shameless self-promotion. live with it.

Katenypubliclibrary2I’m sorry. I haven’t posted here recently. I’m in the thick of booking my college, university, high school and conference touring season. I’ve been writing a fuck of a lot, just not here. I’m sorry. I am. I’m still trying to figure out how to keep this blog updated and interesting, while keeping my other online spots up to date, and still have room for a life.

I would surely appreciate your help on the having-a-life part.

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it’s about you staying alive

Itsaboutthebook
Hello, Cruel World is my response to the incidents of September 11th, 2001; and to the terrifying government that grew up here in the name of national security. That government, and the oppressive culture it’s forwarding, is making life really difficult for a lot of sweet people in the world.

Today, on the 5th anniversary of that day, I’m dedicating the first page of my Hello, Cruel Blog as a safe, respectful forum in which readers of the book can speak, to heal, and to focus on making our freaky lives more livable.

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It Was My Mom’s Birthday Yesterday

301albertmomThis is a picture of me and my mom, taken in the summer of 1948. I wasn’t even a year old. Mildred Vandam Bornstein died about 12 years ago. I was lucky enough to have a mother-son relationship with her as I was growing up, and a mother-daughter relationship with her for seven years as an adult.

A few years back, I wrote a piece that was published in The New York Times Sunday Magazine, under the title "Her Son/Daughter." I’d called the piece "Hoowahyoo," but editors tend to dick around with your work, especially titles of short pieces. No matter.

Every September 9th, I open up this document on my hard drive and I read it and I smile and cry a little. If you know my work, you’ve probably read it before. But in honor of my mom’s birthday, I’m presenting it for the first time here on my blog. This is the uncut version, with the extra bit about my phone sex hostess days that my mother never did know about.

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and now some encouraging words from mr. rogers

RogersOn this past Monday, Labor Day, I gave a welcome-to-school talk to First-Years at Hampshire College, as a guest of their Office of Student Development. And just last night I gave the keynote welcome address to new and returning LGBTQ&A Students at New York University, as a guest of the NYU Office of LGBT Student Services. What a rush! I felt truly welcome at both schools, and I met some brave and awfully fun students who I’m now in touch with on my myspace page.
Makes me feel really good about the future.
 

But now I’m exhausted, and I‘m letting Mr. Rogers describe the kind of world that probably would be equally welcoming to both you and me and gosh just about everyone else I can think of, even and maybe especially Mr. President himself. Wouldja be my neighbor, George?

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Will Bush Go After Ahmadinejad for His Denunciation of Liberal Educators?

Ahmadinejadinpulpit
It’s back to school in Iran, too. But Ahmadinejad is welcoming Iran’s students back with a challenge:

"Today, students should shout at the president and ask why liberal and secular university lecturers are present in the universities!"

SEEING THE FOREST For the Trees
has an interesting take on this, comparing the fundamentalist Iranian
regime with fundamentalist US Republicans. But I think Bush and Company are in
a bind. Are they actually going to defend the liberal and secular professors in Iran? Can’t wait to see that!

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No Child Left Behind… Indeed!

Nochildleftbehindbyusa_1
Happy Labor Day weekend. I’m home working on some talks i’m going to be delivering next week: Monday, Sept. 4th I’m at Hampshire College as part of Orientation Week for new incoming students and all first-years. Then, on Wednesday, Sept. 6th, I’m at NYU, speaking to newly incoming and returning LGBTQ students as part of their welcome back party. I’m looking forward to both engagments. So for a few days, I’m going to post some old favorites, stuff I like that maybe you haven’t seen.

"No Child Left Behind" is a theme I’ve been grappling with. This article is from a piece I did for the GLBT Pride Week edition of Seattle’s The Stranger. Surely, you must be a fan of Dan Savage! So, plunk the magic twanger that is your "read more" button, to read my message for Pride just the way I turned it in to Dan, right before the paper went to press.

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Fly High, Enjoy the Burn: The Icarus Project

Fly_high_enjoy_the_burn_4"Creating a new culture and language for people with manic depression and related madness."

The Icarus Project

I met Sascha Scatter and some other members of the New York branch of The Icarus Project at a reading I did at Bluestockings Books in New York City. I was there for the release of my new book, Hello, Cruel World, this past July. Now, Sascha and I are friends on myspace and we’re plotting to take over the world via the group ze’s part of: The Icarus Project. From the group’s website:

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Got Hooked?

Hooked_lip2
There’s a Tibetan Buddhist concept known as “shenpa”, which loosely translates into “how we get hooked.” Everyone goes through this syndrome. One moment, we’re doing just fine and dandy, and the next moment we’re on the edge of rage or despair or some other negative emotion. I can tell you where I’ve always tended to get hooked: when I’m in the presence of some jerk who… whoops…

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