Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Coming out of hiding for a special bulletin: DON'T TELL ME ABOUT MY VAGINA!

Grey People, Grey People, Grey People!

Oh how I have missed you. I didn't think I'd find myself here again any time soon (I'm working on my book, sorry!), but I read an article today, and I had to come out of hiding for this very important bulletin: Don't tell me about my vagina! Especially, if you're going to do it like this:

I was reading this article this morning, and all I could think was, "There is no way that this was written by someone who actually HAS a vagina." Because nobody who is lucky enough to be a part of the pussy parade would ever talk about her coochie that way, right?! Wrong. And so, in defense of the diamonds at the meeting of my thighs, this was the response that I posted:

As a professed pussy lover, I have to say that this article hardly makes me want to call up my ex and put my face between her legs! When you call it "salsa," and "vaginal discharge," and use words such as "acidic bacteria" and "nasty intruders," it's no wonder that men everywhere are looking for a get-out-of-jail-free card! Now, I confess that I don't know much about "blow jobs," but back in the days before I realized that it was more than just the smell of them (and all of that hair...everywhere) that made me un-attracted to men, if someone had described semen as a "milky acidic substance that smells sort of bleachy, with a consistency somewhere between snot and hair gel" I would have come to terms with my homosexuality a lot sooner, if you know what I mean.

When they are clean, most vagina's have a mild scent, and the natural lubricant that they produce is warm, smooth, and can have a variety of lovely tastes, from sweet and salty to sour and tart; vagina much more closely resembles my favorite GoBerry flavor than it does a Bueno y Sano fish taco (although I love the fish tacos from Bueno!) As the walls of the vagina contract and expand with arousal, pleasurable textures and contours can be felt, and moisture often increases with arousal. Vagina is a delicacy, and just like many exotic cuisines, it is an acquired taste. And if men hope to get their ladies (or gentleman) anywhere near that bleachy squirt gun and chicken-skin ball sack, it's a taste that I suggest they acquire.

For clarification, Bueno y Sano is a burrito shop, and GoBerry is a frozen yogurt joint.

So, Grey People, read the article, and tell me what you think! And if you feel the desire, stand up for your pussy, and for pussies everywhere. Because, I don't know about you, but my Va-Jay-Jay does not now, nor has it EVER tasted like salsa!

Peace and love and bugs named Doug,

Monday, February 13, 2012

Piece of Me

Hey Grey People,

      Here's a piece of me to start things off again. Missed you!!

Home is not a stationary thing for me; it wasn’t something that ever existed in the usual way. It had nothing to do with family or old memories, fond memories, any memories. Home was futuristic to me. I hoped to build it out of the people I would meet, the places I would visit.
When you take home with you, you’re far more selective of what you call home, for if you carry too many Things, it can become too heavy, too involved in its idea rather than its practice. And so you choose wisely, and you discard things along the way, Things that no longer serve a purpose, Things that you forgot why you brought with you in the first place. And so home is always new and perfectly suited to you, never bogged down by forgotten toys and Things, never held up by books whose reason for keeping escape you.
You also try to make sure to leave certain Things behind, which is harder than deciding what to take most of the time, mainly because the decision is only half of it (and the easier half at that.) For those Things, you most often end up having to really rip them from you because they hold on tighter than anxious children. Finally, you peel the fingers off, one-by-one, tell yourself that it’s okay, that you can leave this here and YOU will be fine, that it doesn’t need you and you don’t need it. It’s amazing how much we think we need our pain especially, and remarkable most of all how we somehow fail to remember that there will always be more hurt, that leaving one behind only assures the encroachment of the next.

Peace and love and bugs named Doug,

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Back from the Dead!

Hello Grey Boys Girls and Zhes,

      I am back in the virtual flesh and wanting to say hello again! We don't need to get into the gritty details, but I have been very very sick, and am finally feeling well enough to come back to the Greyspace. I apologize for my abrupt departure, but one does not often think about grabbing a laptop on the way to the hospital, and once one is there, the general idea is to get better and leave as soon as possible. The food is as bad as they say it is, the odor is of death and sterilization, and the people are not particularly attractive if I'm being frank (and we know I always am!)

       So much has happened in the queer world since I left, but most notably, prop 8 was voted unconstitutional! See, crazy evangelical Christians, God is, in fact, NOT trying to punish us. I realize that this is but a small step in a much larger journey, but all forward movement only serves to bring about greater momentum, making the next step a little easier than the one before it. So thank you to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals (the two judges in the panel of three anyway), who voted for equality. Thank you for being part of the movement to bring our country into the century that we supposedly reside in.

      What has been going on in your worlds? I have lots of stories, and lots of drama to catch you up on, so I hope to see you back here in the Greyspace tomorrow, where I'll give you an update on my best friend issues, the perils of dating your friend's ex, et cetera.

Peace and love and bugs named Doug,

Sunday, December 4, 2011

"This is who I am."

Hey Grey People,

            So, Enigma has been doing a lot of these, and they’re so entertaining that I have decided to take the questions I like, in no particular order, and start giving you little pieces of myself. It’s a fun way of saying “this is who I am.”

1)    What is something you often do without realizing that you’re doing it?
I correct people’s grammar in my head while they’re talking. So if they say “further” when they should say “farther” I say this to myself in my head. I have a grammar thing—I can’t help it!
2)    Who has the capacity to make you angrier than anyone else in your life, and what in particular does he or she do to make you so angry?
Unfortunately it’s my best friend. She purposely sabotages her relationships with women, and leaves me as the scapegoat. It sucks because she’s not really conscious of it, but everyone else can see it, and tells me so all the time like I’m supposed to do something about it. I can’t make someone see what’s right in front of her if she refuses to open her eyes.
3)    If a fairy waved a magic wand and gave you the house of your dreams, where would it be and what features would it have?
It would be anywhere I wanted—a traveling house. It would most often go back and forth from NYC to a cute New England town. And it would have an amazing kitchen with a range-top gas stove and every kitchen gadget you can imagine. It would have one of those pot racks above the stove, and endless counter space. I love to cook, if you hadn’t gathered :)
4)    What’s a belief that you hold with which many people disagree?
The right to end one’s own life without being classified as mentally ill. Some people’s lives, for whatever reason, are terrible. And they should be able to end them in peace. Suicidality ≠ insanity.
5)    Imagine you just moved onto Sesame Street. Which puppet would you want as your new roommate?
Probably Beaker, because I like to experiment as well. And maybe I could keep him from blowing everything up!!
6)    Have you ever had a weird crush on a famous person that didn’t make sense to you?
Yes! Steven Tyler. I think it’s is mouth/lips, coupled with his screaming and strange androgyny. Somehow I find it hot. I know, a lesbian with a thing for Steven Tyler? Go figure!
7)    If you get ten minutes to interview any celebrity of your choice, who would you like it to be?
Oprah for sure. She has an amazing life story. I could learn a lot.
8)    VH1 has re-introduced its hit show “Pop-Up Video,” which gives behind-the-scenes facts for popular music videos. What musician would you be most interested in learning behind-the-scenes facts about?
Probably Tracy Chapman. I guess I would want to know why she isn’t more forthcoming about her sexuality and personal life (besides the obvious answer of “because it’s private.”)
9)    If you stumbled across someone’s personal written journal that was accidentally left in a public place, would you read any of the content?
Yes. I am fascinated by people, what they think and feel. I don’t think I’d be able to help myself. I realize that I would feel so exposed and betrayed if the tables were turned, but for that reason, I’d never lose my journal!
10) What is the title of a self-help book that you’d never want to see on a store bookshelf?
How about just “How to Live Your Life?” I don’t really care for this genre in general...not sure why.
11) Why did you sign up for writing your blog?
Because I felt the need to reach out to others, and blogging is a great way to do that :)
12) What do you do online when you’re not on your blog?
I read articles, tweet, look at and comment on other people’s blogs, peruse psychology research studies, non-fiction book reviews.
13) How about when you’re not on the computer?
I hike, go out to eat with friends, listen to music, sing, dance, read, bike...oh, and work. You know, the business of life.
14) What do you wish people who read your blog knew about you?
Who I am. Anonymity is safe, but isolating at times.
15) What is your favorite community in the blogosphere?
The queer “this is my life” community. I like hearing other people’s stories.
16) Tell me about your picture you use to represent you on your blog.
The picture is a part of my body, in gray. It represents the philosophy behind my blog—the Grey Space.
17) Pick 3 random blogs from your blogroll and tell us about them.
Effingdykes is a hilarious blog about...well, dykey things. It has great pictures and comical captions, and each post has a theme. The one about dancing is by far my favorite, so check it out! A Brown Girl is Alix Golden’s blog, and it’s really interesting, fun, and comforting—we have some things in common. The Hook Up is an AfterEllen blog that gives relationship advice to people who write in. It makes me feel like I’m not the only who has trouble maneuvering the human species!
18) What features do you think your blog should have that it doesn’t currently?
I wish my blog had a better aesthetic and a clearer organizational structure or focus. I’m thinking of switching to wordpress, but I’m fighting the urge to organize too much. I do that enough in my day-to-day life!
19) Do you have any unique interests that you have never shared before? What are they?
I don’t know if this is unique, but I’m interested in how psychopathology develops in children. The overarching question I have is “what dictates that some of us thrive as children, in spite of our surroundings, while others deteriorate?” How is it that two children growing up in the same environment can have such divergent life outcomes?
20) Do you follow your own style or everyone else’s? Definitely my own. If you were to look into my closet, you’d have no idea what to make of me, because I can be anything on any given day. The same goes for my friends. They are all over the map. I can appreciate a lot of different types of things and people. I’m versatile that way. I’m not a “prep” or a “sporty dyke” or a “femme” exclusively. It’s all in there. I like “nice” people, and “assholes” and “funny” people and “smart” people. I can appreciate certain qualities in everyone, and I judge no one.

Peace and Love and Bugs Named Doug,


Grey Campers,

       A short piece today. Thoughts?

I realized that when others didn’t like gay people, it meant that they didn’t like me. It took me years to come into my blackness, to own it, find a way to identify with it that didn’t leave me feeling like the exception to a dirty but steadfast rule. It took me even longer to embrace my woman-ness, to wear it as proudly as anything, to learn to defend it against all of the malevolent forces that challenged me. How was I now supposed to be a woman and black and queer at the same time? This realization, this discovery, had temporarily turned me from a proud black woman, into a faggot nigger bitch, and I didn’t know how to get back.
            They build on one another; they are inextricably intertwined. I cannot be a black faggot, a lesbian bitch. The denunciation of a single part of me ultimately led to the suffocation of my whole self. We are not pieces; we cannot mix and match, pick two, or buy two and get one free. We are all, and we are nothing without this amalgamation. In this way our emotional selves mirror our physical anatomy.

Peace and Love and Bugs Named Doug,

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Excerpt: The Problem with Men

Hello loyal grey readers,

      Thanks for coming back :-) Here's another excerpt for you. Hope you're enjoying them!

      For the longest time I couldn’t put my finger on it. He’d get in the shower with me, and I’d just stare, wondering what it was about him that bothered me so. At first I thought it might have been the way he moved—quick and seizure-like, sometimes with contorted hands—but later I realized what it was.
                                                            *            *            *   

“So, what exactly is it that you don’t like about his body?”
“Well, his butt, for one.”
“What about it?” 
"It’s flat, and kind of...narrow.”
“Well he can’t help that, he’s a white boy. It’s a white boy butt.”
“Ok, what else?”
“Well, I don’t really like his torso.”
“His torso? That’s random. What’s wrong with his torso?”
“I don’t know, it’s just kind of...square.  You know that place where your stomach descends toward your hipbones? His is so...straight.”
“You mean he doesn’t have a curve there? He’s not a girl, you know!”
“Yeah, I know.”
                                                            *            *            *  

“I tried my best, I really did.”
“It gets better.”
 “I don’t like it.”
“Maybe he’s not the right one. What do you feel when you’re with him?”
“There’s nothing.”
“Was there ever?”
“I wanted there to be something.”
“But was there?”
“I don’t know.”
“Well, describe it. What does it feel like, from start to finish?”
“Well first I get nervous.”
“That’s normal.”
“And then, I am concentrating.”
“Concentrating on what, exactly?”
“Doing a good job...?”
“At what?”
“Making him happy?”
“Hmm...okay. And then what?”
“What? Relief at what?”
“That it’s over. That I won. That he’s happy.”
“And what about in between? Does he make you happy?”
“I don’t know how to answer that question.”

                                                            *            *            *           

“Does he pleasure you?”
“I mean, it gives me pleasure that he feels pleasure.”
“But, I mean, does he try?”
“He does, he tries.”
“The first few times it worked, but after that...I don’t know.”
“What do you mean, ‘it worked?’”
“I mean I came.”
“You did?!”
“ I did...”
“Then what happened after that? When did things change?”
“Oh, around the third time we slept together.”
“And how long had you been together at that point?”
“Three months.”
“So, what did you do after that?”
“Well, we started watching porn together. I thought it would help.”
“Nice! Very bold of you.”
“Um, it was Lesbian porn.”
“Oh. I’ll bet he liked that!”
“I liked that.”
                                                            *            *            *

            I don’t know how many times we actually "slept together"—things got to a point where I was squarely somewhere else for the entire affair, away in a place where the woman on the screen was with me, caressing me gently, smelling of musk and tickling the fine hairs on the small of my back—but it was surely enough times to recognize that this truly was “it.”
            But the rest of it was fine for a while. We hung out, watched movies, hiked. I cooked, he enjoyed my cooking, appreciated it even. But the more I had to see him naked, the stranger things became. At first I just didn’t enjoy seeing him. Up until that point I guess I never looked. If he was changing I’d turn away and pretend to do something, or I’d leave the room. And if I was already doing something, I certainly wouldn’t look up from it. But nudity didn’t embarrass me, or make me uncomfortable in general; my face would just curl in a strange way, involuntarily, whenever I looked at him. He never noticed.
                                                            *            *            *
“I don’t know how to make you feel...” he said. He misspoke, and yet, he did not. Nobody can make anybody feel anything else, but there were certain things I would never feel for him, what for who he was, what he was. I didn’t say anything.

Peace and Love and Bugs Named Doug,

Monday, November 28, 2011

A piece of Anna

Grey People,

      Here's another excerpt from what I have written. It's about Anna, my first...well, my first everything. Comments and criticism are welcome. Again, this is part of a memoir I have written, and it's coming in pieces, and out of order. I'm just trying to get my feet wet, and see how I feel about putting this out there.

      I only once had a nightmare in her arms, and it was the last time we were together that year. Perhaps my pain could sense this. My pain was afraid of her, I think, because she was not afraid of it. I opened my eyes to her, and I let her see it. I made no sounds, no attempts to explain, I merely peeled away the layers of myself and let her curl up inside. She was no stranger to pain; pain had taught her many things too, I could tell.

            The night before she was leaving, she knocked on my door in the early morning hours. Knowing that it must be her, I fell clumsily out of bed. I opened the interior door (my roommate was not home, and I had come not to expect her), and saw the light of the hallway peeking under the exterior door. I could not see the shadow of her feet. I opened the door, and without looking to see if it was her, turned and walked back into my room, peeled of my t-shirt, and climbed into bed. She peeled off her outer layers, and slid under the covers with me, pushing the heavy blanket to the bottom of the bed.

            We held each other for a long time, saying nothing. There was nothing to say. We had no delusions about the world and the way things worked. I wasn’t even my whole self yet, and could not hope that our pieces would actually fit together once I was formed. Such hopes are unrealistic. I am a member of the realist party. We made love, and it was more intentional, more intimate than ever before. Her teeth ripped at my skin as though she was trying to take a piece of it with her. The pain was a deliberate pleasure that I welcomed, and reciprocated. As I kissed her, she passed into me, and I into her, and she shuddered. Knowing is a reciprocal affair.

            I don’t remember the nightmare, so I don’t know how bad it was, only that when I started she was already awake, and pulled me tightly to her with one arm. I struggled for a moment out of confusion, but then I smelled her and felt her, and my breathing calmed. After a while, she pressed her lips to the back of my neck and routed her other arm in between my head and shoulder, engulfing me in her skin. Her left hand came to rest on breast, and my heart fluttered a bit. I think she felt it. “I’m here,” she said softly. She was, there on my chest, in my chest, as she would always be.

            The next morning she fell out of bed, still drunk from our night, and pulled on her layers. I rolled over, and I opened my eyes, but did not stir any further. She came close then, and, stroking my wild hair, looked at me, into me, and said, “I love you.”

“I love you too, “ I said, believing her instantly. We kissed, and she was gone.

            I saw her once, the following year, when she came back to visit, but we hadn’t spoken much in between. I was broken up with my “boyfriend” at the time, and we made love again in the effortless way we always did. When she left, I knew I would not see her again.

            I don’t know if she was ever real now, as she no longer exists in the world. In the age of technology, her name is nowhere, her likeness without an eternal electronic address, and so I find myself wondering if the way I remember her in my mind is the way that she is. If she even is, or ever was, Anna. She will always exist for me, though, as an awakening. She explained many things and helped build many pieces of me. I love you.

Peace and Love and Bugs Named Doug,