June 30th, 2004

Courtesey First . . .

I've been away for what feels like ages, what with reunion, Origins, and the like. Even when I've been around, I've been too busy working on my play (and discovering I'm not a playwright!) to have much energy to write here. But first things first: before I start rambling about my own stuff, I owe a number of people congratulations of various kinds. For instance:

chaiya, hakamadare - Oh my word! You have a house! I can't wait to come see it. I'll poke the boy and see whether he's interested in doing July 4th in Boston, but if not, we'll have to come and help you on the unpacking end of things instead.

bneuensc - I'm not sure whether to sympathize or rejoice with you, so let's go for both. Consider me patting you on the back with one hand and waving the other in glee at the same time.

rscott - Not that you haven't heard this from me in person, but you're a bloody genius. And I hate you. Did I mention the hating you? -g- Also, thanks again to you and thran for the flowers and port - though I haven't gotten a chance to drink the latter yet, since I might just pass out on the floor, what with being sick.

psychick - You're pretty fantastic all-around, but congratulations on your fabulous art stuff. Really, though, I'm most pleased that we got some time to bond this weekend. Does that mean you'll let me take you out to dinner sometime soon and talk your ear off about projects and the arting-up thereof?

kniedzw - Good luck. Really. I'm crossing as many fingers for you as are socially appropriate.

scarywhitegirl - Squee! The bag is adorable! I love the colors, but I might have to replace the silver button with a big blue one, because then it would match my favorite shirt and I'll use it all the time (as opposed to just periodically). I hope you don't mind! (Of course, I'm going to have to get the boy to do the actual button replacing, as I've made a point of never learning to sew. He even has to sew up the various knitted items I make.)

In other big news about other people, my sister (she of the thesis) is moving to New York. She's looking for a cheap two-bedroom apartment and a job doing non-profit work, if anyone hears about either. Or I can just use my magic powers of hookup to find her something, let's hope. I'm really excited to have her here, especially as I'm not the best phone correspondent (as most of you can vouch for!) and she hates email - so instead we'll get to hang out in person, I can show her around the city, and with any luck I can suck her and some of her more talented friends into the madness I call my life.

Off to look at an apartment for eclectician. I'm hoping this particular place kicks enough ass for him to take it, as it means he'll be about ten minutes from me. More later.
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Sun and Stars

I don't believe (and have never believed) in astrology, but I've always found it vaguely interesting as a tool for self-examination. (Example: "Am I like that? Or am I more like this other thing?") Usually I find myself not identifying with anything that's said about Capricorn - I don't consider myself overly pragmatic, detail-oriented, conventional or stuffy. Mentally, I'm a synthetic and creative thinker; emotionally, I value originality and passion. I took some online quiz, though, and got this result, which I found surprisingly accurate.

When Jessica was born, the Sun was in the Sign Capricorn, the Elder. One critical point dominates every other consideration: Jessica's basic sanity and vitality depend on a constant diet of visible accomplishments. For this reason, Capricorn is often framed as an "ambitious" sign. Yes and no: psychologically, all Capricorn really refers to is self-discipline and sustained effort. Even though Jessica has those qualities in abundance, the key is that she feeds herself through exploring and extending them. And that's something she can do in a conventional profession...or by spending long hours devotedly learning to play the sitar. To that end, Jessica's nature is determined, serious, and driven, no matter where she aims it. Restraints on her focus and concentration are anathema to her. For committed love really to work for Jessica in the long run, it must support her larger aims rather than detracting from them. No clinging vines need apply, in other words -- although if Jessica found herself with one, she'd probably honor the commitment! In real intimacy, Jessica's self-containment may let her slip into a kind of emotional invisibility or unavailability, and clearly that must be avoided. Ditto for the perils of simple exhaustion. The good news is that she brings to love the same inestimable virtues she brings to the rest of her life: integrity, devotion, a capacity to endure the threadbare patches, and unerring realism.

It's useful for me to think about this, especially in the context of various possible professional developments coming up. It's true: I don't feel complete unless I'm making or doing something, and doing something that I feel is a good use of my abilities as well as being inherently worth doing. Considering that I've got some hard choices coming up about where to spend my time and effort, every little bit of insight helps.
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Someone Should Write This Novel

I'm part of a young women's discussion group that I've been referring to as "Talk Club" (as in: the first rule of Talk Club is that you do not talk . . . oh, nevermind). Last meeting, we all brought in memoir pieces - mine was about learning to cook, and I'll post it here if someone gives me even minimal provocation - and one of the other girls had a fabulous line in her piece that's begging to be turned into a novel. "Imagine the People interview: queer feminist radical names highschool boyfriend as greatest lifetime influence!" Can't you imagine a terrific, biting, witty novel of social satire about sexual identity, political correctness, the media, celebrity and gender roles just from that one line? I can, but I don't know enough about the radical lesbian community to handle it with the grace, humor and depth it deserves. If you find an aspiring queer feminist radical who's looking for a novel concept, or just one who's interested in helping me do some research, send 'em my way, okay?
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Duly Provoked

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(The end of the story, insofar as there ever is an end to a story in real life, is that I left seminary after my first year. It wasn't so much a rebellious phase as an act of desperation: I'm not nearly as religious a person as my parents hoped I would be, and it was time that I found my own path. Now if only I knew where that path was leading . . .)
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