daily specials:
drew's tasting menu:
appetizer: unflaming, whiskey-soaked inari
soup: whipped rice congee
entree: seared duck breast (from a young, but fed-up bird)
dessert: fresh asian fruit salad with bitter melon-lemon dressing

Thursday, July 31, 2003

So today there was this proselytizer, shouting in the subway (at Lex), about the coming again of God and some such, and how punishment will be visited upon all those who are "practicing homosexuality, which is gay or lesbian acts..." I was sorely tempted (but lacked the balls, despite the cute, white, pecs-parading T-shirt I was wearing) to rebut, "I'm not practicing! It's fer reals!"

Hrmm... So yeah, other than being sexy and eating yet more rice, I have little to report, other than the beginning of the weekend, and long overdue with my school friends: hard to imagine that that school is now swallowed by another, and that that little chapter has so fully tied itself up. I have, at least, been thinking more about cool new units for next year, and if I start setting things down now I might actually have a new teaching method for next year. I think that it is more fertile ground than last year, and it's just a matter of getting started on the right foot and making the right sorts of nods to my kung-fu practicing Chinese ass: maybe I can wow them with some distorted vision of Chineseness, where duck sauce and PFR flow from every orifice, a neverending bounty of wisdom and MSG.

So today was not very exciting, as far as classes are concerned, given that my shoptalk banter I expect to be more exciting than actually happened this afternoon. In any case, I wish the following were more troubling: but it is not. Welcome to my life, eh? It's been strange how I've forgotten my work habits and my importance. But this shit gets me fucking steamed.

I love pigeon peas, I love Goya. And Joephet too. But that's a longer story, with fewer carbs.

Wednesday, July 30, 2003

So the past few entries have been just a tad out of synch for whatever reason--I have not been posting very promptly after writing. And I was away from internet access last night, so I wasn't able to say anything, though I guess I did find the right sort of distraction from that work. I think I'm reaching a blah blah phase right now--it's almost three on a wednesday afternoon and I've yet to check out the new comics for the week or the Onion. Still, the evening spent pleasantly with Joephet and going through old photos (new to me) with Betsy, marvelling, perhaps, at how little some things change, or sot hey apear: it's strange, as there are so few photos of me from the college years, as I don't think I had very shutterbug friends, and I certainly have never had a camera, trusting instead to memory. And of course I have such discontinuities: how many friends have lasted? Schisms sadly the usual mode. Ah, well: I should start turning on the matchmaking juices, it's just difficult cuz Alric isn't a Jew...

Also managed to dig up some lost gems via Joephet's lit anthologies, which do not coincide with mine, which are buried deep in boxes against my wall anyway: I do miss freshman year and my writing class then. In particular, Walker Percy's The Loss of the Creature (a title which I have forgotten for well-on 4 years) is I think the beginnings of my term "touristical" to describe a certain approach to experience. I really need to focus more, and might leave for school early, just to hit the library a little earlier than before. Ah, for bookshelves! I live in such squalor...

So the Post is still a goldmine. Today, re: the gay high school thing, a 35-year-old sheet-metal worker from Westchester is heard to remark, "There's enough segregation in society as it is. What are they going to have next black and white school? It's ridiculous." I guess that's all I need to say...

I'm skipping classes today. It's not a big deal, though, as all my work is done, yet again. I really should find some fun project in Assembly to do in my spare time, except I don't actually have an assembler at home and hafta schlep an hour and a half to assemble my code. So I should find something fun to do, though I'm tempted to just do some more math, strangely enough: looking up all manner of old work, and hankering to do some writing again.

I'd made great progress on this one short story And there is hope quite some time ago, but I have made little progress since and it's not yet clear that my protagonist is a chinaboi. Hrmm....

Tuesday, July 29, 2003

thismorningthreelargestrongcupsofchaiatatwoandonehalfhournewemployees
meetingandbytheniwasshakingthesexualharassmentpamphletsoffthetableand
clutchingnursingmycuplikeitwasaginandtonicandsotothemiwasthedrunkenfool
andmaybeiamnowforabeer.

Monday, July 28, 2003

So I am sitting at my college computer lab, blogging and surfing away since my Assembly class was cancelled. But this is pleasant enough, even if I am deprived of my usual chatty subactivities. I have finished my assignment for the week, which seems horribly simple after a fashion, and I am wondering whether that $40 Assembly book was worth it. I also feel snobbery creeping into what I am thinking, as I am looking up nursing programs... I don't know what to say at this point.

I was rereading some more unpleasant writing I'd done as regards Joephet some weeks ago: three weeks ago, in fact. And I must say, I am rather sharp. Maybe I will post that when I get home, maybe not.

So upon reading Harper's for the first time in some time, I confess I find it horribly horribly pretentious. It has the post-visceral taint of well-fed white liberalism, if that makes sense. The extended essay on dissent is more rambling than a drunken me. Maybe I am allergic to higher-quality paper, or the pooh-poohness of it all: this is simply not muscular prose, it is too upholstered in a florid print. I guess it's also already long-obvious the things pointed out: the similarities between the present American imperialism and that of a century ago. So maybe I'm jaded: I guess I'm curious as to what the demographic for this magazine is, as well as what the further-left reception is (not great, I'd imagine). To think that I'd once wanted to work for these guys...

Ah, yes: the Post, which I read as my daily dose of right-wing nonsense, and also for signs of cracks in the Bush edifice, which is actually happening blessedly more and more often, today has a second headline of "Gay High," which is apparently just good ol' Harvey Milk given a head. Hrmm... I guess it would be nice to be able to bring Joephet to school, but at the same time, I feel as if I am ill-equipped to deal with quite so much high school bujiiness. Still, one must give some thought to the Conservative Party Chairman Mike Long's query, "Is there a different way to teach homosexuals? Is there gay math?"

Well, I can say from personal experience that in gay math, combinatorics (how many outfits?) is much more important. And your word problems tend to be set at Sephora. But that is an inside joke. And I am a terribly dressed gay math teacher, hehe, so I was famous for the (illustrative) question, "Mr. Hu has five dress shirts and one pair of pants. How many outfits does he have?" It's great to be able to deflect your students' accusations of buggery with a simple, "Not with these shoes..."

Sunday, July 27, 2003

So my parents send me the following news, from the cutting edge of subversive leftist activity. The old subdivision in metro Detroit is being taken over by blacks, much to the chagrin of the longtime-resident rich Jews. After a landscaping dispute with our neighbors on the hill, my parents have decided to exact their revenge by selling the house (which is an imminent transaction, it sadly seems--where will my books go?) to only black families at what they term to be a "Bad Neighbor Discount." Take that, whitey!

Joephet is the third bowl of porridge.

So it has been a while, and indeed I have done plenty to now recount.

Last night I spent with Lex and Hanna and Alex, old friends from school, Lex my old roommate for two years, and though the entertainment (Bad Boys II) was long and drawn-out (with needless state-sponsored terrorism against our Communist neighbor to the south), to say nothing of more of that all-too-familar brand of homophobic double-entendre, the company was as always well-met, long overdue. And so it seems that Lex and Hanna are to settle down together, in what feels like a happy move, somehow, Hanna at last working with the little kids she so covets. And this is a relief, they together perhaps again moving toward the status of Hope for Heterosexuality. It's also nice, somehow seeing, however overdue, old friends by which I can measure myself, my progress, my core.

Ah, yes: also a nice jaunt to Alric's, whose UWS apartment is actually rather nice, I must say. Though in characteristic fashion he has failed to realize that a package labelled "drape" contains but one. So his red-bedecked lightless shaft-pointing window is somehow less than halfway decent. Sex and the City, red wine, a sprinkling of girls, and fagulous commentary is well on the way.

This morning rolled out of bed to see Kenneth in Union Square, to dish about his little field trip to New Jersey to meet a man (a token of) his type. I tried to be all big-brotherly, which is kind of strange when your victim is a year older and used to be a drill sergeant. Still, right about now, I hope Kenneth is snoozing on his host's couch, or at least fully clothed still. I suppose at some point I can ask him What's the Frequency, Kenneth? and not quite be talking about EM-radiation. Who would have thought an NYUer could turn out so right?

Alric again this afternoon, unexpectedly at my computer by the time I returned, late, having malingered with Kenneth to make sure he wouldn't brush his teeth beforehand... And this was pleasant, though it was perhaps strange when my roommate Errol had a friend visit, replete with servings of mung bean soup, a strange vibe, and Chinese music playing rather loudly. Very ethnic. But perhaps he's beat old Alric in "breaking in" his old room. And this after only a few weeks. However: De gustibus...

Then off with Dannis (who frantically greeted me and almost knocked me over galloping from the shower, as I stood in the foyer, wondering why I'm not gay enough have a presentable apartment) all the way to Joephet's fam's place out in Little Neck. I am beginning to suspect that Columbia faggery would have been more bearable than the type that I avoided so scrupulously back in the day. But maybe I'm just overgeneralizing from one case. That's how stereotypes are born, y'know. Whoever thought that bickering about haircare could be so amusing? A pleasant if misdirected ride, necessitating a full canter at a bus that was not where we had quite expected it. I can still hoof it in dress shoes.... Upon arriving, I felt as if I had walked onto the set of Better Luck Tomorrow, though in this case there was race/nationality solidarity in this house of karaoke-singing Filipinos. I cannot begin to describe that cooing scene now, and do regret that I didn't take a whirl--I was too busy controlling myself in J's presence, able only to furtively conference with him when about to leave. Thanks to Dannis' tactical obfuscations, I made it back to the subway and then home safely, and before too long, though not before a little scary jaunt through downtown LIC. So it goes. Family, though, is family. And as insistent as they may be that you eat yet more succulent pig, I can't help but smile at the thought. Ripe pickings. So though I'm alone again now, it's but temporary: and not a bad space at that.

Friday, July 25, 2003

So I been lazy on this day my day off, which as expected has become this deep sink where there is to be no real math to be done, though I am somehow reading yet more short fiction, with the hope that perhaps some of it will rub off and I will gain the sort of fluency I will need to make some of my own. Not so much a matter of imitative strokes, but more the direction of orienting myself, as it were, as this is not something I've given much thought to. It's also difficult, because old Alric, for all his ambitions in fictional directions (heehee: I'm going to have to blog that little one-liner), confesses not to often read women authors. Which seems rather important if I am to write biting SAPI fiction (At Alric's suggestion, "Straight Asian/Pacific Islander" is more clear-cut, with the requisite counterpart "GAPI").

See, I've been trying to blog about class-assumptions in fiction for some time now, but in all my attempts come across as something of a prig. But it's a big deal, still. Like at the year-end reception for the teachers at my school at the Brooklyn Marriott, where some teachers were unable to identify all the cheeses present--Cheddar, Havarti, Brie. I mean, brie, goddammit! This is not rocket science. So the point is that any work of fiction--any type of discourse, really--has class-assumptions about it which can be difficult to somehow overcome--and this is the hesitancy that I feel, though of course it's deeper than this one trivial manifestation--I just don't quite know how to verbalize it yet. But I feel this way about most art, which is, I realize, somehow foolish, but perhaps no more foolish than some soaring praise of the universality of art and beauty and all that. I guess I recognize the barriers but have yet to rest upon their ultimate significance. And it's not as if I don't love a good Waugh story.

All right, so this lame, but I couldn't resist: Study: Extent of whaling greater than thought. Now, this one can't be true--after all, the latter is boundless and hard to quantify (well, OK maybe Wittgenstein has limited it...), but the former is bound by physical constraints. Yahoo is great.

so the pirate and i trekked to portland tonight... without trying, we ended up driving right up to urban outfitters and a perfect parallel parking job (go pirate!) into an open space on the street in front of it. it was like the mothership calling us home. presence of a dollar shelf completely only turned the situation from tasty to delicious.

yeah... i am a consumer.

Thursday, July 24, 2003

So I've been wandering around these days without my glasses, which I have temporarily misplaced. It's strange, having to go back to my old ways of squinting and of guessing--I'm rather good at both, though I suppose the former to be more racially charged. So it's been annoying, to have my range so reduced, but it's helped me actually to focus, rather than to stare off into the distance, or be distracted with cruising. It's hard to cruise when you hafta squint to make eyes at someone. Not that I've ever been successful in that direction. It's a normative practice, after all, and I'm just a Chinaman...

I should clarify: the previous post was meeting only a math guy. Nothing else. It was just designed to unsettle certain readers of this blog and coddle their paranoic tendencies...

some of the coworkers and i went to dairy queen this evening. having already had my ice cream for the day (green tea! of course, it is the soy kind, so moderately bland... but still a bit of the flavor i want), i ordered a raspberry misty, and was handed a blue thing. raspberries are not blue. over the weekend i had a raspberry slushie and it was red, with seeds from the actual berries. i soon sucked all of the blueness out anyhow.

and drew...
"it's sort of a shame that he has to get off so soon, as today we just weren't getting off at the same stop. we didn't have time to finish..." somewhere between nice and too obvious. and you met a mathboy. have you seen the movie sneakers? one of the disposable (disposed of, as it were) characters is the "sexy, unfathomably brilliant mathematician who wears linen suits." hm.

So much of today is unbloggable. I'll figure out a way to, though. Meanwhile, I'm just amused by the following revelation: Study: Ice cream more fattening than thought. But come now.... the latter is a hard-to-pin-down process that might not reduce down to just the neurobiological, while the former is a confection.

Wednesday, July 23, 2003

So I met this new guy today. This is not something I normally do on the subway, but I guess he saw what I was reading, and I guess I also saw what he was reading, so it was perhaps inevitable. So we strike up a conversation, and hit it off admirably. All the while, I'm thinking: I'm not that obvious, am I? Well, I guess today I was. In any case, it's sort of a shame that he has to get off so soon, as today we just weren't getting off at the same stop. We didn't have time to finish, and all the while I think our trainmates were rather amused or perturbed by his wild gesticulations and floorbound demonstrations. There's a reason why I don't like this sort of thing in public... In any case, we exchanged numbers (well, I gave him my email: never phone number to strangers, after all), so we can probably finish up later. Altogether unexpected, but still...

I just really hafta stop reading math on the train.

Hrmm... I am soon compiling all of the writings on a particular bathroom wall that I have been reading and rereading. Apparently, the appropriate response to, "I love all of my girlfriends shoes... [followed by a detailed inventory of shoes as well as acts]" is "Well, I love my girlfriend's titties and pussy..." Also, while "dictator" is a word, and "pussytator" is not, this is a disconnected fact, somehow. Sigh. A teacher's instincts never die.

Modal logic is exciting. Correspondence theory! Cayley-Klein geometries and modal logics! Whee!

Orientalism is treating me well. (This is a use-mention error, to comic effect). And I will soon begin work on my tapestry of stories starring pathetic, emasculated Chinabois.

Tuesday, July 22, 2003

Strange dreams that I can only vaguely remember: something about Josh Hartnett floating naked in an indoor swimming pool, and me without a remote control. The attic people who seek to get married, but when they go to the shore to contemplate the future together, find that with the receding tide there are park benches of tormented souls who are periodically jolted by a monkey from the Planet of the Apes in pretty multicolored bolts of monkey-electricity. I need to get a dental checkup, too.

I may be getting mired in ethnic literatures, meanwhile. Which again, would help, as I feel more and more the plight of the HAPI (heterosexual Asian/Pacific-Islander, which is a delightful acronym, as surely they are anything but). Something ought to be done about that, and I would be interested to see what the latest takes in fiction might be...

And now the rain is falling, which means that for the first time in memory it is actually not Beer Garden weather, which is tragic, but OK, as most of the neighborly crew are elsewhere. I think a Mandy Moore expedition with Lex is quite overdue, to learn How to Deal. Not feeling lackluster in general, but not been in a blogging mood. Maybe because my contentment of late is rather private...

at the wheel again today... for the first time since last, eh, september? and pots from then remain bisqueware to this day... the studio here is thoroughly acceptable... a better pottery room than i am accustomed to... a choice of clays instead of just one. large doors to the sunny and sweltering world. a tiny locker just right for my bag of clay. two bowls and a drinking cup today. let's hope they don't crack.

bessie does have all the fun... i am glad she is taking care of our dear. he plays gatsby... i can only think of those i hope not to play at the moment... narcissa benbow.... who was all right in flags in the dust for the most part, but became intolerable in sanctuary.

Monday, July 21, 2003

So I shouldn't still be up, but what can you do. Thoroughly in love--in love with this Clarence Cooper novel I'm reading, The Dark Messenger, about a Negro newspaper. I don't know: it's just so vibrant, raw, polemical but real. Exactly the sort of Trojan Horse fiction I could only dream of writing. My work is too unsubtle. But as Stanislavsky said to Danny Kaye, "You must suffer."

So I lost the previous version of this post, which I was writing when I had just gotten back from Bessie's in Connecticut--Glorious (which is what I said before too, cuz it's true), laid back, no rush, no schedule, outdoorsy, historical and quaint, but just perfect weather and a river that is much more pleasant where there is no danger of actually drowning, even if the twelve-year-old who saved your life last time too is still around to throw you a rope again if necessary. So floating in the river on an inflatable (inner tube), happily browning (like Elizabeth Barrett, only more so), and occasionally stretched out Christ-figure-like like Gatsby at three in the afternoon. Bessie is the ideal hostess, and I have a newfound appreciation for perfect gins-and-tonics (I love the idea of that pluralization, especially given how it should be "standersby" or "passersby"), though inebriation is dangerous (Someone: "Yeah, half of Yale is gay." me, unintentionally, talking literally about bodies, not other dichotomies: "Is that the top half or the bottom half?") when you are in a crowd of similarly educated fofolks where it's possible to end up in extended disputes over whether a marsupial pouch is actually an orifice (of course it's not: it's not internal).

So charades was great, even if classed. Abstract nouns/ideas ("integrity", "continuity") and crude sexual slang are very effective, as are sundry organelles. We actually devised a sign for "abstract noun/idea" which is wiggling your fingers on both hands above your head. It's also extremely frustrating to get as close to "Trinidad & Tobago" as "Trinity & Toboggan" and then run out of time. Ya can't win 'em all. And pancakes are delightfully acceptable carbs.

Ah, Bessie. Maybe I'm a little tipsy on slightly watered-down Maker's Mark, but she really is the "best girl in the world."

Oh, yes: I got a letter (which is pretty morbidifying in its own way) from the organ bank recently. So it turns out that if the teaching and leftism don't work out I can always be an eye-banker....

Saturday, July 19, 2003

So very pleasantly drunk now, though alone, on some new whiskey I've acquired. It's great just sipping while smoking and chatting on the phone, in my sort of placid lucidity. Reconnecting with my old summertime pursuits, and good to feel as if I've left some sort of imprint, even if it's not fully what I would have authored if only I held the pen. Tonal shifts can be drastic, sustaining. But I am being a little vague here, perhaps intentionally. There still hafta be some mysteries left, after all...

But no, I do feel as if I am approaching critical mass of friends here in New York. I have my old teaching buddies, of course, and though D is now out of town and out of touch, Miss Fegs is a wonderful, sustaining influence, even if our schedules don't quite match, with me and my bachelor nocturnalness and her and her more domestic idleness. We hope to have a website together, and I bet I would abduct/adopt her kids if I could. It's just too easy to miss that sort of chemistry, where I could roll into my class Block 2 and banter with her, tell jokes to the class that only she would laugh at, being Cap'n Fags to her Miss Fegs (which is the name of a citywide detox center (which is a detox center that has branches citywide, not some other misconstrual)), full of crazy peeps who always try to bum cigarettes from ya, cuz those are still legal. Well, no. If I were just ten years older and het....

Friday, July 18, 2003

ar, i am so lag in posting compared to dear drew... so i just got back from an art fair... not bad... left me somewhere between disgusted and inspired. so much stuff being produced (of varying quality), and why am i not currently really producing myself (well, i have an appointment to start potting again on monday)? i had a really good soft pretzel and some loganberry punch at the jewish booth (the local jewish congregation... is there just one in this town?). i wanted to ask the cute (albeit probably too young) guy who said they were warming the pretzel just for me (before the pregnant lady tried to steal it) if there are any hebrew classes/language tables around these parts, but i chickened out. maybe tomorrow.

and so, drew, is the settling down of these things always admirable in some sense?

Uhhh.... So things with Joephet have settled down admirably, away from the previous untoward expectations and back toward a sort of close friendship, or as close as it can be at this relatively early stage, where my seniority is at least an order of magnitude less than that of any of his other friends. It's just more balanced and realistic, and hopefully sustainable. Certainly not the arrangement I would have expected to be possible, but I guess you can't be too pre-fixed in your ideas. For those yet curious as to what this actually means, I am not yet getting a haircut or shaving.

Off to Middle Haddam this weekend to see Bessie, alongside Alric and some other second-order acquaintances. I will be bringing modal logic, and just need to be away from the city for a bit, get going, see a river, and not come quite as close to drowning this time, perhaps.

The thing is I really need to get cracking on this comic strip: there is such quality material to be done, but it is somehow difficult for me to sit down without deadlines or an audience.

So I've been a marvelous juggler. Today since hitting the college library again I've been bouncing all around yet more modal logic, some philosophy of math a la Hartry Field, and William James and Pragmatism. And I can hold each in my head, separately. But this of course does not compare to what I was doing last night, which I can now shamefacedly confess--I was half-consoling my friend Boston, chatting with Joephet on the phone about my tendency to be mean to him (for all the obvious reasons), and performing a running commentary over IM about this really bad gaysian porn I was watching with Kean. Yeah. All this at the same time, somehow. I had considered writing at length on that particular porn, but that would be very Albert freshman year. I just don't know that it would quite change anything.

Beyond that, a wonderful moment at Borough Hall in Brooklyn on the 4 train when a family walks in, and the matriarch (grandmother) mutters about one of her grandkids, "I really hafta get rid of one of them," to which I promptly reply, "I'll take him!" Something about 3-year-olds which is so vulnerable and beautiful and full of hope.

Thursday, July 17, 2003

When I grow up....

Where to begin? It's been quite a day, though I suppose that my sleeping hours are now very much shifted, to the ridiculous 6am to about 3pm, which is plenty of sleep, yes, but not very nice for dealing with other people.

Last night a great, long phone conversation with my usual mutterances and mumblings, that deepening and growlying of my voice that comes with late darkness, so much so that I was incomprehensible enough to have my stated one-time ambition to be "a math professor when I grow up" mistaken for "a masturbator when I grow up." Further examination does perhaps suggest that the similarity is not completely outlandish, but still... It's a little embarassing, at the least. But such mishearing aside, I feel as if my head was cleared in many ways, that I was able to somehow step back and look at the shape of my life, with some greater context provided by counterfactuals: with the question put to me, I guess I see at least five tracks for myself within the next decade: (1) pure teaching, which seems unlikely and rather unsatisfying, though stable and easy; (2) a route that takes me through administration, where it might feel as if I might have more of a push policy-wise, and where I might shape schools and not just classrooms; (3) a more purely academic route, where I go back to school for a parent-pleasing terminal degree in some non-math field, such as linguistic, philosophy, or maybe even economics; (4) a law-school/political route, where I get the credentials to push the system from the outside, lawsuits and such; (5) a more purely artistic route, where I try to comick full-time.

Of course, these are all somehow external measures: somehow what really matters would be an adopted family of Chinese-yakking, chopsticks-clacking black kids.

Here's to batteries dying before the conversation does, Kean.


Meanwhile, I suppose I am neck-deep in modal logic. This is vaguely fun, and nicely between philosophy and logic--it's nice to get back into the old groove as far as math goes, though we'll see how long this lasts. There is no greater motivator than independent study in a classroom where people confuse odds for primes and don't understand simple syntax in quantificational logic. (For example, a predicate cannot take an existential quantifier as an argument....). Who knows where this will lead, in the hunt for adequate recommendations for law school... ugh.

Wednesday, July 16, 2003

there is no justice in this world.

after two evenings of searching (ok, so the first evening i got pretty quickly distracted by a bookstore), and a semi-traumatic crossing of the city police car launching platform, i finally found the public library. i enter, find my way to the opposite end of the building, one floor up, where the library card issuers are. i wait patiently while small, raggedy children bump into me while clamoring for their copies of hard core elmo porn (featuring prairie dawn), or whatever it is that kids read these days. finally, i get to the desk and am esstentially told there is no way in hell i am getting a city library card, despite the fact that i live in the center of the city, roughly three blocks from the library itself. this because i live on the university campus, but am not a student (and even if i were a student, i would not be able to use my card when school is not in session). as my coworker would say, i began to "pitch a fit" and told the shriveled librarians that i found it "ridiculous" that "any library would deny access" to an eager reader. being somewhat sympathetic, but crying "budget problems" they agreed to seek the advice of their superiors, who might in turn have to seek more advice from more superiors, but still i probably won't get a card. this, combined with the law that says i cannot pump my own gas, clearly makes this a state of heathens.

what makes me the most livid about the library thing... i certainly would not die intellectually without a public library card; i have the university library (which is of course lacking in some practial materials i desire from the public one, e.g. how to sew yourself a hippie dress). think, however, about the poor children who live outside of a city, in the county. there are no county libraries here. only those who live in a city (and not on university property) may have a card. the little kids whose parents have naught pennies for books are doomed to lag behind their city peers in reading skills because they do not have public library access. come join me on the picket line tomorrow. in the evening, we'll drive the backroads and hand out free copies of ralph s. mouse

Crabs are good for your dick.

Some philosophical asides: Life is great as far as logic goes, I'm waking up more than I have, and I think I can make all sorts of new use-mention jokes because I have been reminded of pointers. This business--the machine-language, assembly, higher-order language business--has also made me think more in terms of linguistics, especially those aspects which line up of course with the philosophy I've been interested in, some watered down version of Wittgenstein. But I am also realizing that the sorts of in-jokes, half-asides and flexing (as the old term used to go for showing off in class, back in college) that this instructor for the Discrete course engages in is no doubt how I do teach my high schoolers and how I would teach at the college level, if that ever again presented itself. And it's fucking annoying. Mostly because you can't make technically precise jokes to an intro-level class....

I am growing out my facial hair in recognition of my current non-dating status. The same for my hair, which has grown rather unmanageably long in the back. I figure it's worth a shot, and might help me look more hard-core. For whom, I don't know.

Beyond that, today was a lazy time, with eventually a brief walk with Jet up and down Broadway--yes, I have a Chinese buddy named "Jet," withthe exuberance that only comes of jabbering in Chinese--my intonations are all different, somehow, and indeed my personality. Dealing with bilinguals is like dealing with two people, really.

Today was also the first day in quite some time that I've worn my old Florida YSP shirt, which has on the back many names, including that of one Michael Hunt (that's not a circumlocution--that's usefully-mentionally correct!). But in any case, I'm at the pizza place (pizza has again become a staple in my commuting to classes) wearing this shirt, which in standard math/science camp fashion has an odd agglomeration of things: Gauss' Law, a DNA helix, a Spanish fort, a Pascal syntax bit, a crab. Well, the Mexican pizza guy recognizes the crab, at least. He starts saying, "congrefos" which is evidently Spanish for crabs. In any case, after going on for a bit about how los chinos like their crabs, he starts talking about "pito". Then he starts flexing his arm and saying that crab is good for your 'pito.' Or so it appeared. Hrmm... So yes... thankfully, with the help of the Slavic counterman, I was able to figure out that crabs are good for your dick. Lobster too.

Tuesday, July 15, 2003

So late last night a great phone call out of the blue from D, who is dropping a line before his bujii Hawaiian vacation, and who has with him at his house this cool girl, with whom I might have been before acquainted at his May rock concert, if only I hadn't been too busy staring at the fucking male performers, for she was one of the hairy-pitted slinky dancers on stage, about whom I remember little in the way of physical appearance. So D has in mind that this might be a sort of relevant introduction, and indeed it is occasioned by her mention of Marx, and D of course thinks I've actually read Marx, as opposed to just rolling around in class anger...

So in any case, after a bit, conversations had, and she is quite charming and enthusiastic, as was I, in that sort of honesty-not-needing-to-impress ("Well, to be completely honest with you, my Marxism begins and ends with class anger.") sort of way. She is saying sensible, well-informed shit. Apparently, her work is currently wrestling ("personal issues or other people?" I quip. She deadpans, "other people." This is a sense of humor I can work with), which makes me wonder if my old roommate Alric would date a wrestler. Hrm... A female one, at that... So in any case, I'm rather charmed and certainly engaged, but my Netherlands don't get the fucking memo!

Why are all the commited leftists I know (and by this, I just mean someone who can talk the talk) women? Maybe it's because they're post-fashion, whereas most fags I know simply aren't. Yeah... I do hazily remember some conversation with Joephet at some point about the Supreme Court or something gay like that, but that's not very much for the time we spent together. Maybe that's part me also. I guess it's more about the ability to talk about things, rather than actual action: Joephet has donated, after all, more of his inexplicable income to charities than I ever have.

So it goes yet again. So I dunno if it's dishonest to give it a try--I shouldn't flatter myself, after all, into thinking that she'd like Chinamen--and surely there's no harm in having another itinerant, well-educated, leftist, activist friend. But I guess this is why people come out, eh? Avoids confusions like this.

First day of classes for the summer, BS CS to plug in for inadequate math, 3 hours of train for 4 hours of boredom. But not hopeless. I mean, how exciting can Assembly possibly be? It's droll, though, how the instructor thinks that "mnemonic" (pronounced "menumonic," evidently) comes from the Latin for "operation." The other class is sadly hopeless in its own way, just overblown philosophical asides in what is so far an intro-Logic class. I haven't heard "vague" abused so many times in a class ever. But the instructor seems willing to work with me on modal logic and other little bits, more from the logic side than the philosophy side of things, which will be novel. Not that this is worth much to my political mission.

Meanwhile, I might well become more involved with the Math Immersion program, in terms of helping with tutoring and perhaps trying to rationalize the Algebra course, to make it more useful for teachers at the secondary level. So it's been exciting getting back into the saddle mathematically, though at this point I bet that I just need some sort of intellectual stimulation after these last two weeks fallow.

Monday, July 14, 2003

so yesterday i went to the oregon country fair... it was exquisite... it took me a bit to warm up, but once i had increased my threshold for being among clouds of dust and mostly naked people whom i did not know, i had an absolutely fabulous time. seriously. the wonders of the fair were many, and i did not sit down for the whole 5 hours i was there... i danced a bit at the drum tower, ate tibetian momo, souvlaki and the most delicious coconut ice cream on top of warm sweet coconut rice.... i let my skirt get dirty at the hem, broke my stroll for the ragamuffin band to pass, and smiled at all the babies. i bought myself a tye-dye dress and a big bag with a peach on it... and yes, i introduced myself as lily, as rightfully i should have. the woman who sold me the momo loved the name, and so do i.

after the fair i went to trader joe's in eugene, and got some two buck chuck.

today... banal... new dresses and groceries. i did listen to the fair's mainstage on the radio, and did wish i was there. i just watched _old school_. luke wilson is hot, and the movie was funny... but not _that_ funny. predictable, if you will.

Home now from dinner, stroll, sit, and about 20 cigarettes along the way with Kenneth. Good and bracing, that--an opportunity for more honesty and useful discussion than with hets who are speaking the wrong language or fags with whom there is undue sexual/romantic tension. So it's nice just to talk without consequence, as it were, where one's travails might actually be instructive--I certainly haven't learnt anything from them. Frightening, though, the personal psychosexual geography of Union Square (and this does not mean psycho and sexual, it just means psychologically-sexual, hrmm.. which loses something in the necessary qualification) and those Village-ward bits: again this notion of secret history, of reminders, of slow accretion.

But no, at the risk of condescension (which is with every utterance with me, after a fashion), it's good to see a sharp kid who reminds me in the good ways of myself at that (st)age. And since I've already made all those mistakes.... hrmmm... youthful indiscretion by proxy, neh?

And imagine: a fag who's on time. I guess he's new... Well, cheers. There is hope. Just a matter of whether there's some for me too...

Sunday, July 13, 2003

It's amusing thing to do archaeology-by-way-of-receipt. What then, is to be made of the following ("fer-reals") order I placed today at AllDirect.com? As the old motto at math camp went, "This will not end well":

1 Assembly Language Programming for the IBM PC Family
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1 LSAT
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1 Sex And The City 3 - The Complete Third Season
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1 Orientalism
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1 Gunga Din Highway


But beyond this petty commerce, today has been thoroughly lazy, aside from the obligatory lifting. Classes begin tomorrow, and so I go back to a minor grind. Amazing how fast this summer has already moved, but I suppose I have let myself lose myself. But it's not hopeless.

Oh, yes: I've realized that gay New York is basically like a generic-brand raisin-bran cereal: some tasty fruits (somewhat dessicated), but mostly just flakes. Not that this realization is new--the conceit, though, is.

So back again from a night at the Beer Garden, this time with Joephet and his fam and birthday boy Dannis. Not to mention Betsy. Or at least I try not to. A good set to have fallen in with. No subequatorial stirrings of note despite the proximity to Joephet, which is indeed well-due progress, I must say. So it's going to be OK, and already is. Difficult to imagine a week ago, which was so marooned and desolate and without hope. Now there is sort of passing acrimony matched with nurturing friendship, which was probably the way to go anyway. New joke, "This is the monoGAMest I've ever been." Must be the buzz talking. It's a joke because of the acronym GAM. If this needs further explanation, maybe you should read the handbook. Am I hardcore, or do I just pretend? I guess a whiskey, a Lucky, and a Zippo are all that I need. But no, drunkenness is ineffable, even from the inside--and of course a roving eye is always good, though the lighting is not Web-quality: the red lights at the Web make everyone look white. But not quite right.

White makes right.

The 60s managed to win equal whites.

So it goes.

Saturday, July 12, 2003

Last night another drunkenly beautiful carouse at the Beer Garden around the corner from my house, the stagger home always the most brilliant stretch in all Astoria, vaguely residentio-commercial, but in a non-threatening way, with the TriBoro bridge always suddenly looming, luminous in the distance. This time with Bessie--that frankness sipped by sipped, and after a day of hanging out, toying more and more with the possibility of going to law school as being a more effective way of reaching strangers, more effective than this current teaching business, which reaches only no-longer-strangers, but can't yet shover the system further where it needs to go--after a year, I'm still idealistic (though, as the old phrase goes, "certainly not wide-eyed"), but it's unclear how long that can last in the face of unsympathetic changes to the system and an economy that's less and less friendly (more an issue for my students than for me, me with my iron-rice-bowl, as the phrase goes). The only issue is a matter of usefulness--I feel useful now, but to wait three years after the two I plan to spend still teaching before being greatly more useful is a strange thing. But I won't be covering any rich ass... Too early to tell, I'm probably just heady on the enthusiasm Bessie always brings, and vaguely dissatisfied with my current idleness. I guess I've been thinking back to that time I went and helped my brother out with his legal-type troubles with the school administration. It was then, more than ever, that I somehow felt indispensable, and as if I was actually bringing to bear all the math, philosophy, and prose that had, until then, merely been disconnected elements. And we kicked some major whitey ass. That was just a defensive action, though. Time to get more offensive...

Speaking of offensive, though my Spanish spelling is poor, I am often reminded of the idiom, "fumando como un chino en kiebra," which means, roughly, "smoking like a bankrupt chinaman." That's me.

Friday, July 11, 2003

mmmm i know about this not sleeping too well... though the trains do not usually bother me, for some reason they seemed particularly loud of whistle last night. i shadowed the facilities and maintenance team all day today... it was in all seriousness fabulous... we dug around in antique furniture, rode in a golf cart, and basically chewed the fat all day.

Didn't sleep terribly well, and probably not just because of dreams of role-playing boardgames with most of the pieces (except the undead ones) missing--I've gone back to a college lifestyle in many ways, with the strange hours, but much less whiskey--it's this lack of deadlines that has been the adjustment, the lack of a routine, which has let my fingernails grow back. It's strange having no fucking formal responsibilities, just the ones I choose--and I don't function well with that amorphousness--I'm not good with making plans, I hate following recipes to the letter--somehow, and this ought to have been the title, I fancy myself with a certain slapdash omnicompetence. Sure, I write drafts and all, but the best stuff is all off the cuff, immediate: just get it done.

not so much overdue, as undercooked

This is perhaps long overdue (as opposed to long-overrude, which I've also been).

beating drew hu to the first post