Saturday, May 14, 2011

How to be a Great Artiste

1) Do not dip dirty paintbrush in your drink glass instead of your dirty paint water glass. Paint is not refreshing (we learned this last week)

2) Be careful that the balaclava you are painting looks like a balaclava and not black face. A balaclava is a ski mask. Black face is always racist.

3) If it looks like crap, stop fighting it and paint over. Even if it means you're losing the things you liked about it.

4)Wine really does help, as long as you're not going for super precise tiny painting. Drink up!

That is your lesson for the week.

Friday, May 13, 2011

It's Friday and We Need Some Fun!

This is the Go!Team, who I learned about years ago from Ad Boy (the boy who literally broke my vagina. It's fixed now, but the story is funny as hell).

And this is a little interview with Ninja, the lead singer. It's just so cute and charming I had to include it.

I'll be shaking my ass this weekend at Honk!Fest to the tunes of radical marching bands. Weird, yes.

The Problem With Defunding Higher Ed

This story involves the Koch brothers, so you've been warned that by the end you will want to kick someone, hard.

In exchange for a 1.5 million dollar grant to Florida State's Economics department, Charles Koch gets to screen and sign off on any new hires.

You want to know why economists are such doouchenoodles (both in theory and in real life)? This is why. No one who has a different opinion from the standard "give rich people everything and suffer the small folks" can get hired. But because we've massively defunded education publicly, universities gotta make up the difference somehow. And people are catching on that maybe needing to take out 50k worth of loans to get an basic bachelor's degree and still not get a job is a bad idea, so schools can't wring any more cash out of their students. So corporate shitbags get to set the agenda from the very beginning by making sure that the only theories out there are theories that benefit them. They pay off the theory makers and educators. Students never see another side.

This story gets a h/t to Ruth, who didn't know until she went to college that people had died for the right to organize their labor. She didn't get that info in the very good public schools she attended as a kid, even though she was a geek like me and read all of the assigned history books. She got a different view of how the world could be from a community college prof. If the Koch brothers, or even Miscrosoft, was funding that school, she might never have learned about it.

In other higher ed news, the other day 50 University of Washington students stormed the president's office to protest the fact that the school contracts with Sodexo, known for their human rights abuses. 25 of them got arrested.

Fuck You Blogger

Blogger has eaten the last 2 days of posts. Fuck you blogger.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

So it started out being a completely crap day and then.....

I had my long waited for furniture appointment today. It's out in the middle of nowhere, and they would have delivered big stuff, but if I wanted anything small (lamps for example) then I would have to carry it home with me. I was gonna get a ride but my ride has recently joined the ranks of the disemployed and overindulged last night. So I took the bus. I figured I'd skip the little stuff. What I really need and can't fit in a car is a bed for me and a sofa & loveseat.

But there wasn't a single bed available. Not a sofa either. I get to reschedule and come back (which means at least 2 more months sans furniture). I was a bit disheartened.

So I called my caseworker and since I tried to get a second hand bed and couldn't, I could go to a mattress store and buy one (as long as it's under $600). The only store she knew of is way far south, but I thought they had one downtown. And they do. And in a week or so I will have, for the first time in my entire life, a brand new mattress and boxspring. A brand new bed of my very own. A bed after 6 months of sleeping on a loveseat or an airmattress. A BED FUCK YEAH.

So for the 2 hours of bus time, 5 bucks in bus fair, and the $2.20 that my bed went over $600 I have a bed. I think that was a well spent morning.

The 4 Kinds of Humans

I found this at Abagond. Go read, it is dead on.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Got a phone? Raise a teaspoon for workers rights!

Workers stand in the pouring rain today holding a sign that reads "Ross Dress For Less Hurts Our Communities".

Kid and I were downtown today when I spotted these nice peeps with their banner. It was very wet out, and yet there they were braving the rain to get fairness for workers. I asked if I could take a pic and write a post and here it is. These are members of the Pacific Northwest Regional Council of Carpenters who are in the middle of a labor dispute with several subcontractors of a company called SD Beacon. The contractors are in trouble for not paying area standard wages, including skipping out on health and welfare benefits for workers and their families. SD Beacon is bidding on a Ross project.

The Pacific NW Regional Council of Carpenters is asking that we call Micheal O'Sullivan at (925) 965-4400 and tell him that he needs to do all he can to see that area labor standards are met for ALL Ross stores' construction projects.

So pick up your phone and give a holler. You can also get more info from PNWCoC by calling (877)235-3184

Oh gag me with a spoon

So I clicked on one of BLCKGRD's links about Obama's new post-killin' poll numbers. It took me to TPM and damn you should warn a girl before sending her into cult land. These are the people who talk about politics like it's a game to be won, while ignoring that the field they are playing on is made up of the backs of us little folk.


There's only one more thing left to say:

Since the dog fart post went over so well

Someone actually donated money just to keep hearing dog stories. No story this time, just a cute picture of the best damn dog in the world- Winifred P. Cooper (I don't know why her middle initial is P, I just call her that and her human doesn't mind). I can tell you that this dog will lick my toes if I'm not wearing shoes. She rolls over on her back and demands belly rubs when she sees me. And she may love Sylvie slightly more than she loves me, or she could just be extra excited because Sylvie smells like C-A-T. That's what Amanda, Winnie's human says anyway. She may be sparing my feelings.

(Look at that face. It's soooooooo cute and plead-y. Don't ya just want to snorgle her to bits)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Rapture is Coming!

Apparently May 21 a whole bunch of planets will align.

Since I am a godless whore, I am thinking of making a trip up to Ballard to liberate property left behind by the assholes of the uber-conservative + tattoos Mars Hill Church. I figure if I find a truck first, then all my furniture needs will be taken care of.

So the end times mean interior decorating for me. What do you peeps plan on doing when the end times come? "shopping", drinking, continuing on like nothing happened (I think most of us will be doing that).

A completely non-serious post & question

So I got bedding, the most delicious dark gunmetal grey sheets and a comforter that was supposed to be pale pink, but is actually peach.

Peach, fucking peach. Non-returnable peach.

Is it too retro 80's? Will I have to put a nagel posterover my bed and get black lacquer furniture?

If you're twisting yourself in knots trying to justify something- stop it.

So there's this post up at Feministe (I know, I hear the groans, I share the groans) about the band Odd Future and misogyny in their lyrics. The author (whom I believe is a dude going by name alone, but I could be wrong) spends a fuck load of screen space trying to figure out if a song about kidnapping, raping and torturing a girl because the rapist likes her and she doesn't like him back is misogynist.

It's pretty simple dude. Rape is kinda the ultimate expression of misogyny. Doesn't matter how oppressed a rapist may be in other aspects (age, race, class and even sexual orientation) because one form, or even multiple forms of oppression don't cancel out another. No need to twist and turn, hem and haw. It's pretty simple. Rape is always bad. Kidnapping and torture are always bad. Always.

The trick to being a murder is...

to be a government official or a kleptocrat when you do it. I'm pissed because I'm reading about Baby Doc Duvalier eating at fancy restaurants in Haiti. Not that long ago I was reading about how all this aid money that is supposed to go to NGO's to help rebuild isn't going to the grass roots, on the ground, local groups. Fuckers.

The other day I was thinking about the places in the world I would like to visit. Always at the top of my list are places I am not allowed or advised to go. An ex, when discussing this list once upon a time, screamed at me "why do you love everything that other people hate?" Haiti has been on that list for a long time, and the sad truth is that it is probably safer for me to visit Haiti* now as an English speaking white woman than it has been in 20 years, even though the danger for a poor Haitian woman has skyrocketed since the earthquake.

*So I checked the State Department's web site and they are advising travel "only if travel is fully supported by organizations with solid infrastructure, evacuation options, and medical support systems in place". The only groups I can think of with the resources for that, besides the big name aid agencies, are disaster capitalist profiteers with security firms under contract.

No Representation Without Taxation

That needs to be on a protest sign located outside the offices of big corporate non-payers like GE, Bank of America, and Twitter. Yes, Twitter.

This little country was founded by a bunch of dudes who were pissed off that they were paying taxes to a government that they had no say in managing. 230 years later and we have the illusion of democracy, but we pay taxes to a government that we have no hope of managing, while the neoaristocracy kleptocrats skip out on paying but pull all the strings. That is a simple, clear message that even the most centrist of people should be able to understand. It's probably also the reason the kleptocrats are big sponsors of the tea baggers, they have the veneer of a grass roots patriot organization while being loud cheerleaders for the ruling class.

Monday, May 09, 2011

There are certainly things I don't learn the first (dozen) time(s)

I'm an intellectual snob, I admit it. This is not a good thing. It means that I fall for the same bullshit credentials over and over, especially regarding my, uhm personal life.

For the last decade or so, nearly every dude I have dated has a graduate degree of some sort, usually in some flavor of science. I just got tired of having to talk down to boys or to placate their egos when I turned out to know more about something than they did. At least if I was dating someone that educated, this would happen less often. Or that was the theory. In practice in means that while there are a thousand more subjects I can talk to them about, they are still mostly condescending douchenozzles who know more than the little lady.

So I found myself having this little conversation today with Mr. I have a PhD in economics and work as a very important negotiator. You all know where this is going already, doncha?

After being lectured that 'we have the same goals but my hard approach isn't the way to go', I may have said something about how if his "let's motivate the elites to treat people better" approach actually worked then I would have nothing to write about. And not coincidentally, I'd have no lovely readers (because if you all wanted to hear the same bullshit about how elites actually do contribute to society and we need to compromise with for them, then you'd be reading the Huffington Post or the Big Orange Cheetoh and praising the like of Camille fucking Paglia.)

The thing is, I don't even think I'm that smart. I mean, yeah I pick up on stuff, but that's just because I read a ton. I'm pretty sure that anyone could do it if they were interested enough. Obviously I keep dating the same types of dudes and am frustrated by their over-privileged view and under-developed sense of decency. (And no Aeryl, we didn't even get far enough for me to ask if he was raised by a single mom or not.)

I'd say I give up, but we all know better. Thank the flying spaghetti monster that I've never seen marriage or a relationship as a requirement to a happy life, or I'd really be miserable.

Elsewhere I have been

For some reason I volunteered to help my dear friend (and laser boobie partner) Syyyyylllvvviiiaaa with blogging and promoting the Seattle Bicycle Music Festival. She organized it last year, and is doing it again this year. When I called to ask her for drinkies the other day she sounded a wee bit frazzled. So I opened my mouth and offered to help (I am actually way more enthused about it than my cynical posting suggests, but cynic, ya know?)

If you are local or near local, you should join us. You don't have to be a bike geek (I'm not) you just should want to have some fun. If you know a business or organization that might want to contribute, email me.

RQ Cooks: The 5 minute salad that will make people worship at your feet

For dinner (the inaugural new apartment dinner partay) we had beef stew with mustard and mushrooms,rosemary drop biscuits and spinach salad. But not just any spinach salad.

I have gotten a bit out of the habit of making fancy salads, what with living with relatives who are, in the kindest of terms, pedestrian in their eating habits. A salad that has both leafy greens and fruit would overwhelm their palates. But this is easy and I can make it quick while things are resting on the stove.

What you need:
A bag of spinach
Large can of mandarin oranges
Half a small red onion, diced
Dried cranberries or cherries

For the dressing:
balsalmic vinegar
olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, crushed and diced
dijon mustard
salt & pepper

Mix salad makings in large bowl.

In a small glass or measuring cup mix equal parts oil and vinegar)It might not actually be equal parts. I just glug shit in till it feels right, so ymmv). Add a tablespoon or so of mustard, the garlic and salt and pepper. Whisk till the dressing is emulsified. Poor over salad and toss.

That's it. But it will make your guests ask for seconds on the salad, no matter that the beef stew you made literally melts in their mouths. When I've made this at Thanksgiving, Ruth has been known to stand next to the bowl eating it with her fingers until the turkey is cool enough to eat with her fingers. People will become self-conscious that they are asking for seconds on salad. It is ok for you to make them grovel at this point.

Sunday, May 08, 2011

Evening Song

Because fuck you I don't care if the Shins are deeply uncool. I like them.