For Wo/Man is the Head of the _________ as Jesus is the Head of the Church.

Going with my constant assertion that, once an argument becomes completely intractable, it's time to throw out all of the existing arguments on both sides and find some new ones because, clearly, the one's we've got aren't going to get us anywhere, here's another thought on gay marriage.

If all people, regardless of race, gender or class, are equal under the law, then why do women have a right or privilege that men do not, namely, the legal ability to marry a man? Contrawise, why are men granted the right to marry women when women are not allowed to do the same? A number of high court precedents, most notably the landmark Brown v. Board..., have held that the constitution makes no provision for equivalent but separate sets of rights for different classes of citizens. If a single person is granted a right, privilege or ability by act of law then that precise action must be available to all people without regard to extra-legal factors.

Absolutely regardless of any moral issues that are presented by same sex marriage, there can be no legal construct that allows for precisely equal rights for both men and women, ergo, either everyone is allowed to do everything or no one is allowed to do anything.

Personally, I vote for no one but I've already talked about that in some detail.


An Apology.

My settings were incorrect. I had not realized that I had restricted comments to registered Blogger users. As I feel the ability to comment freely, even anonymously, is vital to this method of discourse, I cannot excuse the oversight.

My profoundest apologies to active bloggers using other platforms for appearing to shun their input and to lurkers for, by extension, depriving them of the attendant conversation. I invite and encourage all valid commentary.

My error has been remedied.


Read My Lips...

While the rest of America hollers herself hoarse about the possibilities of an election nearly a year and a half away and while pundits and spin doctors obsess over every machination of campaign subterfuge, how about a quick and honest thought about the nature of government.

Categorically, I will vote for any candidate that gets up on national television and says the following:

"I will veto everything."

I say it again. "I will veto absolutely everything that congress sends to the White House. We have too many laws and I will see as few new ones as possible created during my tenure. My default action on any piece of legislation will be to veto. I will sign only acts of congress that are constitutionally mandated as periodic duties of the government, such as the annual budget. Baring that, no bill that does not deal with an overriding and pressing issue of American security or economic stability will receive my signature. Furthermore, I will allow any grandfathered legislation to pass out of law without renewal unless there is a similar such need for its continuance and I will issue a list of laws that I will approve for renewal before the election."

The age in which the finances and fates of the American people are simply the playthings for a handful of over-entitled honkey geriatrics needs to come to an end. A promise like this might make some progress in that direction.

I'm not getting my hopes up, though.


Movies are Dead, Long Live Movies

Last week a card playing companion of mine had occasion to, in the guise of asking my professional opinion, pontificate at great length on how the film industry is on it's last legs and will shortly be a cultural dinosaur like disco and ice cream socials. His argument for this rested primarily on the assertion that advances in home theatre technology will, in a few short years, make actually attending a movie unnecessary.

I had to answer that, despite his protestations, this is simply not the case.

I'm going to tell all of you something that it seems the big distributors don't want anyone to know. Our industry isn't hurting. Are we loosing revenue to piracy, yes, but it's not as big a deal as the studios would have you believe. Beyond that, everything is five by five.

Home viewership is not going to supplant the theatre-going experience anytime soon. Yes, there is some really killer technology on the market for the people who want it but those toys, no matter how fancy, are not going to doom movie theaters.

Why? Because going to the movies isn't so much about the movie as it is about going to the movie, getting out of the house, making an event out of viewership and having, what the great media theorist Walter Benjamin called, presence, the thrill of actually being there. There is a cultural and social aspect to the cineplex that cannot be replicated in the living room. The standard first date will remain dinner and a movie. Taking children to see the next animated or family film will remain a quintessential weekend outing. Geeks and fanboys of all sorts (and I proudly count myself among them) will continue to show up in droves for the midnight release of the next fantasy blockbuster.

We often forget that so much of human behavior is not simply about utility but also about culture and personal interaction. Packaged alcohol is cheaper, but we still go to bars. There's nothing you can't buy online but people still go shopping. It would be cheaper and easier to do push ups in the garage but people still join gyms. Recorded music didn't put an end to live shows. The fact that baseball is on television does not stop fans from actually attending the games because there is something important in the social aspect of these things, of being there, then, with other people. Yes, in a few years home theaters will be so impressive as to rival the best equipped movie houses and eventually that hardware will become cheap enough for just about everyone to own. That won't stop people from going to the movies because, like I said, it's not about the movie; it's about the going.

If people went to the movies just for the content, we'd have been out of business long ago.



Look at you. I mean, Christ, just look at you, those clothes, that hair, that demeanor. You’re helpless. Do you want people to see you like this? Do you even care what they would think? Nothing good, I can tell you that. Look at what you’ve done with your life. What happened to your goals, you dreams, your plans?

What would you do if you ran into yourself tomorrow, not another of yourself as you are but yourself when you were seventeen. What would the seventeen year old you say? Would they be disappointed? I imagine they would be. Things haven’t turned out as they imagined and they’re probably pretty angry. Would they think that you got lazy or that you lost your focus? Would they think you squandered your best chances or that you simply fucked up? Worst, would they think you sold out?

No matter what they thought they would be when they got to be you, you’re not it. If you are then you’re either lying to yourself or you had dreams too mundane for any self respecting seventeen year old to have. That or you’ve been given more than you’ve earned in life and it doesn’t count for bollocks anyway. Somewhere along the line you did, even if for a moment, get lazy, lost your focus or squandered a good opportunity. Somewhere along the line, some tiny part of you sold out. Somewhere between seventeen and now you stepped in your own shit and didn’t have the wherewithal to wipe it off and the reek is still clinging to you. You@17 , the you that was eager and feisty, proud and invincible, the you that was ready and capable and jaded in the way that only a seventeen year old can be, that you is really pissed off.

Y’know what? Fuck You@17. You@17 didn’t know shit. Nobody had told them what the real world was going to be like. Nobody had explained to them anything about adulthood. They didn’t know a thing about sleepless nights. They didn’t know a thing about paying bills. They didn’t understand being broke or having to perform on someone else’s terms. They didn’t know about sacrifice, about bruised pride, about long hours or about how the world likes to beat good people down. You@17 didn’t know about lost jobs or heartless lovers. They didn’t know what it feels like to fail, even when you were at your best. They didn’t’ know what it’s like to have more expected of them than they were able to give. You@17 had never been defeated. You@17 had a lot of lessons to learn.

And so do you.

Don’t you dare feel bad. Don’t you dare feel sorry for yourself. Don’t even think about apologizing to You@17. You@17 couldn’t have done what you’ve done, couldn’t cope with what you undertake every single day. You@17 kept fucking up until they became you now and never thought to revaluate the surroundings. You@17 needs to be put in their place.

Now, straighten up, dust yourself off and put yourself in order. There are things to be done, things You@17 would never understand or appreciate. There’s still a world to conquer and legions of left over seventeen year olds’ asses to kick.


... Let no Man Put Asunder

I was on the west coast this past weekend to attend the wedding of my best friend from high school.

Killyin, the great ladies' man, the fellow once bemused by all trappings of pomp and circumstance, the most mischievous do-gooder I've ever known and the old friend I was most sure would see forty as a bachelor, got married. They had an elegant modern Catholic wedding. The hilltop reception in the northern California hills inspired ubiquitous envy. I was honored to be a groomsman and I gave what was, in my own opinion, a glorious toast, greeted by a combination of uproarious laughter and unblinking stares of reptilian noncomprehension.

Killyin is wed. He got hitched. He settled down. He became a family man. It blows my fucking mind.

Not, mind you, because it was him, in particular, that went down the aisle. It could have been any of a handful of my closest friends from high school or college. No, it's just that the whole thing make me feel more painfully grown up that I'm really ready to be. I've had other friends get married but none that I knew so well, none that I considered a reflection of myself, none who expected me to put on a tux and give speech, none who's nuptial made me so painfully aware of how far we've come from being children.

It's not that I see anything wrong with marriage or family life, I'm just sure that I'm not at all ready to start a family of my own. I started my adulthood younger than most. I moved out of the house when I was still seventeen. I put myself through college with narry a dime from my parents. I've held a full time job since the day I graduated high school. All that and, so near as I can read myself, I'm still years from wanting to be married.

Am I unconsciously extending my bachelorhood because I spent to little time as an adolescent? Am I one of those guys that will just refuse go grow up, content to be just barely more than a boy for my whole life? Am I the only sane one, standing back while everyone rushes to the altar? Am I too much the union of romantic and pragmatist, waiting for the unlikely someone with whom I can fall madly in love whilst workably sharing financial, familial and cultural responsibilities? Am I just too much like my father, who married for the first and only time in his late thirties?

I choose to think that it's because I'm both practical and ambitious. I know that my career does not, presently, facilitate such things. The financial instability of a freelance profession, the fourteen hour days and six day weeks while on a job, the months away from home, the missed birthdays and skipped anniversaries, the stress of a job that demands flawlessness and the fact that, when time off comes, I'm just oh, so tired, these things do not make for a stable family life. In my business, to succeed, one must forsake everything else. Most people find this a burden but I don't. This is how I have chosen to live my life; it's the career I've wanted since I was in the fourth grade and I've resolved never to belabor or regret it. It's as much a part of who I am as family life would or could be.

That's why, despite two long and fulfilling relationships, both with exceptional women that I will always adore, I've never really taken seriously the idea of getting married. I don't want to be the husband or the father that's never there, that sees their children grow up from afar and ends up not knowing their own kids. I also don't want to be the guy that surrenders his ambitions for his family, that takes the sure paycheck and never tries anything new for fear of loosing the house or of not being able to pay for braces. Noble thought that is, I'm watching too many people my own age as they do exactly that, resenting every moment, destined to die secure and miserable.

Is that selfish or is it wise? Is it selfish wisdom?

In any case, they're a perfect couple and I wish them both the best. If anyone can make it, it's them. It's going to be a while before Killyin has to rent a tux on my behalf, though.

To the newly minted family, Salud, Mazel Tov, Brightest Blessings. I love you both.