sitting on the edge of the sandbox, biting my tongue

July 24, 2013

Kurt Cobain Speaking From The Grave

Filed under: journalism, music, politics — Tags: , — edge of the sandbox @ 9:41 pm

The come hither portrait of Dzhokar Tsarnaev gracing the latest cover of The Rolling Stone made me think of their first Nirvana cover.

Kurt Cobain scribbled “corporate magazines still suck” on his t-shirt.  Suck: as opposed to underground zine reading which is never a waste of time.  The editors of this particular corporate bi-weekly scored big with this willing display of punk rock authenticity

Back then I thought that the band wanted to have its cake and eat it too: to be commercially successful while currying favors with the people who resent success.  Now I see that Cobain was practically clairvoyant.  Not because his running around and incessantly talking of suicide somehow foreshadowed his own death, but because, gosh, Rolling Stone does suck.  Then and now (and always) they are creating controversies out of thin air.

What does the younger Tsarnaev has to do with music?  He’s not a performer; he wasn’t an underground cult figure prior to the Boston massacre.  After the bombing, sure, he did develop a following of “girls” in polyester rompers.  The irony of it is, he probably listens to some kind of Eurotrash — or Mideast themed Eurotrash — the kind of music that’s supposed to be an instant turn off to his groupies… if he wasn’t a murderous cult figure, that is.


July 22, 2013

Busy… Or Not

Filed under: blogging, fashion, politics — Tags: — edge of the sandbox @ 9:44 pm

It’s been a very busy summer so far, which is why I was unable to do much blogging, including following my blogging buddies for which I apologize profusely.

I did plan some alone time for this weekend, however and when I went to Anthropologie in the City.  Initially I thought I’d do it Friday evening, but it turned out that there was an anti-Zimmerman protest planned at Fruitvale BART.  So, because my children need me, and because the other day the rioters profiled some water at a chi chi restaurant, figured that he didn’t have a gun and smashed him in the face with a hummer, I cancelled that and went the next day.

I went to Anthro where I found two items of interest.  First, a lovely and easy to wear dress to show support for Florida criminal justice:

These exquisite Art Nouveau style pink flamingos practically scream stand your ground

In the wake of George Zimmerman trial, the Congressional Black Caucus may back NAACP’s call for boycott of the state of FL.  Put on this lovely gown and make their blood boil.

Item number two is the proof that American patriots ruined a psychedelic children’s book written by a man who was possibly a child predator* for upper middle class housewives:

Shock the bourgeoisie!

This t-shirt was produced in several patterns, all of them sold out long ago except for, predictably, the tea party.  Anthropologie, what were you thinking?  It’s been awhile since the shirt went on sale for $35, and, as my shopaholic 7th sense in divining, it will go through another reduction soon.  I’d wait.  The Florida tunic, on the other hand, is much more subtle.  The salesgirl was ecstatic about it, and I predict it will fly off the shelves.


I love Alice in Wonderland and I don’t care who the long-deceased creator was.

July 15, 2013

Hipsters, Rachel Madow (But I Repeat Myself) The Only Winners in Zimmerman Verdict

Filed under: Bay Area politics, politics — Tags: , , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 10:21 pm

14th and Harrison? I lived there in my wasted youth. Wow! I feel like part of history

Those were the days.  If I happened to catch a BART train late at night, and had to walk home in that mixed neighborhood, I made sure to cross the street if I saw black men in hoodies walking towards me.

There was a bit of political activity in the neighborhood back then (in the 90s that is).  I found blacks with their racialism creepy and white radicalism embarrassing, so I generally avoided that scene.  The themes of the neighborhood radicals were pretty hard to miss, however.  One of their favorite slogans was Free Mumia.  I hadn’t the faintest clue about that Mumia fellow, and if I cared to find out, I’d look for source other than my neighbors.  But there was something I could appreciate about this Free Mumia shtick: the radicals wanted to free somebody.  Give him the benefit of the doubt.  In the struggle of a man against the State they sided with that man.

Now they are demanding incarceration of a man on whom the prosecution had nothing and who probably should not had been tried at all.  Ah, the leftie radicalism in the age of Obama.  Not only it’s statist, it’s more violent, too.  When Clinton was in the Oval Office black panthers and nerds distributed leaflets.  When Bush won the election, there were “anti-war” rallies — mostly in San Francisco.  But there was nothing, nothing, like the insidiousness of Occupy or race-themed riots in honor of Oscar Grant or Trayvon Martin.

George Zimmerman can now breath a sigh of relief, but his life is probably ruined.  He and his family should never been put through it.  Neither should Martin’s parents or that girl that the prosecution dragged to the witness stand who obviously didn’t want anything to do with her “friend” Trayvon.  I don’t see how getting all worked up about the trail could in any way help most black people — unless the are attorneys for the family of the slain young man.

Quite a few whites participated in these early riots, and, as DH says, they were probably happy that the verdict came “not guilty” because it gave an excuse to smash windows and burn flags (not to say that white kids were the only ones destroying property).  From their point of view, they still have their trust funds, but they are seizing the opportunity to show that they are down with the blacks.  Behold “I’ve Been Tired” by Pixies (language warning):

The important thing is to get the outrage on.  Rachel Maddow among others declared that the Zimmerman verdict must mean open season on black boys.  She finally noticed.

It must be surreal to be Hispanic (or any other kind of “brown” fellow) and observe the whole Zimmerman ordeal.  Any viewer who cast a glance at the TV, and I don’t care how poor the coverage, must know that the defendant is Hispanic.  And we are asked to believe that he’s some sort of  Klansman reincarnate.

Mexican kids educated in this country are taught to believe that their skin color and the country of origin of their ancestors are the key component of their identity.  As far as I know (and help me out here, I might be misinformed) there was no movement on the part of Hispanic communities to vindicate Zimmerman.  Am I suppose to infer that when people of Latin American heritage move into gated communities and aspire for careers in law enforcement they are to be considered white outs?  Or that in some kind of perverted grievance hierarchy blackness trumps brown skin and demands from Hispanics identification with blacks (with predictable results)?  Or that when the chief executive pronounces that he personally identifies with Trayvon the game is off?  It’s all awfully confusing.

Oakland last night

July 9, 2013

Growing Old Is Hard To Do

Filed under: parenting, society — Tags: , , — edge of the sandbox @ 5:50 pm

Heather Havrilesky had her her driver’s license picture taken at 33.  Ten years later she has this to say about the woman in the picture:

Her hair looks unnaturally shiny. Her smile says, ‘I have nowhere in particular to be. Let’s go grab a cocktail!’(Via Instapundit)

It’s a strange state of affairs when a 33-year-old middle class women has nowhere in particular to be.  I should know; I was one of them myself, albeit I was planning my wedding part of that year and gestating a baby the remaining time.

I remember waiting to be four and then five and then six.  Waiting, and waiting, and whining to my mom that my Birthday just never seemed to come.  Mom always smiled: “When you are a kid time moves slowly, but when you grow up, you want it to stop, or at least to slow down.  I’m not too exited about my next Birthday because I want to stay young.  But time doesn’t stop.  It seems to go faster and faster.”  I am now older than she was when we were having this conversations.

Anticipating Birthdays in my teens didn’t seem like such a terrible ordeal.  I was fairly content with the passage of time.  And then something happened.  I turned a corner, and half of my twenties were gone.  I blamed it on the climate.  In the old country we had seasons.  Looking out of the window I would see a maple tree shedding its last leaf and babushkas doing a balancing act on newly formed ice; that’s when I knew it’s time to get the fur hat out of the wardrobe.  Another year went by.  In Northern California fashion conscious “girls” wear knee high boots with sundresses year round.  That was my excuse for wasting time.

My thirties flew by pretty quick, but at least I have something to show for it: I’m raising kids.  I can’t say I never feel nostalgic for my “have nowhere in particular to be” days.  The other day on the way to pick up the progeny I spotted a young couple walking into a bar.  Just like that.  In the middle of the day.  Then I had to remind myself about the hangovers.  20’s are not what they are cranked up to be.

Amazingly, in our frank age Heather Havrilesky managed to pen an essay on aging without mentioning the m-word.  She’s 43.  I’m 40, and I have to admit that the commercials on talk radio about women over 40 needing to exercise an hour a day just to prevent weight gain fill me with panic.  Someday soon the day will come when I will find myself reaching the age when women are no longer attractive.  And even if an aggressive facial regime and a splatter of hair die can deceive casual acquaintances, I will know the truth.  Havrietsky complained that motherhood aged her (that she shifted that stage into advanced maternal age is part of the problem).  But childbearing is a function of youth.  My young children make feel young.  It’s the knowledge that a few years down the road (if not now) I will be no longer able to bare children that really saddens me.  What’s left are wrinkles and decay.

My mother is now switching to orthopedic shoes.  I look into my closet.  Do I have another decade of stilettos?  Fifteen years?  Is a 55-year-old allowed to wear a heel over 2 inches?  When to I bestow my collection of fashionable footwear onto my daughter (if she happens to wear my size)?

July 2, 2013

SCOTUS, The Great and Powerful

Filed under: politics, society, whatever — Tags: , , , — edge of the sandbox @ 9:31 pm

A few days ago I read an essay by Dr. Helen Smith on Puffington Host.  It was titles “8 Reasons Straight Men Don’t Want To Get Married” and was followed by a “clarification”:

From author Helen Smith: “I talked only with heterosexual men about marriage for the book. It did not include same-sex marriages. However the dynamics of same -sex marriage would be a fascinating study for future research.” — HuffPost Eds.

Good thing PuffHo gave Dr. Helen a chance to explain herself.
The federal government should finance a study or two to figure out why gay men don’t want to marry.
According to the Pew poll Dr. Helen cites, 37% of women of childbearing age say that marriage is important, but only 29% of men in that age cohort express the same opinion.  The 8% gap probably* represents a problem to women seeking fulfillment in family life.  On the other hand, if only 2% of gays and lesbians are known to wed, these family-minded queers can date their fellow 2%-ers.  Problem solved.  If there ever was a problem.  Because queers can’t mate with each other (d’oh!) and so rarely adopt other people’s children, the future of next generation is not at stake, and there is no compelling reason why society should insert itself into the legal status of their relationships.
San Francisco City Hall was practically mobbed by “dozens” of same sex couples rushing to get married the day after Prop 8 was no more.  All that pent up demand…  All right, all right, it was during the Pride weekend, so everyone was busy partying.  This year’s San Francisco’s Gay Pride parade boasted record attendance — 1.5 million, or 50% more than 2012.  So, of course, there were plenty of parties to go.
This blog predicts that queer matrimony is going to be statistically negligible, and because it’s so unusual — even though it will be right front and center in the media — gay marriage is not going to influence the lives of American families.  But, hey, LGBT activists got an affirmation.  Woo-hooo!  And the legal and social status of polygamy is something to watch.

San Francisco City Hall lit up in gay pride colors in celebration of the SCOTUS ruling (or merely for the gay pride parade). Wouldn’t it be especially meaningful to get married on Pride week and immediately after Prop 8 was overturned? Or am I thinking like a straight woman?

On the subject of married life, parenting is kicking my behind right now, which is why I haven’t been blogging much.  DH, who toured the US and Europe prior to starting family, recently had an “embarrassingly Freudian” dream in which midgets were committing identity theft against him.  In his waken hours he says that he doesn’t want to play rock-n-roll anymore.
Speaking of rock-n-roll, does George Zimmerman hate whitie?  After all, he said “Effing punks!” in reference to the intruder, and something like 95% of Punks are Caucasian.  The other 5% are white Hispanics, but never mind.  A ska song from San Francisco circa 1980 offers some deep thoughts on that subject:
And speaking of Hispanics, the other morning I heard on Armstrong and Getti that until in an unprecedented display of common sense SCOTUS ruled the whole thing unconstitutional, Monterey, CA was covered under Section 4 of the Voting Rights Act.  Monterey, really?  “Community activists” are not happy, of course; they must be preparing for amnesty.  We go to Monterey every summer, and I find the two-tier English/Spanish California social structure is especially pronounced there.  Go to a fancy restaurant or a hotel on Cannery Row and see elegant young white servers raking in tips.  Go to Monterey Aquarium and see signs in our two languages and all sorts of people from all over the world — but no Hispanics.  Perhaps they go there on a free for locals day, because there is certainly no shortage of middle age Mexicans in Monterey; they are taking orders in Denny’s.
And to go back to gay marriage, did you know that the majority of gays raising children are not wealthy white urbanites we see on TV, but Hispanics?  LGBT movement needs amnesty more than anyone else in this country.
…The title of this post should really be referencing the very great and very gay (not obviously so to kids) original film and not the very gay (in a different sense) remake.
* Surveys are just surveys.  People don’t admit what they really feel, and perhaps the don’t know how they feel.  Even those men who are adamant about avoiding the nuptials might find themselves at the altar, under the huppah, or in a City Hall.  If men marry at all, it’s because that’s what their women want from them.
UPDATE: Reblogged by Citizen Tom — thanks!

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