Friday, June 29, 2007

Surrounded by Life

My landlord and friend, Brian, walked past my porch moments ago and noted out loud that I had my whole life right there with me: my laptop (playing music), "Atlas Shrugged (reading), Turkish coffee (Yum!), my prayer book (faith), my telephone (friends) and my checkbook (work-income).

I guess that really is a pretty good summary of my life.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Last Call

Hummingbird visits to my feeders had dropped to nearly none before I realized that the New Mexican summer heat had fermented the sugary drink I had placed out for them.

Immediately after I changed the syrup, an aggressive hummingbird buzzed the feeder, tested it and flew off chattering wildly.

I don't know if it was excitement and he was telling others that at last there was something good to drink, or if he was swearing angrily about the bar being closed.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Today the temperature outside is the same as my body, or only slightly less, and it causes me to feel seemless, like I have no edges and am one with the air. Even the ever-so-slight breeze that tickles the Aspen leaves into a lazy dance doesn't register on my skin as external. It feels, instead, as though my own body were moving while I am standing still.

These are the magical days of summer dreaming, when time connects us, if we pause, to the conversations of rocks and dirt, to the soundless writing of the sky.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Let Them Eat Cake!

My typical eating schedule goes as follow:
• Coffee at work around 9 AM, occasionally accompanied by something like an empanada.
• Bowl of micro-waved Indian food at 1 PM
• Maybe a pizza and drink around 7:30 PM

I’ve been reading a lot lately on the chemical properties of food, their interactions and body metabolism. To sum up, I pretty much eat all of the wrong foods at all of the wrong intervals.

According to my latest reading, my body type needs 4-5 oz. of protein (and not from nuts, beans, dairy and other stuff I usually consider my protein sources) consumed at a minimum of 5 times a day. Plus, 100 oz. of water each day is highly recommended.

I’m trying to follow the regimen closely, mostly to absorb the concepts of eating that much protein, balanced with just the right amount of good carbohydrates, that often. Last week, I spent an hour planning my meals. Then I went shopping for 45 minutes. At home, I cooked and packaged meals for 3 hours.

Following a properly recommended healthy eating plan, I consumed it all in two days! Halibut and oatmeal with berries for breakfast; a protein shake and baked yam at 10 AM; filet of sole, salad, baked potato for lunch, 4 boiled egg whites and rice in the afternoon; albacore tuna, greens and rice for dinner; halibut and baked potato as an after dinner snack: Day One.

So much food! Basically, the equivalent of 28 oz. of steak, 3 baked potatoes, a cup or so of red fruits and as many green veggies as I care to eat…every day!

I can’t afford to be healthy. I don’t have that much time or money.

P.S. I've taken the liberty of posting some comments to the blog that were sent directly to me. It had seemed so quiet here lately, but I still hear from so many folks that they are reading this blog. Just click on the word "comments" when you want to add something. Also, remember to check out updates to my music, books and movies posted in the column to the right.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Happy Belated Father's Day

I spent Father’s Day with friends at a family cookout. It was also how I celebrated my birthday. They had invited me to share the Father’s Day celebration with their family, so it seemed awkward and a bit trite to accept only to then say, “By the way, it’s my birthday. Celebrate me, too.”

Instead, I savored the joy of being included simply because they wanted me to be there. Inwardly, as sometimes I have done in past years, I quietly enjoyed the day of my birth soaking up ordinary moments of the day that were uncluttered by prescribed social birthday obligations, pondering these moments in light of years gone by and times to come.

This year, the ending of my 41st, listening to the stories and tears of an elder patriarch’s survived battle with prostate cancer, swapping jokes, laughing, playing cards, passing bowls of strawberry shortcake, touring old carcasses of foreign cars and being with friends was perfect.

I am happy to be alive.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Springtime Breakfasts

We are waiting on the apricots to ripen at home. The cherries are past their prime, but we didn't get to eat them. Instead, the birds pecked precisely one bite out of each.

Somewhere, there's a mother bird chastising, "Eat your cherries. Just think of all the starving birds in China."

(Art by Sheila Simpson-Creps.)

Monday, June 11, 2007

March On

I went to the gay Pride Parade this past Saturday. It's not a huge affair in Albuquerque, mostly friends marching down the street waving to friends watching them from the sidewalk.

Afterwards, I went home. The following things remained true:

  • I can be fired in 30 states simply because I am gay.
  • Same-sex domestic benefits are federally taxed. Heterosexual domestic benefits are not.
  • 45 states have either a constitutional amendment or a law that restricts marriage to one man and one woman.
  • 21 states have no state laws that protect LGBT students against harassment.
  • 19 states do not recognize violence against someone because of sexual orientation as a hate crime.
  • 4 states prohibit my adopting a child.

Still, everyone loves a parade.

(source: Human Rights Campaign.)

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Happy Pride!

Name the origin of the pink triangle as a symbol for the gay community....

It's Pride Week in many cities all over the country. Here in Albuquerque, there was an inter-faith service last weekend to begin the week. Festivities culminate Saturday with a parade that leads to a festival at the state fairgrounds.

A local exhibit worth noting is showcased at the New Mexcio Holocaust and Intolerance Museum. It is a touring exhibit of Nazi Perscution of Homosexuals, 1933-1945.
"An estimated 1.2 million men were homosexuals in Germany in 1928. Between 1933-1945, an estimated 100,000 men were arrested as homosexuals, and of these, some 50,000 officially defined homosexuals were sentenced. Most of these men spent time in regular prisons, and an estimated 5,000 to 15,000 of the total sentenced were incarcerated in concentration camps," according to a pamphlet published by the United States Holocaust Museum. This does not include women who were also arrested, imprisoned and executed because of sexuality.
After the Holocaust, in 1956, West Germany disqualified recipients of compensation if their internment in a concentration camp had been based upon homosexuality. Homosexuality remained a crime in Germany until 1969; persons incarcerated in the camps because of their sexuality were not publicly commemorated until the mid 1980s. (source: Alibi, June 7-13, 2007)
The pink triangle was the patch LGBT persons were forced to wear during the Holocaust and in concentration camps to identify them as homosexuals. Today the pink triangle serves as a tragic and symbolic reminder of the horrific treatment that many in our community still experience, here in the United States and throughout the world.

Friday, June 01, 2007

There Goes the Neighborhood

I put up a second feeder for the hummingbirds so that they wouldn't fight. They aren't fighting. They aren't coming to feed, either.

I think it has something to do along the lines of, "Well, there goes the neighborhood. Now we have a Starbucks on every corner. These trees are becoming Mc-ified with absolutely no local variety anymore."

I don't blame them, really.

But I did add some extra sugar to see if that will lure them back.


If you can make the proper association of the picture below to this posting, I'll send you some hummingbird droppings! Go ahead...take a guess as to how the two relate.