snowy times, tough dykes, & possibilities


winter is here and it sucks the breath out of my lungs, that first step outside. i didn’t believe it would happen. i don’t know why, i just thought things would be different. but i’m sleep-deprived & over-caffeinated, just like most people, wandering through the days in a numb haze. already tired of it, with many months to go.

i saw “rise against: the tribe 8 documentary” last night with a bunch of fun queers, and it was so good, so snarky and relevant to my life both now and long ago, made me miss my crazy punk dyke friends, all gone now in one way or another. and just seeing a movie, seeing something, that made sense to me, that i could relate to, was like a salve. there’s one line i thought about all day, where silas flipper says, “i read somewhere that a woman’s worst fear is being raped, and a man’s worst fear is being laughed at. i think that says a lot about how things are in our society. so, i try to laugh at men as much as i can!” i spent all day wondering how any woman gets by in this world without subverting it in some way. all the women that i work with, who i don’t like at all, i still feel bad for them. all the dieting, the endless trying to please everyone in their lives, all the casual self-hatred tossed out all day. “i’m so fat.” “i’m so stupid.” how have they done it for so long?

i don’t think that i’m making the point that i want to make. so i will change the subject. i was thinking of moving back to new york, not this summer but next, and working for the union for a little bit, mainly because i want my next novel to be a lesbian construction worker romance (which will not be as ridiculous as it sounds!) i worked construction the summer of 2004, in the union that my dad is a member of, that my grandfather and great-grandfather were a member of. fourth generation. all the grizzled old union guys were impressed when i told them. it sucked, getting up early and sweating all day with a bunch of dudes, half of whom were so pissed that i was there because they felt like they couldn’t scratch their balls all day or whatever the fuck. but it was also a really interesting environment that i kind of want to talk about. and i want to talk about how the women in that environment took care of each other; we had to. there were about 500 guys in the building and about 20 women. and it was so beautiful, what we saw in each other, what we nurtured and protected.

plus, funny things happened there every day. just little things. i don’t feel like telling any of the stories right now, but maybe i’ll be in the mood some day. the graffiti was great, the conversations were sometimes great, just being in those buildings while they were still new, before anyone else, high above the city as the sun slowly crawled above the buildings. and the first-born in my family has always been an electrician, for three generations before me, and i usually hate tradition but there was something about swinging that hammer, about cutting that pipe, about running that wire through the ceiling, that felt so right, that i felt deep in my bones. so maybe i’ll do it again, just for the summer when i’m off from my other job, gathering stories like little figs, underslept and overcaffeinated, just like i am now.

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