Monday, December 31, 2007

Last Blog Entry for 2007

Well, I wish I was bringing in the New Year on a more positive note. I had to leave work early today because I am so sick. The cold I've been battling for the last week finally opened a can of whoop-ass today by giving me a migraine. I started crying while talking to a coworker, which was embarrassing for me, but I went directly to the doctor afterward. Antibiotics and steroids... the doctor believes the migraine was caused by inflammation around my sinus cavities.

This is my first experience with having a migraine, and I am OK if this is my last. Growing up I saw firsthand how migraines affected my mother. My mother would stay in bed for a solid week if not more. I remember covering the windows in my mom's bedroom in an effect to ease her discomfort and having to make her eat. When I was a kid it was scary for me; I worried about her when I'd go to school. There were days when I would cry and beg for her to let me stay home so I could take care of her. Some days she'd let me. There were a couple of times when I was a teenager that I flat out refused to go to school because she seemed worse than usual.

OK. Enough of memory lane.

I received DOLLY AND FRIENDS the other day; it's simply 150 minutes of Dolly-Heaven. If you're a Dolly fan, purchase a copy today. Even if you're not a Dolly fan, purchase a copy today... 70s Dolly might win you over.

I hope everyone has a safe and fun NYE as well as a splendid New Year. May you obtain everything you want and deserve in 2008.

Friday, December 28, 2007

2/28/08 ~ Save the Date


2/28/08
~
Launch Party
~
hosted by Outwrite


Outwrite has generously agreed to host the fagulous launch party for Limp Wrist on Thursday, February 28, 2008, starting at 8pm. Those operating on gay time need to disregard the 8pm statement; program 7:30pm in your PDA as the start time!

The special guest of the evening will be the fierce Laure-Anne Bosselaar. You don't want to miss your chance to hear Laure-Anne; she's only in town for a limited time.

Come out and support Limp Wrist with an evening of poetry and conversation.

Bette Davis Stars in 2008 Postage Stamps

Bette Davis Stars in 2008 Postage Stamps

Dec. 27, 2007, 9:29 AM EST
The Associated Press

A face that will tease you, and please you and perhaps unease you is coming to the post office next year, it's those Bette Davis eyes.

On the 100th anniversary of her birth the great actress will be honored on a commemorative stamp, the 14th in the Legends of Hollywood Series.

A 10-time Academy Award nominee, Davis won twice, for her roles in "Dangerous" (1935) and "Jezebel" (1938).

And speaking of centennials, the same year Davis was born, actor Jack Norworth wrote "Take Me Out to the Ball Game," the song still famed in the seventh inning stretch. Postal officials hope buyers will root, root, root for a stamp based on a 19th-century baseball card recalling that special melody next year.

Also in 2008 the post office will launch a new multiyear Flags of Our Nation series, a 60-stamp set scheduled to include the Stars and Stripes as well as the flags of each state, the District of Columbia and territories.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Home from Houston

HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

If you celebrate Christmas, I hope you had a very Merry Christmas.

Each year I select a quotation to write in my Christmas cards and notes that I send out. Hope you enjoy my 2007 quote:

We cannot control the evil tongues of others;
but a good life enables us to disregard them.
~Cato the Elder


I landed in Atlanta around 10pm last night. After tracking down my luggage and waiting on MARTA, I arrived at the Doraville station around 11:40pm for my aunt and uncle to collect me. They took me home because I had to get my car to go back to their place to get Daisy-- she's a puker when it comes to riding in cars, so that understandably didn't want to bring her along. I think it was close to 2am before I got to bed, and even though I had issues falling asleep. Baja, still a kitten, was excited to have a living body in the apartment; therefore, she decided to headbutt me for most of the night. Isis was acting weird, and I was almost at a worrying point..... then.. I hear her meow... I look up.... she is ass up in the window--- damn it, she's in heat. She kept her fuck-me-meow up until about 3am.

I have to say, my Daisy was a perfect angel. She sat beside and chewed her bone until finally deciding to sleep.

I'll post some pictures from the Houston trip at some point over the next week.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Out of Here

Leaving work to go to the airport; I have an 8:55pm flight to Houston. Spending the Christmas holiday with Paul's family. I'll return home Christmas night.

Happy Holidays!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Beth Gylys ~ Limpwrist

Charles Jensen, poet/blogger/full-time cutie, is writing a review of Beth Gylys's MATCHBOOK for the first issue of LIMP WRIST. I am ecstatic that he has agreed to review Beth's work, and she is excited as well. She told she hopes he likes it-- I predict he will. I wouldn't ask him to review MATCHBOOK if I thought he wouldn't like! (No pressure Charlie!)

Since I'm writing about Beth, I guess I'll share one of my favs from her book BODIES THAT HUM. I've probably shared this poem before-- if so, get over it- thanks for your cooperation.


AFTERWARDS

Your desktop PC is well-equipped to handle
every disaster from spilled coffee to a power surge,
which is only one reason I don't understand
how you can just stand there,
puzzling at the toes of your Reebocks,
as if you might think of an apology for yourself
or your lack of courteous love-making practices,
such as kissing me on the neck,
for instance, or taking off your tube socks,
which, after all, usually have holes, and anyway,
you told me you didn't believe in all that shit
about mutuality or marriage, so at least you could stop
curling up your lip like a frazzled Doberman
and fuck like you want to fuck
or leave like you're never coming back.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas Bonus = Goodies

Prepare yourself for an attack of the dangerous green bug.

With part of my Christmas bonus, which was a surprise to me, to purchase the lovely items below.







What I wanted but did not get:


Feel free to get Uncle Dustin the Dolly poster. ;-P

Monday, December 10, 2007

Get to know Atlanta Pride-- Part 1

Over the next couple of months I will post parts of an interview I am conducting with Atlanta Pride's executive director, Donna Narducci.

I hope people will take time to read the interview in full; it is my goalto provide an inside glimpse to the workings of the Atlanta Pride Festival... show peeps how it happens... who makes it happen... and prove that it is indeed more than a three day
par-tay of twinks, leather daddies, drag queens, dykes on bikes, and hot muscled studs prancing around shirtless. Of course all of those things make it fagulous, but there are some of us who give up time 10 months out of the year and 40 to 80 hours the week of the event as well as people whose careers are to ensure the festival happens.


Q:
First off, thank you Donna for agreeing to this interview. I'm excited to give Atlanta Pride a voice in my blog. You've seen a lot of changes regarding Atlanta Pride; what would you consider the largest or most important change with the organization?



A:
Thanks Dustin for the opportunity to reach a larger audience and engage in
conversation about Atlanta Pride -- the event and the people behind the scenes
who put on the event for the community.

I began volunteering with the Atlanta Pride Committee in the spring of 1993 when I joined the Board of Directors. At that time, the Board was comprised of about 12 individuals who planned the festival and parade, which was a 2-day event held the last weekend. in June. I remember that year's festival being very chaotic...the person who was in charge of the market didn't show up, so people who had paid for a
booth space had no idea where they were supposed to set up and it became a free
for all. Back then we didn't erect many tents, we bought those blue canopies from K-mart and that was the tent we gave to people to set up their booth under.

Also, we were anticipating 100,000+ people coming to the event, so we ordered 15,000 t-shirts for our merchandise sales. Big mistake...we had never sold more than 1,000 shirts before and that year wasn't any different. It put us nearly $64,000 in debt after the event was over.

But, it also made the Board take a good hard look at how we were doing business, and put together better systems...budgets, forecasting, etc. It also made us realize that the event was growing faster than we --- as an all-volunteer organization -- could keep up with. The next year we held much tighter purse strings and managed to retire the debt from the year before, which paved the way to hire a part-time administrator, Hubert Alexander.

In my opinion, this was the first of 2 very important changes for the organization -- hiring staff. That may sound self-serving, but I promise you it is not. It is very scary for an organization to bring on an employee, and to make the financial commitment to paying their salary. But as was the case for APC, once you have someone to handle the day to day operations of running the organization, you actually stand a better chance of making more money because you are not relying solely on volunteers to handle everything.

I resigned from the Board after the '95 event to apply for the Executive Director position, and started as a part-time E.D. in October of '95. In '97 my position went to full-time, and over the years I have added 2 additional full-time staff. A festival committee was created to deal entirely with the planning and execution of the annual festival and parade, and the Board now focuses on policy, long-term planning, and governance.

So -- big change #1 was establishing a business/corporate environment for the organization which has facilitated the growth we have seen in the event over the last 12 years.

Big change #2 I believe we experienced while we began planning for the event this past June, and that is, the infusion of a global perspective on LGBT Human Rights, which started with the selection of the '07 theme: "Our Rights, Your Rights, Human Rights".

The annual PRIDE events have their roots in the commemoration of the Stonewall uprising in 1969. The Stonewall was a little gay bar in the gay area of NYC known as "the Village". During the '60's it was pretty commonplace for the police to raid gay bars at will and arrest patrons for a variety of offenses. It was blatant harassment but in those days, no one really cared. Well that night of June 27, 1969 the patrons of the bar didn't go willingly into the back of the paddy wagon, instead, they kicked and punched and screamed and started a small riot that lasted for several days. It was the shot heard 'round the world and is considered by many to be the turning point in the LGBT rights movement -- here in the US. That is why PRIDE events are usually held in June -- to make that connection to commemorating the brave queens, dykes, and trannies who stood up and faced off with their tormentors.

Over the years the PRIDE events have been used to protest, rally, motivate, mobilize, educate, and celebrate. Here in the US, our PRIDE events have a more celebratory tone, our parades are festive, the weekend events resemble many other traditional festivals held annually. Some might say we have lost our way, we are not
as political as we should be, we've gotten too soft -- too complacent.

Well, at this year's event a few members of the Festival Committee established the Human Rights Display which was placed on the bridge over the lake that connects the 2 sides of Piedmont Park. Twenty four panels were placed on both sides of the bridge to educate folks about the ongoing struggle for LGBT rights globally. Congressman John Lewis came and viewed the display then addressed the audience from the stage that Saturday afternoon.

Also, the Pride Committee had a float built for the parade that addressed the theme of "Our Rights, Your Rights, Human Rights and the float was prominently placed at the beginning of the parade to remind viewers of the emphasis on this year's event.

This was a HUGE shift in the focus of the event -- we weren't just planning another festival, we were getting back to the reason why we come together as a community each June, to remind ourselves that there is still work to be done, each and every day until full-equality is achieved for every single lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender person here in the US and throughout the world.

The Atlanta Pride Committee has selected our theme for this next year's event, and we continue with our focus on LGBT Human Rights -- but we bring it a little closer to home. After all, this is an election year and we are making history by making the presidential candidates accountable to us -- as witnessed in the ongoing debates, the raising of the marriage equality issue, ENDA, and the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell. These are no longer issues that candidates can brush aside, but must face head on.

The theme for '08 is: Your Vote, Your Rights, Your Future. It is a call to make a stand, to get involved in ensuring your voice is heard through your vote, which affects your future!

Friday, December 7, 2007

THE GIRL WHO WALKED HOME ALONE

Bette was a great favorite among impersonators who did impressions of the starts because she has such strong individual characteristics. She considered their attention "a compliment, highly flattering." She particularly enjoyed Charles Pierce's Bette Davis, and called him "supremely talented."

"For a long time, the impersonators didn't do me. I was worried about it. It meant I didn't have a distinct style.

People think I don't like those impersonators who do me. Well, they're wrong. I like it very much, as long as they are very good. The only time I don't like it is if they aren't good, or worse if they're better than I am. I watch them to learn about myself. Until I saw Arthur Blake, I never knew I moved my elbows so much."

~THE GIRL WHO WALKED HOME ALONE: Bette Davis A Personal Biography

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Dolly .... Oprah..... Audience Member? .... Oh My


OMG!


Oprah wants the biggest Dolly fans in her audience when she has my fabulous Dolly on her show promoting BACKWOODS BARBIE. I would give up an arm and legs to be on the Oprah show and meet Dolly..... wait.. actually, just the legs, I need to have both arms to give Dolly a huge ass hug.


If Oprah and her peeps know what is best, they'll have me on that show.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Dinner and Margaritas with the Girls

My girls from the "former" job took me out to dinner last Friday. The picture below is pre-margaritas. Thankfully, there are no post-margarita pictures.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Cecilia Woloch Shares Advice

A week or so ago, there was a meme circulating around the blogosphere; bloggers who were tagged had to post advice for new writers. This meme caught my interest, so I thought I would ask a couple of established poets to share advice for new writers and let me share it via my blog. The wonderful and sexy Cecilia Woloch was kind enough to share.

After reading Cecilia's advice you will find her biographical information (which was taken from Cecilia's website). Please, please, take a few minutes to view Cecilia's website. Make a point to read the poems on her website. Her brilliant poem "Burning the Doll," which happens to be one of my top ten favorite poems, is on her webpage!




1). Read voraciously -- the best contemporary poetry, but also reach back
into poetry's traditions (all the way to Sappho, at least!) and read poetry in
translation from other cultures and traditions.

2). Don't be in a rush to publish. You may only end up publishing things
you'll later regret having published, or the (almost inevitable) rejections may
interfere with your relationship to your work. Give the work time to
develop, and learn to think of the work as its own reward, and not to worry too
much about "validation" from the world.

3). Do find a supportive community of poets, a workshop or just a few
friends whose opinions and goodwill you trust, people who will challenge and
stimulate you as a poet. But don't let the judgements of others quash what may
be most original in your work -- a danger of workshops.

4). Lead an interesting life, care deeply, don't be afraid.



BIO:
CECILIA WOLOCH was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and grew up there and in rural Kentucky, one of seven children of a homemaker and an airplane mechanic. She received her MFA in Creative Writing from Antioch University L.A. in 1999.

Her books of poems are Sacrifice (Cahuenga Press, 1997), a BookSense 76 selection in 2001; Tsigan: The Gypsy Poem (Cahuenga Press, 2002); and Late (BOA Editions, 2003) for which she was named Georgia Author of the Year in Poetry in 2004. A chapbook manuscript, "Narcissus," was chosen winner of the Tupelo Press Snowbound Competition and will be published in 2007.

She is the founding director of Summer Poetry in Idyllwild and of The Paris Poetry Workshop, and is currently a lecturer in the creative writing program at the University of Southern California as well as a member of the core faculty of the low-residency MFA Program in Professional Writing at Western Connecticut State University.

Monday, December 3, 2007

THE GIRL WHO WALKED HOME ALONE

"People wished to see the character they saw on the screen, or there were looks of disappointment on their faces. They actually expect you to be certain characters they saw in the films. They think I'm a difficult person because of the parts I've played. They're disappointed in you if you don't say those lines. They don't want you to be out of character."

~ THE GIRL WHO WALKED HOME ALONE: Bette Davis, A Personal Biography

Sunday, December 2, 2007

"Better Get To Livin" Video

ENJOY DOLLY'S NEW MUSIC VIDEO!

Few Pics from 3rd Annual Lighting of the GLBT Tree

Ruby Red and Phillip handed out prizes.



Carey Sherrell called me a tall drink of water
and wanted my number, but I am off the market.



Deje Johnson has a splendid voice!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Not for the Eyes of Children or Conservative Right Wingers

Margaret Cho you rock. I posted a link to this video before; however, I thought I'd post it today since it is one of my favorite youtube videos. Oh, it's so wrong that it's right.

Enjoy "My Puss".....


World AIDS Day 2007




Today is World AIDS Day.

Take a moment to think about all of the people who are battling HIV/AIDS. Take a moment to think about all the people who lost the battle. (Click here and/or here for pictures of the AIDS Quilt.)

What are you doing for the cause? Don't you want to help in the battle? Find a way to be assistance in your community.

Prove to yourself that you love yourself by using protection. Respect your sexual partner: use protection. Growing up I remember hearing the slogan "Friends don't let friends drink and drive" over and over. Yes, it is a true statement and so is friends don't let friends unprotected sex. When I was in high school there were a few times when I gave out condoms to friends who were sexually active, and I sold condoms for a quarter each to the people I didn't like.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Pull Out the February 2008 Calendar

After a number of emails between Kodak Harrison and Laure-Anne Bosselaar, I am excited to announce that Laure-Anne Bosselaar will be a feature at Kodac's Java Monkey Speaks on Sunday, February 17, 2008. Mark it on your calendar; program it in your PDA. I am telling you this as sure as I'm Dolly obsessed-- you won't want to miss this reading.

I met the fantastic Laure-Anne two years ago at the Palm Beach Poetry Festival, and she was kind enough to meet with me this past January at PBPF. She is an amazing person as well as poet. I simply love her personality. She has graciously agreed to an interview for the first issue of Limpwrist (yay!).

Check out Laure-Anne's books THE HOUR BETWEEN DOG AND WOLF, SMALL GODS OF GRIEF, and A NEW HUNGER.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Variety-- Limpwrist to Work to .....

~ MM is the greatest; he's got some mad skills. Chick here to check out this page he created to pimp out Limpwrist.

~ Today, I had my first disappointment with the new job. When I interviewed for the new job I was told that I would have 2 weeks vacation. Now the person I interviewed with, who is also my supervisor, told me she is sorry for the miscommunication. In book it isn't miscommunication when you flat out tell me something then basically say you didn't. The lack of vacation time poses a big problem for me since I'm going to the Key West Literary Festival in January, which will have be off Wednesday to Wednesday. Another supervisor told me I could work longer shifts on Monday/Tuesday and Thursday/Friday to help with the time loss-- it is a nice gesture but when you depend on 40 hours a week it isn't enough.

~ Check Charles Jensen's blog today and scroll to his entry 11/20/07. He has a new chapbook with a fabulous cover titled The Strange Case of Maribel Dixon.

~ Paul and I watched the Hairspray remake last night. I prefer the 1988 version-- even if that means I lose some gay points. Michelle Pfieffer did an amazing job playing the bitch. Evidence below:

Saturday, November 24, 2007

3rd Annual GLBT Holiday Tree Lighting

It's a full evening of fun, food, and friends when Outwrite plays host to the Third Annual GLBT Holiday Tree Lighting, a benefit for Atlanta Pride Committee, on Thursday, Nov. 29 starting at 7:30 p.m. hosted by the outrageous local personality Ruby Redd. This event is free and open to the public.

This year live music is an added feature with appearances by DeJe Johnson, a performer from Blake's Southern Comfort series, and OurSong, the Atlanta Gay and Lesbian Chorus. Live theatre is also represented with appearances by Scrooge from Alliance Theatre's production of A Christmas Carol as well as by the elfin star of Horizon Theatre's production of The Santaland Diaries.

A special guest appearance by Carey Sherrell, a contestant on Donald Trump's television series The Apprentice, is also scheduled.

While kids of all ages are invited, only those 21 years of age or older will be able to purchase a wristband ($5) entitling bearers to free food and drink. Raffles for fabulous prizes donated by area businesses are also planned. Smirnoff Twist is providing cocktails with Vitamin Energy providing non-alcoholic beverages. Blake's on the Park is supplying food.

Revelers may also place their festive ornaments on the Holiday Tree.

This gala event is sponsored by Outwrite, Smirnoff Twist, Vitamin Energy, Blake's on the Park, David, Southern Voice, and Atlanta Pride Committee.

(from Outwrite's webpage)

"Buying Stock" ~ Denise Duhamel

Love this poem.

BUYING STOCK

"...The use of condoms offers substantial protection, but does not
guarantee total protection and that while
there is no evidence that deep kissing has resulted in
transfer of the virus, no one can say that such transmission
would be absolutely impossible."
-- The Surgeon General, 1987

I know you won't mind if I ask you to put this on.
It's for your protection as well as mine--Wait.
Wait. Here, before we rush into anything
I've bought a condom for each one of your fingers. And here--
just a minute--Open up.
I'll help you put this one on, over your tongue.
I was thinking:
If we leave these two rolled, you can wear them
as patches over your eyes. Partners have been known to cry,
shed tears, bodily fluids, at all this trust, at even the thought
of this closeness.

~ Denise Duhamel

Friday, November 23, 2007

Spam Poetry-- Rated X

I'm willing to be someone else's life, but not anyone I care deeply about, that it was T.S. Eliot who once said, Good poets borrow; great poets steal. I am in no way calling myself a great poet. I am only using Eliot's line to soften the stealing of an idea, but I know CK won't mind--- after all I am giving him credit. CK recently posted a poem in his blog that was created from the subject lines of his spam mail, but I heard him first mention the idea of saving spam subject lines at the Outwrite reading I did earlier this month. I absolutely fell in love with the idea, so I started saving spam subject lines.

Every line in the poem below is from a subject line. The poem is rated X.. (I wonder if Loretta Lynn will pay me for that reference to her song)-- be warned..... I like it.. hope you will too

Spam Poem 1

Dear prize winner
Make a breakthrough in your sexual relationship
Don't let your dick provoke her laughter
Don't be an average man! Megadick will lift you up to the top
You'll never be unhappy in bed anymore!

Forget about failures in the bedroom
Bigger penis is not just an illusion
Make all the girls notice your manhood
Grow a hulky shaft
Let your penis grow into a purple-headed demon
Separate yourself from other men
Your new penis will be all women's dreams

11/23/07

THE MIST



Thanksgiving dinner was delicious. My mother outdid herself. We enjoyed turkey, green beans, rice, mac&cheese, okra, squash casserole, rolls, corn, and homemade cheese cake for dessert. (The corn, okra, green beans, and squash were grown in my parents garden.) After dinner we watched some of the Law & Order marathon. I could stay glued to Law & Order: Special Victims Unit for hours, sadly, maybe days.


After leaving my parents' place, Paul and I went to the theater to watch THE MIST. I was expecting to be disappointed with the movie because I often feel let down when Stephen King's literary works are made into movies; however, THE MIST was great. Go see it this weekend; you won't regret it.

I had two favorite performances in the movie. One was by Marcia Gay Harden as crazy-ass schizo religious zealot Mrs. Carmody. Her performance was flawless. Frances Stermhagen as Irene, the town's caring elementary school principal, was my other favorite performance. Irene has a memorable line that will have you laughing-- "I have more canned peas!" Even though I enjoyed the performances of these lovely women, I still enjoyed eye candy Thomas Jane as David Drayton-- yum.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy T-Day


Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Monday, November 19, 2007

WGA Strike Perspective from Richard Andreoli

Below are links to blog entries written by Richard Andreoli, editor of MONDOHOMO. Rick has written some interesting and informative blog entries regarding the Writer's Guild of America Strike, and I have enjoyed reading his entries.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Grass Roots Institute Sale!

The first time I heard the name Aida Rentas was
at an Atlanta Pride Committee when we were
discussing and voting on male and female grand marshalls for the 2007 Atlanta Pride Parade. After hearing about Aida, I was surprised I had never of her before. I thought to myself, this woman sounds amazing! If you don't want to take my word for it, heck even if you do, I encourage you to click here to read here biography on the APC website.

I remember when I walked into Aida's Grass Roots Institute (GRI). (You can see a little bit of the store in my Dolly Night at GRI blog entry; you'll also see Aida strutting it as Dolly.) The store was packed with all kinds of art from floor to wall to ceiling-- paintings, pottery, photography, homemade soap & candles, and so much more. I couldn't help but feel at home and safe, which I am sure is how the children involved in Aida's program feel. Aida and I sat down and chatted about the work I wanted to do with her organization. I don't think I have ever had someone I just met keep me smiling and laughing for an entire lengthy conversation. Quickly I learned Aida is what I call a spit-fire-- fiesty....blunt...tells it like it is no matter what. I fell in love.

Anyway, I could write a book on the wonders of Aida, but I should get to the purpose of this post. GRI is moving locations. To help in the switching of locations Aida is having a huge sale. I stopped by Saturday to check out the sale and left with a few goodies. GRI will be open every day this week from 10am to 6pm, except for Thanksgiving. Schedule some time to visit GRI-- you'll probably find a little something-something for yourself or someone else.

Grass Roots Institute
593 Edgewood Avenue
Atlanta, GA 30312
(located by the Lighting Loft)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Dustin-Contest Time

I have had the desire to do something different, fun and a little bit unique, so I thought why not have a Dustin-Contest. No, I'm not self centered, only lazy-- it is must easier to come up with questions about me than to do extensive research to create really hard trivia questions.

This entry contains eleven questions. Five of the questions are multiple choice and the others are very short answer. If a question is marked with an asterisk it means the answer has been discussed in my blog. There is one trick question; it should be obvious that it is a trick question but the answer is not so obvious.

Like any decent contest, there will be a prize. If I happen to feel frisky there might be a prize for second place. However, we all know that second place is only the first person to lose-- or at least that is what my dad used to tell me.

TO WIN, email your answers to dustinvbrookshire@gmail.com. Please type "Dustin-Contest" in the subject line. All comments regarding my cuteness as a child, visible in the above picture, may be left in a comment.

1. For the past couple years, I've wanted to do Dolly for Halloween. Which Dolly did I want to be?
A) Here You Come Again- Dolly
B) Best Little Whorehouse in Texas- Dolly
C) Halo & Horns- Dolly

2. Out of the three poets below, which would I consider my favorite?
A) Kim Addonizio
B) Marilyn Nelson
C) Denise Duhamel

3. How many times have I visited Dollywood?

4. What poet do I consider as my mentor?*

5. Who is my favorite actress?
A) Jodi Foster
B) Kathy Bates
C) Dolly Parton

6. Whenever I attend a workshop or conference what book do I always take?
A) Furious Cooking
B) Bodies that Hum
C) Kinky

7. What is my boyfriend's name?*

8. Which celebrity does Daisy share a birthday with?*

9. In January 2008, what conference will I attend?*

10. What movie introduced me to the wonderful, funny, and talented Madeline Kahn?
A) Blazing Saddles
B) Clue
C) Young Frankenstein

11. What follows my blog's name?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Dustin Contest Coming

At some point this weekend I am going to post a blog entry with a Dustin Contest........ I feel like doing something fun. The person with the most questions answered correctly will win a little something-something. Until then, enjoy this Dolly video:

Thursday, November 15, 2007

2008 Atlanta Pride Theme

Your Vote. Your rights. Your future.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Brief Overview of Poetry Night

I think the poetry evening at Outwrite was a success! It was great to see all of the usuals: Collin, Lisa, and Rupert. Franklin Abbott hosted and started off the reading. Then he introduced me-- I started off with three villanelles then read a mix of old and new work. I debuted four new poems and two of the new were brand spanking new. The brand spanking new poems were "Building 412 (1/1/04)" and "The Georgia Baptist Convention Requests a Day of Rain Prayer on 11/4/07." "Building 412 (1/1/04)" is inspired by the AJC's series A HIDDEN SHAME: Death in Georgia's Mental Hospitals, and I am currently working and mapping out other poems on the series. The other new poems were "Wreckage" and "Ivory"... both come from the last section of my chapbook DISORDERS.

Karen Head was absolutely amazing. I loved all of her work, and I am hoping she will submit to Limpwrist because I would be honored to include her in the first issue. Karen read a poem about a breast cancer survivor; I think I'll ask if I can post it in blog. The poem was moving in many ways, but it made me think of two friends who have battled breast cancer. She closed her reading with a dream poem, and in the dream Dolly Parton is her aunt. I was giddy. I plan to ask Karen if I can reprint it in Limpwrist.

I thoroughly enjoyed myself. Remember, support Outwrite because Outwrite supports its community and audience.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Tomorrow Night!

Time: Tuesday, November 13, 2007 8:00 PM

Phone: 404-607-0082

Title of Event: Poetry Night with Franklin Abbott & Friends


Outwrite hosts the popular Poetry Night with readings by Atlanta poet and host for the evening Franklin Abbott and invited guests. This November edition features poets Dustin Brookshire and Karen Head.


Dustin Brookshire is a poet, activist, eternal student, and part time naughty boy living in Atlanta. Dustin has had work published in numerous online journals, won awards from sate poetry societies, and had his blog recognized on the Senate floor in the Georgia General Assembly.


Karen Head author of Sassing (WordTech Press, forthcoming) and Shadow Boxes (All Nations Press, 2003), will be joining us at Outwrite for our popular poetry night. Karen's poetry has appeared in a number of journals and anthologies. As a scholar of contemporary American Poetry, she has begun to explore the connections between traditional text-based poetry and digitally- enhanced poetry, an exploration that involves her in a number of projects being conducted in the Wesley Center for New Media at Georgia Tech. Her digital poetry was featured at the E-Poetry 2007 festival in Paris.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

America's Next Top Model

I have a fever. No, Christopher Walken, it can't be cured by more cowbell. However, it can be cured by more of America's Next Top Model. Yes, I realize admitting my addiction to Top Model upgrades my gay card from regular to platinum--- it can't be helped.

Today, there was a Top Model marathon on MTV...... this means my goals of rearranging this and that & washing a couple of loads of clothes never happened. Damn you Tyra.

It doesn't hurt that Jay Manuel and Nigel Barker show up on every episode. Jay and Nigel = Exquisite Eye Candy that is diabetic approved.




Saturday, November 10, 2007

A Hidden Shame: Death in Georgia's Mental Hospitals

Below I have links to a series of articles, A HIDDEN SHAME: Death in Georgia's Mental Hospitals, written by AJC investigative reporters Alan Judd and Andy Miller. It isn't enough to say I am appalled by what has slid by in the state mental hospitals. I am saddened for the people and families that are victims of the neglect and abuse of the state mental hospitals.

I am disgusted that the GA Governor Sonny Perdue had the nerve to request $19 million for his Go Fish Georgia Initiative when the AJC was spotlighting the need of financial assistance for state mental hospitals. I was shocked that Perdue considers fishing more important than the state's mental hospitals.

A HIDDEN SHAME: DEATH IN GEORGIA'S MENTAL HOSPITALS
A HIDDEN SHAME: About the series
Part 1: Sarah Crider is among the victims
Part 2: Suicide exposes neglect in state hospitals

Part 3: A fatal struggle--but no punishment
Part 4: Lax security, easy escape, tragic ending
Part 5: Family shattered by failure in care
Part 6: Psychiatric patients are vulnerable when state shunts them to inns, shelters, streets
Part 7: Children housed with alleged offenders
Part 8: A lonely end to a life of madness
Part 9: Mental unit needed cops to end teens 'riot'

"Islands in the Stream"

Look at the split on her dress! HOT.

Shakira Parody from Way Back When

This video never fails to make me laugh.

Friday, November 9, 2007

On my home from work today, I saw something that is currently a huge sin in Georgia. At the intersection of Springdale and Lindbergh there is a leaking fire hydrant.

Four or five blocks down the road,on the opposite side of the road from the leaking hydrant, a homeowner has a sign in his yard that reads, "the wet sidewalk is from an undergroun pipe leak, NOT from watering the lawn."

Thursday, November 8, 2007

U.S. House Takes Historic Step by Passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act

U.S. House Takes Historic Step by Passing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act
11/7/07

WASHINGTON – In an historic step toward equality, the U.S. House of Representatives successfully passed today the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, ENDA. The vote, 235 to 184, marks the first time ever that either chamber of Congress has passed employment protections based on sexual orientation.

"Today, we witnessed the making of civil rights history in the U.S. House of Representatives by the passing of ENDA," said Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese. "This vote by Congress is an important step at ensuring that millions of gay and lesbian Americans will never again have to go to work in fear of losing their jobs because of who they are."

In 31 states, it is currently legal to fire someone based on their sexual orientation. In 39 states, it is legal to fire a person for being transgender.

The Human Rights Campaign helped introduce ENDA 13 years ago to prevent workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation. This year, for the first time, HRC and allies on the Hill included gender identity in the bill to also protect transgender workers. One month ago, House leadership made it clear that Congress did not have the votes to pass HR 2015, which prevents discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity. This week, House Rules Committee reported out Congressman Frank’s HR 3685, a bill that protects only sexual orientation, to the floor.

While HRC was disappointed that HR 3685 did not include protections for transgender Americans, it believes the successful passage of Congressman Frank’s bill is a step forward for all Americans, and that it paves the way for additional progress to outlaw workplace discrimination based on gender identity.

"Our fight for equality will not be won overnight," said Solmonese. "It will be won one step at a time, and we will not give up until we reach the finish line. This is a critical piece of legislation and a major step toward the finish line for all Americans."

Throughout history, Congress has often taken an incremental approach toward equality for other civil rights and business regulatory legislation. For example, the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) was introduced in five consecutive congresses for eight years and was vetoed twice by former President Bush before it was finally signed into law on February 5, 1993, by President Clinton. Each time the FMLA was introduced, Members built upon the protection from the previous year’s legislative action.

Additionally, each piece of civil rights legislation passed by Congress -- in 1957, 1960, 1963, 1965, 1967, 1968, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975 and 1990 -- continued the legislative path of the expansion of essential civil rights protections in law.

On Tuesday, the Human Rights Campaign joined the Leadership Conference on Civil Rights (LCCR); the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP); and the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), among other organizations in the civil rights community, in support of the bill that would make it illegal for employers to discriminate on sexual orientation. The letter was signed by 10 national civil rights and worker protection organizations representing millions of Americans.

(taken from www.hrc.org)

"Shine"

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

11/13/07 --- Save the Date


Karen Head
and
Dustin Brookshire

OUTWRITE
TUESDAY EVENING
NOVEMBER 13TH
8 PM
HOSTED BY
FRANKLIN ABBOTT


Karen Head is the author of Sassing
and Shadow Boxing.
Her digital poetry was featured
at the E-Poetry 2007 Festival in Paris.
She teaches at Georgia Tech.

Dustin Brookshire is a poet, activist
eternal student and part time naughty boy.
His chapbook, Disorders,
is in search of a publisher.
His online magazine, LIMPWRIST,
is on the verge of launching issue 1.
Find him at
www.dbrookshire.blogspot.com

OUTWRITE BOOKSTORE AND COFFEEHOUSE
is located at 10th and Piedmont
www.outwritebooks.com
404-607-0082

THIS EVENT IS FREE AND OPEN TO ALL.
COMING UP IN 2008
Jim Elledge
author of A History of My Tattoo



www.atlantarainbowmuse.com
www.theninthmuse.com
(stolen from Franklin's email)

Monday, November 5, 2007

Changing to the Other Side of the Fence

After eight years in retail pharmacy I pursued change and will be embracing it soon. I accepted a full time position with a 29-doctor medical practice in Atlanta. The practice has a position for a pharmacy technician on its clinical staff team. The tech fields calls from patients and pharmacies regarding prescriptions, meets with drug reps, stocks the sample closet, and assists the clinical staff in others if desired/as needed. With 29 doctors I have a feeling I will be quite busy with the calls regarding refills!

I was extremely nervous about my interview because it has been years since I've had to interview for a position. I guess I shouldn't have been nervous because it was a slam dunk. The interviewer told me that I impressed her with my medication knowledge and professional demeanor. (Yay for compliments!) But even so, I have already started studying the area this practices specializes in.

This position is all around better from what I am currently doing. I will have better hours. I'm maxed out at my current job at barely-decent pay rate, and I'm going to start out at a much better rate with room for raises at the new job. Also, there is no more worrying about if I'll be working holidays as the office is closed for 9 holidays throughout the year. Oh yes, this is going to be good for me.

I am not abandoning retail pharmacy all together. I plan to work a weekend or two each month. The extra money from the weekends will be good for me, and it will keep my drug knowledge up to date.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Rolled Like Dice

The day after my "Bette Davis Eyes" entry, I some how managed to knock over a cap less bottle of water during the night. Yes, water equals no stains; however, water soaking a laptop equals possible big trouble. My laptop has not functioned properly unit t0day. Praise be to Dolly for a working laptop!



Here's some blurbs of stuff that I have wanted to blog about when I was laptop-less:



*BIG NEWS: I've worked in retail pharmacy since I was 16; I've been with my current employer for 6 years. This month all of this is changing because I am leaving my job for another. Well, I am leaving as a full time employee. I'll probably dedicate an entry to tomorrow to this change.

*Listening to NPR this morning I found out: In April of this year soldiers serving overseas had their duty time increased from 12 months to 15 months. My Opinion: The increase is bullshit.

Georgia Speaker of the House, Glen Richardson, wants to abolish property tax and implement a 4% on EVERYTHING...... yes, everything means the items that weren't taxed before like doctor visits, etc. My Opinion: I'm not on Speaker Richardson's abolishing boat.



*The Southern Baptist Convention has asked all churches belonging to the group to pray for rain in Georgia and think about what God is telling us. My Opinion: A poem is in the works on this topic.

*I really want to watch BEOWULF and ENCHANTED. I'm excited that THE LOVELY BONES is being made into a movie; hope it comes together as an A+ production.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Current Addiction: "Bette Davis Eyes"

Atl GLBTQ Literary Festival

Here's a shot of the readers from Saturday morning.

left to right:
Cleo Creech, Collin Kelley, Reginald Jackson, Megan Volpert,
Dustin Brookshire, Franklin Abbott, Lisa Allender
not pictured:
Debbie Fraker & Larry Corse

AIDS Quilt----- 2 of 2

Here is the second post of pictures of the AIDS Quilt. Click here if you missed the first post with pictures.





























Friday, October 26, 2007

2007 AIDS Walk Poetry Book Raffle

I wanted to be creative when announcing the winners for the poetry book raffle, so I asked blogger friend Montgomery Maxton, who is always creating interesting Youtube clips, to create a Youtube clip to draw the winners for the contest. Being the great guy he is, he of course helped me out. Please click his name; give his blog some love. Here's his video:

Funeral Today

Aunt Betty's funeral was today. Her daughter, my cousin, asked my mother if I would be a pallbearer. Normally, I have a standard answer of no to the pallbearer question because I often find myself too emotional at the funeral of a family member. I thought of what Aunt Betty would say if she heard me answer no. She would have given me hell in her special and funny way.

I'm going to miss her presence at family gatherings-- miss how she calls people out for BS, miss how she makes me laugh and smile with her honesty.

I am in such q need for a nap..... so it is about to be nap time. When I wake, I'm going to post a video made by friend and poet Montgomery Maxton announcing the winners of the poetry book raffle I conducted to raise funds for the 2007 AIDS Walk.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Presidential Hopefuls on Iraq

VIEWS ON IRAQ

Please note: All information in quotations comes from the official web page of the Presidential hopeful pictured to the left of the statement.


View: There should be a timetable for the removal of troops.

"Starting Phased Redeployment within Hillary's First Days in Office: The most important part of Hillary's plan is the first: to end our military engagement in Iraq's civil war and immediately start bringing our troops home. As president, one of Hillary's first official actions would be to convene the Joint Chiefs of Staff, her Secretary of Defense, and her National Security Council. She would direct them to draw up a clear, viable plan to bring our troops home starting with the first 60 days of her Administration. She would also direct the Department of Defense and the Department of Veterans Affairs to prepare a comprehensive plan to provide the highest quality health care and benefits to every service member -- including every member of the National Guard and Reserves -- and their families." (Click here to Clinton's page on Iraq.)



View: There should be a timetable for the removal of troops.


"There is no military solution to the chaos in Iraq. Instead, the Iraqi people must solve the problem politically by taking responsibility for their country. By leaving Iraq, America will prompt the Iraqi people, regional powers, and the entire international community to find the political solution that will end the sectarian violence and create a stable Iraq. We must show the Iraqis that we are serious about leaving by actually starting to leave, with an immediate withdrawal of 40,000-50,000 troops and a complete withdrawal within nine to ten months. We should leave behind in Iraq only a brigade of 3,500 to 5,000 troops to protect the embassy and possibly a few hundred troops to guard humanitarian workers. " (Click here to see Edwards's page on Iraq.)




View: U.S. forces need to stay in Iraq for as long as it takes for Iraqi forces to take over.


"Rudy Giuliani believes winning the war on terror is the great responsibility of our generation. America cannot afford to go back to the days of playing defense, with inconsistent responses to terrorist attacks, because weakness only encourages aggression. Americans want peace. We’re at war not because we want to be, but because the terrorists declared war on us—well before the attacks of September 11th. Rudy understands that freedom is going to win this war of ideas. America will win the war on terror." (Click here to watch comments from Giuliani's page on Iraq.)






View: U.S. forces need to stay in Iraq for as long as it takes for Iraqi forces to take over.

"A greater military commitment now is necessary if we are to achieve long-term success in Iraq. John McCain agrees with retired Army General Jack Keane that there are simply not enough American forces in Iraq. More troops are necessary to clear and hold insurgent strongholds; to provide security for rebuilding local institutions and economies; to halt sectarian violence in Baghdad and disarm Sunni and Shia militias; to dismantle al Qaeda; to train the Iraqi Army; and to embed American personnel in Iraqi police units. Accomplishing each of these goals will require more troops and is a crucial prerequisite for needed economic and political development in the country. America's ultimate strategy is to give Iraqis the capabilities to govern and secure their own country. " (Click here to see McCain's page on Iraq.)




View: There should be a timetable for the removal of troops.

"Obama has a plan to immediately begin withdrawing our troops engaged in combat operations at a pace of one or two brigades every month, to be completed by the end of next year. He would call for a new constitutional convention in Iraq, convened with the United Nations, which would not adjourn until Iraq's leaders reach a new accord on reconciliation. He would use presidential leadership to surge our diplomacy with all of the nations of the region on behalf of a new regional security compact. And he would take immediate steps to confront the ongoing humanitarian disaster in Iraq." (Click here to see Obama's page on Iraq.)



View: U.S. forces need to stay in Iraq for as long as it takes for Iraqi forces to take over.

"Across the nation, there is debate about our future course in Iraq. Our desire to bring our troops home, safely and soon, is met with our recognition that if Iraq descends into all-out civil war, millions could die; that Iraq's Sunni region could become a base for Al Qaeda; that its Shia region could be seized by Iran; that Kurd tension could destabilize Turkey; and even that the broader Middle East could be drawn into conflict. The possible implications for America and for American interests from such developments could be devastating. It could mean a future with far more military involvement and far more loss of American life. For these reasons, I believe that so long as there is a reasonable prospect of success, our wisest course is to seek stability in Iraq, with additional troops endeavoring to secure the civilian population. (Click here for Romney's page.)

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

A Tribute to My Aunt Betty

What the World Should Know:

Aunt Betty was fierce and a fighter. She battled leukaemia for a number of years, but sick or not she worked in her vegetable garden, canned food, and worshipped her grandchildren. She loved and took pride in her garden and shared her canned goods with people who fell on hard times and included a homemade cake. If you asked for the shirt off her back, she would give it to you and two more from her closet.

Aunt Betty said what she thought at all times; she had absolutely no qualms or fears when it came to expressing herself. She never backed down no matter how much of a ruckus it caused within the family. I admire her greatly, honestly more than anyone will ever know, for this quality.

Aunt Betty was accepting. Unfortunately, a number of my aunt and uncles carry lots of prejudice ideals, but she didn't fit the category whatsoever. All Aunt Betty required was that you be yourself. If you were fake, well, God help you then-- Aunt Betty didn't care for fake people. When one of my cousins "came out," he father disowned him. Once the news made it to Aunt Betty she called her brother to tell him how stupid he was being, that he needed to realize nothing was different about his son.

I will always remember Aunt Betty as someone who would stand up for the underdog and spoke her mind so you always knew where she stood. I love that she'd tell a person in an instance to be his/herself and recommend to that person to tell everyone else to fuck off if they didn't like it. Oh yes, she'd drop the F-bomb---she always said what she thought-- I mentioned it before but I'll mention it again: that quality is something I dearly love about her. At times you never knew what would come out of her mouth, but you knew it would be from the heart or her brutal honest opinion.

Aunt Betty fought a hard battle Tuesday morning and showed she wasn't leaving very easily. She coded four times and recovered successfully; however, she wasn't able to recover after she coded for a fifth time.

Rest in peace Aunt Betty. Lots and lots love.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Positive Thoughts, Vibes, & Prayers

Please send out positive thoughts & vibes and/or prayers for my family. We had an unexpected death in the family---one of my aunts passed away at 3am this morning.

The ICU staff at Emory Crawford Long Hospital deserves recognition for their excellent and unbelievable bedside manner. I don't think I have ever experienced such a dedicated and sincere staff.

Monday, October 22, 2007

AIDS Quilt --- 1 of 2

Ok. I feel worse than yesterday, but no time to whine about. This entry contains some of the pictures I took while viewing the AIDS Quilt; I have more pictures that I will post later. I don't know if I can accurately describe all the thoughts and emotions I experienced as I viewed the quilt; however, I know the first emotion that hit me was an overwhelming sadness. The short life spans seemed to leap from the quilt as if they were in 3-D, so many people were robbed of long lives and dealt exit cards in their 40s. Chris, who always adds rational to my emotional, reminded me to look at the years these people were born, which was typically the 50s, 60s, and 70s. He reminded me of the progress that have been made in the medical field, but it was hard for me to concentrate on what he was saying. I mean, I know that these days in pharmacy school and med school HIV/AIDS is taught as a manageable diseases instead of as a death sentence.

But even though there has been much progress, there is still so much more progress that must be made. There are so many people we need to remember.