Monday, September 30, 2013

Vacation Vixen: Blerta

Right, so I’m on vacation for the next few days. I’m road tripping and will have limited internet access, but lots of wine. Not necessarily in that order. To tide you over while I’m away I’ve lined up some vacation treats for you to nibble on. The first is Tina Fey as Blerta, the new Albanian roommate on “Girls.” This skit proves three things 1) “Girls” is ridiculous, but I’m still going to watch it when it returns. 2) Kate McKinnon is amazing and needs to be given more to do on SNL. 3) Tina Fey can even kill while wearing a rubber hand. Happy vacation to me.

Friday, September 27, 2013

My Weekend Giveaway

Remember when I said there would be prizes? I wasn’t kidding. Former AfterEllen Managing Editor and current kick-ass fiction writer Malinda Lo has another book, the sequel to last year’s “Adaptation,” out this week and you can win a copy of your very own.

Inheritance,” the follow-up to the contemporary science fiction tale, picks up exactly where the story left off and, without getting too into details, Reese will have to decide between David and Amber. Also there’s the little matters of (SPOILERS, SUCH SPOILERS) alien DNA and government conspiracies to deal with, too.

Malinda has graciously agreed to give away a two-pack, “Adaptation” and “Inheritance,” to one lucky winner. If you already have “Adaptation,” give the extra copy to a friend to read. If you haven’t read it yet, well now you don’t have to wait for the sequel. Lucky dog.

Malinda is a smart, compelling writer who knows how to make you want to turn the page. And while her work is classified as young adult, it’s accessible to everyone and always, always brings the gay.

So here are the details. The contest is only open to U.S. residents (I am so sorry, my international friends. You know I love you though, right?) To enter put your name, the state you live in and your email address (spell it out if you worry about spambots) in the comments section. I will pick a winner at random at the end of next week.

Oh, and good luck.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Clean All The Things

Apologies for the end-of-the-day post today. I was busy cleaning every single surface in my house. My mother and aunt are coming for a week-long visit. So, you know, cleaning. I ask for your humble forgiveness. Please enjoy this gif of Jaime Murray dancing as a symbol of my sincere apologies.

Please come back tomorrow when I’ll have a proper post with prizes and everything. Well, a prize. But it's a good prize.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Bring on the Blue

There was a period in my life when I just couldn’t get enough of French films. There was a lot of smoking and little speaking and I soaked in the sparseness. French films don’t mind showing people just thinking or brooding or – yes – that ubiquitous smoking. (Note: I only enjoy movie smoking, where no one has to get cancer or hack up a lung.)

I haven’t watched as many of late. Though I feel that’s a symptom of an overall improvement in television offering more than a decline in my Francophile tendencies. OK, fine, I also like to brood less now. I blame “Twilight,” ruining vampires and brooding for us all.

But, no matter what, this year I will see at least one French film. And that film will be “Blue Is the Warmest Color.” You know – the coming-of-age lesbian love story that was a sensation at Cannes only to be followed by a sensational clash between the actresses and director about the grueling shoot and then a sensational breakdown by the director who is now questioning whether the film should be released at all. No, really. All of this has happened.

Yet still, I’m a sucker for a good love story, especially a lesbian love story. And even though – and this is not a spoiler, just a guess – this sounds like one of those love stories that can’t end well for all parties involved (it is a French film after all, and words like “searing” and “shattering” keep getting used by critics to describe it) I simply cannot wait. I’m just a sucker for the brooding, I guess. C'est la vie.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

SGALGG: Emmy Edition

You know, there wasn’t even that much SGALGG at the Emmys, more evidence that it was a generally forgettable year (minus a few notable exceptions, who of course helped prove the rule). But I worked hard to find you the closest I could find to Straight Gals Acting Like Gay Gals at the awards this year, because I believe in selfless endeavors that betters humanity. Also, I just like it when ladies hold hands. And this gives me more opportunities to post pictures of Tina and Amy. Award season gives you lemons, you turn it into Liz Lemonade. Too much? Well, I tried. On to the SGALGG.

Tina & Amy

I love how it looks like Tina is totally checking out Amy’s ass and Amy is all, “Like what you see, of course you do.”

Alison Pill & Jane Fonda

I don’t know what Jane is trying to do to Allison, but I’m not entirely sure it’s consensual.

Diahann Carroll & Kerry Washington

Two beautiful women who look beautiful together. No joke, just facts.

“Orange Is the New Black” Emmy Selfies

Stop being so adorable, cast. You only make me miss you more.

Sofia Vergara & Padma Lakshmi

I. Will. Be. In. My. Bunk.

Sofia Vergara & Julie Bowen

Clearly Julie’s being all possessive with Sofia after seeing that display with Padma.

Claire Danes & Lena Dunham

If you watched the E! Red Carpet, you saw Lena & Claire discuss being BFFs. You also saw they awkward goodbye faux makeout.


Carla Gallo & Sarah Paulson

I really wanted the gay lady to win for playing a gay lady. Better luck with “American Horror Story: Coven,” Sarah.

Clea DuVall & Natasha Lyonne

Graham + Megan 4EVA

Monday, September 23, 2013

Emmy Hangover

So the Emmys were last night and the only things those of you who did not watch really need to know is this 1) They talked a lot about death. Like, a lot. Like it was the best-dressed funeral with the worst hors d’oeuvres you’ve ever been to. 2) Most of the people I wanted to win lost. See: Amy Poehler, Kerry Washington, Jessica Lange and Sarah Paulson, among others. 3) Three women absolutely stole the show within the first 15 minutes and it was all downhill from there. Those women were Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Merritt Wever.

Tina & Amy showed poor Neil Patrick Harris how it’s done by heckling him about twerking after the opening number.

Then Merritt showed all the other winners how an acceptance speech is done when she won Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy for “Nurse Jackie.”

The only other thing you need to know about the awards is that Tatiana Maslany was robbed.

Friday, September 20, 2013

My Weekend Crush

If Luce tells you to relax, that’s one thing. If Cersei tells you to relax, it’s entirely another. But if Lena Headey tell you to relax, well, you relax. So in the spirit of relaxation and adorable things that are even more adorable together, here is Lena and Murray the Muppet telling us to keep calm and have an amazing weekend. Happy (relaxing) weekend, all.

p.s. Lena’s “Sesame Street” episode airs today on PBS. Just in case you have kids who want to watch. Or, you know, for the kid in all of us.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Heady Programming

You know how I said I wasn’t really excited for any new shows this season. I take that back. After watching the pilot, I’m all kinds of excited for “Sleepy Hollow.” The new drama doesn’t make any sense on paper. A supernatural thriller about Revolutionary War-era Ichabod Crane who emerges after centuries of dormancy in modern-day Sleepy Hollow only to be chased again by a headless horseman hell-bent on bringing, well, hell to the world. Yeah, um, OK. Sure.

But then I watched it because not much else was happening Monday night and, you know, I always liked Washington Irving’s spooky little story. And, damn, if it wasn’t entertaining. Like more entertaining than such a wacky premise should be, complete with crazy conspiracy theories, evil (and good) witches, demons, decapitations. It’s an unexpected mix of apocalyptic conspiracy thriller, time-traveling adventure and odd-couple buddy-cop show all wrapped in one. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, but still packs in plenty of scares.

All that would be fine and good, but “Sleepy Hollow” does one more thing that makes it well worth watching. It has a woman of color as its co-lead. Not the best friend, not the sassy co-worker, not the neighbor who pops in to show the lead knows black people. Nope, the co-lead. “Sleepy Hollow” gives us policewoman Abbie Mills (a very capable Nicole Beharie from “42”), who teams up with Ichabod to get to the bottom of all the weirdness afoot.

Now, you might say, what’s the big deal? This is 2013. Obama is president. Racism over. But think about it. How many broadcast shows in primetime feature women of color as leads? “Scandal,” “Elementary,” “The Mindy Project,” “Grey’s Anatomy” (which is really stretching it because it’s a large ensemble show without clear individual leads) and then it gets tricky. So seeing a new show centered around an African-American woman as its smart, strong co-lead, yeah, that still matters – it matters a lot.

Also, damn, if it didn’t have some impressively nuanced humor when it comes to race (something not often seen in genre shows) in the pilot. When just-work-up from his long, long sleep Ichabod asks if Abbie is an emancipated slave, she shoots him a look. And then he tries to pull the 1770s equivalent of “Hey, some of my best friends are black!” she similarly is unimpressed.

Ichabod: “If you’re insinuating I endorse slavery, I’m offended…I’ll have you know I was a proponent of the Abolitionist Act before the New York Assembly.”
Abbie: “Congratulations. Slavery has been abolished 150 years. It’s a whole new day in America.”

I don’t know if it’s a whole new day, but I’ve already set my DVR for “Sleepy Hollow” to that headless horseman can ride another day – make it season – on my TV.

p.s. Want to watch? The premiere is streaming on Fox and Hulu right now.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Tegan and Puppy (also Sara)

Corgis and pugs and Tegan and Sara, OH MY. I know this week has been video heavy. But, come on, it’s lesbian heartthrobs Tegan and Sara remaking their “Closer” video with DOGS. Yes, puppehs! Puppehs singing about lesbian sex. OK, now that seems a little weird. But it’s not. It’s just really, really cute.

See, cute! Dogs! Lesbians! Slo-mo pillow fights!

The group made the video with The Pet Collective, a site that – as far as I can tell – is entirely devoted to making adorable animal videos. So, you know, nice work if you can get it.

Yesterday the Canadian cuties (what, you know it’s true) also released their video for the somewhat less cute “Goodbye, Goodbye.” Basically that shows all of the ways you can break up with someone without breaking up with them face-to-face.

Yeah, good song. But the dogs sure are cuter.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Hit it on the Head

I feel like I’ve been waiting to get hit on the head forever. Wait, hold on, let me rephrase that. I’ve been waiting to see “Concussion” for what seems like forever. The movie’s premise about a wealthy married suburban lesbian mom who suffers the titular blow and decides to start turning tricks with women in the city sounds a little like it was, well, hit in the head. But the trailers show off what looks like a very rich, layered film starring Robin Weigert (a cleaned-up Calamity Jane from “Deadwood”) as the woman with the head trauma and Maggie Siff (from “Sons of Anarchy,” minus the Harleys) as one of her friends/clients. Also it’s hot. The new red-band trailer is really, really hot.

Much to my chagrin, I missed this movie when it played in my area at Frameline this past June. So I’m thrilled to see it opens Oct. 4 in theaters and on video-on-demand. At last, the wait is almost over. Now, to wear a helmet to the theater or not? One can never be too careful. This is a lesbian movie, after all.

Note: This trailer is very NSFW. And, therefore, sexy as hell.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Lorde of Music

So I’m totally over “Blurred Lines.” And now all I want to hear on the radio is “Royals.” Like, I scan the channels incessantly to hear it on my drive in to work. Because, damn, if that isn’t catchy. But it’s more than catchy, it’s smart and stylish and also sung by a 16-year-old girl from New Zealand. I know. I KNOW! Well, if you don’t know its singer, Lorde, here are a few fast facts (if you did know her before, feel free to be smug about it in the comments): 1) She’s 16, like for real. 2) She writes her own songs. 3) Her first full album, “Pure Heroine,” comes out Sept. 30. 4) She still attends high school in a suburb of Auckland, New Zealand. 5) SHE IS ONLY 16.

She may be a teen, but she’s not just a bopper. Right, please enjoy your next earworm.

p.s. Added the "Tennis Court" video because dayyyyum.

Sunday, September 15, 2013

My (Belated) Weekend Crush

Whoops, I just realized I forgot to post a Weekend Crush this weekend. Busy, excuses, etc. So I started to feel nostalgic for the old days, when these ladies used to pal around and act all gay together. Sure, the show drove us all absolutely crazy. But, man, do I miss those ladies. Happy (remainder) of your weekend, all.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Fall into TV

It’s officially mid-September which means it’s officially time to get excited about fall TV. Which means it’s officially time to judge the new trailers for the new fall season. Most people are talking about all the new, shiny shows coming to our TVs. But, to be honest, none of them really do it for me. I mean, sure, there’s the Joss Whedon-sized elephant in the room, which I of course will watch. But the other stuff? I’m going to give “Trophy Wife” a chance because of Sarah Haskins. And maybe I’ll give “The Michael J. Fox” show a chance because Michael J. Fox was my first celebrity crush. (Don’t judge, if you squint he looks like a short, butch lesbian.) But everything else? Eh. Still, there’s plenty to get excited about. Like the returning shows. Yes, return to me, shows. Envelop me in your warm, electric embrace. Yeah, perhaps I should get out more.

Anyway, on to the judging!

Lost Girl

Sadly, there’s absolutely nothing new in this trailer. In fact it’s all scenes from Season 3 and some were even used in the promos for last season. But, damn, if I’m still not excited to have Bo and the gang back just as much. And I dig that version of “The Wanderer,” I really do. Back Nov. 10 on Showcase in Canada. (Not back in the U.S. until 2014. We’re not saying Bo, we’re saying Boooooo, Syfy.)


Yes, I’ve resigned myself to watching again. Mostly it’s to see Naya and Demi make out, because I am a deeply, deeply shallow person. Also, it’s nice to have bright colors & kids dancing on while I do the dishes. Back Sept. 26 on Fox.

American Horror Story: Coven

This show scares the ever-loving shit out of me. Like I watch in absolute terror. But it is also the show I am absolutely most excited to see because Jessica Lange, Sarah Paulson, Angela Bassett and Kathy Bates. Also witches, some evil witches. (Which we all know is ridiculous, ’cause witches – they were persecuted, Wicca good and love the earth and woman power and I’ll be over here.) Back Oct. 9 of FX.

Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.

Right. So, I’ll be watching this. Duh. Premieres Sept. 24 on ABC.

Right, so which returning (and new, if you must) shows are you most excited about?

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Orange Is the New Selfies

Hey, you know who I miss? Piper and Taystee and Poussey and Nicky and Sophia and Red and Diaz and Morello and Daya and Crazy Eyes and Big Boo and Miss Claudette and Yoga Jones and, hell, even Pennsatucky. And especially Alex Vause. Yep, I miss the ladies of “Orange Is the New Black.” I miss them a lot. ALOTALOTALOT. But what’s helping to tide me over all those long, long, long months until the show returns is how good they all are at Instagram. Like wicked good. Like selfie-sensational. Too much? Perhaps. But when there are ten agonizing months until even the possibility of another swirl, swirl, swirl you will gladly grasp anything that makes the wait even a little more bearable.

Also, damn, if those gals don’t look like they truly enjoy each other’s company and are having fun doing what they do. Hard time or good times, you decide. (Click any and all to embiggen)

The gang likes making faces.

Like, a lot.

The gang likes goofing on set.

Like, a lot.

The gang likes hanging off set.

Like, a lot.

The gang likes being affectionate.

Like, a lot.

The gang likes looking good.

Like, a lot.

A lot.

The gang likes posing with Jodie Foster (who directed the third episode of the first season, “Lesbian Request Denied.”)

Like, a lot.

A lot. (Full Disclosure: This was the one was not from Instagram, just from Twitter.)

But, come on, how can you not love this cast?

Like, a lot.

A lot.

So a lot.

p.s. Some of the cast to follow if you’re so inclined:
Taylor Schilling (Piper), Laura Prepon (Alex), Danielle Brooks (Taystee), Taryn Manning (Pennsatucky), Samira Wiley (Poussey), Dascha Polanco (Daya), Jackie Cruz (Flaca), Emma Myles (Leanne), Adrienne Moore (Black Cindy).

p.p.s. Also, as long as you’re following, I’m on the damn thing, too.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Tatiana Tuesday

Hey, remember yesterday when I was talking about how funny those wacky kids at “Parks & Recreation” are? Well, they’re also brilliant. Because – as you hopefully already know – they’re bringing in Tatiana Maslany to play a two-episode arc next season. You know Tatiana Maslany – the woman who plays like 722 characters on “Orphan Black,” all brilliantly. She’ll be playing a love interest for Tom Haverford. I’m not wild about that, because he’s like my least favorite character on the show. And that’s including Jerry.

But I am wild about Tatiana. And I’m certain she’ll be amazing because she is amazing in everything. And I can’t wait to see her in the world of Pawnee. Or has she been there all along? I mean she is Tatiana Maslany. And Tatiana Maslany is undeniably awesome. So awesome she’s even mesmerizing to watch on Vine.

Also did you notice Tatiana is wearing a tank top? She is so perfect, she even knows how to dress appropriately for the day.

p.s. If you happened to miss the first season of “Orphan Black,” or just want to relive the magic, BBC America will start playing an encore showing this Saturday. Oh, Maslany, I lit-rally cannot wait for Season 2.

Monday, September 09, 2013

Parks & Monday

Monday, Monday. Nothing as predictable as the inevitable mundanity of the perpetual restarting of the work week. What can be done in the face of such a case of the day-before-Tuesday? Simple. Be like that lovable chim-chimney sweep Bert. Love to laugh. But what at? So many option. Republican attempts at minority outreach? Anthony Weiner’s mayoral campaign? Justin Bieber?

Nope, nope. Yes, but also nope. No, when I want to laugh I like to leave it to the professionals. Because serious laughs are serious business. Seriously funny. Which is why the best way to start your Monday is with the gang from “Parks & Recreation.” And, hard workers that they are, they provided us some 20-minutes of gag reel for their Season 5 DVD. That’s a lot of laughs, friends. A lot.

Please enjoy. And know that nothing makes your bored co-workers more jealous on a mind-numbing Monday than seeing you shake with laughter at your desk. You’re welcome.

Friday, September 06, 2013

My Weekend Crush

Because I’ve been in a confess my senility kind of mood of late, I’ll confess to often mixing up Alison Pill and Thora Birch. I mean, you can see it, right? Sometimes I also get Mae Whitman confused with all three, as well. But Alison Pill is the one who played the lesbian in “Milk” and drummer in “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” and best friend in “Confessions of a Teenage Drama” and daughter in “An Unexpected Love” (don’t lie, you know you totally watched that Lifetime movie). Nowadays she is best know as one of the stars of “The Newsroom,” which I don’t watch and feel kind of bad about because I probably should watch. Anyway, this is a long way of saying, hey, you know Alison Pill?

Well, I hadn’t thought much more about her – other than she seems like a promising young actress – until I saw a clip of her on Conan from this week. And, can I just say, this is the perfect way to handle an embarrassing social media faux pas. Alison was so refreshingly honest about the incident, where she accidentally tweeted out a topless picture of herself almost year ago because she wasn’t familiar with her new touchscreen Blackberry. (And, yes, that link is NSFW.) Immediately after her Anthony Weiner-moment she tweeted an admission that, “Yep. That picture happened.” and apologized to her followers. No, “I was hacked.” No, “The dog did it.” Just, “I fucked up, damn.” Just as refreshing is her refusal to be slut-shamed for having nekkid pictures of herself on her phone. And for lusting after Nancy Pelosi. In short, if you’re going to have an embarrassing technological moment – and haven’t we all been there, with or without showing that much skin – please handle it with as much grace, humor and aplomb as Alison. Happy weekend, all.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

When Nikki met Nora

Want to watch a series with two hot female leads who solve crimes and make out? No, really, do you want to watch them make out? And not just in your head? Subtext is all fun and good, but we always need the real deal. So imagine my pleasure when I heard that the folks behind the unaired pilot of “Nikki & Nora” were back. Almost a decade after giving it a go for network TV, the series lives again in the form of a crowd-funded webseries.

For those of you unfamiliar with the 2004 pilot, “Nikki & Nora” was a crime drama about two female police partners in New Orleans who go the bad guys and each other – if you know what I mean. Nikki Beaumont was played by “CSI”-alum Liz Vassey and Nora Delany was played by “Better Than Chocolate” star Christina Cox. Did I mention they made out in the show, because they did. At the time it was billed as the first lesbian-themed drama series up for serious consideration for network TV. And, yes, get prepared to scream “Tasha!” and “Agent Derek Morgan!” shortly after pressing play.

(You can watch the unaired pilot in full here on DailyMotion.)

Now, nine years later, the pilot’s creator Nancylee Myatt (also creator of that teenage dream “South of Nowhere”) is back with “The N&N Files.” She’s co-producing with “SoN” writing alum Paige Bernhardt and Tello Film President Christin Mell. Also back are the pilot’s original stars, Liz and Christina. The project raised $65,000 on Indiegogo (way to go-go, guys) and now they’ve released their first trailer. The result is big-time easy (see what I did there, Big Easy/big-time easy – oy, the puns today) on the eyes.

Watching was, once again, a game of spot the co-star. Look, the principal from “Buffy!” Look, the lab tech from “CSI!” Look, the friend from “SoN!” And of course Liz and Christina – who are playing private investigators instead of police detectives this time out – are lovely together. Look, you know I love me some silly subtext (p.s. your gayzzoli recap of the week will post this afternoon), but nothing beats the real thing. No we just need a chocolate body painting scene between these two, for old time’s sake.

The fist first (Freudian typo alert) season of series should be available on One More Lesbian soon was just announced will release on Dec. 1.

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Girls Don't Deserve It

“Blurred Lines” is undeniably catchy. I do a little shimmy to it in the car every damn time it comes on. But “Blurred Lines” is also undeniably sexist. I’ve only watched the video in full once, because watching dudes in suits preen while nearly naked (or in the unedited video’s case, plain-old naked) women strut for their pleasure is too much for my little feminist heart to take no matter how catchy the damn song.

Granted, a lot of music and accompanying music videos are sexist. But there’s something about the sexism of the “Blurred Lines” video – especially the orgy of objectification in the unrated version where it’s literally just topless girls bouncing around while Robin Thicke and Pharrell Williams leer at them – that makes my skin crawl. Look, I love naked ladies – a lot. A LOT. But respect is at the heart of that sometimes blurry line between objectification and appreciation. And I don’t think a song where men brag about being “big enough to tear your ass in two” really respects the women it sings about. Even worse, it plays its casual sexism off as so, so cool – like objectification chic. Plus don’t get me started on all the douchey hashtags.

So over the weekend I was happy to hear about a great feminist parody response to “Blurred Lines.” About time some gals tweaked (not twerked, dear God, not twerked) the concept. And my, did they tweak. The video “Defined Lines” is by a group of University of Auckland law students - Olivia Lubbock, Zoe Ellwood and Adelaide Dunn. The parody was part of the Law Revue show, which included some 40 other comedic skits. Fantastic, no? Also, it’s good for us gals and our gay boy friends. So much beefcake in white briefs. Turnaround, fair play, all these things.

Of course, this being the man’s world the ladies sing about, the video was briefly banned from YouTube because it was deemed “inappropriate.” Never mind that both the PG-13 and R-rated versions of Thicke’s original video are up and have never been banned. Luckily, the parody video was restored and can now be viewed and enjoyed in full. I mean, how can you not love a song that includes the words “misogyny,” “chauvinistic,” “emasculate,” “vibrator,” and “castration?”

Of course, again, this isn’t the first time YouTube’s seemed blurry on the concept of a double-standard. Another gender-swapped parody of “Blurred Lines” posted back in July got slapped with an age inappropriate filter (which since has been removed, thankfully).

So now, when “Blurred Lines” comes on the radio, I’m still going to shimmy. But I just might change the lyrics. So we can fuck this man’s world, indeed.

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

You down with R.B.G.

It’s badass ladies of a certain age week here at Surrenders. So it’s already a true fact that Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is a certified badass. The 80-year-old (R.B.G. if you’re nasty) has been on the highest bench in the land for 20 years and in that time she has been a champion of women’s rights, abortion rights, gay rights and voting rights. If you recall, she asked the epic question during the DOMA hearings about skim milk marriage:
They (the 1,000-plus benefits offered to married couples under federal law) touch every aspect of life. Your partner is sick. Social Security. I mean, it's pervasive. It's not as though, well, there's this little federal sphere and it's only a tax question. ... And so he was really diminishing what the state has said is marriage. You’re saying, no, state marriage [is] the full marriage, and then this sort of skim milk marriage.
And she was, of course, among the majority who overturned DOMA and found the Prop. 8 proponents did not have the standing to bring the case and essentially overturning the proposition as well. And this weekend she became the first Supreme Court Justice to officiate a same-sex marriage. On Saturday she presided over the wedding of Kennedy Center President Michael M. Kaiser and economist John Roberts. Factoid: R.B.G is a huge fan of opera and close friends with Kaiser. Another Factoid: R.B.G. will be conducting another same-sex wedding this month. Counter Factoid: Justice Clarence Thomas performed (one of) the weddings of radio windbag Rush Limbaugh. Yeah, now you’re even more down with R.B.G.

Also, you’ve got to love the snarky precision of some of her arguments. In writing the dissenting opinion of the Court’s gutting of the Voting Rights Act she wrote:
Throwing out preclearance when it has worked and is continuing to work to stop discriminatory changes is like throwing away your umbrella in a rainstorm because you are not getting wet.
And when asked a couple of years ago how many women on the Supreme Court would be enough, she answered – naturally - nine:

Also, have I mentioned she beat cancer twice, has a penchant for lace gloves and has her own dedicated Tumblr blog called – what else – Notorious R.B.G.

Monday, September 02, 2013

Xtreme Dream

Hey, you know what’s badass? Being a 64-year-old female lesbian endurance swimmer and making history by becoming the only person in history to make the some 110-miles swim in open water from Cuba to Florida without a shark cage, flippers or wet suit. Diana Nyad accomplished her 35-year dream of completing the unprecedented swim today after 52 hrs, 54 mins and 18.6 sec. This was her fifth and final try at the swim – other attempts had been stopped by jellyfish stings, boat troubles and storms. Today was a truly awe-inspiring feat of human endurance, determination and both physical and mental strength. Think about going that distance. Think about taking that time. Think about all that open water. There are not enough congratulations in the world. But, hey, here’s one from President Barack Obama.

My only complaint is in no way a reflection of Diana’s phenomenal accomplishment, which once again was phenomenal. But it’s about the terrible coverage given by the live TV crews covering the finish of her swim. When it became apparent she was going to land on a spot further down the beach, none of the live crews bothered to hoof it the 300 feet to catch her actually emerging from the water. NONE. I had three live local streams up as well as CNN (which was using a local feed as well) on my screen and they all showed either the back of a big throng of people way far down the beach and/or palm trees blowing gently in the wind at the historic moment. Cool, good job, guys. No worries, I’m sure tons of people do this all the time. Oh, wait, nope – she’s the only one. (Another swimmer made the crossing in 1997, but with a shark cage.)

The good news, PBS NewsHour did manage to run down the beach and catch her just post landing greeting her supporters. Thank you, public television. And congratulations, Diana Nyad. Dream your dreams because you’re never too old to be a total fucking badass.

Hey, did I mention she is 64? Yeah. Like I was saying, total badass.

UPDATE: Finally, some great footage from the Florida Keys county tourist development council.