Welcome to the Oly Oly Action Alert Special Edition!
This is going to be a very special edition indeed!
I started off last week’s newsletter by mentioning people who think it is not cool to talk about religion or politics. In the very unlikely event that any such people read my newsletter then you will be very happy to hear that this Special Edition concerns itself mostly with sex.
First, though, I would like to thank everyone who reads this and especially those who critique me and provide feedback.
I obviously put a lot of time and effort into this, but believe me; I am paid many times over. Thanks to this newsletter I get to get up in the morning and drink a cup of coffee as I get fired up by Amy Goodman — and if feeling especially frisky I’ll check out the Corbett Report. Then — even as the outrage is burning through my soul like a tsunami of righteous indignation — at that very moment I get to unleash my computer of mass destruction, engage my flamethrower app, and blast that frigging Machine right in its frigging schnozzer!
Yeah! Take that you very bad person! I get to vent all that righteous rage by unleashing an inky maelstrom of fiery rhetoric, incendiary prose, and broiling indignation upon their pointy little heads! And then I get to hurl Thunderbolts of Justice at their corporate-frigging baby-killing asses! Yeah! Take that, you vile dastardly evildoer! And let me tell you: IT FEELS VERY FRIGGING GOOD!
Then, my rage vented, I can go have a very nice day now, thank you.
I have both laughed and cried more than once writing this newsletter.
Again, thank you.
At the risk of committing further crimes of sappiness and sentimentality — and at the risk of maybe freaking some people out — I kind of feel like I’ve kind of created a sort-of family with this newsletter. (Don’t worry though! You are free to publically disavow any relation if the thought of being in any family that has me in it does indeed freak you out.)
(I probably won’t ask you for any money either.)
This newsletter goes directly to about 600 people but it also goes to three list-servers and I don’t know how many subscribers there are on any of them so it’s hard to say exactly — but as far as I can tell this newsletter is received by around 1,000 people.
Whatever. The point is that unless I am being pointlessly flattered this newsletter is being read and appreciated by a goodly number of that approximately 1,000 of you.
Like any family we have our disagreements and spats. As you can probably imagine my “Wagging Penises and Other Dangerous Hazards” piece last week elicited some comment.
I got a lot of responses that began like this: “Dana, I really love you I greatly respect you I truly admire all the work you do your newsletter is awesome and so on and so forth and etc…
And I truly appreciate those sentiments and I know they are true and heartfelt and everyone who said all that cool stuff about me I sincerely feel the same about you.
However, I saw the ‘but’ coming a mile away: “… yeah, Dana, you are just seven kinds of awesome — but…”
And when you see that ‘but’ coming that’s when you know that you’re in trouble.
A dialogue began which led to some questions — some of them quite sharp — which led to lengthy discourse which led to some rethinking on more than one part which led to this which led to that which led to cans of worms appearing which led to questions about my personal character and credibility — and since the character and credibility of my newsletter is dependent upon the character and credibility of my person and since a lot of this discussion concerned content in this newsletter and since these are issues that affect all of us and since I think many could benefit from our exchanges and conclusions and since I don’t know how long I can keep this sentence going then I have decided that I want to now share some of it with you, my beloved Oly Oly Action family!
(Would anyone like to volunteer to diagram that sentence?)
(Maybe you students can get some credits for it.)
(When finished it might even qualify as a work of art.)
While this Special Edition is mostly about sexism it is more centered on local personal family-type stuff than any overarching political point. If you are looking for political information the regular newsletter will be out next Thursday like always. If you think that more personal-type stuff in a publication of this nature is sappy or sentimental or inappropriate or whatever then you may also want to wait until next week.
As for the rest of you: Onward through the fog!
So now, I promised you SEXXX!!!
(No, stop! I meant talk about it! Please stop screaming and running out of the room!)
Yes, Kids, as advertised this Special Edition of Oly Oly Action has sex galore, let me tell you! For your prurient delectation this evening I have castration fantasies, magic witches, naked teenagers in meadows, self-deception, shocking allegations, true confessions, college girls, and — of course — I’ve got penis-waggers galore!
Actually, though, this first bit should probably be filed under ‘non-sex’ (as in permanently) because Dani Madrone’s response to “Penis Waggers” was to say that she loved me and greatly respected me and so on — but — she wanted to let me know on no uncertain terms that she not only wanted no penis-wagging to be done in her service but that if I ever did do any penis-wagging anywhere in her immediate vicinity then she would cut it off.
Thanks for the warning, Dani. I truly do sincerely appreciate that with all my heart. Believe me.
(Make mental note: Absolutely never wag anything anywhere near Dani Madrone.)
(But beegads and bazooks! I need to wag my fingers to play guitar! Jeez Louise! I sure hope that Dani has good eyes and can tell the difference…)
I pointed out to Dani that a little penis-wagging can sometimes prove an effective deterrent to the bad guys — that is if you subscribe to Wayne LaPierre’s theory that the best protection from a bad penis-wagger is a good penis-wagger.
(Then I begged her not to hit me.)
As Dani and others can attest firsthand I’m not really what you would call a problem-wagger and believe me, Dani; neither you nor anyone else in Olympia has ever seen me in full-on heavy-wagging mode. (I save that for very special occasions.) (The last time was in Club Fed.) (And now that I know your policy on penis-waggers that is probably very fortunate.)
I have actually thought about this a lot in the past and I am very conscientious about adhering to best practices in responsible and appropriate penis-wagging.
After all, penis-wagging is usually the last resort of a limited imagination.
And now that I think about it, rather than me having to wag my penis around I’ll bet that Dani Madrone threatening to ‘cut it off’ may prove an even more effective deterrent to errant penis-waggers!
(I bet she’d do it, too.)
(Dani makes the head of security at the state capitol building very nervous I can tell you…)
And finally; if I have not yet sufficiently alarmed any wayward penis-waggers out there concerning the danger posed to their manhood by Dani Madrone, consider that one of Dani’s hometown contemporaries is a lady some of youse may have heard of named Lorena Bobbitt…
(This is actually true. Take note.)
(Is this a cultural tradition in your neck of the woods, Dani? Exactly where is this place again?)
(And really finally: As a result of this exchange we all learned that the inimitable Ms. Bobbitt currently makes her living by cutting hair!)
(No one could make that up. No one would believe it. Truth is indeed much stranger than fiction.)
(Don’t haircutters keep straight-razors on premises? Doesn’t that make her male customers nervous? Does she actually have any male customers?)
And now for the next section we have…
(Gee, does this mean that can I finally make some money doing this?)
As a result of South Carolina Chris’ tirade about my evil male-dominating ways Dani Madrone, Koyote Scofflaw, and Emmeline all assured me that they greatly respected me and greatly respected my work — but — they all called me out for sexism because I have twice now mentioned past romantic exploits in this newsletter.
I think even they would have to admit that these references were clever, funny, and contextually appropriate — but they were probably indeed gratuitous and all three responders provided reasons why I should not do this and they are very good reasons and so I am going to stop doing it — at least after today.
Sex is a wondrous celebratory spiritual thing for me and I sometimes forget that it means something else entirely for large numbers of my fellow Americans — and especially for survivors.
I will be more aware of that in the future. Thanks for the heads up, Kids.
However: Before abandoning past romantic encounters as fodder for my newsletter I first want to tell everyone a really cool story and if sappy sentimental romantic stuff bothers you then maybe you should skip this too but I have a contextually-appropriate reason for telling this story that I will reveal after having told it.
Usually my newsletter is public and I encourage everyone to pass it around as far and wide as you can but I am going to copyright this story because now that I’ve written it I think that I am going to use it in my literary stuff – so since I just said it’s copyrighted in a semi-public forum then that makes it so!
This is a true story.
Riders on the Storm
I first ask you to imagine Julie; a tiny magical 19-year old elfin-like creature of great delight who, rather than walking, instead ambulated about her universe by dancing everywhere that she went.
(There is a lady named Olivia who works at the CoOp that does the same thing.)
(Shari does it sometimes too.)
(It is an utterly enchanting and delightful habit. I wish more people would take it up.)
Now: Imagine Julie and Young Me hiking in the Grand Tetons and imagine that we come across a huge open meadow packed wall-to-wall with waist-high yellow flowers that are gently swaying in the breezes; it is like a sea of slow-dancing yellow delight.
Julie and I laugh and talk and joke and dream as we take in this incredible spectacle. We are young. This place is awesomely beautiful. We are awesomely beautiful. We are living inside a miracle.
Suddenly, a thunderstorm strikes! Rain is pouring lightning is flashing and thunder is crashing all around us! The gusting winds threaten to knock us off our feet!
Then; we notice that rather than gently swaying, the acres and acres of yellow flowers are now instead swaying wildly back and forth in seemingly choreographed waves! They shimmer in weaving dancing and ever-changing patterns throughout the meadow! And then, like some slo-mo cosmic strobe-light with hiccups, at irregular intervals averaging every few seconds but sometimes several times in the space of a few seconds — the entire scene is illuminated by lightning flashes!
Amidst the barrage-like lightning and thunder and drenched by driving screaming wind and rain, Julie and I are both crying out in pure amazement and joy. We laugh hysterically. We scream at every especially close lightning strike.
We occasionally exchange awed glances of jaw-dropped wonder that we were privileged to live in such an incredible universe.
We are riders on the storm.
Pretty magical, eh? What else could possibly add to this already insanely indescribable vortex of synergistic awesomeness that was pouring down ever so over-abundantly upon my grateful little head?
Hang on to your horses for a moment, Kids, and I’ll tell you — for now, dear readers, I invite you to behold the climactic cymbal crash and the triumphant finale in this symphony of magic…
…for I invite you now to imagine Julie simultaneously laughing and crying like a little kid as she rips off all her clothes and begins dancing with the flowers.
She just follows the wind, like they do. She joins them. She essentially becomes them.
I further invite you to imagine that as Julie is dancing with the flowers her already sweet and darling little face is radiating and transformed by one of the most beatific smiles of pure ecstatic joy that I have ever seen.
Every time lightning strikes near us Julie screams in delight — then quickly turns and opens her arms to catch the thunder…
I ripped off my clothes and joined her.
The fact that we both knew full well this was dangerous as hell did not even cross our minds.
We knew that we were protected by powerful magic.
End of Copyrighted Material
Except for witnessing the birth of my daughter, the spectacle of Julie dancing naked with the flowers in the thunderstorm was the most mind-blowingly awesome thing that has ever happened to me. Had I not previously ‘seduced’ Julie my life would have been deprived of this experience that I now so treasure and that can bring tears to my eyes to this very day — and in fact did so just now as I was typing it. All of my best memories for my whole frigging life happened either when I was alone or when I was a special lady. The special ladies in my life were special and I always treated them as such and if I was a bit of a slut at times in my life I was always a totally honest and a highly respectful one. The actual sex part was fairly irrelevant; plugging into the female-magic was the important part. The sex just sometimes helped in that.
And my special ladies were not only important to me but so are my memories of them. Those memories have often brought light to darkness. Those memories provided an absolutely vital escape-hatch as I walked laps around the prison yard for six years.
Mention last week of my college-girl days as “peripheral academic cred” and mention a few months ago of the magic witch that I knew in Kansas City in reference to the Witch Trial was, for me, recalling magical memories.
I can very easily understand, though, how others could see it through a different lens and so I will apologize if I made anyone uncomfortable with those references.
So moving right along here, someone else also had a comment that I’d like to share but I have a feeling that she wouldn’t want me using her name here — so I will call her Boss.
She probably won’t like that but I think it fits. Boss did not preface her remarks by telling me how much she respected me, but I think that maybe she does — at least a little bit — perhaps —
Actually I have no idea. Boss tends to growl and bark at you and if there are any sentimental warm fuzzies in her harsh glare then they are not bestowed lightly and you’re damn well going to have to earn them and evidently I have not.
Boss is a member in good standing of our rather large Formidable Warrior-Women of Olympia Caucus.
(There’s no organized caucus — just lots of members.)
Whatever Boss thinks of me I can say that I have the deepest respect for her formidable accomplishments and knowledge. (Note that I did not say that first and then add a ‘but’.)
Boss is a walking encyclopedia of local activist history and she frigging knows everything and everybody in the Olympia power structure and she knows everything that everybody is up to — often to the Olympia power structure’s great distress…
I have only been in Olympia for four years and so there is a lot of historical stuff that I don’t know — but from what I do know Boss’ Olympia activist cred is exceeded only by Rick Fellows and possibly by Glen Anderson and I suspect that a lot of the old-timers already know who I’m talking about.
(I’m also sure that my inbox will now overflow with other candidates for Top Gun Olympia Activist now, too.)
Whatever. Boss kicks major ass. She is smart as a whip, determined as a bulldog, and as abrasive as a jack-hammer — but I think the most effective weapon in her activist toolkit is that most people are simply afraid not to do whatever the hell she tells them to do.
I just thought of the ultimate nightmare scenario: You’re some penis-wagging government baby-killer and you’re naked and alone in a closed room — and suddenly Dani Madrone, Boss, and Lorena Bobbitt all walk in bearing sheep-shears…
Talk about weapons of mass destruction!
(I think that I am going to option that idea to a Hollywood horror producer…)
Anyway, this was Boss’ response to Wagging Penises:
Hahahaha, I think it’s great when men get all defensive over not being sexist. Also, I find it odd that men who are “NOT sexist” always think feminism implies a belief system that holds women superior to men, that’s also hilarious…some men get so confused and squirmy don’t they? Cheers.
And my reply:
Hi Boss. At the risk of sounding like a confused squirmy defensive male I would point out that I don’t consider women superior to men because I’m a confused squirmy defensive male.
(And besides, I’m not squirmy!)
I also don’t consider women superior to men because I feel I must conform to some perceived feminist dogma.
(C’mon, Boss, I thought you knew me better than that! I run over dogmas every time I drive my karma!)
No, Boss: I consider women superior to men based upon evidence both empirical and anecdotal. In addition, new scientific discoveries keep backing up my theory — and actually at this point I pretty much consider it to be established fact.
And thus, Boss, I am not only a true reverse-sexist but I am somewhat evangelical about it.
A kind of weird cool and interesting side note to all this has also resulted from recent studies: It turns out that purely gay men (i.e. men who have no attraction to women) share many of the same physiological differences in brain function that women have, so possibly gay men are superior to other men too (though that is still theoretical.)
Cheers to you too, Boss.;-)
And finally, we reach the True Confession portion of this screed…
…and once again we feature the indomitable Dani Madrone!
(You’re the star of the show tonight, Dani!)
(Are you thrilled?)
Actually I think you’ll enjoy this one, Dani, because I must now eat some crow and give you some props for forcing me to be honest with myself.
(People like Dani and Boss can be exceedingly difficult to work with at times but I have found that the benefits far outweigh the costs.)
Anyway: Dani also sharply questioned me about the context of Chris’ remarks in Wagging Penises. Poor Mr. Innocent Unjustly Persecuted Me replied that all I had done was to innocently post a link to my innocent article about gun control on Chris’ page along with an innocent invitation to innocently explore an innocent alternative view.
I was innocent, I cried! Listen to Poor Mr. Innocent Unjustly Persecuted Me!
What I said in Wagging Penises and what I told Dani is all completely true as far as it goes — it just doesn’t go far enough. In light of Dani’s query as to context I realized that in order to be honest and in order to be fair to Chris (even as unfair as Chris was to me) this explanation did not go nearly far enough for there is indeed some slightly embarrassing context that I somehow failed to previously mention. Dani forced me to confront what I had actually done which I had not yet actually done until considering Dani’s query.
Thus, I will provide the full context of Chris’ fiery denunciation:
Last summer Chris basically forbade me from trashing Obama on her page. Censorship is one of the Seven Deadly Sins as far as I’m concerned and that pissed me off so much that I boycotted her page for months. However, right after I wrote my spiel on Disappearing the Homeless I remembered that Chris had always enjoyed my descriptions of the Busker Parades and I thought she might like to know about this new iteration of our battle — and Chris’ page is always a good place for high-quality brain food and I missed hanging out there — so I decided to drop by.
Her page was wall-to-wall gun control with the unquestioned assumption that gun control laws are desirable.
As some folks may know I think that contention is debatable and that it should be debated.
Knowing Chris I suspected she disagreed on both counts.
I posted my link to the homelessness article — along with a snarky comment about having contrary opinions on gun control but due to Chris not liking people to disagree with her I would play nice and keep my contrary opinions to myself.
That was bad enough. However, I wasn’t done.
It started eating at me. Chris’ page is Chris’ page and if she wants to run it like a Nazi then that is her prerogative, but at the same time I am constantly preaching to the choir about our need to stop preaching to the choir. People who don’t question things are the people who should themselves be questioned.
And so — True Confession Time — I already had a pretty good idea in advance of what Chris would think of me throwing another turd into her punchbowl — but I threw it anyway.
I went back to her page and posted the link with an explanation, “Sorry, Chris, but I just can’t help myself.”
The fact that her reaction was much more over-the-top vitriolic furious off-base off-topic and insane than anything I had imagined suggested that I had accidently pulled a couple of other triggers that I had been previously been unaware of, which is something else that I’ve learned you’ve gotta watch out for.
So there. True Confessions are now officially over. (At least until next time…)
Since everyone has different values I guess everyone will pass different value judgments. While I didn’t say anything in past newsletters that wasn’t true I also wasn’t as honest either with myself or with my readers as I probably should have been in the Penis Waggers bit. I have now seen the errors of my ways and so I will also now apologize to everyone for that — and I will once again thank the inimitable Dani Madrone for forcing me to this observation.
And finally, I will go political right at the end here (pun intended) because I wanted to make the following clarification: I got several wtf’s over my advocacy of a machine gun and rocket launcher in every home.
For the record: I occasionally indulge my sense of irony and engage in hyperbolic over-the-top exaggeration to add humour and/or emotional impact to whatever it is I’m saying. The ‘machine gun and rocket launcher in every home’ comment was an example of that tactic.
Actually, I think that probably one machine gun and one rocket launcher per city block would be sufficient.
One final thought on all this: If us guys can’t wag our penises anymore then what good are we?
That’s it for now, Kids! (Probly shoulda said that six pages ago.)
As always, your comments are greatly appreciated. They make me think and they help keep me honest.