Trailer - Baraka (1992)
Some of today’s research material
As such, most of my cruising experience has been done online and even more so with the advent of iPhones.
It’s frustrating to me; the need to categorize and quantify myself, because in turn it has made me think in the same way. Online I judge others by stats, weed out what I don’t want from those that I do. Knowing full well that the same process is being done to my profile (an avatar for my being, encapsulated), as I get weeded out from others’ consciousness.
Sex in general has been really frustrating for me all my life. As a survivor of childhood abuse and sexual trauma, I still carry some of this baggage in my sexual experiences as an adult. A lot of times I have trouble with intimacy and sex can be frustrating and at times triggering.
I realize we all carry these things, that we all have different histories about our relationship to our own bodies and how they interact intimately with other bodies. I think the digital era of data representations really doesn’t help to see one another as people deserving of compassion, care, and fulfillment in whatever consensual way (be it vanilla, kink, or anything else one desires).
I’m trying to decondition myself, find new ways of thinking and being and relating but it’s difficult and I slip back to my conditioned mode. I’ve just spent 2 hours trying to set up a rendezvous with someone, actually working with several different options, and none of them pan out. Perhaps for the better. Really, I try not to judge others. I just know what I want, I have an idea of what I need, but it’s not so easy getting it.
Now I’m just hungry, tired, and over it. I think I’ll make some food and watch Parks & Rec.
Something makes me uneasy about posts that say, “imagine if Trayvon was white, would the same situation and ruling have happened?”
It makes me uneasy not because they’re false - of course it was racially motivated. We live in a culture that simultaneously fetishizes and dehumanizes black bodies, a culture set by the precedence of centuries of slavery and segregation, continuing today with the prison industrial complex (a legalized form of slavery).
Statements that ask us to reverse the races (Trayvon as white and Zimmerman as black) seem well intentioned but they also serve to maintain the status quo - sympathy for the white body, vilification of the black body.
And most importantly, it’s upsetting that people have to ask others to imagine Trayvon as white and erase his blackness, for him to be seen as human, for the injustice to be understood, for the racial inequality to be evident, for people to feel, “that could have been my son, brother, or friend.”
- 70 Percent of Anti-LGBT Murder Victims Are People of Color
- While people of color make up about 30 percent of the United States’ population, they account for 60 percent of those imprisoned.
- Report: Immigration Status aRace Affect Domestic Workers’ Pay
- Once convicted, black offenders receive longer sentences compared to white offenders. The U.S. Sentencing Commission stated that in the federal system black offenders receive sentences that are 10 percent longer than white offenders for the same crimes.
- Marijuana Prohibition Turns 75, Blacks Three Times More Likely to be Arrested Than Whites
- According to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, one in three black men can expect to go to prison in their lifetime.
- A number of states have bans on people with certain convictions working in domestic health-service industries such as nursing, child care, and home health care—areas in which many poor women and women of color are disproportionately concentrated.
- African Americans were twice as likely to be arrested and almost four times as likely to experience the use of force during encounters with the police.
- The prison population grew by 700 percent from 1970 to 2005, a rate that is outpacing crime and population rates. The incarceration rates disproportionately impact men of color: 1 in every 15 African American men and 1 in every 36 Hispanic men are incarcerated in comparison to 1 in every 106 white men.
- [TW: Rape] Canadian police accused of abusing native women
- CNN breaks down the numbers: > Nearly nine out of 10 people “stopped and frisked” under a controversial New York Police Department policy in 2011 were African-American or Hispanic.
- The War on Drugs Is Really a War on Minorities
- Martin Luther King assassinated by US government: MLK civil trial decision
I will tell you a story. It is mine, but not alone
I was given a name.
I was given a body
Pronouns in various languages
clothes, narratives, a past, and a projected future
I was expected to be present, to accept
a life chosen for me, a way
a certain walk
and ways to talk
ways to act, up
and erect, in the world
“I’ve been required to justify my presence.”
“Once upon a time I was a boy”
Once upon a time I was a girl, perhaps as well.
I changed my name.
It came free of charge when I changed my citizenship.
How much does it cost to change one’s identity?
What is the worth of a piece of paper?
What is the worth of a single character?
What must I prove, and to whom?
told me to be a real man
As he had been told to be a real man
by others, real men, who were told to be the same
What is a real man?
What is a real woman?
Is it to look the part?
To have “working” body parts?
A way to dress, to be, to act in the world?
How does a real man sleep?
How does a real woman sleep?
How does a real man wake up in the morning?
How does a real woman brush her teeth?
“You don’t have to be the man anymore.”
Society, in its incessant need to put us in neatly categorized boxes
and make us sit still, has failed
for we are truly
always in transition.
Kiam Marcelo Junio
February 5, 2013
Changed my Facebook language settings to Filipino. I had it on Spanish for a few years when I was living in Spain and immersing myself in the language. Now I hardly speak Spanish, though it does come in handy when I teach yoga, or randomly in the street when someone asks me for directions.
I realize I need a language partner or a friend here in Chicago I can speak Filipino/Tagalog with. Maybe even Ilocano, since I think I’ve pretty much lost that tongue (though I still understand it perfectly - my mom often talks to me in Ilocano, and I respond in Tagalog).
I also want to get back to learning French, as I’m visiting my lover in Paris this summer.
And then I wanna try learning Mandarin. And work on reading and writing Sanskrit, which I was introduced to in Yoga Teacher Training. I found out recently that Sanskrit was a big influence in some the indigenous alphabets of the Philippines. When I was trying to learn Sanskrit, It reminded me of when I was learning Hirigana in elementary school, another phonetic alphabet.
My lover mentioned once how he feels displaced through being bilingual, that it does something, not just to one’s mind/thought patterns, but also inter-relationally. I wonder what it’s like for other people who speak multiple languages, or has had exposure to a wide variety of ways of expression.
It’s on Facebook, so it’s official now.
The Mark Aguhar Memorial Grant Winner:
Kiam Marcelo Junio is a multidisciplinary artist living in Chicago, IL. He works in multiple media including photography, video, printmaking, installation, burlesque, and performance art. His research and art work centers around queer identities, the Filipino American diaspora, and post-colonialist Asian American tropes and stereotypes, and military and civilian power dynamics.
Jerry Blossom is Kiam’s alter-ego, a genderqueer Filipino male bodied femme-presenting persona, obsessed with assimilating into Western culture and beauty standards.
Kiam served seven years in the US Navy. He was born in the Philippines and has lived in the US, Japan, and Spain. He is also a registered Yoga teacher.
Congratulations also to the Critical Fierceness Grantees, Rami George and Betsy Odom!
Come join us this Saturday at Chances at the Hideout to celebrate!
The Hideout Inn, 1354 W. Wabansia, Chicago
**THIS SATURDAY NIGHT THE MARK AGUHAR MEMORIAL GRANT AND CRITICAL FIERCENESS GRANT WINNERS FOR WINTER 2012 WILL BE ANNOUNCED**
HOSTED BY VAJAQUEQUE BROWN
FEATURING DJS SWAGUERILLA AND LADY MISS NAVY PIER
*DOORS FOR CHANCES AT MIDNIGHT*
ummm, fuck. that’s hot.
damn homo-normativity. I know it’s a somewhat new image I’m being fed, that beard/hair is attractive, and it’s just as pervasive an idealized image as all others (“skinny/white/muscular is beautiful”) but maybe it’s more accessible for people?
I don’t know, it’s complicated. It’s hard do delineate where mass media-enforced beauty standards end and where one’s own preferences begin. Maybe there should not even be personal preferences, but an equal adoration for all sizes/shapes/bodies/hair?
Perhaps I’ve analyzed this set of images enough that I don’t even find it attractive anymore.
Damn over-analysis. You ruin everything.
BIC Cristal for Her Ball Pen, 1.0 mm
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Portraits of Women Living as Men to Escape Oppression in the Balkans
Photography by Jill Peters
‘Sworn Virgin’ is the term given to a biological female in the Balkans who is chosen to take on the social identity of a man for life. Dating back hundreds of years, this was necessary in societies that lived within tribal clans, followed the Kanun, an archaic code of law, and maintained an oppressive rule over the female gender. The Kanun states that women are considered to be the property of their husbands. The freedom to vote, drive, conduct business, earn money, drink, smoke, swear, own a gun or wear pants was traditionally the exclusive province of men.
As an alternative, becoming a Sworn Virgin, or ‘burnesha’, elevated a woman to the status of a man and granted her all the rights and privileges of the male population. In order to manifest the transition such a woman cut her hair, donned male clothing and sometimes even changed her name. Male gestures and swaggers were practiced until they became second nature. Most importantly of all, she took a vow of celibacy to remain chaste for life. This practice continues today but as modernization inches toward the small villages nestled in the Alps, this archaic tradition is increasingly seen as obsolete. Only a few aging Sworn Virgins remain.—Jill Peters
via Feature Shoot
Art is a circle jerk.
Which is fun. And I’m in it, and I enjoy the fact that I both benefit and take from it. And to many it may seem frivolous and in excess, that there are more important things to do than make art, or to keep with the metaphor, better and more productive ways to have sex.
People often criticize artists for creating work that only other artists understand (circle jerk), producing products for the consumption of the circles that support the institution, completely removed from the rest of society. In many senses, it’s correct. One must be invited to a circle jerk, or an event with a circle jerk. One does not normally meet a group at a bar and decide, “hey, you know what would be fun, we should have a circle jerk.” There normally involves planning, and selecting which friends will be participating. So circle jerks are often elite institutions, but this does not preclude that it is the only way for them to happen. Art, after all, is not made in a vacuum. People’s personal “real world” experiences and tastes will always influence their art, and therefore, the circle jerk. The world that exists outside of art, and the people outside of the circle jerk, will still see, influence, and benefit from the event.
Circle jerks, and therefore, art, are important means of communication, and provide a vital role creation of cultural capital. Circle jerks negotiate boundaries between parties, seeking to provide equal voices and honor one another’s presence through the giving and receiving of pleasure, or in the art sense, the provision of pleasure to the viewer, on whom the artist depends for survival. Whether for simply aesthetic, or profound purposes pertinent to the human condition, art, and therefore, circle jerks, are essential developments in the human experience.
Chescaleigh of “Shit White Girls Say… to Black Girls!” fame brings the laughs to an otherwise serious conversation. Check it out!
This is how I connect with you, in hidden spaces
fucking in the hot musky fog
are only a few feet away, with a few minutes to spare
enough to put my cock in your mouth
We connect through coded glances
1, 2, 3 seconds, and you’ll let me buy you a drink now
And then and forever shall be
world without end
I connect with you over fantasies of other men.
measuring my worth against theirs
replacing you with another body
replacing me with another cock
another set of lips
another round and ready ass
We connect over things that should have been
But it’s always been
simply you and me
and other men
(Top 4 images on Google Search for “Bindi”)
A bindi (Hindi: बिंदी, from Sanskrit bindu, meaning “a drop, small particle, dot”) is a forehead decoration worn in South Asia(particularly India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Mauritius). and Southeast Asia. Traditionally it is a dot of red color applied in the center of the forehead close to the eyebrows, but it can also consist of a sign or piece of jewelry worn at this location.
In modern times, bindis are worn by women of many religious dispositions in South Asia and Southeast Asia, and is not restricted to Hindus. Many Muslim women in Bangladesh and Pakistan wear the bindi as part of makeup.
- From Vedic times, the bindi was created as a means to worship one’s intellect. Therefore it was used by both men and women. The worship of intellect was in order to use it to ensure our thoughts, speech, actions, habits and ultimately our character becomes pure. A strong intellect can help one to make noble decisions in life, be able to stand up to challenges in life with courage, and recognize and welcome good thoughts in life. The belief was that on this a strong individual, a strong family and strong society can be formed.
- In meditation, this very spot between the eyebrows (Bhrumadhya) is where one focuses his/her sight, so that it helps concentration. Most images of Buddha or Hindu divinities in meditative pose with their eyes nearly closed show the gaze focused between eyebrows (other spot being the tip of the nose – naasikagra).
Bindis are worn throughout South Asia, specifically India, Nepal, and Sri Lanka, by women, men, girls and boys, and no longer signify age, marital status, religious background or ethnic affiliation. The bindi has become a decorative item and is no longer restricted in colour or shape.  Self-adhesive bindis (also known as sticker bindis) are available, usually made of felt or thin metal and adhesive on the other side. These are simple to apply, disposable substitutes for older tilak bindis. Sticker bindis come in many colors, designs, materials, and sizes. Some are decorated with sequins, glass beads, or rhinestones.
Bindis are not always red, nor always a dot, nor always worn by women. They are called kumkum or bindi, or tilak (“mark”) when worn by men. Usually Hindu women, priests, monks and worshipers wear it. Men wear it on auspicious occasions such as Puja (ritual worship), or marriage, or Aarti (waving of lights), on festive occasions such as on Raksha-bandhan, Bhaai-duj, Karvaa Chauth or Paadwaa or Dasshera, or while embarking on, or upon return from a voyage or a campaign. It is also worn by Jains and Buddhists (even in China).