Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Rest Stops and Bathrooms

Public bathrooms are always hard, but I think for some reason when I am traveling it is harder. Now my family is used to finding the unisex/family bathrooms because of my brother, who is 15 and has disabilities, and therefore cannot go to the bathroom on his own. So what I know is that they are hard to find, sparse and often hidden. The one place where these bathrooms at least seems to be visible is rest stops on the highway. However, there are problems...

Going into female bathrooms makes me uncomfortable, going into male bathrooms makes me downright scared. So I attempted to find the "manager" for the key. However, the info table was shut down for the night, and the woman at the gift shop looked at me in confusement and horror when I asked for the manager/key to the unisex bathroom. She said that there was no manager, and had no idea who i could ask for more help. So, its back to the ladies bathroom, and extended confused looks from people in there.

Monday, November 24, 2008

the solution

so I talked a few entries back about what I am going for here, and I would like to include a section at the end of my piece about how to deconstruct media imagery on a daily personal basis, so that you can deal with it within your own world...

how do you deal with media imagery? How do you deconstruct the media on a personal level? What helps you get through every day?

leave comments! or IM/Email/call me...


You see that girl with the long blonde hair in the picture? She’s really pretty huh? Yea, she is, that’s me? Do you believe it? I don’t.
When you look at that picture you see a pretty girl with her pretty boyfriend, a happy all American couple. But look through the smile on her face; see the heart that beats within, she is not happy. She wonders why she has to wear that dress while he gets to where the suit and tie. She goes back to the days of her 5 year old self when she dreamed of playing like the boys, and being like the boys and even of being, a boy. She wants so hard to not be that girl that girl in the picture, long blonde hair, green eyes, boyfriend, crisp suit, toned muscles, blonde hair, blue eyes. They are the perfect couple, they are beautiful, and they are what everyone wants to be, except her.
She doesn’t want the long blonde hair, she wants short hair, but if she cuts it off they will know, she is afraid of them. They cannot know, she must be that little girl because god-forbid she tells them that she is no fucking little girl. She tries so hard to be happy, boyfriend after boyfriend, hairstyles come and go but nothing fits. People look at her and they see the girl in the picture but that is not who she is. She is that girl with the short hair who you have to do a double take to tell if she’s a boy or a girl. She’s the one who says that you only need to know what’s in her pants if she is letting you in them. She finally got the courage to chop off all her hair, but she is scared, they accepted her short hair and called her a butch, but they still asked when she was going to go back to that long blonde hair. She tries to tell them that long blonde hair is not her, it makes her look good but it makes her feel like someone has taken a knife and dug it through her skin and between her ribs and pierced it through her heart. But with strong hands he pulls it out of his skin and rebuilds his broken heart. He puts the pieces back together, and tells himself that one-day it will be ok. He wonders what to do now, he’s no body’s butch, and he wants to be that dyke with the tits but who is still packing in her pants. He wonders what it would be like to have the parts he wants, to reach down there and feel that thing that he yearns for. But at the same time she loves her life, she loves her self and the breasts that feel heavy on her chest, she loves them. And then, in and instant, she wants them to go, she wants to bind them away, pull them so tight that they absolve into nothingness. But tomorrow he will wear them out, in that tank top that slides down so low, and he will love them, his breasts. He doesn’t understand why these lines get drawn why he can’t be both, why he will one day have to explain to his cousins why he is so different.
He loved that girl with the long blonde hair, she loved herself back then and yet, she wanted to tear herself out of her life and cry and scream and hope that tomorrow she would wake up and be in a different body. She wants to wake up and have every thing be ok, but the problem is she doesn’t know what ok is anymore. She doesn’t know what is up and down, all she knows is that today is a day, and she has a life, and she will go on living this life, not knowing what tomorrow will bring or how he will feel, but tomorrow, like today, will just be, another day.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


One visual image that I think about a lot is the image of shattered mirrors, so with this post I am including 3 video elements, two made by me and one by the talented Lucas Carpenter, and I encourage you to watch them in the order I have posted them...

In the media women (and everyone for that matter, but especially women because they are so overtly sexualized) are broken down into their parts, we are focused on a woman's hands, or eyes, or mouth, all of these parts, in addition to only portraying part of a woman (which is a problem in itself), also carry a sexualized weight. Watch the clips, the first two will likely be in the doc and the song from the third will be there so let me know what you think about all of this...
comments are good for something...

Monday, November 17, 2008

What are we going for here?

So the clip I am posting along with this entry brings up a really good point about what exactly we are going for with this whole documentary, mass media resistance thing. In advertisements I feel like the actual way that women are portrayed physically, specifically when we are talking about an image of a woman having sex, or being overtly sexual with a man is not as much a problem as is how much control they have over the situation. This entire concept brings up alot of classic debates about sex, exposure, children, agency. Should a woman with full power be allowed to sell her body for sex? yes, why not? The problem however with sex work becomes when it is controlled by men who exploit and traffic women. Many "advocates" for children would also argue that sex work is something to protect the children from, but how much should/can we protect children? and is that our right when they are other peoples kids? what about our own children?

So when I first cut out this clip I did so for a few reasons...

For one, I feel, and still do that this image perpetuates a heteronormative ideal on whoever sees it. Secondly, I think that this image implies that sex is necessary and imparts the message on readers that they need to have sex with their partner. Not that I think sex after a date is a bad thing, but I do think that images that imply that it is necessary are problematic.
So in the end we are left with the question of what exactly am I going for here, with this documentary... project. I don't want to go on some loony save the children rant across the country joined by christian fundamentalists who use my clips to encourage abstinence only in schools. I am a big proponent of telling the children the truth, I think that it is crucial to allow all people to access information. So I guess in a sense that is what the point of all of this is, to give people the tools to analyze and deconstruct this information, because right now not only children, but adults too are being fed these lies about the human body, and beauty...

Impacting Girls, Influencing Life; The Portrayal of Women by the Media-
There are certain images established by the media of what a woman is and should be. These images have had a profound effect at some point on all of us. This documentary attempts to examine those images, expose the effect, and deconstruct the power of the media.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Production Update

So just another update on everything that is going on in the orb of my video production. So basically I am done shooting, with only one or 2 more interviews I want, and if I can find any kids to interview using them definitely. SO I am editing, a TON, as you may or may not have been able to guess from the clips I have been posting. More clips to come. In addition I am trying to incorporate work of other artists along the same lines, I am working on bringing in some art and photography, in addition I am using some of the music of Lee G ( and Lucas Carpenter ( I have also finally managed to secure some old barbie dolls to use for a cool sequence so keep your eyes open for that!...
In other aspects of my life I am also editing a short for Steven Emmanuel aka Queer Kid of Color (, so keep your eyes out for that.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Celebration Dance

I was talking to a friend about a dance, a celebration dance. It is a means of expression of joy, there is no proper way to dance this dance, but rather there is just movement. The drum beats for the dancer and the dancer dances for the drum. And that is what that night was. It was a celebration dance.
ABC news declared Obama the projected winner of the 2008 presidential election and the room exploded. People ran from all sides, champagne was opened, beers were drunk, things were smoked, and then everyone ran outside and there was a celebration. People ran from their houses to the lawn and there they danced, fireworks exploded above our heads, hugs and kisses and screams surrounded us.
We all know that Obama will not bring the radical revolutionary change we wish for, but we do celebrate. We celebrate a black man’s rise into the highest position our country has to offer, we celebrate the defeat of John McCain and Sarah Palin, we celebrate the end of the Bush regime, and we celebrate a little bit of hope, a little bit of faith, and we nod our heads and say “yes we can”.
I think that when we feel like we have won it is important to remember that blind faith is dangerous, and that as President (elect) Barack Obama said last night “This victory alone is not the change we seek - it is only the chance for us to make that change. This victory alone is not the change we seek - it is only the chance for us to make that change”. So we go into the coming months and years with caution. More hope then normal, more faith in the American people then perhaps they have always deserved, but we go into those months nonetheless.
Change will not come easy, and now it is time to dig in your heals and hold Obama to the promises he has made. It is time to take to the streets and be accountable for the actions of our country. I urge you not to just sit back and accept victory, but to see it as a challenge. Every citizen of a nation is responsible for the acts committed in their nations name. We must be mindful of this and we must fight to get the change we seek out of Obama, but I know that it is a fight we can win.
And hey, if all else fails, Michelle for 2012?