Wednesday, February 28, 2007
Pah! I've posted my first vlog! I know there are a few things wrong with this vlog. (Hey! It's my first! Gimme a break!) I know there are (wasted) space between the top frame and my head. I'll do better next time. My partner stated that I was not myself. I guess I was concerned with my webcam. I didn't know if it would be blurry or not. So far, it looks ok. Anyways, I'm excited to have finally posted a vlog.
In this vlog, I address the issue some Deaf people making homophobic remarks and insensitive comments against other minorities, particularly against the Latinos. I just thought I'd say something and raise an awareness about our comments.
Tuesday, February 27, 2007
I've just finished reading "Hunger of Memory: The Education of Richard Rodriguez". I found it to be an ok autobiographical read. I was somewhat disappointed in it because Rodriguez seemed to dwell too much on language (Spanish & English). However, there were other parts about the book that I liked. I liked his personal accounts of assimilating American values and his minority status in higher education.
Anyways, what I liked best was his portrayal of his mother. His portrayal reminded me so much of my mother.
- Family...a private matter. A lot of Hispanic families, especially mothers, believe that family matters are private. My mother used to tell me, all the time, that we don't "air dirty laundry". What happens in the family stays in the family. My mother would chew me out and pinch me if she ever found out that I shared some personal information. She hated it when I shared such information with my cousins. Of course, there were some things that were private and then there were some things that were not a big deal. I guess life as an open book is a foreign concept.
- Facial expressions. Hispanic mothers are experts with relaying the mood of the situation with their faces, especially their eyes. You knew right away if the situation was serious or if you were in trouble. Not a word had to be said. For me, it was worse looking at my mother stern eyes and hearing her hiss 'come here' That only made me wanna run in the opposite direction. But I knew that if I even took a step backward, it would involve my father and that was the last thing I would want. So, with "a tail between my legs", I'd go and face my mother's wrath.
Now, I just look back and laugh. I'd look at my cousins and I'd say, "you are so like your mother". Of course, that'll earn me a couple of cuss words from them.
For me, I'm not as limited as to what can be shared or not in regards to family matters. There are a few stuff that I'll tell KT, "don't you dare". Then, I'll re-evaluate and laugh as to why I considered a particular stuff as dirty laundry. I guess we all want a good life.
As for the evil eye, I guess I'll wait til I have kids of my own to use it.
Monday, February 26, 2007
I have to admit something. The computer and I aren't friends. I have bad luck with the computer. I don't know what it is but the computer hates me!
The computer, somehow, knows when to misbehave especially when I'm in a hurry to get something done or have something important to do. It'll freeze. It'll send a pop-up message that something has went wrong internally. It'll give me some friggin' code that I'm supposed to decipher. It'll do anything to make me mad!
I have like 2 million programs installed to battle viruses, spams and whatnots. And, I'll still get them! I'm like, am I just blowing money away?
Its best friend, the printer, is also not a friend of mine. It loves to jam itself up just to piss me off!
I used to think it was weird when people would say that they are not friends with the computer. Well, now, I'm joining them.
Meanwhile, KT laughs his head off. He never has problems with the computer. Ok, that's not quite true. He'll have 1 computer problem per year. It just that he doesn't really have any problems with it.
I'm over here screaming Why!?!? Why?!?! Why?!?!? Why?!?! Of course, I'll be cussing out the computer. Isn't that such a silly thing? Cussing out an inanimate object.
The computer. Can't stand it! Can't stand to be without it! Sigh...
Saturday, February 24, 2007
Wednesday, February 21, 2007
I TiVo'd *House of D* thinking that I just might not like it. However, I was actually surprised how much I loved it, along with a few tears.
The movie is a flashback of Tom Warshaw (David Duchovny), an American artist living in Paris. As Tom's son is soon turning 13, Tom goes back to a time when he was nearing 13.
Tommy takes care of his chain-smoking mother (Tea Leoni), who has a difficult time coping with the recent death of her husband. Although she is supposed to console Tommy, it is Tommy who actually has to look after his mother. Tommy also takes care or rather, defends his best friend. His best friend is a 41-year-old slightly retarded janitor and deliveryman, Pappass (Robin Williams). Meanwhile, Tommy is getting advice from female inmate, Lady (Erykah Badu) at the local women's house of detention about intimate issues (dancing, girls, etc.). Tommy cannot see her except her hands. They carry a conversation by shouting across as Lady is jailed on the second (or third?) floor.
With the exception of his clingy mother and his father's death, life seems to be good for Tommy. However, things take a turn for the worse when the mother overdoses on pills and becomes brain-dead and Pappass steals a bike. Ultimately, Tommy blames Lady for everything. Lady, realizing the severity of situations, riles him into further anger to make him run. Although Tommy didn't see her point, Lady was actually setting him free...to be a man.
The whole point was about a boy's journey/transition becoming a man. Despite the death of Tommy's father, Tommy had it pretty good as a boy. But, there came a point where Tommy had to lose a few things or rather, people before he could became a man. He loses his mother as well as the girl he likes. He loses trust of a "friend" whose advice he once sought. The hardest of all, he deserts his best friend. The irony here was that while Pappass was an older man, he would never actually be (or was) a man. However, in this moment, Pappass realizes that Tommny needed to go and find himself and gives his blessing.
Overall, *House of D* was a wonderful movie. David Duchovny did a superb job as a director. I'd definitely check out future movies directed by him. Go check it out, along with a few laughs and tears.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
The only thing that I knew about Richmond was that it is the site of the nation's best forensic science/pathology/training. Plus, one of my favorite authors, Patricia Cornwell, resides there.
So, my colleague and I get there and checked into a hotel. However, having skipped lunch, we were starving. So, we headed over to Barcode, which was supposed to be the hottest gay bar (& restaurant) in Richmond. The food was alright but the service was great. We stayed there til about midnight, drinking and catching up with news and whatnots. We met a couple of guys who knew some signs. Of course, they knew signs only because their ex-boyfriends were Deaf. Of course!
We thought that maybe Barcode had put up a "misleading" advertisement that they were the best in town to attract people. So, we asked the patrons in Barcode if there was a better bar/club to check out. They all said that Barcode was indeed the best.
When we left the place to go back and rest up for the workshop, I had to wonder about something. When we arrived, there was a security guard standing outside. Initially, I thought "wow, how nice" that one had been provided so that gay patrons would feel secured. But, when I left, I asked myself why was there a security guard in the first place. Had there been harrassment or violence against gay patrons? So, I wonder...how would you feel if you came into a place where there was a security guard stationed outside? Would you feel safe or would you feel wary?
Anyways, the workshop was great. It was nice to meet other professionals in ASL & interpreting programs in some parts of Virginia. The workshop was beneficial but overwhelming at the same time. But, that's a good thing! You know that the workshop was good when you leave for the day and debate with your colleagues about certain issues.
So, it was a goooooood thing to be off Monday for President's Day. Ok, so I wasn't entirely off. I had to come in and teach a class. But that was it. Came back home and rested all day. Sooooo needed that!
A question: when is winter going away?!?!?!?!?
ta ta for now...
Monday, February 19, 2007
I thought that *Acacia* was an interesting movie except for one thing. *Acacia* moves very slow.
A childless couple decides to adopt a child. They go to the orphanage to adopt. The wife sees a painting on the wall. The painting is very similar to Edvard Munch's "The Scream". In this dark painting, the screaming man is surrounded by trees. The wife inquires about its artist and insists on meeting this child.
The adoption goes smooth. The family is trying to bond with one another. The boy takes an immediate fascination with the couple's leaf-less acacia tree in the backyard. From this point on, we start to see that the boy is eccentric in his talks and in his behaviorism. He truly believes that his real folks are inside the tree or rather, they are the tree.
Despite his odd ways, the mother defends him. However, the mother's mother clearly doesn't like the adopted boy. She takes advantage of any opportunity to point out his flaws. Meanwhile, the father's father tells him interesting tidbits about nature and tries to get him involves in little projects. The girl, next door, seems to be the only one who truly accept him as she is a little odd herself.
Things change when the mother finds out that she's pregnant. The adopted boy becomes detached from everyone, even from the girl. Then, one rainy night, he disappears. The parents do not call the police because they assumed that he would return.
So, where did he go? Did he merge with the tree in the backyard? Is he haunting them?
There were some interesting scenes in this film. Overall, I thought it was one of the best Asian horror movies that I've seen. The only bad part about it was that it moves painfully slow.
Thursday, February 15, 2007
I have reserved my copy of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Hurry up, July!
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
KT...Happy Valentine's!! Hurry up and come home from work! Can't wait to spend a quiet, romantic evening with you. *mwah*
Well, Gallaudet had a 2-hour delay. So, I didn't have to teach this morning. So, instead, I headed straight to my other job at the law firm. I got there only to discover that it was closed as well. So, I'm back home, enjoying the day off. Whooo! It's a good thing because I'll be in Richmond this weekend for a workshop.
Isn't it wonderful when you're thought of by another, other than your significant other and family? I got a page from a friend that I haven't seen nor heard from in ages. She sent me a page with a Valentine's greeting and a short message. That just made my day better.
Well, y'all have a nice Valentine's. Pamper yourselves or your loved ones. Meanwhile, I'm waiting and waiting and waiting for KT to come home!!! ;)
Tuesday, February 13, 2007
I was actually disappointed in *Dahmer*. I guess I was expecting the life and crimes of Dahmer. I remembered, as a teenager, how it was such a big deal when Dahmer was arrested. So, I was looking forward to a gruesome account of how he had came to be. He was charged on 17 counts of murder. However, he was actually convicted on 15 of them, totally some 937 years in prison.
Instead, like one reviewer (in Amazon.com) put it, this was like "pre-Dahmer" and it certainly felt that way. Plus, not everything in this film was accurate as there was a disclaimer saying so. So, if you're not familiar on Dahmer and his crimes, then you won't know which is true and which isn't.
*Dahmer* paints this serial killer as a lonesome gay chocolate factory worker in Milwaukee. However, Dahmer likes his men to be totally submissive. In order for them to be submissive, he'll have them drugged and then killed.
The problem is that we don't really see how or where he murders them, except 2 of them. We see, in flashbacks, how he seduced his (first?) victim. Then, we see how he seduced Khamtay. (In real life, his name was Konerak.) Khamtay was the only person who gave suspense in this entire film. You see, Khamtay escaped from Dahmer's apartment and begged for help. However, when the police arrived so did Dahmer, from work. After some smooth talking, the police gave Khamtay back to Dahmer to his death. Last, we see the drama between Dahmer and Rodney. In real life, Rodney is supposed to be Tracy, who was the second and last victim to escape from Dahmer.
However, we do not see that here. Instead, we see that Rodney is interested in Dahmer. Dahmer is interested but conflicted. Every time that Dahmer wanted to kill Rodney, he stopped. This was interesting because, in real life, Rodney was supposedly not gay.
So, we do not really see the real portrayal of Dahmer in this film. Instead, we see flashbacks of his teen years and young adulthood where Dahmer struggled against the authority of his religious father. I guess that is supposed to explain why Dahmer came to be as this serial killer. We see his run-in's with the police but gets away with it every time. We see how he drugged men at the local gay bar and in his apartment. And that's just about it. You could just imagine how many lives would have been spared if the police had actually done a thorough investigation.
Honestly, it was a waste of time. You're better off watching *The Texas Chainsaw Massacre* just to get an idea of what Dahmer might've been like.
2 stars out of 5.
For more information on Dahmer, click here and here.
Tuesday, February 06, 2007
I love learning new words, phrases, concepts and the like. I was reading The Zookeeper and came across "openly closeted". I thought it was an interesting play with 2 words that sounded oxymoronic.
The question is what is an openly closeted person. This term seems to be applied to celebrities or well-known public figures. According to postmodernbarney.com, they "are gay, live their lives as gay men or lesbians, but steadfastly refuse to actually go that one step beyond and publicly acknowledge that, yes, they're gay". North Dallas Thirty says that an openly closeted person is one that refuses to answer "that question".
So, who are the openly closeted people? According to Citizen Crain, they are Anderson Cooper, Sean Hayes, Ricky Martin, Clay Aiken and former NYC mayor Ed Koch. According to the Washington Blade, David Dreier, a member of the GOP House leadership, is openly closeted.
Anyways, below is my review for The Zookeeper as appeared in Amazon.com:
*The Zookeeper* was a good read, being light on plots.
Sam Metcalfe is a zookeeper at the National Zoo in DC. He is mainly responsible for black howler monkeys. Sam has some great ideas for projects and renovations for the Zoo. However, his proposals are constantly being shelved or rejected. He's also a "keeper" of other people's lives:
Jack - He's an older guy at the Zoo, who trained Sam when he first came on. He's responsible for the big cats. His wife has been dealing with cancer. Jack deals with it by drinking. At times, he comes to work ineberated.
Laurel - She is Sam's childhood best friend. She's the chef and owner of Terra, a trendy restaurant in Dupont Circle. She has been pressured by her sisters to take care of their mother in Pennsylvania. Their mother has been diagnosed with Alzheimer's.
Jamie - He is Sam's nephew. Sam is a father figure for Jamie. Jamie pretty much has a good relationship with his mother. However, problems arise every now and then. Jamie has expressed going to a particular high school but his mother is set on another school.
After a blind date, Sam has struck gold with Dean. Dean is a closeted meteorologist for the local news channel. Dean is like the perfect gay man...having a wonderful job, toned body, fantastic place and an impressive circle of friends.
Sam is in love with Dean. Dean seems to reciprocate the feeling. However, things start to change especially when Dean aims for an anchorman position in New York City.
From this moment, Sam realizes that he's losing control as a "keeper". The worst is his own life. He starts to question decisions that he has made. But before he can straighten out his life, he feels that he needs to make sure the the people in his lives are alright.
Overall, it was a good read with simple plots. This is something that you could read over the weekend. It's simply boy-meets-boy-and-boy-wonders-if-this-is-the-happy-life-and-if-he-is-content-with-it.
Monday, February 05, 2007
Friday night, I wanted to see the ASP pledge pick-up. Then, I wanted to go to DPHH. However, I really needed to stay home and give my body additional recovery time from the flu I had earlier the week.
Saturday, I went over to Gallaudet for a meeting with CBASLTA. Afterwards, I headed over for the Blogging/Vlogging Conference, hosted by the Coalition for Critical Inquiry.
I was only able to make it to the very last session. It was a panel session which focused on the impact and future of blogs and vlogs. It was moderated by Allison Kaftan and the panel consisted of Joey Baer, Tayler Mayer, Jared Evans and Shane Feldman.
It was a very interesting session about blogs and vlogs. I was particularly interested in Joey's presentation about vlogs. Several times, I've considered doing a vlog. However, I was telling Chris Kaftan that I'm overly critical of my signs. By the time I review myself before posting, I find myself deleting the entire vlog post. Maybe I should just ignore and just go ahead and post.
Another interesting thing to consider was the credibility of blogs and vlogs. I forgot who (Shane?) mentioned it but I thought was an interesting point. Mainstreamed (read: hearing) blogs and vlogs are often commentaries of news that have been reported in newspapers and in television. News in newspapers and television are supposed to be verified facts.
Ok, now, with Deaf blogs and vlogs, readers often assume or rely postings to be facts. The problem is that we don't have Deaf newspapers or television shows reporting on Deaf events. We also don't have the mainstreamed media reporting on Deaf events. So, where and how can we present verified facts in our postings?
Next, we need to raise accountability in bloggers and vloggers. Bloggers & vloggers need to explicitly clarify when something is factual and when something is of their own opinions. I believe this is going to raise everyone's (bloggers, vloggers, readers, commenters) awareness of accountability and credibility. Deaf blogs and vlogs have been in the infant stage these few years. However, with the exponential growth of Deaf bloggers and vloggers, we're moving up to the next stage. The next stage comes with maturity and scrutiny, which is needed.
Like I said, it was an interesting panel session. Also, I learned the new signs for blog and vlog. Hopefully, someone will do a vlog to show the new signs.
After that, I took the opportunity to meet bloggers in person. It was so nice to actually get to know each other. The people I met for the first time were: Jared Evans, Mike McConnell, David Evans and Joey Baer. I thought it was my first time meeting Tayler Mayer but he said that we met while we were graduate students at Gallaudet. Anyways, it was nice to meet him again. It was nice to see Katie Roberts again, after so many years. (I'm not sure if she has an active blog. I do know that she's an active commenter in many blogs.) There were a few people that I recognized but did not have a chance to formally introduce myself: Amy Cohen Efron, David Fulmer and Carl Schroeder.
Hopefully, there'll be another conference next year. If so, I do hope more Deaf bloggers and vloggers will attend.
By the way, congratulations to all the Deaf bloggers and vloggers who won the DeafRead 2006 Deaf Blogs awards! *hands waving*
Boy, did SuperBowl suck! The commercials were lame!
Labels: Deaf events
Thursday, February 01, 2007
Peachtree Rainbow Deaf Society (PRDS) has decided to refund money after stepping down as the hosting chapter for the upcoming RAD conference. RAD had initially proposed that PRDS transfer the funds to them. However, PRDS has decided not to do so. Instead, they will encourage attendants to re-register if they are still interested.
Below is the memo from PRDS:
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – 2/1/2007 – Atlanta, Georgia
Peachtree Rainbow Deaf Society, Inc. (PRDS) has received a proposal from the Rainbow Alliance of the Deaf (RAD) to transfer all money collected from combo ticket sales to RAD for the 2007 RAD Conference. At the January 28th membership meeting, PRDS has decided not to transfer the funds to RAD. Based on legal advice we received, it is in the best interest of the combo ticket holders and our organization that the money will be refunded to back to the individual ticket holders. The ticket holders should receive a letter including a check of the refund within 15 business days, starting February 1, 2007.
The RAD Board is taking over the 2007 RAD Conference that will be held in Atlanta. If you still wish to attend the conference, we ask that once you receive your refund, to please make a new check in the same amount payable to RAD/RAD 2007 Host Conference and mail it to Larry Pike, RAD Business Manager, 1191 Grape Street, Denver, CO 80220. It must be postmarked on or before Thursday, March 1, 2007. RAD Board will honor the same cost for the combo ticket that you paid to PRDS.
If you need more information about the upcoming 2007 RAD conference, please contact Bob Donaldson, RAD President. His e-mail is email@example.com.
Members of PRDS