A colleague and I just got back on Sunday from a really fun trip to Turpan, a city roughly five hours from Hami by train. We visited lots of historical
sites, such as the Emin Minaret, the ruins of an ancient city called
Gaochang, and the Astana Graves. The food was pretty good, the people
were friendly, and the weather was great.
For the upcoming May Day break (our equivalent to Spring Break), I'll be going to the town of Xiahe in Gansu province, which is inhabited by a predominantly Tibetan population and is home to several famous monasteries.
Somebody, writing for a different Internet forum, once said that one of the greatest ironies in American politics is that the government can deny freedoms to certain groups, but freedom is given without question to religious groups who want to deny freedom to other people.
I respect Christian fundamentalists' right to have their own opinions, even if I find their opinions repugnant. However, boundaries are crossed when they attempt to take their opinions and turn them into law, as is happening in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts at this very moment. According to an
I just uploaded a bunch of new photos, if anyone wants to look at them. There are a couple of photos with me, as well as one I took in Hong Kong and a few from the trip my colleagues and I took to the mountains today.
Well, I'm now living in Hami, Xinjiang in northwestern China (on the periphery of the Gobi Desert and the Tian Shan mountain range). It's pretty cold out here, but it's been sunny lately, and on most days I have a great view of the Tian Shan. My plan now is to just hang out until the 23rd, when I start teaching, and spend my spare time travelling around and attempting to learn Uyghur. I'm also hoping to learn about Uyghur dancing if I can find a place to study it.
(Taken from the Hartford Courant)
Two Views Of Same-Sex Marriage
February 10, 2004
In response to Rep. Steve King's (R-Iowa) remark that he does not "think our
society can adjust" to gay marriage [Page 1, Feb. 5, "Gays To Marry As Soon As
I can adjust to all efforts to provide equal protection under the law to my gay
The title is Uyghur for "hello," in case you're curious. I really have to get off my lazy ass and pick up my study of Uyghur again...
Since I don't contribute very much here, I thought I'd write a little update on what I've been doing lately.
I'm still with my boyfriend David, and neither of us have any intention of breaking off our relationship. I'm glad that after a long string of disastrous relationships and a lot of playing around, I've finally found somebody I can love.
Well, bois and gurlz, as many of you may be aware, our good buddies at the American Family Association recently decided to conduct a poll on whether same-sex marriage should be legalized and submit the results to Congress. Since the AFA is a right-wing Christian fundamentalist organization known for entertaining often rabidly anti-gay views, I would suppose that their ultimate goal was to demonstrate to Congress that a vast majority of Americans are opposed to gay marriage. However, they will likely be greatly disappointed by the results they just sent to me and other respondents by e-mail. Of the 632,843 people surveyed thus far:
* 201,914 (31%) oppose same-sex marriage.
* 52,238 (8%) favor same-sex civil unions, but not marriage.
* 378,691 (59%) favor the legalization of same-sex marriage.
Of course, we must consider a few things. First, it's possible that somebody has been going on there, writing fake names, and jacking up the numbers. Even if the numbers are as they seem, AFA may decide not to submit the poll to Congress if the results don't come out in their favor, or they may allege that somebody has been tampering with the polling mechanism.
Either way, though, ha ha ha ha hahaaaaaa!!!!
Has anybody here ever had Carbine Beer? It's from Australia, and it's one of the only dark beers available here in Lianyungang, and it's damn good stuff. I'm drinking some right now, and for the first time ever, it's COLD. And why? Because we (the foreign instructors) have finally been moved into our newly-built apartments. I don't know if I ever wrote this, but before today, we had basically been living in hotel rooms, with me being the "veteran" of the bunch, having lived in my little room in the Cangwu Hotel for almost 11 months.
It's not common for me to publish big whiny bitch-a-thons, but I'm going to publish one here.
I'm getting sick of this SARS-related bullshit. I'm still firmly convinced that its being blown way the hell out of proportion and both people and the government are taking it far too seriously. Jesus Christ...
I have nothing against the SARS coronavirus, because it's just a virus doing what it's gotta do to survive. Likewise, I'm not worried about the epidemic, since the WHO's own figures suggest that people in my age group are at the lowest risk of dying from the disease. What I'm angry about is how this whole thing is being handled. I don't know how the news of this whole thing is being covered in the West, but what's happened is that the government has ordered all schools to close their gates and not allow any students to leave the campus, and tightly regulate who can go in and out. Luckily, I don't live on campus, but I'm still confined to Lianyungang's city limits.
This is something I posted to another Website that I've edited slightly... Mind you, it was meant to be a joke.
(Note: I don't know if this will concern readers or not, but since I'm in China, the whole SARS thing definitely concerns me, right right O My Brothers and Droogs?)
I will admit that I don't really enjoy teaching 12 year-old children. They're noisy, they often don't listen, and they just have too much energy to really be invested in learning. On top of that, their English level is so low that they can hardly understand what I say to them, and I've considered maybe just teaching my Junior I classes all in Chinese. Believe me, the fact that I'm neither suicidal nor an alcoholic is actually quite amazing.
Because my boyfriend in and I are more than 1,000 miles apart and almost never get to see each other, and because I'm randy as a rabbit while he has the sex drive of a mushroom, he's okay with me dating other guys while I'm up here.
There's one interesting thing I've noticed about my dating habits: I exclusively date guys who are 5-10 years older than me. Where I am now, I've dated guys who are 26, 28, and 29, generally finding them more attractive than guys my own age. I can date guys in my own age group - my boyfriend's 22 - but I would rather date a 25 year-old than an 18 year-old.
While on a trip to Nanjing to this weekend to see a friend, I was told that on April 1st, Leslie Cheung, a popular gay actor and pop singer from Hong Kong and star in the 1997 gay movie "Happy Together," committed suicide by jumping off a building, apparently due to a break-up with his boyfriend. Has anyone else heard about this? I know a lot of gay people in China are pretty bummed out to hear about it.