[Wijvenweek] On kids


Tonight my daughter went to sleep clutching a silk skirt with a palm tree motif.
About twenty minutes later, I heard noise in the bathroom. Upon inspection, I found out that she was trying on the skirt in front of the mirror.
Thank God, her tiara was downstairs.
She's 3.

The cradle of multiculturalism

I sense that some explanation is due, so I'll try to do my best.

Some of you may be aware of the 'Fitna' polemic raging in the Low Countries. I would like to state for the record that I do NOT condone any of Mr Wilders ideas. What this whole polemic and this movie pressed home to me, was that there is a general lack of respect for ideas, lifestyles, opinions and above all, freedom of expression in a certain part of society. Something I take grave issue with.

I use the clip of gorgeous Italian artist Dalida, singing 'Helwa ya Balady', to drive home my point.

Dalida, like my father, was born in Egypt and lived in Cairo for much of her early life. She left in 1954 to pursue her career as a diva/songstress and in time would be elevated to the status of gay icon (before Madonna even hit the scene). My father, like many other foreigners, was kicked out of Egypt in 1956 when Nasser came to power, with two suitcases and a few piasters in his pocket.

What most of this diasporah shares, is their love for their 'native' country. My father raved about Egypt until his last day on earth. The sun had bored into his skin, as was evident, when I visited his body in the morgue and realised that even in death, the sun's life never had left him. The song 'Helwa ya Balady' (my sweet country) was a fixture of Dalida's repertoire until her death, of suicide.

When I asked my father about life in Alexandria (Claude François country) and Cairo, his eyes tended to glaze over. He would tell stories about how the rabbi from the synagogue would ply the children in the street with chocolate when he needed the necessary minyan to be present to start the service. My grandfather, an Italian Jew, lays buried in the Jewish cemetery in Alexandria. My grandmother, an Irish Catholic, was laid to rest in a Catholic cemetery in Antwerp. My three uncles, respectively a Catholic, a Jew and a Muslim, went to the French Collège des Frères and were taught by a Greek orthodox priest.

We were all raised on the principle of respect and multiculturalism. And our family has continued along these principles. A family reunion of the last three generations means up to 12 different nationalities at the table, and three different religions. I credit this spirit for my family's acceptance of my gayness, and our choice to have a child.

Finally, yesteryear's Cairenes and Alexandrians still search for and meet one another all over the world in an effort to recreate what they have lost.

So why is it that the rest of the world cannot follow our example?

Take a bow.


I need to clarify this post.

I routinely work with words on a daily basis. In fact, language is all I see, every day.
But these are other people's words, not my own.
So I undertook to put my own words in writing. Hence, the origin of this blog.

It's been a good six months, and I enjoyed meeting new people with similar or different interests.
Some people have even been kind enough to comment on what I've written.

However, at this point, I don't see any added value to this blog. I don't know what it does, except provide me with a vehicle to air my thoughts, opinions and interests.

Maybe I should just limit myself to being a reader, or to my day job even. Maybe I should focus on more important, relevant things. This evening I saw Geert Wilders' film 'Fitna'. It made me think about how people's perceptions cannot be changed, how we all end up choosing a side of the divide, and how people just cannot seem to bridge the gap.

It made me think about the fact that I am gay, and out there, although I have never actually encountered such people, there are people who would actually kill me for loving a woman.

It made me think that it's all very nice to be here on the Internet, blogging about silly daily events, but that there's more going on out there.

It was a fine game, while it lasted. But I think that my time has come to fold.

Don't you think?

[wijvenweek] On my household

and get a cleaner instead! That said, we cancelled ours and got a gym membership, figuring that it would be more efficient to burn double calories by cleaning ourselves AND hitting the gym.
I'll go to any lengths to avoid relinquishing my double cream!

[wijvenweek] On the subject of men


After some comments that the winners of Belgium's most recent blog awards were just 'wijvenblogs', a bunch of Flemish female blog authors felt that this was somewhat denigrating and most definitely incorrect. In fact, the type of comment made by your typical male blogger that thinks the blogosphere is his domain, and his only.
So they want wijvenblogs, they'll get them. This week female bloggers have been invited to contribute to wijvenweek, where women will blog about exclusively feminine subjects...
So bear with me, while I break out my tiara and unleash my feminine wiles on you!

Since today's theme was 'men', it kind of placed me in somewhat of a quandary. After all, this domestic demi-goddess has been sharing the last 11 years of her lifetime with... a woman. And while I do know men, I don't actually sleep with them, wake up with them or even work with them at this point.

So I thought, and thought, and thought. And then the infamous light bulb popped over my head. What about a post about the ideal man? Except there is no such thing, and I can certainly profess to not having found one, since I finally opted in favour of a woman instead.

Then I reflected on my professional career, where in my last job, before self-employed land, I was the only girl batting on a team of five of the most chauvinistic men I've ever met. Considering that I started my career working as one of three girls on a team of 13 men, I should have come prepared... I mean, what better way to start your Monday mornings than to have your boss walk by your desk and ask you if you had sex this weekend? Uh no, I've been out dancing since Friday night, have slept all of two hours, had too much whiskey and disgusting BiFi rolls, at what point of the weekend do you think that I had the time for some sex, was my standard answer, which inevitably would elicit a guffaw...

The little scouts troop with which I worked, for lack of a better expression since their favourite passtime was outdoor sports during office hours, might have invented the glass ceiling for all I care. God forbid that a woman should actually have, gasp, brains, and even a head on her shoulders. 'Sois-belle et tais-toi'...

So I turned my blogging mind to my male friends: invariably all the men in my life, whether relatives or friends, have always been courteous, caring, loving, in loving relationships, sexy, cute, sweet, intelligent, fun to be with, always up for a joke, clean, good cooks, good house decorators, fun-loving, flaming queens when they need to be, sturdy shoulders to lean on when I needed them, reliable, dependent, ...

Wait, on reflection, they are the ideal men! Dang, if I only I had noticed ;-)

And a dance clip thrown in for extra measure, just because I'd like to stick with my faves. Very 50s, extremely un-PC and on the subject of man... Ann Miller in 'On the Town':


The photo says it all...

The L Word, S5. Ep. 12: Loyal and True


Season 5 draws to a close, and once again continuity was not the forte of the writers of the L-Word. Not that it ever was.
The leaps and bounds, the strands of narrative left hanging, never cease to amaze me.

Off the top my head, I can think of Papi (who disappeared off the face of the earth and the chart without so much as a mention), Mark, Helena's children, the fact that Kit, Tina AND Bette can all be out and about, but where is little Angelica in all this (attachment parenting, hello?), Bette and Helena hugging like best friends, Marina (oh, remember Marina) auditioning for Les Girls with her troupe, Carmen, and so on.

Also, I don't know who directed this episode (couldn't be bothered to look it up), but the direction sucked: the sideways profile (Shane/Phyllis scene), the filming through fabric or blinds (Bette and Tina, Jenny and Tina) , the seguing of Bette and Tina in traffic and the chopper overhead with Mama P and the jellyfish venom inside, ack!

But on to more interesting things, the storylines:

- Alice/Tasha: I guess the poster on the bus means that Alice DID get the job. Hurray, and thanks for mentioning that. So being on 'The Look' now means that she has to go dress like Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday, so she can take a ride on a Vespa.
And what's with the identical dressing this season? The Wardrobe people must be on drugs: Bette and Tina, Bette and Jodi, Alice and Clea... Need I go on?
Was the Cal-Mart badge a dead give-away that the Alice/Tasha relationship was going down the drain, or was it the police academy that cinched it? At any rate, I almost feel that season 6 will start sans Tasha, with once again no mention of what happened. I'll be very sad to see Rose Rollins go and I will definitely miss her belly laugh. Just seems amazing how Alice is capable of throwing her own principles (remember last week's eppy) out of the window when it suits her. But let's face it, if you're taking advice from Shane on your relationship, you might just as well call it quits.

- Shane/Molly: wow, how quick does Shane cave in to Phyllis on her future with Molly?! Coming from someone who just threw twenty years of marriage down the drain to rediscover her inner lesbian, that is a bit rich. (Also for some reason, Cybill Shepherd reminded me of Dawn French in that scene. All she needed was a giant baby strapped on). But I also think any best friend should know better than to hop on to the best friend's ex, especially when everything is so fresh and raw. That said, in the lesbian world of six degrees of separation, everything is possible, I guess.

- Jenny/Nikki/Adele: pff, I'm guessing that the balcony scene, as it will henceforth be known, (to replace that old favourite, which goes something along the lines of 'O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou, Romeo) means the end of exciting purple strapon sex. Ah, had we had but more of that this season. I'm looking at you, Bette and Tina! It also gave a whole new meaning to the expression "safe sex", didn't it.
As for Adele and Begonia: it's almost as if she lives out Jenny's life as it should have been? Success, and the hot exotic girlfriend to boot.
And Jenny could have done MUCH more when she walked in and told Adele that she stole the movie from under her.
The end of this episode was slightly puzzling: was this a cliffhanger? Was Jenny referring to Nikki or Shane when she dropped the 'love' word ? Guess we'll have to wait another ten months to find out. Now if this was Dynasty or As The World Turns, someone would have walked up with a machine gun or someone would have fallen off a balcony... No such luck here.

- Jodi: I must have missed something because at what point did Jodi become BFF with everybody overnight? Since I never was on the Jodi bandwagon, let's just say that this episode did nothing to make me change my mind.
The 'Core' installation was downright spiteful and the smirk that served it too. Also, I must have been asleep during the past six episodes, because did ANYBODY ever see a videocam in the vicinity of Bette? We all did see the one in Nikki and Jenny's tent (how could we ever forget that memorable scene and the purple dildo) but at Bette's house? And why would someone who is deaf, make an AUDIOvisual installation?
And personally, I'd be dialling Joyce Wischnia's number ASAP for assault of character or whatever it is that they call it these days instead of doing a paltry imitation of Annie Leibovitz's photo of Lennon/Ono.

- Bette/Tina: it must have been a pretty bad week at casa Porter/Kennard. First Tina gets kicked off her own set by scheming Adele (if you want this movie on time and on budget) and then Bette gets some pretty strong medicine levelled at her by Jodi. No wonder their heads aren't thinking straight, as Bette mentions having a 'baby brother or sister' for Angelica during the poolside scene. Um, hello, you haven't even decided whether you want to live together yet, have been reunited for all of twelve seconds, and you're talking babies? This will never fly in Peoria, or with the lesbians for that matter. On a nicer note, the ladies took dancing to a whole new level ;-)... The word 'floorgasm' has already been coined.

- Helena: I'll admit to having fanned myself as a sun-kissed, tussled Helena tumbled from under that chopper to greet Peggy P. So Mama P got herself stung by a jellyfish? I was reminded of this story in last week's news. With her untimely demise near, Peggy giveth, taketh and giveth again... and after all that, recommends Helena to go buy Kit a night club, or two... I'm lost for words. And did we see the old Helena shine through there, as she admits to being bored with life on a remote paradise island in Tahiti with a hot criminal wanted for tax evasion? On to the next thrill, rich girl.

- Double D: my God, my lovah Cindy has a middle and last name. It's Cindy Annabel Tucker, if you please, and she manages to serve Denbot her just desserts. And then, for some reason, she's glued to Helena. 'Mmkay?

- Max, wherefore art thou?

Some good moments this season:

- Bette: was Mary fucking Poppins not available (on learning that Bev would be played by a white actress)
- Mama P: Were I receptive to such a proposition, it would first require a full booty check. Were you to pass muster baby, I'd give it to you family style. (hmmm, sigh, Holland Taylor, I love how you steal every scene you're in).
- Pam Grier for being able to turn two words into a whole line. Max for getting fewer lines every eppy (hi guys, in ep. 12)
- Fuck no, Denbo (Alice?)
- Nikki/Jenny: We’re going to fuck in a closet? The irony hasn’t escaped me.

On a last note: I can hear groans all around about the baby mention, but has anybody thought about the fact that either Holloman or Beals might be really pregnant and that this has to be worked into the storyline again? They both have three-year olds or thereabouts...

And WHY did someone have to blend the song "2Wicky" by Belgian band Hooverphonic with an Isaac Hayes song and turn it into an onslaught on our ears??? (I'm so vocal on this one, because it was the first song that SO and I shared as a couple, and part of the lyrics made up the title of my first ever post on this blog).

Here, as my parting shot for this season, is the song with the splendid vocals by Liesje Sadonius...

Now if someone would take the memorable Bette and Tina floorgasm and put this to this music, I certainly wouldn't object.

The hand that rocked our cradle


There's an urban legend that says that men think about sex every seven seconds. Women a lot less, I am told.
Who knows? Who cares?

When you're in a long-term relationship, however, this mere fact can tip the balance severely.

The impact of parenthood on any (lesbian) relationship cannot be underestimated as my SO and I have witnessed first-hand in our own relationship and the relationships around us.

To this date, we have knowledge of 5 lesbian couples breaking up, one being on the verge of breaking up and one couple that was on the verge. I won't even discuss the straight couples here.
What is it precisely that rocks the cradle?

I can only give my own take, as ours was the 'on the verge' relationship.

Three years ago we welcomed our munchkin into our lives. It was an event that had been discussed at length, planned at length and at the end of the day took much less time than we ever expected.
Cue, one year and two extremely tired mothers later. While trying to juggle the obligations of parenthood and work, we simply lost sight of the one aspect that had brought us this far in the first place: ourselves.
We drifted, on very different seas.

One morning, I looked at my SO and was forced to admit that when she said the sun is shining, and it was actually raining, I no longer believed her.
I took a long hard look in the mirror and realised that the same probably applied to myself. Where had those girls of the summer of 1997 gone? It was a tough discussion, one that occasionally still gives rise to some extremely poisonous barbs from my loved one.

As time passed, the subject lay dormant between us, and we circled it with some apprehension. Little did we know the answer would come from an unexpected angle.

Recently, my SO underwent some rather invasive surgery. The operation led to some minute changes in her appearance - a change of haircut, pregnancy clothes to alleviate the pressure on her scar - and an extended leave at home.
Gone were the circles under the eyes, the severe hairstyle, with hair drawn back, the uniform for work.
Eyes that had always been light sparkled once again in a rested face, framed by hair, that was, well, hair again. I rediscovered curves on her body that I had forgotten existed. I found myself wanting to be near her again, feel her skin touching mine at night, nuzzling up to her by day.
In short, I found her sexy again. Her external appearance enhanced all of those aspects of her personality that attracted me to her in the first place.

So a word of advice to impending mothers: while the care of your child takes a lot out of you, you should never lose sight of that other priority. Yourselves.

Holidays: the bane of the demi-goddess' existence


The Easter Weekend is upon us.
Some people make peep centerpieces. I bake.

The dough for tomorrow's hot cross buns is proving in the fridge.. Technically, we should have had them today but since SO and I were the on duty mothers in kindergarten this morning, running a breakfast restaurant for 27 toddlers and taking part in a 'jump' class with them - Don't ask, it's a Belgian thing -, they went by the wayside.

My mother is in charge of the paschal lamb and I of desert: coconut cake with physalis and ice cream as well as a lemon meringue cake.
Guess I know what I shall be doing tomorrow afternoon.

In the meantime the black sheep of the family, my uncle, has surfaced again today. My mother has as usual imploded and has retreated in floods. My grandmother of course has welcomed the prodigal son with wide-open arms. You get the picture.

This family just does not do holidays very well, I fear.

Thank God, it's a long weekend and we have an easter egg hunt, some snow and an episode of the L-Word to look forward to.

ETA: photo of cakes.
Because I have to live up to my reputation of domestic demi-goddess...
The hyacinth and narcissus in the background will hopefully flower soon.
The munchkin kindly provided the artwork.

Because I said so!


The William Tell Overture, as interpreted by Anita Renfroe. She might not have the greatest voice, and I know she is a comedian on the christian women circuit, but hey, she's a mum and it's all in a day's work...

current mood: deflated

Like so many other people at the moment, I'm alternately hacking, sniffling, barking, and wheezing my way through life. Only, I've had this cold since SO was operated at the end of January. So while SO is making a speedy recovery and more or less looks the paragon of health, I'm flailing next to her with pain in my chest.

Matters aren't helped, naturally, by the fact that, as usual, just before a holiday, everyone in the world needs work done.

And finally, add to this already explosive mixture, the coming of teenage age of our toddler. Honestly, some days we're really sure that she's three going on thirteen.
Every morning we start out on a happy note, only to find in the half hour that she has to get ready for school, that the only word she knows is *NO!*. In the face of such disobedience, her two mothers are literally wrecked. Because what can you do when a child says no and won't budge?

Also, this is the dangerous age, where they start feeding off an audience. My point was proven this afternoon in a store, where she was on the verge of meltdown no. 5 of the day and I was holding on to her for dear life, and I suddenly realised that she was actually looking at people around us while struggling against me and grumbling. Such fun. We have now become users of the time-out concept and have resorted to fish oil chews in hopes of calming her down a little.

Nobody said it was going to be easy. But if it's already this bad at three, what's it going to be like at thirteen, when you can't hold on to them like that?

So, we soldier boldly on. And I might consider going to see our GP tomorrow because I'm feeling past the point of repair.

The word Fierce was invented for them


In my ever continuing sage of dance in all its forms, and prompted by LesbianDad's mention of Carmen, I give you this little snippet of raw flamenco.

It's taken from Carlos Saura's Carmen, in which the eponymous opera by Georges Bizet is staged as an opera within an opera. Thus the dancer's emotions in their real lives (the subplot of the affair between Carmen and Antonio) blend in with the actual storyline of Carmen and the performance.

This powerful and vivid scene is the Tabacalera or tobacco factory: the stand-off between the two women (a splendid Christina Hoyos as the elder woman) leads to death.
I simply love the women sitting at the table singing.

I saw this movie for the first time in another life, when I was sixteen, and had a Spanish boyfriend named Rafael, who was a great Sevillana dancer.

The L Word S.5 Ep. 11 - Lunar Cycle


The longest breakup in lesbian film history is finally behind us. Yay! And oy vey, how tedious it was. Twelve stages of push and pull ending in a truly anticlimactic departure of Jodi, leaving Bette with an expensive Tag Heuer watch. I don't get it. There are so many more meaningful gifts to give... especially coming from an artist such as Professor Lerner. A work of your own (expensive) art, maybe? Or was this simply a corporate-imposed brand plug?

But let's rewind and go back to that ill-fated moment when Jodi walked into the Planet in an identical outfit to Bette's. I already remarked on the omni-presence of pink in this season (someone, please tell the stylist already that it's overkill). The scene in Bette's other status symbol, the Lexus, was too much: even the babyseat matched their outfits. And Angelica, in the last scenes was also wearing pink.

I know I should pay more attention to the events at Bette's house, but honestly: if that was me, I would have just pointed at the door. Being kept hostage in your house for half a day by a woman, who then, all of a sudden, starts acting normal and accompanies you to your office and then still refuses to get the message? I sense a bunny in the pot next episode. A core values bunny...

Moving on, Jenny finally met her match: Adele - cool as a cucumber - took over at the helm in an easy putsch. This just as everyone was beginning to realise la Schecter's a creative genius (if the dialogue in the Nina/Bev scene is anything to go by, I declare a bomb at the box office, but who am I, n'est-ce pas?). C'mon, a sex tape, a call to William, and voilà, she's in the director's chair? And do we really believe that she is doing it for Les Girls? All shall be revealed in next week's episode, I suppose. You would think that Jenny would have learnt from the whole Mark episode (a whole season of Mark, remember Mark? Where did samurai boy vanish to?).

Meanwhile Shane and Jenny are left to drown their mutual sorrows with a bong and a lot of alcohol. And where was Mollykins in all this? For a moment there, I almost suspected that the writers were ready for it: friendly sex and a final insight. But no such thing, as the oracle known as Max walked in. And Jenny declared Nikki to be dead to her, thus paving the way for *insert spoiler here*.

I did mention my reserves and worries about Tasha and Alice, and during this episode they were confirmed. Pretty young (soup-chef lookalike) Australian designer hits the Look and home, right into Alice's heart. Meanwhile Tasha and Alice seem to be on different wavelengths.

Kit, pushed into a corner by Denbo and her lovah Cindy, decides it's time to go all Foxy Brown on us. 'She won't budge when she carries a grudge'... Only little Angelica can sway her: first as the ringtone for Bette, and later when playing with Kit's gun. I saw that one coming too, but thankfully the writers that be decided on a positive outcome for that story arc. I will refrain from commenting on the idiocy of throwing the gun WITH YOUR PRINTS in the dumpster.

It was largely an uneventful episode this week after last week's sexanigans. Not a boob in sight. An episode that was written to showcase Marlee Matlin's acting talent and to wrap up some storylines in anticipation of the finale and season 6's eight episodes. But hey, maybe the writer's team's lunar cycles were all up in the air... or maybe there was some rampant PMS raging. I would have never guessed it from all the references to it...

PS - I kept thinking that the Clea character looked familiar, but it just dawned on me. She played the role of Pauline in Heavenly Creatures, that Mario Lanza murder extravaganza!
Fun moment: Kit and Max rolling their eyes at all the PMS-bitchslapping going on around them. Shane actualling reading something (the NYT no less). And on a final note, I'll admit to feeling sorry for Jenny this episode.



Why does this video always make me want to go out and get a tattoo? And a tie?

must-have: Magimix food processor 3200

I caved in.
Look at it: how could I resist?
Satin silver finish, sharp blades, and it mixes, whisks, kneads, slices, grates, chops, and liquidises too. And you can use it as a juicer too. And it has a button that reads 'Pulse'. Sigh.
I am now officially an appliance junkie.

oh they were gorgeous - the Ladies of Burlesque


These days the charming figure of Dita von Teese seems to be omnipresent, whether at a Dior store opening or as the face of a new MAC lipstick.

But in effect, Ms von Teese is not doing anything new.

Doreen Lord was the original girl in the champagne glass.

Sally Rand pioneered the feather dance.

And of course, who could forget about the bold and brash Gipsy Rose Lee and her legendary memoirs? Her mother allegedly run a lesbian boarding house and ended up killing her lover who is alleged to have made a pass at Gipsy...

Other Ladies of Burlesque include the pioneer of the genre, Little Egypt, who danced at the 1893 World Fair; Mae West, the madam of double entendres (is that a pistol in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?); Lili St Cyr who is said to have inspired Norma Jean's makeover and of course Bettie Page.

What these women have in common, is that they all conveyed sophistication and mystery. A voyeur's delight, shall we say?


The demi-goddess' new clothes


Time for an overhaul, I thought.
You likey?

The L word S. 5 Ep. 10 'Lifecycle'


Given that most of this week's episode screamed Camp Winnelesbo, this review will focus on just that.

First, let me remark on the fact that it took Mama Chaiken a whole 11 episodes to do the honourable thing and give some credit or mention the early and unnecessary demise of Dana. 11 episodes, Ilene! Ah Dana, we miss you. And a shout-out to my SO's Aunt Donna, who is a breast cancer survivor!

By the end of this episode, however, it was obvious that Team Dana would never ride again. In the meantime, we had more than 30 minutes of dykes on bikes (yeah, yeah, easy, I know). And how well equipped these damsels came. Bette, kitted out to the T and even speaking tour de lesbo speak (pull up, to your left). Kit, fit, and on a bike. At least she had some screentime this eppy. Even Shane managed to get that wiry puny body of hers to accelerate.

Speaking of Shane: this relationship with Molly is just the next in a string of one-way streets. Meanwhile young Nikki has already let her beady eye roam along the non-existing curves of Shane's bod. You just know that we are heading for a fall. I'm also worried about the Tasha and Alice storyline. Of course, it's the L Word and we've had five seasons of this, and a sixth in the making, so we've come to expect this, but still... And did you know that there was segregation in gay clubs? I guess that maybe I haven't been riding the bus long enough to know.

But on to more exciting things because this is definitely the season in which the L Word discovered sex. I can just picture it now: meeting in board room - bunch of suits around the table talking to Mama Chaiken. "But Ilene, you need to think about the male demographic". Yeah, their and my hormones were surely in a tizz as Nikki girded her loins in the Taj Mahal tent after which Jenny added a nice purple penis to the already quite pretty picture of Nikki in a harness. I had to pinch myself to remind myself that this was American TV.

And American TV wouldn't be quite complete without ads. At some point, this episode edged conspicuously nearer to a Tampax ad. It had chick flick written all over it. Although when Alice and Shane joined Tina in her tent, beer bottles in hand, and Alice said 'What the fuck?", for a moment there, I definitely had a case of déjà vu. Remember the wassuuuup ads for Budweiser?

Cue campfire delight. For a moment there I thought that they were going to play spin the bottle and already I could visualise some interesting kissing combos. Alas, it was a game of 'I never... ' and well, I never would have guessed that the Bette/Tina/Jodi showdown was going to happen there and then. But as the discussion focused on the definition of cheating, the shit hit the fan, and Jodi stomped out of the magic circle leaving Bette and an unhappy Max in her wake. SO at that point reflected on the fact that Bette doesn't "really" have any friends (except Shane maybe).

Jenny's summing up of the situation reflected our thoughts exactly. She really is Mama Chaiken's alter ego. Bette and Tina belong together. Word!

* Props this episode to Kit for making some hideous headfashions work anyway. Girl, we miss your fro!
* Quote of the day: my pussy is so numb(Jenny). It will be even sorer tomorrow, dear, from all that riding.
* Rose Rollins and Jennifer Beals have the best laughs. So infectious.
* I *like totally* didn't know The North Face created such palatial tents or I would have actually gone on a camping trip before. This of course hinges on there being a socket in the tent to plug in a hairdryer, in which case I would consider roaming the wilderness.

And finally: I wanted to illustrate this post with a pic of Nikki's pretty buttocks in all their strap-on lusciousness, but I thought that would be rather NSFW. I'm sure that you will be able to find the image somewhere in cyberspace to satisfy your wicked curiosity.

Belgium's candidate for the Eurovision Song CampFest


Catchy tune, eh? What do you think, zero or douze points?

9 March - Vita Sackville-West's birthday: the book of Revelations

"I am reduced to a thing that wants Virginia. I composed a beautiful letter to you in the sleepless nightmare hours of the night, and it has all gone: I just miss you, in a quite simple desperate human way. You, with all your un-dumb letters, would never write so elementary a phrase as that; perhaps you wouldn't even feel it. And yet I believe you'll be sensible of a little gap. But you'd clothe it in so exquisite a phrase that it would lose a little of its reality. Whereas with me it is quite stark: I miss you even more than I could have believed; and I was prepared to miss you a good deal. So this letter is just really a squeal of pain. It is incredible how essential to me you have become."

Vita Sackville-West in a letter to Virginia Woolf, Jan. 21, 1926

A second girl child will be named Dora.

We've visited Sissinghurst on several occasions. I wouldn't mind getting married in its White Garden.

I own several books on the Bloomsberries.

Parental (di)stress part II - going that extra mile


I've been reading a lot of other blogs lately, seeing a lot of friends lately.

What shines through in all the blogs, books, discussions is that we all feel that we are coming up short when it comes to our parenting skills and practice. Think about all the things we worry about:
- are our kids getting enough sleep, food, love? Are they potty-trained, and when should they be? Are we making them the right lunches? Are they getting their fish oil and vitamin intake? Did we give them too many cookies today?
- what about their interaction with other kids, i.e. are they being bullied, are they nice, are they bullying, do they have friends, etc.?
- performance at school or in playgroup? Are they happy, well-balanced, or stressed out and tired? Are we expecting too much from them?
- are they wearing the right outfit for carnival? Did we spend enough hours making a fantastic outfit? Did we bake the right amount of cakes?
- are we giving them the right answers? Are we helping them on their way through to life? Did we make the right choice when making the choices that we did?

I could go on.

Did our parents worry like we do? Or is this just typical behaviour of parents in this century? And are all parents confronted with these worries?

And what about news items like these:
- Florida mom uses car power washer on toddler
- toddler force-fed liquor, had broken arm
- 4-year old shows up to elementary school drunk

So let me hear your thoughts on parenting, being parents, worries, etc.

Why do we worry in the first place? I'm beginning to think that we are all doing a fine job. So three cheers to us, because it seems as if we could all do with a pat on the back.



Did you know that my time costs money?
And that keeping four vials of sperm in some weird container also costs money?
And that to use them you also have to pay money?
That to sit down in an office with a famous doctor of reproductive medicine for 15 mins. also means you need to get that roll of twenties out?
The world is all about commodity: who wants what, who's got it, who'll give it to you in exchange for something else.

You might have guessed that I'm tired, overworked, irritated, aggravated, and annoyed or I wouldn't be so ironic about something which matters so much to me.

Anyway, there you have it. I had my last hamburger today for the next five months. I will be gradually relinquishing coffee, wine, raw meat and fish, double cream and a slew of other favourite foods in coming weeks to prepare my body. I will even go take that Pilates class on Tuesday evenings (unless Fresco can convince me to take a Latin dance class instead).

Because in June, project baby is on the rails and we only have four more goes left at getting it right.

My body is a temple. Repeat: my body is a temple. Repeat: my body is a temple.

Can I have a glass of wine now please?

Dainty shoes


Charlie Chaplin, The Gold Rush (1925)

For another dance scene featuring Chaplin, point your mouse towards that famous excerpt from the Great Dictator, where he dances with a globe to Richard Wagner's Lohrangrin overture.

Thanks, but no thanks: on a change of sexuality


One of the topics on LesbianLifestyle.com this month is the following:

If your fairy Godmother told you that you could be a heterosexual tomorrow by the touch of her glittery wand would you allow her to change your sexuality and why or why not?

This was food for thought as this is a question that I’ve been asked many times over the past years. My answer is usually a firm no but I never really took the time to think about the underlying reasons of my answer, which is why I thought it would be good to do so today.

The first and only thought that surfaces is that I really have had an easy deal. Unlike other men and women, my coming out (if any) was not a complex, harrowing, draining process.

I must have been seven when I (subconsciously) experienced my first infatuation with a woman. The location was the Langelinie Pavillion in Copenhagen, she wore a hot pink evening dress and her name was Elise. Over the years, many women would take this first woman’s place. And yet, I never questioned my feelings for these women. They were there, I attempted to deal with my feelings for them for the most part and continued to gossip about boys, neck with them when the opportunity presented itself, date them and later sleep with them.

This was all to change in 1993. My best friend at university, who had been in love with me at one time but never told me about it, and whom I subsequently fell in love with, one evening confessed to me that he was gay. I became his date on his forays into a world that was relatively new to us: the world of gay men and women. After ten months I told him that I couldn’t take it anymore and that from now on he was on his own. Maybe this was the sign for him to get moving, because that evening he found himself a date (the beginning of a ten-year relationship). As I was roaming the venue, trying to entertain myself, someone stood out just that little more than the other women. There was nothing show-stopping about her, except the irresistibly seductive twinkle of her eyes. Next thing I knew, I was kissing her. It was as if a floodgate opened.

I will not go into as much detail about what followed. What is important is that I realised right away that I had always been in love with women but simply never had the opportunity, in my extremely straight surroundings, to exercise that love. From one day into another I swapped men for women. I didn’t give it much thought and I expected the people around me to follow my example. For the most part, they did. I can count on one hand the people who could not deal with my decision. The oldest person in my life, my gran, said ‘as long as you’re happy’. My mum had a meltdown and hated the girlfriend. My youngest sister said ewwww.

My life has continued much in the same vein: my mother adores my partner of 11 years, we have a child, are considered a couple by my family, my SO’s employer and the school, our neighbours. We don’t consider ourselves the ‘only gay in the village’ and we are not in your face gay either. I never made any statements about my sexuality, I simply steamed on.

In Italian they say ‘Icche’ c’e c’e’: whatever there is, there is. In hindsight, it pretty much sums up my attitude to life and being gay. I take it at face value, dealing with whatever is coming right at me. My recommendation to my fairy godmother would thus have to be that she needs to reserve that fairy dust for worthier purposes, such as a second baby, maybe?

The L Word S5 Ep 9 - Liquid Heat

Was this episode an homage to the Coppola family or what?

Starting with the L-Word version of the Godfather, with Don Bette and Sonny Kit as her sidekick. All we needed was a horse’s head in Bette’s bed once Jodi finds out what’s really going on. And the end of the episode only required different lighting since the music was already there, et voilà, a Sofia Coppola movie. OK, I’m exaggerating, but still.

Let’s get down to business. Literally. As the last 5 minutes or so were all about getting down (and dirty?).

Welcome back Max for starters. Maybe I won’t be making friends here but I actually thought that was hot (to quote next season’s new guest star, Paris Hilton). I admit to being puzzled at first: let’s face it, Max made his entrance into the L-world as Jenny’s boyfriend, then transitioned, then did Billy (albeit under the influence of the hormones), then shifted back to Grace and now is with Tom. And for the first time, also a bottom instead of a top, as was the case with Billy. I had the odd sense that for Max it was quite liberating to be with somebody who really was interested in him, after overcoming the whole gender issue.

On to Alice and Tasha: it is getting hotta in here. Alice is seemingly back to normal again and it is quite cute to watch them. Especially the scene where Tasha is ‘feeling’ the humdrum noise of the rush hour. Mind you, if I lived there, I’d have to move. Waaaay too much noise.

I really felt sorry for Shane at the end. This is the straight crush that won’t go away, but it has also put Shane on the receiving end for once. Her just desserts, some might say. Do you feel as if she is nothing else but a sexperiment for Molly? Who just wants to drive her mother back out of the lesbian world and into her father’s arms? We’ll see.

Jenny/Nikki/Adele: teen sex and an incredulous Nikki locking lips with Adele. A lot was made of the letter that Jenny had written, but what if Adele had re-written it?

Kit is in overdrive this episode, although the scene where manages to keep her baby sister under her thumb and immediately reads Bette like an open book is quite touching.

Jodi is getting the short end of the stick, whichever way you look at it. In that sense, this episode was rather strange, if you look at Bette’s scenes.

The scene by the pool: Jodi leaps into the pool, liberated as she is (visions of Marlee Matlin in children of a lesser god). The scene with Bette and Jodi by the pool was cruel. I can see why she wouldn’t be so happy about Jodi’s attentions, excessive as they are. A bit of overacting there, I think. That said, saying ‘I love Tina’, while knowing your lover can’t here you, is downright unpleasant. The scene in the elevator is quite revealing at another level, as they don’t actually discuss feelings, but limit themselves to superficiality (you surround yourself with beauty, we have the same friends, etc,). I also have a pair of comfortable slippers, but at the end of the day, I’m not married to them, if you see what I’m getting at. A relationship is about much more than that, and the ‘I love you’ seemed so hollow, and added on an afterthought. Also note that Tina says affair, while Bette wants to come home. Add to that that Tina is still chatting up the AD and what do you get? Two ships in the mist, albeit some hot mist.

Love in an elevator(1): I know, I know, give me one chocolate and I want the whole bar. It had been built up in such a way that I expected a major explosion. It was a minor bang. The previews led me to expect more, for some reason; there have been better scenes between these two in the past. But as my SO remarked: I hate the Tina character, but I find that I can watch her when she has onscreen time with Bette. These two are simply made for each other.

And finally: double D’s rumble at She-Bar. I’m not familiar with Miami customs but I did find this scene a bit strange. Does this mean that you can’t survive in WeHo if you’re not in with Bette and her crowd? I also got the feeling that Fuck no, Denbo was still in the driver’s seat as the new kid on the block. Although her lover Cindy seems to want to dispute that. Laughed at Jenny’s comment (she’s pyschotic).


- Nikki’s nipple tape.

- Molly’s ‘weird, boobs’ comment.What a major turn-off.

- Visions of Olivia Newton John in Grease every time Jenny was in the picture. And what’s with the identical shoes for Adele? Is Jenny that blind?

- How interesting to play a lesbian in a lesbian series, and watch your real-life daughter acting getting her freak on with another woman, while both of you are straight?

- Fun: the shot of Phyllis upside down from Molly’s perspective.

- A thought: looking at the excess fabric around Laurel Holloman’s waistline, could it be that she is once again with child? (Which is why we are careening towards a happy end for Bette and Tina, going for baby number two in the next season?)

* A shout-out has to go out to Joyce Wischnia for wearing that tank top and giving Phyllis a dose of her own medicine.

* Refrigerator scene: how many of you wanted to be that tub of ice-cream!

!! Photo courtesy of Dorothy Surrenders.

(1) Aerosmith brought out this song 13 years ago. I'm feeling very old all of a sudden!

Little Red is back in da hood!


The munchkin had started chanting the song of Little Red Riding Hood this week, prompting me to finally open that cardboard box replete with Ladybird books, fairytale books and many more treasures of my childhood.

I have been raving about these books since I was a child, because the artwork, to me, was quite beautiful, although highly romanticised. The princesses looked like real princesses should (Ancien Régime style) while the men looked like burly hunters in medieval dress. Go figure. But they were hugely appealing and they seem to be working for the munchkin, who naturally pounced on Little Red Riding Hood with glee.

SO and I though found ourselves reading this book with a certain degree of discomfort and a running ironic commentary.

Little Red takes her grandmother cake and a wine, because grandmother is ill and according to her mother, they will do her good. Sounds like someone is a wino, no? She is expressly told to walk carefully and not to run of she will break the bottle and have no wine for grandmother. Wow. Call AA presto.

The wolf is a dashing large dog, who, in human form, would be reminiscent of a winking Lothario or even Joey from Friends: 'hey, how you doing?". He subsequently tells her to smell the roses, instead of walking straight along the path. Of course, the guileless creature caves in under such manly pressure and makes straight for the grasslands carpeted with flowers. Can you blame her (with such pretty illustrated daisies)?

However, when Little Red has gathered so many flowers that her arms were full, she begins to think of her grandmother again and returns to the path. Harrumph.

Arriving at grandmother's cottage, she has some up close and personal time with el wolfo, who then gobbles her up in one mouthful. SO clearly had forgotten the lunch and dinner part, and said incredulously: "Nooooo, what do you mean, he gobbles her up?". Enter the burly woodcutter, aka Little Red's Big Daddy, who kills the wolf with one fell swoop of his dangerous axe. Sharp objects around children, tsk.

And out of the wolf's humongous stomach jump Little Red, and her grandma, who is miraculously revived after a bottle of wine. See, I told you, definitely a raging alcoholic or a very fine wine.

Red then goes on to swear to her mother that 'As long as I live, I shall never again leave the forest path when you have warned me not to do so'. Yeah sure, until you're a teenager and your hormones kick in and you're not even capable of thinking clearly for the next ten years at least.

I tell you, fairytales never quite have the same magical effect when you're an adult.

The munchkin, of course, lapped it up like cream.

Next installment: Rumpelstiltskin, the fairytale equivalent of Michael Jackson, in preparation of our visit to the puppet theatre on Wednesday.

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