Archive for the ‘Biography’ Category

Not-At-All-Innocent Broads

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Diary #393

Though the holiday season officially ended on Saturday, Lorelei and I have planned a sort of epilogue to it; very early Thursday morning we’ll be departing for Mexico and not returning until the following Tuesday.  Don’t worry, there will be pictures!  We’ll probably be tweeting them periodically all weekend.  If you’re jealous, maybe you should book a duo with us for when we return so you can absorb a little of our surplus Mexico mojo; you can contact either of us as you prefer.  If you’ve been thinking about it, there’s no time like the present.  Oh, and speaking of Lorelei, this is just a reminder that we’ve moved our Doctor Who night to Wednesday, so if you enjoy pictures like this one, that’s the time to look for them now.  Please forgive the short column; I have some packing to do!

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Diary #392

It’s just so lovely having Grace nearby.  Instead of having to fly her here and deal with all the logistics of a two-week vacation, all I had to do is take a two-hour drive out to Sunset and I can visit for as long as I like.  In fact, I was able to visit for Christmas, come back to Seattle on Boxing Day, then go back last Saturday and stay until Tuesday.  And you know what I did all day Sunday and Monday?  Mostly a lot of nothing.  Oh, I caught up on some writing on Sunday, and I prepared dinner on Monday, but other than that it was just a lot of being stoned, listening to music, talking, cuddling up on the couch and watching movies.  I need to do this sort of thing a LOT more often; I think I’ll do an Imbolc feast like I used to in the old days, with my sister’s gumbo as the entree.  It’s true that there are still a lot of repairs to do on the place (and I’ve added some tools Grace wants to my Amazon wishlist), and it’ll be a long time before I can find where anything is (when it isn’t still in a box).  But in a year or so it should be a place I can happily invite friends to visit, and I enjoy seeing Grace in the meantime even if it’s still a mess.

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Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.
–  attributed to Lucius Annaeus Seneca

And so we come to the end of another difficult year.  I think it’s safe to say that most Americans considered it a pretty bad one, partly because of the behavior of our mad emperor but mostly because of the continuation of trends that were in place long before anyone even knew who he was…trends like the increasing violence of the police, the increasing prevalence of surveillance, and the increasing number of laws designed to criminalize every aspect of ordinary life.  The year was also not especially good for me personally; oh, I’m not under as much stress as I was last year or the year before at this time, and there were some wonderful high points like my weekly dates (and trip to Ireland) with Lorelei Rivers.  But I’m afraid the damage of decades is catching up with me; none of the old wounds are healing any longer and I just can’t get the howling things to go back in their boxes any more, so now my coping strategy is “spend as much time as possible in the less-haunted parts of the house; eliminate, ignore or refuse activities that might take me downstairs alone; turn the music up so loud they’re drowned out; and spend as little of the rest of the time conscious and sober as is practical.”  Case in point, this very essay; for most of my life this time of year was a happy one, but in the past few years it has become for me a time for melancholy and emotional exhaustion.  It seems the most certain way to ensure that a situation worsens is to declare that it’s already as bad as it can get, so I won’t do that.  But I will say that even in the midst of this blue period, I still dare to hope that maybe the coming year won’t be quite as difficult as the last three years have been, even if only because I’m so used to it now.

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Diary #391

It’s rare that it snows in Seattle at all, much less right on time.  But this year, thanks to several hours of Christmas Eve snow all over this part of the Pacific Northwest, we had a genuine white Christmas.  And though we got a decent amount out at Sunset, it didn’t accumulate and was followed by rain; not exactly conducive to lovely pictures.  Not so in Seattle, though; this photo was taken by one of my guests on her way to my place on Christmas morning.  It’s been a few years since I cooked a Christmas dinner, so this was simultaneously nostalgic and chaotic (because I didn’t unpack the boxes and therefore didn’t know where anything had been put away in the kitchen).  Another thing that was a bit different:  two of my guests wanted to contribute a dish themselves, so there were as many as three of us in the kitchen at once (it’s fairly large, so we didn’t really get in each other’s way).  So even though most everything is still in boxes and it’s obvious that people only moved in recently, I was able to get a tiny glimpse of what holidays may be like there once the dust finally settles and I have things the way I want them.

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Diary #390

It’s the holidays again, and that means my schedule is all over the place (though in a not-necessarily-bad way).  Y’all may have noticed my latest news and links columns weren’t in their usual places; that was necessary to make room for the holidays and other special occasions, but it’ll be back to normal after the Yuletide season ends on January 6th.  I’ll be at Sunset for a few days at Christmas and again at New Year, and then Lorelei and I are going on a short vacation in January, but by mid-January everything should be settling back down.  Several of you have asked me when I’m coming down to California again, and I’m not sure of the date but probably late winter (February or early March); keep your eyes on these diary columns and I’ll announce the dates when I get them.  Of course, I’m also available to make a trip just to see you if you like; the minimum appointment length must at least be equal to my round-trip travel time, which basically means an overnight appointment if you’re more than four hours from Seattle by air.  However, I do have a Yuletide special running until January 6th which could save you a good bit on that if you’re willing to pay in advance (or if you’re a subscriber to this blog).  As always, serious inquiries only, please, and Happy Holidays to all of you!

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Every week, sometimes more than once per week, I share news reports of cops molesting, sexually harassing, sexually assaulting and even raping women and teen girls, and sometimes even men, boys or children.  These reports appear on average every five days, but that’s only counting the incidents which are both reported and rise to the level of a crime; most rapes, molestations and other sexual misbehavior by cops falls short of an actual crime, and most of the crimes are not reported because most of the victims are wise enough to understand that their lives will be overturned and their affairs pried into by “investigators” with very little chance of the rapist cop suffering even the slightest consequences (unless you call a paid vacation a “consequence”).  Most regular readers know that I myself was raped by cops in May of 1995, but today I’d like to share all of the other incidents of sexual harassment that, while they weren’t quite crimes (though a couple of them certainly constituted malfeasance and abuse), may give you an idea of how frequently cops try to apply sexual pressure of one kind or another on women.  With the exception of the cops when I was arrested for prostitution in 2005, none of these knew I was a sex worker (and before September of ’97 I wasn’t, not full time anyway); they and others like them are out there in their tens of thousands, making life more difficult and scarier for any attractive woman who has the misfortune to cross their paths.

First, there was the one in my (small) home town who carried a grudge against me for over 10 years because I wouldn’t date him in high school; as an adult cop in the early ’90s he delighted in stalking me to give me tickets.  It only stopped when he tried to frame me for an accident in which an elderly man ran a stop sign and slammed into my car; my mother was furious, so she went to the sheriff and reported him.  That one had a happy ending; the sheriff actually refunded me the costs of several of the tickets the guy had written in the past year.  But had the town been bigger and my mother not had a political connection that allowed her to gain the sheriff’s ear?  Forget it.  In the spring of 1989, a cop who had pulled me over on some dumbass excuse forced me to walk about 800 meters along a busy highway at night in pumps and a none-too-long skirt to the nearest service station to call a friend to come and get me and my car, which he wouldn’t let me drive because he claimed my license was suspended.  I later discovered (when I contested the FOUR tickets he gave me) not only that it wasn’t, but that this cop had a long history of humiliating attractive young women (the tickets were dismissed because the DA & judge were so sick of hearing about him).  Then on two separate occasions, both in the ’90s, state troopers pulled me over on I-10 and asked me for a date; the second one had the nerve to do it after he wrote me a ticket for some kind of bullshit like a burned-out brake light.  That was the same excuse used by a cop in the town nearest my Oklahoma ranch to stop me not once but twice, about a month apart; after the second one I went straight to the police chief and told him if it happened again I’d know it was harassment and would not stay quiet about it.  Surprise; it never happened again.  Another pig in that same small town (< 20,000 people) stopped me for some BS on three separate occasions when I was out in my convertible.  He never gave me a ticket, just wanted to gawk at the hot chick in the cool car, so I thought it was best to leave well enough alone on that one.

When I was arrested for prostitution after Katrina, a jail cop wanted me forced to strip in front of male guards and prisoners; the female guard refused and told him off, and to her credit stuck to her guns even after he tried to cite “regulations” at her (which, judging by her reaction, he clearly had never tried to invoke before for female prisoners he didn’t find attractive).  Then one night a week and a half ago, a Seattle cop who pulled up beside me at a traffic light then proceeded to tail-gate me for 11 blocks, even when I changed lanes (twice) and turned into another street; he didn’t give up until I turned into my own street, which is not a through street (I guess that would’ve been a bit too obvious).  On another occasion in the ’80s, a cop tailed me with lights flashing in a secluded part of I-10; following my then-boyfriend’s advice I refused to pull over until I got to a brightly-lit filling station.  And as I exited the freeway, the cop turned off his lights, accelerated and kept going.  I don’t want to think about what might’ve happened in those pre-cell phone days had I pulled over.

There are probably other incidents I’m not remembering right now, but I think you’ll get the idea.  And I’m willing to bet most every woman reading this has at least a couple of similar stories.  But go on, authoritarians, tell me how cops are there to “protect” women, and how we’re supposed to feel “safe” around them, and how they’re the only ones who should have guns.  But you’ll have to pardon me if I spit in your face when you do.

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