Saturday, August 22, 2009

Sober and OVer It (Rant)

Party culture. I feel like I can't get away from it.

When you live on top of mountain, there ain't much you can do for fun but get wasted. At least that's what quite a few people from my college woiuld say. I know that all colleges have a hig level of alcohol-induced stupidity and in fact Marlboro culture is probably better than universityies in the sense that we don't ahve insane binge dirnking. But stuffed away in the backwoods alcoholism is nonetheless an insidious ever present problem. Our school allows students to designate money to activitie and a large portion of the budget annually goes to serving alcohol. When our licor liscence was revoked a week before what usually is one of the biggest parties of the year, the party attendence went from 300 to 30.

So I looked onward in search of a community. I spent the summer in a radical collective that didn't do much in terms of organizing, but was a strong hold of the Chicago radical scene socially. By this, I mean it was a good place to meet people who believed a lot of similar things to me, there were zines around all the time, we threw concerts to benefit political prisoners, and every activist and their brother spent a couple nights on our beat up couches. This summer I learned in a big way how radical culture can be party culture. Sex party, beer party, whiskey party. Even though the house passed a policy discouraging drug use in the house, the party was on. Five days a week the stay-up-till-3-o'clock-drinking ethos imbued the first floor traveling upstairs (where I lived) to the roof for smoke breaks.

What I learned was I am really done. I am done with people yelling outside my door for no reason. With waking up to recycling bins full of beer cans. With floors sticky from god knows what.

I've been back for a "training" which has been a thinly veiled excuse for people leading orientation trips to drink every day, get high, and bar-b-que.

I'm over it, and I don't even know how to get away.

Distance and Interest

I feel like so many of the things I have dealt with in my life have made my feel more distanced and disconnected from the people around me.

When my mother was crazy, it made me feel crazy. Apart. Estranged from notions of friendship and family that were illusory to me yet somehow implied in the existence of my peers. I needed to be away from her, and so I went to Peru. I gave myself what I needed. I was independent. Competent. Strong. But for all the good it did me in my life, it was another experience that only makes the distance seem somewhat spectacular. Sometimes I feel as if I’ve learned how to be an interesting person at the expense of being a relatable person. It’s another in an ever expanding collection… my very own cabinet of curiosities where my life is what is on display.

Now I want to transition. When I first started thinking of transitioning, I had people in my life who valued me for my gender ambiguity, people who loved and coveted my genderquuerdom, people who I related to more because of my boyish desires. Now so much has changed in my life in terms of relationships. I feel like to transition would be to transition out of community, to taking another step away from support with no foreseeable corollary on the other side.

It’s no wonder that so much of what I focus my energies on is trying to find community in struggle. I worry that dealing with rather than striving for is the only future I’m prepared for. As if I have reached a point in my life where the only kind of connection that seems authentic is the relationship between people learning how to deal with shit together. As if the only love I believe in is love among comrades.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

appologies and promises

As some have noted, its been forever since I have blogged. Mostly it's because the nature of doing video work is that I get stuck inside for 7 hours a day when it's gorgeous outside. When I"m off, I've been trying to find green space in the city, and soak in the rays before heading back to to VT.

At the moment, I am getting ready to be sequestered, but in the meantime, I will be writing and I'll post some of it.

Things I promise to reflect on soon: where I'm at with trust & play, and My changing thoughts on sexism.