For Halloween C and I were middle-aged lesbian professors. We went to the goodwill on Friday. It was crawling with people, and we took the things off the racks that no-one else wanted- flammable, rustly fabrics, bright, contrasting prints, and shoulder pads. On Saturday we put on our outfits, along with blush and some lipstick that clashed with our skin tones, and curled our hair with Naomi’s curling iron. We went to the homo Halloween party at Rotture, where people were dressed as jellyfish, prince, and jon-benet ramsey, among other clever things. It felt fun and freeing to be dressed as something non-sexy, and I was prepared to pretend, for a night, that I was never going to have sex again. Instead, C and I won the grand prize in the costume contest, because there is nothing, apparently, that good-looking homos like more than middle-aged women who remind them of their favorite French teacher from middle school.
Ally Picard of Bloodhound Photography took many great photos of the costumes at the party, and you can see them all here.
Another exciting thing is that I am reading on Thursday! As part of In Other Words Books’ 17th annual birthday-party celebration! In Other Words Books is the country’s last-surviving non-profit feminist bookstore, and they are currently transitioning into a community center. Feminist community centers and bookstores are important. We think, these days, that feminist things are not important. But this is not true! I do not know how to say, right here right now, when I am procrastinating my homework, distracted by a thousand things, receiving text messages, and also overwhelmed and discouraged by the attitudes of many people, who are not affected by sexism, towards feminism- I do not know how to tell you why feminism is important. There are already handfuls of books written about feminism, and maybe our culture means to wear me down to a little nubbin by encouraging me, over and over, to try and explain why feminism is important, instead of doing any of the work itself- maybe our culture expects me to carry the entire responsibility of educating its people about feminism- maybe it would love to see me worn down to a little nubbin, unable to speak, my life all used up, school failed because I have just talked about feminism instead of reading chapter seven of my chemistry book- but I am only going to tell you that if you do not know what feminism is or why it is important, than you should read every book by Bell Hooks, and I will not say one word about it until every one of my ignorant-of-feminism readers has done that.
Come see me read on Thursday! November fourth! At the Northstar Ballroom, which is at 635 Killingsworth Court, in Portland Oregon. The event is from 6 to 9 pm and costs 7-20 dollars, sliding scale. And all profits go to support the bookstore! I will not be reading about feminism directly although I am always, in a way, reading and writing about feminism. I will be reading a piece of fiction that is not even finished yet. I had meant to work on it tonite but tonite I was unable to do most of the things that I had meant to do, instead I just wanted to arrange my new houseplants and drink tea and make a fire and read short stories and eat chocolate-flavored tortilla chips. Because I am a middle-aged lesbian professor.
In other news, while I may be winning at costume contests and awesome feminist readings, tonite I am failing on the homework front. So I must go and work on that, while it is still warm in my cottage from the woodstove.