geographical borders

Rick Riordan won a Stonewall award today

for his second Magnus Chase book, due to the inclusion of the character Alex Fierro who is gender fluid. This was the speech he gave, and it really distills why I love this author and his works so much, and why I will always recommend his works to anyone and everyone.

“Thank you for inviting me here today. As I told the Stonewall Award Committee, this is an honor both humbling and unexpected.

So, what is an old cis straight white male doing up here? Where did I get the nerve to write Alex Fierro, a transgender, gender fluid child of Loki in The Hammer of Thor, and why should I get cookies for that?

These are all fair and valid questions, which I have been asking myself a lot.

I think, to support young LGBTQ readers, the most important thing publishing can do is to publish and promote more stories by LGBTQ authors, authentic experiences by authentic voices. We have to keep pushing for this. The Stonewall committee’s work is a critical part of that effort. I can only accept the Stonewall Award in the sense that I accept a call to action – firstly, to do more myself to read and promote books by LGBTQ authors.

But also, it’s a call to do better in my own writing. As one of my genderqueer readers told me recently, “Hey, thanks for Alex. You didn’t do a terrible job!” I thought: Yes! Not doing a terrible job was my goal!

As important as it is to offer authentic voices and empower authors and role models from within LGBTQ community, it’s is also important that LGBTQ kids see themselves reflected and valued in the larger world of mass media, including my books. I know this because my non-heteronormative readers tell me so. They actively lobby to see characters like themselves in my books. They like the universe I’ve created. They want to be part of it. They deserve that opportunity. It’s important that I, as a mainstream author, say, “I see you. You matter. Your life experience may not be like mine, but it is no less valid and no less real. I will do whatever I can to understand and accurately include you in my stories, in my world. I will not erase you.”

People all over the political spectrum often ask me, “Why can’t you just stay silent on these issues? Just don’t include LGBTQ material and everybody will be happy.” This assumes that silence is the natural neutral position. But silence is not neutral. It’s an active choice. Silence is great when you are listening. Silence is not so great when you are using it to ignore or exclude.

But that’s all macro, ‘big picture’ stuff. Yes, I think the principles are important. Yes, in the abstract, I feel an obligation to write the world as I see it: beautiful because of its variations. Where I can’t draw on personal experience, I listen, I read a lot – in particular I want to credit Beyond Magenta and Gender Outlaws for helping me understand more about the perspective of my character Alex Fierro – and I trust that much of the human experience is universal. You can’t go too far wrong if you use empathy as your lens. But the reason I wrote Alex Fierro, or Nico di Angelo, or any of my characters, is much more personal.

I was a teacher for many years, in public and private school, California and Texas. During those years, I taught all kinds of kids. I want them all to know that I see them. They matter. I write characters to honor my students, and to make up for what I wished I could have done for them in the classroom.

I think about my former student Adrian (a pseudonym), back in the 90s in San Francisco. Adrian used the pronouns he and him, so I will call him that, but I suspect Adrian might have had more freedom and more options as to how he self-identified in school were he growing up today. His peers, his teachers, his family all understood that Adrian was female, despite his birth designation. Since kindergarten, he had self-selected to be among the girls – socially, athletically, academically. He was one of our girls. And although he got support and acceptance at the school, I don’t know that I helped him as much as I could, or that I tried to understand his needs and his journey. At that time in my life, I didn’t have the experience, the vocabulary, or frankly the emotional capacity to have that conversation. When we broke into social skills groups, for instance, boys apart from girls, he came into my group with the boys, I think because he felt it was required, but I feel like I missed the opportunity to sit with him and ask him what he wanted. And to assure him it was okay, whichever choice he made. I learned more from Adrian than I taught him. Twenty years later, Alex Fierro is for Adrian.

I think about Jane (pseudonym), another one of my students who was a straight cis-female with two fantastic moms. Again, for LGBTQ families, San Francisco was a pretty good place to live in the 90s, but as we know, prejudice has no geographical border. You cannot build a wall high enough to keep it out. I know Jane got flack about her family. I did what I could to support her, but I don’t think I did enough. I remember the day Jane’s drama class was happening in my classroom. The teacher was new – our first African American male teacher, which we were all really excited about – and this was only his third week. I was sitting at my desk, grading papers, while the teacher did a free association exercise. One of his examples was ‘fruit – gay.’ I think he did it because he thought it would be funny to middle schoolers. After the class, I asked to see the teacher one on one. I asked him to be aware of what he was saying and how that might be hurtful. I know. Me, a white guy, lecturing this Black teacher about hurtful words. He got defensive and quit, because he said he could not promise to not use that language again. At the time, I felt like I needed to do something, to stand up especially for Jane and her family. But did I make things better handling it as I did? I think I missed an opportunity to open a dialogue about how different people experience hurtful labels. Emmie and Josephine and their daughter Georgina, the family I introduce in The Dark Prophecy, are for Jane.

I think about Amy, and Mark, and Nicholas … All former students who have come out as gay since I taught them in middle school. All have gone on to have successful careers and happy families. When I taught them, I knew they were different. Their struggles were greater, their perspectives more divergent than some of my other students. I tried to provide a safe space for them, to model respect, but in retrospect I don’t think I supported them as well as I could have, or reached out as much as they might have needed. I was too busy preparing lessons on Shakespeare or adjectives, and not focusing enough on my students’ emotional health. Adjectives were a lot easier for me to reconcile than feelings. Would they have felt comfortable coming out earlier than college or high school if they had found more support in middle school? Would they have wanted to? I don’t know. But I don’t think they felt it was a safe option, which leaves me thinking that I did not do enough for them at that critical middle school time. I do not want any kid to feel alone, invisible, misunderstood. Nico di Angelo is for Amy, and Mark and Nicholas.

I am trying to do more. Percy Jackson started as a way to empower kids, in particular my son, who had learning differences. As my platform grew, I felt obliged to use it to empower all kids who are struggling through middle school for whatever reason. I don’t always do enough. I don’t always get it right. Good intentions are wonderful things, but at the end of a manuscript, the text has to stand on its own. What I meant ceases to matter. Kids just see what I wrote. But I have to keep trying. My kids are counting on me.

So thank you, above all, to my former students who taught me. Alex Fierro is for you.

To you, I pledge myself to do better – to apologize when I screw up, to learn from my mistakes, to be there for LGBTQ youth and make sure they know that in my books, they are included. They matter. I am going to stop talking now, but I promise you I won’t stop listening.”

Thank you for inviting me here today. As I told the Stonewall Award Committee, this is an honor both humbling and unexpected.

So, what is an old cis straight white male doing up here? Where did I get the nerve to write Alex Fierro, a transgender, gender fluid child of Loki in The Hammer of Thor, and why should I get cookies for that?

These are all fair and valid questions, which I have been asking myself a lot.

I think, to support young LGBTQ readers, the most important thing publishing can do is to publish and promote more stories by LGBTQ authors, authentic experiences by authentic voices. We have to keep pushing for this. The Stonewall committee’s work is a critical part of that effort. I can only accept the Stonewall Award in the sense that I accept a call to action – firstly, to do more myself to read and promote books by LGBTQ authors.

But also, it’s a call to do better in my own writing. As one of my genderqueer readers told me recently, “Hey, thanks for Alex. You didn’t do a terrible job!” I thought: Yes! Not doing a terrible job was my goal!

As important as it is to offer authentic voices and empower authors and role models from within LGBTQ community, it’s is also important that LGBTQ kids see themselves reflected and valued in the larger world of mass media, including my books. I know this because my non-heteronormative readers tell me so. They actively lobby to see characters like themselves in my books. They like the universe I’ve created. They want to be part of it. They deserve that opportunity. It’s important that I, as a mainstream author, say, “I see you. You matter. Your life experience may not be like mine, but it is no less valid and no less real. I will do whatever I can to understand and accurately include you in my stories, in my world. I will not erase you.”

People all over the political spectrum often ask me, “Why can’t you just stay silent on these issues? Just don’t include LGBTQ material and everybody will be happy.” This assumes that silence is the natural neutral position. But silence is not neutral. It’s an active choice. Silence is great when you are listening. Silence is not so great when you are using it to ignore or exclude.

But that’s all macro, ‘big picture’ stuff. Yes, I think the principles are important. Yes, in the abstract, I feel an obligation to write the world as I see it: beautiful because of its variations. Where I can’t draw on personal experience, I listen, I read a lot – in particular I want to credit Beyond Magenta and Gender Outlaws for helping me understand more about the perspective of my character Alex Fierro – and I trust that much of the human experience is universal. You can’t go too far wrong if you use empathy as your lens. But the reason I wrote Alex Fierro, or Nico di Angelo, or any of my characters, is much more personal.

I was a teacher for many years, in public and private school, California and Texas. During those years, I taught all kinds of kids. I want them all to know that I see them. They matter. I write characters to honor my students, and to make up for what I wished I could have done for them in the classroom.

I think about my former student Adrian (a pseudonym), back in the 90s in San Francisco. Adrian used the pronouns he and him, so I will call him that, but I suspect Adrian might have had more freedom and more options as to how he self-identified in school were he growing up today. His peers, his teachers, his family all understood that Adrian was female, despite his birth designation. Since kindergarten, he had self-selected to be among the girls – socially, athletically, academically. He was one of our girls. And although he got support and acceptance at the school, I don’t know that I helped him as much as I could, or that I tried to understand his needs and his journey. At that time in my life, I didn’t have the experience, the vocabulary, or frankly the emotional capacity to have that conversation. When we broke into social skills groups, for instance, boys apart from girls, he came into my group with the boys, I think because he felt it was required, but I feel like I missed the opportunity to sit with him and ask him what he wanted. And to assure him it was okay, whichever choice he made. I learned more from Adrian than I taught him. Twenty years later, Alex Fierro is for Adrian.

I think about Jane (pseudonym), another one of my students who was a straight cis-female with two fantastic moms. Again, for LGBTQ families, San Francisco was a pretty good place to live in the 90s, but as we know, prejudice has no geographical border. You cannot build a wall high enough to keep it out. I know Jane got flack about her family. I did what I could to support her, but I don’t think I did enough. I remember the day Jane’s drama class was happening in my classroom. The teacher was new – our first African American male teacher, which we were all really excited about – and this was only his third week. I was sitting at my desk, grading papers, while the teacher did a free association exercise. One of his examples was ‘fruit – gay.’ I think he did it because he thought it would be funny to middle schoolers. After the class, I asked to see the teacher one on one. I asked him to be aware of what he was saying and how that might be hurtful. I know. Me, a white guy, lecturing this Black teacher about hurtful words. He got defensive and quit, because he said he could not promise to not use that language again. At the time, I felt like I needed to do something, to stand up especially for Jane and her family. But did I make things better handling it as I did? I think I missed an opportunity to open a dialogue about how different people experience hurtful labels. Emmie and Josephine and their daughter Georgina, the family I introduce in The Dark Prophecy, are for Jane.

I think about Amy, and Mark, and Nicholas … All former students who have come out as gay since I taught them in middle school. All have gone on to have successful careers and happy families. When I taught them, I knew they were different. Their struggles were greater, their perspectives more divergent than some of my other students. I tried to provide a safe space for them, to model respect, but in retrospect I don’t think I supported them as well as I could have, or reached out as much as they might have needed. I was too busy preparing lessons on Shakespeare or adjectives, and not focusing enough on my students’ emotional health. Adjectives were a lot easier for me to reconcile than feelings. Would they have felt comfortable coming out earlier than college or high school if they had found more support in middle school? Would they have wanted to? I don’t know. But I don’t think they felt it was a safe option, which leaves me thinking that I did not do enough for them at that critical middle school time. I do not want any kid to feel alone, invisible, misunderstood. Nico di Angelo is for Amy, and Mark and Nicholas.

I am trying to do more. Percy Jackson started as a way to empower kids, in particular my son, who had learning differences. As my platform grew, I felt obliged to use it to empower all kids who are struggling through middle school for whatever reason. I don’t always do enough. I don’t always get it right. Good intentions are wonderful things, but at the end of a manuscript, the text has to stand on its own. What I meant ceases to matter. Kids just see what I wrote. But I have to keep trying. My kids are counting on me.

So thank you, above all, to my former students who taught me. Alex Fierro is for you.

To you, I pledge myself to do better – to apologize when I screw up, to learn from my mistakes, to be there for LGBTQ youth and make sure they know that in my books, they are included. They matter. I am going to stop talking now, but I promise you I won’t stop listening.

—  Rick Riordan’s speech in June 26, 2017 for The Stonewall Award
American Library Association meeting in Chicago for the book Magnus Chase 2: The Hammer of Thor that won the children’s book award for “exceptional merit relating to the gay/lesbian/bisexual/transgender experience” because of the character of Alex Fierro.

I love how Skam makes you empathise with characters. Like, I’m not a teenage boy who wears snapbacks and suddenly has to cope with feelings he’s never acknowledged before. And yet, in a way, I am. I’m not a Muslim girl in a mostly secular country feeling ike nobody’s there for her. But when I’m watching Skam, I am.

I honestly think that’s the whole point of television, of fiction, even. To make you empathise with something outside of your everyday sphere of experience. Not simply watch it, not even necessarily understand it, feel it.

And maybe that quality is why Skam can transcend borders the way it does. Geographical borders (suck it, geoblock), language barriers, cultural differences… we’re all experiencing the same life at the same time, together.

anonymous asked:

Pashtuns are all ethnically Afghan not Pakistani.

Afghan and Pakistani are not ethnicities, they are nationalities. 

However, Pashtuns are NATIVE to the geographical areas that stretch from Afghanistan to North-western Pakistan and are not geographically limited to state borders.

Something I’ve noticed is that everyone who hates Gremlin D.Va completely misses the gaming culture reference. And that’s something that transcends geographic borders. It literally has nothing to do with making her more white. It has everything to do with exaggerating the “gamer” aspect of her character (since it’s canon that she streams all of her matches).

Also if this person is talking about Soldier 76 as the “white fave,” soldier 76 is literally everyone’s dad. I have no idea why but that’s just how it is.

Source

anonymous asked:

Why is Antifa mostly middle class white brain-washed university kids who hate their own race? If you're not racist, why are there not more "POC" as you put it (when they come together against the white man they're POC, but without a common enemy they inevitably fight turf wars) in your movement? Sure whites are the majority, but even in places like London and Washington DC its mostly nons. Dont you see minorities dont want you? I suggest you take pride in your race, you're still whites you know.

Oh man.  Take a minute and go get a grownup to sit beside you and explain the more-difficult concepts we’re about to lay down here.  OK?  Let’s begin!

1) Why is Antifa mostly middle class white brain-washed university kids who hate their own race?

First of all, thanks for erasing the very real contributions that racialized people and people of all classes make every single day towards combatting fascism and racism based on your bullshit presumptions that you’ve pulled out of thin fucking air.  You’re a real social scientist, you are.  

Insofar as anti-fascists appear to be more educated than bigoted swine like you, there is a lot of research that shows that postsecondary education tends to reduce levels of prejudice in students.  There’s probably two reasons for this: a) learning new ideas about the world leads to people not being so small-minded and ignorant; and b) being away from one’s home and attending college with people who aren’t like you or everyone you grew up with tends to open one’s mind about the commonalities shared by all people, which are more important and meaningful than what shade their fucking skin is or where their great-great-great grandparents grew up.

You want a good case study of this?  Derek Black.  Yes, that Derek Black. 

2) If you’re not racist, why are there not more “POC” as you put it…in your movement?

If you bothered to read this blog or have someone read it to you, you’d know that we almost always use the term “racialized” not “POC.”  Why?  Because racialized describes something that’s done to people - which is that they are categorized and discriminated against based on a made-up list of every-changing criteria (Religion?  Language? Hair color?  Nose shape?  Skin color?  Some of the above for some groups, but other things for other groups?) that slots them into a less-dominant social group.  Race isn’t something that people are, it’s something that is done to people.

Insofar as you can claim that anti-fascism is a “white” movement, maybe that has to do with a lot of the more-recent wave of anti-fascism coming from the punk and skinhead subcultures.  Or maybe it has to do with things like “white” people having more privilege and cultural capital with gives them the time and resources to engage in militant political action without having to worry as much about the consequences of taking such action.  Or maybe it has to do with the fact that racism is a system that was created by “white” people and that benefits “white” people, so it’s up to “white” people to eliminate it.  Or maybe it’s a combination of those things.

(when they come together against the white man they’re POC, but without a common enemy they inevitably fight turf wars)

You’ve got to be fucking kidding.  Do you have any idea of what the history of Europe has been like?  Hundreds upon hundreds of “turf wars” going back as far as recorded history; forty-two armed conflicts and full-on wars have erupted in Europe in just the last fifty years.  As you were busy behind your little keyboard pretending that it’s just racialized people that “inevitably fight turf wars” there is an ongoing war in the Donbass, in other parts of Ukraine, and armed groups still operating in Northern Ireland and the Basque country.  GTFO with that bullshit, son.

Sure whites are the majority
  
Uh, WHAT???  

Global population: 7.4 billion

Now, take a look at the population sizes of the 50 most-populous countries.  Get a calculator and add up the populations of the countries on that list that you don’t think are “white.”  We think the number you’ll get is about five billion people.  Which means that two out of every three people on the planet aren’t “white.”   

even in places like London and Washington DC its mostly nons. 

Well, DC’s stats show that it’s two-thirds racialized, true.  But London is still 59% “white.”  Unless you’re an old-school racist and don’t believe that the Irish are “white.”  Which is a nice segue to the last bit of your message: 

I suggest you take pride in your race, you’re still whites you know.

We are, are we?  How do you figure that?  Assuming that you’re “white,” how can you prove it?

Genetics won’t work because there are no genetic markers that are found exclusively in one “race.”  This is why pretty much every geneticist and biological anthropologist in the world rejects race as a valid way to categorize humans.  

Is it based on the race of our forebears?  Well, what race were they and how did you determine that?  What race would someone with a white mom and a black dad belong to?  What about a black grandma?  A black great-great-grandfather?  And how do you decide in a logical, consistent, scientifically-valid way what the borders and determinants are?  
 
Is it where are ancestors are from?  Bad news there - human beings have traveled around a lot over the centuries!  Again, how far back do we go to determine that someone belongs to a given race?  Parents?  Grandparents?  Great-great-great grandparents?  What rationale do you use to decide how far back to go?  And what geographic borders mark “white places” from “non-white places?”   Is Portugal white?  Then what about Morocco?  Is Greece white?  Turkey?  Russia?  Kazakhstan?  How do you decide in a logical, scientifically-valid way which geographic regions are where white people come from and which ones are not?  

Is it simply whether someone “looks” white?  What are the determinants of that?  How curly or dark can your hair be and you still get to be in the “white” club?  Can people with brown eyes be white?  How dark can your skin be before you’re not white?  Eye shape?  Nose size?
  
Are Jews white?  Are Catholics white?  Are Muslims white? Can you be white if you only speak Spanish?  

Here’s the other problem you’ve got with your “white pride.”  You’ve taken dozens and dozens of unique and distinct cultures - each with its own history, language, geography, customs, etc. (and many of which have been sworn enemies of each other - see our list above of European conflicts) - and you’ve lumped them all together as “white,” erasing centuries of what exactly made them unique and distinct and interesting in the first place.  Your “pride” turns out to be the most disrespectful thing you can do to explore or celebrate actual culture.

There is no white language.  There are no white traditions.  There is no white homeland.  It’s made-up bullshit.  You’re proud of made-up bullshit that you personally had no say in.  That’s pretty sad, don’t you think?

Anon, here is historical fact: there was no such thing as “white people” until about 500 years ago.  That’s when European rulers got scared that the working-class Europeans working on their colonies would rebel and unite with the slaves and the aboriginals who had been displaced when their land and resources were stolen.  To stop those rebellions, they invented the concept of the “white” race, the “black” race, etc.  The first time the word “white” was used to describe a group of people in a law was the 1691 Virginia law prohibiting interracial marriage.    

Instead of being proud of being working-class and seeing that you have the same wants, needs, and interests as millions of other working-class people no matter what color they are, you’ve turned away from that to build your identity on made-up nonsense that the wealthiest people in the world use to divide us and stop us from threatening their continued dominance over our lives.

You’re not a proud white person, Anon.  You’re a traitor to your class.

Terezi and the Lawful axis

My mental definition of the lawful axis is “adheres to an internalized standard of correct behavior” rather than “adheres to the law as established by some external governing body.”

Because that second thing is not necessarily very useful or interesting as a character descriptor. There can be a lot of reasons to do that, and they often say less about the person than about the governing body. Under that definition, your alignment changes when the world changes. Or just when you step over the Tennessee border.

So, consistency is the important thing here. So the Chaotic axis, I define as “does what feels right, which might be very different from what felt right in similar circumstances yesterday.”

John and Vriska are chaotic! They may make rules and goals for themselves - John: “don’t use your new powers to alter the nature of reality”, Vriska: “defeat Lord English and become the Big Damn Hero” - but they’re willing to discard them without worrying too much about it. Kanaya and Karkat are lawful; they hold themselves to standards and beat themselves up over it when they fail them.

The defining thing here is what causes you guilt, I think. Vriska doesn’t feel guilt, in the way most people would recognize it. She just regrets her actions when they start causing problems for her. John feels bad when he sees that his actions have had negative consequences for others, but he can fuck something up in re his own standards and not feel bad about it, as long as things turn out okay.

Whereas Karkat and Kanaya are so invested in doing things “right” that they feel bad about “failures” that haven’t caused any problems, or even that aren’t entirely within their control. (They both define “keeping these idiots in line” as their responsibility - and that is, of course, impossible.)

The thing about Terezi is this: She’s not actually Lawful! She’s not innately emotionally invested in her own standards in the way that Karkat and Kanaya are. She breaks off her relationship with Vriska because Vriska hurt and killed innocent people, then cheerfully leads John to his death. She feels (a little) bad about that only when Davesprite tells her off about it. For most of the story, “justice” is a role-playing game for her - she enjoys following the rules, but they’re not a part of her.

Then she kills Vriska, and she finds out about guilt. She did not know about that stuff before! Dang.

There is something insidious and pervasive about heterosexual feminism, something that makes me question my own validity. Heterosexual feminism and its narrative is so centered around women and a woman’s relationship with men - for obvious reasons, of course - but the very language of heterosexual feminism makes me, as a woman-loving woman, feel as if I am not part of the narrative. Heterosexual feminism assumes that lbpq women and trans women do not face oppression under (cishetero)patriarchy the way straight women do. 

I see so many straight women complain about the tokenization of femininity, and I wonder if they realize that gender non-conforming women, particularly butch lesbians, are never taken seriously or seen as actual women because of gender expectations. I hear straight women “wish” that they were bisexual because it’d “give them more options” or that they were lesbian because “their lives would be so much easier”, and I wonder if they understand how terrifying the intersection of homophobia and misogyny is. 

It’s something I’ve always felt, deep in my bones, even when I was a 10-year-old girl. I’m not gender non-conforming but I’m not particularly feminine either. And yet I could never understand a straight woman’s complaints or stories about men, about her wishes to have a marriage with pomp and circumstance, about her desire to mother many children, about the various brands of makeup she uses. I wonder if straight women understand that motherhood is much easier for a cishet white woman than it is for a woman of color or for an lbpq woman or a trans woman. How many lbpq and trans women wish to get married and have a big home with kids and a puppy? How many lbpq and trans women have those futures stolen away from them? How many lbpq and trans women, especially if they are women of color, have to worry about surviving the night and feeding themselves and escaping abuse before they even think about marriage or children? 

When I try to point this out, heterosexual radfems will jump at me and claim that I’m “minimizing” the trauma that cishet women face at the hands of men. I’m not - I understand very well that patriarchy oppresses all women, regardless of geographical borders. But there are qualifications and clarifications to this oppression. I wonder how many lbpq and trans women have had to bite their tongues and swallow what they want to say and just nod, smile, and state “I totally agree” when straight women speak. I wonder how many of them look at their bodies and think that they are worthless compared to cishet women. I wonder how many of them feel physical repulsion when cishet women glorify mediocre men for being conventionally attractive. I wonder how many of them feel their voices falter when cishet women congratulate men for passing the bare minimum of human decency. I wonder how many of them feel anger flare up when lbpq mothers, mothers of color, and trans mothers are thrown under the bus through a combination of sterilization, police brutality, xenophobia, imperialism, the prison industrial complex, racism, ableism, misogynoir, transmisogyny, and lesbophobia while cishet women congratulate single fathers for knowing how to change a diaper. 

I always feel disconnected from my body and my experience as a woman when straight women write poetry about their “accursed” attraction to men or when they use feminist rhetoric that only belongs to them. It’s like when cis Western women make “radical” art celebrating a cis woman’s genitalia (and yes, I understand that in many parts of the world, sex-based oppression exists, but I see nothing radical about a thin white woman making art out of her glorified body) or advocate the “free the nipple” movement, or when heterosexual women make jokes about “fat, hairy lesbian feminists” and “slutty bisexuals”. I feel as if my body floats into the air, as if my own experience with misogyny is invalid because I’m attracted to women. When a straight woman told me that I’m as bad as a man because I have the “male gaze”, I kept floating. As if my body is no longer my own because I am not heterosexual. 

In fact, Oregon recognizes a marriage of love with the same equal eye that it recognizes a marriage of convenience. It affords the same set of rights and privileges to Tristan and Isolde that it affords to a Hollywood celebrity waking up in Las Vegas with a blurry memory and a ringed finger. It does not, however, afford these very same rights to gay and lesbian couples who wish to marry within the confines of our geographic borders.
—  –U.S. District Judge Michael McShane, in his ruling that struck down Oregon’s ban on same-sex marriages
DAY 2530

Jalsa, Mumbai           Mar 19/20,  2015            Thu/Fri  12:21 am



Yes its 20 million on FaceBook and it could never have been possible were it not for the affection of those that are at this very moment reading this transcript .. !! Thank you all .. I survive another milestone !!


There is no conditioning of time when you get off a long flight … and there are a million suggestions and cures that come across voluntarily to get over it. Many and all have been given the try, yet nothing works quite as well as the good old rest and time for the body to adjust .. so one does just that .. rests and allows the body to take in during the entire day a superlative performance by the Indian Cricket team in the quarter finals of the 2015 being played in Australia, between India and Bangladesh … and the joy in winning it !!

Tomorrow is a journey to the ‘city in blue’ Jodhpur, for the charity event for the Head Injury foundation as stated yesterday, and the magnificence of the Umaid Bhavan Palace of the Maharaja !

‘City of Blue’ because most of the housing around the city are painted blue, making it a very picturesque site when you climb the ramparts of the old fort of the city. 

Jaipur as you know is known as the ‘Pink City’ because most of the structures and the surroundings are made of the typical pinkish Rajasthan stone, and hence the name …


But Rajasthan whether it is ‘blue’ or ‘pink’ is quite phenomenal with its culture and history and its art and its grandeur and most importantly for its valour - it being strategically and geographically positioned by the border area of the country, through which most of the invasions from marauding armies attempted to come through. They have had a very strong tradition of warriors, of keepers of the land and of their aesthetics. There is something about Rajasthan that transforms one into the age of regality, still omnipresent, despite the passage of time and political changes …

Its vibrancy is contagious .. 


My love and care ..


Amitabh Bachchan