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Archive for June, 2009

Renga

Last semester, members of my grad cohort had dinner with a very cool queer theorist who was guest speaking at the university. We were thrilled to meet her and discuss her work. We were even more thrilled when advisors later told us, “Professor G loved you! She said you were so  [inset gaggle of compliments].” We beamed like kindergartners awarded gold stars.

Then our advisor added, “Professor G was so impressed that you were so uncompetitive with one another.”

Hmm.

That last comment threw me a little, because I’ve never seen myself as non-competitive. Was I losing my edge?

I later learned that Professor G felt the students at her R1 were competitive in a destructive way. They’d ask questions not out of genuine interest in one another’s work, but in an attempt to one-up one another by tearing each other’s work down. That’s competition?

I think back to the members of my cohort. F works on art activism in queer communities of color. C’s work is on trafficking of women. B is looking into transwomen of color in the diaspora. N studies how colonial legal systems have enshrined violence against women. Professor G was right. They’re each doing vital work, and I’ve no desire to try to tear that down.

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run2I used to think that I loved running because it made me free.

But lately, the runs have been harder. Not any less satisfying, just harder to get into. Harder to enjoy. It’s not that my runs have changed, but the purpose.

Lately, I’ve been running to get away from people. I’m not quite sure how this happened.

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not-a-trail

That sign, “This is not a trail,” drives my dog crazy. Because right behind the sign is. . .a trail.

Apparently, it’s a trail full of coyote scents and potato bugs and other curiosities that his mama won’t let him explore. There was a beautiful trail just waiting to be sniffed, he could see that. No matter what the sign said.

My dog’s reaction brings to mind other official versions of “This is not…”

This is not torture. (At least not when we do it.)

And according to the Philippine government, this is not an abduction.

Any additions to the list?

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