STICKY

PERHAPS WE LEARNED SOMETHING.....
…Perhaps we were only mildly entertained. Regardless, please enjoy these Reviews, Responses, Works of Fiction, and Retellings brought to you by one who hopes to someday join the ranks of those who have written something worth reading.
(Kaylia Metcalfe)

Virginia State of Mind

What the hell.

What the HELL!?

I'm not going to go over it again, by now we all know that Nazis held a rally complete with torches, chanting KKK slogans, and surrounding a church, then another rally this time with a counter protest where one of their members killed a counter protester. Straight up murdered her.



This isn't the 60s. Trust me, I double checked.

This is now and it is disgusting.

Tonight I attended a vigil for Heather Heyer on the Fresno State Campus.

Before I went, I told someone about it... and the response of "Why would you go, it doesn't affect you?" made me sick.

I am so glad I went/
It was moving and important. We held space, sat in silence, sang and prayed together,.... we shared from out own lives and vowed to work to stamp out bigotry and fascism here in Fresno (starting with the removal of the current Fresno Board of Education president Brooke Ashjian after he went on record as a bigoted anti LGBT rights scumbag.)

As I left I couldn't help but think of the UU chant:

If not us, then who?
If not now, then when?





Summer Wind Down / Where I Toot My Own Horn

I made a decision at the start of this summer that I am feeling darn proud of right about now.

I scheduled the crap out of us in June.
I scheduled us to be fairly busy in July.
I left the first two weeks of August TOTALLY EMPTY so we could recover and rest before school starts on the 14th.

It is working out great.

Kiddo did three different camps this summer, UU Chalice Camp, River Camp, and Zoo Camp. We hosted a mini family reunion (5 adults and 1 baby). We hosted another mini reunion (2 adults, 2 kids) There were also swim lessons, trips to the library, going to the Jungle Play place, going to the park, regular playdates, and an early summer slumber party.

And now we get to just lounge around for two weeks watching movies in our PJs and organizing the house for the start of school.

Kiddo has also read over 200 books this summer and done seven workbooks. So... yeah... we have earned ourselves some mindless movie watching!

Well done us!

Announcement: GCV Closing Down

It became official yesterday.

We announced the closure of the Fresno LGBT Community Center and the impending disolving of Gay Central Valley as an organization.

Statement from the Board can be read here.

I am so sad that is has come to this. When I gave my notice back in June, I knew it would cause added workload and stress to the remaining 4 board members. I even knew that one member was probably going to leave after the summer... but I also knew of a community member who was interested in joining the board... and the board has been rebuilt in the past.

So, I was gobsmacked when not one, but TWO fellow board members quit earlier this month with no notice and no phase out plan. This legitimately left us with 3 people, 1 on the way out (me) and 1 quite possibly leaving as well.

I know people will think that we are shutting down due to funding. And while, yes, fundraising is a pain the ass and we have talked about if our money going toward the center every month couldn't possibly be better used to fund other projects... we have money and support. What we don't have is a leadership team. To run a nonprofit, you need a dedicated GROUP of people... a team of multiple people... it cannot rest solely on the shoulders of one or two individuals.

I am honestly feeling very guilty. If I hadn't quit, even if these other two had, we would still have a semi working team and could have possibly recruited more...

but then I remember that I am not being selfish to work toward my own goals. And I remember that my vision (while doing good now) is a limited time sort of thing. And I remember that Chris also has a medical issue and really needs to be stepping back for the sake of his eyes and health.

It is so frustrating but it couldn't be helped.

Lots of feelings tonight.

And I got my notice that I was accepted into UCSD's extension program... so going back to school is no longer a pipe dream; it is really happening.

Trying to focus on the future...


Happy Fourth!

However you celebrated the Fourth of July... I hope you had a good time.

For years, years, the Man has wanted to take the Kid to see fireworks.

And for years, years, I have dragged my feet because I am totally chicken and HATE fireworks.

Yeah, I know (intellectually) that they are really high up. I know they can't hurt me.

But....

... I have no depth perception. None. So to my eyes/head/heart/self they are RIGHT HERE INT FRONT OF MY FACE ABOUT TO BURN ME!

Image result for fireworks

Ahem

This year, he took her... and I stayed home with a really stupid movie and a tub of chocolate chip cookie dough.

The main character holding a tablet
like I said... reallllllly dumb..... 

I think I got he better end of the deal... no crowds! No praying over loudspeakers! no sunburning! No traffic!

And best of all... no fireworks!

They had fun too.




Saying Goodbye to GCV

This evening I formally resign from Gay Central Valley effective September 2017.

It has been an honor and a privilege to serve this organization for the past six years. I have grown as an organizer, an advocate, and a person. I am so very grateful for the chance to write for the blog, organize events, participate in fund development campaigns, collaborate on cultural competency training seminars, learn about website building, and gain experience through so many other projects and adventures all while enjoying the fellowship of my Fresno LGBT community.

It is time, however, for me to put my passion and creative spark to other uses. I will, of course, continue to be a friend to the organization. I believe in the work that GCV has done and I strongly support the GCV leadership. 

This decision was not made lightly. Tonight is very hard, but I feel that I am doing the right thing.

I am excited about the next chapters of my life (Girl Scouts, Being the mom to a Kinder, Returning to school myself, Focusing on my writing / editing work, etc).

This is definitely bittersweet.


First day as a volunteer at the Fresno LGBT Community Center, spring 2011



Parent Real Talk

No, this isn't a post about poop or fits or misguided expectations.

Nope, this is a post about the random mundane things you find yourself doing because you a)have latent control issues and b) love your kid.

My daughter found me on the floor the other day sorting rubber bands. 

Legit.



Big ones, medium ones, tiny ones, clips, headbands.... Soon they would all be organized in little containers making my life so much easier when it came time to do her hair.

My daughter has a lot of hair.

Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing, hat, tree and outdoor

And she is still learning how to do it.


I braid it in either one braid or two braids every day. And then I fight the ongoing war with her bang-like hair that won't go into braids but magically foils all attempts by any sort of clip to hold it in place.

But she is four and the various hair things get lost and dropped and there is never a tiny rubber band when/where you need it most.

Thus, the organizing.

Ahh yes, I said to myself as I organized... this is the true mommy life...

And then she found me.

And then she found the broken rubber band I was planning on throwing away.

And then the tears came.

you see... it was her FAVORITE rubber band. It didn't matter that there six to eight other exactly the same rubber bands in the box, THIS one was special and unique and LOVED.

And so she cried, and hugged it, and threw it away with all the pomp and circumstance of a dead pet. There was a eulogy and a few more tears.

(Side note: no, we do not have a pet and no we do not want a pet and yes this might be a small part of why that is the case)

Ahhh yes, I said to myself, rocking my sad but brave little daughter... this is the mommy life... 

Really though, the mommy life is a good one. 


Fresno Pride 2017

Had a wonderful time at Pride the other day!



Yeah... that's me dancing like a freak.

Very proud of the GCV BOD and all our volunteers for our parade and booth this year. Really hit it out of the park!



Of course I am looking forward to the day when we don't NEED a Pride... but until then, just give me some flags and point me to the crowd!


Image may contain: 1 person, smiling, standing, sky and outdoor

See NKOTB In Concert? CHECK

Got to mark another item off my bucket list last week thanks to my sister and her epic gift giving.

That's right. 

I'm 36 years old and I screamed and danced my way through a nostalgia filled evening with Boys II Men, Paula Freakin' Abdul and NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK

As a kid, I was left out of a lot of stuff because we didn't have a TV, my parents were super strict, I was a nerd before being nerd was cool, or at least enough of a thing that you could find fellow nerds. Nope, back in the days of my childhood and the teeny tiny private school I attended... you had maybe three options for friends because there were literally only 9 kids in your fifth grade 

I'm not joking.



So when the other three girls started talking about The New Kids on the Block and how great they were... you bet I jumped on that bandwagon. To be precise, I flagged it down, clambered aboard and duct taped myself to the back bumper.

Image result for new kids on the block first album

I was a NKOTB fan even after no one else was... because for a while, I was IN... I borrowed magazines and tapes and I knew things! I knew their names! I knew thier ages. At one point I knew thier favorite colors and pizza toppings. (Thakfully age has robed me of these things.)

And yeah... I had a favorite. 

Donnie.

Partly because he wore a hat. Partly because he was (and still is) the cutest. Partly because he sang all my favorite songs.

Image result for new kids on the block young Donnie


ANYWAY... by 8th grade I only listened to them in secret. By 15, I pretended that I had never listened to them. Bu in my late 20s I reclaimed my inner weirdo and refused to have shame when I blasted their albums while dance cleaning.

And now... now at 36 I got to see them in CONCERT!

It was... amazing. They were silly, self depreciating, and sweet. They were obviously having a great time and so was the crowd. Again, I was IN. I was a part of this mass of people (women and men) who wanted to dance to silly white boy pop and giggle at the floating phallus symbols projected on the stage. We all wanted to reclaim a bit of our youth, where music was magical because  it was slightly hard to come by and hearing *your song* on the radio was a sign that the universe loved you. The early 90s were a simpler time... and it was damn fun to revisit them as an adult, even if for only a few hours.



Thank you sister Kristen for an amazing night I will never forget!