Archive for the 'blogging' Category

My new blog

Apparently the Allied Media Conference always makes me want to get my blog on. Last year I thought it was gonna kickstart my blogging for sure, but then Life happened and I drifted away again.

This year as I was heading home from the conference, the time felt right to start again. But I didn’t want to start again here. I haven’t been feeling the AngryBrownButch moniker for a while now. Yeah, I’m still a brown butch, and I’m often angry since there’s so damn much to be angry about. But AngryBrownButch made me feel like I’d pigeonholed myself a bit too much. I’ve also built up a fair amount of baggage on this blog since I started out here in November 2005. It’s been time to move on.

So I have. If you want to find me from now on, check me out at jackalop.es (using a temporary domain name right now until I straighten some shit out between my domain registrar and my bank.) First post of real substance: La piratería y el pillaje y los hot dogs: reflections on July 4th, what the day means to me as a Puerto Rican, what it’s like to experience the patriotic propaganda machine accidentally in your own home, and some bonus mockery of a couple of really stupid commercials.

If anyone still gets this feed in their RSS reader or checks this out every now and again, I hope you check my new blog out! This one will stay up indefinitely as an archive of what I’ve written before, but all the new action will happen there.

Where I’ve been & where I am

So, as evidenced by the date of my last post, I’ve been absent from the blogosphere for quite a while, for a couple of reasons. Firstly, I needed retreat in order to focus on my work. I’m a freelance Drupal/web developer and general techie working with non-profit organizations, and both the freelance and the non-profit aspects of that mean I need to bust ass and stay very, very focused to make a living, make progress, make deadlines, just make it. I wasn’t focusing like I needed to and found myself struggling to keep up with my work, do justice by my clients, and make enough money to pay taxes and the bills and the rent. So I necessarily stepped back from many time-consuming things in my life, including blogging. When I get really into the blogosphere, especially when I get wrapped up in the more heated discussions, debates, and arguments, it drains a whole lot of my time, and since I’m a freelancer, it’s easy to eat into work hours, promise myself I’ll make up that time later – and never really make it up. But I’m happy to report that I’ve made tons of progress, am more financially stable, and have been making exciting moves towards expanding my work and increasing my collaboration with other folks. I’m still trying to stay primarily focused on work – expansion takes a lot of time and energy – but I’m in a much better place.

The other reason I’ve been gone is that blogging itself was getting away from me – at least, blogging right was. See, it started with commenting on other blogs. I realized that while I was reading amazing stuff from amazing bloggers, I wasn’t really engaging in the conversations or expressing my appreciation, agreement, disagreements, whatever my reactions were to their words. And as a blogger myself, I know how important it is to get that feedback and to take part in the conversations; blogging in a vacuum isn’t very good blogging at all, in my opinion. Then I started slipping on reading other blogs at all; hell, I was barely even reading what my co-bloggers on Feministe were writing. That felt pretty crappy and made me feel even more disconnected from the larger conversations. And finally, I started having trouble responding to comments on my own blog posts. I still can’t believe it took me more than 2 months to respond to Denise Oliver-Velez’s comment on my Young Lords post (she was a leader and member of both the Young Lords and Black Panthers). When I can’t even respond to the people who are taking the time to read and respond to my work, then I’m not doing my duty as a blogger, punto.

So – all that is to say that yes, I’ve been gone, but I’m not gone for good. I’m starting to get the itch to blog again, and that itch got soooo much itchier since I got to the Women, Action and Media conference yesterday. And though I do have to stay on top of my work stuff and can’t let blogging bleed into those hours too much, I do want to come back to this. But I want to do it right, so I’ve set some rules for myself: first, I start reading other folks’ blogs; then, I start commenting on those blogs and get involved in the conversation; then, I start really getting back to blogging again, as long as I can keep up with my comments. I may post here and there before I can really start reading the blogs (including posts about WAM, which I hope to start writing soon). But if I’m gonna do this right, I need to be a part of the blogging communities that are important to me, I need to listen to them and contribute to them and be aware of what’s going on. It’s the only responsible way I can do it, and it’s the only way I can do this blogging thing right.

So yes – hopefully you’ll be seeing more of me soon!

Liveblogging tonight’s debate!

I’ll be liveblogging the final presidential debate tonight with a great bunch of folks including fellow Feministe blogger Holly, Maegan la Mala of Mamita Mala and Vivir Latino, Nezua of The Unapologetic Mexican, Jose Vilson, Kai of Zuky, and possibly (hopefully!) Sylvia of Problem Chylde. Should be a good conversation to accompany your debate watching tonight so swing by, check it out, and join the discussion! The debate starts at 9pm EST but we’ll probably drop in a little earlier to get ready for the action.

Continue reading ‘Liveblogging tonight’s debate!’

First day at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting

This morning I woke up far earlier than usual (6AM!) to get up to the 8am press meeting at the Clinton Global Initiative Annual Meeting. It’s been a really interesting, crazy time so far, starting from when I first arrived. When I came to Monday’s blogger meeting with Bill Clinton, I was surprised at how relaxed the security was for the meeting. Not so today. Getting into the Sheraton meant passing through the highest level of security I’ve ever experienced. This ranged from the no-tech to the highest of the high tech: manual bag search, walking through a sensor that detected the RFID inside of my press badge and instantly displayed my name and picture on a connected laptop, a metal detector, a handheld wand that could detect the RFID in my badge, AND some weird thing that seemed to take both normal pictures and x-ray type body scans. All to be expected given the number of world leaders, politicians, celebrities, and corporate leaders at the event, but still a bit unnerving. Past the doors, security has been pretty tight as well, with the press being carefully corralled and guided away from any mingling with the Important People.

I’ve spent most of my day in the press room with both bloggers and the more traditional media. These groups don’t mix that much. No matter, because it’s been fun to meet all of the other bloggers who are here and attach faces to names and the words they write. I do keep hoping that Amy Goodman or Juan Gonzalez will walk up into the press room, but I don’t think that’s too likely.

Panelists at the CGI Opening PlenaryDeanna and I liveblogged the Opening Plenary, which was chock full of celebrities, dignitaries, and noble ideas; check the record of the liveblogging for details. Afterwards, I attended the press conference with Lance Armstrong, where he announced the creation of the Livestrong Global Cancer Awareness Campaign as well as details his return to cycling, which he described as another way to raise international awareness of cancer: “While my intention is to train and compete as fiercely as I always have, this time I will gauge victory by how much progress woe make against cancer, a disease that will claim 8 million lives this year alone.”

Afterwards there was lunch (during which I was reminded that I like the idea of roast beef far more than I like the reality of roast beef), followed by the working sessions in which all of the bigwigs who are gathered here get down to business and try to come up with concrete ways to tackle issues of poverty, energy and climate change, education, and global health. I watched and listened to the live feed of the Global Health working session, the theme of which was “Healthy Transitions for Adolescent Girls.” The conversation and discussion that came afterward were fascinating, and I’ll be posting about it shortly. Then, a panel on philanthropy with Bill Clinton and Bill Gates (!), then home. Whew!

Cross-posted at Feministe

Check it out!

I’m blogging over at Feministe now, “too!” Don’t worry – note that I said too. I plan on blogging plenty here as well. Some stuff will be posted only here, some stuff will be cross-posted, and some stuff will be posted only over there. You’ll never know where my next screed rant thoughtful post will appear next. That’ll keep you on your toes!

I’ve already posted one somewhat rambly post about what it means to be blogging on a feminist blog, in response to some conversations I’ve read (and bungled about in) recently.

Guest blogging at Feministe

As you may have gathered from the little “cross-posted” note at the end of my last post, I’m guest blogging over at Feministe this week. I’ve never guest blogged before; it’s an honor and quite exciting. And I think it’ll be a good springboard for this whole “blogging a lot again” business. I’ll be cross-posting stuff here, but I suggest that folks check out and engage in discussion in the comments over there, in addition to reading the posts by the resident Feministers and my fellow guest bloggers.

This Site is Under Construction!

As a web designer by trade, it’s kinda fun to break one of my cardinal rules of web design: never put an “under construction” message on your site. Especially not one accompanied by an image like this:

Under Construction

Anyhow – the reason for this transgression is that, now that I’m making (yet another) attempt to return to blogging full-force, I’d like to do some sprucing up and customization that I’ve been meaning to do since I started this blog back in 2005. In the course of that, things might break or end up looking funky for a while. Bear with me, please!

america loves a fall guy

Hi, everybody. I’m back from my month plus blogging sabbatical, during which I did many constructive things like playing hours of World of Warcraft, closely following women’s and men’s March Madness basketball (somehow, my first try ever brackets got first place in both my pools, woohoo!), and most recently, setting up a fantasy baseball team called Orgullo Boricua (which had a dismal first week, but I have faith in ‘em!)

But now I’m back, after weeks of guilt over not posting, anxiety over how to start blogging again, and a few gentle prods. I’ve missed a lot, especially in other folks’ blogs – when I’m not writing, I’m usually not reading, alas. But hopefully I’ll be able to get back into the swing of things and stay there for a good long while.

This morning, I saw this headline from TIME: “Conservatives to Bush: Fire Gonzales. A group that calls themselves the American Freedom Agenda, dedicated to promoting conservative legal principles, sent a letter to the president calling for Attorney General Alberto Gonzales’ resignation. From the letter:

“He has brought rule of law into disrepute, and debased honesty as the coin of the realm… He has engendered the suspicion that partisan politics trumps evenhanded law enforcement in the Department of Justice… Attorney General Gonzales has proven an unsuitable steward of the law and should resign for the good of the country… The President should accept the resignation, and set a standard to which the wise and honest might repair in nominating a successor…”

TIME reports that this is “the first public demand by a group of conservatives for Gonzales’ firing;” however, I’ve heard grumblings to this effect from conservative politicians and pundits for the past few weeks.

Now, don’t get me wrong; I’ve got no love for Alberto Gonzales, and I do think that he bears much of the burden of responsibility for the politically-motivated firings for U.S. attorneys.

However, this does seem like Scooter Libby all over again – Gonzales is simply the fall guy. Sure, he was an active participant in this fiasco and should therefore probably be fired; but he’s certainly not the only one who was involved in this, and is probably not the highest up of the guilty parties. And yet, he’s most likely the highest up person who will face any real repercussions – punishment, even – for his actions.

There has been a bit of a stir up over Karl Rove’s connection to the firings, centering around his “deletion” of four years’ worth of emails, some of which may discuss the firings. As a technologist, I find this particularly interesting, in that it’s got politicians, pundits, and the media talking about the technicalities of email and servers and how “deleted” usually doesn’t mean “gone forever (see this article from CNet for more on how those emails are probably not gone for good.) However, I can’t see that this will really amount to much of anything. Rove really does seem to be made of Teflon, despite the many flaps in which he’s been implicated. And it’s not as if he’s really at the top, either.

So, it looks like Gonzales is going to lose his job, most likely for following direction from higher-ups who will never really be forced to face the music. And I’m sorry, but I can’t help but think that lots of those conservatives were a bit too eager to give Gonzales up as a sacrificial lamb. Apparently, according to the TIME article, they’ve disliked him for quite some time:

Conservatives have long distrusted Gonzales, but until now many hesitated to criticize him publicly in the current controversy out or respect for the broad latitude they believe a President should have in selecting his cabinet. Behind the scenes, however, their opposition helped dissuade Bush from nominating Gonzales to the Supreme Court and, over the years, they have regularly disparaged him as too soft on key issues such as affirmative action and abortion.

Now, maybe I’m just being my usual paranoid brown self (that’s sarcasm there, folks), but I can’t help but think that if his name was Albert Gordon instead of Alberto Gonzalez, maybe those conservatives might not be quite so quick to hang him out to dry.

whew!

Now that I’ve returned to Brooklyn and the life, love, and work contained therein, it’s harder to keep up with all of this blogging business! Not only the writing, but the reading of other people’s blogs, the linking, the commenting, the responding to comments here, etc. How do some of y’all manage to keep up with it all?

Part of what’s fallen to the wayside is continuing to participate in the massive, multi-blog conversation about feminism and trans politics & identity. The conversation continues to move to new blogs and posts; one recent, active, and interesting thread is going on over at Alas, a blog.

I’d intended to write my own post highlighting the excellent conversation going on in the comments on this earlier post, especially the dialogue between Holly and Fire Fly. I’m not going to get to write that post and pull out quotes from that discussion with any degree of timeliness, so instead, I’ll encourage folks to read and participate more in the discussion, either in the comments on that post, or here on this post. (Also, Holly rocks and says a lot of stuff that I just wind up nodding furiously too, since I couldn’t say it better myself.)

you know you’re blogging too much…

… when you’re watching overtime in the Fiesta Bowl, and instead of hearing “he knows how to read blocks,” you hear, “he knows how to read blogs,” and are very confused for a few moments.

Although, during the commentary on the various Bowl games today, there has been discussion about blogs, specifically on how bloggers are going to react to Michigan’s loss today. Yes, in case there were any doubts left, blogging has officially entered the mainstream.

P.S. HOLY FUCK, WHAT A GAME!