Friday, December 26, 2008

Merry Christmas??????

Photo: AP (K. Mohammed)

I am resting at an undisclosed warm-weather location, living the Real Housewives of Atlanta lifestyle, if they were retirees looking at Social Security checks in the mail each month. Each morning's newspaper headlines bring a surrealist haiku. For example: "Missing Elf in Sanibel," or my personal favorite "Deputies Arrest Lewd Santa at Wal-Mart." Of course, after yesterday's tragic incident in Los Angeles where a guy in a Santa suit murdered several people, set fire to a home, and then killed himself (why don't these murderous people ever kill themselves first before going on these horrific rampages?), the molesting Santa harassing a woman at a big box union-busting schlock shop seems less shocking.

But the photo I saw in USA TODAY (as my late, beloved ex used to refer to it "The McDonald's of newspapers.") this morning -see above- took the sinister Santa trope to a whole new level. Now no one would belittle the sacrifices made by our troops in Iraq, especially when they are away from home for the holidays. But you have to acknowledge the creepiness of the petite soldier, almost child-like, sitting on Santa's lap while wielding a massive machine gun. And a nice touch is the Crucifix on the ground. (wouldn't that be sacrilegious?) Merry Christmas! Is this like the latter-day Crusades? Is the point to send the propaganda message: Bow down to us, infidels? I find the image absolutely terrifying and abhorrent. But that's because A. I am a lapsed Catholic who objects to most of what the institution of the Papal Catholic Church has ever done, and B. I am a pacifist and this war was based on lies and Bush's goals for imperial profit.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Devorame. Otra Vez.

This is the best salsa sensual song. Ever. Titled, evocatively, "Devorame" (Devour me) by the salsa troubadour Lalo Rodriguez, the lyrics leave nothing to the imagination. Made popular in the late 1980s, I still remember fondly having to translate it into English while drinking margaritas at El Sombrero in the Lower East Side with a very uptight WASP date. Hot. The album cover for this song is priceless, "Un nuevo amanecer" (A New Daybreak) features Lalo in a blue silk robe, open to reveal his curly, hairy chest, he's in some kind of wicker throne chair and of course has a hot mami on either side of him. I don't know what I love most about this video of a live performance. The improvisation on the lyrics "Moje las sabanas...." the fucsia lycra body suit with lace up sides on the thighs of the dancer on the left, the Afro-mullet of the male dancer on the right.... For my loyal readers who speak Spanish, the lyrics are a real treat. Enjoy.

Monday, December 22, 2008

It's hard out here

If I Could Turn Back Time

I would have an excuse to play with Barbies. Mine were always divorced. The Ken dolls were set aside so that the girls could get into their red convertible and go shopping. Foreshadowing? Perhaps.

(Although recently I have reconsidered my feelings about playing with the Ken dolls, and would love to have one like the one above, maybe with an Italian accent)

In any case shopping for one of my "sobrinas" on-line I realized that the Barbie has developed quite a bit since my last foray into the genre 11 years ago, when a friend gave me the Puerto Rican Barbie (in criolla attire, suitably light-skinned) for my (very) belated quinceañera party. Now I see that they have: President-elect Barbie (a white and a black one), NASCAR, Dallas Cowboy Cheerleaders, Teresa, the Hispanic one, is a beautician complete with a blowdrier (el beauti!!!), the ethnic ones include South African and even Spanish (in a flamenco dress, naturally), a Kimora Lee Simmons and a  Beyonce (but no Oprah, Condi, or Ivana Trump, what?!), a Hitchcock The Birds Barbie complete with attached birds attacking the doll.

But the best is above, "1980s Bob Mackie Cher" as she is called. Proof positive that gay men are designing these dolls. Which is why I love them.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Last Statue of Franco in the Penninsula Removed in Santander

There is still one left in Melilla, pictured below.

This in no way makes up for the terrible blow to democracy and justice that took place when the Spanish court overruled Judge Garzon stating that he was not competent to argue about crimes against humanity, overturn the amnesty law, bring living perpetrators to justice, or nationally coordinate excavation of mass graves and DNA identification of victims.

Photos: EL PAIS (Madrid)

Betty Page

The gorgeous Betty Page died a few days ago. She is definitely one of my style icons. Let's never forget her fabulousness, bravery, sexiness, and glamour.