Monday, October 27, 2003
I know, I know - it's been a long time. But NOW I'm sick. So I'm at work, but I'm going to go home soon and curl up on the couch, remote in hand, for self-pity, the Simpsons, and GAYNY.
Saturday, October 18, 2003
My long-awaited return to the blogosophere, or whatever the hell the kids are calling it these days, has arrived. I was going to wait until tomorrow, since Marriage Protection Week will officially be over then, but it's just after 9 AM on a Saturday morning, I've slept for three and a half hours, and I'm at work. And will be here until 5, at which point I have to go to the MCA to house manage. And I have been, I should add, invited to no less than four (4) parties tonight. And Lincoln and Brandy are bartending at Jimmy's, so I have to stop by. Especially because on Thursday night I let Brandy borrow my husband's album.
It's tough, dears, being a socialite.
And...I just had a startling realization that there are certain things I should never discuss, under any circumstances, with some people, and possibly everyone. I am not, I should say, an unusually private person. At the same time, though, I also avoid creating and/or getting involved in my own drama. Of course I LOVE other peoples' drama. But at a certain point I become incredibly private (hey there, personal space issues) and I can't deal with other peoples' drama AT ALL. My boss and I have discussed this - how certain things are not everybody's bid-ness. So, lately (as in the past year or two), I've been more careful about who I really, truly open up to. But sometimes I forget.
So, my week? Well, it feels like forever ago. I would tell the story about my Saturday night last week, but most everyone has heard it about a million times. Suffice it to say I felt all second-year again, and was accosted by two guys asking for a cigarette, one of whom called me "a very influential U of C student" and then told me about his affinity for anal sex with women. Then I witnessed a guy run across the street and slide across the hood of a car.
Tuesday, N/A LCS (whichever one the Cubs are in?)
My apartment, appx. 11 PM
ROOMMATE: Oh my God, Jon, did you watch the game?
ME: Uh, oh. No, I didn't.
ROOMMATE: OH MY GOD, how could you not? It was, like, an amazing game!
ME: Dude, it's Tuesday night. GayTV, you know?
ROOMMATE: Wait, so you didn't watch the Cubs game, you watched Queer Eye instead?
ME: GayTV stops for nothing.
ROOMMATE: Well, you missed a great game. Was it a good episode at least?
ME: Well, it was a repeat, but it was a good one, definitely.
ROOMMATE gives a puzzled and judgmental look
ME: What? I told you, GAYTV STOPS FOR NOTHING!
My workouts at the Rat have been going incredibly well lately, but my shower experience there on Monday left me slightly traumatized. I can't quite comfortably straddle that "two steps from an orgy, two steps from a hate crime" feeling I get whenever I walk into the locker room.
Christopher and I had a very grandma/grandpa night last night. We determined, once and for all, that we are old souls/spirits, and really we just need to spend the rest of our days drinking pernod and watching the drag queens sing away at Gentry. We met up at around 8, ostensibly to go up to Landmark, watch Mambo Italiano at Landmark, eat, and then go out dancing. We didn't make it to the movie, went to La Creperie, where some cute kid told Christopher he was a "great smoker," and then slowly made our way to Roscoe's, which was hot, gross, and full of not-very-attractive boys.
We even have names for each other. He's Harold, I'm Agnes.
PS- I'm totally crushing on Sebastian, the French graduate fellow who's sitting in on my class about gay.
Friday, October 10, 2003
In honor of Marriage Protection Week 2003, National Coming Out Day, the fifth anniversary of the murder of Matthew Shepard, the beginning of Domestic Partnership Registration in Cook County, IL, and Gay History Month, I will not be blogging next week. I'll see you in mid-October.
My left hand is a little injured right now, so this might be a short post. Yesterday while quartering tomatoes for GAYTVdinner I sliced into my hand. And today, while rushing out of admissions to sneak food from the Dean's secret stash, I slammed my index finger into a door. Baby's hurt!
Evelyn seems to think she's the only person who hasn't seen a famous person since Proof started filming on campus. I haven't either. Although I haven't been looking. But really, Jakey, Gwynny, and Tony should be coming to me. I'm actually way so over the filming. At first it was cool, then it was a little intense, and now they're just in the way. On Monday they actually shut off an entire quadrangle to traffic, and it caused massive clusterfucks during class changes. Did anyone let those folks know that this is a school and not a movie location? I was just annoyed until they got in MY way when I went into Swift Hall, the divinity school, to get lunch from the coffee shop there and had to WAIT to leave the shop until they finished filming a scene. Although I did walk past the benches that the famous people got to use. Oh, and readers: when you go see the movie, every scene that's supposed to be in Eckhart, the math building, was actually shot in Swift Hall, the div school.
Today there's an AIDS Awareness study break in Hutch Commons and The Organization of Latin American Students is sponsoring a spoken-word open mic in the C-Shop. It's apparently Latin American Heritage Month. Rawr. There is some cute Latin culture up there. Some very, very nice asses.
Ahem. Excuse me. I mean...
The Beyonce CD has definitely brightened my workout experience.
U OF C STALKER (WOOHOO):
- From Sara: Saw Anthony Hopkins standing outside my div school class on Tuesday. He was talking to one of the other students in the class and said that it sounded like an "interesting" class.
- Parker saw Gwyneth and Chris Martin of Coldplay.
- Someone else told me he saw Gwyneth's body doubles hanging about.
- "I saw an unsuspecting first year arguing with the Korean bible study guy that hangs out on the quad."
- And finally, Nobel Laureate J. M. Coetzee walking across the quadrangle the day he received his award, looking slightly pleased with himself (this is from me).
I have been oddly productive all weekend. I guess, what with working and all, my social calendar won't interfere with my homework schedule (the usual pattern of interference: mind-numbing hangovers). I finished all the reading for Chauncey's class for Tuesday, wrote my mini-ethnography of lgbtq life on campus, and now I'm working on my reading for the Confessions.
Although tonight, when I get off work, I'm going to grab a few drinks withtheseoldkids.
Last night I went to a party and felt really, really old. Although I did have a good moment with some kid there. He was pretty drunk. (And very not gay - you'll understand later in the story why I need to say that now)
DRUNK BOY: Hey, you look familiar. Who are you?
ME: I'm Jon. I think I've seen you at the Reynolds Club.
DRUNK BOY: What?
ME: I'm a building manager there. I think that's where we've seen each other.
DRUNK BOY: OH YEAH! Totally. My name's Anthony. Jon, Right?
[we shake hands, old-school-gentleman-style]
ANTHONY: So, could you do me some favors sometime when I'm there?
ME [obnoxiously]: Well, it depends on what you mean by favors. The sexual ones are always free. The rest of them you're going to have to pay for.
ANTHONY: Um, oh, um...
A few posts back I wrote about how I was a pariah in my family - well, I called my mother yesterday and she hasn't called me back. His mom is blogging for him this weekend! And saying wonderful things, too! I just want a phone call!
Check out this NYTimes Mag article by Gary Shteyngart about downtown NYC.
Post #1 of an eight-hour shift:
I am normally something of a brisk walker. It mostly has to do with whatever music I'm listening to and my feeling of inner contemplative-ness, or something like that. But I do not, when I'm walking to campus, across campus, etc., usually enjoy strolling. I am going to where I'm going.
No speed I walk compares to a phenomenon that may, I think, be particular to The University of Chicago. In my three years here, I only recently systematized this phenomenon: The Runner.
There are certain individuals at this school who run. Not the track boys and girls, for whom running at least in some way defines their existence here. Not the boyzz at the gym (wait a second, there aren't any boyzz at the gym. The "young men who are not really attractive" at the gym is better). These people, save for their propensity to break into a sprint, defy class and racial boundaries; i.e., they are united together by their random speediness. Men, women, all colors, all years, grad, undergrad, it doesn't matter.
The Runner operates in this way (I know for sure because of my three years of voyeuristic, I mean anthropological, observation): he (for the sake of brevity I will call The Generic Runner "he") will walk at a normal pace, usually an intense look in the face. Some kind of inner thought process will work its magic on him, and then, usually with a change in focus of the eyes, a shift in intensity perhaps, he will take off running. Note that this phenomenon is never - NEVER - based on external stimuli. The running appears to accomplish no purpose (maybe, just maybe to save time?) and usually ceases before The Runner has reached his destination. The running, of course, always ceases after a short time.
What are the causes? I am unsure, as my expertise does not extend to the physiological. If, however, it is an attempt to save, or to "hurry," it would make no sense. The Runner must be placed in a separate category from Those Who Run to Catch the Bus Before it Leaves Them or, perhaps, Those Who Run to Get Inside the Bar Before Last Call So They Can Drink Their Lives Away. For, as I noted, the runner never reaches his destination during the course of his sprint.
I have spent many moments of my three years here thinking to myself, when I witness this phenomenon, "We've got a Runner! People, we've got a Runner!" On occasion when I see a Runner-in-action, I will point the individual out to a friend I am walking with, and sometimes I will issue my call out loud, for the benefit of my friend.
But I must issue an urgent plea to all my fellow students, especially those that read this page:
1. DO NOT BECOME THE RUNNER
2. WE MUST END THE PHENOMENON OF THE RUNNER. THEREFORE, WE MUST ISSUE THE CALL MORE LOUDLY AND IN THE DIRECTION OF THE RUNNER AS HE IS COMMITTING HIS ACT. DO NOT BE SILENT WHEN YOU SEE A RUNNER. USE MY CALL PROVIDED IN THE PREVIOUS PARAGRAPH. SHAME THEM INTO CONFORMITY - OR AT LEAST SHAME THEM TO CONFORM TO MY STANDARDS.
Jon Ryan Quinn
Gay Socialite, Moral Arbiter
Saturday, October 04, 2003
Jonathan Katz in "The Age of Sodomitical Sin, 1607-1740":
Homosexuals are still encouraged to acts of public self-denial, each a little death. [emphasis mine]
You know, I like the new Ratner Center a lot (especially because when you're doing cardio you can look down at the people in the pool and the people walking in at the same time), but I mean, come on.
Friday, October 03, 2003
CORRECTION: Coetzee's Nobel Prize brings the total number of U of C Nobels to 75, not 74. Not bad for a school that's only 110 years old.
My thoughts on the "don't ask, don't tell" policy are quoted in this article from the school's best weekly newspaper. Aside from misspelling my name, I think they got everything else right - I did tell the author that I did not know much about the law school fracas and he avoided quoting me on that.
From the Timesarticle on Coetzee's Nobel Prize award:
Jonathan Lear, a professor of philosophy at the University of Chicago who is teaching a course with Mr. Coetzee this semester, said: "One of the things he looks at, which other people including myself lack the courage to look at, is human cruelty and insensitivity as it occurs in all sort of contexts. If you read his work, it's really a surgical, clinical diagnosis of what's going on here, and it's not pretty. On the other hand, he has an amazing human passion that is very clear even when he's describing the worst things people do to one another. He's asking what are the conditions of our salvation and damnation."
Thursday, October 02, 2003
The man who co-taught my class on The Brothers Karamazov last fall (with Jonathan Lear, who advised my junior paper), John M. Coetzee, won the Nobel Prize in Literaturetoday, bringing the school's total number of Nobel winners to 74 (the last professor from here to win the prize in literature was Saul Bellow in '76).
Wednesday, October 01, 2003
Okay, this has to be a quick one, because I have three articles to read for my Social History of American Sexual Subcultures class and all of Book I of Augustine's Confessions to read. So, first, to the point: UofCStalker.
This week: mostly Proof-related sightings, but some of them are good.
- From Heidi: Gwyneth Paltrow, outside Rockefeller chapel, skinny & blond, filming a scene. I was driving, I could only slow down and stare for so long!
- On the bulletin board at work: "I saw Anthony Hopkins. He's hot!" (you can also find out more about me at that website, as well).
- Gyllenhall sighting 1 of 2: "My friend Hannah and I staked out the quad where they were filming today to look for stars. Thanks to some knowledge of the secret shortcuts at the U of C, I got us into the building where Jake Gyllenhall starts a scene. Hannah and I befriended the crew there and ended up chatting with Jake for quite a while! Jake was so much fun to talk to! Totally a nice person! Hannah and I made a real connection with him. This is the most exciting thing that has happened to us all summer! I had to share the excitement (excitement is an understatement, trust me, it took about an hour for us to stop hyperventilating)."
- Gyllenhall 2 of 2: Someone at the RC told me that she saw the filming of a scene where he runs across the quadrangle. The did a couple of takes. He was, apparently, very dramatic at the end of each take as he acted "out of breath."
- James Redfield: This one's from me, dear readers. He walked past me in Harper on Tuesday while I was at Admissions and waved to me. This morning I saw him at the Reg, asleep/dozing off at a computer.
My David Brooks-labeled "politically unclassifiable" advisor, Mark Lilla, and I met today. We discussed my plan to take an independent study course to read Camus' The Stranger in the original French (one of my program's requirements is that we do a text in a foreign language). He had forgotten, initially, but agreed once I told him that we'd talked about it, and about what I was expecting. As I was leaving he said: "I just have one request. When you email me, can you take the quote from SEX AND THE CITY off your email?" (For those of you who don't know, I have, or now had, a quote on the signature of my email from Samantha, my favorite character: "I think I've got monogamy. I must have caught it from one of YOU people.") I was a little taken aback, and said, "Um, yeah, I'm sorry, I was planning on changing it, but just haven't gotten around to it." [which is partially true] He said, "It's just sad when you get an email from a student who wants to read Camus with you and then it ends with a quote from SEX AND THE CITY."
I was like, "Um, okay. Sorry." I was thinking both "Shit!" and "dammit, what a prude!" But he did one thing: he silenced the fashionista in me. No witty reply was forthcoming. I'm losing my edge!
Also, someone in my class on The Prince actually said, on the first day on Monday, "When we read this in the Core...blahblahblah." I was like, "Excuse me? No one cares. We all read it in the Core. We're not IN the Core anymore, androgynous boy."
Fuck. Except for the UofCstalker, everything in this post is about academics.
It IS first week, though, so I guess it's excusable. At least the profane content of this page has shot up with the return of the academic year.
I think I have a date tomorrow night. I don't know if it's a date yet.