When I try to focus on theory
Comments were closed to this thread, which I stumbled upon (manually) while looking for a quick pic of monty python drag queens which I could paste onto a friend’s Facebook post to reference a planned Halloween costume. It’s called, “Is Drag Sexist?” I just feel like I had to put some opinions out on this, as I’ve recently started watching “RuPaul’s Drag Race”.
Drag has been on my mind a lot as of late: my older brother, who I am very close to, is a pageant-winning all-star drag queen in Oklahoma City; I spent much of my playtime as a child pulling sheets out of the dress-up bucket and making dresses for myself! I haven’t studied Gender or Queer Theory, but I am a human who has questioned many societal and human things, including my sexuality and the sexuality of humanity. I think I can “put my two cents’ worth” as well.
I appreciate and honor all of the previous comments. I respect comments on how Drag is an insult to real transgender people and it’s quite perspective-shifting to think about the emotional and physical pandemonium that can be imbued with this experience. From my outsider’s perspective, it seems like the opinion of drag queens towards a transgender is “whoa girl, you go get that surgery, damn!”, or maybe something a lot more serious and sympathetic with the situation. But these men have situations of their own! We’ve all seemed down to call out drag queens as sexist rich gay men trying to get laughs and kicks, but from my personal experience, the Drag world is not necessarily always this way. Like a musician (as I am myself), a drag queen is a performer, with a drive to express themselves through certain media (lots of media: many of these men do their own makeup, sew their costumes, lip-sync flawlessly to tons of songs, et al). Carl Jung and others have expressed that all humans have masculine and feminine traits, as all peoples’ consciousness is an expression of their being and past environmental stimuli, which includes observance of their mother’s and father’s traits. Some people develop the lean towards one or the other, most acceptably, the traits of their respective gender. But some people may have been ridiculed or scolded for exhibiting traits of another gender, causing them to question and criticize themselves for those things earlier in life than their peers; throughout the years, suppressing this energy for longer than others creates an self-ostracization which could only possibly later manifest itself in a grand exhibition (and in some cases a financial living or career), where this person has broken through psychological barriers to be accepted, honored and praised for exhibiting this part of them that is overwhelming. My brother, for instance, endured a lot of bullying and hatred in school, felt that he was born in the wrong body, etc. His plan was to graduate and then go to NYC or California, get tits and maybe a vagina, and become This Famous Tranny. Luckily, he soon got into the local Drag community and felt the urge to perform this feat himself, to realize that it’s much more satisfying to express your Animus and still be able to take off your tits afterwards. Some family members are uneasy about my brother’s Drag: imagine how ostracized he would be if he had seriously gone into changing gender! I am not a rich kid, I’m a musician but try to make Art and a living off of the cheapest and fewest equipment I can find, so naturally my brother is not rich either. He does Drag not on a careless whim but by recycling everything, and trying to make his vision come to life by using the things he has, and not having it made by a company in California.
And as for Monty Python, so what that they didn’t hire any women? I’m sure these men, like the drag queens in Oklahoma, had the urge to dress like women and be silly, and hopefully the audience would get their kicks too and they’d get money to eat for it! These men all got together, as men have done for a while, and developed a comedic project through their comeraderie. It’s like a lot of bands; females may not be as encouraged through the media to be in bands, but that’s not necessarily why most of the bands you see are all-male! These guys all got together and decided to make music. Not only that, but these men are portraying what their beings know a woman or want a woman to be like. It’s an interesting psychological thing. What makes this man think that this is what women are like?
And just because you know what being transgender is like doesn’t mean you know what being a drag queen is like! Or what being a blackface actor is like! All art should be valued for the vantage point from which it was created. It’s like meeting as many people as you can; your brain will develop a broader expanse of connections because of the diversity of stimuli. Like Permaculture: the more diversity you have in the ecosystem, the more resilient that ecosystem will be. Whether you are offended by the art or not, the artist has come from his own spirit (excuse me: his or her own spirit) and it has led you to question some connection in your brain.
The first time you conduct a sforzando in basic conducting class
When my teacher says I should start practicing in the morning
Wayne Coyne’s house.
no way! i’ve seen it from the outside… but wow!
"Music is nothing but unconscious arithmetic."
Gottfried Wilhelm von Leibniz
Prole do bebê / The Baby’s Family
Book I (1918)
I. Branquinha (The light-skinned girl; porcelain doll)
II. Moreninha (The dark-skinned girl; papier-mâché doll)
III. Caboclinha (The mestizo girl; clay doll)
IV. Mulatinha (The mulatto girl; rubber doll)
V. Negrinha (The black girl; wooden doll)
VI. A pobrezinha (The poor girl; rag doll)
VII. O polichinelo (The clown)
VIII. A bruxa (The witch; cloth doll)
Marc-André Hamelin, piano
The metal keys are made from smelted iron ore which is dug out from sacred hills and holy mountains where the Shona chiefs and Shona statesmen are buried. The keys thus personify the presence of ancestral spirits directly on the instrument. The sound board, made from a special kind of tree, mubvamaropa, represents a source of shelter and fuel, basic necessities in everyday Shona life. The resonator gourd or deze, into which the mbira is mounted and propped as a second level amplifier is a special type of dried squash, called Nhangatanga or the first squash, which is a source of food. It is also used as a water container, dende. In its smaller form and dried, the nhangatanga squash is used as a drinking gourd, mukombe. The instrument thus symbolizes the basic elements of everyday life in Shona. The mbira player adds the final and human dimension to complete a Shona social institution.
"Colors blind the eye
Sounds deafen the ear
Flavors numb the taste
Thoughts weaken the mind.
Desires wither the heart.
The Master observes the world, but trusts his inner vision
He allows things to come and go
His heart is as open as the sky."
The Tao Te Ching of Lao Tzu (via heartmindawakening)
"You are a puppet, but in the hands of the infinite, which are perhaps your hands."
Antonio Porchia (via heartmindawakening)
“When I began painting, all my paintings were of words which were gutteral utterances like Smash, Boss, Eat. Those words were like flowers in a vase.”
Ed Ruscha Honk 1962
“Good art should elicit a response of ‘Huh? Wow!’ as opposed to ‘Wow! Huh?’”
Edward Ruscha, 1970
"You must be desirous of knowing the truth; even if it seems to you the most bitter, distasteful or unpleasant thing, consider the truth as nectar. The right kind of seeker will accept and search for truth whether it brings bitterness or sweetness, whatever it tastes like, for its own sake. He must be prepared to find God as impersonal, and to lose his individuality for the sake of truth."
Ashtavakra Gita (via heartmindawakening)