Monday, December 26, 2005

Cranky Cindy's Top Ten

and can I crank that i hate that blogger won't let me modify formatting properly when I cut and paste? so you may be seeing curiously large letters mixed in with normal ones.

On behalf of Church Administrators, custodians, and sextons everywhere
(this one's kind of a cheat b/c i posted a link to it on the LREDA list)

This is My Blog. Censorship, Community, and Public Dialogue

Wednesday Drivin'Bloggin'
Jesus for the Sex Industry

Breakfast Club to Dead Zone and a rant about racism on tv
My own words bite me in the butt

The Rubix Cube of Racism and classism
Race as Meme and White Privilege
Sponge Bob has Square Pants
Pirates of the Caribbean Commentary Track
Why is this breaking News? Albert Einstein was actively opposed to lynching, segregation, and racism

There's not really a bottom ten on this blog -- almost all my posts are read by 10-20 people, no matter what. Thanks regulars, whoever you are!

Happycindy had a much more defined low point.

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Wednesday Drivin’Bloggin’ – Stop Signs and Red Lights are for Stopping

If it was safe to yield, there would be a yield sign there.

According to the National Safety Council, in a study of Good Drivers that got killed while driving,

Sixteen percent of drivers in our analysis were killed because another driver either did not see, purposely ignored, or showed poor judgment at a stop sign.

Note this link is to a downloading .doc file, don’t click on it unless you’re comfortable with that. Otherwise, this link, at least for now, is to the html google cache of it.

This article puts the onus of being wary of bad drivers on the good drivers, and doesn’t yell at the bad drivers.

Red-light running turned out to be another deadly accident for innocent drivers, killing eight percent of them. When the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety monitored a busy intersection in Arlington County, Virginia, for several months, they found a driver running the light every 12 minutes on average. It was as high as once every five minutes during peak rush hours. "That's more than 100 chances a day for an unsuspecting motorist to become a crash victim," says Institute safety expert Richard Retting.

Two days ago, a man in a pick up barreled through the red light of a left turn arrow in front of me. I was leading the oncoming traffic and watched him as he floored it 4 or 5 car lengths before the intersection as the green turned yellow, then barreled through the red. Luckily for me at least, and perhaps for him, I had seen him speed up and instead of accelerating into the intersection and dying, I leaned on my horn.

In general, I think horns should be reserved for safety violations or to bring someone’s attention to a dangerous situation, and not for expressing anger, but I think my bringing his ahole behavior to his attention then turned into an expression of anger as he looked up and waved to me.

Not a “oops, sorry,” wave, or a “my mother’s in the hospital and I’ve got to go,” wave, or even a “yea yea, I probably shouldn’t have,” wave. It was a “Hello you silly woman, have a nice day, I just ran this red light and you can’t stop me,” wave. You know, those elaborate FU waves that are energetic and go on and on. I continued to lean on my horn throughout.

So while he was waving at me, he almost ran over a woman who was walking across the street, she thought, with the light.

So I accept that my part of it wasn’t innocent.

What would he have said if he had hit her or me? “It was an accident; I didn’t mean to hit the woman”? “I only meant to run the red light”?

It wouldn’t have been an accident. Accident are unforeseeable and uncontrollable. It is perfectly foreseeable that when rolling through a Stop, flooring it to beat the red light, or turning into oncoming traffic you might Kill Someone.

So the National Safety Council can say, that “Please people look out for idiots.”

Crankycindy sez, "Please Idiots, Stop Running Red Lights and Stop Signs!"

Monday, December 19, 2005

slc24a5 -- Melanin and Me

99.9 percent of human genes are the same. Of 3.1 Billion (how many zeros is that? 3,100,000,000?) letters in the human genome project, slc24a5 "blocks the creation of a protein whose job is to move charged atoms across cell membranes, an obscure process that is crucial to the accumulation of melanin inside cells." from the Washington Post article, which I send you to b/c the last line is great.

Recent revelations that all people are more than 99.9 percent genetically identical has proved that race has almost no biological validity. Yet geneticists' claims that race is a phony construct have not rung true to many nonscientists -- and understandably so, said Vivian Ota Wang of the National Human Genome Research Institute in Bethesda.

"You may tell people that race isn't real and doesn't matter, but they can't catch a cab," Ota Wang said. "So unless we take that into account it makes us sound crazy."

The title of the article in the Washington Post (Scientists Find A DNA Change That Accounts For White Skin)
is misleading -- this gene mutation accounts for northern european white skin, but humans with light and white skin which genetic origins are from asia, those are accounted for by other mutations.
original article in Science is linked for you really really smart people.

Read or listen to NPR

jenn at says

Race is not about genetics, it's about social inequality and disenfranchisment. As cool as this finding is, we must be careful not to conclude that we can therefore simply erase the effects of racism by pretending it doesn't exist.

This is new and not much commented/discussed yet by the religious right, conservative right, but the racist right's picked right up on it.
For now, keep an eye on comments at as a jump off way to link to the conservative right's take on this.

Or spend some time at the racist right, where at comments are going like this:

Hmmmm. How can it be just one gene (i.e. locus)? If it was, then race-mixer's would reproduce according to simple mendel laws right? I.e. there would be limited shades like very black, very white. This if alleles would be strictly dominant/recessive. Or, if recessive allele played a role too, then there could be a one or two middle shades. How comes there're so many shades of skin color?
It looks like there have to be severel locuses involved... or not? Can somebody better educated in genetics explain?


Read the article, seems a bit like PC bull****. There's still confusion, but by default we are all black, my ass. Ask the fish.


When we mix, we are destroying the blessing and miracle of the creator, we are sending the love letter written in nature and translated by us back unopened. This is suicide, it is choosing death.

more here.

We may have all 'come from africa' and were brown skinned at that time. BUT just as we evolved into who we are so too the black african evolved into who they are. We evolved differently and sharing a common ancestor does not in any way negate who we are today nor invalidate any of our goals and achievements.Indeed, I see such scientific discoveries confirming the fact we ARE genetically different and strengthens our position. [from this page]

from the same page, my favorite
I've always thought skin color was ostentatious

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Wednesday Drivin’Bloggin’

Passing me like a fool to beat me to that Red Light.

So I'm starting a Wednesday Drivin’Bloggin’ meme because there’s nothing, except maybe people who cut in line right in front of me while I'm looking right at them, that irritates me more than stupid and aggressive driving.

Today it’s people who cut in line with their cars. (Merging will be another day) I’m a speed limit goer, especially in town. Kids dart out, squirrels and cats dawdle, and people roll through stop signs. You never know.

Why do people feel it necessary to act the fool and pass my speed limit going self in a double yellow line area, or in front of the music school straightaway, only to arrive one car ahead of me at the next red light?

They wasted gas (the physics of coasting to stop signs saving brakes and gas another time), endangered their life, mine, and the kids at the music school bus stop, and got my blood pressure up!

It's Unacceptable. Fool Passing People should go to the naughty mat!

Friday, December 02, 2005

Four girlz and a gay guy

Ok, so crankycindy believes that popular media television sucks -- and absolutely loves it. Years ago I made fun of my new partner's love for the TV show Survivor. But I sat through it with her... and here I am years later, celebrating that a group of players came up with a strategy that takes into account age and gender discrimination in a way that works for women and a gay man.

On the other hand, I could go on for days about how for the most part, Survivor producers pick white folks to play this game. Women of Color have had some small success (yea Sandra and Vecipia!), men of color who aren't of african decent are very few and far between, and the occasional African American man selected for the series can't swim, or hate bugs, or are somehow otherwise completely unprepared for outdoor survival.

There are exceptions of course, and but given that there are what, 11 seasons of Survivor, and 20 people per season, the experience of people of color hasn't been all that great -- I suggest that this is not because of the individual prejudice or racism of participants, but because of who the producers choose, and how they choose to edit.

And because it’s a 40 day experience, edited down into a few hours, we’ll never know for sure what the role of white supremacy or heterosexual/male/Christian privilege really is in this show. They show Big Tom (a stereotypical white poorly educated farmer guy) threaten to shoot Clarence, an African American man, but they've also managed to edit it to show Clarence as simultaneously lazy and a physical threat to the players. We'll never know for sure, but I'm confident that the "reality" that Survivor producers intend to show, is the reality of 60's cowboy movies meets Swiss Family Robinson. (hunker down, build a shelter, and protect the womenfolk.)

Interesting essay/ article on racism and editing.
The white supremacist Vanguard News Network, that bastion of all news perspective and lies racist, anti-semitic, and homophobic, has an interesting, if stomach wrenching, take on racism/editing and the stereotypes the Survivor producers chose to portray. It's good sometimes to remember that there are people who still perpetuate the racist myths that underlie much of our more well intentioned unconscious racism.

But that's not the point of this post.

Given that it's edited, this is the way we see this show --
A whole group of people row to an island, or run 11 miles through the woods or over the desert to get to their two camps.

Then we see young adults quickly divide between 'hard workers' and the 'gotta rest a minute' and 'gotta catch some rays.' The older adults work as hard as they can to keep up with the young strong ones.

They arrive at their locations and have to build camps.

The older people w/ outdoors or building experience work on building structures and get frustrated w/ younger people laying around, or: older people with nursing or teaching experience nurse the young kids back to health after the kids hurt themselves. After they've been and helpful to the team effort,
the older people get kicked out one by one.

Then the funny looking, geeky, dweeby, too pushy, “too-black,” and “too-queer” get kicked out/voted off. I think gay guy Richard Hatch won the first season only because no one else understood the concept of alliances, and so he controlled the game by controlling alliances – that’ll never happen again now that everyone understands it’s a game of alliances, trust and backstabbing.

The “Cool Kids” who often include an occasional quiet mom/pop-type person run the place (Every neighborhood has a "cool mom.") They’re generally the cool white kids, mostly men, who define what is normal (on a fake survival island surrounded by cameras!) and determine what’s too different...too pushy/black/queer.

Sandra and Vecipia and Tina (middle aged white woman) won Survivor by staying under the radar for a long time. When I watch this show I always want to go on it. I think I could win.
My partner says I’d wouldn't, that I could never be an under the radar middle aged woman – she thinks I'd be the first one out -- I'd be there trying to tell them they were doing something wrong, how to build the shelter toward the wind, or away from the water, or whatever, and I’d be the first older opinionated person out.
I think that’s only if it was her voting.

I would would like to think that while I could never stay under the radar, I might be able to pull off being the mom/pop type person that the cool kids want to hang with.
...Except that I’ve never been a cool kid or a cool kid hanger-on, and I’m funny looking, geeky, dwebby, pushy, and queer. So maybe not so much with the winning.

So anyway, last night, three people got a chance to plot and plan away from the rest of the group -- one woman who is a cool kid, one who had her head on the next nights chopping block, and the gay guy who has made it this far by being gay and athletic. (Perhaps the first time producers have picked a strong gay man.)

And damn if the game doesn't turn in a way it never has before.

They voted off the guy who thought he was the leader of the cool kids. Oops.

And damn if we don't have four women and a gay guy playing the last rounds of Survivor. Rafe, the gay guy from a huge Mormon family, is, I think, best suited to win this game -- he's an experienced outdoors educator and wilderness guide. The women are Danni, a young white model who was Miss Kansas, Miss USA runner up, and won Star Search. Then there's two time Survivor Stephanie, a young beautiful white woman and accomplished athlete, Cindy, another young beautiful athletic white woman, and Lydia , a middle-aged woman who (I don't know what name she gives her heritage,) was born in Japan of a Puerto Rican father and after leaving Japan, grew up in Puerto Rico, and lived a life of army-style multicultural/multinational life experience as an adult. Example of the producers editing choices? Everytime they show Lydia's name on the tv, they call her a "fish-monger." Her bio lists her as having 18 years experience with one company, and is currently an assistant manager there.

So it's such a mixed thing, this show Survivor. I'm cranky and happy. go figure. This is probably why most people only have one blog.