Growing up, I developed a healthy fear of rabid dogs, trigonometry and Are You Afraid of the Dark? TV marathons. I also harbored an unfounded phobia of picking up the telephone, and placing calls. Right up through the Third Grade, I can recall pleading with my mother to schedule 'play dates;' as if the sound of her voice could cajole the popular kids into my corner. It certainly felt a lot easier than preparing myself for another rejection.
My mother eventually tired of my histrionics, and caught me by surprise one day after she forced the receiver into my startled hands. I am still amazed though, that through my tears, the vacuum repairman on the other end didn't alert the authorities. He patiently listened as I awkwardly stumbled through our conversation - placing an order for a damaged part - and let me say my piece. Nearly a decade later, I began my Federal Work-Study job my freshman year at college as a telephone interviewer.
Encouraging survey participation could be difficult at times if a respondent had belched into you ear (or worse.) But, as degraded as I felt in those moments, I couldn't imagine myself stooping to their level and placing a bomb threat. However, that's exactly what a telemarketer did to a Mead, Colo. resident. Little did our hot-headed dialer realize that by saying, "I've placed a bomb in your house," he could evacuate an entire neighborhood; or tip off the FBI.
Can you hear me now? It's what you need to know:
- Somebody please notify the Jersey Shore's Mike Sorrentino that MTF transgender filmmaker Lana Wachowski appears to be experiencing a "gender situation," as described by a New Yorker reporter profiling the "Wachowski brothers."
- Republican Gov. Haley Barbour of Mississippi tapped into his inner E.L. James to weave a seedy narrative about President Barack Obama, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and red-hot butt-poking that could leave the likes of Christian Grey bashful.
- Four Camp Pendleton Marines made bail after an alleged assault upon a gay man outside of the Silver Fox Bar in Long Beach, Calif. in what authorities believe could be a hate crime. The victim - beaten until unconscious - isn't insured, and cannot afford either his hospital stay or the doctor-recommend MRI.
- Gay & Lesbian Advocates & Defenders [GLAD] argue that sexual reassignment surgery can be a "legitimate life-saving medical treatment for transgender people," even if that individual happens to be a convicted murderer. However, Massachusetts Republicans are unconvinced that the taxpayer-funded operation to treat Michelle Kosilek's gender dysphoria - estimated at $20,000 - isn't purely superficial.
- Students from Alabama's Spanish Fort High School recently forgot everything they learned about dignity - likely taught to them by a certain, magical dinosaur - after they taunted a rival football team, live on ESPN, with this homophobic banner.
- Love of country, and his two moms, shall likely leave the delegates that activist Zach Wahls addresses Thursday at the Democratic National Convention inspired; as was the case on a cold, February night one year ago, speaking out against an anti-gay constitutional amendment before the Iowa House of Representatives.
- What happens once gay characters are introduced into a futuristic, action role-playing game that revolves around an intergalactic war? Absolutely nothing.
- Maybe we'll never find our life's purpose. Lots of people don't. However, let me just say for the record that, although my editorial internship might be through, it's only for now. I'm incredibly grateful for being given the opportunity to shine as a blogger. Thanks Bil, James and the readers of The Bilerico Project for pushing me closer toward mine.
(Bomb graphic via Photobucket)