22.8.10

Nomenclature

DISCLAIMER: This is the opinion and observation of a straight white guy, so take of that what you will.

I like to think I'm a pretty open-minded guy. Hell, just look at a lot of the company I keep. I have known/hung with/worked with people of all sorts of sexual and gender orientations, and I generally treat it like water off a duck's back. I am very interested in sexual and gender politics, and I like to think that the passion to suppress the queer community will die sooner rather than later.

That being said, the nomenclature and terminology of the queer community bugs me. The lack of consensus on definitions, coupled with the inevitability of picking the wrong term leads to a lot of embarassing moments for me. I can appreciate the need for appropriate definition, and I am more than aware of just how individual someone's gender and sexual identity can be, but you gotta draw a line somewhere.

I'm going to make a mathematical analogy(because that's what I do) to try to make my point a bit more clear.

Let's take the real interval R = [0,1]. That's every possible number from 0 to 1 inclusive. This interval is infinitely sized, and not just that, it's uncountably infinite. Let's take another set, the set of all rational numbers from 0 to 1, and let's call it Q. This set is also infinite, but it is countably infinite. If any of these terms are unfamiliar, don't worry about it. It's enough to know for now that R is much larger than Q.

But how much larger? Q actually has a measure of 0 within R. To give an imprecise definition of that, if R was a dart board, the probability of a dart hitting a point in Q is 0. Q basically takes up no space within R.

If we think of R as a spectrum of human sexuality and Q as the terminolgy of human sexuality, then it's pretty easy to see how a given person will often find it hard to find a term that is appropriate. It also helps describe the feeling of being adrift that a lot of queer people feel.

Now I'm not saying people need to define themselves narrowly, I'm just asking for a bone to be thrown. If I pick the wrong term, please don't get defensive or offended, just suggest the closest one.

I'm here, I'm straight but not narrow, get used to it.

10.8.10

Favourite moments in film

I have a few solid moments from movies that I can watch at any time. Spoilers may be nigh, ye be duly warned.

Metropolis The climactic scene
This video might seem like an edit or a tribute, but no. It's from the actual film. You'd normally expect some sort of urgent orchestral piece of music to accompany this scene, but instead you have Ray Charles. It's amazingly powerful, especially when you don't expect it:



Rob Roy Climactic sword fight
Most sword fights you see are between people with similar styles, with similar weapons. This is a great example of how differences in fight culture go.



Ronin The second car chase
Nothing like high speeds on tightly spaced Paris roads. "Take the tunnel now!" "Eh, merde!"