aTypical Joe: a gay New Yorker living in the rural South
Thursday, September 28, 2006
What’s in a (middle) name (Wayne)?
Ms. Stewart has an unusual hobby: clipping newspaper articles of a particular ilk. She sent me xeroxs of her most recent finds. All of these clippings were from The Dallas News, from February 2006 to the present. The articles had two things in common: (1) all of them were stories reporting on crimes, and (2) the perpetrator’s middle name was “Wayne.”
I have to say I was stunned by the number of examples she sent me:
Eric Wayne Kelley—sex charges
Nathan Wayne Green—kidnapping and beating, homicide
Ronald Wayne Spencer, Jr.—triple homicide
David Wayne Rhodes—10 years for practicing nursing without a license
Larry Wayne King—homicide
Paul Wayne Mitchell—Theft
Michael Wayne Hills—theft
Jeremy Wayne Hopkins—homicide
Garry Wayne Carriker—knowingly having unprotected sex when HIV positive
Bruce Wayne Potts—homicide
Joshua Wayne Jones—assault of officer
Billy Wayne Sinclair—homicide
Billy Wayne Boyer—assault
Billy Wayne Miller—attempted murder and robbery
Kenneth Wayne Downs —sex assault
Jerry Wayne Lucas—attempted homicide
Tony Wayne Swinnie—aggravated assault of grandmother in front of her grandchildren, robbery
Larry Wayne Dacy—home invasion
Richard Wayne Miles—police standoff
Charles Wayne Thomas—homicide
Maybe you could assemble a list this impressive for some other middle name, but I doubt it. Of course, these folks are following the path set for them by the notorious Chicago serial killer John Wayne Gacy, Jr.
Relics of a gay ol’ time that should be long gone
Richard Kim on the passion of Jim McGreevey in Salon:
This is stomach-turning stuff, not in the least because McGreevey clearly still gets off on how far he was able to push the boundaries of the closet. At the height of his career it spanned the whole state. Openly gay aides (including his chief of staff and his communications director), Republican opponents, radio shock jocks, state troopers assigned to his protection and snoopy newspaper reporters, who cheekily took to describing Cipel as a “sailor” and a “poet” (he was in the Israeli Defense Forces and had written a few verses as a child), all knew or suspected. If he did not deceive them all, he at least beguiled and intimidated them into silence for almost the entirety of his first and only term.
Throughout his account McGreevey forces an analogy between life in the closet and life in politics. But because the inevitable conclusion—that he was a closeted homosexual because he coveted power—is both contemptible and predictable, he effects a curious reversal: He took refuge in power because he was a closeted homosexual.
The closet is a poisonous destructive place; a damaging shame-based relic that can only lead to bad things. It is not a benign place; it’s an unhealthy place that fosters unhealthy behavior. It should be eliminated and gay leaders should understand that and say so.
Speaking of which, last week in SoVo, Wayne Beson looked at the big lie about gay men and sex. I’m right there with him in his description of a “gulf between the men who oink and boink and those who bed and wed.” George Michael puts in an appearance as the former:
THIS BATTLE OF the male brain is now playing itself out in gay society after paparazzi ambushed pop star George Michael coming out of the bushes following a supposed sexcapade with a pot-bellied peasant.
Michael, for his part, implied that his behavior was a result of entrenched gay customs. “Are you gay?” he asked the paparazzi, “No? Then fuck off. This is my culture.”
That may have been true in the 1970s, when gay culture had been set up to accommodate married men on the sly. Back in those days, bathhouses were hugely popular and the gay bars had blackened out windows, creating a virtual cocktail-serving closet. Many of the patrons had to have sex away from home to keep the secret from an unsuspecting wife and kids.
Of course, there was a portion of men who did have options - just as Michael does today - but who enjoyed unfettered promiscuity for the thrill.
With time, the ease with which people could come out, combined with the fear of contracting HIV, sharply curtailed the carnal carnival the gay subculture once represented.
The whole notion that gay men are more libidinous than straight men is a canard pushed by right wing fanatics in an effort to deny homosexuals basic rights. Indeed, one of the most guarded secrets of gay life is that a good portion of homosexuals are as undersexed as their straight counterparts.
LATER: McGreevey on The Daily Show, unintersting. Jason Jones on the hack local TV reporter in Ohio, brilliant satire. I’ll post it as soon as it’s available.
Don’t pinch me!
When I read the Slate piece on idiotic examples of corporate cost cutting, I thought that the same dynamic applies to government cost-cutting:
Frequently, managers looking for low-hanging fruit impose symbolic cost-cutting measures that take away some of the few pleasures their fellow employees enjoy. James Dimon, the legendary cost-cutter who is now the chief executive at J.P. Morgan Chase, has won kudos for his merciless efforts to slash expenses at the bank. Among his triumphs: shutting down employee gyms and cutting off cell phones provided to employees.
What ends up infuriating employees is that the scrimping on minor employee perks co-exists with a pay-any-price attitude for so much else. Credit Suisse, for example, pays seven-figure bonuses to hundreds of bankers every year. Telling associates who prepare deal books that they can’t print out color PowerPoint slides because the bank needs to pinch pennies seems an exercise in futility. Yahoo!’s cutback seems even more likely to infuriate. On the heels of a warning on revenues that caused its stock to plummet about 10 percent, Yahoo! told its 10,500 employees to take off the week between Christmas and New Year’s. Offices will be closed, allowing workers “to enjoy guilt-free time off while helping Yahoo! reduce unused vacation time,” wrote Libby Sartain, Yahoo!’s human resources boss. Assuming average weekly wages of $2,000, that would save the company only $21 million-or about the combined earnings of CEO Terry Semel, CFO Susan Decker, and COO Dan Rosensweig last year. (See Page 26 of Yahoo!’s proxy statement.) Meanwhile, Yahoo! is rumored to be contemplating a $1 billion acquisition of Facebook.
your my nose to spite your face. And give yourself a fat congressional pay raise.
An ATM for Jesus
The LATimes has a story on a church in Augusta that has ATM-like kiosks that will take in between $200,000 and $240,000 in donations this year. Last summer the pastor, Marty Baker, and his wife, Patty, began selling the devices to other churches through their for-profit company, SecureGive:
The Bakers charge between $2,000 and $5,000 for the kiosks, which come in a variety of configurations. They also collect a monthly subscription fee of up to $49.95 for licensing and support. And a card-processing company gets 1.9% of each transaction; a small cut of that fee goes to SecureGive.
So far, seven other congregations have installed or ordered the machines. All of them are Protestant, and most are in the South. If the idea takes off and makes the Bakers rich, Patty says they will thank the Lord - and give a significant sum to their church.
That seems like a perfectly obvious Christian-capitalist idea to me. Apparently the LATimes found it newsworthy and some churches find it objectionable.
Me, I had a kind of visceral objection to how a different Augusta church chose to give back to the community. On a recent trip to there, in a Panera Bread Company men’s room, I found this:
I was dumbfounded. Am I the only person to be reminded of this?
LATER: David Pescovitz at Boing Boing has a photo of the ATM.