I’d tell you that it’s been a very busy week. I was in Hattiesburg all week because of the Spanish course I was taking, and it was a rather intensive course. I stayed with Gene’O all week long, and it was nice to get to catch up during the times that we weren’t working. Of course, that’s meant that both of the blogs have suffered a little bit this week, but that happens on occasion. It’s been more important to concentrate on doing well in the course and in spending face-to-face time with Gene’O and with a few other folks who I don’t get to see often because we no longer live in the same state.
The course was interesting, but it was certainly draining. I spent 8:00-3:00 or 4:00 each day in a classroom, learning to translate written Spanish to written English. There was, of course, homework, and there were, of course, quizzes. I even made flashcards for the first time in a good 10 years or so. I’m not sure how much of it I’ll retain, but I hope that with Little Jedi beginning Spanish immersion, the practice I’ll get reading through and helping with homework will reinforce this kind of thing. I’ve never been terribly good at other languages, and Spanish seems like a dead useful thing to know, especially with us being 10 days away from Little Jedi’s first day of the immersion school.
I’ve got 2 projects left to do to be finished with that course, and then I take the other half of it in December (because of the way the program is set up, the course is just taught this way—2 mini sessions that total 6 credit hours at the grad level). In the meantime, I’m about 10 days away from meeting with my comps director about setting a final date for taking the exam. I’m rather terrified about the whole affair, but at this point it’s time to buckle down and take the exams, for better or worse. I’ll likely spend the next month studying and take the exam in September, so the next month or two will be fairly busy for me.
I’d tell you that today I watched The L Word Mississippi: Hate the Sin, and I was blown away. Much of what happens in the documentary happened right around my area—Hattiesburg and Laurel–and I’m familiar with the organizations and events in the film. I didn’t know there was a documentary in the works, though.
Sam and I sat down to to watch the documentary after a friend of mine, who was interviewed for the film, posted a link to a review on Facebook. And it’s a truly spectacular piece of cultural exploration.
The film follows the lives of several lesbians from Mississippi. Most of them are couples in committed relationships, though Rene is the one real exception, and her story is perhaps the saddest of all. Rene is trying, desperately, to pray away the gay, to become less the stone butch she has been and more a straight, feminine Southern lady. She has a son from her one straight encounter, and she blames herself that her son is also gay—something that is worthy of blame because she believes it’ll send him to hell. And herself. In the chilling last moments of the film, she wishes that either god will kill her before she ever goes back to that lifestyle or that she’ll kill herself.
And it’s sad how most everyone in the film is fighting with themselves, not just with the culture. Rene seems to be the most conflicted about her lifestyle, but some of the other women have concerns of their own—why god would give them feelings that, at least according to the modern day church, are so wrong.
I laughed, and I wept. It’s absolutely a film worth watching.
I’d ask about your week and weekend, what you’d like to talk about over Sunday coffee.