Getting in the Christmas Spirit

BY KELLY JEAN COGSWELL | I’ll probably die of cancer of some girly part, like tits or crotch, with Loki, the trickster god looking on and snickering at the irony, because I preach so often that it’s usually the ticker or lungs that gets women just like for men.

Loki’s the only god I’m ever tempted to believe in. Who else could be responsible for the Christmas season with all that earnest sanctimonious crap on the one hand, and Black Friday feeding frenzies and family shootouts on the other? I should probably build a little holiday shrine to the guy, and write a liturgy that starts with, “Pull my finger.”

Don’t worry, on my Christmas list I’ll ask for a sense of humor. I seem to have lost mine like an old glove. People have gone as far as to call me bitter, something no dyke has heard before. But what do you want, trying to pursue logic in a world that doesn’t have much? Maybe practice would help.

In the New Year, I could resolve to wear my clothes inside out and backwards at least once a week. I already tried to laugh insouciantly when Culture War vet Newt Gingrich turned up as a presidential contender, blabbing about Christian values though he discarded one wife after another. But it sounded more like choking, and the waiter tried the Heimlich maneuver.

Queers in West Africa should be laughing their heads off. Cynical, homophobic politicians there have decided that the best way to unify their countries split between Christian and Muslim bigots is to hate on queers, attacking us as a residual colonial threat not only toward the African family, and each country’s sovereignty, but on civilization itself. Funny, right, that somebody could think we have such power? And that same-sex anything is attached to one country or another? Hah, hah. What idiots! If we had super powers like that, those creeps would have been vaporized years ago.

I suppose you can laugh when you read about Alabama, where at least 66 people have already been arrested for not carrying proper documentation as required by the new law targeting undocumented immigrants. The punch line? Half of them have been African Americans. Hah, hah. Fooled you.

Though I did think it was worth a chuckle or two when I read how cops there also picked up a German Mercedes Benz executive who left his hotel without his passport. Ditto for a Japanese exec with Honda. This, after the state spent millions trying to attract foreign investment. How long do you think they’re going to stay, with a big welcome like that? And clever competing states like Missouri inviting car makers to relocate there: “We are the Show Me State, not the Show Me Your Papers State.”

Even World Day Against AIDS has its little ironic kick. How many more people wear ribbons then than on the International Day Against Homophobia? As if there were no connection. As if the biggest obstacle to dealing with HIV was the lack of research money, and not the gay stigma that lets straight guys go around spreading the virus because they can’t get a “gay” disease and allows other men busy having sex with men to believe they can’t get HIV as long as they deny that word, gay, and stick to down-low. HIV isn’t really a virus at all –– some microscopic creature passed from one human to another –– but a linguistic contamination.

I was heartened for about a minute last week when I read the headline “Gambia: On World Aids Day SCB Calls for Fight Against Stigma.” But when I continued reading the article, which was probably more of a press release by SCB, Standard Chartered Bank, they repeated the world stigma several times, but neglected to say what the stigma was or why AIDS should have it. Didn’t use the word “gay” once. Or anything else that reminded the world that queers exist. Which kind of reinforces the stigma, if you ask me –– having people so afraid of using the word that you can’t print the unmentionable, embarrassing thing. Funny, huh? Hilarious.

As UNAIDS reports that for every two people put on antiretroviral drugs, another five become newly infected. Often in these same West African countries where politicians are busy hating on queers. Irony. See, I recognize it.

Even if for me, it’ll probably be the heart attack after all. Because whenever I open my eyes, I find myself in a state of rage, with no passport out. Not until Loki answers my prayer, teaches me to embrace the ridiculous and deadly absurd.

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