So last night, after a long day of grading papers and trying to get my cat to eat anything – we’ve settled on tuna juice and bits of Friskies Salmon Dinner fed from my finger – I settled in to watch The Laramie Project. And wow, what a great – if hard – way to cap my weekend. In case you don’t know the premise, the film is based on the play that was written by the Tectonic Theater Project with Moises Kaufman as director/coordinator. The Project members visit Laramie, Wyoming, shortly after Matthew Shepard is killed, and they interview lots of people from around the town. These interviews then form the language and shape of the play/film.

It was beautiful. Balanced, fair, honest and eye-opening, especially for me who moved to rural Maryland from San Francisco a couple of years ago and who doesn’t always remember that people are still scared of gay people. I’m going to use the film in my composition class because we’re talking about discrimination, and I’m sure it’s going to be a hard class day. A lot of my students believe homosexuality is wrong – as do many of my dear friends – and many of my students are truly homophobic. So I’m hoping this film will open their eyes to the way that dislike can turn into hate and hate almost always turns into violence, be it verbal or physical. If you haven’t seen the film, I would highly recommend it, and for a sense of how challenging it must have been to conduct the interviews in Laramie, read this interview with Moises Kaufman.
Cover of DVD The Laramie Project

After watching Laramie last night, I came up to shut down the computer and happened to see that my friend Megan Scott had posted a new addition to her blog Localore. Megan’s writing is lovely, like the pleasure you get from seeing a picture form from the pieces of a jigsaw – all tulips and fairies coming into life. In her most recent blog, she talks about the gloriousness of beet-flavored, hard-boiled eggs. I can’t even begin to describe how well she captures the life of an egg, but my favorite section is:
My chair screeches back, as I reach for the salt hog, a pinch of sea salt across the top of the yellow-eyed, pink-shadowed eggs. These treats are ladies, ready for a night out. These treats are the opposite of their sisters, the beets that share their domicile. Housed together they make a funny pair of earth and birth, sweet/tangy, sugar and salt. Root and life..
Take a look at Megan’s writing. Add it to your blog roll. Never look at beets or eggs the same way again.

So I’m at the point in the year when I’m longing for the end of the semester. My students are fried and frazzled; I’m fried and frazzled, and we’re pushing into the last month, when all anyone can do is work, work, work. I’m not a big fan of summer – just not one for the heat and humidity – but I am absolutely longing for those languid days when I can work in the yard, read a lot, and get some writing done. Oh for it to be mid-May. Can anyone relate?

So I’m giving another book away, mostly because the cover looks summery to me – a girl’s bare legs beneath a white cotton dress as she stands over looking the sea. The book is Between the Tides by Patti Callahan Henry. (Note – there is a small water stain on the edge of the book, so if you’re a pristine book lover, this may not be the giveaway for you.)Post a comment below before Friday, April 4th, and I’ll draw a name on Saturday. I love these giveaways.
Cover of Henry's Between the Tides