JT, Chicago, USA

 My family is bananas about Christmas.

It started, I think, with my Grandpa. In the old Super-8 movies, there are elaborate sets around the christmas tree. Each year, he would spend weeks building faux Santa’s Villages or North Pole cardboard stand-ups. Then he would spend Christmas Eve putting them up and filming them with his camera. Grandpa Ralph* was a graphic designer–so these were no joke, yo.

They had six kids and my grandpa worked to make Christmas a magical time for them. He had a little Santa in his heart and my mom inherited that in spades. When I was a kid, there was always Christmas carols blasting year-round and christmas itself was super fun. My mom always baked tons of cookies and we got to frost them. We made ornaments together and we always had a blast putting up the Nativity Scene (which my brother called “the Bethlehem barn”. We weren’t very religious.) (more…)


All right, I will write on fame later on. I have a great story about Davy Jones and my Aunt Betsi, the “Monkee-Head”. But for now, I will answer the question before this most recent one:

“If there was a soundtrack to your life, what would be on it?”

Yesssssss. This is my kind of question.

  1. Barry Manilow: Copacabana. It is 1978 and I am entranced by the story of Lola (the washed-up showgirl) and Rico, who went a bit too far. She has a fantastic costume (yellow feathers in her hair and a dress cut down to there) and she is drinking and mourning her dead Tony. She is a former burlesque dancer in a bar that is now a disco. The story of love and glamour and loss is almost too much for me at seven. This is the first record I purchase. At K-Mart. With my allowance. (more…)

So here I sit in my blue kitchen in the Midwest of the United States, wondering just how it is that I should start this.

Let me explain how I got here, to Thirty Voices–Explaining how I got to this point, here, in the blue kitchen in my far-flug working class neighborhood at 6:45 AM would take considerably longer and will evolve over time.

The other night, I was hosting my weekly queer lady open mic and a woman got up and read a nice little piece about her mother and eating and exercising. She (StacyJill!) mentioned casually that it was from this blog. As an avid blogger (it’s here), I was excited about this idea. I emailed her yesterday, got the invitation to participate and the rest will be history. (Since it’s only been a day now, I don’t really feel like saying “the rest is history” is very apt.)

So, who am I? I ask myself that every day.