Saturday, July 31, 2010
well, i can only hope that August will bring more summery weather here. it has traditionally not been that great in recent years. i definitely hope to get lots more swims in the pond, as well as hopefully a few more trips to the beach. I also hope to start to pick my running back up a notch, now that these new SSRIs seem to be giving me a boost. Although BQing is long out the window, I want to run the Newfoundland Provincial Marathon in late September, for the 4th year in a row. So, i have some training to do in order to rebuild my endurance to where it needs to be to run a marathon.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Poignantly.. as old and wise as i like to think that i am, there's a word that i had honestly never heard of. guess you still can learn something new every day!
Anyway, in other news, it's been a very busy week of networking as i attempt to build a a foundation for both Pride and Ngale. I've had chats with some folks from out of town, and i think it's time for the St. John's LGBT community to reach out to those in smaller communities in the province. As conservative as things may seem here in St. John's, it's even tougher in rural parts of the province. most LGBT people feel forced to remain closeted, and that's not good.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
I am currently looking for people who would be interested in forming a corporate partnership with me to either resurrect Ngale, or create a similar non-profit company.
If you would like to discuss this further, please get in touch firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Well, if running the Tely 10 wasn't enough, the day continued with the pride finale: a rally at the colonial building, a parade, a drag queen contest, and a BBQ. the parade turn out was the largest ever in our city. Depicted is me on the megaphone just before the drag event (i spoke about the differences between drag and trans, and also spoke about some of the same battles we are fighting together). Also depicted is me with two fellow World Outgames runners, who i will be forming a chapter of international frontrunners with, here in Newfoundland.
Now, the fun begins as we all try to figure out how to make pride bigger and better in the future. It's no secret that there has been some battles among the different demographics in our local LGBT community. I have made the first major move, having recently secured the rights to the name St. John's Pride Inc., and the domain for www.stjohnspride.org in hopes that this will be a catalyst to bring change from a small group who have essentially ran pride in a manner that is not very transparent or accountable. ultimately, i hope to work with everyone to ensure that pride can offer something for everyone. I actually find it strange that they didn't incorporate before. The next steps will be to put together a team of Directors who can formally found the company, and then we will look to put together some project teams to undertake the great deal of work that needs to be done. An exciting challenge ahead, and one i am looking forward to, and one i am proud to take on!
Monday, July 26, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
2 of my 3 speaches were actually recorded for youtube here. I also spoke about frontrunners. i wanted to air this video, but we didn't have time.
The official occasion of this event was to recognize 'pride citizen of the year.' Although the award was ad hoc and informal in its creation by the team of volunteers that put together a series of pride events, their decision to give this award to Susan Rose was met with pretty much unanimous praise from dozens of community members.
Although I personally opposed the idea that Pride follow through with a by-invitation-only event of any nature, I can appreciate the positive value this event has brought, as Susan Rose said herself, "this is the opening of a significant door to the LGBT community" of Newfoundland.
It's actually rather sad how the event got finalized. The booking of an event was made well in advance, but the pride executive never got around to organizing a nomination process. In the end, a decision was made at the last pride meeting (among the 7 people in the room who attended), that we forgo such a process and just give the award to Susan, who in all honesty, would have probably won it anyway. A team of 5 people were then consulted regarding which 50 people should be invited (i was fortunate enough to have a say in the inclusion of a few special guests who had specifically made a significant contribution to the trans community of the province).
In the end, it was actually a lovely event that featured excellent speeches from Crosbie, Susan Rose, and emcee Gemma Schlamp-Hickey (who was asked by pride executive to emcee the event), as well as lovely tea and cookies. Government House itself is an amazing building to visit, that has lots of history. Depicted here is myself, Susan Rose, another LGBT community member, and Mr and Mrs Crosbie. What made this meeting with Crosbie even more interesting is that he conducted political business with my father back in the late 1980s and early 90s.
Anyway, if the unofficial entity known as Pride wants to start giving awards, i have suggested that at the very least, they should publicly recognize Susan Rose at the Pride parade, even though most standing in line at the parade had no say and no involvement in this event process.
Susan is definitely our #1 leader in terms of carving a legacy for LGBT people in this province, and i am excited to know that she and i will likely be working closely together in September when her organization Egale rolls out a phase if implimentations, that came from a report written based on what appears to be seriously-concerning homophobia and transphobia in our countries high school system.
Pride continued that night with a pub night that was hosted by a sister organization of pride, known as 'queerfare'. these folks organize a pub 'raid' where LGBT people all dawned purple outfits and attended a bar that is not commonly known as a LGBT hangout. nothing hostile here, just a bunch of queer people going to the pub, standing out, and having fun. unfortunatly, i was too tired to attend, but wished i could.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
this policy was put in place back at a time when it was perceived that AIDS was a 'gay' disease. But times have clearly changed. AIDS is not about who you are, it's who you sleep with. promiscuity, sex without protection, sharing needles.... these are the way AIDS spread. A sexually responsible person, no matter what sexual orientation or gender identity, should be considered a safe donor (unless they are deemed disqualified for any other reason).
in the end, the event garnished media attention from CBC, NTV, VOCM, and the Telegram (the 4 biggest news entities in the city). i was only at the event briefly towards the end, so i was not involved in the media, but i had a good chat with the blood rep, who will be on hand to present to the forum on Saturday.
in other news, i picked up my Tely 10 race kit tonight. hard to believe i will be back in this race after missing it last year due to my marathon in denmark. should be an interesting run.
Monday, July 19, 2010
well, turns out NTV ran an additional story on Pride that included segments of me speech and interview from the flag raising. wow, just when i thought they had shelved my comments, they air it. which is great! a big thanks and congrats to Carolyn and all the crew at NTV for doing such a great job with their media coverage for Pride.
this interview focuses on concerns with out-of-date and inadequate health care funding policies:
Jennifer's Trans Health Interview on NTV .
later in the telecast, NTV ran a story about the G20 protest, and i was depicted not only marching down the street in the parade, but a good portion of my speech aired too, including my infamous intentional misuse of the non-word "freedomly" :
Jennifer's G20 Freedom of Expression Interview on NTV .
Once again, a big thanks and congrats to NTV for airing social justice issues in the news, issues that are often overlooked by other media entities.
well, meanwhile, it was more Pride today as i had coffee with a few pride-related friends, then we all headed down to the Women's Centre for a Pride movie night. In lieu of attendance by any of the "official, unofficial pride committee" i acted as co-host of the event, along with the manager of the Women's Centre. I gave a brief speech before the movie aired, where i talked a little bit about the remaining Pride events, thanked the women's centre for their great interest and dedication to the LGBTQ community, and thanked everyone for coming out.
on that note, as deep as i have gotten involved with Pride this year, i find it rather strange that the folks who have set up the Pride website have verbally refered to me as a member of the 'committee' yet they won't formally announce this title on either their website or on their facebook site.. hmmm.... oh well, that's a topic of another kind for another day.
anyway, later in the early evening, i had a nice swim in Kent's Pond, before heading home for the night.
Another big day ahead tomorrow, as i have a dental visit, then a trip to middle cove beach for the pride bonfire, where among other things, i will challenge 'queen lorne' to a bikini contest! should be a fun-filled evening of belly flab.. lol
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Well, today started out with an early morning wake up as i needed to get myself over to Mundy Pond to help set up the St. John's PRIDE running team for the 5k 'run for respect' to raise money for the NL Sexual Health Centre. As team captain, i am pleased to report that the project was a success, as many of the people i recruited did indeed show up! Together, we raised over $200 for the cause, and all had great runs.
Later in the day, it was the Pride Picnic, where i had a chance to mingle with some colleagues, and throw around a football for the first time in a while! the day remained cloudy right up until 5 pm, when the sun finally peaked through. As i was walking home, i took a short nap on a picnic bench by the pond. I also had a chance to see some more baby duckies! (depicted is me with 5 of the 6 other Pride team members; and me at the picnic with former president of Egale Canada, and former NDP candidate, Gemma-Schlamp-Hickey.)
Saturday, July 17, 2010
A big day tomorrow as i will run the 5k 'Run for Respect' to raise money for the NL Sexual Health Centre. I will also be captaining a team of 10 runners who will be representing St. John's Pride. Should be lots of fun!
Well, today i addressed a crowd of people at St. John's City Hall, not once, but twice, as part of the launch of the Pride week festivities. The noon hour event featured a flag-raising ceremony. I, along with several prominent members of the LGBT community, as well as a few politicians, addressed the crowd and the media. My speech focused mostly on transsexual issues, including our fight with government entities over fair access to health care, employment, housing, and human rights. I also lightened the crowd with a few wise-crack jokes at local politician Siobhan Coady, as well as local tv personalities Alan Hawco and Rick Mercer. The evening event was more of the same. Depicted here is me with Sioban (federal liberal member of parliament) and, in the middle, Shannie Duff, former mayor and current deputy mayor.
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
This is a really good article that gives a nice overview of the PRIDE event and most of the issues.
Don't forget that one of the most controversial issues in the news lately was the Department of Justice's refusal to add gender identity into the newly-amended Human Rights Act. This topic will definitely be highlighted at the seminar as well as the flag raising.
And by the way, as nice as this article is, it really doesn't belong in the 'lifestyle' section of the paper. Nobody choses to be LGBTQ as a lifestyle. We are born the way we are born. We are human beings just like anyone else. We aren't just about sexual orientation and gender identity. We all eat, sleep, and go to the bathroom just like everyone else. We are all part of the community. We all go or went to school; we all try to find good jobs. We all strive for strong physical and mental health. Some of us love music, some of us love sports. Some of us run businesses, some of us work for the government.
As unique as I may be in the eyes of many, I consider myself a regular St. John's native that enjoys the very same things about this city that so many others do. I feed the ducks at Kent's Pond on a regular basis; I will be running the Tely 10; I swim at the Aquarena; I will be at the Teddy Bear's Picnic as a volunteer; I attend concerts at Mile One Centre; I shop at the Avalon Mall.
The only 'lifestyle choice' happening here is that the bulk of society continues to express hatred, discrimination and phobia towards LGBTQ people, including our Government by way of their refusal to update policies, procedures and legislations to conform with global best-practices. what separates me as a transperson is that I can't seem to get what I need out of our Health Care system and our Human Rights system, and I face discrimination and exclusion from society without just-cause. Anyway, PRIDE is for everyone, as this article says. For everyone out there who may feel afraid of the unknown. Please come out to these PRIDE events and mingle with members of the LGBTQ community. You will find out that most of us are kind human beings who love life and love our city.
Monday, July 12, 2010
Thursday July 15th:
12:00pm Flag Raising at City Hall
Come on out to city hall as Pride Coordinators, LGBTQ individuals, community partners and politicians open pride week and raise the pride flag.
7:00pm Opening Reception Foran Room, City Hall
A reception at city hall to mingle with fellow LBGTQ individuals and supporters. Light refreshments will be provided.
Friday July 16th:
9:00 pm Party at the Breezeway, Everyone's welcome
Saturday July 17th 2010:
11:00am Scavanger Hunt
6:30 pm Big Gay Boat Tour
Sunday July 18th:
9:00 am Planned Parenthood Walk for Respect
1:00pm Pride Picnic Bannerman Park
Monday July 19th:
6:30-8:30pm : Film Night at the Women's Centre
9:00pm Haunted Hike
Tuesday July 20th:
12:00pm Same-sex assault pamphlet launch
7:00pm Big Gay Bonfire
Wednesday July 21st:
6:30-8:30pm All Ages Bowling
Thursday July 22nd:
12:00-4:00pm Blood Drive
8:00pm Trivia/ Youtube Karaoke
Friday July 23rd:
10:30am LGBTQ Pride Citizen of the Year Award
9:00pm Guerrilla Queerfare
Please join the Guerrila Queerfare group http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=24878706861&ref=ts for more information.
2 nights before, members of this group will be sent details about the bar where the event will be hosted and the colour that people can wear.
Saturday July 24th:
12:00pm-4:00pm Seminar / Educational Forum
9:00pm Pride Dance
Sunday July 25th:
1:00pm Pride Parade
2:00pm Drag Races
3:00pm Pride QueerBQ
Sunday, July 11, 2010
the run started slow and sluggish, and i even had to take a bathroom break at 4k!. then i finally got warmed up. after hitting 5k at 33.30, i managed to pick the pace up. i sprinted in the last 3 k in 16.20, to sneak in just under 50. it was fun to see some old colleagues from the running community that i hadn't spoken to since last year.
oh well, after running just 5.7k over the past 2 weeks, it's nice to be back!
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
but i have signed up for a few local races, to try to get my butt out the door for a run more often on the weekends!
Mews 8k - July 11 (will be a bittersweet run as last year i ran along side of Kim in her debut race. She is on the shelf indefinitely these days to due severe cluster headache problems.
Sexual Health Charity 5k - July 18 (highly doubt i will successfully defend my title this year, but this is more of a fun run for charity, than anything else. I am actually part of a St. John's, PRIDE team, so that will be fun too!)
Tely 10 - July 25 (my long-awaited return to Newfoundland's most popular road race, this 16.09k jaunt down topsail road into the city from the town of Paradise has grown into a mega event with an expected 2500 runners. AFter running 70 and 74 minute Telys in 2007 and 2008, respectively, (and finishing near the front of the pack), it will be strange feeling to be near the back this year, but at least i can say that i ran it again!
Newfoundland Provincial Marathon - Sept 26 - no idea how i am going to find a way to complete this tough run, but then again, i managed to get thru 5 in 34 days this spring when i was convinced i couldn't even do 1. this will be 4 newfoundlands in a row, and 25th overall. a nice milestone, and a nice way to go out, if in fact, this is my last marathon.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
Jan - 271.60 k - 271.60 k
Feb - 205.90 k - 477.50 k
Mar - 258.80 k - 736.30 k
Apr - 213.70 k - 950.00 k
May - 230.20 k - 1180.20 k
June - 147.00 k - 1327.20 k
5 official marathons:
04/19/10 - Boston Marathon - 5.16.55
04/25/10 - Big Sur Marathon - 4.49.49
05/09/10 - Fredericton Marathon - 4.36.33
05/16/10 - Mississauga Marathon - 4.56.03
05/23/10 - Halifax Marathon - 4.35.54
the worst numbers of them all:
Jan 1/07 - 238
Jul 1/07 - 183
Jan 1/08 - 178
Jul 1/08 - 166
Jan 1/09 - 188
Jul 1/09 - 187
Jan 1/10 - 198
Jul 1/10 - 217