After the music class

Thanks to the patronage of her DadDad, we enrolled the lil’ monkey and her peanut brother in a local Music Together class, a thrill for us all. Okay, a qualified thrill. In class, the LM does her best impersonation of Michigan J. Frog, the one-hit wonder of the Warner Brothers’ cartoon “One Froggy Evening,” pasted below. Michigan J. Monkey sings every damn song from the CD at home, even plays them on kazoo while “reading” the sheet music. Kid you not. Then at the class: Ribbit.

Though she will dance.

If you’re not already a Michigan J. Frog fan, I won’t give away the plot, you really just have to watch all seven minutes of it. Especially if you’re at work.

Making it up as we go along


In my “It’s all relatives” post last week, I neglected to clarify that the group of LGBT parents to whom I was primarily (though not exclusively) referring was “intentional” queer parents: people whose families are planned and realized from inside their queer relationships. The phrase “queer family-making” carried the burden, but too obliquely.

The ever-astute Dana Rudolph clarified that distinction, and noted that “intentional” parenthood characterizes some, but by no means all families in the current “gayby” boom. Many kids are born into heterosexual families, before one or another parent comes out and continues to raise them. Significantly, at least as of the moment, families planned and realized from within LGBT community skew towards the white and the middle class on up, Dana notes, citing research by Gary Gates, of UCLA’s Williams Institute on Sexual Orientation Law and Public Policy (himself cited in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article about which she posted).

All this inspired me to dust off and enliven a page that had long been in the hopper: a wee LesbianDad Glossary, now gracing the primary page links stretching across the base of the header up there (around about my right armpit, actually). Several factors spurred this glossary:

Read moreMaking it up as we go along

Weekend bonus shot, 07.21.07

President Poopyhead, Berkeley, CA.

T-shirt available here at Baby Wit, for the fashion forward set. The link’s prompted by this image’s appearance as a comment thread reference at Daily Kos (Chrisc’s “I’d like to see… him [Romney] kiss this baby without reading his t-shirt.”) Could a Baba be prouder? The shop sells a raft of gems, a sampling of which are shown below.

It’s all relatives

Clockwise, from upper right: friend, sister, mother’s partner, mother, and sister-in-law send welcome.

[Cross-posted at the Family Pride Blog.]

Your Gamete, Myself

Many of you will have read Peggy Orenstein’s cover piece in this past Sunday’s New York Times Magazine, “Your Gamete, Myself.” For those who didn’t, or who just now linked to it and balked when you saw that it spans nine pages online, here’s a synopsis: Orenstein, an astute writer on matters feminist and maternal, looks at the medical and social evolution of egg donor conception. She interviews several families (mostly the mothers therein) who conceived their kids using donor eggs. She talks to doctors at fertility clinics, and weaves in anecdotal notes from her own journey to motherhood.* Throughout, she explores the ethical and emotional ramifications (to parent and child) of donor egg conception. She muses about how, in ways both like and unlike sperm donor conception and adoption, donor egg conception blurs the “bright lines” that ordinary, “biogenetic” parenthood draws around parents’ “genetic, biological and social relationships to their children.” Is this a good thing or a bad thing? I have an answer, though you’ll have to wade through my own thicket of paragraphs to find out.

Those queer and queer-cognizant readers that do mosey through the entirety of Orenstein’s piece might find themselves nodding and murmuring in assent to this or that point, all the while waiting patiently for the moment when Orenstein would of course consider how queer family-making sheds a bright light from a fresh angle on the myriad emotional issues she’s examining. After all, we couldn’t be bigger boosters of alternative conception, both via egg- and sperm-donation. “Ah,” these readers might have said to themselves as they watched paragraph after paragraph slip by, “the sly dog! Orenstein’s holding her big guns ‘til the last section of the article!”

And many of these readers will have, like me, scratched their heads when they arrived at the end of the piece having never seen the word “lesbian” or “gay” in print. Well I have just one thing to say to that: lesbianlesbianlesbian!

Okay, maybe I have more than one thing to say.

Read moreIt’s all relatives