Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Before anything else, let me recommend a trip via the link at the right to Duncan's blog, welshcake. He has written a most beautiful and well-deserved tribute to the late Joe Orton, the tag being the revelation of a most appropriate memorial to the late playwright that fully honors his wickedly irreverent, anarchic and naughty sense of fun.

Today is the day: CBS Radio News announced this morning that some time before noon the Massachusetts legislature is going to announce its decision on same-sex marriage. If it passes, we will be the first state (we're a Commonwealth actually, but who's counting?) in the United States to have fully legalized gay and lesbian marriage.

I really don't know how to predict this one. There are states with larger gay populations and states that have made bolder pro-gay moves. But California also has a very large constituency of extreme conservatives, and New Hampshire, in spite of the Gene Robinson installation, is still dominated by the rabidly reactionary and bigoted Manchester Union Leader. That newspaper is actually getting worse, something I did not think possible in the years after the demise of the infamous William Loeb and his widow who kept the status quo. But the paper is hopeless except as a mouthpiece for the rantings of the most extreme Right. It seems to me that here in highly- to ultra-liberal Massachusetts, same-sex marriage has the best shot at the moment of any state in the country.

The home computer is down, and I mean down all the way. It became unstable about a month ago and, very thankful that I had gone ahead and purchased an extended warranty, I began a series of calls to Dell technicians that led to multi-hour sessions repairing this or deleting that. After each session the machine might or might not worrk somewhat normally for a day or so but then it crashed worse than before. I had been warned both by a friend who is my salvation on matters computorial and by the Dell boys
that the ultimate fix would be to wipe the hard drive clean and start all over. To that end, said dear friend helped me download all my files, address book and bookmarks to floppys
(floppies?--spelling is changing so fast now). So last night the latest of the Dell techs had me wipe the hard drive clean only to discover that the Windows xp restore disc provided with the machine at purchase is completely defective. So there will be another delay while a new disc is sent and we will try to rebuild the system. Each of these calls has taken a whole evening between waiting for the Dell tech to become available (up to 35 minutes) and doing the work. I am very much on the verge of demanding that a Dell technician come to the house and do the work to restore the mess the others seem to have made of things while I do something productive with my time.

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