While Ty and family were still here, Ty and I went to the hotel that Donna and Cole were staying at to eat dinner and swim one day, and had a small early birthday celebration for Ty at my house another day (his birthday is on the 20th), and then they left on the the 16th.
Later that day (the 16th), my mom and I went to the Montreal Anarchist Bookfair. There were tons of people there! Outside of the building where it was being held there were groups of people standing around talking, and a small camping tent set of where several people had crammed themselves in and were playing instruments. Inside, it was packed. In the main hallway people were sitting all over the floor, talking, laughing, playing guitar and banjo, putting dreads in each others hair... I loved the style of the people there. There were tons of people with dreadlocks, some with mowhawks or mullets. There were tons (and I do mean TONS) of awesome piercings, and tons of cool DIY punk clothing. As my sister pointed out, pretty much the only people who are anarchists are punks and hippies, so was it really a big surprise that those were the prevalent people there? :-P My mom and I were both equally happy with the wonderful atmosphere there and all of the cool stuff to see. We wandered around, happily looking at/reading a wide range of radical books, zines, pamphlets, stickers, buttons, t-shirts, and similar paraphernalia. Many things were sold on a sliding scale, and many things were free, or simply by donation. There was also a decent amount of stuff on green anarchy, ecology, and similar stuff, which made me very happy! Finally, between my mom and I, we got Manifestos on the Future of Food and Seed, Stolen Harvest, Earth Democracy, Days of War, Nights of Love, and Expect Resistance. I was thrilled when my mom decided to get Days of War, Nights of love since it's a book that I myself have wanted to read since it was recommended to me last year by the guy who got me interested in green anarchy. Both that book and Expect Resistance are published by CrimeThinc., which I love. Their rebellious, sarcastic, energetic style makes their stuff compulsively readable, and what they have to say is virtually always thought provoking.
My mom and I have started reading Days of War, Nights of Love together, taking turns reading bits out loud, and it's already sparked some very interesting conversations. For instance, last night we read the chapter on hygiene and "cleanliness" which was very interesting, and then moved onto the chapter about sex, which sparked a long discussion. Strange thing to be discussing with my mom, eh? When I was in my preteens and early teens, there was so much stuff that made me uncomfortable to talk about. Sex, drugs, bodily functions, just tons of stuff. But as I made different friends, I became desensitized to a lot of stuff, and that's basically what I'm still doing now. I really don't like it when something makes me uncomfortable to talk about, because I honestly believe that everything should be able to be discussed with comfort, and I want to be able to do that! So I'm actually almost happy when I find something that makes me feel uncomfortable, because then I can push through that feeling and be happy in the knowledge that I've just broadened my horizons a bit by having an interesting conversation that I could have shied away from do to a bit of uncomfort! It also helps that my mom is amazing cool, open-minded, and as much a best friend as a mother. I know that it makes both of us very happy that we have such a strong relationship, and can discuss things comfortably with each other that most teens/parents would never dream of talking to their parents/teens about! It also makes me very happy that my mom agrees with so much of what I have to say. It really wasn't all that long a stretch for me to get into as radical views as I have, since my mom has always been a wee bit "radical" herself! ;-)
In other news, well, there isn't really much news that I can think of at the moment, actually. Oh, wait, perhaps there is... I've been thinking a lot lately about issues of sexual orientation, and similar things. For the longest time it seemed to me that many of my friends, and simply people I knew, were wrestling with issues of sexual identity, and how society looked on their sexual orientations, how whether the fact they were bisexual or homosexual changed the way people viewed them or treated them, as well as gender issues, and issues of how society expected them to act in a very narrow way because of what gender they were assigned at birth. I always found it slightly ironic (as well as sad) that I was very sure of my heterosexuality and felt entirely female, yet had some of the most open-minded and accepting parents I knew, and the people I knew who did not identify as heterosexual had parents who were very homophobic, close-minded, and unaccepting.
For the longest time I've said, and believed, that those boxes of straight/gay/bi were too restricting, and unrealistic. People are people, and I think that matters a lot more then gender, straightness, gayness, or any other label. People are attracted to people, and some people simply tend to be attracted to certain types of people (I am including gender in types of people, I just don't think it's necessarily the most important part). However, as much as I knew that to be true, I'm not sure I fully absorbed it, because a little while ago I realized that I wasn't as "straight" as I thought myself to be. I was, and am, attracted to girls somewhat, I'm just attracted to a wider range of guys. For about a week, I fussed over that. I'd put myself into too tight a box, then felt insecure and a bit lost when I realized that the way I describe myself and show myself to the world wasn't quite right. But luckily, after about a week of that, I realized that I was being silly. I didn't need to worry about labels or anything else. As I already knew, people are attracted to people, and it really isn't all that important, or even necessarily healthy, to try and attach a ton of labels to myself. Now the closest to labeling I've come lately is in a rather interesting conversation involving each person's percentage of attraction to either sex. I've decided that I'm 85% attracted to guys, 15% girls. And for some reason, having something solid like that in my head makes me happy. I think it's because I find it very important to be able to describe myself to people in words, and when I can't do that it makes me unhappy...
Anyway, I'm going to head off now, and perhaps spend some time outside while the sun is still out... :-)