Happy Year of the Cock!
Shortly after noon on Jan. 20, Inauguration Day, the White House website page on LGBT Rights disappeared. In fact, the site was completely scrubbed of all vestiges of President Obama’s legacy including information on National HIV/AIDS Strategies, health care, global warming, immigration and all the rest. And, although each new administration removes its predecessor’s policies and replaces them with its own, the current site has no revised LGBT statement.
There was also news of the proposed end of funding for NPR, PBS and the National Endowment for the Arts. A dismal .012% of the national budget, it was apparent the cut was not intended to save taxpayer money. Rather, the real motive is to squelch intelligent discourse through thought, facts (as opposed to “alternative facts”), science and the critical minds of artists. It was another strategic act of institutionalized dumbing-down.
Other news items of the day included the DC gays’ DeploraBall, a black tie fête of wealthy and white LGBTs. One guest arrived as a tuxedoed Pepe the Frog, the anti-immigration mascot of the Neo-Nazi Alt-Right. Locally, a house in Oshkosh flew a Nazi flag. Speaking of Nazis, the day’s only redeeming moment was that “Pow! Right in the Kisser!” sucker punch delivered by an unknown antifa to white supremacist Richard Spencer’s smug face.
The bleak inauguration as a backdrop, I was chatting with a friend about the pervasively negative impact the past year had on so many levels and lives, even beyond the election. I mentioned all the unhappy relationships among our friends. There was a lot of tumult in most of them, including his, as well as many a messy break-up. One ugly separation went on for months with the ex sending hundreds of nasty texts (at least back before technology he would have eventually run out of postage stamps)
Then, my buddy, who is Asian, matter-of-factly says, “Well, of course. It’s the Year of the Monkey.” Indeed it is. Apparently, true to the monkey’s unpredictable behavior, there tends to be more mayhem in the months ruled by that particular primate than, well, a barrel of monkeys—think of that Cary Grant movie Monkey Business, “throwing a monkey wrench into the works,” or Curious George, (or Bi-Curious George, for that matter).
Mercifully, the new lunar year is just days away so positive change is in the offing. Come Jan. 28, we’ll be celebrating the Year of the Cock. Like Western astrology’s star signs, there are various characteristics attributed to the lunar calendar’s cast of a dozen animals. The elements of earth, wood, water, metal and fire come into play as well. This year, the cock’s element will be fire. That should portend our hard work, courage and determination in facing what will certainly be a challenging year of resistance. Consider those traditional idioms like “cock sure,” “cocky” or that lesbian musical duo Bitch and Animal’s hit song “Best Cock on the Block.” (It’s a pity they broke up.)
Still, the New Year won’t necessarily bring good fortune for all. The cock, in relationship with most other signs, is a beneficial and lucky animal, unless, like the new guy in the White House, you’re a dog.