Dangerous Compassions

who’s Venn and why does he get all the diagrams?

I made a Venn diagram.  Not sure I ever made one before.  I was working on a new zine, and there was stuff about community.  A strong impulse stirred inside me, to diagram it!

venn diagram

I thought “me” should be small, since I am small, but the the smallness caused difficulty of the circles.  No matter.  Not bad, for a first try.  I like the ovals.  I like the categories I chose.

Hours later I showed it to Ming.  Well, first I asked, “Hey, honey.  Do you like Venn diagrams?”

He smiled.  “The way I like Venn diagrams slightly overlaps with the way I really like Venn diagrams!”

It was cute to see him work for his joke.  “Cool!” I said, happy he might like my diagram.  “I see your circular logic there.”

He came to me and looked at my diagram.

“Friends shared–friends, penpals, ancestors…”  He was looking carefully.  “Why does zinesters not include you?” he asked.

“Because…  It’s an imperfect Venn diagram,” I said.  “I was just trying it out.  I could make a better one.”  Then I smiled at him.

“I like it!” he said.

“Yay!” I said.

the Y

I applied for the Y’s reduced rate.  I had to do a form and provide my financial details.  They gave me a free week while my application is processed.

Ming and I walked the track a few laps, the indoor track.  That’s because it’s summer and I wanted the coolness.  Some big dude runners ran by, but mostly we had it to ourselves.

It was fun.  I was nervous.  I’d been scared beforehand about the norms of the place.  Was it ok for me to go in wearing no bra.  Was a skirt ok.  I was afraid of getting kicked out.

We had this whole conversation about norms and how they make no sense to me, and I’m terrified of messing it up.  I try to figure out the social rules, and I’m fucking clueless.  Ming talked it out with me.  How it was and wasn’t like visiting someone in prison.  I guess I got traumatized by our trips to see my cousin in prison.

We walked only about 20 minutes, but that was ok for a first try, and we’d already walked half an hour in the morning.  In the morning, I got a new shawl.


Beautiful beyond be-leaf?  Oh, sweet eucalyptus.  It smelled kind of like my homeland in the rain.

every rose has its thorn

Also in the news, I was drinking rosehip tea, and there was something in my mouth I did not expect.  It felt flat and big.

I spit it out and looked at my hand.  Guess what.


There was a thorn!  I showed Ming the thorn.  “It’s red,” he said.

“Yes, it’s dyed from the tea.”

“Poor thorn,” he said.  “I’m glad you didn’t swallow it!”

“Yeah!” I said.  “We don’t want to puncture me!”


Pour your rosehip tea thru a meshie.  Do not filter with your lips.  Or harvest it yourself and don’t let thorns go in there.  Good luck, vitamin c seeker.

By Laura-Marie

Good at listening to the noise until it makes sense.

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