Thursday, January 24, 2013


Tucson Weather Today



-  Designed for or suitable to both sexes: unisex clothing; unisex hairstyles.
-   Not distinguished or distinguishable on the basis of sex; androgynous in appearance.
-  Elimination or absence of sexual distinctions.

Unisex refers to things that are suitable for either gender, but can also be another term for gender-blindness.

The term was coined in the 1960s and was used fairly informally. Though the combining form uni- is from the Latin unus meaning one, the term seems to have been influenced by words such as united and universal where the uni- prefix takes on the sense of shared. In this sense, it can be seen as meaning shared by both sexes.

Hair stylists and beauty salons that serve both men and women are often referred to as unisex. This is also typical of other services that traditionally separated the sexes, such as clothing shops.

According to Wikipedia: A unisex public toilet, also known as a unisex toilet, unisex bathroom, family toilet, or gender-neutral bathroom, is a public restroom or toilet that is available for use by either the male or female gender, including family restrooms for family or elderly use. Unisex toilets can be used by all persons, regardless of gender identity. Unisex toilets may be built by developers to save costs; instead of building two separate facilities, they only need to build one or one type, which may save costs as well as reduce space. Where it is impractical to have separate facilities, such as in airliners, trains, or buses, unisex toilets are used.

My first formal introduction to a unisex toilet came when I was forty years old, circa 1980, when I was a dormitory resident student at Valparaiso Technical Institute located at Valparaiso, Indiana. One night as I was standing in the (Men's?)) restroom before one of the urinals, a tipsy teenage female from a wild party in a room down the hall came bustling in and entered one of the stalls, giving me no more than a passing glance. Before the night was over, this event recurred twice again.

In the thirty-plus years since that time, I have had occasion to us the facilities at other unisex public restrooms.

If this becomes the norm, I believe that I will have no qualms about it.


I received some emailed comments regarding Portents, the Flash Fiction story I posted in yesterday's blog entry. It seems that most of these responders liked the story, and even the few negative comments, those pointing out the story's 1950s era atmosphere (Sad Sack, etc.) were helpful; they are things for me to keep in mind for possible future revisions.

Feedback, to a writer, even a writer of Flash Fiction, almost always proves to be extremely valuable. And I sincerely thank those of you who offered their critiques and opinions.

A few years back I tried my hand at writing limericks. Below is one of those attempts:

Whenever a Brit says, "whinge",
I shudder, I shake and I cringe.
In the States, we say, "whine",
Which to me is perfectly fine --
A Yank will never say, "whinge".

Copyright 2008 Gene Chambers



Ernest Borgnine
Born Jan. 24, 1917
Died: July 8, 2012

Ernest Borgnine was an American film and television actor whose career spanned more than six decades. He was an unconventional lead in many films of the 1950s, winning an Oscar in 1955 for Marty. On television, he played Quinton McHale in the 1962–1966 series McHale's Navy and co-starred in the mid-1980s action series Airwolf, in addition to a wide variety of other roles. Borgnine earned an Emmy Award nomination at age 92 for his work on the series ER.

In 1951, Borgnine received his big break in From Here to Eternity (1953), playing the sadistic Sergeant "Fatso" Judson, who beats a stockade prisoner in his charge, Angelo Maggio (played by Frank Sinatra). Borgnine built a reputation as a dependable character actor and played villains in early films, including movies like Johnny Guitar, Vera Cruz and Bad Day at Black Rock.

Borgnine's film career flourished through the 1960s, 1970s and 1980s, including roles in The Flight of the Phoenix (1965), The Dirty Dozen (1967), Ice Station Zebra (1968), The Poseidon Adventure (1972), Emperor of the North (1973), Convoy (1978), The Black Hole (1979) and Escape from New York (1981).

He was also known for being the original voice of Mermaid Man on SpongeBob SquarePants from 1999 to 2012.

Born Jan. 24, 1943
Died: Aug. 9, 1969

Sharon Marie Tate was an American actress. During the 1960s she played small television roles before appearing in several films. After receiving positive reviews for her comedic performances, she was hailed as one of Hollywood's promising newcomers and was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for her performance in Valley of the Dolls (1967). She also appeared regularly in fashion magazines as a model and cover girl.

Married to film director Roman Polanski in 1968, Tate was eight-and-a-half months pregnant when she was murdered in her home, along with four others, by followers of Charles Manson on August 9, 1969.

Born Jan. 24, 1949
Died: Mar. 5, 1982

John Adam Belushi was an American comedian, actor, and musician. He is best known as one of the original cast members of the hit NBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live and as the co-star and co-creator of the hugely successful motion picture The Blues Brothers. He was the older brother of James "Jim" Belushi. He was known for his brash, energetic style and raunchy humor. During his career he had a close personal and artistic partnership with fellow SNL comedian and author Dan Aykroyd.

Belushi died on March 5, 1982 in Hollywood, California after overdosing on a mixture of cocaine and heroin at the age of 33.

Born Jan 24, 1941
Age:  71 years old

Neil Leslie Diamond is an American singer-songwriter with a career that began in the 1960s. As of 2001, Diamond had sold over 115 million records worldwide including 48 million in the United States alone. He is considered to be the third most successful adult contemporary artist ever on the Billboard chart behind Barbra Streisand and Elton John.

Diamond was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame in 1984 and into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2011. Additionally, he received the Sammy Cahn Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000 and in 2011 was an honoree at the Kennedy Center Honors. He has had eight number one hit singles: "Cracklin Rosie", "Song Sung Blue", "Desiree", "You Don't Bring Me Flowers", "Love on the Rocks", "America", "Yesterday's Songs", and "Heartlight".


If modesty disappeared, so would exhibitionism.
--Mason Cooley

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