what is lvlmnly, anyway?


I’d noticed that I was getting (a very small few number, but nevertheless pretty much 100%, of) referrals from scatterplot (thanks!!) , but couldn’t figure out where they were coming from. Then I glanced at their blogroll and noticed “love lemonly” – what a coincidence, I thought! that’s so similar to my blog name! and then I clicked on it and it WAS my blog!

Which reminded me of the myriad interpretations of those letters, and how it became a fun game back when it was my vanity plate. If I were truly procrastinating, instead of only partly procrastinating, I might even delve into the basement to find it and take a photo.

But anyway, I’ve heard many versions (my fave: lovely manly), but love lemonly is new to me. Just to set the record straight, I read this as live liminally, but (as should be or become clear) I’m super tickled by the multiple interpretations. Almost like a Rorschach test, but more fun.

I don’t actually remember where I came up with it, or realized that those letters worked, but I was in Seattle, probably before I finished college. It also probably had something to do with a lecture by my undergrad mentor. She was probably talking about gay rights & representations or something* and mentioned one of her standards of liberation was libertas quirkas, the freedom to be quirky.**

fremont troll

anyway, lvlmnly means a lot of different things to me, but one of the main things is the constant reminder that the boundaries we draw between things are rarely natural or logically necessary. because i’m generally one of those authority-pleasing types, it also helps me remember to push the boundaries occasionally. it captures my sense of being between things, on many different levels at different times in my life, something I have a hard time enjoying***, but often need to experience. i’m usually on the fringes of many different social circles; i’m also usually on the fringes of many different disciplines, and enjoy the perspective i get from both. i’m uncomfortable with labels on my (and others’) choice of partners, and in the hypothetical forced-choice quiz questions will always pick queer over lgbt. and similarly with reified notions of gender (or race or whatever), generally opting for performative explanations over naturalized ones. for example. (by the way, just read a great book by julie bettie, women without class, that i think does a great job of integrating ethnographic research with performative identity theory.)

there are probably more things i’m forgetting to add to this, but (in the interest of maintaining the illusion of only partly procrastinating) i’ll leave those for another day.

*did you ever hear that joke about how reading exams is like seeing your lecture notes come back to you in cartoon form? yeah.

**i never knew until just now that that’s also the slogan on the fremont rocket. i’m including a picture of the troll because … i like it better, and it’s my damn blog. yes, that’s a real life size beetle under there.

*** for example, i always have and probably always will unpack my suitcase into the dresser in hotels.

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2 Comments on “what is lvlmnly, anyway?”

  1. jeremy Says:

    Yeah, I figured the letters were supposed to sound out to something, but I couldn’t figure out what, so I just guessed.

  2. auderey Says:

    not a bad guess, at that. better than some of the things my mother came up with!

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