Saturday, September 27, 2008

Dead Air.

As both of you that read this may have noticed, I haven't really been posting to this blog anymore. I'm kind of too busy to keep up, so don't be surprised if I never come back or just sort of toss something up here sporadically.


Friday, August 15, 2008

If I Didn't Already Despise American Apparel

I found this gem of an article on the Feministing community about the founder of American Apparel.

Apparently he has multiple sexual harassment lawsuits because he likes to go to meetings in his underwear and take his wang out in the office.

Unfortunately, that article sounds like it's making excuses for him and almost glorifying his actions. I'm not. He's a disgusting human being and if I ever bought their stuff I would stop now.

I mean, I already don't buy their shirts because they run so damn small I can barely cram myself into an XXL (I wear an L or XL in other brands). This just gives me another reason.

But not too long ago I was desperate for a job and a nearby AA store had a hiring sign, so I figured what the hell, it's work, and went in to apply. Instead of an actual application they gave me a slip of paper with an email address and instructions to send in my resume and 3 pictures of myself so they could "see my sense of style." I was tempted to send the exact same resume in twice, once with pictures of the real me and again with a different name and pictures of a very skinny person and see which they called back. But I couldn't figure out the logistics of doing that without someone figuring it out. I thought asking for photos before being hired was illegal. At the very least it's unethical.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Glad To See I'm Not The Only One Who Noticed

The discrepancies in male vs. female Olympic uniforms.

Someone posted about it here. Their examples are all Australia's athletes, but apparently this is an international problem. Which makes sense because I'd assume the uniforms would be universal.

Also, creepy. The opening ceremony couldn't have just been awesome, we had to ruin it with that? Ugh.

By the by, the Indian women's beach volleyball team has declined to wear bikinis for cultural reasons. I think all the teams should decline to wear them for "I'm not buying into this patriarchal bullshit" reasons.

I do kind of love this line from a French volleyball player:

"Maybe once they see us, they will be inspired in the future to wear bikinis," she added.

They'll be inspired to throw away their thousands-of-years-old culture because they saw you in a two-piece? I don't know who she is, how she plays or what she looks like, but I don't think anyone can be so important/great at volleyball/gorgeous as to "inspire" the Indian team to do something so blatantly against their heritage. Merde.


Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Seemingly Random Catchall Sports Post

First off, yeah, bitches.

Second, I've decided that beach volleyball is incredibly sexist. Why exactly do the women have to wear bikinis, considering the men wear loose workout-style shorts and tank tops? Oh right, because women are primarily on this earth for the gratification of those watching them. You can't hand me any crap about the bikinis being more comfortable. If that were the case, men would be playing in banana hammocks. Yet they don't.

Also, the announcers are very focused on the family lives of female athletes. I really don't care that the two volleyball players both got married and may soon start families. It really has no bearing on the game.


Saturday, August 9, 2008

Why Do Entertainers Keep Dying?

Bernie Mac died this morning of pneumonia.

He was only 50.

Is it just me or have a lot of public figures been dying relatively young this year?

I mean, Heath Ledger is a pretty obvious one. Also, Tim Russert was only 58.

I know George Carlin was 74, but I still didn't think of him as old.


I Think They Were Building the Bird's Nest When I Was In China...

But I don't remember for sure.

Anyhoo, that opening ceremony was pretty much the coolest thing I've seen in a long time.

Two points:

-The little boy that walked out with Yao Ming that had saved some of his classmates during the earthquake was adorable. And his story came very close to making me cry.

-I kept yelling at the TV every time they showed George and Laura. Especially when they showed the two of them applauding the Iraqi athletes. I started yelling "you do NOT get to clap for them!" over and over. I really wanted a collective bird-flipping at them from the Iraqi team. But apparently they have more class and decorum than I do.


Thursday, July 31, 2008

One More Reason To Never Join The Military.

Well, this is just pathetic.

Apparently 40 percent of female soldiers in hospitals report being sexually assaulted. And, of course, a military doctor subpoenaed in the case was ordered not to show up to a hearing. Yet the Army is claiming they take sexual assault claims seriously? Something doesn't add up there.


Monday, July 28, 2008

Summer, Sex and Spirits

Tomorrow night is Summer, Sex and Spirits a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood of New York City. It's from 7-10 pm at the Museum of Sex on 5th Avenue at 27th Street.

I should be there volunteering. Woo.


A Sense of Community? Or Something.

You should go read my post to the Feministing community blog.

It rocks, if you ignore the fact that I wrote it at 1 AM and there are a few errors that are completely glaring to me.

I misspelled "condescension." That's what I get for writing it in notepad first. No spell-check.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Asking and Telling

A House committee is looking to review and repeal don't ask don't tell. So gay people can actually be gay in service.

My concern though, would an overturn include protection against harassment from peers and higher-ups?


Where I Am

I'm not actually anywhere special.

But I haven't been updating this very often. I know both people reading this must be heartbroken.

I've been somewhat busy. Internship, part-time job, plus I've taken up knitting and trying to actually finish all the books I've bought and never read.

I'll be back sporadically.


Monday, July 21, 2008

Get Your Own Mariah Carey Bobblehead

Who was in charge of re-attaching her head? And why is she trying to remove it in the first place?

Seriously, my senile 16-year-old Bichon Frise with cataracts could do better Photoshop than this.


Sunday, July 20, 2008

On Giant Cans

Having huge boobs can be hard enough. Bra-wise, I mean.

Having huge boobs and a small back makes it practically impossible. Seriously, a year ago when I was a lot heavier I didn't have that hard a time. But my back has shrunk to "normal" and my boobs are still big (TMI? too bad) and that means I have to find something either ill-fitting or ridiculously expensive.

My mom just set me this link addressing exactly that. Well, not to much the expensive part as the actually finding something part (and the person who wrote this is worse off than I am - I'm still on the larger end of "normal" and find something occasionally).

And the evil clerks at Victoria's Secret laughed in her face. If I didn't already hate that store I would now.


Friday, July 18, 2008

Creepy = Emmy

If Michael Emerson doesn't win the Emmy for Outstanding Actor in a Drama Series, I'm going to stage a Lost-style revolt, complete with torches, stolen guns, polar bears and smoke monsters.

Why am I posting about TV again?


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Yeah That's The End.

Rumor has it William Peterson is going to leave CSI.

So basically, the show will be ending soon.


Monday, July 7, 2008

Cliques and Body Image

I saw this over at Big Fat Blog and then again at The F-Word. This study just came out saying that the "label" that a girl identifies with as a teenager is related to her body image.

"More specifically, girls identifying with athletic peers ('Jocks') were less concerned about their own weight and seemed less likely to be trying to control their weight. Girls identifying with non-conformist peers ('Alternatives') were more concerned about their weight and appearance and more likely to be actively trying to lose weight. The girls who identified with those who skip school and often get into trouble ('Burnouts') believed their peers valued thinness and dieting. Finally, girls who did not belong to any particular peer group were the most likely to use slimming strategies."

I'm not completely sure what I was. Probably a giant nerd, but that isn't mentioned. Out of those 3 options I guess I'll take the non-conformists. I don't remember many of my friends being that obsessed with dieting, honestly. If they were, they didn't talk to me about it. I was, but I dare you to show me a 16-year-old shopping in Lane Bryant who wasn't.


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Time Makes Me Want To Throw Things

They published an article about young women making "pregnancy pacts." Then they followed it up with another that ends with a veritable love letter to crisis pregnancy centers.

Click the expandy-thing to read my letter to the editor.

Nancy Gibbs did a disservice to women everywhere with her article "Give the Girls a Break." At the end, she credited so-called "crisis pregnancy centers" (CPCs) with "talk[ing] women out of having abortions and offer[ing] whatever support they can." While they do, in fact, aim to talk women out of abortions, what they offer is far from support.

These centers use scare tactics, pressure, and flat-out lies to keep women from making their own reproductive choices. Many CPCs deliberately position themselves very close to legitimate women's health clinics to cause confusion. They do whatever they can to trick women into entering their "clinic" instead of the real one, then once she is inside they try and scare and brainwash her so she can't make an informed choice. On the phone, they won't give out any information and will insist you visit the clinic.

Frequently CPCs won't even tell a woman whether or not she is pregnant, especially if she says she wants an abortion. They will instead sit her down and tell her all the "evils" of abortion, many of which are completely untrue. Their lobbies and waiting areas are full of religious and anti-choice propaganda, most of which is based on intimidation and blatantly false information. Women who have accidentally entered these places report harassment, as well as being forced to pray with center employees and even being followed home or later hassled by phone or mail. To any woman out there: if you find yourself in one of these centers get out immediately. Don't stop to tell anyone, don't wait for your test results; get out, find a legitimate clinic, and make your own informed decision.

These centers do not, in fact, help women of any age "take responsibility" for having sex. The best way to take responsibility for your sexual activity is to protect yourself with contraceptives, get regular health screenings and keep yourself informed of your reproductive choices, including both carrying to term and deciding to abort. Any choice a woman makes about her pregnancy is taking responsibility, and no woman should ever feel pressured or be lied to in order to sway her decision.


Monday, June 30, 2008

I Hate Judgmental Video Games

Here's a good editorial about Wii Fit.

It uses BMI (crap) to determine your goals and will give you weight-loss tips even if you enter "no change" in your weight loss preferences. Plus, once it measures your BMI (again, crap) it will change your Mii's body accordingly. And again, no matter what your enter as your goal, it will select a BMI (do I have to say it again? crap) goal for you. Apparently 22 is some sort of universal crap BMI magic number or something.

I wonder if it would give mine giant knockers. I mean, if it's trying to make your Mii's body more like yours...


Saturday, June 28, 2008

It Does Happen In Threes.

First, Tim Russert dies.

Then we lose George Carlin, one of the greatest comedians ever.

And now, we've lost the world's best and most adorable college mascot, Uga VI at age 9.

Rest in peace, badass puppy.

(I'll refrain from using terms like "the air-conditioned doghouse with a big bag of ice to lay on in the sky")

He was Georgia's "winningest" mascot.


Friday, June 27, 2008

My Dog Is Cuter Than All Others.

Don't question the cuteness.

She likes to help me clean.

And Barney's all, "wtf, mate?"


Express Yourself By Rendering Yourself Unable To Make Facial Expressions


Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Alex Trebek Is STILL A D-Bag

So tonight the final category is the Heisman Trophy.

As soon as Alex revealed it, he said "and the ladies just went 'augggh!'" To which my insides went "augggh!"

Because women NEVER pay attention to sports.


*EDIT* All three contestants got it right, including the two women (one of whom won). It was easy, name one of the two winners who share their last name with a U.S. President? Duh, all three of them said Reggie Bush. As did I. God, standing around making small talk at the end, I'd be like "So, you didn't think the girls would know sports, eh, douchebag Alex? Well, suck it."


R.I.P. George Carlin 1937-2008

George Carlin was one of my favorite comedians. He was incredibly offensive in a good way. He took topics that on the surface seem horrifying (see "Rape Can Be Funny") and talked about them in a way that was actually very insightful (in the rape one he actually takes on victim blaming for how stupid it is).

He talked about really important things, and took obvious pleasure in getting a rise out of people. But he was also hilarious. It's not easy to make people think and piss them off while at the same time making them laugh their asses off.

After the jump I've put up some clips of his routines, including his "Seven Words" bit.


I Need To Do Some Shopping.

First off, I am going to pay tribute to George Carlin soon. But I want to actually take some time to write something about him, because he deserves more than a quick mention.

Anyhoo, via an ad on Feministing, I have discovered Dogs 4 Democrats. I now feel I need to buy things for Zelda. Like an Obama collar (maybe after the convention)? Or how about some poop bags with Bush and Cheney's faces one them? They say "Mission Accomplished," which is as full of crap as the bags will be. Probably more so if you have a small dog with small poop.

And for cat people, there is "DemoCats" merchandise as well.

I guess I need money.


Monday, June 23, 2008

Alex Trebek Is A D-Bag

I'm a big geek and I pretty much watch Jeopardy! every day that I can be in front of my TV at 7 PM.

My least favorite part is where the contestants introduce themselves (I don't CARE what you do for a living - I just want the geeky trivia!). Today though, one of the contestants, a man named Sven, said that when he got married both he and his wife changed their last names.

Alex Trebek couldn't seem to wrap his head around that. He asked, "so Sven ---- [I didn't catch the last name] isn't your real name?" To which he was like, "It's my real name, just not my birth name."

(women change their names all the time when they get married, but never have to have that conversation. it's expected of us.)

I didn't catch if he said why he and his wife chose to do this, I was too busy thinking that he was a badass and that Trebek's reaction was incredibly stupid. Plus I was making dinner.

If I find a video of it later, I'll post it. But the episode just ended. He won, by the way.

*Edit*: Thanks to Google, it appears his "fake" last name is Sinclair.


Because They Have To.

A good letter in today's New York Times. Abortion providers continue to do their jobs despite harassment and injury for the simple reason that women out there need their services. It was in response to an article last week about a Kansas grand jury being (ab)used politically to convict abortion provider Dr. George Tiller. Tiller has been subject to harassment and was even shot in both arms for providing abortions.

As I tend to do whenever violence or harassment against abortion providers is mentioned, I'm going to invoke Barnett Slepian. When you Google his name the first hit is Wikipedia, the second is from and titled "Babykiller Barnett Slepian." You know, 11 years after his family watched him bleed to death on the kitchen floor. Cuz they're, you know, pro-life.


Sunday, June 22, 2008

I'm Back

And posting the only music video in recent history that has the potential to get me laid. haha.

It's also an obnoxiously catchy song that I might need in my iPod for 5K training.


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Taking a Break

In case you care, I probably won't be posting much for the next week or so. I'll have friends in town and most likely won't have as much free time to post.

Before I go, I feel like I should at least mention Tim Russert's death. I didn't always agree with him, but he was good at what he did, plus, he was a fellow Buffalo native and always spoke of that with pride. That's all.


Friday, June 13, 2008

R. Kelly Gets Off

Um, no pun intended.

R. Kelly was acquitted in his child porn case.

Given the evidence, I can't say that I'm surprised. The woman who is supposedly in the tape denied that it was her, plus there's the mole issue: R. Kelly has a large mole on his back and the man in the video does not.

One of the jurors said was positive that the man was R. Kelly but couldn't vote 'guilty' because the woman denied it was her.

Look, if he was having sex with a 13-year-old then, you know, ew. That's a problem. But the evidence in this case was weak at best, and I would say that "reasonable doubt" is an understatement.

Just because this involves possible statutory rape doesn't mean we can ignore the legal system and presume him guilty without proof.

I mean, I watch CSI. I've seen what will and won't stand up in court. Kidding.


Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Ugh, Gag

OK, I just noticed this on CNN's Political Ticker: an incredibly deep article claiming Scarlett Johansson has a crush on Obama. Why? Because she sends him emails, he personally responds and she is impressed by that.

I can see why she'd be impressed - I can't imagine someone on the Presidential campaign trail has a ton of free time to personally answer e-mails, considering he probably receives thousands a day. I would assume most people who e-mail him get either a) nothing or b) a form response. I'm sure her name on the message is motivation for a reply - because now there will be Political Ticker articles about what a great guy he is for personally responding to her.

But - crush? Seriously? I'm finding that a little offensive, because to me it's making the assumption that because a young woman is impressed by a man's actions, she must have some kind of romantic designs on him. The womenz don't have enough emotional levels to appreciate an action without some sort of "crush."

Maybe no one agrees with me, but this particular clip really got to my gag reflex.


John Cusack's MoveOn.Org Ad

I wuv him


Birth Control Under John McCain

Be afraid.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Money, Please

I have officially signed up for the Susan G Komen Race for the Cure. You can have the honor of donating on my behalf if you go to my personal page. Woo!


Because I'm Kind Of Obnoxious

I've decided to sign up for a 5K. Probably the Susen G Komen Race for the Cure in September (maybe I'll be able to run 3 miles without stopping by then, the most I've managed so far is 2). And I think I want to wear a shirt that has something on it making fun of the assumption that fat people can't run. Something in really annoying faux-internet-y language...something like "OMG! Teh fattyz running!!!!11one"

It's probably a stupid idea, but I like to cause trouble. It's what I do, and I do it well.


Saturday, June 7, 2008

Official Nomination-age

OK, technically it's not official until the convention in August, but today Clinton announced the end of her candidacy and endorsed Obama. She also asked her supporters to vote for him. I believe the official term is "called for party unity."

Or as I prefer, "end the tantrums about your favorite not winning and support the candidate that is closest to your views instead of allowing the polar opposite to get into office and destroy us all."

So let's hope we can get the same record voter turnout (or more!) in November and elect the Democratic ticket.

Hey, I even added Obama to my list of Facebook pages. And I still maintain he'd have to be stupid to pick anyone other than Clinton as his running mate. Want to talk party unity? Put the two candidates that drew out a record number of voters on the same ticket. It seems obvious to me. And I'm not the only one.


Counter Protest "The Pill Kills" Morons

It's the anniversary of Griswold v. Connecticut, which is the case that deemed it unconstitutional for any state to outlaw birth control. According to a comment on this Feministing post there will be anti-choice asshats protesting at various clinics around the country tomorrow (as usual, Planned Parenthood will be targeted) claiming "the Pill kills." A group known as Planning is Power! will host counter-protests at as many of the clinics as possible, including PPNYC locations in Manhattan and Brooklyn. Apparently the Bronx clinic won't be open so there won't be any protests.


The Manhattan Planned Parenthood (a.k.a. the Margaret Sanger Center) is at 26 Bleecker at the corner of Mott. The closest subway stops are the Bleecker St 6 stop and the Broadway/Lafayette B/D/F/V stop.

The Brooklyn PPNYC is at 44 Court St in Brooklyn Heights. The nearest subway stops are the 2/3/4/5/M/R to Court St/Borough Hall and A/C to High St. The F to York St is not too far away in DUMBO (woot). The Brooklyn PPNYC is not well marked and is hard to find from the street. I think it's between Remsen and Jorlemon. There's an office supply store right next to it if that helps. I have no idea where the protesting will take place, maybe across the street in that open area outside the courthouse?

Apparently it starts at 8 AM and goes until noon. I hope I can get up early enough because I plan to walk up there and check it out.


Creepy Abstinence Wear, Now At Low Prices

K-Mart is selling abstinence sweat pants.

Only to girls, of course. Because it doesn't matter how much screwing teenage boys are doing as long as we keep those delicate young ladies chaste and pure. So bring on the brainwashing sweatpants.

Next up, Wal-Mart sells "condoms cause cancer" thong panties. "The pill kills" camisoles? No?

Can I at least point out the irony that they chose sweatpants to promote abstinence, since they are pretty much the easiest and fasted kind of pants to remove?


Friday, June 6, 2008

Barrage of Links About Body Image

I'm too fat and lazy to do a long post about each of these. So have some blurby goodness.

Madonna hates her thighs. Cuz, you know, being Italian and pushing 50, plus having popped out a couple of kids doesn't allow for anything but stick legs and a complete lack of body fat. Maybe she was just trying to come across as someone women could "relate to?" (I know I would otherwise relate to fake British accents and doinking your personal trainer, it was just the thighs that stopped me)

An obviously unwell woman decided to blog about all the fat people at WisCon and blur out their faces to make it OK. Apparently in her (fake) apology she blamed an eating disorder for her hate. I thought those were internal? Oh, and oopsie, one of the targeted people saw it and responded.

I'm pretty sure this is the basis of the CSI episode "Big Middle."

Talk body image with former Olympian Dominique Dawes.

There's an identity to being fat. Which sounds a lot better to me than, say, considering self-inflicted injury at age 10 because of a particularly harsh teasing incident and still being on anti-depressants/having no self-esteem 14 years later thanks to the constant barrage of insults as a child. Hypothetically.

Personal fitness scores sent home from gym class to parents? Based on BMI, which is complete crapola, no less (like the Wii Fit?). Always good to add potential fodder to the merciless bullies of elementary schools. I'm pretty certain my parents knew I was the fat kid. Not to mention the fact that these tests (based on number of sit-ups/push-ups, and mile-run times) only measure some fitness. I'd have failed that but if there'd been a swim test I'd probably have done close to the best out of everyone despite having twice as much to pull through the water.

The craze for celebrity "baby-bump watching" is stupid and offensive on many levels.

More about the problems with Wii Fit.


The Glaring Results Of Cultural Brainwashing.

Hey guess what, if two people who supported Clinton are quoted in a article, they represent the exact sentiments of every other person who supported Clinton! That's right. Obviously because this one woman felt that the Democratic party treated the candidates unequally and the other plans to vote for McCain over Obama, that must be how we all feel!

Well, that's what this glimmering beacon of political enlightenment seems to think.

Despite the fact that, well, Clinton's campaign was treated differently than Obama's by both Democrats and the mainstream media, if we call anyone out on it we're just whining because we think she was entitled.

Never mind the fact that Clinton herself said weeks ago how stupid it would be for her supporters to vote for McCain over Obama. At some point, some exit poll somewhere said that some Clinton supporters would vote McCain (I notice we failed to mention that nearly as many Obama supporters said the same thing)! And there's one person quoted in that article! zomg it's true for everyone!!!!!11111one

Run your eyes really fast from left to right over my banner. See me roll my eyes? I'm doing it for real, too.


Wednesday, June 4, 2008

You've Probably Been Waiting For This.

Since the general assumption has been that I'm obsessed with the Clinton campaign, both of you reading this have probably wondered what my reaction to the final tally is.

First of all, I was never obsessed. I have an opinion and a preference and I'm not afraid to say what it is. But being in the minority in a lot of areas of my life, I was sought out as the go-to Clinton supporter and subsequently seen as a bastion of all knowledge and facts relating to her campaign. But obsessed? Not so much. Opinionated and obnoxious maybe.

Secondly, I have been saying since day one that I have no particular qualms with Barack Obama. In fact, come August (once the convention is over and his nomination is official) I will probably be sporting Obama campaign swag of some sort.

Trois, John Kerry wasn't my first choice in 2004 but I still voted for him. Of course, I voted by absentee ballot in Georgia so it probably wasn't counted anyway. But that's not the point.

I am, however, going to paste here something I just posted as a comment on Feministing. Basically I wrote about what the Clinton campaign (and the whole primary circus) taught me about this country.

It showed my how horrifyingly sexist our country still is. Even people I wouldn't have thought of as in any way misogynistic made comments about Clinton being "too political" or "too aggressive" and things of the same ilk, characteristics shared by all politicians but only lambasted in females.

It showed me that a woman can be the more experienced candidate but her career is taken far less seriously than a male competitor's is.

It showed me that a smart, strong, independent, qualified woman in a position of power still terrifies the American people at large.

I learned a woman can make a brilliant and intelligent speech or kick serious ass in a debate but the next day we will only her about her hairstyle, her pantsuit or her cleavage.

I learned you are either stony and emotionless or a hysterical woman; there is no middle ground.

I learned that if your husband cheats on you and you don't leave him, you are, by default, abusive to women and a sexual harasser. However, had you left him, you would be less of a woman or at least less qualified for the presidency for being divorced (that's my own speculation but I doubt anyone would disagree here).

I learned if your daughter helps you campaign, you are "pimping her out." Because there's no way that the daughter of a smart, strong woman would grow up to also be a smart, strong woman and be able to make her own decisions about politics.

I learned that the media's collective soft-kissing of a particular candidate can secure his future long before he ACTUALLY secures his future.

I learned that a female president will automatically attract terrorists, despite the fact that several countries we are allegedly fighting against have had women in positions of power, as have friendlier nations who have yet to be blown up for it.

I learned that people automatically assume that if you happen to choose the candidate that matches your sex or race (when there's actually an option other than white male) that is the only reason you are voting for them. It's not possible that you just prefer the candidate.

I learned that it's still OK to use derogatory sexist names and slurs while using parallel racial terms would earn you a one way trip to bloody-pulp-ville. Or banned-from-the-media-ville. Etc.

Mostly I learned that since the general public is still intimidated by smart, strong women, I should stand up and be one, not shut my mouth, not be a good little girl, and not take any of this sexist BS laying down, because if we just roll over and let it happen nothing will never change.

(I also decided that if Obama has any political savvy in him he'll pick Clinton for his veep, they would be completely unstoppable as a joint ticket in my opinion)


Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Wedding Shows Are Ridiculous

I hate weddings. Seriously. I don't have any strong desire to get married, but if I ever do walk that plank I'm thinking city hall or Vegas (seriously, why would you want to go to a church and/or blow 50 grand on one stupid day when you can have an ordained alien or Elvis marry you?). I hate wedding shows even more than I hate weddings...unless the shows come with an open bar, too.

Anyhoo, this video is awesome:

Edit: Random thought - someone should open a Transformers-themed chapel in Vegas. I mean, seriously, there would be nothing cooler than having Optimus Prime perform your wedding. If they did that I'd grab the next guy that passed me on the street and marry him. Or maybe it could be 80s-toy themed in general. That way you could choose, would you like to be married by Optimus, She-Ra, or Funshine Bear?


Saturday, May 31, 2008

Quickie: Oblivious Background Edition

I know at some point I must have made a conscious decision about the layout and design of this page, but I just looked at it and thought "has it always been blue?"

Methinks it's time for bed.


Friday, May 30, 2008

Have a Massive Dose of Adorable.

This is how old Zelda was the first time I met her (4 weeks). She looked a lot like the red ones in the video. Except mine is cuter because she didn't have her tail mutilated hacked off docked.

You can see why I had to adopt her.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

SEX! That Wasn't Just To Get Your Attention - This Post Really Is About Sex. Well, Sex Ed At Least

New York state's Healthy Teens Act got passed in Assembly and is headed over to the State Senate. This is where it needs some help, in part because last I heard the NYS Senate has a republican majority. Unless there was some shuffling with the whole Spitzer thing that changed the distribution, because it was only a one-seat majority. Anyhoo.

Basically, the bill establishes funding for New York schools to provide age-appropriate comprehensive sex ed. Right now there isn't a whole lot of money for sex ed in because Spitzer told the federal government to suck it when they offered funding - but only for abstinence programs (see? aside from that little hooker thing, he was actually pretty good), which as we all know, does more harm than good. You know, the idea that we're all dirty, used toothbrushes if we have sex (frayed bristles! fraaaaaaaaayed briiiiiiiistles!).

It's expensive to introduce a new sex ed program, especially a good one where the teachers are trained. So a lot of schools have nothing. This will offer schools the option to apply for funding to hire and train faculty and implement a program.

Family Planning Advocates of New York (whose conference I was at the day the Spitzer thing broke) issued a memo of support for the bill, and sent out forms to send to members of the State Senate in support of the bill.


Monday, May 26, 2008

Look, It's Some Stone, and Metal...and Tourists and Cars...

Thought I'd put up a few pictures from the Brooklyn Bridge 125th Birthday thing I went to last week (Thursday?).

As a side note, I just noticed that this is also my 125th post to this blog. How fun.



Quickie: Murdered Harry Potter Actor

I wonder how many people will read that and immediately panic that I meant Daniel Radcliffe or Rupert Grint. You know, out of both the people that will actually read this.

Rob Knox, who plays Marcus Belby in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was stabbed to death in a London bar. He was only 18.


The movie is coming out in November by the way. For all of my geekitude, and the 827 million times I've read the series (that's a precise count of course), I can't place where Marcus Belby fits into the story.


Cannes You Dig It?

I apologize for that; I couldn't stop myself.

So the Cannes film festival ended yesterday. This is the first time in 21 years that a French film has won the Palme d'Or. Laurent Cantet won for The Class, the last French film to win was Sous le Soleil de Satan in 1987.

Benicis del Toro won best actor for playing Che Guevara and Sandra Corveloni won best actress for Linha de Passe. The best feature film was Hunger, which is about someone dying after 66 days on a hunger strike.

Really the reason I mention Cannes is because of this article I found saying that this year's films show a trend toward women's empowerment and humanitarian issues rather than violence. Woot.


Quickie: Love Yourself, Screw Better

Sometimes it's astounding what Google Alerts will send me. My alert for "abortion" turns up some scary (and misinformed) crap. So does "feminism." And some of the others I have will send me things that don't even relate to the topic at hand.

Seriously. I just clicked on one that was some kid's Live Journal entry about how he had been accepted to the University of Georgia (woot! must be a smart kid). And I don't have a "University of Georgia" alert set up.

This one is actually on-topic, though. A blog post about how body image can affect your sex life. Though it seems like common sense to me. If you are self-conscious, sex won't be as good. Inhibitions are bad.

And it even came in attached to my "body image" alert. Way to get one right, Google.


Quickie: Nasal Genetics

This is a bit more personal than usual.

Since my grandmother died in March my dad's side of the family has been taking turns traveling upstate to clean out her house. I've sort of taken over the organization of thousands (not an exaggeration) of old photos. Which has taught me something...

...wait for it...

...all the men on my dad's side of the family have the same nose. The men. Yet somehow, I got it too.

I may not like it but at least now I see where it came from.

Oh yes, I did just post a blog entry about my nose.


Friday, May 23, 2008


OK, so I love me some yogurt. Really; it's tasty. But as we all know, it's also the quintessential female-oriented diet food. Which is incredibly annoying (I'm sorry, nothing that comes in a little plastic cup qualifies as "cute best man good").

Well, this video about the marketing of yogurt to women has been making the rounds of blogs that I read over the past few weeks:



Go Whatever-Wash-U's-Mascot-Is

So when Washington University announced it was giving an honorary degree to anti-feminist, anti-woman, right-wing assface Phyllis Schlafly, students and faculty were (rightfully) horrified. There are several Facebook groups against the degree and there was lots of debate on how to go about opposing her.

About 75% of the 2800-person graduating class plus several faculty members stood up and turned their backs while she was being given her degree (got that little fact from Feministing). Ignore Wolf Blitzer's condescending douche-y "What's the controversy this time? [sigh]" comment and focus on the story.

("A bunch of losers"? Stay classy, Phyllis Schlafly)

Also, photos.

Isn't accepting an honorary degree (and having her own Bachelor's and law degrees) hypocritical of her? She thinks women should stay out of the workforce and be at home, why isn't she leading by example? She should have refused her degree on the grounds that she doesn't want to be treated like a man.

In case you missed it, this is a woman who said it's perfectly acceptable for a man to rape his wife.


Ellen Is Getting Married Now That She Can

Because California is one of the few states that doesn't suck. I'm looking at you, New York, it seems like you should be next. Anyhoo, here's a video.

She also took on John McCain over gay marriage:


Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Dorky Charm City Cakes Love

I went to volunteer at the Milkbone 100th anniversary event with Animal Haven today. I'm a big dork because I was very excited that they had a cake from Charm City (a.k.a. the bakery on Ace of Cake) shaped like a Milkbone. Not only did I get to have a (very tiny) piece, I briefly met Geoff.


If you've never watched Ace of Cakes, I highly recommend it. It's the best show about stoner cake bakers I've ever seen.


Friday, May 16, 2008

The Sweetie Thing On Video

With thanks to Feministe


Thursday, May 15, 2008

Aww, Hey Sugar

Obama had to apologize to a female reporter in Michigan not only for failing to answer her question but also for calling her "sweetie."

I know some will think this is a non-issue (look at the 241 tools who commented on that article), but I personally hate being called "sweetie" (or any derivative thereof). Especially by someone I don't know. It's one of those out-of-date diminutive nicknames that goes only to women. It's degrading and implies women's place as the complacent, innocent, sweet, non-threatening good little girls we're supposed to be. And it makes me want to gag.

I spent five years in the south, where they still seem to live by that last thing. You know, women aren't supposed to be loud or opinionated or free-thinking, and we're certainly supposed to be pure and sweet. I got called various forms of "sweetie" all the time and I wanted to slap people for it.

Oops, that's not ladylike.


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My Take On The Edwards Endorsement

He endorsed Obama, in case you didn't know.

How deliciously safe it is. He waited until it started to look like Obama was really going to win, then he pounced. But he did it while the race was still technically on, so it would look genuine. How deliberate, calculating and convenient to wait until now.

It's kind of like how Bush waited until all the Republicans had dropped out, then endorsed McCain. Except Bush isn't smart enough to calculate when to do it so it still looked real.

How glaringly obvious, Johnny.

And very interesting that NARAL Pro-Choice America made the same slick move. Of course it's especially stupid for them because of the possibility of alienating a lot of their donors.

And yes, if Clinton were ahead and he'd picked her I'd say the exact same thing.


That's Exactly What I've Been Saying

While talking about the campaign, Hillary Clinton said precisely what I've been saying this whole time: it would be ridiculously stupid for her supporters to vote for McCain over Obama. And vice versa, it would be stupid for Obama's supporters to vote for McCain over her.

Because WHY would you vote for someone who's beliefs are 180 degrees away from yours when there is someone with a very similar platform to what you agree with right there just waiting for you to vote for them? Because isn't looking past someone's lack of experience or a minor deviation from your exact beliefs a better choice than someone with whom you have nothing in common?

I also agree with something else she said, which was that the Democrats will have a unified party once they have a nominee. I'm taking that to support my theory that the people who claim they would vote for McCain over their favorite are doing it out of some sort of hissy fit, or that they say that now but come November there's no way they'd pull the lever for a (pro-war, anti-choice, freedom-hating, Bush-imitating) Republican.

Also, I'm resigning myself to the idea that Obama will probably be the nominee. I know people out there think I'm obsessed with having Clinton win because I am not shy about the fact that I support and prefer her. Obama isn't a terrible candidate, he's just not my first choice. But hell, John Kerry wasn't my first choice in 2004 and I still voted and campaigned for him. Though I'm pretty sure my property won't be vandalized this time.

Having said that, I feel I should add a *woot* to West Virginia.


Monday, May 12, 2008

Quickie: Celebrity Dog Love

I thought this was cute.


Quickie: A New Low In Lawsuits

...and that's saying something.

A man who ran over and killed a Miniature Pinscher is suing the dog's family to repair his 97 Honda Civic.

Never mind the fact that he killed their dog. Their grief isn't nearly as important as fixing his 11-year-old car.

If someone hit my Min Pin they wouldn't be suing me for damages. Why? They'd be dead. Or at the very least, they'd be too busy contemplating the fact that I just handed them their own reproductive tract in a baggie.


Sunday, May 11, 2008

I'd Be Upset With Nintendo If It Weren't For The Legend Of Zelda

Seriously, I've got two versions of the game going right now (DS and Wii). Yes, in my life, Zelda transcends principles. I mean, hello, I did name my dog after it.


By now we all know what Wii Fit is. If not, you can either click the Wikipedia link or read on.

It's an exercise based Nintendo Wii game. It comes with a balance board and you can do about 40 different activities, from yoga poses to push-ups to aerobics. Sounds cool, right? It would be if it didn't use the outdated BMI system to measure how "fit" or "fat" you are. And if it didn't focus its marketing for the game on women and young girls. 'Cause, you know, it's a really good idea to make women and young girls more aware and ashamed of their bodies.

Let me just go ahead and quote this article:

In keeping with the personal image theme, perhaps Nintendo can come out with a Wii [Bulimia] game, where you stick the Wii Remote down your throat and hop on the balance board.

I'm going to call it the Wii-ting Disorder. Brought to you by Shigeru Miyamoto.

I mean, come on, I'm all for getting in shape and being fit, but (1) BMI is a terrible way to measure it (it's a terrible way to measure anything, really, check out the BMI Project) and (2) the marketing campaign here does nothing but support the idiotic stereotype and misguided notion that thin = fit and fat = lazy/out of shape.


Saturday, May 10, 2008

Man On Man? You're On The List!

So a high school principal in Tennessee outed two gay students by posting their names on a list of known romantic couples, allegedly in an attempt to deter PDA. Her story is that there was too much "explicit sexual activity" in the halls and she was keeping a list of all the known couples in the school to keep a special eye on. There are so many things wrong with this I barely know where to begin.

First off, how's about the ol' violation of privacy? I know, I know, they're still "children" and it's a high school and therefore they have no legal rights. They're minors so their parents deserve to know what they're up to, blah blah blah. Crap. They may technically be minors, but they are still human beings and within a few short years of legal adulthood. They are old enough to make their own decisions about their sexuality and romantic lives. They are CERTAINLY old enough to have their privacy respected.

There's also the fact that revealing couples could put those listed in danger. That's not just the gay couples, either. What about interracial couples with racist parents? What about a girl who's dating the "bad" guy that her parents would never approve of? Or what about something as seemingly trivial as dating across economic class or social circles? Any of those things could put the teens at risk of parental abuse and punishment or being ostracized by their peers. And, getting back to the same-sex couples, let's remember that this is Tennessee. Not to generalize, but the south isn't exactly a beacon of gay acceptance. Tennessee still sees an alarming number of hate crimes. As someone who has lived in the south and as someone who naturally seems to befriend gay men, I have seen and heard stories about narrow-minded families (like my friend who's brother told him he'd never see his niece and nephews again if he ever brought his boyfriend home) and various forms of harassment. So how is it logical for a principal to put students in danger of this kind of discrimination?

The ACLU has gotten involved on behalf of the outed teens after being contacted by one of the young men's mothers (who didn't know he was gay before but fortunately seems supportive and non-judgmental).

One other thought. High school relationships tend to not last very long. What good is this list if a month from now 80% of the couples will be broken up and new ones will have formed? Also, if you want to stop PDA, how about you just walk through the halls and stop it as you see it?


Quickie: Women In Sports

Thought I'd alert you to a blog post written by a friend (acquaintance? whatever, that's not important) of mine on women in sports. Enjoy.

I maintain we need a WNHL.


On Being Ten Feet From Howard Dean

This is a little late, I apologize. But last week I went to a taping of The Daily Show. It was last Thursday, the episode that had Howard Dean as the guest. I thought that I'd walk you through the process.

First, you arrive and stand in line. You have to make reservations at the Daily Show Tickets page. Those come with the disclaimer that not every who makes a reservation will get in. It also suggest you arrive between 3:30 and 4:00. That's crap. On my first attempt to get in I arrived somewhere around 3:15 and was at the back of the line around the corner. They cut the line off about 10 or 15 people in front of me (*grumble*). That, however, worked out for the better, because if you get denied the first time you can e-mail them for VIP tickets that guarantee you a spot in the audience. Which is what I had last week.

With VIP tickets you don't have to get there quite as early. I believe 4:30 is the latest you can arrive and still be guaranteed a spot. I got there a little before 4:00 and stood and waited. At 4:30 (or 4:35 or 4:40...) they come down the VIP line and check your name off their list and give you a numbered ticket. I was #9. Yes, I made "Client 9" jokes. It was the right thing to do. Then you go through a security checkpoint. Metal detector and someone searching your bag. Like the airport without the condescension or attitude. Then you are corralled into a holding area while all 200 audience members go through security, and you stand there for about an hour total. Then they finally let you into the audience area (after making 2 or 3 announcements reminding you not to use electronic devices or take pictures, or to shout anything out during taping, etc) by your ticket number.

My party had really good seats. If you're facing the desk Jon Stewart sits at, we would be to the left (so, his right) in the second row. Pretty much as close as you can get without giving him a lapdance.

You sit there for another half-hour or so. There's a warm-up guy who comes out and makes fun of people in the audience and gives instructions about applause and all that. See, they don't use a laugh track. The audience is mic'd at half the volume Stewart is, so your reactions are what is used on the show. And you have to clap and cheer loud because of the half-volume thing.

So Jon Stewart comes out (woo) and talks/answers audience questions for a few minutes.

The taping starts. Little did I know, they do the entire show in a straight shot. They even have monitors hanging that play the pre-taped segments. It's exactly what you see on TV, only live. I was surprised by that initially, but I guess it makes sense for this particular show. It's scripted, but there's a little bit of ad-libbing and audience reaction that feeds it and is what makes it good.

So, on to Howard Dean. I was interested but not completely thrilled when I learned he was the guest. See, I don't agree with his decision to disenfranchise Florida and Michigan. Though I will say with his appearance I can sort of see where he's coming from, but I still think it's a huge mistake and very much smacks of what happened to Florida in 2000. Which I hate because he was one of my top choices in 2004, I think Edwards-Dean or Dean-Edwards would have been a better choice than Kerry-Edwards. Certainly more charismatic.

When he left (during the commercial break) Jon Stewart said a little something to the audience that to me sounded like he was pretty much thanking us for not booing Dean off the set. So that acknowledges the fact that I'm not the only liberal irked by his decision. Which I sort of already knew.

Anyway, after that, it was just like the end of the show. Wrap it up, Moment of Zen, out of there. Then the audience was ushered out.

It's a really cool experience. From a nerdy, "I love that show and anything that comes out of Jon Stewart's mouth" place as well as being interested in seeing how these things work behind the scenes.

Have some clips from that day's show (which, put together, are pretty much the entire show):

(I decided that John Oliver is by far my favorite of their current correspondents)

(I though this segent was kind of stupid, except when he asked if Clinton wore pantsuits when she was 3)


Wednesday, May 7, 2008

I Celebrate My Return To Blogging By Inundating You With Music Videos

Don't worry, I only inundate people with incredibly badass music videos. I wouldn't want to disappoint either of my readers.

Also, in order to keep up with the grain of this blog, they are politically motivated incredibly badass music videos. W00t.

(This isn't NOFX's video, it's some random YouTube person's...but it's more about the song anyway)


And one more, for funsies:

(meaning it's not political, I just like the song - though I swear it's been sped up for the video, compared to the album)



Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Oh, You Dirty, Dirty Toothbrushes, How Dare You Put Your God-Stick Into My Shame-Cave

No matter how delightfully snarky and sarcastic I find myself to be (yes, I'm completely narcissistic, deal with it), Jon Stewert is always better. Maybe that's why he's on TV and have a piddly blog with about 5 readers.

Anyhoo, The Daily Show takes on abstinence-only sex ed:



That's Really Gonna Hurt On The Way Out

I apologize in advance for linking to Fox "News." But this was too good to pass up.

During an ultrasound, a mother to be saw the image of Jesus on the cross in her uterus.

There really isn't anything more to say to that.


Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Fun With Celebrity Drug Arrests

I'm not normally into blogging about celebrities. Maybe I once mentioned how Tom Cruise spent over a million dollars on gas in one year. Or things that happen to involve a celebrity but also relate to body image, Hillary Clinton/politics, censorship, etc.

But I'm a big, geeky CSI fan.

So I thought I'd bring up Gary Dourdan's arrest. He has been implicated on charges for possession of cocaine, heroin, ecstasy and prescription pills. He was released on $5,000 bail, since, you know, he's a TV star and 5 G's is probably like pocket change.

Let me take a moment and point out that even his mug shot is sexy.

Anyhoo, apparently he's scheduled to leave the show at the end of this season. After the weird, hallucinatory sex scene in the episode "Cockroaches" I'm somewhat unconcerned by that.


Monday, April 28, 2008

Who Needs Clean Living Quarters, Anyway?

A soldier's father posted a video on YouTube showing deplorable living conditions at a Fort Bragg barrack.

Rust, peeling (lead) paint, clogged drains, broken toilets and sewer gas. Goes well with religious harassment, sexual assault and phony discharges.


Let's Just Ignore That Little 24th Amendment Thing

In a 6-to-3 decision, the Supreme Court ruled that it was NOT unconstitutional for Indiana to require ID to vote.

Um. Yeah it is.

The 24th Amendment states that the right to vote "shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax."

Requiring ID to vote is an indirect poll tax. You have to pay to get a driver's license or non-driver ID in most states (all of them as far as I know). You have to pay to get a passport. You have to pay for any government-issued ID.

Therefore, it is possible that someone would be barred from voting because of an inability to pay. Disenfranchisement for being poor.

As of right now, seven states request photo ID and 18 require ID that doesn't need to be photo.


Sunday, April 27, 2008

Killing People Is Only OK In The Name Of Jesus

Why am I not surprised.

Apparently, a soldier names Jeremy Hall is filing a suit against the Army saying he was harassed by his colleagues for being an atheist.

When he complained, the Army claimed it "couldn't protect him." So he filed a suit through the Military Religious Freedom Foundation.

So let me just get this straight for a moment. In the military it's OK to sexually harass or even assault women, keep gays in the closet and discharge wounded soldiers then lie about pre-existing conditions to get out of paying veterans' benefits and disabilities...

...but it's not alright to be an atheist. I guess as long as you rape female soldiers in the name of God, it's perfectly OK.


P.S. It also bothered me when I went to Normandy that the graves were either crosses or Stars of David. If you were Jewish you got a star. Anything else and you got a cross. Because obviously if you weren't Jewish you had to love Jesus. There are only two religions out there, after all.


Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Saving Animals In Brooklyn - Now That's Just Bad! Close Them Down! I Said Now!

This sickens me. Ugh.

New York City Animal Care and Control appointed a new Executive Director some time ago by the name of Charlene Pedrolie. Apparently she is a renowned business consultant. But she has no experience working in animal rescue.

Since taking over, she has enacted policy changes that save money at the expense of the health and lives of the animals. As a result, much of the NYCACC veterinary staff has resigned and many animals have been put to death needlessly. They order animals that are slightly sick to be put down instead of treated because it's cheaper. Which means in NYCACC something as simple as kennel cough (which my dog has had) is a death sentence.

If that wasn't bad enough, she recently banned 7 rescue shelters from taking animals off death row to be adopted. One of the groups, Brooklyn Animal Foster Network has saved 1000 animals in two years. That's one group. And Pedrolie has banned seven.

I know not a lot of people read this, but of those few who do, many are pet owners, right? And I'm sure of those, at least some of you adopted your pet from shelter. Look at your dog or cat. Imagine 1000 just like them NOT finding a home for political, pigheaded reasons.

Her reasoning, if you can call it that, is that she received "complaints" about Laurie Bleier, the head of BAFN. People have alleged that Bleier is abrasive and rude to them.

Let me tell you something about shelters. They're tough. They take an emotional toll. I know, I've worked in one. I only lasted 5 months because of how hard and depressing it is. And people treat you like crap. Especially if you don't tell them what they want to hear. If they don't meet pre-screening requirements, they will argue with you. Usually it's over the phone and you can get out of it quickly. But sometimes they will show up in person in a rage and cause a scene at the shelter. These are the people you have to be short and abrasive with. Unfortunately, these are also the kinds of people who would lodge complaints in order to have you shut down. Nice to know hundreds of innocent animals will be killed over a few bruised egos.

Another false claim by Pedrolie is that one of BAFN's animals was emaciated. This claim was proven to be 100% untrue by the ASPCA. If you don't believe me, call Joe Pentangelo at (212) 876-7700, ext. 4450.

When you visit the nice pretty NYCACC website, remind yourself that it was designed pro bono by Laurie Bleier's company, Brainstorm LLC.

By the way, this is Laurie Bleier:

She looks like a terrible, person, doesn't she?

By the way, Brooklyn Paper readers were flooding the letters to the editor after this story broke. Myself included.

OK, it's contact time. I say inundate everyone possible with phone calls and emails until something finally happens.

E-mail the Mayor's office

Call Charlene Pedrolie on her direct line at (212)442-2059 or her cell phone at (732)939-7948.


Care 2 Petition for Pedrolie's removal.

If anyone finds any other contacts or information, please either e-mail it to me or post it here as a comment.


Clinton Wins Pennsylvania!

It's been called by multiple sources. CNN, The New York Times, and Reuters.

Woo hoo!

See, here's the thing. People keep saying she's going to drop out any day now. They say it's coming; she hasn't got a prayer.


She's behind by less than 130 delegates. Know what that is? NOTHING. Pennsylvania alone has 188. And there are more primaries to go. Seven states, Puerto Rico and Guam still remain. That's 501 more delegates. And if you add in PA it's 689 (since we don't know exactly how the delegates will be divided yet). Say they split the remaining races exactly down the middle. If you take their current delegate standings (Clinton 1541 and Obama 1679) and added half (344) to either of them, it's still a razor thin margin. If that were the case, Obama would have 2023 and Clinton would have 1885.

Obama would be ahead, but that's still 2 delegates shy of sealing the deal*.

Basically, what I'm saying is, at this point it would be beyond stupid for her to drop out of the race. Especially with tonight's Pennsylvania victory, the margin between them is so tight there's no telling who's going to come out the winner.

We aren't going to know for sure until August, people (person?). We may have an idea when all the primaries are over in June, but I'm not taking anything to heart until the actual convention and official nomination.

*I realize I am not addressing any remaining superdelegates with this. But my point would stay the same. It's still too close to know, and it would be insane to drop out at this point. No superdelegates were harmed in the making of this post.


Buffalo Is Not New York City.

This started as a Facebook note, but I thought I'd put it up here instead. I know it's not really in line with what I usually write about, but it's my blog and I do what I want, mwahahahahaha. Anyhoo...

It's one of those things I should be used to. It's been happening my whole life. But for some reason it gets to me every time.

When someone asks me if I am from New York I am always going to say NO. Because 99% of the time they mean NYC. Especially now that I am in NYC and I know people are asking if I am from this city.

When I say no I will clarify and say I am from Buffalo. I'm terribly sorry if that confuses you. Yes, it's in New York State. But that's not what you were asking and you know it.

Buffalo is not an extension of NYC. It's clear on the other side of the state, it will take you 8-10 hours to drive there. It is a completely different world that just happens to lie in the same state borders.

I happen to be from the only area of the country (that I can think of) where you can't simply say the state you're from. Which is why it will always go "Michigan" "Arizona" "Florida" "Buffalo" when I am there.

Frankly, I don't have much love for Buffalo outside of Duff's, the Sabres, and the three relatives I still have living there. I certainly don't want to live there again. The thing is, though, where you grow up shapes you as a person. And since Buffalo is so radically different from NYC, I would probably be a very different person if I had grown up here. So it's important to me to make the distinction.

I mean, if you can go from one end of Brooklyn to the other and pass through dozens of different cultures and lifestyles, how could you lump in a city that is 400 miles away? It would be like comparing Savannah and Atlanta, Miami and Tallahassee, San Francisco and Los Angeles, or Tucson and Flagstaff. Not the same.

I like to think I'm a relatively intelligent person. Meaning I am aware of what state I grew up in. I am also intuitive enough to know that when someone mentions "New York" everyone will think of NYC unless they are actually FROM another part of the state.

To imply that being from Buffalo is the same as being from New York is insulting, at least to me. It ignores the characteristic differences between the two areas, and honestly, attempting to correct my answer is demeaning my intelligence. I heard your question. I know what you were really asking. And I answered accordingly.

This might be the kind of thing only I am sensitive to. And I know people aren't going to change. I spent five years in Georgia, and even when I explained Buffalo was nowhere near NYC people still assumed I was going to fit the stereotype of a "New Yorker." But it's something I still fight. I guess it comes with the territory when your home state and its biggest city share the same name.

P.S. Buffalo isn't Upstate either. It's actually Western NY.

I'm done ranting now.


Friday, April 18, 2008

Football Keeps Me Sane

According to CNN, football great/god Herschel Walker write a book revealing he suffers from Dissiciative Identity Disorder. This disorder, formerly known as Multiple Personality Disorder, is a condition where people display multiple identities or personalities, usually called "alters." Generally, when in one of these alters, the person won't remember anything about what they did. In Walker's case, he was prone to violent outbursts, at one time attacking and trying to choke his wife, not remembering it afterward.

DID is not what like how it is portrayed in movies. No nifty Primal Fear "third person" or narrator/Tyler Durden dichotomy. Sorry.

Walker claims that his DID didn't really surface until after he retired from football. When he was playing, in college and professionally, he had somewhere to channel his mind, something keeping him occupied. Once he retired, he no longer had that, and that is when his DID really took over.

No, people, claiming to have DID is not a cop-out to excuse violent behavior. It's a very serious mental condition. And mental conditions are as serious as physical ones, sometimes even more so. Walker would have nothing to gain by sharing this story if it wasn't true. Maybe my view on him is skewed (I did go to Georgia, after all), but he hasn't been seen as anything other than a great football player. He hasn't been caught up in some OJ-style crime where he needs this to defend himself. He wrote a book, shared his story, he wouldn't gain anything by lying.


Thursday, April 17, 2008

Fair Pay. Woo!

Blog for Fair Pay


Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Yes, Honey, Mommy is Having Water Balloons Put In Her Chest!

File this under "things I couldn't have made up if I wanted to." A Florida plastic surgeon wrote a children's book called My Beautiful Mommy, in which a woman explains to her daughter why she wants plastic surgery "to become even more beautiful than before."

The little girl in the story accompanies her mother on the consultation with her (muscular, hulking, superhero-esque) surgeon, Dr. Michael. Then Mommy explains that she has "extra skin" and it "won't fit into her clothes" and that she needs to have a smaller tummy to feel better. And of course, she comes home with just a few bandages and minimal bruising, and feels so much better about herself and the world is happy again. Gag, gag, an have I mentioned...gag?

Just to prove I am, in fact, NOT making this up:


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Feminism and the Clinton Campaign

New York Magazine has a great article this week about the effects of Clinton's campaign on modern feminism. It makes a lot of good points, the most notable of which is that, even if Clinton doesn't get the nomination and become the first woman president, she has started a national dialog and opened up a lot of people's eyes to how sexist our society really is.

Too many people thought that past waves of feminism had cured the U.S. of it's misogynistic ways, but they didn't realize that just because they didn't experience anything overt in their daily lives doesn't mean it isn't happening elsewhere. Besides, what they perceive as equal is still sexist because differences between genders are still noted. Women's successes and failures are still seen as successes or failures of their gender as opposed to the individual. Sexist and derogatory remarks are still made around the office, and covered up as "jokes." Women are still judged for their appearance hundreds of times more than men are. Pay is still unequal. Etc. I don't think I need to continue.


Feel Like Ripping Your Hair Out?

The Guardian posted the most hate-filled, bigoted, discriminatory, anti-fat drivel I have ever read. Apparently we're "wrong" and that "there's nothing remotely beautiful about eyeing up a bunch of heart attacks waiting to happen" (aimed at Dove's wonderful Campaign For Real Beauty). Unfortunately, commenting has closed for the post, or I'd recommend several thorough verbal floggings, but I thought everyone would like to be as nauseous as possible.

By the way, sorry it's been awhile since I posted. I guess I was just too fat and lazy to do anything. I must have been too busy laying on the couch eating McDonald's (because that's obviously how I spend my days).


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Start Smelling Like The Irish

For funsies. Oh, you have to scroll in about 40 seconds to get to the actual video.


Quickie: Truest Cartoon Ever


You Know What? You Can Keep Your Glaciers And Beautiful Scenery!

Ugh. Alaska just passed a bill reqiring parental consent for underage women to get an abortion. They had passed a similar bill way back in 1997, but after 10 years of legal battles it was ruled unconstitutional. Which it is.

OK, here's the deal. It would be wonderful if no teenage young woman ever needed an abortion. And if she did, it would be great if every young woman had the kind of family she could discuss this kind of thing with. But the sad fact of the matter is that there are many young women out there who CAN'T go to their parents about this sort of thing. For a multitude of reasons. In an extreme case, she could be a victim of incest and the father could be a member of her family. Her family could be abusive. Or it could be that her parents are crazy religious maniacs and would disown her, kick her out, or in some way severely punish her for a) having sex and thus getting pregnant and b) wanting an abortion. Teenage young women are much more responsible and perceptive than they are given credit for. In this situation, generally if they can talk to their parents they will. But if they choose not to talk to their parents there is usually a very good reason.

All these parental consent laws do is take young women who are already in a tough situation and make it worse. They also potentially put young women in danger. Think about it, if a family would harm a young woman for having an abortion, how will they react when she is visibly pregnant?

I guess you can't expect much from a red state.


Monday, April 7, 2008

A Stricter Standard For Women - Perish The Thought!

The New York Times website posted this article about weight bias. Basically, it says that women are scrutinized more harshly for weight and discriminated against at lower weights than men are. After weight gain, women receive more bias than men. Also, we receive it after a smaller gain (women only have to gain about 15 pounds to be discriminated against, men have to gain about 60).


Why do you think we have shows like King of Queens? Do you ever think we'd see a show with a heavy woman and a thin, attractive husband? Has there even BEEN an overweight female protagonist on TV since Roseanne?

I can tell this by living my life. I've been in the process of losing weight, and how I am treated is slightly better as I get smaller. Salespeople and waitstaff are nicer to me, people don't talk down to me as much, men look more, etc. I'm still considered "fat" but I'm smaller than I was and it's improved. It's really stupid, since I'm the same person I was 6 months ago, just with a little less meat.

Yes, this study is flawed. Self-report isn't the most reliable method of research. But I don't doubt the truth of the results. I've also seen this other study: this woman, who was thin to average, went into a store and looked around, and took note of how the salespeople treated her, how many greeted her, etc. She then went back to the same store a few minutes later wearing a fat suit and measured the same people and how they treated to her. It's probably no surprise that the same people were ruder to her and paid less attention when she was in the fat suit than when she was her thin self. At least after that was over she got to take off her suit and be treated nicely again. We don't all have that option. Fat suits are like blackface.


Saturday, April 5, 2008

Medical Terms On A Medical Database...Shock!

POPLINE has reconsidered censoring searches.

Abortion has been re-instated as a searchable term.

I hope that other organizations learn that censoring something isn't going to make it go away.

The Dean of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Health released this statement:

I was informed this morning that the word "abortion" was blocked as a search term in the POPLINE family planning database administered by the Bloomberg School’s Center for Communication Programs. POPLINE provides evidence-based information on reproductive health and family planning and is the world’s largest database on these issues.

USAID, which funds POPLINE, found two items in the database related to abortion that did not fit POPLINE criteria. The agency then made an inquiry to POPLINE administrators. Following this inquiry, the POPLINE administrators at the Center for Communication Programs made the decision to restrict abortion as a search term.

I could not disagree more strongly with this decision, and I have directed that the POPLINE administrators restore "abortion" as a search term immediately. I will also launch an inquiry to determine why this change occurred.

The Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health is dedicated to the advancement and dissemination of knowledge and not its restriction.


Michael J. Klag, MD, MPH
Dean, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health


You Weren't Mugged, You Just Gave Away Your Belongings

A little something to make you want to stab something/one:

A court in Nebraska has denied an appeal against a woman who contested a judge's move to ban the word "rape" from a rape trial.

The initial ban happened last year when Pamir Safi was on trial for raping Tory Bowen. The judge banned the use of the words "rape," "sexual assault," "victim," or "sexual assault kit." The only words allowed in describing the incident are "sex" and "intercourse."

The judge's reason? That "rape" is not legally neutral, where "sex" or "intercourse" are. So, if you are ever robbed, don't say "I was robbed" say "I gave my wallet to that man." If at a murder trial, only say "he died" not "he was shot in the forehead." Get the point?

Bowen (the victim) immediately refused to abide by the ban, saying "I refuse to call it sex, or any other word that I'm supposed to say, encouraged to say on the stand, because to me that's committing perjury. What happened to me was rape, it was not sex."

The initial trial resulted in a hung jury, and the second was declared a mistrial before it even started, under the guise that jurors would be biased because of media coverage. Which is a huge disappointment, because this woman deserves to see justice for what happened to her.

And Dahlia Lithwick of Slate couldn't have said it better when she said

The fact that judges are not rushing to ban similarly conclusory legal language from trial testimony—presumably one can still say murder or embezzlement on the stand—reflects not just the fraught nature of language but also the fraught nature of rape prosecutions. We as a society still somehow think rape is different—either because we assume the victims are especially fragile or because we assume they are particularly deceitful. Is the word rape truly more inflammatory to a jury than the word robbery?

The victim's father has been speaking out as well, reminding everyone that his daughter's First Amendment rights have been violated.

Rape isn't really about sex, anyway. It's about power, violence, coercion, and hatred. It is manifested though an act that is sexual, but the actual crime isn't about sex.


A Little Something I Just Noticed: File Under "Stupid" and "One of the Many Reasons I'm Glad To Have Left Georgia"

OK, everyone (both of you) know that commercial for the digital pregnancy test? The one that says "it's the most sophisticated piece of technology you will ever pee on." Well, I just realized something. Here in New York, the commercial plays in its entirety and as it was written. When I was living in Georgia, however, the commercial was censored. The voice-over says "the most sophisticated piece of technology you will ever - ahem, you know." But it still had the pee stream on the screen. Dumb.


Friday, April 4, 2008

Roses Are Red, Nintendo Wii's Are Blue?

Here's a little something I found on Feminist Gamers: Best Buy held an event on March 30 called Wii for Women during which they gave away spa certificates as prizes.

I don't know about anyone else, but I didn't need spa prizes and pretty little giveaways to go get a Wii. All I needed was a Target ad that said "we have Wiis in stock" to get me to the store.

Women play video games. We don't need pedicures and facials and pretty little things to get us there.