Monday, December 29, 2008

generational feminism.

i know, i know, i'm all posting-insane lately. but lots of stuff has happened! and i'd rather not grade my students' essays on human suffering! [really.]

this 23-year-old feminist just died - and her stuff's everywhere lately, and awesome.
Most young women said that their first strong role model was their mother, whether she was feminist or not. If not their mother, it was a teacher, an artist, a musician, but always a tangible woman who made strength and creativity seem possible.
this is the experience of feminism, not the word - and she points out that many younger women reject the label of, for example, "feminist artist" while still exploring gender in non-traditional ways. it's a very cool article. she seems cool. sad.

and, a related memory - my female, older-generation relatives telling me that a vote for obama in the primary would be throwing away everything they worked for. wait. i thought feminists worked for our freedom to choose. the best candidate. despite gender. right?


"Here’s to humility and equanimity everywhere in America, starting at the top, as we negotiate the fierce rapids of change awaiting us in the New Year." some interesting reading on whether obama really loves gay people or not. at the very least, lots of links.

okay, so, i freaked out with happiness when obama included gay and straight in his categories of people on election night. i really did. because he didn't have to, and it's still a rare shoutout, and i thought it meant something.

rick warren - sigh. is a critic of gay marriage. but which religious leader do you pick to pray at your inauguration? especially when you've had problems with your favorite ministers in the past? and you got some crap for the pray-er at the dnc, too? i don't know what to say about who obama should have picked. really, really don't. who's not controversial? [unless my "keep religion out of politics" idea might work. hmm?]

i read the purpose-driven life. i don't recommend it unless you subscibe to a bible-based, protestant view of religion. and i guess i feel the same about rick warren, himself, at least what i've read of his stuff. he's narrow-minded, yes. has done a lot of good, for sure. and here are his comments that have been so controversial - judge for yourselves. [i didn't find a lot of commentary on this issue that actually quoted him. i think it's important to read, though, yeah?]

you all know i don't agree with his "sin" talk, but here's something - how about his warning about judging others before we judge ourselves?
So why do we hear so much more - especially from religious conservatives - about gay marriage than about divorce?

Oh, we always love to talk about other sins more than ours. Why do we hear more about drug use than about being overweight? Why do we hear more about anything else than about wasting time or gossip? We want to point that my sins are perfectly acceptable. Your sins are hideous and evil.

again, i don't appreciate his "sin" language. his point, though, makes me at least give him a nod. if you're all bible-based and can't get past it and believe homosexuality is a sin, well, at least realize that you have some sins to deal with, yourself, before you start condemning everyone else. [i wouldn't use a phrase like "your sins are hideous and evil" saracastically in public, though.] i'd also like to talk with him about whether religious leaders' obsession with rules about sex has a little more of a freudian origin...

anyway, check out the man's comments. i'm pretty sure that he's trying to do good - of course, you could say the same for a lot of people with a lot of harmful biases. and he can talk about "the 5,000 year old definition of marriage" all he wants, but i won't listen to him until his government and religious leaders won't let him marry someone HE loves. i've had enough of straight people thinking everyone would be happy if they were straight. because, you know, it feels so good to us! wheee! aren't we awesome?

oh! thoughts on being "home."

i had a gchat recently in which i asked a friend how it feels to be "home" - that is, back at her apartment, with her job and roommates and real life. but i'd asked the same thing a week ago, when i asked her how it felt to be "home" at her parents' house.

hard to say which is which.

at a family and friends gathering, a group of college-y and post-college people started a game of circle of death - a game that i, many of you, and the cashier at a local convenience store all know. it's the game where you pick a card and have to do something, based on the card. and one of the most difficult cards, for everyone, is the one that makes you create a rule for everyone. this group already had to wipe their mouths before they drank, i think. and they weren't allowed to say anyone's name. or whatever.

t: okay, what should the new rule be?
g: oh, here's one my roommate thought up. after every time you drink you have to say [as his mom walks into the room with a plate of cookies] "bitch tits motherfucker."
hm: [speechless, with cookies]

it was one of those moments in which we all COULD have, maybe, warned him that his mom has just come down the stairs. [into the basement, of course. remember the basement, that land of iniquity and secrets?] but it was too close, and happened too fast, and turned out to be too darn funny...

Friday, December 26, 2008

it's a christmas miracle!

highlight of my christmas, i think, was our family video gchat with our faraway family members. seeing my 91-year-old grandma [in her christmas sweater, of course] say, "well, isn't that wonderful!" into a webcam from a thousand miles away - yeah, that's pretty great. oh, the future.

also pretty great - deciding we were too full from appetizers [an all-day event, as those of you who know my brothers already know] to eat the turkey and sitting on the couch watching NCIS instead.

yeah, NCIS. i'm totally hooked. remember everything you loved [and hated] about JAG? now, throw in every crime show convention, multiply all that by a hundred, and add lots and lots of flirting. among every possible permutation of characters. and that, my friends, is NCIS. i hated the first five episodes i saw, but episodes six through twenty were gooooood. and there's a marathon on tomorrow...

[later note: best full episode player ever.]

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

"it's jimmy 'santa' clausen and golden 'frankincense and myrrh' tate..."

watching the game, playing around on my laptop [three laptops and four family members in here], waiting for brother to get home from the base so christmas can start...


if you've got some time, i'm kind of into this new yorker article about elevators. introduced to me, randomly in the middle of a gchat, with "this article is FASCINATING." i was like, really? but it IS.
In the old system—board elevator, press button—you have an illusion of control; elevator manufacturers have sought to trick the passengers into thinking they’re driving the conveyance. In most elevators, at least in any built or installed since the early nineties, the door-close button doesn’t work. It is there mainly to make you think it works. (It does work if, say, a fireman needs to take control. But you need a key, and a fire, to do that.) Once you know this, it can be illuminating to watch people compulsively press the door-close button. That the door eventually closes reinforces their belief in the button’s power. It’s a little like prayer.
ohhhh. this is totally up my alley. i took a social psychology class once. i KNOW.

and now, an overview of my favorite and least favorite elevators.
1. the elevator in pip's old building. too fast. made me want to puke. thanks for moving, pip.
2. the elevator in the library in college also made me want to puke. not as much when i used to take it from the first to the second floor. WHAT? that was a really, really long staircase.
3. the elevator in my dorm in college. SO FREAKING SLOW. i moved to the top floor just so i could take it without guilt. [on rereading - does that make sense? we'd all glare at the non-top-floor girls who took the elevator, because it took forever to open and close.]
4. the adventure i had in the sears tower, trying to get to an office on the 60-somethingth floor. first, you have to get on the right elevator on the first floor. then, you have to take three different elevators. they're all around corners. you have to keep getting off one elevator and getting on another one. it's really difficult. possibly to keep the rifraff out?

on the moth podcast recently, there was a really sweet story on the moth podcast that involved an incident of making out in a stopped elevator, which stopped all the other elevators in the building and showed the maker-outers on elevator cam in the lobby. so awesome. [looked it up - the story is "what goes up," by katherine russell rich, and it was on the podcast on 12/01/08. and you can still get it! go!]


from slate, in my browsing tonight:
- have you all seen this guy, who writes about "bogus trends"? i feel like he's actually writing about, you know, bad writing. not checking your facts, using lots of generalizations - i'd like to use it in class, actually. [none of my reporter friends would ever write something like this.]
- a little action about the name of jesus. lots of talk about greek and aramaic and the difference between i, y, and j. nicely done.
- related to a previous post, from dear prudie - "According to sociologist Kathleen Bogle, author of Hooking Up, once people who've only hooked up graduate from college, they do start dating one person at a time, but since some have never even been on a single date, they're as clumsy at it as high-school freshmen." [she's giving advice on a girl who's been hooking up with a friend - should she tell him how she feels? should they stop hooking up? wow, what a new and interesting situation! BOGUS.]


and now, a heartwarming christmas story.

brother and i went out to get some groceries for tomorrow. discovered that all the grocery stores are closed here in middle america. hmmm. we needed ingredients to make appetizers. [oh no! a christmas crisis!] so we went to the convenience store and, just for you all, had an awkward conversation with the [female, 20-ish] cashier.

b: [checking out with hot dogs, pita chips, cream cheese, and sam adams] yeah, we're playing a game called "what real food can we make out of things we can buy here."
c: have you ever played the game circle of death? with drinking?
b: ... YES.
c: yeah. that's fun.

i had to pause a minute to collect my thoughts. i said something about the random food i was buying, and she asked me about a drinking game? that i might play later, with my sam adams? she wanted to suggest a drinking game i could play, while eating hot dogs with pita chips and cream cheese?

maybe she didn't understand the "we're playing a game called..." turn of phrase. do i use that too much? hmmm.

also, one of the other guys working there [they had way too many people working for christmas eve, i'll tell you what] let me try the difference between "egg nog" and "holiday nog." as far as i can tell, the difference is that the holiday nog tastes sort of like banana.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

"Think of it as a one-night stand with someone you know."

hey, guys! we're famous. some interesting stuff in the new york times...

first, this one on how the delay in adulthood affects organized religion. [i found one of those "note to self: find this article" things on my computer recently, and hey, it's really interesting.]
Today, many young people spend more than a decade between high school and marriage “exploring life’s many options in unprecedented freedom.” And, it should be added, in great uncertainty.
and this one on how we don't date anymore.
Under the old model, you dated a few times and, if you really liked the person, you might consider having sex. Under the new model, you hook up a few times and, if you really like the person, you might consider going on a date.
it's weird to read about this stuff in the paper, hmm?

i was talking to my dad on the phone about how i bought myself a new ipod today [yellow! nano!] and felt kind of bad buying something big for myself at christmas. [even though i waited until my old one really, really died.] then he told me a story about one time in the eighties when they were all going to buy stuff for themselves for christmas, or something - and i was like, "wait, 'greed is good' was real? i thought it was just something people wrote about in the paper!"

it's almost like these columnists are really on to something.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

"i want to change the world. instead, i sleep."

i have a list on my computer of songs i can't find on itunes. then i check itunes periodically to see if they're available yet. tonight, i downloaded "keep breathing" by ingrid michaelson [yes, my favorite genre of music is "songs i heard on grey's"] and the title of this post is an actual line from the song. shoot. a little close to home, there, ingrid.

song's good, though. sort of the opposite of "world on fire," but i like it.

cursing, acting cool. winning friends and influencing people.

written on the door of the bathroom at the bar last night, each line in different handwriting:

but it's ok.

nice, hmm? mutual support, in the ladies' room. i like it.

in contrast, written into the cement on the sidewalk on the way to my apartment from the train:


i'm always like, well... if that's how you feel...

anyway, hadn't been to this particular bar since i started this post [quoted below]. and, coincidentally, just found it.
bitter, bitter debate at the bar this weekend over whether snuffleupagus is real or imaginary. turns out there's a whole story about how only big bird can see him and no one believes he exists [imaginary friend, guys!], but then big bird proves he's real after all. so i think i was RIGHT. that he's imaginary. ha.
impressed a stranger last night by ordering the dogfish head 90 minute IPA. thanks, beer club. you know how you always want to have those things that you can order, or listen to, or read, or casually drop in conversation so that people will think you're cool? YEAH, you do. don't lie.

things this makes me think of...
1. my favorite episode of friends ["the one with the embryos," which i've apparently already blogged about], the one where the girls lose the apartment in the trivia game with the boys.
ross: rachel claims that THIS is her favorite movie.
chandler: dangerous liasons.
ross: her ACTUAL favorite movie is...
joey: [points at rachel] weekend at bernie's!
2. my favorite band. and being called out for liking them. i don't even care. COUNTING CROWS RULE ALL.
3. the other day, at trader joe's, the checkout guy was all, "you listening to any good music?" because i was doing my new favorite thing where i put my headphones inside my scarf so they're conveniently close to my head, even when i'm not listening to them. and instead of being all cool and starting a conversation about something cool, i decided to tell the TRUTH. ah, the truth.
tjcg: you listening to any good music?
b: um... ahh... actually, the prairie home companion podcast... [shut up. it is FUNNY. and no, i am not 55 years old.]
tjcg: [all polite] oh, yeah? what is that?
b: it's like, garrison keillor... it's a radio show on npr... and he has, like, a funny monologue...
tjcg: isn't there a movie about it? what's the movie about, then?
b: [blanking] i think it's about... making the show, or something...
seriously, one of the MOST awkward conversations i've ever had. especially since i've SEEN the movie. and i can tell you that it's about the variety show "a prairie home companion," on npr. and the podcast is garrison keillor's "news from lake wobegon," in which he uses dry humor and makes fun of people who live in the northern midwest.

i think it was so awkward because i immediately wished i had lied. and said i was listening to... hmm. any ideas?

Monday, December 08, 2008

dan's so pretty. and spunky.

for those of you watching gossip girl right now...

b: why's she lying?
k: she's not. she's just... a bad actress.

and "i carried the garment bag" = "i carried a watermelon"? was that intentional? because i LOVE it.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

it's the FUTURE.

you know what i love, on friends? [you're all like, "besides EVERYTHING?"] i love it when someone is all indignant, like, "WHAT?!" about something someone else says, and phoebe just repeats what the first person said. louder. it's so awesome.

on further reflection, this is when i usually decide that my obsession is out of hand. "oh, it's so funny when phoebe does that!" as if she's a real person, or something. in college, there was a billboard for hacienda that said "monica and chandler shouldn't be your only friends." and i was always like, HEY. too close to home, guys.

at the apple store... thanks, apple store guys...

b: [holds out vintage ipod mini, sadly]
asg: oh, you need support. [well, i did.]

basg: well, how big's your hard drive now?
b: forty gig...
basg: oh. wow.
b: well, at the time, you could pick forty or eighty. and back then, i thought - who could EVER need EIGHTY gig of hard drive?!
basg: well, the future you, apparently!

[that was BEARDED apple store guy. beards are back! especially in the apple store!]

also, hey, let's live like presidents! becauuuuuse, you know, presidents have their own cologne and shopping sprees and jewels and things. although, here's the problem with the fake news - i clicked on this because the podcast said that the package includes a PUPPY. and i was like, a puppy! wow! but, no.

first post in forever, and it's random and trivial? well, yes.