tumultuous times

The rain is pouring down outside, after about an hour of flashing and flickering lightning.  What a great night to be inside.  Except, I left work because the sun set – not because my work was done.  And I left people there.  So I feel bad.  But I am still incredibly grateful for the Sabbath.  If you don’t actually have a day of rest, I’m sorry.  God knew what He was doing.  We need that day.  The whole day.

I’ve worked 12 hour days since Tuesday.  Which I haven’t done since my last job. (’05)  So I was definitely ready for the break.  But since stuff still wasn’t going right when I left, I’m considering what I should do (if anything) for my boss and coworker that I left behind.  Granted, my boss has been a hellion for the last two weeks, and she’s part of the reason that we were in this pickle, but she finally started acting human again this afternoon.  A couple of days this week, I thought I just needed to quit.  That might still be the case, but right now, I don’t feel the urgency that I did yesterday or the …five days before.  Anyway, I have mixed feeling about leaving her there.  More about leaving my coworker.  Tough situation.  But it really wasn’t necessary for me to stay, either.

But apparently, I’m not the only one who’s been going through.  One of the links on my blogroll doesn’t work because of some crazy stuff [read: total concept/idea/content appropriation sans credit].  Then there was this whole other thing with some publishers and some WOC.  woo.  Why’s it gotta be feminists fighting?

My dad is a feminist.  But he’s also still a good deal sexist.  I deal.  He’s my dad.  He’s actually very progressive for his age and upbringing.  He had good goals in raising my sister and I… I’m proud of him.  But he still says some sexist stuff.

His response to my ranting about my boss and her bizarre behavior?

“It’s a shame that she’s acting this way,  now people have a perfect example to point to and say -‘see? women don’t work as managers.  They’re too emotional.’ “

Now, on the face of it, this sounds supportive.  But when you know (like I do) that every time I bring up anything negative about my boss, this is what he says.  If there’s a better marker for showing that his first thought tends toward the stereotype of female bosses being emotional, tell me about it.  But, on the real, he’s a really awesome dad.


Anyway, this [the femblog blow-up] is one of those situations that I would describe to my dad, and he’d say something to the effect of

“It’s a shame they’re acting like that.  All that fighting and arguing.  Now people just have another example to point to and say ‘see?  Women could never rule the world (much less the country) – they’re too emotional.  You know – all those hormones.’ “

So what’s up ladies?  Are we seriously going to give people the exact ammunition they’re (literally) preaching about?  Not to say that those people who have been wronged should not be livid – they should.  But the cattiness [for lack of a better term] that has come with the backlash against valid righteous indignation?  Why?  Are we not all grown-@ss women?

I am thoroughly and completely beat.  My blinks keep getting longer and longer.  So goodnight and grow up.  I’m gonna go get some Sabbath rest.

Sydney White: What makes a ‘Good’ Woman?

Among other things, I watched Sydney White last night. I happen to love Amanda Bynes and had been pleasantly surprised by She’s the Man last fall, so I was totally ready for this one. A Snow White story with a twist – basically, Sydney White and the 7 dorks. Cute premise. Amanda did her part and it was a cute movie.

I watched the deleted scenes, and there was this annoying guy [the director] talking in between each of the scenes. That was enough to rankle a bit, but then I accidentally listened to some of what he was saying. He was talking about Sydney’s character development and how he wanted to make her accessible/friendly/a heroine/’one of the guys’. As he continued, it was clear that he was saying that tomboys and girls that hang out with guys or do stereotypically ‘guy’ things, are “cool” and “smart”. Girls that wear dresses and pink and want to be in sororities are, by contrast, not.

Then I started paying attention to the rest of what he was saying – basically, that in order for a girl/woman to gain his respect, she must take on the stereotypic attributes of a guy. And these attributes will still be “boyish”, though she exhibits them. Because “girlish” things are inconsequential/stupid. Continue reading

‘lipstick jungle’ and NBC

Looks like NBC’s got a thing for women right about now. NBC and MSNBC. The network jumped on the ‘Sex and the City’ rehash train with an actual Candace Bushnell follow-up: Lipstick Jungle. The news network…well, they’ve got Chris Matthews and David Shuster. What else can I say? They’ve apparently got women on the brain as well. [The only two that seem to matter to them right now share the same last name, but I digress]

What I’m really talking about here isn’t just NBC and Lipstick Jungle (or ABC and Cashmere Mafia, for that matter) – it’s the general trend of putting forth high-achieving women as hopelessly conflicted semi-basket cases. Most of the time, if they have achieved a high-enough level, their husbands are dealing with male implosion and they’re still dealing with the responsibility for most of the home life [whether it’s actually hands-on or managing the nanny and the maid]. They still hafta stroke the guy’s ego, and deal with some simpering in that department – but then if things don’t go well at home/office/in the public eye – they take a private moment to cry.

The stereotypical ‘claw-her-way-to-the-top-by-any-means-necessary-b*tch’ will do the strong, silent cry: a few tears roll down the cheeks and are immediately wiped away, with furtive glances [even though she’s alone]. The ‘sensitive-but-still-in-charge-woman’ [read: the wimp] gets to boo-hoo it up in front of her girlfriends for some good old-fashioned hugs and ice cream. And inevitably, there’s at least one who is totally into being a strong, independent [never actually say the word feminist – but then none of these women do] woman, and is completely swept off of her feet by a guy that’s even more successful than she is. (Note: He won’t actually stay with her, because he’ll realize she’s too attached to her job/life/individuality/independence and at the end of the day he wants someone who can stand by his side and wave – OR he’ll leave cuz it’s just a glorified booty-call, he was in it for the chase, and she’s actually decided she could work from home just so she can be near him 25hrs of the day.)

It’s a recipe that seems to be working [at least as long as the strike has been on – we’ll see how things go now that the WGA is patching things back up.]

What’s up with this? Is this really the way successful women are? [I mean the super-successful ones that are worthy of having tv shows made about them – not the regular successful ones who make up the rest of America’s female population.] Ever notice that when they’ve made it to the pinnacle of success, their morals get spotty and there tends to be a fair amount of hanky-panky goin’ on? Maybe that’s following a male example/stereotype based on access, maybe not. But really, maybe it’s me that’s out of touch. I don’t actually know any CEOs – male or female – so, maybe that’s what it really is like.

Somehow, though, it seems to me like these shows are trying to impress on us the message that Concerned Women for America [and others like them] are trying to get out: feminism sold us a bill of goods, and all we really wanted was a husband and some kids, anyway. If we go out there and work, and get all ambitious, how will we ever get a man???

MSNBC.com has the answer, and it’s from a woman. Lori Gottlieb knows us. She’s a woman. So of course, she does. And her solution? Settle. [h/t Shakesville] Stop all the posturing ladies – you know you want a man. And you know why, too, right? So, you can have bee-yoo-tee-ful babies together. As many as possible. All that corporate-ladder climbing is for the birds. Or rather, for the men. But, you know, since you already have a job and everything, and most families in America can’t really afford for an adult in the house to not work…just find some guy you think you can live with. Who’ll take the kids for a moment or two every week, so you can catch some down time. You know – someone who can open the pickle jar. [Yeah, I watched the ‘matchmaker Oprah’ – and while I agreed that you shouldn’t approach a date like an interview, or come in looking like a slob, or one-up everything a dude says…why do I still need to sublimate the successful parts of myself to be with someone? Oh that’s right – cuz ‘men still need to feel like men’.]

So, while I was a little interested in Brooke Shields’ return to the small-screen, and the fact that another Candace Bushnell book was being adapted for tv, I don’t know how many more of these I’ll be watching. I happen to really be into Lucy Liu’s hair on Cashmere Mafia


but I can’t seem to get into the show otherwise, and it seems of the same ilk, basically. All mega-successful women trying to deal with how everyone else has a problem with them because they’re mega-successful women. Guess it’s progress, though. Rachel, Monica, and Phoebe didn’t really have much in the way of jobs…although they did have incredible apartments. [magic of television]

So I’ll end with a positive: go here, pick a woman, and support her.

Ciao, bella

I happen to love Ciao Bella passion fruit sorbetto – a lot, a lot. But I have refrained recently cuz it’s just too cold to be having ice cream/sorbet.

I’m in the mind of having some, as I’m in the midst of the whirlwind of planning/co-planning a long overdue trip to Rome. My sister and I were actually supposed to go last year, and we could just never get our schedules to mesh. She’s in school and has much more freedom than the ball-and-chain that my 5-day/week grind has turned out to be. [This 5day a week crap with 2 weeks of vaca a year – it bites.] Anyway – we’re still a tad bit undecided between March and May cuz the prices in May are astoundingly outrageous in comparison to those in March.

Initially, my sister had concerns about the temperature in March, but the longer I think about it – the more I realize that my best clothes are long-sleeved anyway. [That is so feminist of me, right? eh.  I wanna look good.] Continue reading