So I officially graduated today, at long last. My thesis is done and for real this time. My forms are signed, my margins are correct, and my papers are turned in. Hooray!
If you have interest in reading any of the MA thesis I’ve been writing about for the past six months, my conclusion (in pdf) is here, and it should make sense without the previous 100 pages. In this conclusion, I discuss my subjects— Feministe, Feministing, and Jezebel— as well as Double X, Linda Hirshman, and all of those juicy bits. I also make recommendations for future research and for feminist blogs in general. (And if you’re interested in reading the whole thing, just let me know. I’d be happy to send it to you.)
We watched a movie last night that used this song, which I don’t think I’ve heard in full since I last had a cassette deck— about seven years ago.
Anyway, not much has changed since 1991, except there are no djs to blame anymore, just record companies. And you can just opt out, if you’re that type, and most of my friends are, so they just ignore who Lady Gaga is. So. There’s that.
Personally I like the radio when I’m driving, but it’s been bad for so long that it seems like it’s just a lost medium, at least for finding new music. But I can’t stop listnening. Am I a prisoner-radio listener? Probably.
You know who you are, you Michael deniers, listenin’ to your The Cure or Aerosmith. You always considered Michael’s music silly. Not serious. Lame, mainstream. “Popular.”…
I don’t blame The Cure. That was your call. The Cure is just out there, like car horns or people who make noise when they cry. The Cure is a choice. When we hear Michael, it is not a choice to feel the beat. It is not a choice to cock your head and straighten all the fingers on your right hand.
We had Thriller growing up, and I remember all the music videos, and I really wanted to buy HIStory when it came out, but really, my favorite Michael Jackson memory is when my sister and I used to sing “You Are Not Alone” to each other. She was 16; I was 12.
The bridge begins as follows: “Whisper three words and I’ll come running.”
My sister and I interpreted it as “Whisper ‘three words’ and I’ll come running,” so after we would sing it, she would whisper, “Three words” and I mimed running. (So clever, so endearing.)
According to the Wiki, “You Were Not Alone” was the first song to debut at number one on Billboard’s Hot 100, where it was number one for only one week.
“I noticed a couple of very attractive women, both of them Republicans, in the legislature. I want you to be sure to emphasize to our people, God, let’s look for some… Understand, I don’t do it because I’m for women, but I’m doing it because I think maybe a woman might win someplace where a man might not… So have you got that in mind?”—
Tomorrow I have an occasion for which I must dress business-professionally. I bought a suity sheath dress back in January for such an occasion, and I’m probably going to wear that. The only thing is: the dress is wool and angora. It’s not excessively heavy, but it’s still wool and angora. And the high tomorrow is 91.
Tumblrs, I need your help with this. I’ve always been confused about suit etiquette in the heat. Am I supposed to wear the suit anyway because it’s nicer and more professional than anything else I own? Am I going to look more intelligent and weather-appropriate if I pick some other type of dress? Chances are I’m going from air-conditioned car to air-conditioned office, and it’s Minnesota, not Delaware, so is anyone even going to care?
Goin to Minneapolis at the end of the week so I’m gettin ready by digging that MPLS sound. Plus this song and “Who You Gonna Run To” I’ve had on hard repeat cuz they’re helpful like that.
Craig is coming to visit, and he will be happy to know that the Solid Gold record is everywhere. It’s the record of the summer, even though I’m pretty sure it came out last summer. Also, I saw these guys last weekend, and the lead singer wore a grey shirt with a deep V.
I’ve never actually understood why anyone would want to read Jodi Picoult, but I’ve never liked to watch SVU, and I never really got into Lurlene McDaniel (you remember, the kids-with-cancer YA books). My mom and my sister and all of their friends love Picoult, buy her novels in hardback, and read them eagerly. I’ve always found what I’ve read and what I’ve heard of those plots to be very emotionally manipulative for no good cause. Gina Bellafante’s article confirms that, kind of, and opines that people (well, parents) really like reading about the things that could happen, but that they have no control over.
I’m not sure what service this fiction performs, other than make people frightened of all the bad things in the world that could happen to their families, but I have to chalk it up to just a difference of taste. I’m generally pretty sympathetic to all that falls into the category of “women’s media”—which I would say this does, at the complete opposite end of the spectrum as a Bad Mommy blog— but Jody Picoult (and “The Lovely Bones” for that matter) just completely escape me. Part of it is my snobbishness, yeah, but part of me wonders why you’d want to do that to your emotions. Over and over. So if anyone would like to explain the redeeming qualities of Jodi Picoult novels, I’d be all ears.
Two years ago today I drove my little packed Civic into downtown Minneapolis for the first time, expecting the population number on the road sign to add one as I rode past.
So yeah, I love it here, and I’m celebrating today by attending Rock the Garden, where I will see some bands (CALEXICO!) and some cool kids and wear my cowboy hat and try not to get sunburnt and drink beers. If I see you, I’ll give you a celebratory hug.
Did romantic comedies ruin this song for me? Yes. When I hear it, I usually think that I should be running around in some downtown area, doing errands for my boss but still working my way up in the world, while the man I’m slightly maybe interested in is twenty floors above, on a cell phone, not realizing how jerky it was to leave me at the bar the night before with nothing but his first name and a non-promise to maybe see me at the gala later or something. And the real guy, the good one who I’ll end up with, is a bike messenger who I don’t even notice as he pedals by.
It’s still a great song, though. Especially when you’re a lady doing it for herself.
6. Give the female employee a definite day-long schedule of duties so that they’ll keep busy without bothering the management for instructions every few minutes. Numerous properties say that women make excellent workers when they have their jobs cut out for them, but that they lack initiative in finding work themselves.
This is why I never trust “studies” or “research” about employment or anything, really, that’s HR-oriented.
Today seems like an appropriate day to post Alvin & The Chipmunks covering Kenny Rogers. This awful high-pitched country cut also comes from the album Urban Chipmunk.
And if the idea of the Chipmunks going country just gives you the most stellar of hard-ons, you can continue the journey by watching this cartoon where Alvin attempts to meet Dolly Parton. It is ALSO titled “Urban Chipmunk.”
Do you follow Badvinyl? Because you should if you’re into Things that We (Humans) Have Done.
Last night, drawn to its Michael Ian Black and Simon Pegg-penned script, I watched Run Fatboy Run. It was supercute, if pretty dumb, and I learned that (OBJECTIFICATION ALERT) Hank Azaria has a really rockin’ body. (This was a surprise because I expect people to look like the cartoon characters they voice.) Also: Dylan Moran! Yes.
Anyway, a couple weeks ago I watched Ricky Gervais’s Ghost Town, and that was terrible, but both featured the other guy— the dude who is with the desired woman— as someone who maybe sometimes does humanitarian work and likes self-improvement. Now, people who are working in Africa to stop the spread of AIDS make us all feel a little inadequate, like we’re not doing enough, but I don’t understand why characters who do selfless work always turn out to be assholes or windbags or terrible people. (Another case: Amy in True Blood, although I still have a few episodes left, so maybe I’m wrong.) Sure, people have many sides and some people are not all good or all bad, but you rarely find a character who openly helps other people who is not also a complete dick. I know I’m not the first to notice this cos it’s a corollary to all the boy-man movies.
To remedy this situation, I’m working on a humanitarian, yet non-imperialist buddy comedy about a group of adult Peace Corps members working in, I dunno, Chad, who learn that while they still might enjoy creature comforts, helping people feels nice too. It will star Alan Rickman, Steve Coogan, and Hank Azaria, because nationality doesn’t actually matter in my version of the Peace Corps if you have a really cool voice.
The second or third thing I do every day, before I open the computer even, is make my bed. It makes me feel put together, even when my room is messy. (Note: I am not always the tidiest person.) I can’t leave the house with my bed unmade.
So on the mornings when I wash my sheets, I feel extremely disoriented, like the world is out to get me.
I didn’t actually enjoy reading Ulysses— I found it pompous and overblown, which is why I will never read Infinite Jest or Gravity’s Rainbow—but I took a class on it my senior year of college so I could be a real lit scholar and argue with the people who loved Ulysses and thought there could never be anything better. (I am spiteful, and I’ll probably read Proust for the same reasons. Eventually.)
One of the other best parts is Aeolus, because the newspaper headlines are hilarious. Unfortunately, the Gabler edition has shitty binding and pages 75 to 106 are missing from my copy so my favorite headline, “SAD.”, is not even there to be quoted, actually. So I can just think about it.
What I miss most about the East Coast (besides my family): relatively easy access to the Atlantic. We were never a huge beach family, but once or twice a year we’d head to Cape May, NJ, or Rehobeth Beach, DE, and spend some time by the sea. I miss the people in ill-fitting swimsuits (you know, before the widespread days of cheaply designed Targetwear), the terrible seagulls, Grotto Pizza and softserve, boardwalks, and not being able to see an end to the beach anywhere because it was, you know, the ocean.
And then I moved to Charleston, twenty minutes from a beach where it was legal to drink, so long as it was concealed. The sea didn’t seem quite as dirty as it always did in New Jersey, and there were never any lifeguards (always seemed a bit dangerous to me), and there was always decent food nearby, and the waves were never big, and jellyfish were nowhere to be found. It spoiled me.
So now, these municipal lake beaches, they take some getting used to for an East Coast girl. It’s great living a mile from two or three little beaches, but the trees always frustrate me. I tend to stick to Lake Calhoun, where there are fewer trees and more sand and I can kinda pretend I’m back east. There are some more frustrating things— like why the hell are there lifeguards on this piddly beach with no riptides? and damn the lake is kinda gross— but I’m getting used to the fact that maybe you don’t need the sounds of waves to take in the sunshine. Some more pizza by the beach, though, might be helpful.
“Mrs. Kronborg was frying doughnuts for her husband’s supper. She laughed as she dropped a new lot into the hot grease. “It’s wonderful, the way some people are made,” she declared. “But I wouldn’t let that upset me if I was you. Think what it would be to live with it all the time. You look in the black pocketbook inside my handbag and take a dime and go downtown and get an ice-cream soda. That’ll make you feel better. Thor can have a little of the ice cream if you feed it to him with a spoon. He likes it, don’t you, son?”
She stooped to wipe his chin. Thor was only six months old and inarticulate, but it was quite true that he liked ice cream.
Willa Cather, The Song of the Lark.
This made my ovaries twitch and established that it’s pretty likely one of my children will be named “Thor.” Doughnuts, ice cream, and motherly advice are going to save the day again.
Oh, hey, what’s up, AP Stylebook? Yeah, I miss teaching with you. You know, using you as a platform to discuss how we talk about race and gender was always an interesting convo. You’ve gotten lots better at that in the past few years, so good job. Also, congrats on the online pronunciation guide. However, my former university will probably take three to eight more years to purchase the online guide for students (we are not “recession-proof,” hahahaha), so that’s probably nothing I’ll ever use.
What’s new? Oh man, you added “Twitter” and the verb “to Tweet”! That’s so cool. And you have “texting” conjugated in all verb forms. Wowza!
So did you unhyphenate “e-mail” yet? No. Oh, well, what about changing “Web site” to “website,” you know, how normal people use it? No? No. Oh. Ok.
Well, it was fun hanging with you, Stylebook. I’ll see you in a couple of years.