Monday, September 27, 2010

Stinkbugs are creatures but I hate them

A green stink bug on a leaf. This is not what the stink bugs on my ceilings look like, because those stink bugs are ugly.
I've been out with a cold the last couple of days, which has strengthened the adhesive between me and my couch. A little game I like to play while I'm on the couch is, "how many fucking stinkbugs are on the ceiling. Currently, the answer is five if you count the lights. Then I look at the wall hangings (seven), appliances (four), and my fucking laptop (two). Ew.

They weren't always around, were they? I remember cicadas and shit in my childhood, and mosquitoes, and all other kind of bugs, but not stink bugs. There's too many of them to really fight too much.

Fuck these insects. I don't really have anything else even mildly clever to say, I just hate them.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Fuck getting places: directions suck

Part of an old hand-drawn map, dating from about 1840, author unknown, showing Portobello, Dublin, and environs. From Wikipedia.
I fucking hate directions. No matter how simple, no matter how straightforward, left alone, I will fuck them up and get lost for a half hour. One must literally draw me a map to ensure I arrive somewhere in a reasonable time frame. And sometimes, even that doesn't work. Unless I live or work there, I do not know how to get there.

Yesterday, I picked up and dropped my friend off at her house. This friend is a good friend, and one of few faithful readers of this blog (hey girl, hey). I've been to her house at least a dozen times over the years, and at least a half a dozen times since the beginning of this year.

But since I can get lost in the simplest of situations, I still had to call her and ask her "okay, so right at the McDonalds, right?" It's probably rude - sorry, girl - but I didn't think of it that way. Rather, I thought of it as not wasting a fucking hour of our time getting hopelessly lost and frustrated, because even though she lives in my very small hometown, even though I've taken the same route to her house at least a dozen times, I'm still too fucking obtuse to find her house without her holding my cellular hand.

I love driving, but I cannot do it for a long period of time in new areas unless my partner gets all patriarchal by my request and tells me when to take a left, and then vigilantly ensures that I do not take a right. Geography and the simplest of directions, down to right vs. left, give me mega anxiety. I've gotten lost a number of times in my life - too many to count, really, but here are a few that stick out in my head.
  • two blocks from my childhood house while coming home from elementary school through a slightly different route (ran home crying)
  • my high school best friend's house the single time I did not go with a crude but detailed map (went 13 miles over the speed limit and cried to a cop)
  • on the way to my boyfriend of two years' house (was actually basically on the right path but still freaked and ended up crying on the phone to him)
As I left my friends, she gave me very simple instructions consisting of no more than two rights and two lefts and maybe two stop signs. It turned into a half-hour excursion through my town's backroads that ended up on the other side of town.

But I made it home, eventually, once I found Main Street. And I didn't cry. And when I am trying to assume the awesome responsibility of escorting myself to my destination, sometimes not crying is all the victory I need.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

The New York Times: newspaper of record (for rich people)

The New York Times is all over this economic crisis!

A screenshot of a New York Times Google RSS item. The title is

Such an immediate and important and of the moment problem: what do you eat if you have limitless money? I know these are the questions that keep me up at night.

Gotta love this quote from the actual piece too:
Money is not an issue! I love that phrase. It comes up in my correspondence more often than you might think.
Wealth is totes awesome, right?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Bathrobes kick ass.

Fuck clothes.

If you are my boyfriend or one of my college friends, you know that I am not a huge fan of getting dressed when it is not absolutely necessary. And the only time that it is absolutely necessary is when I leave the house.

I mean, they’re fun to put on when I have to put them on. But unless I need it for warmth (note: I do not presently need it for warmth), I see no reason to cover up. I living in the fucking mountains. No one is peeping on me. I frequently water my plants in my underwear, and I’ve gotten approximately zero pushback on this thus far.

If I haven’t returned from work? If I’m not “entertaining”? Fuck it, I’m naked. Bodies are awesome. My body is awesome. There is nothing more comfortable than fucking skin.
And the perfect accessory to nudity on a weekday morning is a bathrobe. I haven’t had mine for a few months because I’m a lazy jackass who couldn’t be bothered to dig it out of a pile. But this weekend I cleaned it, and oh what a good decision that was. I’ve been in it (or nothing) pretty much about 75% of the time since.

Bathrobes kick ass. Remind me never to lose mine again.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Really, I don’t get the big deal about sandwiches

All Star Sandwich Bar: Falafel Burger, Tomatoes, Onions, Sprouts, Cucumbers and Tahini on Whole Wheat. Scanned by Weekly Dig for Roflcon at Cambridge, Mass
Man, fuck sandwiches.

For whatever reason, people on the internet love them some sandwiches. Jessica from Go Fug Yourself talks of them frequently. I remember the first time I heard about Twitter, it was framed as “hey there’s this service where people make short updates about sandwiches mainly!”

Yes, different varieties and combinations of vegetables, meat, condiments, and frequent though not necessary cheese between two slie of bread is quite a thing on the Internet. Mayo, turkey, lettuce, tomatoes, beef, provalone, pickles, mozzerella, mustard, onions, between rye, wheat, sourdough. Et cetera. Okay, I’m getting the point. Lots of good stuff, lots of different stuff.

Perhaps I’m unfairly prejudiced against sandwichs. But they’re just not that tasty to me. They get soggy, and spill out the sides, and just don’t come out right in my mouth.

Homemade: Fresh Turkey, Sprouts, Swiss Cheese, Purple Onions On a Baguette.

See? The fuck am I going to take all those damn sprouts in my mouth at once? No mustard or anything, shit.

I just don't get it. All the component parts are there. Love meat. Love veggies. Love love love bread. Love condiments (particularly mayo). But together, it's just not that tasty to me.

I’m not saying I can’t get down with a grilled cheese every so often. But most of the time? No, thanks, stuff-in-bread. Whatever, sandwiches.

All photos from scanwiches

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Internalized sexism and cleaning.

Image: Soap on a tub. Useless, guilt-inducing soap.

Y'all know that I am not averse to attributing things to THE SEXISM/PATRIARCHY/KYRIARCHY IF I'M FEELING ALL INTERSECTIONAL. And normally, if I'm feeling guilty about something that LADIES ARE SUPPOSED TO DO, I attribute it to good old internalization.

But right now I am feeling guilty about my messy-ass home as my boyfriend tidies, and that has nothing to do with internalized anything, except maybe laziness. It's nothing to do with "why can't the MAN clean up once in a while?" It's more of a "why can't RMJ pick up after herself like a competent adult once in a while?"

My boyfriend is presently bustling around like a busy fucking bee, picking shit up and asking me where the shit I've left around the house goes (to which I shrug and say "I don't know, I'm writing."). He's doing his damn part. He wants to end this mess. He wants to walk on clean floors and he wants it now, and for some mysterious reason, he expects that I'm going to eventually help.

This pattern, of me being a lazy jackass while some lovely Virgo cleans shit up around me, is long-standing. It dates back to childhood, when my mother would ask me to do some simple task like sort the recycling while she cooked dinner and mopped and set the table and loaded the dishwasher. Being lazy and entitled, I would sigh and moan and do whatever it was I did to procrastinate before I dicked about on the Internet, pretty much until the milk bottles and Kix boxes and multitudes of Diet Pepsi, known in our home as "DP" (haaaaaaaaaaaa) fell out the container.

I mean, I have a legitimate reason (note: I don't feel like it is basically my reason) to not help my partner out. I'm not just being a lazy partner (note: I am actually kind of lazy, no lie). See, he put on Metallica, and cleaning to Metallica gives me a goddamn headache. I want to clean to Lady Gaga.

I know I bitch a lot about cleaning. Clearly I hate it. Clearly nothing is going to make me like that shit. Cleaning sucks. I rarely get satisfaction from it (because, well, I rarely do a good job at it). But Lady Gaga helps! It's nice to be able to shake one's booty to distract one's self from the fucking pile of dishes in front of one.

Ugh, and there is Pokerface. Time to go do some fucking dishes.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Eloise fucking Hawking: fucking time travel, she knows how it works. (Fuck).

Of all the things that the Lost finale did not wrap up, I am most fucking pissed about Eloise Hawking. I love Eloise Hawking.

Image description: A completely badass older white woman, Eloise Hawking, with fierce white hair tells some likely-time-traveling douchebag what the fuck is up

That lady knew what the fuck was going on at all times, and on a show that basically can't write women well and where mothers in particular are evil and crazy, that was pretty fucking refreshing. She embodied mysterious sci-fi Lost at its best. Eloise is symbolic of the lost (HAHA I AM SO GOOD AT PUNS) promise of the sci-fi-free sixth season. She was the only one who understood fucking everything. Whatever happened, she basically reacted with "CALLED IT!"

I mean, the lady fucked shit up, don’t get me wrong. She’s not exactly my role model (note: she kind of is my role model, as far as women on Lost go). Like, she did some Jedi mind-trick on Desmond where she made him not propose to Penny, which is sad and all but also fucking cool. She cold shot her own son, which sucks and all. (but it was awesome when Widmore whined and she was like "fuck you I shot my son").

You want to talk sacrifice, Jack "It's Raining On My Face" Shephard? Or John "Destiny, fucking DESTINY" Locke? Eloise Hawking killed her son, raised him to be a doomed fucking genius, then sent him back just to make sure she would shoot him again.

Christ, Eloise was so fucking awesome. She told people where to go and what to do and how long they had to do it, and when they (read: Ben and Fucking Jack) whined about it, she was like "well, shit, I did my fucking part of the work, chop chop." She swam through caves with nuclear bombs. That is not a fucking exaggeration.

Eloise Fucking Hawking was a bullshit-detecting machine - a quality most characters on this show (like Jack "This Is A Totally Normal Island, Yay Science" and later "Sure, Let's Blow Up This Atomic Bomb" Shephard or John "Yeah, Let's Trust The Con-Man Who Stole My Liver" Locke) lacked in pretty much every situation. But that lady? She knew when people were from the future when even Richard fucking Alpert was like “Oh, US Army? Right this way!” She was the only fucking person who seemed like she knew what the fuck was going on in season five. Fucking time travel, how does it work? Eloise fucking knows.

That's the thing about fucking Eloise Hawking. She knows what the fuck is happening with this Lost bullshit. She fucking knows. Better than fucking Jack, or fucking Hurley, or even fucking Jacob's stupid ass. Eloise Hawking? Has got a handle on this time-travel situation.

Eloise fucking Hawking is so fucking awesome that she could have save the sixth fucking season. As I've said before, with less foul language, I liked the finale but shit where was the fucking science this season. In one fucking scene - one fucking scene - I bet Eloise could have explained the whole goddamn mess. She could have been like "look, Jack" or "look, Hurley" or "look, Desmond" or even fucking "look, Charles" and just laid shit out. Yeah, maybe it would have been a little exposition heavy, but Finoula fucking Finnigen could pull it the fuck off, no matter how fucking shitty and clunky the dialogue was (and it would have been hella shitty and clunky).

Or you know, if Darlton wanted to be awesome (note: they don't), they could give her her own fucking episode. God. Think about how awesome it would be to have an episode about that badass fucking women with all the badass fucking women who played her. She could have faced off with Jacob and been like “look, asshole, I need some answers right fucking now.” And Jacob could have explained things to a point where they made sense beyond “hey guys, God is cool, but we’re all going to die, so, here’s heaven”. It wouldn’t be perfect, but it would be at least as good as Ab Aeterno and it would at least go beyond the magic fucking light cave in explaining what the fucking show was about.

Okay, I've realized that from the amount of time I've written "cold somehow fucked up poor sweet Daniel Faraday" that she's not a great mother. Yeah. You know what, fine, yeah, she was a kind of shitty mom. And she kept Des and Penny apart. Yeah, that sucks. Every character on Lost does shitty things.

But you know what else? Most every woman on the show to be a shitty fucking abandoning-ass mother in one way or another (even if it’s not really their fault, WHATEVER WHATEVER that’s for another post). Why would Eloise be any fucking different? And you know what else? Some women have more fucking important things to worry about than being a good mother. Being a good mother is fucking awesome. I had an awesome mom, and I one day hope to be an awesome mom.

But Eloise fucking Hawking had more than Daniel Fucking Faraday to fucking worry about. Bitch had to prioritize. You know what's more important than Daniel fucking Faraday? Two of her other little responsibilities - namely space and fucking time.

Vincent: the best thing about Lost

So my next post is pretty critical of Lost and how it treats Eloise. And I’ve written a lot recently about ways in which Lost sucks and does a disservice to its characters.

And it does. But there’s one character that I think they handled beautifully from start to finish in Lost. And not coincidentally, it’s the character that I have never heard a complaint about from the fanbase.

That’s right. Vincent.

It’s hard to go wrong with a dog this sweet. But Darlton did more than just give us a cute puppy to coo over. They used Vincent as a character and as a plot device pitch-perfectly throughout the entire run of the show.

Vincent the character was someone we, the fans, deeply cared about throughout the show. We cared about his relationship with Walt – Cara cited Walt’s farewell to him in the season one finale as one of the most moving moments of the show. He helped Shannon before she was killed (for loving Sayid). I cared about what happened to them as the human characters skipped through time and space. He made episodes that featured him better because I was always happy to see Vincent when he showed up. One common refrain I heard throughout the often discouraging sixth season was “More Vincent!” And as the show waned, it turned into a beg – a wish for a bright spot in the disappointing winding down of the show.

Vincent was also used brilliantly as a literary device. He was used to lead people into the Jungle of Mystery for believable reasons. Because, everybody loved him, who wouldn’t save Vincent? He was an emotional or comic relief for many scenes, a way to easily but effectively punctuate scenes without overdoing it.

And Vincent’s placement in the opening and closing shots of the show was just unbelieveably beautiful and perfect, and multifaceted. First off, dogs are cute and make everything +1. Furthermore, at the beginning of the show, it created just the right amount of mystery and suspense. At the end of the show, Vincent, the developed character we cared about, gave the show its last strong punch of emotional resonance. Furthermore, it reflected the parallelism of the beginning and ending shots of the show.

The sixth season made a lot of mistakes, but its closing on-island shot was an excellent choice that emotionally redeemed many of my qualms as I watched the show end in tears. And Vincent was the reason that shot, and to some extension the show, worked as well as it did.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Quit whining, Netflix.

Oh, whatever, Netflix. Your whining has grow tiring and predictable:

The Internet is perfectly fine. The internet is fantastic. I have like two dozen tabs with like gif files open and the internet is fast as shit:

The Internet, basically, is much more competent than your inconsistent ass, Netflix, so enough with the fucking theatrics.

(I'm sorry, Netflix, please come back. I love you and your affordability and huge library. I didn't mean it, I was just having a moment, you know how I get when I don't have my X Files or King of the Hill. You're such a good video delivery service, I've never had a video delivery service like you. You let me write about all my favorite stupid shows. When I make it to the big time, I'm going to take you shopping and buy you lots of stuff.)

Thursday, May 27, 2010

In defense of kittens.

Above you will see me and my dear friend Erika holding kittens. You may wonder, where did we get the courage? We are not, as you may expect, exceptionally brave women. No. It is just that these tiny cats are just too cute.

I came to cuddle them after my boyfriend found some abandoned six-week-old kittens last week. Having been fed years of fear-mongering media stories of kittens - you know, how they eat faces, poop on televisions, and generally ruin lives - I was understandably against the idea of bringing kittens into our well-ordered, immacuately appointed home.

But my partner was moved by their notoriously seductive mews, so often compared to the sirens of Homer. And against my will, we moved them into our basement.

Here comes the twist in my story, reader. Because I was also taken in by these creatures. Kittens are, in fact, totally cute.

I know, I know, this is a rather startling argument. Subversive. Radical, even. But trust me. I have evidence.
If you will look at the the kittens in the above photo, you will see that they fit in a man's hand. This is an illustration of how small these kittens are (contrary to prevalent stereotypes about their terrifying hugeness). Small beings are often read as cute. These are very small, and thus cute, mammals.

Above, you can see that these beings have a lot of hair. Though most believe that kittens have leatherlike skin, in fact these baby cats have plenty of fuzzy fur that is soft and nice for nuzzling. Though the word nuzzling may have been sullied from misuse in those anti-kitten stories above, it is actually quite a pleasant sensation.

Their beguiling mews are not a form of deception, but are instead an indication of their very factual adorability.

I know I'm taking a risk here. I know this is going to create quite the controversy. But I will say it here, to all those nay-sayers on this hot-button issue: kittens are adorable. Deal with it.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The End of Lost, and why the sixth season missed the sci-fi mark

I am a rather contrary person, but I am also quite the conformist on occasion, which is why I write groundbreaking, earthshaking posts that generally go something like “HEY YALL DID YOU KNOW THAT CONTRARY TO POPULAR OPINION, CHEESECAKE IS DELICIOUS?” or maybe “HEY YALL I DON’T LIKE CLEANING AND HOUSEHOLD CHORES, I KNOW WEIRD RIGHT?”

So I’m not exactly sure how to react to the Lost finale after watching it yesterday morning.

I liked it. I did. But tentatively, problematically.

I reacted well to it, like I reacted well to Across the Sea. There were plenty of problems, but like that episode, I felt like it gave me a better idea of the nature of the show and its ideas and what it’s trying to get across.

I liked it much better than Across the Sea in many ways. While Across the Sea was a bit of a rush job as far as “developing the island as a character”, this was a coda for characters who were already extremely well-developed.

That’s what The End really did well. It banked on the viewer’s strong emotional ties to these characters: it made us remember how wonderful Jin and Sun and Rose and Bernard and even Jack and Kate are, made us remember that a big part of the reason we’d cared about this show for so long was the characters: well-developed, well-articulated, three-dimensional. The acting was also exceptional: I’m not usually a huge fan of Evangeline Lilly’s acting skills, but even she gave her character’s end gravity and meaning. In a show that consistently punished, tortured, killed its characters with rewards few and far between, it gave us something unexpected in its conclusion: their happiness in their death, their redemption through their trials. It showed us what they died for in a way the penultimate episode could not. Seeing these characters find understanding and happiness was incredibly powerful after six years, and it made the conclusion much more pleasant and satisfying. I cried several times, but not bitterly or out of sadness.


I have no problem with big, epic, science fiction shows ending up being about religion, like BSG and now Lost. Science, to me, is about religion. Maybe it’s because I’ve never been that good at understanding either. But life, growing, changing, nature, are wonders to me. Creation and science are fact, but the facts are constantly shifting, truth is constantly changing with our knowledge. The universe is not something we can intimately understand.

Thus, I did not mind the focus on faith and religion in this episode or these season. Faith has always been a strong current in the show. It’s mixed with science to create grand mystery and suspense, and when the plotting and pacing are good (as they were in this final episode, it can be magnificent).

But science was mostly abandoned this season, in favor of magic and religion. And that’s not living up to the show – it’s lazy fucking writing.

I had reserved judgment on the “magic everywhere in this bitch” aspect of the season. And now, I feel cheated.

Magic, as I hope I illustrated above, is not mutually exclusive with science. The light, the energy, the magic, the heart, works to a certain degree as a motif - flashes of light are a frequent punctuation on the show, and energy is a basic concept in science. But the show does not develop the energy/light/force as the scientific property behind many plot points on the show. Instead, it chooses to focus on developing a side world that ultimately does not exist. That’s wasteful writing, and it’s unnecessary.

A more productive tack to take, in my opinion, would have been to start developing the island as a character early on in the season, placing Ab Aeterno and Across The Sea early on in the season. Some of the weaker episodes (in particular Sayid’s, the Kwon’s, Kate’s, and Sawyer’s) should have instead been devoted to seeing more of the history of the island and developing how the energy affects the inhabitants, and defining the parameters of the protector’s guidance of the island. In this way, the show could have answered a lot of central questions: questions they built up and promptly abandoned. If you’re reading it, you know what they are. For me, I think that it would be easy to explain:

-the island’s past, particularly with regard to all of the Roman and Egyptian imagery and mythology

-conception and pregnancy [Particularly here – I would have loved to see more Alison Janney in different situations because I love her]

-fucking magnets, how do they work

-time and how it shifts

-the smoke and the nature of MiB

The problem with the construction of this season is that they did not trust the viewer enough. I do not dislike the idea of the sideways as purgatory. But they worked too hard to build it up when they really didn't need to in order to give these characters resolution. But I do dislike that they created a demand and an anticipation for specific aspects of the show, and actively chose to avoid answering those questions.

Further reading:
this ain't livin

Friday, May 21, 2010

Dirty laundry: I also hate it

Last week, I wrote at some length about how much I hate doing the (fucking) dishes. I still hate them. But I forgot to write about another thing I hate.


I hate laundry. I hate everything connected to laundry, except of course for the wearing of clean clothes.

When I was a child, I perpetually refused to throw my clothes in the goddamn hamper. Nothing has changed in nearly two decades. There are clothes all over my floor, on my bed, even on the back of my couch. I suck at putting away my fucking clothes.

What's worse is that my boyfriend is perfect about this. He comes home from working outdoors and immediately puts them in the wash, then in the dryer immediately after that. So that mess up there? All me.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Gardening porn.

Earlier today, you probably saw a weird plant next to a picture illustrating my rant about laundry. That's my beloved rosemary plant.

For my birthday this year, I asked for some basil and some rosemary from my boyfriend. He obliged, and my basil has been hitting it out of the park:

But my rosemary wasn't flourishing at quite the same rate. So I transplanted it, twice, and bought a little sister for her, and mixed in some sandy soil. It's doing pretty well. But I want a bush, so I don't have to worry about how much I can and cannot take to season my salmon.

In other news, my "Big Bertha" bell peppers are failing:

I transplanted a couple of plants out, but for some reason the ones didn't get transplanted are dying.

Wahhhhh, I was looking forward to them. Luckily, my yellow bell peppers are kicking ass:

I have to transplant them, too. Hope they don't die!

Oh, my cucumbers, by the way, are kicking ass and blooming all of a sudden:

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Coffee: today it fails me.

Coffee has many varied purposes, including tasting delicious and making chocolate taste especially delicious. But for me, its central purpose is to wake my tired ass up in the morning.

Today, that is not happening. I have been awake and drinking coffee for three full hours. I have had an egg and the last piece of cheesecake in addition to several cups of coffee. I have been working and watching TV, as is my routine. I've walked around, done some gardening.

But I am still fully prepared to wake up in three hours with no memory of what's happened and qwerty on my face.

Coffee, what is your DEAL today?

Monday, May 17, 2010

I don't have a microwave, and that makes me better than you.

I own the hell out of my TV. I watch that shit critically, and daily. I am not ashamed to l-o-v-e my tee-vee. I am watching it right now (The Office UK special).

But there is one common household appliance that makes me feels superior because I do not have it. A microwave. Yeah, that's right, I'm avoiding the shit out of some cancer.

Actually, I'm probably putting plenty of cancer freons or particles or whatever in my system. They're everywhere.

But I like not having a microwave, for whatever reasons. I adore cooking, and I like doing it a little slower. Heating things slowly and manually requires more care and attention, and for me, that means a better tasting dish. Efficacy is one of my favorite concepts from political science - it's the idea that feeling like you have control over something makes your appreciate it more. The feeling that I am putting active work into whatever I'm doing, whether it's my writing, my body, my friendships, the herbs I'm growing, or my cooking, always makes me more satisfied with the subject of my efforts.

Of course, it would be easier for, like, boiling water or reheating stuff. I'll probably get one eventually, particularly after I become a mom. Microwaves are convenient everyday appliances that are necessary to many people, and it's indicative of my class privilege that I can exist without one.

It's silly that I am so smug about not having a microwave. But smugness is kind of silly in general, isn't it?

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Crocs are goddamn comfortable, and that is enough for footwear

I love Crocs.

Yeah, you heard me. See how happy they make me?

I love Crocs. I wear mine all the time. I wear them in public, I wear them around the house, I wear them to my casual workplace with jeans, I wear them whenever possible.

They are so goddamn comfortable. They are easy. They are durable, even when I treat them bad (or leave them in the car too long. Which I have done several times, and it has warped slightly, but they are still comfy goddamn shoes. They were a gift from my boyfriend for Christmas 2007 (I used to steal his since we wear the same size; they are Red Sox-themed; he gives awesome gifts) and I wear them constantly, and they’ve held up totes well.

Are they stylish? I guess not, no. Normally I am a clothes kind of gal – I like looking at them and wearing them quite a bit. But these are so goddamn fucking comfortable.


Halfway through writing this (which was supposed to be a warmup for real writing), I read this awesome piece on Beyonce and beauty performance. I read it, thought “fuck yeah!” clicked “like” to tell Google basically that I like it (because who else cares?) and then went back to my word processing document.

And I thought, “wait, why the fuck is this so defensive? Why do I feel like I have to defend occasionally veering from style/beauty standards even the last little bit? They’re Crocs. They’re comfortable. That's the point?Why does this fucking matter, why should I feel like I have to put on cute shoes every time I go in public?” I’m guilty about it for some reason (hint: the reason is the patriarchy) and so I’m moved to write this to assuage my guilt.

Style and fashion and what we wear are a construct, demanded by the patriarchy, but the building of it, the tiny choices, the shoes – that work is pushed off onto us. Like a, I don’t know, clock-making kit you get from an aunt or uncle or grandma for Christmas, except they don’t always have the colors or the batteries or something is missing, and you work hard on it, and it’s still a mess.

The beauty myth is very DIY.

Friday, May 14, 2010

The verdict on cheesecake: awesome

I love cheesecake.

I don't generally like cheese that much, so I didn't start eating it until I encountered chocolate-dipped cheesecake on a stick at FloydFest last year.

Holy shit it was delicious. It was a fucking party in my mouth. Since then I've been getting it every once in a while, when Food Lion has it on sale or when it's not too expensive on the menu.

I've also been getting into baked brie, which I can actually make myself. Cut it in half, slap some kind of jelly in the middle and on the top, cover in pastry dough. Oh baby oh baby.

The above is called South-African Rose Baked Cheesecake. I don't know what that tastes like, but I want to. It is here because it is on Wikipedia and looks delicious.

Yum. I've been on a stupid diet for a while, so I've been avoiding it. But my period has a way of making me realize that diets are stupid and sugar is delicious, so I had cheesecake and chocolate ice cream for breakfast today.

Another great thing about cheesecake is that it's a dessert my boyfriend likes. Usually he's not much of a sweets person, but he too loves cheesecake and ice cream, so I don't feel like a lonely fatass. (Not that I should feel like a fatass, because that is a perjorative and blah blah feminism blah blah, but that's how I feel).

This is me, after writing this essay.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Dirty dishes, everywhere.

I hate doing dishes. Especially without a dishwasher.

I've been down for a week, and between my work-generated dishes and the dishes I'm supposed to do because my boyfriend cooked last week, I'm basically a step below Liz Lemon taking her fork out of the dishwasher. I wish I had a dishwasher.

When I was a kid, my least favorite chore was taking dishes out of the dishwasher. I was generally pretty obnoxiously lazy in general but particularly with regard to housework. I was supposed to empty the dishwasher after dinner, and I would usually put it off for hours after forks were down.

Ugh. Youth. I had it so easy and I didn't even know.

The pile-up of dishes means that one load is a fucking production. I have to soak the dishes (because they're disgusting), then empty the water and clean off the food particles. Ew and ew. Then I fill with hot soapy water and wait some more, go do something else for a while. Then I have to either put up the clean dishes or move the dirty dishes to another part of the kitchen, which, when my kitchen is in the state it's in, is also an ordeal. Then I have to rinse them, which is not a big deal.

At this point, I say to myself, "Look at what you've accomplished. You are done with cleaning for the night."

Then I go and make and eat dinner, generating at least another two loads. My life, it's so hard.

In short, fuck dishwashing. My least favorite part of any day.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Cucumber plants suck.

Man, fuck cucumbers.

I've been gardening this summer, in planters, on my porch. I've been doing pretty well:

Yeah, it's pretty rockin. I'm particularly proud of my basil and rosemary plants. Thyme has been a challenge, but I think I'm getting the hang of it. I love going outside as I'm preparing dinner to get my spices and prune my plants. My chicken tastes better and my plants are mostly flourishing.

I'm also doing pretty well with some of the veggies I'm growing. My peppers are kicking some ass, as are my tomato plants.

But my cucumbers?

Ugh. My cucumbers. I had four seedlings. One is doing well. One has died.

This is probably mainly because I don't really know how to garden. This is king of a grow-as-I-go type of thing. But still - it needs full sun, I give it full sun. It needs water, I give it some goddamn water. This plant is a hater.



Okay, so, I really liked Across The Sea. Like, I really liked it. I was taken in, involved, everything.

It's a little bizarre, and yeah, you know, it is about magic after a fashion. But honestly, what the fuck did you expect it to be? Was the "it's PHYSICS" explanation really any more articulate or seriously meaningful? Time travel doesn't actually exist, you know. It doesn't. Time may be a dimension but we don't understand it. At least they're giving some kind of explanation instead of being like "WELL IT'S THIS MACHINE WITH WHEELS AND GEARS YOU SEE". We already got the sci-fi weird machine bullshit out of the way in seasons 2-5. And besides, as my nerdy brother is fond of quoting, any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.

This is a weird fucking island. A lot of weird, inexplicable things happen. Is magic really that surprising?

And it's not just magic (though it is very much magical). It's also about spirit. And yeah, it's hokey, but again: the fuck did you want? This is all about the power of fucking love and the human spirit and faith versus fact and all of that.

And it's not just magic and spirituality: think about the role that light, overpowering, beautiful light, has played on this island as a theme and a motif. Most notably, this light accompanied the time jumps of season five, due to the malfunctioning wheel MIB fashioned. When Desmond pressed the fail-safe, light accompanied the tremors that brought the plane down.

Also, what's so fucking wrong with magic? Magic is awesome. I love Harry Potter, and magical realism, and all of that bullshit. Magic kicks ass.

Was the CGI corny? Yeah. So? I thought it was also beautiful. This show is not about fucking reality.

I love this episode because it did not give "the whispers are SPIRITS" bullshit direct answers. It told a story of mythology that moved forward my understanding of the island and the essence of this show. Across The Sea shifted the way I view the show: what it's about, what lies beneath it, where it came from, what it represents. And I couldn't ask or expect anything more of it.

Further reading:

Lost S6E15: Across the Sea

Thesis statement

I love writing. I love writing for my usually very serious critical feminist blog Deeply Problematic.

But sometimes, it's a little hard to verbally and critical limber up in the morning. I don't think about feminism and my privilege twenty-four hours out of the day. I don't always want to write about the Problems in the World and why they're Relevant. I don't always want to re-draft and re-draft, and re-draft and re-draft, to make sure I'm not offending, not centering my privileges, etc. I love doing this a lot of the time. I feel honest and real and insightful when I write for Deeply Problematic, and it's deeply challenging and deeply gratifying.

But that's not all I want to write. I want to write about, like, my struggles with gardening, or why I love Bette Davis. I want a space to write about stuff without having to re-draft. I want a place to write about silly things. I want to write like a regular blogger, really colloquially, write and press publish, etc.

So, this is my space to write things off the cuff. It's where I'll come to warm up my critical skills in the morning while drinking my coffee, and to vent at night while I'm drinking my beer. There will be feminism on occasion, since I am a feminist. And just because I'm sick of considering my privilege doesn't mean it won't show here, and hurt people, and you're welcome to call me on that. But mainly it's just going to be my critique - positive or negative - on things not necessarily directly relevant to dismantling the kyriarchy.