Friday, May 30, 2008

How to tell if you are a total nerd

You're supposed to go have cocktails and see the Sex and the City movie tonight, but you've just realized that you're going to miss BOTH Battlestar Galactica AND the National Spelling Bee finals if you go out. This makes you sad, and you wonder if it might be better to just stay home and see Sex and the City another night.

Yep. Total nerd.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

anti-feminist bingo

For noting on the Apartment Therapy comment section that the aforementioned BigA$$Pinata was offensive, I got piled on by a bunch of design snobs, who were defending, let us be clear, a tacky piece of crap.

It was anti-feminist bingo in in time at all:

'It's funny. You have no sense of humor. Lighten up.'
'Why are you upset over something so trivial?'
'I'm a feminist and I think it's funny.'
'Fretting about little stuff does a disservice to *real* women's issues' (thanks for the backup, sister!)
I got called a slut in a sideways sort of way (non sequitur mention of a "walk of shame"?), spoken to with condescension, and of course told to "get over it."
Oh, and the same dude suggested that it had been too long since I'd seen a naked ass - I would call that the slightly subtle equivalent of telling me I need to get laid.
Ah, also, several people explained to me, as though I were five, that beating a pinata is NOT the same thing as beating a woman. Because I obviously am not smart enough to tell the difference between a real woman and a disembodied female body part product.

Over, LET US BE CLEAR: a tacky piece of kitschy crap.

Man, the d00dz, they sure don't like having their love of disembodied female body parts criticized. And the d00dz, what they don't get is that I tossed off a snarky comment and only entered a so-called flame war after being piled on by a bunch of assholes. Oh, yeah, I was told that name-calling wasn't a good rhetorical move. Thanks, man. Appreciate that. By the time I called one dude an idiot and another one an ass-hat, it was clear that adult conversation with either would be impossible, so why not just let it rip, I say? Asshats. Idiots.

Lesson learned: Let no one be fooled by a slick modern apartment full of tasteful decor: a dude with Eames chairs is just as likely to be an ass as a dude with a plaid recliner and a painting of dogs playing poker.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

misogyny in design today

Inspired by Shakesville's "Today in Disembodied Things" series, I bring you two new objects to heap your scorn upon.

First up, the "Big Ass Pinata," brought to my attention by Apartment Therapy for some reason.

I mean, not only is it offensive and sexist, it's just not an interesting or original product. I am loathe to link to the company in question, so find it yourself with your google-fu if you're interested. After several commenters noted that it was sexist and offensive, the "what about teh menz" contingent appeared with the "How do you know it's not a man's ass?! (because of the exaggerated hip-to-waist ratio, idiot!), and "why are you assuming they don't sell a male version?" (because I checked the website, dipshit!).

Point being: violence against women is neither fun nor funny. Neither is beating the crap out of a disembodied female ass.

Next up, Pharrell Williams' "Perspective Chair".

Huh huh huh, said Beavis, it looks like they're DOING IT. Yeah, that's fucking hilarious. Or is it sexy? Or stupid? It's such a fine line.

Allen Jones did it what, forty years ago? Please. It was offensive when it was done with some measure of aesthetic quality. Here it's offensive AND ugly.

Hey! Link-a-riffic!

I ran across this recently:

An archive of Biting Beaver's posts.

A project of the AntiPorn Activist Network.

Check it out, yo.

[shout out to Izzy at Damage Control for the link]

The Jena Six still wait for justice

Sure, you heard about the protest in Jena months ago. You know that six African-American teens have been targeted with unfair charges, denied bail, and subjected to a biased and corrupt judge, AFTER having been subjected to nooses, racial slurs, and insults by the white kid they eventually (allegedly) beat up.

It's still going on, people. Those kids are still in the system, and still haven't had a fair trial.

Read all about it in Jeff Chang's column at the Huffington Post.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Trinity Football

I seem to have forgotten to post this back when it was fresh, but it's still worth a look if you appreciate creative football plays at all.

Yeah, it's my alma mater. So?

Monday, May 19, 2008

House 05.19.08

Yeah, so watching House made me cry last night, but it also irritated the ever-living shit out of me. Why? Because Wilson is NOT Amber's "family." He's her boyfriend. Does she not have a next of kin? Shouldn't someone have *called* her next of kin to make the big life-or-death decisions? Man, that's aggravating. House is usually better-written than that.

Lots of people curious about what Gaeta is singing

...on the last episode of Battlestar Galactica ("Guess What's Coming to Dinner?" is the ep title). The song is called "Gaeta's Lament".

Commentary and video can be found here: Battlestar Galactica's Latest Song is full of Clues.

However, I would have to agree with the commenter on that site that the blog post title is misleading. The blogger, Meredith Woerner, doesn't exactly untangle the lyrics and give us a new interpretation. (Also, Meredith breaks up with Gaeta in this blog post. Which if fine. Gaeta can be MY boyfriend if she doesn't want him.)

It's a start, anyway.

Good hunting.

Mid-Century Modern comes to New Orleans

I skim the catalogs of the major New Orleans auction houses regularly, and for the most part, the furniture is gilded and/or Frenchy, but changes are afoot. A solid representation of Chinese antiques and whatnots has shown up in recent catalogues, and this month, a small but excellent selection of awesome mid-century modern stuff is up at New Orleans Auction.

I do not love Frenchy foo-foo things much, especially not in large quantities. In fact, just about any style named after a monarch, I'm not so much into. It's too shiny and ostentatious for me.

For example: O these Charles & Ray Eames for Herman Miller recliners! I effin LUFF these chairs with a mighty passion. If you really loved me, you'd buy me one. Also, you would purchase for me the services of a cat trainer who will keep my quattro cats from destroying it.

If you loved me even more, you'd buy me this fantastic painting by NOLA artist Ida Kohlmeyer:

I would also not be opposed to owning this charming suite of Herman Miller chairs, also designed by Charles & Ray Eames:

Although I am in general not big into vast tracts of French Provincial quaintness, my OCD organizer self loves this a LOT, because I love things with tiny little compartments for the organizing of small things:

Unfortunately it also reminds me of that Friends episode where where Ross and Rachel both buy an apothecary cabinet from Pottery Barn, but Rachel tells Phoebe it's a flea market find, and Phoebe goes on this awesome Pottery Barn rant, but then she ends up loving it anyway.

All images from: New Orleans Auction

Friday, May 16, 2008

liveblogging Battlestar Galactica 05.16.08

How did Gaius find out about Roslin's shared vision with Six and Athena?

When did Apollo get to be such an asshole?

So Tigh is getting in touch with his Cylon ESP, looks like.

[Seriously, people, who the fuck is Tony Stewart?]

I see a hitch: the four who are hidden clearly do *not* know where Earth is. And what if the Five don't want to go with the other Cylons? I guess that makes two hitches.

Oh! And what about Nick Tyrol? What will happen to him if Daddy has to leave with the Cylon rebels?

Why is Gaeta obsessed with being awake during the amputation? And when will that poor guy get laid?

OMG! Tory is busted! Oh man, and here goes another person asking Tory to prostitute herself for information. That is SO not cool.

What is with Gaeta singing? There's always weirdness around singing on this show.

And the question remains: Kara is the harbinger of WHOSE death? Tricksy hybrid! With her pronouns with unclear antecedents!

Hey, a little face time for Dualla. Haven't seen her in a while.

So what's the fallout here? Six is dead, she can't stall for time, and that means Leoben may not have enough time to undo their double-cross. IF he was planning on undoing it at all. I'm not even convinced Sharon killed the right Six - it seems like it was the Six in the brig that was going to be taking Hera. Is she thinking of killing every Six she sees?

[preview of next episode]

Sure looks like Tigh done knocked up Prisoner Six. Dang.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

vegetarian victory moment

I was watching Hell's Kitchen the other night, and the head chef decided to run a taste test with the contestants. We're talking about 8 or 10 professional chefs, people who have trained and cooked for years, right? He had them taste three different dishes and try to figure out what was missing. The three dishes were a chicken pasta dish (tetrazzini, maybe?), beef stew, and sausage ravioli. They all guessed things like salt, pepper, cream, rosemary, this, that, the other. Nobody got it right.

Guess what was missing? The meat! HA! Every one of those dishes was made with fake meat and NONE of them noticed. How awesome is that?

Next time some carnivore gets up my snout about how fake meat is so, so terrible, I'm just gonna point and laugh.

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

my new favorite mississippi moment

This afternoon, I went out to a friend's country property to help critique the site-specific sculptures her students had produced out there. About every ten minutes, she would warn us of some new danger. Watch out for snakes! Oh yeah, and the brown recluse spiders. Next it was fire ants, and then the poison ivy and the slippery muddy swampy bits. Seriously, why do people even LIVE in the country? It's freakin dangerous. And there are bitey things.

So, one of the students had accidentally placed her piece outside of the friend's property, in her neighbor's field. The field was right next to the driveway, just a chunk of field, nothing much happening. She dug a hole, inserted a 10' I-beam, and attached on top a ring of metal (imagine a really big iron stop sign, only with a ring instead of a circle). There's another piece on the ground that fell off during installation, but that's neither here nor there.

What *is* important is that the neighbor came rolling up as we were all standing around, having just finished critiquing the work. He was the very picture of a pissed-off redneck, in his ginormous crew-cab pickup truck and his triplet-sized beer-belly. He was on the phone until he stopped the truck, then got off the phone and started snapping pictures of us with it. He shouted "Do you all know what you're doing out here?" Which, to my mind, is a dumb-ass question. Anyway. My friend walks over to chat with him, and tells us to go back to the house, since we're done with the critique. A few of us kind of linger around for a few minutes, because he really seems pretty pissed. She looks around, says, no, she's fine, head on back, and we mosey back slowly.

Ten minutes later she returns. What's the deal, we ask? This is rich. Wait for it.

He was convinced we were performing a Satanic Ritual on his property and was outraged. Yes. He thought that it was an Satanic symbol of some kind and we were out there sacrificing goats or whatever the hell. As soon as he said that, she knew it would be fine and she'd be able to calm him down, because it was so freakin absurd. Look, he was DEAD SERIOUS. Somebody had called him and told him that satanists were preparing to worship the devil on his land.

I mean, I must've laughed for ten minutes straight when I realized what he was so het up about. Satanic Rituals! On his PROPERTY! Goldangit! Do you people realize what you are doing? I'm surprised he didn't launch into a preachin'.

So that was the surreal end to my very sweaty, swampy, buggy, arty afternoon.

Friday, May 02, 2008

in which I respond to my search strings

If you are looking for news of Barbara Menendez, go to and you can search YouTube for Cold videos.

Anything re: jezebel, cogitor, cat's cradle, chrysalis, the guild, and the golden age of WWIV BBSes in the 504, there ain't much out there, but you can try: If you happen to know Chrysalis, tell her I said hi. She was an amazing mentor when I was a newbie.

If you're looking for Brian "BS" Wayson, try Portland, OR. Don't tell him I sent you. He's an ass and you're better off not finding him. If you read on his high school alumni website that he's was killed by an ex, that's bullshit. His idea of a "joke."

What to wear to a dissertation defense: a navy suit, a non-low-cut shirt, glasses if you've got 'em (they make you look smarter!), and bring a bottle of water. You can buy time on answering your interrogators by taking a long swig of water. Even better, wear pajamas and defend via speakerphone.

Thursday, May 01, 2008


As anyone who's paid attention knows, this blog veers back and forth from total fluff to political commentary esp. re: feminism. Lately it's been fluff because I think I do some of my best patriarchy-blaming over on the IBTP Forum (follow the link to IBTP blog if you're interested). I'm more of a reactive writer than a pro-active one. Give me something to argue with, I'm on it. But if I try to come up with a blog post on something new, I'll get stuck. Why? There's too much out there to be righteously indignant about. Too much to be angry about. Misogyny, racism, age-ism, able-ism, and what do you call it when someone's anti-everyone-else's-religion? Religionism isn't right, is it? Anyway, that. So much fear and hatred that I wouldn't even begin to know where to start. So I guess I post happy-making videos of kitty-cats because a dose of teh cute provides a brief mental & emotional respite from the world.

I just finished a huge project at work, that almost went completely kablooey on me (as in, almost missed publication deadline for catalog of an exhibition). The day was saved by a cash infusion (amazing what money can buy) but it's been a stressful six or eight months. Now that the project is done, it's like the dam is broken and I am able to sit still and get small things done. Sure, I can spend fifteen minutes labeling and filing at work. I can finally, FINALLY, order those cute CD binders from West Elm and transfer my CDs from jewel cases to binders, thus freeing up space (both literal and visual) in my house. I can do them because I don't have Guilt - the guilt that I *should* be doing this Huge Project, so I can't even make myself embark on a Small Project.

The dam has broken & I'm using the Apartment Therapy eight-step home cure, but on my own schedule. It's supposed to be an eight-week process, but I skipped a week (too busy at work) and then Week Three tasks took two weeks, and now Week Four tasks are taking two weeks. Which is fine. I don't have a deadline, I just need to de-clutter and spring-clean my space. I've been in my house almost 7 years now and it needs attention. Having a tidy & serene & aesthetically pleasing home environment is SO essential to my sanity, I can't tell you.

And then I re-read those paragraphs and think: holy crap I am a bourgeois honky ASSHOLE. I should be sending my every extra penny to relief efforts or Planned Parenthood or my internet friend in Canada who's about to be homeless. GOD, I'm a privileged spoiled middle-class American white girl, and what the fuck do I do about it? How can I possibly justify spending $75 on cute CD binders to house my CD collection? How fucking ABSURD is that?

But wait, do I really even have extra money? Shouldn't I have spent that $75 on paying down my consumer credit? (Let us pass over in silence my six-figure student loans). Where are my priorities:

1. social justice/aid
2. financial solvency (getting out of debt)
3. self-care

What comes first? Where should that $75 go? I spin around and around these axes and no matter which one I choose, I feel that I have failed in my efforts with regard to the other two.

And then back to it: I'm SO privileged to be able to sit here in air conditioning in front of a computer having White Lady Angst about what to do with $75, which constitutes a week's salary for many, a month's salary for others.

And the privilege of money is only the beginning of it, isn't it? This is the problem I have when I talk to people about privilege: They think it means money, money ONLY. If I say "white people have privilege" they might say, "Well, plenty of black people are richer than me." Or, say, I point out male privilege by mentioning the daily indignities of sexism, both large & small. Mr. Male Privilege then denounces each of the daily indignities as minor at best, or pronounces me paranoid, or too sensitive. Mr. Male Privilege usually thinks he's NOT privileged because, say, he grew up poor. Or short. Or in an abusive family. But he's still got that Male Privilege, but he doesn't see it, because he does not speak my language. He does not understand how privilege DOES NOT EQUAL money. It's so much more than that. SO much more.

And I fear that my White Lady Privilege is blinding me all the time. It's like I have this inkling that it's there - I know it rationally - but do I *see* it, each and every day? I don't know how to see it. I don't know exactly which daily indignities I am spared. I almost said, "I should be thankful that I'm spared these things," but that's the Patriarchy talking. That's the P saying "Be glad you're at least doing better than those poor sods over there. You think YOU have it bad? Better be grateful that your crumbs are tastier than hers!" So, no: I will not be grateful. I will try to be aware, to look, to listen. I don't know what else I can do.