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Unnecessary personal information ahoy

I find it difficult to attribute things to chemical reactions in my body.  Intellectually, of course everything is chemical.  But since it doesn't end up feeling like that to all of the other chemical reactions that make up Maggie, it seems to be the last thing I think of when trying to figure stuff out.

For instance -- I tried 3 months of a different brand of birth control.  I also have been uncharacteristically very very depressed quite often in the past 3 months.  My breasts are about a cup size larger than they were in early summer.  And finally, my breasts were very painful ("tender" doesn't really cut it) for a good two weeks.

Last weekend, I went back to the previous type of birth control pill.

For the past week, I've been mostly content and/or happy as a clam.

I suppose this is not all coincidence.  In that case, I hope the rising tide of my chest has hit its high and thus low tide is around the corner.  I have PLENTY of bras already.

I argue with people on Facebook walls

I am so annoyed by the mansplaining I'm making a post out of it, just so it doesn't disappear into the mansplainin' ether.

It started with this link, about whiny feminists whining about there not being fat chicks in magazines, or whatever.  HUMOUROUS!

My sarcastic comment:
It's true, feminism is a limited product and can only be used for so many things at once. Just because of this, there are issues about women's rights in India being totally disregarded! Wait, she disregarded them too. Why is she worrying about Australian problems when there are so much worse?

Reply from someone else (the actual linker hasn't participated in internet fighting except for his attestation with the link that it is HUMOUROUS!):

Well, feminism might not be a limited product, but people only have limited free time and attention spans, and burying core feminist positions under a lot of what would seem to be peripheral issues seems counterproductive to me. Maybe I'm not sophisticated^ enough.

Me:
It's always going to be considered a peripheral issue to someone.

And you sure it is a peripheral issue, or perhaps one part of the bigger picture?

He: 
Depends on what you are referring to by "it" I guess.

Me:
Well, no, that's the point. Anything is a peripheral issue, if you decide it is. There's always something worse out there, except maybe the heat death of the universe, that might be the end point.

So, why even CARE about women???? The heat death of the universe is just going to annihilate them and their stupid fat asses anyway!

He:
Okay, which is more important--the right to vote, drive cars, go out without putting on a sack and gender equality under the frikking law in general, or equal representation for various body weights in glossy magazines? Or is that question completely relativistic to most people? Not to me.

Me:
What's more important, the right to vote, or rape? Clearly rape is worse!

My point is that ranking it is ridiculous. It's all important. Because it's all related! Women as objects in magazines, objects without the vote, objects being raped, objects being forced to wear a sack.

I'm just a crazy feminist, worrying about silly magazines and things. La la la la.

He:
I don't believe it is one large conspiracy and I do believe that ranking these things is necessary. An isolated incident of rape awaiting due police investigation in a Western country bothers me much less than women denied the vote in a middle eastern country.

Me:
Really? Yikes.
Me:
Well, then you'd better educate us, far-sighted man. Your wondrous ability to rank the badness of issues is clearly needed. Please inform feminists forthwith of what we are allowed to be concerned with. Thanking you in advance.

BONUS PRIVATE MESSAGE!

"I read post-modern deconstructions of evil patriarchal scientific meta-narratives of modern life, or whatever, and think, are these people really so parochial and clueless? Clueless because I see that the men in any ad is handsomer than I am, but I don't see how that is an indicator of institutionalized matriarchal attitudes. Parochial because there are other, perhaps more pressing issues vying for the same limited space in a newspaper. Can it be that feminism has given in to the Capitalist "patriarchal" mercenary-ism and is producing feel-good crap to pay their domestic bills? Maybe I'm the one who's clueless. Maybe not."
 

This post from Kate Harding on Sandra Bullock, Jesse James, and the horror of accusing white people of being racist reminded me of my Unified Theory of Douchebags, as illustrated (shoddily) above.

In fact, the consequences of accusing a nice white person of racism, falsely or not, are so unspeakably terrible — why, some people might think poorly of her! — it would probably be better if we never used the word “racist” at all, except with regard to people who do, in fact, personally want to commit genocide. Just to be on the safe side.

And if that means we can never really confront racism when we see it, well… that’s unfortunate. But come on. We don’t want to make people uncomfortable. White people, I mean. I understand that racism itself tends to have damaging effects on everyone else, but since I’ve never personally experienced it, I can only speak as a white woman — and let me tell you, being told that something you’ve done as a well-intentioned, liberal white person was, in fact, racist? AWKWARD! So before you go trying to end oppression, you should probably take that into consideration, okay?

Yeah!  You can't just flagrantly throw stuff around like that!  Sandra Bullock is nice, and this whole thing can be explained away, because saying mean things about her or her douchey ex is mean!  You can't just go around calling white people racist willy-nilly!

So, my theory is that if you're doing something a bunch of people say is a bad thing, and you could just as easily NOT do that bad thing -- you are a douchebag.  With whatever other word needs to be attached to that -- racist, sexist, anti-Semite, ableist, whatever.

I find it's easy NOT to use the word "retard", dress like Hitler, describe someone as "bigblack", or make rape jokes.   It really is!  I often do not make jokes about women's poor driving abilities, call people lame, and call black women "sistah"!  Many times in the day I don't do these things!

It really is not that difficult to just avoid looking like a jerk -- or, if you fuck up and look like a jerk, say: "I fucked up! I'm not going to make up 400 bad reasons why I'm not a jerk, and instead do better next time!"  You could, you know, own up to the shitty thing you did, and learn from it, and work on being a better person.  Guess what?  Everyone needs to do this.  Me, you, my beloved grandmother, my brother, everyone.

So stop with the "it was just a joke", "you're too sensitive", "what are you, the PC police?", "I'm a member of X group and I don't have a problem with it", "I'm a nice person and I'm butthurt at you suggesting I'm not nice" and 400 other methods of trying to turn these things into something you don't have to feel bad about.

Perhaps, when you get the itch to make a rape joke, or say that Obama looks like a monkey, maybe you could just stop for a second and think: "Is this douchebaggery really necessary?"

I'll save you the trip through the flowchart -- it's not.

You know, I don't like you Clara Hughes

The majority of medals won by Canadians at these Olympics have been won by women.

http://www.montrealgazette.com/sports/2010wintergames/Women%20owning%20podium%20Canada/2616658/story.html

Speedskater Clara Hughes says that

"I hate to say this as a female, but there is a lot more depth in men's sport,'' she said. "It takes a lot more resources to be able to develop men. In my sport, speedskating and also in cycling, when you get a top-10 result as a male, it's something out of this world coming from North America.''

Well, Clara Huges -- It's harder for men, because men have been given more resources to begin with (and have been encouraged much more).  Therefore they have much more competition.

So Canadian women are beating the snot out of Canadian men in medal count, because they are (relative to other countries) given lots of resources...and then get to compete against women who have never been given anything like what men have gotten.  If you compare Canadian men with, say, Indian men then it's going to be the same thing.

This makes sense!  But the "poor menz, it's so much harder for teh menz!" way this is framed is amazingly obnoxious.

I figured it out!

I know what it is that's bothering me!

I seem to have an inner Successful Relationship Guide that says

Step 1: meet
Step 2: like each other a lot
Step 3: want to share lives
Step 4: eventually live together
Step 5: ????
Step 6: profit

So therefore, since I have these steps down, I'm at a loss because I don't have a general sense of where things are going.  I'm off the grid, people!

Nothing I can really do about that, except get a new inner Successful Relationships Guide.  But at least I know what it is that I'm thrown off by now.  I have the map to a foreign country and I don't know where my hotel is.

OH the internet

ME:

Because I hate everything, here's more about the use of aboriginal culture in the Games.

SOME FUCKHEAD:

There is no such thing as "indigenous" or "aboriginal" anymore. There are "groups not yet fully integrated into the larger society" and "groups who found their place in larger society through being indigenously aboriginal and profiting from that in many forms". Live with it.

ME:

Uh huh.  Thanks, font of all knowledge!

Do you think people of colour are just lazy, too?  Slavery was ages ago!

Or is it maybe slightly more complex than "stop being lazy and whining about the white people"?  Is it perhaps kinda difficult to get out of the reservations your family grew up in?  Kinda difficult to get out of all the racism, you dirty drunken Indian?  Kinda hard to just get over being abused in residential schools?

No no, clearly you have Canada's problems all figured out, random Latvian on the internet.

You go and let the aboriginal population know that they can't call themselves their own names.  Again.  Lemme know how that works out.

ME IN REAL LIFE
:

*feeling punchy*

All hail the Fatshionista

A little while back I expressed the notion of performing femininity.

Lesley does a better job!

On dressing femme

As well, it relates a bit to something else about myself that I'm thinking about more now that I'm moving into more of the Fat Acceptance sphere of the intertubes.

I'm fat to some and thin to others.  I'm not welcome to take photos of my outfits and post them on fatshionista sites, because I'm far too small.  But I'm a size 8-ish, and short, which means...what?  I guess it means I'm not thin either.  But I know if I was a few sizes larger it would be unquestionably suckier; I'm not saying I really need to be let into the fat girl clubhouse.

Or something. 

Really, I think the thing is that pretty much every women thinks that her body isn't right in some way.  Or many ways.

I used to work at a high-end swimsuit store in Yorkville.  I really saw how much women hated themselves.  So many women who thought the police would show up or something if they wore a bikini at the beach.  Young, old, whatever shape.  Didn't matter what they actually looked like.

You can't have the Right Body anyway.  The concept is stupid.  Sure, there's a general standard of slim, maybe blonde and blue-eyed or something.  But put any ten people in a room and ask them to name people who are perfect, and they won't have the same answers.  Obviously.  Hell, I always thought Jessica Biel has a fantastic body, but so many people have snarked about how muscular and manly she is.  Vomit!

Another thing that's helped me feel better about myself is sleeping around, actually.  Somehow, after high school I had the impression that I was fairly unattractive.  Not hideous; but fat and plain.  I suppose it was due to comparing myself to everyone else and thinking they were so much prettier*.  And the fact that guys were interested in them**.

Fucking made me realize that hey, guess what?  Real guys didn't see me like that.  They obviously thought I was attractive.  So I was wrong about myself.

I try not to hate myself.  Some days I fail.  But mostly I realize that I've got a pretty healthy body that can do a lot of fun things, and that's not something to take lightly at all.


*Looking back, I was not fat in the slightest, and I was quite cute if I do say so myself.

**It's possible guys were interested in me, I wouldn't have had a clue.  Sexually frustrated + awkward = no datin'.

Deja vu all over again

Since I'm rarely right in interpersonal relationships, I only now realize that calling it in advance doesn't necessarily make you feel any better about it.

Nevertheless, after considering it I'm pretty sure I still prefer to see it coming.  Then again, you might end up wondering if being cynical dooms you to failure...

Time will tell.

I perform femininity

I perform Femininity. (As well as Sporty, Casual, and Trendy. But these are not so political.)

I can be a bit of a chameleon* and like to perform. Femininity is a conscious construction, generally consisting of mascara and eyeshadow, heels, and a skirt or dress.

The Fat Nutritionist calls this "Beauty Drag". And she is much better at Pretty than I, I'm sure. I don't actually put tons of effort in.

And of course, "perform" implies an audience. I think mine is mostly for myself, though I like feeling that I may be perceived as Looking Good to others.

I also perform in the arena of sex. I enjoy being desired, and to that end I disseminate images of myself from cheesecake to hardcore. This is actively objectifying myself!

What can I say about that? I won't make any excuses. I understand that these aren't feminist acts.

But I enjoy it. I like to perform. I do think that this is how humanity tends to work; we present images of ourselves. You're necessarily making a statement, no matter what you do. Nor do I think there's a code that, if followed, means you are a Real Feminist.

I'm okay with performing. I do it the way I want to, which often is not the way it's "supposed" to be.


*Give me an office job and watch me start to build a wardrobe of suits, skirts and heels. Give me a job in the attic of a historical house and watch me start buying capris and t-shirts. It would be fascinating to see what I'd start wearing if I worked at Aritzia. I promise it wouldn't be tights and a large plaid shirt though.