Ida Maria Sivertsen may not have won a Nobel Prize this week, but she is one more good reason to pay attention to what comes out of Stockholm. Ida, pronounced (ee-da) was born and raised in a small Norwegian village with a population of less than 2,000. In 2007 she packed up and headed to Sweden. Since then, she has made it onto the Top 20 charts in the UK and is infiltrating the US through a series of small shows, singles on iTunes, Gossip Girl, Perez Hilton and unbelievably cool YouTube videos.
Let's say that you're out at a bar, and you meet an attractive girl. You want to talk to her, but you are completely devoid of all redeeming qualities and are literally incapable of striking up a conversation with anyone, let alone someone you hope to have sex with. Before now, you'd probably have to run to the bathroom and consult your Tucker Max paperback for potential date rape tactics, but not anymore. No, now there is an AMP iPhone app that will do all of the dirty work of "manipulatingdegrading figuring women out" for you.
A relationship question for our modern times: Do you Google the people you date? Before a blind date? After a first date? Just quick background check? It's undoubtedly the greatest invention in history if you want to check up on your exes, but what about Googling the people you're meeting right now?
A recent article in the Washington Post tackles the question:
Web searches for background intel on prospective dates have been
undertaken since the dawn of cyberspace, but only in the last few years
-- with the advent of Twitter, Flickr, LinkedIn and the like -- have
our online identities grown so rich that they routinely precede
Does hitting the search engines ahead of time spoil the thrill of discovery? Does it ruin the romance? Or is checking people out on-line just common sense?
Now that The Simpsons has sold feminism the fuck out, I'd like to give props to one cartoon I can still count on. I'm talking about South Park, which, after 14 seasons, still offers up some of the finest social satire ever to grace the American airwaves.
Okay, so maybe it's not perfect. The main characters, Stan and Kyle, are baby bros who use words like "gay" and "pussy" as derogatory slurs, and Cartman's bigotry would make Archie Bunker blush. But as the boys navigate their world, they encounter a lot of hypocrisy—including sexist behavior. And when the writers bring their social scalpel to these situations, the results can be hilarious, heart-breaking, (potty-mouthed), and yes...feminist.
Don't tell Trey Parker and Matt Stone I love their pro-woman work, because they try hard to make sure every group gets ruthlessly ridiculed (it's how they avoid hypocrisy.) So until they animate Susan B. Anthony sniffing glue, let's celebrate some episodes well done. Enjoy!
These days everyone seems to be caught up in the Obama Peace Prize hullabaloo: He's only been in office for 9 months! How do we know he deserves it? What if he surges the troops in Afghanistan? Personally, I couldn't care less. By now, the Nobel Peace Prize is right up there with the Grammys in the respectability category (or lack thereof), and the prize has a history of rewarding American Imperialism. The original war-mongering president Teddy Roosevelt won one, for Pete's sake. In the irony category, the prize in economics often seems to follow suit, so my jaded trust in the Scandinavian art of prize-giving was pleasantly proven wrong today when I read that Elinor Ostrom became the first woman ever to win the Nobel Prize in Economics.
This prize is exciting partly because Ms. Ostrom is the first woman to win it, but not just because of that. Her winning this prize will hopefully help to highlight women's voices in a field that is desperate for them, and the noble work this Nobel is rewarding will hopefully change the way we think about economics in general.
In my ongoing attempt to bring you amazing tattoos on queers and/or women--and the often even more amazing stories behind them--I have a treat for you this post. From the vault of a project I'm doing archiving the tattoo stories of people I like, I am happy to introduce you to Arwen--a fantastic artist, a beautiful writer, and an old friend.
The New York Times and BBC report that eight women-only trains were recently introduced in urban Indian cities. Some may question this form of sex-segretation as a sign of progress, but to female riders, these trains are a space where they can feel free. Humor me while my mind meanders.