Where to even begin with Dana Vollmer? Not only is she one of the best swimmers in the world, she's been in the elite ranks since she was a pre-teen. That's right: Vollmer was 12 (!) when she competed in the 2000 U.S. Olympic Trials. The Texas native failed to make the team that year but, as usual, she moved fast: she won a gold medal at the 2004 Olympics as part of the 4x200 freestyle relay team that broke a world record that had stood for seventeen years.It is not, however, all smooth sailing (smooth swimming?) for Vollmer. In 2003--the year before she would win her gold medal--Vollmer had heart surgery for a medical condition that nearly kept her out of the pool for good.
Welcome to the Sapphic Salon, Bitch's new blog about queer women's representation in pop culture. This includes the good and the bad, truths and myths, and about and of interest to women who love women.
Basically, we're right at home with Bitch.
A lot of people tell me they want to make their blog more accessible, but they aren't really sure how to do that. I'll own right up front that most of the accessibility issues relating to websites and blogs don't directly affect me – I'm not blind, d/Deaf, and I don't have mobility issues that could make web-surfing a pain. That means I may have lots of stuff at my fingertips that's "Best Practice", but people's lived experience pretty much trumps my "studies show that". Also, not all problems are ones you're going to be able to fix at your end anyway. But a few key things with your blog can make a big difference in who can read it.
Two twenty-something, upper class, educated, Jewish girls traipse around the United States looking for the feminism of a new generation, and once they find it, one of them kills herself. That's not exactly what the back cover of Girldrive: Criss-Crossing America, Redefining Feminism reads, but that's one version of what happened. Best friends since 1997, Nona Willis Aronowitz and Emma Bee Bernstein decided to take a road trip and talk to a cross section of young women about the F-word. They met 127 women—including a sex shop clerk, a Bible college student, a witch, a future nun, a former Air Force worker, and an anarchist—to find out why some woman love feminism with a fierceness and why others don't relate to it at all.
This week a query in the Bitch office got me thinking about John Hughes films. And that got me thinking in soundtrack mode. And that lead to the realization that many of my favorite (or at least memorable on some level) 80s films have title tracks or songs that always accompany any thought of them. Read on for the list, and listen with caution: these will get stuck on replay in your head.
The ACLU is suing this week's Douchebag Decree recipient for being a gigantic douche. OK, so Austin Couch, principal of Churubusco High School in Indiana, is actually being sued for free speech violation, but that's just lawyer speak for douchiness, right? At any rate, Principal Couch suspended two CHS sophomores from all extracurricular activities last month because they posted photos of themselves on their MySpace pages looking too darned sexy. He calls it principal-ing, but we (and the ACLU) call it slut-shaming.
You girls are officially suspended for having bodies!
The much anticipated Very Special Disability Episode of Glee, "Wheels" aired last night. And already the rave reviews are flooding in. It's "edgy," it's "a game changer," it's "controversial," it's "moving," it's "thought provoking." Twitter is aflutter with praise.
Did everyone else watch the same episode I watched?
In just six days 26-year-old Era Al-Sufri, a Diplomatic Officer at Brunei's Ministry of Foreign Affairs who loves math and is passionate about the environment, will embark on a dream vacation... of sorts. One of eight women from eight countries picked to participate in the Kaspersky Lab Commonwealth Antarctic Expedition, Era (aka Polar Girl) and her cohorts underwent an intensive training in order to complete a 40-day, 900km ski through blizzards and subzero temperatures (up to -40 degrees) with the goal of arriving at the South Pole on January 1, 2010.