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.
So: I went to the zoo today. I thought it would be nice! I live in New York City! It is hard to see animals bigger than squirrels or lap dogs out here, so I imagined it would be very fulfilling and grounding, in some sort of hippie Earth Mother way, to actually see some of those and remind myself that I do not live on a planet entirely composed of Pinkberry outlets. But here's the thing: zoos, if you are not seven years old, are very depressing. There's nothing nice about captivity. Even if you wouldn't wish to see some of these animals out and wandering around in your neighborhood - even if they are dangerous or gross or otherwise undesirable - there's something deeply sad and wrong about seeing them stuck behind glass walls, with nothing to do, just waiting for someone to come by and look at them.
It was under these circumstances, then, that I began to think about Miley Cyrus deleting her Twitter.
A while back when a girlfriend and I were walking by a billboard for
the Vivica Fox-hosted reality show, "The Cougar." I made some snarky
comment about this not exactly being the equality feminists dream of, and the friend gave me a cheeky grin and said, "You know, that
older woman is only 39."
That's less than five years away, folks. Apparently I don't have long
before I go from flirty thirty-something sexual adventurer to predatory
over-the-hill sexual adventurer, at least in the eyes of TV producers.
I should probably call ahead to see if they can line up some callow
youths for me. But the problem is, I'm not particularly attracted to
young men. In fact, I already know I would just plain suck at being a
I have three little brothers who range in age from 23-18. The little
brothers have friends. More than once, the friends have hit on me, and
some of these guys were--objectively speaking--pretty hot. But while a
college athlete's body is a thing of beauty, I wasn't all that tempted.
First of all, I knew that even just a fun roll in the hay would condemn
my brothers to years of "Yo, Sharper, I fucked your sister!" I couldn't
do that to them. Second of all, as I recall from my own experience,
college guys are fairly lousy in the sack. Energetic and enthusiastic
maybe, but their technique usually needs a lot of refining.
Granted, there are some women who like that. Madonna, when asked about
her predilection for very young men, once said: "They don't know what
they're doing, but they can do it all night long." Yikes.