Category: Quotes

Journal Time Up!

This past week, I finished up all pages in the notebook of my journal. The time with this journal spanned over 10 years, many life changes, and even more shopping and to-do lists. I thought I would go ahead and post my very first and my very last entry.

I’m wondering why there’s all this emphasis on maturity and growing up. I never wanted to grow up to begin with, and now I’m all upset because I acted irrationally and immaturely. I guess it’s because I’m worried about what effects it’s going o have in the long term, but . . . well . . . maybe it’s because I’ve ruined so many of these things in the past.
Well, this is it. The last page. We have moved in to our house (the one we bought!) so it’s obviously the end and beginning of an era. It’s only right that this journal should end, as well.
The house is perfect and adorable and requires so much work. I keep telling people that it’s like having a child–I’m exhausted all the time but I’m so happy.
. . .
What a boring, devoid of emotion entry for my final page. That’s okay. I’m excited about the new house and the new process of adulthood. I’m probably a different person from 2003. I’ve grown into the person I was afraid of, and I’m pretty sure I like myself a lot more, now.

The Original: Females

Does the book contain one or more female characters? Yes

Do these characters have names? Yes: Sarah, Ernestina, Aunt Tranter, Mrs. Poultney, Mrs. Talbot, Mrs. Fairley, Milly, Mary

Do these characters talk to one another? Yes

Do they discuss something other than men? Yes. Mrs. Fairley and Mrs. Poulteney talk about Sarah. The one time that conversation is witnessed by the reader, however, they discuss Sarah walking through what serves in the story as the red light district. Therefore, while the conversation is not about men, it does indirectly pertain to men.

Other-The fascinating thing about a Victorian novel being written in the late sixties is the perspective and self-awareness The French Lieutenant’s Woman has. While the 60’s were not as advanced when it comes to feminism as we are, today, the author is surprisingly advanced for his time: “What are we faced with in the nineteenth century? An age where woman was sacred; and where you could buy a thirteen-year-old girl for a few pounds–a few shillings, if you wanted her for only an hour or two. Where more churches were built than in the whole previous history of the county; and where one in sixty houses in London was a brothel…Where the sanctity or marriage (and chastity before marriage) was proclaimed from every pulpit, in every newspaper editorial and public utterance; and where never–or hardly ever–have so many great public figures, from the future king down, led scandalous private lives…Where the female body had never been so hidden from view; and where every sculptor was judged by his ability to carve naked women…Where it was universally maintained that women do not have orgasms; and yet every prostitute was taught to simulate them. Where there was enormous progress and liberation in every other field of human activity; and nothing but tyranny in the most personal and fundamental” (p266-267).


Does the book contain one or more characters of a minority race? No

Other: “My dear Charles, if you play the Muslim in a world of Puritans, you can expect no other treatment,” the doctor tells the main character. While there are no minority characters in Victorian England, this statement does imply that there is awareness of other races, at least in the more educated population of the country.


Does the book contain one or more gay characters? It is unclear, though the book does make mention of the question, during a scene in which the main heroine is seen in bed with another woman: “But some vices were then so unnatural that they did not exist. I doubt if Mrs. Poulteney had ever heard of the word “lesbian”; and if she had, it would have commenced with a capital , and referred to an island in Greece . . . But what of Sarah’s motives? As regards lesbianism, she was as ignorant as her mistress” (p. 157-158). Is Sarah a lesbian? Maybe.


Does the book contain one or more lower-class characters? Yes. There is a significant amount of time spent on the romantic subplot between two lower class characters.

Do these characters have names? Millie, Mary, Sam…

Do these characters talk to one another? Yes, frequently.

Do they discuss something other than the upper class? Sam and Mary discuss their love, marriage, as well as make some small talk. The conversation that the reader is privy to does tend to revolve around the larger plot, Charles and Sarah, so the instances of Mary and Sam talking, unrelated to their employers are few, but existent, none the less.

Other– The narrator, in his more “enlightened” viewpoint, seems to have interesting opinions about the Victorian class structure. Mr. Freeman, one of the only financially successful characters in the novel offers Charles, his future son-in-law at the time, his business. This immediately pits Charles in a quandary. Though he has no money, it’s so plebeian to work for money. Gentlemen simply don’t do that. The most respectable character in the novel, Dr. Grogan, is both learned, middle class, and self-employed in the business of helping others.

Also important to mention is the distinction and time the author spends on Sam’s position: “Of course, to us any Cockney servant called Sam evokes immediately the immortal Weller; and it was certainly from that background that this Sam had emerged…But the difference between Sam Weller and Sam Farrow (that is, between 1836 and 1867) was this: the first was happy with his role, the second suffered it. Weller would have answered the bag of soot, and with a verbal vengeance. Sam had stiffened, ‘rose his hibrows’ and turned his back.” This paves the way for much more characterization and time spent on/with Sam, but it only ends up being foreshadowing.

Why is pop musi…

Why is pop music the only art form that still inspires such arrantly stupid discussion?

-Sashe Frere-Jones, The New Yorker

There is a very simple answer to this–pop music is popular. So is stupidity.

Since pop music is popular, pop stars are glamorized and scrutinized in ways that other artists don’t have to deal with, or at least don’t have to deal with to quite the same extent. In the public eye, these people become more than just music makers. When conversation becomes vapid (as it always does when such a large group of people focus strongly on a single person) it extends past weight loss/gain, dating, social events, and other such things that have nothing to do with music to the music itself.

The Burqa

As we have just passed the ten year anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, we might consider how civilizational-sartorial thinking has shaped recent cultural politics and military policies. In the immediate aftermath of the attacks, veils and veiled Muslim women were pathologized as passive victims in need of rescue from their oppressive religion, culture, and men. As I discuss in greater detail elsewhere, it was not just the fashion media but also the news media, politicians, and, yes, mainstream feminists who perceived the veil as the exemplary Other to fashion. Consider this statement by a writer: “frivolous fashion is itself a patriotic symbol of America: You may never be able to afford that shredded Georgette Givenchy gown, but at least you aren’t forced to live underneath a burqa.” The veil, within this civilizational logic, is rendered the material symbol of not only Eastern tradition (as opposed to Western modernity) but a tradition imagined as brutally backwards and oppressive. This image of the victimized veiled woman played a large role in substantiating the humanitarian justification for the war in Afghanistan. Recall all the ways in which the U.S. State Department’s Report on the Taliban’s War against Women centered on the burqa and its perceived infringement on Muslim women’s freedoms. Civilizational thinking occludes the possibility that the burqa might be a fashionable garment that women wear to express their own identities, worldviews, and choices. In other words, civilizational-sartorial thinking denies Muslim women’s agency and in so doing, it negates important feminist histories of veiling such as the choice of some Egyptian women in the 1970s and 1980s to veil as a resistant act challenging Western and secular cultural domination.

Fraught Intimacies: Fashion & Feminism (The Director’s Cut)

The Original: Females

Does the book contain one or more female characters? Yes

Do these characters have names? Yes: Daisy, Jordan, Myrtle, Catherine, Lucille

Do these characters talk to one another? Yes

Do they discuss something other than men? Yes. Travel (p.34)

Other-Though Fitzgerald seems to be less sexist than many of his contemporaries, the predominant sexist attitude of the time tends to slip through on occasion. For instance, when Nick first describes the lavish parties at Gatsby’s house: “In his blue gardens men and girls came and went like moths” (p.39). One could make the argument that, like many of the wealthy men of today, the men of Gatsby’s parties are attracted to women very much their juniors, and therefore, Nick is simply describing the party-goers as he sees them. However, when speaking about his lover Jordan, this bias becomes clearer: “Dishonesty in a woman is a thing you never blame deeply” (p.58). Clearly, Nick can’t hold Jordan to the same moral standard as he would a man, because she is just a weak woman. The last sexist moment doesn’t come from Nick, but rather from Tom. Tom serves as the window character to show some of the more repulsive commonly held views of upper class society members of the day. Near the end of the novel, Tom makes Daisy drive home with Gatsby shortly after Gatsby reveals to him that he is in love with Daisy and that he intends to run off with her. For some reason, Daisy agrees, showing that both she and Gatsby are powerless in the face of Tom. To add insult to injury, Nick tells Gatsby after the fact, “I don’t think she ever loved him…You must remember, old sport, she was very excited this afternoon. He told her things in a way that frightened her” (p.152). Ah, yes. Women are known to betray every emotion and relationship they’ve ever had once they get excited, just like a dog that urinates on itself.


Does the book contain one or more characters of a minority race? Yes: “A Finnish woman, who made my bed and cooked breakfast and muttered Finnish wisdom to herself over the electric stove. ” (p.4)

Do these characters have names? No.

Other: Fitzgerald uses Tom to show the worst traits of upper class society, therefore making him a racist, along with many other things. Tom goes on and on in long rants about his views of minorities: “The idea is if we don’t look out the white race will be–will be utterly submerged…It’s up to us, who are the dominant race, to watch out of these other races will have control of things;” “Nowadays people begin by sneering at family life and family institutions, and next they’ll throw everything overboard and have intermarriage between black and white” (p.130). This racism also extends to Myrtle, Tom’s mistress, but to a lesser extent: “I almost married a little kike who’d been after me for years. I knew he was below me” (p.34). However, the idea that Fitzgerald is using racism as a literary device falls through once the narrator starts saying things a bit off color: “As we crossed Blackwell’s Island a limousine passed us, driven by a white chauffeur, in which sat three modish negroes, two bucks and a girl. I laughed  aloud as the yolks of their eyeballs rolled toward us in haughty rivalry” (p.69); “A pale well-dressed negro stepped near” (p.139).


Does the book contain one or more gay characters? No.


Does the book contain one or more lower-class characters? Yes and no. The book is aware of lower class characters, and even pitches Nick as one of them, as he is not super rich. However, someone whose parents pay for him to take a year off after college to find himself is pretty far from poor by any standards. The book constantly refers to these characters, but treats them as mythical creatures that they’ve all been told about in fairy tales: “One thing’s sure and nothing’s surer / The rich get richer and the poor get—children” (song p.95). Oh plight of the lower classes, you’re so funny.

Why I Hate My Tiny Weiner

Are you there God? It’s me Margaret.

No not really God, it’s me again and yes this is the same one-sided conversation that we’ve had for the past 20 years. But this time I’m serious. We really need to talk.

You see, I just read this article about this guy and his giant “dong” and how it causes him “problems”. Not the “Is that it? No seriously .. is there more?” type of problem that was my first (and last sexual experience) I have but the “Hey, I can spare a few feet” type of problem that really seems unfuckingfair at this point.

Sure. You blessed me with an oversized intellect and abs that would make Baby Jesus cry but you coupled those gifts with a joke of a penis that would make the Virgin Mary point and laugh and cry and laugh some more.

I mean, I don’t even know if it’s fair to call what I have a penis (let alone a “dong”). It looks like a lightswitch in rural India. God – if you’re still paying attention, THERE ARE NO FUCKING LIGHTSWITCHES IN RURAL INDIA. You should know. You built the place. Or forsook it. At this point, who really fucking knows what goes through your head.

God, all I’m saying is you’ve really got your priorities all fucked up. King Dong above may be the greatest guy in the world but can HE ADD like I can? Probably fucking not. Which means that his giant dingaling genes may be passed on but what else? Me? I could sire a thousand accountants and actuaries and engineers and PEOPLE OF VALUE if and only if I find someone willing to stop LAUGHING AT ME long enough for us to share 15 seconds of carnel bliss.

Oh yeah, and that’s another thing! Not ONLY did you give me a shrinky dink for a penis but you decided that wasn’t cruel enough. Oh no! You also decided that I should have the sexual stamina of … fuck I don’t know … I’m so distraught that I can’t even think up a good analogy at this point.

Come May 21st, or whatever, you’ve got some explaining to do. Oh, and if you decide my fervent yet shaken faith doesn’t warrant an immediate Get Out of Jail Free card later this month, I’m totally switching sides.

Via Jezebel, comment by Ska Himself (who I may marry)

Everyday Conversations

Thomas:  what is that I don’t even

 me:  i stepped on you

it was an accident

dont wake the goblins

Glee is the ultimate pop-cultural hate-fuck for me. It gets so much right, champions the unloved and unlovely, produces some genuinely sublime, can’t-stop-smiling coups de theatre, and is, when all’s said and done, one of the most heart-felt, funny and truly progressive shows on television today. Or ever.

But FUCK ME if it isn’t also skull-poundingly awful, misogynistic, bi-phobic, atrociously plotted, bloated with its own sense of moral superiority and forever teetering on the edge of eye-clawing insanity. It drives me berzerk that I cannot stop watching it, even as I’m throwing things at the television and screaming “What the fuck do you mean ‘I’m relatively sane, for a girl.’?! You’re just fucking with me now, aren’t you Murphy?”

RM and Glee’s Powers-That-Be have so far to go to make the show into a consistent, cohesive whole, but they keep falling back into dropped plots and contemptibly lazy characterisation. I keep waiting and waiting for them to pull it together, even for a single episode, and it never quite happens.

And yet. And yet. I love it. I do. It’s so frustrating to hear Ryan Murphy’s hacky bloviations on his own self-importance, and his overweening sense of creative pomposity. But I still feel intensely, heart-breakingly grateful to him for making moments like this happen. Every time I think I’m out, they just keep pulling me back in. So if you’ll excuse me, I need to go lie down and think about Darren Criss’s dreamy, dreamy eyes for a little while.

Comment posted on Jezebel by A Small Turnip

Bad Grammar Beaver

"This was bad grammar, but that is how beavers talk when they are excited." -C.S. Lewis

Quote courtesy of Ruth Crews

Pizza and the Dog

gderekadams: emerson was out of food, so i gave him a slice of pizza