Thursday, February 28, 2008

Waste me. The Guardian has a really interesting/disturbing commentary about "misogyny psychosis"--the violent, psychopathic hatred of women. Apparently Britain's been experiencing a rash of vomit-inducing violent crimes against women. This goes beyond domestic violence or rape. This is scary Jack the Ripper shit. Even more disturbing and upsetting than the individual acts of violence is the fact that friends, co-workers, lovers, even the police, knew what these guys were up to and did NOTHING. Makes you want to enact that Good Samaritan law from the last episode of "Seinfeld," doesn't it?

Who needs a drink?

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Now that the love is gone. Do guys really talk like this? And if so, why haven't I met any who do?

She didn't want to, he had his way. Let's all give Israel a hearty round of applause. You let your president get away with rape. Good for you, Israeli government. Have cigar.

I spent a lot of time and energy while in Israel working with the organizations trying to combat this disgusting plea bargain, so I'm especially angry. Thankfully, I'm not alone in that.

For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about, I'll spell it out for you: Imagine that George Bush raped his secretary while president, plus a few other women while he was governor of Texas. They can't prove that he raped the other women, but they have a really good case against him about his secretary. However, under the law, while president, Bush cannot be charged with any criminal action. So he sits around the White House greeting foreign dignitaries and living off your tax dollars in the lap of luxury while Congress debates whether or not he should be impeached; they decide against this. Eventually, Bush resigns and charges in the rape case are brought against him. Meanwhile, the secretary is being subjected to the most disgusting, brutal, and insulting investigation imaginable, being forced to answer questions right down to the minute detail of her sexual proclivities. The Attorney General decides to plea bargain the case, and all Bush has to do is admit that he acted inappropriately and probably committed a few acts of sexual harassment. He will serve no jail time, and he still gets to keep his personal driver and assistant and probably his security detail (paid for with your tax dollars, of course), but he has to give up his pension (they have socialized health care in Israel, so we'll take that out of the equation). The country attends protest rallies in record numbers, and the Supreme Court weighs in on the validity of the plea bargain. In the end, Bush gets away with it and all he has to do is pay his secretary $14,000.

If you do not think this is a complete abomination, you have no soul.

Candelabra's lighted. All my misanthropy and disillusionment neatly and articulately presented, courtesy of Ms. Austen:

"There are few people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well. The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and everyday confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of either merit or sense."
-Pride & Prejudice, Volume 2, Chapter 1

It is amazing how little human nature changes. I've finally gotten around to reading Emma, and though the circumstances and social conventions are different, the reactions, motivations, and emotions exhibited by the central characters are completely relatable. You'd hope that human beings would have matured by now, but apparently not. Instead, we've just gotten rid of all the social graces and made the subtext the text. In other words, you can say any disgusting thing you want to anyone, especially on the Internet, and you won't be shunned from polite society because polite society no longer exists (no matter what "Vogue" or "New York" or the British aristocracy would have you believe). I'm glad I am not required to wear a corset, but does that mean we all have to talk like sailors?

Monday, February 25, 2008

Gotta find me somebody. Yet more thoughts on this whole wacky world of dating. Salad bars are the way to go. Apparently you can win friends with salad.

Ever wonder what it'd be like if the men of Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice" had online dating profiles? Me neither, but thank goodness someone did.

Endless tears, forever joy. This video changed my life:

J'étais dans l'apart de Raoul et Sandro, et j'ai entendu cette chanson qui chant mon âme. Dans ce moment, j'ai compris que je ne suis pas de tout seule dans la douleur de coeur et le désir pour quelque chose non réalisé. Et, peux en peux, je me suis senti mieux.

Friday, February 22, 2008

It takes a strong man to stand by a strong woman. This season's Lilith has an interesting/frightening report on online dating and the single Jewish woman. Basically, men don't want serious relationships until they're in their 30s, which is when they start trying to pick up 20-something women. But women in their 20s are too focused on their careers to notice, so Jewish women don't get married. Yay! I have to say, on some level, this article is a complete condemnation of Jewish women. It paints us as hopelessly self-involved and uneducated about how to successfully form and nurture romantic attachments. There is a slight mention that men also contribute to the marriage shortage because the Internet allows them to stay single indefinitely (Why settle down when there's a whole catalogue of women to pursue?), but mostly the blame is placed on women not knowing what they want or how to go about getting it.

I think this may be an accurate portrayal of some women (I actually know middle-aged women who are like this); there are women who stay stuck in the same dead-end patterns of finding a mate because they focus on superficial details instead of substantive qualities. But the part of this that scares me is the hopelessness of the situation. For example, according to the article, men don't like women who are smarter or more ambitious and/or successful than they are. Great. As a highly-educated, ambitious woman, what am I supposed to do? Have a lobotomy? Not go to graduate school? Why is it always incumbent upon women to change--to dumb themselves down or sex themselves up--so as not to threaten the oh-so-delicate menfolk?

The article does make a good point: Women spend too much time in unpromising situations (I, for one, am extremely guilty of this). Women (and men) also tend to value the appearance of a relationship--What is his career? How much does he make?--and not how the relationship feels or how you interact. But I can't get over of the terrifying thought that, even if you don't care about these sorts of things, you're still doomed because men are babies. What's a girl to do, aside from date 30 year-olds?

Alright Internet, here's my list of adjectives (in no particular order) which, when strung together, hopefully describe an actual person: Practicing Jew, college-educated, stable, laid-back, communicative, understanding, good listener, non-smoker, driven, kind, funny, smart, patient, attentive, affectionate, self-confident, self-aware, engaging, feminist a huge plus. I don't care about career or income or taste in music or how close he is with his family or any of that malarkey, though I probably wouldn't have the patience to date an actor or a model. If it's not too much to ask, I'd also like it if he was at least 5'10", had a full head of dark hair, and a beard (I really like beards). And since I'm fantasizing anyway, I request Matthew Macfadyen as Mr. Darcy, but Jewish.

Spins a web, any size. Who knew that Spider-man was such a sex-positive, Planned Parenthood enthusiast? Marvel would be castrated for doing something like that now.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Sunny day. Cutest thing EVER!!!! Squeal!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Bow to his daughter-in-law elect. Aw, you guys! I want one!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

You want one true lover with a thousand kisses. Happy V-day, all! Does any holiday provoke as much angst as Valentine's Day? All that anxiety about finding a mate or pleasing your current mate, and the disappointment when none of it works out, can make you want to hide under your bed with a Whitman's Sampler and wait for it all to go away. Apparently, this is when people are at their most aggressive when trying to find a mate/date/one-night stand. No one wants to be alone on Valentine's Day. Except me; I really don't care. Why? Because I would rather be single on V-day than desperately trying to wrangle a date or convince my beau to romance me. Fuck it, I'll take the Whitman's Sampler and a good book over that kind of stress, thanks very much.

Also, I'm glad I'm not tangling with this type of bullshit. So funny! So pathetic! Hurrah for St. Valentine!

Friday, February 08, 2008

White teeth are uglier than yellow teeth. It's amazing that our health care system has reduced us to "medical tourism." Inexplicably, it is cheaper to fly to Hungary or Costa Rica for dental procedures than to go around the corner. Either American dentists charge outrageous prices, or the economy and health care industry are in worse shape than anyone wants to admit. Either way, this is shameful, even if it is an impressive display of multi-tasking.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Happier now than I’ve been in the past. I don't usually commend Newsweek, but this is a fantastic, compelling article about the happiness-at-all-costs movement. As someone who tends to have melancholic nature and has received a lifetime's worth of flak for it, I think that this article speaks to many things I have experienced in my own life. When I'm at my most euphoric, I often make my worst mistakes. But even though my sadness is trenchant, I know it isn't permanent. I could babble on, but I won't. Just read the article.

We're not the ones who're meant to follow. Happy Super Tuesday, everyone! There's a great interview with a candidate you didn't even know was running for president on Jezebel today. Mike Gravel is too much of an idealist for me, but everything he says about women's rights and LGBT issues is right on. He also makes a fantastic point for all you power-mongers out there:

If you vote for power over substance, then you won't ever get either. You've got to vote for substance regardless of who you think will win, because you'll see that substance will win out in the end.

For those of you who have yet to vote and don't feel like slogging through months worth of press coverage, make an educated decision with the League of Women Voter's nonpartisan primary guide.

Get the full primary scorecard here.

And remember, you lose your right to complain if you don't vote!

Sunday, February 03, 2008

If you had no money I'd give you my last dime. I realize that probably no one cares about this, but it's my blog so ha! I just found out that That Dog, the best band you've never heard of, made a video for "Never Say Never" many moons ago. Holy crap! This is what happens when you grow up without MTV--you miss everything. Check it out. It's such a hypercolor blast from the past.

Friday, February 01, 2008

What it feels like for a girl. Man oh man, Super Tuesday is gonna be one hell of a nailbiter. I offer you some very exciting words for the future of the country and the Democratic Party courtesy of Hillary Clinton (And read this article for some great commentary):

"I would, with all due respect, say that the United States government is much more than a business," Clinton began. "It is a trust. It is the most complicated organization, but it is not out to make a profit. It is out to help the American people. It is about (what we do) to stand up for our values and to do what we should at home and around the world to keep faith with who we are as a country. With all due respect, we have a president who basically ran as the 'CEO/MBA President' and look what we got! I am not too happy about the results."

The most amazing thing about all of this, I think, is that people are really taking her seriously. There has never been a female candidate for president than anyone was willing to pay attention to. In fact, there has never been a female candidate or a minority candidate that anyone was willing to pay attention to. Yet here we have two non-traditional presidential candidates who are not only attractive candidates in their own right, but they beat out the white guy to boot. For the most part, people are paying attention to the mssage and not the stereotypes and really conflicted about who will make the better president. How remarkable that two underdogs can come out on top.

This is such an exciting time!