CONTEST

OK, who can guess: which serio-comic song makes me laugh with jittery glee?

Exhibit One:

Exhibit Two:

Exhibit Three:

Exhibit Four:

Let me immediately confess I threw in a ringer. The Fogelberg (any Fogelberg really) fills me with a tight and smoldering rage. Like, if I ever found myself in that situation, I wouldn’t drink beer in the car with that loser. And I’d also probably hate myself for dating the guy in the first place. P.S. I hate the word “lover” times about a thousand.

Also, theories as to why Sandy and her puppy dog mysteriously died on that same exact night they showed up, or how a man might sexually satisfy his partner even if he’s paralyzed from the waist down, are welcomed.

Take me out, baby / I want to go sail tonight :: Friday links!

Thursday I had one of the most energetic and lovely days, but now it’s 2 AM on Friday morning and I’d better get my links up!

1. Spousal unit Ralph updated his design website, favoring pink. I think it looks great!

2. From ricedaddies: “Who Loves More: Parents or Children?” This piece includes an analysis of a childhood book – a pretty funny analysis I think- and then delves into even more thoughtful territory.

3. Mexican Pointy Boots. This was seriously nine minutes of my life well-spent:

 

4. Katie Makkai – “Pretty”:

(Also, do read Tami Harris’ thoughts and the comments, at “Not a pretty girl.”)

5. From friend and reader Kat: “What Happened When I Chased Down the A**hole Who Slapped My Butt on the Street” at alternet. Good for her.

6. “A Black Woman’s Plea for ‘Justified’ – The Red State Western You Should be Watching” at Racialicious. This is super-smart commentary on American television and the typical (and atypical) treatment of race relations (specifically black/white race relations).

7. “AED Guidelines for Childhood Obestity Prevention Programs” from the Academy of Eating Disorders. This? is stunning. D’you think our First Lady will take note? I sure hope parents, teachers, and other adults do.

8. So, I’m not going to link to the deplorable article by LZ Granderson entitled, “Parents, don’t dress your girls like tramps”. I don’t want to contribute to even one blog hit, although by all means go read if you can stomach it. Ostensibly about the sexual exploitation and objectification of young girls and young women, it was also a hot mess of oppositional sexism, patriarchal attitudes, adultism, slut-shaming, sexism, victim-blaming, and misogyny (so: nothing we haven’t heard before). Yes, this was aired on CNN. A few good things came out of the piece: namely, on-point rebuttals. Here are four:

From PostBourgie: “Sexism, What About the Children?! Edition”. At Shakesville: “This is so the worst thing you’re going to read all day.” From Pigtail Pals: “Did You Just Call My Daughter A Prostitute?” And from Amy Bradstreet, a friend and reader and supporter and awesome-lady: “Shame And Blame Where It Belongs Regarding The Objectification Of Children”.

As always for complex or socially-heated subjects showcased by rather long pieces, feel free to add your comments to source articles and let me know – I will happily link back through here.

9. A Derrick Jensen quote, which I take as a refutation of “well, that’s human nature” / “it’s natural for people to act that way” of those I consider pro-status quo apologists, as posted by Idzie.

10. “Being acceptable in the eyes of society”: people would do well to read what it’s like to be a mother and/or mother-identified.

11. Make: sent to me by my brother’s lady J.: Herb Stenciled Easter Eggs. Beautiful!

11. “green snake”, a photo anthology (a tiny bit NSFW). I keep wanting to try absinthe, but I’ve thus far been too lazy to try to get ahold of some.

12. And finally: the best ballon dance I’ve seen, and that’s saying something:

it’s six am and i’m all messed up (friday)

It’s Friday again and I gotta admit, this week’s links are rather schooly (or, non-schooly), but there are a few other subjects as well as some frivolity to boot. Let’s get started, shall we?

1. In “Authentic Parent, Inauthentic Birth?”, Laura shares a story of a birth that went poorly – with the typical lack of support from others, choice afforded, and semi-tortured reflection on personal consent given. It is a powerful piece and I related to much of what I read. I also thought a bit about how much I admire birth and breastfeeding – well, activists, I guess, although that word has, to some, such a rigid and harsh tone. Indeed, culturally-induced misogynistic perceptions have succeeded in bathing the birth movement in a poor light. But Laura’s post, spoken in first person and passionate and real, reminds us this movement is mostly populated by women who want others to have a safe and empowered experience – and to have choices, and the support to make them, in one of life’s potentially most profund events.

2. One of my favorite comedians, and from what I can tell an all-around beautiful man, tweets his interview: “BIll Corbett” at Suicide Girls. Besides being a must-know for any cinemaphile, it seems almost everything he says is funny, insightful, or sweet – and often enough, all three. He and Al Yankovic alone are worth joining Twitter.

3. “Kill Me Or Leave Me Alone: Street Harassment As A Public Health Issue” via Racialicious. The post is just – hard to read, and reflective of a reality far to many people face. Tangentially (sorta), like the author, as a woman, and living life with compassion as much as I can, I don’t think the mainstreem public response to Charlie Sheen’s activities (which continue to be exploited and celebrated) is fun nor funny (latest update).

4. Sunday Sweets: Butterbeer Cupcakes at amybites. Yes. I’m gonna be making these.

5. Apologies if I’ve shared this (I don’t think I have), but because the Bill Corbett interview reminded me of the many delightful MST3K and Rifftrax educational shorts I’ve seen, I present: “The Cliche Family in Television Land!”

6. Misbehavior in Public courtesy of Love & Logic. OK, let’s have a contest. If someone can find something MORE f’d up and chilling than my cited example, you win like, a prize. Here’s the worst aspect, as I see it: the impressions and instruction the physically-large sixteen year old Preston in this story receives, given the “big stick” by the authority figure (the mother), to wield over the thirteen year old at his mercy. After spending most his days and hours in school, saturated in the playground (and classroom) bully culture in play, this seems an elegant and effective training session for Preston in Might Equals Right.

7. “The Deconstruction Of Indulgence (NFSW)” at Sociological Images. These were rather upsetting images, actually, so let me post a trigger warning for eating disorder content. Well-executed art, absolutement, not arguing that. What thoughts and feelings do the pieces invoke in you?

8. “Raising children to be submissive members of the lower caste” by Tami Harris (whom I just, a few hours ago, finished an awesome blogger-on-blogger interview; she’ll be posting on Monday!). Watch the video, read the passages and comments. I was really struck by how different cultures and microcultures frame the same strategies. In my parenting peer world, parents hardly *ever* own up to hitting (or dragging, grabbing, screaming at, coercing, manipulating) their children, although time-outs are deemed completely acceptable and *totally different*/separate from the abusive framework listed above.

9. In public health: um, go Georgia? (but, not) Anti-Childhood Obesity PSA Shames Fat Children as curated at Sociological Images. As usual regarding the folk devil obesity, the comments are riddled with a few haters; but hey, there are also some purdy good rebuttals to the haters. Or maybe I was just feeling kinda unsinkable when I read through ’em. Like I got some laughs from those who said they didn’t see the “shaming” in the campaign.

10. Speaking of fats: in AU: “Should fatties pay more for flights? I’m on the Morning Show” at Dr. Samantha Thomas’ site The Discourse. OK, I’m sorry, but I’m used to examples of US morning television, with it’s false parity and sensationalism and weird superficiality even on issues torturing Americans. So, is Australian morning television always this decent? A short, but satisfying, video, and Dr. Thomas does very well.

11. Top reasons to homeschool or unschool by The Sattvic Family. Good retort to the “socialization” question regarding homeschoolers, by the way: “As is obvious, the way of choosing one’s peers regardless of age is far more social than one’s child only having friends they are forced to choose from, and that are the same age.” Also, reason 4), in its entirety, was so good it made me pee a little.

12. “Children are Born to Learn Everything They Need On Their Own” by Laurie Couture (I am currently making my way through her podcasts; brilliant!):

“No one has to (or should) teach children anything. Children are wired from birth to learn everything they need to learn to reach their full potentials. They just need adults to get out of their way and instead guide, mentor and expose children to the resources they want and need in order to explore, create, play and invent.”

13. Speaking of people to listen to: Wendy Priesnitz will be featured at Unplugged Mom, 8 AM EST today! It’s a podcast so you can download later at your discretion.

14. In the comic book genre, applicable to other pop culture products: “Tropes vs. Women: #2 Women in Refrigerators” from Anita Sarkeesian at Feminist Frequency.

15. Finally: lately I’m listening to Brandi Carlile, watching “Gavin & Stacey”, and (re-)reading The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Rings, a paperback I got for $1 from Jackson Street Books. Wonderful stuff. What about you?

random monday awesomeness

A coffee date with my mom.

Flowers from the husband.

Dancing while holding Nels and singing to him.

Some sewing whilst watching Black Dynamite.

A right-good rogering.

Homemade Valentines:

Happy Valentines Day Nels

Happy Valentines Day Phoenix

(for my FOO:)
Happy Valentines Day FOO

(Um, here are Ralph’s, made for me. “Call the police!”)

Dinner out and (as always) great conversation with Ralph.

My daughter on FB: awesome & more awesome.

Then:

(thanks, J.!)

And:

Phoenix, watching a movie with me: “That’s what I want for my birthday – a giant mechanical wolf!” (handy – take note. Her birthday’s the second of next month.)

haute cinema

The tide is high....
“The tide is high…” by Hoquiamite Mickey Thurman

Responding to a tweet last night for movies I would recommend, I now present a very hastily-thrown together list of films – imperfectly categorized – that I watched in 2010 and enjoyed very much:

Documentary
Protangonist, A Family Undertaking: POV, Not Quite Hollywood, “Addiction” (HBO), “When We Left Earth” (TV), The Celluloid Closet, Harlan County U.S.A., Stranded: I Come From a Plane That Crashed on The Mountains, The Business of Being Born, The Pervert’s Guide To Cinema, Man on Wire, The Thin Blue Line

Indie
La Mission, Revanche, Happy Accidents (LOVE IT… maybe one of the few romantic films I totally fell for), Chopper, Red (with Brian Cox), Dandelion

Thriller/Horror
Moon, Blue Velvet, Let the Right One In, Teeth, Slither, An American Werewolf in London

New & Old Classics
The Man from Snowy River, Night of the Creeps, Dial M For Murder (with Blue Velvet one of my fave movies ever), On The Waterfront, The Verdict, “Have Gun – Will Travel” (TV)

Action/Western
Appaloosa, Sexy Beast, Unforgiven, Lonesome Dove, Cutthroat Island (LADY AWESOMENESS!), Cop LandThe Edge

Introspective/Drama
After the Wedding, Gone Baby Gone, Hounddog (for Dakota, 100%), Letters from Iwo Jima, The Answer Man (best grownup/teacher conference EVAR), Sense & Sensibility, Bleak House, “John from Cincinnati” (TV), “Deadwood” (TV), “Prime Suspect” series (BBC TV), I’ve Loved You So Long (the film is well-done, but more to the point Kristin Scott Thomas is excellent and made me cry so hard I almost threw up)

Comedy
Fatal Instinct, The Other Guys, Elvira: Mistress of the Dark, Hot Fuzz, “Strangers With Candy” (TV), “Reno 911!” (TV), Fido, Hot Rod, Anchorman, Idiocracy

***

Cool Water
(Small Stone #15*)

I love washing and soaking beans!
Small sedate jewels
Nourishing my family’s bellies, for pennies,
Work by my hands

Hamilton
(Small Stone #16*)

The cat pads into the kitchen
With a pencil in her mouth.

Small stone project

stuck in the moment

Ralph might have started the game of Blanket Monster, but Phoenix Fire ended it. By clocking her father in the face with the rather rugged and heavy phony-Christmas-tree cardboard box. The way Ralph tells it Phoenix rather reluctantly gave up her hopes and dreams of a normal life, but with a practicality and thoroughness that is so trademark to her sensible nature. “Well, I used to have a daddy, but now he’s a relentless Blanket Monster, so I’d better kill the sonovabitch.” Ralph describes “blinding white light” and staggering to the bathroom where he staunched the flow of bloody nose while our daughter apologized with sincere but pragmatic gravitas. Fucker was pulling them under the blankets by their legs, afterall. “Tickle torture isn’t funny,” she tells me later standing with a towel wrapped around her reedlike body, her freckles standing at attention under a seal-wet post-bath noggin.

Later as we left for a date our daughter calls, “Take care of your nose, daddy!” She means it in a cheerful and loving way but it kinda sounds like a veiled threat.

We got home and later discovered a bunch of items on my Mac. Some intentional video – (I think Flickr cut out some of the artistic differences our children discuss at the end of the film)…

and some unintentional (Ding Dong!):

friday what goes along comes around

Short and sweet today as I’m including a must-listen interview (first link). Today’s links are on the serious/thinky side (a recent trend I guess) as opposed to gratuitous mustache pictures and a citation of my favorite “Mighty Boosh” sketches. I know, I know – it’s hardly fair on a Friday, right?

Super-Special Double-Awesomeness!
“on hold with atchka! and ellyn satter”
This? Should be required listening. For American human beings at least (and probably lots of others). In the same week we hear our First Lady claim childhood obesity is a matter of national security as we’re all so fat we roll around entirely helpless and can’t hold weapons in our sausage-fingers, it’s so wonderful to here the voice of reason, compassion, food enojoyment, rigorous science and analysis, social criticism, trust in and support of children, and health (yeah, remember that concern?)! Do listen to the interview – it’s about thirty six minutes long and it’s phenomenal!

Parenting/Living Together
“5 Ways To Work With Anger” by Tiff at freeplaylife
Tiff’s suggestions aren’t particularly ones that I’ve used or that appeal to me, but I like her concepts around a life lived with children (as opposed to one where most of their waking hours are out-of-home/in school) and I’ve often thought depictions of such lives are too few and far between. I have my own thoughts about anger and its use (maybe I’ll share them soon!) but I agree that the by-rote attempt to avoid or suppress anger is not a workable solution and provides a poor if not toxic environment for children.

Teaching Your Child To Share? at Authentic Parenting
The way grownups deal with “sharing” in young children is often fear-based, illogical, and counterproductive. This article is a great 101. I made a lot of mistakes re: sharing (and of course slip up still) but figured it out early enough. I love, love watching small children negotiate when adults don’t over-interfere.

Current Events
“What the Assange case says about rape in America”, Valenti at The Washington Post
“[T]this means we can’t stop at changing legislation. For true justice, there needs to be a cultural shift in the way Americans think about sex, consent and rape, so that when women come forward – whether they’re accusing a celebrity, a sports star or a neighbor – our immediate reaction isn’t to misconstrue or speculate about their motives, but to listen.”

Here’s some of what Sady Doyle has experienced since she’s been calling out rape apologism and speaking in anti-rape terms; particularly in this case on the response to Assange’s accusers and “progressive” reactions to the scourge of rape and sexual assault (as anyone who gives a damn and has self-educated on violence against women and children, when I say “here’s what so-and-so’s experienced”, you know it’s going to be awful – so, trigger warning for graphic violence threats, rape threats, and rape apologism).

Culture
“Doctors not immune from fat-bashing” from The Sydney Morning Herald
This is a very touching piece and a sober glimpse at how physicians treat one of their own, with, I believe, serious repercussions to the care given at large to patients. Unsubstantiated bias -> poor practices & poor public health. I learned a new word today, unrelated to this story: iatrogenic. Seems apt.

Two great posts from Renee at womanist-musings:

“No going into labour in public”
I don’t know Renee but I’ve read enough of her articles that I’ve established a “tone” of voice in my mind when I read. And that tone seems to often be one of aggravation, like in this article. As I’ve posted before, never has my body been “public property” as much as when I was pregnant. At the time I didn’t know enough of my own heart to protest this treatment. Too bad I don’t get a do-over. I love [snark] the idea that when a woman goes INTO LABOR, her whole consideration should be other people’s feelings – or that some dude standing nearby who doesn’t behave like a dick (and yay for that!), it’s all about him.

No Rules Rules For Jada and Will’s Kids
A discussion on respecting children vis-a-vis a celebrity couple’s public and private life; and what do you know, the commentstream isn’t even a mess of Fail!

Craft/Make
How-To: Stitched Gift Wrap & Tags at CRAFT
This is something even a sew-novice could do with very lovely results.

“A Green Christmas” at Natural Life Magazine
Links listing Christmas activities, if you’d like to buy less or at least attempt to bring the Trampling & Eating Everything You See rollercoaster to a slower clip

Eggnog recipe at Instructables
I made this last night. Yeah it has raw eggs, because I’m a bad-ass motherfucker!

Tweet of the Week
As pertains to cats, from Frank Conniff

Random
The movie was great; the score I downloaded, the soundtrack I need!

Most Extreme Animal Shirts from the archives at scienceblogs.com. They saved the best for last in my opinion.

LADYBUG PLAYS WITH SPRINKLES
I thought maybe I was stoned while watching this, but I watched it again and turns out, IT REALLY HAPPENED!

***

If you feel moved to comment below, please first read the epilogue in this post (and the comments, if you’re confused still). Thanks!

for posterity

Nelsisms from the last few days:

Upsicles
A stalagmite made from freezing water. Like an icicle but from the ground up – he saw one the other day and coined the term. Oh and according to Nels there are also “leftsicles” and “rightsicles” and he just explained to me how these would form. I’m a little skeptical, but okay.

Snuggle Trance
This is what Nels says he wants in the morning when he wakes up and desires me to come to bed and cuddle him.

Greedy Voice
This is what Nels cries out in protest when I am angry or irritated and speak to him with a “tone”.

Wine Makeout
You’re drinking wine and you’re really enjoying it. My kids think being drunk is funny. Because they watch “The Pink Panther” and “Reno 9-11”, not “COPS” or Leaving Las Vegas.

friday links

In the good news, we’re all doing very well thank you and enjoying health and harmony together. In the bad news, Ralph is working through our spending plan as I type and we might not get to have a Christmas (not really, but you probably know what I mean). In the good news, my husband is growing a beard. In the bad news, he’s so anxious about this money thing that ANY LITTLE COMMENT may cause him to shave. Please, if you see him, or Facebook him, say REALLY flattering things about his beard. We shall all reap the benefits as its full-throated red glory is bestowed upon us during our most dreary winter months…

Here’s more good news – for those who are unfortunate enough to be stuck in an office job today, hungover and dyspeptic from yesterday’s feast, or cowering in fear or disdain of Black Friday, or who’ve shopped until they’re wrecked – I bring you the Friday links you so desperately need to sink your teeth into.

Culture
“‘Privilege Denying Dude’ and the Fight for the Right to Snark” at ColorLines
“The Internet has carried over the ‘neutral’ we’ve always seen, meaning that if it’s online, it better appeal to straight white men before and above anyone else. A lot of us hate it. We find humor in other memes, but sometimes we see a misogynist or homophobic joke in the bunch… and we just scroll on past it. It’s disappointing how used to that we are.” [ emphasis mine, because: Oh Yes. ]

Anton Vowl wrote “Breeding hell” in response to Howard Flight’s remarks. Look familiar, USians? The UK terminology referring to the “underclass” may be different from ours but you and I recognize what the author is referencing: “a narrative in which the young and the poor can be dismissed as a mass of animals, as an underclass of scum. They are always set up against the ‘middle-classes’, aka the hardworking taxpaying middle classes, the people who do all the work and pay for all the doleites popping out kids and getting free houses on estates up and down the land […] It’s the dehumanising thing that seems so depressing – dehumanising a whole class of people. It’s the language of hatred. It’s the language of class war.”

“Today in Journalism: The Disabled” at FWD/Feminists with Disabilities
“This contributes to the de-humanization of disabled people. ‘The disabled’ aren’t people, they’re a big collective noun who can’t be reasoned with, can’t be talked to, can’t be considered – they’re just to be placated, and dealt with, and put out of our minds as quickly as possible in case they sue us.”

Family
“The Effects of Video Games: A guide for the science-based parent” at parentingscience.com
The concept that video games are “bad”, or at least anything more than a very occasional play with them is “bad”, is so culturally-supported many journalists will take one study and blow it up to epic conclusions. I often think those loudest about how “bad” video games inherently are, are those who either don’t particularly enjoy nor excel at them; or those who’ve lived a childhood of externally-imposed values/activities which reify this message.

“Jong Got It Wrong” from Wendy Priesnitz
Much of modern-day feminism has failed so many – those with disabilities, those non-white, poor, trans women, those marginalized, those without “careers”, babies and children, and anyone involved in what’s often named as “traditional women’s work” (hi!) but what would be more accurately described as necessary human work (much of it often still performed by women and underpaid, under-respected, etc). Today many modern feminists (along with the maintream) continue to throw children under the proverbial bus as well as those who are responsible for children’s care (usually, other women) and especially those who give a shit about how these things all go down. As usual, Wendy Priesnitz delivers a succinct and apt response to the recent Jong dust-up.

Feminism
“Pre-Photoshopped Playboy Models (Definitely NSFW)”
“…the message is clear: even after a genetic bounty, all-but-certain plastic surgery and dieting, good lighting, a pro-photographer, and dozens of shots, even the fantasy woman is not fantastic enough.” (You can follow links to the original Jezebel post if you want example after example of women’s bodies critiqued, objectified, and dissected).

Subway Flasher Gets More Than He Bargained For
This video deeply upset me. First I couldn’t believe what I was seeing – the courage of this woman. Then I felt sick for the times I’ve been in a similar position and felt too scared to do anything. On second watch I so admired this woman and wish I could find her to say, “Well done!”

Craft
“Rural Roads” by sillyboodilly. Beautiful work; check the rest of her postings as well!

Make
Mushroom tutorial by my friend Kit. Mushrooms are out like you wouldn’t believe! I have a wee parcel of wool felt heading my way to make up these cuties with the kiddos.

Live
“How To Read Articles About Health” by Dr. Alicia White

“18 Practical Habits for Living the Golden Rule” at Zen Habits

Quotable
“The master of the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his education and his recreation, his love and his religion. He hardly knows which is which; he simply pursues his vision of excellence in whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing. To him he is always doing both.” – Buddha

Random
How did Alan Thicke land this sweet job, is what I want to know!

And finally:

My favorite tweet of the week.