Belated Book Recs: MLK 2019

I’ve been wrestling with the notion of weighing in on what I am sarcastically calling the “Covington Catholic clusterfuck,” but I really don’t have any hot take on it that isn’t actively plagiarizing other people’s intellectual labor and insights. Here’s a few links and random thoughts:

  • On why that unedited video doesn’t actually exonerate these teenage racists: WokeSloth and Twitter.
  • On the general foolishness of chanting “build that wall” at someone whose ancestors were here LONG before yours.*
  • And here’s an extra thought (freely lifted from a friend FB page): would this whole sorry confrontation have been de-escalated earlier if there had been been more NPS Rangers on hand, rather than them being so short-staffed on account of the shut-down?

And that’s all I care to say about that tonight.

So, in lieu of socio-cultural commentary, what focus am I going to use for an MLK Day post?

Books, of course.

Continue reading “Belated Book Recs: MLK 2019”

I Never Thought I’d Live Past 20 (Well, 30)

A friend of mine and fellow blogger* has, upon occasion referred to herself as an “unfunny feminist“–riffing on and mocking the dismissive “Can’t you take a joke?” bullshit that so often erupts when we dare to read some bit of cultural quote-unquote fun through an anti-kyriarchal lens, only to observe (quelle surprise!) that said fun isn’t really fun or funny, and instead just reinscribes some horrific piece of the miasma of misogyny in which we all soak daily.

Now, I’m not gonna steal my friend’s slogan from her, but I gotta say that I am definitely feeling the “unfunny feminist” vibe today. (Maybe I’ll call my own expression of this kind of sentiment the “Humourless Hag” chronicles.)

Continue reading “I Never Thought I’d Live Past 20 (Well, 30)”

Of Bread and Circuses

As a card-carrying “geek girl,” it shouldn’t be much of a surprise that I’ve been watching Game of Thrones since it debuted on HBO back in 2011. Besides, I made this fact clear last summer when I reminisced about using the show as a touchpoint of connection between Mr. Mezzo and myself back during the late spring & early summer of 2013 when we were living apart as part of the Great Northern Relocation.*

(For the spoiler-averse, I’m going to be talking more about last night’s GoT episode, as well as plot points from previous episodes. So if you’re not caught up and don’t want to have plot surprises reveled to you, stop now rather than clicking through to after the jump. For the rest of you, who are up-to-speed or who don’t give many fucks about the series, come on in!)

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A Piece of the Action

It case it hasn’t been made eminently clear by now, I am and have always been a “geek girl.”

[SIDEBAR] I’m using the irony-quotes because I don’t feel entirely comfortable with the dimunutive-ing effect of describing my 45-year-old self and interests as those of a “girl.” But “geek girl” is the general nomenclature, so there you go. [/SIDEBAR]

Being a female fan of things geeky has always been a source of cognitive dissonance for me, and I really don’t think I’m alone in this. After all, whatever aspirational role models I could find in that world always had at least a teaspoon of misogyny soup in the mix. Black Canary may kick ass, but she’s only allowed to do so in fishnets and a ridiculous leather bustier.* Princess Leia is strong enough to wield a blaster pistol and withstand torture in Star Wars, but by Return of the Jedi, there is she is stuck in the nouveau sci-fi version of the chainmail bikini.

For every mark in the “W” column, there’s another loss. For every Buffy, there’s a Bella.

Continue reading “A Piece of the Action”

NaMo: Yes, No, Maybe So?

Mr. Mezzo has been spending the last week making preparations for his imminent descent in NaNoWriMo. For anyone unfamiliar with the concept, NaNoWriMo is a (mostly) virtual event in which a bunch of writers band together and pledge to write a 50,000 word novel during the course of November. (Hence the name: NAtional NOvel WRIting MOnth.* This will be the second time he’s done it, and I’m wondering if I should maybe do something of my own in solidarity.

Now, I’m not crazy enough to do NaNoWriMo. For starters, there’s the fact that I live in a Newtonian universe where time and energy are finite resources. I still have those two classes I’m finishing up, plus choir, plus the fact that I’m just now beginning to pull myself out of the black hole I recently fell into. More importantly than those practicalities is the fact that I don’t currently have a strong idea for a book. I know I’ll write one someday — but this day is not that day. (Or “this month is not that month.” Something like that.)

But NaBloPoMo? That’s a entirely different kettle of tea.

Continue reading “NaMo: Yes, No, Maybe So?”

All Hallows’ Eve Eve

Well, I’ve been half-avoiding the topic, but there’s no denying that it’s Hallowe’en tomorrow.  Mr. Mezzo and I didn’t get any trick-or-treaters last year, but we still have some candy on hand. We’ll turn on the front porch light and will set out a few seasonal decorations tomorrow evening, just in case anyone comes through the neighborhood looking for treats.

But I won’t be taking the time to get dressed up in costume.

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The Spiked and the Flat of It

Jezebel tells me that the Wall Street Journal recently ran an article asking “Are High Heels Dead?”  The full WSJ article is behind their subscriber paywall, so I can’t tell you anything more about it than appears in Jezebel’s summary.

Look down at your feet. If you’re wearing Crocs or clogs right now, then you win and you’re right on trend. There’s a “low shoe revolution” afoot and it’s all about comfort. According to this Wall Street Journal article, “Are High Heels Dead?” ladies are proudly taking to the streets in their best-worst “unfashionable footwear.”

I honestly can’t tell if the Jezebel staffer is happy, unhappy, or indifferent about this supposed turn of events — she identifies herself as someone interested in comfort, but also comments “there’s no real reason to trash all our favorite pumps.”

What I will say is that I am more skeptical than anything else.

Continue reading “The Spiked and the Flat of It”