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Spent like, 12 hours from Monday night to Tuesday morning catching up on all the math homework I neglected when I was sick–paid off, since I aced my test (a lucky guess helped too). Now that I’m pretty caught up with math and reasonably well-rested, I can get back to more important things, like reading all of the internet.

This blog post about why the idea of the “friendzone” is complete crap was great, and I actually think the discussion in the comments is worth reading too–some really great points from contributors that add to the ideas in the original post. Something that I always feel compelled to point out, and was touched on by some of the comments: women get rejected too. For the most part, we’re not flooding forums with “Guys only like dumb bitches, why can’t they see how great I am!” posts. I’d also like to add that, when women act the way some of these Nice Guys(TM) do, they’re (rightly) labeled as clingy, crazy and desperate. It goes both ways. Finally, being a nice person DOES NOT MEAN that you are automatically sexually attractive to all and sundry. If you’re not being nice because it’s JUST WHAT YOU DO AS A HUMAN BEING, you are not actually being nice.

Neat blurb about employee empowerment and how it’s been completely reframed to mesh with employer needs–definitely something to think about as we consider how we want to keep restructuring our culture. You know, I had to take this (completely insulting to my intelligence) course called “Success and Study Skills.” Maybe it’s because community colleges often train students in a more vocational capacity, but it was incredible to what extent the workaholic, corporate culture was present in the textbook. The author kept exhorting the value of finding a career you were happy with, since you’d have to go to work 50 weeks per year. How does that sound at all reasonable? How can a person be happy when they spend the majority of their productive years helping someone else have a comfortable life while they’re barely getting by? What’s so horrible about the European model, with way more vacation time? It’s not like we need to spend as much time doing work to be productive, the rate of productivity in modern times has been through the roof!

Relatedly, the failure of the American meritocracy contributes to skyrocketing rates of anxiety disorders. Color me surprised. “We don’t all have the same options, but many at the top tend to assume we do, despite how much the conditions that we are born into delimit and affect all kinds of subsequent decisions — like whether or not we’ll go to college, what kind of school we’ll go to, and what type of work we’ll do. “Not everyone has the same choice set or the opportunity to choose among good alternatives,” as Markus puts it. “Good choice is not evenly distributed throughout society, so beating people up for [making] bad choice[s] is unfair,” says Markus. And yet, because we believe we live in a meritocracy, we often do just that — and beat ourselves up for it, too.”

I really loved this write-up of ten tropes about women that women should stop perpetuating. I’ve just recently really started working on unlearning a lot of my negative ideas about other women. It’s almost depressing because it’s so difficult and it shouldn’t be, but at least the idea that maybe we should not all be hating each other is becoming more and more prevalent in the common discourse.

Articles like this make me glad I went to school in a super liberal area. Can we start recognizing nontheists as a heavily marginalized group yet?

Also on the topic of education, I really enjoyed this piece about student blogging. That is an integration of technology into the curriculum that I can wholeheartedly embrace, if it’s done the right way, because it has the power to bring together so many concepts at once. You’re empowering students, giving them much needed writing practice (I do think emphasizing standard conventions is important if this is used in an educational setting), and introducing them to the idea of virtual community (and all that that entails). I also think that blogging is a way to get involved with technology and the internet even if you don’t have access to a bunch of fancy new gadgets, which many students don’t.

Not sure why this article about pot-smoking moms feeling judged by wine-drinking moms popped up in my feed, but it was strangely hilarious. Especially this part: ““Being judged for doing something nontoxic and totally organic, enjoying a god-given plant, by moms who suck back two bottles of Chardonnay like sports drinks feels like s—,” complains Margaret.”

I didn’t really want to post anything about Yahoo’s new CEO and her pregnancy and how for some people it’s the end of the world, but I couldn’t resist. Article rightly points out that because of how prominent she is, Marissa Mayer is now going to be the barometer for women everywhere and whether or not they can have a family and succeed in high-powered corporate positions. I’d really love to figure out how to separate being a member of a particular group and being a representative for every single person in that group ever. I feel horrified of doing something stereotypically “girly” (especially if it’s seen as a negative) ever because I feel so much pressure to not let down EVERY WOMAN EVERYWHERE. Do people not realize how insanely messed up that is? Yes, everything I do and feel and think is only because I’m a woman, and all women are just like me, and anything that I do that differentiates me from Stereotypical Woman has to be noteworthy, because it is such a huge surprise that maybe I am not just a woman but also A REGULAR HUMAN BEING.

Also on the topic, just found Caroline Heldman’s blog and wanted to share practically every post, but I’ll limit myself. First, here’s a very interesting piece about how Magic Mike is a load of sexist tripe, and not nearly as empowering as some people seem to think it is. I also got a lot out of her series on sexual objectification (what is it? how does it harm us?) , including habits to stop and habits to start. Even if you can’t (I know I can’t) flip the switch overnight, or just think some of her ideas are kooky, I think a critical examination of certain behaviors we take for granted in our lives is worth undertaking.

Okay, I’m pooped. Please feel free to respond to anything I wrote in the comments!

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