Archive for the ‘rant’ Category
Yes, you read that right.
Chrystal Bougon recognized a need. She saw that women bigger than a Victoria’s Secret model needed and wanted lingerie. So she opened a shop. In fact, her Curvy Girl Lingerie is the second brick and mortar plus-sized lingerie store in the United States, located in San Jose, California. She also sells on the internet. Chrystal also started a Curvy Girl Facebook page. When a customer asked to post a picture of herself, a real woman, wearing some of the lingerie she had purchased, Chrystal thought this sounded like a great idea.
I think any woman, no matter her size, knows what a big deal it is for a woman to post a picture of herself in lingerie. It takes a hell of a lot of moxie. Chrystal let women have a safe place. Because they looked good. They felt good. They’re beautiful and other women want to see them. They want to be inspired by women like themselves, maybe slip on a teddy at home. Maybe even have a few pictures taken of themselves.
It’s empowering for people to see people who look like themselves. Doesn’t matter who or what you are, you want to be normalized. And that’s what Chrystal did. That’s a good thing.
Until the Wicked Witch stepped in and decided that Chrystal was single-handedly contributing to the Ohmigoddeathfat Obesity Epidemic by letting this happen. On her business’ Facebook page. Where business customers sought her out to become fans. Where customers posted pictures. Where no one invited the Wicked Witch to visit, not even once.
I refuse to name the Wicked Witch (aka WW) or her nicknames. She has gotten more than enough publicity from her tantrums and childish behavior. The media fall all over themselves because she’s one of the pretty people that they love having before their cameras. Which doesn’t make what she says worth listening to.
WW went on her Facebook page and posted why obese people should not be allowed to exist. Sure, she sugar-coated it with words of health and fitness. But she makes such blanket claims that she has nothing to back them up. Bottom line: WW would like all obese people to hide away from her sight until they look like her. Or until they are only thirty or forty pounds overweight.
Someone reported WW’s post as hate speech and she was banned from Facebook for a few days. Apparently, Facebook is very very very very important to her because she fell apart. And called her publicist. Who called a few people. And then the WW started making the media merry-go-round.
One news show showed her bopping around her kitchen, perfectly coiffed, whipping up breakfast for her children. Then showed her exercising in the park with other fit mothers, each flinging a toddler about as exercise equipment. She kept repeating, “Anyone can do it! Like I do.”
Unless you work and can’t go to a mom and tot group in the middle of the day.
Unless you don’t have access to a safe outdoor workout space.
Unless you don’t have a healthy child.
Unless you are not healthy.
Unless you don’t want to work out with your child and prefer reading or drawing or looking at the clouds or…
According to WW, however, those are just excuses and you need to get over yourself.
CNN invited Chrystal Bougon and WW on for a sit-down. Which WW dominated with her non-facts. She managed to let everyone know they if they are ready to fix themselves she’s got a way to help them and they can contact her. Nice push for her business, right? And the hosts fell all over her. Chrystal was calm, cool, and collected, saying wise things when allowed. Somehow her video feed was lost, while we were all left with WW’s sneering duck-lip gasp, “you know, I saw women not just 30 or 40 pounds overweight but…obese…[grimace]…morbidly obese [shudder]…”
The hosts never once challenged one of WW’s “facts” or any of the things she was spouting as truths. In fact, the real issue shouldn’t have been the War on Fat at all, but the fact that Fat People Bother the WW and The Media Care. Because the WW can’t look at any of the women posting photos of themselves on the Curvy Girl Facebook page and know whether or not they work out. She cannot look at a photograph of a Victoria’s Secret model and know if she is metabolically healthy. Heck, are we even so sure WW is healthy?
Once again, shame on the media for being such a shoddy group of people. Why would someone even pick up this story? Surely people are getting kicked off of Facebook hourly. There wasn’t a better reason to cover? The good thing is I hope Curvy Girl Lingerie gets some great sales from WW’s tantrum.
All Chrystal wants to do is give a safe space for regular women to be seen. Women who have scars, stretch marks, sagging, excess skin, weight…whatever. There’s no airbrushing or photoshopping. There’s no body shaming or snarking. There’s nothing but camaraderie for women who have lived life and are still living life without the fear of eating a cookie or missing a workout. By the way, she never even calls them curvy…just regular…like you…like me…like my neighbor…like my best friend…
Last week I addressed a letter that may or may not have been intended for the neighborhood children. I’ve heard rumors that the letter was done as a “joke” by a radio station. Yeah. Real Funny.
Honestly, I thought calling the neighborhood kids moderately obese was dastardly. I mean, who does something like that on a holiday that is built on consuming treats? No one’s advertising bananas and apples as the ideal Halloween treat! Kit Kats. Reeses Peanut Butter Cups. Candy, candy, candy!
How would you feel if your kid came home with candy, but attached to a graphic anti-abortion pamphlet? That happened in New Mexico. I would be furious if this happened in my neighborhood. Halloween is not the time to share your beliefs about reproductive rights. Do that with your adult peers. Kids want treats, not political rantings.
(Although if this did happen in my neighborhood I might be forced to counter it with condoms and the morning after pill going out with the candy.)
What if you attended the Halloween costume parade and saw a child from the school dressed as a klansman? Yes, as a member of the KKK. It happened in Virginia. Lordy, kids at the neighborhood school nearby aren’t even allowed to wear masks, much less hoods. Klansman hoods.
Originally I was hoping the child had no idea why he was dressing up as a white witch. But after reading quotes made by his mother, I’m sure he’s aware of what his costume represents. I imagine he’s a bully. Here’s what Mom has to say, according to the referenced article:
Jessica Black of Craigsville told WHSV in Virginia that there’s nothing wrong with the costume or the Ku Klux Klan. “It’s suppose to be white with white. Black with black. Man with woman and all of that.”
That’s one little boy I don’t want coming over for a play date!
I say it over and over again that adults are ruining childhood for our kids. These things just further fuel my argument.
I grabbed this image from the new tumbler, We Don’t Need An Excuse. Read this. Process this.
Do you know what a total and complete asshat douche canoe someone has to be to pass this out at Halloween?!
For god’s sake, turn off your porch light and hide in the dark. But don’t be a jerk to the neighbor kids. Yeah, you’re probably the one who keeps the balls when they roll into your yard and yells when someone steps on your grass. So it’s not like you’ll be missed or anything at the block party.
If you are someone who feels that this is the right thing to do I have a few questions:
1) What, exactly, is moderate obesity? Do you have a scale hidden under the welcome mat? Is this something that can be seen with the naked eye?
2) When did sugar and treats become completely off limits? Are you so sure that I, as a parent, need your input into my child’s diet?
3) Who appointed you king or queen of this neighborhood?
4) What happens if my kid is fat? Maybe it’s not as terrible as you’ve been led to believe.
I’m not linking to the links that answer some of these questions. Check out these bloggers, who do some great work with the science behind the madness instead.
And eat a Snickers…you’re not acting right!
I know, I know…that sounds silly. But I’m tired of being slapped upside the head every day with the plastic perfection that passes for beauty in today’s media.
I noticed it while I watched the Jodi Arias trial–my springtime obsession. All the experts were perfectly made up, perfectly coiffed blonde model types. Almost every single expert fit that mold. Which made me start noticing other “experts” on other shows.
I’m not doubting their expertise in any subject. But I wonder where the average, real looking people are who might actually have the same or more expertise? Are they out there? Do they exist?
I went to graduate school to get my masters degree in clinical psychology. I remember one gorgeous girl from the class; the rest of us were normal looking. Where did the model experts go to school? Is there a special graduate school just for model-type students?!
This isn’t to say I am not surrounded daily by attractive people. I have gorgeous friends and neighbors. Fellow school moms take my breath away. The ladies I graduated from high school in 1984 are, by far, the most attractive women I see on Facebook. Still, not one of them fills the “gorgeous” mold that I see on television.
Why is that? Who came along and decided that tall, leggy, and blonde were the default requirements for beauty in our country? It hasn’t always been this way.
I watch old movies and am amazed at the quality of the acting of Joan Crawford and Betty Davis. They are attractive, pleasing women. They wouldn’t get a movie role today if they begged. I watched Carol King perform with James Taylor and thought the same thing: she wouldn’t stand a chance in today’s musical arena.
I want the average, expert on the street to be given a chance to shine. I want one of my grad school instructors to appear somewhere as an expert.
I want to see and hear experts who are there on their actual qualifications, not on how they look.
I want to see some quirky, imperfect, mousy brown-haired woman knocking an audience dead with her knowledge of psychology, criminal justice, or politics. Don’t you?
If you’ve been on Facebook lately, you’ve probably seen the article circulating about two Texas women who have been pulled over for littering–chucking a cigarette butt out the window–and ultimately end up getting road-side cavity searches because the cop smelled marijuana. The two women have sued, officers have been fired, and basic health safety has been discussed because the same set of gloves was used on both women for both cavities.
Let me explain this even more clearly: two woman are pulled over at night on a busy Texas highway. One of them threw a cigarette butt out of the window of the car. (Honestly, I see this happen so often here in Chiburbia that I didn’t even know it was a crime. I might have to do some citizen arrests of my own!) The officer smells marijuana, but doesn’t search the car. Instead, he calls in a female officer who comes to do the cavity searches. Donning one pair of gloves, she probes the vaginas and anuses of both women, without ever changing the gloves. On the road, as cars drive by. All while being recorded by the dashboard camera. No marijuana is ever found. No arrests are made. Except those of the cops.
Where to even begin? There are so many things wrong with this and other people have done the finger pointing and head banging. But my ultimate question is this: what if this happens to you or I? What are our options right at that moment?
I imagine if I refuse the roadside cavity search/gynecological exam, that I will be instantly hauled off to jail. Do I avoid the embarrassment and inconvenience of an arrest and let them probe me? Do I put up a fight? I can’t exactly call the police…since they are the ones doing the initial wrong thing.
What would you do? How would you handle this?
I think this is something we really need to address and be prepared for. Because these things are happening. What do we teach our daughters? What do we teach our sons?
Most of all, when did the police stop being the good guys?
Did you think I was being abnormally silent on the outcome of the death of a young black man? I had to think carefully how to respond. I didn’t want to be one of the people on Facebook who called a dead boy a “thug.” I didn’t want to be the person calling for George Zimmerman’s head on a platter.
As I do a lot lately, I blame the media for fueling the fires of this case. Talking out of both sides of their mouths, they managed to send people into a frenzy. Some days it’s hard to keep track of who we’re supposed to be hating! I made it my mission to keep a level head.
I feel the pain of Trayvon Martin’s family. I am Trayvon’s mother. Every time my sons leave the house I have to worry. I don’t think parents of white boys worry in the same way. Maybe I’m wrong and we all open our doors and feel terror as our sons go into the streets.
No one really knows what happened that night. There are always three sides to every story. Watch the story end up in court and the story tellers multiply as experts are called to testify. Usually experts paid for by the side they are supporting. That’s not exactly unbiased story telling.
This was a tragedy on so many levels that I cannot begin a dissection. But I can encourage you to make some changes. Because we can’t change the past. We can only change the future.
Yes, you…we…us have the power to make the changes in our society. We do the voting that puts the people into power. We can vote. If we don’t vote, we also have exercised our powers in an apathetic way. We can elect people who reflect our values. We can not vote for people who are consumed with the greed of politics.
We can encourage politicians through communication and petitions to guide our local and state governments in the direction we would like. We can investigate who is behind certain laws. Are they truly states people who want a stand your ground law? Or is a political think tank responsible? Who benefits most from legislation? The people of your community or the businesses?
Our power is in our vote. And we need to exercise our power whenever possible to save our country from people who don’t have its best interests at heart. I know, I sound a little conspiracy geeked here. It seems politicians have lost sight of who government is here to support: The people.
When “less government” is being defined as let me into your uterus and your bedroom to see what you’ve been doing and cutting food stamps for women and children in need, there is something fundamentally wrong with America. I guess we no longer have to worry about the tired, the poor, the huddled masses. Unless they are they huddled board members of some investment firm who misappropriated funds and required a bailout and a change in laws to make it easier to save their asses. And we only want the homeless and tempest tossed if they don’t require any assistance of any kind and can work for minimum wage to line to pockets of the big box store owner, but can’t afford housing and healthcare.
Seriously, our priorities are all screwed up. And only we can make a difference. Educate yourself. Do your research. And vote.
Last week I nearly went on an unfriend spree on Facebook when links appeared to articles about the Texas pro-choice protesters being devil worshipers. It seems several “trustworthy” news sources (e.g., having “red” or “conservative” in their titles) reported that there were women chanting “Hail Satan” at the protests.
I did my research. I looked for a reliable news source. Hell, I would have even read something by Fox. I did find something at MSN, but I got the feeling from the comments that the source might not be neutral.
I saw a video of one girl walking by saying something. People have assured me she’s saying “hail satan.” But on my video it looks a little off. Another source said five women were chanting the offensive phrase. Five women can not be representative of the tens of thousands of women at the protest.
Still the stories were shared on my Facebook feed with comments like: “see who you’re really supporting when you support abortion” and “forgive them, they know not what they do.” Lumping all the pro-choice women in with the devil-worshipers. How offensive is that?!
See, I am vehemently pro-choice. I will fight for the rights of everyone. Even for the rights of people whose opinions I disagree with. It’s what America is all about.
But lately there has been a change in our country. We are no longer a nation founded on religious freedom, respectful of all people despite their differences. We have become a nation at war with ourselves: the people who wish to support the original wishes of our founding fathers and the people who want to control everyone with their narrow views. Instilling their limited brand of religion into politics where they don’t belong. Calling people who disagree with them devil worshipers is just another weapon in their arsenal.
I guess that’s easier than actually being educated on what happens during a woman’s reproductive cycle, what is included in a rape kit, and what happens during a rape. It’s easier to spread fear and disinformation than actual facts. It’s also more profitable (getting Koch brother money) to stomp on women’s rights than to actually earn campaign donations from pleased constituents.
Where I come from, Jesus taught us we had free will. We get to decide what we do and deal with the consequences. But in today’s society, the politicians want to dictate their values on anyone under their control. Unfortunately, it always ends up being women and minorities, but that’s a discussion for a different day.
They preach their twisted message from God, scaring people who disagree with them with eternal damnation, and reaping the benefits. Although I’m not sure what benefits come from forcing women under any and all circumstances to carry an unwanted pregnancy to term. Add to it a reluctance to allow birth control and we’ve got a hot mess of not making sense soup.
Basically, we’re battling over a woman’s free will. It’s her body, her choice. It is a decision to be made between a woman, her partner, and her doctor.
No one else needs to be involved. No one else needs to make judgments. No one else gets a voice.
See, it’s not devil worship. It’s human rights.
By now I’m sure you’ve heard about Senator Wendy Davis, the Texas senator who filibustered for 11 hours, preventing the passage of a restrictive anti-abortion law that would have basically made the state clinic-less. She’s been all over the news. All over the internet. Even her shoes–she grabbed her dusty running shoes as she went out the door–have become an internet sensation. She took them with her as she left in the morning because she knew she’d be standing for quite awhile last Tuesday.
Stand she did. She stood and talked non-stop. Stayed on topic. Talked. Talked. Talked.
And prevented the bill from being passed. Even though the opposing team tried to turn back time to get it passed on time.
I know you’ve heard this…and I hope you admire Senator Davis half as much as I do. But do you know that Senator Davis wore a catheter for her filibuster?!
She. Wore. A. Catheter.
She didn’t take the offered IV drip but she did take the catheter. While filibustering, the speaker isn’t allowed food, drink, or to leave the floor for any reason. They also aren’t allowed to veer off-topic or sit down. Senator Davis faced even harsher restrictions as the opposition also wouldn’t allow her ice chips and hard candy–which are usually allowed for other politicians.
This is a seriously dedicated politician. She came prepared to fight, armed with information and stories, and she prevailed.
Seriously, though, they wouldn’t let her sit? Go to the bathroom? Have a drink of water? Isn’t that torture?
I’m serious here…we give prisoners better treatment after murdering gazillion people but we can’t give something to people working the democratic process?!
This is where we’ve ended up, people. In order to win, one side fights dirty and the other side works their asses off. While one side bases all their platform on the ideals of a few rich white men, the other side listens to the people and responds to them on their own level. While one single woman dons a catheter, the other side refuses her food and water.
But you elected them. These are the people you’ve chosen to represent you. Mean, cantankerous, vengeful people. Don’t you deserve better?
P.S. Losing doesn’t count these days in politics, so a special session has been called to pass this (and two other issues that were lost in the shuffle). Texans, don’t you wonder where the money for this special session is coming from? What cost politics?!
This isn’t the first time I’ve lamented the lack of customer service in the United States. Seems businesses have so many customers that they no longer have to be nice to anyone nor do they have any interest in keeping customers happy. Why should they when they are probably getting tax benefits and breaks, and not relying on actual sales for their bottom line?
Lately I’ve watched my satellite bill increase and increase. Didn’t matter that I had a contract. In fact, the contract only benefited them. They’ve raised my rates over the two years at least two times. But because I’ve been pleased with their service and had been a customer for nine years, I wasn’t fretting it.
Then I saw the rates they are offering new customers. Which are almost half the rate I paid on my last bill! I called and asked what they could do for me. The answer: a nice big, resounding no.
I said I was interested in new customer rates because I’ve been a customer for nine years. They said no.
I said I was still using nine-year old original equipment on one TV. They said so what?
The first person I spoke to refused to do anything. She passed me off to someone who offered me $10 off my bill a month. OK, the last increase was $7 which makes the discount $3. And that’s not considering the other increase. It didn’t even come to 10 per cent of my bill! Seriously, people, 10 per cent doesn’t even count as a discount.
I ended up changing providers. When I was disconnecting the original service, they were ready to offer me things to stay. The woman kept saying, “you’ve been a customer for nine years! We hate to see you go!” Yes, that was my point yesterday. Also, I started with new customer pricing as my base bargain. I would have been happy with 20 percent off…
What I’ve learned is that when my new service contract is up in two years, I will begin searching for a new provider. Obviously, that’s the way things are done now. A loyal, prompt-paying, low-maintenance customer is meaningless to these businesses.
Damn, this makes me mad! I want someone to be interested in me as a customer. Amazingly, I went to twitter and found my new satellite provider. I was presented with a list of things they were doing for new customers and got every one. They installed within 24 hours. They swear my bill will not change for 24 months; we’ll see about that.
My needs in customer service are not demanding. I don’t require a foot massage and champagne when I interact with your business. But there are things I want and need:
- Customer service reps who speak clear English. I want them to enunciate their words and speak clearly. I want them to actually listen to questions/concerns and answer in a knowledgeable way without resorting to canned responses outlined in the training manual.
- I want to walk through a parking lot without getting run over or having my car blocked by the cart retrieval guys.
- I want clutter free aisles. Even if you’re stocking shelves, isn’t there a way to do it that doesn’t actually impede the shopping of your customers?
- If I am a frequent shopper, I want my very rare returns treated politely and respectfully. When you’re snotty and bitchy because I’ve returned clothing I haven’t even taken the tags off, it doesn’t make me want to come back to buy more from you.
- If you are an employee and you’re walking through the store, do not run me over. Have some respect for another person.
Do you think poor customer service is just a reflection of our very rude society? I can’t be the only one who has noticed that people are far less courteous in recent years.
Are employees treated so poorly that they simply reflect their own treatment by the business owners? Do business owners realize how this affecting their business reputation?
Let me be clear, I have had some wonderful customer service lately also. The customer service at Target in Glendale Heights is great. Especially in the pharmacy, where I am treated very well. After a rocky start with Verizon, I have to say they have wonderful customer service. Even the original satellite provider had amazing customer service–until I wanted something. Though I’m regretting all the times I raved about them over the past nine years.
Am I the only one noticing a surge of poor customer service? Tell me what you think!
Recently, I read a letter seeking advice from the girl next door in Men’s Health. A man was confused because his wife said she needed no special plans for their upcoming anniversary and he wasn’t sure she meant it. Of course the girl next door set him straight–and told him that his wife didn’t mean it. After all, women don’t need to communicate clearly what they need from their partners and in their relationships!
Ladies, this is the crap we have to stop doing. We cannot go around chanting “no means no” and then expecting the people around us to know when we really mean “yes.”
If you are an adult women in an adult-type relationship, stop playing games. Making your partner guess what you mean is a trip to disaster lane. You’re mature enough to be married? You’re mature enough to say what’s on your mind. Really, there are few things you can say that will scare off a partner.
I’m not saying men have carte blanche to do what they please. Don’t misunderstand me. In any sexual situation, no does mean no. And no man should attempt to read anything else into the statement. But women do have a responsibility also. By communicating clearly and concisely, your needs will be known and hopefully met.
As for the wife not requiring special anniversary plans, I completely understand. Being the most unromantic female in America, I require nothing special on an anniversary. At this point, I’m just in awe as the years pass by, proud of Jim and I for amassing quite a few. I don’t want candy or flowers. A trip or some jewelry, maybe. I mean, I got a Dremel for my birthday/Mother’s Day and was pleased!
I am concerned that a column in a men’s magazine written by a woman (hopefully that part is true!) goes about perpetuating stereotypes of manipulative women who need to be coy about their needs. What is wrong about not needing a special anniversary celebration? Is it not female enough? Not committed enough? Why couldn’t the advice simply have been: well, she said she needs nothing, so she needs nothing. The End.
It’s 2013 and the time for games are over. As women we are fighting for the futures of ourselves, our daughters, our granddaughters, and every female around us. As women’s rights are being chipped away and cowardly men feel the need to wrest some control over their spinning worlds, we need to stand strong and confident. Every time you act coy and let your man guess what you want, another ultrasound wand is stuck up another vagina to prevent an abortion. Because women don’t really know what they want and the men need to make sure we know what we’re doing!
Stop playing games and learn to speak up. If you don’t know how or you need some encouragement, let me know. I’m here to help you!