Wednesday, October 28, 2009

The day of quotes

Anyway, so I gave Lynn Harris a quote on why Congress shouldn't eliminate women's ability to get abortion coverage in their health insurance plans, as though there's some honest debate about why a minority of people's religious beliefs should be the foundation of public policy or business decisions in America today. Oh, wait, there is, because those people are asses. But still.

From Amanda Hess, on rape and alcohol consumption

Go read the whole thing, but here's the part that Amanda puts together really well that too many other people [cough, Arlington County prosecutors, cough] can't wrap their heads around.
The idea that women who drink are an affront to the “ideals of femininity” has contributed to the widespread perception that drunk women are less-than-perfect rape victims. The perception that female drinking is a conscious sexual subversion on the part of women is problematic on a number of levels. First, it tells women who drink that they’re asking for it; that if they are raped, they are somehow responsible for the crime committed against them; that it is their deviant decisions that caused them to be raped. Second, it tells rapists that women who drink are not valued by society; that they are considered “lesser” women; that everyone knows drunk girls are down for sex, and no one will believe they can be raped. In other words, it points out exactly who rapists ought to target in order to avoid the consequences of their crimes.

No taking my idea!

Because I can never resist a good pun, an opportunity to tweak both the whole "slutty Halloween" tradition and the anti-reproductive rights forces, or my friend Erica, I contributed to Planned Parenthood NYC's parade of pro-choice Halloween costumes.

Fair warning: I am really going as a Nuva Ring. Don't even pretend like you thought of it first.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Standing the test of time

In the summer of 2000, I was living in New York because I had been in love with a man here, and because I was too stubborn to let it go at the cost of a boring internship that would pay me a fuckload of money.

We'd broken up, I thought, because I'd been living in D.C. and the fantasies he'd spun of an apartment together near Gramercy Park and the reality of a long-distance relationship were too much for him to bear. In retrospect, the difference between the (extremely traditional) life he wanted and the one he could have shared with me could ne'er be broached.

But, stubborn as ever and with the scent of lucre in my nostrils, I moved here anyway. It wasn't about him, it was about the money, right? I was such a good liar then.

Anyway, I listened to this song a lot that summer.

Damn, it holds up. Thankfully, it's not about him anymore. But it's such a weird feeling, the sense that your emotions have become Fortunato and you're Montresor, walling them up with the cask of Amontillado, ignoring their screams until they die off, going from that sense of deep knowledge to mere acquaintances.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

New author archive

With the new launch, there's a new archive of my stuff on Air America. Click here to see it!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

And in The Guardian...

And, one for today and one rather late: my articles in Comment is free on The Guardian's site.

A is for abortion (today's)
Shrinking white men

Me on Maddow

Meant to post this last week, naturally...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Second beer wisdom

Wall Street is like an attractive dude with a 3" dick. Girls come onto him all the time, giving him some "confidence," but he's always going to be worried about his value when the rubber meets the road.

Things weekend getaways are made of

Bacon cheddar burgers, pumpkin beer and fries with garlic mayo. And awesome friends.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Neg

In the height of the pick-up artist fad, I was negged at a bar in New York. Seated on a banquette with two girl friends, a guy who looked like a nice guy walked up and started talking to me.

I like nice guys and my friends aren't judge-y, so I smiled politely, made eye contact and tried to hear him over the loud music and other people talking. And then, he asked me how tall I was. It was an odd question--he was more or less average height himself-- but I thought maybe it was related to my 3" heels or something, so I said, "5'4"." And he replied, "No, you're not at all." And I thought that was extremely odd, the thought that I would lie about my height (particularly as I don't even lie about my weight). So, I stood up and said, "Yes, actually, I am."

And then, despite the fact that I was actually 5'7" in my heels, he continued to deny the obvious reality that I was as tall as I am, insisting repeatedly that I was no more than 5 feet tall. And I was bemusedly wondering as I sat down, annoyed, what sort of drugs the dude was on, what he'd been smoking or whether he was far drunker than he seemed when I realized: he was trying to neg me. He was trying to make me interested in him by insulting me with the purpose of making me feel so desperate to be liked that I'd do whatever.

The entirely stupid thing was is that if he'd just walked up to me and been nice and polite, he probably would've gotten at least my phone number. Instead, by trying out some technique designed to force me into feeling so desperate for his approval (a bad tactic to try on me, generally speaking) that I would do anything, he failed to get even another word out of me, despite continuing to stand in front of me for a good 30 minutes. When we got up to leave, he gave his sad, disappointed you're-not-leaving face and I said, "Why would you be disappointed? I lie about my height."

All of this is to say: Amanda Marcotte is the queen of the neg, and I bow to her.
But I’ve found that insulting someone, especially by using a back-handed compliment, is a really great way to run off a guy that’s hitting on you in the most douchebaggy way. I recently told a guy who came up and dropped a really stupid line on me that I was surprised he had the nerve to approach me, because I’d imagine a guy like him would usually be intimidated by someone like me. I think that fit all the neg rules---there was a back-handed compliment buried in there, I established that I had a right to cast judgment, established my social dominance, and implied that he should feel insecure, which pick-up artists promise will make the neg receiver try to prove their worth. Instead, it threw him for a loop, and he didn’t like it, and therefore wasn’t even remotely interested in stalling me as I made my escape.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Tonight's distraction

Fenway Park, mofos.

Biggest Champagne Thursday ever

It's pouring rain in Boston, we ran out of champagne and then Josh provided us with the biggest bottle of champagne ever to make up for the wet, wet walk. Aw, family times.