April 30, 2010

Keep your apps off my body!

Posted in Feminism, Reproduction at 10:45 am by The Lizard Queen

(Alternate title: Code Red has me seeing red — [rimshot] I’m here all week, folks!)

Okay.  So, apparently there exist iPhone apps specifically geared at men to track the menstrual cycles of the women in their lives.  I’ve little doubt that they’re meant to be at least partly tongue-in-cheek (though part of me wonders if I’m not underestimating the ingrained misogyny/gynophobia in our culture with that thought).

An app like this—or at least in this general vein, without, for example, the oh-so-charming devil horns—could certainly be used for good, like participating in tracking fertility in a couple trying to get pregnant, or, as someone in the comments at RH Reality Check mentioned, scheduling hiking and camping trips.  Even in those cases, though, I can’t really imagine why an iPhone app would work any better than, I dunno, TALKING to one’s partner.

But the app could also be used for asshaberdashery, too: I can well imagine a scenario, just as one example, in which a fellow does something jerky, and his lady-friend gets upset with him over it.  He checks his iPhone, confirms that it’s devil-horns time, and pats her on the head.  “There, there,” he says; “I know it’s just your hormones talking.”  Perhaps in and of itself that might not seem so bad, especially when compared to the atrocities women endure in other parts of the world*, but as part of an over-arching system in which women’s feelings, thoughts, and experiences are dismissed and diminished, it’s a problem.

Overall, the RH Reality Check post covered the issue really well, so I recommend reading that.  I even recommend reading most of the comments, which address some of the “why is this a big deal?” knee-jerk reactions.  I just figured I’d pipe up to say that this squicks me out, too.

*Can you see, here, how I’ve internalized certain silencing criticisms?  “This isn’t that big a deal—there are starving children in Ethiopia, you know!”  Or, later, “Someone else already covered this—what could you possibly add to the discussion?”  Indeed, I imagine one could do a rhetorical analysis of my blog and find it chock full of passages where I’ve moderated my tone to make it appear I was far less angry about something than I was, places where I demur or equivocate when I actually feel quite strongly about a subject, etc.  Hmm.

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April 23, 2010

Friday musings: music, hook-ups, and flowers

Posted in Feminism, Music, Musings at 10:50 am by The Lizard Queen

I’ve been on a Liz Phair kick lately, focused especially on Exile in Guyville.  A couple of weeks ago now I found myself in a dilemma, as I had “Fuck and Run” stuck in my head all day, and normally when I have a song in my head, I’ll sing it, I’ll listen to it multiple times, etc.–but I was at work, and that’s not exactly a song that can be called “safe for work,” in the parlance of our times.

So, with that background, you can perhaps imagine my delight at the recent Tiger Beatdown post that discussed “Fuck and Run” (plus another song by some dude)!  That got me thinking about a couple of related things that would have been sort of tangential and derailing to put in the comments at TB, but that’s part of why I have my own blog, no?  Here we are, then: Read the rest of this entry »

April 9, 2010

Picking at nits, I suppose–but words matter!

Posted in Language, News, Politics at 3:47 pm by The Lizard Queen

This headline just about caused me physical pain: Obama Sasses Palin on Nuclear Policy.

Now, you know and I know that journalists often have no control over their headlines.  And indeed, I don’t claim to know much about Newsweek’s “The Gaggle” blog in the first place.  And furthermore, I know some folks have gotten awful sensitive when it comes to calling verbal attacks against the President “racist.”

All that said: we’re going to say that the Black dude sassed the white lady?  Seriously?  Y’all have noticed that he’s the President of the United States, right?  Or is he still supposed to “know his place” in spite of that little detail?

Good grief.

[Tip of the oh-so-post-racial tiara to Sadly, No!]