Sunday, December 12, 2010

Most women are one man away from welfare. ~Gloria Steinem

This blog post has been a long time coming. This will probably be just Part One of many blog posts of mine on this/these subject/s. It most definitely won't be the last. If you know me this well by now, you know that I'm a feminist. Yes, I'm one of those. As much as I kind of, sort of, don't want to admit it, I am. I get into arguments with men (who aren't my close significant other) who call me "baby", "sweetie" "good girl" (I just did a little shudder at that last one, did you?) I quietly in my head have arguments with thirteen year old girls (and their parents) who have children. And with women my age who seem to think that finding a man and marrying him is our only salvation and we just can't seem to possibly survive by our own devices. But truly, it's not our fault. We have been socially conditioned from the time we pop out from our Mother's womb. We're sung pop hits, told fairy-tales, read poetry, watch movies about finding love. And not just about finding love. But waiting for that one special man who will sweep us off our feet and let us stay at home and cook and clean while they win the bread elsewhere. But the thing is that most men are not capable of doing this. It's not their fault, they're socially conditioned as well. Now, I can tell you first-hand that as a woman who is most definitely deeply and truly in love, that it is grand. But it's not everything. I promise you that. And I can also tell you that most people my age were raised by single women who often times did not get credit for the insane amounts of work they were just expected to do. And by Fathers who lied, abused, ran off, cheated, didn't take responsibility, etc. And we're told to give them the benefit of the doubt because, well, it's not their fault. They're socially conditioned.

From a very young age, I questioned everything. I severely questioned the authority of "rules", moral values, and most significantly, The Bible. I had been taught most of the stories since I was young. I even went to private Christian school until the 3rd grade and went to church frequently until I was about in third grade. I went to church for a brief time in middle school. I went on church trips. But I think all of the illusions shattered when one of the pastors told our youth group that we should be leaders in the Church and that we should consider becoming preachers as well. I went to express my interest in becoming a preacher and was told that I couldn't. And that I should try to become a preacher's wife. Little did I know that God has prerequisites for becoming a Church leader and that having a penis, testicles, and a Y chromosome were a few of them. I shouldn't have been surprised, there is justification in his attitude. 1 Corinthians 14:33-38 goes as follows: "As in all the churches of the saints, the women should keep silence in the churches. For they are not permitted to speak, but should be subordinate, as even the law says. If there is anything they desire to know, let them ask their husbands at home. For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church."

I could go on and on about Bible doctrines that subjugate and opress women. But that would be besides the point I'm trying to make. You find it in the Old and New Testaments, the Koran, the Bhagavad Gita. And you find it in modern day movies, songs, the fashion and beauty industries. In the magazines on the shelves of the checkout counters. In the t.v. advertisements we see every day. On billboards shouting at us and our cars on every interstate drive we make. But the most important thing is that we stop buying in to it. That we realize that as soon as we stop giving these people our collective time and money and that WE SHAPE OUR ENTIRE WORLD that these things will either change or completely cease to be.

You don't have to signal a social conscience by looking like a frump. Lace knickers won't hasten the holocaust, you can ban the bomb in a feather boa just as well as without, and a mild interest in the length of hemlines doesn't necessarily disqualify you from reading Das Kapital and agreeing with every word. ~Elizabeth Bibesco

I wish someone would have told me that, just because I'm a girl, I don't have to get married. ~Marlo Thomas

Men weren't really the enemy - they were fellow victims suffering from an outmoded masculine mystique that made them feel unnecessarily inadequate when there were no bears to kill. ~Betty Friedan

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

My to-do list for 2011

If you know me, by now you should know I have a hard time finishing anything. And I forget everything. I'm a procrastinator to a fault. And I'm a little bit lazy. Add all of this together and you get the most unlikely candidate for New Years Resolutions. Or maybe the best, I'm not really sure. But, let me back up here for a moment. Before I make my to-do list for 2011 I'd like to mention some (actually, kind of big) achievements for 2010. I was in two plays (Steel Magnolias and Dearly Departed) I had an art show. I've painted about 20-something paintings. I've started reading about 15 books and finished 3 all the way. I've gone hiking. I got into a car crash. I went to Orlando. And Tampa. And Atlanta. And Naples. I've met so many new friends, watched some of them go, had some of them come back. Wow. . . I feel like I did more than that. . . but back to the point.

Here are the things I would like to accomplish by this time next year:
Finishing 50 paintings and/or works of art. Approximately one a week.
Maybe sell some of said paintings.
Make more stuff. Like clothes. Or jewelery.
Possibly another play or two.
Read books by only women authors.
Read more in general.
Watch fewer movies and shows. (Certain exceptions apply)
Shop local and eat local more often.
Stop using plastic bags (even though I recycle them now)
Excercise more. Do yoga. Hike. Bike.
Maybe, possibly, hopefully move to another town (this is kind of on the DL)

Well, thats about it. . . until about ten minutes from now when I think of something else. . .