Monday, November 29, 2010

It's more fun to write about Mariah Carey at QVC in her pink tracksuit than study for finals

only the greats do qvc. no snark.
  •  Where else can you get a pendant that looks like a ring pop? 
  • In case you didn't know, The Transporter is a much better movie in Spanish because they dub over Jason Statham's voice and I'm sorry but the way he talks makes me want to claw out my eyeballs.  But to the issue at hand: what do you think he and Rosie Huntington-Whitley talk about?

Goodbye to Jezebel, for (probably) always

Yes, I removed Jezebel from my blogroll, because of the whole "maybe sexual assault is actually okay?" piece published, and then backed up, by the editors. See Tiger Beatdown for the entire story, but if you follow the feminist interwebs, you've probably heard all about it.

After fully informing yourself of the situation and all that occurred, as well as remembering that you've been seeing more and more bullshit published at Jez as well as less and less of well-established contributors like LaToya Jackson, let me know what you think. And if you honestly think that Jez hasn't been going to the dogs and didn't compromise its values by advocating sexual assault, then get the fuck away from my blog. We don't need rape apologists here, and neither do we need people whose concept of feminism is so narrow that it only concerns itself with white, cis, middle-class women.

I'm sorry to be so ranty, and it's not like I want to take any of this out on you who are aware that what Jez did was wrong, and only more fully compounded by Jessica Coen's bullshit "apology." It's just, well, it's just that it's Monday and I'm disillusioned and sad.

I may end up there every once in a while, and I may even get info from that blog - the internet is a big place, but the feminist internet is not - but the new standard around here when it comes to Jezebel is shoot first, ask questions later (not literally what do you think I am a Tea Bagger?)

Douching and economic theory? You got it

How is a raven like a writing desk? is sort of a boring question.

But what about this: how is an economic depression like a good ice-cold douche?

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Charlize Theron's Anti-Rape PSA - Banned in South Africa





Yeah, this looks a little old-school. But considering how bad things are for women in South Africa in terms of sexual violence, it bears repeating - especially since it was banned because it was offensive to men or something (wtf??)

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

After a bran muffin and a huge thingy of coffee, one expects some things.

One expects to be energized, amped, maybe a little caffeine angry - and one also expects to take an awesome dump. While one is waiting for this mythical BM to occur, one will spend a little time posting images of frivolity incarnate.

  • I feel like I'm Olivia Wilde's publicist. I've been "recommending" her recent photos shoots (Vanity Fair, Details, etc) for the last week or so, like I have some kind of stake in her eventual success. I have a feeling she's only one Tron away from being a top-tier actress.
  • After GOOP and accompanying bullshit, I kind of wish that people would stop giving Gwyneth Paltrow opportunities at viability. Please, people, stop doing it.
  • With the holiday season comes a spate of Daily Mail articles and general MSM fretting over weight. Too big, too small, too fat, too thin, how am I going to lose/gain weight so that people will stop criticizing me for being fat/skinny.
  • Billy Bob is so hot. I don't care if he did Botox. Also from this article, Carla Gugino's dress is tres beautiful:

  • Nicki Minaj's dress is fabulous.
bollywood chill wave neon holy mountain

The TSA is even going to ruin the Happiest Place On Earth

Of course, there are hella problems with Disney as a corporation, and with the image it promotes, and blah blah that's all very important. But try explaining that to my sister, a twenty-five-year old developmentally disabled and autistic woman. Watching movies, and in particular Disney movies, is probably the thing she loves most in the world. Going to Disneyland, although as stressful to her (crowds of people make her nervous, and she is easily overstimulated) as going in for surgery is for other people, is also among the highlights of her life. Disneyland is, if nothing else, very friendly to disabled people and their families. Disney employees have always treated my sister with care and respect, while at the same time never breaking away from their role as Snow White or Goofy or whatever. If it didn't make me fucking emotional to hear about it, I might have lost my mind from being told a thousand ecstatic times about her walk with Snow White (who, by the way, addressed her by name because of her special name-tag and took her hand).

that lady was awesome. i wish they were allowed to accept tips.
 So, yeah, feel-good time. Luckily for me and my family, we life in California and it is not unreasonable to drive to Disneyland once every few years. But many disabled people live further away. Is it worth it to take your disabled family member on a plane to one of the best experiences they'll ever have (no, I'm not fucking exaggerating) if it means being groped by TSA representatives? Although my sister is very high-functioning, I couldn't promise that she wouldn't have a meltdown while being grope-searched. Could her behavior, which usually includes screaming, crying, hitting, and sometimes just dropping on the ground for a good old-fashioned tantrum, be considered dangerous, a threat to our national security? Would she be tazed, beaten, or otherwise detained - by herself, a woman who can't even tie her shoes - with strange federal employees who I wouldn't trust with the well-being of a gerbil? Do you really think that someone who can only spell her name is going to know what her rights are?

Not insignificantly, my sister is also a sexual-assault survivor; after all of the things we've striven to teach her - that her body is hers alone, and no one can touch it without her permission, that she is allowed to make noise if it means protecting herself, that it was not in any way her fault that a very bad man tried to rape her while she was in a location where she felt most protected - how could my mother allow those people to put their hands all over her, to make sure that she isn't a terrorist? I don't think, if I signed off on that, that I could look her in the face again.

From what I've read - although you're welcome to prove me wrong - there are no accommodations made by the TSA for disabled adults. I don't even know what to say.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Rest and relapsation

oscar the grouch in lady form
 I wouldn't call what's been going on with me a relapse, technically. I think there are stringent clinical qualifications and other things that determine whether or not your ass is no longer on the wagon (although who would want to be on a wagon with a bunch of people recovering from eating disorders, anyway, I wonder, what with our multifaceted anxiety, emotional itchiness, and tendencies towards that everconstant OCD-enabler, Purell). But I do feel bad, in any case. Could hardly leave bed today.

When I was a kid, my favorite Sesame Street character was Oscar the Grouch. Like any kid who took ten years to stop breastfeeding (not literally tho hahahaha), I was one of those super-sensitive criers. Because kids have a hard time distinguishing between viable candidates for empathy, like people, and Muppets, I remember weeping over Oscar's perpetual loneliness.

miz undahstood


He's not like Eeyore, who takes a sort of masochistic satisfaction in his pessimistic conception of the world; even as he bellyaches, you can see the gleam of serenity in his button eyes. At the very least, his expectations of the world are being met. Oscar, however, really thinks that by selling sewer water at a lemonade stand that he is helping people; and he really does think that by relating to his friends the way he does, he is communicating to them his friendship. But he isn't, and he's oblivious of how to improve himself, and goddammit if that just doesn't get me every time. I know that Oscar isn't supposed to make kids sad, but that's always been the effect he's had on me.

sort of like this movie. it's a comedy, but i was literally near tears when paul rudd's character realizes he has no friends.


I guess what I'm saying here is that I'm immature enough to try to explain my emotional situation with Muppet-mummery on a blog. But my feelings are valid and I am sad, and it's because, like Oscar, I'm not getting something right. I'm off-course; my compass is fucked; the radar's been pissed on. Although I am aware that my life-paradigm or whatever is messed up, unlike Oscar, we're still sort of in the same situation. How to improve it? What can we do to get our acts straight? Not everyone can be that nasal-voiced buzzkill, Big Bird, with his equanimity and droopy eyelids. We are just as neurotic as Grover but, we like to think, distinctly more likeable.

We like to think so, anyway.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

One of those nights: In which I heat up a tamale

Sunday night is the traditional evening on which I procrastinate, eat tamales, and think about looking at porn and then having a feminist conflict about it and decide not to but only because I'm tired but pretend that it's some kind of moral victory on my end.

After that mouthful, I was going to post a picture illustrating my point in a pithy, clever way, but then discovered that GISing "immoral" is a recipe for hentai that just has to be illegal.

i'm right partial to this thing that turned up, though
In any case, I have fallen down the rabbit hole; GIS often has that effect. As long as you can control yourself enough to refrain from searching for pics of MRSA and aborted fetuses, you can come up with the entertainingly creepy, the culturally embarrassing, and even the pessimistically enlightening.

like this. it's soap. ew.
nature is so beautiful
paradise lost
But the weird palls, and we soon come to the Blogger's inevitable descent into gooey fashion history.

givenchy

...to celebrity obsessions...


...and thereby segueing into things that just sort of strike my fancy but are probably reflective of my psychospiritual tomfoolery and general derp.

And I don't know how - certainly this trajectory doesn't explain anything - but it always leads back to porn. And whether or not to masturbate with it is a solved problem. Guess that answers that.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Wage gap continued: Paycheck Fairness Act shot down in flames

I  believe a few weeks ago I got ranty about how the gendered wage gap has, at the very best, deprived me of something around $5,000 since I (legally) entered the workforce at the tender age of eighteen. Today could have proven to be a salve to that ranty angry feministy bullshit, but, of course, the Senate fucked over legislation aimed at making it so people cannot be discriminated against and paid less because they are a lady rather than a man.



But that would be just too easy, wouldn't it? Not a single Republican voted in favor of the act, which would take steps to resolve the wage gap that costs American women workers to lose, on average, TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS PER YEAR. Have the audacity, the unmitigated gall, to be a lady of color? IT'S EVEN HIGHER.

I guess expecting politicians to vote on gendered lines rather than party lines is naive, and even bad, but none the Republican senators who are women - Susan Collins, Kay Bailey Hutchison, Lisa Murkowski and Olympia Snowe -  supported the act. None. These women got theirs. So fuck you.

Even though some of these senators voted for the Lily Ledbetter Act, which makes it easier for women to collect retroactive pay if it's been lost due to gender discrimination, it seems that the official stance of the GOP and their supporters - including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce (the letter included this gem, motherfuckers: "It strains logic to mandate [with this act] that damages conceived and designed to punish and deter wrongful conduct should apply to claims of inadvertent, unintentional conduct that has the effect of violating the EPA. " Because discrimination is okay if you didn't mean to do it and should be permitted to continue occurring), and others with a completely understandable capitalist interest in exploiting and profiting from the discrimination of women, people of color, and other marginalized populations - have decided that, no, you can't have it, not yours.

The GOP and Chamber of Commerce aren't the only assholes who think legislating anti-discriminatory laws is not fair, not right, and some kind of transgression against freedom and True Americans blah blah blah.  Some WSJ cunt felt that doing so is tantamount to "[embarking] upon a journey that leads us to gender warfare."

..............

Because the rape culture we currently live in, in which one in four women - at least - are sexually assaulted, in which women are underpaid, underrepresented, and objectified - isn't "gender warfare."

Of course it isn't. 

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

From my inbox: LOL bye bye Four Loko

FUCKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKKK

Update on protest at Regents Meeting in Oakland

Most recent text from a friend attending: [Arrests] Ben Lynch, Berkeley. Unknown, Berkeley. Claire Keating, unknown campus. Cops stopped me from talking. Seven arrested [UCD students] this time. Twelve total today."

After yesterday's sort of apathetic showing, it's nice to see that more people turned out to get pepper-sprayed and arrested. I've got a video for ya, as well as a few recent articles. From one of these, a protester was quoted as saying:

"“They’re putting workers into abject poverty,” said Paul Haller, a building manager at UC Berkeley. “I’ve worked here for 27 years, and back then I didn’t think about retirement, but now it’s a lot more important.”

UPDATE: Officer Kemper pulls gun, according to witnesses.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

No, I don't like Obama.

From page 62 of Cynthia Enloe's Bananas, Beaches & Bases: Making Feminist Sense of International Politics:
"Women who have called for more genuine equality between the sexes...have been told that now is not the time, the nation is too fragile, the enemy is too near. Women must be patient, they must wait until the nationalist goal is achieved; then relations between women and men can be addressed..."
Sounds reasonable, right? Obama has to wade in and undo all that damage eight years of Bush did, he has to make everything right for all of us (? all of us men, or what?) before he can work on women's rights in particular.

This is not to say that Obamacare hasn't done good things, or set good precedents, or whatever. And it doesn't mean that we're all idiots and don't understand that change takes time (or don't we? And I highly suggest clicking on this link; Liss @ Shakesville not only knows her shit, but has excellent resources for people who just don't want to relinquish their love for Barry's "progressive" administration).

But women, as well as other oppressed groups, often hear that dealing with our specific, minority (?), or niche problem will happen after we win the revolution (we being, of course, the dudes in charge). As Enloe writes,
"It is advice predicated on the belief that the most dire problems facing the nascent national community are problems which can be explained and solved without reference to power relations between women and men."
This situation, in which we are encouraged to allow a privileged conception of the "greater good" precede the defense of our rights, reminds me of Heidi Hartmann's writing on Marxism and feminism, and Marxist claims that feminist (read: women's rights) issues will be resolved once we have accomplished a classless society. As if the subjugation of women by men will be eradicated when our men take care of their problems with some other men.

I'm really super sure Obama is a nice guy who wants what's best for our country. And I'm really super sure that health care reform has improved, to some extent, my quality of life. But at the expense of what, and who? More of us get health care (sorta), while others of us are further deprived of their reproductive rights and bodily autonomy. How different would it be, I often wonder, if the government made laws regulating the reproductive rights or bodily autonomy of men? How would you respond, Sir, if the government interfered with your sexual identity, your right to fuck, your right to get medical help when you need it, even if that help is for your filthy, dirty, naughty bits?

This argument that women wait is kind of like saying, Well, we got Barry into office and he saved us from starvation by giving everyone in the country one chicken sammich (yeah, I dunno), while allowing the rest of the chicken sammiches (a surplus, if you will, of delicious food), be divided among a very small group of interested parties, capitalists, and wealthy bastards. At least we got a sammich, right? Even though we are still going to starve later on.

(That was an awful comparison, but please make an effort at seeing my point, as long as I haven't bungled it beyond articulation. If you still think I'm wrong and an idiot, PLEASE go to Shakesville and listen to what Liss has to say. That lady will make you understand what I'm attempting to get across.)

November 17 - UC Regents Are Meeting. Another fee increase? What does it matter when we're already dropping out...



Although I won't be able to join the protest scheduled early tomorrow morning because of work (check out UC Unity - No More Fees on your FB), I have been participating when I can on campus and in Davis. It's weird that, now that my college career is prematurely over, at least for the present time, I'm so much more invested in this movement. And much angrier. It's probably due to my prepping for our march - unfortunately, participants maxed out at about thirty people - by reading Cynthia Enloe and watching a VHS of Toni Morrison talking about Beloved in one of my classes.

[this is not comparing myself or our movement with slavery; I'm just saying that being confronted with that oppression as a member of the kyriarchy in which it is done is both horrifying and enraging]

Because this shit is making me...emotional. And not "hysterically" emotional, or emptily emotional, or impotent but crying anyway: "emotional" is going to mean something different than what it means now with all of its gendered, demonized baggage. "Emotional" means fed up; it means pissed; and it means active.

If you can, go to a campus and protest; go to the regents meeting and protest. Put up fliers. Tell people that the voices of dissent at UC campuses are diminishing because us - the poor kids, the brown kids, the immigrant kids, the workers, the grad students, the marginalized of all kinds - are being SQUEEZED OUT. And rather effectively, I might add.

As I pointed out to a friend, I am a white cis-gendered, cis-sexual(ish) woman who has benefited so much from these privileges - and I am being fucked. There are other people - people of color, undocumented immigrants, queer people, working-class and impoverished people - who have it worse. If this is bad for me, or for you, remember that there are people with less privilege out there.

Do something about it.

Monday, November 15, 2010

There Will Be Blood (Coming Out of Your Ass)

I made the mistake of reading through a forum on ulcerative colitis, which I have in a very mild form. Of course, it made me panic about my health and my future and whether or not I will have to have surgery to remove my colon, and whether or not I will have to spend my life in stupid chronic pain, much like Crohn's victims or some such. (I have a lot of physical problems, as you may be able to tell. From what I can put together, a great many of them are co-morbid, or have caused other ones. General anxiety and bulimia, for example, probably triggered my colitis; my eating disorder was also the reason why I've gotten myriad infections, tooth problems, and a weak immune system which means that every infection within a five-mile radius of my body is likely to put me out of commission for a weak and make me a pretty bad candidate for piercings, blood donation, awesome drugs, and other cool stuff.)

The reason why I don't go to these forums is they freak me out and then I get COMPLAINY and not only is that unpleasant for everyone around me, but having a sassy sense of humor about the corporeal lemon I got dealt at birth is a lot more fun. I mean, would Shirley MacLaine lie in bed, wilting and weeping, if she shat blood every day for a few years? You bet your ass she wouldn't. She'd yell at you and smack back-talking kids and do that thing with her eyes and posture informing you of, among other things, your absurd cretin-ness, as well as emphasize her class and imperturbability, you poor, poor idiot.


forget it, jake, she thinks you're gross

Thinking about strong women who were strong to the bitter end is, if not inspiring, at least entertaining. Picturing Cher or Meryl Streep or Liza Minnelli or Roseanne - and I mean both Barr and Connors - in the shit but then flipping it off and doing something about it is entirely aspirational.

I mean, I scream when the toaster pops without warning; the very least I could do is try to be a little more like these heroines.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Being fat doesn't mean you are unhealthy...

There has been a lot of digital to-do about this "amazing" man and the Twinkie diet that helped him to lose something like thirty pounds. Although of course this reaffirms that weight-loss is, in general, a calorie game, it also demonstrates how little weight has to do with overall health. Do you think this guy was more healthy eating a steady diet of a food that never goes bad over regularly, balanced meals and exercise? Do you really think Anna Wintour, who subsists on a disordered, Spartan diet to go along with her cigarettes, is more healthy than a fat guy from a fly-over state who gets all his veggies and runs a couple of times a week?

Thing is, fat people can be unhealthy. And so can skinny people. The long and short and fat and thin of it is: you can't tell anyone's level of health by just looking at their body. How many times did I get compliments on my "fitness" when I was fainting from calorie-deprivation (fwiw, I think I looked like total shit, but I guess people were so dazzled by the waist size that they didn't notice my dull skin, crappy hair, baggy eyes, constant illness, irritable attitude and mild scarring from SI)? And how many times, conversely, have people been body-snarked or discriminated against because they weren't a size 8 and must therefore be slovenly monsters?

Too many times, that's how many, people. Unfortunately, it is very hard to convince most people that making sweeping judgments about people's character, health, habits, and lifestyle by sort of giving them the up-and-down in line at the grocery store isn't the way to go about it. But if you make the claim that that is not the way to evaluate people, you get accused of being a "fat-apologist," as if that were somehow a bad thing, and helping the "obesity epidemic" flourish and enfatten America so much that it will be just a complete travesty if anyone ever goes outside or loves their body ever again.

As another fwiw (that you may take with a grain of salt and all of the caution that anecdotal evidence must be digested with), I must say that people find me more attractive now that I am at a healthy weight that I don't maintain by exercise abuse or chugging Ipecac; not that being attractive should have some kind of impact on what kind of person I'm taken to be, but I think it would be nice to emphasize that loving yourself and taking care of yourself does a lot more for your sex life than otherwise.

(NB: The above is not meant to be disableist towards people with eating disorders, chronic illness, mental illness, or other conditions. I am not saying that being in glowing health is the only way to be attractive, or that people with eating disorders have them because they want to be beautiful, or that once anorexics and bulimics and binge-eating addicts realize beauty comes from within they'll get better...all I'm saying is, I get laid more when I love myself more.

Monday, November 8, 2010

"If you're a woman and you have a body, you can't fucking win." Word.

Time for some more ED/body image linkies. If you are susceptible to trigger-warning stuff, you probably shouldn't be clickin on these here links. If you aren't very familiar, I highly recommend educating yourself more about eating disorders and mental illness, in general. We all know that mental illness is highly stigmatized, as well as one way that disablist prejudices are exercised on people.

Part of recognizing your own privilege is going through the effort of educating yourself about people who have not been lucky enough to receive said privilege. That means, as a white woman, it is my responsibility to be an ally to people of color, and to inform myself on their struggles without imposing myself on Black people or Asian people or people of indigenous heritage who are just trying to get through their freaking day.

This other link is a reminder that fat hatred is just one of many prejudices intertwined (hey there, intersectionality) with other forms of oppression.  It is no coincidence that being fat is unacceptable particularly for women, the condition of whose bodies and their adherence to arbitrary norms of beauty being how we are evaluated for our societal worth.

Think about these you demonize a fat person, or body snark in general.

"Lady Gaga Steal's Lady's BF"

To be honest, I would probably die of gratitude of Lady Gaga stole my boyfriend. Yeah, you're lonely and rejected, but what a validation of your powers of attraction, right?

[salt n pepa's "i'll take your man" in the background]

This is bad news...for my kidneys

I really really really have to pee but I have only just secured one of the many coveted computers in the always-packed computer room on my campus. Last year it was secret, but people eventually caught on that a really good lab was hidden in the women's/gender/ethnic studies building. Because these people definitely aint here to talk about Monique Wittig or Audre Lorde.

For your viewing pleasure, here's a link to images of hipsters who have to pee. If you've gotten even a little bit of that delicious schadenfreude from seeing some hip motherfucker in discomfort (writes the blogger wearing a bandana around her neck fuck you it's cold), then I have done my duty.

Friday, November 5, 2010

Fashion: Posh is the real deal

I said it first, and then Iman confirmed it. Not that Victoria is necessarily a top designer now, but as I've said before, she will most definitely have a legitimate legacy in the world of fashion. She is a competent designer and, from all signs, a lovely lady. That's all I need. She's no Coco Chanel, but can you think of any celebrity/singers turned designers that did good?
Maybe Beth Ditto? But she didn't have the Spice Girls baggage that Posh has, and also she worked in conjunction with Lagerfeld, an obviously very prominent designer (of Chanel, no less). Maybe there isn't a valid comparison. Perhaps Stella McCartney? She didn't have a singing career, but being the child of an enormously famous person doesn't hurt when you're building your own fashion house.

Eating Disorders: What causes them? And why are mocha frappucinos so expensive?

It occurred to me, what with all this political junk going on, that I haven't written about eating disorders, or linked you to eating disorder articles, in while. Before recovery, it's hard to believe that you can actually think about anything else. But being where I am now - about seven years since I started getting treatment - it's not something constantly preoccupying my mind

(I mean, it's there most of the time, but it's not like I'm obsessively paging through the DSM soon-to-be V and GISing pictures of people with EDs and doing calorie runups on every imaginable food AMIRITE?).

This blog post, besides being about the Maudsley treatment method, about which I've heard excellent things but is something that my parents would never care to/be capable of doing, is also about the "causes" of EDs. It's good to remember that it's never one thing that triggers a mental illness, just like it's probably a combination of factors weakening your body that exposes you to physical illness. As the writer of this piece says, " Genes shape the gun, environment loads it, and stress pulls the trigger."

In thinking over my personal situation, this makes sense. Genetically, I'd say I was set up for my ED (my mom was bulimic and depressed; my dad has OCD tendencies, although he has no idea what OCD is and if you told him he'd once had a really nasty case of it he'd shoot your eye out. Plus, general anxiety and addiction runs in da family), as well having certain experiences that may have helped trigger it (divorce of my parents, childhood abuse, being on a sports team in high school with many eating-disordered athletes, as well as a perfectionist streak that I've definitely put out of its misery I mean look at me now I can barely make it out of the house with pants on).

At this point in my life, though, I have mostly learned to re-channel these issues into more constructive, or at least less destructive, shit. Instead of abusing food, I clean or worry about bugs or allow my hypochondria to indulge in itself. If I feel manic, I try to distract myself, or sleep too much or maybe have a drink. And perhaps doctors would tell you that these are just replacements for my ED, that they're just as bad as bulimia. But I really do believe EDs are like alcoholism - you have them for the rest of your life, whether or not you act on your compulsion to abuse your substance of choice. And since the crazy in my head has definitely dissipated, I see no problem with sleeping too much rather than binge and purge. Because at least the former doesn't slowly kill you from the inside out.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Daily Mail: Tucci Tucci Tucci Touch Meeeee

  • I wish Stanley Tucci would tucci my neck like this
christina knows not what she is blessed with
It's genuinely beyond me why he is not actually the love interest in this stupid movie. I get that young Xtina needs a young, handsome gay actor to have this deep, sexy relationship with, but have they seen Tucci? Have they seen how hot he is? Also, he's fair shakes at the whole fancyman thing - a hetero with a gay appraising look? That's like finding a Skinny Cow in the salad bar.
and what movie with faggy smirks wouldn't have cher?
  • How many grade school girls are learning the pleasures of humping furniture with Ryan Reynolds on Sesame Street. For that matter, how many boys?
not enough, that's how many

What's the wage gap worth to you? To me, it's $5,000 - so far

Whatever else people may say about the fact that the wage gap is closing, or that we shouldn't whine so much about something that will eventually go away because the world is feminist now so get over it, I would like to remind everything the impact it can have on an individual life. Bear in mind, also, that I am a white American citizen: the wage gap for women of color, immigrants and openly queer/trans* people is considerably steeper.

I did a lil bit of math - and if you really want to see it, I guess you can email - and (carry the two, derpty derp), estimated that, making 90% of what a man in my position would after being in the (official) work force for four years, I am missing out on around five thousand dollars. Depending on the location and situation, the wage gap can be considerably higher - as low as seventy-seven cents per dollar - but I felt like playing it safe and calculating from the outside, just to prove my point.

So, had I been born with a penis instead of my current vagina; or rather, had I been socialized to have a different gender than I do now, I would have five thousand more dollars in my bank account (full-disclosure: I have a little less than zero in there right now).

Let's look at it:
my my my, what a helpful graphic
For a poor person like me, that's a fuckton of money.

For a person who would need just about that amount to finally graduate from UC Davis, that's a luxury I don't have.

In my small but expensive college town of Davis, California, five grand is ten months of rent, or years of groceries, or a fucking car, or five Mac laptops, or a bunch of bikes (my transportation is 95% bicycling, by the way. You can imagine how a bike used every day for years gets beat up) or, if you're a boozer like me, something like a thousand Jack and diet cokes.

At the risk of hitting you over the head into oozing unconsciousness with my point, I'm going to reemphasize my problem: men make more, on average, than women. For no reason other than gender bias.  That we are still in the midst of pushing through legislation to prevent this in 2010 is heinous; that I am, in many ways, at the top of the dog pile when it comes to people who are underpaid because of the patriarchy is appalling; that it didn't really occur to me until the other day, while taking a short break in between my two jobs to do some homework, that being a boy may have made things far more different than just my haircut, is foul. (NB: I am not including in my chalk-up of money lost the overtime I worked, without pay, because a dickhead boss told me to or else; the injuries I sustained that weren't paid for by management because they found plenty of ways to squirrel out of responsibility; of being passed up for promotions or positions, or getting the shittier shift, because an equally or less-deserving fella got preference; neither am I adding in the money I lost from leaving a job because a man or men on staff were sexually harassing me.)

What can I do other than vote and hope for the best? When theft and the consideration of sex work are staring you in the face, how can you help but feel a little defeated?