Tag Archives: women

DIY: Genderproofing Your Home

gender-signsWhat? Another DIY post? Wow. I must really be in the mood to be helpful.

Target, apparently a retail establishment that peddles cheaply-made crap (most of it likely sourced from overseas and presumably made with cheap labor) recently announced it was taking down gender-based signage in their stores. The new policy applies to departments like “toys” and “bedding.” Clothes, apparently, still have a long way to go, baby.

The old way of shopping worked something like this:

“Hey, we gotta get a toy for Pat. The kid is having a birthday soon.”

“OMFG! What gender is Pat? Do we even know?! That’s it, man. Game over. Stop your grinnin’ and drop your linen.”

“Whoa. Easy there. Calm down. We know what it is. Pat is currently a boy.”

“Whew. Okay. Close one. Let’s go to Target. We’ll head for the section labeled Toys For Boys. Make no mistake about it. We will not go down the aisle labeled Toys For Girls. No fucking way!”

At the store: “Now these are toys for boys. Get the erector set, Lincoln logs, Army men, flamethrower, truck nuts, 8×10 color glossy of Mike Rowe, a jumbo jar of Rambo sweat, and box of Cuban cigars.”

“Fuckin’ A.”

Now, thanks to Target, you can shop the new way:

“Oh, noes. The ‘boys’ and ‘girls’ signs are gone. Now we’re forced to choose from aisles simply labeled ‘toys.’ What are we supposed to do now? We’re gonna die!!!”

Don’t go sticking your head in an Easy Bake Oven just yet.

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Man To Man?

water-heaterA wise person once said, “I feel in need of a long, hot shower.” Yep, that’s the most recent comment on this blog as I sit down to work on this post and a fitting way to start. Yesterday’s topic decidedly left me wanting the same.

The key word in the opening statement is “hot.”

Q. What goes in the toaster?

A. Bread, you idiot.

Q. Do you sell any hot water heaters?

A. No, you idiot. You don’t need to heat water that’s already hot.

Ah. So we’ll need a water heater if we want our shower to be nice and toasty.

We’ve lived in the big city for eight months now. During that time the hot water has had a rosy hue. Kind of the like the candy apple red on the car in the movie Corvette Summer starring Mark Hamill. We’ve been showering in rust.

The water heater, circa 1985, was almost 30 years old. My wife finally convinced the property management company to put in a new one. They were sending over their man to install it.

The big day came and I listened out of the corner of my ear, working on my computer, safely ensconced in my office, as my wife met the guy and they set about the task. Everything seemed to be going fine.


I went to the kitchen to get a refill on my coffee. The man saw me. Oh shit.
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How To React To A Rape Law

The modernized definition of "consent."

The modernized definition of “consent.”

This is a tough post to write. I have a seemingly simple point I want to make and yet I find myself unable to find the right words. This is actually my second attempt to grapple with this topic. It’s not easy.

The first draft got dumped after it went sideways. I guess I just don’t know how to write about the tough issues.

I’ll give it one more try. I’m deliberately going to be brief and less wordy than usual.

One time we were sitting around discussing a new law designed to get tougher on rape. It was one of those impromptu office conversations about news of the day that hopped to a topic that’s normally rather unusual in a business setting.

I no longer remember the specific news item. It was something to do with consent and the definition of sexual assault. But I do remember the reaction of a certain person (and former boss).

“That proposed law concerns me.”
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Oh, crap. I’m sitting here looking at a blank page and I’ve got a serious blockage.

What? No! Not that kind. Jeez. What do you take me for?

Seriously. I’m drawing one big blank over here.

What’s the big deal? I could miss a day, right? Well, right now, I’ve successfully blogged 920 days in a row. My streak of continuous posts started way back on October 5, 2009. That’s right. 920 days without a break and never Freshly Pressed. I’m obviously going for the world record. Let it be known that I’ll go to any length to be pathetic.

How much more, WordPress? How much more? Please let me know when I’ve achieved the longest Freshly Pressed drought of all-time while posting daily at the same time. Now that is something I would love to stuff and shove on the mantle. Something to be proud of.

Since I got nothing, I’ll simply go off an a couple of random things. We’ll start with presidential wannabe emails.
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Reproducing some thoughts about men

Finally. I figured out a way we can make contraception and reproduction laws that make sense for ALL of us.
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Zainab Salbi: Women, wartime and the dream of peace

People in the so-called real life don’t know me as the Guru. Anonymity demands that I lead a double life, much like Bruce Wayne. (Yeah, just like that!) Sometimes it’s a hassle not revealing my secret identity to people I know, especially the ones I like, but that’s just the way it has got to be.

What they do know about me is that I’m negative (no big surprise there), but also that I’m generally “stand-up funny” within small groups of people that I know fairly well. (I don’t like strangers.) They also, generally, consider me kind, caring, logical and intelligent. On the other hand, they know I’m stubborn, resistant to change, opinionated, judgmental, grumpy and generally miserable and pathetic. (I get off on being pathetic.)

I also enjoy a good political discussion. Very much so. It is hard for me to let sleeping dogs lie. So I’ll often find myself poking people who have a different point of view. “How you liking nuclear power now?” I’ll ask. “Here’s my opinions on the latest hi-jinx in Japan, goddammit.” As you might expect, this usually goes over like a lead balloon.

During one of these discussions, I took a rather strange hypothesis out for a spin. “You know,” I said, “if the world was populated by me and only clones of me, there wouldn’t be any war. At all.”

Think of it! 7 billion inhabitants of planet Earth and all of them me. What a strange notion.

It begs the question: Would I even want to live on that planet? Would it be enough to get me to cash in my ticket off this shithole? (I’m a registered volunteer for the one-way mission to Mars.)

I can honestly answer: I don’t know.

But I do know this. That planet would not have war. I’m capable of physical violence. I know that. But only if I’m pushed to my limit. (Like the time some jackass in a pickup was in the wrong, yet still turned around and pursued my wife into a parking lot. I flew out of that car the moment it came to a stop and went right at that motherfucker. Sure, he would have kicked my ass, but in the moment nothing was going to stop me from taking him on. Luckily people in a restaurant rushed out and pulled us apart.) The point is, I’m capable of it, but I have to be pushed. A lot.

And, let’s face it. If the whole planet was me, there wouldn’t be a lot of pushing. I’m very considerate of other people and their feelings. I try extremely hard not to push. In fact, most of the time, I take a lot of shit on my shoulders rather than push back. It’s my nature.

So even though I’m not sure I’d want to live on that planet, I can guarantee there would be no war. It would be missing a lot of other things, too, like killing, rape, and theft. To be completely honest, it would probably be a hungry planet, too. I’m also deathly afraid of real work, so none of me would be out in the fields growing anything to eat.

Anyway, enough about that planet. How about this one? Unfortunately this one has things like wars, killing and rape in abundance. The woman in the following video makes some excellent points about wars, gender and power. And also some staggering financial stats that really should make all of us wonder.