What's Going On


  • Mary Rodgers:
    "So I asked the shrink: When you're depressed because of actual things that are depressing, are there any drugs that can make you feel better? And he said no, which was even more depressing."
  • David Sedaris, Happy-Go-Lucky:
    "I figured my post-college life would be pretty much like the one I'd been leading for the past decade: work some little job I didn't have to put much into, then come home and do my own stuff. It was the life that most of my friends had, and half my family." "It's a consequence of putting stuff out there--you're going to get reactions."
  • Kristina Marusic:
    "There likely aren’t a ton of people on this planet—let alone within your geography or social circles—whose moral compass, sense of humor, Netflix addictions, dietary restrictions, and idiosyncrasies sync up with yours closely enough to make you want to hitch your wagon to them for the long-haul (and the internet is making us all even picker)."
  • John Oliver:
    "Let this be a lesson that you absolutely don’t want to fuck with someone who has the patience, attention to detail, and sustained anger to crochet their resentment into a handmade garment."
  • Gail Donovan, quoted in "Knitting Yarns" in the essay "Knitted Goods"
    "I love taking what is basically a long string and constructing a three-dimensional object. I love thinking about how somebody figured out how to do that!"
  • Amber A’Lee Frost:
    "It’s not just bad for a person to rely on their weakest skills for survival; it’s unsustainable and immiserating."
  • Michael Che:
    “You know what else makes you do crazy things? Crazy,”
  • August and Annie/Isaiah, "One Last Stop."
    "Does it ever, like...I don't know. Make you lonely? To love somebody who can't meet you there?" "Sometimes. But, you know, that feeling?" When you wake up in the morning and you have somebody to think about? Somewhere for hope to go? It's good. Even when it's bad, it's good."
  • Katie Brennan:
    "The Office taught me that love isn’t always an immediate burst of rainbows and butterflies; sometimes the best kind of love is a quiet, enduring, and steadfast process. When you really love someone, you know they are worth putting in time and effort. Even if you entertain the thought of someone else during the process, i.e. you get yourself a Karen, you know they can’t compare to your person. No amount of time can make that connection fade, so whether it’s consciously or subconsciously, you wait for your stars to align. It might take your company casually hosting a Casino Night, or a heartfelt post it note attached to an Office Olympics “medal,” but eventually your time comes—and when it does, it’s pretty much the best thing ever."
  • Jane Tyson Clement:
    "We don't notice the strange way things come about while they are coming about. It is only afterwards that we see the pattern..."
  • "Candace Kahn," Almost Romance:
    "You can't blow off a good story just because it's challenging."
  • Nick Cave:
    "I prefer to say that I have made, for reasons of survival, a commitment to the uncertain nature of the world. This is where my heart lies. I suspect it always has."
  • Ted Lasso:
    "I love meeting people's moms. It's like reading an instruction manual as to why they're nuts."
  • Ask Amy:
    "My point is that you can lay out your plans, but the world might have other ideas."
  • supercrayon:
    "But I kept thinking there’s a future me a week or a month or a year away that is through this. That future me is not plagued by uncertainty, they know what happened and they’re looking back at how things played out. I liked to think that future me was sending strength and love to present me. Sometimes now, present me in fact does send strength and love back towards past me. Your future selves know what happened. The you of a week or a month from now knows, and has already started to plan your next moves. I hope strength and love are rippling up and down the timeline between yourselves."
  • Christina Long (Washington Post)
  • Michael Diamond:
    “People get frustrated when they can’t see the future,” says Diamond. “The future looks scary if you’re telling them it’s just staying at home for the next 12 to 18 months. You shouldn’t really be that surprised when at least a fraction of them get angry."
  • Seanan McGuire:
    "Please stop trying to solve me. I'm not a problem."
  • Morrie Morgan, in "Work Song" by Ivan Doig:
    "I don't know any cure for being myself. The lotion for that hasn't been concocted yet."
  • Jason Mendoza:
    “Sometimes you just gotta huck a Molotov cocktail at a drone and see what happens.”
  • Augusten Burroughs:
    "But impossible is a concept that makes one's heart laugh and throw peanuts at the television."
  • Augusten Burroughs:
    "Even if things aren't catastrophic now, catastrophe has always followed me. Life unfolds, right? All the time, it's unfolding, and I'm going to follow it."
  • Augusten Burroughs:
    "My life has never really been “happily ever after.” I’ve always had conflict and disaster follow me around like a shadow, and I can’t really believe that will suddenly stop now that I’m happily living in Connecticut with three dogs. We’re just going to have to see."
  • Jacqui:
    “If you have a job where you’re not coming home with stories, it’s time to leave. That simply is our qualification. Healthcare helps. Benefits are nice, but oh my god, how do you not come home with stories? It is the easiest qualification, but it’s true. My feeling is if you don’t have a story, it wasn’t a good day."
  • armeowda:
    "Many people can cast their affections broad and bright as floodlights, but others of us are laser beams, and when something actually trips our attraction/affection sensors it can feel like a certain kind of instant precision strike, and it can leave a mark forever."
  • Stan Tatkin
    "There's actually nothing more difficult on the planet than another person."
  • Lani Diane Rich:
    "What doesn't kill you makes you stranger."
  • Heather Havrilesky:
    "Do they let me write these words because I’m good at it, or do they let me do it because I’m an entertainingly crazy person who is slowly but surely unraveling before 50,000-to-100,000 sets of eyeballs each week?"
  • Justin Peters:
    "The simple lesson that Millionaire taught me is that if you want to change your life—either by winning a lot of money on television or by some more prosaic means—at some point you are going to have to take a risk. Unless you are John Carpenter, you will eventually have to step into the unknown, bet on yourself, and hope that you are making the right decision."
  • Leslie Jones
    "Women are the same as humans."
  • Anne Lamott:
    “If you’re paying attention and making your own life as beautiful and rich and fun as it can be, you might just attract someone who’s doing the same thing,” she said. “You can give up on tracking someone down with your butterfly net.” “Never give up, no matter how things look or how long they take. Don’t quit before the miracle.”
  • Seanan McGuire:
    "If what I say doesn’t help you, ask someone else, until you find the person whose reply tells you how to kick the damn door down."
  • Grangousier:
    "It's 2018. There's a realistic chance of pretty much anything happening if it's ridiculous enough."
  • Joy:
    "I feel a constant low level of stress every day, just by virtue of existing in my environment,"
  • Fancy Feast:
    "When she was on a bad date, she would go to the bathroom, hit her nose until she got a nosebleed, and excuse herself, because it was easier to punch herself in the face than suffer the consequences of rejecting a man."
  • Ber:
    "Get your freak on, screw the powers that would deny you."
  • Lee Bradford:
    "Lee? Why does all this weird shit only seem to happen to you? Well, disembodied voice from nowhere-statistically, it has to happen somewhere."
  • David Neal:
    “Nobody told us that our ‘15 Minutes of Fame’ would include shaming, insults, threats, etc. And that we might not have even asked for it.”
  • Debbie Harry (???)
    “Chaos is a great factor in making art happen."
  • Jason Cochran:
    "So don’t be impatient about your own life. It takes a lifetime, sometimes, to reach your destiny."

« An even worse ripoff. | Main | Fuck you, music industry. »

June 16, 2005



I'm growing discouraged by the fact that 90% or more of the people commenting, linking, and talking about this issue are women. WHERE ARE THE FREAKING MEN?

For once, I'm wondering...where are the male bloggers?


Everyone except rapists (and possibly some of them to...) realise that rape is bad. The world would be a better place if it never happened, just like any other sort of serious crime, like assault or murder. However, what we constantly hear is comments to the tune of 'the courts protect rapists'. The law, imperfect as it is, attempts to ascribe guilt and, unfortunately, most rapists aren't honest about what they've done. If all it took was an accusation that would then lead to a confession, I'd certainly be a lot happier, and I dare say the courts would be to. Since this isn't the case: fortunately, despite crimes such as rape being used to fuel political movements, the courts cling on to the need to prove a case against a defendent. In the case of rape - unlike the armed robbery example being used above - the problem is made even more difficult by sex being a common act between consenting adults, so in many cases both partners don't contest that sex took place, it's consent that is argued. It's not a perfect system. It can get ugly, very ugly. Got any better ideas? (I mean serious ones, not like 'lock up all men' 'keep all men away from women' - these sort of reactions are to be tolerated from a person who has been subjected to this kind of horror - a bit like a person hating black people because they were seriously assulted and robbed by one - but it is something that needs to be worked through, come to terms with, understood and rejected. They certainly cannot be views to base a systemic response upon. These politcially grouped collective-selfs are not to be confused with individuals. Yes, I am a man, but I am a man-who-does-not-rape, just as I am black, and I'm a black-man-who-does-not-assualt-or-rob.)


Dru: good point.

Damian: Sadly, no, I don't. Trying to get assholes not to be assholes, well... nobody knows how to work that one.

Which doesn't mean I'm not pissed off at being born a girl and thus under constant threat my entire life in a way guys usually aren't unless they go to prison, though.


True Jennifer, but I was more refering to how we can find out who the assholes are. I number of issues seem to get confused and kind of molded together. Stopping violence happening is a very different issue to justly dealing with violence after it has happened in a progressive society. With the former, I am down with whatever's going, but with the latter there are issues of presumptions of innocence, due process of law etc that should not be eroded since these are things designed to protect you and me if we are innocent of a crime we are accused of. A poster on one of the linked threads here mentioned another male being assualted by multiple men at a college because he had 'assaulted a woman' and nobody batted an electronic eyelid. Had he? Nobody sees a problem there?

As for why men don't get too involved in these sorts of discussion, the tone of many of the messages makes that rather obvious. Generally, I don't get too involved in KKK chats either, and you'd be surprised just how much 'evidence' and 'statistics' they have to back themselves up in their particular views. It's ironic I supppose, because I can imagine the type of man who these women are actually talking about, the ones that either perpetrate or celebrate these crimes, would actually find their feelings as they express them uplifting and exciting, whereas the men that they are not talking about, such as myself, find it frustrating that they are being lumped in with a collective identity that they are not placing upon themselves. Another poster claimed that generating this kind of collective guilt amongst men is helpful, that it would actualise positive change. As a man, I think it can only do the opposite - assist those men that do these things in their sick little minds while marginalising and antagonising those other men be unfair association.


Hm. An idea for finding out who the assholes are, albeit one that would freak everyone out, is to do some profiling (what childhood circumstances might lead to someone finding rape attractive), psych testing, seeing shrinks, stuff like that. But then again, everyone would protest at getting pegged at being a potential molester.

Gah. I don't know.


it is, i fear, a deeply ingrained shadow-trait in the human psyche to prey upon the weak, or those who are perceived as weak. in a society obsessed with power and control, weakness is always punished by the social unit. if you are willing to accept the premise, as i do, that we live in a patriarchy, then anything which is perceived as not-male [including children of either sex] is automatically weaker, and automatically prey. you can civilize yourself as much as you want, tell yourself you're "not one of those type of men", but the fact remains it's locked in the basement of every single man in our culture. some men put a padlock on the basement door; some don't. we are not trained to deal with our shadow in western culture; we're taught to deny it exists. but that doesn't make it go away.

i think as somewhat poorly evolved primates we sexualize power, fetishize it, because we're pretty much insane as a species. so having fetishized power, when we feel powerless, we strike out in a sexually violent manner against those weaker than us. and because we are socially conditioned to view males as belonging on top, men are encouraged to act out against women and children, because women and children are symbolic objects of their inner demons of lust/fear that arise out of that essential powerlessness.

i think that if we did not live in a political structure of patriarchy, if women were warriors as much as men have been, we might have seen more sexual aggression from women, but we don't. it's not that way because society has not been that way. i have never believed that women are angels and men are devils, or that women are somehow intrinsically better than men, their "spiritual superiors" as some of the early suffragists liked to argue; rather, the socio-political reality of thousands of years of patriarchy has made it so that these behavior patterns arise as they do. of course it's scientifically accurate that testosterone makes people aggressive, but i've seen plenty of highly aggressive women in my life to know that there's no hard and fast gender-based distinction between who is going to be aggressive under what circumstances. i think that patriarchal society creates rape culture, much as radical feminists [the much-maligned] have posited in the past - i think it's a reasonable analysis.

how do we raise boys to treat women as equal? there is such deep and troublesome psychic modeling we give our children about gender roles - one of the things that men can do for their sons is to raise them affectionately, demonstrate that their emotional selves need not reside in the female of the species alone. this is, oddly enough, one of the biggest things men can do to contribute to reducing male violence towards both women AND men - to model emotional connectedness and wholeness to their sons. i'm optimistic about this making a difference.

we don't have to teach our sons to be war-makers, pillagers, takers. we don't have to teach them the artificial "law of the jungle" of so-called social darwinism. we don't have to teach them that competition is more important than cooperation. it will be hard, because we have to embody these lessons ourselves. it's not the work of even one lifetime, but many lifetimes. but if the commitment is there, hope is there.


male blogger here. i care. a lot has been said already, though, so i don't have much to say beyond that just yet. but i care.

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Speed-Reading List

  • Scott Meslow: From Hollywood With Love: The Rise and Fall (and Rise Again) of the Romantic Comedy
    Reviewed September 27. (****)
  • Mary Rodgers and Jesse Green: Shy: The Alarmingly Outspoken Memoirs of Mary Rodgers
    Reviewed September 26. (****)
  • Sarah Henning: The King Will Kill You
    Reviewed September 14. (***)
  • Josh Sundquist: Semi-Famous: A True Story of Near Celebrity
    Reviewed September 13. (****)
  • Kelly Williams Brown: Easy Crafts for the Insane: A Mostly Funny Memoir of Mental Illness and Making Things
    Reviewed September 12. (****)
  • Lester David and Irene David.: Ike and Mamie: The Story of the General and His Lady
    Reviewed August 11. (****)
  • Tom Wicker: Dwight D. Eisenhower
    Reviewed August 9. (**)
  • A.J. Baime: The Accidental President: Harry S Truman and the Four Months that Changed the World
    Reviewed August 1. (****)
  • Kristin Marguerite Doidge: Nora Ephron: A Biography
    Reviewed July 31. (****)
  • Delia Ephron: Left on Tenth: A Second Chance at Life
    Reviewed July 30. (***)
  • Kevin Tuerff: Channel of Peace: Stranded in Gander on 9/11
    Reviewed July 29. (***)
  • Emily Wibberley and Austin Siegemund-Broka.: With and Without You
    Reviewed July 25. (****)
  • Sutton Foster: Hooked: How Crafting Saved My Life
    Reviewed July 22. (****)
  • Nicole L. Anslover.: Harry S Truman: The Coming of the Cold War
    Reviewed July 19. (***)
  • Robert Dallek: Harry S Truman
    Reviewed July 18. (***)
  • Anna Carey: This Is Not The Jess Show
    Reviewed July 17. (****)
  • Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray.: The Personal Librarian
    Reviewed July 10. (****)
  • Amber Ruffin and Lacey Lamar: You'll Never Believe What Happened to Lacey: Crazy Stories about Racism
    Reviewed July 3. (****)
  • David Sedaris: Happy-Go-Lucky
    Reviewed July 2. (****)

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