Walking Wounded

I may be a bad person of poor character, but I sometimes read Dawn Eden’s blog. I know, I know, but ever since I gave up drug abuse, promiscuous sex, satan worshipping, and having abortions for kicks on my slow weekends, there isn’t much left for an intellectual mindfuck but Dawn Eden.

She seems nice enough — fairly reasonable, if a bit judgemental, and certainly speaks as an authority on many of her pet issues. Her favorite thing to write about appears to be sex — all sex all the time in the garden of Eden — but sex is not healthy or normal except within a particular set of constructs. Oh no. Today Ms. Eden decided to bag on one of her greatest blog adversaries, but was wise not to link that heathenous slut lest she turn her blog harpies on dear, chaste Dawn.

A childless feminist blogger took pleasure in taking apart Sandoval’s piece, accusing the writer of hating sex and hating sexually active singles. She buoyed her arguments by noting that while she herself supported having sex outside of marriage, she was not promiscuous—she’d been with the same man for four years.

Oh my. Who could that be? And why are we feminists suddenly divided into child-ful and child-less? I suppose I’m a less heathenous feminist since I have a child. Or wait, a hapless slut (I can never remember). Perhaps Dawn feels this unnamed blogger’s criticisms are too close to home. Nevertheless, she goes on:

Reading that, I thought, this is a woman who does not know what her life is for or who she is. She badly desires to anchor her life in a relationship, yet she has a contingency plan to escape that relationship with no strings attached, should it prove too cumbersome. She takes hormones to prevent her ovaries from releasing eggs, so that her lover’s seed may pass in and out of her without the chance that she’ll actually receive it.

There is so much in this little paragraph to criticize, and we haven’t even gotten to the part yet where she states that “contracepted sex” is merely “coitus interruptus” and thereby inferior to “the mixing of body fluids” that produces God’s Army. She condescends the unnamed blogger’s choice of commitment, suggests this unnamed blogger can not and will not know herself unless she’s knockin’ boots with a wedding ring on (I suppose any asker will do), judges this unnamed blogger’s willingness to face the reality of relationships, assumes quite a bit about the unnamed blogger’s medical contraceptive choices, and actually says the phrase “lover’s seed.”

Lover’s seed. For real? Hopefully a person’s significant other has more to offer a relationship than “his seed,” you know, like mowing lawns and opening jars of mayo. For all the flack feminists get for our supposed single, monolithic view on marriage, sex, and manhood, Dawn seems awfully fixated on the, well, manhood.

Isn’t that interesting?

Someone here is walking wounded and it ain’t the unnamed feminist. But after all of this, I do have one niggling thought. For someone who promotes abstinence until marriage, rages against the “porn-liberal” and only refers to her own sexual life as “chaste,” Ms. Eden sure knows a lot about sex.

I wonder.

UPDATE: Amanda responds. Priceless.

Posted in Feminism, Sex | Tagged , , | 34 Comments


Oh! This shit had me rolling.

It’s kind of hard to blame the Old Boys Network, when blogging didn’t exist until very recently. I suggested then that one obvious reason is that most women are too concerned about their own lives and those of the people they care about to bother broadcasting their opinions on events of only marginal relationship to themselves to the world.

An even more more impolite corollary to that is that women tend to be more emotional than men, so a disembodied text-only medium that puts a high emphasis on rationality is not one in which women will tend to equal men in performance.

I was really dreading my first class this morning, but goddamn, a good laugh got me feeling the revival. What an excellent parody.

via Mark

Posted in Blogging, Feminism | Tagged , , | 12 Comments

One Nation Under God

This afternoon when I picked Ethan up from school, his teacher turned from a conversation she was having with another mother, pulled me aside and asked a question. “Did you tell Ethan not to say the pledge?”

“I told him it was his choice,” I said. “Why?”

“Well, it doesn’t matter to me if he says the pledge or not, but he has to be respectful when the other kids do.”

“I spoke to him about that. How was he disrespectful?”

“He had his arms crossed.”

“Did he do anything else?” I asked. The other mom looked at me warily.


I hesitated for a moment. “Clearly our versions of ‘respect’ are different, but I’ll speak to Ethan about that.”

Last week when Ethan started kindergarten, I was concerned about a great number of things, one of which was him knowing that no matter what any authority or law says, his rights do not stop at the school doors. When a friend reminded me that all Indiana children in public schools have to stand and recite the pledge every day at school to an American flag whose presence is mandated in every classroom, I made a point of discussing this with Ethan, simply to let him know that he had a choice of whether or not to stand with his classmates and make a pledge he certainly doesn’t understand.

I explained it as simply as possible without even touching on the religious complaints against the pledge. Our country is at war overseas, I told him, and some people with a lot of power believe that saying the pledge will make us love our country more and support the war. But, I told him, I think it’s silly to think that a pledge will make us love our country when there are plenty of other things to be grateful for, and just so you know, Mama doesn’t support the war. You can say the pledge if you want to, but it is your choice. No one can make you say it and no one can make you not say it.

I don’t care about “under God.” I care that my child is being asked to conform to an ideal he knows nothing about.

Ethan asked further about the war and I explained as best as I could, reminding him of all the stories Mama watches on the news. It’s a huge concept for a child to wrap his mind around. I answered his questions as best as I could at his level and reassured him that he could decide at any point to say or not say the pledge, and then could change his mind if he wanted to. This is precisely the point about religion that I have pressed on him over time: his choice. In this case the Pledge of Allegiance feels too much like a prayer of political indoctrination “encouraged” by lawmakers for me to feel comfortable to let it go. And finally, I told him that if anyone gives him any crap to refer them to me. I’d handle it.

I was miffed by the teacher, who is by all accounts a wonderful educator (and Ph.D.), but had to take into account all sides. No matter her views, her views are disregarded and part of her state-mandated curriculum is to teach children how to say the pledge and to make time for it every morning. Further, my views and Ethan’s choice could concern other children and parents. On the way out of school I asked Ethan about it. What did she say?

“She said I have to be respectful.”


“She said I can’t cross my arms.”

“Well, next time why don’t you just put your hands in your pockets and stand with the rest of the kids if you don’t want to say the pledge.”

“I can’t. She said I have to stand like this.” Ethan put his arms stiffly at his sides and stood, to my dismay, like a little soldier. Perhaps I was reading into things. I reassured him that it was okay, it is his choice. My five-year-old son is no soldier, too young to be a patriot.

Posted in Education, War | Tagged , , , | 46 Comments

“Feminism Didn’t Suit You”

While blogging to some background music I caught this lyric in a song by Jens Lekman, one of my new favorite artists:

oh her highness, I heard you say in some interview
that feminism was something that didn’t suit you
a lack of interest perhaps
or maybe you’re just stupid and inbred

but I still remember when I saw you as a goddess

Something about this seems pro-feminist, and something seems condescending. I’m too lazy to figure it out for myself. Interpretations? Download “Silvia” here.

For more of the pleasantly ironic Jens Lekman, see his Department of Forgotten Songs at Secretly Canadian.

Posted in Feminism, Music | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

The Glass Closet

What happens when a female basketball player, backed by the same franchise as Kobe Bryant, is accused of sexual assault? Well, she sure didn’t get the same treatment that Kobe did. Bryant got backed up; coaches insisted tat he play until proven guilty. Byears was removed immediately, and went from playing basketball to working at JC Penny.

I’m not arguing that sexual predators shouldn’t face the consequences, but there should be a single consistent policy for players across the board — a policy that applies to big NBA stars and little WNBA stars alike.

Posted in Sexual Assault | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

More “science” from the right

Attacking evolution with “intelligent design.” In related news, evangelical scientists refute gravity with theory of intelligent falling.

Posted in Education, Politics | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Empty Your Cache

and head over to Pandagon. I granted them a new design.

My only wish for future design projects is that Blogads have customizable stylesheets that do not suck, because Blogads, if anything, is U-G-L-Y and ain’t got no alibi.

Posted in Blogging | Tagged | 12 Comments


Tomorrow the school year starts for yours truly, the last semester of my undergrad years if I manage to eke out without too many mistakes or bluffs. I am so grateful to go up north and visit with friends this weekend before the dreaded semester begins.

My friend, coolest single mom alive, invited over a bunch of other single moms on Friday night. We sat around chatting about all sorts of family, work, and personal issues while the kids played and dumped an entire can of parmesean on their bowls of spaghetti.

Saturday we headed off for her boyfriend’s parents’ mansion (technical term since they only live there watching the mansion for a world-travelling playboy) and spent the next seven hours soaking in their massive swimming pool. I mean, the mansion had it’s own island. The entire house was filled to the brim with enormous fossils, hunks of jade that easily weigh 500 lbs., and beautiful, original artwork. For someone as unimpressed by massive displays of wealth as I am, you could, perhaps, color me impressed. The art will get me every time.

We also managed to go thrifting, hitting up numerous stores for cheap items. I picked up a few trashy nightgowns, some pool toys for the kids, and a 3/4 length jacket that looks like it belongs in a blaxploitation movie. Me and Pam Grier! Like sisters! I digress.

The most important thing was that Ethan and I had a blast. Chances are, this semester won’t afford the kind of time or money to enjoy ourselves like that for awhile. Part of my good time was the ability to commune with other single parents. I simply don’t know many here, and most of the single parents I know are either busy as hell or trying to bootstrap their ways into or out of drug addictions.

I need more true peers and I know it.

Posted in Vanity | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Commune

The Golf Gene

I feel like we should create a new category of posts called “John Tierney is an Idiot.” This week, his brilliant idea is men are biologically predisposed to like golf more than women. This explains why they watch it even though there are no explosions, collisions, or cheerleaders. Huh.

In related news, I will be watching golf all day tomorrow (Sunday) at Snoqualmie Ridge. This is because I am secretly a man.

Posted in Gender | Tagged , | 16 Comments

Stepping Out

I am not looking forward to the school year. Student teaching looms over my head. I’m nervous and antsy and reading all I can from Rethinking Schools to ground myself before I get in the classroom.

To get out of my head, I’m stepping out for the weekend, heading up to northwestern Indiana to visit friends with the little one before my official school year starts on Tuesday. We plan on doing little — perhaps some swimming, a lot of eating, absolutely no internet — and that’s exactly what I need.

Everyone have a good weekend.

Posted in Blogging, Vanity | Tagged | 6 Comments


Via Mac I have discovered an eBay-esque site called Etsy where you can buy handmade items from all over the globe. I have decided that I will quite possibly keel over and die if I do not get my hands on this. Or this. And especially this.

I really need to learn to sew.

Posted in Business, Domesticity | Tagged , | 7 Comments

In Which Ethan Tortures the Cats

This was taken shortly before Doug bit Ethan on the arm.

Shortly Before Doug Bit E's Arm

This was taken shortly before Pablo bit Ethan on the arm.

Gratuitous Torture of Pablo

Both cats approached us of their own free will. Big mistake.

Posted in General | Tagged | 14 Comments