Sunday, September 28, 2008

Non-Depressing Linky Goodness

BRAVE: What To Expect When You're Aborting. Want to know what it's like? Unapologetic, real, and an eye-opener. Go see if you haven't yet. And yes. Yes, this adorable illustration is exactly what it's like.

AWESOME: Bitch magazine has been saved! I'm a bitch, you're a bitch, etc. This is definitely good news.

QUEER PSA: The best "Vote No on 8" ad I've seen. I want them to air this on TV. It has been noted that it's kinda lacking in POC's, but other than that it's awesome.
h/t Alas, a blog

FEMINIST PSA: It's pretty good. Disappointing that we need one, but something to point your coworkers/friends to if they need something illustrative.
h/t The Feminist Underground

BEST RANT OF THE WEEK: Essin' Em lets loose on guys who get in our personal space. This is a big thing of mine, so it's nice to see it addressed! That kinda made my day, and I had to include it at the last minute.

BLOG ENDORSEMENT OF THE WEEK: Natalia Antonova, a blog that deals with feminism, Eastern European and Middle-Eastern politics, and occasionally, stuff. Her What About The Menz? post was pointed and nasty- which of course I love.

OLD-SCHOOL: The Politics of Housework, an essay written in 1970 that still applies today. Which is, um, pretty sad. If you haven't read this, it's highly recommended reading.

FEMME-TASTIC: I can't be all serious, can I? Go to and see the 15 Hottest Butches of all time.

So that's it for now. An interesting mix, I hope?
Feel free to leave links in the comments.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

A Brave Little Toaster

So when Ferret and I moved, we brought our respective fuzzies with us: my kitty Haven, and her ferret Loki. It was a hell of an adventure- and I think without kitty sedatives we'd have gone insane with the constant affronted, squeaking meows. (She woke up once during the drive before we could give her snooze-pills again. Once was enough.) Thank goddess ferrets, at least, don't make many sounds.
So we've been here a few weeks and we're staying downstairs. The kitty too has been staying downstairs because of the two large furry noisy scary things upstairs, also known as dogs. They can't come down the stairs, and the one time early on that she ventured up, they wanted to play. Apparently it was traumatic. She's also kind of a diva, so I don't put it past her to exaggerate the whole thing's drama factor. Honestly, it was just a little drool. But she's insistent that they're barbarians.
 So, stalemate.

But now the kitty, who's been lurking in the basement like, well, Basement Cat, is finally starting to unwind. She'll come up the stairs now, and sit near the top, plaintively calling for attention. She'll dash to the bottom as soon as I head down, of course, because she hopes to play the "sit on the bed and be petted" game. She'll come to the stairs when I call, because she knows she'll get a treat if she comes up a few steps. I've been hoping to gradually coax her upward.

But we had a triumphal moment when she came up the stairs, out the door, and wandered cautiously around the kitchen, sniffing. Haven made it out of the stairwell!
...And then she heard a noise and zoomed downstairs again.

Oh well, she'll learn.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

An Everyday Frustration

This is my response to the semi-joking statement that was made to me the other night: Not all feminists "hate men".  The conversation involved my possibly applying for a job wherein I would work with groups of young girls (incredible in itself, as I don't like kids that much). The other speaker said jokingly, "But you know you can't be teaching 'em that man-hating stuff."
At the time all I could do was splutter something about how I don't hate men, dammit! 

And I know she was joking, and I know that if I'd had the prescence of mind to explain how feminism works, she'd dismiss it. But it's fucking disheartening, because a lot of the time the things people say in jest are what they really believe. Too many people- too many women believe that "feminists just don't like men" or something similar. Too many people I know. 

Too many people who roll their eyes at the mere word, too many people who use terms like "ugly" and "lesbian" and "bra-burning" whenever the subject's brought up.

Too many women who don't understand what feminism has done for them, and that those rights aren't irrevocable, aren't set in stone, and aren't complete. We aren't past feminism- there's still a need, dear Hecate there's still such a fucking need. 

How can any woman not understand this? This is less and more than basic history, empathy, sociology. It should be in our blood, our bones- this weight of injustice, the need to keep fighting until it's lifted. Why has this not been passed on, from mother to daughter, from sister to friend, to every woman? Why shouldn't I be teaching girls this message? It's not about hate, but justice, fairness, and the need to end the inequality that's been the norm for generations.

Even though I try like hell not to speak for all feminists, let me say this (and hope it's true for most of us) to all non-fems, especially men, out there : We do not hate any man that doesn't hate us. We don't hate you because you're men. We hate the men that hate us, but we have hope that it's not all of you. I know what you think about feminists, but try to think a little differently, please. 

Seriously. This is stuff you should know.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Happy Bi Pride Day!

I almost missed it! ...but I'm happy I didn't. As a bisexual, I catch a lot of shit from both gays and straights because, well, all sorts of things. But I love being bi, and I'm happy with who I am. If you're bi, I hope you are too.
So those of you who consider yourselves attracted to both men and women, either simultaneously or one-at-a-time, be proud today!
I don't know if there's a pansexual pride day, but if there isn't, I invite pansexuals to join in with us today-inclusiveness for all! 

Happy Bisexual Pride Day, y'all!

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Damn You, Haloscan!

I don't know why, but my header's been gone for the last week. So I tried to fix it by reinstalling my Haloscan template, because somehow, it's Haloscan's fault. I don't know enough html to fix it, and now Blogger is telling me it can't process my request when I try and put the new template in. So, Haloscan means comments get saved and trackbacks are possible, but no header on my freakin' blog. 'Try and re-install everything' equals a big ol' fuck-you from the Internet.
Damn it, damn it, damn it! 

So try and be patient, and know that until further notice, if you comment, it won't be saved. Sorry. I'm always happy to get comments, though, and if you want I'll try and save them and copy-paste them into Haloscan once I get this figured out. 
I'd also welcome advice from anyone who knows more about this than I do... and I don't know a whole lot.

UPDATE: Yay! I fixed it! See? ^ We now have both comments and a header! Oooooo.
...Okay, I had some help. I may not agree with my almost-dad-in-law's politics, but the man stepped in and figured out the code glitch, so he definitely earns a vote of thanks from me. Thaaaaaanks!
Now to go tinker some more. 
(New post coming soon. Any requests?)

Friday, September 19, 2008


A really good quote from an otherwise annoying and offensive post over at HuffPo:

"Stop voting for people you want to have a beer with. Stop voting for folksy. Stop voting for people who remind you of your neighbor. Stop voting for the ideologically intransigent, the staggeringly ignorant, and the blazingly incompetent.

Vote for someone smarter than you. Vote for someone who inspires you. Vote for someone who has not only traveled the world but who has also shown a deep understanding and compassion for it. The stakes are real and they’re terrifyingly high. This election matters. It matters. It really matters. Let me say that one more time. This. Really. Matters."

Sweet Aradia,
yes. It matters. No matter how hard these camapigners try, they aren't "just one of the people". For one, that's an insult to the diversity of the American populace. We aren't all white, or hockey moms, or beer drinkers, [ad nauseum], yeah?

For another thing, it's an insult to our intelligence. No matter where you came from, if you're running for office then the person you are now is educated, has more than just personal power, is probably pretty damn wealthy, is (presumably) well-spoken, and has advantages that many of us don't. 

We know that, for fuck's sake. And you know what? It doesn't matter! Hell, I want the person with thier finger on the button to have as many advantages, as much education, as much experience as freakin' necessary.

I don't want another Prez whose stupid comments are so famous they make calendars of 'em. I don't want a frat boy, I don't want someone to have a beer with or 'mate with' or watch my kids; it's not my priority if you're running a country.
I don't want another rich old white dude. Oh, and I don't want a 'military man' because frankly, leading an entire country is a nuanced job unless you're under constant martial law (and I'd like us not to be, thanks). The military is usually about simple solutions to all problems (IE, blow shit up). I don't want a leader who's used to finding simple answers, especially when they usually involve more violence.

I want diplomacy, I want intellectualism,
I want someone who, even if he or she was born in some backwards town/state/decade, doesn't make it a priority to act like they never left it.
It's great to remember where you came from, to not become such an elitist that you have no empathy for those who're not so priveleged. But you should only be this obsessed with "staying true to your roots" if the song you're singing is 'Jenny From the Block'. It's a different story if your anthem is 'Hail to the Chief".

Hat tip to Smart Like Me.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Hey, Femme Girls. Over Here!

I found something that makes me happy. Over at the Femme's Guide to Everything, there's this fabulous post by Essin' Em, who I love, about butch/femme symbolism and how butches used to tattoo blue stars on their wrists back in the day, as a secret sign of queer butch-ness. 
Welllll, it was pointed out that femmes don't really have a sign that we can point to as "ours". Em suggested the spiral, for the reasons she lists:
"’s a basic concept, that can be changed and altered to fit the personality of each Femme getting it tattooed.  It’s pretty (I *am* a Femme!). It’s a simple concept, but also slightly complicated (more than a circle, or a triangle, or _____). Just like Femmes; we’re a simple idea, but with a lot more depth and complicatedness behind our hottness.

I'm totally behind this. I think it's awesome that the Femmes could have a sign of our own, especially since so many of us get mistaken for straight girls. It's a way to communicate, to proclaim, to be noticed. And a spiral is a very cool symbol, linked to all kinds of religions and cultures; I believe some even use it as a sign of Goddess. 

Anyway, I'm posting this because I'd like to get more femmes behind this symbol. I'd like it to become known in the LGBTQ community, a symbol as recognized as a pink triangle or a rainbow flag. If I get this tattooed on my so-far ink-free body, I want people to know what it means, know what I am. I'm proud of it, and I want it known.

So pass this around, if it takes your fancy. This is a way to help end femme invisibility, if you're into that. Let's make it- and us- recognized.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Sarah Palin and some dude

Here at Things That Piss Me Off dot com, we have: Palin, and the opinions of a dude who thinks she's great. That I have to live with. 
I have nothing to say about her that hasn't already been said, by Melissa, by Cara, by Holly and others, I'm sure.
I have to defend her against sexism and misogyny, because that's how feminism works. Just tell me I don't have to like it.
I find her politics and her policies reprehensible. I find it wildly annoying that the Repubs are lauding her as a "new kind of feminist" when she isn't, but damn ain't she cute! She's palatable to men who are scared of powerful women. And if she and McSame win, I'm goin' to Canada. 

I got into an almost-fight with my almost-dad-in-law because... well, because he's conservative and I'm a liberal. He likes Palin, and any feminist backlash against her he dismisses (wait for it) because "she's attractive and those ugly liberal feminists are jealous". Are you fucking kidding me? I can't even unravel all the sexism in that comment. When I explained that No, She Isn't A Feminist, he said something about how she's just not a liberal feminist and that's why I don't like her. Um, in all seriousness, is it possible for one to be a conservative feminist? Isn't that a little... difficult?
He thinks she does no wrong, and I don't know if it's just cause "she's so attractive" and therefore nonthreatening, or not. He's made approving comments about her looks before, completely missing the sexism of course. Sigh. 
He doesn't care about polar bears, doesn't believe she wants to teach creationism, doesn't believe she's strongly affiliated with the church she goes to (or thinks it doesn't matter, I'm not sure which). He doesn't believe the censorship allegations (no, there's no list, but yes, she inquired about removing 'certain books' from the library, and it does look like she tried to have the librarian fired), and her choice position doesn't seem to mean much to him. I didn't even attempt to mention this, because I'm not sure he'd see a problem with it.
 He also, by the way, believes the abortion rates aren't lower because abortion is "a 7-billion-dollar industry". I don't even know how to begin to refute that. But you know what? Should I have to? Should I even have to argue my position with someone for whom it's an academic discussion? 
 I wish I could post a big billboard on the highway: "IF YOU DON'T HAVE A UTERUS, YOU DON'T GET AN OPINION"
I've decided to just refuse to argue with the dude. He's an ok guy, but I have NO desire to talk politics with someone who's totally opposite me on a lot of issues, and less desire to talk them with someone who shouts a lot. It's annoying, and so is his privelege.
I'm done for now.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Because I Can

I will now provide you with a link to one of the weirdest blogs on my blog list, "Desperately Seeking...Something?" It has penises. (Penii?) It has commentary ON said penises. It's where I go when I've had a bad day, and it's funny as hell. 
The reason I'm sharing it with you today?
Because if you scroll down to the last picture,  there's the comment "...Don't you understand guys? You think you are offering us some hot lovin' and ALL we can see is the shit you are going to expect us to pick up." 
I read it, and then had to clean tea off the monitor. Maybe I'm just easily amused.
Of course, I'm thinking that anyone who needed this advice probably wouldn't be linking here. But you could email it to some unfortunate dude, if you know any like this. 
Anyway, if you like making fun of this kind of thing, or just, you know, laughing at it... go see. 
It's my Blog Endorsement of the Week. 

(You know, if you guys want some of this stuff to be regular features, as opposed to me just pretending it's a regular feature, say so. I might actually make an effort. Just sayin'.)

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Femme By Default

So as I'm wandering the blogosphere, avoiding the job search, I come across this post by Sinclair and then SublimeFemme's response to it. Both, at the end, ask about us, as femmes. What are our femme markers, and along the same lines, how do we define them? Do we define them in relation to butch? How do we define femme for ourselves, and in what ways do our bodies or sexuality shape that femme-ness?

All very good questions, to be sure. And then I had a moment wherein I realized: I have no fucking clue. I have no fucking clue and it's driving me up the wall. How do I define my femme self? What about me makes me femme? It should be an easy question to answer, because I'm like Princess Psychoanalystica, especially when it comes to the workings of my own twisted brain. Yes, I do find myself that fascinating and I know it's narcissistic, thanks very much.

Every time I try to think about it, I shy away. I try to treat it like my partner treats butch: "This is what I am. If people don't like it they can fuck off. That's all there is to it." (Yes, that's a direct quote. I love my Ferret.) The thing is, that's how she handles almost everything; introspective she's not, as a rule. And I can't work that way. I have to think about everything, take it down to its component parts, analyze it, toss out a couple extra springs, and then reassemble it all before I'm satisfied. When I have an opinion, make a major decision, or claim a new 'label' for myself, this is what I do. 

But I didn't do that when I claimed 'femme'. I just kind of thought, "Okay, this is my partner, who's undeniably butch. I'm not a butch, or not as much as she, and I seem to have all the femme markers (which at that point to me were: long hair, acknowledgement of boobs, girly undies, and the willingness to wear a skirt sometimes). Femme it is!" I applied Sinclair's Dress-Up Test to the dynamic and called it good. Keep in mind, this was several years ago. I'd just been introduced to the idea of butch/femme. 
Shortly after this, Ferret and I split up, to go our seperate ways. We would not be lovers for a good four years. For two of those years, we wouldn't even speak to each other. Obviously, we reconciled our differences and now you couldn't part the two of us without a really big crowbar. Uh, metaphorically.

So now we've been together for some time. I've not been in any butch/femme relationships in that time. In fact, I tended to be slightly 'butch-er' when I was with another woman, and I wasn't all "high heels and low cleavage" with a guy. I've become "femme-by-default", and I don't know 
just what i consider my markers to be, or how I define myself as femme, other than in relation to my very butch Ferret.

Which disturbs me. I want to be femme on my own, not just because I'm with someone who needs me to be, so we balance out. It doesn't bother me to be the femme, I don't think. I just have to know I have my own reasons for doing it. So now I have to figure out what they are.
I need to identify my femme-ness and work out my issues with being one of them (you? us?).
Sadly, this post feels like "exploring my angst", and not so much about "coming to productive conclusions". Oh well, maybe that'll come later.

PS: I'm working on a post about women and symbolism. Check it out when it goes up (sometime soon!); it'll either be really cool and possibly a little original, or it'll be some half-baked random crap! It's a mystery!

Friday, September 5, 2008

Link Roundup

Yes, I'm doing that thing known as a link-cluster, a big ol' orgy of links.
... Ok, so it's not a metric ton of new hyperlink-y goodness, but I'm working on it. Check em out anyway.

IMPORTANT: Cara writes about Amy Goodman's arrest and why you should care. A lot. So, by the way, do a lot of other folks. Does anyone else feel like it's an Orwellian morning? In 1984?

SCARY: This is a 'joke site' putting girls up for sale- as long as you marry 'em! has confirmed that it's not real, but there are people out there who'd probably try to use it, and quite a few of 'em are in the States. Also, the reminder of 'foreign brides' and sex-trafficked women ruined my breakfast cinnamon roll.

QUEER: The lovely SublimeFemme has a post responding to an Annoyed Lesbian who's bemoaning the abundance of Butch/Femme types in NYC. Oh, the horror!

USEFUL: How not to be "That Guy", by synechdochic. I need to print this and throw copies of the roof of a high building.

NEW AND SPIFFY: I just found another feminist blog that seems to be pretty neat. Lots of political stuff, of course. What did we do before this election?

MORE QUEER: Sinclair's new post on femme identity made me think about how I identify. What makes me a femme? ...still thinking on that one.

ON ROE: A doctor's story of the days pre-Roe v. Wade, which brings the point home again that making abortion illegal won't stop it from being performed. It will do nothing but cause more death and pain. I thought it was a necessary and important thing to keep in mind.

Okay kids, that's my first try at a blogaround/ link roundup of random stuff. Feel free to leave your links in comments!

A Congressman's Response (redux)

NOW! with more hope and less confusion! (emphasis still mine)

Dear Ms. [Lemur],

Thank you for contacting my office concerning the proposed new Health and Human Services regulations regarding birth control. I appreciate hearing from you on this important issue and I welcome the opportunity to respond.

As you may know, this regulation would establish a new definition of abortion. There is a risk that this new definition could confuse certain contraception, including birth control, with abortion. It is possible under these new regulations that women may be discouraged or blocked from receiving birth control from federally funded health care entities.

I firmly believe that a woman's personal decisions about her body and her health are her own to make. Access to prescribed contraception is a legal right in the United States and important in preventing unintended pregnancies, family planning, and treating medical conditions such as endometriosis and irregular cycles. Please be assured that I will continue the fight for measures that protect women's health.

Again, thank you for taking the time to contact my office. I sincerely appreciate your input and hope that you will contact me in the future if I can be of further assistance. Additionally, I hope you'll find my website ( a useful resource for keeping up with events in Washington and the 22nd District of Florida.


Ron Klein
Member of Congress

Okay folks, having RE-read this letter, I realize I've been a bad blogger and did not fact check. Bad Lemur, no cookie. I assumed Congressman Klein was behind the proposal in the first place, because I wrote to him objecting to it. Nope, not true. I tried to see who was behind it and couldn't find a particular person. (Maybe HHS is just one big multibrained entity.) Anyway, not Klein. He got my letter because he's (was) my particular Congressman, is all. Actually, it turns out he's not a bad guy, for a politician anyway.

So yeah, this letter actually makes a lot more sense now. My apologies to Ron Klein, and anyone having the misfortune to read this post.
I will be accepting thumps upside the head, and will be more careful in the future.
Sorry, guys!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Teh Move, Teh Trauma

I moved. A thousand miles, 2 days, 1 car, 2 kitty sedatives, and 1 trailer unloading later, we are here. Other than the fact that my bed won't fit through the downstairs doorway, meaning we have to sleep on the futon, everything's going about like I thought. Fortunately we're not planning to stay here long.

...I hate when things are disorganized. Bah.
I need a drink.
That is all.