“Beauty makes me hopeless. I don’t care why anymore I just want to get away. When I look at the city of Paris I long to wrap my legs around it. When I watch you dancing there is a heartless immensity like a sailor in a dead-calm sea. Desires as round as peaches bloom in me all night, I no longer gather what falls.”—Anne Carson, On Hedonism (via mitochondria)
“Type Four: The Individualist
The introspective, romantic type. Fours are self-aware, sensitive, and reserved. They are emotionally honest, creative, and personal, but can also be moody and self-conscious. Withholding themselves from others due to feeling vulnerable and defective, they can also feel disdainful and exempt from ordinary ways of living. They typically have problems with melancholy, self-indulgence, and self-pity. At their Best: inspired and highly creative, they are able to renew themselves and transform their experiences.”—RHETI Sampler Test Results
“Lofton notes that Gospel means “good news.” According to the Gospel of Oprah, “You are your good news.” According to the New York Post, to write her book, Lofton reviewed over 1,560 show transcripts, 105 issues of O magazine, 17 issues of O at Home, 68 Book Club selections and 52 Spirit Newsletters.”—
ut in the United States we see girls all the time who have been trafficked — and our hearts harden. The problem is that these girls aren’t locked in cages. Rather, they’re often runaways out on the street wearing short skirts or busting out of low-cut tops, and many Americans perceive them not as trafficking victims but as miscreants who have chosen their way of life. So even when they’re 14 years old, we often arrest and prosecute them — even as the trafficker goes free.
“Sometimes I wonder if part of the eager reception of the print-media-is-dead trend juggernaut ouroboros, aside from the obvious, is how much certain people who like books like to be the only person they know who likes books, or the person who loves books the most. They have a persona and they’re sticking to it and they seem to like how much the news confirms that their persona more special by the day. I feel like I hear a lot in conversation, after a person learns I am a bookseller, a variation on the following: “Well, I personally just love books, especially, you know, the feel of the paper under my fingers, but nobody else seems to want those things. People don’t even read anymore. What can you do?” And then he shrugs, or even laughs, as though he is not talking about me losing my job, or as though it doesn’t bother him that he thinks that people don’t read.”—Sometimes I wonder if part of the eager reception…
“Joining the now-excommunicated women who have stepped forward to be ordained as Roman Catholic priests, the latest victim of the Church’s strong-armed resistance towards women’s equality is internationally beloved Father Roy Bourgeois. The Church hierarchy, in its treatment of Bourgeois, is showing that it considers any advocacy of women’s ordination to be much, much worse than priestly pedophilia.”—Easter Sunday Paradox: Father Roy Must Recant, But Pedophile Priests Go Free : Ms Magazine Blog
And what about the individual woman’s experience? A gradient exists among those who have been kidnapped and enslaved, and those who are engaging in sex work commercially. It’s easy for anti-trafficking efforts to devolve into a paradigm whereby a [privileged] [man] rides in on a white horse to “rescue” a [poor] [woman]. With this dynamic, it’s easy to steamroll over the individual rights and dignity, and complicated personal experience, of the individual.
Does the burn-out and depression so common among Harvard kids plague students at other elite institutions? Is our school not the only where people habitually overcommit to academic and extracurricular things but flake out on personal obligations? Is this is an inherent feature of colleges that emphasize achievement at all costs? Because if it is, in fact, systemic, then any steps taken to alleviate the problem (expanding mental health services, etc.) are only going to treat the symptoms. I hesitate to say that Harvard was built to create unhappy people, because it wasn’t. It’s built to create successful people.
Incarcerated women have the right to choose an abortion, just like every other woman in the U.S. In many facilities it is no problem for a woman to get an abortion in custody. The clinic at the correctional facility helps to make the appointment and facilitates transport. These are things that incarcerated women have limited ability to arrange themselves. In reality, it is often restricted by rules and the political beliefs of the people who are in charge at a local level. I have heard stories from many women at other facilities about women not being allowed to leave the facility for an abortion. Or women may be required to get a court order for being transported, which is not required for all medical transports. This can take time and sometimes the approval comes through too late, when abortion is no longer possible. And so some women are forced to carry undesired pregnancies to term. This is a kind of punishment which men don’t have to experience.
“I love you also means I love you more than anyone loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that no one loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that I love no one else, and never have loved anyone else, and never will love anyone else.”—Jonathan Safran Foer (via kari-shma)
“Your mother was Ann Richards, the legendary Democratic governor of Texas. Did she give you any good job advice?
She believed that women are always waiting for someone to give us permission. We think we don’t have the right clothes, don’t know the right people, don’t have the right degrees. She told me to never turn down a new opportunity because I might think I’m not qualified — the only regrets you have are for those things you didn’t do.”—Planned Parenthood President Interview - Cecile Richards Talks About Planned Parenthood - Marie Claire
“Kittenish cancer campaigns reinforce that message, simultaneously pathologizing and fetishizing women’s breasts at the expense of the bodies, hearts and minds attached to them. In that way, they actually suppress discussion of real cancer, rendering its sufferers — those of us whom all this is supposed to be for — invisible.”—
This was the summer it got so hot we put a fan in each window. At night we teamed up with the Palestinian students and stole tulips from Centennial Park. We used them as garnishes: we arranged bouquets on table ends and desktops.
We burned a wicker chair on the beach at night. We cooked steaks and pork chops on sticks over the fire. We went skinny-dipping. We huddled under the towels. We told stories about our fathers, about our first kiss, about that one uncle who was always drunk at family reunions.
We bought guitars and accordions and played them under blankets in the park. We tried to follow the Dutch dancers. We mowed lawns and stole flags from construction sites and kissed on the lips at the drinking fountain. We drank Boone’s Sangria and cried and cried and cried on the couch.
We sewed shirts for our friends, with decorative borders made from ribbons, with zippers, with billowing collars, with floral patterns. Nothing fit right. We went around shirtless, even the skinny ones, even the fat ones, even the ones with terrific arms and shoulders.
We took our time talking things out; we listened carefully, with a serious look. We prayed. We read Paul’s letter to the Corinthians. We tried very hard to understand this.
We went to a church that was in English and Spanish. We tried very hard to understand this.
We made omelets on the weekends. We whittled wood. We knitted hats. We smoked cigarettes. We gave each other gifts. Elaborate, handmade, complicated passive aggressive gifts.
We were afraid to be left behind. We were afraid to be loved. We were afraid this would come to an end, as all things do. We sat on the couch and cried and cried and cried.
"You construct stories about yourself and dish them out—one for you, one for you—" here he reënacted the process, showing me handing out lies as if they were apples. "Pretending. I believe the professional name for it might be denial."
this never gets old. also, it is my life, minus the lesbianism & the racial alienation. ohhhh summer 2007, summer 2010.
Caffeine evolved in plants as an anti-herbivore defense; the chemical was present to ward off insects that might eat the leaves. Apparently, caffeine can paralyze and kill insects just chowing down on things like the leaves of a tea plant.
“Are you O.K.?” she’d whisper. “Are you O.K.?” I’d whisper back. It was our code. There was no real answer, but asking the question was enough. And the answer, the repeated question, at least meant that we were alive.
in my memories, it is july 2009 and I am in iowa and there is a talent show in the basement of the dorm where we are not allowed to use a certain staircase. everyone is absurdly talented in this place, in ways many and multiple, and I feel small in my chair. L texts me: “hello. how is your diet coke?” and of course it is delicious, even though I paid $1.50 for it in the vending machine that fuels us, caffeinated, through the nights. M and H are singing this, an a capella duet, and it is beautiful, beautiful, and I will fly back home and listen to this song on my break at the girl scout camp where I work, sitting on a molding mattress on a rusty frame, and cry.
Since last week’s budget agreement already ensured that Planned Parenthood would keep the funding it gets for non-abortion health services and everyone expected that it would die in the Senate, they were essentially wasting legislative time to make a point.
That’s just the thing about recognizing our common humanity, our common burden. We’re suspended for a moment on this spinning blue pearl, here together and alive right now, conscious, though no one knows why. It is a question of caring. When one of us considers the experiences of another, all the failings and the achievements in someone else’s life, we are seeing from this common place, knowing that it’s all taking place in doubt and the absolute solitude and terror of being human, and knowing that it’s all temporary. All those who are unsure of themselves and suspect themselves of the worst falseness and wrong, bad things are to be not only pitied but loved, identified with and known. Wallace taught that, and suffered for it, and in a way he died of it, too.
so. I went to DC on Thursday blah blah blah, strength in numbers. we met with a freshwoman member of the House who juuuuust barely ousted a really awesome progressive congressman running for his 2nd term. the congresswoman was totally dismissive, smile & nod - not moved at all by stories of cancer prevented & lives saved for vulnerable women. I just want to say that I am FULL OF ADMIRING for the Planned Parenthood policy staff, both locally & nationally, who have been taking this crap and fighting back intelligently & tirelessly all week. I am going to bake them cookies again.
then I go into work for a 4:30-9:30. pre-work I have an awesome conversation with co-worker D, who is all kinds of awesome. we complain about politics and make fun of Republicans. I take a second to sign the latest Planned Parenthood petition & post it to my Facebook, as a dozen of my friends already have.
3 hours later I check my phone on break to find that my super-catholic friend’s friend has commented “I stand AGAINST planned parenthood.”
oh really? I had no idea.
so angry, and it’s killing me not to respond. so much ignorance - yes. I too was raised to believe that PP was an evil baby-killing machine. so much misspent energy - yes. so much could be done for already-born babies, rather than shaming & harassing the clinic patients while shaking rosary beads at them. so much adolescent, juvenile, “I am right and I am going to heaven” tongue-sticking-out - yes. But really, it makes me incredibly sad to see this totally privileged girl deny the need for the not-privileged [you know, “for as much as you have done this to the least of me” and all that] to get this care & take the moral higher ground.
so here is my imaginary response… since I’m thinking the non-engagement rule applies to FB too, and I’m not really quite sure what to say to her, and I don’t know if I really want to Start Something.
"K, you’re not in the country [study abroad… when so many of these women will probably never leave their hometown], so perhaps you’re not aware that the government is about to grind to a screeching halt because of the right’s refusal to drop this issue. you’re white, so you don’t know what it’s like to be a victim of institutional racism in a country that steps on you in any way it can. and you’re privileged, so perhaps you’re not aware what it’s like to be one of the millions of people in this country without health insurance, or the 6/10 patients in planned parenthood centers who have no other source of health insurance. you’re a perfect catholic, so you have never had sex, and when you do have sex it will be perfect heterosexual sex with your perfect std-free husband, who will also never have had sex before. you’re not a victim of rape or incest but if you were, and you got pregnant, as a result, it’d be god’s will. you’ve never found yourself pregnant while in an abusive relationship or mentally ill or financially insolvent. I am not asking you to suddenly support Planned Parenthood. I am just asking you to show a little mercy for these women and understand that THEY are why Planned Parenthood exists."
Female hysteria was a once-common medical diagnosis, made exclusively in women, which is today no longer recognized by modern medical authorities as a medical disorder. Women considered to be suffering from it exhibited a wide array of symptoms including faintness, nervousness, insomnia, fluid retention, heaviness in abdomen, muscle spasm, shortness of breath, irritability, loss of appetite for food or sex, and “a tendency to cause trouble”. (via sleevia)