reflections

artist: Marcus Gaab, found via Feature Shoot

Can one self-diagnose narcissism? And does that diagnosis have any validity?

I’m currently reading Women Without Class: Girls, Race, and Identity by Julie Bettie. It’s heady in its theory and grounded in its politics. Read Chapter 2 for some seriously sexy theoretical breakdowns on class, gender, and race.

Women Without Class influenced me to bring up class as a reason why my work environment doesn’t allow for diverse thoughts or voices at a team dinner. It was a loaded leading question, a set-up, and I bravely walked into the weeds. My opinion was met with an awkward silence which was to be expected, which is why I said it. When you ask questions, you should to be prepared for any answer if you assume people are telling you the truth.

Deflecting constructed status and coercing self-reflections sometimes feels like a narcissistic project of intense proportions. When does such navel gazing result in momentum?

landscapes

artist: david carol, found via thesilverliningblog

Navigating pathways in spaces that have friction, tension, or whatever you like to call situations where you don’t belong.

Forty hours of meetings, forty more to go.

A laser focus on numbers (percentages, significant gains, deviations) ignores the subject. I can’t figure out if my level of tolerance has gone up or down and the original meanings for both.

I thought it was a scientific fact that if you focus, you lose the bigger picture.

Intelligence: Fail

artist: roberto fabra, found via unurth

Who gets to determine the pace of progress?

After reading this article about passing as stupid results in prestigious job,I would use this as Exhibit A that patriarchy, does in fact, still exist. Despite the rhetoric that education is the bootstrap on the American dream boot, not all are welcome to pull themselves up.

Diane Ravitch’s recent post on stripping the joy from education and the buzzkill of measurement solidified a belief that there has always been class war in the school rooms of America.

If being clever means being diabolical in a culture that sucks all joy out of learning and continues to structure a patriarchal society, then I will never play dumb.

feeling presidential

I did go outside this weekend, I promise.  Today is the first day of summer in the Emerald City which means 10 o’clock sunshine and vitamin D euphoria.

7.2.10

7.3.10
7.4.10

Summer Wish List:

new-found freckles
out-of-body experiences
thought-provoking catalysts

Ulzzang!

artist: amandine alessanda, found via uppercasemagazine.tumblr

According to the New York Times, contacts that make your eyes look larger are both a dangerous fashion craze and a fad that’s already over. The article outlines an apparent global aesthetic for “huge eyes” and women’s willingness to stick medically unnecessary contacts in their eyes and believe it’s just like other make-up enhancements.

The article continues on with a hegemonic medical reminder that if a doctor doesn’t prescribe it, it could be dangerous. Because we all know that tummy tucks, hymen reconstructions, and other beauty regimes performed by licensed medical professionals aren’t dangerous and come with “grave concerns.”  A blip about “circle lenses are not just for Asian people” successfully  equalizes the multi-cultural phenomenon.

The male voices, the “experts,” are authoritatively paternalistic. The female voices, the consumers, are simply stating that looking good makes them feel good and happy. They get compliments from …. from who?

Can we assume these are all heterosexual women? Can we assume this hetero-normative gendered groupthink is because men told them they look desirable? The male gaze is seemingly lacking or absent so it’s difficult to conclude that answer.

What to make of these women who have a regressive belief that child-like is attractive? Why am I regressively assuming that they are wearing circle lenses for hidden sexual agendas? I’ve been reading Nobody Passes: Rejecting the Rules of Gender and Conformity and I can’t stop thinking about gender performance and how that informs sexuality. Sometimes the obvious is the hardest to see. Or when you’re not looking for the signs, you’re likely to miss them even as they are staring right at you.

Wearing circle lenses isn’t any different from other forms of beauty regimes women subject themselves to (bleach douches anyone?) and they certainly won’t be the last.  Exposing the dynamic nature of beauty fads and their intersections of race, consumer culture, sexuality, class, and gender norms is fascinating to me. Thank you Mattilda and contributing authors for keeping my eyes open and huge.

34 is not a prime number

we’re special in other ways, ways our mothers appreciate


Where you live matters and happiness is subjective. Some lives are harder lived than others.

You are in oil country young lady, let’s not forget what makes America run.

Demanding to be what you are despite all the pressures to be contained, buttoned, and subjectified; it is a battle I don’t know how to not fight.

Being the same was apparently never an option. Sometimes I can’t tell acting nice versus well disguised contempt.

A mother who doesn’t acknowledge your birthday isn’t surprising. She was 50% this year.