What am I doing with a blog?

Awww…heck. I dunno.

posts looking like ass these days November 29, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — himbly @ 1:19 am

Sorry about my posts and their bad formatting these days.  I’m trying to get used to the new stuff that wordpress threw at me.

 

What marketing team thought this one up?

Filed under: feminism — himbly @ 1:15 am

Behold.  The Lusty Linda pen holder:   Lusty Linda pen holderLusty Linda pen holder 2

Um, so…yeah.  I found this on Shakesville (via Pandagon) in a discussion of misogynistic toys/gags.  I typically ignore a lot of these things assuming only those who don’t get laid or are insecure about their sexual abilities think they’re worth buying, but this one.  Well, this one is special.  You’ll see why.    Lusty Linda, firstly…a personal thing…has a huge hole where flesh ought to be.  I get irritated by details like this.  I mean, if you’re going to be all super lame and shit, at least get the details right.  The vagina is further south.   

 

 

 

 

Now, another added feature of Lusty Linda is that she speaks.  Yes indeed.    

 

Let Lusty Linda the pen holder sun-bath on your desk.  When you stick in a pen, she will moan, groan or say any of 10 different things. A switch on the bottom lets you set Linda’s mood, from good or bad. (too bad all women did not have such a switch).Lusty Linda The Pen Holder Says 10 Different Things including:

  • ooow (ouch)!
  • Get out you, you dirty old man!
  • What are you looking at?
  • Help! Help!
  • Oh ooh (excited)

 Did you get that?  She has a switch where you can set her mood to her reaction to having your pen shoved inside her.  You can set her to a good mood, in which case she will moan and purr happily…or a bad mood, in which case she will essentially respond to your harassment or request that you do not rape her.    So many questions right now…so many flooding through my head.  Such as, if you are the type of a-hole who puts this toy on your desk, how much more of an a-hole do you have to be to switch it to ‘bad mood’ so you can hear her yell (comically, I suppose) for help? Okay, so that’s Lusty Linda…but she is only one of a bad lot. Arguably the worst, actually, but only one.  No!  You can anally rape a guy with your pen, too. 

Mr. Butt Face Hilarious!  Now, honestly…I enjoy a good Deliverance joke as much as the next gal, but would one be proud to have this on his/her desk?     

 

You can go to the site here and hear what Mr. BF says when you stick a pen into him.  Sadly, Mr. BF does not a happy switch.  He is always sad and never enjoys his forced anal pen. 

     So, what have we learned today, children?  That women sometimes like, and other times don’t like things in their vagina but it doesn’t matter…both are funny.  Also, we learned that men never like anything in their butt, but that also doesn’t matter.   

 

remember this? November 26, 2007

Filed under: youtube — himbly @ 9:57 pm

Wtf?  This is hilarious:  

 

a little somethin’ for the ladies…

Filed under: youtube — himbly @ 5:26 pm

 

“Great Scott”, I mean “Knockers” November 24, 2007

Filed under: feminism,Uncategorized — himbly @ 6:18 pm

Okay.  This.   

It’s been confusing a lot of women lately. Dang, I can’t get it to embed here. Click on the link for the Heidi Klum Victoria’s Secret ad with her “great knockers”.   Anyway, It’s been confusing me lately, for certain.  And lilithattack, too.    

 So, last night I was out with lilith and gerbils and she and I got to talking.   We talked about this ad and why, even though we both wanted to like it for some reason, we just couldn’t.  I’ll outline the reasons here for me, and although lilith and my arguments both for and against were similar, I am not going to presume to speak for her.  Go to her blog…she writes better than me for one thing.  

 1- arguments for Heidi Klum pretending her boobs are machine guns

I wanted to like this ad. I really did want to.  I was very torn watching it.  I sat like a dog watching a cat dancing with a top hat on TV…ie. confused and uncomfortable.  And I think I figured it out.  I wanted to like that ad because it took away some of the mystique that surrounds the female body.  The female body has been taken to be such a damn serious thing…sacred…womb bearing…that the humour in it has gone away.  Our bodies, if you own one you know this, are hilarious and weird.  Nooks, crannies, dampness, dryness, lumps, bumps, humps…my humps, my lovely lady lumps.  Check it out:  we ought to rejoice in the fact that we can squeeze our boobs and make honking sounds.  Sarah Silverman, whom I love, devoted an entire episode of her brilliant show (it is too brilliant)  to queefing.  These things are important so that men can’t be the only ones that fart.

 2- argument against Heidi Klum yelling about her great knockers 

 Well..she does have great knockers.  Actually, in that commercial, they are so big they kinda freak me out.  Basically, I think I like the concept of that ad but Heidi Klum is all wrong for the role.  And not because she’s blonde, skinny, rich, famous, and gorgeous.  It’s because…and I mean no real offense to her…she just doesn’t pull it off for me.  She seems, how do I put this…she seems to have that “hot girl” sense of humour, which is less funny and more ‘hey, that hot chick is doing weird shit’.  Don’t pretend you didn’t know these girls in high school or your undergrad.  Or now, even.  I vote for the aforementioned Sarah Silverman.  Or Naomi Campbell because that chick has got issues.  Or what about less model-y women?  Why not make a series of women who love their knockers?  How weird would Dita Von Tease be?

 Now that I’ve said it, I’m wondering if that’s why the commercial is so heavily edited.  Because they filmed HK for an hour and came up with 30 seconds of ‘okay-good-enough-lets-wrap-up’ stuff? 

(ugh.  Wordpress changed shit and now I’m a bit confused.  Sorry if this post looks like ass.)

 

 

Truly amazing November 23, 2007

Filed under: Uncategorized — himbly @ 8:38 am

So, I’ve not been around too much lately due to my mad catch-up skillz.  I’m in the midst of 3 experiments this week which leaves me many days of full on ‘sperimentin’ and evenings for little more than a/ working or b/ passing out.  It’s the end of the semester, you see, and I have papers to write. By way of keeping people coming here, I’m offering this vid.  It is absolutely incredible and if your jaw doesn’t drop at some point, then you’re the most hardened mofo I’ve ever come across.  Enjoy!    

 

holy crap holy crap holy crap holy crap November 15, 2007

Filed under: dorky,school — himbly @ 11:36 pm

It’s already mid-November

Holycrapholycrapholycrapholycrap…

I has teh coldsweatz

 

my amazing body: part whatever

Filed under: misc — himbly @ 1:51 am

I can’t find my previous posts on this topic and, frankly, it’s probably something you don’t want to read about so go run and get yourself some ice cream.

So…last year (once I find ’em, I’ll link ’em) I had about 4 really weird allergy attacks. They started off with what I will only describe as “two exits, no waiting” and progressed (while *ahem* preoccupied with other matters in the lavatory) into swollen, itchy eyes, slight restriction in breathing, but nothing alarming, and sneezing like I worked at a pepper factory. Oh…and hives…hives all over my body.

I get warm thinking of those days gone by.

Anyway…so this led me to stop eating at the student center on campus. 4 attacks, 4 different establishments = danger zone.

I’ve been ‘attack free’ since. Until last night.

I woke up feeling sick and, about an hour after waking up, noticed I was breaking out in hives and I started sneezing. A far far far more mild reaction than those in the past, but still…and this time I had eaten only food that I made all day.

Wait..I’m getting ahead of myself. All these attacks, unlike usual allergy attacks that have been instant, are delayed a few hours. It seems to me that it has to hit a certain part of my digestive system before it gains the power and the will to eff me up. I attribute all of these previous attacks to some sort of brush with nuts or nut oil (even though the vendors said ‘no’, there was ‘yes’ in their eyes).

Last night I felt like having a dinner of dip. Whatever, I’m single and an adult and if I want a dinner of dip, I’ll effing have a dinner of dip.

I made baba ghanoush (HA…I just about typed baby ghanoush) and feta/roast pepper dip. Mmmmm…munch munch munch.

there is/was absolutely nothing in either of those dips that I’ve not eaten a kagillion times before, so when I got the usual hives/sneezies while dealing with other pressing matters, I was surprised. Wtf?

It dawned on me today that when I bought the eggplant, they were located directly under a pile of chestnuts. Can it be?? Could I have taken a chestnut-fondled-then-transfered-by-christ-knows-how-many-hands eggplant home, cooked it and eaten enough baba ghanoush to make myself react?? Is it possible??

I’m completely stumped.

 

trying to spread the word November 14, 2007

Filed under: misc — himbly @ 11:34 pm

Via Pharyngula and from The Intersection:

We have a Category 4 cyclone barreling down on what is possibly the most vulnerable place in the world for such a storm. So I just visited CNN.com. No mention of it whatsoever on the front page. Stunning–but at the same time, not unexpected, no?

Because Bangladesh is one of the low-laying regions most at risk from sea level rise, as a marine biologist I’m all too familiar with how vulnerable it is to flooding and storm surges. It’s also one of the most densely populated countries and – as Chris has expressed – I fear this storm may be a worst case scenario. It’s my sincere hope that we’re mistaken.

I’ve found very little about it myself, so I’m trying to help out through my tiny corner of the blogosphere. Please check these articles I’ve linked.

 

Himbly via Flickr November 12, 2007

Filed under: dorky,misc — himbly @ 1:18 pm

H I M B L Y

Flickr speller

 

yeah, ‘cept I really am… November 8, 2007

Filed under: school — himbly @ 11:16 pm

…an imposter.

On a recent evening, Columbia University held a well-attended workshop for young academics who feel like frauds.

Columbia, huh? Yeah…that’s where real students go. I wouldn’t even attempt to go to their fraud seminar for fear of getting the bum’s rush.

These were duly vetted, highly successful scholars who nonetheless live in creeping fear of being found out. Exposed. Sent packing.

“It’s like we have this trick scale,” says Valerie Young, a traveling expert on the syndrome who gave the workshop at Columbia. Here’s how that scale works: Self-doubt and negative feedback weigh heavily on the mind, but praise barely registers. You attribute your failures to a stable, inner core of ineptness. Meanwhile, you discount your successes as accidental or, worse, as just so many confidence jobs. Every positive is a false positive.

By many accounts, academics — graduate students, junior professors, and even some full professors — relate to this only a little less than they relate to eye strain.

It’s amazing how common feeling like a fraud is. The article goes on to say that roughly 70% of, well, everyone (men and women) have felt as though they were imposters at one point of their careers. Through personal experience, I suppose almost all the grad students I know have mentioned feeling inferior at some point or another, and the truth is that I’ve not paid that much attention to these comments because of my admiration for their work…and my inferiority to them. Heh.

According to Ms. Matthews, a person with impostor syndrome typically experiences a cycle of distress when faced with a new task: self-doubt, followed by perfectionism, then — sometimes but not always — procrastination.

But if it weren’t for my procrastination cycle, I wouldn’t post on my blog at all!

It is 10:15pm on the eve of my 35th birthday and I’m signing off. Himbly, queen of all that she fakes her way through.

 

revisit November 4, 2007

Filed under: feminism — himbly @ 3:41 pm

at the end of this post: The Vajayjay Monologues I commented on something that Michael Smerconish wrote in his article.

I want to comment more on that. I think it’s a problem:

Years ago (when I was much younger than I am today), I had lunch in a men’s club (of course), where I made the acquaintance of an older, distinguished gent. We were randomly seated next to one another. I’d bet two generations separated me from my dining companion.

As the hour progressed and we warmed to one another, I asked him what he did for a living. With a sagelike glint in his eye, he said to me: “Son, I spend my daytime doing what you’ll spend your lifetime trying to accomplish.”

You probably figured out that he was an OB/GYN. Some things don’t get lost in translation.

My reading of the Smerconish article suggested that this event was considered a friendly and civilized joke between two healthy men sat down in a men’s club smoking cigars.

I find it disturbing.

What I don’t find particularly disturbing is that some older male OB/GYN made that comment. It was clearly a joke, and whether he sexualizes his work is really nothing you can actually read into it. The joke was made between two people discussing stuff and, in that context, I don’t think you can actually take anything seriously.

No. What I find disturbing is Smerconish deciding that it was a perfectly charming thing to write in his article defending the use vajayjay as a euphamism for vagina. That I, as a reader and a woman who knows nothing of Smerconish, this particular OB/GYN nor the men’s club they were at, would be comforted by the love of this doctor for his work. He loves vaginas. See? Men love vaginas. Mean ol’ feminists.

And I wonder, after reading the whole article, if Smerconish actually knows any women.

I’m glad that there are men who love vaginas. I’m glad to be acquainted with some of those men. Ummm…I wouldn’t want my OB/GYN to love vaginas in the same way when in his office. This isn’t why I have a female OB/GYN (in fact, a female GP). I’ve not been afraid of anyone sexualizing a Pap smear, so I’d rather not think that someone out there is.

I think that Smerconish and Christopher Hitchens (after reading his article on women and humour) maybe ought to go out and actually talk to the women they may or may not know. There seems to be an entire breed of men who have no clue.

 

snippet of a conversation

Filed under: misc — himbly @ 3:21 pm

…at a potluck party with academics

(note: the people I am quoting here…well, I actually like them. Just this is not the first time I’ve been through this particular conversation.)

me: oh…those look good (refering to chocolate brownies). Er…do they have nuts in them?

academic 1: no

me: (suspicious) what’s in them?

academic 1: peanut butter

me: uh…you mean crushed nuts?

academic 1: they’re not nuts, they’re legumes.

me: okay, so what I am actually asking is ‘will I be allergic to them?’

academic 1: I have no idea what you’re allergic to.

This is just one example of an irritating conversation when one has a nut allergy. I know that peanuts are legumes. I also know plenty of people who, being allergic to nuts/peanuts, don’t give a shit that they’re called legumes…they avoid them just the same. It is not uncommon to be allergic to both. I think it’s clear when asking ‘does the ____ have nuts in it’ that I’m not asking for a trivia fact or to start a conversation on seeds/nuts/legumes. So, instead of showing off your knowledge of food classifications, just take the wider spectrum of what has been asked and answer the question. Use your pragmatic semantic knowledge.

part 2:

me: yes, I know that peanuts are legumes, but I’m fairly sure I’m allergic to them as well as some nuts.

academic 2: but how do you know unless you’ve tried them? You don’t actually know.

Does academic 2 know what it’s like to suffer through an allergic reaction? I’m guessing no, because it really really sucks. And I’m not the type of person-with-a-nut-allergy that actually dies. Or goes to the hospital. And it still really really really sucks. So, no…I guess I’ve not sat down in front of a range of nuts (including the legume peanut) and recorded my reaction once I’ve eaten one at a time. It is just easier for me to avoid all nuts. I’ve never eaten them (on purpose)…and I probably will never eat them (on purpose). Leave me alone..it’s my choice. Just tell me, when I ask you, if there’s nuts or peanuts in an item of food that I’m hovering over my face.

Oh, and for the record, I am almost certain I’ve had a reaction to peanut oil.

 

The Vajayjay Monologues

Filed under: feminism,linguistics — himbly @ 12:30 pm

I’ve been reading a bit about the reaction to the new euphamism for vagina “vajayjay”. Specifically, lillithattack, Pandagon (this one, too), and the Pandagon refered Michael Smerconish and Stephanie Rosenbloom.

Now, I’m not one of those types of linguistics that decide on a favourite vowel, brake for portmanteau morphemes and hover over all sorts of dictionaries, but I am a linguist and a feminist so I have had an interest in this discussion.

(eek…this was meant to be a fairly short post, but upon rereading those articles, I found many more things to address. Anyway…here goes.)

On the use of the euphamism Vajayjay. My short answer: why not? My long answer: I understand why not, but including a few factors, I still say ‘why not’?

Via the NY Times:

It began on Feb. 12, 2006, when viewers of the ABC series “Grey’s Anatomy” heard the character Miranda Bailey, a pregnant doctor who had gone into labor, admonish a male intern, “Stop looking at my vajayjay.”

The line sprang from an executive producer’s need to mollify standards and practices executives who wanted the script to include fewer mentions of the word vagina.

That’s the problem. Right there. It stemmed from the network not allowing a character from a popular medical drama use the medical term: vagina. Wtf?

Since, it caught on like wildfire. Oprah, apparently, loves the word and uses it on her show. More NY Times:

Vajayjay found its way into electronic dictionaries like Urban Dictionary, Word Spy and Merriam-Webster’s Open Dictionary. It was uttered on the television series “30 Rock.” It was used on the Web site of “The Tyra Banks Show.” Jimmy Kimmel said it in a monologue. It has appeared in the Web publications Salon and the Huffington Post and on the blog Wonkette.

And feminists, I think correctly, got nervous.

Feminists are not nervous, unlike Michael Smerconish seems to think, because they feel as though the vagina should be seen as a no-fun-zone for men.

Michael Smerconish:
No matter what you call it, many feminists don’t want guys attracted to it. If it were up to them, there’d be an image at www.dictionary.com with a sign next to “vagina” reading “No men allowed.”

Quite the opposite! Good lord…very very much the opposite. In fact, many feminists, quite rightly, riducule those men who don’t ‘go down’. And this is the problem…that our bodies are somehow seen as either too ‘temple-like’ (because of our scacred womb) or ‘disgusting’ (because or our periods) to refer to without discomfort.

Pandagon:
There’s been taboo studies that show that tampons are more taboo than toilet paper—read: menstrual blood bothers people more than shit. … Hell, think of the constant use of the word “purity” to refer to virginal women. That word choice speaks volumes.

This is what causes the push for using vagina/vulva/clitoris when refering to these parts of a woman’s body. Because those are the names and we need, precisely the opposite of what Smerconish claims, everyone to be comfortable with them. These words are not dirty, disgusting, nor awkward, neither inherently nor because of what they describe. This is why feminists encourage the use of them.

This is also why I use the word ‘cunt’. I do not enjoy that the one big taboo word in our North American culture, the one that you really really have to be prepared to use, happens to refer to the vagina…or labia. Actually, I guess the whole kit-n’-kaboodle. I would prefer that everyone gets over their squeemishness use it as they would cock, dick, or pecker.

Having said all that….

NY Times:
In a voice-mail message left for a reporter, Gloria Steinem said she hopes the women using vajayjay are doing so because they think it is more descriptive than vagina, not because they are squeamish.

I’m not sure what else Steinem has said about vajayjay, but if this is at the heart of it, I agree. I hope the same thing. I am perfectly fine with the euphamism vajayjay…if that’s what it is about.

When I’m with my good friends and I want to refer to sexual intercourse, I’ll say “A and B fucked”. I may, if I want to seem baser and more teenaged, say “they pumped” or “they humped”. When I’m with my mother or father (and this conversation does not come up often with them, believe me), I will say “they slept together”. There’s no sleeping involved in fucking. I know that, my mom and dad know that, but we use that euphamism anyway. Vajayjay serves the same function. Now, personally, if I were addressing my mom or dad, I would probably use the word ‘vagina’..but I may find myself in a situation where a reference to one’s vagina needs to be made with minimum fuss. A children’s party, perhaps. Kidding…I do think that kids need to know what their body parts are properly named.

My point is that, as much as sometimes we don’t care to admit it, there is a cause for us to adjust our language due to social situations. I think that it is sometimes seen as phony, but it most certainly is a part of being a social animal. Recognising the social situation you are in and responding appropriately. We, as humans, just happen to have language to concern ourselves with.

I think vajayjay can help our cause. Men have all sorts of euphamisms for penis that range from acceptable (“little fella”) to unacceptable (I dunno..probably something to do with a snake) depending on the situation and euphamisms for vagina have been sorely lacking. Twat. Cunt. Snatch. Pussy. None of these are particularly friendly. Vajayjay might be the one that can’t be hurled at us by drunken frat boys to make us feel less than we are.

Though, thanks to Dan Savage for encouraging the use of pussy to mean something strong.

NY Times:
There have been at least 1,200 terms for the vagina in the history of the English language, according to Steven Pinker, a psychology professor at Harvard and the author of “The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window into Human Nature” (Viking, 2007).

There is? Who knew? Stephen Pinker, I guess…with his ‘rock star good looks’.

This is because sexual subjects are always “emotionally fraught,” he said, and each new euphemism eventually “gets contaminated” and prompts “the search for yet another euphemism.”

HE calls it “the euphemism treadmill.” Such words arise, he said, “because people want to make it perfectly clear to their listeners that they are not bringing up the topic for prurient reasons.”

Okay…sure. I agree. But lets be more to the point. I can’t remember the last time that the penis went through this ‘treadmill’. Female sexual subjects seem to be more ’emotionally fraught’ than male…but whatever. I understand what Pinker is saying.

So, I think I covered all I meant to say here. Essentially, I don’t think we need to be afraid of the dawning of another euphamism. Euphamisms do happen, and frankly, I agree with Nunberg in that there may have been a need for a new euphamism that was more female friendly:

NY Times:
“There was a need for a pet name,” said Geoffrey Nunberg, a linguist at the School of Information at the University of California, Berkeley, and the chairman of the usage panel for the American Heritage Dictionary, “a name that women can use in a familiar way among themselves.”

But, as feminist writers caution us, this cannot be a replacement for vagina. And, as long as we remember that, I think we will be okay.

One thing, though….he most disturbing thing about Smerconish’s article:

Years ago (when I was much younger than I am today), I had lunch in a men’s club (of course), where I made the acquaintance of an older, distinguished gent. We were randomly seated next to one another. I’d bet two generations separated me from my dining companion.

As the hour progressed and we warmed to one another, I asked him what he did for a living. With a sagelike glint in his eye, he said to me: “Son, I spend my daytime doing what you’ll spend your lifetime trying to accomplish.”

You probably figured out that he was an OB/GYN. Some things don’t get lost in translation.

If this is how male OB/GYNs are talking to other men about their job…I think this is a problem. And fucking creepy.

 

He gets confused easily

Filed under: misc — himbly @ 1:57 am

So, he gets quail confused with his buddy’s face and chest.

I guess that means that confusing Venezuela with Peru kinda pales in comparison.

While criticising Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, Mr Cheney said “the people of Peru deserve better”.

Mr. Cheney, the people of the US deserve better.

And then the people of Canada can rest easier.

Brought to my attention by CMcB.