Archive for the ‘Social Injustice’ Category

My Sister’s Take on the Situation

December 5, 2006

Poor Sean Preston. He’s so cute!

I know. He can’t possibly have inherited any intelligence whatsoever.

(pause)

At least he’ll inherit some money.

Too X-Treme

November 10, 2006

Pop open a can of Mountain Dew, Ladies, because it’s time for X-TREME HAIR REMOVAL!

***

I’m pissed off. The topic? Bikini wax expectations. This is a relatively new thing, as in something that seems to have arisin within the last decade, and I’m not sure who exactly I have to thank for it. And by “thank” I mean kick in the nuts.

I’ve done a little research, and have come up with this conclusion. In America right now, having a brazilian bikini wax (which I call “X-Treme Hair Removal”) is as standard and socially required as shaving your legs. And I say FUCK THAT. You know why? Because it fricking hurts, that’s why. And it’s also recockulously expensive. Last time I went to get my bikini and eyebrows done, the total was a whopping $87 smackers. Can I afford that every 3 weeks, along with everything else? Hell, no, and even if I could, out of principle I don’t want to.

Look. I’m not saying we should all be running around with a 1970s bush going on. I am a stickler for hygene and grooming. And I’m not one to go against the crowd on issues of what’s expected of me regarding my personal appearance. Call me a conformist, but I imagine it would be tough to be known as “’70s Bush Girl.” But come on, throw us a fricking bone. As if women don’t have enough to feel bad about, now we have to be paranoid about that??? “Oh no, I’m between bikini waxes, I’m going to be judged, and so-and-so is going to be all grossed out!” WTF??? COME ON!!!!

If men did it too I could maybe wrap my head around it. I already think men should shave their armpits. Armpit hair is disgusting on both men and women, so Get on that, Men. But for me, it’s great if a guy just trims “down there.” Just so it’s not all over the place. I think if any man holds a woman to a certain waxing standard, he should have to go get that exact type of wax done once, just once, and let’s all sit back and see how quickly his expectations will change. The first time he hands someone a 50-dollar bill to rip all the hair off his balls, he’ll think twice about complaining about his date’s between-wax status. And he’ll probably also cry a little.

This rule hurts not only women, but men also. My research has concluded that women everywhere are too scared to hook up with anyone if we aren’t fresh from the salon. We’ll be too embarrassed to admit the real reason, so we’ll make something up. Men will feel rejected, and we’ll feel sad, like we’ve let ourselves down and let him down, because this is just one more expectation we can’t live up to.

Plus, this is one more thing on our plates, making us busier than ever, making MEN have to wait for us (and complain about waiting, and make jokes on sitcoms about it) while we try to alter ourselves so we’ll be accepted by society. Makeup, high heels, hair removal all over the place — We get it. We’re not OK as we are. What’s next? God only knows.

Who made this rule, and who is enforcing it? Someone tell me. I’m not saying it’s only men — Women are huge enforcers of beauty standards. But I have a feeling this originated with porn, and the fact that porn dictates how I’m expected to look makes me sick.

If you are reading this and you are a man, or have insight into what men think about this, please comment, because I need to know! Is it really a big deal for men, or do women just think it is?

And if you’re someone who might someday ever want to date me, and if you expect me to get XTreme Hair Removal, get out your wallet. ‘Cause you’re paying for it.

***

UPDATE: As of 4:36 PM, I am feeling slightly better about this topic. After reading this blentry, a male friend conducted some of his own independent research, and 5 out of 5 male subjects stated that while they do think X-Treme Hair Removal is nicer than Standard Hair Removal, the issue is never a deal breaker.

***

UPDATE #2, 5:59 PM: I have had a spirited IM conversation with Eric, who has brought up an excellent point. This is perhaps more of an L.A. trend than a National one. I would like to hear from someone in another state, please. Do you feel this same type of pressure? Also per said conversation, I have decided to veer from all tradition and simply shave it into the shape of a tiny Care Bear. Instead of the Care Bear Stare it will be the Care Bear Hair!

Shoes! Eyes! Heartbreak! (My vision hasn’t changed, though, so that’s good)

September 19, 2006

Yesterday I had an eye doctor appointment — and let me just interrupt myself here to ask you why we say “eye doctor” instead of “optometrist.” Why do we do that with eye doctors only? It’s never acceptable to say, “Aaaugh, I think I have a cavity. I’d better go to the tooth doctor!” Or, “Oooooh, yeah, that’s a sketchy mole. You should see a skin doctor ASAP.”

Anyway, so I went to the optometrist in Santa Monica, and afterwards my pupils were so dilated I was like the opposite of Little Orphan Annie, who had no pupils (see Appendix A), and decided that instead of driving home in the bright sunlight I should instead seek refuge in a nearby shoe store — for my eyes, you see. Conveniently, I had a store credit at this very store, so for the sake of my vision, I decided I’d better find something to buy.

It didn’t take me long to find these adorable specimens of footwear (They’re Rocket Dog, if you’re wondering) (God bless Rocket Dog and all that they do):

cuteshoes2.jpgcuteshoes1.jpg

I got both colors, and the magical part is, the total was something like $68.34 (yes, for both!) and my store credit was for $68.75. I generously let the store keep the change.

I was so happy. I couldn’t wait to wear them. I planned my outfit for today around the tan ones. And then, I put them on this morning, and the left one hurt my m-f-ing toe!!!!! I guess in the store I had walked around mostly with the right one on, but I did try the left one and got no warning signs that it would hurt. The main problem is, I think they’re a little too short, and it takes my big toe and squeezes it over towards my other toes, which as you may remember, is unacceptable as it may lead to bunions, one of my greatest fears in life, along with getting taken hostage and running out of Advil.

Maybe I could get a bigger size, but I fear the next size up will be too wide, and plus, these are the kind of shoes that only look good in small sizes, and I’m pretty sure the next size will make my feet look like boats.

So I came to work today in my boring flip flops (Both flip flops and sneakers are frowned upon at my office except on Fridays, but I’m at that “whatever” stage, so whatever). And I feel totally un-cute, and my day — nay my life — is ruined forever! Scowl.

Appendix A:

Little Orphan Annie

Toilets 2, Me 0

August 30, 2006

UM…. Am I in Pergatory? My worst nightmare is coming true. I was peeing in my favorite bathroom stall at the office yesterday (for information on which one is my favorite and why, see Appendix A), and mid-pee, what do you think happened? Yes. It flushed itself. I was all, “Wha…???” because as you may or may not know, one of the reasons I took this job in the first place was because the office did NOT have automatic flush toilets. If you’re unfamiliar with my stance on these evil, wicked beasts, please refer back to this blentry.

Angry Toilet
Apparently I go on vacation and everything goes to pot around here (no pun intended). Adding insult to injury, I discovered that an entire bag of UNexpired yogurts I had in the fridge had been thrown out while I was away. Argh!

So anyway, they’ve replaced my favorite manual-flush toilet with an evil automatic one. I don’t know if they’re changing all of them and just starting with one, or just changing the one, but I do know this f-ing sucks, and I may have to start job-hunting again.

Appendix A: OK, so there are four stalls in the ladies’ room. The last one, the big handicapped one, is the worst, because the toilet seat sits up on stilts, causing a big gap between the seat and the rim, and when you pee, unless you concentrate very hard, your pee shoots out the front of the toilet and gets you, the floor, and everything wet, with pee. All the women here seem to have made that mistake once, and God willing, only once.

The first stall has horrible water pressure, and if you use a toilet seat cover and/or any toilet paper at all, which most of us do, it all creates a tight ball that refuses to flush and just rolls around in the hole, even if you flush it over and over.

The second stall is not ideal because, and this may get complicated, but hear me out here: Since the last one is by far the worst, nobody wants to use it. If you’re in the second stall and someone else comes in, she is almost definitely going to choose the first or third stall, thus settling in right next to you. Some poeple don’t mind this, but I get stage fright when someone is too close to me and find it nearly impossible to pee, try as I might, and you can just forget anything else (not that I do anything else, Jeff, don’t worry, girls don’t go #2, least of all me). Same goes for people talking to me while I’m in the stall. If you ask me, it’s common sense that conversation should end when the stall door closes.

The point is, the only really desirable stall, the one that used to offer me a peaceful sanctuary of relaxation, has now been turned into something that will only infuriate me and cause me stress and nervous breakdowns. Why is life so cruel?!!!

UPDATE: Well, after someone read this blentry he was totally incredulous about my stage fright comment, and in retrospect I may have been exaggerating a little (ME???). Usually I can pee fine with someone next door, unless they’re talking to me. I really do find it impossible to carry on a conversation and pee at the same time. Chalk it up to my not being the best multi-tasker. But really it’s the poo thing that gets me (which, again, Jeff, I do NOT do, I’m just saying I imagine if I did it would be difficult to do so with someone in the next stall). The worst is when two people (not me) are sitting in stalls next to each other, and we’re they’re totally silent and can hear each other breathing, each one waiting for the other to finish and flush so she can let the poo make the noise it makes when it lands in the water. I mean, not that I’m familiar with that; I’m just saying.

As Soon as I Handed the Guy at the Bank My Pen, I Knew I Would Never See It Again.

March 6, 2006

So today is my day off, and just now I walked down to the bank to open a new savings account, and sat down to wait for someone at a desk to help me, and this dude walks up wearing jeans and a bright yellow and blue basketball jersey with "Fila" in huge letters across the front.  The only way I knew he worked there is he asked me if I had a question. 

"Yes, I do," I replied. "What the hell are you wearing?  Look around.  You work in a bank!"  OK, no I did not say that, but are we serious here?  I looked at the girl behind the other desk, and sure enough, she was wearing full-on sweats!  Like, pink sweat pants and a little pink hoodie.  I know this is So-Cal and we like to pretend we’re laid back by wearing uber-casual clothes while we’re actually stressing ourselves crazy about our agents and managers and the fact that we still have over 0% body fat, even after the power spinbox yogalates we did for four hours this morning.  But the bank?  I mean, I’m even required to dress "business casual" at my editing job, where I’ve never once seen a client face to face.  Even on "casual Fridays," sweats and b-ball jerseys are frowned upon.  (Oh my gosh, I’m starting to hyperventilate because I just realized I used the term "casual Fridays" in reference to my own life.  Excuse me while I call my boss RIGHT NOW and quit my job and make plans to move to an island where I can make ends meet by trading shells.  That is, if I can stop the dry-heaving, which is preventing me from speaking clearly).

So I went over to James’ (his name was James) desk and he began the very official process of getting my new account opened by signing into his computer, except that he couldn’t because he had forgotten his password.  We joked about that for a minute, and then he decided to write my name down on a plain pad of paper, for some reason.  Except that the pen attached to the desk didn’t write, so he picked up a green highlighter instead, and wrote "Marcy Minton" in fat green letters.  Then, once that was done, I guess he remembered his password and started typing some stuff, blah blah, yadda yadda, and then went and got a form from somewhere.  He came back and started to fill it out, and I saw him searching the desk for a pen and coming up empty, so I said, "You can use this one."  And as the words came out of my mouth and the pen passed from my hand into his, it felt like slow motion, and I thought, "I will never see this pen again." 

As it happens, just, JUST before leaving for the bank I cleaned out my purse. I had had 2 pens, but decided that was excessive and removed one.  This information will come in handy for you a little later.  But back to this pen. This pen happened to be one of my favorites.  It was one I stole from work during a brief period when they were getting us really nice clicky, soft grippy pens. 

So we finished opening the account, and he says Thank You, and I say Thank you, and he shakes my hand, and I get up to go, and Sure Enough.  He keeps my pen.  I hesitated for just a fraction of a second, picturing myself asking for it back and the awkwardness that would surely ensue, and while I hesitated he began filling out some other type of paperwork with it, and I realized that he seemed really to be struggling today, and therefore I would let him keep the dang pen, darn it.

On my way out I stopped at the ATM to deposit a check.  I opened my checkbook to fill out the deposit slip, and this is the part I told you about, the part where it sucks that I cleaned out my purse this morning, because instead of having one pen left, I had no pen.  Dammit.  So I marched back inside, determined to ask James for my pen back, awkwardness be damned, but there he was, all innocent looking in his loud jersey, still writing with it.  I couldn’t do it.  So I went to the table where you fill stuff out and used one of the pens attached to the desk (the first one I tried didn’t work, by the way.  They really need to get on that!) and went back to the ATM.  I was just about to seal the envelope and stick it in the machine when I realized I hadn’t endorsed the check.  Arrrrgh.  So I went back in again to use the pen, and this time I passed James, and he said, "Did you have another question?"

"No, I’m just… depositing… some…"  And he was already like, "Oh, oh, OK, ok," and the awkwardness I had been hoping to avoid was there anyway, but I was still sans pen.  UGH!  So by this point I was SO ready to just get out of the f-ing bank, and I went back out to the ATM and it was BEEEEEEEEEEPing, and I realized I had left my card inside! But luckily everyone seemed to have steered clear of that ATM, probably because of the ear-splitting beep coming out of it, so my card was still there, and I finished up my transaction and walked home.

Lessons learned: Never clean out purse, never let people in sweat pants/loud jerseys handle your finances, never assume that once you’ve stolen a pen it won’t be stolen from you, and never assume that a simple task will be accomplished simply and without hassle.  Never.

Shoes! and Outrage

February 24, 2006

I am outraged that Rebecca is out sick today!  I wanted to show her my new gold shoes.  How dare she get sick when I want to show her my shoes!  And they’re gold!  These shoes are especially special, because a week or two ago while at Ross Dress for Less looking in vain for a certain type of luggage, I decided, oh, why not just cruise by the shoe section? and these caught my eye as most shiny things do, because as I have mentioned before, I am just like a crow in that way. OH, and speaking of crows, this morning I was washing my face and heard a scuttle-scruffle-skittling-scampering coming from up above me somewhere.  This scuttling was much louder and different from the scriffling of last summer, when I was ON THE TOILET and heard a soft scuttle-scruffle and a GIANT COCKROACH fell OUT OF A GAP IN THE FAN ON THE CEILING right next to me on its back and started kicking its legs until I leapt from the toilet screaming and screaming and fled the room, and I don’t even remember what happened after that because it was so, so horrible.  No, this scuttling was much louder and was probably more scriffling than scuttling, and even a little scralumphing, and definitely a fair amount of scampering.  I looked up, and through the skylight saw the huge shadow of a crow! It hopped around right on the skylight, scritchety-scratching its claws all over the glass, and then started pecking on the skylight! Just pecking away, right on the glass!  I hope that glass is strong because I am not in the mood to endure another creature crashing down on me in my bathroom!

So anyway, I was at Ross looking at shoes, and this adorable gold, shiny pair caught my eye.  I tried them on and realized that they were the same brand my old roommate Candice designs shoes for.  So I bought them because frankly I think it would have been rude not to, right? And sure enough, I showed them to her and while she didn’t design them per se, since truth-be-told they are knock-offs of another brand, she did the sketching and detailing for them (or maybe sketching and detailing are the same thing, I don’t know).  Anyway, I love, love, love them, and I am wearing them today, and Rebecca is not even here to appreciate them!  But you can:Goldshoes2 Goldshoes

Where Is My Robot?!

January 17, 2006

Pinkrobot Is it just me, or are y’all with me? Weren’t we raised with the assumption that by the year 2000 we would all have personal robots? The kind that walk around saying things like “I-am-a-robot,” in robotic voices? They would do our homework, clean our rooms, and go get us Cokes out of the fridge. Right? Well, it’s 2006 and I don’t know about you, but I sure as hell don’t have one, and I don’t know anybody who does. I don’t have homework anymore, but I sure would appreciate my room getting cleaned or my dinner fixed. The only robots I’ve heard about are in hospitals, doing precise surgery, and they don’t even look like people! They just look like machines. I mean sure, that’s great and all – I’m all for precise surgery — but can’t they at least make the robots look like people and dress them up like little surgeons? Where is the sense of fun in this world? If we can’t have fun in surgery, where can we?!!!

Technology is far, far behind my expectations, and I’m pretty disappointed, I won’t pretend otherwise.

Porcelain Devils, or “Bowls of Evil”

December 14, 2005

Automatic-flush toilets were sent here from hell, to remind us of the punishment that may await us if we’re not careful.  I hate them, with every fiber of my being.

I’ll tell you, I like the automatic faucets — easy, saves water, and as a germaphobe, I appreciate not having to touch bacteria-infested surfaces more than necessary.  I see the point of that.  Also, I can completely stand behind automatic paper-towel dispensers.  Waving my hand in front of them and paper towels coming out like magic makes me feel like I’m living in the future.  But the toilets… The Toilets. 

I guess they’re an OK invention — good intentions and all — but they just plain do not work.  They flush when you don’t want them to, and don’t when you do.  I once had an automatic toilet flush seven times during a short bathroom visit, but as soon as I got up to leave, NOTHING.  The whole time I was trying to pee, my butt was getting splattered with water as it churned below, but when I stood up and the toilet should have flushed, it just sat there.  I waved my hand in front of it, backed against the wall so it would think I had left, even actually left the stall and waited nearby, and it just freaking sat there.  And that was just one instance.  I cannot count the number of tricks I have tried to con the toilet into thinking I’ve left so I can make sure it actually will flush, or the times I’ve had to go back into the stall and push the little button to manually flush the toilet.  At least with the old-school toilets I could flush them with my foot — but these, I have to press directly on that little button with my finger, and it grosses the hell out of me.

Another infurating thing about them is when they flush repeatedly before I’m even sitting down.  I lean over and put down the toilet seat cover, stand up, turn around, get all ready to sit down and — flush. There goes the seat cover, sucked right in.  Repeat steps 1-4.  At my last job we had a particularly ornery toilet that did that every time.  I finally worked out a system whereby I had my pants down before putting the seat cover down, then put it down, held it down with my hands while I spun around and jammed my butt down on it before it had a chance to flush away.  It worked pretty well, but sometimes it made me dizzy.

I know I’m not the only one experiencing this.  Otherwise, how do you explain the sheer multitude of unflushed toilets?  Before, we were all responsible for flushing our own toilet.  Sure, there was the odd person-raised-in-a-barn who never flushed, but that person was shunned by society and therefore was the exception rather than the rule.  For the most part, people flushed and you didn’t think much about it.  Now we’re being trained not to even think about whether our toilet has flushed.  We just leave the stall and expect it to be done for us.  What’s next? Toys that pick themselves up?  Toothbrushes that march merrily into our rooms at night, dive into our mouths, and brush our teeth for us? (Actually, that wouldn’t be so bad… )  But really, how is anyone supposed to learn any responsibility with all this automation?  And even if it isn’t damaging society, it doesn’t work!  The toilets only flush when you don’t want them to!  Please, let’s just go back to good old-fashioned manual-flush toilets — and send these devils back to hell where they belong!