“There are certain things about women that men will never understand, in part because they have no interest in understanding them. They will never know how deeply we care about our houses—what a large role they play in our dreams for ourselves, how unhappy their shortcomings make us. Men think they understand the way our physical beauty—or lack of it, or assaults on it from age or extra weight—preys on our minds, but they don’t fully grasp the significance these things have for us. Nor can they understand the way physical comforts or simple luxuries—the fresh towel or the fat new cake of soap—can lift our spirits. And they will never know how much our lives are shaped around the fear of bad men and the harm they can bring us if we’re not careful, if we’re not banded together, if we’re not telling each other what to watch out for, what we’ve learned. We need each other’s counsel, and oftentimes it comes when we’re talking about other things, when we seem not to have much important on our minds at all.”—
For me, reading Caitlin Flanagan’s honeyed words is not so different from the bronchitis I’m currently recovering from. I really want to keep coughing because I think that this time, surely, the cough will be productive and afterwards I will feel better. Instead I just get a knot of something stuck in my throat and then my chest hurts.
I suppose I could go stand in a hot shower or buy some Halls or something. But then what would I complain about?
The New York Times magazine picked Caitlin Flanagan’s “The Glory of Oprah” as one of their top #longreads of 2011. This is the third-to-last paragraph and so it’s really not fair for me to quote it out of context since it elaborates on and completes thoughts she’s been weaving through the piece.
Or maybe it is fair to quote it out of context. Maybe what’s really unfair is for Flanagan to spend the rest of the piece casting a diabolical spell with her wit and flawless style and perfect innate balance between pathos and humor, so that when you get to this paragraph and its galling, risible gender essentialism, you are inclined not to throw down the magazine or close the tab in disgust, but to nod, narcotized by her smooth sentences, and agree. Of course all men are one way and all women are another way, nature has made them that way, not culture. Want … soap …
Shake it off, readers! Don’t let her win! Caitlin Flanagan is a DANGEROUS LUNATIC and WE MUST NEVER ALLOW OURSELVES TO FORGET THAT, NO MATTER HOW FUNNY AND CONVINCING SHE IS! AUGHH!
Oof, I seem to have overexerted myself. Can I have a fresh towel?
The Genius Gentleman spends a great deal of time inventing clever things in his private laboratory in the Cotswalds. He often forgets to eat. On the run from your murderous uncle, your perfect handwriting leads to employment as his amanuensis. You quickly make a friend of the book, straighten out the household accounts and bring him a cup of chocolate at midnight. This leads to stolen kisses and the discovery that his daily walks have resulted in a great many muscles. And, well, he’s a VERY clever inventor.
On assignment in Palm Beach, Hitchens scored an invitation to dine at the town’s most exclusive, and allegedly anti-Semitic, country club. Though he admired Trotsky, truth be told Hitch revelled in the high life. But having discovered his own Jewish heritage late in life, he was hell-bent on making the most of it. After generous libations at the bar, Hitchens and a small party of friends, including his wife Carol Blue, were ceremoniously seated at a table in the midst of the stuffy dining room. Surrounded by billionaires politely nibbling at Crab Louis with their families, Hitch was presented with the establishment’s menu. There was a pause, as he scanned the entries. Then, at a volume designed to be heard on all eighteen holes of the adjoining golf course, Hitch handed back the menu to the waiter and boomed, “This won’t do. I NEED THE KOSHER MENU!”
A gentleman named Farhad Manjoo just posted a proudly contrarian article on Slate explaining why independent bookstores are not only irrelevent but maybe even harmful. I work at an independent bookstore, so that’s an argument I’d be very very curious to see made well. Honestly, I know the failings of small booksellers as well as anyone, and it’d be good to see them articulated. But that’s not what this essay was. Let’s look at it. All of it. In detail.
I’ll be interjecting my thoughts into the text of the essay itself. I know that’s a pretty ungenerous way to go about it, but as you’ll see, Mr. Manjoo is kind of an asshat, so I’m not feeling generous.
“They also accused her of being sardonic, and although there was uncertainty about the meaning of the word, they knew that it was not a desirable quality in a woman, being one which gentlemen particularly disliked.”—P.D. James, awesomely, in Death Comes to Pemberley
"The interracial couple will go on with their lives, popping out mixed-race babies and living happily ever after. The old racist will sit alone, weeping into his liver-spotted hands and being very confused with the world."
ha, well for all those tracking this tumblr’s Kentucky Gulnare FREEWILL Baptist Church beat (caps mine), it looks like the ride is over. Racism has been outvoted. No word on if the kids helped. There’s a new rule welcoming believers regardless of race, creed, color (though shhhh, just yesterday it was mad racist there). Interracial sinning is alive and well in Kentucky. The End.