when the status quo frustrates.

McBoing Gets a Visit From a Certain Special Fairy

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

I have a few computer-related pet peeves, and one of them are those history and favorites bars in IE. And IE. The first thing I did when I finally got my own work station was download Firefox and revel in my tabbed goodness. I like a large screen resolution, I want to cram as much information in front of my face as possible, and because I have to have so many windows that have to be open on the screen for actual work, I will not be assaulted by a fat extra bar in my browser.

Imagine my surprise when I get to my computer this morning and find IE glomming itself across the monitor. With the history bar open. Knowing that I certainly didn’t open this window, I clicked around.

Backseatbangers.com. In the history bar. On my computer. In IE. In the history bar, listed under Today.

I grabbed my supervisor. “Just so you know, I never use IE. But look at this.”

“Oh my god.” She seemed unfazed. The day before I caught her singing 2 Live Crew in her cubicle.

“I swear I just logged on.”

“Whoever went to that site certainly spent a lot of time there.”

“Sabotage?”

“Nah. Probably the cleaning crew.”

The mighty have fallen, or, blogging for the glory of the LORD

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

Remember Ben Domenech?

I started working at Human Events, a capitol hill newsweekly, when I was fifteen…I’ve written for many places, including The Washington Post, The Washington Times, Human Events, Citizen Magazine, New York Press, The American Conservative, The Dallas Morning News, and McSweeney’s.

I spent a couple of years working as a speechwriter for several prominent politicians and then as a book editor in Washington D.C. I am currently a writer living in Virginia.

He’s got a hot new project over at Boundless. Remember Boundless?

From college to career to relationships, we at Boundless want to cast a vibrant vision for the single years, helping you navigate this season while preparing for the challenges and responsibilities of the one to come. That requires living intentionally with purpose by bringing your gifts, talents and Christian worldview to bear on your whole life.

Well, a typepad account shared with some spare staff from Focus on the Family is no Washington Post, but if the entire genre of Christian alternative music is any indication, you’ve found the perfect audience. They’ve been conditioned for years to accept whatever drivel is handed to them unquestioningly, so they’ll never once think to google you. And for that you have no one but God, God and a massive Christian corporate machine, to thank. Hallelujah!

Why stop the killing when you can spin it?

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

Haditha. Abu Ghraib. A massive civilian death toll.

We need to turn those frowns upside down, people, and the US military will pay $20 million dollars to whoever can put on the happiest face:

U.S. military leaders in Baghdad have put out for bid a two-year, $20 million public relations contract that calls for extensive monitoring of U.S. and Middle Eastern media in an effort to promote more positive coverage of news from Iraq.

The contract calls for assembling a database of selected news stories and assessing their tone as part of a program to provide “public relations products” that would improve coverage of the military command’s performance, according to a statement of work attached to the proposal.

The 21st century isn’t about being successful or good; it’s about Wolf Blitzer saying you are. Still, by offering such a princely sum to provide cover for their actions, the military’s explicit admission of this fact shows we’ve managed to reach a new low in a Mission Accomplished that’s full of them.

I can see the stories now:

Military leaves no cavity unsearched in quest for evildoers
“Today, the US sent a military search team into a teenage girl suspected of harboring terrorists in her womb. No evidence of terror was found inside the girl, and, unfortunately, her grandmother’s M-16 accidentally misfired, killing her and her entire family. The military would like to take this opportunity to remind Americans to always leave on the safety.”

Iraqi cabal of secrets destroyed
“All around the country, Iraqis were cheering the demise of a small village known as Haditha, which translates loosely to “Islamofascistville.” After it was discovered one person living in the village might know something about someone who may have built an IED, Iraqis staged massive protests against the village’s tacit endorsement of terrorism. US soldiers initially arrived as peacekeepers, but one of villager’s M-16 accidentally misfired, killing the entire village. The military would like to take this opportunity to remind Iraqis to tell the truth at all times because Allah works in mysterious ways and you never know when a stray bullet might puncture your lying artery.”

Soldiers and Iraqis enjoy mingling, party games
“Nation-building can be an exhausting enterprise for the occupied and occupiers alike. While tensions sometimes run high, Iraqis and US soldiers are finding creative ways to blow off some steam, and the result is spelled F-U-N. One place you’ll find citizens and soldiers unwinding is a small resort called Abu Ghraib, where visitors play games like headsack races and Human Pyramid. This singles hotspot gets rowdy after hours, often becoming clothing-optional. Look out, Club Med, you’ve got some competition in Iraq!”

US extends pre-emptive strike policy
“While Iraq was never a part of the attacks on 9/11, it was conceivable that Saddam Hussein could theoretically participate in such an attack sometime in the undetermined future. As a result, the US enabled regime change. Today, Secretary Rumsfeld announced that the 100,000 dead Iraqi civilians represented an extension of the same idea. ‘You can never tell who’ll be the next Saddam Hussein. Better safe than sorry,’ he said. The Secretary also noted that food shortages could be reduced with fewer future terrorists to feed and that mass sterilization was also under consideration as a means of easing the burdens on the Iraqi people. It should be noted that the vast majority of civilian deaths occurred when one of Saddam Hussein’s hidden M-16s was discovered and misfired. The military would like to take this opportunity to remind the rest of the world that their leaders may also have buried weapons that could misfire in the same way and kill all of them, too, if they aren’t careful.”

Dookie on the screen

Thursday, August 31st, 2006

Jackass Number Two arrives in a theater near you in 3 weeks and a day. Something tells me your reaction is one, some, or all of the following:
1-”Grr. I hate that stupid crap.”
2-”Huh? Wha? You kids are nuts.”
3-”Who cares?”
4-”Just thinking about it makes me queasy.”
5-[look around to make sure no one's around to judge you] “Sweet.”

My personal blend mixes a heavy dose of 4 and 5 with a smattering of 1 for texture. Like me, most people I know who like the first film feel some compulsion to qualify or hedge their praise. Is that really necessary, though? Let’s explore.

Watching “Jackass:” Proudly or shamefully?

The right people hate it.
“The Terminal” drew fundie praise, a sign you should be embarrassed to like the movie. And can you absolutely rule out the prospect of Dick Cheney tossing some popcorn down the chute while catching a snuff film? I didn’t think so. Even if your own moral compass fails you, this suggests you should be ashamed to enjoy one.

Somewhere ‘twixt the two lies “Jackass,” but neither party would be caught dead seeing it. Advantage, “Jackass.”

It has interesting sexual politics.
The first movie contains oodles of male nudity. During their show, they performed a skit in which 2 guys rollerbladed around a park in their skivvies while holding a sexual position together. They have a controversial gay-themed billboard up in LA, and in an interview with his own production company, MTV Films, director Jeff Tremaine described the film this way:

I think the stunts are bigger, and it’s a lot gayer. That’s the only way to explain it.

It consists entirely of dehumanization and violence.
If the Geneva Convention saw the first film, it would burst into flames. Apparently, the sequel contains a gag-inducing sequence involving horse semen. And as you might’ve seen from the trailer, this stunt ends poorly:

The violence is restricted to men.
These dudes dig the pain. They love to inflict it on each other. Maybe the patriarchy will pick up the message and start directing its violence onto itself. At the very least, it might thin the herd.

But it does encourage men to be violent.
In the end, that doesn’t help matters much.

It’s performance art.
Stupid as it sounds, it’s true, and its shock value can really cause you to think about anything from how depressingly hollow our culture has become to the peculiar pleasure of pain. Against all odds, “Jackass” is thought-provoking.

———

So at the end of the day, you have to weigh its glorification of violence and dehumanization against the rest of the package. At this point, I feel fairly certain “Jackass” is a net positive. I look forward to being proven wrong below.

Stop crying! Our gonads shut down, too, dammit!

Wednesday, August 30th, 2006

You know what pisses off men? When your ovaries shut down. And it isn’t for the reasons you think.

Women hog all the attention in mid-life just because of the menopause phenomenon. They get to act all depressed and mood-swingy while playing the get-out-of-jail-free card known as “hormone changes.”

This is totally unfair. Men have way more taxing mid-life crises than women — you don’t see nearly as many ladies rushing out to buy Corvettes and harrass Hooters waitresses, do you? [Checkmate.] Yet men don’t get a bodily excuse for our behavior; somehow our petulant overreactions are our fault.

Fortunately, this may be changing. The concept of “manopause” is taking root, and it’s about damn time. In fact, Rosanna Arquette’s making a documentary about it.

This thing is for real, yo. Men start losing testosterone at a rate of 1% per year starting around age 30, which is, uh, _exactly_ like menopause. That’s the ticket. I mean, hey, some women go through menopause for a couple years — that’s practically forever in man years (which is about as long as it takes for balls to close up shop permanently).

You may think there’s a limit to what we’ll co-opt, but clearly you underestimate us. Men won’t tolerate women monopolizing the pause. We want one too, and whether you call it manopause or andropause or shittyexcuseformybehaviorpause, we’ll shoehorn the idea into the mainstream no matter how many Arquette and/or Baldwin documentaries it takes.

Some men really do go through significant hormonal changes in their 40s and 50s. Calling it something with a -pause on the end not only legitimizes this experience, but it let’s the rest of us use it as an excuse women will be forced to accept. As a bonus, it minimizes menopause by equating it with something totally dissimilar and less immediately traumatic.

Trifecta, baby. High five.

Finally, “complete unity between pen and hand”

Wednesday, August 30th, 2006

Really. What. The. Fuck.

Awareness doesn’t require a makeover

Wednesday, August 30th, 2006

I promise we’ll get to blow jobs and corsets and heels directly, but let’s get there by way of football.

I like football. Unfortunately, football’s a piggish industry filled with awful men. “Sexism” often doesn’t begin to describe the attitudes, actions, and codes of players and coaches at all levels. With wave after wave of stories like the Katie Hnida and rape scandals at CU, anyone who watches football and doesn’t admit its flaws does so for one of three reasons: 1) ignorance, 2) a preference for sexism, or 3) denial.

You all agree football’s pretty fucked up from a feminist perspective, right? I should probably give it up. In fact, that attitude is what motivates reason #3 above: a number of men probably refuse to think about this stuff because they worry that acknowledging football’s sexism would mean they’d have to give it up.

Maybe you’d prefer it if all men, especially all feminist supporters, dumped football. But I doubt you expect it to happen. Given that, I suspect you at least want football fans to have an awareness of its failings and talk about them openly. By accusing the football industry of sexism, people expect to combat denial and ignorance, not empty the stadiums.

Why don’t some people understand the same thing is true of critiquing BJs, sporsets, and high heels?

Okay, maybe we can expect to dump the damn sports corset thing. It just came out and there’s a small chance that ripping it publicly will prevent people from purchasing one. Other than that, I doubt those who examine the root causes and/or effects of BJs and high heels actually expect the world to boycott them. They might prefer it, just like football haters might prefer its demise, but at a minimum, they at least hope to have an honest discussion of their shortcomings.

This is why I can’t abide comments like this from Bitch|Lab at Pandagon:

The problem is, she doesn’t do what everyone expects next, where she is supposed to stop giving blow jobs to a man she loves or stop participating in the patriarchy’s conditioned social roles.

Now, this came on a thread about a woman’s misunderstanding about her own oral rape, but B|L’s misfire perfectly illustrates a major falsehood to which people cling: criticizing an aspect of something you enjoy means I expect you to give it up.

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Frickity Frack

Tuesday, August 29th, 2006

Just lost a big fucking post. See you next week.

Appropriate

Tuesday, August 29th, 2006


QuizGalaxy!
‘What will your obituary say?’ at QuizGalaxy.com

Hang up those clitorii girls, the under 30′s set is coming to town

Tuesday, August 29th, 2006

given that Randombird has apparently taken lessons in “feminist theory” at college, and yet is also inexplicably unaware that performing sexual acts you do not want to do is rape, I am left with this simple question, and do please excuse this non-college going fem for her ignorance…

But WTF do they actually TEACH women in those feminist theory classes?

Because someone obviously forgot the basics in that syllabus.

Seriously, what do they teach in those classes, anyone who’s taken them want to inform us plebs?

Because rather than inexplicably blaming entire age groups (in this case the evil demons like me who have been lauching our asses off while the boomers and Xers spent our childhoods fighting constantly over who’s got the bigger zeitgeist) I’d like to ask the fundamental that should be asked: Why the fuck is my generation so prone to RandomBird’s stupid bullshit? Why is “I’m a sexual person” automatically phrased, more often than not, as “I wanna subsume my wants, desires and personality beneath a gentle tide of blowjob spit and objectification, STARE AT MY TITS DAMMIT, STARE. AT. MY. TITS!“, like female sexuality that is all about men being pleasured and gently titillated whenever a woman is present was only invented as a result of the mythic feminist destruction of the patriarchy in the 1960′s, and it is the only way for a woman to be sexual dontyaknow.

Oh wait second, now I remember: Patriarchy. (more…)

One Question

Tuesday, August 29th, 2006

Has anyone who isn’t Ayn Rand ever used the term “Breeder” as an insult?

Seriously, I’ve never seen this, ever, except when people are attacking people who aren’t nicey nice with their criticism – which of course is always too harsh for some people, no matter how nicely you try to sugar coat it, because the mere act of criticsim is always not nice, duh, which is why I’ve never felt an incentive to bother trying – in which case they are inexplicably against mothers.

Which I must point out, is really mean, you meanie meanie heads, stop it!!! *bursts into tears and runs crying from the room*

Flesh partners are so 20th century

Tuesday, August 29th, 2006

When it comes to sex, America can be a little prudish. Sex ed comes and goes (depending on your community), we flipped out over Janet Jackson’s nipple being exposed for 3/8 of a second, and it’s been really hard to start a spontaneous orgy lately.

When it comes to sex entertainment, though, we’re dogfighting the Germans for international dominance. Traditional porn is rather ho-hum. Now it’s all about doin’ it digital, baby, and the rest of the world seems to have taken note of our excellence.

Via the Hindustan Times, Asia News International sounds very excited about our latest development:

Jenna Jameson, the first porn star to be immortalised by wax museum Madame Tussauds, has now brought forth her new venture – a new virtual reality sex game.

According to TMZ.com, people visiting the website VirtuallyJenna, can choose not only the locations, toys, positions, but also partners and acts, all for the price of 29.95 dollars a month.

As if that were not enough, Jameson and the other virtual models also make actual love sounds such as gagging, slurping and yum noises while performing their acts.

As for all those still not sure whether or not they want to be pleasured for an entire month, well all they need to do is dish out 9.95 dollars for a 3-day trial while they make up their minds.

Hooray! Virtual love-gagging complete with sound effects! Take that, Kaiser!

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