Monday, February 28, 2011

I've been looking through Feminist-colored glasses too much

I don't really want to be one of these people.  You know, the feminists who nitpick about language?  Like the whole Stud vs Slut thing (a man who has sex with a lot of women is a stud, a women who has sex with lots of women is a slut... and which one is viewed as derogatory?)

But I was reading something with the phrase "men's entitlement to female nurturance" which is something that is totally stereotypical in traditional gender-role marriages (think Cult of True Womanhood if you know the term).

When I read that, I thought "high-maintenance".  Then I realized nobody would ever use that to describe a man.  (Not that I think a man who insists on being nurtured without returning the favor is a good thing either.  Its gotta be mutual, if you want a strong relationship.)

More to the point, however... here's a bunny :)

Thursday, February 24, 2011

When Psychology Works

I'm taking a psychology class this semester called "Psychology of Women".  It's probably the least feminist-theory class I can be taking to fulfill my gender and women's studies graduation requirement, plus it's psychology.  Nevertheless, we're still talking a great deal about the social forces which shape female psychology, as well as how they may (or may not) create gender differences.

The most recent topic of conversation was gender differences in conversation.  Generally, women are more deferent than men: more likely to use qualifiers on their opinions, and less likely to interrupt than men (in male-female conversations), among other things.

Our professor posed an interesting theory about why men interrupt more than women: she theorized that men learn early on that if they interrupt, they get the floor: women listen to them.  On the other hand, when women interrupt men, they are ignored, which teaches them that interruption is not productive.

After saying this, she gave us all the assignment to interrupt someone before the next class.  She told the one male in class that day to do it too, and then was about to continue when he said "I just finished my assignment"

"Oh?  What did you do?"
"I interrupted you."
Somewhat taken aback, the professor asked how she responded.
"You listened to me."
"Ohhh phooey."

Thus proving her own theory.

In other news, this post took a while because of this video.  (Video embedding take one)

... Sweet.  A finished post.  I'm gonna go make myself some rice now.  Yay college mid-evening snacks!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Eating Jesus

First I want to say this: I didn't want to make this post very religious, but I realized that for such a topic, that would be inevitable.  But bear with me - its just me, who I am, how I think of things, like everything else here.

Second, those of you who are still interested, you should listen to this song (How Many Kings by Downhere) while you're reading it.  In my mind, it offers an interesting coloring to the situation at hand.

There is good news, my friends.  It only involves me, of course, unless a slightly happier me is good news that involves you too.

Yes, my news is that fabulous: I've finally found a church community in Southern California that I feel at home with.  It only took me a year and a half.  (Don't worry, FPCB, I still love you dearly.  You haven't been replaced.  Just substituted with a more available community.)

To some degree, this church community has also adopted me as their resident starving college student.  As of yesterday, various members of the small group which meets on Wednesday nights will be driving me to and from the church.  Somehow, this made everyone feel more charitable to me.  Or maybe I just don't fully know United Methodists yet.

The Wednesday night service I go to has communion every week.  Last night, someone had been baking bread earlier in the day, and offered up a loaf for communion that night.  The pastor finished communion saying that it was the "best Jesus ever".

After service, he offered me the leftover dinner.  I politely declined, knowing I wouldn't eat it.  Then he offered me the leftover communion bread, something I now know is common among the Methodist church.  It was excellent bread, so naturally I accepted.  I'd been hankering after an extra piece anyways.

With a large loaf of bread at my disposal, of course I wanted to share.  I mean, we're told to share the love and the word of Jesus.  Why not share his body as well?

This, of course, is where the jokes began.

"You know how you are what you eat?"
"Well, right now I'm feeling kinda cross."

"Can I have some Jesus?"
"No!  My Jesus!  I don't wanna share!"
"Okay, I guess Jesus loves everyone."

At some point, I decided to put some of the best honey ever on Jesus.  Damn, if Jesus doesn't taste good with honey.

"Now that I've tried Jesus with honey, just Jesus isn't good enough for me."

A few comments were a little more serious, though.  One friend hesitated to join us, saying she wasn't Catholic.  We told her not to worry, the Methodists didn't care.  That they're welcoming of everyone.  So welcoming that half of one youth group probably isn't actually Christian.  So welcoming that the first song we sang my first day there was "everyone is welcome here".

At which point I invited the one friend who isn't in class Wednesday nights and who might be interested to come with me.  He wasn't sure he'd be welcome, as a non-Christian.  We assured him that nobody would care.

"Wow" he responded.  "That seems a lot more efficient than the Catholics."

About here, the conversation ended.  We continued to eat Jesus.  I started to wonder if maybe this is how communion is supposed to be.  Everyone is invited to the table.  Everyone is invited to dine with Him.  Every time that we break bread, we do so in remembrance of him.  And Jesus wasn't the type to exclude anyone from his table.

And really, guys.  Can you think of a better way to share the Lord with your friends, than with honey?

Cause I swear I can't.

(Also, apparently Amazon sells Communion Wafers. Read the comments. They're hilarious.)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Please stay safe

A couple days ago, I received an email alerting me to a sexual assault on campus.

Now, I by no means want to trivialize sexual assault by saying this, or even remotely imply that the victim is ever at fault (the gender of the student was not actually specified).  I also don't know many details, such as if the two people knew each other.

However, the email did say one thing that caught my eye: "The student and the assailant left the [party] together and went to a nearby residence hall."  It was here that the assault happened.

I want to ask this: why?  Why did these two go to a nearby residence hall together?  If they knew each other, were very close friends, this is understandable.  However, if they didn't know each other, and one didn't want sex, maybe the whole thing could have been prevented.  (Unless, of course, that was forced too, which I don't know).

So here's what I want to ask you all: Guys, RESPECT WOMEN!  Girls, keep yourself safe.  Don't lock yourself alone in a room with a guy you don't know won't try to pull shit on you.  Especially if he's drunk.  It's just a bad idea.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Estoy Pensando en (many strange languages)

My week has been Spanish-intense. For some reason, with four classes, I've had more Spanish homework this week than all my other classes combined.

One assignment a day, for three days. A short story (page and a half) due today. And, thanks to my tendency to want to get things over with as soon as possible, a 7 minute presentation about Flamenco yesterday (which turned out to be around 5 minutes long).

I've been having trouble sleeping lately, which has involved some interesting experiences.

For instance, on Monday night, I was half awake for part of the night thinking about homework assignments that I thought I had to do... or, thought I was in the process I was doing. (After my first 30 hour week of work as a lifeguard this summer, I was half awake in the middle of the night thinking I was supposed to be guarding a pool, and for that reason wouldn't let myself fall asleep... God forbid I should sleep on duty.)

Tuesday night, I was nervous about my presentation the next morning, and a bit preoccupied about my short story as well. I woke up in the middle of the night thinking in Spanish about the essay I wanted to write to provide context for my presentation. I knew I didn't have to, but I wanted to. (I know, right?)

It gets weirder, though. Last night, everyone around me (mostly people I don't know) was working on the same homework assignment. It involved programming in Python, something I have little to no experience with (unless looking over other people's shoulders who are programming in other languages counts). There was much wailing and gnashing of teeth. I quietly studied for my psychology test.

Then I went to bed. I was burned out from studying and math homework. And I woke up in the middle of the night convinced I was a computer programmer, and trying to program something. It took me a couple hours (still in the middle of the night) to figure out why. Not that that broke my delusion, of course.

(Another game recommendation: Pandemic, the game where everybody wins... or everybody loses.  Lots of fun, if you prefer collaboration to competition.)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A Rant on Ranting

I was going to write a post about this article because I think the points it makes are awesome, or at least important and interesting.  Then last night, I had an experience.  An incredibly awful experience.

Yes, last night I panicked.  My math professor hadn't covered all the material we needed to know for our homework which is due tomorrow.  He'd changed his office hours to a time I was busy.  And my job was suddenly feeling like the straw that would break the camel's back.

But math.  Math wasn't working.  You know how frustrating it is when math doesn't work?  And that was the half the assignment that the professor did cover in class.  So I panicked.  Naturally, this wasn't productive.  I got nothing done.

The next day I actually tried to do the parts I didn't know how to do.  They were ridiculously easy.  I felt kinda ridiculous.  Moral of the story?  Don't complain about an assignment being difficult until after you've tried to do it.

Sometimes ranting is fun.  Like ranting about music.  Like getting a song stuck in your head and realizing the first line of the song is "I was riding shotgun with my hair undone in the front seat of his car".  Really, Taylor Swift?  I liked your lyrics.  They were good.  What's this about?

Sometimes, ranting can make you realize that you weren't keeping an open enough mind.  Such as when I ranted about said lyric and someone responded:  "Where else would you ride shotgun?  In a stagecoach?  With an actual shotgun?  Cause that would be badass."

Everything will be okay, though.  "Time will tell if we can stand the test of time."  (Damn song lyrics.  Why you so silly?)

P.S. The link is to an article about bias and failure in medical studies.

P.P.S. Buy THIS GAME.  It is the best thing ever.  (That is an endorsement by one of the awesomenest redheads ever.)