The Myth of Female Privilege, or, Mark Saunders Is an Idiot

Categories: Random Ephemera

Over the last weekend a new name in the Men's Right's movement emerged in the form of columnist Mark Saunders at Thought Catalog. The self-described Denver yuppie debuted on the site with his article "18 Things Females Seem To Not Understand (Because, Female Privilege)". The thing is, Saunders is completely right. Women don't understand his bullet points for the exact same reason I don't understand the government's plans to sterilize us with chemtrails; they aren't freakin' true.

And Saunders doesn't understand why he's wrong because he's an idiot.

I'm not likely to change the hearts and minds of any MRAs any time soon, but I would still like to go through his bullet points to try and slide some actual reason into the conversation.

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Rehoming a Dog in Houston Is Not an Easy Task

Categories: Random Ephemera

Pretty cute eh?
My husband and I rescued our dog Sadie from the Gulf Coast Bull Terrier Rescue organization. I had had bull terriers as a kid and recalled loving them like crazy. Sadie doesn't look like the classic all white bull terrier - the Target dog or Spuds MacKenzie - as she is a nice mix of brown and white. I am not at all being biased when I say she is the cutest dog that ever lived in the entire world. Not a walk or trip to the dog park goes by that I don't get stopped by random strangers telling me the same thing.

But Sadie has a big problem. Aside from living for the sheer joy of ripping the squeaker out of all toys, she doesn't like children. I can't pinpoint when this animus against kiddos began, but it's a real issue. When we rescued her she was six months old and in bad physical shape due to an irresponsible backyard breeder. Who knows what traumas she went through with the smaller set of humans?

At first we didn't notice anything, when she was a puppy she spent Thanksgiving with our friends' new baby staring in a blissful awe, but as she grew older her distaste or perhaps taste for young blood grew. She barks at children at the park, she runs and hides when the neighbor's tikes try and pat her head and she's been known to snap in the direction of a young girl who visits her daycare. Let's get real, she hates kids.

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The Difference Between Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts Outside the Grocery Store

Categories: Random Ephemera

Photo by Marit & Toomas Hinnosaar
The Boy Scouts of America have really got to hire a marketing expert to have a little talk with the way they let the Scouts raise money outside of grocery stores because at this point I swear it feels like I am being accosted by tiny, well-prepared drug dealers.

Let me explain.

I go to the store every day because I don't believe in stocking up on food when I live with two impossibly picky eaters. That means that during Girl Scout cookie time and Boy Scout... coupon book time (That does not flow well at all) I see the Scouts of both sexes very regularly and get a pretty good idea of their methods of presentations.

With the girls I have absolutely zero problems. Each set up outside my local Kroger features a nice table with the various cookies all neatly arranged in professional piles. There are usually hand drawn signs to go along with them to give the table that whimsical, childhood touch. Clearly, each stand is a Place of Business representing a brand you can trust.

The girls themselves are always decked out nicely in their uniforms, full of smiles and in one delightful case this year with a prepared song and dance number. Their mothers or fathers stand back near the excess stock, always ready to help replenish the dwindling piles or help with change or other duties. All in all, it's a grand, adorable microcosm of capitalist society.

The Boy Scouts do not do this.

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Breastfeeding Mom Has Beer, Gets Arrested. Seriously?

Old wives' tale or old awesome tale?
As a new mother, I can attest that spending nine months pregnant had its challenges. Some women absolutely love it and some don't. I fell more on the "don't" side of the spectrum. I missed turkey sandwiches and jogging and clothing that fit and wine. I mostly missed wine. I don't drink more than the average person, but I like a glass of wine here and there; it makes life seem nicer to me.

I've written before about the growing inconsistencies on whether or not it's okay to drink during pregnancy. This topic is a never-ending debate, like global warming or whether Modern Family is actually a good show or we've all been duped. I struggled to get pregnant, so to me not drinking was a no-brainer. Whether it hurt or not, why take the risk?

But drinking while breastfeeding, now we are onto a totally different situation.

Last week the news hit that an Arkansas woman, Tasha Adams, a mother of three, had been arrested for having a beer while nursing her child. In an interview with ABC's 20/20, Adams told her sudsy tale. She was out to dinner with some family, having a bite to eat and a beer. Her six-month old baby also was hungry, and so Adams fed her, as a mother should do when her child is looking for food.

A off-duty waitress happened to come into the restaurant, and took it upon herself to call the police. The waitress didn't know how many drinks Adams had had, nor did she go and discuss her concerns with the mom; she just called the cops. The police came and arrested Adams for endangering her child.

Just so you know, Arkansas might have some strict laws and many dry areas, but drinking and breastfeeding is not illegal there. It's not illegal anywhere.

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Flu So Pretty: 13 Ways to Feel/Look Slightly Less Gross When Sick

If you are one of the helpless victims of this year's flu--or even just a really bad case of seasonal allergies--chances are you've found yourself bedridden in the last few months. And because there are only so many syndicated episodes of Parks and Recreation one can watch, you may have found yourself extremely -- even terminally -- bored during your illness and recovery.

You also probably found yourself, after a day or two, to be pretty freaking gross looking. While there is no reason to embark upon a full, Academy Awards-level grooming during a bout of the flu, there is something to be said about using that "lost time" to make you feel better by doing small, no-to-low effort things that may even help you look a little better. As Billy Crystal's Fernando points out, "It's not how you feel -- it's how you look."

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Five Things That We Miss About the Rodeo Once It's Over

Photo by Brian Austin
He. Is. SO. CUTE.
I never realized just how big a deal the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo is until I moved to this fair city. Back home in Victoria we have a livestock show, but being that I've never been the most agriculturally inclined person all that livestock shows ever meant to me was that the carnival was in town.

To my surprise, I've become rather fond of this yearly tradition. While many of my friends are ambivalent or downright hostile toward it, I genuinely look forward to it now. Sure, traffic gets a little worse in certain parts of town, the parking lot can be an absolute nightmare, and I'll never be able to pull off the cowboy look, but these are all things that I'm willing to deal with in the name of a good time.

As we prepare to say goodbye to the rodeo until the next year, here are five things that I love about it that I wish I could have year round.

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Stupid Advice About "Marrying Smart" in New Book

Last week, collegiate women everywhere were offered some advice that seemed to be sent via mimeograph directly from 1955. Author Susan Patton, who dubs herself "The Princeton Mom," released her book Marry Smart: Advice for Finding THE ONE (capitals hers). The book is a self-help guide, if you will, on how to bag a good man early on in life -- when young women are in college. Patton then goes into great detail, based on her own personal experience and that of people she knows, on why this is the best time for such an endeavor.

Some of the advice Patton offers is genuinely sound: Look for good boys because they make good men; don't date married men; if he cheats with you, he'll cheat on you. All of this is fair. The book is broken into parts based on age, college years, twenties, thirties and the differences in finding a "mate" (God, I hate that word) through these times in a woman's life. And despite what we want to say, finding a guy in your twenties is significantly different from finding one when you are 30. But very quickly, Patton's advice turns into a bad episode of The Donna Reed Show, except even Donna Reed wouldn't put herself down like Patton is suggesting young women everywhere start to do.

The crux of Patton's book is that young college women need to be intelligent and find a man while in school. If finding said man gets in the way of your studies or personal exploration, well, that's just fine by her. You'll have plenty of time to get a career going, but so many smart, capable and, most important, single men will never again surround you at once; the time for snagging one is nigh!

Patton is right on the one hand -- being in college is probably the last time you will be living among a plethora of college-age men, but smart? Capable? College guys? Hey, Susan Patton, when was the last time you were in college? That's right: a long, long time ago.

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Puking Isn't Just for St. Paddy's Day

Categories: Random Ephemera

I know that to many people who actually celebrate St. Patrick's Day in earnest, the holiday dedicated to the death of the patron saint of Ireland, Saint Patrick, is a time of family celebration and Irish pride. But sadly, to most of the United States, the holiday has turned into a poor excuse to get completely obliterated and wear monochromatic green outfits.

We Americans just love any reason that justifies getting tanked; hell, we don't even need the holiday, really; it just makes painting shamrocks on your face more socially acceptable.

In my younger days, I celebrated this holiday with the fervor of a girl who desperately needs bead necklaces on Mardi Gras to prove her worth, but now I am happy to eat a boiled potato and watch Leprechaun. Scrolling through my Facebook feed, I found varying levels of emotion about the holiday, from "Let's crack another green Guinness" to "Get off my lawn...with your throw-up." One particularly irate friend called out every person who has ever partaken a few too many as the scum of the earth, especially when their upchucking was involved. It seemed a bit extreme, but I understood her point. No one likes being around really drunken, barfing people.

It got me thinking, however, about debaucherous moments in my own life, holiday-related and not, and how I wished I could apologize to those who got caught in the cross fire, and when I say "cross fire," obviously I'm talking about vomit.

You see, I am what you might describe as someone with a weak stomach, or in layman's terms: a puker. I never mean to do it, and when it happens it's usually not even because I have consumed that much. More often than not, I just haven't eaten enough that day to counteract the alcohol or maybe my internal organs just can't handle it, but regardless of reason, my urge to purge is legend with my close friends and family. (I was known for some time as "Puke-a-saurus Rex.)

In my deep thoughts on the subject -- because I guess I have nothing better to think about --- it occurred to me that I have never tossed my cookies on St. Patrick's Day. There have been many, many other days, and here are a few of my favorites. I would love if you would share yours, assuming you remember them.

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The 10 Worst Pickup Lines of All Time

Photo by Bombardier via flickr

So, you're standing at a bar, and some over-cologned dude who's sporting sunglasses indoors slides in next to you and says the following:

"Do you want to see something swell?"

And then he proceeds to look down at his crotch. No. Just no. These are situations that should never happen, and yet they do, often. Horrid pickup lines are hilarious anecdotally, but they're utterly uncomfortable in the moment. Nothing says "I need mace" like a stranger's crotch-reference. Especially when alcohol is involved.

So listen, guys. No matter what Mystery, the eyeliner-sporting "pickup artist" told you in his book, or what your boys told you about "negging" or whatever, it is never a good idea to use a stupid pickup line.

Here are some of the worst pickup lines ever, just in case you were planning to use any of them during tonight's bar-prowl.

Oh, love. Ain't it grand?

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For the Fancy Potheads: Cannabis Wedding Receptions and Luxury Pot Tours

Photo by tanjila via flickr creative commons

So, let's talk about the traditional method of weed delivery, shall we? The nickel sack.

Does anyone here remember the nickel sack? You'd buy it in some hurried drug deal, a process in which you'd deliver your five dollar bill to some the shady guy out of view, who would then pull a crumpled-up sandwich bag out of his nether regions. It was a crazy, somewhat unsanitary process of scoring some weed, but it was weed, and you were happy.

Well, those days are over folks. Sorry to kill the nostalgia buzz, but gone are the days of stuffing your shoe -- or your nether regions -- with a sandwich bag full of weed. These days, it's all about the frills of the drug deal. Seriously.

Now that recreational weed is legal in a couple of states, we are starting to see a new phenomenon arise from the prohibition ashes: the re-branding of cannabis. Weed no longer carries some sort of stoner stigma, and these days it's all about the high-end, flavor-profiled cannabis, and the cannabis connoisseurs that flock to it.

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