Tuesday, July 30, 2013

40 years -can it be?

                                                        Some of the class of '73

Oh yes it can.  Our class reunion was held this past Saturday,  July 27th. Alas I was unable to go to the Friday dinner nor Saturday morning breakfast but I did meet with others for a tour of the old home town that afternoon.

As we walked down Merrick Rd (the main street) we played "what the hell use to be here?"  There were so many changes since we were kids/teenagers.

We also toured the small but nice historical museum. Later we had a dinner/dance consisting of all the classes that graduated in the '70's.

I know some people don't like reunions but I do.  I love the energy that bubbles through everyone.   I love how they smile and hug each other and how it's accentuated by squeals of surprise and delight. I love how they get up and dance, in couples or in groups so everyone can participate. I love how joy seems to permeate the air. You can almost feel its effervescence and breath it in.  I mean really, that's fun.  How can anyone not like all of that?

The only thing I don't like is they end.  You sit there the next day and say damn I should have gotten so and so's number and/or I wish I had talked to certain people more. Well you get the idea.  But it's still good.  And if I'm around for the fiftieth, I'll be there shakin' it on the dance floor (or at least trying to) and hugging my classmates. 

Do you like reunions?  Which ones have you gone to.  Do you feel there's a certain year to stop having them or to stop going to them?

Some of my classmates
Can  you tell Blogger wasn't cooperating with me on these pics. They're suppose to be side by side.

Note: I fractured my hand after I had come home from the reunion. (No, I wasn't drunk!  I'd been real good and had one drink for the whole night)  So, in the coming weeks, my posts will probably consist of more pictures or things I can copy and paste.  Sorry.

Monday, July 15, 2013

How Should We Talk to Little Girls?

How do you talk to little girls? According to Lisa Bloom, in a posting on The Blog (Huff Post), we should never compliment them on their looks.  Doing so teaches girls their appearance is the first thing you notice, establishing that looks are most important.  She states "that 15 to 18 percent of girls under 12 now wear mascara, eyeliner and lipstick regularly; eating disorders are up and self-esteem is down; and 25 percent of young American women would rather win America's Next Top Model than the Nobel Peace Prize". Because of society's emphasis on appearance, little girls are worried more than ever about their looks and suffering the consequences. 

What you should do is comment on something more meaningful, ask about their likes and dislikes and why.  For tweens and teenagers, you should ask their opinions on timely matters and what they think should be done. She states this helps to reinforce the idea that her intelligence is most important.  It makes her feel  her ideas have credibility and makes her think in different ways.

On the other hand  Carla Molina, thinks it's a load of "crap".  She feels girls don't have a bad body image because we compliment them on their appearance but it is the result of poor role models -women who are "obsessed in an unhealthy way about body image".   She says "I will not ignore their looks for the sake of making them feel smart. I do not believe brains and beauty are mutually exclusive. My girls can be both attractive and smart." She says complimenting a little girl doesn't have to be shallow if you do it in a constructive way. 

I can see Lisa Bloom's point.  An ABC news report stated that a "2009 University of Central Florida study found that nearly half of the 3- to 6-year-old participants said they worried about being fat".  That's alarming.  In my opinion, that idea shouldn't even touch that age group's minds. They should be more worried about whether they might not have the right color crayon to finish their drawing. 

Younger and younger girls are over occupied with with how they look.  This brings about peer pressure, who's "in" and who's "out" based on image and creates low self esteem.  It's definitely a problem - a big problem.  I think the media, advertising, corporations, and women who've bought into this are the biggest culprits and it should be stopped.  

However, I can also agree with Carla Molina. I believe both intelligence and beauty can reside side by side as long as the child relies more on intelligence as a measure of worth.   I don't think there's anything wrong with a simple compliment on a child's clothing, hair, eyes etc as  long as it's not the only thing you say to her. No gushing on and on about how pretty or cute she is or her  fabulous outfit.  Why can't you say they have a pretty dress, t-shirt, eyes or they look nice today and then go into a discussion of what they like, what they read, etc. or vice versa?  Does that hurt or undermine their value of themselves?  I don't know. I would think the longer conversation of exchanging ideas would leave a more lasting or better impression than the quick physical compliment.

What's you're opinion?  Should we or shouldn't we compliment little girls on their looks? How do you handle talking to little girls?

Monday, July 1, 2013

This ain't edgy

Sorry, I saw this on Buzzfeed and it wouldn't get out of my head.  After all these years of trying to get equality, of trying to achieve good role models, and trying to raise women above subjugation, I see this and have to ask how...why...what happened? I have so many thoughts and feelings about this, I'm finding it hard to write them down coherently. So bear with me, please.

How can these manufacturers think violence towards women would attract them to buy their products? How is this glamorous? They have the nerve to trash women then ask for their money.  Let's face it, they wouldn't dare put anyone of color or religion in the same situation because it isn't right and there would be such an uproar from around the world it would shake their walls down but yet it's okay to show a female in a degrading way.  

Oh, by the way, that Johnny Farah bag she has over her head costs $545.00. He demoralizes women then expects them to pay an exorbitant amount  for his damn handbag.

Notice the "relish it" in the lower right hand corner. Sickening,  Yeah I'm sure women would love to be brutalized and sexually manhandled.

Allowing this man to to kick or shove her shows women they should tolerate abuse.  Is this the lesson we want our children to learn?

This Dolce & Gabbana ad, suggestive of a gang rape, is tame compared to the October 2010 Calvin Klein (below) that was  banned in Australia.

It can be debated whether or not this type of advertising promotes violence towards women, but I feel it desensitizes society to these situations making it easier for them to happen and making it harder to report such actions.  Through these ads, the victimization of women becomes normal to both men and women.   The shock at such actions become dull.   It becomes accepted that men can do it and women have to take it.   

It shouldn't be that way.    It just shouldn't be.

Note: What we, men and women alike, should do if we ever see any kind of ad that victimizes women, go to that manufacturer's site and really bitch. Tell them you'll never buy anything of theirs until they get their act together and that you'll tell anyone and everyone about their disgraceful ads.