Ephemerality

Apr 18, 2014

"

There are no Jack Kerouacs or Holden Caulfields for girls. Literary girls don’t take road-trips to find themselves; they take trips to find men.

"Great" books, as defined by the Western canon, didn’t contain female protagonists I could admire. In fact, they barely contained female protagonists at all.

"

Apr 18, 2014

Apr 18, 2014

"When you grow up as a girl, the world tells you the things that you are supposed to be: emotional, loving, beautiful, wanted. And then when you are those things, the world tells you they are inferior: illogical, weak, vain, empty."

—Stevie Nicks (via angelingus)

(Source: bmurguia, via whtabtpineapple)

Apr 18, 2014

ethiopienne:

my entire life in one tweet

ethiopienne:

my entire life in one tweet

(via bookoisseur)

Apr 18, 2014

boyfriendhook:

In which Jaime required coffee in order to sit through the wedding vows. [x]

OMFG BEST MISTAKE EVER

(Source: maimedlion, via whtabtpineapple)

Apr 17, 2014

"

A police officer from West Hartford had pulled up across the street, exited his vehicle, and begun walking in my direction. I noted the strangeness of his being in Hartford—an entirely separate town with its own police force—so I thought he needed help. He approached me with purpose, and then, without any introduction or explanation he asked, “So, you trying to make a few extra bucks, shoveling people’s driveways around here?”

All of my homeowner confidence suddenly seemed like an illusion.

It would have been all too easy to play the “Do you know who I am?” game. My late father was an immigrant from Trinidad who enrolled at Howard University at age 31 and went on to become a psychiatrist. My mother was an important education reformer from the South. I graduated from an Ivy League school with an engineering degree, only to get selected in the first round of the Major League Baseball draft. I went on to play professionally for nearly 15 years, retiring into business then going on to write a book and a column for The New York Times. Today, I work at ESPN in another American dream job that lets me file my taxes under the description “baseball analyst.”

But I didn’t mention any of this to the officer. I tried to take his question at face value, explaining that the Old Tudor house behind me was my own. The more I talked, the more senseless it seemed that I was even answering the question. But I knew I wouldn’t be smiling anymore that day.

"

—Excellent, excellent article by retired MLB player Doug Glanville on how he was racially profiled while shoveling snow out of his own driveway in Hartford, Connecticut. Worth the read. (via leeandlow)

(via whtabtpineapple)

Apr 17, 2014

(Source: disneyfansonly, via copsandwriters)

Apr 17, 2014

(Source: lady-arryn, via ladybunch)

Apr 17, 2014

bookoisseur:

postcardstoauthors:

Anne Fadiman is the author of Ex Libris.

Ex Libris is one of my all-time favorite books. I give it to everyone I know.

bookoisseur:

postcardstoauthors:

Anne Fadiman is the author of Ex Libris.

Ex Libris is one of my all-time favorite books. I give it to everyone I know.

Apr 17, 2014

counterpunches:

volando-voy:

volando-voy:

ephemeralness:

mhc-asc:

In 1964 the Mount Holyoke College Alumnae Association published this pamphlet “Do You Think You Want A Job?” and attached it to that winter’s issue of the Alumnae Quarterly magazine. It was only 50 years ago that “your husband and his job demand first consideration.” 

#i’m just going to link to this post whenever someone asks me if “feminism has really done anything for women” #yes is my answer

meanwhile i hope that people are actually reading all of the text instead of just snickering at that quote and mindlessly reblogging, because 95% of the advice is still relevant.

(actually, even that quote has been pulled out of context. having watched a number of foreign service families negotiate how to choose new overseas postings, i will say that considering the possible negative effects change will have on the stability of your partnership is pretty darn important. the wording in the pamphlet is archaic, to be sure, but that tip is far more practical than it is sexist.)

 

it’s just, blanket interpretations like that, which are clearly made by people who haven’t had enough life experience to think beyond their own narrow view of how things should be, really annoy me.

when i was doing my master’s degree, one of my courses on foreign policy dedicated an entire class session to discussing how you negotiate your career trajectory with your partner/family. there are a whole host of side effects experienced by said partner/family that come with a job full of rotational travel, positive and negative. and this is true for any career that requires heavy time commitments from an individual. but for college kids coming up in a society that glorifies the success of the individual, and who often have demonstrably weak interpersonal skills, being taught to recognize that your decisions put a lot of stress on other people and that you have to meaningfully communicate, and sometimes even turn down opportunities, is revelation and a total blind spot for lots of new/recent grads.

so, yes, i’m going to side-eye the way this text was framed for public consumption. saying that you shouldn’t prioritize the commitments that you voluntarily made for life when you want to make a significant life change that affects said people is just … naïve, and woefully ignorant.

#i think the most hilarious part is that if you reworded that point in modern lingo #nobody would find it offensive at all #it’s just that it uses the word ‘husband’#and is paired with the word ‘demand’ … which here is being used in the sense of ‘require/need’ #and not in the negative aggressive sense #CONTEXT MATTERS KIDS

I don’t disagree with the any of the above commentary. In part the lingo of “deciding” to get a job betrays that this classist, which is not terribly surprising considering that Mount Holyoke was distributing it to alums, and their alums would have been overwhelmingly white women at the time. 

However, when I initially re-blogged this and added the commentary, I was thinking more in part of Nora Ephron’s Commencement Speech at Wellesley, in which she talks about her graduation in 1962 - close to when this was being distributed - because I think it adds insight into the point Ephron is making about “marrying into lives” and being taught to make nice. 

My class went to college in the era when you got a masters degrees in teaching because it was “something to fall back on” in the worst case scenario, the worst case scenario being that no one married you and you actually had to go to work. As this same classmate said at our reunion, “Our education was a dress rehearsal for a life we never led.” Isn’t that the saddest line? We weren’t meant to have futures, we were meant to marry them. We weren’t’ meant to have politics, or careers that mattered, or opinions, or lives; we were meant to marry them. If you wanted to be an architect, you married an architect. Non Ministrare sed Ministrari — you know the old joke, not to be ministers but to be ministers’ wives.

I’ve written about my years at Wellesley, and I don’t want to repeat myself any more than is necessary. But I do want to retell one anecdote from the piece I did about my 10th Wellesley reunion. I’ll tell it a little differently for those of you who read it. Which was that, during my junior year, when I was engaged for a very short period of time, I thought I might transfer to Barnard my senior year. I went to see my class dean and she said to me, “Let me give you some advice. You’ve worked so hard at Wellesley, when you marry, take a year off. Devote yourself to your husband and your marriage.” Of course it was stunning piece of advice to give me because I’d always intended to work after college. My mother was a career women, and all of us, her four daughters, grew up understanding that the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” was as valid for girls as for boys. Take a year off being a wife. I always wondered what I was supposed to do in that year. Iron? I repeated the story for years, as proof that Wellesley wanted its graduates to be merely housewives. But I turned out to be wrong, because years later I met another Wellesley graduate who had been as hell-bent on domesticity as I had been on a career. And she had gone to the same dean with the same problem, and the dean had said to her, “Don’t have children right away. Take a year to work.” And so I saw that what Wellesley wanted was for us to avoid the extremes. To be instead, that thing in the middle. A lady. We were to take the fabulous education we had received here and use it to preside at dinner table or at a committee meeting, and when two people disagreed we would be intelligent enough to step in and point out the remarkable similarities between their two opposing positions. We were to spend our lives making nice.”

Of course, if you have made commitments to others, partners, children, those people deserve to be considered in your decision making process. But it’s worth noting the context in which women are continually socialized to be “nice,” the ones that compromise, and the ones that think of others. Could you imagine, for example, Harvard distributing this brochure in 1964 for it’s overwhelmingly male alums? I can’t.