V-Day and ONE BILLION RISING

Because V-Day can be about your Valentine or your Vagina or your Valentine’s Vagina or whatever you want it to be.

My Fabulous Nerds – this  2 PM posting time is not working out is it? At least not on Wednesdays as I am about to publish this about 40 minutes before midnight. Oh well, I’m gonna work on it for you. Promise.

ANYWAY, as you may or may not know, Valentine’s Day is one of my top three favorite holidays (along with Groundhog Day and Thanksgiving). Hey! Don’t think I don’t see the doubt in your face FabNerds. I know what you are thinking “But Jessica, you’re SINGLE – how can you love this overly-commercialized, patriarchal, first-world, cheese-fest that is designed to make independent women feel bad about the fact that they don’t have a husband?”

FabNerds, you are getting cynical on me! Here is my quick argument:

1- My favorite colors have and will ALWAYS be Pink and Red. By the end of January, walking into CVS is like walking into my brain.

2- What’s wrong with a little cheesy commercialism? I am known to enjoy the occasional silliness and I think that as long as you observe the world around you with a grain of salt and know that not everything is always going to be sunshine and rainbows for everyone then why can’t you buy the dancing Snoopy if he makes you smile?

Now is that so bad?

3- I’ve never believed that Valentine’s Day was just about being with your significant other. Growing up (with my crazy, awesome feminist parents) it was impressed upon me that Valentine’s Day was about taking stalk of ALL THE LOVE in your life: Love for your family, your friends, your job, your plant, yourself, whatever! It’s not really patriarchal when you thinking about it like that.

AND SPEAKING OF PATRIARCHY! 

This brings me to the other type of V-DAY in this post. Fifteen years ago, Eve Ensler, of Vagina Monologues fame (a play I am very proud to say I have been in twice) started V-Day, an organization to end violence in women in girls across the world. Today (for it is after midnight now and officially February 14th) V-Day asks all of us to stand up for ONE BILLION WOMEN on this planet that are raped and beaten in their lifetime. It is a day to raise awareness, stand together, and demand an end to violence against women. Here’s what the website says:

“What does ONE BILLION look like? On 14 February 2013, it will look like a REVOLUTION.

ONE BILLION RISING IS:

A global strike
An invitation to dance
A call to men and women to refuse to participate in the status quo until rape and rape culture ends
An act of solidarity, demonstrating to women the commonality of their struggles and their power in numbers
A refusal to accept violence against women and girls as a given
A new time and a new way of being”

Now, there are lots of ways to participate in this movement today. Many are listed on onebillionrising.org, but the simplest things you can do is to are:

A- Tweet using the hastag #1billionrising. Get it trending people!

B- Sharing it with your friends on Facebook!

C- Change any or all of your profile pictures to the One Billion Rising Logo that is at the top of this post. (I just did on FB and Twitter)

D- Share this blog post or ANY blog post about One Billion Rising on any social media platform of your choice. Or just share the website. Share like the lives of women across the globe depend on it. Because they do.

So, let’s not make Valentine’s Day just about Hallmark cards and chocolate -though I still think those are great things. But this day is more than that. It is about a Global Love and the best way I can think to demonstrate that today is to support women and help bring an end to violence. I’ll let Eve have the final word for today.

Happy Valentines,

Jess

 

 

You’re Not An Asshole

~*note: Sorry it took me so long to put this up today. There were technical difficulties. And then a new Gigi Darcy vid, followed by the series premiere of Squaresville. And then a really great game of Flow Free on my iphone.*~

Kurt Vonnegut’s drawing of an asshole. Not it doesn’t look like you or Lena Dunham.

What’s up FabNerds? Happy Friday! Let’s celebrate by talking about something that happened at the Golden Globe Awards a few weeks back. Remember when HBO’s  Girls one best comedy (also remember how SMASH was also nominated? How cool was that?!) and Lena Dunham thanked Chad Lowe at the end of her speech? Take a moment and watch it you don’t remember.

Good? Now, I’m not Lena Dunham’s biggest fan for a lot of reasons (her inability to walk in heels for one thing) BUT I do think she’s done some really cool things for women and television the last couple of years AND I will be the first to admit I thought her reference to THIS famous Oscar snub (featuring one of my favorite people Roberto Benigni) was kind of hysterical.*

Of course, like all pop culture references, not everyone got it. So when Ms. Dunham gave her post-win interview this is what she said. Skip to like 4:45, if you want to get to the damn point.

Now, since when does being clever in your Golden Globe acceptance speech make you an asshole? I see women doing this all the time and it really annoys me. Example: The other day one of my friends was talking about how she was the first person in her Really Hard and Sophisticated Science class to finish a test. Cool, right? Well, what does she say when she finishes this kick-ass story: “You know, because I’m an asshole.”

To which my wonderful roommate replied, “You’re not an asshole, you were just prepared.”

I read an article on Jezebel about how men use self-deprecation to diffuse anger from women. When a man says “I’m an asshole” to you it can be a type of gaslighting. It creates feelings of guilt and makes you learn to expect less from him – but it’s all good because both you and him know that he’s an “asshole”.

I can’t help but  feel like  this passive aggressive behavior totally correlates with how women use the A-word. However, instead of saying it to get away with less, women call themselves assholes to basically apologize for their accomplishments. It’s to soften the blow, because for some reason, women are feeling guilty of what they should be proud of.

I gotta ask… Ladies, what is the deal with this? Do you really feel bad or do you just think you should feel bad? Why do you feel the need to use all this self-deprecation? If you’ve achieved something awesome, you should OWN IT! Why do you want to shy away from your incredible feats? You know it’s not bragging if you deserve it, right? I mean, have you ever seen Oprah call herself an asshole? What Would Oprah Do??

I’m a WHAT?!

So here’s my humble request – and stop me if you think I’m asking for too much here- STOP CALLING YOURSELVES ASSHOLES! You deserve to be proud of what you contribute to the world and not feel the need to apologize.

That is, of course, if you’re not actually an asshole.

Peace,

Jess

madmen_icon

* Still don’t get it? Hillary Swank was married to Chad Lowe at the time and forgot to thank him in her acceptance speech. They are now divorced. This is why everyone freaks out at award shows now when someone forgets to thank their spouse. It’s like a clear sign their headed towards Splits-ville. So they say.

P.S. If you don’t already, follow me on the Twitter @TheFabJessGoing