June 2009

Do a Higher IQ and EQ Really Mean More Orgasms?

In yet another study trying to determine who among the female population can and can not achieve "heavenly bliss" (and no, I am definitely not talking about the feeling you get in church), researchers at King's College in London surveyed 2,000 female twins about their sex lives. The results indicated that the higher the IQ and EQ of a woman, the more orgasms that woman will have.

Needless to say, I think this study is likely a crock of she-ite.

Human Trafficking: Kidnapping, Rape and Modern Day Slavery

The word “traffick” conjures images of bumper-to-bumper taxi cabs, women applying lipstick in smudgy lines, and men screaming obscenities at whatever unfortunate creatures that happen to be deadlocked in front of them. After the award-winning fillm Traffick hit theaters, the public may have become more aware of what the word can really mean. But human trafficking, the most heinous form of the word, is the third largest industry on earth, just behind the arms and drug trades. (Hopefully Liam Neeson's latest hit movie Taken will alert the public as Traffic previously did.)

Does Anthony Robbins Have Anything Useful to Say?

Is Anthony Robbins a Psycho-Quack cheese-master or does he actually have something useful to say? This is my true story of how Anthony Robbins made me a functioning member of society again.

A few years ago, I was afflicted with the often-undiagnosed Supermarket Anxiety and as-yet unrecognized disorder on the DSM. It hit me abruptly and without warning. After years of leisurely strolling through the aisles, I became panicky at the Grocery Store, just wanting to get the F out of Dodge. If i went with a friend, I would wait in the car. If I went alone, I walked quickly and with my head down, as if in a trance. The situation became so bad that I started dissociating at the drop of a hat. (If my mind left my body, I was not cognizant enough of where it went to be able to enjoy the experience.)

Buffy Vs. Edward: Not As Clear-Cut As You Might Think

I have not read the Twilight books nor seen the Twilight movie.  I have a long standing policy of not criticizing things that I haven't watched or read myself.  However, I've heard enough about the Twilight series, from a number of sources that I trust, to feel like I have a pretty good grasp at what's going on.  (I'm certainly qualified to comment on Buffy and Angel issues, having watched every single episode of both.)

This mash-up video,
created by a group of Buffy fans, sums everything up nicely.  Edward is creepy, Bella is a passive loser who thinks that his stalking is somehow attractive, and Buffy is a sensible girl who would kick Edward's ass.  And rightly so.

There are a lot of interesting discussions that come out of comparing Buffy and Twilight.  It's not nearly as clear-cut as "Buffy is awesome and Twilight sucks."  Buffy, too, fell in love with her stalker (Angel).  One difference between them is that the show recognized the error of Buffy's ways, while Stephanie Meyer does not.  By all accounts, Meyer essentially celebrates and honors stalking and general creepiness as a way of showing affection.

Then again, we can't fully have this discussion if we're going to continue to pretend that "that episode" of Buffy, the one with the "incident" with Spike, didn't happen.  Hey, I understand why you'd want to pretend that.  The show was a lot less problematic if you overlook "that episode." 

Bacardi Urges Women to Get Ugly Friends

Via Jezebel.

WTF!  Bacardi Breezers has a great ad campaign (please read this with the necessary sarcasm that I hope is dripping off the page) that encourages women to drink Bacardi Breezers at bars, beaches, or BBQs  in the company of "an ugly girlfriend", so they can look more attractive by comparison. Great advice from perhaps the most misogynistic company on the face of the earth? I'm not so sure. More than likely, it is just an ill-thought out ad campaign that will hopefully turn around and bite Bacardi in the ass. (Pardon my language)

The Preference for Boys v. Girls

In a recent NYT article, the writer examained the current trend of Asian-Americans' preference for boys in the United States, which  been reflected in the actual number of boys born in the United States in relation to the number of girls born. (The researchers also stress that not every Asian-American does this.) According to the article:

"In general, more boys than girls are born in the United States, by a ratio of 1.05 to 1. But among American families of Chinese, Korean and Indian descent, the likelihood of having a boy increased to 1.17 to 1 if the first child was a girl, according to the Columbia economists. If the first two children were girls, the ratio for a third child was 1.51 to 1 — or about 50 percent greater — in favor of boys."

The Women's Craft Ghetto

After writing yesterday's blog post, I started thinking about the economics of selling crafts.  The most obvious reason for why crafts earn so little money is that they are traditionally women's work.  It is almost impossible to earn a decent amount of money for making a craft.

Just as an example, it will take me about 50 or 60 hours to knit a sweater, plus between $60 and $100 for the yarn.  However, I can go to Target and buy a perfectly good sweater for about $20.00.  When someone asks me to knit a sweater, they are usually shocked at the price that I quote them.  My standard quote is the cost of materials plus $10.00 an hour.  This is a fair cost for me, but most people are appalled.

Etsy A "False Feminist Fantasy"?

Via Metafilter today, a long and elaborate discussion regarding women selling crafts on the Internet.  The bloggers at Slate's new feminist blog feel that Etsy is a ghetto for women who have been sold the dream of working from home and making a living selling crafts.  This is the conclusion they have drawn from the fact that most Etsy sellers are women.

It is very true, as the article points out, that very few people selling on Etsy are making a living from it.  For most people, Etsy is a way to finance their hobby.  That doesn't stop people from dreaming that they can make a full-time job out of it.  But hey, it doesn't hurt to dream, right?

Sara Ziff Details Fashion Model Exploitation

The Guardian has an interview with former model Sara Ziff regarding her new documentary, Picture Me, about the poor working conditions in the modeling industry.  It is perhaps not surprising that models - young, female, pretty, entirely under the control of whoever happens to be running the shoot, and isolated from their previous lives and support systems - are subject to what can only be called institutionalized sexual assault. 

The Ins and Outs of Hymen Reconstruction Surgery

When I was in Korea about ten years ago, one of my male university students was eager to explain the "ins and outs" (sorry- couldn't resist- pun definitely intended) of hymen reconstruction surgery. According to him, it was a common occurrence for girls about ready to get married and needing that "extra dose of virginity" that they may have been lacking.

A Menopausal Man

Men are encroaching on our territory. (Remember last year when the "man" had a baby?) Today, the NYT had a little segment by Dana Jennings who received hormone therapy as treatment for Prostrate Cancer. As a result, he "got" to experience all of the "pleasures" of menopause, right along side his wife and  wrote about his experiences with humor, wit, and more than a little empathy.

Plastic Surgery Vacations

Imagine your dilemma, you want to travel somewhere for an exotic vacation with or without your "special someone", but you are not quite bikini-ready. Your belly is a little bigger than you would like and your 40-year-old breasts are not your 20-year-old breasts of yesterday. Do you stay home, work out religiously and buy a Wonderbra bikini to give you that special perk you so desperately need or do you take a vacation and get a little plastic surgery done at the same time?

Teen Sex

Brooke Shields regrets not having sex earlier. Apparently, the model/actress/spokesperson for postpartum depression and foe to Scientology  did not do the deed until the age of 22. I'm thinking that although she is a litttle bit older than me, that this was a little above average in the age depression for losing the big "V".