This whole Planned Parenthood/Komen thing keeps irritating me again at random points throughout my day, which is pretty crappy because it’s seriously ruined basically the past seventy two hours of my life in a pretty major way. Right when I think I’ve forgotten it or managed to distract myself, some little part of me flares up in rage again (“But what the FUCK! It’s like they’re TRYING to PROVE that Planned Parenthood is only a baby-killing machine by taking away some of its other super valuable services! And like they only care about curing breast cancer in rich white ladies who will give them more money! What the fuck is humanity COMING TO? This is HORRIBLE!”) I think I physicallycannotstop being pissed off about it, and so instead of writing nine thousand more words on how utterly infuriating this entire situation is, here, instead, are some links!
• Lest we forget, a year ago when that whole defunding debacle happened I wrote a thing about how much and why I love Planned Parenthood, and none of my feelings have changed.
• Salon has a great piece with a good analysis of the Komen Foundation and how it’s actually symptomatic of wider problems with the org:
It’s worth noting that while breast cancer rates are dipping, an October report from the American Cancer Society warned that they are declining more slowly among low-income women, and that “Poor women are now at greater risk for breast cancer death because of less access to screening and better treatments. This continued disparity is impeding real progress against breast cancer.” You know who loses when Komen backs away from Planned Parenthood? Probably not those nice, pink-clad ladies who attend Susan Komen wine-tasting events.
• This post does a great job of explaining the insidious ways in which pro-lifers are not so much anti-abortion as anti women’s freedom and anti-sex in general, which is an excellent point
If pro-life activists really cared about public health and stopping abortion and saving the precious widdle babies, if they were truly pro-life, then they would support policies and scientific advancements that prevent abortion and, you know, actually save lives. They would promote the use of contraceptives, and fight to make them as cheap and accessible as possible…………. They would support financial assistance for women who cannot afford pre and postnatal care. They would support organizations like Planned Parenthood. But they don’t. They virulently oppose all of these things with a vicious, fiery passion because it’s not about the babies and it’s not about health - it’s about the sex and the women who have it.
• The Planned Parenthood Saved My Life tumblr is full of stories from women who received excellent and often life-saving care at their local PP, which is nothing knew but really serves to drive home the point that, you know, it rules?
• Here’s a link where you can donate to PP, or if you aren’t able to donate, you can always actually support them by, you know, utilizing their services — go ahead and book yourself a pap smear or whatevz like, right now, since you’ve probably been putting it off anyhow. You can also add your name to the letter declaring that you still stand with PP, or you can check out the PPAction site for more news and updates and calls to action.
OKAY KIDS. Makeup tutorial, part two time! So you did that nice classy cat-eye with the orange lipstick thing earlier in the day, right? And now you just got home from work and are going to, I don’t know, something FABULOUS and you want to look like a grungy alien witch mermaid goth from space in the 90’s or something, yeah? But like you don’t actually want to pull out the blue lipstick like Meg does sometimes because you still want to look sort of like a presentable human, just with rad eye makeup? Like this?
Tumblr has also informed me that I have “partial heterochromia.” Cool!
Cool. So you’re gonna go home, wipe off the rest of that lipstick, and dust a little loose powder over your face to negate any shininess that happened during the day, and maybe fix your brows a bit. And then we’re gonna get started. You’re going to go into the bowels of your makeup box/bin/bag/Kaboodle/whatevz and get:
Russian-born Nina Leen was one of the first female photographers to shoot for LIFE magazine, which, fortunately for us, means there’s a ton of her work available on the Google LIFE photo archives. While mostly known for her work with animals (including a dog named Lucky that she adopted and apparently put hats on), it’s Leen’s photographs of women that I find most fascinating. Admittedly, to some extent the period of time in which she was working for LIFE — the late 40s through the 1950s — dictated that bizarre style of “it’s totally not posed, I swear, I just stand this awkwardly and grin with a box of kitchen supplies all the time, not to mention we are all white and very happy all the time” photography. (The original “woman laughing alone with salad?”)
But when juxtaposed with her more candid shots (a girl falling down at a skating rink, a woman on the phone in an office, women trying on shoes, cleaning their living rooms, browsing stores) they provide a surprising amount of insight into the expectations versus reality of being a young woman in that era. Exposé photoessays on the work of housewives or of young working girls (like we know from Mad Men, most of them are either secretaries or models) ran in contrast to Upper East Side socialites walking their dogs or glamorous women in evening gowns posed like mannequins. Intentionally or otherwise, her work as a whole provides an interesting study on idealized femininity and the public versus private lives of women and the world, separate from that of men, in which they were forced to exist.
More photos after the jump.
So you guys all comment or ask me for a makeup tutorial like once a goddamned week, I swear, and I finally did it! For some reason this felt super awkward? Like way more awkward than taking photos of my outfits? It’s really weird to do one step of your makeup and then take a picture and then after like eighteen photos I’m all “ew god that is WAY TOO MUCH OF MY FACE this is so embarrassing what am I doing ew, wait shit I shouldn’t have worn this tube top now it looks like I’m NAKED too, someone SEND HELP PLZ” but anyhow, whatever, MOVING ON.
This is pretty much my daily makeup routine, more or less: the whole thing takes me less than ten minutes at this point and relies basically on a simple bold cat-eye and a bright lipstick colour. This is basically what I do in the morning, for work or ordinary daytime things, and later in the week (I did TWO!) I’ll post the second half of this to show you what I do at the end of the day, with this stuff basically already on my face, to go from “daytime appropriate” to “super gothy 90s club kid editorial black eyeliner new sparkly Gareth Pugh pigment and greyish purple lips whatever I don’t even know" that I guess is more what my face usually looks like after 9 PM. It’s the Jekyll and Hyde of makeup tutorials or something? I DON’T KNOW. Let’s get started. Three steps only, I promise!
Deets after the jump!
FOOD POST TIME Y’ALL. Mixing sweet and savory is kind of my jam, and while my usual breakfast is pretty modest (yogurt with some almonds, fruit and a protein bar, toast with peanut butter and honey, etc) I actually have a huge weakness for breakfast pastries and muffins and sweetbreads and so on. These muffins — with no butter but full of omega-3’s from olive oil, and fiber from apples and whole wheat flour — let me pretend that there’s some sort of vague nutritional value in something so tasty. These seriously are delicious — you’ll be amazed at how light and fluffy they are and at how well the flavor of the olive oil comes through. They’re amazing right out of the oven spread with some fig jam or mascarpone cheese or apple butter, but keep pretty well wrapped in foil for a few days as well.
BLACK PEPPER AND OLIVE OIL APPLE MUFFINS
recipe after the jump, adapted from here
This post is about the fact that I am more than halfway through my twenties and have just started to learn how to use a curling iron. Look! I am learning!
american apparel + sharpie shirt, h+m skirt, LOTS OF HAIRSPRAY.
In general I am pretty good at girl things: I can apply liquid eyeliner perfectly in a moving taxi, and I hardly even blink at five inch heels. But one thing has always eluded me: CURLING IRONS. How do those torturous implements which I recall being forced to submit to as a child for maximum curled-under bangs give people everything from loose waves to Hollywood ringlets without weird bumps in their hair and burns all over their face? IT’S A TWELVE INCH ROD OF FOUR HUNDRED DEGREE CERAMIC-COATED METAL. That is a device capable of a good deal of bodily harm.
But the grass is always greener when it comes to hair texture, and I’ve spent much of my life trying to make my thick wiry pin straight hair (for reference, this is “air dried and slept on”) somehow not straight. It has been a long and expensive journey, but I think I am finally learning! HERE I WILL SHOW YOU HOW.
Every time I get into one of those All Time Desert Island Top Five conversations, I hesitate. I usually go for the safe, the safe and obvious — Radiohead, The Pixies, New Order, Gang of Four, maybe like Sleater Kinney or the Yeah Yeah Yeahs? But I’m always lying. Because the thing I always hesitate to admit is this: one of my favorite bands, and the band I have seen live more than any other, ever, is actually Rainer Maria.
That’s me, age 16, in a mall, holding a Frappochino, wearing a Rainer Maria shirt I made.
I don’t remember where, when, or how I first discovered the band — my best guess is on a mix or from one track that took me an hour to download from a nascent Napster. But I remember saving babysitting money to buy their CDs from Sound Exchange, the independent record store in my town, and biking home to pour over the liner notes while I listened to them. Rainer Maria was the only band I’d heard with the melodic rawness I’d come to love in bands like Braid and Alkaline Trio, but with a girl, and less violent and stupid, and with something else, something that seemed cool and too smart, something that seemed like how I saw myself. They wrote songs about Abraham Lincoln and Walt Whitman, they were named after a poet. Clearly this was something different, something I needed to love.
The context for this is, I suppose, is that I was born in the mid-80s and grew up in fucking New Jersey, a veritable mecca of hair gel, tanning beds, and strip malls. But it was a breeding ground for that now oft-maligned genre of our collective teenage shame – emo, which admittedly constituted a significant portion of my teenage identity, years before Jimmy Eat World records started going platinum. Between the ages of 13 and 16 my life revolved entirely around mixes from friends, crappy shows in American Legion hall basements, and college radio, facilitated by information I consumed ravenously from LiveJournal and an early Pitchfork Media, via the 14.4k modem my parents acquired when I was in the ninth grade.
Living in a town where “not tanning” and “taking an art class” was all it took to make you “subversive” was torture to my oh-so-misunderstood teenage self: Rainer Maria gave me a promise. My best friend and I would cut school to take the New Jersey Transit bus to New York, though we never knew what to do there. We did what we thought we should do and waited in the places we thought we should be — bought books at the Strand, records at Other Music, ate pizza. We shared my headphones waiting for the train at Broadway-Lafayette, one earbud in each of our ears, listening to the CD of A Better Version Of Me, which I’d just bought.
It seemed, at the time, that Caitlin de Marrais was actually singing about a better version of me, the one I could become. I too could one day live in Brooklyn and be a literary and complicated redhead (that Caithlin and Jenny Lewis are partially responsible for my ginger conversion at the age of 16 is undeniable) and wear Victorian blouses and skinny jeans tucked into boots. It seemed so sophisticated in comparison to my cropped hair and Converse sneakers. One day I too would have a complicated love life, a college education’s worth of pretentious literary references, and a knowledge of New York geography (the skyline is two gazes long, going nowhere on the BQE, pick me up on A & 9th) to drop into my songs to make up for a limited vocal range. Caithlin de Marrais was precisely who my maudlin, sheltered sixteen-year-old self knew I could be the moment I escaped New Jersey. Never before had it been more obvious an option as it was on that train platform as I’ve seen the girl who will pick up where I left off, she’s already smoothing her hands for the pictures…I know I should drop everything and let her sing she’s a better version of me strained through tinny headphone speakers into my ears.
I guess when I was 17 “taking a photo with the singer of the band” seemed like a cool thing to do
I saw them live for the first time on Valentine’s Day of my senior year of high school, in the echoing, shadowy chapel of the college (Vassar) that I had recently been accepted to. The next autumn, having escaped the suburbs at long last, I flung myself with wholehearted naiveté into becoming an “Interesting College Student/Intellectual English Major.” But as I surrounded myself with books, sweaters, and mismatched earth-toned dorm room bedding, something I had long suspected began to concretize for the first time as well, in the form of a dark-haired girl from New York who would come to visit another friend at Vassar. We went to a Le Tigre show at the campus center, and back in her friend’s room she smiled at me and held my hand under the blanket and my body froze at the electric warmth of her so near. She gave me a sterile kiss on the cheek and apologized for not having any time alone with me, and mentioned that she had Rainer Maria tickets in a few weeks, did I want to come?
I took the Metro North south to Grand Central, and we made our way to Northsix, the filthy Brooklyn venue that has since become the Bowery-Presents-owned chrome-finished Music Hall of Williamsburg. Her boyfriend bought us Sparks at a bodega, which we drank out of paper bags sitting on the broken concrete near the Kent waterfront (I know, I know) before the show. Later, I pressed myself up against the stage and sang along to every word, while she fought with her boyfriend outside.
He broke up with her (via text message) on our way home, and I consoled her on the train ride back, her head heavy in my lap. There was nowhere to sleep in her tiny Manhattan apartment but in her bed, and she clung to me throughout the night, her breath warm on the back of my neck, her hand on the small of my back. I left the next morning after another apology and sterile kiss on the cheek, and walked to the train with a joy of anticipation or self-actualization or understanding rising in my chest. There was a smaller sinking feeling in my stomach, and the suspicion that I had definitely cheated on my long-distance high-school boyfriend, though I was unsure why, as the evening’s most illicit incident had been a twenty-one year old buying beer for my eighteen year old self.
I wrote in a small black notebook on the train back upstate: Went to see Rainer Maria last night, in Brooklyn. I stared at the page for a while, unsure of what else to write, since I felt like Something Important had happened. Instead I carefully printed the lyrics: Save me some time. I’ve always wanted to wake up, on the Lower East Side. You want me completely and I’m ready and it’s fine, and so I begin the double life.
my dorm room, sophomore year of college
For the next few years I would see every show that Rainer Maria played in New York, including their last, which I would go to just hours after flying back from a semester living in Prague. Jet-lagged and alone, I lingered at the back rather than pressing myself against the stage, although I still knew the words. "Living in New York" and "dressing kinda arty" no longer held the mysterious, elite appeal it did when I was fifteen, and I was deeply ashamed of my screamo-heavy, mall-shopping suburban history — patently uncool amongst my city-raised I-have-wealthy-artist-parents classmates. An awareness of issues beyond “not fitting in at my high school” had developed, and I was conflicted by how self-indulgent the songs now seemed. My new life in New York, a developing career in the music industry, and my time in Prague (naturally filled with electroclash, a new haircut, and a terribly affected sense of self) had caused something else: a guilty suspicion that this just wasn’t cool. I left torn between embarrassment and a strange nostalgia for the person I had been when I loved them with such unbridled enthusiasm.
Five years later, all of this is, of course, hilariously petty. I’m sort of an adult now, with a day job and a live-in girlfriend and a lease I signed for and bills I pay, usually on time. My teenage image of who I would be in my mid twenties is oddly accurate, although shifted: I publish my writing differently than I thought I would, and I’m a blonde now, not a redhead. But as it turns out, there’s nothing especially glamorous about being a grown-up and living in New York. There are times that I feel cheated by how unglamorous the whole thing actually is — the drudgery of the commute, rude taxi drivers, roaches, Excel spreadsheets of personal budgets. I often feel old, old and boring.
But Rainer Maria is still on my iPod, every last song they’ve ever recorded, and I still listen to them more often than I want to admit. Strangely, I think my lingering affinity stems from the fact that the songs somehow manage to re-romanticize for me the shocking ordinariness of what it’s actually like to be a creative professional in New York. Somehow they bring back a nostalgia for the version of myself I am now, but as I saw that self ten years ago – the girl who will pick up where I leave off, the girl who will beat through all the hell and high water threatening what she believes. She’s a better version of me.
On Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 1:46 PM, the rejectionist wrote:
are you going to see the us girl with the dragon tattoo? i saw the preview and there is absolutely no chance on this earth i want to watch that movie, but I REALLY REALLY NEED FOR SOMEONE TO MAKE ME A PHOTOMONTAGE OF ROONEY MARA’S OUTFITS, WILL YOU DO THIS, THERE IS NO ONE ELSE I CAN TRUST
On Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 1:49 PM, m clark wrote:
i couldn’t sit through the entirety of the swedish one and had to turn it off after like the seventeenth graphic rape/dismemberment/etc and thus i was not planning on subjecting myself to the american one and am certainly paying $13 plus popcorn to do so, but i’m sure we can figure something out
On Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 1:53 PM, the rejectionist wrote:
maybe we can get someone on twitter to do it, didn’t the worn people do that for clueless or something
On Mon, Oct 31, 2011 at 1:28 PM, m clark wrote:
let’s try, maybe we can get an “intern”
they can go on an Official Errand buy the h+m pants for us too
Sometimes you end up having so many conversations about your Feelings about a thing, which are not even very Complicated feelings just Obvious ones, that actually “writing a coherent thing about it” seems simultaneously impossible and totally boring so there’s nothing left to do but post the weirdo conversations you had about it instead, which is what’s about to happen with regards to The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and specifically the H+M collection inspired by such which we have seen ALL OVER THE INTERNETS this week but in case we haven’t, well, there’s a photo of it above, and there’s a lot more e-mail conversations, facebook posts, and links after the jump.
But hey, as previously mentioned — if anyone wants to, uh, volunteer as an one-time intern for Sarah and I to compile a photomontage for us of Rooney Mara’s styling without actually having to subject us to the inevitable eighty seven brutal rape scenes, we’re totally serious. Sort of. We can pay you with whiskey.