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Jul. 31st, 2012


on fast food chicken

With the culture wars currently feasting on a diet of fried chicken, it seems appropriate to take a moment to figure out how we got here. The more polite among us are beginning to involve themselves by reminding us that fried chicken isn’t that important and that we shouldn’t assume the worst about each other. I think, in general, this is always a good message. However, we shouldn’t fall into the lazy thinking that taking a position in the middle makes you impartial, fair, and reasonable. I also submit that in this case, our assumptions are accurate. Simply, homophobic is as homophobic does.

I’ve heard it said that this thinking isn’t fair. I’m going to explain why it is by breaking down the argument made by chicken-loving social conservatives.

1. This is about freedom of speech - This is obviously illogical. Freedom of speech protects you from the government, not from criticisms of your fellow citizens. Seeing as nobody from Chick Fil A has been imprisoned or fined for this, clearly freedom of speech is safe. Furthermore, to suggest that liberals who want to boycott should be silenced is, itself, to suggest that freedom of speech be curtailed. Do you see why this argument doesn’t work?

2. Consumer activism hurts businesses and is unfair - This could be a logical argument. It would be a logical argument if you had not previously supported consumer activism on your side. If you think boycotts are so vile, why didn’t you feel this outraged when 1 Million Moms boycotted J C Penny for adopting Ellen Degenerous as a spokesperson? I’m waiting for an answer to that. From my perspective, it seems you’re only opposed to consumer activism when liberals do it.

So, at this point we’re left with the conclusion that the reasons you cite for supporting Chick Fil A are not really the reasons you’re doing it. You’re leaving me to fill in the blanks, myself. Here’s what I came up with.

1. You think what Chick Fil A did is good - Since it’s pretty obvious this isn’t about freedom of speech or consumer activism being wrong, you really must think that donating to hate groups is either not that bad or possibly good. I’ll try not to assume the worst, but you do realize that the donations WERE made by the corporation and did go to HATE groups, whose sole purpose is to restrict marriage, right? So, when I say you’re supporting a corporation that wants to restrict gay rights, you really are, and there’s no way to argue that point, except maybe making a time machine or brainwashing me.

2. You’re so hardened by the culture war that your first reflex is to take the side opposing those darn liberals - I think this is probably the more likely scenario. I still think this is morally wrong. Would you argue with me about the KKK being wrong just because we’re on other sides of the spectrum. Oh wait, you already did argue that murdering a teenager for the crime of wearing a hoodie was fine because he was looking suspicious (read: black). Sorry, couldn’t resist. But anyway, I’ve always tried to listen to what you have to say with an open mind and wouldn’t disagree with you purely out of spite. I still haven’t made my mind up about many issues that you care about. I’m not sure if I think shale oil is a good idea, and I promise I won’t decide against it just because I’m afraid of having common ground with you. Why can’t you extend to me the same courtesy?

I don’t think either of these assumptions is very flattering, and sadly, these are pretty much the only explanations with which you’ve left us for your behavior. Your timing is telling and speaks volumes. You care about this issue BECAUSE you either want to be contrary or oppose gay marriage. Either way, you’re still siding with a company who made the choice to donate to hate groups whose sole aim is to restrict the rights of gay Americans. So, homophobic is as homophobic does. You’ve chosen your side. This sends a message, whether you choose to acknowledge it or not.

I’ll admit that by most people’s standards, I’ve probably gotten too worked up. I don’t think I have. Gay teens are 4 times more likely to kill themselves. 4 times more likely. When they’re in a supportive environment, the numbers drop to normal levels. When I see your Chick Fil A posts, I see you casting a vote for the status quo and fighting to preserve an environment where homophobia is condoned or even encouraged. What does your support of Chick Fil A say to a gay teen who is struggling with his or her identity? It says that they are not doing what they should be, that they should continue living their lives at the margins of society and hide who they are. What does this say to the truly hateful people out there? I think it says that you understand why they feel justified in beating up a dirty homo. So, I realize this might sound a little histrionic, but you have blood on your hands. You have a part in creating cultural norms and your words and facebook posts have an effect. Please don’t tell me it’s just an opinion. It became something more when you voiced it so publicly.

I hope you’ll actually listen to what I have to say. I’m pretty sure most of the people I’m talking to already decided that they wouldn’t even bother reading what I have to say, because they know I’m on “the other side.” That’s really sad.

Jul. 13th, 2012


It's time for another edition of Dean Eats Things That Aren't Food!

om nom nomCollapse )

Jul. 11th, 2012


Attachment Parenting Flunkie: An Introduction to the “Whatever Works” School of Parenting

When I imagined motherhood, I thought I would give my baby the sort of childhood I had growing up. My mom was an attachment parent, before attachment parenting was a thing. She was also fairly crunchy, except for a steadfast refusal to cook anything in any appliance other than the microwave. We have since had many debates about whether you can call heating something in the microwave “cooking,” but I digress. We tended to use minimal products like body wash, and her governing philosophy was “simpler is better.” Her sustained paranoia regarding plastics, cell phones, and chemicals in make up was a source of consternation in my teenage years, but science has since vindicated her.

In contrast, my husband was raised in a house that was a shrine to name brand convenience. Tellingly, the first story he told me about his childhood was that he cried the first time he was set down in the grass, and refused to touch dirt, sand, and anything resembling nature until sometime around high school. He still finds excuses to avoid gardening. Something about nature is just so… unnatural.

While pregnant, I bought every crunchy mama staple. I amassed three(!) different baby carriers, all approved by the hard core baby wearers. These were not simple bjorns. No, no, no. Only the best, most ergonomically sound organic cotton contraptions for my baby! We stocked up on organic, paraben free body washes and lotions. I delighted in the new blender I got for my baby shower, which I would use to make wonderful homemade organic baby food. I researched cloth-diapering systems late at night.

Then something happened: I had my baby. I had my baby and he is definitely his father’s son.

My little prince, or as he has come to be known recently in my house, “King Baby,” is a persnickety little tot, and he shares his father’s tendencies. King Baby prefers to be pushed in a stroller, refuses home made baby food most of the time because mama can’t puree it fine enough for his delicate little mouth, and cannot abide even the tiniest drop of moisture against his skin.

I battled him about this for a while. I tried to get him to like being worn. He now tolerates it, but not well enough for me to ever leave the stroller behind for a walk. That kind of defeats the purpose. He begrudgingly ate some of my pureed peas, I think just to humor me. He employed a clever strategy to rid himself of the cloth diapers, peeing every ten minutes or so and crying until I had changed him so many times in one day that I had no clean diapers left.

King Baby doesn’t think much of crunchy mama's crunchy wishes.

At a recent trip to Target to get more formula (yep, breastfeeding didn’t work, either), I saw the entire bountiful aisle of alluringly flavored organic baby food on sale. I bought at least 10 different kinds. It was fun picking out the different varieties to try. I’m excited to see what he likes and dislikes and watch him make those funny “new taste” faces. I realized something in that moment: parenting can, nay should, be fun. Dean’s not going to be any worse for the wear if I feed him some earth’s best carrots. They’re still carrots. They’re still organic. It saves me washing the blender. It makes him happy, which makes it easier for me to enjoy mealtime. I surrender, King Baby. You win.

The baby advice manuals led me to believe that I’ll suffer some consequences for this lazy parenting. But will I really? I guess only time will tell. I’m growing increasingly skeptical, though. My husband turned out pretty awesome – awesome enough for me to marry him, and he grew up on gerber and formula and processed food and refusing to touch dirt or feel the sun on his skin. I’m thinking it takes a lot more to ruin a child than store-bought baby food.

Apr. 23rd, 2012


The Great 'Gina Massacre

It is a wonderful time to be pregnant. Stylish preggos flaunt their baby bumps in artfully fitted maternity dresses on their way to prenatal yoga. Ever the walking emblem of fertility, womanhood, the future of our great nation, doors are opened, groceries carried, all while well meaning strangers ask “are you ready to pop yet?” Pregnant celebrities grace the covers of magazines, flaunting their airbrushed bellies, cupping their newly ample sweater muffins in their hands and proclaiming that they’ve never felt sexier.

I loved it. I miss it.

You’ll find no such celebration of the 12 weeks postpartum body. There’s a reason for this: the newly postpartum body is a DISASTER. Those beautiful round bosoms, now put to work, constantly swell and deflate, transforming your pert, full sweater muffins into tired, sad ole flapjacks. You suddenly understand why and how mom jeans happen to good women the first time you purchase new clothes. The jiggly mess where you bump used to be spills over the top of those cute low-rise jeans you used to wear, and insecurity drives you to pick something with a higher cut. And lets not even talk about what happens to your vagina. Let’s just say that a friend of mine accurately predicted the result when she referred to my upcoming delivery as the “great ‘gina massacre.”

The good news is that everybody will be paying attention to your cute baby and you’ll be too exhausted to care about your muffin top or even notice the spit up in your hair. However, there will come a day when you start to think about caring again. For me, this was pretty recent.

There was a time when I thought I could never watch enough TV or spend enough time in my pajamas. I love television, and equipped with my trusty DVR, I enjoyed a lot of trash tv in those first couple of weeks in order to keep myself occupied during the endless cycle of nursing and burping. I was actually relieved when the day came that I grew sick of lounging in my pj’s and watching television. I had underestimated myself; it turns out I do give a shit. I sucked it up and purchased some new clothes, as one cannot, should not, live her whole life in maternity pants, however forgiving that waistband is. I’m still working on figuring out who I want to be and what I want to look like in this new phase of life, but I’m wearing real pants, and that’s progress.

Mar. 29th, 2012


In defense of selfishness

I sat in the backseat of my car, nursing in the McDonald’s parking lot. I had spent the last 15 minutes trying to reason with a baby. Naturally that didn’t work. Instead, I was hunched over uncomfortably, attempting to get my baby to latch and wishing feeding him wasn’t so dang hard. One of about 100 moments every day I think about quitting breastfeeding.

Any parent can tell you that babies have radar. They come with the ability to detect the instant that mom is trying to eat, sleep, brush her hair, or do anything, really, but most of all anything involving the maintenance of her person. I think this is purposeful. It’s their way of saying, “Hey sugartits, don’t think you’re living for yourself anymore. I’m numero uno.” Today my baby effortlessly detected all red lights, reserving his most urgent wails for the moments when I couldn’t pull over and was thus powerless to stop them. So I pleaded, “please Dean, can we just make it to 38th street and then I’ll pull over?”

Little man had been fickle all day. Yesterday he wanted nothing to do with my boobs. Today he was more interested in the booby. I try my best to oblige him, but this is becoming more challenging because of the boob situation.

Nursing has been a bit of a challenge. I chalk this up to cosmic justice. I say this because I had haughtily judged friends who didn’t breastfeed in the past. Breast is best, yada yada yada, yada. More importantly, a week and a half post partum I told my mother on the telephone how lucky I was to have already established breastfeeding, how easy it was, etc. Hubris. Hubris will always get you. I should have knocked on wood, or even better, kept my damn trap shut.

But as I sat in the backseat of my car, attempting to nurse my squirmy baby, all I could think was, “goddamn, I just want my McFlurry already.” And then it occurred to me. Just give him a bottle and get yourself a McFlurry. When all you want in life is a damn McFlurry, why shouldn’t you be indulged? So I gave him a bottle and bought my McFlurry.

And I have to say, the ice cream was much more satisfying than my mommy martyrdom.

Bonus picture of the Wubba:

Mar. 27th, 2012


On January 27th 2012

I became a mother to my little Chubbawubba, aka Wubby, aka D-dubs, aka Dean William. He was 8 pounds 14 ounces, 20.25 inches long and full of attitude.

The occasion also marked my departure from the world of academia and into the world of baby bjorns, binkies, onesies, and baby talk. Needless to say, it's been quite the adjustment.

Here you will find a my thoughts, pictures of the Wubby, and a thorough documentation of all poop mishaps.

Introducing the Wubby:

You can also find me on Babycenter here

Blogging here

I've decided I'm going to make a more concerted effort to blog. I also decided this would be the home of the new blog. Expect a revamp and some more exciting stuff here soon. Date of completion to be determined by the little dictator in footie pajamas. He rules this roost.

I'm also going to link this to my babycenter profile, which means... wait for it...

Feb. 21st, 2012



my little man entered the world on January 27 at 10:37 AM. 8 lb 14 oz. 20.25 inches long.

been typing 1-handed ever since.

Jul. 1st, 2011


(no subject)

11 weeks this Sunday.

Went for my first appointment with the midwife and everything looks good. Heard the heartbeat again :)

I'll probably go back to being a nervous wreck by next week, but I'm feeling great for now.

Jun. 22nd, 2011


Writer's Block: Born again

If you were reincarnated as an animal, which would you choose to be in your next life, and why?

a trust fund baby

ok, but the real answer in which I interpret the question as intended:

obviously a gay man's dog. I'd be so spoiled and fashionable.

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