Monthly Archives

April 2016

Books, Feminism/Women's Issues

Feminist Friday: Kicky Pantsuit Edition

April 29, 2016

“Shelley Hack jumps out of a Rolls-Royce and strides confidently down the streets of New York City in a kicky pantsuit, embodying all the freedom and confidence of the women’s movement with none of the baggy clothes or scowling.”

 – We Were Feminists Once (Andi Zeisler)

I recently started reading Andi Ziesler’s We Were Feminists Once, and by “started reading” I mean I’ve almost finished the first chapter. But I encountered the quote above, and haven’t been able to move beyond the word “kicky”. I think I might want a kicky pantsuit! For clarification, the quote is describing an iconic ad for Charlie, a perfume by Revlon, and the first perfume to become a “blockbuster”. This ad is largely attributed to its commercial success. (Shelley Hack is the ad’s model.)

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Life

Love In An Elevator

April 27, 2016

 

Not so much that (but I’ve had the song stuck in my head all morning). More like this:

G'day, gents.

G’day, gents.

I’ve stumbled upon an odd little pocket of propriety in the most curiously small place: the elevator in my office building. During my first couple of months as a rider, I thought the niceties were a fluke attributed to a handful of cheerful ladies, accidental encounters with people who happened to be having a good day. But the longer am I here, and the more trips up and down I take, I have slowly come to realize that the elevator has created its own ultra-polite subculture with very clearly defined etiquette. Perhaps someone forgot this essential piece of my training when I came on board, but I’ve slowly caught on. I know what you’re thinking. “Maybe the people in your building are just really nice people.” This would be a logical conclusion, and while I wouldn’t disagree, per se, I am not afforded the same courtesy elsewhere. For example, it is completely optional to acknowledge a pleasant smile and hello in the hallway, but the elevator? You might as well get off on the first available floor.

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Books, Odds and Ends

Everything You Never Knew: Salt Edition

April 25, 2016

As I mentioned last week, I’ve been reading Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky. Well, actually I finished it this past weekend – huzzah! The book was a fairly dense history of salt production and the political implications of it as a controlled government commodity, spanning ancient China to modern day America, but what I loved about it was that sprinkled into this history were some really, really interesting facts. It was part history, part science, part geology. In deeming it “dense” I don’t mean  to suggest that it reads like a sterile textbook, quite the opposite! I’m as surprised as anyone that I was enraptured by a 400 page book on salt, which should say something about the book and its writer. Thanks, Mark!

Anyway, I thought it would be fun to share some of the fun, fascinating notes I jotted down as I was reading. So, here it goes…

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Life

The Post About Running

April 22, 2016

I am a runner; the kind that likes to train for long distance races, gets excited about tempo runs/PRs, and looks forward to Sunday mornings when I join the ranks of my fellow weekend warriors to do my longest run of the week. If you were looking for an approximate time of the sunrise for any given period of the year, I could give it to you because I’m usually up running pre-dawn and anxiously start to await the return of natural light around February. The internet is not devoid of people blogging about running, and while I’ve tried to go there in the past, and on some level kind of, sort of, want to go there now, for some curious reason, I just can’t. “Now wait, a second,” you’re saying to yourself. “Sarah, you are writing about running, darn you!” What an astute reader you are. Yes, I am writing about running, but only to tell you why I can’t write about running.

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Life

The Curious Thing About Being Outside

April 20, 2016

Until this past January, I was your typical office worker, complete with a long commute, a cubical, weekly meetings, the whole nine. While I haven’t ditched the desk job or the meetings, my situation has changed drastically; instead of commuting 90 minutes each way in my car, I am now walking 0.8 miles each way. Additional feature updates included with the new gig: a shared office (no cube) with a real window that lets in real natural light, and a flexible schedule, complete with a laid back boss who doesn’t keep tabs on my exact time of arrival or departure. Today I took and hour and fifteen minutes for lunch. I am a liberated woman.

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Books

Still Reading – Salt: A World History

April 18, 2016

After a reading marathon over the holidays (as in Christmas, not April Fool’s Day), I have been in a bit, not a lot, of a reading slump. I tend to be a serial reader; I’ll take an author, series, genre, self-assigned thread, to the end of some imagined line and then I’ll hit a wall and need some time to recover. My brain shuts down for awhile, and nothing else can get in. I found myself engrossed with all things Tudor this past December, and since then? Reading…pfff. What is that even? Subtitle of this post: How Henry VIII Destroyed My Reading Life. Curse the patriarchy!

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Odds and Ends

Fast Food Friday: This Week’s Reads

April 15, 2016

It’s Friday! In light of jeans, amazing spring weather, and the anticipation of the weekend (or just happy hour), I thought I’d share a few interesting articles I read this week. Hopefully I’ll be circling back to these in the near future to ponder them in more depth, but until then enjoy some intelligent and thought-provoking conversation with your morning coffee, afternoon tea, evening cocktail.

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Odds and Ends

On Writing and Nakedness

April 13, 2016

Writing, in a nutshell, is hard. Heck, even the nutshell is hard. Understanding what it means to you, as the writer, is not a something set in stone; the process is ever-evolving, ever-shifting, ever-surprising, and, can I just add, terrifying. You write a blog post, you hit publish, and then you wake up the next morning to the realization that everything you just thought and wrote was total horseshit. Case in point, Monday’s post about Victorian era women and my own thoughts about weddings, rings, and the whole nine yards? I’ve been stuck in a loop of could’ve/should’ve. Did I really mean what I said? Did I think that through thoroughly before I sent it out into the ether? What if, heaven forbid, someone were to actually read it?

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Culture

Edith-Anne, My Patron Saint, and Romantic Courtship

April 11, 2016

This morning, I was treated to the above image on Twitter, which sparked equal amounts of laughter, curiosity, and social criticism. Edith-Anne, you are now officially my patron saint.

I started pondering courtship, historically, as in this showcase of marriageable skill, and my own experiences and confusions about courtship, romantic love, and marriage. This has proven to be quite a lot of heavy lifting for me on this rainy,  cold Monday morning, though I suppose this is ideal weather for sitting and pondering.

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