We hear a lot about motherhood. Women doing it wrong, women not being women until they are mothers, mothers ruining lives, dearly loved mothers, hugely resentful mothers, mothers who breastfeed, mothers who don't love their child enough to lactate, evil step-mothers, stay at home mums, working mums and momagers etc, etc. But you rarely hear about fatherhood. Not even to insult people, we say son of a bitch rather than son of a bastard or spawn of Satan. Discussions about fathers are often presented within the binaries of present and absent fathers. If a father is present then he is probably wonderful. If he is absent then he probably has his reasons.
Some people out there are happy to sit quietly. Or rely on talk radio to fill the silence. Others still are happy to acknowledge the chaos of life and select 'shuffle' on their iPod or MP3 Player of choice. For the rest of us there is the noble playlist. Borne out of the superior mixtape from the olden days in which a friend or lover slaved over a tape player for hours deciding what you might like to hear the innovation that is Spotify means you can suit a playlist to your mood THIS INSTANT. The latest person to take advantage of this is Spotify employee Sofie Olofssen who created a PMS playlist. We have decided to take the liberty of creating some more playlists to anticipate your moods...
Live near a university? You have probably been fresher spotting then. Right this minute 18 and 19 year olds across the country are wandering what decorations will best convey their fun but deep personality in their new halls of residence, attempting to seem blase about drinking games, fending off tired cliches involved a diet of Baked Beans and being flummoxed by the microwave. They are also attending Freshers Fairs, picking up free things in plastic bags and joining (or not joining) various societies. At Dundee University however there will be one stand missing during Freshers week, that of SPUC.
When not appraising women physically the media and general public like to comment on their silliness. Silly girl. A woman makes a choice others disapprove of and she's a silly girl. Whether or not it is a wise decision does not negate the fact that the person who has made it is a grown woman and we rarely know all the many reasons that have gone into her final decision. Nor does it change the gravity of the situation. Particularly when it comes to the subject of domestic abuse. If your only comment is 'silly girl' then you are taking the wrong things and people into account. (TW)
I logged onto twitter during a break at work yesterday to find my feed filled with pronouncements that a whole load of bad news was about to be buried, and that twitter was about to become unbearable (although those repeated messages do a good job of starting that off themselves...). What could have caused this? I'm sure you've guessed it was the announcement by a fairly well-known couple that they're expecting their second child. Yes that's right, it's Royal Baby 2: The Spare.
Hilary Mantel was vilified last year for suggesting that the media treat Kate as "a shop window mannequin whose only purpose is to breed" with a rush to portray those views as hers and not what she was describing in the press. But was she wrong?
Probably one of the cutest things going around on the internet right now are pet shaming photos. Pets, mostly dogs and cats, are posed next to the scene of the crime with a note announcing what they did, in first person. As though they wrote it themselves! Cute. It's cute. I'm serious. And informative, the amount of animals that eat their own poo and their neighbour's poo is shocking. Don't have a pet? Perhaps you have a recalcitrant teenager you'd like to publicly humiliate, or a cheating partner you want to punish. Because they are totes modern and down with the internet, police in California are stepping up a campaign of John shaming in a bid to combat sex work.
In these unstable times it's nice to be able to have a few certainties in life. One of these certainties was the fact that Hello Kitty was...well, a kitty. Not so. Last week our world was turned upside down when Sanrio decided that Hello Kitty's 40th birthday would be best marked by mentioning that, by the by, you have all been living a lie and Hello Kitty, with her cat ears and expressionless cat face is not a cat. In fact, she is an English girl called Kitty White, with parents called George and Mary White, and she lives in the suburbs of London and Sanrio is all like 'Sorry guys we thought you knew that...' So who else is pulling the anthropomorphic wool over our eyes?
Some perverts say it's natural but nudity is wrong, wrong, wrong and we all know it. If nudity was what God intended why'd he create M&S? Apparently there are some people who don't just keep nudity to the colony, or specific part of the beach. No, brace yourself and hold on to your nipples because the Daily Mail recently uncovered a disturbing occurrence. Uncovered being the operative word. It could be happening in your neighbourhood. Right this minute a grown woman mother might be standing naked before her opposite sex SON. No, not just standing "Parading" naked in front of her own son.
Warwick student Sue is using a lawn mower to build up her evidence against the noisy neighbours, while nursing a sick chameleon back to health and working on the beginnings of a dissertation...
The hot weather we have been experiencing up until recently, made the grass grow at an alarming rate, so whilst my other half was incapacitated with man flu or whatever ailed him, I decided to mow the lawn. This is the first time I have used the new lawn mower, and it will be my last. It made neither music of the future nor music of the past, but rather a deafening crunch. I gave the power lead an impatient flick, and succeeded in decapitating the begonias and lassoing the bird bath all in one swift smooth movement, so that bowl detached from pedestal and was sent hurtling to the ground, splashing water all up the backs of my newly painstakingly painted tanned legs.
If you were to ask me to point out my spleen, or gesture to where I reckoned my kidneys were I might be able to give you the notion that I had an E in Biology AS level. I can also, after a night celebrating the 20th anniversary of Withnail & I, gesture to where my liver is. None of this is particularly impressive, though if it looks like I'm showing off it's because I am. These aren't body parts you can see, or necessarily feel so it's understandable that people who aren't medical professionals might be a little iffy on where certain internal vital bits are. Not to worry, just don't perform surgery any time soon, yeah? However when it comes to the vagina, the idea that women fail to identify it is not being modest, it's alarming...