My Inner Woman has PMS, My Inner Child is Teething, and My Inner Voice Has Laryngitis

plus a million other things that give me a headache.

Soylent Green is Make-Up! November 23, 2009

In Memory of all the Grand Women Victimized by Body-Image

In Memory of All the Grand Women Victimized by Body-Image

I’m not sure if you missed it.  I’m not sure how you could.  It made me lose my lunch, when the Twitter-verse started Tweeting about the Peruvian crime ring selling human fat from their victims for use by Cosmetic Companies.  If there was ever a reason to check labels carefully and check the contents of your cosmetics, this is it.  But my mind didn’t stop processing the information on that thought alone.  Immediately, I thought, wait… Where there are buyers there is demand, where there is demand there have to be suppliers, and it’s highly unlikely these Peruvians gangs are solely responsible for supplying that market.  Consider what I am saying here.  What do so many women rush to do now a day?  Liposuction.  That’s right.  Think about it.  How many women (and men) around the world have gone and butchered themselves, paid for the service, of removing unwanted fat from their bodies?

I was afraid that I might be right on this one, and a quick check on articles on this bizarre situation only served to confirm my worst fears.  Here is a quote I pulled directly from an article on the Associated Press.

Dr. Adam Katz, a professor of plastic surgery at the University of Virginia medical school, was incredulous when told about the Peruvian ring.

“I can’t see why there would be a black market for fat,” he said. “It doesn’t make any sense at all, because in most countries we can get fat so readily and in such amounts from people who are willing and ready to donate that I don’t see why there would ever be a black market for fat, of all tissues.”

 

“Donate it?” How cynical do you have to be?  What?  Do people walk in and say, “Please take this lard of my hips so, across the globe, an unwitting woman can place it on her lips?”  If there were ever a doubt that the cosmetic industry and the plastic surgery industry see women as life-stock, as fuel for their machine, then this quote makes matters clear.

 

We need to consider: at what price beauty? I’m all in favor of cosmetics.  I’ve been known to use them liberally as an art-form, a form of self-expression, or just as a pick-me-up.  But surely I do not want the product of another woman’s suffering on my skin.  I am personally not a fan of plastic surgery, especially not of liposuction, but I am not trying to pass judgment on another for what they feel compelled to do.

 

What needs to be judged heavily, and needs to be more heavily regulated, is the industry that exploits and uses us so casually.  It’s all well and good to arrest a rouge bunch of sickies in Peru, but who is doing anything about all the “respectable” professionals doing the very same thing every day?  Notice that no buyers have yet been identified.  I am digging, and if I manage to uncover names, I will re-post a list.

 

We can’t wait on government to do this for us, ladies, so wake up!  So long as we cooperate, we will be used and sucked dry to put a penny in someone else’s hollow pocket.  Many of us have greater financial freedom than we have ever had.  Let’s use our pennies wisely.  Let’s finance freedom.  Let’s stop paying a fortune for pretentious cosmetics made for us, from us.  Let’s do our research and buy plant-based products.  Be weary of the word “organic.”  We are organic.  Look for plant-based products.

 

But most of all, ladies, let’s stop buying the hype.  We’re all beautiful.  Some maybe fit the common “aesthetic” more than others, and it doesn’t matter a hill of beans.

We’re all going to get wrinkles..the more we smile the better.

We’re all going to get crows-feet..the more we wink the better.

We’re all going to get chubby..the more to hold onto the better (ask a man if you don’t believe me–a good one).

Want to get a nice blush on your cheeks?  Do some healthy exercise (sex is my personal favorite).

Wear confidence, not a mask, and you will blow people’s minds.

Be strong.

Be proud.

And stop being a product.

 

In the words of the infinitely knowledgeable Philosopher of the 20th Century:

I’m no model lady. A model’s just an imitation of the real thing.  — Mae West

 

…and that’s a Penny for Your Thoughts

 

If you missed my previous post on beauty and make-up:  see it again!

A Picture Paints a Thousand Words a Video Clip Paints a Million

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Not Turning the Other Cheek! November 19, 2009

Don’t expect a link.  Don’t expect a picture.  I won’t help to promote it.  Look it up yourself, if you want to know what has my blood boiling right now. It’s there, sadly, on-line.

I’ve just seen an article on the news about a new web-site intended to discourage domestic violence called, unbelievably, “Hit the B*ch.”

It is an interactive on-line “game” developed in Denmark to discourage domestic violence by letting you whack a woman black-and-blue very graphically, on screen, as much as you want.

I had to check myself to be sure I wasn’t hallucinating.  It seemed that insane. But sadly, it’s true, it’s real, and it is a disaster for women and men alike.

I am all in favor of a little shock value to get a message across, but there is a line, folks, and it has been crossed, tred-upon, and abused.

There is sufficient encouragement of aggression everyday in video games, music lyrics, literature, general ordinary everyday behavior.  It does not need more encouragement: it needs to be DISCOURAGED.  Consistently.

My first animal impulse would be to ask for an alternative reply-site called ‘Kick the B*stard in the Nuts,’ but that wouldn’t do any good, would it?  It would be just as pointless and just as wrong.

We have to remember that promoting violence IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM is wrong.  We should be trying to promote healthy interaction and mutual respect.  Always. Always. Always.  (I’ll say it one more time: Always.)

Whatever these poor misguided people were thinking, they should re-consider their strategy.  Of course, perhaps they were hoping to build an uproar, as they have, but there are other, better, ways.  Let’s learn to be responsible.  Let’s learn to be human.  Violence is an animal reaction to a human dilemma.  It is never a reflection of our higher-self.  It debases us.  Every time a man beats a woman, he humiliates and hurts himself far more than he humiliates and hurts her.  The same thing applies to child abuse.  To any abuse for that matter.

We cannot build up by tearing down.  We cannot rise by dragging ourselves in the mud.  We cannot promote good with bad behavior.

It’s 2009, let’s just get over it.  Let’s raise our hand only to volunteer, to give answers, to provide assistance.  Let’s start being human and stop being ignorant beasts.  Now.

Dr. Martin Luther King said it elegantly, and I paraphrase him here:

“Hate begets hate; violence begets violence; toughness begets a greater toughness. We must meet the forces of hate with the power of love…Our aim must never be to defeat or humiliate..a man [or woman], but to win his [her] friendship and understanding.” — 1958

Please notice that was fifty one years ago.  More than two generations ago.  For two generations we have gone far off track.  Let’s get back on the right road again, for the good of us all.

 

High Hemlines and Low Ideals November 11, 2009

Here I was, thinking that this might be a week without news.  I should have known better than to rush to judgement on a Tuesday.  After all, yesterday we commemorated the fall of the Berlin wall 20 years ago, tomorrow we commemorate the end of the First World War ninety-one years ago, but that’s all old news. 

Today, CNN International repeatedly took time to highlight more important events, happening right now, in this world, that affect us all, intimately.  Yes, I am referring to Geisy Arruda.  If you have managed to get through your day without knowing who Geisy Arruda is and why she is so important, then you have a rich and fulfilled life.  Here’s a link to a video that explains it anyway:

Geisy Arruda, who wishes nothing more from life than to earn herself a career in Tourism, has raised all kinds of heck by raising her hemline.  Brazilians everywhere are outraged.  There is a significant social split in Sao Paolo over this controversy.  As you can appreciate, Brazil is famous for its decorum.  Though widely known for their Carnaval, an essential part of their tourism strategy, Brasil is also a conservative Catholic culture where morality and propriety is of significant importance.  This generates a problematic paradox.  After all, the event that leads to women dancing in the streets in body paint and feathers, is in fact a religious one, marking the beginning of Lent.  Mmmm…Mixed messages, anyone?  I suppose the discussion has everything to do with the concept that there is a time and a place for everything and the time and place to dress for Carnaval is at Carnaval, not while attending a class at University, but I remain unconvinced and conflicted.

Not by the hemline.  Frankly, what this young woman needs is my Nana, God rest her soul.  I can remember with a smile the many times when, as I was leaving the house, she made her characteristic guttural sound of disapproval and uttered her famous warning:  “I hope you don’t fall from that hemline, you’ll break your neck.”

Not by the concept that people should fight for the right to be educated, even when under-dressed.  In fact, ironically, also on continuous loop on CNN International was the interview with the Taliban leader in Afghanistan who is pondering whether women should be granted an ongoing education at all, and proposing that if they are allowed to learn then certainly they should learn separately from men and still wearing a veil.

My conflict is with CNN, what it considers news, and what it chooses to present repeatedly in order to nurture a following.  The incessant showing of the girl in the mini-skirt led to a lot of showing of the girl in the mini-skirt.  No women in veils were shown during the Taliban leader’s interview, and to cap it all of, Anderson Cooper in his 360 degrees showed all 360 degrees of Miss America in a bikini, to compensate for the censors forbidding their showing the full topless shots, presumably.

The women in Brazil, who stand by Geisy Arruda as she battles for re-admission to the school that expelled her for taking the level above the knee to a level just below her crotch, are claiming they are fighting machismo.  I argue that they are protesting in the wrong continent.  On this same night that the news broke out, the power grid went out in Brazil, an unprecedented power outage, possibly related to the increased demand for pictures of Geisy’s thighs from people around the world who get CNN International as their sole English news offering…I’m just saying.

Will CNN take responsibility for the outage of worthwhile information?  Probably not.  Hemlines have been making headlines for years.  It used to be considered a bit of Yellow Journalism, but in an era of Yellow Journalism gone mad, it’s Carnaval everyday.

In the end, CNN is probably just applying a bit of my favorite female philosopher’s wisdom:

Those who are easily shocked should be shocked more often.

–Mae West

..And That’s a Penny for Your Thoughts

 

Change is Good..and Lacy! November 3, 2009

So.  I couldn’t believe it.  My hubby saw it.  He’s a marvel that way, always seeing what I miss.  Love that man.

Anywho…

We’re overseas right now and watching foreign TV.  I’m working on my computer in my comfy-clothes, probably not looking my best right now, and he says: “Change..change your bra!”

Strange thing to say, right? Rife with peril for the male.  He’s brave that way.

Instead of ripping his heart out with my fingernails, I decided to be calm and rational.  So I asked him just what the heck he was talking about.  Which proves that PMS doesn’t run me..I run on it!

So here’s what my hubby meant.  ‘CHANGE,’ the actual word is now a registered trademark (Actually it seems it has been since 1995.)

Yep.  You heard me.  TRADE-mark.  As in selling ‘Change.’  So I think, OK, maybe you could sell ideas for positive change in society, change in lifestyles, change of technology..I dunno some good change.  Nope. It turns out CHANGE (R) is a company that sells bras…  YES–BRAS–LIKE FOR YOUR BOOBS.  Don’t believe me? Link here:

Change is Good...and comes in A cup through EEE!

Change is Good...and comes in A-cup through EEE-cup; in a variety of colors and styles and even has lace!

So now we know, ladies, change is not only coming..change is here!

Don’t get me wrong, I love a lacy bra as much as the next man, but somehow my dream of a brighter future for women took a hit when I read quotes like:

At Change, we respect your natural beauty. That’s why our lingerie doesn’t dictate how your body should look or promise a whole new you. What it will do is give you a variety of styles in a fit that feels just right. It’s all about feeling beautiful. So feel free to express yourself. To explore the different facets of your femininity. And the woman within.

This is the philosophy behind Change and the key to our success.

 

The people at Change (R) were even nice enough to plan my week for me:

 

Every day, a new Pair...oooh I'm giddy!

Every day, a new Pair...oooh I'm giddy!

 

It makes a girl warm inside to know that someone is looking out for her this way. And the people of CHANGE (R) are committed to ensuring our ongoing happiness.  They state it clearly in their Motto:

YOU. ONLY BETTER.

So now you know.  Your cup size DOES matter.  If we are going to have any CHANGE (R) in our lives, we should consider a Balconette.

There’s even a new line out for 2009 called CHARADE – ’nuff said.

I’d feel short-changed, except that might make me sound a little bitter.  After all, it’s probably nothing.  I just need a better bra.

…and that’s a Penny for Your Thoughts

 

 

Me, the Internet and 69 October 31, 2009

Filed under: Penny for Your Thoughts — pennybloom @ 10:47 am
Tags: , , , , ,

The Internet and I have a lot in common.  We both like sex.  You don’t know me, but you know the internet, so…

 

But that is not our only common trait.  Sure we both have boobs — the Internet has larger boobs — but our common thread is even deeper than that. (Don’t read anything funny into deeper — or go ahead and I’ll blush for you.)

 

We are both children of 69.  We are both Gen-X’rs.  What does that mean to us?  What does that mean to the world?

 

A Re-Tweet I got today got me to thinking about just that.  It’s highly recommended:

How Forgotten GenX Changed the World

 

When the Internet and I were babies, we were both trapped in little boxes.  (One day, I’ll tell you the funny story about how my mom saved money on a crib by putting me in a suitcase for six months and my aunt thought that it was cute when she closed the lid and that is why I have spent thousands of dollars on therapy for claustrophobia, but not today.)

 

Soon after those dark and lonely beginnings, the Internet and I both started to network around a small circle of friends within a very limited circle.  In fact, both the Internet and I had very little outside interaction until our pre-adolescence with more than a delicately monitored group of protective guardians.

 

But then all hell broke loose.  For both of us.  Once we got out – we got OUT!

 

The trials and perils of being global have never been demonstrated as well as they have through the Internet, and in my own little life.  Meeting strange and fascinating people.  Meeting fascinatingly strange people.  Meeting strange people.  The Internet and I have done a lot of all of that.

 

So, when you’ve gotten out, and toured the world, and seen it’s peaks and valleys, its beauty and its ugliness, its sublime art and its subversive trash, what does that do to you?

 

Well, here again, the Internet and I have had strangely similar reactions.  We’ve both crashed a couple of times, and gotten back up.  We’ve both gotten viruses.  (There’s you with your dirty mind again–think the flu and Moctezuma’s revenge — get your mind out of the gutter!)

 

But as Nietzsche so rightly put it: “What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.”

 

We haven’t perished, the Internet and I, despite claims that we were just a random trend, despite occasionally being ill-used and misunderstood, despite making mistakes.  We’ve held strong.  We’ve endured.  We’ve stuck to our basic philosophy that, in the end, what the world is sorely lacking, what it needs most, what it craves even more than water, is connection.

 

Many years ago, when I was just an inexperienced smart-ass (now I am an experienced smart-ass), I told a male friend who was much smarter than me (aren’t they always), that this Internet thing could make lots of money for people and would be a boon for business.  He laughed. “Ha! Ha! Ha! The Internet is a vehicle for education and research, it will never be commercialized,” he said.

 

She who laughs last laughs best, and the Internet and I are both giggling hysterically over this.

 

But, as any of us who have been in the depths of the commercial arena have learned, there are perilous perils for those unprepared.

 

I’ve recently had a very ugly wake up call to this, and for a while, it caused me to break up with the Internet entirely (even though she has been such a good friend).  There be monsters.  There be pirates. There be threats of every kind on every shore…(sound of Captain Ahab cackling.)

 

Now that we are both going through our little mid-life crisis, I’d like to impart some advice to my friend, the Internet, on how to survive and thrive and make the world a better place, no matter what Leviathans may roam the depths.

 

1) Promote the Common Good – even if your aim is commercial, it does not preclude you from doing good while making money.

2) Have Zero-Tolerance for Theft – property earned or created should be property kept.  Persons promoting piracy are not freeing anything of anything; the only things they are free of are morals and ethics.  We must ensure that all people are protected from theft, be it of money, or data, or intellectual property.  All people.  Always.  There has been some discussion in Britain about eliminating access rights to the Internet to those culpable of Piracy Initiatives that merit serious discussion.   Of course, they appear to brush up against the noble aim to ensure Internet access as a basic human right.  Which I support.  We should not get these things confused.  Living on the planet is a basic human right, but it does not mean we let people steal things willy-nilly (unless we’re living in anarchy).  Likewise, the Internet should have the right to cast out Predators.  We need to.  It’s a wild jungle out there and we have to join ranks and protect against intruders.

3) Be Paranoid – About Security. As the saying goes: just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean they’re not out to get you.  They are.  Big time.  Security Specialists around the world should be postponing sleep until death, because there are some major holes in the web that need mending.

4) Don’t Abandon Your Dreams – They are all you have that matters.  The aspirations of the Internet, from its conception have been noble and grand.  They should continue to be.  Like nothing else in Human History, the Internet has the potential to be the thing that tips our consciousness over the edge and helps us achieve a greater level of enlightenment.  (Dawning of the Age of Aquarius plays softly in the background and builds to crescendo.) Yes!  Enlightenment, higher consciousness, the final great evolution of people living in one world thinking with many minds and once and finding wonderful revealing connections.  Don’t believe me?  Watch these spaces:

Trendsmap

Cruxlux

These are the kinds of things that would have given Carl Jung an orgasm, that would have made Joseph Campbell convulse in ecstasy.  We are beginning to see connections, being given the tools to see them instantly, and what the mind does when the synapses are stimulated is truly a beautiful thing.  (As Paris Hilton repeatedly points out – Intellectuals are Hot – OK? Deal with it.)

5) Be Glorious – Be Proud, Be Noble, Be Beautiful, Be Quirky, Be Yourself, Be Somebody Else, Be Whatever You Want to Be but stay Free.  One of the biggest concerns I have over points 1, 2 and 3, is that, if the Internet is not adamant and intransigent about independently being all of these things, then the Conquerors will come and set up flags.  This is the rule of History.  Where a society (and the Internet is the largest society in Human History) is unregulated, Tyrants appear to fill in the gaps.  This does not call for revolution, it calls for order, for self-regulation and for responsible pro-active citizenry.

 

So for her 40th Birthday, the greatest gift we can give the Internet, is to let her own her fine self, and stand proud and firm.  All of us who (like me) are 69’ers (or roundabouts) have a calling to ensure this.  All GenX’ers can remember a time when this was our dream, our legacy to the world, yet to be realized.  Now, it is here, and we have to defend her, because let’s face it, the Boombers are tired and the Y’s and Millenials are busy with other stuff. (Like Tweeting about Twilight – God save Humanity!)

 

We may be, as Martin Zwilling points out, “the forgotten generation,” but we haven’t forgotten anything.  We still have really good memories and pretty large balls.  We are the hard salamy between two generations of white bread.  No disrespect intended – I mean only that, by and large, we had it tougher than our parents and tougher than our younger siblings and offspring.

 

We’re lean, we’re mean, and we’re going to get this Earth Clean!

 

I’ve been bloodied and bruised from my travails, but that’s only made paradoxically meaner and kinder.  Meaner because I’m less tolerant of nonsense and predatorial behavior.  Kinder because I appreciate good people far more than I ever did.  I’ve also learned that even if someone tries to tear you down to ashes, you can rise like a Phoenix when your determination knows no bounds.

 

The Internet can do the same, and we should support her, we should encourage her to be her own great self.

 

I plan to spend the next 40 years of my life being absolutely amazing, and I plan to have an absolutely amazing Internet to live my life on.

 

 

I leave you with the thoughts of a one of the greatest philosophers of the 20th century:

A dame that knows the ropes isn’t likely to get tied up.

– Mae West

 

…and that was a Penny for Your Thoughts!