A Fist Full of Refuting

I did all this research to refute Exador’s misguided wrongness last night, but my heart just wasn’t in it, and so I ended up deleting the post.  I thought, “What’s the use in pointing out the errors of his ways if he’s never going to talk to me again?”  But since he claims he will, I just can’t let this nonsense stand.

So, the point of his little rant is that, supposedly, women are twice as domestically violent as men.

This is interesting, I thought.  What does the government say?

My, my, my.  Looky here.  If a woman is murdered, there’s a one in three chance it was her husband, ex-husband, or boyfriend who did it.  Two-thirds of the people who are killed by an intimate partner are women.  Two-thirds of the people who kill their intimate partners are men.

I don’t mean to point out a huge flaw in the Wayward Boy Scout’s beloved data, but since the study interviewed 1615 co-habitating couples, it by definition didn’t interview anyone who had fled an abusive relationship or anyone who had killed his or her partner.  So, you cannot say that women are more violent than men (though good try); you can only safely say that in ongoing partnerships, women tend to be more violent.  We might surmise that, in relationships that have come to an end due to violence, such as when your partner kills you or makes you so afraid that he might kill you, then the more violent partner is usually male.

The Tennessean Can Suck My Butt!

Rachel over at Women’s Health News helps the Tennessean fix the error of their ways and, in thanks, they insist she take down a chart of theirs.

In response, I must insist that the Tennessean  suck my butt.

Behold the law:

§ 107. Limitations on exclusive rights: Fair use

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies or phonorecords or by any other means specified by that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include — 

(1) the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;

(2) the nature of the copyrighted work;

(3) the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and

(4) the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors.

[emphasis mine, for the butt-suckers at our local daily, who seem unclear about the fucking law]

I totally should have been a copyright attorney.  Hurray for copyright law!

Men, How I Love You, Let Me Count the Ways

Yes, I’m still a man-hating feminist pig, whatever.  I tried to give it up for the day, but I like feminism.  It’s fun and it makes me happy.  Plus, if I’m not a feminist, who will refute the Wayward Boy Scout when he is wrong?*  Who will mock and shame Kleinheider, while at the same time closing her eyes and smiling at the thought of his massive penis?**  Who will cause right-wingers to throw up their hands in disgust?

No, the void left by my retreat from feminism is just too large.  I must soldier on.  Not for myself, but for society at large.

Before we get to that, though, let us spend a moment listing more good things about the men I know:

1.  Sarcastro will continue to talk to me while I’m in the bathroom peeing.  I don’t know why, but I find this comforting.  There’s “girl you know,” there’s “friends,” and then there’s “fuck it, you’re like family” and I think acknowledging that the person in your house is still in your house even when she’s peeing is at the “fuck it, you’re like family level.”

2.  Sarcastro does not offer touchy-feely advice about how I should deal with my feelings.

3.  The Butcher bought me a Globe from the grocery store that has, as its lead story, Laura Bush moving out of the White House in anger at W.’s “affair” with Condi.

4.  You may not have noticed, but I am frazzled.  I mean, I am frazzled.  I scheduled two things for the same time this afternoon.  And I scheduled two things for the same time Thursday.  And I told the guy from State Farm that I would not need a rental car while my car was in the shop and he said, “You know, that’s probably going to be a week” and I was all like “What would I possibly need a car for?***” And I’m sure he was thinking, “Oh, I don’t know, to get places, you dumb bitch,” but instead, he said nicely “Why don’t you just give me a call back when you’ve talked to the repair shop and we’ll get something set up.”

5.  The guy at the collision repair shop talked to me like a normal human being.  He took me outside and we looked at the car and we both looked at how funky the hood is sitting and he was all like, “I bet you the some-fucking-thing-or-other is bent, but we won’t know until we get in there and take a look.  Don’t you think?”  “Yep, it probably is the some-fucking-thing-I-have-no-idea-about-because-I-am-not-a-car-or-a-car-fixer-upper, surely.”  And then I said, “What do you think it’ll cost me to get that door fixed?”  And he said, “Well, now, if you want to get it fixed and all blended and looking like new, it’s going to run you eleven hundred bucks, but hold on” and he gets on the phone and he’s all like “I got me a 2002 Dodge Stratus sedan needs a front passenger door.  You got one?  In white?  White.  Yep.  Great.”  and turns to me, “He got one in white.  It’s probably got some dings, but nothing like you got there and I can just swap it out for $550.  I’ll give you a call when the door gets here and we can look at it together.”  Collision Repair Shop Guy, if you hadn’t had a big ole wedding ring on your hand, I would have probably kissed you, full on the mouth.

6.  I know y’all thought it was funny when Exador got all huffy and threatened to leave.  But it made me cry.  That probably makes me a bad feminist, so I’m going to say it now before I resume my feministory duties.  I don’t expect you to understand, but I find the libertarians very comforting.  Exador, especially, soothes my soul and I feel lucky that Sarcastro introduced us.  He has this way about him that is so solid and self-assured, not in a cocky way, just in a “I have a right to take up space in the world” way that I really like.

He seems unflappable.  But his comment was that of a man very flapped.  That’s what scared the shit out of me.   I really thought he might not come back and, if he didn’t, who could I look to for inspiration on how to be solid and sure of myself? 

He claims he’s not mad at me.  I hope he’s not just saying that so that I’ll stop writing him pathetic emails.  Especially because it’s hard for me to feel good about pointing out how he’s wrong about things when I think he’s really pissed at me.

7.  At the park this weekend, Mrs. Wigglebottom and I saw the tall guy again.  I don’t know if I told you about him.  He’s this tall guy, obviously, who walks at the park and he stands so straight with his arms so gracefully at his side, like lanky ornaments, that I thought for sure he was African.  But he said ‘hello’ to us in this deep Southern voice and when he walked by he smelled so good it made my knees buckle.  Wow.  He smelled like good soap and something kind of musky, but not too pungent.

Okay, seven is good.  Seven things that have made me glad this week.  I mean, it’s only Tuesday.


*And folks, the Wayward Boy Scout needs a fist full of refuting today.

**And Kleinheider needs to both be mock, shamed, and imagined naked, except for a large, pink feather boa and some kohl black eyeliner.

***I know!  Me.  Thinking I could last a week without a car.  What the fuck?  Did I think I was just going to live at the office?  Where would I shower?

The Car, My Beloved Car–An Update

So, I talked to Beth over at State Farm, who had also talked to the Butcher and she told me how upset he was on the phone and how he told her that she should in no uncertain terms call me until he had a chance to talk to me because he was, "going to take care of this himself, so that my sister wouldn’t have to worry."

I don’t know why, but that breaks my heart.

Sarcastro asked me this question yesterday–"Isn’t it disillusioning to see that the people who you figure are living the dream turn out to be more fucked up than you?"–and I think he meant it rhetorically, which is good, because I didn’t have an answer for him, I was so taken aback by it.

Y’all, I am kind of a dumb fuck.  I really do kind of think that you all have things together so much better than I do and, I’ll be honest, sometimes I write things here just as kind of giant explanations as to why you have to share the streets with someone who does not have her shit together in the way that she should, by now, have her shit together.

But I think the truth is yesterday, that we are all kind of fucked up in ways that would surprise each other if we knew them for true, and in spite of that, you still have some folks who try, in their own fucked up ways, to take care of you and you, in return, make your own half-assed efforts to return the kindness.

Anyway, so I talked to Beth, who sent me to Kevin, who set me up an appointment at a place near here to get my car fixed and it’s going to cost me $250 bucks and I’m going to ask them to give me an estimate on the door, just so the Butcher has something to aim for as he saves up to get it fixed.

I told Kevin I didn’t think I’d need a rental car, but I was clearly momentarily insane.  Of course I need a rental car.  How am I going to get to the feminist indoctrination camp performance without a car?

Er, because, of course, someone must be there to set those girls straight about the joys of the patriarchy.

Men Are Not Animals to Train for Your Amusement

Back before I learned to stop worrying and love the patriarchy, an article like this one in the New York Times about the benefits of using animal training techniques on your husband, would have pissed me off for the fucked up ideas it perpetuates about how men and women should relate:  Men are big fucking babies who cannot be reasoned with and so women have to stop treating them like human beings and instead, treat them like exotic animals who must be taught new tricks through the use of behavior modification.

Yes, it’s just an never-ending supply of grossness–men are unreasonable brutes; it’s women’s job to manipulate men into proper behavior; women are responsible for the emotional wellbeing of the household; men have to be carefully studied and scrutinized; if women have problems with men, the appropriate solution is to force the men to change, instead of either changing women’s own expectations and responses or explaining to the men what the problems are and letting the men either decide to change or deal with the repercussions of not changing; etc. etc.

See, I think this kind of article is insidious because the author comes to a good conclusion before veering off into "let me run your life" land.  Her husband loses his keys.  He grouches.  She attempts to appease him.  He grouches some more.  They end up fighting.  She decides to stop trying to appease him, thus he grouches, she ignores her desire to meddle and provide for him something he can provide for himself, he grouches a little more, and he finds his keys.

But does she take from this success that she should not try to appease her husband when he is upset about something that doesn’t concern her, because it’s kind of meddlesome and patronizing to run around trying to provide for your spouse something that he can provide for himself, especially when he’s not asked for help?


She just changes her meddling tactics.  Now she’s not meddling by trying to do things for him.  Now she’s meddling by manipulating him.

If I were still a feminist, I would point out that this is bullshit.  Grown ass men are, by definition, grown ass men.  They can take care of themselves and they can ask for help when they need it.  Anticipating the needs of your man and trying to meet them, when you’ve decided for him what his needs are instead of him, is disturbing.

Ha, and if I were still a feminist, I’d point out how this is doubly insidious because it looks like the innocuous and pleasant "We take care of each other and I do things for him, because I love him, and he does stuff for me because he loves me" stuff that happens in relationships.

But, alas, I have renounced my patriarchy-renouncing ways and so, instead, all I can say about it is "I’m glad that she seems to be doing the laundry and making dinners.  What a good wife!  Go patriarchy!  Woo hoo."

Or can I even say that?

I may need to check with Kleinheider and see if I can still blog as a patriarchy-supporting woman or if I should be spending that time in his kitchen or scrubbing his toilet.  I probably haven’t been a PSW long enough to earn myself a Shafly or Coulter dispensation, but for the sake of Tiny Cat Pants, I’m hoping I can keep writing.

I’m Still Lucky to Have Mrs. Wigglebottom

Probably luck is like birds on a wire.  You get used to a wire full of birds, you don’t notice any more when there are more or less or none at all.  It’s just those moments when you look up and watch them all take flight at the same time and you catch your breath as they all turn and then turn again and then fly off to places unknown, that you think, that can’t possibly be ordinary.  This can’t possibly be how things go.  It must mean something; it must be an omen, a change I can’t live with.

Of course, that’s not true.

Mrs. Wigglebottom still curls up under my feet, rests her head on her paws, and snores quietly like there’s nothing more soothing than the sound of my fingers tapping on plastic keys.

That’s not true, either–I’d argue that letting me rub your head is much more soothing–but it makes me feel calm and calming anyway.