Sunday, May 31, 2009

RIP Dr. George Tiller

An act of terrorism was committed on American soil today.

Dr. George Tiller was an American Hero. May his murderer rot in jail forever.

Feministe has a list of links up to places you can donate in Dr. Tiller's memory.

**added** Read this commenter's account of a personal experience under Dr. Tiller's care.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Friday, May 29, 2009


The "Ahhh Summertime" edition.

For me, summer and music are linked. That's true for everyone, right? I mean, in summer you have the time to blast loud music and dance around in your kitchen or something. (Not that I've been wasting my time on that recently, not while I need to put together a CV and try to find a real job, no siree.) Summer needs a soundtrack. So, here goes.

Firstly, because it reminds me of my misspent youth, and driving around in blisteringly hot weather for no reason in a crappy car when gas was cheap with all the windows rolled down while blasting the radio, and maybe later drinking a slurpee with rum in it (or maybe a frosty with whiskey in it) while lounging about on the front porch.

The Clash - "Rudy Can't Fail"

This one's for Abbie, who continues her weirdo love for Kraftwerk and all things roboty and electronical.

Kraftwerk - "Music Non Stop"

And because it's a good song, and in honor of being suspicious of any government who so readily denies civilian death tolls without letting anyone investigate, (methinks the lady doth protest too much) there's this one.

M.I.A. - "Sunshowers"

I've been finally watching Battlestar Galactica on DVD this summer, and quite like it, but I really like the music, funnily enough.

Bear McCreary - "The Dance" (not a particularly exciting video though)

And finally, because its the best summer song ever, (although here they are performing it the year I was born...neat!) and also optimal for kitchen dancing purposes.

The B-52s - "Rock Lobster"

Saturday, May 23, 2009


I apparently actually graduated summa cum laude, not magna cum laude.

I promise to stop talking about graduating now.

Friday, May 22, 2009


I'd known about the original Solomon Linda version of Mbube (or "The Lion Sleeps Tonight" for the culturally appropriative amongst us) but I'd never heard it. I had no idea it was an isicathamiya song (a la Ladysmith Black Mambazo). At least it seems to be that way to my Western ears.

Thought that was interesting, anyway. Just being an ethnomusicology nerd. Professor Feld (look, you're in wikipedia!)would be so proud.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Class Privilege Meme

From Daisy's, this is originally an in-class exercise that's been adapted to blogging.

For blogs, bold the following facts that apply to you:

Part I, when you were in college:

Father went to college
Father finished college
Mother went to college
Mother finished college
Have any relative who is an attorney, physician, or professor. (Semi-estranged aunts and uncles.)
Were the same or higher class than your high school teachers
Had more than 50 books in your childhood home
Had more than 500 books in your childhood home
Were read children's books by a parent
Had lessons of any kind before you turned 18
Had more than two kinds of lessons before you turned 18
The people in the media who dress and talk like me are portrayed positively
Had a credit card with your name on it before you turned 18 (still don't have one)
Your parents (or a trust) paid for the majority of your college costs
Your parents (or a trust) paid for all of your college costs
Went to a private high school
Went to summer camp
Had a private tutor
If you have been to Europe
Family vacations involved staying at hotels
Your clothing was all bought new before you turned 18
Your parents bought you a car that was not a hand-me-down from them
There was original art in your house when you were a child (by relatives, not by recognized "artists"--but it WAS original!)
Had a phone in your room before you turned 18
You and your family lived in a single family house
Your parent(s) owned their own house or apartment before you left home
You had your own room as a child
Participated in an SAT/ACT prep course
Had your own TV in your room in High School
Owned a mutual fund or IRA in High School or College
Flew anywhere on a commercial airline before you turned 16
Went on a cruise with your family
Went on more than one cruise with your family
Your parents took you to museums and art galleries as you grew up
You were unaware of how much heating bills were for your family

Part II, in childhood:

If your body does not bear long-term signs of malnutrition. (Like Daisy, I have major teeth issues)
If you had orthodontia.
If you saw a doctor for anything other than emergencies or school-mandated shots.
If you heated your home with clean-burning fuels or had properly vented heating.
If you grew up in a house without vermin.
If you had running water.
If you had a basement or foundation under your house. (sometimes yes, sometimes no)
If you had an indoor toilet.
If your parents and immediate family were outside the criminal justice system.
If you yourself remained outside the criminal justice system.

If your parents had a new car.
If you never went barefoot so that you could ’save your shoes for school.’ (I don't think my paranoid mother would have allowed going outside barefoot, lest we step on something fatal or something.)
If your parents never argued in front of you about having enough money for food to last out the month.
If you ate hunted and fished meat because it was a recreational activity rather than as the major way to stock a freezer.
If your laundry was done at home in a washer rather than in a lavandaria. (Laundromat)
If your hair was cut by a professional barber or hair stylist instead of your parent.


Counting correctly this time, I get eighteen. I don't know how I feel about this meme. I kind of feel it's too vague to really measure anything. I don't know that having books is a class privilege thing, honestly. I know plenty of upper class people who don't read, and plenty of poor people who obsessively collect used paperbacks (me, my father, my husband). And getting read to as a child also seems to have little to do with class (well, other than maybe working such long hours you don't get to see your children at all). Ditto going to museums and stuff.

While I think that it *is* a privilege to grow up in a family that cares about education and knowledge, I kind if think it tips towards negative stereotyping of the poor to suggest that caring about books and reading is something that only the middle class does. Is that good-parenting privilege, then? As a parent now, I can see the thousand little tiny ways my parents, who were both working and getting their masters when I was born, and who both came from working-class backgrounds (my father grew up in the projects of Spanish Harlem, my mother was the daughter of a plumber and a widow), must have busted their asses to provide the kind of culturally-rich childhood I managed to have.

An important one to unpack from your knapsack, sure. But not the same as class privilege.

**added** It occurs to me that this might be another one of those things that growing up in New Mexico, where we're all pretty much poor and the division between the classes isn't so sharp, and education at state schools is relatively cheap for residents (hell, you can get your pre-recs fulfilled for a couple hundred bucks for a few semesters at CNM, the local community college, like I did), might affect my worldview. I've found it also affects my point of view on race issues sometimes, as in New Mexico everyone is brown and race is not mapped so tightly to class (or education level) as it is elsewhere. Hrm.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Done for reals yo!

Long fricken day. I'm going to take a nap for the rest of the
afternoon, now that I'm officially unemployed and not just a student.

Thursday, May 14, 2009


So I took my last final today. I got a cap and gown (that fits - don't ask).

Woo hoo!

Now I just need to figure out what to do with the rest of my life.

For the moment, though, this sums up my mood.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Hey, I really do love college

So I'll finally have my BA in a few weeks. Anyone who knows me personally knows how hard it's been for me to get this done financially (it's taken several tries over a decade). I won't say that I'm not feeling a little maudlin about it, kind of like I'm getting laid off of my job or something.

But it does make me kind of want to give Asher Roth a spanking. Oh, for you college is just an opportunity to party while presumably living off your parent's dime? No trying to juggle a job, childcare, real bills, and a marriage with your freaking homework? How nice for you!

Although, come to think of it, I should thank Asher Roth and other peddlers of the drunken college student culture. Thanks to the fact that most of my classmates spend all of their time staying up all night partying, wake up late, then doing it again it's that much easier for me to make magna cum laude level grades. It'll be that much easier for me to make it in to grad school! So thanks, Asher Roth, for thinning out the herd a bit!