Feminism, Kuwait, Musings, SAY WHAAA...!

Basma Sultan Is Funny! (And So Are You!)

20130415-160606.jpg

Y’know there’s this overarching myth that’s been following women around since the beginning of jokes, comedy, and possibly even since the first chortling grunt laugh of our Neanderthal ancestors. Y’know, the one that proclaims female, estrogen-makin’, bird brains are just not that funny. Why, you ask? Well, because psychological half-science a’course! I mean, look, according to all kinds of ‘studies’ men are just the funnier gender, okay? Women are just biologically incapable of making you laugh anywhere near as strongly as a dude with an ‘edgy’ joke! It’s fact.

COOL STORY, BROS. TELL IT AGAIN.

Look, I take no issue with these kinds of studies per se. They’re just a collection of data that proves that no one laughs at women’s jokes and no one thinks women are funny. What irks me is the overbearingly sexist insinuation these studies make. Which is that women might just be biologically less funny than men.

Of course, they never go so far as saying that explicitly because they would then be burdened by the need for biological evidence WHICH WOULD PROVE THEY ARE DOWNRIGHT BONKERS. Instead they make light references to pop psychology here and there and say that these findings may have “something” to do with the way women are socialized.

To which I say: No, no. It has EVERYTHING to do with the way all women are socialized everywhere.

I mean, consider it from a local angle and look at how most Arab women are conditioned both within Kuwait and elsewhere. Girls are born into a social environment which is, for the most part, explicitly telling them that if they ever hope to be considered as desirable they have to remain modest (translate: quiet) and pliable no matter what, and that they should never ever bruise a man’s ego by seriously outsmarting or outshining him. If you’re the kind of girl that sits still and smiles at everything everyone says you’re ‘tharba’ (put-together). If you’re the kind of girl who always makes sharp, witty, off-hand remarks and cracks jokes in a confidently unapologetic tone then, more often than not, you’re about the last thing from being “tharba.”

Oh, but psychology says? Well, I guess we’re done here. I mean, it certainly couldn’t be all those ingrained social customs of what constitutes a desirable, potential wife and what constitutes a yucky, she-man telling people how to judge a woman as soon as she so much as attempts to make a knock-knock joke. No? Psychology? ‘Kay.

Fine. You know what? They’re right. Most women are not funny. But that’s because most PEOPLE are not funny. Being a funny person with strong comedic timing is a learned artistic skill. In order to be funny you need to teach yourself to be outspoken, unapologetically honest, very self-confident, and absolutely REFUSE to humor people. And, well, these traits are not exactly the traits we foster in our little girls (and even our adult, women-folk).

Instead, we go with mistrust of other women, a crazy obsession with needlessly expensive junk, and the idea that, when it really comes down to it, being pretty is a lot more important than being smart. The reason no one laughs at women’s jokes is because, to most people, they don’t read as jokes. They read as uncomfortable confessions or socially awkward comments. Because our society teaches girls that they need to always work on attaining perfection 24/7.

A man’s ideas are just as important as his body. A man is encouraged to be bold and speak his mind candidly. A woman is told that, while her ideas may matter on some level, they are not nearly as important as the need to perfect her physical body at all times. A woman is told that she needs to re-re-re-RE-think every step and utterance she makes lest she be considered as anything less than “tharba.”

And all these crazy, unnatural, socially constructed outlines are the very reason why I was nothing short of delighted when I first saw Basma Sultan’s “Dine With Basma” segment on Bel Mokhba’s YouTube channel.

For one thing, Basma Sultan is a very funny woman. She has the kind of raw, candid humor that you really only share among the closest of friends. She doesn’t think twice about embracing the awkward things that everyone is already thinking about and turning them into a joke we can all laugh at (the free food, the passing bus, the self-promotion). Her charm is in her off-beat, bubbly personality that is outspoken and entirely genuine. She laughs at what frustrates her just as much as she laughs at what amuses her. You laugh with Basma Sultan because Basma Sultan knows how to tell the best kind of joke. The kind that naturally and easily rolls of the tongue like that’s how she really talks all the time. And I bet she does. I bet Basma Sultan is just as genuine and carefree and hilariously outspoken in reality as she is in that video.

I don’t know of many women in Arab media who are willing to speak so candidly, embrace their personality so openly, and so confidently and easily navigate from one joke to the next on a public platform as well as she does. In that way, Basma Sultan is a freaking relic. She is extremely rare. And its so awesome to see her in action like that.

But, hey, I know plenty of other funny Arab women. Hell, I’m a funny Arab woman. And I know that if all these comedically gifted ladies take Basma’s route and decide that they actually don’t give a flying dingbat what anyone thinks and just start to confidently embrace their personalities (which happen to be funny as hell) the rest of the world will totally know it too. Even more importantly, they’ll grow to love it.

All my love!

Advertisements
Feminism, Musings

To My Smart, Motivated, Single Friend (or 7 Reasons to NOT Marry)

20130321-195219.jpg

So, when I was in college I made a really, really good friend. She was the kind of friend who was so ambitiously motivated about her goals and dreams that, in many ways, she made those around her equally motivated and pumped up about their own lives. Even after we’ve graduated, she’s still resilient about making something of herself and achieving her own set of meaningful life plans.

In under two years she’s learned to fluently read and speak in Russian (because she’s a Russian literature enthusiast and wants to pursue higher education in the field); she’s involved in pretty much every humanitarian and activist volunteer work that Kuwait has to offer (she recently landed a killer gig with the UNDP); and she juggles the toils and pressures that come with working a full-time job. This woman is, by all standards, the personification of girl power. She literally oozes with crazy potential and meaningful ambition.

But, here’s the thing: my friend is in her mid-twenties and she’s unmarried. So, of course, none of her hopes or dreams or personal choices in this world really matter as much as, y’know, finding a fella (preferably with an umbrella). Because, clearly, in the year 2013, Arabs are still talking about a woman and judging her like a carton of skimmed milk with a nearing expiration date. So… progress.

Yep, on a routine and weekly basis I receive a number of heartbreaking texts and phone calls from this damn near superwoman because her family, despite all her pride-worthy achievements and ambitions, will not stop bullying her into feeling like a shriveled up spinster of one hundred and ten. Instead of supporting her and helping her embrace her young, bright, and motivated spirit, my friend has to deal with her closest family members telling her she’s damaged goods on a daily basis and she’s still in her mid-twenties.

The sadder thing is that this isn’t even just about my friend. I have a ton of other friends from all over who are, unfortunately, bagged on (in measures of various subtlety) by their social circles, their families, and, hell, just random ol’ strangers for not hunkering down and popping children out by the time they hit 21. And while I personally have hopped off the ‘Singledom Death Train’ many moons ago and, thankfully, was never surrounded by family or friends who would bring that destructive thinking into my life anyway, I feel for you, sister-friends.

So, in celebration of my friend and all the women (and, hell, even men) like her who are just as smart, passionate, motivated and, yes, single, and who quietly suffer with the age-old Arab notions of ‘marriage deadlines,’ let me lend some support and remind you all of the very good reasons why you are probably NOT married.

1. You Are Focused On Your Career – If you’re a woman, SOME people will call you names and leer at you for doing this because you haven’t apologized for choosing a lifestyle which includes doing something other than being a pretty, quiet (translate: ‘modest’) baby maker. Thankfully, most sane humans in the world call this being alive in 2013, so don’t sweat it.

2. You’ve Got Standards – Sure, you could’ve married Mr. “I just don’t like your siblings.” Or Mr. “I want you to change everything about your lifestyle to suit me and my family.” Or Mr. “I just don’t think women have ever really done anything.” Or even Mr. “I only cheated on you once.” But you realized that you could do better and that you’d much rather be alone and settled in your own skin than be in a lifelong relationship that royally sucks. So you didn’t marry him, even though you probably could have.

3. You (or Your Significant Other) Can’t Afford Marriage – Look, let’s get real: anyone who thinks marriage requires little to no money is living in banana-land. Marriage is the most expensive club membership you will ever pay. And, in many cases, it’s not even that women don’t want to get married as much as it is the guys who don’t think they have enough cash to propose and make other big, adult life commitments. Unfortunately, the magic love potion that can convince a man that you seriously don’t care if he’s broke is yet to be invented. We live in a world where men are still expected to out-earn women, even though the woman might have a great job that can support both people. Plus, I once heard that the average price of a wedding in Kuwait is somewhere in the neighborhood of 30,000 KD. Yes, you read that right.

4. You’ve Got a Full, Wonderful Life, Filled with Equally Wonderful People – If some awesome fella does happen to waltz into your life then that’s totally cool, but you are honestly just not sweating it. Why? Because you’ve already got an awesome life. A life filled with adventures and loving phone calls and hilarious friends and books and shopping sprees and OH MY GOD TRIPLE CHOCOLATE ICE-CREAM. Even when you really are down about something (as does happen to all humans, even the non-single ones), you’ve got a million friends and family members you can call to cheer you up. This is because you’ve spent time and energy nurturing all of your relationships, not just the potentially matrimonial kind. Kudos to you!

5. Monogamy Is Not Your Thing – I know, I know. I’m going into dangerously taboo territory here. But hear me out. As it turns out, there are people (both men and women) who really don’t have the genetic make-up to withstand monogamy for sustained periods of time and that’s some legit, DNA, honest-to-God science talk. There really are men and women in this world who are biologically pre-disposed towards polygamy and I think that people shouldn’t be judged for being whatever way they were created. The reason we don’t have many respectable models of these kinds of people is because, really, cheaters are complete and utter jerks. Cheating on someone is a truly despicable thing to do no matter what. But, either way, if you feel like you might have a polygamous tendency it might be something worth taking into consideration when it comes to marriage.

6. You Have Unresolved, Personal Issues – Hey, look, it’s fine. We all have our own personal hang-ups. I mean, if you’re actually taking the time to deal with your personal problems and your trouble-spots before embarking on a super serious relationship, then you’re actually doing the responsible thing. If you just shovel your issues under the rug and put on a fake Mrs. Perfect face then you are not doing yourself or your partner any favors. Getting through your own set of baggage is no easy feat and will definitely not happen overnight, so make sure you take the necessary time to completely move past whatever it is you think is hanging you up in your own head. Don’t rush it because of some invented standard age by which everyone keeps saying you should be married.

7. You Honestly Just Don’t Want To Get Married – KA-BOOM! TRUTH BOMB! Anyone alive out there? I know that this statement might have felt like a bucket of ice cold slush falling on your head, but I can promise you it’s totally real. I know our society can’t even fathom the notion of a woman who, for whatever reason, is legitimately disinterested in the idea of married life but please try to get past that. I mean, sure, society will totally let you do whatever you wanna do, but only provided that ‘whatever you wanna do’ will eventually lead to marriage, obviously. But, look! I have at least three Arab, Muslim, completely sound-minded female friends who have expressed to me their complete certainty in NOT wanting to get married. Like, never ever. And no they’re not lying to themselves; they simply just don’t choose that life. They’ve been to lots of weddings, they appreciate the idea, they were happy for everyone, but they didn’t walk out with a feeling of longing for marriage or even weddings. In fact, one of my friends told me that the idea of even wearing a wedding dress makes her want to break out in a cold sweat. Another friend of mine told me that she doesn’t want it because she legitimately believes that the idea of forever is a total crackpot and that marriage creates a weird social complex that she’s not interested in being a part of. I mean, even if I personally don’t share or agree with these notions (and I actually don’t), I have to respect them and the women who are saying them. Some women just don’t want to get married. Ever. And that’s a legitimate choice. Which is fine. If you’re still in shock over this news, I suggest you dunk your head in some salt water and move on with your day.

So there. To all of my single (and maybe ready to mingle) lady friends, this one’s for you. This one’s for all the pointless crap that society or family throws at you for not having hitched your wagon to a dude yet (any dude! JUST FIND A DUDE.). I know it hurts and it’s distracting and it makes you feel like there’s something truly wrong with you. But, there isn’t. Really. YOU’RE ABSOLUTELY AND TOTALLY COOL. I swear.

All my love!

Beautiful, Feminism, Kuwait, Running In Heels

Running In Heels: A Feature Series on Women In Kuwait

runninginheels

So about a week ago I had an idea. I thought that I really wanted to do something on this blog to celebrate Kuwait in February–our happiest and most jubilant month of the year. And then I had an even better idea. I wanted to do something to celebrate Kuwait all year round. And, immediately, the idea was crystal clear to me: this had to be about women. The way that I knew I could best celebrate Kuwait in all her flickering glory was by celebrating her women. (C’mon! Even Kuwait is a woman! This idea is without fail.)

I decided that I absolutely needed to talk about and give mad props to all the hundreds of thousands–probably even millions (hello! Half the population!)–of women in Kuwait who are, by all means, kicking heads and taking names. At the very least, I could try my best to pretty much just thank as many of them for being made of 90% awesome (10% vital organs, cause they are humans, after all).

I could never call myself an all and out feminist if I didn’t take the time to bring that virtue back around to the only place I’ve ever called home: Kuwait. So many women in Kuwait (both Kuwaiti and otherwise) need to be celebrated for striving to break barriers (and actually breaking them!) which have previously stood in the way of other women, and are now making way for future ladies to continue this important work in our society.

Women in Kuwait need to be celebrated for, essentially, running in heels. Not only running, but also winning, and crossing that finish line every single time.

Now, I know that many important, wonderful women don’t prefer to wear heels at all (I, the lanky white girl, being one of them). To me, wearing a heel is about as comfortable as sticking my foot in a sharp, metal vice. I hardly ever, ever do it. The point is that many of these women are willing to wear this punishment footwear (according to me), and that they are actively running the whole freaking world anyway (Somewhere in East Hollywood Beyonce is extremely happy with us).

But, it really doesn’t matter if these righteous women are kicking butt in heels, flats, or scuba flippers. It doesn’t really matter what their favorite mode of footwear is. That’s why God gave us free will and Vogue magazine. Really, at the end of the day, feminism is much less about what you put on your feet than what you put in your head.

So, I present to you Running In Heels: a new feature series on the many women in Kuwait who are worthy of our appreciation. Women you may know, women you should know, and women you’ll definitely be hearing more about in the future. All beautiful, vibrant, game-changing women who have caught my attention and that I think definitely deserve yours as well.

All my love!

Feminism, Musings, SAY WHAAA...!

Nonsense ‘Female’ Marketing 101 (or How To Ruin It For Pink Lovers)

Ladies, answer me this: Can you drive a car? Can you use a laptop? Can you a handle a pen?

Wait, I’m sorry–what in the world was I thinking. Of course you can’t, you silly goose! Don’t you know that you’ve got the bone marrow of a freaking infant and that your brain simply cannot function under the overwhelming pressure of dealing with regular-colored stuff? Black, red, blue… you know, man colors. Yekh! I mean, I could personally die of shame at the thought of it.

But never fear lady-friends, because the business world is here for you. That’s right, capitalism has anticipated your dire need and deep, physiological dependence on the fact you simply cannot live without the color pink in your life. The business world understands your unique, girly limits and is going so far as to create and fully customize everyday (and otherwise manly) things just for you and your delicate, girl needs.

How so very thoughtful of you, world. Really–thank you.

So if any of you reading this are thinking of going into the noble line of female marketing work, here is but a very quick overview of a few promising products in today’s “woman-friendly” markets which include cars, electronics and, shockingly, chocolate:

The Honda ‘She’s’ – That’s right, ladies. Honda has listened to our frail estrogen cries and has finally made us our very own automobile. And, thank heavens, it comes in pink! The official color of cotton candy, Barbie, and breast cancer! Hurrah! And since Honda knows that our basic mental deduction skills are incapable of grasping knowledge of things like engines, wheels, and oil (Yekh! More dude stuff!), it has thankfully devoted almost its entire PR campaign telling us about such wonderful features as ‘pink-plated air conditioning display!’ Which is really all that should matter to us in the first place because none of us know how to drive anyway.

Fujitsu’s ‘Floral Kiss’ Laptop – THANK YOU GOD! I can finally get rid of my Hello Kitty diary because my prayers have finally been answered with a laptop that has a built-in diary, scrapbook, and daily horoscopes! Y’know, for all my essential lady activities. And, much like our dear female advocates at Honda, Fujitsu doesn’t want to trouble women with man-knowledge about specs and tech-y gibberish. That’s why they devote exactly 19 words in their press release to the actual specs and a whopping 301 words to things like the available girl colors (Feminine Pink, Elegant White, and Luxury Brown) and fingernail-friendly, bedazzled latches and keyboards. Ooh and the carry case comes with its own make-up pouch, too? I am 100% sold.


Cadbury’s Crispello Chocolate – So, sure, women live and breathe chocolate. Which would be totally cool if it weren’t for this truth-bomb I’m about to drop on all of you. Ready, ladies? Okay, here goes. When you scarf down every morsel of chocolate that crosses your cocoa-crazed path, it makes you fat. BOOM! Any survivors out there? But, wait, don’t fret just yet! As all you ladies know, our life’s most important goal and achievement is looking like a Sports Illustrated cover girl (above our families, careers, and friends) and, thankfully, Cadbury is here to help us out! Meet Crispello: the first ever directly female focused, 165 calorie chocolate delight! “A little treat for you” designed to stave your estrogen choco-mania without the fear of piling on the dreaded pounds. Because, clearly, weight gain is a female issue, which only females who are females suffer from, and so requires a specific female solution.

Call me crazy, but I think we may have just won the war on women here.

Aye. But, seriously? (wait, you weren’t being serious before?!)

I’m one of those women that actually enjoys most girly things. I’m a HUGE fan of the color pink–my laptop is pink, my iPad cover is pink, and the socks I’m wearing right now? Totally pink. There is no way I would ever try to tell anyone what colors or products they can and can’t like, least of all women. But the very deep issue I have with the literally millions of marketing strategies which target women with nothing other than this pink-washed, baby doll, sexist nonsense is the fact that it speaks for all women, most of which are actually NOT rabid pink lovers with flowery wallpapers. This is a huge problem because the more women are okay with being treated and marketed like a sub-class of society who only cares about something’s prettiness (including our own bodies) then that’s how society is going to continue to treat and consider women in their actual, daily lives.

And I don’t know about any of you, but as much as I like to own pretty (and sometimes pink) things, I also like to be taken seriously a whole lot more.

All my love!

Everywhere Else, Feminism, News, SAY WHAAA...!

Iranian Women are Apparently Too Awesome For Competitive Academics

So, in a totally surprising and absolutely not forewarned move on the Iranian government’s part, women in Iran are now going to be legally banned from taking 77 BA and BSc university courses. These courses include English literature, English translation, hotel management, archaeology, nuclear physics, computer science, electrical engineering, industrial engineering, and business management. So basically any potentially lucrative major ever.

And what brought on this insanely inhumane nod to primitivism? Why, women’s overachieving brains that’s what!

Yup. In a country where 65% of all college students are women and where the ratio of female to male graduates is the highest in the entire world, these overachieving women are being discriminated against for being so smart.

I’ll pause for a second and give you all a chance to pick your jaws up off the floor.

According to the Science and High Education Minister, Kamran Daneshjoo, this adjustment is necessary in order to restore “balance.”

WHAT?! So the women have to get screwed out of taking advantage of their career opportunities and following their passions because their male counterparts are just not smart enough to compete with them? UGH. This kind of ignorant primitivism is exactly the reason why I’m such an adamant feminist.

I don’t even know how this decision is going to make Iranian women just give up and be all like, “Well, I guess we should all stop fighting for our rights and pursuing our futures and just stay home and give birth to a soccer team!” If anything, this is probably going to make the Iranian women even more stubborn and resilient about living up to their academic potential.

All I can personally see this kind of decision proving is this: Women are awesome. So awesome in fact that horribly insecure men have to try and restrict their awesomeness by legislating insane laws just to try and keep up with them.

Guys, don’t fight the awesomeness. Embrace it. Share the load with the other half of humanity. I mean, honestly, you are all seriously due for a much deserved break.

All my love!

Feminism, Musings, SAY WHAAA...!

Congratulations! You’re Never Going to Be Completely Happy!

Ah, to be a twenty-something, hopeful dreamer in today’s modern world! So many possibilities and doors and opportunities just waiting for us to grasp and turn into money-making, peace-spreading, belly-filling lemonade. It’s all out there for us to behold! Money, family, love, endless happiness!

YOU CAN HAVE IT ALL! ALL!

But, wait, let’s backpedal for a second there, shall we? What about this ‘it’ business? What exactly is this ‘it’ of which we do not only want a slivering slice but, as the beaten dead cliche goes, the whole enchilada? To a feminist (a la moi), ‘having it all’ denotes the most overworked and booo-ring mantra that every feminist is apparently supposed to hard-wire through their skull: That you can both have a successful career AND a truly devoted family life.

Well, speaking as one die-hard feminist (and otherwise normal human being), I’ve got to say that this all sounds like a bunch of absolute boo-hockey to me.

(Now, as a disclaimer, I should let you all know that I’m going to be sharing this point of view mostly from a woman’s perspective. Because, you know, I am one. But still… do read on, dudes! I promise some fine feminist bashing to come which I know you all enjoy.)

Look, no one’s completely and utterly and all-inclusively happy. No one. Not women, not men, not celebrities, not models, not royalty, not politicians, not children, not Disney characters. To assume that there is a universal “it” package which every woman (and possible man) on the planet wants is not only inaccurate but also kinda annoying. Some women are not happy staying at home (oh mon dieu!). Some women are. Some women find their life’s happiness in a worthwhile career. Or in pursuing some deeply artistic but mostly unprofitable ambition. Or in being Holly Housewife. Or even in being alone.

I mean, man or woman, I don’t know any person who’s only ever had one single life goal/dream/ambition to pursue. Yet, for some reason, feminism has sold women on the idea of some “it” package deal which, in reality, can’t really be defined.

And, correct me if I’m wrong but, if you really can’t strictly define a thing then odds are it probably doesn’t exist.

Yup, say it with me ladies and gents: THERE IS NO ‘IT.’ That’s right: complete satisfaction in all aspects of your human life is never going to happen. Say it loud, say it proud!

Now, don’t get me wrong. This post was not made in an attempt to demoralize you, make you pack up all your hopes and dreams in a cardboard box, and inspire you to see life as nothing but an endlessly dark passageway between this world and the next. In fact I’m here to tell you that this is good news. Especially for us women folk.

Because realizing that there is really no specific goal for all females to aspire to (i.e. being both a successful career gal and having a happy family) means that we can now free ourselves from the totally annoying definition of what “being a woman” means.

We can let go of the whole, “Oh! A woman can’t be successful in the workplace unless she’s smarter, tougher, and more dedicated than any of her male colleagues!” Or, “Oh! A woman can’t successfully raise a family unless she sacrifices a bunch of fun stuff and turns herself into a constant caregiver!”

Now we can finally live our lives based upon the fact that no one person is exactly the same as any other person and we can just figure out what works for us and makes us happy specifically. Basically, we can do whatever the hell we want and not feel bad for not achieving this elusive ‘it.’ Which, if you ask me, is as liberating as all get-out.

And, hey, I get it. Knowing that there is probably never going to be a way for women to live the dream both at home and at work totally sucks. No arguments there. But, when it comes down to it, does it even really matter?

All people–men or women–will always have to live their lives based on a series of choices. We all choose to live our lives one way and not another. This sacrifice is all a part of being an adult human being. Sometimes its going to suck and sometimes its not. All that matters is that we are given the right to choose.

Even better? The right to quit feeling bad about not choosing. To be okay with not choosing any pre-packaged, socially accepted concepts of ‘happiness.’ The right for men and women alike to not torture ourselves chasing the imaginary mirage of “having it all.”

All my love!

Feminism, Musings, SAY WHAAA...!

This One’s For All The Dudes (From Your Friendly Neighborhood Feminist)

So I’m a feminist. And proudly so. I am a complete advocate for women’s rights and I have no issue standing against any part of any society that tries to diminish a woman’s right to be equal to her male counterpart in every single way.

Now, whenever someone finds this out about me they immediately assume that I am a man-hating, bra-burning, glass ceiling shattering psycho. They think that I hate men and everything they stand for. They think that all I want to do, as a woman, is overpower men and make them look stupid.

Of course, this is all a bunch of boo-hockey. Anyone who understands the basic principles of feminism knows this. Because feminism, in its purest form, isn’t about overpowering men or making them obsolete or anything of the sort. Feminism just asks that women be allowed the right to live their lives equal to men if they want to. That’s it. If a man is allowed to act, think, or operate a certain way and a woman isn’t, then I’ve got issues with that philosophy, whatever it may be.

And, while I know I’ve brought up several subjects that have been a little critical of the patriarchal society which men have essentially established, that does not mean that I hate men.

I love men. And women. And just people in general.

In fact, in order to prove how much I love men (especially the ones who read this blog), I’m going to give you a list of things that would make life absolutely miserable had there been no men around.

  1. No more Big Evil Patriarchy for me to pick apart and complain about. – As strongly as feminists feel about the fundamentally and logically flawed nature of many patriarchal ideals–let’s admit it ladies–it can also be a hell of a lot of fun to prove the boys wrong (again and again).
  2. All flat tires will remain unchanged. – Oh wait, we must not anger the Feminist Mafia. 75% of tires will remain unchanged.
  3. European soccer leagues would be booo-ring. – I mean, why does any woman really start to watch soccer? I’ll give you a hint: it ain’t the fun of watching a ball move from one patch of grass to the next.
  4. Who will fill all the jobs that require “masculine strength” and, I don’t know, lots of manly spitting? – Who will put out our fires and fix our cars? For the love of God, who will drive our tanks and drop our bombs?
  5. Cats galore! – Because, you know, no babies. So, naturally, all women will turn to the next best thing: cats. So if men ceased to exist it would be CATS EVERYWHERE ALL THE TIME. And, speaking as someone with a severe cat allergy, I am not on board.
  6. Some men are kind of awesome (or the only serious reason) Some of the best people I know are men. For real. I mean, it actually took me a while to think of all the above criteria on this list because, in all seriousness, I think one of the worst things anyone can do to someone else is to stereotype them based on a group rather than look at them individually. I’m well aware of the fact that there are specific aspects to both being a man and a woman–testosterone and estrogen is some strong stuff, you guys–but I still think there’s no possible way that a whole half of humanity is just going to fit into a single mold. Some men can be the biggest pains in the neck. Some men are a total hoot to be around. Some men are more responsible than others. Some men are sensitive. Some men are bulging with testosterone. Some men are less so. And, most importantly, some men can’t change a tire.

So, if any of my readers have misconstrued anything I have ever said on this blog as my war-cry against the entire male species, then let me set the record straight. Do I want to remove all the harmful, useless, offensive, power-hungry aspects that make up a great deal of most patriarchal structures? Absolutely.

But does that mean that I want to completely annihilate an entire 50% of the world’s population just because of some stupid stereotypes that have never really applied to my life all that much anyway? OF COURSE NOT.

Regardless of any wonky society and ideology, I will always love men. You know why? Because I will always love people.

All my love! (from your friendly neighborhood feminist)