Ramblings on weight and autonomy

So this has been making the rounds on Facebook:

Original caption: "Each of these women weighs 150 lbs.
I'm comfortable with the message - women come in all shapes and sizes. Period. Some of us have more muscle, some have more body fat, some of that body fat can be fluffy or firm ... it varies. It is what it is. We are what we are.

It's sad that we still need to make points like these. There's far too much time spent auditing men's and women's bodies - we need to look like X and anyone who doesn't fit that mold is inferior/a freak of nature/lazy/etc. AND, if you have the audacity to fail to be X, let me give you boatloads of unsolicited advice on how to force yourself to fit that mold.

I recently leveled up (imho) when I realized that I needed to stop making jokes about skinny people. I have long been a fan of the fat acceptance movement (because STOP AUDITING OTHER PEOPLE'S LIFESTYLES UNLESS YOU ARE THEIR PHYSICIAN), but still cracked "she needs to eat a cookie/sandwich/etc." jokes whenever Anne Coulter came up in conversation. Or when someone particularly slim passed by me on the street. Or... whenever. It finally hit me - if I'm tired of fat folks having to explain their fatness (medication/injury/love of food/etc), then skinny peepz shouldn't be criticized either. You never know why someone weighs what they do. Or looks the way they do. And really, it's none of  your damn business, other than to let them be - their own bodies, their own choices and don't you dare act like they need to justify it to you. I'm happy to have come to that realization. Becoming a more positive, supportive human being is a journey, after all.

Anyhoo, I guess my point is that critics should shut their pie holes (even the "I'm just worried about your health" types - it is condescending, and some people refer to them as "concern trolls"). I'm fine discussing obesity and eating disorders in general terms, but interrogating/attacking individuals is cruel and unnecessary. 


Apologies: Doing them right (The Oatmeal Edition)

For those who asked:

- This morning The Oatmeal posted a rather cruddy comic.

- The Twitterverse and Blogosphere understandably blew up.
- The Oatmeal kind of apologized.
- The Twitterverse and Blogosphere were still understandably pissed.
- The Oatmeal apologized the right way.

 I apologize to any female gamers who I offended.  I didn’t mean to perpetuate the idea that women are treated more nicely while playing games online.  It sounds like in a lot of cases the opposite is true.

In short:  I’m sorry for making a stupid comic today. 

Lastly, apologies on the internet mean about as much as farts do in outer space. So I went ahead and donated $1,000 to the Women Against Abuse foundation. 

Hugs and asspickles, 


Yay. Major points to him for being a decent human being, humble/brave enough to admit a mistake and cool enough to make amends for it.

Kitchen Gadgets You Actually Use

I'm certainly not immune to impulse buys. Many are cooking oriented, but only a handful have been truly useful.

Here's what I've ended up using on a regular basis, long after the initial purchase:
- Slow cooker. Once I discovered the little liners, this became an amazing purchase. Virtually no cleanup, good results, and a nice time saver.
- Breadmaker. So cheap to make the loaves, SO tasty, and the whole apartment smells incroyable.
- Rice cooker. Beats the heck out of that 10-minute rice junk.
- Electric mixer. I have the cheaper handheld version (as opposed to those glorious, but expensive, KitchenAid mixing stands), but golly do I ever get some good use out of it. Cupcakes and mousses and frostings, OH MY!
- Airpopper. Noisy noisy noisy, but yum. Infinitely yummier than the microwaved stuff - AND healthier. Win-win.

Despite my best intentions, these have mostly gone unused:
- French press. I don't have a dishwasher, so I don't feel like adding to my daily dish load. Delicious as a treat, but I only pull it out a few times a year.
- Handheld milk frother. Super cool, purchased to help me make a homemade version of Starbucks green tea lattes. Also delicious, but I haven't even dug it out of the cupboard at all in 2012.
- Blender. It's just such a pain to clean. I dreamed of a life filled with breakfast smoothies, but it was not meant to be.
- Espresso maker. Muse had one when I moved in, and we've maybe used it three times since 2004. Apparently I don't value my kitchen real estate enough to get rid of it.
- Drip coffeemaker. Used a few times a year, but it's just not as good as the french press and/or the stuff we get at the local coffee shop down the block.

P.S. Links go to the actual makes/models I purchased with my own real-world monies. :) 

Various fruits (or baked goods) of my labor:

Orange cranberry cupcakes with buttercream frosting

A mushy but lufferly rainbow layer cake

Angel food cake with Cool Whip, blueberries and strawberries for the 4th of July

Yummy rum cake

Interior of rainbow cupcakes

Exterior of rainbow cupcakes, plus chocolate peanut butter cupcakes.

You had to be there (Dream Edition)

Last night's dream was a mix of Cary Grant as the leading man, Jim Carey as a cab driver, and a suspenseful thriller movie. I spent a lot of time running down long hallways.


Accidental Awesomeness aka A Fast Track to Diabetes

- Mix up a box of brownie mix, following the instructions on the box (eggs, water, oil, etc).
- Spread said mix across the bottom of a baking pan.
- Gently plop a layer of cherry pie filling on top of the brownie foundation.
- Mix 8 oz of cream cheese with one pound of powdered sugar, a teaspoon of vanilla extract, and a half a stick of butter.
- Even more gently plop that on top of the cherry pie filling.
- Sprinkle a 12 oz bag of semi-sweet chocolate chips over the top.
- Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 50 minutes.
- Let cool.

Enjoy an overly sweet, gooey pile of awesomeness. A glass of milk is recommended.


Marital Blur

Inspired by Jen Doll at the Hairpin.

- The one where I puked. I was five and got sick all over my dress. My parents whisked me away in a taxi before the reception.

- The one where I was a flower girl. My super cool, magic-trick wielding, motorcycle-riding cousin was getting married to a gorgeous lady who sported leather jackets. (They're still together, and still cool). I vividly remember trying on the peach satin dress with white lace overlay and later pairing it with a gigantic white flower & streamer headband.

The one at the Faire. Renaissance theme in the woods around Tahoe, family I'd forgotten, and my mom glaring at my grandma for dancing too close to younger men. I don't remember much else, but I kept the program in an old photobook.

- The shotgun. My high school bestie and his wife-to-be started their family very, very early. I was a groomsman (woman?), wore a vest, and lent my skirt to a bridesmaid (in favor of pants). It rained the best kind of rain at the reception (big, warm droplets). I ate nacho cheese from a crockpot and danced outside.

- The other cousins. Swanky country club, swanky Greek Orthodox ceremony, not so swanky wrap dress from Target.

- The one with bees. I ----ing hate bees. My boyfriend at the time took me as a date to his friends' wedding. They had rotten-tasting champagne in mini bottles marked with the names of the bride and groom. I wore a stretchy lavender floral dress.

- The one with garters. I was feeling adventurous, so I put on a black wrap dress and thigh high stockings held up by garters. My date was the same as before, and this again was his friends' wedding. I knew no one and the mother of the bride glared at me and my stockings.

- The one with a new friend. Three weddings in one summer and again it was my boyfriend's friends. This time I ended up becoming forever friends with the bride. She is brilliant and funny. Every table had a camera, so I snapped silly shots of people I hardly knew. Can't for the life of me remember what I wore.

- The one with an old friend. Up to Montana from Colorado to see another high school bestie marry a gal from our rival high school. I'd dyed my hair red, wore all black, and sang at a Catholic ceremony. It was lovely seeing all of the old crew from high school - far enough out that we had plenty of news, but not so long that we'd lost the closeness.

- The one in the mountains. Up to Big Sky for a serene and gorgeous mountain ceremony. The black wrap dress came out again and my latest boyfriend met a man who was actually named Bubba. Who does that to their children?

- The one in the backyard. Overcrowded, Christmas lights, and a marriage that lasted a year. Oh, yes, black. Wrap. Dress.

- The sweetest one. My favoritest cousins, an aunt, and my favorite set of wedding vows. "Til life or love leaves us." I wore a long black maxi dress, burgundy cardigan, and red kitten heels. Ooooh, and the gluten-free cake: AMAZING.

Customer Loyalty

-- Paraphrased --

Me: Hi, I'm a longtime customer and stay with you virtually every time I've been in the bay area over the last several years. I very much prefer your location to the Holiday Inn Express in Walnut Creek, but it's a $100 price difference right now. Is there anything you can do in terms of a discount so I can go with you guys again?

Holiday Inn Express in American Canyon: No.

Me: Best Western it is.