Wednesday, June 10, 2009

This week

This week...

I decided to copy this man, whose life is exciting and worth reading about every single week. He is a funny man.

We went to a wedding here. Ryan was the best man. The lady running the reception place said his was the best toast she had ever heard. I think his secret weapon was wearing these:

If I had a brain, I would have pictures of the event. Sadly, I DO NOT HAVE A BRAIN. Picture takers, what's your secret?

When we got home, we went to Ikea immediately and bought this:
It has saved my sanity and possibly my life. The purchase of this item has set my settling process in motion and soon all will be done. Still need to hang the pictures and the mirror.

Discovered these. Ate four, all delicious. Need to figure out how to make them at home. Planning to try these. Embracing a future as a social outcast, but with flexible arteries and low blood pressure.

Couldn't believe this. Rejoiced much. Still rejoicing. When it ends, all I have to look forward to is this:
which feels like this:which is what Google Image Search thinks hell looks like, apparently.

Once it feels like that, I will need to do this. Home ownership involves a lot of doing things. Also on the list is this, this, and possibly this. In my dreams, this would also happen.

Participated in a Safe Zone training, which you can read about here, and studied about this theory for a test. Preferred the Safe Zone training by a landslide.

Read this. Felt sad for all women everywhere.

Watched the beginnings of one of these emerge from our garden. Come visit in October. We're having pie.


Kate said...

Sad news. Larabars were bought out by General Mills & are now manufactured by them. Sick, huh? Our friend works for them & was telling us how great it was & how they kept the Colorado office so that they could keep that address on the labels. Argh! Just sad to know that the same place that makes Lucky Charms makes these.

Anne put up some recipes for homemade ones on they look even tastier than the store ones!

Aby Runyan said...

Jeff has a story he tells, a true one, titled "To Burley and Back". It's quite hilarious.

Us picture takes. Our secret. We take our camera places, and then push the button. Amazed?

I read that whole LONG talk. WHY do you feel bad for women?
Relative? Yes. I think.

luvs, aby

Zillah said...

i know, dear.

amy said...

Kate- I am not surprised that General Mills spied profit potential with those Larabars, and am even less surprised that they deceptively kept the Colorado address. As a person who just made another major furniture purchase at Ikea, I am probably not above continuing to purchase Larabars in duress, but I will definitely check out Anne's recipe :) I think I need a dehydrator-emphasis on NEED!

Aby- My first experience in Burley was when I rolled my minivan just outside town and spent all day weeping in the ER of the Cassia County Regional Medical Center, crying for the loss of my precious van. Seems like a surprising number of people have reason to discuss Burley. Also, that picture taking trick, I'm totally using that one. You take the camera with you and THEN push the button?

As for the speech, I thought the whole thing was rather disturbing. The first two thirds or so references many famous artists from Western Europe--and none from anywhere else. I think that a definition of beauty and refinement that fails to even mention the vast majority of the world's experience of art is bizarre and disenfranchising to not only people whose heritages produced the unacknowledged art but those of us who appreciate it. It is also a shame for folks of Anglo descent who deserve to be exposed to art from cultures not our own and whose lives would be enriched by learning its meaning and value.

My sadness was heightened, however, in the section of the talk that begins with the "Just tell me you think I am beautiful" story. The story itself rankled me--why would such a narrow self-concept be lauded from the pulpit at a BYU devotional? And why would her narrow self-concept be followed, if anything, with a reminder for women not to "let themselves go?" (I know that this instruction is not specified for women alone, but that was how I perceived the meaning, in the context of the preceding paragraphs). Why, when the woman in the story said that the ONLY compliment she wanted was for her beauty, was the follow-up that she was expressing an "important need"? Although the speaker said women should be praised for all their gifts, the story he used to illustrate his point had the opposite message: women only want to be acknowledged for their beauty, and that's just fine.

I am not an angel; I am a person. Same for the rest of the women out there, though some are certainly more angelic than I. I'm not too keen on the idea of women watching the clock waiting for their husbands to come home, even if they are thrilled when he shows up. I think the overall picture is weird and dehumanizing and presents a view of women that does not represent my experience remotely. I imagine I am not the only woman who felt unrepresented by this portrayal.

Objectification of women, even in subtle ways, is distressing to me. When one group of people is viewed as even the tiniest bit less-human than any other group, it becomes permissible to treat them accordingly. When women are treated as "jewels in a crown" or some other decorative object, I believe violence against women results. In Utah, one in three women will be sexually assaulted and one in eight will be raped. I think our greater concern should be keeping women safe by teaching everyone that women are people than keeping everyone obsessed with the status quo: women's ultimate goal is winning male attention by fitting into a prescripted beauty mold.

If I am beautiful it is because I am a person. Not because of my facial features, body structure, choice of clothing or adornment, hygiene practices, or anything else. I don't want to be a princess; I want to be a real person with the right to make choices and be safe. I think that this talk misses the mark of what women really need. And, as usual, it misses the mark all the more dramatically for women of color and/or low socioeconomic status and/or non-United States Citizen status.


Kate said...


Ann Marie said...

i read his speech and your speech. i liked yours much better.

hopefully i'll be at your house in october for pie!

missy. said...

I believe you are already aware of my feelings on that article ;)

I can't wait for pie. I am suddenly so excited to move back to Utah.

Snap peas were on sale at my local farmstand last week. I ate a lot of them.

You know that my dear husband is something of a behaviorist, right? The theory has formed the basis of his entire masters program. We have had plenty o' arguments about it (as I am also predisposed to not exactly love it), but in the end his opinions on behaviorism are quite interesting and enlightening. Perhaps the two of you can have a good chat about it sometime.

Kelsey said...

1. Did you go to Tuma's wedding and didn't even tell me? This is unthinkable.

2. We own not one, but two of your pictured bookshelf and desk combos. That's right, two. They are heavenly.

amy said...

Kate and Anne, thanks for the vote of support. Nice to know I'm not the only one ragin' around here :)

Missy, I do feel familiar with your thoughts about the article--so much so, in fact, that I'm pretty sure some of mine were originally yours! Also, I got nothin' against behaviorism in the right place at the right time, but studying Pavlov and Skinner ain't my idea of a good time! I'd love to be compelled by Joe's arguments though, even if I don't have anything to counter with.

Kelsey, a thousand apologies. We went to Tuma's wedding. It was good times all around. I will give you all the details at the time of your choosing. And if my house had more rooms, I would fill them all with heavenly desk/shelf combos from Ikea.

Kelsey said...

We keep both of ours in the same room. I should take a picture, it would make you happy.

Also I need all the details of a Tuma wedding. Sheesh!

Rach said...

dear amy, what is your email address? and your wife's? I don't know if ryan has changed his since I last emailed him when I was, like, 14.

Carrie K said...

Haha! I like this post. You know, my Grandma lives in Burley! There's a chance I know your "just got married" friends.
Hey, I'll be in Utah this Wednesday and I'll stick around until Aug 12. I'd love to visit, what does your summer look like?

Carrie K said...

Haha! I like this post. You know, my Grandma lives in Burley! There's a chance I know your "just got married" friends.
Hey, I'll be in Utah this Wednesday and I'll stick around until Aug 12. I'd love to visit, what does your summer look like?

Jen said...

My original comment for this post was "thank you for tabbed browsing."

However, after reading the comments and having watched Little Women this week, I will add that I thought of you when Susan Sarandon said, "I just don't want you to think that your purpose is merely decorative."

Katie M. said...

I find it so great to know that we've been reading and thinking about the same things-both the Apron Stage piece and that BYU speech.

Yeah Elder Callister's speech has much to get one long, short's-like panties in a twist about. I formerly would have likely focused my anger on his comments about women's appearance, but spending my time working on a blog called the Art of Manliness has veritably smothered the feminist right out of me and cultivated some embarrassingly retro opinions on this subject.

What really chafed my hide was Elder Callister's comments about how God only talks in measured tones. I'm really not a big fan of the way the Church shrinks God into this very understandable and boring version of Deity,a God that essentially functions as a glorified GA who probably wears a suit, and is best praised with whispered tones and folded arms. I'd like to think that God is a lot more awesome than that and actually would use the word awesome. My thoughts can actually best be summed up in another person's comments on a blog on this subject. To quote:

"However, the thing about God speaking in measured tones was asinine. First of all, do we really think that Genesis is some kind of accurate transcript of conversations in the celestial control center during the creation? Even more bothersome is this comment: “We would be disappointed if God had used ‘awesome’ or other exaggerated phrases.” Really, Elder Callister? REALLY? You would be DISAPPOINTED? IN GOD?! What would that even sound like, “I’m sorry, O Lord, I just wish you had read more Strunk and White––I really expected better from you, God?” REALLY? Gimme a break."

Thank you for listening.

amy said...

Katie, I totally agree. There was so much to get hot under the collar about in that article that it was hard to choose. Naturally, I went with my pet issue, which is of course informed by my having spent the past two years steeped in feminist theory so thick I can't see through the fog sometimes. I would be interested in your thoughts about the part of the article I ranted about. Your experience writing for AOM has been pretty different from mine becoming a therapist with a feminist orientation, and while we may not agree I am always eager to hear your opinions and where they came from. I like your brain.

Miss you!