Thursday, April 30, 2009

The other white meat?

I think I strained a neurone

White Castle burgers has an advertisement for pulled pork (see their site)...

...with a person in a pig suit doing the "Flashdance" routine and being splashed with brown barbeque source that gets all over the audience...

...(in the middle of a swine flu panic).

This actually makes the Burger King "I. Like. Square. Pants" and the Quizno's HAL toaster "put it in me" campaign look fairly sensible.

White castle special promo: pulled pork
Bizarre Creep White Castle Ad

Prejean, AWOL

So, Miss California famously stated during the contest that she felt marriage should be between a man and a woman only. It's hardly an uncommon belief and she answered as she did knowing it would probably cost her the big crown. But now she seems to be skipping out on the jobs that go with the smaller one, and not answering calls about her AWOL tendencies.

But it seems rather flaky to me that having risen to a high profile by winning this contest she is ignoring the attached duties to go and be an anti-gay-marriage advocate. I mean, what kind of moral weight can she put behind her position?

“I’m going to do whatever it takes … to protect marriage,” the lady is quoted as saying. Because nothing speaks to how sacred and important the marriage contract issue than totally ignoring a contract with her employers, avoiding their calls and running away from the attached duties without so much as an explanation.

See also:
Calif. pageant eyes Prejean for contract violation (jumping on the story a week later)

Quoted for Awesomeness:
"If we have reached a point in the development of our society, where a beauty pageant contestant is disqualified for believing that marriage should be restricted to a union between a man and a woman, then shouldn't the President of the United States get the same treatment?" [Miss California and Liberal Babeophobia]

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Thursday, April 23, 2009

She said what?

And I quote: "If Federal funding for abstinence education were to go away the breadth of the approach will be hindered." [Valerie Huber, National Abstinence Education Association]

My WTF, let me show it to you:
* Illinois State law mandates that high school sex ed emphasis abstinence. So no federal program will make that "go away".
* $176 million Federal dollars currently bribe schools to teach only abstinence as pregnancy prevention. It is only this funding that is under reconsideration. Thus the current state is teaching one option, the alternative is teaching many alternatives. Cherchez the loss of "breath of approach" when one approach is replaced by diverse approaches?

* Currently 39% of Illinois schools teach only abstinence before marriage (another 60% present it as the best alternative).
* 66% of high school senior are sexually active.
* Teen pregnancy rate in the state increased this year, just as they did last year.

So, to sum up, not teaching kids about contraception has not proven to be a great way to reduce teen pregnancy.

Go figure.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Arizona Strip Search Case

It is a clash of the great moral panics of our time. Is suspicion of drug possession ground for strip searching a 13-year-old girl?

I find it interesting that Justice David Souter clearly knows which bogeyman scares him more. He compares the alleged possession of ibuprofen to a "dead kid" and strip search a girl in a way that was humiliating enough to cause her to drop out of that school despite being a conscientious honor student as just a little "embarrassment". So that's okay then.

Meanwhile another girl caught with a terrifying drug, the birth control pill, was suspended and threatened with expulsion. I can't help but wonder if this is partly due to the powers that be and their attitudes about schoolgirls and the pill? (In an area where 1/4 to 1/2 of students are sexually active).

Or is it just that in both cases a zero tolerance policy is the next best thing to a lobotomy? Because the fear of any and all objects in pill form seems to be far more important than a girl's dignity, control over her own body, and access to education.

Monday, April 20, 2009

The New Black

Never using the phrase "the new black" is the new black.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

The foolish man

Several times, online, I have seen men bemoaning the new stereotype on television, the foolish man. He is bumbling, and doltish and laughable. TV is saying all men are Homer Simpson, or are, at least, a little idiotic in comparison to their more couth and eloquent wives.

It took a while for me to realise what bothered me about this complaint.

And this is it. The stupid person is a stock character, especially in comedy. The drunk, the klutz, the fool. There are gendered and variously aged versions of different types: the bimbo, the naive innocent, the curmudgeon.

There have always been plenty of idiot male characters, the difference is that they were always the butt of jokes and condescension from other men. All that has happened now is that is is acceptable to show a man who is less intelligent in some or all way in comparison with a female like his wife.

This is noticeable only because it was previously simply not allowed.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

#5th most pathetic hero for girls

By the Power (He-Man) versus For the Honor (She-Ra)--which is more impressive?

I would rate She-Ra the fifth most pathetic hero for girls--for the simple reason that she is a blatant copy of He-Man but not as cool. The Sword of Protection (not Power), the Palace (not Castle), and instead of "I Have the Power" she just says "I am She-Ra". Basically She-Ra seems to struggle just to exist with almost no assertive sounding abilities. Even her animal, Spirit, gets the magical power to grow wings and fly away (c.f. Battle-Cat who, um, battles).

It reminds me of how I felt as a ten-year-old when I was reading the Narnia books and Aslan said "the Daughters of Eve will not fight in the battle", and instead of weapons they get given healing potions and so forth. Is it too much to ask for a female hero that kicks butt when kicking butt is called for?



Sunday, April 12, 2009

Kudos to Covergirl...

The Good:

Covergirl has broken the mold a little in using Ellen Degeneres as their latest "covergirl".

The Ungood

Amazon is removing Amazon rankings from books considered too "adult". Like Ellen Degeneres's biography.

The Neosexual

"FIRST there was the SNAG, then came the metrosexual, retrosexual and now - if marketers are to be believed - the neosexual."

Spare me.

The neosexual is apparently a metrosexual minus the feminity.

Which is to say 'guy classic'.

Which is to say, just a dude.

Earth to advertising company. You don't need a new word for something that already exists.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Classic Covers: Some Die Young

I think all of the ladies on classic covers must be closely related.

Or at least Miss "Die-Young" (1956) looks very similar to Miss "Kiss-Deadly". They also seem to share a tendency to make questionable life choices whilst in their nightwear.

But if-slash-when either of them does die young, they can pass away safe in the knowledge that their hair and make-up is fabulous.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Monsters versus Aliens (quietly feminist) [[[SPOILERS]]]]

I was watching Monsters versus Aliens (in 3D) and wishing I had Kleenex. No, the movies isn't sad, it was LOUD. OMG BRAIN-HURTING LOUD.

I find it interesting this is basically a story of how a woman becomes huge and powerful and decides not to get married to prat. It is a kind of feminist reimaging of Attack of the 50 Foot Woman where a woman is likewise effected by an alien to become huge and powerful, and ends up killing herself and her unfaithful husband. In this new version Susan decides not to marry her selfish potential husband at all, and goes off to become a kind of superhero. A much better ending.

The previews are rather coy about the actual themes of the movie, playing up the jokes and slapstick. This may well be wise from a marketing perspective, and there is enough laughs and explosions to make any kid (and undemanding adult) happy. But I, for one, am thrilled to see the underlying story arc of this movie--and an honest-to-goodness female hero in a kid's movies aimed at both sexes.

(And the 3D also rocks.)