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Ok so I started this with a shedload of swearing, but I changed my mind. I’m gonna leave this one up to you to scream and swear about (as I am currently doing).

I know I keep linking The F-Word, but hey it’s a good site. And if you’re reading this and not reading the F-Word, I want to keep you updated.


Watch the video and you will understand my disgust. This man should not be a father. He should not be allowed anywhere near women…*freaks out*

And on that note – adieu.


Jojo Jako Yakob is a 19 year-old Syrian. He was jailed in Syria, and beaten when it was discovered that he is gay. His application for asylum the Home Office has been refused, despite the fact that he may face execution if he returns to Syria. Apparently he was offered £46 for leaving the country, “to assist you in reintegrating into your home country. This could be used for example to set up a business, further your education or assist with housing” [The Scotsman].

A website in support of Jojo has been set up – it has info on how you can get involved and help out.

Sadly, Jojo is not the only one in this situation.

More on this from Shakesville , The Scotsman and The F-Word

Brownfemipower has stopped blogging. So has blackamazon. I just thought I’d fill you in.


Feministe responds to the issue

When any of us have a soapbox, an opportunity to get up and talk, we must continue to stand by those who aren’t called on. If you want to consider yourself an anti-racist or a white ally to people of color — if you want anyone else to consider you those things — then it behooves you to swim against the current. If everyone did, perhaps the tides would turn, even if it was just in our corner of the blogosphere.

I wish this hadn’t happened. I never really got the chance to look at BFP’s writing in detail, but what I read of her blog was very powerful. It’s terrible that she should be driven from blogging like this. Equally with blackamazon. I just hope that it serves as a lesson to everyone (it has certainly made me re-think what feminism stands for a great deal), and that they returns when they each feel that they are ready.


And it appears that over the last year, nothing has changed.

So there we go. I can’t say anything about them as I am too tired and therefore my writing ability has diminished considerably. Also best not to write when angry.

And on that note – adieu!

makes me sick. But it’s always there, and complaining about it gets so darn tiresome. And ruins the breaks between perfectly decent, non-sexist programmes (cos there actually are a few…)

This one has really got me riled, and I didn’t even see it on TV, but on The F-Word

It is very distressing that this has been shown on tv. It’s like, we have a society that is supposedly gradually moving forwards, we have laws against things like sexism and yet advertising is allowed to ignore them and appeal to everyone’s sexist, prejudiced sides. If only there were more of us who don’t have them!

Oh goodness. I just found this and I feel really, really unwell now. I simply can’t understand why people would want to do something like this:

and this is ridiculous (the oh-so-rare-but-still-so-wrong objectification of men…) :

and perleeeeese, this is so stupid:

On a brighter (kinda) note, in America tomorrow they are doing something marvellous – a Day of Silence “to highlight the bullying and harassment of LGBTQ students, and their supporters”, something which has apparently been going on since 1996. If I’d only known earlier I’d have tried to organise something – as it is, all I can do is say props to those who are doing it in America, I think it’s wonderful and I wonder why England hasn’t followed suit. I only wish that such a day weren’t necessary in the first place.

See more in this vid, which is amazing and has my favourite actor from Grey’s Anatomy in it (he plays George :D)

And on that note – Adieu!

…or at least, that is what one is led to believe by the promise of many new ‘Hooters‘ bars cropping up all over England. Hoorah, another way of normalising the objectification and degradation of women.

I’ll link you up to the criticisms on The F-Word, and the relevant Facebook group and petition, but first have a look at what Hooters have to say for themselves:

The element of female sex appeal is prevalent in the restaurants, and the company believes the Hooters Girl is as socially acceptable as a Dallas Cowboy cheerleader, Sports Illustrated swimsuit model, or a Radio City Rockette. The Hooters system employs over 25,000 people – over 15,000 of which are Hooters Girls. The “nearly world famous” Hooters Girls are the cornerstone of the Hooters concept, and as part of their job, these all-American cheerleaders make promotional and charitable appearances in their respective communities. Hooters hires women who best fit the image of a Hooters Girl to work in this capacity. The chain hires both males and females to work in management and host, staff, service bar, and kitchen positions. The Hooters Girl uniform consists of orange shorts and a white tank top, short-sleeve or long-sleeve T-shirt. Pantyhose and bras are required.

Claims that Hooters exploits attractive women are as ridiculous as saying the NFL exploits men who are big and fast. Hooters Girls have the same right to use their natural female sex appeal to earn a living as do super models Cindy Crawford and Naomi Campbell. To Hooters, the women’s rights movement is important because it guarantees women have the right to choose their own careers, be it a Supreme Court Justice or Hooters Girl.

Women occupy management positions all the way from Assistant Manager to Vice President of Training and Development, Kat Cole, who started her career at Hooters as a Hooters Girl.

The chain acknowledges that many consider “Hooters” a slang term for a portion of the female anatomy. Hooters does have an owl inside its logo and uses an owl theme sufficiently to allow debate to occur over the meaning’s intent. The chain enjoys and benefits from this debate. In the end, we hope Hooters means a great place to eat.

Hooters characterizes itself as a neighborhood place, not a typical family restaurant. Sixty-eight percent of customers are male, most between the ages of 25-54. Hooters does not market itself to families, but they do patronize the restaurants. Ten percent of the parties we serve have children in them. Hooters is in the hospitality business and provides the best possible service to anyone coming through the door. For this reason, the chain offers a children’s menu.

Oh I could continue quoting, but you might as well read the page if it interests you. I’ll just add this one bit:

Sex appeal is legal and it sells. Newspapers, magazines, daytime talk shows, and local television affiliates consistently emphasize a variety of sexual topics to boost sales. Hooters marketing, emphasizing the Hooters Girl and her sex appeal, along with its commitment to quality operations continues to build and contributes to the chain’s success. Hooters’ business motto sums it up, “You can sell the sizzle, but you have to deliver the steak.”

Lovely. It’s one of those ‘the majority is always right, therefore the perceived majority is always right, therefore the media is always right and therefore we are’ decisions. Pretty questionable if you ask me. What they don’t seem to understand is that their company reduces women to mere ‘sex appeal’, and normalises the view of women as constantly sexually available, as there for male pleasure and as subservient. As Laura Woodhouse from The F-Word puts it,

Some women may have no problems working there or dealing with the customers. But some women choosing to work there doesn’t mean that the Hooters’ view of women is OK. As long as women are primarily valued and viewed as sex objects for male pleasure/entertainment, all women suffer, because that status allows us to be discriminated against and “justifies” male sexual harassment of women, the myths about rape (she asked for it because she had her breasts out, she wanted it really etc etc), paying us less or barring our access to certain jobs. We will not be seen or treated as equals with equal rights as long as the culture of which Hooters is a part insists that our greatest asset is our breasts, and that these exist for men to look at and make money out of.

Other women have to take any job going, and they shouldn’t have to put up with the Hooters uniform and sexual harassment in order to make a living. Callers on the show last night who claimed that no one has to do a job they don’t like are naive. You think people CHOOSE to empty bins or clean toilets day in, day out for years on end? People have to make ends meet, and they should not have to put up with the Hooters environment in order to do so. I don’t think the women who choose to work there should have to, either.

Here are the anti-hooters links: Both blogs at The F-Word , Facebook group, PETITION, Guardian article.

And here’s the agreement that all of the ‘girls’ have to sign – read paras 2 and 3.

I’d be intrigued to know what you think about this. Personally, as you may have gathered, I’m astonished that this should even be suggested, let alone accepted, as a new branch of restaurants, pleasantly titled ‘breastaurants’ by one of the lawyers for Hooters (which, really, says it all), in England.

Goodness, that’s a bit of a long sentence, sorry. I hope that there is some way of stopping them, really I do. The fact that they are celebrating their 25th Birthday in America is depressing enough, let’s hope they never get to celebrate their first one here.

[Edit: It would appear that actually they have been successful in getting permission for a Hooters in Southend on Sea. Damn damn damn damn. But that does not mean (obviously) that we just give up and accept their existence in our country. Or indeed anywhere. Keep fighting the good fight, my friends. And on that note, as ever, adieu.]

Aaah! Aaah!

I just searched ‘baby’ for a picture of, you guessed it, a baby for my presentation. And the pic I liked was from this site. Which is all about helping you choose what gender your child will be.

No. You’re not meant to be able to do that. I know that they do it naturally, claiming that conceiving at certain points of your cycle decides on your child’s gender. But still – having a child shouldn’t be about ‘I want a little girl, not a little boy’ or visa versa. It should be ‘I want a child.’

/rant. Sorry, it just weirded me out.

And on that note – adieu.

…so today, well tonight, I will relish my last moments of holiday, of escape. I’ve given up on things lately – work mostly, depression about the state of the world (made easier by trying to avoid the news and any research), people. Keeping my room tidy. Reading what I’m supposed to read.

It was only for a few days. And now I know that My Life As It Really Is must resume soon – tomorrow, in fact. Those three essays I’ve ignored need to be done. That presentation on my project about women in science? Yeah, gotta do that. The revision for my History and English exams? Ought to dig into that at some point. What’s that? I have to see friends and family and walk around and breathe as well? Great.

As a final flourish of the Free Flag, then, I will provide you with some lovely things that have managed to distract me for a few hours. Enjoy. After this it’ll no doubt get gritty again.

Oh and by the way – some of these things are weird 🙂

A movie in a minute …yes, I just said movie. That’s what they’ve called them. I’m on holiday, I can’t complain 🙂

They do books too

Hello Boys and Girls, today we’re going to make music…count and play your rhythm sticks, if you have them 😀 This site just has loadsa sound bytes. These are my favourites so far!

Bullet + Crayons = fun

These two have whole books. On teh internetz! 😀

The Mockery of the Bible. Worth it for the foolery section alone. Obviously there are issues with all of it – but today is holiday day and I’m not going into them.

You know the words you can put on your fridge? The magnetic ones of joy? There’s a huge fridge in cyberspace all for you…and everyone else in the world…YAY 😀

A title generator (for stories, poems, you name it 🙂 )

This is what my house will look like when I’m all growed up.

Scrap that. My house will be all of these. Combined.

But if you really want something disheartening, as that is what this blog usually seems to bring to your attention, try this. It’s pathetic. Have something that’s depressing in a cheery way to make up for it : *smiles*

Back in the dream world – ooh, an online typewriter thing 🙂

Some of these photos are incredible – I love the 5th one the most =]

A pac man game with SCOUTING FOR GIRLS! Hoorah, all of my dreams have come true 😛

Bible Google! Hahahaha wow. I’m happy.

Story in a sentence. Kinda like postsecret in a way. But nowhere near as good. Some interesting ones though 🙂

The Beatles make me happy. Bit of a weird link tho.

I. Love. Words.

And I love this

Sarcasm. Society. Need I say more?

In fact, no. I think I’ve said enough. I fear I must now resign myself to sleep, fully aware that when I wake the work will descend and there will seem to be no end. There we go, that’s life.

And on that note – adieu!

I expect most of y’all will have heard of this. Maybe. I hadn’t until today, and I am now really eager to go and do it. Maybe after college one day? In Churchill Square? Or the Lanes?

This, by the way, is the Free Hugs Campaign.

It’s amazing. So inspirational. And hey, hugs are important things. They can change a life. This small act of kindness and generosity is really quite incredible.

Thought I’d share that, and this poem, with you. Enjoy.

The Hug– Tess Gallagher

A woman is reading a poem on the street

and another woman stops to listen. We stop too,

with our arms around each other. The poem

is being read and listened out here

in the open. Behind us

no one is entering or leaving the houses.

Suddenly a hug comes over me and I’m

giving it to you, like a variable star shooting light

off to make itself comfortable, then

subsiding. I finish but keep holding

you. A man walks up to us and we know he hasn’t

come out of nowhere, but if he could, he

would have. He looks homeless because of how

he needs. “Can I have one of those?” he asks you,

and I feel you nod. I’m surprised,

surprised you don’t tell him how

it is – that I’m yours, only

yours, etc., exclusive as a nose to

its face. Love – that’s what we’re talking about, love

that nabs you with ‘for me

only’ and holds on.

So I walk over to him and put my

arms around him and try to

hug him like I mean it. He’s got an overcoat on

so thick I can’t feel

him past it. I’m starting the hug

and thinking, ‘How big a hug is this supposed to be?

How long shall I hold this hug?’ Already

we could be eternal, his arms falling over my

shoulders, my hands not

meeting behind his back, he is so big!

I put my head into his chest and snuggle

in. I lean into him. I lean my blood and my wishes

into him. He stands for it. This is his

and he’s starting to give it back so well I know he’s

getting it. This hug. So truly, so tenderly

we stop having arms and I don’t know if

my lover has walked away or what, or

if the woman is still reading the poem, or the houses –

what about them? – the houses.

Clearly a little permission is a dangerous thing.

But when you hug someone you want it

to be a masterpiece of connection, the way the button

on his coat will leave the imprint of

a planet in my cheek

when I walk away. When I try to find some place

to go back to.

And on that note – adieu!

…and I hate to say it, but it’s gonna be a while yet before I get a proper blog going again. I’m off to a week of work experience now in London, at The Agency – I can’t wait, but it means I’m not going to have any free time…and then I’m off to Norwich for a week.

So I promise you, when I return from all of that I’ll be back with a vengeance. To make up for it for now, maybe you could check these guys out:

Katie Wirsing (Is rather good)

Andrea Gibson (breaks my heart)

Shira Erlichman Saul Williams (I’m not sure about him, but he has an energy that I find fascinating 🙂 )

Alvin Lau And this guy is mental

And on that note – adieu!

Flickr Photos