Monday, November 23, 2015

Adventures in Homeownership: Washing Machines

Our washing machine came with the house and for the first three months we lived here, it was fine. And then something shifted inside and since then, it sounds like a frieght train is fucking a gorilla during the rinse cycle.

And within the last few weeks, water has been gushing both from the bottom as discovered today and from the drainage pipe during the final spin cycle.

This is behind the washer. We get to run it with a bucket and a towel. Also, hai ugly tiles slated for demo next year.

This is the setup we bought with the house. Super handy of course.

We want to save up for a new washing machine/dryer set up, so I bought a tray to catch all the water that dribbles underneath.

As for the final spin cycle, I literally have to stand there and toggle the washer off to let the water drain before letting it finish the cycle. I'm baby sitting a damned washing machine.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

Sunday Snippets: What a fucking week

There are so many people who need love right now. I'm sending out as many good vibes into the universe that I can.

I love videos like this

I DIED at #8

Well, damn

I really want to see He Named Me Malala Also eternal love for Emma Watson.

This bullshit

This is fucking terrifying. These kids want to get an education and they are being hunted? More screenshots

And there it is


The fact that Jeter, an entirely innocent man, could be in jail today without the other dashcam is bone chilling.

Purty much


Here's the Real Immigration Problem That Donald Trump Isn't Talking About

The rule: In 2009, the now-deceased West Virginia Sen. Robert Byrd slipped a quota into the Homeland Security Department's annual spending bill requiring that Immigration and Customs Enforcement "maintain a level of not less than 34,000 detention beds" at all times.


What a shit basket

Tens of thousands march in South Korea anti-gov't protest



Friday, November 20, 2015

Phipps Conservatory

We visit with friends who moved to Pittsburgh last year quite frequently and on our last trip, we went to the Phipps Conservatory.

The orchid room was a favorite and this is probably my favorite shot from the entire day.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Fall Shots

I wasn't able to make it down to Shenandoah this year, so in order to get more of my fall fix, I took an afternoon walk in the little park down the street from my house.

See more here.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Sunday Snippets: Yay Halloween!

The hubs and I went as mechanics. We also dressed up our fuzzy children. They were not as happy as I was.

Yup, there it is

6,000 aboriginal children died in residential school system, report finds


Happenings in Canada


The Illusion of Simplicity

Just hope the organization store doesn’t decide to redesign their containers — you’ll have to start all over again with new ones if you want everything to match.

This isn’t the kind of possibility I was hoping for.

This isn’t freedom from stuff, this is hoarding disguised as simplicity.

3 Ways to Say Goodbye to Busyness

5 Black Churches in the Ferguson Area Have Burned Since Last Week, Media Shrugs


Aww, poor guy!

The Syrian Refugee Struggle No One’s Talking About

Might need to sit down and watch The Knick now Also Clive Owen is forever on my list.

Facts that I didn't know

Such a classic

This actually does make a lot of sense

Let’s be honest. What he really wanted to say was “She was asking for it”.

An off-duty cop shot my brother inside a hospital. I want to know why.

Not Okay

Women can’t have it all – because the game is rigged

When commentators speak of women's 'work-life balance', they're not talking about how much time a woman will have, at the end of the day, to work on her memoirs, or travel the world. ‘Life', for women, is simply another word for work, a route-march through child-rearing and domestic labour which is assumed to be the ultimate destination of every woman’s passions. 'Life', for men, is meant to be bigger than that.
Disgusted, but not surprised

How to be a good ally


Canada, looking good

This is horrifying

You will be surprised to learn that our friend Larry has also argued that “Biblically speaking, there is no such thing as ‘marital rape.’” In a post titled “Christian Husbands — You don’t pay for the milk when you own the cow!” Solomon insists a wife’s “body does belong to her husband,” and that any requests for sex deferral should be made “humbly and gently.” After all, “sex is not about being in the mood, and it is not about feelings, it is about doing what is right.”

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Sunday Snippets: In Law Visits

My mother in law is visiting our house for the first time (she lives in FL, so we don't see her often) and this will also be the first we've seen her since our wedding. I really adore her and my mom also isn't batshit crazy, so we kinda flout the stereotypes. Our fathers, on the other hand.....

Daily Reminder Fucking sad that none of this surprises me

*Hork* Gag worthy

Redlining is Alive and Well—and Evolving

“Redlining,” the practice of banks and real estate agents steering black and Latino families away from predominantly white neighborhoods, is often spoken of in the past tense. We tend to think of it as a vestige of Jim Crow, of a thankfully bygone era when people wore racism on their sleeves and wove it into neighborhood engineering without repercussion.

Some recent cases, however, show that not only is redlining alive today, but that it’s also evolved in many cases into racist practices that aren’t as detectable as they were during Jim Crow.

Mass Killings in the US: Masculinity, Masculinity, Masculinity

In the interview Mercer called the event “devastating” and explained he was still trying to understand it, but he took the time to issue a passionate call for the U.S. to restrict access to firearms

17 Powerful Quotes About Racism In America


Monday, October 5, 2015

Adventures in Homeownership: Round Up Edition

With the weather sidling most of our plans, we did some serious puttering around the house:

Fixed my rug (more here)

I started (finally) using Ebates and once you make your first purchase, you get a free Target giftcard.

Displayed our new oil candle, a gift from friends.

Re-arranged nightstand area. 

Close up

Husband made a custom paint stirrer for the drill. He's inventive like that.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Sunday Snippets: Hurricane?

It's been a little over three years since Hurricane Sandy. I'm hunkering down with the husband, cats and copious amounts of liquor to ride out this latest storm.


You have to understand, that no one puts their children in a boat unless the water is safer than the land.”


This is one of the instances where karma is going to fuck this dude up

For Halloween 2015, Just Say No To Blackface

File under duh

Awww, elephants

Whoop, there it is

I do believe another gent in history had a similar idea....

Why doesn't she get the same coverage?

Poor babies


“They said it’s safe, but it’s brown water,” said Marshall, also a radiology coder, after the meeting.“Why do we have to drink brown water? No one else has to drink brown water.”

What happens when a young girl of color goes missing? Who searches for her? Who tries to bring her home safely? Not the police, as the short film Muted shows.

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Book Review: I'm not a Slut: Slut-Shaming in the Age of the Internet

I was thrilled that one of my all time favorite books,
Slut! Growing Up Female with a Bad Reputation was getting a follow up. I first read Slut! at 16 and it was one of my awakening books, the "Oh, this actually happens to other people/I'm not alone" type of books. I eagerly anticipated the same feeling with Tanenbaum's newest, but I was sadly and woefully disappointed.

The book is broken down in nine chapters, starting with the differences of slut bashing and shaming today versus twenty years ago, the differences between a "good" slut and a "bad" slut, how online harassment has developed, sexual assault and how to cope and eventually eliminate the term. Tanenbaum states upfront that there is a lot of ground to cover because "the label 'slut' is far more common, and utterly more confusing than ever before. But one thing has not changed: regardless of context, the consequences of being labelled a slut are nearly always damaging." Damaging indeed. Countless young women, including Rehtaeh Parsons, Felicia Garcia, Audrie Pott, took their lives after brutal and disgusting bullying, mostly about their sexual lives. The author states that one thing that has changed is that there are now two separate types of harassment: slut-bashing and slut-shaming, the latter being a causal way of judging peers, but still nonetheless harmful because it polices others' behavior. The term 'slut' has always been about controlling women.

The book does include some very thoughtful and important points, like specifically calling out the fact that "the components of a slut's sluttiness include: displaying agency, being active rather than passive, choosing her actions....Agency is a critical element of the sexual double standard, in which only girls, never boys, are called to tasks for their real or presumed sexual aggression."Women who don't toe the party line or play the game have been called aggressive or slutty since the beginning of time. Calling a woman a slut "convinces girls and women who have been victimized that they are the ones who have done something wrong," when in fact it is a tool to subjugate women. Young women "[recognize] that sexual equality does not in fact yet exist in practice. When a girl and boy are identically sexually active, only the girl is treated punitively."

The book concludes with talking about the StopSlut movement and the activism, both online and in the public sphere, including Hollaback!, all of which are making a noticeable difference in women's lives around the world. One of the appendices also includes good ideas about halting toxic behavior, like calling out someone who uses the term slut or ho.

However, there were several disappointing parts in the book. While Tanenbaum includes the ethnicity of the young women she interviewed (skewed toward white women), she also included physical descriptions, such as hair style and clothing choices, which seemed unnecessary. And while many aspects of the digital age are numerous and sometimes understood only colloquially, the author plays up to the fact that she is out of date. Social media isn't difficult, nor are teenagers a separate species.

One of the biggest issues was the discrepancies in advice or judgement. On one page, this is stated: "It's true that something is horribly wrong. But hand wringing, clucking or lecturing girls to behave 'appropriately' or 'modestly' is an ineffective as a 'Do Not Track' app." And yet on the very next page, "We wonder: Don't young females today recognize that if they sexualize themselves, particularly in nonsexual contexts such as school, others will regard them as sexual objects?...Are they really so clueless?" And yet still on the next page, "In general, these girls claim that they make clothing choices for themselves, not male attention. This, my friends, is a smoke screen." Gobsmackingly, this same book spoke about agency and how "sluts" take agency and control and are thus penalized for it. I'm at a loss as to what effect the previous statements could possibly hope to make.

I appreciate the situation as it is currently: we want to encourage women to dress and act as they wish, because they are independent human beings, but also must acknowledge the fact that rape culture and outdated and dangerous attitudes prevail, which lead to whispered advice and contradictory attitudes about drinking while out in public. But the advice given seems deliberately contradictory.

When the book ended with appendices, I admit I was incensed. They included "Don't insult your daughter over her clothing choices" for parents but in The Slut-Shaming Self-Defense Toolkit, "Don't binge drink" and "Don't dress in a sexually provocative manner unless you want to be looked at sexually and can handle being reduced to a sexual object" were listed. For the latter appendix, the author does preface with "It's never your fault for being slut-shamed or assaulted. The ultimate goals described in this book are to eliminate slut-shaming and to redirect blame for sexual assault onto those responsible for it: the assaulters."

Since Ms. Tanenbaum is unclear on the topic, please allow me to state it unequivocally: "A woman could be stone cold drunk, unconscious and a gigantic arrow pointing to her orifices and guess what? STILL ISN'T HER FAULT THAT SHE WAS RAPED." It is utterly galling to read a book geared toward young women seeking advice about how to combat sexist attitudes and harassment that includes those very same judgments within the same book. As previously mentioned, I understand how difficult it can be to help women avoid assault. I realize attitudes and actions take measurably longer to change, but this book feels yet again that we are putting the onus on women to avoid rape rather than teaching men healthy boundaries, consent and to not rape women.

(Photo Credit:

Friday, September 18, 2015

Fall: A Round Up

This photo is part of the #DSFloral collection on Instagram. I love the vibrancy contrasting with the dark background, the texture is gorgeous and screams Fall.

There are some songs that, as soon as I hear them, I can see the dark leaves, moody rich colors of fall.

Is This Real-Lisa Hall

Change In the House of Flies-Deftones

I Put a Spell on You-Bryan Ferry

Crazy in Love-Sofia Karlberg (we'll ignore the fact that this song, along with so many good ones, were put in that awful movie)


(Photo credit: