Monday, November 5, 2007


(A bumper harvest year -- Feng shou nian)

I have something I'm proud of to share: The Seventh Carnival of Radical Feminists is compiled and up at host Angry For A Reason (a blog I enjoy reading regularly, about "living in a effed up white male dominated, capitalistic society"). I'm proud to say, I once again have three of my posts recommended in this carnival, including "THE WAR", OURS AND THEIRS -- PROPANDA AS BRAIN DAMAGE; WHEN JOHNNY COMES MARCHING HOME AGAIN; and "THE WAR" -- EXCERPT FROM GINNY BATES. She also comments "I suggest you read her entire blog as she submitted a lot of things to me and they're all worth a read. (sorry Maggie that I didn't put them all in."

I'm extremely honored to make this line-up. Reading it every month has introduced me to some extraordinary writers and blogs, and I recommend you sample liberally. I was particularly glad to see that a post by The Portly Dyke was also included, A Modest Proposal: The Thorny Issue of Sexual Consent. When you're done feasting on that one, hop over to a response by Heart at Women's Space to keep your brain synapses firing, especially from all the funny and way, way smart commenters there.

I also want to remind everybody that in addition to the body clock assault of daylight savings time shifts (did you know the rate of pedestrians being hit by cars goes up over 30% the week after a daylight savings time change? along with a lot of other profound negative impacts), and in addition to ongoing climate abnormalities, we are also smack in the middle of Scorpio. Which exalts death and secrets, among other attributes. It's a big, slow-moving planet which means it deals with major life lessons but in a way that often feels like you're having to learn the same lesson over and over again with no progress whatsoever. Remind yourself of it every day until the 22nd; don't give in to a sense of failure or being angry about how angry everyone else is acting right now; and let it unfold in its inexorable way until, presto, we hop into Sagittarius and suddenly energy will return.

With that in mind, I'm only going to recommend a couple of online treats to check out, one with some built-in hope and the other just plain funny. Go eat some chocolate, resist unloading in the comments portion of a blog, and make sure you get a good nature fix.

Oh, and if you're a fan of the computer games Virtual Villagers (the original and the Lost Children version), the makers, Last Day of Work, have a new one out called Plant Tycoon which is mostly about watching plants grow, playing around with cross-fertilization, collecting bugs, and, well, watching plants grow. Like all their games, it occurs in real-time whether you have the game on or not, and the same funky little villagers appear again, this time in modern dress as nursery customers. These are the most engrossing, non-stressful games I've run across, especially if you use a cheat code to remove all survival issues. (If you want the cheat codes, write me.)

In The Future of Cities: How Sprawl and Racism are Intertwined, an interview with civil rights leader and environmentalist Van Jones published at Alternt by Kevin Danaher, Shannon Biggs, and Jason M, a wealth of analysis (and solutions) are presented. Here are some of the quotes from Mr. Jones:

"Sprawl is a response to racial fear and anxiety on the part of white elites"

"People don't want to talk about why people call this a 'good' neighborhood or that one a 'bad' neighborhood, but often it has to do with the race of the people that live there. "

"[Environmentalists] often speak about working together through 'outreach' -- outreach in the sense of 'outreaching to' these people or those people. Outreaching to the black community: 'Well, we outreached to them so they could hear our agenda and get onboard with what we are saying.' This, as opposed to saying 'let's go make some friends,' building relationships, creating relationships. Figuring things out from a place where everyone's views are included. Relationships are give and take, mutual aid and help. Outreaching is the white thing, it's about bringing folks into what you are doing, and does not necessarily convey understanding."

"The incarceration industry is the new Jim Crow; you don't have to call him the "N word" if you just call him a felon. The current economic strategy is to take poor black kids, put them in jail in rural areas, and give poor white kids jobs as guards in that prison. Rural towns can't compete with industry, farms are all going away, so prison is an economic boon for rural communities. "

"We can have a Gulag or a green economy. But we can't have both."

(Picket line, King Farm Strike, Morrisville PA, August 1938, photo by John Vachon for WPA)

Second tip: has a wonderful schematic called Evolutionary Biology Bingo. Now you can back up all of your sexist ideas and gender essentialism with something that sounds a bit like science. Here's a couple of my favorite grid comments:

"The gender dynamics of our savannah ancestors looked curiously like those of 1950s America."

"Believes that women talk more than men, but for some reason won't let you get a word in edgewise."

(Image from the one and only Anne Taintor)


liza said...

Congratulations! Well deserved, of course.

And thanks for the reminder about Scorpio.

Maggie Jochild said...

Thanks, Lize. But credit back atcha -- getting to think with you makes so much possible.

shadocat said...

I second the congratulations

kat said...

I'm very late in reading these recent posts....Belated congratulations on the honor!

What's the picture inside the dot-thingy? sorry, red/green color blind....

Maggie Jochild said...

Kat, I'm not sure if you're pulling my leg or honestly not able to read it.

But, I'll play along. Inside the color field is spelled out, in red-green dots, "Fuck the color blind."

Joke accomplished, either way, eh?

kat said...

I'm totally not joking.
My mom would tease me as a kid when my socks didn't match or I referred to something that clearly wasn't the color I was calling it.

Finally when I in college, I got to the eye doctor (turns out I had needed glasses for some time--like, since the 4th grade--but was only just getting them at 19), and they tested me with all these awful dot thingies....

Yup, red/green color blind. I see them both, but if they (or variants of them) are next to each other, I'm doomed.

Does it really say "Fuck the Color Blind"??? Or are you being a meanie?

Maggie Jochild said...

Well, Kat, I guess "yes" would be the right answer to both questions -- yes, it really does say that, and yes, I was being a meanie in using the image.

I was partnered for five years with a woman whose mother was color blind, and she had decided to make up for her inability to see color distinctions by embracing PATTERNS! Her gifts at birthdays and other holidays were striking. I always admired her chutzpah.

And, I have to say, some of the hurdles they give up to make sure we're not spamming online -- like the word verification below -- are really hard to do. I often miss it the first time out. Not color issues, but fonts and numbers, I guess.