“I will have to remember ‘I am here today to cross the swamp, not to fight all the alligators.’”
— From The Art of Possibility by Rosamund and Benjamin Zander
In or around 2012 I started a blog. I called it the 365-Day blog because I planned on posting everyday (I know). I called it, Miss Anita Kloo, What Should I Do?” because at the time I wanted to be an advice columnist. There’s something inherently egotistical about that goal. My motives, or the way I like to think about them, were pure: I have read thousands of self-help books. Some applicable, some not so much. What good were all those wasted hours if not to reach out with the most “pertinent” information to edify others? Ha!
Fear is as feckless yet not as shallow as Cher from Clueless.
If you’re interested in the Zen of stupid yet philosophically interesting pop-culture films, I’m your girl. Take Cher from Clueless. She’s a sex goddess yet strangely virginal. I found out the first year of college that Cher was an Aphrodite defanged by patriarchal culture. You could want to and need to feel her warm, passionate regard. But she was to remain a girl attracted to gay guys and the Reality-Bites version of a knight in shining armor, Paul Rudd. Oh, it made me hot.
I mean, look at the blow-job lips on every woman on the poster. Couldn’t we show her being a little less label-conscious and a little more feminist? Cher seemed to gain her identity from taking care of her workaholic father and channeling her passions to spacey, Miss-Whoever’s charity of the week. In case you didn’t know, these activist-lesbians are seen as channeling their “normal” penis cravings into social justice. WTF people! Please fucking forgive me for writing about this bigotry—I am shining a light on it, not condoning it. The idea that Cher and her sidekick black girl(!!!???) could become agents of patriarchal culture and get this woman married to the dude who kept saying, “Inconceivable” in The Princess Bride is just lame-ass.
And never mind the plastification of Britney Murphy who was absolutely fine the way she showed up, new girl in school, bad accent notwithstanding.
Feminism isn’t the right to wear our skirts as short as we want. – Patty Tomsky
Feminism isn’t the right to wear our skirts as short as we want or choosing to go with the safe law student as a BF also BFF. It’s about….it’s ummmmm OH FUCK IT NO MORE!!!
I’ve spent my life under well-meaning judgement. The tribes we lived in as cavewomen needed to create an evil OTHER to keep the kids from wandering over and giving up our secrets–where were we hiding the deep-frozen bison jerky all winter?
I can’t believe that eight years ago I was into telling other people how to live. Let that sink in–telling other people they should read such and that of a book or a podcast and try to incorporate it because my gosh how VALUABLE it was to me.
The barrage of should-be-betters had me frozen and drowned, like Ophelia, letting my desires die–for art, for poetry, for a life not lived under the work-chapped knuckles of capitalism. I’d wanted to be free to make my own decisions and create my own path to freedom as a Mom, working woman, artist, writer, creative.
No one left me the space to finally, forever do it, until I was able to get out from under the expectations I spun in my head. To decide for myself that my unseemly need for more, better, now–space and freedom to do my art — was fine.
So, in honor of Ophelia, one of the first anxiety disorder/depressives accurately depicted in literature. In honor of you out there, whoever you are, who needs to learn just exactly what she needs to learn thanks to your own, blessed, individual journey, forever and ever, Alleluia, Amen. No more advice. Just empathetic listening and an open mind and heart.