Laugh Your Way to Lower Stress

Posts tagged ‘politics’

In Lieu of a Slap to the Head

I’m thinking of printing out cards that read, “You really deserve a slap to the head, but because society frowns on that, I give you this card instead.” A little poetry in lieu of poetic justice.

I’ll call these my STH (slap to head) cards.

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I needed these yesterday when I was at a local grocery store that carries an equal mix of organic and conventional foods, and a woman asked me if I knew where the “other” grapes were as I looked at the organic ones. She then proudly said, “I don’t buy organic.” I replied, “But those are covered with poison,” to which she responded, “I have to die of something.” In my head, I continued with, “But what about the bees? And the other critters who drink the water full of toxins?! And the people downstream? And Casar Chavez?”

A telepathic environmental activist is what I am. Because saying this stuff out loud could lead to harder drugs, such as  keying people’s Humvees or tossing Chinese throwing stars in their general direction as they serpentine across the parking lot.

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Also deserving of one my STH cards is anyone who says, “I don’t follow politics.” This is especially true if their response is to a statement such as, “We really need to do something to change the impact of humans on the earth” or “I sure hope no one takes away Social Security because I don’t know how I’ll survive on pension plan of a snarky wordsmith.”

Do they feel that being aware of issues beyond what type of lip gloss Iggy Azalea uses or whether the latest superhero movie holds up to the comic book requires too much effort? As if to “follow politics” they might actually have to physically follow the issues around, hopping a cab here, a Greyhound bus there, never knowing whether they’ll end up in Vegas or Muleshoe, Texas.

For them, my STH cards would be a substitute for my standing on a cruelty free, vegan, free-range soap box and yelling, “You don’t have to follow anything (except the 4000 people you stalk on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest) to take an interest in the world at large. It’s a fascinating place out here. You should come take a look sometime. There are real goats and llamas too!”

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Carly Fiorina, most of the female staff at Fox News, and any other woman who speaks out against equal pay for women, unfettered reproductive health care, or maternity leave should get an entire deck of cards. Come on, you’re packing a penis, right?

STH cards would help prevent me from hurling boxes of tampons at these women, yelling “Traitors!” and insisting they sit through the movie Beaches until their estrogen surged back to normal levels.

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I clearly need to design these cards fast or take my chances of showing up in a real life Orange is the New Black situation.

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It’s “History” because Women’s Clothes are Uncomfortable

I walked out of my high school history class one day because I was tired of learning about men and the wars they started and the countries they “discovered” by taking them from other people when they weren’t paying attention. If that’s “discovery,” then my sister discovered my clothes every week when we shared a room growing up together.

Even at the ripe old age of 16, I knew that if women made up half the population, they surely must have contributed something more to the world than birthing babies, tending to men’s battle wounds, and dressing up purty in whorehouses. But the Texas educational system surely did not want me to find out what those contributions were ‘cuz I might get uppity and refuse to bring my future husband a future beer.

Fast forward to today when I decide to take a break from digging up crabgrass in my yard, so I turn on the Discovery Channel, only to find a marathon about extraterrestials and how they may be behind most of the bright scientific and artistic minds throughout the ages… and every example of those bright scientific and artistic minds was male. This contrasts nicely with a printout on my desk right now from WomenRockScience.tumblr.com that highlights women who made remarkable scientific discoveries only to have them co-opted by men who decided he who has the testicles gets to win the Nobel Prize.

Other than men taking credit where none is due and men controlling the media for millenia, is there any other reason women don’t show up as history makers? I think there is: uncomfortable clothing.

Throughout history, women were in so much fashion-related pain, it was hard to remember where they lived, much less take over a government or develop a plan for landing on the moon. Yes, I realize that in the past men also occasionally dressed uncomfortably but most of the  painful outfits and accessories are saved for women. Think bustle so large women couldn’t sit down, corset laced so tightly that the act of breathing was as challenging as sucking a strawberry through a straw, girdle, hoop skirt, skinny jeans so tight it took a stick of butter to get them zipped, crinoline cage (that’s right, cage), thong panty, and 6″ stiletto heel (or as I call them, training stilts.)

Yes, it’s true that women have often chosen these stupid options for themselves, but most were invented by men and the media helped perpetuate the myth that the only way women could be considered feminine was to also be weak and unable to get from point A to point B without stabbing pain, likely heart attack, or scaring the horses. Even today in our so-called enlightened and more gender-equivalent society, the thing most women do when returning home from work or a social event is to strip off the Spanx and breathe and kick off the heels and slip into an actual shoe meant for walking.

If the members of one gender have been brainwashed to think that they must be uncomfortable at all times in order to be considered attractive and socially acceptable, they aren’t going to accomplish as much as if they were wearing, say, sweat pants and sneakers. There’s a reason Wendy Davis didn’t wear heels to deliver her filibuster in Texas: She knew that women with barking dogs don’t get anywhere.

The next time you go shopping for something pretty, ask yourself, “Can I run up the stairs of the Capitol building in this? Will I be so preoccupied by the pain it causes that within a few hours I’ll be dying to go home and put on my robe? Will it scare the horses or will it scare the men with whom I can now compete on an even and more comfortable playing field?”Image

How to Put the Spark Back in Your Relationship with Barack Obama

I’ll be the first to admit the passion has been all but snuffed out. Gone are the days when simply saying ”Barack” brought goose bumps; when I not only wrote his name on my notebook, I put his picture on the rear bumper of my car; when someone else would declare his or her love for him and I’d interrupt, reminding everyone, “I loved him first! Back when you were drooling over John Edwards and Hillary Clinton!”

Yes, I know that our waning ardor was inevitable. After all, the honeymoon is long over and it’s hard to feel that rush of desire that once was so powerful that hardly a moment went by without me thinking about the Big O and smiling like a fully satisfied woman. But our loss is sad nonetheless and I refuse to sit back and do nothing. It’s time for me to do what it takes to put the spark back in my relationship with Barack.
I know he feels the same way. Just last week, he reached out to me, inviting me to a romantic dinner. Sure the national media would be there and he’d invited millions of others too. And yes, I’d have to win a random drawing first and he wanted my money, but I could feel that his heart was in the right place. He knew we had to do something and he was willing to take the first step. It takes a big man to put aside his ego and reach out to his soul mates.

Now it’s my turn. And while I realize that a picnic in the park or long walks on the beach are probably out (it’s hard to reconnect with Secret Service surrounding us and the sound of helicopter propeller blades chopping the air), there are some steps I can take to rekindle our love. I plan to:

1. Make more time for him. Often I go days without thinking about Barack at all. His wants, his needs, his plans for troop withdrawal in Afghanistan don’t even register on my list of things to do. I take full responsibility for my failure to be there for him. From now on I will devote myself to visiting his FaceBook page several times a day and liking him as often as I can.
2. Listen better. Whether he’s giving a weekly radio address or fielding questions from reporters about his thoughts on Paul Ryan or who he likes on So You Think You Can Dance, I will listen. And rather than barely tuning in while sorting laundry or doing the dishes, I will give him my complete attention. In fact, just moments ago I watched an old video in which my man said, “I have faith that we will emerge from this trying time even stronger and more prosperous than we were before.” I feel better about us already.
3. Praise him for the good things he’s brought to our relationship. Couples tend to focus too much on the little things that go wrong, such as job loss, failure to get angry enough, and lack of commitment to slowing down global warming. But so many things have gone right and I need to make sure to let Barack know how much I appreciate even the smallest effort. Whether it was appointing Elena Kagen to the Supreme Court (and no, I am NOT jealous), asking the Pentagon to eliminate Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, restoring the Environmental Protection Agency to Cabinet status or installing energy efficient lights in the White House, there are so many things I have been taking for granted lately. And look, just last week, he finally took a stand on gay marriage. My man is slowly evolving and I need to make sure he knows I appreciate it.
4. Laugh together. In the beginning, we giggled all the time. He was on The Daily Show and I snorted soy milk through my nose. I hurt my tailbone falling off my chair laughing at his appearance on Saturday Night Live. What happened to the fun times we used to have? Sure, we’ve had to get serious and face our problems, but we need to remember to take time to laugh and let go. I think I’ll send him that funny YouTube video of the Tea Party flash mob video featuring cats in Glenn Beck masks. I know that will crack him up.
5. Make him his favorite meals. It’s been forever since I cooked for my man, so tonight I’m going to prepare all his favorites: nuts, seeds, raisins, broccoli, and spinach. How could I forget that the way to the leader of the free world’s heart is through his stomach?
6. Flirt. Flirting is what our relationship was built on at the start. He promised me change and I flashed him a coy smile. His eyes bored into mine through the fiber optic cables that bring me the news and I twirled my hair and batted my eyelashes. Just because he’s thousands of miles away and sometimes too busy to get away from his job, that’s no reason for us not to make sparks fly again. I know his @Twitter name and there’s nothing to stop me from sending him sexy messages. If he can get his sound bites down to fewer than 140 characters, I know I can do the same with mine.

You know what? I feel more connected already. In fact, if all goes well, I see us renewing our vows later this year. He looks so handsome in the fall.