Today, I have to be out of my house as it gets cleaned in advance of the three houseguests who are coming to march and the approximately fifty guests who will use it as a launching point for the March on Saturday morning.
This means that I am seeing, up close and personal, all the signs and preparations for the inauguration. And my heart almost can’t handle it. My eyes are leaking at the least provocation. So me, trying to read this article about how the White House staff handles moving out one First Family and moving in the next, was not the best idea (It’s interesting, but consider yourself warned).
This means I’m not really in a place to offer much of anything original that is useful for you all. But what I can do is share with you the articles I’m reading to avoid the pain of what is about to happen. Without further ado, my Top 5 distractions in advance of the Trump Inauguration.
* This little piece of amazing on Rep. Maxine Waters and the SHADE she has been throwing. I’m in such a down mood lately that very few things make me laugh out loud. This made me laugh out loud multiple times. The happy I feel from seeing how Rep. Waters turns distain into a particularly effective form of resistance registers damn near a perfect 10. The pictures. The videos. The gifs. But also, the author R. Eric Thomas, who gives us lines like “Her whole face says, ‘You tried it.’ Her lipstick shade is ‘Shade.'” or “She’s treating the press like they’re a bunch of vacuum cleaner salespeople who barged into her living room in the middle of Days of Our Lives. Like sands through the hourglass, this is a read of your life.” It doesn’t fully qualify as distraction because it is tangentially about the current political shitshow, but it is so maximally entertaining. My top recommendation.
* This interview with Chimamanda Ngozi Adichi about feminism, femininity, makeup and professionalism. I found most interesting her story about sitting and talking makeup with other “serious” women and about how that isn’t normal or really allowed for professional women. In contrast, it is fully acceptable and typical for men to sit and talk ad nauseam about golf swings or workout routines — even in professional settings. She also discusses the related judgment that can come for women in professional settings based on the kind of makeup they wear and how that varies between different countries. In general, this got me thinking about how we all have the ability to enact little cultural shifts by how we normalize or stigmatize behaviors.
* This review of the “Most Anticipated Feminist Book Releases of 2017.” It’s a handy little look, complete with links to buy, feminist books in every form: essays, poetry, fiction, memoir, commentary, etc. Some you will have undoubtedly heard of (e.g. Roxane Gay’s Difficult Women and Hunger), but others might be new discoveries. For example, I’m excited to read “The Hate U Give,” which is a debut novel inspired by the Movement for Black Lives and the fight for police reforms. I love debut novels, and the fact that there was a bidding war by various publishers to acquire it gives you a hint at how good it promises to be. Excited for all the good reading to cover this year!
* This criticism of how “La La Land” fails to be a feminist flick. Not every movie needs to be feminist. In fact, some of my favorites are decidedly not (shout out to Desperado; you’ll always be in my top 10). But La La Land is getting a “give them all the awards” reception from critics and just general heaps of adoration. And it apparently starts with the female protagonist seeming both strong and more or less realized. Sadly, it apparently devolves into the “woman wins when she gets a man and baby” trope, ignoring their character’s career aspirations almost entirely. That’s a bummer. I love musicals enough (shout out to White Christmas; you’ll always be in my top 10) that I’ll see it. But I wish that I could love it because it is a musical and because it stars a woman I recognize as akin to those in my life. The article ends with a bit of a zinging closer, so it is still a fun read. And I’m obviously seeing the movie in theaters. More distraction please!
* This puff piece on asking men on Tinder if they are feminists. I’m sure you’ll be shocked to learn that she doesn’t get a lot of positive responses to her inquiry about whether men she’s chatting with are feminists. This got me thinking about how hard it seems for men to embrace the term. Which got me thinking about how lucky I am that my husband does. Which got me thinking about other men who are, like my husband, proudly joining the Women’s March this weekend. Which meant I was back thinking about the state of our world and no longer distracted.
The truth is, there isn’t enough distraction in the world to distract from the Trump Inauguration. As a bonus, though, there is this awesome new chant/song from Fiona Apple: