Thursday, March 18, 2010

Southwest Airlines Gets The Boot

Same commercial stretch during the NCAA semis: 11 burly boy airline workers line up on the tarmac, hollerin'. Plane begins to taxi, guys lift up shirts to flash the plane as we watch their backs. Cut to interior of plane. Older woman looks out the window and we see the burly boys' bare bellies read B A G S  F L Y  F R E E!.

Well now. I'm sure Southwest Airlines didn't mean that the older woman looking out the window gets a free flight, but gee, guys. Honestly? You can't do better than this?

Who wants to look at bare-bellied hollerin' guys whether you're a bag or not?

Southwest Airlines gets the boot. Maybe two boots.

Miller Lite Gets The Boot

Watched 10 minutes of March Madness; enough time to see about 5 commercials.

Man/woman/dog at a sidewalk bar table. "So if Buster and I were both falling off a cliff, who would you save?" she asks. He chooses her. Then: "Me or your mom?" Same result. Then: "Me or your Miller Lite?"

He thinks. "How high's the cliff?" She stomps away. He snickers to Buster.

Miller Lite forgets women buy beer. Even silly women buy beer. Miller Lite gets the boot. And I will continue not to buy Miller Lite.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Happy Birthday, Pisceans!

Another fish-friendly year is underway for all of us Pisces people.

Cheers to everyone, and let's hope success in 2010 leads to more success in 2011.

April and May are expected to be particularly advantageous months for us. According to one card deck, we'll be shopping for luxury items. In my case, that means an upgrade in toothpaste choices.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

What I Want for My Birthday

I want my mom back so I can ask her what it was like to give birth.

I want to stand up for myself whenever I feel it is necessary and not feel guilty.

I want to stop reading things that make me crazy, furious, sad or dumbfounded.

I want to have no opinion about more stuff.

I want a hair conditioner that conditions my hair rather than my shower stall.

I want a cellphone that makes a call and keeps it until I hang up.

I want a piece of key lime pie. With a candle. So here 'tis - Happy Birthday!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Tamara de Lempika

Tamara de Lempika (1898 to 1980) was the finest Art Deco painter (my opinion) and one of the few painters from the time who worked successfully for most of her career. She was independent, tough, smart and marvelous. Her portraits of the aristocracy, the noveau riche and the fabulously well-to-do were commissioned for the equivalent of $20,000 in today's dollars.

Her biography, "Tamara de Lempika: A Life of Deco and Decadence," although unfriendly fire, has some terrific plates in it, and it is still possible to admire her work, if not her choices, after reading it.

She was bisexual and a practicing, painting voluptuary, which produced excellent paintings and a wild, busy and chaotic life, which not all appreciated.

She was a superb painter, was masterful at acquiring patrons, and had a glamorous life and business in Europe and after 1939, in Hollywood as painter of the stars. After 1943, when her popularity diminished she painted still lifes, and took up the palette knife, as her acclaim subsided. After 1962, she gave up painting altogether. Although the Baronness lived long enough to see a resurgence in interest in her work, she didn't enjoy her later years. But what a life she lived as a legend in her own time.

Make Yourself Historical

March, 2010 is Women's History Month. This month we celebrate the accomplishments, journey, strength and hope of women in America and the world.

Do something for you this month. Contribute to a cause that makes you vibrate with urgency. Donate your time, experience, care to a worthy mission. Write your story, get it out in the world. Reward you for being you. Sing your praises loudly and publicly. Toast your survival. Hug you, embrace your womanhood, your sisterhood, your whateverhood. Do it now. Tell your truth, reclaim your power, assert your strength, act on your intuition.

Give you a gift. Make a cake, and blow out a candle with a wish for your continued success. Get everyone in your house to do the same. Make a secret desire known, and take the first steps to grab what you want. Do this. Do it now, this March, 2010. Then keep doing it.

Admirable Women: Sofia Brahe

Sofia [Sophia] Brahe (1556 to 1643) was a Danish astronomer, horticulturalist and a highly-educated and accomplished woman. While I remember studying Tycho Brahe (her brother) and Johannes Kepler in college, I don't remember much mention of Sofia. I noted this at the time.

My niece had a research paper to do years ago and had the choice of 5 people; the one woman was Sofia Brahe. She chose Sofia. We had trouble then finding any references to her, although there were many to her brother. There is little more to be found now; searching "Sofia or Sophia Brahe" will get you plenty of Tycho information, but not much of her own. What you find are copies of other pages.

I just had a web page translated from Spanish, and while the pronoun "his" is incorrectly applied, and started making me cranky, it turns out to be an interesting page from the Physics and Chemistry Department somewhere in the world. Kudos to Miriam Cruces Villaran!

Women were not encouraged or allowed to be educated in the 16th century, but Ms. Brahe got herself educated nonetheless. It is my belief that, as happened to millions of accomplished women unheralded by historians, much of Brahe's original research and work was probably credited to the male closest to her: in Sofia's case, her brother. I hope there are young women out there who are researching the work of Sofia Brahe, and will bring her accomplishments, and their own, to light in the near future.


Hatshepsut was Pharoah of Egypt from possibly as early as 1512 BC [or as late as 1493] until 1458 BC. She is acknowledged one of the most successful Pharoahs in history, although early Egyptologists credited some of her accomplishments to other male rulers throughout history. (Surprised?)

Hatshepsut named herself Pharoah, donned the false beard and other regalia of office, demanded she be called "His Majesty," and also took the additional title of "Chieftainess of Noble Women."

She was a warrior, general, king, builder, beneficent ruler, trade route creator, exceptional negotiator and is the only woman buried in the Valley of the Kings.

Her successor Thutmose III and his son Amenhotep II had minions try to erase her from history by chiseling her image, and references of her off statuary and cartouches. They did a poor job, and started late in their careers, thankfully. Attempts to take credit for her brilliant reign are gradually being debunked. Long may her true history shine ever brighter. More women archeologists! There are undoubtedly young Egyptologists hard at work right now.

Women's History Month

March is Women's History Month. Wish there was more history to celebrate, so instead of wishing, I'm dedicating this month to putting some of our names and faces in history. National Women's History Project is calling this month's attention "Writing Women Back into History."

Women's Media Center is asking for donations to continue their excellent work: $30 to support their 30 Women Making History project. There is a video called "Celebrate Academy Award Nominated Women!" You can sign a petition on the site to have more women nominated next year. More importantly, you can finish your own movie to be nominated. Or start it this April at ScriptFrenzy.

You want to watch the video. It's goose-bumping.

Carolynne Cunningham is nominated for Best Picture as producer "District 9," and credited in the video. Cool! But wait! I checked Wikipedia, and there was Peter Jackson, Producer. Only. I signed up as an editor on Wikipedia, twitched and swore my way through their instructions and DOs and DON'T DAREs, and got Carolynne Cunningham's name on the entry. YAY US! There she is. I feel powerful and happy. I wrote a woman back into history.

Just read "Molly Ivins: A Rebel Life," and there is on page 141 reference to Myra MacPherson, MSU-educated journalist. There is NO Wikipedia entry for Myra MacPherson. Not much about her at all except as author of a book about I.F. Stone. I want to know about Myra MacPherson, MSU alumnus. I'll find her this month and celebrate her.

More celebrating to come! YAY US!