Foolishness and direction

Finding direction was a lot like figuring out

I realized in April that I was a fool which helped me find my direction. That was actually one of my favorite posts, though it was a small one. It was during this second quarter of the year that I really did find my direction. I had already established that I was a feminist and that I believed in masculism as a concept, though not all masculists. I don’t agree with all feminists either, so I don’t know why that would be an expectation. I’ve argued with both. It was during this time that I also learned of non-binary people and some of their issues, such as not having adequate pronouns. The world started unfolding a bit more and I realized that only posting my own content every two weeks was not an option. I’d have to say that in the choir analogy from last week, this quarter was when I started to find my part on the music. For those who are not familiar with sheet music, all parts of the song show up on one page and you have to figure out which one is for your voice. This is when that happened.

In April, I realized that I needed to post weekly and it was in May that realized that I need a little more structure and decided on the monthly themes. I had spent two weeks on Bias, so I stuck to that for May but wanted to talk about men the following month. Father’s Day was coming up, what better month to talk about men? In May, discussion on bias were not exclusive to the plight of women, though I was not yet aware of non-binary people and their place in all of this, that came later. Bias really began in April with the fear of criticism, and carried through May with a look at internal bias, what we can do as individuals, letting go of bias, gender neutral pronouns, and that fear is not exclusive to one gender. The last two were the beginning of my education on non-binary people and their set of problems in the world.

Of course, education is forever, right? This quarter is when I finished The Feminine Mystique (50th Anniversary Edition). I wrote about it several times. I’d had no idea what was really going on in that book and it really scratched the shimmer off the view of the early twentieth century. This was followed by The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir, and Wild At Heart by John Eldredge. The first was breath-taking and amazing, which really set the second up for failure. Truth be told, I am not a fan of men’s issues books so far. Out of the three that I have read, I only really liked one, but that didn’t come until August. Let’s get back to the second quarter though.

It was in this second quarter that marked the beginning of the Bring Back Our Girls campaign and gave a huge wake up call to unequal pay in the form of the Jill Abramson firing. The Isla Vista shooting took place during this time as well. That was also my first experience with the backlash that some men cause in what seems like an effort to distance themselves from the kind of men who perpetrate such acts. I’m sure that their intentions are meant to not allow men to be demonized, but it doesn’t usually come off this way. It usually comes off sounding like a collective temper tantrum. I try to think of what might be a more “grown up” response, but I’m at a loss. I suppose they would take a higher road if they saw one. Not all men are bad men, not all women are good women. Such assumptions must be dispelled, but the radicals of both sides don’t seem to want us to forget these images of ourselves.

I got a chance to spend some time talking about men and men’s issues in June, which I rather enjoyed. I tried to not speak for them, since I am an outsider. Instead, I wrote about and linked to a page of theirs that outlined their issues. I also wrote about some issues that I have in relation to men, and please don’t confuse that with the idea that I have issues with men. For starters, there seemed to be a question as to why men are demonized with certain actions being attributed to them, why I think that chivalry is concept that should be dead by now, and the gross overstatement of misandry in all but the most extreme of radical feminist circles. Make no mistake, I did not attempt to debunk misandry entirely, I know that it exists. Misandry and misogyny are terms defining specific types of hatred and should not be confused with lesser things. Often both terms are misused for lesser forms of dislike or resentment.

It was also in June that I began the Wednesday Media Posts. These have been snippets of entertainment that have inspired thoughts on gender and gender expression. Some have taken on a life of their own, but most of them are just little pieces of inspiration in one way or another. It began with Much Ado About Nothing and continued with The Amazing Spider-Man 2Maleficent, and ended in June with some thoughts on characters who live outside their stereotypes. Somewhere along the way, I also added a Pinterest account to keep track of the books I had read and the ones I wanted to read, to collect images and content on people who inspired me and to better share content from other bloggers who made good points. The Pinboards have expanded since then, feel free to check them out. I was and still am learning a lot all the time about gender, gender relations, and gendered issues.

Things really started to come together in the second quarter for me and the blog. After making the plan to have the themes, ideas came in faster and posts formed in more consistent ways. It really came together then. To go back to the choir analogy, I found my part in the song we were singing, just not the pitch yet.


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