April 19, 2016

Vacancy of Days

The hardest part is knowing where to start. Usually the music greases the wheels and makes it easier. These days it’s Carrie and Lowell by Sufan Stevens that gets me to the spot where I feel ready to say something about something. The blank page defeated by an inaugural sentence.

A few minutes ago I tweeted the following:

The #whenIwas hashtag should be an eye opening, somber look at what it means to deal with @EverydaySexism. Something most men never face.

It is filled with disturbing sexist comments many women face as young as seven years old. It ranges from suggestive sexual advances forced upon children to flagrant outdated remarks about what is and what is not acceptable for girls-- apparently math and science seldom fit this bill. On this hashtag women share stories of being cat called or spoken to about their sexuality as young as ten years old. It got me thinking about how ill-equipped Kaia is to deal with such disgusting suggestions. It got me thinking about the world she must learn to navigate and how different this world will be from my male-privileged course. 

As a young man, I was able to be and do whatever I wanted. There was no one leering at me or suggesting that my only value was sexual. There was no one passively aggressively hinting that I couldn’t do anything because of my gender. Sure there were unrealistic expectations of what it meant to be a man, but I still had the advantage of being a man.

The sadder and scarier point I want to make is that after I posted that tweet, several people immediately called me a faggot and hurled insults. There is this emerging dangerous culture of attacking people when they say what you don’t agree with online, and these attacks more and more often are directed at women or people who talk about equality and sexism.

I guess rather than getting discouraged, we have to stay vigilant. If I want my daughters to live in a world where they are not objectified or taken less seriously than their male counterparts, I have to keep speaking up and taking back our collective spaces. I think this standing firm is equally more important for men; we cannot leave this battle for women alone. We have to be in it together.

did you remember
that the vacancy of days
is where loved is stored?

My desk at work is such a crazy mess and every time I interact with it, I doubt whether or not I will be a good head of grade. I am hoping my ideas are more important than my organisational skills. I can do motivation and inspiration, I think, but administration is not my strong suit. I hope to try and clean it, the desk, tomorrow if I can make some time. I cleaned my inbox today, so that was a start.

I am also contemplating changes in my wardrobe for next year. How extreme will it need to be? More long sleeve shirts? Ties? Vests? Same-same? These are things I think about as I brush my teeth in the morning. Any ideas for new professional yet hip wardrobe choices are welcome in the comments below. Feel free to include photos and where items can be purchased. I am open to radical changes.

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