Thursday, August 29, 2013

Thesaurus Thursday: "Objurgate."

Hello everyone!  I have been very busy and subsequently exhausted, so apologies if "normal" blog posts aren't posted as often as I would prefer.  But today is Thursday, and you know what that means!  Today's word is "objurgate," a verb meaning to severely scold, rebuke, or berate.

I don't mind mild reproach from others over a mistake, but I suspect that I might be brought to tears if someone were to objurgate me.

I objurgate the centipede, 
A bug we do not really need. 
At sleepy-time he beats a path 
Straight to the bedroom or the bath. 
You always wallop where he’s not, 
Or, if he is, he makes a spot. 

"The Centipede"

Ogden Nash

Friday, August 23, 2013

Thesaurus Thursday: "Bight."

Happy weekend everybody!  I usually have riding lessons on Thursday mornings, and that is what makes me remember that it is, indeed, Thursday.  The lesson got rescheduled to Friday this week, so I spent all day yesterday believing that it was Wednesday and all day today believing it was Thursday until someone reminded me that tomorrow is Saturday... so yesterday's word is "bight."  A bight (n.) can refer to a curve in a shoreline, a bay formed by such a curve, or the slack part of an extended rope.  More rarely, it can simply mean any angle or bend.

The bight along a short section of coastline formed a nice private beach.

Wikipedia may only be a tertiary source, but it does have something to say about everything.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

#DiversityInLingerie: We Need More Representative Samples.

This post is part of a larger movement of various bloggers using the hashtag #DiversityInLingerie.  See June's post on Braless in Brasil to get involved/see a list of everyone participating!

To say that I look like a typical lingerie model would be a stretch... I look like one minus a few inches in height, plus a few pounds, plus a handful of scars and stretchmarks and other features that the media would call "imperfections," but I just call "me."  But my skin color, age group, and body type are still much more ubiquitous in the lingerie industry than those of many other women.  I think this needs to change.

Of course there are women who are in the 18-30 range, white (but usually tan!), tall, and very slender, with ample chests, no blemishes, and no cellulite.  These women certainly have a place in magazines, trade shows, and on runways.  Their bodies are equally valid, equally beautiful, equally deserving of attention.  But they don't constitute a representative sample of all women, yet the lingerie industry uses these models for the vast majority of work and/or airbrushes women to look like they have all of the features listed above.  Why?  Do an image search for "lingerie model" (remember to set content filters for this if you need to!), and you'll find that if a woman doesn't meet all of the above criteria, she stands out.  Even in plus-size lingerie modeling, there is a "standard" look: smooth, unmarked skin and an hourglass shape.

There are companies that try to break out of the mould; Curvy Kate uses "regular" (re: who haven't modeled before) women to model their lingerie and doesn't airbrush away every lump and bump.  You! Lingerie used pregnant models at New York's Fashion Week.  There are far more non-white models out there than there were- though I'd love to see more.  But we still have quite a way to go before the industry is truly representative.  Do 50-year-olds not buy lingerie?  Do people in wheelchairs not buy lingerie?  Do people with c-section or surgery scars not buy lingerie (that actually shows their scars)?  Of course they do!  And guess what?  Using someone with any of these attributes to market lingerie will not make me- someone who fits the "mould" to some degree at least- hesitate to purchase it.

Dear lingerie industry:

I don't need to see lingerie on a certain type of figure to be convinced to buy it, even if it is nice to see figures like mine out there. I actually don't even need to see it on a model who "looks like me." I'm much more inclined to spend my money on lingerie when it is modeled by someone who looks comfortable and happy (and, with bras, preferably well-fitted!). Sex appeal can be used, but I associate it more with a mindset than a particular appearance, and I actually don't appreciate you guessing what I find "sexy" in order to sell me a pair of knickers*, because attraction is very individualized. I would love to see more lingerie models of different ages and body types, with any marks on their bodies, of different races/ethnic backgrounds, or with disabilities. I think you'll find that a lot of women agree with me.


The Absurd Curvy Nerd

*"But it's what's sexy to men/significant others that drives sales!" doesn't hold with me either.  I haven't seen anyone really trying to use more variety and gauging its effectiveness.  Also, I know many, many people find their partners just as sexy with (if not because of) all their unique qualities and supposed "flaws."

Friday, August 16, 2013

Thesaurus Thursday: "Beleaguer."/People are Nosy.

Today's word is "beleaguer," a verb meaning to harass or besiege.

If you have ever been questioned about or chastised for what you choose to wear, whom you choose to associate with, or what you do in your spare time, here's a word of warning: you will be beleaguered by "well-meaning" individuals to an even greater degree if job prospects are involved.


I was thinking about this the other day.  The laundry list of questions and advice regarding your personal life during job hunting would border on offensively intrusive at any other time.  I'll give you some examples from my past experience:

Make sure you don't put anything inappropriate on Facebook.
If I spewed hatred on my page, talked about illegal activities, or was obviously emotionally unstable, I could understand concern.  I don't/am not.  You might find out that I (gasp!) like bras.  Also, sometimes I talk about boobs on my blog page. I have them.  A lot of other people have them. Pretending that they aren't there is a bit silly.

Isn't talking about bras/boobs inappropriate?
Is it?  Please give me a non-sexist answer to this question: Why? 

Ahhh!  So NSFW!

Are all of your friends' blogs/pages free of questionable content?
If you have read 1984, you should understand why this question scares me.

Make sure your blog's content is OK.
One moment... Yes, it's fine. It hasn't had an emotional break down and run away.

Are all of your pictures safe for employers to look at?
All of my wedding photos contain subliminal messaging telling viewers to ruthlessly pursue world domination.

No, I mean the pictures on your blog's page.
Bras usually cover as much if not more than bikinis.  I always thought going to the beach was a G-rated activity.
I haven't been in a while; maybe I'm remembering it wrong?

But sometimes in bras you can see a glimpse of what's underneath.
You know, I saw a man topless on Facebook once.  He didn't even have a bra on.  I've been shocked about the lack of an outcry.  I mean, think of the children.

You need to make sure that no one can get your personal information.
I'll do everything within my power to keep away creeps, but if you believe that not having a Facebook/Twitter/Instagram/other account means that people can't easily access your personal information if they really want it, I have a mansion on Mars to sell you.

Don't post anything offensive online.
This is related to the first but usually refers to objectively offensive content.  It's an instruction that basically assumes that I'm stupid and/or a bad person-- why else would I post something offensive?  I suppose a lot of Twitter users might be offended by the occasional update about how much I dislike horribly botched grammar.

I just posted something offensive.

You need new clothes.
Please note that the clothes I'm currently wearing don't meet the criteria for an office dress code because I am at dinner with my husband and not at an interview.  Does job hunting make everyone think that they have the right to comment on every. single. outfit. I wear in public? (The answer is, apparently, "Yes.")

Don't dye your hair/get anything pierced/get tattoos during this time.
While I would check out a dress code to make sure that I could easily comply with it, I would neither respect nor work for someone who wouldn't hire a competent, qualified individual on the basis of physical appearance.

Network/refine your resume/do X and not Y in an interview...
All suggestions regarding resumes, applications, interviews, and networking have been filed under "Advice given by 10+ people.  This morning."

Try to act like all you ever do is go to church.
...  Seriously?

Monday, August 12, 2013

New Post Thursday!

I realized that the post I'm currently working on would be better suited to a Bra Edition of Thesaurus Thursday, so it will be posted then.  Thanks everybody!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Thesaurus Thursday: "Hirsute."

Is everyone glad it's almost the the weekend?

Today's word is "hirsute," an adjective meaning hairy or coarse-haired.  I had always heard this word in relation to animals, but apparently it is also often used in botany to describe parts of plants that are covered with stiff bristles.

In the story of Jacob and Esau, Jacob donned goat skins to fool his father into believing that he was his hirsute older brother.

It probably wasn't this dramatic.

Another post should be up this weekend :-).

Sunday, August 4, 2013

The Malazan Book of the Fallen: A Break-Up Letter.

Dear MBotF,

It's not you; it's me.

...OK, maybe it's a bit you.   I don't often not finish a series.  I usually feel as if my willpower has failed me and that I ought to get to the end just to be able to say, "I didn't like it, and yes, I read it all the way through," to the barrage of questions along the lines of, "Why didn't you like it?  Did you even read it?  Did anyone tell you it gets better?"  I know I've only read two books out of ten, but you haven't changed yet, and I don't want to waste my time believing that you will suddenly become The One.

We started out so well.  The beginning was all sinister scenes and captivating intrigue.  I suppose I should have known that this would foreshadow a fling rather than a long-term relationship, because you got complicated fast.  I'm no stranger to elaborate plot lines, extensive magic systems, or novels packed with detail-- I adored Brandon Sanderson's first book of The Stormlight Archives and Robert Jordan's Wheel of Time novels.  But you assumed that I knew your history as soon as we met.  You give bits and pieces here and there, but it's often difficult to form into a coherent whole, and true explanations come later than needed.  I'm still not certain how or why a warren works, and I don't want to have to read with a Wiki open.   You introduced the Bridgeburners as if everyone knew exactly who they were and what they did in the time before the series picked up in their story.  Did you drop hints that finally formed into a narrative?  Sure, but I don't like feeling like an author is toying with me for kicks.

OK, sometimes I tolerate it.

You seem to leave your friends in the lurch occasionally.  Just when I think I'm getting to know your characters, you shift settings and introduce me to a barrage of new people at once.  Even though they are often good characters-- no one-dimensional heroes or villains here; Mappo and Icarium were fascinating, and their story line nearly had me in tears-- but switching so often is jarring and slows reading time to a crawl.  I don't mind reading slowly, but not that slowly; I would prefer to be able to read more than one series in this lifetime, thank you.

Sometimes I also think you try to make up for any weaknesses with shock value.  Detailed descriptions of gruesome violence and horrible illness abound.  I understand that an empire is in turmoil and that various factions (both imperial and otherwise) are trying to take control, and I acknowledge that it must include unspeakable horrors.  But I much prefer the subtle double-crossings and nuanced personal relationships that you are so, so excellent at conveying to the nauseating drawn-out descriptions of crucifixions and dysentery.  Others might applaud the "realism," but as someone who has read, watched, and enjoyed A Game of Thrones, you disturbed even me.

Like Norman Bates levels of disturbance.

I know there are people who will appreciate you.  My feelings and preferences don't necessarily extend to others.  We're just not compatible, and I think it best that we go our separate ways.


The Absurd Curvy Nerd

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Thesaurus Thursday: "Carking."

Hello everybody!  I'm back.  And today's word is "carking," an adjective meaning burdensome or annoying.

Sometimes I am overwhelmed by the carking necessity of yard work.

I don't even know what this is.

This week's regular post will be up sometime this weekend :-).