Because Feminism

A conversation from today —

Sister: So Aaron says “ready Betty” instead of ready Freddy and I think you should adopt it too because feminism

Me: A girl could be named freddy because feminism

Sister: A boy could be named Betty because feminism

Me: Yeah

Sister: Are we arguing or agreeing, I’m confused

Me: I’m winning

Sister: Okay

…In other news, I am going to make a very solid effort at reading only books written by women this year, outside of required school reading.

Because when somebody says, “Name a great American author,” you say, “Hemmingway” or “Fitzgerald” or “Steinbeck” or about five other names before you say “O’Connor” or “Morrison” or “Oates” or “Cisneros” or “Plath” or “Cather” or “Angelou” or “Allison.”

Because we have voices.

Because feminism.



Let’s talk about sex.  Here’s a story from a woman at work that I heard during our holiday party yesterday:

My kids aren’t allowed to say “sex” or “sexy” or any of that.  But they’ll find it in games — I don’t know why, it’s always the games — and they’ll come running, “Mommy! Mommy! This game has a bad word in it!  Should we take the card out?” […]  And then [child] the other day was like, “Mom, what does S-E-X mean?” and I was like Oh, crap! “It means like whether you’re a boy or a girl.”  [Co-worker asks how old child is.]  He’s 8.  Seems a little young to know about all of that.

It is not my place to tell you what to teach your child and when to do it, but you’d better believe I am going to judge.  This poor child is going to be sexually mature within the next decade, and he will have spent at least the first decade of his life thinking that “sex” and all things associated with it are bad and forbidden like other (actually) bad words.  Talk about baggage.  In some part of his mind, that’s going to stick with him for decades.

There are definitely things you are slowly initiated into over time, like your knowledge of sex.  My family was one in which your questions were answered.  Anatomically, with hand-drawn diagrams of various organs that could take over the dinner table, food half-forgotten.  I really appreciate that in retrospect.  Sex was what brought about babies.  I could understand that.  I could understand the body parts I had and the body parts male bodies had and how they worked together, which at least made sense logically, although it did seem a little sketchy where motivation was concerned.

I do remember, though, one Christmas when one of my cousins was in town and she was telling a story and stopped suddenly and was like, “Wait, do your kids know about sex?” to my mom.  And my mom answered, “Yes, but they think we’ve only done it three times.”

My mind was blown.

The idea that people would have sex to have sex and not for babies was confusing.  And I had previously believed all sex lead to a baby, so I was not sure why I only had two siblings if my parents had had sex more than three times.

I remember the “Joy of Sex” books on one of our bookcases, although I’m not sure I ever pulled them out.  I remember trying to look up “oral sex” in the dictionary with a friend because I had a puberty/sex book that mentioned but did not explain it.  I remember totally wanting to avoid the topic completely for most of my teens because I knew I wasn’t thinking about sex in the same way as everything had informed me I would (spoiler alert: totally gay).

Everyone has a different journey growing up and learning about sex.  But I really feel for that 8-year-old, who either doesn’t know how to pronounce S-E-X as a word or feels so much shame around it that it must be spelled.  Puberty is going to hit that kid hard.

Biopsy Bandaids – Week Two

Here is week two!



Things that happened this week that shed some light on some of these: I got my biopsy results (ferocious tiger stripes), my sister wanted me to be a cyborg (outlet and plug), I saw Hunger Games (Mockingjay), Ferguson indictment (lynching), Thanksgiving (gobble).


Biopsy Bandaids – Week One

On par with my original shark drawing, I have taken to drawing on my forehead daily, because, I mean, why not?  Here is the first week’s collection:


It should be noted that I actually have to draw on the bandaid when it’s on my head.  Because I have to trim it to get around my hairline and eyebrow, it’s incredibly difficult to draw on the bandage and then apply it to my head.  It’s actually more successful (and definitely more fun!) to put the bandage on and then practice my mirror drawing skills by drawing on my face.  In permanent marker.


Fun story: on the Snowflakes day, I met some new friends, and one of them, upon actual discovery of my bandaids, said she had thought I had a face tattoo.


Also, for the record, positive biopsy results.  So they’ll be scooping this baby out, and I’ll be drawing for a while more.

Cancer is Catching

Pretty sure I have skin cancer, you guys.  I mean, it is the most common cancer and I’m almost certain that we’re looking at basal cell carcinoma, so they’ll just scoop it out and I’ll go on in my life until the next time.  (I’m not like planning the next time, but statistically, given that I’m 25, white, burn easily, burnt a lot as a kid, have a family history, etc., I’ll get hit again.)

I should probably mention that this hasn’t actually been confirmed, persay, yet.  Here is what has occurred:

  • I finally decided this thing on my forehead that my brother has referred to as my “bullet hole” multiple times should probably get checked out, so I made an appointment.
  • Then I researched the heck out of skin cancer and realized that ok, I’m not a doctor, but waaaayyyy more reputable sources than Yahoo! Answers informed me that this is textbook BCC
  • Promptly, I started making skin cancer jokes.  Because it’s an amusing way to ease yourself into the whole concept, as well as those who will be concerned.  Example: Somebody tries to hug you, you say, “Oh, careful, don’t get too close, you might catch my skin cancer!”  Which admittedly is funnier to say than to unexpectedly hear.  So I enjoyed it.
  • I started parting my hair so that it covers my forehead on the side that will be messed with for a bit now.
  • My appointment arrived today.  I decided to only eat chocolate all day.
  • The dermatologist lady asked me if I had ever used a tanning bed THREE times, amongst a zillion other questions which basically confirmed that yeah, I’m like 99.6% likely to get skin cancer at some point.
  • She looked at my bullet hole with like a special old person magnifying glass and said it looks like BCC.
  • She said that they would need the biopsy to tell what it is, but she did not tell me anything else it might be.
  • She numbed part of my head, which was way more comfortable than when the dentist numbs part of your head.
  • She sliced off a piece of my forehead.  When I asked to see it, she was like, “Oh, honey, I already put on the bandaid!” And I was like no, I want to see the thing you shaved off.  It looked kind of lame.
  • She told me all about how to take care of the biopsy site and what scarring might look like for that site for the biopsy and for a full removal.
  • She gave me a pamphlet about skin cancer.

I’m feeling pretty confident about this diagnosis, you guys.

At least it “basal cell” is a pretty adorable cancer name.  And realistically, thank goodness it’s curable.

So then I sent a snap chat of my giant forehead bandaid to a handful of people being like, “Probs have skin cancer” which prompted this fantastic millenial text exchange:

Brother: Are you making a joke or are you telling me serious news on snapchat

Me: I already sent you two more snaps explaining!



...And then I drew a shark on my bandaid.

…And then I drew a shark on my bandaid.


BSE might be BS

The other night, my brother sent me a SnapChat of my Facebook profile with my job title, Associate Software Engineer, circled and a comment about my not having a BSE.  It prompted this conversation:

Me: Fact of life: you can be an engineer without ever having taken a physics course.

Him: Physics is for physics majors

Him: And rules are for fools, but that’s not relevant

Me: I don’t even have a BS

Me: I have a BA

Me: I am a mathematical artist!

Me: Which is basically the definition of engineer.

Him: Engineers are problem solvers

Him: You are a liar

Me: That’s like all math is.  Problems.

Him: Idk if you are stuck up enough to call yourself an engineer

Me: Math is about solving impossible problems; engineering is about solving solvable problems.  So… suck it.

Me: #semicoloninatext

Me: #usedcorrectly

Him: Correctly but not necessarily.  Semicolons are used to connect an independent clause to a related dependent clause; like this.

Him: Or two related independent clauses.

Me: You know the correct rules, but neither negates my use case’s validity

Me: My awesomeness and I are going to bed.

Him: I’m telling your boss about this tomorrow

Him: And then I’m telling mom