If you fly a lot, you'll either be caught up on your fine literature reading or more likely on the comedies that are available in the iTunes store, home of DRM and overpriced rentals. (Also home to movies that are difficult to watch on planes, because suddenly there's boobies on your bright portable device and you're like "Oh my God, there's an eight-year-old about 20 inches behind me.") After the comedies that launched a thousand post-"Are Women Funny" magazine pieces, then in the iterated form of "Are Women Box Office" magazine pieces—those would be about Bridesmaids and then about Anna Faris, because of course we're all so very concerned about [...]
In a brave experiment, Molly McAleer, a biological woman who lives in Los Angeles, has been hired by showrunner Michael Patrick King for CBS' "Two Broke Girls," which was picked up by the network in mid-May, and will allegedly air between "How I Met Your Mother" and "Two and a Half Men."
The repercussions of having a woman writing TV are unknown but we expect the very worst.
Ooh, smoke billowing at 14th and I, NW, in D.C.! Maybe it's all the hot air being burned right now on Cabalist in the wake of that story on up-and-coming journalist-and-blogger Beltway Insiders, the one that had an all-male cast. Cabalist, should you not be a manly Beltway Insider yourself, is the email listserv Journolist replacement, where the in-the-know politicos discuss amongst themselves the weighty wonky workings of the world. (I'm jealous! I want in!) Here's a brief note to our wonky Cabalistic boyfriends in D.C.: whenever a reporter calls, you always ask with whom else he is speaking. And who his editor is. And what [...]
In 2009, according to the numbers just released by the City at the end of 2010, New York City had 126,774 live births! And 90,000 pregnancies—that were reported, at least!—ended in chosen termination. So of course the Archbishop is weeping and freaking out.
As of five weeks ago, there were two women staff reporters at the New York Observer. Three weeks ago, one of those women quit; today, Irina Aleksander, the last woman staff reporter, has given notice. (We hear she'll be writing regularly for Times Styles—Alexandra Jacobs, a long-time Observer editor, decamped for Times Styles two months ago.) According to the paper's newly updated masthead, the paper now has nine staff writers, all of them men. (Of its non-staff "contributing writers" list of 13, two are women.) This all comes not long after the last woman editor—excluding the managing editor—quit. In the last month, one man was hired at [...]
"We're asking so much more of men today. We want them to be great providers – but we also want them to get pedicures. We want them to be sensitive – but we also want them to be alpha males." -That's Cosmopolitan editor Kate White, proving why she's a high-paid executive in a time-bubble of 1998.
By way of eulogy to the dying animal that is the Diva, my crack team of consultants, statisticians and graphic designers have assembled DIVA-OFF 2010, a highly scientific (we used computers!) evaluation of the greatest divas of the past twenty-five years. A list of divas was evaluated on eleven levels of diva-ness, and, because each diva characteristic is not created equal, we scaled the values in the hopes of creating an aggregate diva number that will serve as a reference point for future generations.
Here is why we needed to do this. On April 14, 1998, at the Beacon Theater in New York City, VH1 put on a [...]
I have three or four things I want to put together. First is The Social Network which I resisted seeing for a very long time (“You’ll love it. It’s great!” It wasn’t.) And second is The Rite which I’ve wanted to see ever since those previews months back. I finally had my paws on The Rite thanks to Netflix but then I couldn’t find anyone to watch it with me at this artist colony I’ve been at all month and I’m leaving tomorrow. So alone and in the deep of the night I watched The Rite in bed. Third and fourth I think is the current economic crisis in America [...]
Sure, there are funny gays in various entertainment fields, such as shoe design and Condé Nast magazines, but let us think of gays in actual comedy. Okay, so there's Ellen. That guy ANT. Neil Patrick Harris. And… hmm.
Oh right. Scott Thompson. And Graham Chapman, of Monty Python. These two might prove a comedy "rule" that gays are often funny when in groups of straight people. Or when they are English: Stephen K. Amos, Simon Amstell, Matt Lucas, Julian Clary, Paul O'Grady. And Kenny Everett and Frankie Howerd and Kenneth Williams, RIP! Or when they are of an English province: Trey Anthony, say, from Canada. And Tommy Sexton. And [...]
Ten Songs For Young, Active Cats To Force Their Extroverted Woman Owners To Sing For Them (On A Rainy Stay-At-Home Friday)
"The researchers determined that cats and their owners strongly influenced each other, such that they were each often controlling the other's behaviors. Extroverted women with young, active cats enjoyed the greatest synchronicity, with cats in these relationships only having to use subtle cues, such as a single upright tail move, to signal desire for friendly contact."
All of a sudden Supreme Court judge Antonin Scalia decided to revive the crazymaking debate regarding the Fourteenth Amendment's protection for women—or, apparently, lack thereof. Here is what Justice Scalia told California Lawyer: "Certainly the Constitution does not require discrimination on the basis of sex. The only issue is whether it prohibits it. It doesn't…. If the current society wants to outlaw discrimination by sex, hey we have things called legislatures, and they enact things called laws. You don't need a constitution to keep things up-to-date. All you need is a legislature and a ballot box. You don't like the death penalty anymore, that's fine. You want a [...]
Contrary to claims by shambling homosexualist Stephen Fry, British women are gagging for it.
Here is a short essay by Justin Taylor that is about being confused by "a general trend in contemporary indy- and small-press lit-land that insists on modesty to the point of self-abasement, encourages people to get awestruck at the drop of a hat, and rewards the expression of self-doubt rather than self-confidence." This is maybe a thing, but also it seems bizarre to me! For one thing, has he been on the Internet, which spends most of its time hammering down any nail that stands out? I also do not see a woman even conceiving of such a critique. They know what happens if a woman [...]
"Not long after working at Allure, I had perfectly straight hair with the most expensive caramel highlights, skin that glowed and perfectly white teeth. And every other day, I had on a pair of Stuart Weitzman or Dolce&Gabbana heels that I tried my hardest not to topple over in while walking on the too-slippery floor of the infamous Frank Gehry-designed cafeteria…. It took me about two years to realize that the whole thing was bullshit." —Lady escapes lady mag.
How many movies passed the Bechdel Test this year so far? Yes, sure, it's a black/white, pass/fail set of criteria, which means that plenty of unconcerned products pass. So this year: From Prada to Nada and Bridesmaids both pass, which… might be sort of besides the point, or might be a related but more capitalist point? Jane Eyre squeaks under the wire. Briefly, Red Riding Hood too, which, uh. On a technicality, Paul. And Sucker Punch—though it's also castigated as the most misogynist film in ages. Also The Last Lions, I think, if you count lady lions talking to other lady lions, I think, but maybe they are [...]
When I think about being female I think about being loved. What I mean by that: I have a little exercise I do when I present my work or speak publicly or even write (like this). In order to build up my courage I try to imagine myself deeply loved. Because there are men whose lives I’ve avidly followed—out of admiration for their work or their “way.” Paolo Pasolini always comes to mind. I love his work, his films, his poetry, his writings on film and literature, his life, all of it, even his death. How did he do it—make such amazing work and stand up so boldly as [...]
Nicki Minaj was six years old in 1990, when Island Records released Lin Que's first album, "Rebel Soul." Lin herself was then only 18. She was a member of the Black Nationalist group X Clan and was known as Isis. Just a year removed from high school, she traveled the world, meeting celebrities like Prince and Diana Ross. “I got bit by that bug, you know?” Lin told me on the phone last spring. “I’m a teenager and I want to be a star—but I don’t know shit.”
What she didn’t know would eventually hurt her. By 1997, Lin had signed three additional record deals, but "Rebel Soul" [...]
How would you like your first novel to have been reviewed by Evelyn Waugh in the following terms? "A book of entirely delicious quality… everything is new, cool, witty, elegant… we gratefully salute a new artist."
Janet Flanner ("Genêt" of the New Yorker) had this to say: "An astonishing and fascinating first novel."
And Nancy Mitford said, "I think it one of the very best novels I have ever read."
To talk about gender and its impact on art in 2010 is to lower yourself onto a playing field strewn with lots of dead and injured (or just plain exhausted) culture warriors. Franzenfreude! The pastiche of Gaga! And don't forget Paglia on Gaga! It's a total combat zone-which is fair enough, given how long, and how unthinkingly-slash-purposefully the whole culture scene has been dominated by the straight white male outlook.
And yet, at the close of many an IM chat or comment thread, you will frequently see some throwing up of hands. As if to say: yes, we've processed this new event, its gender consequences [...]