Friday, January 30

Need to use social networking sites? Novel idea! Hire someone who uses them daily!


Teens Frequently Mention Risky Behaviors on Social Networking Sites
About half of teens reference substance use or other risky behaviors on
social networking Web sites, such as MySpace, a recent study found.
The study was published in the January issue of the
Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine
. A related study
notes that developing online interventions using these social networking
venues may be a cost effective way to reduce risky behaviors.
Learn how to use social networking sites for prevention and
intervention efforts during two workshops at CADCA´s upcoming
National Leadership Forum XIX.

I am on several listserves for work. I get a lot of information about
non-profit organizing etc and it's usually harmless and even
occasionally interesting.

So why am I posting about teens and social networking?

Because I found it a mildly funny that CADCA is hosting multiple
workshops on how to use facebook and mysapce. Not because it's bad
idea. In fact, it's a great way to reach lots of teenagers and young adults
(and some not so young adults too!)

It's funny because people need to learn how to use these sites, when there
is a whole generation of young, able workers who already have these skills.

Novel idea: hire some of these skilled young people. Social networking
is a valuable asset, not just a time wasting procrastinating activity.

Why force entrenched staff members to try and compete against
tech savvy 'kids' who have been typing since they could talk? Now,
there is absolutely nothing wrong with having staff learn new skills.
But it's frustrating when so many organizations are reluctant to hire
new graduates, or almost worse, hire them and then mock them for
their mild facebook addiction or (horror!) ability to navigate online.

It's really lucky (thanks Becky!) when you can find an employer who
recognizes these skills as such and takes full advantage of their staff
without being patronizing.

Social networking is a skill people! Appreciate those who can text with
ease, upload pictures, navigate notes & posting and give us jobs!

Tuesday, January 27

This is why I read the New York Times

I took a really interesting class last term about prenatal and infant development. The professor does a lot of research about depression and fetal/infant outcomes, and also did some work on the 'crack baby' epidemic.

I was shocked when she told us that there is overwhelming evidence that the entire epidemic was little more than a scare tactic.

The basics: sure, crack isn't good for developing fetuses..but neither is smoking or a host of other legal but ill-advised activities.

The New York Times has a great article about a longitudinal study that has basically confirmed what she told us, and delves into the ramifications (past & present) for women.

My two favorite quotes from the article:
"But cocaine use in pregnancy has been treated as a moral issue rather than a health problem, Dr. Frank said. Pregnant women who use illegal drugs commonly lose custody of their children, and during the 1990s many were prosecuted and jailed."


"He added that factors like poor parenting, poverty and stresses like exposure to violence were far more likely to damage a child's intellectual and emotional development — and by the same token, growing up in a stable household, with parents who do not abuse alcohol or drugs, can do much to ease any harmful effects of prenatal drug exposure."

So we shame women for struggling with addiction, and then blame any and all of their children's problems on their prenatal negligence. Turns out all the time and money spent taking babies away from their mothers and jailing women for endangering fetuses could have been better spent on tackling issues such as...who knew..poverty, economic support for women, parenting classes etc.

The list so far...

I've been thinking about it..and I came up with a few disaster movies with female characters who are not totally useless.

Actually, the criteria is stricter than "not totally useless." I tried to think of movies where there is a dominant female character, someone who takes charge and commands respect (flaws and all!).

So. The list so far:
1. Alien
2. Twister
3. Inferno (sadly)

That's all so far!

I thought about The Deep Blue Sea, but I think being a crazy/frosty scientist disqualifies you for the list.

Being in a Charlton Heston movie also automatically disqualifies you for contention on the list. His misogynist pushiness simply overwhelms any and all co-stars.

Must keep thinking.

Monday, January 26

It's official. Inferno is the worst disaster movie..ever

I can't believe I sat through all 90 minutes of the monstrosity otherwise known as Inferno.

I should have sent it back when I realized the only A-lister was actually a Z-lister (Al, the sidekick from Quantum Leap).

I should have sent it back when I realized it was the 9th choice on imdb for the title "Inferno"

I should have sent it back when I realized that the main character was a woman who vaguely resembled Jodi Foster. I don't like when they cast look-a-likes. It's deceitful & tricky.

I should have sent it back when I realized that they cast some girl as the look-a-like's daughter because she must have been the only girl n the universe willing to say these lines. They certainly didn't cast her for her acting ability.

But nooo I didn't send it back. I watched the ENTIRE movie.

It was painful.
Bad acting.
Terrible dialogue.
ZERO dead bodies.

All in all, a total waste of my time and blogging.

The only (and I really mean only) redeeming aspect of the movie was the gender dynamics. The main character is a woman firefighter, and there was a lot of tension between her and the 'old boys' firefighting network in the small town.

The movie was awful, but at least it had a genuine butt-kicking heroic female main character.

Most of the times I have to rant and rave about women being portrayed as hysterical and/or sidekicks in disaster movies.

Hmm. Now I think I'm going to have to make a list of movies that have female characters who aren't useless. I'm betting that the majority of blockbuster disaster movies will be lacking, while the low budget ones will fare a little better.

Figures. The crappy movies that nobody watches (except me of course!) will likely have better female characters..

Monday, January 19

I can boycott Spike in peace..

I am so glad that Spike canceled..well..the show shall remained unnamed since even I am mildly embarrassed I watched the entire season.

I'm sure you can guess what it is though with a little research/knowledge of my tv viewing preferences.

Anyway, the show is long gone and I can gladly boycott Spike TV.


This article on about the top "butterbodies" in Hollywood:

More thoughts to come later. Deep breathing first.

Sunday, January 18

Jurassic Park 3

JP3 is going to be my favorite.

Weak premise, carnage in the first few scenes, and someone has already suggested that maybe "it would be better to split up." Tea Leoni's character is clearly a moron.

This is going to be good. And by good, I mean ridiculous and probably a little yucky.

Friday, January 16

Do not do anything alone. Ever. Or, JP2 part 2

Toby (who knows what his real name is..he'll always be Toby from West Wing to me) is about to get eaten by a T-rex. Or maybe thrown over a cliff by a T-rex, but either way he's in trouble.

(pause pause)

Yep, eaten.

See, it's somehow better to be hanging off the edge of a cliff as a trailer explodes below you than to be all alone on level ground with scary dinos nearby.

Also, JP2 is not as scary as I thought it might be. I think it's going to be gory, but it's not really frightening in a nail-biting, squeak and hide way. And yes, I have been known to squeak a little when scared. This is not one of those times. I think it is, however, going to be a good chance to see dinosaurs eat a bunch of stupid people, and enjoy some A-listers slummimg it up for paycheck.

In terms of A-listers we have:
1. Julianne Moore
2. Jeff Goldblum (bonus for being a returning character!)
3. Vince Vaughn (he's A list now..not then, but still counts)
plus Toby (ok, ok his real name is Richard Schiff) who's at least a B, and a few famous character actors like the Russian cosmonot from Armeggedon.

I think JP2 is going to be a small screen watch

Uh oh..I'm already a little scared by Jurassic Park 2. I think I'm going to watch it on small screen (you know, where you make the video half size) so any eating and rampaging is a little less intense.

Also, I'm not sure how I feel about the first scene. If they killed the little girl I'm going to annoyed that they broke the children remain unharmed rule. Although, she did break the cardinal 'don't wander off alone' in a scary area rule.

I'm also pretty sure that was vintage Camilla Belle with a British accent.

Ha! The New York Times agrees that PMS isn't a joking matter

Remember my (slightly) ranty post about the potential PMS movie? Well, the New York Times has an article about the medical community and the debate about pathologizing the normal female reproductive system.

Basically, there is a lot of debate in the medical community about PMS and more specifically PMDD (premenstrual dysphoric disorder)- it's currently kept in a secondary portion of the DSM manual, but they are debating whether to keep it as a diagnosis at all given the current level of evidence.

No matter what they decide, I think the article clearly makes the point that there are serious repercussion for women if they allow PMDD to remain a diagnosable disorder or if they remove it completely from the manual.

Doesn't really sound that hilarious to me..and definitely not something that merits a spoofy movie filled with stereotypes and sexism.

See the article here:

Tuesday, January 13

If this movie gets made I might have to organize a protest..

I stumbled upon this blog through my new group, 2o something bloggers, and had to do some of that 'calm down' breathing after I read the first post about PMS.

Apparently the blog owner, Jenn, let a guy writing a movie script about PMSing women guest write for a day to get comments. He explained that the premise of the movie is basically a guy being mystified by the 'crazy' antics of his PMSing love interest and the antics that ensue.

If this movies gets made, I am seriously going to organize a protest.
Or a boycott.
Or have a meltdown and blame it on PMS.

Is this really the kind of drivel that people will pay money to see?

I know that I will gladly pay money to watch crocodiles/sharks/dinosaurs munch on hapless victims and my taste in movies is nothing if not..unusual..but really, a movie about PMS?

I am absolutely not trying to start a debate about the impact of hormones upon men and women.
But do people still think that it's funny to act like women's bodies are weird and that we're irrational creatures controlled by our uteruses?

Of course there are differences between men and women, but many of these things are socially constructed. And those things that are genuinely divergent are the least understood and the most mocked (like hormones!).

Don't you think our time would be better spent examining these differences so that things like..oh I don't know..drug reactions are better understood instead of making movies about 'crazy women' with PMS?

ps. Spellcheck keeps telling me that uteruses is not a word..but I looked it up, and it IS one acceptable plural for uterus. See? Even blogger is sexist and thinks I'm crazy because I'm a woman.

I almost feel like a celebrity..

My (former) boss from Faith Aloud (formerly MORCRC) made it onto the main page of Feministing. I feel kind of like a cool kid now because Becky gave me my first job out of college and then wrote some fabulous recs when I left MORCRC to start grad school.

Check out the post here.

I'm not going to lie..I sometimes feel as though Feministing does not speak to me in the same way it did when Adele (another MORCRC person!) introduced me to the site. I still check it out, but I think maybe my own personal beliefs have just moved beyond the spoon-feeding provided. But, I still think it's an amazing resource and am really really proud that Becky's thoughts are being read by so many people!

Monday, January 12

Tremors 2

Blockbuster has redeemed itself! Tremors 2 arrived while I was out of town!

Opening scene: Graboid eating an oil worker. Now this is the way a bad disaster movie is supposed to start. Now I don't think that this movie has an any actual A-listers, but it does have a character from the original movie. That's almost as good as someone famous.

I really like that character development is basically non-existent and that graboids are already blowing up fifteen minutes into the movie. Oh, and we already know that our wonderful returning star Fred Ward and the blonde woman are going to get it on because they've very visibly eyed one another's rear ends.

Saturday, January 10

JP so far

Ah Jurassic Park. Classic!

A-listers galore & lots of easily referenced rules
1. Do not say "It could have been a lot worse
2. Do not leave the main group. Ever.
3. For goodness sake, pay your staff well! Saves you from sabotage, mass carnage etc
4. If it has been extinct for millions of years, weighs several tons, and has razor sharp teeth.. see where I'm going? Do you really want to bring back a scary killing machine with no natural predators?
5. Do not say "Unless." As in.. "unless they figure out how to open doors.." or "unless they are smarter than we thought.." Because they will INEVITABLY be able to open said doors, or somehow be smarter than all living creatures. So just keep your trap shut!

Unlike some other movies (yes Megaladon I'm talking to you!), Jurassic Park knows that it is a disaster movie; it has appropriate levels of carnage & follows the rules (children survive).
Death count @ midway point: 3 with several more to come..

Friday, January 9

I now own Jurassic Park 1, 2 & 3

Some good posting soon to come. Carrie bought me all 3 Jurassic Parks..and I'm ashamed to admit that I've only ever seen the first.

Ashamed? Yes. Because 2 & 3 are more than likely to fit my criteria as truly crap disaster movies. Jurassic Park is actually a pretty darn good movie, but since it involves dinosaurs and carnage, I'll still put up a post after I've had a chance to re-watch.

Friday, January 2

No A-lister? Not a good sign

Unless you count the guy who played Ethan Rayne (Buffy reference!), or maybe some guy named Mark Sheppard who has guest-starred in almost every TV show Megalodon totally lacks an A-lister.

Anaconda: 4 (I'm being generous and counting JLo)
Deep Blue Sea: 2
Volcano: 2
Dante's Peak: 1.5 (Linda Hamilton is cool..but only to geeky SciFi buffs)
Megalodon: 0

I'll let this fact slide for now and see if the sheer stupidity of the script makes the movie enjoyable. Given the effects so far I think I can easily expect a lot of low-budget carnage.

Although we are 23 minutes in and the body count is at ZERO. Where's the requisite unexplained tourist death??

31 minutes in: some type of prehistoric fish attacked someone, but he survived...
1 hour in: 1 guy dead, but just because the shark ate his sub. No carnage.
1 hour 5 minutes: another death by sub chomping. Again, no carnage.
1 hour 7 minutes: I think some guy just got eaten, but I couldn't even tell because there was NO blood splatter, or screaming, or chomping. What kind of shark movie is this anyway??

Then, they just blew up the shark. One more guy died in the explosion, but it was barely dramatic. At the end we see that maybe the Megalodon released by the drilling (yeah yeah, it's a stupid plot device) wasn't the only one. Big shock...

I'm disappointed. No A-listers, no carnage, stock footage of sharks, and almost an hour and a half wasted. I should have just re-watched Jaws.

I've been waiting 2 months for this..and it's going to be awful/awesome

Megalodon finally arrived. Blog post to follow soon.

Just an FYI..Megalodon is like a really low-budget Jaws. I'm excited.