Friday, April 22, 2005

7 Sightings 

A baker's half dozen of today's moving targets, from the virtual to the local.

1. A link from there to here and a virtual high five, both for submitting one of the 20 questions Captain Platypus chose to address for post-series Ask The Captain. Answer (and my question about woodchucks) here.

2. Nifty male-parenting resource Fatherville, courtesy of fellow culture vulture (and Mother-in-law) Patty. She's helping with the wee ones this afternoon while I work, so extra thanks, Mama.

3. Blood everywhere this afternoon on my way to work, perhaps as much as a cup trickling from my nostrils before I could pinch the clot into forming. Damn allergies. Lucky I had all those leftover McDonald's bags in the car, or I'd never have had enough napkins to handle the flow.

4. Parents in droves cover our beloved campuses today for this term's Parent's Visting weekend. Since I'm not teaching classes while on paternity leave, I've got but one meeting (with an advisee parent), and have been otherwise hiding out behind the service desk in the library. Long weekend ahead!

5. Potentially pro-masturbation (and anti-feminist) message intended to "merely" promote Vagina Monologes proves my ongoing point about the semiotic limitations, vast vague openness, and ultimate danger to one's cause of bumper-sticker messages. Say what you will, but this principal is absolutely in the right to ban "I (Heart) My Vagina" buttons, as they can indeed suggest/reinforce the unfortunate idea that women should be (or want to be) valued for their body rather than mind and heart.

6. Today's McSweeney's Short Imagined Monologue: MICROSOFT OFFICE ASSISTANT: THE PAPER CLIP:
Let me help you with that. Oh, come on. I don't want anything. I just want to lend a helping hand. Look at me, I have eyebrows! I need attention. But that is all I need. Feed me attention and I will solve all your problems. It looks like you're writing a letter. I love writing letters. I love reading letters. I just finished reading The Collected Letters of Van Gogh in three volumes....

7. And, finally...

Yet another wonderful thematic Google icon

Even Google knows it's Earth Day. Now get outside and hug a tree or something.

posted by boyhowdy | 1:19 PM |

Comments:
A few afterthoughts on vaginas:

1. One of the sites I linked to (at metafilter) is chock full of folks who seem to think that the principal banned the buttons because students are somehow not allowed to use the word "vagina." Note that this is NOT the case I am making. Reading the original article carefully, one finds that the principal's case isn't even presented clearly enough for us to be sure that this is the case for HER, either...though the article erroneously assumes that IS her problem in the lead 'graph.

2. Similarly, in a perfect world, I'd support the right to wear these buttons. But I am much stronger an advocate for consistency of policy than I am for libertarian rights in underage institutions, and common school policy across the nation is that if a message is vague enough that it can easily be seen to advocate something against school policy (in this case, the possibility of thinking with one's vagina), then it is not considered acceptable school speech.
 
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