Over the last few days, a bunch of ink has been spilled discussing the topic of selfies — officially the word of the year! — and whether or not they’re good or bad for women. First, at Slate, Rachel Simmons suggested that selfies are a powerful self-esteem builder for girls. Erin Gloria Ryan at Jezebel took the opposite point of view at Jezebel, writing yesterday selfies are not empowering or feminist and are, in fact, a “cry for help.” Many women on Twitter were angry with her piece, because it failed to recognize that for women who don’t fit the white, cisgender, thin, able-bodied norm, posting selfies can be a radical act. Twitter user ConvergeCollide started the hashtag #feministselfie and encouraged women to start posting their selfies and before you knew it, the topic was trending.
I take a ton of selfies, for a variety of reasons, because most people who take selfies take them for a variety of reasons and not simply because we are A) making a feminist statement or B) crying for help. I take selfies because I used to feel like I was ugly and now I don’t anymore. I take selfies because my dog can’t take pictures of me. I take selfies because I like to spend most of my time alone but I still want to document that I exist. Here are 13 of those selfies, judged on how feminist they are.
Holiday party season has arrived! While I love a fun, short, fancy dress, allow me to suggest going a different route this year. Consider THE JUMPSUIT. No longer for those still wearing diapers, the onesie is a totally party-appropriate alternative to your standard cocktail dress or mini skirt, minus the risk of flashing your panties. And don’t ignore short, romper-style jumpsuits either — just throw on a pair of tight underneath and you’re good to go. Here are 20 reasons to consider the jumpsuit this holiday season…
Excuse me, Melissa Joan Hart? I know you’re on your way into the premiere of “Frozen” but I really feel like someone should tell you this. You have something on your face. Specifically your forehead. Wait, there’s some around your nose and mouth too. Powdered sugar? Cocaine? Translucent powder? Probably the latter, most likely, though it’s hard to understand how any self-respecting makeup artist could let Melissa leave the house without blending in her makeup, like, at all. Ahh well, at least the theater was dark.
We may think celebrities are always picture perfect, but every once in a while we see behind the curtain — especially when those bright bulbs are flashing on the red carpet. Makeup is required. More specifically, powder. But it’s a delicate balance. Too much and your favorite celeb may look like a clown, too little and they’re shinier than an oil slick. Click through to see some very unfortunate celebrity powder mishaps.
The Hunger Games book series and movies are hugely popular with a wide audience, but I was still surprised (and delighted!) to learn the legendary rock star and poet Patti Smith counts herself amongst its fans. In fact, Smith enjoys the series so much, she:
- Wears a mockingjay pin on her lapel and carries a mockingjay iPhone case.
- Has been known to hold her fingers up in the District 12 salute, which she says is “beautiful” and “brings tears” to her eyes, at concerts.
- She wrote a song for the “Catching Fire” soundtrack called “Capital Letter,” which, she explains, “[Is] like a letter to the Capitol, warning them about Katniss, but warning them in a proud way.” It includes the lyrics, “Rebellion has a heart / Breaking like the dawn / Bursting into song” and “She’s the silent one / In her silent boots / Racing through the flames.”
One question remains: Team Peeta or Team Gale? [Vanity Fair]
You’ll never hear me offer up much praise for Dr. Phil, but his wife, Robin McGraw, is owed some props. Her foundation, When Georgia Smiled, has released a free app for smartphones called ASPIRE News that seeks to aid women who are in abusive relationships. ASPIRE News is, on the surface, just your standard news reader, offering “summaries of top stories in world, sports, and entertainment news” — but the app also has a help section, filled with resources for victims of domestic violence, like phone numbers for shelters and help lines. Additionally, the app can be set up to secretly alert the user’s “trusted contacts” that they’re in an emergency situation, simply by tapping the top of the screen three times. Because the app looks and operates just like your standard news reader, it won’t draw the attention of abusers who closely monitor their victims’ every move.
ASPIRE News makes clear that it’s not a replacement for emergency services, and that 911 should still be called if necessary, but for DV victims that don’t want or aren’t yet ready to call authorities, the app’s ability to alert a trusted love one that they need help could be a lifesaver. [iTunes via When Georgia Smiled]
Someone get Tyra Banks on the phone! There’s a hot “new” trend in posing ridiculously for photos called “squinching,” but I’m pretty sure Tyra’s go-to “Top Model” tip — SMIZE! — has just been stolen and rebranded under a different name. According to the Daily Mail, which shouts out Tyra’s smize in its intro, photographer Peter Hurley “claims the squinch is the act of squinting your eyes in such a way as to ooze confidence and self-assuredness.” Squinching is more subtle than squinting; when you squint, your eyes appear too closed, but, explains the Daily Mail, ”when you ‘squinch,’ however, you’re lifting and tightening the lower eyelid and only allowing the top eyelid to come down slightly.” Keep reading »
“We plotted it out in a self-protective way. It wasn’t a relationship [the other characters were] talking about. Nobody knew about it. We as writers were almost as protective of it as those characters were. We didn’t want to make too much of a deal about it too early. That’s what you saw on the screen, but it’s also how we experienced it. We didn’t want to spend too much too fast. We didn’t want it to be high drama. So we just kept taking baby steps forward and feeling our way through. …
If you didn’t have a Monica-and-Chandler relationship, if the center of ’Friends’ had remained Ross and Rachel, you would’ve seen a much shorter shelf life for the show. Without Monica and Chandler, it ends three years earlier. I don’t owe my whole house to them, but at least two bedrooms and a bath are because of them.”
I’ve never been much of a sitcom fan, but “Friends” is one exception. I still think the show, which ended its run in 2004, is one of the funniest TV shows ever and, thanks to the endless repeats on TBS, I’ve seen every episode at least five times. So, I lovvvvved this piece on NYMag.com about how the show’s producers and writers, including executive producer Scott Silveri, quoted above, came to the decision to make Monica Gellar and Chandler Bing a couple. Keep reading »
But did she see it coming?
Psychic Sylvia Browne, who is probably most famous to people my age for her regular appearances on “The Montel Williams Show” during the ’90s, passed away yesterday morning at her home in San Jose, CA. She was 77. Browne claimed to have discovered her psychic abilities at age 3, and made a living sharing her premonitions on shows like “Montel Williams,” “Larry King Live” and “Unsolved Mysteries.” In 2006, while appearing on “The Montel Williams Show,” she told Louwanna Miller, mother of Cleveland kidnapping victim Amanda Berry, that her daughter was dead. Browne took a lot of heat when it was discovered that Berry, along with two other kidnapped women, was alive and had been held captive for over a decade. Keep reading »