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Is It Possible To “Judge Like A Woman”?

Just how much does gender influence the way a judge makes decisions?

The New York Times tried to tackle this behemoth question—as it pertains to Sonia Sotomayor, President Obama’s nominee for the Supreme Court—in one tight little article this weekend. And while we hate to nitpick, the title alone kinda pissed us off: “Debate On Whether Female Judges Decide Differently Arises Anew.”

Of course men and women are different. We have different life experiences, different hormones coursing through our bodies, and different ideas of what constitutes a clean bathtub. But our problem when talking about differences is more of a semantic one: why is being a male considered “normal,” but being a female is considered “different”? We don’t like the implication of phrases like “will Sotomayor decide differently” or “does Ginsberg decide differently?”, as if decisions made by males are status quo and what should be normal. How did being of the less-represented gender equal some kind of bias? Keep reading »

Does The World Need Princesses? Hell Yeah!

There’s been quite a bit of controversy surrounding Disney’s “The Princess and the Frog,” which, for the first time in Disney’s 70-year history, stars a black princess. First her name was too stereotypically slave-like, so it was changed from Maddie to Tiana. Then the blogosphere was in an uproar because Princess Tiana has a racially-ambiguous love interest who has lighter skin.

Now a not-so new debate has come up about whether little girls should be indoctrinated into the princess culture in the first place. Blogger Monique Fields, who has daughters ages 2 and 4, at The Root questions the impact of princess values and ideals, preferring a healthy dose of reality for young women to counteract this fantasy.
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Laura Ling And Euna Lee Sentenced To 12 Years In Labor Camp

North Korea’s highest court sentenced American journalists Laura Ling and Euna Lee today to 12 years in a labor camp for illegal entry into the country and an unspecified “grave crime.” Seoul officials said the decision is final, as the top North Korean court does not allow appeals. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has called for the country to release Ling and Lee, and word is that despite not having formal diplomatic relations with North Korea, the U.S. will send someone like Al Gore (who owns Current, where the women work) or New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson on a mission to get the journalists released. All we can think about is Lee’s four-year-old daughter who, at this point, still thinks her mommy is away for work. [CNN, Korea Times, Liberate Laura & Euna Now] Keep reading »

Check This Out: Passive Aggressive Notes

It’s one thing to write a passive aggressive note. It’s doubly passive for the recipient to then post the note online. And yet it makes for wonderful entertainment, thanks to PassiveAggressiveNotes.com, a blog showcasing the best in annoying, written interactions. Some of the goodies include a letter written on Hello Kitty paper that reads, “Hi neighbors! You smoked us out with your barbeque right under the bedroom window.” That’s fairly pleasant compared to some of the meaner posts, like a note written to office workers: “Attention to whoever is fond of taking my things!!!! Well I don’t remember signing any bond/contract with anyone to have access to my things!!!” Sheesh! [PassiveAggressiveNotes.com] Keep reading »

“The Vampire Diaries” Extended Preview

I was a little skeptical about “The Vampire Diaries” until I watched this teaser. I thought the CW was just trying to capitalize on the vampire resurgence in the cheesy way that only that network can. But I was wrong. This trailer gave me the same excitement I had when I first saw “True Blood” and read the Twilight series. You can bet we’ll cover “The Vampire Diaries” in the fall once it premieres. Will you watch the show? Or are sick of vampires already? Keep reading »

XTreme Eating Awards: Put Down The Fork, And Back Away

I have a confession. I am a food monster. When left to my own devices, I’ve been known to fry up pancetta and pour it (and the resulting bacon-y grease) over popcorn. I put MSG on everything. My favorite food group is “cheese” and “vehicles for cheese.” Sometimes my roommate walks in and asks, “What are you eating that goat cheese with?” And my answer is, “A spoon.” But none of that prepared me for the Xtreme Eating Awards that the Center of Science compiled to show the public just how unhealthy some meals are at popular chain restaurants. After the jump, some of the scariest. [USAToday] Keep reading »

“Bad-Ass Of The Week” Website Picks Actual Bad-Asses

I was slightly confused when my boyfriend started going on about the bad-ass of the week. I nodded dumbly figuring he was just speaking in boy-talk. But oh no, the continued references to the bad-ass continued so I finally decided to translate his statements into normal human speech. It turns out that he was actually making sense and that I just couldn’t fully comprehend the true awesomeness of the Bad Ass Of The Week website. Keep reading »

Getting Hired In A Sea Of Unemployment

Employment rates reached 9.4% this month—the highest they’ve been in the past 26 years. Great, so nearly a tenth of the U.S. is unemployed, and I’m graduating college in a semester––yikes! While I’d totally love to embrace “funemployment” come December, I just don’t think my Dad will approve of that. So in the spirit of I-better-start-looking-for-a-job-now-or-I’m-gonna-need-food-stamps-and-I-don’t-know-how-they-work, here are some very creative ways other people have taken to the job search. Keep reading »

Workers of the World—It’s Weisure Time!

As a writer who works from home, sometimes the lines get blurred—what is my work time and what is my leisure time? Apparently, I’m not alone. Experts are calling this mish-mash of work and pleasure “weisure time.” Yes, you read that right. Now try to say it three times fast. Laugh now, but get ready to live it, cause experts are predicting that the American workforce is moving from 9 to 5 work hours to 24/7 “weisure time.” Woo hoo! Keep reading »

Fame And Fortune Don’t Bring Happiness, Yeah Right

A new study has found that the pursuit of fame, fortune, and beauty makes people less happy. One hundred and fifty graduates from the University of Rochester and Knox College in Illinois were followed for two years, and over that time, researchers assessed the graduates’ satisfaction with life, relationships, and self-esteem. Participants also evaluated their anxiety and stress levels, as well as, their physical ailments such as headaches. The researchers found that fame- and money-hungry graduates who had achieved their goals were the most dissatisfied and anxious. In contrast, participants who had a stronger sense of community and had developed fulfilling relationships felt less stress and were more confident. [am New York]

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