(Trigger Warning: Discussion of incest and childhood sexual abuse.)
The greatest gift my father gave me was a passion for art. As a pianist and composer with a Master’s degree in Musicology, he infused our home with creativity throughout my childhood. He encouraged me to find my own outlet; instead of sports teams and debate club, my extracurricular activities included violin lessons, piano lessons, drawing classes, painting classes, dance classes, theater camp, and color guard practice. You name it, I tried it.
The day we discovered my true passion was the day my father brought home a video camera. As I started to experiment with filmmaking as a medium of expression, he shared with me his advice about being an artist: “Never compromise your artistic vision for mainstream success.” “Art should never be restricted to those who can afford museum admission or concert tickets – create art that can be accessible to the public.” “Look for the art around you in every day life and draw inspiration from it.” “Let art drive everything else in your life.”
My memory of my childhood is hazy, so I can’t remember if our talks about art started before or after my father molested me. It happened so casually, so blatantly, that I assumed it was normal, loving behavior. Given the way he would constantly praise my appearance, talk openly and explicitly about sex, and encourage me to feel comfortable walking around naked in front of him, I did not realize that what happened to me was abuse until I was an adult. Today, we no longer have a relationship. I have nightmares about hearing his voice when I pick up the phone. Looking at photographs of him makes my stomach churn. But as I write this, I am listening to one of his recordings over and over again, straining to hear the words I know he will never say. Keep reading »
I was clicking about the internet, looking for some news when I happened upon this gem of a piece on the Huffington Post entitled “There Are Plenty Of Twitter Users Who FInd Their Cousins Hot.” It’s just what the doctor ordered for a “Law & Order: SVU” fan with twisted curiosities.
On Christmas night, a man about the internet who tweets as @Mobute, went on what the Huffington Post called “an epic retweeting spree.” This is the first retweeting frenzy I’ve ever beheld. It really was epic. It appears that an unnervingly number of people find their cousins hot and are down to share that with the whole internet via Twitter. Read the top tweets on The Gloss…
Waffle & Wolf is a waffle shack in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, that serves all manner of amazing waffles, both savory and sweet. Apparently, Waffle & Wolf is also where a reddish-haired man works that reminds this Craigslist poster of her deceased father. At first, the ad reads like a woman searching for a potentially long-lost family member — could the ginger waffle maker be her half-brother?! But no. She indicates that despite the resemblance, the chances of them being related are slim — but couldn’t they pretend for the sake of her incest-fantasy? Yes, this Craigslist post (which has since been deleted) quickly goes from sweet to sexual and also really kind of sad. Keep reading »
It’s over, The Onion: a piece that went up today called “Adolescent Girl Reaching Age Where She Starts Exploring Stepfather’s Body” is a grenade-launch distance past the “too far” line. The humor site failed to make anything funny — like, at all — about a 13-year-old girl named Heather who is being sexually abused by her stepfather, Gary. “It will probably take time for Heather to figure out what does and doesn’t feel good to her stepfather, and she may be surprised to discover acne and hair in unexpected places on Craig’s body,” The Onion joked. “But it’s all part of growing up, and she should know that she is taking a very important step in life. It won’t be long before her childhood is gone forever.” The piece then suggests that if (if?) Heather is “confused or troubled by such experiences,” she should talk to her friends “who are going through the exact same thing.” Keep reading »
A 11-year-old girl in Chile, who was impregnated by her mother’s boyfriend, told a TV interviewer recently that giving birth to a baby would be like “having a doll.” Chilean President Sebastian Pinera, who opposes abortion, has praised the fifth grader publicly for her “depth and maturity” in carrying the pregnancy to term.
Oh, and did I mention that in Chile, abortion is super-duper illegal? Keep reading »
Iceland is a pretty small country, people-wise. There’s only around 300,000 people in total, and most of them are related. In Michael Lewis’s 2011 book Boomerang (on the global financial collapse. It’s really good!), he explains that there are only about nine surnames in the country, and everyone is listed in the phone book by their first names. And yes, they all know Bjork. “Yes, I know Bjork,” says a professor at the University of Iceland, whom Lewis interviews. “She can’t sing, and I know her mother from childhood, and they were both crazy. That she is so well known outside of Iceland tells me more about the world than it does about Bjork.”
Thanks to their generally closed society over the last 1,100 years and the fact that everyone has similar last names (ending in either -son or -dottir), dating and mating can be tricky. But a new app, which is loosely translated to mean Incest Prevention Alarm, is hoping to help Icelanders avoid sleeping with relations. Its slogan is “Bump the app before you bump in bed.” Keep reading »
Whenever you think about the travails of dating and mating, consider this guy, and be glad this hasn’t happened to you. An anonymous man wrote into Slate’s advice column, Dear Prudence, asking what to do about a rather unbelievable series of genetic events.
Read on for the full query. Keep reading »