Don’t forget about the “He”

“It’s about freedom.”

Emma Watson and her speech at the UN has really hit home with the vast majority of young women, especially on my campus. Very fairly so. And not just because she is standing up to help pave the way for women’s rights, but because she is focusing on what is really important – gender equality.

The issue of feminism isn’t feminism, in my opinion. It’s that society has taken this word and steered it away from what it really means, which is creating equality for men and women, and turned it into women wanting to become the superior race.

I’m a woman. I want gender equality. But I didn’t want to watch another speech where a woman stands up in front of everyone and stomps her foot and demands equal pay, rights, and for men to stop treating her like a piece of meat. Which we all obviously want. Obviously.

But what I wanted to see was some accountability. I wanted to see a speech where a woman said “Hey, men of the world, this sucks for us. And we think it probably sucks for you guys, too. You’re fathers, uncles, brothers. You’re not all that creep guy who sexualized us, or that manager that didn’t pay us fairly. You matter, too.”

And honestly, Ms. Watson’s speech delivered that. We as women want so much to be able to walk down the street without being yelled at. We want to not have to fight for that extra fifty cents that our male coworker makes although we’re equally qualified. We don’t want to have to worry about any of it. Especially who’s deciding things when it comes to our bodies. But what we really, really want is for men to be on board with us. We want to be able to feel open to asking our fathers, uncles, even our boyfriends, to be able to stand up with us and ask for equality.

Because that’s important. To everyone. And Ms. Watson’s He for She is perfect, because she’s giving EVERYONE an opportunity to stand up and speak, she is offering EQUALITY.  Which is what feminism is. Which is what we want.

It’s what I want.

I definitely encourage anyone to watch the speech because equality isn’t something to be taken lightly. We strive for equality everyday within races, religions, and socioeconomic classes – and we really stand by that, we all believe that there should be equality in those sectors. Gender equality is just one of the many causes that we should stand up for and try our hardest to make changes to because in the years to come my generation will want to know that they have little to worry about when it comes to their daughters. I believe they’ll be happy with fighting to make changes because, in the long run, there will only be benefits for all of us – men and women.

There’s always going to be something we don’t agree on, which is common sense to realize. But if we can set aside superiority, we’d all be a lot closer to something really great.

x.

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Media, Deception, and James Franco

(Originally posted April 4th, 2014)
Have we all had a minute to read up on this James Franco moment yet?
If you haven’t, let me fill you in.
James Franco, (beloved, attractive, actor/scholar), was seen on social media program Instagram attempting to lure a 17 year old Scottish girl to meet with him.
Franco, 36, was apparently approached by this young woman outside of his Broadway show Of Mice and Men.
Wow, what a significant play.
What a significantly creepy move that after such a powerful story of love, selfishness, and making a right or wrong choice, Franco asks the young girl to tag him in a photo that she wants to post on Instagram … where he later contacts her.
Before I am strung up by the million Franco groupies of the world, let me speak a little further.
Franco starred in a film where he plays a high school soccer coach and father that has an inappropriate affair with an underage girl. The film is called Palo Alto and very importantly centers in on how easy it is for those that are closest to your family may very well be the ones who could take advantage of them, too. More about this in a minute. But before I continue, this movie has Val Kilmer in it……. didn’t we leave him behind in the ’80s? No?
Many media outlets have been reporting about the incident, two days after the illicit messages were supposedly sent, in an almost defense mannerism. James Franco could not POSSIBLY have sent those messages! James Franco is a COLLEGE EDUCATED actor! James Franco must have been set UP! James Franco must have been doing this TO PROMOTE HIS NEW FILM WHERE HE IS A SEXUAL PREDATOR NOT THAT HE REALLY IS ONE!
Ok.
Let me explain what does not necessarily need to be explained:
The minute the media would rather defend a celebrity than to question them for something as serious as potential child sexual predatory behavior, we have failed as a media influenced society by allowing this to go on.
Do I think personally that James Franco is guilty of being a sexual predator? That’s neither here nor there. Do I think that this should be checked into? Yes. Do I think this was a stunt to promote a movie that was actually released in August of 2013? …. How does that make sense.
If we as a society would rather defend a celebrity for this behavior, especially without providing all the facts like when the actual movie was released, and in turn condemn a young woman, or man, for speaking up – we need to reevaluate.
If this was a film promotion, it was not done in order to spark a fury around making sure James Franco is safe –
It was done to see if there was fury and outrage over someone we, as beloved consumers of Franco’s movies, trusted who violated the simple promise to never, ever abuse your power and take advantage of someone young, naieve, and possibly easily swayed.
New York age of consent may be 17 but we all know how inappropriate a 36 year old and a 17 year old is. And if you want to argue that …. please, please refrain.
And if this was a stunt put on by Franco, I think maybe it could teach us a thing or two about what we deem important as a society.
Franco is a VERY well educated man. He is a poet, he is a teacher, he directs. He’s someone well known, he is very savvy with social media. He is not afraid to speak his mind. And while these are all admirable traits that make us stop and reconsider how someone could do this and make us begin to dismiss these allegations, will we do the same the next time we hear about this is our own personal towns? Will we dismiss the claims from the young because this is an adult that is well trusted? Will we dismiss pictures and text messages and private chats because there’s just no way they would take advantage of a 17 year old that we know?
If anything, Franco has shown us the slippery slope. Much like his performance in Of Mice and Men… if we let things slide, we allow our “Lenny” to continue to move forward, until it’s too late. Except our Lenny knows what he’s doing, he’s cunning, he’s trusted, and even though you might hate to believe it, he might be James Franco.
Social Media for ya.

x.

Body Quo?

(Originally posted April 17th, 2013)
Why don’t we like to work out?
I ask myself this almost daily when I’m getting ready in the morning and realize that I’m, uh, not as in shape as I was a year or so ago. But then the day wears on and I’m exhausted when I get home and I try so hard to convince myself that even a ten minute workout is better than watching Mad Men, but then there I am again on the couch with my ice cream.

We buy Cosmopolitan at my apartment. The cover always has some girl on it who’s the ‘right size’ and then there’s always a little section in it about loving your body and whatever, who cares, we all know we skip over that part. But, then I think about it. We really should start loving our bodies. No, this isn’t one of those blog posts where I tell young women “Hey! No, you look good! You inhale that over processed food and you love yourself for it!”. I’m not that kind of person, and I’m not going to say that.
What I am trying to say is how weird it is that we would rather watch Dove commercials that tell us to love ourselves than to go out and do something that might actually make us feel like we could love ourselves. I know that when I finally get up and go work out, I feel like I could smile for days. The endorphins (yes, they exist) that rush through your body after a work out feel better than Luke Bryan asking you out. Okay, I’m exaggerating, but it’s pretty close if you close your eyes…
I don’t want to upset anyone out there with this post. You all really are beautiful. Really. But I looked at myself today and thought well, maybe I should work out, for summer, you know. I hit the yoga mat in my living room and did a couple exercises then got up and came to the computer. I started thinking, that felt really good, I should’ve done that for longer. Weird.
It’s not about being skinny. I don’t WANT to be skinny. I like what I have going on. It’s about being healthy. And to be honest, the food we eat, the food I eat, as a college student is not helping us out. You wanna know why you’re tired after walking from your apartment or dorm to the class that you cut through a building to get to that’s not even 10 minutes away? Because the oreos and Noodles and Co you decided to eat as a midnight snack last night has decided to slow down not only your metabolism, but also YOU. Pretty scary.
So, I’ll ask again, why don’t we like to work out? So many people do it and look at where they are. They’re happy, they look good, they’re probably not going to die at 60. The more I look, the more I like it.
Think of it kind of like that first party in college. Uh, this is weird and uncomfortable and I’m not sure why everyone’s so sweaty. But then you realized how much you LOVE college parties and you do them all the time now!
Anyway, let’s workout. Let’s like it and let’s like ourselves for getting out there and doing it. I think that’s what Cosmo says anyway…
x.

John Mayer’s Born and Raised

 

b1 [Converted]

 

(Originally posted May 23rd, 2012)

Okay, so as we all know, John Mayer has a new album out. I have to admit, I am a huge John Mayer fan. Well, okay, there are John Mayer songs that I absolutely think are just beautiful works of music. I’ve never been a fan of full Mayer albums, so I decided to listen to his new LP, “Born and Raised”, all the way through. Check out my track by track review below, and please don’t be afraid to let me know what you thought of it as well!
X.
HERE WE GO…
Queen of California – Good vibe, very folky – kinda like early 70’s rock … unlike mayer – lyics would bring any teenage girl to her knees, especially those on the brink of escaping parent’s home for the promised land of California. If you see her, say hello? Hello, Bob Dylan. I like the almost zydeco influence that’s on this song  – the mixture between the piano and the electric is actually really good – I like that you can hear each distinctly. Not a fan, but I can see the potential.
The Age of Worry – Kind of a Mumford and Sons vibe – I think this is his excuse song for his douche baggy behavior a few years back – “defend your innocence while you do everything wrong”. Huh.. Okay, John.  Ultimately, I like the lyrics and the message it sends. But I wouldn’t be playing it for myself because his voice with the chords does not mesh at all, and it’s almost too… nice? To be a John Mayer song.
Shadow Days – Music video – The opening chords for this song got me really excited, it felt kinda Steve Miller Band–ish. But these lyrics…. I’m really not a fan! This song is like the ultimate “hey, I sucked for a while guys. But really, I’m a good dude. Sorry about that other shit, I’m over it and you should be too”. I kinda dig this song, but I wish he’d used more of a range for his vocals on it. His guitar, as always, sounds beautiful and effortless. I wonder what he could do with a purely instrumental album? Hmmm..
Speak for Me – FINALLY music and vocals are lining up into something I can dig. This song is really beautiful, and I enjoy it. This is more of the John Mayer I liked, where his lyrics are something you have to think about and draw your own conclusions about. The other songs I’ve heard so far on this album are laid out in black and white, and that’s something I don’t get down with from any artist. Give me something I can interpret!
Something Like Olivia – I love this. Love, love, love. It’s bluesy, which is what he’s best at. I love this. Did I mention I love this?
Born and Raised –  Okay, harmonica in the opening… You know, I like it, minus the choir behind him in the chorus. Definitely a great song about growing up. I really love the harmonica, adds a different definition. Really enjoying this, the last line is gold, “Cause one of these days you’ll be born and raised/And it takes you on without warning”. I’m all about living life to the fullest (if you guys haven’t caught on already) and this song embodies that.If I Ever Get Around to Living – Folksy…  I kinda dig this one. When he harmonizes, it’s awesome. The lyrics are pretty spot on, although the music is what I think makes this song. The acoustic with the drum makes this a smooth song to drive to the beach to.  Seriously inspired by early 70’s rock, which I LOVE.
Walt Grace’s Submarine Test, January 1967 – This title just reeks of Beatles influence. The beginning of this song as well.  Also, the lyrics kind of remind me of Dylan’s 115th Dream, which I think is kind of cool. I like that this isn’t your run of the mill song. And his raspy, bluesy voice kind of comes through on this song. I like it. It’s not a jam, but it’s something to put on when you’re hanging around. I wish the chords had more depth to them, but ultimately it’s a cool song.
Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey – Harmonica intro – Lyrics solid – Love this song. Love love love. Whiskey, whiskey, whiskey, water, water, water, sleep. Sound like college? Blues comes through on this song – dig it entirely. Man I like this song. The bridge is awesome, I can see myself signing the chords in the car. You know what I’m saying? The repeated chorus at the end is John Mayer at his finest. It’s reminiscent of Stop That Train on Continuum. Love this freaking song. HARMONICA AT THE END IS GOLD! IT’S JUST GOLD! THIS SONG! GO TO ITUNES! But please don’t steal it; that is so irritating.
A Face to Call Home – This title speaks to all of us. We know what it’s like to have that one face that makes us smile when we see it, that makes us feel like we’re safe once again. This song… GREAT. I’m not big on like lovey dovey songs, but this song is a great kind of love song, that’s not too much of that gushiness. It’s just like he met a girl that made him want to forget his wild past, he’s seeing her and he’s seeing where he wants to stick. It’s great. The outro – great. Beautiful. Pure John Mayer. Oh my God, the outro. This is another golden song. You got a face to call home. Hey, let’s make that into a pick up line, too…
Born and Raised (Reprise) – This is horrible. Okay, like if I was sitting on my front porch, in a rocking chair, chewing snuff and listening to kids play the banjo and spoons, I’d dig this. But, I’m not. I’m sitting on my back porch, on my Macbook, eating toast, wondering what the hell he was thinking when he thought this would be cool to put on an album..
Fool to Love You – I actually turned the volume up on this one! This is sick, so bluesy, so southern. I am in love. I am a fool to love this song (hehe) This is awesome, harmonica once again. Kind of has a Clapton vibe, like circa wonderful tonight. Love this. Really, really, impressed with this last track.
Go Buy:           Something Like Olivia
If I Ever Get Around to Living
Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey
A Face to Call Home
Fool to Love You
What’d ya think? Check out the picture to go listen to samples of the songs!