July 28, 2013
I do not think that Amy Pond is the Manic Pixie Dream Girl that you think she is.
I’ve been seeing this column linked, quoted, and excerpted pretty much all over the internet in the past couple weeks. And I wish I were having as positive a reaction to it as, apparently, basically every other woman on the internet is. But I’m not.
I was never a manic pixie dream girl. Though it wasn’t for the lack of a couple of people’s trying to make me theirs. Who decided everything about who I was, tried to treat me like I was that person, and then were continually confused and disappointed when I wasn’t. In fact, that’s true of a lot of people in my life, in various contexts, and not just romantically.
It’s the kind of thing I can see happening to Amy a lot, too. Not just guys with romantic intent, but people, deciding based on her looks and demeanor what’s behind her eyes.
And then it isn’t.
And so not many people stay close.
It’s not that she’s vacant or empty—it’s that so much has happened to her that has no possibility of being put into words that anyone else would either understand or believe. That has no analog or describeability at all within what most people in her world know and accept as the boundaries of reality.
She’s tried. And look what happened for her trouble. Four psychiatrists; being told all her life that she was making it up, or delusional, that what she knows to be true couldn’t possibly be.
Believe me about the wear and tear that exerts on a person’s psyche. (And I didn’t even have a Time Lord fall out of the sky into my backyard in a police box after my entire family had been disappeared by a crack in the universe.)
(Um, not exactly, anyway.)
Is it any wonder she doesn’t let much of her interiority slip anymore?
I have always, always experienced Amy as the protagonist of that entire story arc of Doctor Who, not as a function of what she was to the Doctor. Far from being “somehow immortally fixed at the physical and mental age of nineteen-and-a-half,” she always struck me as much older and sadder than she was supposed to be, perhaps even by her writer. She was always the point-of-view character to me. We saw her, and the world from her perspective, first and last in that story.
And finally, it was a world that I recognized.
That doesn’t mean that the framing of the story, and Steven Moffat’s (and therefore the Doctor’s) treatment of her aren’t sometimes often inexcusably patronizing or sexist. Particularly the ways in which people try to protect her by hiding knowledge or information about herself from her, in an inadvertent continuation of the way she had her very existential integrity violated by the effects of the crack in her bedroom wall.
Lots of people try to take Amy away from herself, with good intent or bad—Moffat, and the Doctor, her aunt and her psychiatrists, the Silence and Madame Kovarian. But she ultimately chooses the framing of her story that gets told to her younger self. She ultimately makes the decisions that take her away from the Doctor. The fact that she is put at the mercy of forces much larger than herself, that people who care about her respond rather imperfectly, that she does the best she can—with a stunning degree of endurance and courage if you really stop to think about it—under deeply irrational and frightening circumstances…I am unclear on how that makes her “the ultimate in lazy sexist tropification.”
That is shit that happens to people.
This is the problem with proclaiming that “the girl who waited” is not a real person. She is. I have been the girl who waited. It’s not a part of my story that I’m particularly enamored with sometimes, but it is intrinsically part of my story. It’s not flattering, but it’s true, and not because that’s just the way some man wanted it. I’ve been the girl whose life didn’t make any sense. I’ve been the girl whose memories didn’t add up. I’ve felt like the impossible girl.
Those aren’t just the titles of stories that happened to other people because that’s what girls are supposed to be. Those are stories that happened to me.
I’ve been told so often, in so many ways, that I wasn’t a real person, that I couldn’t exist in the world.
And oh, look, here’s another woman, doing it again. (It is usually women.) I guess to some women, being real is only for some women. And not for those of us whose stories are too inconvenient.
Even Amy isn’t truly a girl I could be, in various ways; it’s just that elements of her story helped me work out a few important things about my own. I watched “The Pandorica Opens” and could literally feel aspects of how the universe was supposed to work, turning and clicking back into place for me. (Even as the episode made so little logical sense that in trying, unsuccessfully, to untangle its plausibility in my head one day, I completely spaced out on my subway ride to work and missed my stop.) I had a Facebook conversation with a friend one night about how, when you’ve spent most of your life deeply disoriented with no clear explanation as to why, to suddenly not be disoriented in that way anymore is its own kind of disorientation. It’s one of the most deeply weird things I’ve ever experienced, and that’s saying something, and I’ve never, not anywhere, seen that experience represented more adeptly than in Amy’s episodes of Doctor Who. (And I very much think of them as Amy’s episodes.)
You know how people sometimes write letters to their childhood selves? I could never do that. I didn’t know what I could possibly say to that little girl. No words would form around the things I wanted her to know. I just couldn’t, somehow, connect the world I know, and the world she lived in, and the things she did and didn’t understand at the time. The truth was just too much, too fractured and incomprehensible a thing to try to figure out how to lay on that girl. It felt like there was some kind of glitch in my timeline…in my own understanding of how I’d even gotten from there to here.
But when the Doctor closed Melody Malone’s book at the end of Amy’s story in “The Angels Take Manhattan,” I cried and cried for a long time without being able to say exactly why. And then I did understand, and then I did know what needed saying to that girl. And I could say it.
Amy means a lot to me precisely because I couldn’t ever be the story that other people wanted.
Neil Gaiman once wrote “…the shape of reality—the way I perceive the world—exists only because of Dr Who,” and while that would be an over-statement in my case, Amy’s story finally reflected to me a lot of the emotional shape of my own world, and some of the joints and hinges that have held it somewhat inexplicably together.
May 31, 2013
So the chancellor of the University System of Georgia, Hank Huckaby, caused a slight kerkuffle among my alumni community this past week, when he said, in reference to the fact that apparently large numbers of jobs in Georgia are going unfilled, that “students are studying the wrong things,” and that “If you can’t get a job, and you majored in drama, there’s probably a reason.”
Where to even start. Oh, I’ll just start.
1. The point of a university education is not to fill a quota of jobs in particular industries that just happen to be available in the state. The point of a university education is to support and fulfill a student in the long term, not simply as a worker but as a learning, thinking, creating person. College education should enrich an entire society with a liberal range of thinking skills, not simply enable young adults to fill available jobs.
If industries with jobs to fill are failing to attract students and applicants by making a reasonable case that the work is worthy of their dedication for the salaries they’re offering, that is not the student body’s fault. Industries with jobs to fill are not entitled to students’ lives or attention. A graduate has no particular duty to take any given job, anywhere, or to train for any given job just because it’s available.
2. It is so easy to take the stereotype of the undisciplined, flighty, starving actor or artist and say if you studied drama and now you don’t have a job, maybe you studied the wrong thing. But who would look at an unemployed graduate who studied business, marketing, or biochemistry, and say “Maybe you studied the wrong thing. Maybe you should have studied photography or playwrighting?”
But maybe they should have. Maybe a kid who sacrificed their true interests to what they were told was more practical, responsible, stable, or lucrative, would have been better off pursuing what they were a natural at. Maybe they would have found that being educated where their strengths and intuition lie is actually more reliable and life-sustaining.
3. People do work in the arts! Maybe this is overly obvious, but I really think that some of these bigwigs who run their mouths off overlook it. People work in the arts. People really do make their livings in the arts. People who quite possibly couldn’t sustain employment in more conventional career fields do so in the arts. People with very specific and uncommon talents find a life in the arts. People study for and work in the arts who damn well know that that path is their best bet.
And it’s not like the only thing to do with a drama degree is act or direct. There are jobs in management, administration, development, and design, just to name a few areas. There is such a profound ignorance of what it really takes to run the theater world, that, just for instance, I had not even heard of what would become my own job until I was in college.
Do too many people study drama expecting to be able to find jobs, or sustain themselves by performing, who then can’t? Sure, probably. But so what if everyone made more practical choices and studied dentistry or engineering instead? Would the economy then have the jobs available to support all of those people? A society can’t absorb an overabundance of nurses or computer scientists any more than it can a glut of theater artists. There aren’t a limitless number of jobs for electrical engineers, either. If everyone who hears Chancellor Huckaby’s speech takes his advice and chooses their field of study based on where job openings in Georgia currently are, who says those jobs will still be so plentiful, or even exist, five or ten years from now, and what happens to those students then? And in the meantime, what happens to a society that decides it doesn’t value the education of its artists and creators?
4. Make no mistake: I am employed because I studied drama.
Beyond the fact that I still actually work in the specific career which I chose in college, my education in theater gave me opportunities to develop communication, interpersonal, collaborative and analytical skills that I just would not have had access to otherwise. I found a world in which the kind of person I was at heart wasn’t considered a fundamental problem. I found a niche that demanded my natural skill set. I got told for the first time that the way I learn is a strength and not a weakness. I deeply understood how my own mind worked for the first time when I was taught to use a two-scene preset light board. Somebody taught me how to yell.
I really and truly don’t like to think about where I’d be right now if I hadn’t studied drama. And there’s almost nothing for which I’m more grateful to my younger self than the fact that she had the foresight to not listen to people like Chancellor Huckaby.
May 25, 2013
I was working on a film shoot a couple weeks ago, and standing around on a break one day, somehow I got to talking with our costume designer and the 12-year-old member of our cast about how much better Nickelodeon shows were in my childhood than they are now. While I was a little embarrassed to have almost no idea what is even on Nickelodeon these days, he was a connoisseur of vintage Nickelodeon, and we wound up talking about shows like Clarissa Explains It All, Doug, Rugrats, Salute Your Shorts, Are You Afraid of the Dark?, You Can’t Do That On Television, and The Adventures of Pete and Pete.
And one of the things we realized, in trying to figure out why those shows were so cool, and felt so good to watch, even though they were in some ways ridiculously wholesome, was that they managed to make you feel like they were always firmly on your side as a kid.
Although almost wholly non-objectionable in any way, they weren’t family shows. They were kids’ shows. They weren’t so much trying to teach any lessons, or make your parents happy, as they were dealing with the world the way that kids actually have to deal with the world, with all of its petty injustice, anxiety, and ludicrousness. There was lightness in the situations, but there wasn’t trivialization or mockery of kids’ problems. Adults were not always ultimately right, or even good or well-intentioned like they were in other network family shows.
And as I thought more about it, I realized something else that day. Those shows weren’t just on the side of kids…they were practically always, as far as I can remember, on the side of vulnerable kids, underdogs, and oddballs.
Compare, for instance, the way Sponge is portrayed in Salute Your Shorts compared to Screech in Saved By The Bell. When Sponge is called names and pushed around and valued only for his huge memory for random facts, it is actually wrong. Or Sam the weird neighbor in Clarissa and Skeeter the weird sidekick in Doug compared to Kimmy the weird neighbor in Full House. The bullies and jerks were the bad guys in those shows, and while you’re still supposed to have compassion for those characters in their own way, they are the actual antagonists of those worlds and you are not supposed to approve of their behavior and join in laughing at their victims. There weren’t characters who were there to be ridiculed.
Heroes and protagonists of Nickelodeon shows felt dorky and inferior…and it was okay.
And I was thinking about it some more as I was going through an old journal this week (which I almost never do), and re-reading an entry about realizing that the things I’ve tended to really love–music or books or TV shows–were things that made me feel like a person. Things that I liked okay were things that at least let me feel like a person.
Things that I could never manage to like much at all, even when everyone else around me loved them, tended to leave me feeling like I couldn’t laugh at the characters I was supposed to be laughing at.
Nickelodeon shows never did that. And while I was warned all too often that the amount of TV I watched as a kid was going to rot my brain, I’m starting to suspect that the more subtle lessons of those shows may actually have been among the most quietly but deeply impactful sources of strength to follow me into adulthood.
(And then there was this. How many things in life have you really been more afraid of than that? The top comment reads “This is why we 90′s kids are so intact”…and I think she may not be wrong.)
April 7, 2013
Really happy to see an update from the Out of Order team this week. Seeing this film get made is a wish very dear to me. It will come as no surprise to anyone, probably, that I treasure stories of people being told that they’re not supposed to exist, and then doing it anyway.
And also because I’ve had people who are not allies to the cause of equality tell me that they’re really and truly trying to understand the position of people who consider themselves both faithful Christians, and avowedly queer. Being able to point them to this film would be a great place to start, but it has to get made first.
Earlier this year I shared the first trailer for this documentary project. I know that everything and everyone is asking for your time or money for something, and I know that queer Presbyterian aspiring clergy might seem an obscure or marginally important topic for a documentary, but the filmmakers have this to say:
This important film is about people making a stand for what they believe in. It’s not merely about Christians or gay and transgender people. It’s about wider humanity and doing what’s right, despite institutions telling you you’re wrong, broken and don’t belong.
I know that’s something that probably a majority of my followers can identify with in some way.
February 28, 2013
So there’s more than one way in which I’m sick of being told that the way I think and experience the world is a blight on humanity that needs to be wiped off the face of the earth.
Recently I had a heated Facebook discussion with a friend over this Times Room for Debate entry, which not only argues that religion is not a reliable source of morality, but also posits that atheism shouldn’t seek to replace religion, but to end it…unfortunately employing a host of unfounded generalizations and leaps of illogic.
In the interest of both critical thinking and compassion, can we look at what, practically and humanly, ending religion would mean?
Various cultures and government regimes, at various times, have tried, hard, to get rid of religion or specific religions. I do not know of an instance in which it has gone well, in which the attempt didn’t involve egregious violence and human rights abuses, or in which the culture in question was left ultimately better off. Or in which it even remotely worked.
Beyond whatever personal spiritual significance or comfort they hold to individual believers, religious thought and traditions are the cornerstones of more than a few minority cultures and communities. Who is anyone to say that these cultures have no value, to put oneself in a position of choosing which other people’s communities, community rituals, values, and devotions, should be suppressed and eliminated? If we’re talking about the distinction between religion and morality, what is the morality of depriving a minority population of its rights of self-definition and community traditions and values?
Has anyone really thought about how we would prevent people or communities from transmitting their belief systems to their children? If you knock down every church building, how are you going to keep people from teaching their children to pray alone in bed at night? How are you going to prevent me from hearing God in the wind in the trees or in the silences between raindrops? How are you going to prevent people from infusing art and literature with religious thought?
And before somebody answers that the solution to ending religious belief is just to teach people better facts, understand this: Religions are not arbitrary sets of false, irrational, or mistaken beliefs, or collections of simple superstitions of cause and effect or magical thinking or carrot/stick promises of punishment or reward for belief or behavior (though they can contain all of those things), which could simply be undone by giving people better information. (That thunder is the result of colliding warm and cool air masses and not the gods having wrestling matches, for instance. I know what causes thunder. That knowledge has never yet prevented the experience of it from being spiritual to me.) They are complex narrative frameworks of symbol, metaphor, and allegory. They are stories and vocabularies for a class of experiences that you can’t simply forbid people from having. You can’t keep someone from having an experience by denying them the language for representing or coping with it.
And so unless you’re going to all-out eliminate storytelling, you’re not going to keep people who are so inclined from finding personal significance and guidance in storytelling, or from using a certain type of story–myth, fable, fairytale, whatever you want to call it–to give shape and understandability to their experiences.
It’s not fair or intellectually honest to presuppose that those experiences are false or trivial just because you don’t share them. And frankly narcissistic to declare that, because you don’t understand or share it, that mode of perception needs to be eliminated from the realm of human experience and meaning.
There is bad religion, just as there is bad music and bad writing, but we don’t talk about doing away with those forms of thought and expression just because a lot of it is of poor quality. There is religion that advances truly terrible values; that doesn’t make religion inherently destructive or wrong any more than Twilight‘s existence makes all teen fantasy literature poorly written and abusive relationship-glorifying. It is a medium, not an end, not an ultimate good or evil in itself.
In the same way that the overwhelming (and baffling) success of Twilight tells us nothing about teen fantasy literature’s inherent quality or worth (the genre also includes the Wrinkle in Time quartet, His Dark Materials, and the Earthsea cycle), the popularity of anti-intellectual or violent fundamentalism tells us nothing about what religion inherently is or has to be. It is one manifestation.
Religion is not morality, we should do a better job of talking about what both of those things are and are not, and I fully agree that religion can’t be said to be the exclusive or superior source of morality. But that doesn’t make it either worthless, or worthy of eradication.
December 9, 2012
I’m very excitedly looking forward to the release of this documentary:
From the project website:
Most gay and transgender people know what it feels like to be told they are broken and to be rejected, and often this message comes from Christians. Out of Order is a feature length documentary following the journey of three queer members of the Presbyterian Church (USA).
With unprecedented access, this groundbreaking documentary joins a group of queer future ministers at a secret retreat in the South. The critical decisions they make there will forever alter the course of their lives.
September 9, 2012
So apparently school started again this past week, and (in)appropriately, I ran across this article on Salon.com (Americans Want Sex Ed), summarizing a report from the National Campaign to Prevent Teen and Unplanned Pregnancy. The report presents the seemingly paradoxical findings that while a solid majority of both adults and teens in the United States believe that teenagers should be taught about birth control, and also that anti-abortion leaders should support the availability of birth control, and also that they (teens) themselves have the information they need to avoid unplanned pregnancy…a somewhat scarily large percentage of teens then go on to report knowing little to nothing of contraception methods.
But I suspect that the discrepancy obscures, at least in part, a disconnect between the fairly binary way in which we conceive of what “sex education” can and should be–either abstinence only or abstinence plus safety and contraception–and the nuances of students’ real lives, or how well what students are taught about contraception does or doesn’t match up with how they really need or want to be educated about sexual relationships.
If, for instance, you’re a 15-year-old lesbian, it may be true that you know what you need to about contraception at the moment even if that isn’t very much. Or if you’ve genuinely decided to wait for sex–till marriage or just till you’re older–you might not be wrong that you don’t need to know everything about possible contraception methods right this minute. Or if you’re on the asexuality spectrum and not seeking a sexual relationship…this information might not be taking up space on your hard drive, but you know where to find it if or when you want it…or if, like some students taking this survey, you’re 12 years old.
Or imagine how profoundly unhelpful a group role-playing game full of scare tactics about the dangers of promiscuity is to someone desperately trying to figure out how to have one good, safe, physical relationship.
It’s also easy to mistakenly think you know everything it’s possible to know, when what you don’t know is what you aren’t being taught.
I was, probably unsurprisingly, one of the kids who thought that I knew what I needed to know. I’d been through fairly decent classes on what to expect from puberty. I’d been given information on available contraception. (In a totally brilliant move on my mother’s part, one day she had picked me up Seventeen magazine’s Environment Special Issue, which she said she thought I’d enjoy, environmental activism being my primary obsession at the time. It also had Your Complete Guide to Contraception in the back of the issue. It was years before I realized that handing that over had probably been deliberate and not an oversight on her part.) I was a biology wonk and already knew more about disease transmission and risk than what was in the health class videos and graphic slide shows.
And, for reasons that turned out to be a good deal more complicated than I even thought they were at the time, I’d taken a stance that I was delaying sex…pretty much indefinitely.
In this state of affairs, I wound up, despite my protestations that the requirement was insulting, in my school’s “Health and Family Wellness” class. In which I somehow managed to be continuously stigmatized for the very choices that the class purported to be encouraging, because the ways in which I’d made them did not comport with the core presumptions of What Teenagers Are Like or How Dating Works. At the same time that I did indeed think I knew what I needed to, as far as what I saw available, I felt this gaping absence of anyone anywhere accurately describing how I actually experienced myself or my desires, and how to build a life or be safe and respected in those things.
Now I look back and know that I cannot have been the only one experiencing this, because people who were not represented as having sexual or romantic relationships worth talking about included gay people, queer people, trans people, disabled people…so also disabled queer people…any kind of gender fluid or gender variant people, people on the asexuality spectrum, or now that I try to think of it, very many people of color or of cultures other than Normal American Teenager. Let alone any of those people having relationships with each other.
What worked for other people was clearly not going to work out for me, but there were no examples of what would. Or of how to talk about what was true for you, if that wasn’t what was presumed to be the default.
There’s a quote from Adrienne Rich that I think of more and more often: “When someone with the authority of a teacher, say, describes the world and you are not in it, there is a moment of psychic disequilibrium, as if you looked into a mirror and saw nothing.”
So…not getting pregnant was actually not my biggest problem. The ways in which our school’s sex ed didn’t have much to offer me went way deeper than “I already know all about contraception, this is a waste of my time, and I’d rather be taking art.” But that was all I was able to express—in no small part because of the poverty of education or language available about relationships, sex, and gender that went beyond the very superficial. And so I sat in class day after day, feeling more and more alienated from my peers and from how adults presumed I should be treated based on the fact that I was 15 and not much else, being told by unqualified teachers “I’m sorry you think you’re too good to be here,” rolling my eyes at badly produced educational videos, and learning most of what I really knew about love and respect from Mulder and Scully at home alone on Friday nights. (And I’m not the only person I know who says that I learned what love was supposed to be from those characters.)
How would I have answered a survey question “Do you feel that you have all the information you need to prevent an unplanned pregnancy at this time?” Yes. But it would’ve been a stand-in answer for the fact that the question didn’t address anything real in my life.
I can well imagine that if you go to a school in which the name of your sexual identity is literally a bad word (“Don’t say gay” bills have been introduced in both Missouri and Tennessee), or a subject that faculty feel forbidden to address, up to and including when you’re being violently victimized for it, that you might reasonably feel that your ability to name risks and benefits of five different kinds of contraception is a little bit beside the point.
It isn’t that we shouldn’t teach comprehensive information about birth control, obviously, or work to ascertain whether kids feel they have the information they need about it, but I think in the common conception of what sex education is, this is widely thought of as the ultimate question: whether to teach abstinence only, or whether to teach risk management methods. But even the seemingly right answer to that question is misleading and even counterproductive when contraception as risk management is taught without a bedrock of positive and healthy attitudes about sex, real-life examples of all types of healthy sexual and romantic relationships, a vocabulary to describe what’s true and desirable for yourself individually, and knowledge and respect for your own sexual identity and those different from you.
Without that kind of knowledge, which should be basic and not controversial, I suspect it may be hard for students to draw easy conclusions about whether the health information they have matches up to the realities of their lives.
July 24, 2012
1. A little over 12 years ago now, I was about to graduate from high school. And my church’s brand new pastor, Brian, thought it would be awesome if, for a spiritual rite of passage or something, me and the other graduating seniors–my childhood friends Jess and Nicole–had to plan an entire Sunday worship service and give the sermon. And I’ve never been reticent about saying “hells to the no” to things that I really, seriously don’t want to do…but I’d been in acting class that year past, and so this idea was not as petrifying to me as it might have been only a short time previously. In fact, I’d been half-wondering whether I felt a calling to the clergy myself, and so I thought this might actually be a good, challenging experiment. And so I said okay.
I wrote my sermon on how trusting in God often means being open to unexpected possibilities, including unexpected discoveries about ourselves. I remember sitting outside on the front steps of the church on a warm spring evening for a planning meeting, Brian approving of our sermon outlines and hymn selections, joking about what more humorous though inappropriate choices might have been. It wouldn’t be so bad. There was an order of worship; I knew how it went. I only had to actually speak for five to seven minutes, from prepared text; I’d done scenes longer than that. Jess and Nicky had to do it, too. If I could act, I could do this. And it would tell me something about myself.
And I did, and it was actually pretty awesome; even though I was fairly sure I wasn’t meant for the ministry, I wasn’t sure at all that I wasn’t destined for some kind of life in performance.
A few weeks ago, I was on the phone with my father when he asked whether I’d gotten Brian’s resignation letter in the mail.
WHAT?!?! I said. No, I had not. What was going on, what happened?!
But the news was good. Brian was leaving to become the executive director of the Covenant Network of Presbyterians, a national organization working to encourage better welcoming and inclusion of LGBT people in the church. And he’d been in a committed relationship with his partner, Troy, for the past nine years.
Given my own past couple of years, I know what it takes to decide that being open about who you really are, whatever the fallout may be, is just worth it. I don’t think I ever imagined that one day I’d get to be so proud of someone who I already liked and respected a lot and who had been a gentle and encouraging influence in choosing to do something immensely difficult all that time ago. I’m fairly sure I cackled for joy when I got off the phone.
2. This has already made the rounds of Facebook, and now it’s up on BoingBoing: earlier this week, my high school friend Chris returned his Eagle Scout medal in protest of the Boy Scouts of America’s recent decision to continue the organization’s ban of gay, bisexual or transgender scouts and leaders, joining a growing number of men who have done so.
I’ve always had a visceral dislike of the Boy Scouts on multiple levels, but the Eagle Scout award is the culmination of years of incredibly hard work, of which men who achieve it are rightfully proud. I didn’t realize until today that only 2.1 million scouts have earned Eagle Scout status…since 1911. So it’s, to say the least, not a trivial decision to give up the award, in order to uphold what it’s supposed to teach.
“Gay scouts and leaders have the right and obligation to be true to themselves. Homosexuality is not a moral deviance, bigotry is,” Chris wrote.
Maggie Koerth-Baker’s article and Chris Baker’s and several other men’s entire letters are here.
I think I agree with a friend who said this week that I clearly have good taste in friends. ; )
December 23, 2011
While I gather my wits for a more substantial post, please enjoy this edition of “Headlines that should be from the Onion, but are not.”
“Despite careful calculations, the world does not end.” –New York Times, 5/21/11
“City strewn with perverts.” –AMNY, 6/15/11 (I know the situation isn’t funny, but the imagery is.)
“Girls Meet Bieber in Meeting Brokered by President Obama.” –gawker.com, 6/27/11
“China admits officials cannot levitate.” –New York Times, 6/30/11
“Cowboy monks quit the cattle business.” –New York Times, 8/14/11
“Bisexual men do exist, study finds.” –New York Times, 8/21/11
“Why do college students love getting wasted?” –Salon.com, 8/29/11
“Do we really need a national weather service?” –foxnews.com, 8/27/11 (i.e., the weekend of Hurricane Irene, which swiped the entire east coast of the United States from the Carolinas to Massachusetts and Vermont. Yeah.)
“White House Says No Evidence of Extra-Terrestrials.” –AP, 11/7/11
“Rick Perry fails to remember what agency he’d get rid of in GOP debates.” –cbsnews.com, 11/9/11
“Starbucks toilet mutiny exposes reliance.” –New York Times, 11/22/11