Posts made in May, 2012

Miss, Mrs and Ms

Posted on May 31, 2012 in Life | 3 comments

There’s a travesty of justice in today’s modern societies that Germaine Greer needs to get on stat.  Titles.

Women’s option for titles harkens back to the day when we were considered the property of men and needed a title to explain quickly our availability status:

Miss: On the Market, pristine condition, new. Available if at the correct age, or sometimes even if not.  Ask the dominant male in the family if you can have her instead of him.

Mrs: Taken.  Owned by someone else so technically off the market, but we all know how these things go.

Ms: Used.  Second hand, a widow or divorcee.

Just looking at those definitions makes me want to take off my bra and burn it in Federation Square… and I’m not the bra burning type.  They’re expensive.  Burnt some undies once but that was privately and they were a boys’.  He wasn’t wearing them at the time.  Unfortunately.  And that’s not technically true, I AM the bra burning type, at least in the manga “Sailor Moon” comic image I have of myself in my head (“…descends from the sky, hair whirling, high boots, balls of light hovering around her hands to dispel the evil subjugation of women in modern society by throwing her special powers after a loud “HAH!”) *sigh*.  The actual reality of protest just doesn’t live up.

It’s none of anybody’s business my marriage status and of course I would say that because I fall into the latter category of Ms even if I didn’t want to.  But I wear it with pride and want to point out that I wore it with pride even when I was technically a Miss.  Although not when I was a Mrs and this is, in my humble opinion, where the problem lies.  Women want to be Mrs.  We love saying our new name after we get married.. ‘Mrs Smith’ because its completely different from “Miss Jones” and that means that we now ‘belong’ to someone in the nice sense… in the same way that they belong to us.

Except they don’t change their title to reflect it.  Only women do.  And that’s wrong.

We should all be Ms.  Just as all males are Mr, married or not.  Use your wedding ring as a symbol of your commitment to each other, at least he’s required to do the same.

Or perhaps men could switch? What a slew of posturing and humphing we would have if equal rights demanded men changed their title according to marriage status!  Master, Mister and Mester???

 

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I Am My Hair

Posted on May 27, 2012 in Me | 0 comments

I tied my hair back mid-pose in yoga this evening.

Haven’t done that for nearly three years.  About 2 years ago I had long, blonde hair.  I could never work out how to tie it during yoga; at the top of my head meant I couldn’t lie down.  At the base of my neck meant I couldn’t do a shoulder stand.  I would spend the entire class tying and re-tying the hair.

 

ps, is my nose getting bigger in these photos or is it just me?

Long enough that I’m right back where I started, in a yoga class, struggling to work out how to tie my hair.  It jolted me back to the long-then-short-blonde-hair time of my life…

I’d purposely asked a friend’s lesbian sister the best place to get my hair done on the idea that at least it would be edgy and funky.  Wrong.  The place felt right; black walls, chicks in black doc martins and thick eyeliner, swear words in every language graffiti’d over the wash basin room walls.  But the cut came out all wrong.  It was way too short.  Supposed to look like Keira Knightly, I, not suprisingly, ended up looking like Ella Degeneres.

Didn’t care though.  There was nothing I wanted more at the time than to be completely utterly different from all the other girls around me with their long locks and short bangs.  I think it was the first time I’d publicly gone against the internal culture cues I’d grown up with and my inner rebellion had finally found an outer expression.  My hair was my own to do with as I wished and mass opinion could just fuck off.  Well, I didn’t use the term ‘fuck off’ of course, grounds for termination as it was at the time, but the feeling inside was the same.

I’ve slowly come to reclaim other parts of myself from the ‘opinion of the masses’ over the past few years.  My thoughts on gay marriage for instance (100% yes, anything less is discrimination), it is definitely acceptable to wear your black and white polka dot ugg boots to your local supermarket and Jersey Shore and Made in Chelsea are absolutely the worst shows to ever hit television (never thought anything would beat Big Brother).

Still… it’s a struggle.  I’m currently transitioning back to long hair and considering going blonde again.  If I’m honest this is because I’m feeling old and having long, maybe blonde hair to swish around at Beautiful People clubs in Europe will make me feel more like I belong.  Likely I’ll get over that scene at some point in the future and the hair will change again in an effort to redefine my message to the world about who I am.

If only I was as wise as my darling India… “I am not my hair… I am not my skin… I am not your expectations…”

 

Anyone else use their hair as an expression of inner turmoil or just me?

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The Cost of Being Clair

Posted on May 3, 2012 in Me | 0 comments

“Where are my keys?! I swear to GOD I put them in my bag about 2 seconds ago…”

If I had a dollar for every time I thought this…I once walked around Woolworths for half an hour checking other people’s shopping baskets in an attempt to find the thief who stole my bag after I mindlessly put it on the ground in front of the freezer.  Turns out it was in MY shopping basket covered with grocery items.

I’m an absent minded genius. Minus the genius. Just pure confusion on everyday skills like taking my laptop with me when I leave a room, getting an address before I jump in the car to drive there or keeping tags on clothes I’ve decided to return. It’s like I have two brains. One conscious one presumably with a modicum of common sense but easily distracted by whatever day dream is running through my brain at the time. The other subconscious one gleefully operating my hands without the use of memory, foresight or logic to create maximum mayhem for when the conscious brain gets wind that Something’s Not Quite Right. Friends and family don’t understand how I can’t remember where my purse is when I paid for something with it a couple of minutes ago. I hope the above explains it. I have two brains.

The necessity of taming my Subconscious brain was brought into painfully sharp focus yesterday through a series of unfortunate events which led to me standing on a street corner at night, in the middle of Kew, in the pouring rain with the flu, bawling like a 3 year old.

It started with getting to work late.  I live in a Quantum Physics world; the ‘time it takes’ to get somewhere is dependent on how long I have to get somewhere.  A 30 minute tram ride to work is reduced to only 15 minutes between the moments of waking to an alarm and pressing the snooze button.  Trams don’t seem to understand this and infuriatingly take the usual amount of time to arrive anywhere, even when you’re in a hurry.

At lunchtime, I spent an hour and a half troopsing my way across the city (again, trams) to renew my British Passport only to discover I hadn’t filled out a section correctly so would have to do it all again tomorrow.  On my way back to the office, I ‘borrowed’ a restaurant’s bathroom and left my umbrella there. Back at the office, I had an uncomfortable discussion with my boss about the flexibility (or rather inflexibility) of my work hours to fit around my increasingly hectic uni schedule before standing in the rain for another 5 minutes without an umbrella waiting for the dreaded tram home.

Safe and warm in a corner seat, I look up from the book I’m reading with some confusion at unfamiliar houses and landmarks whooshing by.  Dammit.  I’ve missed my stop (this happens regularly) and will now have to walk a few blocks back home in the rain.  Without an umbrella.  It wasn’t until I google mapped my current location to find out just exactly how far I was from my stop that I realised…

The wrong tram.

I got. On the Wrong. Tram.

How does someone do that?  The number 48 looks nothing like 75!  Now I’m in Kew.  20 blocks from my place and no direct tram line.  In the rain.  Without an umbrella.  Sick and hungry.  I rang the only friend I know in Kew to see if he was home and could come get me.  No go.  I wandered across the road and caught the 48 tram back to where I was pretty sure the line intersects with tram 75.

I could double check if it’s the right intersection on google maps.  But then, I could also just sit here in the warm tram, taking a gamble that my lack of effort will be made up for by luck; it’s a game I like to play with myself.  Wing it and if you get it right, you haven’t spent unnecessary effort on details.  The feeling of winning is euphoric and addictive.  Losing can be a bitch though.  Hopping off the tram, I cross at the lights in wind and rain and look up the road tram 75 was supposed to use to take me home.  There are no tram tracks on it.  Wrong intersection!  Dammit.

I run back across the road to the tram I just got off still waiting at the red light, shoes soaking up the puddles, and raise my hand to the tram driver in his big control pit as I cross right in front of him. A younger guy with a short haircut and tanned skin, he was leaning forward on his dashboard, surveying the intersection and then me as I shivered around to the side door expecting it to open and let me into the warmth and safety of the carriage.

But without taking his eyes off me, he releases his foot off the brake, letting the tram roll on through the now green light to trundle on down the wet, dark street to the next intersection.  75 tram’s intersection.  I stood, stunned, wet, cold and sick by the side of the road, shivering and did what every self respecting 26 year old professional female does after a day of continual frustration. I started crying. Out loud. With a big “I’m crying” wrinkly face. Maybe one of the cars only a metre away would take pity on me and offer to drive me home? I’m a damsel in distress for goodness sake!!

3 minutes later and that tactic not working, I pull out my phone, order a taxi and enter all the things my random brain had made me mess up that day into an excel spreadsheet. (Geek? Yes.)  Yesterday’s Cost of Being Clair was $135, not including emotional trauma damages over the loss of my favourite Audrey Hepburn style umbrella.

Do I have early dementia perhaps?

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