Special Sauce

A mish-mash of twisted thoughts from a fevered ego. Updated when the spirit moves me, contents vary and may have settled during shipping. Do not open towards eyes. Caution: Ingestion of Special Sauce may cause hair loss, halitosis, and a burning sensation while urinating.

3.08.2005

International Women's Day

Yes, it is International Women's Day, and I'm about to go off on all things girly.

You have been warned.


I've started this thing three times now, lets hope this time is the charm. I've been reflecting on what it means to me to be a feminist, and why I'm proud I'm a woman, and getting a little angry too. Not about the IWD, but about the fact that we're forgetting things.

Well, not all of us. Not exactly, anyway.

This most recent election was supposed to be the "year of the single woman." You know, sort of like the "soccer mom" year, and all that jazz. Girls my age, my brother's age, this year's new voters- we have always been lucky. We forget. We don't know what it was like. Our grandmothers, our great-grandmothers, our great-greats many times over, they fought. They made their way in life, to new lands, forming households on foreign soil. They wrestled with "woman's work", back-breaking labor, simply to feed and clothe a household. They stayed at home, not dreaming of going to school, or away on trips. They raised children, canned vegetables, dreamed of a day when maybe, someday, there wouldn't be so much work. They worked in factories, making tires for planes, or later, dishes. Still, they raised more children, and in my family, they didn't take much shit from their husbands. They kept things together, somehow, and they always vowed things would change for the next generation...

Our mothers came along, things were different by then. They wore pants, they wore minis. They thumbed their noses at convention. They dreamed of college, of getting away. They got out, they got jobs, they discovered the pill. They picketed, they marched, they demanded equal rights. They saw their friends and the back-alley abortions, they fought for change. They saw victories our grandmothers had only dreamed about. They vowed things would never go back to the way they were...

Then we came.

We haven't had to fight, the stories about going to jail, or dying over an abortion are just that, stories. Women have always been professors, construction workers, CEOs and lawyers. We've never known anything different. Sure, we may make a few bucks less than Ted in accounting, and the boss may grab our ass every once in a while, but it's nothing serious, right? Feminists... they're those angry women who hate men, right?

It's frustrating.

We didn't turn out in large numbers this year, despite the pleas from NARAL, NOW, and those SMILE people. I don't think things had as much relevancy for my generation. We don't know what it was like, so we don't have the sense of immediacy. I'm not making excuses, but I'm offering an explanation: I think many of us are conflicted. I know I am a lot of the time.

On one hand, I'm a card-carrying, "no, really, I can get that door, thanks", get your laws off my body, "buck fushing" feminist. On the other, I love to cook and sew, I enjoy knitting, and some day, I'm going to make someone a really fucking awesome wife. I love beer and football and duct tape, but I'd also like to maybe stay home with a youngin' till they're in school, and do crafts and sew things, and have dinner ready when futurespouse comes home. And yes, some day, I do want to get married, I want to share my life with someone I love, but it's also not the only reason I exist. And it's hard to reconcile.

Sometimes it feels like you're a "bad feminist" or you're looked down upon by the previous generation for "fuckin' with their hard work". When really, what the whole point of feminism is, in my eyes, is the opportunity to do what you feel is best for you, as a woman. To be a "good feminist" is to stand up for the rights of other women to do what they feel is right for them. It doesn't matter if a woman wants to wear pumps and pearls while vacuuming the front room and baking chocolate chip cookies. If that's what she wants to do, that's her brand of feminism. If a woman wants to renounce the patriarchy, refer to herself as a womyn, and march on Washington, that's her brand of feminism. It all comes back to what she wants to do.




Am I alone in these beliefs? A while back Sars wrote an excellent piece on the topic that sorta says things better than I can. Anyway. Comments are open. Dive in. And wherever you are today, do me a favor. Thank your mom. Biological, surrogate, adoptive, pseudo, whatever. Thank your mom. You wouldn't be here today if it weren't for her.

3 Comments:

Blogger Steph said...

Sister Sauce,
AMEN! TESTIFY! YOU GO GIRL! i am SO there with you!! power to the people! and please for the love of Elvis, don't judge me for this next comment......GIRL POWER! via the spice girls circa 1995.

xoxox

10:52 PM  
Blogger Ghost of Goldwater said...

"I'm a woman, hear me NAG..."

I'd post more comments, but I love life too much.

4:56 AM  
Blogger Special Sauce said...

I am woman, see me beat the crap outta Ghostie.

:)

Thanks Stephee! Woot!

5:28 AM  

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