Women in Sports
After Her NYC Marathon Victory, Is Boston Next for Shalane Flanagan? (Erin Strout, Runner’s World, 15 Nov 2017): A month and a half later, the answer is a definitive yes. And for those who haven’t seen, here’s a clip of her finish and post-race interview. Pure class.
Anything for this: The costs, benefits of life in elite sport (Mara Abbot, ESPNW, 14 Sep 2017): Beautifully honest reflection on the risks of being an elite athlete, particularly with respect to eating disorders and general mental health issues.
40 Years Of Athletic Support: Happy Anniversary To The Sports Bra (Jane Lindholm, NPR, 29 Sep 2017): The 1999 World Cup win happened just as I was starting to get into soccer; myself and countless peers were inspired by Brandi Chastain and her shirt-waving photo. Thanks, sports bra.
How a Philly Ob-Gyn Ended Up Delivering a Baby Gorilla (Ed Yong, The Atlantic, 14 Jun 2017): “In a nearby building, McCurdy did an ultrasound. ‘We had to remove some of her fur so I could see; I don’t usually have to do that,’ she says. ‘There were also bits of straw on her fur; that’s not usually a problem, either.'”
Blue eyes, caramel wings and other crazy facts about crows (Kaeli Swift, KUOW, 1 Dec 2017): Swift is a member of the preeminent corvid research lab at the University of Washington (it’s likely that if you hear about a research study on crows or ravens in the news, it was conducted there). Here she answers some common questions about crows. I’d also recommend her blog, which contains a detailed FAQ section, information on her current research, and excellent photography.
These Bats Don’t Let Scorpion Stings Get in the Way of a Tasty Meal (Kelsey Kennedy, Atlas Obscura, 31 Aug 2017): The GIF is strangely mesmerizing…
The Real Difference Between Warm and Cool Colors (Rachel Gutman, The Atlantic, 18 Sep 2017): For the next time you get into a tipsy philosophical discussion about whether your blue is REALLY my blue.
A Physicist Who Models ISIS and the Alt-Right (Natalie Wolchover, Quanta/The Atlantic, 23 Aug 2017): Math and physics isn’t just for hoity toity academics wearing tweed suits in ivory towers or dorky grad students in pants two sizes too short and shirts two sizes too large!
Merriam-Webster Word of the Year: Feminism
A Father’s Struggle to Stop His Daughter’s Adoption (Kevin Noble Maillard, The Atlantic, 7 Jul 2015): At first glance, this doesn’t look like it has anything to do with feminism. I would argue that it does: fathers (hell, people) won’t be treated with justice in court until we have equality, and we won’t have equality until we start valuing women. Justice is a higher value than equality, but it can’t proceed before equality. (Also, here’s a nice follow-up to the original article).
How Will the Boy Scouts’ Decision Affect the Girl Scouts? (Elaine Godfrey, The Atlantic, 18 Oct 2017): The Girl Scouts are definitely in a bind here. My gut reaction is that the Girl Scouts should embrace the change, since they’ve always been the more progressive (i.e., accepting and promoting change) of the two organizations, and I think they should cling to that value. On the other hand, it is hard to ignore the fact that it does seem that the Boy Scouts are making a grab at the Girl Scouts’ population amidst declining membership–after years of at best tolerating the Girl Scouts, at worst openly disdaining them. On the other other hand, maybe it’s good that they’re finally opening up to the idea that the world is not static (and neither are gender roles)…
How ‘Germany’s Hugh Hefner’ created an entirely different sort of sex empire (Elizabeth Heneman, Quartz, 5 Oct 2017): I had no idea about any of this before, so I have no idea how much of this article is spin and how much is real, but it’s interesting to ponder nonetheless.
Don’t Let Them See Your Tampons (Julie Beck, The Atlantic, 1 Jun 2015): “‘It’s just one more thing that dudes don’t even realize that we as women have to think about and plan,’ Mallory puts it.”
One Theory of Marriage and Kids: ‘Very Cute in the Abstract’ (Emma Green, The Atlantic, 11 Dec 2013): “‘Children are very cute in the abstract,’ she said. ‘In the abstract, they’re much easier—like, they’re much quieter. The idea of children is very appealing. But the reality is, if you ask people who have children, especially young children, life consists of chores they don’t really like doing.'”
Hillary Clinton On Losing the 2016 Presidential Election & Her Marriage to Bill (Hillary Rodham Clinton, Vogue, 10 Sep 2017): For all of the accusations that Clinton’s book lacked self-reflection, cast blame on everyone else, and so on, this article contained few if any of those pitfalls. For a long time I have admired the Obamas’ marriage–I’ve thought often that for all the bizarre and outrageous criticisms people could throw at Obama (He’s a secret Muslim! He was born in Kenya! He has a secret alliance with ISIS!) the one they never tried because they knew it would never stick were accusations relating to his marriage. For probably obvious reasons, I’ve never had quite those thoughts about the Clintons’ marriage; at best, it was something along the lines of, “Wow, HRC is a stellar example of forebearance and forgiveness.” But recently, and especially after reading this article, I think she/they are due more credit than that. “I know some people wonder why we’re still together. I heard it again in the 2016 campaign: that ‘we must have an arrangement’ (we do; it’s called a marriage); that I helped him become president and then stayed so he could help me become president (no); that we lead completely separate lives, and it’s just a marriage on paper now (he is reading this over my shoulder in our kitchen with our dogs underfoot, and in a minute he will reorganize our bookshelves for the millionth time, which means I will not be able to find any of my books, and once I learn the new system, he’ll just redo it again, but I don’t mind because he really loves to organize those bookshelves)…He has been my partner in life and my greatest champion. He never once asked me to put my career on hold for his. He never once suggested that maybe I shouldn’t compete for anything—in work or politics—because it would interfere with his life or ambitions…Bill is completely unbothered by having an ambitious, opinionated, occasionally pushy wife. In fact, he loves me for it.”
Other Things Not Easily Categorized
The Basic Grossness of Humans (Alexis C. Madrigal, The Atlantic, 15 Dec 2017): Another thing I had a vague idea existed but had no idea what it actually entailed…
One God, Under Trump w/ Jack Jenkins and Parker Molloy (Ana Marie Cox, With Friends Like These, 25 Aug 2017): This podcast begins to explore the nuances of “evangelicalism” in it’s “traditional” (note: I didn’t say “true”) sense and its political implications. I think this podcast would be particularly helpful for the “stereotypical liberal elite” struggling to understand why so much of “Christian” America is pro-Trump despite the apparent contradiction of values (or for the conflicted reluctantly-evangelical-but-not-quite-mainstream Christian).
Safety Pins and Swastikas (Shuja Haider, Jacobin, 5 Jan 2017): Identity politics? Horseshoe theory? Need to read this again…