It’s been a long, rough week, but with so many sprinklings of good and happy things amidst all the tough stuff. I am still definitely glad it’s Friday. And I’m glad I managed to find time to compile the Friday Five for you this week. Enjoy. <3
Earlier this week, Gena sneak-peeked this on her Instagram letting us knew it’d be on the blog soon, and I could.not.wait for her to post it! The sound of roasted carrots and hummus sounded absolutely divine to me. And it’s so autumn-appropriately orange!
I appreciate that this article from the Times about urban farming provides a foundation to view it through an intersectional framework alongside race, gender, and class. I think the (male) writer fails to bring that into fruition at times, but he’s attempting to challenge essentialist notions of “women’s work,” when he asks, “”if urban ag work comes to be seen as women’s work, what will that mean for the movement’s farming model, mission and pay?” I was particularly interested in learning more about Karen Washington who “has been observing the community garden scene for more than 25 years from her plot in the Garden of Happiness, a couple of blocks from the Bronx Zoo. She also organizes the Black Urban Growersconference and a long list of other food and neighborhood initiatives.” As one of the astute commenters wrote, “Female farmers are a clear fact in urban and societally-focused ag. The real issue is, what will we harvest from these seeds of change?”
This article from Autostraddle is so important. Harassment of any kind seeps into our insides, and we carry that trauma in the deepest parts of our muscles and bones. Author July Westhale writes “Fighting back isn’t always a safe option, nor an option for everyone, so the often radical-seeming idea of self-care is what is currently available to us.” She then proceeds to provide powerful ideas for practicing self-care after harassment incidents, including ideas on how to reconnect with your body and reach out for support.
I teach about social media and its cultural implications, so this article is hitting a lot of my nerdy buttons. The thorough and savvy piece from The Hairpin provides an overview of the newest internet meme: “snackwave.” This phenomenon refers to women and teenage girls expressing obsession with “bad-for-you” snack foods. The authors clarify, “It’s important to note that snackwave is different from, say, a bunch of girls eating snacks and tweeting about them. Snackwave is defined by exaggeration and extremism. You don’t just eat cheeseburgers. You wear a shirt covered in them.” The voice of the snackwaver alters between “confident and self-depricating”—think of someone labeling a picture of them eating pizza with both: “#pizzaslut” and “#dyingalone” (the former being a proud proclamation, the latter a jokey aside about being pathetic). Here’s where it starts to get interesting: this trend exists almost exclusively in connection to thin women. The article traces it’s pop cultural roots (e.g. Liz Lemon, Rory Gilmore); provides real life examples from Twitter; images of the gazillion ironic (or not, I guess…?) shirts from places like Urban Outfitters that are filled with images of pizza, hamburgers, and hot dogs; and points to everyones favorite “cool girl” Jennifer Lawrence, who is lauded for talking about french fries on the red carpet.
Okay, so first I’m nerding out thinking about the whole, “What does this say that it’s only thin (usually white, but not exclusively) women who can do this?” Next question: Is the article right that this is a backlash against health food culture? The authors, write, “Organic farming, kale salads, and whatever other artisanal green shit young people like are often considered standard fare for millennials. Grease-laden microwavables and fast food are the quirkier go-to choice. Snackwave will not fuck with your Mason jar of pickled veggies.” Okay, okay, so if the new hipster trend is junk food, what does this mean for health food movements? What does the trendiness of things like bacon and pizza mean for the vegan movement? And what the fuck is this doing to young women’s relationship with food and their bodies? Is this a good thing? The lack of restriction and playful indulgence? Is this a terrible thing? Throwing out any attention to health (I know, it’s a construct, but you know what I mean) with the mainstream (is it?) bathwater? SO MANY QUESTIONS.
Stuff from the Week that Made Me Happy
brisk fall mornings; golden-leaf sunlight; a really inspiring event about Ferguson, racism, and police accountability on my campus; good news from my mom—she’s the best and things are looking up!; all the music that makes me feel all the autumn feelings (like this and this and this and this); yoga, obvs; in particular, a yoga workshop about making our classes more theme-centric (more than just asana, yeah!); chatting with long-distance friends who totally get it; kitten cuddles; yoga teacher party that included many wine-tipsy attempts at peacock pose (do not try that combination at home!); delicious homemade soup for dinner; understanding that self-care and healing is a lot of work and the realization that i am strong enough to do it; new shoes and new makeup (thanks, first paycheck since June!); the powerful elixir that is lemon water in the morning; New England walks, and spotting all the eager orange leaves…
What made you happy this week? xo