Friday BARB Up December 30, 2016

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“Be different” is not anything my mother ever said to me. She encouraged what she knew: traditionalism. She wanted me to grow up, find a husband, pro-create. That’s fact. I don’t know that she ever imagined I’d backpack across Europe at the age of 19 or that I’d start a feminist zine (twice!) or that I’d raise a daughter on my own. I know for a fact that tattoos and body piercings were verboten, as were eating shellfish and pork. Still. Still. Still. I yearned for my own path, and I forged it.

This photo of me is from 2011; I wanted purple and pink hair. And so, I went to Cutler Salon and I got the hair color I wanted. I kept my hair in various shades of pink and purple for years, because I liked it. And the more I stare at the textures, the more I yearn for that color again. It’s…different.

If you plan on marching, whether in DC, in your home town, or in your bedroom, there is one item you ought to be wearing, and that’s the PussyHat, part of the PussyHat Project. You can knit one on your own or purchase it here, from Diana Kane, the genius behind the Feminist t-shirt, which you ought to own whether you are marching or not.

Alisha Acquaye spent a year reading books written by black women, that were not limited to Maya, Toni and Alice (although, always a wonderful world to be in, the works of Maya, Toni and Alice).

I had breast reconstruction a few years ago and it was as feminist a statement as any I have made. My body, my choice. So when I found this article, written by Sarah Cottrell, talking about her experience, I did a little Snoopy Dance. “Being a modern feminist means being able to make our own choices about our bodies, but many people still harbor this antiquated idea that a woman cannot possibly be feminist if she wants things that are considered oppressive, like being a stay-at-home-mom, or — gasp — wants to alter her body via surgical enhancements. I say: Wrong. If a woman chooses to do these things, including shelling out thousands of dollars for a porn star ass then she is just as feminist as Rosie the Riveter. It’s all about the freedom to choose.”

The Vatican grabs one too! Barbara Jatta is now a woman in power at the Holiness’s domain as the Director of its museums.

A pivotal moment in my career as a director and producer was when I shot my series of Breast Cancer PSA‘s for Lifetime Television. It was the first campaign they launched for breast cancer awareness and I was part of the team that put the creative together. It starred Veronica Webb, then at the height of her career as a model. She was warm and lovely; a joy to work with. That’s always stayed with me. So when I saw this article about her, that she is now a family person living on the Upper West Side and forging her own path, it made me so happy. Check out her website,

And now, have a laugh with Kathleen Madigan.




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