For so long, I was out there dating, like my once-millennial self, searching for my The One. I went out with so many people, once or twenty times. The search for romance, for eternal love, always on the brain. Usually sex on the table. Or realizing I didn’t want sex to be on that table and bailing. I’ve performed too, faked my way out of things, used my hand to wrap things up. My libido always my priority, but also the humanity that was and still is resonant within. Not all of my female friends were aligned with how I approached dating and sex, it was apparent to me that what was normalized for me was not necessarily so for all women. As a woman in my twenties, my like-minded friends and I watched porn, taking notes; we learned how to say “oh baby yes please” from Janine Lindemulder and Nikki Dial and a whole slew of women who have aged out of their status as Porn Stars. I didn’t know where The Spot was, I only found it in San Francisco, thanks to a Do Me Feminist that enlightened me. In fact, when I began thinking about BUST, the cover lines of women’s magazines were a call to action, the “How To Please Your Man” position; the indignation of that, the subservience, the lack of agency angered me, fueled me. I wanted to figure out pleasure for myself, for my girlfriends, for women all over. Addressing sex from a position of power, but also, curiosity, looking for answers. Sometimes clueless (hearing a man say “Ow” is how I learned Teeth hurt). I’ve carried all this and more with me into my later adulthood, where apps give sex new levels of gazing, ubiquitous with shopping for it, masking predatory behavior under the veil of transparency and words like “play.” Where being where I am in my life gives me the advantage of experience, of reading a room, of understanding what I want. Of entering any situation knowing I can exit, knowing that I can close a door behind me, a stranger standing in anticipation, and at any point, I can walk out a door. I have agency. I am empowered. I am also a romantic; it’s how I ended up with Sam the Boyfriend, wanting more than just another night on a couch, pawing. I finally wanted more. I finally hit my limit, of heading home alone from a man’s house, after having had or almost had sex, that air of disappointment that he was yet another guy that will never put a ring on it, that he didn’t measure up, that he wasn’t my Him. I get being let down. I also get what I have: power. Don’t give up on yourself, ladies. You have it. Own it. Relish in it. And Use it.
Lo Sharkey. Yes. A tale of two dates, what you can learn from both sides.
Margaret Atwood: “My fundamental position is that women are human beings, with the full range of saintly and demonic behaviours this entails, including criminal ones. They’re not angels, incapable of wrongdoing. If they were, we wouldn’t need a legal system.”
Bari Weiss: “The feminist answer is to push for a culture in which boys and young men are taught that sex does not have to be pursued like they’re in a porn film, and one in which girls and young women are empowered to be bolder, braver and louder about what they want.”
Catherine Deneuve: “What creates traumatic and untenable situations is always the power, the hierarchical position, or a form of influence. The trap closes when it becomes impossible to say not without risking one’s job, or to suffer degrading humiliation and sarcasm. So I think the solution will come from educating our boys and girls.”
Terry Gross: “When you’re talking to an artist, you can get insight into the sensibility that created his or her art and into the life that shaped that sensibility. I love making those connections. I think we all feel very alone. I don’t mean that we don’t have friends or lovers but that deep at our core we all have loneliness.”
NY Women’s March Info, happening this weekend.
Media companies stepping up.
Do you work from home? Cool, cool.
Oh look, another sweater I covet. This one, by Bella Freud.
And now have a laugh with Jo Firestone.