You are currently browsing the tag archive for the ‘feminism’ tag.

Uber can’t be fixed—it’s time for regulators to shut it down.

A new book examines how the upper-middle class has enriched itself and harmed economic mobility.

The rise of the 21st century Victorians.

Brooklyn’s famous Green Lady explains her lifelong devotion to the color green.

The far-out sci-fi costume parties of the Bauhaus school in the 1920s.

It’s the end of the shopping mall as we know it.

How to deal with a 4Chan troll. There is some information that’s useful for anyone who’s dealing with any kind of online troll regardless of whether it involves politics or not.

Low-income workers who live in RVs are being chased out of Silicon Valley streets.

Feminist publication makes history by appointing black trans woman as editor-in-chief.

The sketchbook of drawings done in ballpoint pen by Nicolas V. Sanchez.

A look at the female pioneers of the Bauhaus art movement.

The fight for health care is really all about civil rights.

23 ways to treat yourself without buying or eating anything.

Glow-in-the-dark “toonie” coins celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary.

These bosses share the worst interviews they’ve ever seen and the results are stunning.

Browse a collection of over 83,500 vintage sewing patterns.

Bid on old computers, speakers, radios, and other junk from the bowels of RadioShack.

This transgender doll is making huge strides in teaching children about gender roles.

She took on Tesla for discrimination. Now others are speaking up.

A new kind of tech job emphasizes skills, not a college degree.

Women in tech speak frankly on the culture of harassment.

Over decades of poverty, Detroit’s have fostered a resilient informal economy based on trust.

GoFraudMe is a blog that exposes fake GoFundMe campaigns.

Rural America is the new “inner city.”

3 ways to be seen as a leader in your field.

Artist repaints mass-produced dolls to make them look realistic and the result is amazing.

Every Sega game ever made is coming to iOS and Android for free.

Edvard Munch’s famous Scream painting animated to Pink Floyd music.

Despite serving time in a Russian prison under Vladimir Putin, a member of the punk rock group Pussy Riot is still defiant.

This 106-year-old cooking show host is YouTube’s oldest creator.

How to get Microsoft Word for free.

What we can learn from the brief period when the government employed artists through its Works Progress Administration (WPA).

Software engineer starts unlikely business: A weekly newspaper.

Russian startup company Renca recycles industrial waste into 3D printable cement.

Can collecting digital art make museums more competitive?

New business fad: Tripping on Ayahuasca.

“Pink Tax” forces women to pay more for gender-specific items than men.

Adobe and IBM are rolling out more artificial intelligence tools for brands.

ISIS recruiting videos hit YouTube after London attack.

Elon Musk wants to merge your brain with a computer.

In the 1970’s this 25-mile-long art project by conceptual artist Christo Javacheff wowed the Bay Area.

A double-amputee toddler gets a doll with prosthetic legs.

Not all animators yearn to direct big studio films.

The disturbing YouTube videos that are tricking children into watching them.

Microsoft Word macro malware automatically adapts attach techniques for Mac OS and Windows.

Little girl mistakes a water heater for a robot and gives it a hug.

Easy Easter crafts that will bring an element of nature to your home.

3D printer helps revive 103-year-old Delage Type-S car.

Virtual anime girl Kizuna Ai rises to fame. She was created using the same software that was used to create virtual pop star Hatsune Miku.

Is YouTube turning against the marginalized community it built its network on?

Italian artists craft the world’s first 24-carat gold-plated shoes that costs ₤21,000 per pair.

The new world of 3D printing and counterfeiting.

Why Piet Mondrian could be considered to be the first digital artist.

Microsoft provided information to the British authorities after the London attack.

Google launches new site to showcase its open source projects and processes.

Open source software is for everyone—so where are the women?

A free tutorial on making a pocket jack-in-the-box in order to keep children occupied while traveling.

Santa Claus

A long time ago I learned that going downtown on Christmas Eve is the best place to be on Christmas Eve because everything is relatively empty. That’s because so many people tend to pack into the suburban shopping malls doing last-minute shopping while the stores in the city are empty. I’ve spent previous Christmas Eves in both Baltimore and DC and it’s the same situation.

I thought about a lot of places I could go to on Christmas Eve. In Baltimore I could go to the Walters Art Museum, Fells Point, or the Ripleys Believe It or Not! Odditorium. In Washington, DC I could go to any of the Smithsonian museums, Chinatown, or Georgetown.

But then it rained on Christmas Eve, which put a damper on a lot of things I would’ve loved to have done (especially going to places where I would be spending a good bit of time outside) and I was not in the mood to do a lot of driving in such lousy weather. I ultimately decided to go to Union Station and the Smithsonian National Postal Museum mainly because both places were located next to each other so I could take the Red Line Metro to the Union Station stop. I exited on to the lower level, where I found that it wasn’t very crowded at all.

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I hadn’t been to Union Station in a long time. I was looking forward to eating sushi for lunch at the Hibachi stand followed by going to Vaccaro’s Italian Pastry for dessert. Except when I arrived I found that half of the lower level where all of the fast food type places are located had been blocked off. While there are still places where one can get a quick bite to eat, there are far fewer choices than before. (That’s not to mention that both Hibachi and Vaccaro’s are both gone.) I ended up going to a Chinese food stand where I ordered orange chicken with two side dishes. But I ordered my lunch around the same time that they changed employees and I told the replacement employee that I had told the other one that wanted the orange chicken. She had me try the tofu and led me to believe that it was one of the side dishes. So I ordered the tofu as a side dish and told her that the orange chicken would be the main dish. Except when I got my meal and went to one of tables I found that this employee had given me the tofu as the main dish. The tofu was okay but I would’ve preferred the orange chicken. On top of it, the green beans side dish was undercooked. I made a mental note of never ordering anything from that place again.

After lunch I did some more walking around. I found out that the reason why the lower level had been cut in half was because Walgreen’s had moved in and opened this giant store.

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There was one large aisle dedicated to purchasing every kind of Washington, DC souvenir that you could think of.

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I’ve been to various Walgreen’s stores over the years but this is the first one I’ve ever been in that actually has a sushi bar that makes fresh sushi on the premises.

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If it hadn’t been for that less-than-thrilling Chinese lunch I had already eaten, I would’ve tried the Walgreen’s sushi for the hell of it.

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I made my way to the upper level where the upscale shops are located and I found that they were not crowded at all.

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Since my last visit to Union Station I saw that the DC Lottery had opened its own store where anyone can buy—what else?—lottery tickets.

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I decided to eat some dessert. Since Vaccarro’s Italian Pastry was gone, I thought about going to the Corner Bakery instead since I’ve eaten their desserts in the past and I found them quite good. But I found out that it was replaced by a French pastry place known as Le Pain Quotidien. I found their Christmas-themed dessert display to be quite charming.

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I ordered the sea salted chocolate and caramel tart and it was wrapped up in this nice looking box. The tart was excellent.

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I saw the Christmas tree that was a gift from the Norwegian Embassy.

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There was also a special exhibition documenting the joint U.S.-Norwegian explorations of the Polar Regions.

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There was a large toy train layout that I found to be quite lovely.

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On my way to one of the exit doors I saw this pigeon who somehow may its way inside Union Station. It was walking around among the various people on the floor like it was going shopping or rushing to take the next Amtrak train. I thought it was quite a hilarious scene.

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Outside of Union Station is this futuristic looking dome where one can rent a bike.

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Right next door to Union Station is the Smithsonian National Postal Museum. It’s one of the newer Smithsonian museums that had opened in recent years but I never got around to stepping foot inside until Christmas Eve.

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I don’t even know what took me so long to visit this place (especially since I’m a local resident). I’m glad I finally did because the interiors are absolutely breathtaking.

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As you can guess by the name, this museum is dedicated to the history of the U.S. Postal Service and postage stamps. Naturally stamp collectors will get the biggest kick out of this museum but there are plenty of things on display to wow those who aren’t into stamp collecting.

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This museum features Owney, a homeless dog who became the mascot of the U.S. Postal Service for a time until his death over 100 years ago. Here’s a bronze statue of the dog.

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And here’s the real Owney, as preserved by a taxidermist.

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Owney was the Grumpy Cat of his day—a beloved animal celebrity who received attention and presents (in the form of special tags indicating where he travelled to) everywhere he went. The next photo shows the many tags he received and are currently on display draping his stuffed carcass.

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The gift shop also has a smaller stuffed animal version of Owney for sale.

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I didn’t buy that stuffed animal but I did buy a short book on the dog’s life for only $4.

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Since I arrived at the museum on Christmas Eve, I got a chance to see the museum’s Christmas tree with surrounding poinsettias.

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The one exhibit that excited me the most was the one on PostSecret: The Power of a Postcard. That’s because, through my past involvements with Artomatic, I know that PostSecret originally started as an Artomatic exhibit that was put on by the writer Frank Warren. That exhibit was such a phenomenal success that it overshadowed the other Artomatic exhibits that were on display that year. That exhibit was eventually turned into a series of books and I remember the times when he held book signings at various Artomatic events mainly as Frank Warren’s way of showing appreciation for the event that started it all. (You can read about those book signings here and here.)

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Now PostSecret has turned into a Smithsonian exhibit, which is pretty cool. The next photo shows just a small portion of the postcards that Frank Warren has received over the years.

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Here’s something that was actually sent on a coconut.

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I’m still amazed that something I’m familiar with from my involvement with Artomatic has become a Smithsonian exhibit.

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The photos I took are just a small sample of what’s currently on display at that exhibit.

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There was an area that was especially made for stamp collectors. One can view the various stamps currently on file in a special room. The stamps are in a case that one can pull out and they are organized by nation, year, and type of stamp. I can imagine a hardcore stamp collector spending at least two days in that area alone just looking at all of the stamps on file.

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That area also had the world’s first postage stamp on display. It was a British stamp known as the Penny Black and it was released in 1840.

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There was a hands-on exhibit where one can design a stamp on a touch screen computer. Here is the stamp I designed.

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There was even an area that’s designed for anyone who’s thinking about starting his/her own stamp collection and one can get the first stamps for free. First you get an envelope like this.

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Then you go through this bin picking out stamps you’d like to put in your envelope.

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I have a confession to make. The rules of picking out free stamps basically said that each person was limited to six stamps in order to make the free stamps available for everyone. There were so few people in the museum the day that I was there that I actually broke the rules and picked out seven stamps. I wasn’t caught (mainly because there were so few people there) and I got away with it. I’m not saying that what I did was right or correct and if there had been a ton of people in the museum that day I would’ve obeyed the rules. But I fell into temptation because there were so few people and, besides, I only took one extra stamp and not like—let’s say—30 extra stamps.

Here are the stamps I picked out. I’ll admit that I was inspired by the recent elections and the incoming President Donald J. Trump Administration along with all the doubts swirling around him as to whether he will even follow the Constitution. So I chose this stamp commemorating the 175th anniversary of the U.S. Bill of Rights.

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As a former Journalism major in college and current blogger, this next stamp really appealed to me. It features a quill and ink along with the words “The Ability to Write-A Root of Democracy.”

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I picked out this stamp featuring George Washington since he was not only one of the Founding Fathers but he was also the first President of the United States and he set the tone for how the succeeding presidents should always follow the Constitution.

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I picked out this stamp featuring Martha Washington because she was not only the first First Lady but I’m sure she went through her own trials and tribulations while supporting her husband first as a hero of the American Revolution then as President of the United States. It’s like the old saying goes: “Behind every man is a woman.”

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I picked out Thomas Jefferson because he was also a hero of the American Revolution, a Founding Father of this nation, and he was instrumental in including many rights that we Americans take for granted (such as the freedom of the press) and could possibly be threatened under Donald Trump’s presidency.

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I picked out Benjamin Franklin, another Founding Father who was the first Postmaster General. Plus I’m currently running the weekly Benjamin Franklin Fridays in this blog where I include quotations from his Poor Richard’s Almanack book.

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I chose Susan B. Anthony because she was a suffragette who fought hard to win the women’s right to vote.

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I chose one foreign stamp. This one is from France and it features Marianne, the French symbol of freedom who provided the inspiration for the Statue of Liberty.

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I basically hung around the museum until it was closing time. By that time the rain had stopped but it was still cloudy outside and the ground was wet. I was treated to a nice Christmas Eve sunset as I took the Metro back home.

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British Pathe was known for producing newsreels from 1896 until 1976 and it has recently uploaded a treasure trove of stuff on its YouTube channel. There’s something on that channel for everyone. For those who like to look at real-life disasters, there’s footage like the 1937 Hindenburg zeppelin crash.

Want to see historical protests? Here’s this 1913 footage of a British suffragette named Emily Davidson who threw herself in front of King George’s horse on Derby Day to protest women not having the right to vote in Great Britain. (Davidson died four days later while the horse and jockey both recovered.)

For aviation history buffs, here’s a story on the Wright Brothers’ first flight in 1903.

For cell phone enthusiasts, here’s a demonstration of the world’s first mobile phone in 1922.

For music fans, here’s some footage from 1963 featuring The Beatles.

On the lighter side, here’s footage of a 1969 Mr. Universe contest in London which was won by an Austrian bodybuilder named Arnold Schwartzenegger.

And these clips are just the tip of the iceberg. This YouTube channel has the potential to be a big time waster for a lot of people. Have fun! 🙂

The Princeton University campus newspaper recently published a letter to the editor that has gone totally viral because of its subject matter. The writer, a Princeton alumni named Susan Patton, made this advice to younger women currently attending her alma mater.

For most of you, the cornerstone of your future and happiness will be inextricably linked to the man you marry, and you will never again have this concentration of men who are worthy of you.

Here is what nobody is telling you: Find a husband on campus before you graduate. Yes, I went there.

It has erupted a total wankerage storm in the media, such as this Washington Post discussion on that letter.

As someone who met her future husband while she was an undergraduate at the University of Maryland and married him 10 months after finishing her education, I feel qualified to speak out on this. Here’s my take: When I decided to attend college, it wasn’t because I wanted to snag a husband. I wanted to have a career that was more interesting and paid more money than the clerical jobs my mother worked at for her entire career. My attitude was that if I found Mr. Right I would marry him after college but if I didn’t I would just continue to look elsewhere but my main focus was on getting enough education and skills to land a well-paying career.

I dated a lot of undergraduate men the same age as me during my college years but all of those relationships ultimately went nowhere. It wasn’t until my junior year when I started going out with a part-time graduate student who was four years older than me and worked full-time at NASA that things finally clicked for me in my personal life. I had a lot in common with my boyfriend and we felt totally at ease with each other. Sure he had flaws but, then again, everyone has flaws. (That’s what it means to be human.) But compared to the undergraduate guys I dated prior to meeting my future husband, that man was a rare gem and I really wanted to hold on to him as much as possible. Fortunately for me, my boyfriend felt the same way about me.

Even though I was a little bit leery about getting married at 23, I dated enough men before my future husband to know that finding the right person for me is even harder than shooting fish in a barrel. I instinctive knew that if I opted not to settle down with my boyfriend when I did or if I had broken up with him in order to move to another part of the country in order to look for work, there was no guarantee that I would find another relationship that was as compatible as the one I had with my boyfriend. I was afraid that if I had not married my boyfriend and I ended up breaking up with him, I would’ve regretted my decision years later. Especially if I ended up never finding another man whom I felt as comfortable as I did around my boyfriend.

So we got married after I got my Bachelor’s degree and we were mostly happy throughout our marriage. In fact we told each other "I love you" every day up until the night before my husband abruptly left home three days after Christmas Day in 2011 without even indicating that he was the slightest bit unhappy. (He never even talked to me about being unhappy. He kept on acting as if he still loved me as much as I loved him.) I later found out that he left me for one of our friends and he has largely avoided me since that time. The divorce petition he filed against me is scheduled to be final next week.

So getting back to Susan Patton’s letter, would I make the same advice to young women currently attending my alma mater or any other college or university? Here’s my answer: No, but…

If you’re a young woman between the ages of 17-23 whose only ambition in life is to get married and have children and you consider that to be your only career goal (and, believe me, I met plenty of girls like that when I attended high school in Glen Burnie, Maryland), I would advise you to not even go to college at all. That’s because college is the expensive way at snagging a husband and going to classes/doing homework is very time-consuming. There aren’t any college courses teaching you how to be in a stable marriage or how to be a good parent—those are lessons you’ll have to learn on your own through personal experience, reading books, asking for advice from friends/relatives, or taking workshops through community/non-profit/religious groups.

(By the way, if you do achieve your only life goal of being a full-time wife and mother, I would advise you to have at least some kind of life outside of the home. You could work a part-time job or you could be a volunteer for various civic or community groups —like the PTA or the Girl Scouts of America— or get involved with your local church/synagogue/mosque. But just do somethng outside the home. In the process you’ll be making contacts and gaining skills and experience that you can draw upon should your husband suddenly die or walk out on you. Don’t assume that you’ll always have a husband who’ll support you financially.)

And there’s one other thing about the college option that Susan Patton never mentioned in her letter: There is no guarantee that you’ll even find a potential husband to your liking while you’re still an undergraduate student. I have plenty of college-educated female friends who, during their college days, weren’t lucky enough to find their Mr. Right they wanted to marry soon after finishing college. Some of my friends eventually found their spouses through their workplaces or through blind dates or through social clubs/organizations or through social events (like parties or sporting events). I have other college-educated female friends who are over 35 and still unmarried because they haven’t found anyone they wanted to settle down with. Just because you’re a college student doesn’t mean you’ll find true love while you’re still a college student.

If you’re someone who wants a career along with a spouse and children, my advice is this: Go to college and get as much training in your future career as possible. Join as many campus organizations related to your major as you have the time for. Keep in regular contact with your professors because you can use them as references once you finish college and begin job hunting. It’s okay to date men while you’re a student but make your studies your top priority. Take the attitude that if you find your Mr. Right while you’re a student, you’ll marry him after college but if you don’t, well that’s okay.

Just don’t feel like a failure if you get your Bachelor’s degree without an engagement ring on your finger. Continue to focus on your career. If you end up not meeting your Mr. Right until you’re 30, 40, 50, or even 65, well so be it. You don’t always need a spouse and/or children in order to leave a happy and contented life. It’s better to be alone than to rush into a marriage that turns into a total hell because your spouse becomes physically/verbally/sexually abusive or develops a problem with saving money, alcohol, drugs, mental illness, etc.

Even if your are lucky enough to find a fellow student who wants to marry you and you want to marry him, keep this in mind: Half of all marriages end in divorce. Just because you think you’ve found your prince doesn’t mean that you’ll be living happily ever after. If you’re a college educated woman who marries your college sweetheart after you get your degree and your marriage ends in divorce years later, at least you’ll have the education and skills to fall back on in order to support yourself and your children (if you have any).

All young women need to learn to not only be able to support herself financially but to support herself in other ways. Learn to develop a budget so you can live within your means without going into crippling financial debt. Read books and websites on how to be thrifty and utilize whatever money-saving tips you find there. Don’t over-rely on credit cards because you’ll be crippled in debt. (And stay away from those tables on college campuses encouraging college students to apply for their first credit cards. There are so many horror stories about students graduating college being more in debt that they would’ve otherwise had they ignored someone’s sales pitch about how it’s great to get a credit card while still a college freshman.) Teach yourself to put electronics together (like attatching a DVD player to a television set). Learn simple car maintenance. Learn how to do simple household repairs (like fixing a leaky faucet or replacing a doorknob). Learn how to recognize whether getting a bargain on something is really getting a bargain without any hidden fees or hidden terms and conditions that could bite you in the ass later. Learn the difference between quantity and quality and why it’s usually better and cheaper in the long-run to shell out a few extra bucks for high quality goods that will hold up for many years than to have many low-quality goods that will end up falling apart in a short period of time.

If you are someone reading this who is currently in a relatively stable marriage while enjoying being supported by a husband with a well-paying job, I have sobering news for you: You may not always be so fortunate. Your husband could lose his well-paying job (which is common in today’s economy) and he may end up either being unemployed for a long time or getting a new job at a reduced pay. Your husband could do what mine did and suddenly walk out on you and into the arms of another woman. Your husband could develop a medical condition that leaves him with injuries so crippling that he’ll end up on disability (which is what happened to my father during the last 12 years of his life). Your husband could suddenly die in a car accident. Your stable life could be gone in a flash and you could be really emotionally and financially devastated if you had been relying on just being always married to a high wage earner and you don’t have anything else to fall back on.

All women in general need to act as if they will be completely alone at some point in their adult lives with no one to take care of them but themselves because that could be your fate and you’ll adjust better to that situation if you had been practicing and preparing for that situation.

Besides, many men find independent women to be very attractive and you may end up finding your future (or next) spouse when you least expect it.

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