Thighs of Glory (Read: Beyonce’s Thighs)

(Amendment at end.)

Today, I learned that I have thighs of glory.  This does not mean my thighs are skinny, because they are not and they never will be.  Skinny thighs give me the creeps.  A “gentleman” walking about downtown Ann Arbor exclaimed upon seeing my pasty, glorious thighs, that they were, in fact, “Sweet and juicy.”  My first reaction, as always, was to get incredibly angry.  I generally get hypermasculine, start swearing, and calling people dudes when I am approached in this manner.  As you might imagine, I do not like being approached by random men who want to comment on my specific body parts and their potential “uses.”  Instead, I simply laughed at these strange and utterly creepy proclamations of my thigh’s awesomeness.

I thought to myself, “Here I am, a slightly-less-fat-than-average person with well-developed leg muscles (mostly the calves), pasty skin, a partial sunburn on my forehead, jiggly thighs, and fairly low self-esteem.  Yet, this possibly drunk man has enjoyed the show (by show, I mean that I walked by in longer-than-apparently-average shorts).  Maybe, I will just laugh at this and be thankful that someone out there still understands that thighs are meant to be thick, strong, and fleshy.  Thighs should look like thighs.”

I would much rather have Beyonce’s thighs of glory (however pastier, less toned, and altogether less glorious), than skinny thighs (ahem, LeAnn Rhimes, Victoria Beckham, Kiera Knightly, almost every model, and Miley Cyrus).  I would rather look like Serena Williams than a 12-year-old.  Skinny thighs are for children.  Thick thighs are for women.

Beyonce looks amazing. Her thighs are made of glory, sunshine, dance skills, and squats.

Seriously, how great does Beyonce look?  This lady helped bring back the popularity of thicker thighs, and I am thankful.  The ladies who write this blog are fans of curves.  Curves are normal.  Beyonce is clearly above average in all ways, but I think we need to remember the glory of “sweet and juicy thighs.”

This picture is so intimidating and amazing. Serena Williams could jump over a skyscraper with those legs. She could crush anything. They are glorious.

Serena Williams could destroy us all with her thighs.  I feel pretty good about that.  She is strong and sexy; her presence in pop culture is good for women with curves.

I know that this post may seem a bit strange.  *After all, I did get inspiration from a drunken cat call.*  However, it is somewhat comforting that people are appreciating pale, fleshy thighs.  That’s all.

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Amendment:

After reading some comments, I realize that this post needs clarification.  Thin thighs are not “unacceptable,” “horrible,” nor are they somehow inherently “bad.”  It is not bad to be a thin person.  No one is a villain simply having thin thighs.

What is bad and scary, then?

It is bad and scary to push a body to extremes.  It is bad to glorify thinness above all else.  It is bad to glorify unhealthy habits that push people into unhealthy weights.  Just as a person can be too fat, a person can be too thin.  Both are bad.  The thing, not a lot of people are striving to be fat.  A lot of people are spending their days and nights obsessing over being thin at any price.  A lot of people have blogs and tumblrs devoted to “thinspo” with all kinds of ways to get skinny.  There are too many little girls and women out there who hurt themselves to achieve a level of thin that is not healthy for them.

That said, making thin women the villain is wrong.

Thin women just so happen to be thin.  Many people want to be thin, and that’s okay.  But wanting to be thin, or wanting to have Beyonce’s thighs, at any cost… that’s scary.

Also, Beyonce is amazing.

Look Before You Squat: One Woman’s Advice on Toilet Seats

Ladies, look before you sit.  This seems to have reached epidemic levels.  Ladies’ lady parts are plunging themselves into toilets because they aren’t looking before plopping their naked asses on seats other people pee on.  This is something I, as a lady, find confusing.  You see, I’m quite protective of my bum and genitals, thus I look before I squat.

I always have, and thus, I have never fallen into the toilet.  I am really tired of hearing women complain about men leaving the seat up like they’re being attacked and/or disrespected.  Someone just forgot.  It’s like if someone left a seat cushion off a couch…  but you’d probably see that first, and then put it back before setting your rear end on it.  How is this a guy’s responsibility?  You should be more concerned about your own bum.  You should care more.  You shouldn’t feel so entitled.  Also, it’s just a damn toilet seat.  Just move it.  You’ll have to wash your hands either way.

Yes, I think it makes sense for the person who originally moved the seat to move it back, but who gives a crap?  (Pun SO, SO intended.)

Just look.  You’re putting your naked butt (which is really close to you genitals) on something AND YOU’RE NOT GONNA LOOK?

Just look.  What if there’s pee on the seat?  What if someone else’s pubes are on the seat?  Wouldn’t you want to check for that anyway?  Wouldn’t you also want to make sure there’s TP while you’re at it.  Just look.

Hide Your Tampon, You Beast!

Are we afraid of periods?  Are we afraid of tampons or pads?  Do ladies think dudes don’t know about periods?  Don’t dudes know?  Periods are not an attack on society.  We all get them.  It just happens, y’all.

I had a wonderful experience this week.  I was in the wide open spaces of my office (visible from the doorway), when I ferociously dug through my purse, carelessly took a tampon from my tiny lady business purse, and dared to hold it for all to see before shoving it, slowly, into my giant dress pocket.  That’s right, people.  I grabbed a tampon – IN THE OPEN.  I am a monster!

Moments after my sinful act, a concerned elderly lady (actually elderly) explained to me that she saw me perform this act of horror, and that I was inappropriate, dishonorable, and altogether yucky.  She was offended by my tampon stashing.  She was offended by my lack of discretion.  She felt I should be more careful, and far sneakier whilst collecting and transporting such feminine goods.  WRONG.

I am not ashamed of my menstruation.  I am a woman in my (barf) child-bearing years.  I get my punctuation every month.  Personally, I consider the crimson tide a celebration of life unmade.  Most single, sexually active women probably have similar reactions.  Sure, cramps happen, but cramps are the song a body sings to remind you that labor would be even worse.  It is a warning and a party all at once.  At this point though, it’s really just a party.

CONGRATULATIONS! YOU DIDN’T MAKE A BABY!  Thank you for telling me, body.  This is great news!

People should not be weirded out by a young woman with a tampon, a pad, or some other period-y product.  It’s in the wrapping.  It’s new.  How is my period offensive?  I don’t want to tell you about it.  I just want to be able to carry a tampon in my own damn office, or down a damn hallway, or in front of other people.  Why?  Because I do.  It’s a fucking tampon.  Get over it, you child.

I was never nervous or embarrassed by buying feminine hygiene products, even as a teenager.  I have friends who still get embarrassed about holding tampons or whatever in the store, but I don’t.  If I don’t feel weird, why should you?  I should be able to walk up to a check out lane with condoms, tampons, pads, adult diapers, hemroid cream, diet pills, and crocs without shame, and without making anyone else feel ashamed.  You don’t know me.  I don’t know you.  Nothing should be that surprising.

Vaginas bleed sometimes.  Sometimes guys get boners.  People buy condoms.  I buy tampons.

The next time some one in a store, or an office, or wherever gets all weirded out by seeing me with a tampon, I will bust out the below tampon flute and go to town on that bitch.

It’s Senior Portraits, Not a Centerfold.

Why have senior pictures become the new place for 18 year old girls to showcase their budding bazongas? Or young men to fantasize that they’re on the cover of GQ? Here are some things NOT to do when you’re getting your (or you know someone else who is getting their) senior pictures taken.

1. Wear make up, but don’t channel Liza Minnelli. Nobody looks good like that.

2. Wear real clothes. In fact, wear your regular clothes, or maybe one step nicer. Remember, your mom is giving copies of these to your grandparents. Do you really think they want to see your cleavage or your bare chest? Yeah, think again.

3. Don’t pose in strange, contorted ways. The idea shouldn’t be “How can we twist you so your boobs hang out?” Just stand or sit normally. Move your chin up and down the way the photographer tells you to so your face doesn’t look weird because of shadows. If he tells you to throw your head back and grab a pole, you may want to consider another photographer–dude’s obviously a perv.

4. Keep your eyes open. There is no reason you need to close your eyes, especially when you’re lying down. Hello, I don’t care how your eyeshadow looked when you were eighteen; I care how you looked. Including your eyes.

5. Smile. Don’t try to be Tyra Banks and “smile with your eyes” to look sexy. You come off looking like an amateur centerfold with your lips half-parted. If you wanna be in pornos, wait til after high school.

10 Ways to Beat (Read: Hide) Your Phobia (as an “Adult”)

This past week, I faced my greatest fear: the dentist.  Though I gave myself multiple pep-talks, rationalized, and even texted my friends to demand their support, it didn’t go quite as planned.  In fact, it was pathetic.  I silently cried; my tears were only silent through brutish will power.  I had to use every ounce of strength I had to keep myself from shaking too hard… but it was still hard enough that the dentist had to stop a few times.  I almost hyperventilated twice, but I didn’t all the way.  It wasn’t a total disaster, but it was pretty sad.  Ultimately, I got through it.  It was embarrassing, but I couldn’t pretend I wasn’t scared, I couldn’t hide my shaking, I couldn’t convince anyone that I was just fine.  The dentist was able to perform the procedures I needed.  She comforted me with words of wisdom, general cooing, and music.  I had to be treated like a slightly stoic child.  The key to my “success” in overcoming my intense, phobia-level fear of the dentist can be found in this list…  Also, flossing helps.  Keep flossing.
  1. Be upfront.  Warn the people around you.  For me, that meant warning the dentist and her staff that I was afraid, and that I had hyperventilated previously, and that my fear would be a silent, but dramatic experience for us all.
  2. Make jokes.  Specifically, make self-effacing, situational jokes.  I had to address the fact that I was sitting there, mouth pried open, tears rolling down my cheeks, shaking like a Kardashian in the presence of a talented person, whimpering like a baby, while also attempting to be an adult.  No, really, I have my own insurance.  I have a full-time job.  I’m actually not a child… I think.
  3. Laugh at yourself.  If you don’t, you’ll look like a tool.  It was friggin’ hilarious to see me in that chair.  I had to accept that.  Plus, me laughing at the situation helped the dentist to know that I wasn’t angry, or terrified beyond reason.  I knew I was being ridiculous, and acknowledging that was important.
  4. Address yourself as a crazy person.  When facing the notion of dentistry, I must remind myself that I am crazy.  It helps.
  5. Remember what the benefits are.  I just kept reminding myself that people go to the dentist all the time, and that I care about my ability to chew.  Chewing means eating watermelon.  I cannot live without watermelon.
  6. Talk to yourself.  A LOT.  Whilst undergoing my drillings and fillings, I had a little mantra going.  It went like this, “Breathe slowly.  Don’t bite her.  You’re not in pain.  Breathe slowly.  Don’t bite her.  You’re not in pain.”  When that failed, I had to remind myself that my actual fear was that I would be hurt, but that I’d felt much worse pain that actually possible from dentistry.
  7. If you must cry, do it silently.
  8. Thank everyone around you, often and sincerely.  Those poor people who had to work on me.  I was awful.  I was scary.  I apologized 400 times.
  9. Limit exposure to humans, especially children.  If you think you might scream, cry, yell, flip-the-eff-out, you should make sure you’re passing your fear on to as few people as possible.  I didn’t want some poor 5-year-old to be sitting in the waiting room, listening to me panic, and think, “Holy moly.  They’re torturing people back there.”
  10. Take all the medication you are offered.  From laughing gas to Novocaine, I was drugged up, and it really helped.  Accept all numbing concoctions, pills, gasses, and creams.  Don’t pretend you’re stronger than you are.
 

Flick Off

Imagine you’re stopped at a red light. You’re bobbing your head along to whatever music is on your radio, and then you notice the guy next to you. He rolls down his window and, sticking his hand out, flicks his cigarette onto the pavement.

Now, generally, people don’t do or say anything–myself included–to Mr. Litterer, but I have a confession to make: THIS DRIVES ME NUTS. And it has, ever since I was a kid. I remember driving in the car with my dad who would ALWAYS flick his cigarettes out the window. I never, ever liked it.

Don’t get me wrong–this isn’t about smoking. Do what you want; I’m not about to judge, and I don’t think it’s necessary for the world to hold smokers up as some kind of social scapegoat. HOWEVER–flicking your cigarette out the window isn’t any different than throwing a wadded up cheeseburger wrapper out. It’s littering and it makes streets gross. And this is public space, for crying out loud!

I guess nonchalant littering in general just really makes me angry because it shows a blatant disrespect for other people. It’s nice that you don’t care whether there are cigarette butts and McDonald’s paper cups and straws on the street, but maybe those of us who walk around this neighborhood care. Maybe the birds don’t want to build nests out of dirty cigarette filters. Maybe you shouldn’t leave shit with your DNA on it lying around in the street, damnit.

So, generally, people of the world: put your trash in trash receptacles. That’s what they’re there for. Because, unlike babies, you’re responsible for your own trash. I am not responsible for your half-chewed straws, your cigarette butts, your paper cups, your tampons (yes, I recently saw a TAMPON lying around in the street), your kleenex, your receipts, and all the other crap you think it’s okay to just dump around in everyone else’s way. Public streets are communal streets. We all use them. And unless you’re some kind of sociopath who doesn’t have the capability of empathy or general humanness, pick up/throw away your shit!!!

Everyone Poops…

Everyone poops, sometimes even while they’re at work.

Where I work, there seems to be outrage about people pooping.  Because it’s at work, pooping is crime.  What?  Why?  Look, I am not a fan of walking into a recently defiled restroom area, but sometimes people just need to go potty and I feel good about that.  We’re all here for 8 hours.  What if someone suddenly realizes they need to go at 10:00 AM?  Are they really supposed to hold it until 5:00 PM?

One of the women I work with came back from a bathroom break in horror – her eyes were blank, her face had lost its color.  She was in shock.  When we inquired, “What happened?”

She said, “Someone was going #2 in the bathroom.  Oh my god.  I want to barf.”  Most of the other people around us agreed that what she had just been through was truly horrific.  She was consoled by their outrage and genuine sympathy.  How dare a person poop in a public restroom?  How offensive?  How outrageous?  They were all so offended.   No one stopped to think that maybe that pooper was not excited about having to go #2 at work, but sometimes the body does what the body wants.  Have these people never dealt with a bought of unwanted gas?

Meanwhile, I was thinking, “Sure, I don’t want to experience that, but it’s a bathroom… so… it doesn’t seem all that weird.”  Someone pooping in a bathroom is not novel to me. It’s normal.  That’s where we’re supposed to do that.

I just don’t understand why this society is in denial of poop (by the way, that would be a terrifying name for a river…).  We all do it.  It’s going to happen.  Chill out.

It’s just not healthy to hold that in all day.  It’s not like people are maniacally planning to ruin other people’s bathroom experiences, they are just people who got to work, and thought… “Oh crap, I have to poop.”  Then, they poop.  They poop at work.  They are trying to be discreet.  They are trying to be quiet.  They run down to that weird bathroom in the basement.  They don’t want you to know.
No one wakes up in the morning and decides they want to poop at work.  That’s not a thing.  People don’t do that on purpose.  You don’t decide when to get hungry, when to sneeze, when you’ll need to pee, or when you’ll need to poop.

They call it “Going to the bathroom,” for a reason.  That reason is because it’s stuff you do in a bathroom.  That’s where they are.  Get over it.

The Middle Stall.

A while ago, I read that the middle stall, on average, is the most frequented of any in a given bathroom.  WHY? Why?  WHY?

Why would the middle stall be most appealing to people?  I really don’t get this.

The middle stall just seems yucky, and I don’t like it.Relieving yourself in the middle stall (assuming all others are available) leaves you more vulnerable.  Rather than being safely next to a wall, a wall which cannot produce alarming smells, noises, or ask you for toilet paper, people are choosing to sit and wait for others to surround them with their bathroom needs.  You’re just so much more exposed to danger.  Your shoes are more likely to get weirdly close to someone else’s, and who knows what will happen?  People are more likely to interact with you.  This is a private time.  It’s not social.  It is also more likely that the movement of someone else’s door will jumble yours and cause it to come undone – sometimes stalls are mounted all together, so when one moves, they all do, which creates a strange game of chance out of any potty party.  It’s awkward.

Walls protect you.  Go with walls.

Walls cannot spy on you.  Walls will not vomit on your shoes.  Walls will not text while pooping.  Walls will not cry on the phone.  Walls will not talk to their friends around you.  Walls will never leave the bathroom without washing their hands.

If you sit your bum in the middle stall, you are forcing people to sit next to you while they relieve themselves.  Give everyone space.  Don’t choose the middle stall first!

Announcing – A Week of Bathroom Talk

That’s right, y’all.  We’re going to devote an entire week to bathroom talk.  Kate and Patty are sick of people acting so weird about the bathroom.  We all use it; it’s okay.  It just seems like our culture denies existence of the camode, or disrespectfully uses it so often.  Why can’t drunk people flush, aim, or wash their hands?  Why do ladies get so mad about the being left up – shouldn’t we look before we sit?  Why aren’t we looking?

In response, we’re talking about the bathroom.  We’re going to rant about poop, pooping, the middle stall, people being annoying about bathroom usage/maintenance/standards.  There will be talk of politics, dating, work, public vs. private, and washing of hands.  We love to wash our hands.  We will also rant for a while about jerks in the potty room.  You get the idea.

Get excited.

Stop Comparing Me to Fruit

I’m sure by now, most women have heard of different classifications for body shapes. There’s the “hourglass” (think Marilyn Monroe and every pin up girl ever) and the “rectangle” (as in you don’t have a natural waist) and sometimes even varieties of triangle (standard and inverse, apparently). But all of this is weird. No one actually looks like a triangle or a rectangle. Hourglass, sure, I can see that. Then there’s the stupid food comparisons: apple, pear, and (this one was new to me) banana. I’m sorry but I definitely don’t look like a piece of fruit. This comparison is just weird and nonsensical.

In this case, the fruit doesn't even fit. And that does NOT look like a banana, damnit.

I’m sorry, but none of these shapes make any sense to my brain. I just don’t get it. Supposedly, because I’m small-chested and big-bootied (is that even a term?) I’m a “pear” shape. But I’m also supposed to have tiny, wimpy shoulders (which I don’t) and thick ankles (also don’t). I get the impetus for classifying body shapes–supposedly helping women dress to flatter their most “alluring” features–but it really needs to be rethought. On top of only being able to represent these so-called universal shapes that are supposed to fit all women on the planet in odd drawings without faces or  with creepy identical faces, when someone does try to represent these shapes in the real world, you wind up with ridiculously inaccurate representations. See, for example, figure three. All of these women, despite the fact that they’ve been classified as “different” shapes, all look the same to me. They all have chests of roughly the same size, they’re all fairly lean (though red bathing suit and black bathing suit have weirdly thin thighs that don’t touch), and they all have pretty defined waists. I’m also increasingly convinced that “inv” triangle and triangle are the same woman with a bit of photoshopping on the booty/thighs area. Alternative to the “models come in all shapes and varieties of anorexic!!!” photo above is the “all women look like worn out slobs and stand with their arms awkwardly lifted and suffering from an inexplicable case of bowleggedness” picture below. Kudos to the creator for using real women, but at the same time, it seems somewhat unfair to try to accurately represent body types when you’re using women whose ages vary from the fairly young (maybe 24, “lollipop”) to the fairly old (65? “column”), and whose relative body weight fluctuates from the very skinny to the verging on obese. And forgive me for asking, but what idiot came up with these horrible names. There’s the classic food items, but wtf is a cello body shape? Lollipop? Goblet? And can we all agree that “brick” is a terrible term for a woman’s body shape? As if you could be any less interested in making a woman feel beautiful–“Yes, dear, I believe you’d be classified as a ‘brick.'” C’mon!

This is not to say that using women of a variety of ages and weights is a bad thing, but it’s hard to get a sense of your body shape if you’re at the right weight but don’t look like Ms. Lollipop, Pear, or Cornet. What about women of average weight who are hourglass-shaped? Or heavy women who are column or goblet shaped? This system just sucks, to be honest.

Additionally, in my evening internet cruising, I keep seeing advice for pear and apple shaped women that encourages them to “hide” their big hips or busts, respectively, while telling hourglass ladies to just let it all hang out cause they have nothing to hide. What kind of message does that send? The only worthwhile, sexy shape is an hourglass one, I assume. Everyone else better try to wear dark colors or use ruffles to give the impression they actually have the hourglass shape instead of just embracing the great assets they do have, regardless of whether their top and bottom halves match.

I say, eff that. Whether you look like Barbie or you don’t, stop dressing to cover up what some people like to call “problem areas” (i.e. anything that’s not an hourglass), and just start wearing what you think looks good and gives you confidence.