Tag Archives: gay marriage

Friday Pix: Recommended Reading For The Weekend

On occasional Fridays, I direct you to some recommended reading around the blogosphere:

1. I thought I’d lead off with June Thomas’ beautiful explanation for why, despite being a lesbian in a long-term, committed relationship, she doesn’t want to get married.

2. On the 200th anniversary of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, The Guardian had prominent writers weigh in on the psychology of some of the book’s main characters. I like to think of this post as more aptly sub-titled “Deconstructing Darcy.”

3. And speaking of writing, wise words from Jane Friedman on how long you should keep trying to get published.

4. This Modern Love essay by Julie Goldberg on a love affair that didn’t quite work out really spoke to me.

5. It’s hard to describe how much I loved 20 obsolete English words that should make a comeback. Don’t jargogle it! (Hat tip: Lisa Romeo Writes)

6. Slate just re-published this hilarious essay by John Swansburg on why he hates (adult) birthday parties. And how, John…

7. Finally, over on Londontopia, some gorgeous pictures of London at Night in the 1930’s.

Friday Pix: Recommended Reading For The Weekend

Every Friday I point you towards some recommended reading for the blogosphere:

1. In light of President Obama’s landmark endorsement of gay marriage, I offer you 14 steps that will help you evolve your views on gay marriage at Buzz Feed.

2. This New Yorker blog post on Putin’s Inauguration as Russian President by Julia Ioffe is funny and depressing in equal measure.

3. In other news, children’s author and illustrator Maurice Sendak died. Here’s a really smart analysis of the underlying message in his children’s books by Ann Hulbert at Slate.

4. Also, don’t forget to take this Washington Post quiz to see how well you really know Sendak.

5. Vidal Sassoon also died. Here’s a wonderful slideshow of his most famous haircuts at The Guardian.

6. On a lighter note, Idea Peepshow lets you vote on your favorite name in Public Radio. (Do not miss the song!)

7. Sometimes truth really is stranger than fiction:  Prince Charles gives a weather report. (And rocks it!)

8. Finally, if you’re looking to put an extra spring in your step, check out Ben Aaron’s dance walking fitness video. Love the Eminem guy!

Have a great weekend everybody!

Tips For Adulthood: Five Reasons To See The Kids Are All Right

Every Wednesday I offer tips for adulthood.

OK, folks, I’ve got another movie recommendation for you.

It’s a small-ish, Indie film by Director Lisa Cholodenko called The Kids Are All Right which has been out in the States for a while now, but only recently opened over here in the land of the free and the brave. (Whoops! That’s the U.S.! I meant, the land that spawned the land of the free and the brave…must get my history straight.)

As always, when I recommend movies or books on this site, it’s because I think that they have something profound to say about adulthood.

So, too, with this film. Here are five reasons you should rush out to see it if you haven’t done so already:

1. It’s about marriage. The film centers around two women – played with just the right mix of pluck and vulnerability by Annette Bening and Julianne Moore – who’ve been married to each other for 18 plus years. And though it’s sort of a film about gay marriage (see #4), I wouldn’t say that’s the central theme. Rather, this film is about what I’ve referred to before as middle marriage – that particular stage of life when you’ve been married for a while and the kids are no longer babies and maybe you’ve had a career change or a move or two, and you’re trying to figure out what it’s all about. And Cholodenko (who also co-wrote the script) gets that stage of life perfectly: the yearnings, the frustrations, the mis-communications, the boredom, the anxiety and, most importantly, the weary and imperfect love that underlies it. I guarantee that if you’ve been married or in a long-term committed relationship for more than five years you will watch this movie and find yourself nodding in recognition.

2. It’s about infidelity. I give nothing away by revealing that the movie’s central drama concerns what happens when the man who donated sperm to this couple many years earlier so that they could have kids re-appears and completely upends their family life. Lots of movies have treated the topic of marital infidelity, which is – as I’ve noted before – not only wide-spread, but in some ways, entirely predictable. (I always feel like I need to justify that claim, so here’s some scientific evidence about why monogamy isn’t natural.) What I liked about this film was the way that the topic was broached. The cheating didn’t stem primarily from feelings of boredom or revenge or even idle sexual attraction. It stemmed from the desire to be recognized and appreciated. Which struck me as so…honest.

3. It’s about parenting teens. Again, there are loads of movies about parenting. What sets this one apart is that it focuses very specifically on parenting teenagers which – in light of our cultural obsession with babies (thank you, Erika Jong!) – can sometimes go missing. The movie not only addresses the classic theme of “letting go” ( the couples’ eldest child is about to go off to college), but also how difficult it can be when you don’t approve of the company your kids are keeping. And Lord knows I could relate to that.

4. It’s about gay marriage. OK, I realize that I just said that this movie wasn’t primarily about gay marriage. And it isn’t. But I very much liked that rather than seeing another film exploring some aspect of a long-term heterosexual relationship, this one brought us inside a homosexual one. In a country where we are still – improbably – trying to figure out if everyone should have the right to marry whoever the heck they want, having a mainstream picture focus in on a lesbian couple with kids who look (gasp) just like every other couple with kids is culturally important.

5. It also stars Mark Ruffalo. ‘Nuff said.


I was over on Politics Daily yesterday talking about the latest chapter in the harrowing Elizabeth Smart story.

Image: Minhas mães e meu pai by Universo Produção via Flickr under a Creative Commons license.

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How The Target Boycott Made Me Rethink My Patriotism

When you live abroad for a long time, you tend to identify certain cultural objects that can readily anchor you with a sense of home. They are the things which – for better or for worse – come to signify “America.”

It might be a diner that serves all-day brunch. Or the blissful simplicity of a tumble dryer. Or – depending on your politics – the meteoric rise of a Mama Grizzly politician or a musician for whom the public is Gaga.

For me, that cultural touchstone has always been Target, that iconic superstore of highways and strip malls across America where you can buy everything from toothpaste to DVD players. Whenever we go back to the States, my husband and I devote an entire day to shopping at Target. We even have a running “Target list” on our computer to which we add items regularly throughout the year.

Read the rest of this article at www.PoliticsDaily.com

Image: Target Cart by joannabethpdot via flickr under a Creative Commons license.

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