It’s Not a “Teenage Dream”

When I met my husband, I was not interested in dating. I was hard-core into women’s rights, had been burned multiple times by guys, and just was not sure men could be trusted. After spending many months working with Chris, I began to soften. He was a good one. A keeper. He was genuinely caring, patient, and trust worthy. I gradually began to break down my barriers, or to paraphrase the words of Katy Perry: “my walls came down.”

I am often known in my family for singing the wrong lyrics in songs. The other day I heard “Teenage Dream” on the radio and remembered how much I liked these three lines. I had to Google them to make sure I was hearing them right:

“You think I’m pretty without any make-up on
You think I’m funny when I tell the punch line wrong
I know you get me, so I let my walls come down, down”

These lines are me to a T. I really dislike make-up. Maybe I got it out of my system when I was a kid. My grandma use to let me put on her blush, blue eyeshadow, and usually some gross colored coral lipstick. She would allow me to leave the house with it on, and never laughed at me. She just let me do it. I probably had no idea of how gaudy (her word) I looked. She just let me feel pretty and run our errands with me existing in my make-believe world. Fast forward to high school and college and when it was a normal time to wear make-up and I was not interested. Had I already done that and did not care anymore? Or was it watching my mom put on foundation to cover the sickness that showed on her skin? At the time, I thought make-up and foundation was a cover-up, it meant you were hiding something. Either way, I have not ever had much interest in make-up and always wanted to feel pretty (not sure by whose standards) without any make-up on.

Just as I sing the wrong lyrics in songs, my brain is often going to fast that I tell a punch line wrong. My husband loves it. Just as mentioned in my blog last week about making up my own words, he will often alert me that I got the punch line wrong on a joke. He always tells me while laughing (usually with me laughing along too), and reminds me later of the joke.

Can you see these lyrics in Katy Perry’s song resonate with me? Thank you, Chris, for “getting me” and bringing my walls down!

Ms. Magazine Turns 40

I am a feminist. I believe in any initiative that fights for and honors the rights for women. I first became passionate about women’s issues in college, and that is when I started reading Ms. Magazine. There were times when I might have considered myself a feminazi. For those of you that have not heard that term, the Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as: “an extreme or militant feminist.”

I no longer consider myself a feminazi, I no longer have a shaved head, and I do not talk about women’s issues in every other conversation, but the passion is still deep inside me. I crave equality for all women. I want a world where a woman feels safe, has the right to decide what to do with her body, receives equal pay, is not abused, is not owned, and is not discriminated against. I appreciate the work that The Girl Effect, National Organization of Women (NOW), Girls, Inc, to name a few do to help empower women and young girls to grow up and stay strong women.

Ms. Magazine was created to bring the women’s movement to print, and I think the fact that it is still in print may mean women still need the printed word to inspire and invigorate their daily life. A quote from Gloria Steinem explains a bit of why Ms. Magazine started:

“I realized as a journalist that there really was nothing for women to read that was controlled by women, and this caused me along with a number of other women to start Ms. Magazine.”

So Happy Birthday Ms. Magazine. Kudos to having Wonder Woman on your first cover. Hopefully over the years all the hard work you have put into publishing Ms. Magazine have inspired women to be powerful superheros and badass wonder women!