NaBloPoMo: Here We Go Again

It seemed like a good idea when I signed up..last year went pretty well, I think?

NaBloPoMo November 2016

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(Not Quite) A Feminism Friday

Yesterday, the kid thrust a $2 off coupon for Kids Nite Out at the Rec center at me when we were on the way home.

“Can I go?”

As in, that night. In an hour. And we haven’t eaten dinner.. But sure, why not. I looked at the movie options at the local theater, because unexpected nights off can sometimes mean movie nights for mama – if the movie schedule fits when V has to be picked up.

Oh, Deepwater Horizon! That sounds good. And I’ll review the trailers in front, as it is Friday, and it’s fun.

Voldemort packed swimsuit and towel, a handful of quarters, and off we went.

As we’re parking in the lot at the rec center, I hear a sheepish sounding, “Mama? I think I forgot something..”

Shoes. Voldemort forgot to put on SHOES before we left the house.

*facepalm*

I got V signed in, discussed if the family bathroom would be open (V doesnt like using gendered bathrooms and vastly prefers not to), rolled my eyes at the lack of shoes (although attempted to be soothing, as the kid was upset about it) and headed out again to take myself to a movie.

I was pretty excited, I’ll admit. But, standing in the registration line had taken ten minutes, and the movie was due to start in five. And I wanted to see all the trailors. So I was trying to hurry.

Which is, of course, when the railroad crossing lights started to flash and the arm that prevents cars from trying to cross the tracks and end up flattened messes came down.

But..but…the trailers!

Four minutes later, I can finally cross. The movie theater parking lot is full, so it takes me another minute to find a spot to park.

I head in happily, although a little anxious.

“One for Deepwater Horizon, please.”

“Sorry, ma’am. This showing is sold out.”

*sigh*

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Feminism Friday: A Look at the Trailers Before Ghostbusters

feminism friday

So last week, I looked at the trailers in front of The Secret Life of Pets. And in front of a G rated movie marketed to children, 49 male characters spoke to only 29 female.

Let’s see what sort of trailers were marketed to a female-led PG-13 movie. I’M SURE THIS WILL GO WELL.

To start:


Florence Foster Jenkins
Main character: Female
Male speakers: 7
Female speakers: 3


Nerve
Main character: Female
Male speakers: 5
Female speakers: 3


Billy Lynn’s Long Halftime Walk
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 5
Female speakers: 2


Sully
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 7
Female speakers: 6


Trolls
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 3
Female speakers: 1


Inferno
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 5
Female speakers: 3


Bridget Jones’s Baby
Main character: Female
Male speakers: 3
Female speakers: 5

Totals:

I find it interesting that, while there are 3 female lead movies out of the 7 shown, ONLY ONE of those have more female speakers than male featured in the trailer. And that it’s Bridget Jones’s Baby, which isn’t the first movie that pops to mind when you think of equality.

But even so, for trailers featured in front of Ghostbusters – a film led by 4 female characters, the fact that there are only 3 female led movies out of the 7 being advertised is a bit boggling.

Sully comes the closest to having equal number of male and female speakers in the trailer. I was particularly bothered by Florence Foster Jenkins, which only counts 3 seperate female speakers if you could the blonde bombshell who shakes her boobs at one point before having one tiny cheer that I’m counting as a line.

Overall, there are 35 male speakers compared to 23 female speakers.

Ongoing count from last week and this:
Male speakers: 84
Female speakers: 52

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Feminism Friday: Movie Trailers from The Secret Life of Pets Showing

feminism friday

It’s summer, and there have been several kid-friendly movies that Voldemort has wanted to see. Which is cool – i like movies, popcorn is yummy, and of course I’m going to go see Finding Dory.

But I noticed something disturbing before Finding Dory started. I noticed the number of trailers for future movies that featured only or primarily male characters. I didn’t notice until halfway through the previews, but it bothered me enough to remember to pull out a small notebook last week when we went to see The Secret Life of Pets.

Just for my own information, I kept track of the name of the movie, the protagonist’s assumed gender*, and the number of assumed male and assumed female characters who spoke in the trailer.

This is ONLY for the movies previewed in front of The Secret Life of Pets. We’re hitting Ghostbusters on Tuesday, so that will an upcoming Feminism Friday

Like so:

The Secret Life of Pets
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 9
Female speakers: 3

I didn’t count the snakes, because they went by too fast.

Makes sense? Let’s go!


Monster Trucks
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 7 (counting the monster itself, which is referred to as “him”)
Female speakers: 3 (counting the radio announcer)


Nine Lives
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 3
Female speakers: 4


Ghostbusters
Main character: 4 badass ladies
Male speakers: 2 in the trailer I saw in the theater, 0 in this one
Female speakers: 4


Trolls
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 3
Female speakers: 1


Storks
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 12
Female speakers: 3

What even is going on here. 3 female speakers to 12 male. Wow.


Kubo and the Two Strings
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 3
Female speakers: 4


Sing
Main character: Male
Male speakers: 12
Female speakers: 7

Whew. My numbers might be off by one or two, but I got pretty close. I didn’t count any character who didn’t speak, except in the case of Sing, where I counted the characters who..sang.

Out of eight movie trailers, seven of those had main characters who were male. Only one had female main characters.

Out of eight movie trailers, a total of forty-nine male characters spoke, compared to only twenty-nine female characters.

Out of eight movie trailers, only three had close to equal the number of male and female speakers.

I don’t think I would’ve done more than roll my eyes if I had been in a different movie – a non-kid-friendly movie. But this is what our children are seeing. This is what is being advertised to MY CHILD as being what is normal – and sure, we’re talking about monsters in trucks and animated trolls, but kids pick this stuff up. They absorb it. And as they get older, it’s what they expect to see in their lives as well.

And this is just looking at gender. Tell me, where there any people of color in those trailers? I can think of two off the top of my head – possibly four if I’m counting correctly in Sing.

It’s time to do better, Hollywood. Seriously.

*as all characters in these movies are presented only as male or female, so assumptions have been made

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A (Lack) of Loneliness

lackofloneliness

Years ago, I was on a retreat with other high school kids from my church. We had a tradition of climbing to the top of the mountain to see the sunrise one morning, which necessitated waking up at a painfully early hour (most of us just didn’t ever go to bed the night before, tbh), driving a few miles to the bottom of the climb, then all spilling out and heading up to the top over twisty, narrow paths.

We would run back down, full tilt, after the sun came up.

My first year I made it to the top with the others. But while I started out running down, I got scared I would fall and I got out of breath. There were other kids behind me, so I stuck my hand out to grab a tree trunk, swung around it, and let people pass me.

I walked the rest of the way down. I couldn’t convince my legs to run anymore after not sleeping and then climbing a mountain.

And when I got to the bottom I was alone.

The van was gone.

I was alone in a parking lot at the bottom of a mountain two miles from the house, at six in the morning.

I stood and waited for a few minutes, thinking maybe that it was a joke. They were hiding, and would be pulling back in to pick me up to go for donuts in town and would tease me about being last.

But they never came back.

I cried as I walked the two miles back to the house on legs that were already aching and trembling.

That crushing feeling of being left behind is a type of loneliness I don’t know how to describe. It’s devastating and frightening and hard.

I cried a lot after asking b to leave. I cried more after telling him I wanted a divorce.

And I know it doesn’t make much sense to say that I felt abandoned, but I did. I felt that I was being left with my normal life..only with a giant hole where a partner should have fit.

I don’t feel like that anymore.

I’m not the awkward fifteen year old who didn’t fit in with her Back Home group and got left on the mountain while everyone else went to get donuts. I’m not the wife waiting for her husband to ask for help.

So I thought, maybe, that it was time to take a step out. Join okcupid. Try dating.

I tried. I chatted some. I even went on one date. He was nice, but..

I’m not even interested. Not in him. Not in anybody.

Maybe someday I will be. Maybe I won’t.

I’m not lonely right now. I’m ok on my own.

And that’s a good feeling.

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