Bits and pieces from the World Wide Web to tide you through the last two hours of Friday boredom
Now that International Women’s Day (IWD) is done and dusted with, we no longer have to put with the zillions of cheap diamonds, bags & kitchenware that marketers had designed “to celebrate the special woman in you”. Interestingly, it was the Communist countries, starting with Russia, who first celebrated March 8 as Women’s Day in 1914; the Wolves of the West got around to adopting the day only after 1977. Love it or mock it, there is no denying that anything that offers an opportunity to talk about the very real challenges women across the world face on a daily basis is worth a few pesky sms-es and emails.
But the week that went by wasn’t just about Women’s Day – it was also about a campaign against “the other B-word”, of the truth behind 20 strangers kissing, the debate over True Detective….and more.
1. “We’re equals, aren’t we?”
It may be 3 years old, but this video of 007 Daniel Craig dressed as a woman with background commentary by M (Judie Dench) is still a powerful statement for equality. It reminded us of Madonna’s observation that
Girls can wear jeans and cut their hair short, wear shirts and boots cause it’s okay to be a boy. But for a boy to look like a girl is degrading cause you think being a girl is degrading
2. Time to ban Bossy?
When we first heard Sheryl Sandberg, and later Beyonce, talk about banning Bossy, “the other B-word”, we thought it was needless haranguing over a trivial word. Reading the first paragraph of Sandberg’s Saturday Essay on the Wall Street Journal seemed to confirm our suspicion that this was the rant of an overbearing over-achiever. But then Sandberg provides compelling data to prove how “bossy” has been negatively associated with females for over a century, including derogatory dictionary usage in places like Oxford Dictionary. In her words:
Boys are expected to be assertive, confident and opinionated, while girls should be kind, nurturing and compassionate. When a little boy takes charge in class or on the playground, nobody is surprised or offended. We expect him to lead. But when a little girl does the same, she is often criticized and disliked.
How are we supposed to level the playing field for girls and women if we discourage the very traits that get them there?
We vote for #banbossy.
3. Would you kiss a stranger?
If you’re ready to dash off into the street – please wait. The video that has nearly 40 million views is actually an ad by a clothing company, shot with professional actors and musicians. As the Time rightly points out, the Internet has a way of reminding us that people are working hard to find new ways to trick us!
4. True Detective: No to Macho Nonsense?
Now that we are done gasping over the brilliance of True Detective, we can take a deep breath and finally begin to think about what the show was about. Or, since zillions of experts are doing that already, we’ll turn it over to them. Writing for the New Yorker, Emily Nussbaum asserts that the show “reeks of macho nonsense….Every live woman [protagonists Rust and Marty] meet is paper-thin. Wives and sluts and daughters — none with any interior life.”
We agree with her assessment (Marty’s wife defies her adulterous husband by sleeping with his partner; Rust’s girlfriend, Leslie, is given just one scene in the entire series). But truth be told, we don’t hold it against the show. The world of creativity would be an exceedingly dreary place if political correctness carried more currency than originality. We enjoyed the show for what it offered: two flawed heroes brilliantly portrayed by Woody Harrelson & Matthew McConaughey, an intriguing narrative with several back-stories, spectacular visuals, a mind blowing soundtrack and the truth that evil exists and will continue to exist, often without reason or remorse.
5. How To Get A Raise
If you’ve been practising your “I need a raise” speech, do watch this 47 second video. And after that, just give it to your boss!