Thursday, March 12, 2009

Girl Power

A post about Barbies, Bratz, Miss America, my little ponies and heels... you boys'll love it!

Barbies are dolls. They are to be played with. Nobody has ever figured out what a Bratz doll would look like in life size with the same proportions - ...or maybe they have... - my guess is that it would have a rather difficult time supporting its ginormous head.

I recently read an article somewhere tearing apart Mattel for selling barbies. The article took the stance that Barbies are responsible for setting unrealistic expectations on our bodies growing up. I don't know about you ladies - but Barbie? Nooo. That's more the ex-husband dept of Toys r Us. Barbie - ahhh Barbie. She was great for having imaginary weddings (with Ken - the looooove of her life - sigh - who always told her she was beautiful... just like Spartan does), making her hair into ratty yet original styles, re-enacting an argument with your BFF (just last year***) coloring allover with marker and for bossing about in general - I also noticed that they are very aerodynamic when launched at my older brother feet first. Girls have launched them at their older brother's for more than half a decade. Why would they stop now?

Stop blaming a plastic toy. I get that Hollywood places unrealistic expectations that women sometimes feel pressure to emulate. Miss America? Same thing. But as long as the world is turning - they will have plastic dolls with long legs, teeeensy waists and big boobs AND they will have some kind of pageant awarding women for something that they had very little to do with - genetics and hair spray. Don't get me wrong; some of these ladies are very committed to healthy living and to working out - and god knows I get how hard that can be since I work my ass off - some have even demonstrated some impressive levels of academia... but mostly people - they are there because they have mastered the most important skills of all; teasing their hair, putting just the right amount of Vaseline on their teeth and knowing which heels will really set that bikini off... (who actually wears heels with their bikini? I might start. Hell - I might even swim in them... maybe even jogging.). I still watch the shite. I still play with buy Barbies (for my daughter...) Can't help it. And really - it's kind of the fault of the mass populous that this still goes on - we're just a bunch of critical enablers.

My point is - I think blaming Mattel for poor body image makes about as much sense as blaming a toy company because you couldn't find a real pink pony with wings. Unless someone actually has... in that case - I want one too...

*** who out there hasn't made your Barbies beat the crap out of each other? Come on! You pick em up and they start beating on each other - with mostly their heads until they are basically a great pile of messy hair and limbs that are attached at rather unnatural angles by the time your mom calls you for dinner. Sometimes their heads even pop right off and roll under the bed - seemingly lost forever. Until one day you move and you find it under the bed and there is a spider living inside it and then you are traumatized - and then you have to check inside the heads of all barbies everywhere to ensure they too haven't become an arachnid haven... I got a little side tracked there. Have a lovely Friday ;0)

Saturday, March 07, 2009

The Highway of Heroes

My brother, the ever eloquent, thoughtful and engaging soldier who wanted a fallen comrad to be honoured in memory when the papers were slaughtering his reputation. He spoke up and wrote to a newspaper (The Globe and Mail) and his comments were published in an article. That was the first time I heard him voice his opinion on Canada's perception of our involvement in the middle east.

The Canadian Military has lost 111 lives in Afghanistan. There will be more. Generally, the media picks up on the stories as they happen and tell about the lives of the soldiers lost and of their families trying to put back the pieces of their shattered lives. But Canada as a whole doesn’t know why our troops our are there. People are left feeling as though these losses of life were for naught. That does not do the memory of these fallen heroes justice. We must honour their memories by understanding why they were there and feeling pride and respect when we think of it.

If we stood back and idly watched what happened there, we would read about it in history much like we do the holocaust and question in anger why we didn’t help. But now, instead, people who hear someone on a political podium make a comment about how these deaths are senseless and that it isn’t our war – walk around repeating it like robots without knowing the whole story.

We are there because the people of Afghanistan have suffered indescribably and because we can help them change that. Because our troops can disarm land mines, build schools and help to hunt down and neutralize al-Qaeda members in that country, as well as toppling the Taliban regime, which has claimed to be supporting international terrorism.They can help the people there rebuild. They can help to give hope to people who have lived in fear and tried to carve out a life in a desolate place. In order that their children can laugh, and more mothers there can watch their children grow up. They are helping to exact a change that has been needed for a very long time. How can anyone think this is without merit?

Canadians generally group Iraq and Afghanistan into the same group and many protest against our inclusion in this war. They are two vastly different situations and though I too want my brother safe at home; I know that Canada’s involvement in Afghanistan is necessary. I believe in him and I believe in his mission. I am overwhelmingly proud of him.

I am outraged at Canada’s lack of education with respect to our involvement in Afghanistan. I believe that the responsibility should fall to the media and our government to convey the facts and inform our country. At least if we make the information available, there is the hope that each person who dares to speak their opinion takes the time to education themselves first. We owe it to our soldiers to understand why they are there and to be damn proud of them for it.

Soldiers have had to send home friends; Mother’s have had to accept the loss of their children; Wives have had to accept the fact that they will never have a chance to look their husband in the eye and tell them they love them; children will have to grow up seeing loved ones in a picture frame instead of having them there. The list goes on ad infinitum.

The least we could do is surround these families with the feeling that we know, we took the time to understand why their father, mother, brother or friend gave their life and that we salute them.

I know this isn't my usual style of writing - especially not here... but sometimes there is no funny. I can't make light of every situation. I just needed to get these thoughts out there. Thank you for making an exception to the norm and for considering what I have expressed...

Monday, March 02, 2009

Birthday card from Roo...

Roo to Mom

I love you Mommy
I don't no wut to doo with ewt you at all
Happy Brthday Mommy

To Mom
Frum Roo

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Oh shit there goes another year...

The years just pick up speed, don't they? Of course this post is a shameless attempt at soliciting happy birthday wishes - but - it is also here to serve as a look back over the last year and a look at what 33 will bring...

The year of 32:

1. Proposed to by the man of my dreams. This alone would have made the year worthwhile - but wait... there is more...

2. Seeing oodles of my BFF Carrie out west.

3. Being a godparent to Carries' newest addition - with Spartan.

4. Curacao. With Spartan. Lizards, birds, eels, laughter and pina coladas. Yay!

5. Getting my body back from having babies! Huzzah!

6. Having healthy family and friends. Double huzzah!

The year ahead:

1. Duh. No brainer what will slide into first place here. Marriage to a most marvelous, loving, kind, supportive, handsome, sexy, and breathtaking man. Of course all of the things that go with it... such as more kisses and hugs from him!

2. Seeing more of my BFF this summer for the festivities.

3. Lots of wonderful friends having babies... including my brother and sister in law!

4. A happy me!

Okay. Gotta go slap on some wrinkle cream and hang upside down for a while.