Thursday, February 24, 2011

Feminist Rant, or We Don't Have to Look Like Supermodels to be Healthy

Rush Limbaugh is an idiot.  I am fully aware of this fact.

Now, usually my approach to idiots is to ignore them.  I ran across this post about Limbaugh's latest comments about our amazing First Lady, and my first impulse was to roll my eyes.  He called her a hypocrite for eating ribs instead of "roots, berries, and tree bark."  Any logical thinking person would realize that healthy people sometimes indulge in their favorite foods (like a cupcake!), and that's all part of being healthy.  (And yes, I realize that he is just an old fat man who has no idea what "healthy" means).

That wasn't the thing that got me.  It was something else he said, directly attacking Michelle Obama, which I could not in good conscience ignore.

To quote:
"I'm trying to say our first lady does not project the image of women that you might see on the cover of the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue or of a woman [Yankees star] Alex Rodriguez might date every six months, or what have you," Limbaugh concluded.
Ah, here we have it!  What is threatening about Michelle Obama is that she is a powerful, smart, educated black woman who is doing amazing things instead of sitting on the sidelines while her husband leads (ahem, Laura Bush).  So if you are an old, fat white man threatened by a powerful woman, what do you attack?  Her physical appearance, of course!

Limbaugh can't possibly see that how the First Lady (amazing arms and all) can be a model for healthy eating because she doesn't resemble the waif-like, airbrushed supermodels that he believes is the perfect female body.  Even those supermodels don't resemble the magazine covers.  Since she's not someone that Alex Rodriguez wants to f*&%, then she's not a good role model, nor is she someone we should listen do. And Limbaugh gets to sneer from his XXL chair that she's a hypocrite and belittle her appearance.

You notice no one goes around critiquing Sam Kass for eating ribs--no one really cares--yet he is a major player in the First Lady's healthy initiative.  Why not?  Because he's a man, so he is not required by any standards to look like a model.  Women, meanwhile, are constantly held to ridiculous standards, and idiots like Limbaugh think its perfectly acceptable to attack THE FIRST LADY of the United States for not looking like sexual object.

Here's the thing, Limbaugh--she is not a sexual object.  She is a woman, an intelligent, educated, powerful woman.  Her ability to do awesome things in the world is not directly related to her resemblance to a magazine cover or the sorts of women that Alex Rodriquez tends to date (if only he could be so lucky to score a babe like our First Lady).  Critiquing her initiative is one thing; attacking her for not living up to an impossible standard of beauty and for not existing to serve as a sexual object for your dirty, nasty gaze is something I will not stand for.

Michelle Obama is the perfect role model for healthy eating.  She is not a size 0, and that's why she's so awesome.  She has curves and muscles, and isn't afraid to bare her arms to the world.  Her husband certainly thinks she's beautiful, and I find her to be a damn classy lady, full of grace and confidence.  She is a healthy weight, she knows that part of enjoying life (while being healthy) requires one to eat a damn rib every now and then (or a cupcake), and that one should feel good in her own body.

This is precisely why she is the perfect model for women, young and old.  She projects the image of a woman who is comfortable in her skin, who isn't obsessed with attaining an impossible standard of beauty.  She isn't afraid to eat a rib every now and then, and she is someone women look to for what we should be.  We don't have to accept that our ability to do things in the world and our self-worth is tied to how we look.

And that, my friends, is why we should speak up, even when old, fat white men critique women's appearances.  We should speak up and shout them down and tell them we aren't taking any more of their impossible standards.  We (women AND men) should scream that we refuse to be reduced to our size or our weight.  And we refuse to be told that our self-worth is dependent on our ability to be a sexual object.

Monday, February 21, 2011


A few weeks ago, I stumbled across this recipe on Food in Jars (one of my favorite sites).  Hmmm, I thought to myself, This looks pretty delicious.  I'll have to try it one night.  Last week, that night came.  Lance and I were so hungry after working out that we wanted a quick and easy dinner.  He boiled noodles and vegetables, and I whipped up the peanut sesame/tahini sauce. Then we ate it all.

The next day I needed a lunch, and I asked Lance to make me noodles once more.  I ate them all.

Then, we made them for potluck last night, adding tofu, beet greens, and carrots.  Everyone kept going back for more, commenting on how delicious they are.

(You should be picking up on a trend now).

I am now officially obsessed with these noodles.  The sauce is infinitely versatile.  Lance created some kind of weird fish sauce concoction to add to it that several people at potluck really liked.  I'm not a fish sauce fan myself, so I'm sticking with them plain and delicious. (But you might add fish sauce, if you're so inclined).

Add whatever vegetables or proteins you want, or use whatever noodles you want (I like sobas, but they are really good with rice noodles, and I'm sure udon or somen would be equally good).  A quick, healthy dinner, all wrapped up in one, provided you don't eat the whole pot or anything.

Incidentally, I'm also eating leftover noodles today for lunch.

Peanut Tahini Noodles 
(from Food in Jars)

With two bundles of soba noodles, it makes two generous servings.

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
3 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
2 tablespoons tahini (sesame paste)
1 tablespoon peanut butter
2 tablespoons honey
1 inch of ginger root, finely minced (we use a garlic press to mince--works great!)
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
1 tablespoon sriracha sauce

Whisk it all together, pour over cooked noodles/vegetables, and NOM.

Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Jenn Got Married

Hey guys, I'm a married lady now!  It happened in a whirlwind of snow, flurries, ice, and skirts.  In the end, it was amazing and perfect--all of our friends and family pitched in to make it an event I'll never forget.

And without further ado (because I know this is what you really want), photos!
Red room!

Bride and groom!

Me and the bridesmaids, who were awesome.  The flowers we're carrying are made (by all of us) of felt, hot glue, and flower wire (and ribbon).  I'll just take a moment to say I had the BEST bridesmaids.  One journeyed far from the northernlands and faced lots of stupid airline crap just to be here.  One absorbed bad luck (her shoe broke just hours before the wedding, and then when she figured that all out, she ended up burning her hair).  One was bringer of boozes not to mention up early to help decorate.  They were all freakin' awesome.

The groomsmen, not be forgotten, were also fantastic. Two travel far--one from Eastern Europe!!--and they all pitched in and helped get everything going, decorating, driving me/other people all around, and just being super cool.  Our wedding parties are simply a microcosm of our fantastic group of friends.

I made my veil, which was super fun.  The flower is made of silk circles of varying sizes, and I sewed some beads in the middle to give it a little bling (I was looking for some sort of cool piece of jewelry but never found one).  The veil itself was a pain, until I finally figured out how to shape it properly--I'm extremely pleased with how it turned out!

The shoes! So amazing! They were great--though, I think because they are really high, they are why I didn't cry during the ceremony, which was so beautiful and perfect.

My dress twirls! (Advantages of a full skirt).

I never thought I'd say it, but my wedding was perfect.  Even with all the snow crazies, and with some people unable to travel, we still had a great time and partied hard.