Links I Love: Volume 3

Hello everyone. How was your week?
This week, I bring you articles on why handwriting is important; how scientists are discovering how to restore lost memories; relationships and not liking the person you’re dating; a short history of tampons (did you know that there’s a Museum of Menstruation?). There’s a [very funny] story; an article on how everything you know about love is wrong (Jon Snow, you); another on why it’s okay to question God; why feminism doesn’t need to be rebranded (sexy, fun?); what happens when your options are to either get an abortion or die; how people are becoming less than humans and also less than computers; myths about hair down there and why it’s okay to keep it. See you on the other side.

Help 500 Rape Survivors Get Psychosocial Services
STER Initiative is trying to raise funds to provide support for rape victims. We want to provide medical, financial, psychological and social support so that these women (and men) who have suffered different forms of abuse heal and so that they can provide for themselves, so they don’t find themselves in situations where they might fall back into the cycle of abuse. You can find more information and make your donations here. You can donate as little as $10 (less than N2,000). We need to raise $5,000 by the end of June. Think of it as your $10 will get help for 1 rape victim.

How To Keep Making A Marriage When It Seems Impossible: #ConsciousCoupling
We didn’t know how to tell them then what we know now about marrying young:No need to invest in things to bring to the marriage, when you could invest in each other and the actual marriage.
Marriage is a commitment meant to form us, not a commitment you enter only once you’re convinced you’re finally formed.
Marriage is something that we learn, like the way we learn our mother tongue.

Aziz Ansari: Everything you think you know about love is wrong
I asked my dad about this experience, and here’s how he described it: he told his parents he was ready to get married, so his family arranged meetings with three neighboring families. The first girl, he said, was “a little too tall,” and the second girl was “a little too short.” Then he met my mom. He quickly deduced that she was the appropriate height (finally!), and they talked for about 30 minutes. They decided it would work. A week later, they were married.

The Tampon: A History
A lot of people argued that [tampon use] was not only inappropriate because it might break the hymen, but it might be also pleasurable and might be a way for girls to experience orgasmic pleasure.” Tampax’s telescoping applicator made it possible to insert a tampon without the dreaded self-touching—though it didn’t do much to assuage fears of accidental virginity loss, which, despite evidence that the hymen doesn’t necessarily break as a result of sex or tampon use, still persist in some parts of the world today.

Am I Not A Reasonable Feminist?
But what happens when talking about the average roles and characteristics of the sexes. I happen to believe that in most cases, the average man knows more about cars than the average female. I am certain that you can pick any man off the street and I am almost a hundred percent sure he’ll know more about a car than I do. Is that sexism or just basic awareness and understanding that male and females are inherently different.

What Do You Call It When You Stop Liking The Person You’re Dating? 
Your very adult definition of what it’s like to be in a long-term meaningful relationship is insightful and correct, that as the initial endorphin rush wears off and you find out what you are actually left with, that there is a great opportunity for even deeper intimacy and, for lack of a better term, the excitement of discovery, as long as you are with someone that you actually love (or, depending on where you’re at with things, at least like a lot). What you are describing is what it is like to date an Actual Human Being, with all of their flaws and complications and blind spots.
It’s important to remember what dating is for. It’s for this! This exact thing. It’s for finding out all the shitty stuff about the person you thought you might like. The hard part is the deciding what to do about it, especially when they make you super horny. Run?

Why It’s Okay To Question God 
Some people believe that any expression of doubt is a sin. They believe that you must always have faith and never waver, never question God, and certainly never criticize God, lest he depart from you or punish you for your insolence or lack of faith.

What’s Lost as Handwriting Fades
But psychologists and neuroscientists say it is far too soon to declare handwriting a relic of the past. New evidence suggests that the links between handwriting and broader educational development run deep.
Children not only learn to read more quickly when they first learn to write by hand, but they also remain better able to generate ideas and retain information. In other words, it’s not just what we write that matters — but how.

Wolfgang Puck: California Is the Basis of Good Cooking
Sometimes when I wake up I think: Jesus Christ, did we just open in London and Singapore? I think back to my little village in the mountains with the cows and the pigs. And the trajectory I took to get here. Why did I go to France? Why did I come to America? Why Indianapolis? Why Los Angeles? How did this whole thing happen?

How I May Have Saved the Life of the Person in Line Behind Me at the Post Office Today
We gave each other one of those tight little smiles meant to indicate one’s courteous and upbeat nature without encouraging conversation with a potential crazy person, over-sharer, or loud complainer. I stood there in my jeans and t-shirt, she in her skirt suit.

The Day The Office Toilet Challenged Me – funny story

Bluffin’ With My Muffin (5 Myths about Pubic Hair)
A little trimming or sculpting is usually appreciated, especially if you are hoping for cunnilingus, but there is no logistical mandate for going totally bareback. Nobody ever in the history of earth was physically unable to insert penis into vagina due to hair interference.

The O-B-S-C-E-N-I-T-Y of Spelling Bees 
A culture of over-achievement is only valuable if it is voluntarily entered into and created by the people doing the over-achieving. Spectacles like spelling bees are oftentimes the consequences of doting, over-controlling parents who, though well-intended, are stymying their children’s capacity for achieving a fulfilled state of mind.

How To Outsmart the Machines 
To treat everything we read as purely literal robs us of the higher faculties: symbolism, context, nuance, historicity. We are diminishing ourselves to read ideas literally, as though they were commands and directives, not ideas and illuminations — but the machines will always be better at us than that. And so when we read the written word as purely literal, we are less than human and less than computers.
The truth is that anything reduced to the absurd sounds stupid. But what is truly stupid is reducing in the first place. For when we reduce, and reduce, and reduce, we are again less than fully human — and also less than computers

Wisdom I Wish I’d Heard As A 1st Grader 
You’re in first grade. This isn’t preschool anymore. If you don’t know how to code, you should pretty much give up on making it to third grade.
You can’t write in cursive, you don’t know the periodic table of elements, you don’t even know how to file your taxes, you dumbass. This is all fine. By knowing your weaknesses and flaws, you can truly understand yourself.

Rebranding Feminism 
Feminism is a movement. Feminists are activists. Our ancestors fought and suffered to help women gain equality. You want us to sprinkle some glitter on top to make you feel better? Are the truths we speak a little too real, a little too uncomfortable?
Will changing the name to “egalitarianism” help you forget that all genders today are not equal? Will allotting Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson a spokesperson make it ‘manly’ enough for you to identify with the movement? Will hosting giant feminist themed parties make it ‘fun’ enough to make you see that feminists are not sexually frustrated butch women?

Scientists have figured out how to retrieve ‘lost’ memories 
While the studies were done in mice, the findings could have implications for memory loss in humans. Specifically, the work suggests that memories lost after a traumatic brain injury such as a concussion, car accident or even a stressful event or some forms of dementia may be retrievable. How successful that may be depends on how soon after the memory-robbing event the recall occurs; it’s more likely to happen, says Ryan, soon after the traumatic event and before the memory is completely stored in the brain. But if the brain is severely damaged, then it’s possible that the process of storing the memory itself is compromised, and the memory won’t be retrievable.

Don’t Let Them See Your Tampons 
Secrecy is a key element of the modern period—the existence of tampons and pads in the first place allows women to “pass as non-bleeders,” as Sharra Vostral puts it in her book Under Wraps: A History of Menstrual Hygiene Technology . Barring any mishaps, the blood is only visible behind closed doors. Women’s public bathrooms have special trashcans in the stalls so feminine products can be disposed of neatly and privately.
Some of this, surely, comes from the disgust associated with all bodily fluids, and a preference to keep dirty-but-necessary animalistic activities (like excretion) cordoned off by bathroom walls, out of the public eye. But if excretion is a great equalizer (Everybody Poops, as the children’s book says), menstruation divides. Only half the population is biologically predisposed to do it, and the other half would largely prefer not to know about it, thank you very much. Many religions have historically dubbed menstruating women “unclean” and secular shame abounds as well, with jokes aplenty about “that time of the month” and teen magazine “Most Embarrassing Moments” columns filled with period-related anecdotes.

Choice’ Isn’t Always A Choice: I Had An Abortion To Save My Life
There’s a danger in talking about “good” abortions — these stories, like mine, of women choosing to end wanted pregnancies because of medical complications. They’re important because they bring to light the need for abortion due to medical reasons, but they also present the danger of making it seem like other reasons for abortion are less valid. That’s not my goal. I don’t want anyone to think that I had abortion for a “good” reason and that abortions for other reasons are bad. What I do want is for people to hear my story and realize that abortion is often a much less black-and-white issue than politicians want us to think.

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