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On A Real Argument for Doing That Thing Where You Rub the Chopsticks for No Real Reason

@StLAmy YES! I even performed an experiment one very boring summer with two shaken cans, and it is totally effective!

Posted on August 13, 2013 at 11:38 am 0

On A Real Argument for Doing That Thing Where You Rub the Chopsticks for No Real Reason

Tapping the top of a soda can does TOO make a difference - it keeps a shaken soda from exploding in your face, and has always been super effective for me.

Posted on August 13, 2013 at 11:34 am 0

On Daisy, You're a Drip, Dear: Detestable Literary Characters Who Are Not Technically Villains

@City_Dater
Daisy doesn't even know the identity of the woman with whom Tom is having an affair, either. The only one in their 4-person Old Money Club really responsible for killing someone, imo, is Tom, who in the novel not only tells Wilson that the yellow car didn't belong to him, but on the day of Gatsby's murder tells gun-toting Wilson where to find him.

Like literally, it is heavily implied that the day after their conversation over Myrtle's body, Wilson goes with his gun to East Egg to meet Tom, who tells him where he can find and kill Gatsby. The movie adaptations like to play it like Tom was blinded by grief after finding Myrtle and in the moment spills to Wilson with tears in his eyes, etc, but in the novel it's a lot more premeditated than that, and the condensed-for-film version doesn't do it justice.

Posted on May 20, 2013 at 3:31 pm 1

On Daisy, You're a Drip, Dear: Detestable Literary Characters Who Are Not Technically Villains

@The Attic Wife

Nick isn't even really poor, either - he's slumming it by choice (in the novel, anyway - the recent adaptation revised this element); his wealthy parents agreed to pay his rent for a year while he tried to make his own independent fortune on Wall Street. I mean, he opens the novel by declaring himself a snob and stating that some people are just born better than others - imo Fitzgerald expected the reader to pass judgment on him just as much as on every other character.

Posted on May 20, 2013 at 3:25 pm 1

On Daisy, You're a Drip, Dear: Detestable Literary Characters Who Are Not Technically Villains

@The Widow Muspratt

I don't think he's an asshole, but he's 100% creating his own problems by the end of the book. "Oh, Komarovsky is offering to save both Lara and me? Nah, I'll trick Lara into going without me and stay behind ~*~because I'm not ready to leave yet~*~ and then spend the rest of the novel lamenting the tragedy of my lost love whilst shacking up with life partner #3!"

Posted on May 20, 2013 at 3:16 pm 1

On Daisy, You're a Drip, Dear: Detestable Literary Characters Who Are Not Technically Villains

"But the really detestable member of the bunch is Daisy, who has no character."

Uh...what? I guess I'll accept this if you're referring to the way Daisy is interpreted in the recent film adaptation (or any of the others, really) - but I'm not sure how one could read the novel and not come away with an appreciation of how complex she is.

Her arc runs parallel to Gatsby's; just like him, she's done everything "right," followed the American Dream Instruction Manual for Happiness to the letter but is miserable and lonely and therefore floundering around for reasons why (Gatsby decides it's because he was too poor to "earn" Daisy, Daisy decides she's unhappy because of the scandal/gossip surrounding her husband's affairs). The scene where she tells Nick that "the best thing a woman can be in the world is a beautiful fool" is heartbreaking; she's so powerless and carries so much resentment - she knows she's married to a man she can't respect, and she also knows that there's nothing she can do about it.

She spends the novel passive-aggressively sniping at Tom (mocking his politics, offering him a pencil with which to take down the address of his next mistress, etc), who she both relies on and sees as the source of her misery, and when Gatsby gives her the opportunity to both join him in his nostalgic game of what-if and strike back at her husband with a little of his own medicine, she jumps on it.

Where she differs from Gatsby is in her pragmatism - like Nick mentions repeatedly in the novel, Gatsby's defining trait is his naive optimism, his inability to let go of an unattainable goal. Once Tom reveals the extent of the gossip surrounding Gatsby's criminal history to Daisy, she finally admits to herself that leaving Tom was never a real option - it would lead to more scandal and judgment from society as staying with him has (plus now she's been offered the hope that Tom means it when he says he'll try to be faithful from then on).

Daisy uses people, but she's far from characterless - she's the most complex character in the story, imo, after Gatsby. Fitzgerald addresses objectification over and over in the book (Jordan's date to Gatsby's party feels "entitled to her personhood," Gatsby himself views Daisy as a prize he once "stole" despite his lack of status/income and needs to possess in order to view himself as a success), and Daisy is the one most obviously, actively languishing under those restrictions. If Gatsby's dreams will always be out of reach because of his lack of elite family lineage, Daisy's powerlessness is because of her gender.

I know we're all programmed to resent female characters who are bad mothers and "lead on" the men who ~deserve them, but Daisy is worth a second look.

Posted on May 20, 2013 at 3:12 pm 1

On Daisy, You're a Drip, Dear: Detestable Literary Characters Who Are Not Technically Villains

@Daisy Razor

Really? I could see rooting for Levin if you'd only seen the recent film adaptation of the novel, but based on the text itself? He's a giant self-centered Nice Guy who compares sexually-active unwed women to spiders that he'd like to crush, wishes his wife and unborn child would just die already because her screams during labor are really ~hard for him to listen to, and screams at his wife/forces her to apologize when one of his own houseguests flirts with her (she not only doesn't flirt back, she refuses to allow him to kiss her hand, which Levin also resents because RUDE).

The worst part, for me, is on their wedding night, when he decides "they shouldn't have secrets from each other" and so gives Kitty a giant list of everyone he's ever slept with/masturbated to. Not only is this "what what no what are you doing please stop WHY" material, it's the most obvious evidence of his total obliviousness to the needs of anyone but himself - he gives her this journal because they should be open with each other...but it never even occurs to him to ask Kitty about her own thoughts/history, because of course Kitty is only there to serve as a keeper of HIS secrets, and her own inner life is irrelevant.

I may have a lot of feelings - I just read this in January, so it's pretty fresh in my mind/actively resentable for me.

Posted on May 20, 2013 at 2:58 pm 1

On Shop Talk

@cosmia I do, and I love it! It's so heavy and shiny and I love all the temperature-conducting properties of stainless steel down there. It's a great shape, too. Totally recommend it in concert with a nice vibe (I use a little Lelo Mia).

Posted on April 5, 2013 at 12:50 pm 0

On Shop Talk

@Lisa Frank My first vibrator! So terrible and ineffective for me, it almost turned me off vibrators altogether.

Posted on April 5, 2013 at 12:42 pm 0

On Faking Orgasms for Fun (?) and Profit

@Jolie Kerr
My grandfather's favorite childhood food (Depression kid) was warm popcorn and milk. I've had it, it's good enough that I could see doing it if I had stale leftover popcorn, but not so good I would waste delicious fresh popcorn on it.

Posted on March 28, 2013 at 1:20 pm 1