I'm afraid I have a bit of a knee-jerk reaction to 'Women should learn self-defense to avoid being raped', and your article made me examine it more fully.
I realise now that my reaction is probably rooted in the fact that suggestion is usually offered as part of a set that includes gems like 'dress appropriately' and 'avoid going out alone late at night' and all those other damned platitudes that are dribbled out as 'simple common sense'. Shark's teeth is such a perfect description.
Thank you for so clearly defining the paradox, and pulling my mind away from this particular shark.
I used Allie's pain chart during childbirth. It worked really well, especially when I made the joyful discovery that I'm really susceptible to the Happy Gas. I'm lying in the bath, sucking down the gas whenever a contraction hits, and when my husband asks what my pain is like, I say (giggling) 'I see Jesus coming for me, but it's okay. Want some of my gas, JC?'. The midwive is very confused, so my husband is all, 'Uh, there's this website called hyperbole and a half, and there's a pain chart on it and..'
'Oh, I remember that one,' says the midwife. 'OK hun, let me know when the bear's mauling you.'
It was a Bonding Moment.
@pollypeachum Um, is it bad that I've told my husband I want my 'push present' to be a plate of soft cheeses? We heard of the whole push present thing, both went WTF? and then I told him triple cream brie was what I was really dreaming of.
During my undergrad biology class, the lecturer announced that Flynn's dad was best known for an experiment in which he fed a dog a piece of meat with a long piece of string attached. Eventually, the string came out the other end, and this, uh, proved that our digestive tract is one long tube? Showed how long dog digestion takes? I have no damn idea, I got stuck on the mental image of a dog-on-a-rope and now it's the first thing I think of whenever I hear of Errol Flynn. (FYI, the dog was apparently quite fine with the string arrangement, but knowing what I do about 1910's science, that could be taken a number of ways).
@OxfordComma: Thank you for asking this. We've got a few wheelchair-bound people in our area and some hills/ramps (a particularly large one is the only way to our train station's platforms). I offer to help but I'm always really conscious of how I say it because on one hand: patronising, but on the other hand: it's a big honking ramp, you know? Then I feel like I'm being ableist for even thinking about it (I don't think twice about helping someone get a pram onboard) and now everyone can see I'm a neurotic weirdo, can't they?
I never push the matter if they refuse, so at least I'd be okay with your aunt, @packedsuitcase!