WTF Wednesday

Woohoo Alabama! You may not be thrilled to have a Democrat in the seat, but your state deserves far better than Roy Moore representing you.

This man shouldn’t have even been running for office, much less in a tight race for it. We have to do better, fellow white people. You can review the full exit poll results here.

I am having so much spiteful joy that one of the men who was denied a marriage license by County Clerk Kim Davis is now running against her for her job.

Kim Davis Re-Election

I understand that there are people who are sincerely morally opposed to a lot of things, but you cannot accept an elected position to serve the public if you refuse to serve the entire public. You can continue to be personally opposed to gay marriage, but you have to give people their marriage licenses. I don’t see how that is any different than denying an interracial couple a license. I originally wrote this last night: “And if you don’t see the similarities, then I am happy to introduce you to plenty of folks I know who believe that relationships between people of different races are a moral abomination.” But, then, this story popped up this morning which perfectly illustrates how AWFUL AND HATEFUL PEOPLE ARE.

I wouldn’t typically cite the Daily Mail as a source, but they have the examples of the comments they received. I really hate people sometimes.

I had a student try to blackmail me last week by telling me if I didn’t do what she wanted she would go to the media.

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I get this threat pretty frequently, but it’s always interesting to me that students think I will suddenly panic and do whatever they want. Frankly, I would love a story to be published about all of the people who presented 425,864 ways to try and help you find a solution to the problem that you created yourself. You, sweet child, are your problem. You chose not to go to your class. Just because you now believe that you had to teach yourself (since you decided not to go to class to actually learn from the qualified person we hired TO TEACH YOU) doesn’t mean you’re entitled to a refund.

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Our graduation ceremonies are this week, and we have four ceremonies starting on Friday morning and lasting through the day on Saturday. I received a call from an angry parent that our Saturday ceremony is “too early” and she’s not sure that she will be able to come. I thought at first that she may live several hours away and is not able to afford a hotel for Friday night (which is a completely reasonable problem), but no. She lives here in town and may not come because it’s “very annoying” to wake up that early on a weekend. The ceremony starts at 8 a.m., not at some truly awful time like five in the morning.

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I sincerely feel for guests who have people graduating on Friday because you either have to take off work or miss the ceremony because you have the kind of crap job that doesn’t give vacation or fires you if you’re not there. I truly feel for those folks, but I have zero empathy for someone who can’t be bothered to wake up a little early on a Saturday to watch her only kid graduate from college.

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Outlander Finale!!

SPOILERS AHEAD

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This season has felt like a hot mess, and the finale was no different. I cannot believe they mushed all of that into a single episode after we spent how many episodes crossing the ocean and watching Claire be moody in Boston??? I am glad that Geillis was in this season because I like the actress, but it still doesn’t make much sense on the whole. As usual, it’s super convenient that Claire has to dig out the pictures of the conveniently 200 year old baby to prove her point to Geillis who can now conveniently use said pics for DARK MAGICAL PLOTS.

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I also don’t understand Claire’s statement that she was essentially drawn through the stones by an individual. Who drew her through that first time?? Anywho, the resolution of the plot with Geillis felt extremely rushed (like the entire season except all of those long ass days on the boat), and I wish she wouldn’t have been so easily defeated. There is no central bad guy for us to focus on this season. Geillis is barely in it and Captain Leonard is a nothingburger. No suspense!

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And just when you think they are headed back to the safety of Scotland, HURRICANE. I knew it was coming but I think Sari rolled her eyes so hard they almost fell out of her head. TOO MUCH. IT IS TOO MUCH PLOT. I’m going to keep watching of course, but I retain my right to complain. At least they’ve landed in the colonies just in time to get properly tangled in another revolution. I wish they had broken this book into two seasons. So much happened and very few plotlines had room to actually breathe and develop.

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I know I use that GIF all the time, but it really is perfect.

WTF Wednesday

Bitcoin has been in the news a lot lately, so when I overheard some professors talking about it recently, I decided to take advantage of their collective knowledge to try and understand what the hell Bitcoin is. After they explained it to me several different ways, I still was struggling. I conceptually understand what a bitcoin is and why they are used, but I still don’t get really understand their big picture purpose (other than buying things anonymously). And then they told me that each one costs about $11,500, so I peaced out because that doesn’t apply to me at all.

Image result for huh gifMaybe it’s because I will likely never have $11,500 around to play with, but why would you spend that much money on a totally made up currency (I get that all currency was totally made up at one point in time) that may or may not exist next month? The price is SO UNSTABLE.

Signed,

Overly Cautious Consumer

I am DEEPLY angered by Trump’s proclamation that they will be significantly decreasing the size of Bears Ears National Monument and Grand Staircase-Escalante. I understand the furor over bureaucratic overreach, but these lands must be protected by the federal government because no one else will or is capable of doing it. The designation of Bears Ears in particular has been the culmination of significant efforts by local tribes to protect land that is sacred and historical to them. Good to see America keeping her commitment to screwing over the native people.

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In a week’s time, Trump deprived Navajo Code Talkers of their rightful honors and recognition by using them as a political prop to attack an opponent with a racist slur (I am embarrassed for Warren and her unsubstantiated claim of native ancestry, but this was completely unacceptable), he announced plans to destroy lands that are sacred to them, and now the Navajo are suing Trump. IN ONE WEEK.

(SOURCE)

This is a good article on some of the scientific value of that region of Utah.

Hey, Brock Turner,

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And your appeal.

OUTLANDER

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I enjoyed this episode much more than prior ones. I am thrilled that they skipped a lot of the unnecessary extra plot from the books (A murder at the ball! The extra voyage and the bat dung! John’s revelation of the existence of Willie to Claire! And Yi Tien Cho’s general creepiness!). I liked having the Geillis reveal earlier in the episode so that the actress who plays her gets more screen time (she’s fantastic!).

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I am also glad that they changed the prophecy from the books. In the book it states that the next King of Scotland will be from Lord Lovat’s lineage (Jamie’s grandfather). It’s assumed that his lineage has died out (since mostly everyone thinks Jamie is childless) until Geillis learns of Brianna. This makes no sense. Jenny has an entire herd of children. If you argue that a female wouldn’t have been considered an heir, then Brianna doesn’t count either. Wouldn’t it skip to Willie? If Brianna does count as heir, then why wasn’t Jenny’s brood considered the heirs before we knew of Jamie’s female progeny? The show’s prophecy was far more specific which helps that whole thing make more sense.

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Also, I still hate Claire’s reaction to Temeraire. Being in a slave market would be horrifying for most people I would think, but particularly so if you had come from a time where MOST OF US agree that it was an abominable practice that has left a dark and shameful stain on our history and has caused numerous challenges for generations of people in this country. BUT. How else are you supposed to help someone who has been enslaved if you don’t “buy” them and set them free? What is the other option, Claire? The best thing you could do is to “purchase” everyone you possibly could, then find a way to get them to safety and freedom. She can’t end the practice of slavery in that time, but she and Jamie certainly could help individuals.

Anyway, I enjoyed the episode mostly because it featured a party with fabulous dresses. No more shipwreck fashion, please! JK, more of that to come.

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WTF Wednesday

When I got to work on Monday my boss said, “I have something to show you that is REALLY going to piss you off.” Raymund Paredes, the Commission of Higher Education in Texas, said, “We’ve been told by some presidents that we’re getting to the point where males feel uncomfortable on college campuses, on some college campuses” because there are TOO MANY WOMEN.

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If you actually want to worry about people feeling uncomfortable, then maybe go chat with those students who have been historically underrepresented in higher education for all of time. I bet the 3.7% of Black students at Texas A&M or the 5% at Texas Tech aren’t always made to feel particularly comfortable. I don’t want students left behind or left out of education, but invariably as more groups gain access to education, then the historically dominant one will decrease. I’m not sad about any of that. You’re going to have to try harder, work harder, and persevere just like everyone else has had to do for centuries. EARN IT.

As you can imagine, I was completely overflowing with joy on Monday at the news of Meghan and Harry. I knew that one of the ladies I work with would also be excited, so I sought her out before a meeting so that we could jump up and down together while shrieking with glee. After calmly chatting about it (instead of actually screaming our heads off with joy), I went back to my seat. The man next to me told me that he was surprised to see that I would be into “something as frivolous as a royal wedding.”

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Knowing that he’s huge fan of a specific sport, I asked him if he ever gets excited watching games. He said of course, and I responded that I was surprised that he would be so into “something as frivolous as grown men in tights wrestling for a ball.” We all have a right to like what we like, and enjoying royal weddings is no more silly or frivolous than enjoying sports.

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I don’t care if Nazis have cats, worry about their wedding getting ruined, or what they watch on TV. DO NOT CARE. If you write an article in which you are making white supremacists sound sympathetic, then you are a Nazi sympathizer. They don’t deserve understanding, acceptance, or tolerance. THE END.

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Never forget when the NYT stated in 1922 that Hitler’s “anti-Semitism was not so genuine or violent as it sounded…” I will defend the freedom and importance of the press in a democracy to my dying day, but quit giving a platform to these hateful people.

The story about the woman posing as a rape survivor to try and discredit women who are actual survivors of sexual assault is a new level of terrible. WTF??? You are the actual worst people.

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Also, Trump donated to the group that organized this entire thing, Project Veritas. OF COURSE HE DID.

Finally, I got rear-ended AGAIN last week. Thankfully, no one was hurt and the damage is pretty minor (just need a new bumber and a repair to the muffler), but good grief. One of our football players slid into me in the rain, but he and his parents were super nice (and truthful), so that was a pleasant change. Also, we have the same insurance which has made the whole thing way easier (and he had actual full coverage). I can still drive my Jeep and it should be fixed next week, so hooray for something actually working the way it’s supposed to.

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WTF Wednesday

Last weekend in Yosemite, I picked up a hitchhiker.Image result for shock gif

I saw a woman by the side of the road who was running with a backpack and crying while waving her arms. I’m not always great with recognizing emotions, but it seemed to be a pretty dire situation. Once I slowed down, I realized that I had actually talked to the woman that morning when we were both walking from Half Dome Village to the start of the trail for the falls. I knew she was from another country and being in a bad situation abroad SUCKS. As it turned out, she was supposed to be taking the YARTS back to her hotel in El Portal at 4 pm, but the shuttle randomly didn’t show to take her to the bus stop, so she started running. When I picked her up it was 3:55 pm.

I picked her up and took her to the bus stop just in time for her to run on the bus as the last passenger. I have NEVER picked someone up and I know there is a false sense of security in picking up another woman, but I couldn’t leave her there. Also, what if a creep picked her up! I hate that it’s so scary to help people out these days. In conclusion, I stayed sexy (not really) and I didn’t get murdered! And she stayed sexy and made it on her bus without being murdered!

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OMG. Charlie Rose. WTF. “I always felt that I was pursuing shared feelings, even though I now realize I was mistaken.” Um. In general, don’t walk around naked in front of people from work. Just ever. And maybe, just maybe, if you want to get naked in front of someone or with someone, it never hurts to just ask. When in doubt, keep your clothes on, your private parts private, and your hands to yourself.

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I am also deeply frustrated, angry, and sad at a comment I am hearing more and more as more allegations come forward. Something a long the line of “Well, I guess all men of  a certain age are in trouble now!” Followed by an eye roll or dismissive comment. Hey, guess what, there definitely men of a certain age who came of age in a time where they thought that grabbing, groping, harassing, raping, assaulting, or exposing themselves to women was totally okay. But, there are a lot of men of that same certain age who grew up in the same society and didn’t engage in those behaviors because they are WRONG and GROSS.

You don’t get a pass just because you wielded power over women by harassing or assaulting them for decades because you could. Nope. Plenty of these accusations have been against men who are around my own age. Men who truly have no excuse for believing these behaviors are okay. They did it because they could, and I have zero pity for them now. This isn’t brand new information or an expectation that has come out of nowhere.

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On the same topic, this weekend was like the weekend of ladies saying the really really wrong thing. I get frustrated with Lena Dunham a lot because I think she says a lot of things to stir up attention and controversy (then is SHOCKED that people were upset with her), but she has proven herself again to officially be the worst. It isn’t about you, it isn’t about the person you think didn’t do anything, and it isn’t about what you think about that person. It’s about the person who was hurt. Maybe it’s time you pump the privileged breaks, lady.

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Hipster racism is the perfect description of this BS, and former Lenny Letter writer, Zinzi Clemmons has an eloquent response to it. Never forget her absolute assholery about Odelle Beckham Jr. Lena sure knows how to piss away opportunity, but don’t worry, she won’t suffer long term for it. Also, this take from Kathleen at Lainey Gossip is solid gold: “What could have possibly been going through Lena Dunham’s performative white feminist marshmallow mush brain that she thought this statement was a good idea?” I’m keeping that insult in the vault for future use.

Gymnast Gabby Douglas stepped in on Friday as well. I give Gabby a bigger pass because she is only 21 (Lena is 31). I said all kinds of backward stupid awful crap when I was that age and it took me years of people patiently teaching me about the error of my ways (and I am still learning) to undue a lot of the harmful beliefs that I had.

I was confused by the response because most of the time wouldn’t they be wearing their leotards? I know that some of them have done photo shoots in skimpy swimsuits, but so what? It’s their body and if they want to show it off, then more power to them. If you don’t want to wear a bikini in a magazine, then don’t. If I had muscles like that I would be showing EVERYBODY all of the time (except at work, of course). Look at my quads, y’all!!Image result for gabby douglas team usa

Anyway, I really hope she learns from this and is more supportive of her teammates in the future. We are so vulnerable and exposed when we are seeking medical treatment, and I can’t fathom how the fact that their medical professional was a disgusting creep can be seen as anyone’s fault but his own. I still believe in you, Gabby.

And, then there were the women who signed the SNL letter this week in support of Senator Al Franken. Plenty of us have worked with people who we thought were totally great and who turned out to be creeps to someone else (I have at least). And it SUCKS, it’s disappointing, and it’s hard not to automatically defend the person you happen to really like. BUT, just because it didn’t happen to me, doesn’t mean that it didn’t happen to someone else. And that is the person whose voice matters right now.

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Also, sexual harassment claims are blowing up at our state capitol. One Assemblymember will resign and we (at my University) are investigating claims made in one of our own internship programs. And the allegations are growing by the day. FINALLY.

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WTF Wednesday

Someone recently recommended a book to me and I replied, “Oh, I have that one on my list. I’m glad to hear you liked it.” She responded that she hadn’t read it, but it looks “so good.” Naturally, I assumed she meant that she had read about it or someone had recommended it to her, and it looked like it would be something she was interested in. Nope. She “doesn’t read like ever,” but the cover “seemed fun.”

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I was also recently sent a draft of a formal event invitation that featured Arial script. ARIAL.

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Sans serif fonts have no place on an invitation. Serif or script ONLY. I’m organizing a rally for font justice.

Seven weeks after Hurricane Maria, Puerto Ricans still can’t access programs that fed millions in Texas and Florida.” THIS IS SHAMEFUL.

One of the women who directly works with me is from Puerto Rico and her family is still there. She spoke to her dad the day after the hurricane passed over the island, but hasn’t been able to get in touch with him since. The rest of her family is trying to get to him to check on him, but physically cannot. This is outragous. Can you imagine not being able to find out if a parent is okay after SEVEN WEEKS??? WTF??

Nationally, it is estimated that teachers spend a total of $1.6 billion on school supplies each year. On average teachers spent nearly $500 with one in ten spending over $1000. The majority of my friends who are teachers work in schools that are in high poverty areas. I know they spend well over $1000 to ensure that their students have the supplies they need to be successful and to create a classroom environment that is inviting. It’s not a child’s fault that their parents can’t afford (or will not purchase) school supplies and it’s not a teacher’s fault that funding for education is still woefully inadequate. All of this is to say that the new Republican tax plan includes a proposal to eliminate the TINY relief that teachers get in claiming up to a $250 deduction on their federal taxes. WTF?? Our teachers and our students deserve far better than this, and it is shameful that teachers have to spend part of their already paltry salary on basic supplies.

Image result for teacher gifI saw someone recently comment that if teachers didn’t waste so much money decorating, then this wouldn’t be an issue. Personally, I think it’s important for students to be in an atmosphere that is inviting, interesting, and fun. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that some of my memories of my favorite teachers (particularly in elementary school) involved classrooms that were vibrant and festive. It was fun to learn and I was excited to be there. I am not stating that if you don’t go all out decorating your classroom then you are a bad teacher because I know that a lot of people truly do not have the time, money, or ability (I certainly couldn’t make anything even halfway nice), but I do think the classroom atmosphere matters. Also, students need Kleenex and pencils. 

 

OUTLANDER SPOILERS.

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THE OTHER WIFE???? When I read who it was in the book I switched my Kindle off with pure rage. I knew that little bitch would be back! I still cannot believe that Jamie married her after she tried to get Claire burned at the stake. The little girls are precious and deserve a good dad, but WTF man? It also constantly infuriates me at how much of the drama in these stories is stirred up by a basic lack of communication. There is never a good time to drop that you have another wife, but Jamie waited way too long. I also appreciate what a total hater Jenny is. She has no time for this Return of Claire nonsense. She’s the best part of any scene she is in.

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I was also furious when Claire decided to have a cliff-side chat about how maybe she should not have traveled back and that they weren’t meant to be after all. Girl, it’s been like a week. Cool your jets. Did you think it would be easy? You just plopped back into someone’s life after being MIA for 20 years. There was no way for that to be a simple situation. Also, OF COURSE Ian was kidnapped by pirates while they hashed out if Claire made a mistake. At least we are finally heading out on the high seas and the VOYAGE part of VOYAGER is happening.

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I don’t see how we are going to get through all of the plots on plots wrapped in plots with a plot topping ahead in just five episodes.