thoughts on hyphenated names

Dr Hegarty said: “In the 16th century, naming men before women became the acceptable word-order to use because of the thinking that men were the worthier sex. This grammar has continued with ‘Mr and Mrs’, ‘his and hers’ and the names of romantic couples like Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet

I often do this without thinking, though I’m getting better at noticing and stopping myself.

I was thinking about this in terms of hyphenated names- do most hetero couples who choose to hyphenate their names together put the man’s name first? How do they decide?

As a person in my 20’s, I have several friends with hyphenated names inherited from their parents. They all hate their last names. They are long and difficult to relay. They are embarrassing.

My boyfriend told me about a study he read (I’m sorry, I can’t find a link) that concluded that hyphenated names are detrimental to women and beneficial to men. People would see “Nathan Smith-Roberts” and think his parents must be progressive, open-minded and tolerant people. The same people would see “Norah Smith-Roberts” and not hire her because she must be a man-hating radical feminist.

I think hyphenated names are a well-intentioned but bad idea. They’re too problematic. What does the next generation do?

I think in a family with multiple children, there are two ideal solutions, assuming the couple wants to pass on both names. They could take turns- name the first child one last name, and the second child the other. Or, for hetero couples, they could give the father’s last name to any sons, and the mother’s last name to any daughters. That makes a lot of sense to me.

Where did your last name come from? Do you like it? Have you ever changed your last name? Why? What would your ideal solution be? I would love to hear your thoughts!

who is responsible for your happiness?

I have had a few epiphanies in my life. One of those epiphanies came when I was 22 years old, about six months after I got married. I realized that I had made a mistake—that I needed to leave him. But that wasn’t my epiphany.

My epiphany was that everyone is responsible for their own happiness.

Read the rest of this entry »

a well-written article about a [disabled] male knitter

Today I came across an article by Capi Lynn at Statesman Journal in Oregon about a blind man who wrote a beginner’s book about knitting.

As I was reading it, I was thinking about a blog post I read recently at FWD/Forward, about “inspiring crip stories”: stories or articles written about disabled people overcoming their horrible afflictions in order to inspire normals (you can hear my sarcasm, right?).

Maybe it’s because I’m coming from the perspective of an able-bodied person, but I thought the article was well-written and respectful. Read the rest of this entry »

why are there no pink cars?

So I was driving home today, and I thought I saw a pink car in the distance, but soon I realized it was red.

Which made me wonder: Why are there no pink cars? I mean, surely there are pink cars in the world, but why do I not see them advertised or driven?

Pink is often used to market traditionally masculine commodities to women, so why are cars (often considered an exclusively masculine interest) not marketed in pink to attract female buyers?

I don’t really have any thoughts on this yet, so I would really, really, appreciate your comments!! Please let me know why you think cars are not advertised or more readily available in pink.

Thanks!

origin of the word “sissy”

I was curious about it, so I googled it and found this:

sissy 1846, “sister,” extended form of sis. Meaning “effeminate man” is recorded from 1887; the adj. in this sense is from 1891.

So, calling someone a sissy is calling them “sister”. Why is it so bad for a man to have traditionally “feminine” characteristics?

The only way this could make sense is if being a woman or having “feminine” characteristics is bad. Wrong. Worse than being a man.

It’s only logical. Yet people still don’t see that we live in a sexist society? This is maddening.

There is a woman that I work with who is in my generation. I am 24, she is a very young 30. I like her a lot—she is a good, fun person. But she constantly uses feminine words to belittle men—in a joking, teasing way. Ha ha. So funny. “You sound like a little girl!” “Why are you walking like a woman?” Ha. See how funny that is?

It makes me angry whenever I hear it. But I don’t want to start a Serious Discussion in the middle of work (in the middle of her funny funny joke) about why that is sexist and demeaning to women.

Once, she and another woman were sitting in the break room at work talking. I went in to grab a coffee. They were talking about an ex of hers, and how he had hung out with a friend making s’mores one time. “That’s so gay!” “I would have dumped him for that!” I told them that was sexist and tried to explain, but it was like they just shut me out. Didn’t want to hear it. Didn’t want to think too hard.

I get this reaction a lot from people, when I want to discuss something, or be serious for a bit, or really think in depth about something. Most people I guess are threatened by that? They don’t want to think too hard. They don’t want their little paradigm to be pushed a little, shifted just a tiny bit. They don’t even want to consider it.

Living like that seems awfully dull and shallow to me.