That's what SHE said: a nightmare house of horrors, the co-opting of the word diversity, the real risks of driving while black, truth about the porn industry, the hard bits of marriage and more...



MY HALLOWEEN HOUSE OF HORRORS | McSweeneys.net 

Wendi Aarons paints a true house of horrors with five terrifying rooms, each depicting her ultimate nightmares... "I creep down a dark flight of stairs. When I reach the bottom, a white suburban dad dressed like Flava Flav jumps out of nowhere and yells, “Hey, BO-OYYY!” and flicks on the lights. Chills go down my spine when I see that I am in a Pottery Barn catalog living room. Four white PTA moms wearing clear heels and booty shorts gyrate against my torso while small, demonic children in helmets and knee pads pedal tricycles in an endless circle. The music of Public Enemy starts pumping over hidden speakers, and my tormentors begin to flash gang signs and mug for the camera, while lip synching “Don’t Believe The Trike.” My body freezes in abject terror because I know there is no escape from this hell. I am forever trapped in a parenting rap parody video."

COSTUME IDEAS FOR THE HALLOWEEN CHURCH FESTIVAL | matthewpierce.com

Mathew Pierce breaks down costume ideas for your annual Halloween "non-Halloween" Church festival complete with a picture of himself as a young Shadrach, part of his obscure Old Testament characters suggestion... "Are you holy enough for simply going to a church Harvest Festival? NO YOU ARE NOT.  Broadcast your righteousness by dressing up as obscure Old Testament figures Shadrach, Meshach, or Abednego …and watch the honeys come runnin.  Is that a real beard? Naw girl, that’s just brown paint.  But you know what IS real? My crippling social anxiety and abject terror of the female body.  But don’t worry–I’ll grow out of it in several dozen years."

A BAD LIP READING OF THE FIRST DEMOCRATIC DEBATE




DIVERSITY IS FOR WHITE PEOPLE: THE BIG LIE BEHIND A WELL-INTENDED WORD | salon.com

An honest look at the co-opting of the word "diversity" and how the watered down use of a well-intended word leaves us without the words to discuss ongoing racism. Diversity talk has been co-opted by white people in universities and corporations who use it to spew policy and outline missions, but put very little effort into effective action..."However much it might feel good, though, diversity talk is not enough. At this paradoxical time, when we are at once commemorating fifty years of civil rights gains while questioning racism in policing and prisons, it allows us to sidestep persistent, alarming racial inequalities. Its appeal makes it downright pernicious. It lets white people off the hook from doing something about our own culpability in the problem — like our inclination to live near people like us (i.e. white) or to put in a good word with the boss about our friends (i.e. probably white)."

THE DISPROPORTIONATE RISKS OF DRIVING WHILE BLACK | nytimes.com

A shocking look at the facts in a racially diverse city whose own mayor is asking: "Are we the next Ferguson?"... "Documenting racial profiling in police work is devilishly difficult, because a multitude of factors — including elevated violent crime rates in many black neighborhoods — makes it hard to tease out evidence of bias from other influences. But an analysis by The New York Times of tens of thousands of traffic stops and years of arrest data in this racially mixed city [Greensboro, NC] of 280,000 uncovered wide racial differences in measure after measure of police conduct."




THE TRUTH ABOUT THE PORN INDUSTRY |  theguardian.com

Julie Bindel profiles Gail Dines, the world's leading anti-pornographer campaign, and her often vilified and misunderstood mission. Dines, author of the book, Pornland: How Porn has Hijacked Our Sexuality, talks about the alarming effects porn is having on our relationships and how it is particularly effecting young men, even boys as young as 10 and changing the way that girls and women think about their bodies and sexuality... "We are now bringing up a generation of boys on cruel, violent porn," she says, "and given what we know about how images affect people, this is going to have a profound influence on their sexuality, behaviour and attitudes towards women...As a result of her research, Dines believes that pornography is driving men to commit particular acts of violence towards women. "I am not saying that a man reads porn and goes out to rape," she says, "but what I do know is that porn gives permission to its consumers to treat women as they are treated in porn." 

THE HARD BITS OF BEING MARRIED | raisingself.com

Samantha Sophia talks about the challenge of being an occasional introvert who itches for an empty bed while married to a man with strong emotions who has needs she can't always meet... "He isn’t an automaton (Jane Eyre anyone); I can’t just activate him when I want to be a wife and deactivate him when I want to be selfish. He has emotional needs, even when I am unable or unwilling to provide them, and that is (one of) the hard bits of being married. That I am a selfish creature fighting like hell to occasionally get out of my own head and be selfless for the man I made so many matrimonial and spiritual promises to."

THE NEW YORK TIMES BEST ILLUSTRATED CHILDREN'S BOOKS OF 2015

Big Bear Little Chair, Written and Illustrated by Lizi Boyd


THINGS TO DO & THEATRE TO SEE

In Los Angeles, young inventors might want to check out the Mini Maker Faire coming to Barnes & Noble Stores nation-wide November 6 -8. For theatre, Beth Henley's Abundance at South Coast Rep is running through November 15th. And if you are looking to jump right into the Christmas spirit, Knott's Merry Farm is coming to town and get your tickets to OC's Festival Ballet Theatre's The Nutcracker! For date night, David Sedaris is coming to Irvine Barclay Theatre in late November.

In New York, step outside and cheer on the NYC Marathon this Sunday, November 1st! If you are looking for some fun musicals, be sure to catch A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder (closing January 17th), Lazarus  (with David Bowie) at New York theatre Workshop, Something Rotten!  on Broadway and Fun Home at Circle in the Square Theatre. For fresh new plays, check out Matthew Broderick in Sylvia and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time



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