Sunday, October 05, 2003

irish baby-boomers

i appreciate it when random-seeming tidbits convene in a way that creates a coherent subject, something conducive to writing about. VIZ.,

first last night i read gail collins's stand up women, an article in the nytimes magazine about how new york city has no statues of actual women (you know, as opposed to hera and alice in wonderland). particularly noteworthy in this piece of course is her paragraph on victoria woodhull, my whoa-man.

this morning i read evil maureen dowd's article which unironically includes the phrase "feminism died in 1998." not acceptable, maureen. even aside from that criminally stupid declaration -- which puts feminism's life-or-death at the feet of icons gloria steinem and hilary clinton -- she bursts at the seams with in jokes, chatty cattiness, and exhausting pseudo-clever wordplays.
witness the following:
It was no surprise on Friday that Mr. S was backing off his promise to release those "Springtime for Hitler" outtakes from George Butler's 1977 documentary "Pumping Iron." No dummy, he knew years ago his "Nazi stuff" could be trouble. He bought up the incriminating evidence, 100 hours of histrionic interviews, for a mil, and worked with the Simon Wiesenthal Center, giving it a mil in guilt gilt.
she means "gelt" not "gilt" and anyway: ugh! can you even unearth her point under the blizzard of blather?

interestingly, once i started researching gail collins, i found this slate article comparing her and dowd. it seems to give collins the advantage but it also paints collins with the same brush that i use above on dowd: "This is not commentary, this is hyperactivity." why do both feel they need to move a mile a minute, whirlwind into each sentence a jab or a jibe? why, in essence, do they write like bloggers? unlike the famed skimmers of the internet, people who read the nytimes are supposed to have an attention span.

as an answer to my rhetorical question, slate also offers this: Oh no; It's a Girl! apparently men are more likely not to leave their wives if their wives, like good wives, produce blessed boy-children. it presupposes that divorce = men leaving their wives. i'm not an economist, i have no idea whether most divorces are in fact initiated by men. although the article does not address that point, it makes some interesting other ones, such as:
One of Dahl and Moretti's most striking bits of evidence comes from shotgun marriages. Take a typical unmarried couple who are expecting a child and have an ultrasound, which more often than not reveals the child's sex. It turns out that such couples are more likely to get married if the child is a boy.
however the article, while pretending to address the subject evenhandedly ("Dahl and Moretti wisely decline to speculate, and I will follow their example") seems to relish its conclusion: "Maybe boys are just more fun to have around."

No comments: