Disclaimer from the priestess, Erin Fleming, herself:
Yeah, sure, thanks, that’s fine, but I would ask that you add the disclaimer that I was writing back to a bunch of friends who I know really, really well, and who are used to my sense of humor, because if I were on a guest panel or in a more public forum I’d like to think I would temper my cheek just a bit. (Or am I just kidding myself?) And also, I have to say that Angel really had the best reaction, which is how silly it is that we’re all discussing a book that none of us have read. We’re just ranting in order to amuse ourselves and our friends. Probably not unlike what goes on in actual book clubs.
Editor’s note: Or, really, what goes on in the blogging and social media worlds pretty much daily.
Well, as funny as this is, Jen, and as you always are, and as great as it would be for you to post in on the your mom blog, just so that there would at least be some more interesting writing on there, it seems to me that you’re going a long way out of your way to deliberately miss her point. (Or is that Ms. it?)
She is a humorist, after all, so I don’t think she chose the title “How to Be A Woman,” with an actual, earnest, Emily Post type agenda, and I don’t think she’s talking about controlling our vaginas as in stopping them from running amok and getting into trouble without our consent. I think she means controlling it as opposed to letting others be in control of it, you know, in the way some others try to do, with their ultrasound legislation and third world clitorectomies and the like. I think that’s the control she’s referring to, not your hilarious blinding nylon vest scenario.
I think what she is clearly challenging is the type of modern woman who is suspicious of using the word feminist to describe herself, because it might put off her more conservative friends, or her controlling husband, or the guy she’s dating who likes to open the door for her, or her boss or her bat shit crazy tea party-ing father. I think she is provocatively challenging the type of woman who shies away from the word feminist because that kind of woman, like many of us, might be embarrassed or offended by what some fearless feminists might say or do. As many of us are, periodically. Pun intended.
I myself, although unabashedly a self-proclaimed feminist, am often offended or embarrassed by what some Americans might say or do, but I don’t shy away from either term as a descriptor. That’s just me.
I think her challenge is something along the lines of getting women to stop thinking that “feminist” is a dirty, unshaven, word, and I think she uses that line as a funny way to make the distinction. I could hear Tina Fey saying the same thing.
But I am the LAST person to talk you off a ledge if you want to publish what you think. Blog your lady business away.