Frankenstein Rewrites, by me

Oh Mary Shelley. Your protagonist just needs to learn how to problem solve.

It’s Spooky September so I’ve been listening to old timey horror novels and there are many situations in Frankenstein (read to me by Dan Stevens, THANK YOU Dan Stevens) that I felt could FRANKly have been vastly improved upon. Here are a few scenes which I have rewritten for your approval and consideration. (This is the closest I will ever get to writing fan fiction.)

The Farmer Rehabilitation Program (alternatively titled : Frankenstein’s First Lesson in Feminism)

“We may not part until you have promised to comply with my requisition. I am alone and miserable; man will not associate with me; but one as deformed and horrible as myself would not deny herself to me. My companion must be of the same species and have the same defects. This being you must create.”

The being finished speaking and fixed his looks upon me in the expectation of a reply. But I was bewildered, perplexed, and unable to arrange my ideas sufficiently to understand the full extent of his proposition. He continued, ‘You must create a female for me with whom I can live in the interchange of those sympathies necessary for my being. This you alone can do, and I demand it of you as a right which you must not refuse to concede.’ The latter part of his tale had kindled anew in me the anger that had died away. “Well, normally I would,” said I, “but remember the part of this tale where you literally murdered my five year old brother?” He replied, ‘I am content to reason with you. I am malicious because I am miserable. Am I not shunned and hated by all mankind? You, my creator, would tear me to pieces and triumph; remember that, and tell me why I should pity man more than he pities me? You would not call it murder if you could precipitate me into one of those ice-rifts and destroy my frame, the work of your own hands. Shall I respect man when he condemns me? Let him live with me in the interchange of kindness, and instead of injury I would bestow every benefit upon him with tears of gratitude at his acceptance. But that cannot be; the human senses are insurmountable barriers to our union. Yet mine shall not be the submission of abject slavery. I will revenge my injuries; if I cannot inspire love, I will cause fear, and chiefly towards you my archenemy, because my creator, do I swear inextinguishable hatred. Have a care; I will work at your destruction, nor finish until I desolate your heart, so that you shall curse the hour of your birth.’ A fiendish rage animated him as he said this; his face was wrinkled into contortions too horrible for human eyes to behold; but presently he calmed himself and proceeded- ‘I intended to reason. This passion is detrimental to me, for you do not reflect that you are the cause of its excess. If any being felt emotions of benevolence towards me, I should return them a hundred and a hundredfold; for that one creature’s sake I would make peace with the whole kind! But I now indulge in dreams of bliss that cannot be realized. What I ask of you is reasonable and moderate; I demand a creature of another sex, but as hideous as myself; the gratification is small, but it is all that I can receive, and it shall content me. It is true, we shall be monsters, cut off from all the world; but on that account we shall be more attached to one another. Our lives will not be happy, but they will be harmless and free from the misery I now feel. Oh! My creator, make me happy; let me feel gratitude towards you for one benefit! Let me see that I excite the sympathy of some existing thing; do not deny me my request!’

Wow, I thought. This really escalated quickly. However, despite my repulsion, I was moved. I shuddered when I thought of the possible consequences of my consent, but I felt that there was some justice in his argument. His tale and the feelings he now expressed proved him to be a creature of fine sensations, and did I not as his maker owe him all the portion of happiness that it was in my power to bestow?

Additionally, he had not asked to be created. I had done that all on my own. He disgusted me, but if I had not been so obsessed with “creating a new species” and being exonerated above my fellow man for my weird and creepy “scientific accomplishments” this wouldn’t even be happening. I groaned inwardly. Toxic masculinity ruins the party again, I thought drily, then made a mental note to discuss my apparent god complex with my therapist. In my opinion, not doing emotional maintenance regularly should be considered a punishable hate crime. I mean, I hadn’t been going to therapy regularly and look at me now.

I considered his request seriously. I could do as he asked. I didn’t relish it. I am a creepy guy, but the thought of digging through various graves for more “parts” was not a prospect I could revisit with any sort of delight. But there was the question of how she would turn out. What if she was a remorseless psychopath? What if the she-monster should not reciprocate his feelings? What if she wanted to pursue her career instead of a family? What if she friend-zoned him? The worst friend-zoning of all time. But it could happen. She should have free agency instead of being forced into a relationship she probably didn’t even want without being told what a “good guy” he was. And no matter what, I thought to myself sternly, no one should ever tell her she looks “so much prettier when she smiles.” That sort of passive-aggressive internalized misogyny belongs in the trash. Shaking myself mentally for veering off the rabbit trail, I resumed my original train of thought. Who would even want to be with this guy anyway? Even completely disregarding his looks (which, to be honest, weren’t great – I should have paid closer attention to the aesthetics) he had no sense of humor to speak of, and he was a stage five clinger. And he whined a lot. What would he even bring to the table in a relationship? Besides unwavering devotion? I should have made him prettier so that other people would like him, I thought ruefully, what a rookie mistake. There’s really nobody to blame here but me and I have just got to handle my scandal. I don’t even know why I didn’t go looking for him sooner. If I had a murderous pet bunny rabbit that I intensely disliked and it escaped, I wouldn’t be like oh well, I hope he never comes back! Who even thinks like that? What is wrong with me?

Right then there, I resolved that I would just have to correct my mistakes in these and past regards.

“First of all, Frank – can I call ya Frank?” I asked him. “I’ve decided to name you after myself, because I am a singularly pathetic narcissist.” I sighed deeply. “First of all, I’d like to apologize for ditching you in the first few years of your life. That wasn’t polite.” Frankenstein looked mystified, but I continued. “It’s just because I was completely horrified by how you looked and didn’t want to have anything to do with you, but still. That’s no excuse for being rude.” I fell silent for a few seconds, contemplating my grave irresponsibility, and then moved forward. “Also,” I explained, “I was extremely ill and I had extensive and prolonged diarrhea. Have you had diarrhea yet? No? Well, that’s a pleasure all the greater for being deferred.” I sighed even more deeply. “Now, even though murdering my little brother and framing Justine for it WAS a total dick move – and I’m very disappointed in you, by the way, and really think you ought to take some time to reflect upon your actions – I have realized it is my duty – as your pop-pop – to teach you right from wrong. It is NOT my duty, however, to make you happy, as you say. I’m not here to babysit your emotions.” I regarded him sternly. “On that note, I am not going to make you a female companion. I don’t believe females should be forced into traditional gender roles or choices they don’t want to make, no matter what Jordan Peterson has to say about it. Chances are she might want to go off on her own anyway, and you’d be just as upset as you are now, and then you’d blame me for it and go on a murdering spree. Now I’m sorry, young man, but that kind of behavior is unacceptable and will not be tolerated under my roof.” Frankenstein seemed even more mystified. “Why not?” He asked me. “Other men do as they like and nobody seems to reproach them.” I rolled my eyes. “I guess in this society, being male and an asshole makes you worthy of our time,” I commented sarcastically. Frankenstein had no worthy rebuttal to my scathing remarks, so I continued. “However, I realize that it would not do to leave you completely without companionship of any kind. That would stunt your emotional growth and leave you unfit for even reclusive society. I will find you a habitat suitable for your needs, where you can be left alone in peace. Someplace scenic, with a brook nearby. I will provide for you a garden, where you will grow your own food. I will procure the necessary books and youtube channels for your tutelage. I will supply for you a pet of your choosing for you to socialize and cuddle with, although pandas and ferrets are out of the question. Dogs, cats and obscure turtles are on the table.”

“What is a ‘cuddle’?” Frankenstein asked me.

“I WILL ALSO,” I stated in an elevated volume, for I was most desperate to avoid questions of this nature, “provide for you a LIBRARY card, and you can tell me which books you might like to read by writing them down on a list. I will tutor you in all the subjects, but I must insist that the first book you read be Anne of Green Gables. You will see that she also had to overcome her temper, even though she was naturally subjected to it by being redheaded. You see,” I said. “You can hate me, if you like. You can be angry, if you like. But you can’t just go around murdering five year olds and then framing their innocent nannies for it. That sort of thing has just got to be nipped in the bud.” I paused for a second. I did not look forward to what I was about to say next, but it had to be said, and well I knew it. “Companionship you shall have,” I said, “but not that of a subjugated female who didn’t ask for it. Your companionship shall be my own. While we can both agree you are disgusting to look at, looks aren’t everything, and I vow to be your closest friend and ally. I admit, I really should let the authorities take over from here, but as I believe in restorative justice and not punitive, I’m gonna let this one slide.” Frankenstein stared at me like I had taken all leave of my faculties. I had to wonder, myself, if I was really in my right mind. The sight of him repulsed me, and his manner of speech was pretentious and weirdly cultivated. What would spending time with him be like? It sounded like a drudgery I could not face. But in this way I would do penance for my crimes, and I need not spend ALL my time with him. Really, if I only spent a few hours with him every few weeks or so, that would probably be sufficient – and it wouldn’t be so arduous if our association was activity-oriented. I made a mental note to acquire some adult colouring books while internally cursing the arrogance that had convinced me of my own superiority in creating life. Master race indeed, I thought bitterly. He doesn’t even know what cuddling is. I should have known I would have done a botch job of it. When will I ever learn to think things through?

My proposition, however ghastly to me, was well thought out. This way, I could go home and marry Elizabeth, my “cousin” – even though it was weird as balls that we had been practically raised together and now I was just going to take her as my wife. Still. It wasn’t fair of me to expect her to sit around at home and wait around while I cavorted around creating monstrous beings and feeling sorry for myself. Maybe she has things that she’d like to do and I should just stop being so selfish. It was time, more than ever, to shit or get off the pot. I just had to make sure Frankenstein wouldn’t go off and murder her in an act of revenge first.

Frankenstein groaned heart-rendingly. “But DAD,” he said, “I WANT a GIRLFRIEND! WHY won’t you MAKE ME ONE?!?!”

“Because,” I said, “you don’t have enough emotional intelligence to be in a relationship yet. Now, as time goes on, we might think about taking you out to masquerade and balls and such, where you could commiserate with the ladies, but now is the not the time for that. You’ve just got to work on you right now, and not expect another person to be beholden for your many shortcomings. Also, you just need to dial it back with the melodramatics. You won’t die if you don’t have a lady friend. I should know. The only lady friend I’ve ever had is my cousin, who isn’t even really my cousin. It’s a weird situation,” I said soberly. “And more than you want on your plate right now. Take it from your old man.”

“But I don’t want to have just one friend,” Frankenstein complained. “I have a LOT of love to give! Some might say too much, in fact!”

“You can have a lot of friends, though,” I encouraged him. “They might just be cat friends.” Frankenstein frowned confusedly at this juncture, but I pressed on. “Now are you going to be sensible and accept my counter-proposal or not? The options, at this point, are accept my counter-proposal, or be a completely miserable wretch hell-bent on my destruction. Of course, that’s your prerogative. But I just want you to know if you continue down that path, it will be your own fault and you’re going to die alone and unloved without health insurance.” At the mention of a possible lack of health insurance, Frankenstein sobbed outright in stark fear and moral outrage, but I was inexorably relentless. These were the cold, hard facts of life and he just had to hear them, whether he liked them or not. “However, if you choose my option, you will be covered by Blue Cross until the day you die, and on your deathbed you will be surrounded by your loved ones. Which will be me, and your many cats. And maybe we could find a few blind friends for you as well. I’m sure there’s a meet-up group for that. They oughtn’t to mind your harsh dialect.”

Frankenstein, shocked into submission, vaguely nodded his assent. He seemed as if he had not much to say.

The years passed by in the manner described above. I brought out several books on the enneagram for him, and we both realized right away that he was obviously a type four. As this was the case, he would fall into fits of melancholy and in fact seemed to enjoy doing so. I had no patience for it. I never forgave him for murdering my brother. But, in time, he grew on me, much like a wart or some kind of unremovable fungus. Eventually I introduced him to my family. They were more annoyed with me for creating him than they were with him for existing. Of course, they all screamed bloody murder when they first laid eyes upon him, and screeched about the devils of hell and etc., but I had the tranquilizer darts ready until they learned to calm down. In time they grew to accept him, though he was quite often the brunt of their jokes without knowing it. As he approached his 16th year, he grew rather knowledgeable in the art of psychology, and began taking university courses by correspondence. Of course, as he would unsettle patients by meeting them in person, once he attained his degree he only did psychiatric support by way of letter writing. Bit more of a lengthier process, but not ineffective.

As the aging process was advanced in his case, he did not live very long. He had two cats, whom he had named Boo Radley and Ham Gathering. Me, my family, Boo Radley and Ham Gathering presided on his deathbed, and he passed away in our loving arms.

The Life Aquatic (Or, I lost my girlfriend and gained a boat)

I trembled and my heart failed within me, when, on looking up, I saw by the light of the moon the demon at the casement. A ghastly grin wrinkled his lips as he gazed on me, where I sat fulfilling the task which he had allotted to me. Yes, he had followed me in my travels; he had loitered in forests, hid himself in caves, or taken refuge in wide and desert heaths; and he now came to mark my progress and claim the fulfillment of my promise. As I looked on him, his countenance expressed the utmost extent of malice and treachery. I thought with a sensation of madness on my promise of creating another like to him, and trembling with passion, tore to pieces the thing on which I was engaged. The wretch saw me destroy the creature on whose future existence he depended for happiness, and with a howl of devilish despair and revenge, withdrew.

In a few minutes after, I heard the creaking of my door, as if some one endeavoured to open it softly. I trembled from head to foot; I felt a presentiment of who it was. Shutting the door, he approached me and said in a smothered voice, ‘You have destroyed the work which you began; what is it that you intend? Do you dare to break your promise? I have endured toil and misery; I left Switzerland with you; I crept along the shores of the Rhine, among its willow islands and over the summits of its hills. I have dwelt many months in the heaths of England and among the deserts of Scotland. I have endured incalculable fatigue, and cold, and hunger; and I also stole a boat, but that’s neither here nor there. Do you dare destroy my hopes?’

‘Begone! I do break my promise; never will I create another like yourself, equal in deformity and wickedness.’ I paused. “Wait a second, did you say that you stole a boat?”

‘Slave, I before reasoned with you, but you have proved yourself unworthy of my condescension. Remember that I have power; I can steal boats willy-nilly and you can’t! You believe yourself miserable, but I can make you so wretched that the light of day will be hateful to you. You are my creator, but I am your master; obey!’

“First of all,” I said, “You are literally being so rude right now. It’s driving me insane and I’m ready to shove a taco up your ass. Secondly, you can’t just go around stealing boats. Thirdly, the hour of my irresolution is past, and the period of your power is arrived. Your threats cannot move me to do an act of wickedness; but they confirm me in a determination of not creating you a companion in vice. Shall I, in cool blood, set loose upon the earth a daemon whose delight is in death and wretchedness? Begone! I am firm, and your words will only exasperate my rage.’ The monster saw my determination in my face and gnashed his teeth in the impotence of anger. ‘Shall each man,’ cried he, ‘find a wife for his bosom, and each beast have his mate, and I be alone with only my boat? It’s a wonderful boat, but I had feelings of affection, and they were requited by detestation and scorn. Man! You may hate, but beware! Your hours will pass in dread and misery, and soon the bolt will fall which must ravish from you your happiness forever, and you will NEVER have a boat as cool as mine! Are you to be happy while I grovel in the intensity of my wretchedness? You can blast my other passions, but revenge and boatlessness remains—revenge, henceforth dearer than light or food OR my boat! I may die, but first you, my tyrant and tormentor, shall curse the sun that gazes on your misery. Beware, for I am fearless and therefore powerful. I will watch you from my boat with the wiliness of a snake, that I may sting with its venom. Man, you shall repent of the injuries you inflict.’

I started forward and exclaimed, ‘Villain! Nobody cares about your stupid boat! Before you sign my death-warrant, be sure that you are yourself safe.’ I would have seized him, except there was no way that I could have seized him, because he was a thousand times more stronger than me, but he eluded me (quite expectedly, it was really idiotic to think I could have seized him myself) and quitted the house with precipitation. In a few moments I saw him in his boat. A motorboat. Advanced for the 18th century. I turned green with ardent jealousy. Did his depravity know no bounds? “See you later, ASSHOLE!” he shrieked.

“Well, sorry I’m NOT SORRY!” I yelled back. “BY THE WAY, THAT IS A GREAT FUCKING BOAT! WHERE DID YOU GET IT, JACKASS?!”

“IT’S PART OF MY NAUTICAL ADVENTURES INITIATIVE!” He hollered. Then he shot across the waters with an arrowy swiftness and was soon lost amidst the waves.

I scowled. Typical. Nothing to do now but call the coast guard.

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Title Of My Life Memoirs

Which I intend to write NEVER, by the way, unless I can write a book full of gossip about myself, my family, and everybody I’ve ever interacted with. Often people say to me “You should write an autobiography!” When I’ve shared a particularly weird/disturbing story from my past – I’ll admit it. Weird shit does happen to me. Without warning, and frequently. But I am not going to put that in print. I’ve got my dignity to think about. However, I do like coming up with TITLES to my life memoirs. Here are some working titles that have presented themselves to me through a) literary works of Lucy Maud Montgomery b) Movies/tv shows and c) things other people have said, either out loud or on twitter, that have inadvertently described my whole life :

Don’t You Dast Go Touching It

I Am Not In The Habit Of Sending For Albert During Family Difficulties

Ambisinistrous : Clumsy With Both Hands

Stern About Justice

If You Don’t Like My Content Then You’re Not My Audience

Protect The Cats

I Like To Exercise A Little Gumption On The Quiet

You May Experience The Emptiness With Me If You Wish

Inspired By The Kardashians

I Will Personally Bury My Spear In His Rump

A Disservice To Humanity

I Am So Over The Toxic Masculinity In This Hallway Right Now

Below Average But Still Good

Too White For This

Before I Punch You In The Crotch

I Would Do It For A Scooby Snack

That’s The Sassiest Owl I’ve Ever Seen

Angry Wizard Princess

I’m Very Non-Physically Resourceful

 

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Why Christianity Needs Feminism

Uh-oh, spaghettios! Prepare yourselves for a wild ride. And also, don’t be a dick in the comments section.

This is something I’ve been wanting to write about for a long time, but feared to do so. I was scared because a) I wasn’t sure I could give this subject the proper justice it deserves and b) other, more well-spoken characters than me have written about it, in better and more pithy ways. Why should I want to add my voice to the clamour? Why should I try to convince anyone of anything on the internet? Isn’t it better, wiser, more time efficient, to keep my mouth shut? To shut the polite fuck up? Why do I have to stir the pot? Why would I not just ask God to do the changing of hearts and minds? That’s not your job, Megan Joan. Well, first of all, being subtle or playing hard to get is just not something that comes naturally to me, so at this point in my career I’ve decided to give up on those two admirable activities altogether. You’re welcome. And secondly, I feel like it’s my responsibility to say something. As a woman, and also as someone who calls herself a Christian (while whispering “free-lance” afterward).

The reason I’m writing this post at all is because it has come to my attention, in a myriad of glaring and simultaneously subversive ways, that there is a divide between “feminists” and “Christians.” To be seen as feminist, in some circles, is to be seen as anti-Christian (because think of the babies!), and to be seen as Christian, in some circles, is to be seen as anti-feminist. To calmly put yourself in both camps is nothing short of ideological suicide on both sides of the coin. And while I’m no stranger to committing ideological suicide, I still feel like this egregious oversight needs to be corrected, or at the very least, someone should point out the fallacies of it. I VOLUNTEER AS TRIBUTE!

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First of all, before we really get started, there seems to be drastic confusion and antipathy surrounding the word “feminism”, and it needs to be cleared up, so allow me. I get the feeling, in certain social situations, to say the word “feminism” is akin to saying “I pooped my pants.” People look away, fidget in their chairs, blush, back away a bit, tense up for the smell that’s about to hit. I’m here to tell you that it’s okay. It’s okay to say the word feminism. It’s not dirty, it’s not bad, it doesn’t mean that you hate men, or want to talk smack about them, or think women are better than men, or that you want to kill all the babies, or that you’re now a member of the Politically Correct Police Task Force. It doesn’t mean any of that. All it means is that you believe women should have the same rights as men. That’s it. That’s the whole thing. Do you believe women and men have the same right to exist? Congratulations! You’re a feminist.

What is feminism? Simply the belief that women should be as free as men, however nuts, dim, deluded, badly dressed, fat, receding, lazy, and smug they might be. Are you a feminist? Hahaha. Of course you are.Caitlin Moran, How to Be A Woman

If you think women should be allowed to say what they think, you’re a feminist. If you think women should be allowed to make decisions for themselves, you’re a feminist. If you believe women have valuable input, be it at work or church or school, you’re a feminist. If you’re a woman who has talked in public today, you’re a feminist. If you believe women have the right not to be raped, you’re a feminist. If you’re not into child marriage or human trafficking, guess what? You’re a feminist! If you believe women should be allowed to take care of themselves, you’re a feminist. If you believe a woman should be allowed to say no without being called a selfish cunt, you’re a feminist. And lastly, though I may get in trouble for this one, if you call yourself a Christian, you’re a feminist. Because to be Christian, to follow Jesus, to believe the words and message of our God, is to be a feminist. In fact, the birthplace of feminism was the evangelical church, circa 1840’s. You really can’t get more fundamentally Christian than feminism. It is the traditionally conservative approach.

The fact that there are Christian women out there who speak against feminism boggles my mind, because without it, you wouldn’t be allowed to voice how you felt about it in the first place. In Caitlin Moran’s words, “The more women argue, loudly, against feminism, the more they both prove it exists and that they enjoy its hardwon privileges. Imagine if, in the 1960s, it had become fashionable for black people to say they “weren’t into” civil rights. “No! I’m not into civil rights! That Martin Luther King is too shouty. He just needs to chill out, to be honest.”

In her book Liberating Tradition (which I cannot recommend enough and which everyone needs to read), Kristina LaCelle-Peterson describes this estrangement between women and the Church in the following way :

“[Feminism] is to help women believe at a deep level something that our laws and our theology affirm – that women and men are equally valuable – but that our societal and church practices often deny…I met a young woman who had grown up in the church but somehow never really believed that women and men are made equally in the image of God; she feared that in God’s design, women are only second-class citizens. She may have heard the words about women’s equal value before God, but she has doubtlessly received the opposite message many, many times in subtle and explicit ways…American gender mores have been baptized by church tradition and repackaged as ‘the will of God’ and ‘what the bible says women should be or what men should be.’ Consequently, to challenge gender assumptions and gender roles feels as if we are rejecting Christianity, or at least parts of the Bible. But that is simply untrue. The problem is that we often assume that the social distinctions we live with flow naturally from biological differences. But they simply don’t.”

One of the best and most overlooked things about Christianity is that, among other things, it is an invitation to be fully human. It is one of the things that I have always loved the most about it. But how can we do that, how can we accept that invitation, if there is an underlying assumption that men bear God’s image more fully? Because God is equally female and equally male, and being “large enough to encompass both”, neither gender can claim that they have a greater resemblance to God. Therefore, neither gender can claim superiority or inferiority. We are equal. God did not design the relationship between men and women to be hierarchical, and scripture does not divide God’s characteristics into either “feminine” or “masculine.” Regardless, we, The Church, have done this anyway. We have tried to divide God. The invisible hierarchy takes place, despite what the bible says. I can only begin to imagine how this grieves God. And because of that, I have to believe that the current imbalance in the way men and women are perceived in the church is something that God never wanted.

So without further ado, here are some troubling arguments against feminism I have come across that I will address, and then you can decide how you feel for yourself :

Feminists are nothing but Pro-Abortion, Anti-Family Satanists

Classic. Okay, well. We all knew this was going to come up, so let’s get it over with. Let me just preface this by saying that I am not going to get into the Pro-Life vs. Pro-Choice debate, because that’s a fool’s game, and it will only end in tears. I refuse to take sides on that. What I will say, however, is that I have seen astonishingly blindsided and hateful rhetoric from both sides. Abortion isn’t simply murdering a child, and abortion isn’t simply a woman’s choice. It’s more complicated than that. You can’t force an issue to be less complicated by sheer force of will. It doesn’t work that way. (I will probably get death threats from both camps now, but that’s okay.) I’m saying that you can believe abortion is wrong and still believe that women are equal to men. You can also believe that it’s a woman’s choice to get an abortion and still be a Christian. If you are a woman who has chosen to stay home and raise a family, that’s not anti-feminist – as long as it was your choice. If you are a career woman, you aren’t anti-family. It is not Us vs. Them. Christianity is about inclusivity, no matter what bible you’re reading. We can’t keep polarizing the sides like this, not only because Jesus didn’t do it, but also because from a practical point of view, it gets us nowhere. So can we please stop with this bullshit? Being pro-life isn’t antithetical to feminism, and being pro-choice isn’t antithetical to Christianity. As Buddy the Elf once said, “There’s room for everyone on the nice list.”

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Man Is The Spiritual Head/Submissive Marriage

This argument is like a pesky, slightly immortal mosquito. I have to keep swatting it over and over. For years. So let’s start with what all the cool kids are saying. There are several verses in the bible that state husbands are the head of the wives, and that the wives should submit to them. However, any biblical scholar who’s worth his salt will tell you that the word given for “head” translates as source and/or completion, not authority. So there, you think, that’s that problem solved. But is it? Because somehow, the belief that the husband makes the final call, that he directs the household, or that there are different things in marriage that men & women are suited for (i.e man is suited for leadership, woman is suited for…other stuff) keeps cropping up. The argument goes, “You can’t be a feminist and a Christian because God made men and women different, not equal.” First of all, let me just say that I don’t think this particular school of thought is Christ-like or even scriptural. Secondly, I’m going to quote LaCelle-Peterson again, because she says it better than I ever could : “You can’t convincingly say ‘We are going to do things my way because I am the head of this house,’ and in the next breath say, ‘but I am ready to lay down my life for you.’ It is nonsensical because those are opposite orientations. Rejecting the hierarchical model of marriage that is still so comfortable in this culture in favour of a marriage shaped by Jesus’ definition and demonstration of love would be truly counter-cultural…God doesn’t need husbands to be spokesmen for him in their families. That some of the marriages in the Bible depict the submissive model for marriage says more about human brokenness than God’s design, and further to that, if you are looking in Scripture for passive women who fit our stereotypes of nice, godly women, you will be sorely disappointed.”

Women Aren’t Supposed to Teach or Lead in Church

Again, this seems like a simple misunderstanding – when the verses in the bible that forbid women to speak in church are looked at critically, we realize that the writer of these verses, Paul, was merely admonishing the women in the church who were being disruptive (and not in a cool way). If you look at all the things written by Paul about women as a whole, Paul was actually an advocate for women, encouraging them to pray, prophesy and be heard. The apostle Paul was a feminist. Maybe the first one. I’m considering making him our team mascot. Therefore, it astounds me that there are churches and Christians out there who would discourage women from being in a place of teaching or leadership. However, to make a long story short, I would perhaps redirect our attention to something I heard said at a conference a few years ago : The church is impoverished when voices are missing. The church cannot fully bear the image of God if half of that image isn’t even invited to the table. Not only is it mathematically impossible – I believe it is an insult to God. To say, “we accept and uplift this part of your creation, but this half – no, they are too emotional, they are less than, and we alone determine their importance in your story” is audaciously arrogant and gross. It’s gross. And I’m really surprised and disappointed that we’ve let it go on for this long.

If you are a Christian, I want to invite you to really take a long hard look at why we, as the Church, are looking at feminism with such distrust. What are we afraid of? Is our God not capable? Does he not transcend gender? Has he not demonstrated, again and again, by word and action, that He believes women are an equal part of his creation? Why can we not treat women as He does? Why can we not make room for that? Why must we ask women to make themselves smaller, to shrink in on themselves, to be one-dimensional? The answer does not lie with God, but with us. It’s us. We did this. And if you let that thought consume you, it will. But let’s not focus on the wrong part of the story. Even in our faithlessness, God reminds faithful. Let’s step out of his way. Let’s accept his invitation to become fully human.

“Doesn’t everyone belong in the arms of the sacred?” -Lady Gaga

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Scream Queens S2 Premier : Innermost Reflections

The green meanie. Ooh.

If this show was just 40 minutes of slow motion walking by John Stamos & Taylor Lautner I would be satisfied

Oh god. So this is where Hermione actually went after drinking the polyjuice potion that turned her into a cat

Oh Taylor Lautner.  Wish he still had that long hair from Twilight because that….was amazing

AAAHH JAMIE LEE CURTIS YOU ARE MY IDOL

A Munsch to the Face? I can’t even

Jamie Lee Curtis is the only woman I would ever tolerate wearing an all-white suit. Hillary Clinton, don’t try this at home

Haha. I would watch a Netflix documentary on the Chanels

ITS MY BEST FRIEND DENISE HEMPHILL!

“Who was later stabbed in the face…and pushed out a car.”

Lea needs to look up the meaning of double jeopardy asap

What is Jamie Lee Curtis up to now. I don’t trust that look in her eyes. But Zayday, like a fool, is all “YEP ALL IN”

So John Stamos is channeling the stone-cold-weirdo persona. Bet you he’s the killer. But no, too obvious.

OH GOD I DON’T WANT TO SEE HIS HAND GET CUT OFF

Haha this show is campy as balls

When do I get to see Chad Radwell. That is literally all I care about

OH MY GOD TAYLOR LAUTNER IS PLAYING A VAMPIRE!!!! PLOT TWIST

I’ve changed my mind. The candy striper is the killer. 110%.

So if she shaved all that hair would it just grow back?

Because of course “Chanel #5” is ON THE DIPLOMA

I like seeing the Chanels poor. WELCOME TO MY LIFE CHANELS

Why does Chanel know how to knit? Like, where did she pick that up?

John Stamos shower scene? Christmas has come early

HAHAHA JOHN STAMOS HAS A HOGWARTS TATTOO ON HIS BACK

Chanel has the most accurate definition of ghosting

Their bedside manner leaves much to be desired

HAHAHA KIRSTIE ALLEY?!?!?!? What the fack

Doctor tv show? Dare to dream

I want a tv show where these “doctors” and the Grey’s Anatomy doctors collide

Oh my god is John Stamos going to make out with Chanel

“No! You look like a large baby!”

Nobody’s died yet

Kirstie Alley just amped up the creep factor so hard

Earmuffs will always be my favourite Chanel

Oh here comes a drowning bathtub scene I bet you

Haha what? A double drowning bathtub scene?

Why do these bathtubs look like torture devices

Oh, here comes the killer. NO ONE IS SURPRISED

Oh pal, you got some green stuff on your fingers.  You’re gonna wanna get that seen to.

And….here is when our journey ends.

Great stuff, but where is my main squeeze Chad Radwell?

The premier of season one was better, but I feel like this season has real potential.

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Tickled : a movie review

“I keep saying the word weird over and over again, but that’s the only way I can describe it.” -Chuck Klosterman, accidentally describing what it was like to watch the documentary Tickled

I would describe my experience of watching this movie much the same as my experience of watching Rocky Horror Picture Show in high school. My thought progression was like this:

This is very hilarious and tremendously enjoyable

Things are starting to get weird now

I feel uncomfortable

OH MY GOD WHY IS THIS HAPPENING AND WHY AM I STILL LAUGHING

This movie also had some of the greatest one-liners I’ve ever heard in my life, primary among them being “Yeah…he’s back into the tickling again” and something alluding to “one man’s elaborate scheme to keep watching other men being tickled” (or something like that).

There were suspenseful parts, although not as “scary” as movie reviews and trailers purported it to be. I read one review describing it as “the scariest documentary you will see this year.” But honestly, a man from the scuzzy underbelly of the internet using a buttload of money to satisfy his weird but non-violent sexual cravings and then to manipulate and terrorize other people is not that scary anymore. It’s a tale as old as time.

As far as the documentary itself went, I thought it was very well done. I was thoroughly amused and simultaneously repulsed, which are my (and America’s) favourite emotions to feel during movie-watching. I hope that the media attention garnered from this documentary will go into publicly shaming the freak show that is David D’amato, because if you can’t legally punish a man, you might as well publicly shame the crap out of him. That’s my personal motto and always has been.

In conclusion, this movie was awesome. I will probably never feel comfortable tickling or being tickled ever, ever, ever, ever again, but I give this movie 10/10. Would see again, would recommend.

Also, as a side note, every documentary I see is more bizarre than the last. I feel that this is a disturbing trend. If this is to continue, I either have to get weirder (which is a situation absolutely no one would be comfortable with), or the content needs to become boringer. That’s a lose-lose situation.


 

 

 

 

 

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Happy Father’s Day 4.0

My father has told me that he is “accepting revenue” this Father’s Day. In lieu of revenue, I hope this will do instead, because I’m poor and need all my money to go on vacation. I believe he will understand this as he is the one who bequeathed me my itchy feet.

All the words in this blog post (beyond this initial paragraph) are things my father has said – out loud, either from memory, written down, texted, or otherwise electronically captured. Behold. The words of my father await you.

EDIT : 2017-2018 Edition, Texting With Dad

On Receiving Visitors

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Frame Of Mind

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From America With Love

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On Elitism

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On The Kinder Morgan Pipeline

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Philosophy vs. Naps

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On Jordan Peterson, the World’s Biggest Douchebag

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The Weather

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Family Band

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Boosting The Ratings

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Douchebag #2 : Ezra Levant

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Obama : The Antichrist

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The Boys Are Back In Town

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Feminism First

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Watch Out For The Good Times

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Emoticons Aren’t Just For Basic White Girls Anymore

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Holiday Pops : Christmas Spirit Reigns Eternal

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On Proverbs 31

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Feminism Is For Everybody

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Jason Kenney Needs Help With His Speechwriting

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I Can Gather All The News I Need From The Weather Report

 

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On The Musical Stylings of Everyone Who Is Not Eric Clapton

 

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“Don’t forget to publicize this far and wide so I can quit work and be rich.”

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I don’t care about the Phantom of the Opera. I care about the jazz bar.

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I’m gonna get my twelve dollars worth.

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Dad : your mother and I are trendsetters
Me : what trend are you setting?
Dad : combining old age with parasitic couch surfing

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Dad : How did the son of Lucifer get in this vehicle?
Me : Dad, that’s a cat.

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Christmas trees are the kingpins of ambience.

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I want to come for dinner and visit with all you socialists.

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She told me I was stupid and that I smelled like fish.

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Your mother is a premium broad.

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I know what will fix this. Broccoli, water, and exercise.

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Dad: you should live long and be…prosperous
Me : dad, do you want me to live long and prosper?
Dad : yeah! Live long and prosper!
Martin : she just made you quote star trek.
Dad : is that a star trek quote? I thought they said you were supposed to go where nobody ever went.

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I don’t have the time to deal with ignorant post graduate high school markers.

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Me : Dad, why are you watching Justin Bieber on youtube?
Dad : just because I can.

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I know that. I know that. You can’t tell me nothing I don’t already know. I think like a Darwinian.

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This is an estrogen tsunami and I’m going to go hide in my room.

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Big Jim says hi. And pray for Stephen because it says in the bible to do that.

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Rise up and bless the Law Society tomorrow. And don’t fart at work.

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Me : Why are you driving so slow
Dad : I’m preserving the integrity of the silver auto

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Who’s this long-hair coming up the driveway? Is he selling you drugs?

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My favourite euphemism for a delivered sermon is chong.

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I’m a jesuit, and jesuits mow their lawns.

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I ain’t going on that. You have to wear a helmet.

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I wanna be the rhythm guitar player in Celine Dion’s band. Or a tow truck driver on the coquihalla.

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I look like George Clooney.

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I’m the closest guy to Jesus in this room.

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I would say there are no answers, but somebody would hotly contest that point too, so I won’t say it. Better to listen and nod.

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Our own church is a grab bag of everything under the sun, just like the rest of life.  Only an idiot—or masochist—would even attempt to sort all that out.

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I think, would I want to wade into all this controversial stuff and get my ass shot off when I could be sipping a cool one at Earl’s?  Is that a bad attitude?

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Is not gospel for the populace?  It is.  Did not Jesus our Lord come to the common people?  He did. Has not the church always tried to express itself in local idiom?  It has.  Talking like this makes you feel like Rick Warren.

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 I get to wondering why he would want to be hated by a zillion Muslims and all the women in the world, but it seems to cheer him up.

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Television furthers the moral decline of the soul.

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Looking on, I am happy for you.  I don’t think you could have found a better situation.  That said, I do feel wistful when I think of you in Calgary…. ” sunrise, sunset, swiftly flow the years/  One season following another, laden with happiness and tears…”  I wonder if it would be any better or any different if we had it to do over.

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Ode to my Mother

My best friend’s mother passed away two years ago.

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We were taking a break. It sounds odd to say – “we were taking a break from death” – but that’s what we were trying to do. Lying in my bed at my parents’ house, laughing over something only the two of us would find funny. Like we’d done countless times since we were twelve, and probably like we’ll do countless times into our old age. Our laughter didn’t sound the same, but we laughed anyway. The phone rang, and I remember wishing she didn’t have to answer it – maybe we could just stay in the moment in between moments. But of course we couldn’t. It was the news we expected – Joyce had gone – and I felt a sensation like falling. I tried to hold on to Steph’s grief for her, but she slipped right through my fingers. I watched her go into that other landscape. Come back, I wanted to yell. Stop. Wait for me. I don’t want you to go by yourself. But I couldn’t go with her. After all, I still had my mother. I didn’t know what that was like. I prayed that I never would.

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On one of those nights, I slipped into my parents’ bedroom, just to make sure my own mother was still alive. That sounds silly now, but at the time it seemed absolutely imperative. Like I’d die if I couldn’t see her breathing. I crawled into the bed on her side and I let my mother hold me. Maybe I was too old for that, but I didn’t care. I thought to myself, “There’ll be a time when I’ll give anything to get this moment back.” Because I can’t keep my mother forever. None of us can.

To those of you who have lost your mothers, you are braver than me.

My relationship with my mom is complicated. Everyone’s is. To those who say their relationship with their mother is simple and uncomplicated and unfettered, you’re tacky and I hate you. My father once said to me, “You fight with her all the time and you tell her everything. You don’t tell me nothin’.” (Which isn’t true, by the way, I do too tell him things. But he was right about one part of that sentence.) My friends are amazed by the way I talk to her, sometimes in a bad way. The familiarity both amazes and scandalizes them. “You talk to your mother like that?”

I have favourite things about my mother. Likely you have favourite things about your mother, too. She watches the Space channel. A lot. Would I say too much? Not here. One time she tried to watch Battlestar Galactica on my computer and accidentally downloaded a porn virus. Her curiousity about the world around her. “You guys, what does ‘getting jiggy’ mean?” I like watching her at parties, I like watching her talk to my friends. I like eating her toast and taking her books. I like the way she laughs when I tell inappropriate jokes, like she really shouldn’t be laughing but she just can’t help herself when faced with the ingenuity of my wit. I like listening to her boss people around on the phone. There was a time when she came along as a “chaperone” on some sort of “youth trip” – one night we were behaving like teenage girls do at 3 am, and I heard her footsteps coming. I dove into my sleeping bag and pretended to be asleep. The others didn’t follow suit, didn’t notice I had dove for cover. Maybe I should have tried to warn them, but after all, bitches gots to learn. The next day, they said to me, “Megan, your mom is scary.” I smiled grimly, but proudly. You’re goddamn right she is. When caught up in a crisis, I’ll remember that my mother exists and I can call her and her advice will ground and center me. I won’t be drifting anymore. I like her dorky jokes and her sarcasm. Her care for others. I like how her face turns red when I yell “TAMPON!” at her. I passionately hate anyone who criticizes her (who’s not within my immediate family).

When I was a child, I tried so hard to imitate her. When I was a teenager, I tried so hard not to imitate her. In my twenties, if anyone accused me of being “just like my mother” my reaction was surprise and slight pride, mixed with a wry acceptance. Sometimes I look down at my hands to see if they’re like hers, but they aren’t. She often says, “Megan doesn’t want to be anything like me”. That’s not true. It’s complicated, Mom. I’m you and I’m not you. Sometimes I look up and there you are. And sometimes I can’t find you at all.

I went for a walk with Maren the other day. She was unsure about it at first.

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Maren is famous, Maren is diplomatic, Maren is insightful, Maren is beautiful, Maren is one. We are not biologically related, but someone tell that to my soul, because I love her with everything that I have. Without purposefully deciding it, we ended up walking around in Sunnyside Garden Centre. Maren waved her arms ecstatically about. Babbling in that way that she does. Flowers, Maren, flowers, I told her. These are important. And then I realized, somehow, I’d turned into my mother. My mother always took me to garden centers. She had a penchant for doing so, in fact. Countless times I’d trailed after her at Dunvegan Gardens. It’s become part of the furniture in my memory. You repeat the best parts of your mother without even realizing you’re doing it.

There is a picture of me as a toddler looking down at my mother from a window. I had seen her and recognized her. Mom liked this particular picture because she says it “spoke to our connection.” It is, indeed, the expression of someone who has seen her mother and knows her.

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I hope that when my turn comes, as I know it must, I can be brave too. I hope that I possess just a fraction of the grace and resilience as my friends whose mothers have passed. In the meantime, I’m lucky, fortunate, blessed beyond comparison. My mom is still here. I’m thankful for the time that we still have together, the things we’ll do, the memories we’ll create. The hours you could have spent with your mother, it’s a lifetime in itself.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom. I wouldn’t have wanted any mother but you.

“When you still had your mother, you often thought of the days when you would have her no longer. Now you will often think of days past when you had her. When you are used to this horrible thing…then you will feel gently feel her revive, returning to take her place, her entire place, beside you. Wait til the incomprehensible power that has broken you restores you a little, I say a little, for henceforth you shall always keep something broken about you. Know that you will never love less, that you will never be consoled, and that you will constantly remember more and more.” –Marcel Proust

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