Katie Hopkins if she were self aware and honest

I’m coming out of the woodwork to rant about Katie Hopkins. This Journey to Fat and Back show has me foaming at the mouth pretty much daily right now. I could write a whole post about that alone and how infuriating it is to me that TLC (The LEARNING Channel!!!) is airing flat out lies for the express purpose of bullying a large group of people for profit. Maybe next week.

Anyway, I know it’s not very original to hate her , everyone does right? But interestingly what also not very original is for people to be thinking that she’s the one you love to hate because she says what everyone is thinking.

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No.

I’m not thinking what she says, I despair for the human race when she speaks, and even more so when people say that they secretly agree with her. What’s fun though is that I just can’t help but decode her ridiculous comments in my head every time I hear them, so I thought I’d share with you my interpretation of what is really going on inside Katie Hopkins, whether she knows it or not.

Katie: “I don’t believe you can be fat and happy.”

Self-aware Katie: “I cannot imagine my happiness not being intricately linked to what the outside world thinks I should look like.”

Katie: “The difference between most mothers and me is that I didn’t sit around drinking coffee at baby group for 12 months after the birth of my baby. No, in three weeks I was back in my suit, back at my desk earning profit for my business and I don’t see why other women shouldn’t do the same.”

Self -aware Katie: “Money, money, money, money… Nothing’s more important! Nothing!”

Katie: “A name, for me, is a short way of working out what class that child comes from. Do I want my child to play with them?”

Self-aware Katie: “I’m too busy to supervise my children and get to know their friends but I do want to make sure they end up as snobby as I am so I come up with these superficial, meaningless rules so that I can feel like I’m involved.”

Katie: “For me, tattoos are just a way for people to find attention who haven’t found another way in their life to achieve it by conventional means.”

Self-aware Katie: “I’m uneasy with people who operate from a different value system than mine. Why don’t they also worry what small minded bigots think of them? There must be something wrong with them.”

That’s right folks, the problem with Katie Hopkins is that she’s full of self doubt and worry about being judged herself! It kind of makes me feel pity for her. Kind of. I wish I could, I really do because I bet she’d hate that so much. But, alas I’m no Gandhi!

Image credit to Daniel Oines.

Why you should stop fat shaming

Whenever there’s an article on the web or a status on Facebook trying to promote healthy body image or stop fat shaming, there’s always that person who thinks its a good time to point out that being fat is unhealthy. I’d like to point out that being judgmental is also not healthy.  These people love insisting that if the fat person would just exercise the same sort of will power as they do, they could be healthier, fitter, sexier people.  More worthy of positive assessments perhaps. Anyway, whatever it is, I’m here to explain why they are just clueless.

Losing is harder than maintaining

Eating 1800 calories a day to maintain a slender figure is not the same as eating 1800 calories a day when you’re slightly over weight and maintenance is 2300. We are not simple balloons who can be filled up or emptied at any whim. If you’ve never had a need to lose 20 pounds or more then you may not know this. You certainly can’t appreciate it, unless maybe you’ve tried to gain 20 pounds and had a hard time doing that. Our bodies fight to maintain our weight. We have hormones like insulin, leptin, and ghrelin that work hard giving us cravings, rationalisations and making us ravenously hungry. Losing weight, being in a caloric deficit, doesn’t feel the same as maintaining or eating maintenance calories even when the number of calories is the same between those two different sized people. It hurts physically, mentally and emotionally. And it’s only when all our ducks are in a perfect row that we can actually manage to consistently lose significant amounts of weight over time.

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Cortisol.

Stress makes it harder. If you have a crap job, a crap relationship, small children, or any constant low level stress that you have to endure, losing weight is going to be harder, if not  impossible. At the same time while we can exercise our willpower we also have finite amountsso if just living your life day to day spends all your patience and will power, adding weight loss is not going to be practical. This reduces the number of over weight people who will lose weight this year significantly on its own. Maybe if our society was a bit more civil and equitable it would be easier.

 The media and body image.

We all know that the media is at fault for giving us all unrealistic body image issues. Because of this overweight people will be fighting themselves and their self image. Hating themselves, in part because of people who fat shame. In many cases it’s not until we can actually truly accept ourselves for who we are, the size we are and everything before we can even get to all the other steps necessary to lose any weight. I only read half the book Overcoming Overeating but completely agree with the narrative which tells about how sometimes you cannot get anywhere until you stop trying so hard. Also, you can look at my post How I came to accept my body for what it is. (Note: I’m now a lower weight than ever since I started trying to lose it.)

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Fast food market, crap food market, food scientists

Multi-billion dollar companies spend millions if not billions on food scientists who research how to make us all addicted to their crap products that make us fat. An ex food scientist in this Guardian article says, “These products are designed to keep you coming back to eat more and more and more.” The WHO acknowledges that it’s largely the fast food market making us fat, and it’s known how much money goes into making those products hard to resist. I can’t emphasise enough how good they have gotten at making the physical product hard to resist and the marketing of that product has become so much more sophisticated. They are using a lot of research to manipulate us into getting fatter and unhappier. None of this is our fault. The only fault lies in continuing to allow them to do it.

Lack of knowledge,

If you don’t know what to eat, what to avoid or how to cook, it’s going to be really hard to manage weight loss in the long term. The diet market sells lies all over the place. Do we eat 1200 calories a day or 2000? Do we walk, run or lift weights? Do we eat calorie controlled ready meals or our own cooked meals? Is all of this wrong? The diet industry tells us there are pills and shakes and diet plans that will magically make us thin. Even shoes and leggings can do it! The fact is, even though there’s always that person saying that it’s obvious what you should and shouldn’t eat, it’s not true. I have lost weight eating burgers, tacos, and take out because I know how to make those kinds of decisions. If you eat plain porridge for breakfast, a salad for lunch and plain chicken with broccoli for dinner, you are going to be so under nourished you’ll gorge on some biscuits before the end of the week for sure. And all those people trying to sell you diet plans aren’t helping you learn either. It takes time, effort, trial and error to learn what works for you and what doesn’t.

The fact is it’s not simply a matter of making the decision to lose weight and following through. Maybe technically it is, but if you think human behaviour is that simple you belong in a different century! Losing weight is possible if you’re committed, but not obsessed. If you’re prepared and ready, you have support, the chance to pamper yourself and the resilience to get back up when you fall. I don’t want anyone to feel like you can’t do it. You can! It just takes a lot of preparation and commitment. Much more than someone who judges you could even dream of.  So if you’ve been victim to fat shaming idiots who think they know better, take heart. They are charmed, clueless and not particularly attractive themselves!

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The universe doesn’t care if you’re happy, but I do.

“I believe that everything happens for a reason. People change so that you can learn to let go. Things go wrong so you can appreciate them when they’re right. You believe lies so eventually you trust no one but yourself. And sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together”

I found this quote and it resonated quite strongly with me for some reason, even though I also think it’s almost completely wrong. It’s attributed to Marilyn Monroe apparently but I found it on a page that says a lot of Marilyn’s quotes are not actually Marilyn’s quotes. I was looking for proof that the “imperfection is beauty” one is real. (Spoiler: probably not!) To me, the quote really just means, “live, learn, grow, move on” which is what caught my attention.

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Jeweled butterfly pendant at Iridescence.co.uk

I try to post twice a week, in between my job, kids, home and husband but at the moment I’ve over-extended myself adding an internet marketing course, a new website I’m creating (!) and now, new and exciting crisis’ galore! So I found this quote, and decided to expand on some of it and basically just let you have a bit of insight into my head at the moment…

Everything happens for a reason: No I think the universe is chaos and there is no reason. We make our own reason for being. We decide what we want out of life and we decide if the risks and the costs are worth the benefits of trying to accomplish those things. Its not about what happens to us, it’s about what we do in response that is the measure of who we really are.

People change so that you can learn to let go: well maybe, or maybe they’ve changed so that they can learn to let go. Or maybe they’ve just changed so that they can be happier and it’s nothing to do with you. Maybe what’s necessary is for you to change so that you can learn to let go. Don’t make the mistake of thinking everything is about you. Again, it’s about your reaction to this change that’s important. If you need to let go, do it. If you need to hold on, then hold on kindly.

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Totally awesome hat by the talented Betsy Hatter Millinery

Things go wrong so you can appreciate them when they’re right: No, things just go wrong sometimes. But definitely try to appreciate them when they are right anyway! Most people have experienced this though; you are totally taking something for granted annoyed at it’s existence at all sometimes and then you get a little taste of losing it and you totally flip out, and change your tune. Try to take a moment every once in a while to appreciate the things around you that you may be taking for granted. However, if something in your life is toxic and needs to go, get it out of there!

You believe lies so eventually you trust no one but yourself: Please do NOT ever get to the point where you trust only yourself. That’s a good measure of madness right there for one. But also, we are not lone wolves. Humans are interdependent, meaning we need other people. Please try to find at least one person who you can count on to not screw you over. And then trust them fully. There’s nothing else like it.

And sometimes good things fall apart so better things can fall together: This, again is not true, sometimes things just fall apart because of the random nature of the universe. However, it is definitely true that good things are almost always around the corner. You really have to believe that! No matter how bad things are it will not always be this way. I know how easy it is to believe that it will, when you’re down and feel hopeless. But if you’re going to have faith in anything at all it must be in the totally random nature of the world we live in and the fact that it will throw good things at you just as easily as crap things. You have to look for them sometimes. You might have to keep a journal of all the little good things, no matter how little. But do it. Because they will grow.

100 Happy Days can help with that. Do it if you need to. Please.

How I came to accept my body for what it is

A bit of “Love Yourself” motivation today. I set out to find these inspiring quotes because I know a lot of people who feel almost desperate to look more like the media messages tell us to. I remember this feeling, sometimes it creeps in a bit even now, but I do make an effort to look for the inspiring messages, which tell you that you are good enough, instead of the disparaging ones, which tell you that you are not, but you could be if only you lost a bit of weight or straightened your hair or used this foundation or that mascara.

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Getting pregnant with my first daughter in 2010 was the best thing that happened to me body image-wise. You see in 2006, still with my first husband, my marriage was falling apart, we had just sold a business that wasn’t working and were losing our house. I became quite anxious and just couldn’t eat most of the time. There were points I didn’t eat anything at all until 8:00 at night and then ate a bit of pasta and went to bed. Unsurprisingly I dropped about 30 pounds in a few months. It was not healthy, however I was now the “hottest” I’d ever looked in my life, I was model thin – you could see the ribs in my chest and everything. Well I obviously loved it and vowed to stay that way, which ushered in my disordered eating phase, where I would try to eat only 1000 calories a day. It didn’t always work and I didn’t know what I was doing so I was probably eating closer to 1500 a day but still, I did a lot of starving myself.

That was until I started to date my current husband; we went out to dinner a lot, I was happy a lot and I didn’t do as much walking. Obviously I gained some weight back. Then I moved here and stayed happy and added baking to my list of favorite hobbies. That did nothing good for my waistline at all let me tell you. I’m not one of those bakers who can eat one and give the rest away, I’m a bit lot greedier than that. All this time though I was trying to lose weight again. I would try crash diets (750 calories a day only protein for five weeks!) and more reasoned diets (lost 4 pounds in 6 weeks, WTF!), I ran and I lifted weights. I never got anywhere. I mean I would lose 10 or 15 pounds and then just as quickly it would come right back again. I remember feeling like I was actually going nuts because while I was trying to eat sensibly I had 4 or 5 insanely fattening and intricately delicious dinner ideas going on in my head. I was about to eat chicken breast and cottage cheese but I was imagining in great detail sausage lasagna and lobster pies! I’d created a feeling in my head and my body of complete deprivation even though I was unable to actually lose any weight (and keep it off). I remember lying there sobbing to my husband that it was just impossible for me to do and I would never be attractive again.

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Then, I got pregnant and had to just eat and not worry about how my body looked, because that was not important anymore. Eating wasn’t about me anymore, it was about my baby. Not only that, I was so sick I didn’t care and had to eat in order to feel a little less sick. It was lovely to eat again guilt free. I tried not to go overboard but also tried not to worry about it. It may have sometimes looked like me going overboard but I did the best I could.

Then I had my daughter and a lot of time and effort went into getting used to this new life we had. It took some time to even get to the point where I could notice but I recognised some time after I’d had my daughter that I didn’t feel deprived anymore. The insatiable, ravenous feeling was just gone. Even when I ate less, actually dieted to lose some baby weight, I didn’t feel it. To this day I get extremely creative when I’m on a diet, I texted my husband the other day to tell him I wanted mac & cheese burgers someday, but it’s not the same as the absolute hysteria I felt back then.

I just needed to eat.

No, I wasn’t managing weight loss but I was managing to make my body feel as though it was in a time of real stress and deprivation and like at any point the food would disappear and I’d just starve to death. I’m sure that’s how it would work in the jungle and my body doesn’t know it doesn’t live there.

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These days I don’t feel so desperate. I’d like to lose those 20 pounds but equally, it’s not worth my mental health or any extra stress on the family. If I can’t manage it right now, maybe later. If not later, that’s ok; I’m busy with some other things anyway. Health is important, but we are already healthy. I want to teach my kids to value intelligence and compassion more than beauty and vanity, so I try hard not to let them hear us talk much about calories and weight loss.

I would like for you to know that if you’ve been trying to lose weight for a long time and you’re feeling desperate and hopeless, maybe the most important thing that you could do for your long term happiness is to take a break from it all. Find the book Overcome Overeating and read it and then take a break. Skinniness is not worth your happiness, your sanity or even very much of your time.

But hey, some more high profile people have something to say as well:

‘I have a crumble baby belly, boobs are worse for wear after two kids…I’m doing all right. I’m 33. I don’t look in the mirror and go, “Oh, I look fantastic!” Of course I don’t. Nobody is perfect. I just don’t believe in perfection. But I do believe in saying, “This is who I am and look at me not being perfect!”. I’m proud of that.’ Kate Winslet katewinslet2

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“How much time have I wasted on diets and what I look like? Take your time and your talent and figure out what you have to contribute to this world. And get over what the hell your butt looks like in those jeans!” America Ferreira americaferr

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‘I’m never going to starve myself for a part. I don’t want little girls to be like, “Oh, I want to look like Katniss” (her character in The Hunger Games), so I’m going to skip dinner. That’s something I was really conscious of during training, when you’re trying to get your body to look exactly right. I was trying to get my body to look fit and strong, not thin and underfed.’ Jennifer Lawrence jenlaw

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‘As a child, I never heard one woman say to me, “I love my body”. Not my mother, my elder sister, my best friend. No one woman has ever said, “I am so proud of my body.” So I make sure to say it to Mia [her daughter], because a positive physical outlook has to start at an early age.’ Kate Winslet katewinslet

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“I am allowed to look sexy, feel sexy, and be in love. I am worthy of all of those things, and so are you. Own your good and bad, and all the scary parts that you’ve been covering up because it is yours and no amount of judgement can tell you how to love your body.  You are magic.” Mary Lambert mary-lambert-630-80

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You are magic, and don’t ever let anyone make you feel less than that. Least of all media and marketing people.

xox

Get #bbloggers & #fbloggers t-shirts now!

So, quietly when I’m not doing anything else I’ve been working on this idea for a line of tee shirts and thinking about a way to fund them through Indiegogo or Kickstarter and the best way to get the word out about them. I want to get the minimum order funded and then release one every month, kind of like a tee shirt of the month club except you don’t have to accept every design. Maybe. Or it may work differently. Anyway I’ve been thinking a lot about tee shirts.

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Then I was on Twitter looking at #bbloggers when it hit me! Why not have #bbloggers and #fbloggers tee shirts!? Nothing too fancy just a simple, clean design that says “I’m a part of this!” I think it would be awesome. However I don’t want to add it to my line because this is different than the others. I just want this to be it’s own little project. Lets just get ourselves some t-shirts and not worry about the rest.

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I already have a supplier that sources ethically produced shirts and prints here in the UK so that’s sorted. All I need is the orders as I don’t have the capital to speculate with. As a matter of fact, I’m only going to buy what you order, so if you want one don’t put it off. Look how gorgeous these are. You can choose between white, leaf green or raspberry pink and the lettering will be a deep purple. They will be amazing!

Get your t-shirts here!

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Iridescence.co.uk

The Giveaway

The other thing I want to tell you about is a blogger giveaway I’m going to do. All I want you to do is write a blog post telling people about the campaign (maybe that you’ve ordered one and are excited lol), link to it and let me know. If the campaign is successful and the goal is reached I will have a rafflecopter widget that you can use to enter my Amazing Thank You Jewelry and Make Up Giveaway. The blog post will be worth a majority of the entries, along with follows as usual and the winner will receive a haul worth £100! You will get £50 to spend with Iridescence my absolutely fave jewelry shop, and £50 to spend on Urban Decay products!

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Urbandecay.co.uk

 I’m really excited about this. I want the t-shirts but I also really want to see the amazing haul post or video by one of you amazing ladies. Please share this opportunity with any bloggers who might be interested! I will be sooo appreciative!

Don’t do the 30 day ab challenge!

I noticed this challenge on Facebook a while back (do I actually LIVE on Facebook? Yes.)

(No not really, I have children. But I do hide there sometimes.)

ANYWAY, I noticed this “event” on Facebook with millions of people joined up to do this stupid abdominal challenge to get people ready for the summer. This is what you do: sit ups, crunches, leg raises (where you lie on the floor and raise your legs) and then plank. Every day with a rest every fourth day. W.T.F.

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It is ridiculous. You know that right? I’m not judging anyone who signed up for it, I’m judging the person who created it. This person is not trying to help you, but preying on your ignorance. Unless you already have low body fat and you’ve been working out, doing squats and push ups and all that but for some reason neglecting your core, this is pointless.

But don’t take my word for it, listen to Lisa Wolfe of Lisa Wolfe Health and Fitness, a friend of mine:

“My take on it is that everyone wants a quick fix. The best you will get out of it is possibly a little stronger and MAYBE some ab definition IF you are already lean. The worst you will get is an injury, especially an out of shape person. The crunches, sit-ups and leg lifts could really hurt someone. Many of my new clients could not do those without hurting themselves. It’s not as bad as the squat challenge in terms of injury potential, but there’s also no sensible progression. The progression from plank, for instance, would be increasingly complex variations. The leg lift starts with a very difficult procedure, especially for people with weak abs and messed up lumbars, which is most people. And what’s the point? There’s no such thing as fixing just one area of the body. It’s not like someone who is 30 pounds overweight is going to see any difference at all doing all those un-weighted exercises on one area of the body.”

I know that it’s the abs that everyone wants but seriously, though you should be working on your core muscles, that’s not ALL you should work on. I assume that getting ready for the summer means trying to lose a few pounds and tone up right? Squats are such a good exercise because they work a huge range of muscles which help you burn fat. And don’t neglect the upper body, like me. I am such a wuss on top. I still can’t do push ups. Still. A lot of us have to work on this don’t we?

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This is why I’m going to host my own summer workout challenge: The 30 Day Full Body Challenge. I’m going to use this workout from Nerdfitness.com. I haven’t read a lot of his stuff but what I’ve seen seems ok so far and the workout looks decent.

20 body weight squats
10 push ups
20 walking lunges
10 dumbbell rows (using a gallon milk jug)
15 second plank
30 Jumping Jacks

I suggest you go look at the link because he has a video where he shows you exactly what to do. Then join my challenge here!

It starts the 15th of June. That’s right, if you’re going to do something don’t wait, just do it! I’m only giving us a bit of time to get people to join in then we’re going for it!

Invite your friends too!

 

#yesallwomen is not enough, lets kick it up a notch

Its been almost a week of media and blogosphere frenzy of rape culture, misogyny and #yesallwomen but #notallmen since the most recent American mass murder last Friday. In case you somehow missed it, a psychopath who refused to take his meds who had some pretty fucked up ideas about people went on a killing spree leaving behind youtube videos explaining it was because of his frustration with women who weren’t attracted to him. He was 22 and never been kissed and we all know what that makes us. That’s right, such a loser.

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Maybe you won’t be surprised by that synopsis that I’m of the unpopular opinion that the guy was a bit nuts and that’s unfortunate but we’re getting a bit rabid here. I mean, when people kill in the name of religion we call them extremists but when some nut kills in the name of misogyny we decide the whole culture is misogynistic.  Don’t get me wrong, I hate sexism (obviously!), along with all the other isms as well, but something about all of this has just not sat well with me all week long. I know that our culture is actually sexist, I do buy that. Misogynistic, or an actual hatred of women, not so much, but that’s hairsplitting I know. Anyway, I didn’t always believe that society in general was sexist, because I haven’t always felt it. Growing up I didn’t think that being a girl meant I couldn’t be whatever I wanted to be. I didn’t particularly notice anyone think I wasn’t as smart as the boys. It wasn’t until I got older that I noticed and I’m more than willing to admit, it may just be a mature mental faculty thing. But also to tell you the truth that one time some guy grabbed my ass was a lot less damaging than the constant abuse and mental anguish I got from girls, and not just in school, but after then too. More on that later.

And so while I really couldn’t pinpoint why I felt uneasy about all this #yesallwomen stuff I continued to ruminate and think about it, ‘cus that’s how I am. Its not like I don’t absolutely and completely stand behind women who have been raped or told they are less worthy or not given promotions. I totally stand behind the woman who has decided to wear shorts  under her dresses because of not just ass grabbing but penetration by unseen hands when she goes out. None of that is OK.  But today, when I finally figured out why it was I felt like saying, “oh just shut up already” it felt like an obvious epiphany. One of those thoughts that is always there, everyone knows this but no one is tying it all together.

You know what I wanted to say to the #yesallwomen crowd? I wanted to say “yeah it really sucks when people are crap to you because you don’t fit into their worldview of what people should be like doesn’t it?”  Maybe it’s because I never really felt like I fit into any group of people that I can’t quite get behind this movement, because all it’s really doing is dividing people further.  #notallmen discriminate against women, #notallwhites discriminate against blacks and other minority races, #notallmiddleclasspeople discriminate against the working class and #notallnormalweight people discriminate against fat people, but like John Scalzi says we all do really. I reblogged his post for a reason, it’s worth the read, go for it now.

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I’ve been discriminated against for all sorts of nontraditional reasons. Basically I’m weird and people don’t like it. #notallnormalpeople are assholes to introverted, geeky creative types but you know what? A damn lot of you are. The fact that we need to face up to is that humans in this western society (and who am I kidding WHAT society is different) loves a pecking order. Its a bit more subtle once you’re out of school but that’s because kids have immature growing brains and haven’t figured out subtlety yet. We all like to rail against bullying but you know what?

They learn it by watching us.

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Kids learn from modelling not from lectures and every time you have something to say under your breath (or not) about that fat kid, or that grubby looking couple or that girl in the weird outfit they get the lesson that people not like us are not worthy. You don’t even have to go that far. Every time you talk about how fat you look or how awful you look so you can’t go out and be seen you’re setting the exact same example. Obviously some people are worse than others. Some go as far as to talk down to minorities or people of a different class, or indeed, women (or men) or gays (the list goes on and on doesn’t it?) I haven’t spoken much about my disdain for pink and frilly baby girl clothes and toys (as well as the blue and browns, trucks and trains for boys). Other people have done a far better job anyway. Suffice it to say we freaking love to have a neat little category to put everyone in so we know where we all stand with each other (cluck! cluck! cluck!) and if they don’t fit it well we don’t like that one bit.

So this is where I’m going with this, it’s not that I’m pro-misogyny or anything, in fact I’m anti-isms in total. Can we please just stop with the sorting game and let everyone just BE!?