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The Murcan Awards: Links to Real Things

[ 32 ] April 17, 2015 |

This list of links is very Murcan. There is no list of links more Murcan.

  • Here’s a thing Andrew Klavan actually wrote. It’s about how Obama is the worst president ever so even pretty girls can do his job. And since women are interchangeable, better a pretty woman than that hideous Hitlery, amirite?
  • This is a book I actually found while browsing Amazon.
  • Hey, have you ever wondered how Murca would react to seeing Hillary do yoga? No? Well, Paula Bolyard has and actually wrote this thing about this thrilling hypothetical.
  • Here’s a thing I actually found in my twitter feed. I won’t spoil the surprise for you but Ben Shapiro’s father wrote an anti-choice ditty and put it on youtube.
  • Gamergaters and Mangy Puppies brigade comment threads on authors’ blogs. It’s just so…reactionary, so Murcan.
  • I’m gettin’ misty thinking about how Murcan this story is.

Confession Time: I’m Not Steve Dallas

[ 61 ] April 12, 2015 |

Most wingnuts prolly can’t tell you why they’re pro-Gator; after all, I’m guessing most of them have no idea what GamerGate is. But they have a vague sense that it makes feminists head-splodey so they know they can’t be aginnit. My favorite wingnut Gator is Robert Stacy McCain. That’s right–the other *shittier* McCain. One of the Gators’ biggest bogeyman is Randi Harper, who genocided free speech by creating a blockbot that, well, blocks Gators on twitter. Gators and poseur-Gators alike–not understanding what “free speech” means–thinks this exactly like Hitler taking a dump in their mouths. Here McCain takes potshots at Randi by being ableist (all liberals are mentally ill), fat-shaming her and just generally being a horrible human being. It really is a delightful Sunday morning read. (Note: please don’t read it.)

But my favorite part of McCain’s word-vomit is the side by side comparison of Harper’s avatar and photo. You see, they don’t look exactly alike. It’s almost as if avatars are supposed to be fun, vague representations of their owners rather than painstakingly-rendered exact likenesses. But since the subject has been broached, I feel I should be honest with you all: I am not Steve Dallas. It’s true, I’m not Steve Dallas. I know some of you are saying “We know, b. We’ve seen pictures of you.” So, for some of you, the secret’s out–I’ve transcended by human form and am now a being of pure energy. It’s good to get that off my chest. Still, if you don’t mind, I’m going to continue being Steve Dallas here because its hard to photograph pure energy, as anyone who has ever tried to take a picture of my son knows.

Not bspencer

bspencer enjoying a beverage

But listen, I know this must be confusing for McCain. And, honestly, I feel sorry for the guy because he’s going to be really disappointed when he finds out all his new twitter pals aren’t actually anime characters.

Art Catch-Up

[ 28 ] April 11, 2015 |

A couple of things:

  1. I’m sorry I haven’t been posting much lately; more importantly I’m sorry I haven’t been able to write posts of more substance. Life is getting in the way–mostly in unpleasant ways. (No worries, we’re talking small dramas here. I’m just really really really burned out.) I’m looking forward to doing some more substantive posts when I can catch my breath.
  2. In the meantime, I wanted to share some art with you.

One of your own recently got one of my prints framed…and it looks fabulous. Ya know, it’s weird, I’ve seen my art in frames lots, but seeing my art all “done up” never fails to thrill me.

Read more…

Sad Puppy Links

[ 226 ] April 10, 2015 |


A group of people calling themselves–sans irony–The Sad Puppies has decided to stuff the Hugo Awards ballot boxes and get a bunch of John C. Wright and Theodore Beale-approved writers nominated.

Hey, you remember when I told y’all I was letting go of GamerGate? Well, here’s the thing: you can let go of GamerGate but there’s no guarantee it’ll let go of you. These same “the venn diagram is a single circle” a-holes are gonna keep rubbing their slimy right-wing, reactionary nastiness on everything.

Thanks to the folks who emailed and brought this to my attention.


[ 70 ] April 2, 2015 |

I’m not a fan of knee-jerk hipster-bashing; hipsters are fine, I guess. They do some cool stuff, they do some dumb stuff.  Sometimes they put flowers in their facial hair. Mostly I just don’t care a whole lot about hipsters. But if they are trying to make Bill Cosby ugly ’80’s sweaters happen, I will find each and every one of them and punch them in the throat. And I don’t mean that metaphorically, so go ahead and try to get me fired from that university I don’t work at.

Let me explain. I opened up my email to find an ad from Etsy. I ignore most ads, but once in awhile I’ll click to see if there’s anything that piques my interest. Well, I clicked on some weird, so Etsy picture of some dude wearing a scarf or something. It took me the site’s latest men’s fashion, and it was pretty much what you’d expect from Etsy fashions for men: v-neck tees with twee logos and such. But interspersed with all the boring stuff were sweaters–butt-ugly, incomprehensible sweaters. Vintage sweaters. Sweaters that better stay vintage or I swear to god I will go  a-throat-punching. If I see even ONE person ironically wearing an eye-assaulting Cosby sweater, I will lose my mind. Do not try to make this happen, hipsters. IT’S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN.

POINTS! for anyone who can tell me what this post title refers to.

Is There a Way to Talk about Design that is Not Completely Obnoxious?

[ 61 ] March 29, 2015 |

Erik’s post below got me thinking–again–about this question: Is it possible to discuss architecture and interior design without it being Olympic-level obnoxious? Is there a way to talk about design that does not make it sound as if authors are performing the most obscene sex acts in service of the extraordinarily privileged?

I love looking at interior design magazines, but it’s gotten the point where I have to remind myself–FORCEFULLY–not to read the accompanying text, because it tends to make me want to jab forks into my eyes.

I always thought it would be neat to have a magazine that showed an interior, then gave readers three options for recreating the look: one on a “just graduated college” budget (in other words, frankly, on the cheap), one on a middle to upper-middle class budget, and one that’s more in the “sky’s the limit” range. I’d love to read an interiors magazine that gave even a curt nod to the idea that not everyone who likes design is obscenely wealthy.

Seriously, what’s the answer here?

The Gunman

[ 140 ] March 25, 2015 |

Did you ever want to see a roided-up Sean Penn star in a male wish-fulfillment fantasy where he makes Javier Bardem look like a  dumb Spanish pansy? Well then “The Gunman” is for you.

“Gunman” is about a former Special Ops (because of of course) guy who has a past providing security for humanitarian compounds in The Congo, and–oh yeah–assassinating the country’s Minister of Mining. He tries to atone for his past misdeeds by returning to his old haunts and digging wells for the locals. He also has time to surf and lift weights for about four hours a day, apparently. His super-manly existence is upended when he’s attacked by men looking to get a Proof of Kill. The rest of “The Gunman” is about his surprisingly uninteresting attempts to find out exactly who’s targeting him.

The gunman is a badass. Buff and self-assured and able to get himself out of a jam in almost supero-esque ways. He also has a European Girlfriend TM. (European Girlfriend TM* has a French accent but speaks and understands English perfectly. European Girlfriend is effortlessly lovely, with soulful brown eyes, charmingly-crooked teeth, beautiful skin and perfectly-tousled chin-length brown hair. European Girlfriend maintains her artifice-free loveliness merely by walking to patisseries and bathing in artisanal olive oil.)  And she’s anxious to hop on his junk despite being married to Javier Bardem and being repeatedly ditched by the gunman (for her safety, of course).

Speaking of Javier Bardem, I went to the film thinking he’d be in it a lot more. He made the movie for me– I love watching the man act. His reactions to losing European Girlfriend to Gunman over and over are the best, most emotionally-wrought parts of the film. Otherwise, I’d say “The Gunman” is merely a passable way to spend two hours.


*Sometimes European Girlfriend has slightly longer hair…and a Spanish accent.

Revenge is a Dish Best…Well…Not Served. Because It Sounds Gross and Inedible.

[ 87 ] March 23, 2015 |

“That Woman”– bspencer Folks, you can’t tame this woman; she was raised on raw misogynist chicken.


Marcotte has a hilarious post up at Pandagon about MGTOW cuisine. I’ve always been a Marcotte fan, but this is truly must-read. Are you a TL;DR kinda person? Well, in short, men are thwarting feminism by cooking horrible-sounding meals for themselves. In response I have decided to renounce feminism and cook disgusting food for neckbearded manbabies. Sorry, folks. I held out for as long as I could but this “logic abuse” and chicken breast abuse finally convinced me of the error of my ways. It was nice thinking of women as fully human with you manginas but I wanna be on the winning team. The winning team that eats salmonella-infused chicken.

Share your own MGTOW-inspired recipes in the comments if you wish.

Megan McArdle Wants You to Come Up with Recipes for Her and Her Rich Friends

[ 131 ] March 19, 2015 |

*Sigh.* Today I learned middle class and poor people don’t care about their waistlines.

“Longtime readers, of course, have heard me talk about this appliance before: the Thermomix. It’s a food processor/blender that also has a heating element and a scale. Sounds crazy, I know, like one of those weird things you see advertised on television: “It’s a car buffer, and it’s also a Doberman Pinscher!” But in fact, it’s amazing. It consolidates multiple kitchen jobs into a single countertop appliance, saving space, and it also renders a lot of tedious kitchen tasks as easy as pressing a few buttons, from caramelizing onions to making bechamel. I’ve had one for a few years now, and if I was only allowed to have one kitchen electric, it’s the one I would pick. How else would I whip up genoise on a weeknight or make bacon-onion jam to top our burgers with?”

I dunno–try not being a lazy piece of crap? Take time away from admonishing the poors about their wanton ways? There are ways, Megan, there is time.

Couple of notes on QVC (She’s right in that the shopping networks would be the ideal place to hawk these gadgets): 1.) Their buying power is so large they could probably afford to sell them at a significant discount. I can easily see them lopping a good 4oo dollars off the price. 2.) They do installment payment options, making even big-ticket items doable for middle class folks.

I think, though, at precisely the time middle class/upper middle class folks like me began buying Thermomixes would be precisely the time McMegan would lose interest in them. She likes the price point they’re at now…their price tag is their appeal for her.

Rule 35 Links

[ 34 ] March 18, 2015 |

Oh, hai, readers. Here are some links for your Wednesday afternoon…

Ladies, They’re on to Us

[ 95 ] March 18, 2015 |


“As ridiculous as my statement is going to sound…” No, doooooooo go on, young futurist.

The Dangerous Expectations We Have of Novelty Women

[ 142 ] March 17, 2015 |

Reading this piece by Maddy Meyers felt revelatory to me because it addressed something that I think desperately needed to be addressed: the idea that sometimes women are average/mediocre…bad at things. And that’s ok.

I’ll be honest with you: I get hives thinking about women who break into career fields and pastimes that were previously (at least thought of as) solidly male territory. The reason I get hives is because when you are the only or one of a few women who are entering this new territory, you immediately cease to be a woman and become all women, everywhere. You cease to be a person, you become a gender. You become representative of all women and how all women will perform.


Let’s be honest: not every woman who picks up a guitar will play like Orianthi. Not every woman who drums will drum like Salin Gas. Not every woman who breaks into a STEM field will be a genius. And not every woman who picks up a console will be a KICKASS GAMER GRRRL. But women have to have permission to be mediocre and even to suck. Because if we don’t allow that, that–in and of itself–becomes a woman’s biggest barrier to breaking barriers.


Just a note: Before anyone pushes his glasses up his nose and huffs and puffs about how Orianthi and Gas are not “such and such,” please remember I’m not claiming to be an expert on playing guitar or drums. I’m holding them up as examples of kickass women who have earned some praise and respect. (For good reason, in my humble opinion.)

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