BITCHES LOVE STORIES

16 Dec

Lora’s right.
Ball State is full of women. I mean, it’s stuffed to the frills.

Figure 1.0
In my English 250, there are 22 students, dramatically split: 17 women. 5 men.

That’s pretty typical here in the English Department, and I’m not complaining. Rah Rah, shish-cum-bah! We’re the future! Gettin’ educated! Wymin power yeah!

Ohold up.
Look closer. Go to a poetry reading, where the shit ain’t too hot for the ladies.
Men. Reading. Aloud. All men.
I mean seriously, is this a joke? Sometimes there’s a woman, and she looks weird, even to me.

Maybe I’m about to make a leap and maybe I lack empirical data (I don’t), but I’m going to guess that this means FEMALE and RECOGNITION aren’t going to the same ugly sweater party this year. AMIRIGHT?

You know that. I mean, yeah yeah, we all kind of know that. It happens. It’s happening. I want to say here: It isn’t Ball State’s fault. (They weren’t making fun of Andy Griffith. This cannot be stressed enough.)
I’ve never felt like my gender held me back in the classroom; my professors treat me equally, and with respect. (thank you)

But, I’ve read once. At a reading. And yeah, I was the only girl. and maybe surprisingly, I was treated well (read: normally), and with respect. No one said NO GURLZ ALLOWED or pulled my pigtails. I read well; I had fun.

SO WHAT THE FUCK AM I BITCHING ABOUT?

I am a senior. The first time I was invited to read (ALOUD) was the second semester of my freshman year. Clearly, I didn’t. And clearly, I refused other invitations.
Why?
I don’t know.

But I think it’s important. I think this is where sexism is raging. You guys, it’s in me.
No one ever said I’d suck at reading because I was a giiiiiiiirl.
Seriously, no one ever said it. But I thought it. Why? I don’t even have bad self-esteem. So seriously, why? What was my problem?

I guess I thought I couldn’t. Or shouldn’t. It was just this thing that I felt. From somewhere. Like, middle school dances kind of somewhere. Like, good grief. I mean, boo-hoo.
And I want to say it like that. Like it’s no big deal, and suck it up, kid.
But, I can’t.
There’s something that happens to women growing up, that sounds like shhhh, and feels like FUCK YOU, and leaves us thinking we shouldn’t. Not that we can’t, not that we aren’t allowed, but that it just really isn’t us. It’s not what we do.

Go find your own tree.

So we end up writing books about family and Jesus and hand-holding and giving head behind a dumpster, but everyone hears it like Lifetime, singing Disney songs. And why not? Sometimes that’s what I hear from my own voice. Because I hear woman and I hear inferior, so I’m just as guilty as anyone. Maybe more. You guys, I think more.

BUT ALSO I AM A WOMAN OF LUST

Meaning, I wanna write goddamnit. And publish things. And read those things, aloud.
I want to win all the prizes SLASH glory SLASH recognition.
I want small, bookish freak children to read my name in anthologies from now until Norton stops being a thing and human life slips under a rock and just. Stops. Being.

I don’t know why I want that, and I don’t much care. I’m petite, and gay, and crazy, and already so much other that WOMAN is just one more thing on top of the pile of things. Most days I hardly feel it.

Or maybe that’s bullshit like me kidding myself, and maybe I feel it every day. Maybe a lot of women do. We feel woman and feel weighed down, and I’m sorry. It blows. I don’t know what to say other than IT BLOWS.
Maybe this: Write more. Speak up. Tell your stories. Aloud. I mean, bitches love stories.
And if a handful of us do that, then other women will be like, yeahok. Maybe.
and then later, maybe they’ll be like, fuck yeah.
And I know I sound like hope and that hope’s woman-hope, and everyone’s thinking ‘gag me’. And I’m even thinking gag-me. Because. Because. I mean, can you see it?

So what I’m trying to say is: MYGOD, I’m sick of feeling small.

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6 Responses to “BITCHES LOVE STORIES”

  1. Layne Ransom December 16, 2010 at 10:00 pm #

    i love this so much i want to get monogrammed towels with it

  2. Layne Ransom December 16, 2010 at 10:13 pm #

    “I guess I thought I couldn’t. Or shouldn’t. It was just this thing that I felt. From somewhere. Like, middle school dances kind of somewhere. Like, good grief. I mean, boo-hoo.
    And I want to say it like that. Like it’s no big deal, and suck it up, kid.
    But, I can’t.
    There’s something that happens to women growing up, that sounds like shhhh, and feels like FUCK YOU, and leaves us thinking we shouldn’t. Not that we can’t, not that we aren’t allowed, but that it just really isn’t us. It’s not what we do.”

    I know I already commented, but seriously, this right here? nail on head.

    because most of the time (my post included), I feel like saying, “gag me” talking about being-female shit.

    “But, I can’t.”

    • leeraloo December 16, 2010 at 10:54 pm #

      That was my favorite part, too, BECAUSE I KNOW EXACTLY WHAT THAT MEANS BUT IT’S SO HARD TO SAY.

  3. Steven January 2, 2011 at 10:53 am #

    I know I’m a little late to the party, and that I have a penis, but I enjoyed this. Although I would dare to say that this is something ALL writers struggle with, not just the female ones. I mean, I’ve been asked to read three times, and I can’t do it. I can barely talk in front of a group. It’s one thing to write something and to love it, and it’s another to get up in front of people and bare your soul to them. I think this time it’s an issue of confidence, not sexism. Thanks for sharing.

  4. Simon! January 14, 2011 at 6:02 pm #

    “There’s something that happens to women growing up, that sounds like shhhh, and feels like FUCK YOU, and leaves us thinking we shouldn’t. Not that we can’t, not that we aren’t allowed, but that it just really isn’t us. It’s not what we do.”

    this. is a thing. yes.

    HI LINDSEY HOW ARE YOU.

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  1. THURSDAYS I POST ON CHICKLITZ | Lindsey P LaVal - December 16, 2010

    […] Go read it. […]

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