oh bother, part 9

So, I have been working on a blog entry about Cynthia Enloe and curiosity over the past few days (yes, it usually takes me a few days to finish an entry). I happened to be in Rochester, MN today and thought that I would finish it up at a local Pantera (or, what many of you might call Panera) since they have free wifi. Anyway, I clicked on the bookmark for Trouble and got a message indicating that my blog was blocked. Here is the explanation they gave me:

Really? According to what definition is this blog pornography? Who determined it to be such–(or what keyword/topic triggered the block)? Why are any sites being blocked? There are many, many reasons being blocked bothers me (not the least of which is the fact that I wasn’t able to finish my blog entry and have to work on it tomorrow). Sigh….so, what do you think? What bothers you about certain blogs/websites being blocked at restaurants? Or coffee shops–Caribou, I am talking to you.

oh bother, part 7

As seen in the Kmart Blue Friday door buster ad: The Huffy Major Flirt Bike for GIRLS and the Huffy Major Trouble Bike for BOYS. The bikes are in the bottom right corner of the flyer.


There are many ways that I could discuss why the names of the bikes bother me. But, because this is an “oh bother” post, I won’t get into any lengthy dissertation on the bothersome reduction of boys to Trouble and girls to Flirt or the problematic way these labels, and the ideologies about “proper” boy and girl behavior that undergird them, hail us into existence as real boys who use our bikes to get into trouble or as real girls who use our bikes to flirt (yes, I did just reference Althusser and his account of interpellation!).

There is one point I would like to make. I was initially thinking of posing the question: Just who does Huffy (the maker of these bikes) imagine a 3-6 year old girl to be flirting with? But instead of focusing on that question and the problematic ways naming a bike “Major Flirt,” could contribute to the over-sexualizing of very little girls, I want to offer another way in which to bother/be bothered by the label. According to dictionary.com, flirt is described as: merely playing with, not taking seriously, and showing only superficial interest without commitment. What stereotypes of little girls do these definitions of flirt (as superficial, etc) reinforce? Oh bother!

Oh bother, part 6

I saw this image in the November issue of Bon Appetit. It really doesn’t make me so mad that I can’t be bothered to think about it. For some reason, even as I find it to be rather problematic, I like it and that bothers me. We will be discussing this image at length in my queering theory class today–in connection with Judith Butler and her idea of performativity (as it is articulated in Gender Trouble). I can’t wait to see what the students think about it…


The ad copy reads: “Chill, ladies. Take a cue from our entertainment sink that chills champagne.”

So, what do you think?