(VIDEO) The Wednesday 5: Penn State Shock, IVF and Cancer Worries, And Who to Invite to the Divorce Ball
This week’s cyber-offerings include thoughts on what we can do about the Penn State scandal, musings about “strong women characters,” and how to make your “divorce ceremony” a party to remember.
- Divorce ceremonies? If the New York Times says that’s a trend, is it so? Either way, the idea took off with our own Roz Warren, who envisions such ceremonies at The Humor Times. Planning is tricky, of course: “First, we’ll divide up all our friends. You’ll have to choose between Team Suzi and Team Bill. Once made this choice is final — no second thoughts and no going back!” Warren envisions a series of games: “While Suzi and her team throw darts and scream insults at a life-size photo of Bill’s lovely new soon-to-be Trophy Wife (she’s a younger, more compliant version of Suzi), Bill will climb into the ring and go ten rounds with a party clown wearing a face mask made from a recent photo of Suzi’s therapist.” It get weirder from there.
- All the recent press about older moms, in New York Magazine and elsewhere, complicates our response to new research reported at Our Bodies, Our Blog. “A recent article in the journal Human Reproduction has attracted a fair bit of attention because it suggests a possible link between in vitro fertilization (IVF) and later increased risk of ovarian cancer.” OBOB goes on to explain the study’s limitations and discuss the context of overall debates and existing literature on the topic.
- Ever wonder why interviewers so often ask novelists and directors, “How difficult was it to write strong women characters?” Jill at I Blame the Patriarchy did, and is outraged: “‘So, Mr Chaucer/Joyce/Hemingway/Virtually Any Other Male Author In The History Of English And American Literature, how difficult was it to write strong men characters?’ It’s a given, not a talk show topic, that strong male characters will inhabit any given work of regular fiction. In fact, the word “strong” never prepends the word “man” in American English unless the topic is circus acts. But in recent literature, film, TV, and blogs, the Strong Woman has emerged as a thing, an archetype.” And she’s just getting started.
- Recent events at Penn State have alternately transfixed and horrified many of us, including readers of AOL’s The Frisky. That blog’s Amelia McDonnell-Parry tells us how to help ProudToBeAPennStater, an effort by “a grassroots group of PSU alumni who are showing their support for victims of sexual abuse by pledging to raise $500,000 for Rape, Abuse and incest National Network in honor of the victims.” She also links to an interview with the mother of the whistleblower in the scandal, who acted when the boy asked how to get into the sex-offender database, and links to the New Yorker’s Amy Davidson, who reflects on the strength of that child.“A child in a situation that was both crushing and lonely thought that connecting with a database might help—that it might tell him about children like him. He sensed that what had happened to him was bad enough to be written down somewhere.”
- It was at Blogher.com that we discovered Marcy L’s Don’t Be Too Timid and Squeamish, where she recently generated her own list: Ten Movies You’ve Never Seen, But Maybe Should: “If you’re looking for something to add to your queue, you should check these movies out.” We might check out one ourselves: Robert Altman’s Company, “a movie about a ballet company [with] such compelling dancing scenes that I was mesmerized. Its loose structure seems like a documentary at times. It has funny moments tucked in here and there, like when the company’s artistic director keeps complaining about all the chairs left sitting around everywhere.” But for WVFC’ers, we thought we’d offer one of the other 10, if only for a chance to see early Diane Keaton at her leggiest and funniest.