The Almost Daily Thread

musings from the blue chair

Why I March

I will march with women as long as my feet will carry me. In my 67 years I have worked my way through many a gender equality issue.
I married young because I believed it “the thing to do”.

After 10 years, I became a single mother and discovered that in spite of having complete control of the finances, I was without any credit rating. After my second divorce, and while, indisputably, not the primary bread winner in either marriage, yet being again in charge of the finances, I was AGAIN without any individual credit rating.  Yes, even with the 7 years of living single between marriages. Credit ratings were attached only to the male and because my single days were previous to the 2nd  marriage they disappeared.

I worked as a banquet waitress (my second job) carrying heavy trays wearing high heels because it was the dress! Why haven’t males been expected to wear high heels to be sexy?

I lost a job once because my commissions paid me more than the boss made for a quarter of that year.

I was any number of times sexually harassed in my job. I was in sales and I certainly encountered sex for business offers. One, in particular, from a  man who was a friend of my father’s, albeit, my father was deceased.

I’ve bought make up, had my nails polished -many women color their hair (I don’t. My hair is still red!) -to step correctly, ie young and perfect, into the cultural acceptance of beauty. Has a man?

So, we, across the board, earn less and we spend on looking culturally acceptable.. (I LOVE YOU, PAULA ANN, my dear friend who does nails and throws in the loving counseling because that is the kind generous soul she is). And, I really do like to have my toenails polished in the summer!

And whose is benefiting from the sale of all that make up and cream and beauty enhancer that we are force fed by our culture? A marketing plan that tells us to be who we are and shine through our God given faces?

Why isn’t there a male word with the same connotation as  misogyny?
mi·sog·y·ny — (dislike of, contempt for, or ingrained prejudice against women.
“she felt she was struggling against thinly disguised misogyny”)

Why is hysterical and hysterectomy from the same root word?

Why is is history and not her-story? Because I think they would write differently.

How many years has it been since women were chattel? Not so many.

Why isn’t there male genital mutilation?

Why is there still a sex trade using young girls as bartering tools?

Why were the girl children killed in China?

Why was there foot binding?

Need I go on?

Yes, I sill go on and I will march for the freedom/equality path I have and will continue to pave for my daughters and my granddaughters and your daughters and your granddaughters.

Take nothing for granted. The freedoms we have now, someone has protested to provide.

Why is this permitted?

Did you know that in 2015, women working full time in the United States typically were paid just 80 percent of what men were paid, a gap of 20 percent? While the number has gone up one percentage point from 2014, the change isn’t statistically significant — because the increase is so small, mere tenths of a percent, it doesn’t amount to perceptible change. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the earnings ratio hasn’t had significant annual change since 2007. The gap has narrowed since the 1970s, due largely to women’s progress in education and workforce participation and to men’s wages rising at a slower rate. Still, the pay gap does not appear likely to go away on its own. At the rate of change between 1960 and 2015, women are expected to reach pay equity with men in 2059. But even that slow progress has stalled in recent years. If change continues at the slower rate seen since 2001, women will not reach pay equity with men until 2152.

http://www.aauw.org/research/the-simple-truth-about-the-gender-pay-gap/

 

 

Thank you Donald Trump for bringing our issues to the open and letting us examine our values in front of the world, our neighbors, ourselves.  I am certainly more and more convinced of my beliefs – the truths I hold to be self-evident.

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The Gift of the Sun Goddess

Sun Goddess

The Sun Goddess grew as a result of human generosity, compassion and my imagination.

The fabric pieces were gifted to me by a complete stranger at the Victory of Light show in Cincinnati in November. A gentleman came into the booth and began to look up close and personal at the fabric collage pieces I had for sale. This guy really looked. Rare for a man to examine the stitching and the embellishments and feel the fabric. Rare for a man to be so involved and interested in the structure and the composition. We chatted for a minute. He left the booth. He then returned and chatted again about where I get my materials and ideas. Seems he is a costume designer! And someone had only recently gifted him with a bag of fabric for which he was grateful and which he knew he was not going to utilize and the bag was still in his car and he had too many unfinished projects in the queue. He asked, “Would you like this bag of fabric?” And I said, “Yes!”

The orange earring is a gift from my brother-in-law, Dave, who works for an apartment owner doing repairs, restoration and spiffing up when a tenant vacates. This particular tenant apparently left very abruptly because she left behind piles of personal belongings. Among the leavings were a hundred or so pairs of big dangly earrings and a bunch of necklaces. He gathered them into a box and brought them to me. They smelled badly of cigarettes and unhappiness. I looked through them wondering, “I don’t know about this stuff.” I laid all the pieces out on the picnic table in the back yard to cleanse in the sunlight for 4-5 days. And the things began to take on as aspect of possibility. Although some of it I tossed, some I kept and the orange oval earring – presto, change – a halo!

The sheet music was part of my Aunt Janet’s collection. She and her mother were accomplished pianists. I have a stack of sheet music with her notes and comments on it. The story is that her mother would start dinner and have it nearly ready when her father came home from the office. He would have a cocktail while she played a piano piece for him and then dinner was ready and they ate!

The wings are really old hinges. They came as a part of a much larger gift from a woman who had more stuff than nearly anybody! She and her husband travelled and collected and shared a lovely life together. My partner became her Mr. Fix-it after her husband passed. He did repairs from changing light bulbs to tiling the bathroom floor and wiring lamps. We would take dinner and talk and share stories. A dear friend. She had the greatest greenhouse full of every color geranium. One Saturday we helped her clean out the tool room and ended up bringing home all sorts of hardware. Nails and screws of many sizes. Picture hangers, wire, and, yep, hinges!

The sun’s face is a hematite. A hematite is a beautiful, smooth, shiny stone used for grounding, stabilization and protection. It’s heavy and solid. While I am not completely certain, most of the arrows point to this being a gift from Wendy Sue, whom I lovingly call my personal shopper. I am sure this piece was a necklace. Wendy Sue can zero in on a bargain from across town. Like a heat seeking missile searching its target. She finds beads, jewelry, lace and fabric. Clothing, shoes. The treasure list is long. Most currently she presents me with a big box of trim samples like for pillows or curtains and tiebacks.
Some might call it excessive or even silly, but Wendy and I can dally through a box of “stuff” admire its quality and workmanship and…and… for a long time. Then she gifts whatever it is to me and I have to find something to do with it! Well, the trim piece becomes: tada, a Sun Goddess body! Who knew!

My Sun Goddess is carrying a pail from which she will pour her blessings.

My blessings within this piece are the result of saying thank you to the many gifts I receive from many, many people. And for the gift of this time in my life wherein I can explore and grow more fully my creative uniqueness. And – believe me, I am continually surprised with the things I end up with.

Receiving the creative piece is just like receiving the material gifts. It’s saying “YES.” It’s being open to the Universal flow. And the flow comes in many packages be it fabric, whats-its or ideas! And the flow? Call it God, call it Creator. Call it the Universe or Source. However you relate to it – Call on it. It is yours for the asking and receiving. It is you, a more fully examined you. I hope you will claim yours.

I did. I am. And it’s fun and it just makes me happy.

And I’ve been humming this song the whole time I’ve been working on this blog.  So, enjoy…

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