Monday, April 30, 2007

PARTIES: White Tees, White Belts

White Tees, White Belts can officially count itself among one of the best Philly transplants to NY, an ostentatious list which includes cheesesteaks, pretzels, John Bolaris (our former weatherman), and myself. War and Moon imported this fine dance party as the latest cherry on their proverbial sundae of secret location "warehouse" parties and mid-week open bars. Now, I never got to go WTWB while I was in Philly, so I don't have much to compare it's NY version too. However, $15 for an all night Open Bar was enough to get me there, and the DJs (including Catchdubs) spinning various club bangers were enough to keep me there until about 3:30 when I stumbled home. True to their word, War and Moon supplied enough complimentary drinks to last throughout the night---and I am pretty sure it was a bad idea to test them on that. I don't remember much else about the night, and the lovely pictures (taken by Miss Megan Tou) tell a story I think it would be best to forget. I salvaged a couple that I thought weren't too says a lot that these were the best ones... Megan Tou is a fashion designer by day, sweaty picture-taker by night. She has a singular talent of capturing the most embarrassing Sparks-filled moments of our lives and publishing them on her Flickr. Her preferred medium is photography, dance, and liquor.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

MEDIA: Degradation of Women in the Media or...The Search for New Pussy

Despite the broad strides women have made in the past decades, in terms of occupation, education, and just plain darn respect, ladies are still pigeonholed. Women are either Virgins or Whores; Mary, Mother of Jesus or Mary Magdalene, Prostitute; Hillary or Monica.

If I were to buy in to this conundrum, I'd have to say that the Pussycat Dolls are whores...Fabulous dancing ones at that! I cannot stop watching "The Search for the Next Pussycat Doll" in the way that people naturally slow down to watch a car crash. Within a few episodes, Pussycat Dolls founder Robin Antin helped the contestants build their confidence by having them dance in lingerie in a glass box. There are two stripper poles on either side of the cage in all performances. The girls outfits almost always consist of a "dress" that I am convinced is really a long top with matching panties. One of the girls, who admittedly cannot sing at all, was kept of the show for weeks because she can kick her leg over her head effortlessly, presenting portions of the female body that I have never even seen on myself! (Might I add, this high kick is perfectly illustrated to the right...)

"where the sun don't shine" High Kick
by Miss Sarah Hoy

Why is it that a reality show in which women (girls of 18-19 really) repeatedly make fools of themselves so entertaining? Watching girls cry, fight and sing off-key is not only hilarious, but engaging enough to waste one hour of my week on. And while I love America's Next Top Model, it is also another prime example of what happens when 9 or so girls are stuffed together in a house. There is always a bitch, a peacemaker, a naive girl from the country, sassy black girl...There is such a thing as creative editing in all reality shows, but why is it so easy for women to fall into the roles pre-determined for us, not just on TV but in life?
I don't think there are any easy answers to these questions, and as a self-professed "sassy black girl" myself, maybe the clue is that we do this to ourselves. And who can we blame when it inevitably makes for great TV? Some of my obviously more mature friends tell me that they switch the channel immediately after Top Model and I wish I could do the same. From the moment I saw glitter, high kicks and feather boas married with such phrases as "She's got that Las Vegas white trash appeal I love" I was hooked. Thank goodness there's only going to be one season...

By the way, let me introduce my brand-spankin new featured illustrator, Miss Sarah Hoy. Her quirky little drawings capture a childlike spirit, maybe because she spends all day working on children's books as a graphic designer. Sarah's preferred medium is hilighters and ballpoint pens on Post-It Notes.