Saturday, April 30, 2011

Saturday in the Park

With Ruby.

What park? This one, which turns out to be both convenient and lovely. And equipped with a 3.7-mile path around a sweet little lake.

And towering trees that stretch, like, all the way up to what we might call Heaven.

Think of it as the party after the after-party, following yesterday's (spectacularly successful) homopalooza at QTU. It was a nice chance for two tired moms to walk off the fatigue and quietly reflect on the many satisfactions of an intellectually vibrant day. And for Ms. Ruby to discover more of the adventures awaiting her in life outside a puppy mill. Like, you know, picnics and bird song and pollen in your beard on a glorious April afternoon.

(Photo Credits: Moose, 4/30/11)

Ah, sweet Ruby, what fun awaits you! I'd be jealous if I weren't grooving in a state beyond all the pettier emotions. For me, of course, every day is a sun-drenched Saturday in the park. (Go on, aging children. Click on that link, so that the earworm that crawled out of 1972 and into Moose's head this morning can slip into yours. Please, or she will spend the rest of the weekend trying, yet again, to figure out what the hell comes after the line about the ice cream guy singing Italian songs.)

Happy weekend to you, darlings. Play hard, rest well, and if perchance you get some pollen in your beard, may a loving hand reach down to brush it off. That, my friends, is heaven on earth. Peace out.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Magic in the Making

Moose and her crew are puttin' on their annual big show tomorrow at QTU. It's totes free and open to the public. Y'all should hop in your personal flying machines and get here for the fun! There'll be world-premier scholarly work from award-winning queer historian Regina Kunzel and QTU Victorianist Jason Rudy. There'll be poetry by Julie R. Enszer and Jason Schneiderman. And whole lots more.

Time for someone to go get her beauty sleep. The Gleeks among you do not need to ask what song Moose will be using to pump herself up for this year's shindig. Kurt sang it in Tuesday night's ep as he (finally! mercifully!) made his way back to McKinley High and was happily reunited with his pals (and his glorious solos) in New Directions.

We'll have early morning madness / We'll have magic in the making -- Sounds about right, don't you think? Sing it, Kurt. Sing it out for smart, elegant, hard-working, high-kicking queers everywhere. Everything's as if we never said goodbye. Amen to that!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Cultural Critique Made Simple

Carina Chocano, former film critic at the LA Times, shows how it's done in this past Sunday's New York Times magazine in a piece that looks back on the films Pretty Woman and Thelma & Louise.

1. Establish your authority over your subject by bragging about how your undergraduate education in semiotics equipped you with a cultural decoder ring that gave you deep insights into the workings of texts and made you vastly superior to all the rubes around you. Like this:
To immerse yourself in literary theory as an impressionable young person is a little like squinting at a piece of toast until the face of Jesus materializes. It’s a slight perceptual shift (all you have to do is unfocus your eyes) but risky, because there’s no going back to plain toast after Jesus.

[Snip, snip.]

Awareness like that can be a terrifying thing, which is why people consistently choose to watch “Jersey Shore.”
2. Pick two texts not quite at random -- though, really, almost any two texts would do, because that's how easy cultural critique is! -- and pit them crudely dramatically against one another in order to prove a highly subjective point about your life gender, power, and culture in a moment of significant transition. Like this:
“Pretty Woman” and “Thelma and Louise” flanked my first postcollege year like a couple of quick-draw gunfighters in a Wild West showdown. They appeared, in 1990 and 1991, respectively, at approximately the moment when second-wave feminism was giving way to the third wave — as Women’s Studies was shifting to Girls’ Studies, as the Riot Grrrl movement was coming into existence, as unapologetic femininity and unchecked rage were linking arms and skipping through the popular culture, snarling at everyone. So when I look back over the long stretch of the intervening decades, I now see those two movies as representing dueling meta-narratives in a postfeminist Mexican standoff. Or maybe as shimmering signposts at a desolate crossroads. Either way, there’s dust, tumbleweeds, Ennio Morricone music in the background and someone lying face down in the dirt.
Quick-draw gunfighters in a Wild West showdown? Yes, kids, that is how culture works! It's one big rock 'em, sock 'em Battle of the Texts! In this corner, we've got the tale of the streetwise sex worker with a heart of gold, and in this corner the hard-driving saga of a couple of gun-toting gal pals taking on the patriarchy one weenie at a time! Which text will win?

3. Declare a winner in the showdown/smackdown by offering up a series of wholly unprovable highly intelligent generalizations about how the films resonated within your head "the culture" of their own moment and well beyond it. Like this:
For the few years after the release of “Thelma and Louise,” the culture seemed unusually and (in hindsight) unbelievably receptive to the plaintive howls of a generation of girls who, as I did, felt exiled from the culture. Within a few more years, though, the whole thing would be supplanted by a far more chipper, more palatable, more profitable version of itself. It’s now nearly impossible to imagine a time, not so long ago, when popular culture was more interested in cool girls than hot girls — or a cultural moment in which girls could become iconic for airing their grievances and not simply their dirty laundry. As it turned out, it was a quick traverse from “revolution grrrl-style now” to “girl power,” as Riot Grrrls gave way to Spice Girls and the dominant pop-culture narrative about femininity went the way of “Sex and the City.” And Carrie Bradshaw (among others) stands pretty clearly as a descendant of Vivian, not of Thelma or Louise. 
Ultimately, “Pretty Woman” wasn’t a love story; it was a money story. Its logic depended on a disconnect between character and narrative, between image and meaning, between money and value, and that made it not cluelessly traditional but thoroughly postmodern. Revisiting “Thelma and Louise” recently, I was struck by how dated it seemed, how much a product of its time. And “Pretty Woman,” it turns out, wasn’t a throwback at all. It was the future.
Which of course leaves you vulnerable to snarky replies from crotchety broads who stuck around for the advanced courses in Readin', Writin', and Interpretin' Through a Feminist Lens. You know, like this:

Dear Ms. Chocano: I will see your anecdotal evidence and raise you two. Thelma & Louise "wins" this contest because Goose and I still talk about it, while we haven't thought about Pretty Woman in years. Every time we are on a highway, I will find some excuse to make a T&L reference, as in: "Boy, that lane-encroaching trucker is a douche-bag. Shoot him for me, would you, Louise?" She will agree to do so, and then we will laugh, hysterically. Furthermore, we both teach the film, usually in Lit by Women courses and often in conjunction with classics of feminist protest writing such as Kate Chopin's The Awakening. Far from finding the film dated, we find that its stripped down, allegorical style has given it the staying power of myth. Our students continue to find it compelling, but perhaps that is because they tune in to Tina Fey rather than "Jersey Shore." Or perhaps it's because in our classes we don't urge them to look for the face of Jesus in a piece of toast. We try to explain that culture is dynamic and ideology is clever about reconsolidating its power, but that subversions, critiques, and reimaginings of agency still matter. I mean, sure, culture is a competitive arena, and there is a way in which texts vie with one another for audience and influence, but it seems silly to declare that one film's fantasy has triumphed over another when there is plenty of evidence that Thelma & Louise are still very much alive. At least, you know, in our car.

Yours sincerely,

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Believing in Spring When You Can't See It

(Photo Credit: Moose, 4/20/11)

Whatever rite of spring you celebrate, may it be joyous and renewing and full of light.

Even if, at this very moment, it is 43 degrees, pouring rain, and pitch dark. Even now, you know the grand old azalea is just outside the door, hugging the front corner of the house, ready to strut its day-glo stuff with the first hint of sunshine. Which will return, darlings. Soon. Honor bright. Can't you feel it? Can't you? Ah, well, never mind. Sleep tonight. Sun tomorrow. I promise. Peace out.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Monumental Women

Or, Today in Fascinating Coincidences -- Coincidences that, I am sure, are in no way political and certainly not related in any way to persisting gender inequities, which exist, after all, only in the minds of fat, ugly, man-hating feminazis:

WaPo has a story this weekend on efforts to call attention to how few public statues or memorials in our happy little post-feminist country commemorate vagina-equipped persons. According to the story,
Of the 5,193 public outdoor sculptures of individuals in the United States, only 394, or less than 8 percent, are of women, compared with 4,799 of men, according to the Smithsonian American Art Museum’s Art Inventories Catalog, considered the most up-to-date catalogue of such works. And none of the 44 national memorials managed by the National Park Service (such as the Lincoln Memorial) specifically focuses on women and their accomplishments, writes art historian Erika Doss in her book “Memorial Mania.”
EVE (Equal Visibility Everywhere) is a new non-profit group that has been established to call attention to the disparity and its harmful possible consequences. Lynette Long, a psychologist and founder of EVE, tells the Post that the nonverbal message conveyed "by the dominance of male statuary trumps any verbal communication girls receive about being equal to boys. 'Humans tend to trust the nonverbal, and the statues send a very clear nonverbal message. Girls can’t be what they can’t see,' she says."

Meantime, over in the business section, the Post reports that sales of Barbie helped Mattel Inc.'s revenue rise by 8 percent during the first quarter, stronger than analysts expected in what is usually a slow quarter for the toy manufacturer after the busy holiday season. Global sales for Barbie were up 14 percent, the first time the Barbie brand has had double-digit sales growth in the first quarter since 1997, according to Reuters.

Which proves once again that girls made of vinyl are ever so much prettier and more appealing than women made of stone. I mean, really, darlings, we can't be cluttering up the nation's hallways and public squares with dour old broads like these, can we? If only those grim-faced gals who spent decades fighting for the right to vote had decked themselves out in some pretty pink ball gowns!

(Photo Credit: Bill O'Leary, Washington Post. Statue of Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Lucretia Mott, and Susan B. Anthony in the Capitol Rotunda.)

We do hereby call upon the vagina-equipped historians (yes, you, and you, you, too, girlfriend) who read Roxie's World to weigh in on this vital question of public herstory. Should we jump on the bandwagon and demand that statues of long forgotten heroes be dragged out of public spaces in order to create room for women whose accomplishments deserve long overdue recognition? Or should we stay at home, playing quietly with our Barbies -- or, you know, fighting to improve conditions for living women rather than wasting valuable energy worrying about how to honor dead ones? In other words, does it matter that the hordes of young girls traipsing through Washington, DC right now on their springtime trips to the nation's capital will see so few images that resemble them in the hundreds of statues they will wander by in the course of their adventures? Or doesn't it? We have a healthy respect for the politics of visibility, but the truth is this issue isn't one that makes our blood pressure rise, tickled as we are that there's a cute little dog in the FDR Memorial downtown. How about you?

We eagerly await your replies. In the meantime, my typist heads to the stationary bike in the basement to continue the project of re-sculpting her own monumental body. Peace out, darlings, and have a happy weekend.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

I, Too, Miss Blogging

Kathleen Fitzpatrick misses blogging because her means of getting immediate gratification through a regular writing practice has shifted in the past couple of years from blogs to Twitter.

I miss blogging because, well, I am dead and my typist is ridiculously busy teaching about blogging -- and falling in love with a new dog and building a more comfortable middle-aged body and tending to this, that, and a million other things. Oh, spring, you lovely, obnoxious season.

Go read Fitzpatrick's post, and be sure to check out the stream of marvelously thoughtful comments it elicited. She and her readers have smart things to say about different modes of online writing and relating and about responses distributed across a range of social-media platforms. We've had some experience of the latter around here, as we have noted patterns of commenting on the blog as compared to Facebook. Moose pimps posts on both Facebook and Twitter but rarely gets into extended conversations with the Twitterati, though they are a friendly bunch of folks. She often finds herself managing dual response streams, though, here on the blog and on Facebook. Are there differences between the two? Hmmm. Predictably, perhaps, Facebook responses tend to be more personal in nature, because they come from Real Life friends. Here in Roxie's World, though many commenters are also some of our nearest and dearest Real Life pals, responses tend to feel a little more public and, if you will, persona-fied, in keeping, I suppose, with this blog's dreadful habit of playing fast and loose with identity. Interestingly, last week's post, "On Broads," elicited about the same number of comments here and on Facebook, and the streams were very similar, as readers entered with gusto into the debate over whether "broad" was a term that could be reclaimed from its sexist origins and deployed as a way of honoring a strong, self-possessed woman. The consensus? Hells to the yeah, my beloved feminazis!

Funny, this question of who we are and how we engage with and present ourselves to others in different corners of the virtual universe seems to be getting a lot of attention right now. What a small, queer world it is, don't you think? Hope to "see" you in it again soon, darlings. April and all its professional cruelties can't last forever, after all. Just remember: No matter where we go and what we are doing, we would almost always rather be right here blogging with you. Peace out.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

On Broads

Are you or are you not a broad? The question is addressed to the women and the non-women among you, because, of course, here in Roxie's World biological sex has no necessary or determining relationship to gender presentation. And, no, we do not need to pause to debate why broad is being defined here as a matter of gender presentation, while women was rather too casually lumped in with biology. It's Wednesday, darlings. My typist has things to do (like, you know, purging before her weekly weigh-in) and places to go (the horrible messy prison-house of doom office), and Judith Butler doesn't read this blog, so we needn't trouble ourselves with the subtleties of the sex/gender divide. Grant me a certain leeway, and go back to my original question: Are you or are you not a broad?

Moose and Goose have different positions on this question (as was noted in this post the other day), which is the only reason we bother asking it. To Moose, broad is a term of respect and affection for a take-no-$hit woman who strides boldly through life with purpose and without apology. Broads are strong, resourceful, willing to take the heat. To Goose, broad is a term of derision, a sexist pig-dog of a term designed to discourage women by labeling any evidence of ambition or power unseemly, unwomanly. Well, sure, Moose retorts, when a caveman says it, but when I say it it's a compliment!

Moose felt supported in her Reclaim the Epithet position by a headline in the Sunday Times on a story about one of her very favorite big-shouldered actresses, Kathleen Turner. "Need a Broad? Call Turner," chortled the headline. The story focused on Turner's performance as "a brassy, foul-mouthed, ex-alcoholic nun who works as an addiction counselor, bullying her patients into sobriety" in Matthew Lombardo's play, High. Lombardo wrote the play with Turner in mind and wanted her for the part because, “In a word, I needed a broad, and when you think of a broad, you think of Kathleen Turner.” In the story, the qualities associated with the figure of the broad are all positive. The broad has "vitality" and "resilience," a "commandeering" presence, a compelling voice: "[Turner] talks the way Bankhead and Joan Crawford and so many of the great movie stars used to talk." Turner seems drawn to the character she plays in High precisely because of her broad-like qualities. She tells the Times she likes “women of strength and character — women who don’t wait around for men to do things for them.” For that reason, she has mixed feelings about some of the women characters in the plays of Tennessee Williams, though she played Maggie in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof to acclaim in 1990. “But some of those other Williams characters,” she said, “they don’t take enough care of their own lives. They’re too passive.”

Broad is good, willing to take charge of her life and the world. Not a broad is weak, waiting, passive, deferential. Broad is Thea Kronborg in Cather's The Song of the Lark, triumphant on the stage at the Met after years of training and shrewd professional pursuit. Not a broad is Lily Bart in Wharton's The House of Mirth, dead because she is too good for this mean, dingy world but too weak to change it.

Or that's what Moose thinks anyway. What do you think? Are you a broad? Why or why not?

(Photo Credit: Mark Veltman, New York Times, 3/31/11)

Saturday, April 02, 2011

The Art of Losing: Take Two

Or, The Case of the Incredible Shrinking Typist

(For our more somber first take on the art of losing, go here. Trigger warning for heartbreak and existential angst.)

Can a queer, feminist, middle-aged, middle-class broad write about weight loss without subjecting herself or others to fat-shaming? That is the question. Let's see if Moose can come up with an answer as she updates my readers on the progress of the Lifestyle Adjustment Program she recently began. Take it away, Moose!

* * *

Bodies are different, and people's experiences of their bodies are different -- from person to person and within individual persons over time. This story is about part of my experience of my body in (what I hope ends up being) the middle of my life.

After years of complaining about my increasing weight and decreasing fitness, I began a Lifestyle Adjustment Program in mid-January that has resulted so far in a loss of nearly 27 pounds. Yes, I have been surprised at how quickly I have been losing. My Lifestyle Adjustment Plan is evidently concerned about my success. A couple of weeks ago, I was awarded with a key chain for reaching a particular milestone in my weight-loss journey. (You are forgiven if phrases such as "weight-loss journey" create a mild burning sensation in the back of your throat. I feel it, too.) This week, when I recorded my results in the convenient online weight tracker, along with the "Congratulations, you lost weight this week!" message, I got a little lecture about the risks of losing more than two pounds a week as well as a recommendation that I slow down my rate of loss. I rolled my eyes at how seamlessly the technology of affirmation got blended with the technology of nagging in this instance, a blend that clearly has more to do with protecting my LAP from liability than with protecting my health. Indeed, I am cynical enough to think my LAP would just as soon slow down my rate of loss in order to prolong my membership in the program, but that is another story.

What is the story, you may be wondering? I am not writing this post because I want to turn Roxie's World into another technology of affirmation, committed as we are 'round here to a glass-half-full practice of optimism in life and politics. You don't need to feel obliged to congratulate me on my weight loss, though I would likely grin and say "Thank you!" if you felt moved to do so. I am also, I swear to dog, not writing it to turn the blog into a technology of nagging or shaming that might make anyone feel bad about her or his own weight or body or fitness or health. Lord knows there is plenty of body fascism in the world and in American culture and history. I have no desire to add fuel to that nasty fire, but lately I've noticed that my food choices can make other people uncomfortable about their food choices, that my visibly thinner body makes them feel self-conscious about their bodies. I laugh when friends tell me they have signed up for my LAP because my success has inspired them, but the truth is I feel a little uncomfortable in that role. Holy crap! I want to say, Do you not realize that I am one Cheeto and a dry martini away from being in the same mess I was in two and a half months ago? That's a slight exaggeration, of course, but my point is serious: I am no expert, and I have a considerable way to go on my weight-loss journey. My weight is not yet in the healthy range for my height on the Body Mass Index scale. (Yes, darlings, I know that BMI isn't perfect and "healthy" is a tricky devil of a term, but it's a helpful gauge and I am using it. Keep reading.)

Like a lot of women and a fair number of non-women, I have struggled for most of my life with weight and body issues. From childhood, I've been tall, which meant I was always heavier than most of the girls in my peer group. As a kid, I felt self-conscious about my size, which perhaps explains why you don't see a smile on the face of that girl with the pigtails, third in from the right on the back row, standing with all the other tall kids in my second-grade class portrait:

The messages I got from the culture and my family of origin intensified the anxieties I had about my body, the feeling that there was simply, always too much of me. I wasn't particularly physically active as a child, in part because I wasn't skilled in games that required a lot of eye-hand coordination or the pixie-girl elasticity of a gymnast. I was an endurance athlete, but it took me twenty years to figure that out. My mother sought to reassure me about my weight by telling me it was "just baby fat," but she also put me on diets when I was as young as 8 or 9. As adolescence approached, my father weighed in, as it were, with words that I am sure he hoped would inspire rather than wound me: "You are so beautiful, honey. Boys would be flocking around here if you would just take off some of that weight." Oh, Papa, I know you meant well.

Our bodies are not ours alone. They are enmeshed in familial and cultural history, histories in which gender, race, class, and sexuality play powerful, shaping roles. We inhabit them, but we do not fully own them in weird yet fundamental ways.

Nonetheless, as 2010 wound down and I found myself weighing nearly twenty pounds over my previous record-high weight (a weight that had sent me into another Lifestyle Adjustment Program in the fall of 1989), I knew that a moment of truth was approaching and that, come the new year, I would find myself among the legions of resolution makers determined to shed pounds in 2011. I spent the first week of 2011 in Los Angeles, at the MLA convention, eating and drinking with giddy abandon. Goose and I flew home the day before my first weigh-in. I was the one who suggested we order a pizza when we got home. We ate most of it along with a nice bottle, or two, of wine. I warmed up the last slice of pizza for breakfast the next morning and then headed off for my reckoning. What the hell, I thought, no point in having a poached egg now.

I have a lot of questions about what I did leading up to that moment and what I am doing now, but I am not prepared to ask and answer most of them here. What I can say is that by early January I had come to a place of feeling miserable in my body and was willing to do anything to get out of that place. People have told me they admire my discipline. Thank you, but please understand that for me the hard part was getting my a$$ on the scale for that first weigh-in. Everything since -- and I do mean everything -- has been easy. Once I have made up my mind to do something like this, temptation is not an issue. I am a rock. You cannot move me. Give me a rule, I will follow it. Give me a Cheeto, I will eat a banana. Tell me to exercise, and I will get a new dog to inspire me to hit the trail.

You see, I am as good at losing weight as I am at gaining it -- and that is part of the problem. I tend to be all-or-nothing, black-or-white, feast-or-famine in these matters. My goal this time around is to find a happy medium, something I can sustain over the long haul. (The last time I lost a substantial amount of weight, I actually succeeded in keeping most of it off for many years, but I was a lot younger then. My metabolism, never a fast one, is even slower now, so I am trying to be realistic about my goals.) I don't have a magic, target number in mind. I don't want to be rail thin, and I don't aspire to run (another) marathon. I want to feel fit, comfortable, able to do the things I want to do: a 4-mile run, Adho Mukha Vrksasana, a walking tour of Portugal or Scotland or Norway with my beloved queer pack. I am on board with the idea that our culture should be far more accepting of bodily diversity than it is and that healthy bodies come in all shapes and sizes. All I'm saying is that the body I was in two and a half months ago wasn't feeling healthy or pleasant to me, so I decided to change it in an effort to feel better.

Here are a few questions I am willing to answer for those who might be interested to know what has worked for one middle-aged broad looking to get a little less broad. (With apologies to Goose, who hates my fondness for the word broad.)

1. Are you going to meetings? Why or why not? Yes, I am going to meetings. I like the accountability of weigh-ins and the camaraderie of hanging out with folks with a similar commitment to losing weight. I also really groove on the kind of non-expert wisdom you pick up at gatherings of this kind. As academics, we tend to over-think things and make them vastly more complicated than they sometimes need to be. I go to a meeting and the leader says, "You know, it isn't rocket science. Eat less, move more, and you will lose weight," or "The thing about this program is, if you kinda work it, it kinda works, but if you really work it, it really works." I walk away thinking, "Holy rice cake! It really is that simple, isn't it? I can so flipping do this!"

2. Are you tracking points? Do you like this whole PointsPlus thing? Yes, I am tracking points, though somewhat less diligently than I was in the beginning when I was learning the system. PointsPlus -- or, as I like to call it, the All the Bananas You Can Eat Diet -- has obviously worked well for me, but I have nothing to compare it to, never having used the old system. Still, I love the idea that all fruits and most vegetables are zero points. That quickly trained me to reach for a piece of fruit whenever I felt hungry. (If you're curious, here's an article that mentions the PointsPlus system in connection with new research on calories, nutrition, and metabolism.)

3. Have you given up alcohol altogether? No. Remember: This is a Lifestyle Adjustment Plan, not a d-i-e-t. Nothing is forbidden. That said, I have cut my alcohol intake considerably and in the early weeks of the plan had none at all. See previous comment about my always slow and getting slower metabolism. I lose weight better when I don't drink, and it's easy for me to go without it, contrary to the impression that all the booze jokes on this blog might have created. I did, however, have half a bottle of really nice champagne to celebrate my birthday last week -- and still lost two pounds!

4. What's working for you food-wise? Short answer: Boneless, skinless chicken thighs. You can do a million things with them really quickly, and they are unbelievably satisfying. Longer answer: I've been keeping breakfast and lunch pretty simple and saving up points and ingenuity for dinners that are varied, delicious, and decadent enough to satisfy our foodiest friends. My favorite magazine, Food Porn for the Conscientious, has been enormously helpful in this regard. I'm fortunate in that I've never been a big snacker or lover of sweets, so it works for me to hold onto about 15 points for a substantial dinner. Believe me, I have never gone to bed hungry on this routine. Oh, and my go-to lunch for days when I'm stuck in the office and dying for something hot and healthy? Amy's Bowls, especially the (7-point) Brown Rice and Vegetables. I'm tellin' ya, kids, it's why dog invented microwaves.

5. Are you exercising? Yes, but not as much as I thought I'd have to in order to lose weight. That was one of the things that made me reluctant to commit to any LAP. I was convinced I would be sentencing myself to a lifetime of small salads and torturously long workouts. As with food, though, I have tried to make activity adjustments that felt realistic and manageable. That has meant doing what I can when I can, which so far has been a mix of yoga, stationary biking, and walking with interludes of jogging out on the trail. So far, so bueno, and I am secretly hoping that the jogging becomes running by mid-summer, if my lumpy, achy feet will cooperate.

6. Are you sure you aren't going to turn this blog into a technology of affirmation or, worse, a fricking diet blog? Because, you know, a lot of us would really, truly hate that. Also, please don't cut out the booze jokes. We like imagining that Moose and Goose are a couple of boozed-up, big-shouldered broads taking on the patriarchy one martini at a time. I know, darlings, and fear not. Your fantasies are safe. We'll always have Ishmael's, the seedy yet cozy bar around the corner from the global headquarters of RW Enterprises, LLC, and there will always be a frosty beverage and a fat-packed mozzarella stick out on the bar just waiting for you.

Peace out, my pretties, and remember: In Roxie's World, we love you just the way you are. Sing it, Piano Man.