Women in Politics

This comes to you from Susan Otcenas as she muses on what her mother taught her.

When I was a child, I was raised to believe women could do and be whatever they wanted. My mom went to college and became a chemist when I was in middle school. It seemed a given that my sisters and I would go to college. And we did. We started businesses; one a restaurant, another an exercise physiology practice, and me an apparel company. Of the 4 of us, only 2 had children.

In short, it seemed to me that our generation (we are aged 44-57) could have limitless possibilities. We wouldn’t be bound by traditions and expectations about what women should be or do, or how we should present ourselves. And it seemed to me unthinkable that despite evidence to the contrary, women would be elected to the highest offices in the country, as they have been in nearly every other first world democracy. It was just a matter of time.

And yet, here we are. I’m 50 years old and a woman has held neither the presidency nor the vice presidency. Arguably the brightest, most experienced, well-spoken, best prepared and most thoughtful candidate has now been forced out of the race. And our “choice” in the next election will come down to voting for a straight white male septuagenarian (the shouting magical thinker with a weak ticker or the bumbling stumbling handsy guy with a weak mind) over the demented immoral incompetent straight white male septuagenarian currently occupying the space.

And so, at 50 years old, I’ve resigned myself to what I’ve known in my heart all along; we women have been sold a lie. And that too many of our “sisters” are complicit in perpetuating the status quo. Apparently strong, smart capable women will be allowed only so much leeway before we tear them down for being too strong, too smart, too capable. Elizabeth Warren’s story is one that every strong smart capable woman understands. How hard it is to maintain a balance and a public demeanor that doesn’t appear too “overbearing”, too “strident”, too “bossy”, while still needing to get (and getting) shit done.

I’m tired. And discouraged.

Consider this before you cast your next vote.

Does a Turtle Know

After 20 years in captivity, a loggerhead turtle was released into the sea. She thrived. She swam from Cape Town, South Africa to Australia, her birthplace.

Twenty years ago, “Yoshi arrived at Cape Town’s Two Oceans Aquarium after crew on a Japanese fishing boat found her with a damaged shell.” This was a bigger project for Two Oceans Aquarium. It had only been open for a couple of years. They took on the turtle and kept her. They learned enough that they took on other turtles to rehabilitate.

Well, read the rest here. It’s fascinating.

Unanswered it how the turtle knew where to go. How to communicate with other turtles. They did “train” her to swim longer distances and she ended up spending year or so in the area. But then she took off for Australia.

Bread Again

This is a place to share successes. Yet, without mistakes and failures, you don’t learn. After my first “good” loaf I took off on changing things. I had failures. Yet, I don’t know enough about the bread process to know just where I went wrong.

I think part of it was too wet dough. But was I using a starter that wasn’t fully ready yet? For a loaf we wanted to eat I had to return to the basics. Verify the starter by float testing it. Verify the dough by measuring everything out completely and not futzing with it later. I did both of these things yesterday.

And gee, just like Jack says, it works. It works well. Really well. On to repeating it!

Morning Thoughts

If I could read my own handwriting it would help. I think I wondered about these things.

Buying things on a whim. I used to do this all the time. Those days are gone. I’m living on savings! Yesterday I bought replacement pens for those that went missing.it’s not like II/we don’t have plenty of pens around the house. But I’ve gotten attached to a ballpoint pen and these models specifically. I’ll have them soon enough.

Kent Peterson seems to buy a bunch of things via eBay. As it turns out he does. For small things, he can buy things for half the price he’s found them elsewhere. That does come with the cost of waiting for the items to be shipped from China. He’s willing to wait.

Last night at Bella’s, an Italian bakery and market, their guy Matt came by with or bottle of wine and another bottle. He was pouring samples of a white. It was a mixture of varietals from southern Italy. It was dry, it was great. We’re hoping he can get it in for all the time. It was a fine start to our evening. (Thursday night is Pizza Night – from 4:00 to 8:00.)

While I’m on my whim I ordered up refills for my pens. Like Kent, I have time to wait for them to arrive. I noticed that Amazon’s listing also stated “Note: Available at a lower price from other sellers, potentially without free Prime shipping.” The “other sellers” were from Japan, who also ships for free. I had ordered from these other sellers a while ago. I’m looking forward to receiving them. Especially with the thank-you note.

As to the last thing I noted this morning, well if you can figure it out please let me know. I’ll talk about it then. Yes, I have a pack of table order things, like they use in restaurants. They’re great for keeping todo lists.

A Glut of Books

There I was, reading through a pair of books I have. It was great. Then boom! Five books arrive at the library after weeks on hold. Lots of variety also. Two novels, two instructionals, a book of poetry. It’s heaven. If I could read at a normal pace.

We should always have problems like this.