The Definition of Feminism

“If you believe in equality for women, you’re a feminist.” “Being ‘feminist’ just means you’re for equality.” This is a routine and agreeable assertion that appears every time a video of a belligerent feminist activist goes viral, like the 2012 Warren Farrell protest at the University of Toronto or the 2013 “From Misogyny & Misandry” […]

Dissecting the Frog: on Sarcastic Paraphrase

“Explaining a joke is like dissecting a frog. You understand it better, but the frog dies in the process.” Academia has no shortage of theories of humor, many of which attempt to explain what humor is at a fundamental level. While I’m sure such findings are useful for development of AI, the everyday applicability of such theories […]

Theactrivism

“Why are you naked?” “Because I want people to look at me!!” “Oh.” “Just kidding. We’re promoting body acceptance!” “Oh.” Just recently I learned that No Shave November has its origins in “Movember”, a month-long period where men grow mustaches for raising awareness of prostate cancer. Having tried the No Shave November thing once and […]

Reverse-engineering Top 40 Song Lyrics

“Did you write a top-40 song?” “No.” “So why are you writing about writing a top-40 song?” I have no idea if anything that follows is a recipe for popular music. What I do know is that you can analyze and reverse-engineer common elements to top-40 songs, which I’ve done here. (I chose “reverse-engineering” over […]

Gaslighting: what it isn’t

NOTE: Roughly 500 people access this page a day. Most comments are about diagnosing people. Under no circumstances should you attempt a diagnosis without the DSM-5 or, if that’s too expensive, the DSM Desk Reference. If you can’t see a psychiatrist, at least buy the tool they’d use to determine your diagnosis. So. You’ve probably interacted […]

Trauma as Trivialization

Middle-class America sees any unusual behavior through a pop-psychological lense; a folk version of child psychology and behaviorism where childhood explains every aspect of who you are. Because of this view, society defaults to looking to your childhood to explain abnormalities, the assumption being that if you hadn’t experienced some kind of bizarre childhood event, […]

Fetishizing the Liberal Underdog

If, at a concert or performance, one person interrupts the speaker, rushes the stage with protest signs, or deliberately pushes their voice on a large group of people, they are quickly shut down to audience approval. It would be weird to attend a comedy performance, for example, expecting everyone to interrupt the comedian every time […]

“PR Disaster”

The only thing worse than being asked to make a public apology is making a public apology. Here is a conversation that has never happened: A: Did you hear Daniel Tosh made a rape joke? B: He makes those all the time though. A: Yeah but this girl yelled at him for it and then he said “wouldn’t […]