Alarming News: I like Morgan Freeberg. A lot.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: We were following a trackback and thinking "hmmm... this is a bloody excellent post!", and then we realized that it was just part III of, well, three...Damn. I wish I'd written those.
Anti-Idiotarian Rottweiler: ...I just remembered that I found a new blog a short while ago, House of Eratosthenes, that I really like. I like his common sense approach and his curiosity when it comes to why people believe what they believe rather than just what they believe.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is an intriguing guy...[he] asks great questions and answers others with style, flair, reason and wit. On the blogroll he goes. Make him a part of your regular blogospheric reading. I certainly will.
Brutally Honest: Morgan Freeberg is brilliant.
Common Sense Junction: Misha @ Anti-Idiotarian never ceases to amaze me. He keeps finding other good blogs. I went over to A.I. this morning for my daily Misha fix and he had found this guy named Morgan Freeberg in Fair Oaks, California, that has a blog, House of Eratosthenes. Freeberg says its "The Blog That Nobody Reads" but it may now become the blog that everybody reads.
Jaded Haven: Good God, Morgan, you cover a topic from front to back with a screwy thoroughness I find mind boggling. I'm in awe of your thought proccesses, my friend, you're an exceptional talent. You start by throwing in the kitchen sink, tie in someone's syphilitic uncle, bend around a rip tide of brilliance and bring it all home in a neat, diamond dripping package of an exceptionally readable moment of damn fine wordsmithing. I love reading you.
Mein Blogovault: Make "the Blog that No One Reads" one of your daily reads.
Philmon: When Morgan meanders, stick with him - he's got a point and it'll be worth it in the end. He's not a hit-and-run snarky quip kind of guy. The pieces all fall into place like tumblers in a lock and bang! He's opened a cognative door for you.
Rightlinx: Morgan at House of Eratosthenes is one of the best writers out there. I read him nearly every day because he manages to provide an interesting perspective, even though I don't always agree.
Poetic Justice: Cletus! Ah gots a laiv one fer yew...
FLOG (n.): A feminist blog. FLOGGER (n.): One who runs, or writes for, such a blog.
The time is right for these words. Our floggers deserve them. Read some non-feminist blogs…then read some feminist blogs. The tone is very, very different.
To ponder why this might be, let’s consider what the word “feminist” means. It’s a deliberately vague term. You can’t explore what it really means, without spending some energy examining how we got to this point.
Sometime in the late seventies, it became fashionable for men to announce, with no small amount of theatrical irony, that they were feminists. It was a term intended to shock. I’m a male nurse…I’m a male bellydancer…I’m a male feminist. By design, this was supposed to lead into a conversation about what exactly a feminist was — the answer to which, of course, was that a feminist believed in equality between the sexes. A man might go to sports bars and strip bars, he might drink beer and eat meat, he might work on a 1965 Dodge charger on the weekends in an old tee shirt twenty years out of style — but if he believed women should be paid the same as men, that there was a feminist, no two ways about it.
The rumor persists to this day. I say, I AM A FEMINIST — and I might mean…equal pay for equal worth. I might be pro-choice. Or, I might be a transgender who hates men. Or anything in between. There’s just no telling what that word means…
…outside of the computer.
In cyberspace, it’s a different story. Someone with a feminist blog says she’s a feminist — you can safely assume a lot of things.
Everybody who’s hit such a site, knows what I’m talking about. I can string tangential embellishments on my definition all day long…and it’ll still work.
On the web, a feminist blog has some incandescent indication that the person who runs the blog is female. And “progressive.”
Which means negative. The feminist blog makes itself known to new arrivals, exactly what the theme song is. It is dark. It is acrid. There are pictorial representations, large-font headlines and sub-headlines, leaving no room for doubt whatsoever: The CEO of this blog is a woman, and she has pet peeves.
The feminist blog is not like the political blog. Surely you’ve noticed by now — a conservative blog, and a liberal blog, will make it a point to highlight what is to be deplored, and what is to be adored. Permanently. On the masthead. In the sidebar. Someplace that won’t move. This guy’s a fool…that other guy is a hero. Three cheers for so-and-so…boos and hisses to such-and-such. And the positive stuff will always at least be somewhat present. Usually, it’s an invitation to join a webring, hosted by like-minded people.
Not so with the feminist blog. These are not out-of-computer feminists, who on occasion at least pretend to like things or people. No, in Internet-land, the feminist blog is a decidedly negative fountainhead of bile. It exists to find things reprehensible, and to broadcast such findings frequently, voluminously, and with grandeur and gusto. The feminist blog is like the siren luring Jason and the Argonauts to certain doom, with tones screeching rather than dulcet. All other purposes are secondary.
This is a meaningful transformation. In my lifetime, orthodox feminism has clung to a veneer of plausible deniability — never straying far from the “Who, Me?” motif. Every insinuation that feminism had something to do with caustic things…even legitimately cynical things…was invariably answered with a peevish counterinsinuation — hey, no, we’re just here to assure fair play. No man regards us as an attack or a threat — no man has any need to — unless he is somehow “insecure.” A level playing field is all we’re about. Like what, you got a problem with that?
The Internet feminist labors under no such motif. Chalk it up to the sinister, anti-socially shading effect of the Internet itself. The cyber-feminist is a decidedly darker version of her flesh-and-blood sister. She is acrimonious, jaded, angry, petulant. She makes no apology for being so. Not only that, but if a day is spent and no nastiness has managed to bubble to the surface, it seems the day has been a waste. It’s part of the identity. The kitty has claws — or else she’s not worth the trouble of being.
Check out masthead after masthead after masthead on some feminist blogs if you have trouble envisioning this. You’ll see what I mean. The “author” is represented by silhouette, or by avatar, or by an actual photograph. There is no smile…not unless it’s been made up into some misshapen sneer. Read the actual posts — and the problem is more pronounced still. Time after time, the theme is left intact, unshaken, unwrinkled, unmoved.
It is this: Somewhere, something is, and it ought not be. That’s it. Overall, it seems the fem-blog hasn’t much else to say. Sensors have detected something somewhere that exists, that we think should be banished to oblivion. Can we get an ‘Amen’ here?
The salty language highlights another key difference. Our flesh-and-blood feminists out here in the real world, use language unfit for a mixed audience — the same way we use it here at The Blog That Nobody Reads. When they think it will add to the point they seek to make. Of course, someone else will always disagree about that, but that’s how we do things here. If a swear-word contributes nothing, we leave it alone, and if it contributes something, we’ll go ahead and toss it in. The same methodology is used by your face-to-face feminists, the comediennes, the water-cooler advocates. Use the PG-13 language with some discretion. It’s a measure of how comfortable they feel with the present audience, and occasionally is used as a testament to how infuriated they are but the topic under discussion.
But outside the cyberworld, I’ve noticed the feminist is careful to avoid wearing it out.
Not so with the fem-blog. The swear words are gratuitous. They have to be on the front page somewhere, and in the scroll format, that means a G-rated post is something tripped across seldom-to-never. “Floggers,” we are left to conclude, use this as a calling card to visitors in cyberspace. Or more like a welcome mat. Rest ye weary bones, Sister In Perpetual Anger; here you’ll find all the solvent acid dripped at the oppressive patriarchy your little heart desires to see dripped.
But they aren’t all bad. It was thanks to a “flog” that I found out about this.
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