Clarissa's Blog

An academic's opinions on feminism, politics, literature, philosophy, teaching, academia, and a lot more.


On the same day but completely independently of each other, N and I went into a grocery store where we never buy our groceries (I have maybe been inside this store twice in the whole time we’ve lived here) and bought identical focaccia loaves. Which we never buy. The only difference is that his loaf has olives and roasted tomatoes and mine only has roasted tomatoes. 

And in the evening, we greeted each other with an identical “Hey, I bought this loaf for you that I think you’ll like.” After which we stared at each other in confusion for a while. 

We don’t buy bread for each other. Normally, he buys berries for me or if he wants me to do something extreme for him, like make a phone call, he buys charcuterie. And I buy cookies and yogurt for him. 

Today’s focaccia loaves from the same strange store are inexplicable. 

CEOs and Hair Color

Research explains why half the female CEOs of S&P 500 companies are blonde.

Research schmesearch. If they are CEOs, they can’t be young. If they are not young, they color their hair. Coloring it red is useless because red washes out like crazy. Coloring it dark needs constant upkeep because grey roots are more visible against dark than against blonde. So women go with generic blonde because it’s the most low-maintenance.

Food Not Food

The pediatrician says I must introduce Klara to solid foods. She doesn’t need them nutritionally but kids need to be socialized into eating from a plate with a spoon. 

The problem is that she would chew on absolutely anything provided it’s not edible. This morning, for instance, she was desperate to eat a Ziploc bag. But when I offer her sweet potato puree/ banana / apricot / apple / avocado, etc, she reacts with extreme disgust. 

Of course, it’s not a big deal because there is literally zero chance that she will still not eat solids foods at age 20. But it’s funny that she recognizes as food everything but food. 

Almost There 

We are watching The Killing and N is shocked by the boys’ lack of engagement in household duties. 

“When I was their age, I did everything!” he exclaims. “I swept the floor, vacuumed the carpets, did the dishes!”

“I did nothing,” I say honestly. 

“Oh,” he says. “So how old were you when you started to do all this?”

“Well,” I respond, “It’s any day now.” 

An Alien Body

Purdue Pharma marketed Oxycontin as non-addictive, lying to doctors and consumers and saying that it couldn’t generate addiction because it wasn’t giving users a high. What I find incomprehensible is how people could trust these lies more than the evidence provided by their own bodies. 

I took Oxy a couple of times, long before I read Dreamland, heard about the opiate epidemic, or even knew Oxy was an opiate. I took a minuscule dosage and discovered that the drug was producing an immediate and noticeable high followed after a while by a very clear crash. 

And I got freaked out like hell and stopped taking the drug.

I’m sure there are people who don’t get an Oxy high. But those are not the ones who are likely to get addicted anyway. The ones who will get addicted because that’s how their brain is set up do feel the high because without it they wouldn’t become addicts. 

So the (entirely rhetorical) question I have is how alienated must one be from one’s own body to disregard what is an obvious sign of great danger and continue taking the drug all the way into a full-blown heroin addiction? People must see themselves as infants whose bodily functions are a responsibility of an adult. 

After a baby turns 1 year old, its parents begin to socialize it into taking control of its bodily functions. But it seems like too many people were never informed that the ultimate responsibility for their bodies is their own. 

400,000,000 Pills

Four hundred million opiate pills were being prescribed annually in Tennessee. Whose population is 6 million.

This is a crime against humanity.

Serious Symptom

I’m so sick that even Russian Facebook memes  (e.g. “If your wife is in a bad mood, step aside and throw a wallet at her”) seem funny.

Yasser Arafat

I forgot to buy a medical mask, so I wrapped a nappy around my lower face. Now I look like a fan of Yasser Arafat. This thing is hot like hell. 

Few things are more disgusting than having a cold on an extremely hot, sticky day. 

Kaepernick 2

Professional athletes tend to have the intellectual the of 12-year-olds. But this Kaepernick fellow seems to have been stuck at age 5. He just repeated the dumbazoid line about Hillary calling black people superpredators. Others say this stupid line in bad faith but this poor parrot seems actually to believe it. 

If I tried playing football, I’d be as bad as he is when he analyzes the political process. 

Sick and Weepy

This nasty cold is making me weepy. In class, I almost broke down when I was telling the students about Isidore of Seville. It is a touching story but I had to make an effort not to wail as I was telling it.

I hope the Spanish alphabet that I will discuss in my next class will not prove as tear-inducing.

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