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Showing posts from August, 2013

Already Paid In Full

Be f r e e !       Confession:  Seeing footage of the Freedom Riders and other non-violent Civil Rights volunteers as they're taunted, beaten, hosed, attacked by police dogs, and arrested makes me grateful to have been born after 1965. The depth of their faith, commitment, and endurance is beyond my ability to comprehend fully. I doubt that I would have been that brave.   BATAF: Each generation is on its own. 

Double Standard

Image from, artist: Suso, copyright 1974.  Victims r eprinted by Eternity Comics 1988 Confession : The tough Black girls on the covers of urban romances look incomplete. Their bold stares challenge their observers, but where's the tenderness and vulnerability that's the standard for mainstream romance covers?   BATAF: Authentic Black girls are hood rats, tough girls or ride-or-die chicks.

Fact Versus Fiction

Confession: When some people insist that white is every color rolled into one without making the distinction between light and pigment, it reminds me of layering all my crayon colors into the center of the page to create one dark spot that fascinated me as a young child. Since my extended family members' complexions spanned the range of freckled pale to deepest dark, being called Black felt accurate and inclusive.      Through my child's literal interpretation filter, I wondered why White people with skin the same pale shades as some of my kin were called the same name as my crayon with no color.      As an adult, reading descriptions of pale, milky white skin makes me wonder if the character is a mime, a Goth, a ghost or a clown. Even albino people are pinkish. BATAF: Absence of color equals purity.     

A Woman's Worth

Age Weight Do-ability Fertility Sexual Virtue Relationship Status       Confession: Women's fiction that reinforces entrenched, narrowly defined ideas of what makes women desirable and worthy of courtesy, respect, love feels archaic. It reads as if the authors haven't been paying attention to the fact that it's normal for girls and women to pursue their intellectual, academic, and professional interests as primary goals, not just as hobbies until they become girlfriends, wives, and mothers.     BATAF: Professionally ambitious women want to be men. 

Stop Herding Me

Image from Confession: Cover art that features scantily clad or naked people is a turnoff even though reading romances and erotica is one of my favorite non-food indulgences. Let me imagine how the characters look without imposing upon my visualization through cover art that often contradicts the text descriptions in the story. BATAF : Women with seriously curvy bodies are abnormal. 

Tunnel Vision

Image copyright Michael Brown from Confession: As a teen, I once got so engrossed in reading a book that I lost track of the child I was babysitting at the neighborhood pool. By the grace of the patron saint of cavalier teens, he was only at the adjacent tennis court fetching tennis balls for some older boys who were practicing their serves.      He was having fun, but losing track of him terrified me so badly that I never again took magazines or books with me when babysitting at the pool. BATAF: Professionally ambitious parents with only one child neglect her/him. Double Bogus! Parents of an only child who adore children pour all their love and attention into their child until the child sometimes wishes the parents would conceive/adopt other children or take up some really time-consuming hobbies. Think Tiger Mom x 2 with extra play dates, lots more fun and positive reinforcement.

Abandonment Issues

Confession: It breaks my loyal reader's heart when my favorite adult non-paranormal romance authors switch exclusively to YA and/or Sci-Fi. Although those genres and their sub-genres are enjoyable, they're not the only types of fun fiction that are worth reading. The variety and volume of contemporary adult fiction (without relentless retail product brand bombardment) written by adults for actual grownups seems to be shrinking exponentially, unless it's depressing, cynical, bittersweet, tragic or catastrophic. BATAF : All women over 30 wish they were younger. 

More Multitasking

image from Confession: The best feature of my slow cooker is that it gives me more time to read. BATAF:  H igh quantity of words = High quality of words

Using What You've Got

Confession: In the time before e-readers, I've read cookbooks as if they were short story collections because the library didn't have exactly what I was craving for my next prose gorge, there wasn't money in the budget for a book splurge, and reading chocolate recipes satisfied two of my joneses at once. BATAF: Being thin is always a sign of self-control.


Image copyright 2013 Banks Art Partners. All rights reserved. Confession: More than one saucepan has been charred into early retirement when I've decided to read "just one more page" while waiting for water to boil. BATAF: Domestic labor is an inherently feminine proclivity.

Make 'Em Laugh

Image from Confession: Moms Mabley, Whoopi Goldberg, Issa Rae, W. Kamau Bell, and Gary Owens inspire me with their funny ways of telling uncomfortable truths while they entertain. Their brilliance spotlights humanity's resilience. BATAF: Oppression harms only the oppressed.

Frequency of Disdain

Scott-Lincoln commemorative coin image from Confession: Every time someone publicly spews racist, anti-Semitic, misogynistic, ageist, Lookist, homophobic, Classist, xenophobic tripe as justification for the dehumanizing treatment of others, Dred Scott comes to mind. It makes me wonder: What would happen if every reference to man/men in the U. S. Constitution were changed to human being/s? BATAF : Some human beings are less valuable than others.