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Episode 114: Femiknitter

by Brenda Dayne on March 14, 2012

In this episode: Apologies. Revisiting knitted skirts – the Lanesplitter, and the Claudia – with thoughts, questions and comments. A lot of knitting, but not a lot of progress this week, so we finish up with VJJs. I know. You’re shocked. Zabet Stewart discusses the importance of nomenclature, then Annie Modesitt and Donna Druchunas discuss cuddly fluffy lady parts and the US Congressmen who need them. I wrap it up with some thoughts about privilege. It sounds disjointed, but it’s really alright. We don’t know how that happens. It’s a mystery.

Participate in the Snatchel Campaign by visiting their website, signing up to the Ravelry Group, knitting a womb or a snatchel, and then sending it to someone who needs it. Your support will brighten up the otherwise dull House or Senate floor in our nation’s capitol, and help keep the US government out of a womb near you.

Packing the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy McIntosh. Read. Discuss.

This week’s Audible pick is The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins.

I do the Facebooks. Also the g+ and, of course, I’m still doing the twitter. Come find me!

Music by Deirdre Flint, Introduction to Bellydancing, from the cd The Shuffleboard Queens; Elizabeth Knight, Let Us All Speak Our Minds, from the cd Songs of the Suffragettes;and the Manic Street Preachers, If You Tolerate This Your Children Will Be Next, from the cd National Treasures – The Complete Singles

Download Episode 114

1 Marg in Mirror, AB, Canada March 14, 2012 at 11:56 pm

I confess, I agree with Pam. And even my 31-year-old willowy daughter whose legs start somewhere right under her chin would likely not wear this skirt (if she ever wore a skirt, which she rarely does). Being a Canuck and not one who knows you well, I was hesitant to comment on this — but your sister’s bold remarks have made me brave. Sorry. Frog it and knit something beautiful with that yarn.

P.S. Being close to 60, it’s been about 15 or 20 years since I’ve even *thought* about wearing a knitted skirt.

2 Susan March 15, 2012 at 12:45 am

“cuddly, fluffy lady parts” How do you not love that? Thanks for a great podcast. You’ve got yourself a new subscriber!

3 Felix March 15, 2012 at 8:03 am

I think the lane-splitter skirt will be a triumph, and although I loved Pam’s outspoken critique of your decision to knit it, I do not agree with her.

I just enjoyed the language; and the fact that she sent such a ranty note with a little “ohai I love your damson BTW” at the end. But the skirt will be amazing, you will rock it over leggings and work it with a big linen shirt. And it will be fabulous x

4 Felix March 15, 2012 at 8:34 am

What an amazing episode; personal & political & funny & as ever, perfectly crafted. I love the way you weave all the threads together. I’ve now listened to the end, and am really sorry to hear the news re: Tonia’s Mum. Sending Love to all at Costa Del Cast On x

5 Genni March 15, 2012 at 9:18 am

I totally agree with you about the reader on the Hunger Games audiobooks (it’s a trilogy… if you can call it that). Although her voice was not well suited to the book (e.g. I’m not sure if the book was frustratingly whiny at times because of the author or the reader), I would recommend them all for the story.

I also totally agree with Pam!!!! I am in my mid-twenties and slim and would not, under any circumstances, wear this skirt. The lengths, shape, stripes, garter ridges (shall I go on?) are a NIGHTMARE for wider hips (by ‘wider’, I mean wider than your knees). Think funnel or soda can. If you MUST: 1) wear a close-cut top, e.g. short jacket/fitted sweater; 2) knit to hit the top of the knee; 3) keep your legs wide open, apparently. However, I encourage you to make it. A cowl.

6 Bonnie March 15, 2012 at 12:09 pm

I’m seconding Felix on all counts (except, possibly, the lane-splitter) – a fabulous episode that reminds us how the personal and political are one great big ball of yarn. Peggy’s article is indeed a classic.
Warm thoughts to you and Tonia this week…

7 Victoria March 15, 2012 at 1:18 pm

I find the knitted “lady parts” patterns funny, and am seriously considering knitting me a set.

HOWEVER. Not all people with vaginas, vulva and the lot are women. Some people are assigned female at birth – that is, have what is called a vulva and a womb and the lot – but do not identify as women. Some are men (also known as transmen) and some are genderqueer (something other than man or woman).

So could you /please/ make a note or something in your show notes indicating that you are aware that not everyone who has a vulva, vagina, uterus etc is a woman?

Otherwise, really enjoy the show, though I’ve just been listening for about a month. Keep up the good entertainment!

8 MelD March 15, 2012 at 2:20 pm

Hm, well, sorry Pam, I don’t agree about the skirt (as long as it doesn’t sag!!). Considering what we know of you, Brenda, where you live and seeing other projects you’ve made, I think the Lanesplitter will be fine. In fact, you inspired me to go and have a look, shout wheeeee! and start one of my own, despite being 47, 5’2″ and decidedly dumpy of figure… it WILL work somehow. On me, with navy or burgundy tights/leggings and boots and a top that reaches to my hips (which are wide), has some structure and fit and draws attention to my waist/face/neck, so the skirt is an afterthought. I think it will be cool – and I do not have pink hair but am known for a brighter palette than is common in chic-land (and yes, I do wear colour with black – sorry Trinny-and-Susannah!!). On someone else, this skirt can be totally Chanel-like, French chic, with nude tights and fancy court shoes, Chanel jacket, silk blouse, what have you… pearls?! On a young trendy thing, ok, anything from pink hair to doc Martens. On you? Brenda, whatever you like ;)) Not wishing to tread on toes, here, but North American fashion sense is not generally accepted to be… well, let’s say it tends to be more than a little conservative. Reminds me of my mom’s friend who is constantly telling her what “one” doesn’t wear, anything shiny is out, this length, that detail, blablabla: wear what goes with your personality, be unique and to hell with the rest of ’em!! ;)) Sorry, my 2cents!!

9 MelD March 15, 2012 at 2:25 pm

…oh, and Claudia?! Can I say “horizontal stripes”??! Vastly prefer diagonals…

10 Karen March 15, 2012 at 3:32 pm

Pam’s wrong, wrong, wrong! Perhaps I drank the kool-aid, but I think it’s lovely. It looks good on a variety of body types and emphasizes curves in the right ways. Your booty will never look better!

11 Pinneguri March 15, 2012 at 6:58 pm

Someone said a year or two ago on a podcast (one of the knitmoregirls, maybe?), that knitted skirts are always wrong. It is. Always. Please, please, please, use your wonderful yarn for something – wearable.
Sorry.

12 Kathleen March 15, 2012 at 7:38 pm

Shades of days gone by episode! Loved it. Hurrah for the VJJ. Everyone here in the states is just boiling over what’s happening. This really helped me and I plan to cast on my “mail in rebate” immediately.
Hugs to Tanya please.
…and sisters do know best…

13 LoriAngela March 15, 2012 at 8:25 pm

Go for it. I have sisters who try to define my style and my fun. The lanesplitter has been documented to not sag. Not so sure about the other one. I am tempted to make this skirt for my son’s girlfriend, because, unlike you, I don’t have the gams.
I think that everything I knit is to “say something”, even if it’s just, “I hope you stay warm.”
Great return of the snatchel.

14 Deidre Corbet March 15, 2012 at 11:56 pm

I also have a Lanesplitter on the needles because everything I read about it made a point of how it looked good on a variety of body shapes. I plan to wear it with leggings and short boots( I am 53 and 5 ft tall). My town has a museum to add to your list: Barb Wire. There is actually a convention or exhibition every May.Wish I could catch you on tour

15 SallyT March 16, 2012 at 1:06 am

Hmm, I know that the lane splitter would be a disaster on my 54 year old behind. YMMV but I think it is best for a tiny butt.

Thanks so much for getting back into the swing of podcasting. I really enjoy your shows. Must say that Cast On is my favorite podcast.

16 Lise Mendel March 16, 2012 at 2:26 am

Loving the podcast, as always. I just had to pause the playback when I came to your fashion question, and refer to the Ravelry photos of Lanesplitter FOs and to my own, personal, style consultant, who is 16 and the final arbitrator in matters of fashion (just ask her).

The definitive answer from a fashionista PoV is: Do NOT go for that skirt. Even if you were the skinny 20 year old Pam mentions, it would not be cool or stylish.

On the other hand, looking at the projects, I immediately thought this would be a really fun project to knit. It’s just yummy!

So there you have it. Knit it up, and sew it shut around a pillow form and you’re good to go. Just don’t try to wear it. ๐Ÿ™‚

17 Renee March 16, 2012 at 4:14 am

Gotta agree with Pam, it’s a group psychosis with the lane splitter. Male a cushion instead. You will not wear that skirt…

18 Karen March 16, 2012 at 12:42 pm

I hate to say anything bad but sometimes one must be honest. Walk away from the skirt! It’s lovely on very few and magnifies the negative on too many. Notice how many are photographed not on a human.

19 Jenny March 16, 2012 at 3:50 pm

I’ve always thought that knitted skirts are odd but I’m a great one for wearing what makes you happy. However, if you’re aiming for chic and stylish, I can’t see it happening. I say this having no idea what you look like, but still confident that I’m right. Looking forward to hearing what you decide.
x

20 Karen March 16, 2012 at 4:09 pm

If you are in Toronto, definitely visit the Bata Shoe Museum. I think it’s your kind of place! My condolences to you and Tonia.

21 Marisa March 16, 2012 at 5:22 pm

Loved the show! Years ago I also made a womb but it was a replacement. A dear friend had a hysterectomy at a young age and as a get well gift. She loved it. ๐Ÿ™‚

22 Susan in Northern CA March 16, 2012 at 5:42 pm

Loved the episode. May have to knit a snatchel for myself. Or for my remarkably conservative representative, Congressman Tom McClintock (who’s also a carpetbagger from Southern California). Re. the skirt, as Desi said to Lucy, “Dun’t.” That skirt is meant for tiny butts. Wish I could say otherwise; I like the fabric a lot. But … no.

23 Marisa March 16, 2012 at 6:10 pm

I left my comment before getting to the end of the episode! Im sorry to hear about Tonias mom. My condolences to you and Tonia.
also thanks for the manic street preachers song. That was who it was, right?

24 Kathryn March 16, 2012 at 6:42 pm

Thank you so much, Brenda, for the info about the Snatchel project. Immediately queued. I had a hysterectomy last fall, couldn’t bring myself to knit the whole Snatchel and start weeping over my own, but I can sure as heck knit a uterus. My brother sent me a uterus from iheartguts.com before my surgery, having that thing in the hospital was fabulous, a real conversation starter. (I was listening to your podcast as I did late night knitting waiting for my pain meds to kick in, also, if you remember, no surprise if you don’t.)

As for the Lanesplitter skirt, I did knit it, and really enjoyed the process, but I must admit that I have never worn it. It does seem a little. . . colorful. . . for my 45-year old self. I have not given up on it, though, and now I am in search of appropriately colored tights and a top to coordinate. I did knit, and love, Sidewinder, and I wear that one all the time.

25 Joanna March 16, 2012 at 7:24 pm

I’m with Pam on the Lanesplitter although I think the Claudia is wearable.
I too am concerned with the “elephant butt” possibilities of the Claudia.

26 Joanna March 16, 2012 at 7:30 pm

You don’t have to make the Claudia with bold horizontal stripes. I’m making mine with very subtle muted color changes and in a fairly dark color. Grays and burgundy with a splash of denim blue and amber at the hem. And making it a bit longer than pattern shows.

27 Liz H March 16, 2012 at 10:11 pm

I’ll be interested to hear your conclusions on the Lanesplitter. I would have bought the yarn for it a few weeks back if the shop I had gone to had got enough Noro in the right shade. I don’t usually wear skirts at all, never mind knitted ones, but I thought that the bias knit and the reasonable amount of give in it would be quite nice on my ample figure. I’m still undecided.

I also loved the pencil museum in Keswick. Were you there when the museum of optical illusions was also in town? Happy memories of that holiday!

Sorry to hear about Tonia’s Mum. Hope you both have some quality family time in the next few weeks.

28 Jennifer Frederick March 17, 2012 at 12:58 am

Can’t tell you how much I loved this episode. The snachel & uterus projects are truly inspired. So very sorry to hear about the loss in your family. Our thoughts are with you both.

29 Abigail March 17, 2012 at 5:25 am

I saw a Lanesplitter at Stitches West and held it up for my friends saying that you and others were knitting it and I was wondering if I should knit one and they all pretty much reacted like your sister Pam and decided that it was only suited for an 8-year-old girl. So, no Lanesplitter for me.

Also, I knit a womb for my midwife because… who else do you knit a womb for? I never thought there would be a reason to knit one for a congressperson!

Finally, thank you for playing Deirdre Flint again! I discovered her through your podcast several years ago and I love her songs. Introduction to Belly Dancing is one of my favorites. ๐Ÿ™‚

30 Theresa March 17, 2012 at 7:50 am

Thank you so much for the podcast. Love this every week.
Condolences to Tonia and her family.

31 moleymakes March 17, 2012 at 11:41 am

Thank you for a wonderful episode and a very thought provoking topic.

Have you noticed how men have to get in the act. We are woMEN, we MENstruate and we go through the MENopause. It makes me seethe that in this day and age there are still men out there who feel they must continue to control us.

Good choice of closing song by the Manics. My favourite Welsh band, closely followed by Sterophonics and Catatonia.

Keep up the excellent work Brenda, I always look forward to hearing your voice.

32 Lisa Writer March 17, 2012 at 5:05 pm

Another lovely episode for me and my pointy sticks.

I’m all signed up to see you when you teacher at Verb in the Bay Area. Very excited.

When you asked for museums devoted to one thing I realized we have one you might like, but it’s a little ways out of SF. The Charles Schultz Museum in Santa Rosa, CA is delightful and well worth the trip. You can even eat lunch at Snoopy’s Ice Rink, where every year there is a hockey tournament for the senior set. You always give us helpful links here’s one for you: http://www.schulzmuseum.org/

Wherever your extra adventures take you I hope are delighted by serendipity.

33 ConnieGail March 17, 2012 at 6:02 pm

Oh Brenda go for it. If you can’t hide stand out. Art never has been what people want it is what they want to talk about. I just finished the Knoll skirt and I am looking into 54th year. I just want to feel fun and so that is what I do. Loved the 114 you rock my pointy sticks. Thanks, ConnieGail

34 Holly March 17, 2012 at 6:29 pm

As for the skirt, follow your bliss. I keep queuing knitted skirts, but I have yet to make one. The Lanesplitter isn’t for me. Thought I had to check it out after your pod cast. I do agree with the commentary that North American’s aren’t known for a daring fashion sense. I’d add to that that us West Coasties tend to go for particularly conservative choices, in general. If it makes you happy, knit it and wear it with pride. The women who wear their clothes confidently, tend to look good no matter what they wear. Even if you don’t like it, you just have to respect it.

Thanks for the knitted snatchel info. Not sure if I’ll make one, but I find knitted art particularly charming and fun.

If you were making it farther north on your tour, I don’t think Seattle made the cut, there is an appalling museum of dolls in Bellevue. I can’t bring myself to go there, as even as a child I found doll eyes creepy, and no I didn’t watch any scary doll related horror flicks.

I’m sorry for your loss. Love the podcast and Welsh for Rainbow.

35 Rhian March 17, 2012 at 8:31 pm

There’s a very good article on just what contraception has meant for male privilege here: http://www.alternet.org/visions/154144/?page=entire

36 Susan L Smith March 18, 2012 at 12:29 am

I looked at the Lanesplitter skirt. I think if it were done in a solid anyone could wear it. Done in a self stripping like the picture you would, I think, need to be thin. It is a biased “cut” skirt which is flattering to most. The material would have to be very thick and heavy to not be pulled out of shape.

I love the podcast and hopefully will be able to see you in Alexandria, VA.

37 Julia March 18, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Not sure about either skirts! It so depends on your figure and whether they will sag and bag after wear. If you wear what my mother would have called and ‘good foundation garment’ ie. a stiff petticoat/slip under they might work. I’m SURE I wouldn’t put my 58yr old bum in one, but I am 3 stone overweight and generously endowed in the rear and have large thighs!
I can see why you fell in love with the pattern, it does look gorgeous, but maybe it would be better in a purse or tote bag instead?
Just my humble opinion!
Fantastic podcast, not sure I am up for knitting lady parts, (I am British after all) but keep up the good work!

38 Nic aka talesfromtheplain March 18, 2012 at 5:45 pm

I LOVE this skirt, but I’m afraid to say I wouldn’t knit it, because I can’t wear skirts on the bias because I am so apple shaped, with added saddlebags that it would be awful on me. It’s such a shame because if I was a UK size 12/14 without a distended belly, I would love it and it would make me feel 20 years younger. But I’m not, so I won’t. I think Pam over-reacted to the projects on Rav – there’s only one that makes me wince – but I suspect she may be right in that this is not the skirt for you.

39 Elspeth March 18, 2012 at 6:19 pm

Condolences on Tonia’s mother’s passing. My thoughts are with you both.

Since I see you will be in the Washington, DC area, I do hope someone has advised you to come and see the textile museum!

40 Johanne March 19, 2012 at 2:07 pm

You asked so I feel I must answer_ it’s not the most flattering style and should be seeing on only the very tall and impossibly skinny. It is, however lovely to look at and I can understand your urge to cast it on.

LOVE your podcast, keep up the good word!

41 Valerie March 19, 2012 at 5:23 pm

Ooh Brenda. Pam is right. Put down the kool-aid. Frog that skirt. Make something else and no one gets hurt.

42 Margaret March 20, 2012 at 9:05 pm

Pam is very funny, but really, Lanesplitter is a cute skirt. I don’t think it is necessarily just for the young, but it is for people with an arty sense of style. It marks you as a “creative”. I think you qualify, don’t you?

43 Siobhan March 21, 2012 at 12:32 am

I’m SO GLAD someone else thinks the same way about the Lanesplitter as I do. It has the rare and equalising quality of looking horrendous on everyone who wears it. Though I’m in the ‘no-knit-skirts’ parade (since when is sagging, clingy material around your bum attractive?), Claudia looks like a more flattering choice.

Very sorry about your loss.

44 Pam March 21, 2012 at 3:44 pm

Note to self: Never diss my sisters knitting project when said sister has a podcast and will share my diss with the knitting populace. You are totally sleeping on the floor when you come to visit in May. You know, the knitted fabric of that skirt is really kind of cool with the diagonal stripes and all. It really would make a fantastic pillow or cowl. As it skirt, it just looks too much like a bath mat. A really colorful and quirky bath mat. I am definitely in the no knitted skirts camp unless you are my vintage groovy ‘hair that grows’ Velvet doll from the 60’s. She could totally rock that skirt and I am going to make her one.

45 JammieG March 21, 2012 at 5:09 pm

LMAO! Only your sis can talk to you that way!

46 Krista March 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm

Just finished the slightly obsessive “listen to all of the archives of a podcast that I found and like in as little time as possible” marathon. I’m back in the real world now – but I have spent the last couple of weeks highly entertained by your podcast. Thank you!

As for small museums, the Tenement Museum (http://www.tenement.org/) on the Lower East Side would probably be something you would be interested in. You can only see it as part of a tour, so it’s worth checking the schedule before you get there, but it’s a fascinating look at the history of immigration and the working class and architecture in New York, all from the history of one building.

47 Mary March 22, 2012 at 6:05 pm

Hmm, I think you are rather taking a risk with the Lanesplitter. The diagonals work for me, but it looks too thick and form fitting to look good on my shape, which I think is probably similar to yours. Also, I think the color choices could help make or break this design. I wouldn’t do the rainbow.

However, the Claudia I have much more hope for, although again a gradually changing color might look better than vertically striped colors. At least that skirt has a better shape and looks like it would have some drape and movement. I’d definitely try to make it in lighter weight yarn and the lace is a great feature here.

48 Mary March 22, 2012 at 6:08 pm

Er, I meant horizontal stripes are not as good. You guys know what I meant.

49 Leah March 22, 2012 at 10:56 pm

I for one *love* the skirt, and it’s in my queue. I haven’t seen one in person (and I’m not known for my fashion sense) but I think it’s a matter of personal taste and you should go for it if you like it!!!

50 tini March 23, 2012 at 6:47 pm

I made the Lanesplitter and I have seen a metric ton of finished skirts on a huge variety of women and they all looked faboulous. The skirt does not sag even after wearing it to work because of the bias and it also does not ride up your leggings/panty hose. It’s just awesome (and I’m working in a bank and even my รผbercorrect colleagues liked the skirt…)

51 Flo March 24, 2012 at 8:50 pm

Thanks again for another great podcast. I think the Lanesplitter looks wonderful, although maybe not on everyone – but if you want to knit it, go for it! I’m sure you could find another use for it if it ends up being not-your-thing.

I wanted to say a huge thank you to Victoria in comment 7 for pointing out what they did. It heartened me hugely to know that I wasn’t the only one thinking that. Thank you Victoria!

52 Glen March 28, 2012 at 9:12 pm

I’m a naysayer, admittedly. But I am one of those people who does not like the look of a knitted skirt or even a knitted dress. I always think that they look baggy on the bottom. Again, that is just my opinion. If you love it, and you think you will wear it, knit it. What’s the worst that will happen? You knit it, you hate it, you frog it. We love knitting, right? So no biggie. ๐Ÿ™‚

53 Trudi Hauptman March 28, 2012 at 11:49 pm

Brenda,

When you are in NYC if ou have the chance hop a train to Brooklyn and go see Judy Chicago’s Dinner Party at the Sackler Feminist Gallery in the Brooklyn Museum. Not to be missed.

See you when you get to San Francisco!

54 Val March 29, 2012 at 10:37 pm

Thank you for this podcast. I found the Project only a few days before the show and I have my crocheted uterus finished. I just need to get it shipped out. I’m considering doing more than one, but it works up so quick that I think it will be an in between projects project.

55 Aebell March 30, 2012 at 2:01 pm

I am afraid I have to side with Pam. I think knitted skirts are tricky and as much as I like the look
Lanesplitter, I do not think it is particularly flattering on wearers of any shape/size. And yes it will certainly bag, especially on a long flight. ๐Ÿ™

56 AnnDS April 4, 2012 at 1:06 am

Dear Brenda, Hmmmmm….Lanesplitter. I do like the skirt, and I think that if it fits properly it can be flattering on lots of people. Problem with some of the ones on Ravelry is they’re too tight. Let’s skim over those tummies and butts, people, skim!

How about, as an alternative, Fair Isle Skirt by Mary Jane Mucklestone? I have this in my Queue. When/if I make it I won’t let it flare/tulip out so much at the bottom, tho.

Ann in Ohio (can’t wait to meet you at sweater class in Chardon!)

57 LostCityDenise April 12, 2012 at 10:24 pm

I’m not sure Lanesplitter, which looks like a fun knit, would be good on anyone but a tall thin woman. Have you seen the Isobel and Chelsea skirts?

58 Deb Giuffre April 17, 2012 at 1:48 am

In regards to knitted skirts, I feel that they are for the thin. I had a knitted dress that I loved, but I was so thin at the time.

I can see wearing a knitted skirt if I take off the weight (15 lbs so far).

59 Nicole April 21, 2012 at 4:45 pm

Brenda, great show, as always!

Here are a few NYC suggestions:

Walk the Highline! It’s a veritable oasis in the middle of chaos.
http://www.thehighline.org/

Visit the Tenement Museum. I think you will find it fascinating.
http://www.tenement.org/

Eat a doughnut at the Doughnut Plant. Order the Blackout.
http://www.doughnutplant.com/
Trust me.

Go to Habu.
http://www.habutextiles.com/

Have fun!!!

60 Marri April 22, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Oaky, so I’m admittedly a few episodes behind but I had to write in and say thank you once again for an amazing podcast, all capped off by MSP – the song that actually introduced me to the band, coincidentally while I was living in New York. SUCH a powerful anthem.

(After you hit up the Guggenheim, I suggest stopping by Alice’s Tea Cup for refreshment. Adorable, whimsical little place!)

61 Terri April 26, 2012 at 5:33 pm

Just a thing you might be interested in – Annie Modesitt was on Dan Savage’s “Savage Love” podcast in the last couple of weeks talking about the knitted ladybits project. It was awesome.

62 Rainy Horvath May 5, 2012 at 12:38 pm

Wow. This is brilliant, thanks for sharing the word.

63 Gretchen Garcia May 23, 2012 at 6:45 am

Brenda,

I am always excited to listen to your podcasts. This one really got me going. I am a Women and Gender Studies graduate from the University of South Florida in Tampa, FL. So many women and men criticize (dare I speak the word aloud?) feminism, believing it is an attack on masculinity, values, gender roles, and more. It is a multifaceted desire to open the doors to personal agency/ choice/ options for women and me. It is a long-standing movement (since July 1848 in the US) and really roots itself in the individual who wants to live fully to have the right to vote, obtain a job and career without gender/ sex/ race/ class bias, to bear children when ready or not to, and to step outside constrictive roles, stereotypes, and boxes and create one’s own freedom in life and society. It’s not easy to be a self-identified (shhh!) feminist, but it’s who I am. Most of my friends, the foremothers in my Puerto Rican and Chinese family, and even my boyfriend are all feminists. They may not use the f-word, but they’re strong and inspiring all the same. Thank you, Brenda, for reading this and making me smile. (It’s a really big smile.)

<3

Gretchen

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