One for the boys…

January 12, 2013

But also a fantastic article for all women to read.

Michael J Dolan, self-reflects and awakens:

I was a Misogynist Comedian

It’s sobering to read what ‘typically’ goes into a set.

Question #134: Is this type of guy/man (the unaware misogynist) a big problem?


Truck Stop.

June 13, 2012

I took my Year 10 Drama students to the theatre today and saw a play that was simply fantastic – captivating…

…and terrifying to watch, all at once!

It’s called Truck Stop.

The play was written based on true events – about a few 14 yr old girls who would sneak out of school at lunch time, hang out at a truck stop and prostitute themselves. The bulk of the play, however, looks at how these young girls reach a point like that in their lives – looking at their social circumstances, coupled with current, cultural pressures. So it’s practically at the end of the play, where we finally see them arrive at that unavoidable end result.

It was hypnotic – like watching a car crash about to happen…except you can’t turn away.

Why am I writing about this? Because how the girls talked, what they did, how they felt, the songs they listened to, all of it – was holding a mirror to what a lot of girls today are living. Breathing.

I found myself actually fighting back strong emotions as I watched, wondering how girls today navigate through such a barrage of feelings, sometimes rendering them impotent to fight against doing ‘whatever it takes’ to attain the one thing they truly want;

To have someone.

That’s the crust of it and has been since the birth of time. We all want someone.

But girls today are bombarded with such powerful emotions – urging them to stand out or be left behind – that (some) succumb to the pressure of what ‘today’ tells them is acceptable and they find themselves making choices that do nothing for them. Time and time again, it seems like the only ‘winner’ is the guy.

This production did a superior job – not just showing the main ‘easy’ girl and her best friend, but also the new innocent Indian student, who joins those girls and is quickly ‘corrupted’ to their ways…until she’s on the outer again. Nothing surprising really, but ladened in pace and emotion. Whenever these girls discussed any activity, whether it be naughty or plain bland, they likened it to a movie or video clip. So incredible how much they seemed to live their lives through fantasy – after all, it’s all that’s splashed in front of them…


Question #57: How can we help our girls get through these pressures; that we simply didn’t have growing up?

Now before you all start jumping up and down saying that we did, what I mean is that we didn’t have the reach of imagery, that this photo-shopped, Internet saturated world has today – we certainly didn’t have the ‘instructional’ music videos of the current pop culture, for example. Of course there were times when I felt like boys wouldn’t like me – but there wasn’t a look or behaviour I had to conform to…and in hindsight, I have to say that it overwhelms me with a sense of relief.

Today is a vastly different story, however, and I feel (at times) disheartened for our girls.

This play doesn’t provide any solutions, but it had a great impact on every one of my students – for many different reasons.

If you’re in Sydney, it’s on at The Seymour Centre until June 23. They may tour, so keep an eye out. It’s worth the watch.

Deep Breath.


Promotional image from Truck Stop.

A response – #2

April 23, 2012

I’ve received another great perspective (thank you), in response to my last post and I thought that seeing as I want to encourage a conversation – I’ll answer it here.

One part read:

I think as well part of the reason women wear such revealing clothes is because we can now, we have reached a stage where we have a right to wear revealing clothes and be in charge of our own bodies, there shouldn’t be anything shameful in wearing something flattering for your body. I don’t think that girls wearing short skirts or dresses is a *pick me* situation at all, in fact most wear them simply because they are in style not because they want to be picked by a man.

I completely agree that women have come such a looong way in being able to choose how to dress and being in control of their own lives – as well as many other advancements. But what I saw on Saturday Night was young women choosing to have a look that has, throughout the decades been equated to one word – SEX.

And that’s OK. I’m not a prude – I think it’s great that women also have more control over their sexual decisions.

BUT, this is the moment where I wonder where the empowerment is – because this look is purely to sexually arouse (heterosexual) men…

it’s the image attached to porn – something created to service men’s desires; an image that has saturated our world, as shown in A visual presentation, since the internet truly hit our shores.

The word ‘flattering’ is the last word that comes to mind (for me) when I see this look because there’s nothing left to the imagination, nothing for the guy to discover – it’s fully out there.

Whatever happened to mystery? Showing a hint of the sexual woman inside, to engage a man?

I have seen VERY sexually alluring women with beautiful and stylish clothing; a low v-neck top, showing a long neckline or a short skirt to show off great legs – but a bit more conservative with the rest.

A taste.

What’s out there appears to be something tacky – when it’s every sexual looked rolled into one. There’s only one message. My husband, a very hot-blooded male, agreed with me – it was a visual candy shop for guys.

Is that it? Can’t we do better?

The reason I ask is because this fashion is filtering down to our young girls – as young as Primary School. We all know that’s true and for the most part, I think people are concerned about this. Why? Because it’s a sexual look and it primarily attracts and arouses men. *massive concern*

Another part read:

I really don’t understand what you mean by girls looking the same while boys all look different, as far as I can tell when it comes to clothes men have a far smaller variety of choice than women.

Men have always used the same clothes for well over a century – as I wrote before – pants, shirt, flat shoes. I was refering to the ‘type’ of guy we saw – not what they were wearing. When it comes to clothes, they don’t have to really make a choice.

But women do. So why not choose a fashion that has sexual allure, steeped in style and mystery?

Again, I really would like to repeat – I’m not criticising these women. I just think they’re worth more than their ‘appearance’ of a stereotypical, male sexual fantasy. Whether girls dress like that for fashion or not – it’s what the guys are interpreting, about women, that matters…

Question #35 …and in this man’s world (which it is) how can we EVER gain empowerment from this look?

We are giving them the look THEY like and, more importantly, the look they chose for us through shows, music videos, men’s magazines etc. etc.

Deep Breath


Some comic relief…

April 19, 2012

This. Is. SO. Funny.

…well, I thought so anyway.

It’s good to have a good and hearty laugh about more serious issues – and this following clip did juuust that for me.

I was flicking channels on the telly a few nights ago, when I landed on Aussie comedienne, Kitty Flanagan, doing some stand-up. I actually went to the same high school as her – she was the year above me. I was mates with her sister, Penny (in my year group), who was a CACK! Such funny girls.

So it was extra-exciting to see Penny join Kitty on stage to sing a song.

Sometimes, you’ve just gotta laugh! *hee heeee*


A visual presentation…

April 18, 2012

So, why is pornographic material so hard to avoid?

Let’s see…

Here are my Top Ten ‘unavoidables’ – places or ways in which women are depicted as hypersexualised and vacuous:

1. COUNTLESS movie plot lines.

2. COUNTLESS music video clips.

3. This – from a popular movie actress, Megan Fox (one amongst many):

4. This – from a popular female singer, Rhianna (one amongst many):

5. This – from a popular television series for young adults, ‘Two and a Half Men’ (one amonst many):

6. This – from a popular television “reality” show for Gen Y, ‘Jersey Shore’ (one amongst many):

I can’t believe these people have become famous and are rewarded for being shallow and self-centered; with the sole intention of partying and hooking up – episode after episode

*sad, sad face*

7. This – a promotional shot from a popular television show for teens and tweens, ‘Glee’ (leading the way):

Look at Lea Michele’s face (on the right) – and look at his (of course) – and where his hands are…

Is video footage more your thing? Click on the following link and watch the video of the Glee students singing and dancing to Beyonce’s song, ‘Run the World (Girls)’ – from a previous post of mine – A (moving) picture paints a thousand words

8. This – from a billboard (Australia) selling Lee Jeans (one amongst many):

9. This – from a funny internet ‘joke’ (one amonst maaany):

10. This – from a t-shirt sold from popular urban store, ‘City Beach’ (one amongst many):

What I really want to know is this:

Question #32: How much longer do we have to wait until women (like these) say, “No. I’m not doing that.”?

Just one, simple word – No.

Because without women – we can’t see these derogative images.

I can dream that day will come…can’t I?

Deep Breath


Looks can be deceiving.

April 16, 2012

I went out with some ex-students of mine last night – a boy and a girl (Paul and Blair) – around 24 years old. I never thought I’d ever have a connection with people so young – but, when I think about it, I’ve had a lot of special friendships throughout the years, that have been with people who have been a lot older than me, as well as younger.

It just goes to show that age doesn’t really have much to do with things – it’s simply people connecting. And we have!

…which is great for me because it means a boogie on Oxford St whenever we get together! So much fun, with two great people.

Yes, I felt a little ‘old’ at times – my feet and bad knee were certainly feeling the ‘nanna’ – but I looove to dance…I can’t keep still when there’s a good dance tune on – and I certainly kept up with the young ones!

If anything I felt like I was cramping their image a little…considering they had the suburban mother and high school teacher in tow. Haha!

But, I think that I hold my own when I ‘go out’ – I look good for my age and I dress well….what I mean is, I like to dress in a way that doesn’t look like I’m going to work (sometimes a challenge) – so, it’s pretty much jeans, some sort of heeled shoe and cheap bling.

More importantly – I’m not trying to be something I’m not. I’m not in my twenties, as some women strive to be (whether older OR younger) and I’m not communicating that I’m ‘ready to go’ sexually. These two seemed to be the predominant ‘goals’ held by a lot of girls and women, when socialising within the current ‘culture’.

Now, last night’s observations were certainly an experience – it’s not often an oldie like me gets to go back to ‘those’ days – and through these wiser eyes, I certainly did observe – and found it intriguing.

I couldn’t help thinking, as I drove home, that a lot of our young people are in a self-destructive, state of affairs – regardless of sexual persuasion. Whether it was the overtly sexual manner in which many men were dancing with other men or the girls I saw walking along Oxford Street, emulating that second goal in a, ‘MESSAGE LOUD AND CLEAR’, kind of way – it all looked a bit sad to me.

Sad because whether in a trendy hotspot, private party or gay bar; north, south, east or west; lower, middle or upper class; straight or gay – there seems to be an obsession with sex and being ‘chosen.’

Maybe it’s not sex that’s really wanted – but to be the chosen one. Sexual allure is just a means to an end – as it is for a lot of things.

The problem here is that we ALL want to be chosen – I mean, who doesn’t? It’s that primal desire we all have – but is insecurity about finding ‘that special someone’ making young people look and behave in a generic and seedy, sexual way?

Question #31: What does one really get for looking good / hot / sexy / or all of the above?

Last night Paul and I were discussing looks and he commented on what a good looking couple my husband and I make. I agreed with him, of course, because we do! *wink*

But then I said to him, “So what?”

Even though I may ‘look good’ – it doesn’t afford me any luxuries or privileges in life. Never has. I’m still a full-time worker, wife and mother of two, with a mortgage and the usual struggles and joys of life.

So you want to be chosen?

That’s cool – just be chosen for the things that make you, YOU.

Your uniqueness – I love this word.

The right guy or girl will see this and be captivated by you, for all the right reasons – but if you go down the other road, the wrong person will just want what you’re offering. The first option sounds better, doesn’t it?

So, this is Nanna signing off – but remember kids – I was the most insecure one of them all, when I was growing up – so what’s my advice?

Good things come to those who wait…and those who don’t sell themselves short – but embrace the bits that nature gave them.

Be confident that there are many people out there who will want and desire you, for the exact person you are. *smile*

Deep Breath.


PS I found the following text conversation on the net and thought you might enjoy the giggle!

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I’ve entered the Best Australian Blogs 2012 Competition.

Today the People’s Choice Awards went online – which means you can all vote for this blog – if you think it’s deserving, that is! *hopeful face*

…and while you’re at it, you can let your friends know about it too – whatever country you’re in!

Shameless, I know *cheeky grin*

Just click on the following link, look for ‘Questions for Women’ and cast your vote.

If Twitter’s your style – #bestblogs2012 is the competition Twitter hash-tag.

Thanks, gorgeous ones.


It’s been three months since this blog was born – yaaaay! *chuffed*

I know three months isn’t a long time, but I held it as a time of testing the waters, I suppose. So here I am and I love it *big smile*

…although it does play with your mind, a bit! The wanting to reach as many women as possible and start them thinking about doing something different, however small, in their everyday lives – to start change – is so strong! But…this blogging business obviously takes time and is slow at the start.

Until this gets a louder voice, however, I’m honoured to be able to talk to those of you who have joined me so far. x

SO – now that this momentous three-month mark has been reached; I just passed 3000 hits; have 31 followers and am about to ask my 30th question, in my 33rd post – (me sees a lot of threes *hmmm*) – let’s make it a question that’s ‘in our face’!

I’ve been wanting to talk about our lack of ‘sisterhood’, for quite a while.

Yes, sisterhood. (I would have loved to have been able to crawl in your heads; to see what you all felt and visualised when you saw the word).

Men are ALWAYS depicted in simple, no-nonsense, “I got your back” Brotherhoods. In fact, it’s respected by both men and women = positive image.

But mention a Sisterhood – and it’s sniffed at and at times mocked…by both men and women = negative image.

We are our own worst enemies.

When I hear that a boy/man has done something ‘slack’ to someone, it’s generally, although not always, to a woman…or girl. But if it’s something slack that was done by a girl/woman – then more often than not, it’s done to one of their own.

Think about it – it’s true – it’s always been true. Remember school? I do – on both sides.

So, can we get out of this please? Stop passing on these bad habits?

Now, of course there are millions of us who DO care and DO feel a strong connection with being a woman.

Where are you? ….Where are WE?

Why aren’t we visible?

All I see are men and their growing army of ‘young’ women (another blog topic – coming soon), ready and eager to please.

My friend Jacquie just wrote a comment that talks about how much we DO have as women – we do have more liberties than the women in the past. So why aren’t we using them for the better?

A motivational speaker who came to talk to my students at school, said that we all know our rights – even kids know their rights – but we don’t always take on the responsibility that comes with having those rights.

With those two wonderful observations, we come to the crunch:

Question #30: Why aren’t women making and teaching the better choices, for our girls, considering the freedoms we’ve attained over the decades?

I’ll leave you with that. Remember girls, it’s got nothing to do with how you look, how many guys AND girls think you’re ‘hot’ or how much money you have.

These are all shallow characteristics and we are much better than that, my lovelies!

My sisters. *group hug*


This is a painting called, “Sisterhood” by Maria Greene.

Love it.

Nature’s balance?

April 9, 2012

I hope everyone had a great Easter. My brood and I headed up to my parents’ place up at The Blue Mountains. I love going up there – I find it so peaceful and I always have a moment where I sit on the back steps, look up at the trees and ponder…

The trees I’m talking about, are predominantly very tall pine trees that are on the property behind my parents’ place. Unfortunately, those owners have been fighting for years to have the permission to cut down around 300 trees on their property to build townhouses. Yep townhouses. Anything to make a buck, right?

It’s so unjust on so many levels. Besides the horror, mess and noise that will come of cutting so many trees down – the whole reason we treasure places like this is because of the wonder that is nature – for balance and peace.

Aren’t they beautiful?

And these three photos were all from this last weekend. Unique, different stages – sunset, full-moon and a foggy early morning – like watching Uluru (so I’m told *wink*). But a camera doesn’t truly capture their magnificence – or how much I love them. *insert heart symbol*

The reason I brought up these trees, is because I often think a lot about life’s challenges and how nature works, when I’m looking at them. I did a lot of this on the weekend.

I’m not ‘religious’ – although what does that mean exactly? I was raised in a home with no religion, but had a lot of it through Primary and High School. I find, as I approach my 42nd birthday, that I pretty much believe a lot of the ‘lessons’ that religion teaches us – I just don’t attach a deity to it.

I just believe in nature and balance. I see an organic, electric force that sends waves of good times and challenges our way – and the way we handle these moments and times, determines our experience on this short time on Earth. When my eldest daughter once asked my mum something about heaven, my mum said to her, “This can be heaven. Now. If you want it to be.”

I loved that. Why can’t this life be heaven?

Well…it can’t be while everyone’s idea of heaven is having lots of money. And this idea – a very strong one now – is tipping nature (which includes us) out of balance.

As a high school teacher, I feel like I’m part of the ‘machine’ that continues to educate our future in the same archaic manner – teach students in the same way (and predominantly the same subjects) as the 50s – so that kids can get a job and buy a house etc. etc.

Girls are encouraged to ‘have it all’ – find a man, marry him, have a successful career, have kids, run a household and start the whole process again with their daughters. Boys – well, they’re encouraged to be men – be powerful (in all areas of his life – which includes power over women, a lot of the time), and earn enough money for said house etc. and they also start the whole process again, with their sons.

OK, so it’s always been that way, to a certain extent. I agree. But if we take a step back, whoever we are and whatever our financial status is, and really look at what we’re being told and sold:

Question #29: Aren’t we creating a society (our children) obsessed with money?

Aren’t we now crossing boundaries to make it and teaching our children how to follow in our footsteps?

The reason I ask, is because this is the point I think that ‘heaven’ can’t be found in this developed world of ours. How can our kids find true balance in their lives when all that matters is money? Everything is buy, buy, buy! What’s worse, though, is that this way of life is moulding our society’s values and beliefs by telling us all what to buy, how to look and what life to aim for.

That last part is the scariest. It looks like everyone is a clone – including myself (big revelation there) – living the life we’ve all been told to aim for. I finished high school, went to uni, got a career as a teacher, travelled, married, had 2 daughters and bought a house….which we’ll be paying off for the rest of our lives. When I look around at my girlfriends from school, the only real difference between us, is our income – because the core of what we ‘have’ is the same. It’s the message that was sold told to us as teens in the 80s and it’s the same as what’s being told to the teens and children of today.

Is this what we want for our future? The same formula – over and over again?

Because it feels like the only lesson that’s being taught, is not in our schools, it’s in our world of consumption and all we are really aiming for is bigger and better than everyone around us.

School, is just a means to an end. School like the 50s (parental concerns of the time, included).

I wonder how I’m going to do it – raise two girls to be strong and unique, whilst navigating through the sludge of how women are represented. How do I teach them to stick to their individuality, when everyone around them is a walking commercial – owning all the ‘latest’ toys and gadgets or wearing the same types of clothes?

So, whenever I can, I look up at the trees – trees that will be cut down, to make way for making money – and wonder if there’s any hope of things truly turning around. Haven’t these issues been brought up a million times before over the decades?

The irony about these trees, is that the original owner of that massive lot – a loong time ago – didn’t sell off pieces of it, to be able to maintain its natural state and beauty, and left clear instructions that it was to be kept that way…but that was only maintained whilst it stayed in the family.

If you get a chance, listen to the wind go through pine leaves – it actually makes that eerie sound you hear in movies…I guess the current owners can’t really hear it over the sound of, ‘Cha-Ching!’


PS Tomorrow’s 3 months since the blog was born! Very exciting *HUGE smile*

A few weeks ago, a friend sent me a link to enter a writers’ blog competition.

I have to admit that I avoided it for a while – avoided entering. Not really sure why – I am enjoying writing so much, it’s like an infusion to my life. I love it. Wish I had more time to do it. *warm fuzzy feeling deep down inside where I live*

So why wouldn’t I want to see it recognised, I hear you ask?

Well, that sneaky, negative voice reared its ugly head. Nothing too drastic, though, just the usual:

  • As ifit would be recognised *grin* – I’m a needle in the massive haystack of wonderful, strong blogger women out there
  • I have days where I barely get a look-see
  • I sound too this – I sound too that

But the crust of it is that I am just loving the freedom of being able to stand up and voice my perspectives on things, questioning our world and hopefully have a laugh along the way.

Most importantly, it’s the wonderful tapestry of women that I want to explore – by chatting to you. It fills me with hope of eventual balance.

So with that being said, I have entered said competition.

I’ve also entered a People’s Choice Award, where my ‘fans’ vote – I’ll keep all thirty of you posted! *wink*

Well…what the hey! You only live once *big smile*