Stupid Girls: The Kardashian Phenomenon & How It’s Ruining Modern Women

While eating lunch with a friend at work last night, we had the bad luck to catch about three minutes of the Kardashian show, Keeping Up with the Kardashians, or whatever the heck the name of that show is.  In any case, we both agreed that our IQs had been lowered just in those few short minutes.  Thankfully we had the good sense to cut off the TV before any more brain cells were lost. Kim Kardashian

I’ve railed against what I call the Kardashian Phenomenon on this blog before, but today I feel like I must address it again, this time as a central theme.

What, you may ask, is the Kardashian Phenomenon?  It is, in my mind, the phenomenon in the modern world in which certain people have become celebrities for no apparent reason whatsoever, other than being wealthy.  Since Kim Kardashian is easily the best example of this phenomenon, I’ve named it after her, although Paris Hilton certainly gives her a run for her money. Kim K marriage cartoon

For years I’ve been trying to figure out why anyone gives two hoots about what these “women” are doing with their pathetic lives, & I’ve yet to unravel the mystery.  As one of my favorite rock stars, Rick DeJesus (lead singer of Adelita’s Way) so eloquently stated in an interview a few years ago, “You’ve got these amazing rock singers, & the reality TV stars have now become more famous than the biggest rock stars in the world.  It boggles my mind that America is letting that happen to rock music.  It boggles my mind that Kim Kardashian, who has no talent at all, is more famous than Brent Smith, one of the best singers probably ever to live . . . You’ve got someone like Kim Kardashian — these people, they do nothing!  There’s no talent.  What’s their talent?  Getting f***ed?” (for the entire interview, see  Forgive me if that sounds crude, but it is truly the reality of the matter, & the world needs to face it!

Rick DeJesus, lead singer of Adelita's Way & author of the brilliant quote above

Rick DeJesus, lead singer of Adelita’s Way & author of the brilliant quote above

This entire phenomenon makes me cherish even more a certain P!nk song called “Stupid Girls.”  I actually didn’t know the song when it was released back in 2006, but a friend of mine introduced me to it sometime in the past year or two, & I instantly fell in love because it seems as relevant now as it was when it debuted. pink stupid girls

[As an aside, one could argue that P!nk might not be the ideal role model for young women, but she’s certainly a hell of a lot better than any other female pop star of the past two decades (other than perhaps Taylor Swift who has sadly crossed firmly into the pop arena).  I particularly like P!nk’s songs about female empowerment such as “So What,” “U & Ur Hand,” (although it kills me that she didn’t just name it “You & Your Hand”!!!) & of course “Stupid Girls.”  In a world where most female pop stars make themselves out to be little (if anything) more than sexual objects, P!nk has certainly taken a different approach.  To this day when a “man” makes me feel uncomfortable by staring at me or making indiscreet remarks, the words of “U & Ur Hand” run through my mind & make me feel just a little bit less marginalized.]p!nk

If you don’t know “Stupid Girls”, here’s a sample of some of my favorite lyrics from the song:

What happened to the dreams of a girl president?
She’s dancing in the video next to 50 Cent
They travel in packs of two or three
With their itsy bitsy doggies & their teeny-weeny tees
Where, oh where, have the smart people gone?
Oh where, oh where could they be?

Maybe if I act like that, that guy will call me back
Porno Paparazzi girl, I don’t wanna be a stupid girl
Maybe if I act like that, flipping my blond hair back
Push up my bra like that, I don’t wanna be a stupid girl

I’m so glad that I’ll never fit in
That will never be me
Outcasts & girls with ambition
That’s what I wanna see

Disasters all around
World in despair
Your only concern
“Will it f*** up my hair?”dumb blonde

Now I’ll be the first to admit that I don’t think all women need to be CEOs, doctors, lawyers, or anything like that in order to avoid being “stupid girls” or part of the despicable Kardashian Phenomenon.  Clearly not everyone is meant to have such a career.  It’s really not about a career anyway; it’s about a mentality, a mentality that worships women who are famous for doing absolutely nothing, other than being wealthy.  And it’s not even like these women are wealthy because of something interesting THEY didlike writing a novel, becoming an athlete, or running a company.  No, girls like Kim Kardashian & Paris Hilton are wealthy because they inherited their money from their fathers!  Yes, they may have expanded their wealth based on their ridiculous TV shows, sex tapes, & other “ventures,” but I dare someone to tell me how any of these things has added any real value to the world.  You’re kidding yourself if you think they have. commander-in-chief

I consider myself a feminist, but I’m not so worried about having a female president, although that would be nice (but I’m not about to vote for someone just because she’s a woman), as I am about what the Kardashian Phenomenon is teaching girls & young women about our society.  Little girls who grow up seeing their moms, aunts, friends, & other role models watching the Kardashian show or other such trash are surely being sent some rather screwed up messages about the definition of success, especially as someone of the female persuasion. feminism-is-not-a-dirty-word

When I was growing up, all the way until I went to college, I was very sheltered which definitely has its advantages & disadvantages, & I do plan to raise my kids a bit differently in some ways (& not so differently in others).  But I will say I am so glad that I did not grow up in the era of the Kardashian Phenomenon, although Britney Spears was certainly bad enough.  Indeed when I was a little girl I dreamed of being a writer, a doctor, a nurse, a teacher, & traveling the world as a National Geographic photographer.  Sure I wanted to be pretty, & trust me, especially as a teen, I spent hours agonizing over my appearance sometimes, & I honestly don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.  After all, we think nothing of guys spending hours in the gym honing their physique in an attempt to attract girls’ attention.  (For the record, it is often very obvious which guys are kicking ass at the gym just for the sake of the ladies & which ones are there because they truly care about looking good & being healthy for their own sake as well.  And the latter are far more attractive!) little girls with dreams

But the point is my greatest goals were never about becoming rich or famous, marrying a millionaire (or even marriage at all), or becoming some kind of sex symbol for America.  It’s not that there’s anything inherently wrong with being rich or famous or even with being a sex symbol in some way.  After all, if you do become rich & famous for whatever reason, as long as you’re not Godzilla, you’re probably going to become some kind of sex symbol whether you like it or not.  It’s just the way the world works & that’s not necessarily bad; it’s just human nature.

Lzzy Hale has certainly become a sex symbol in the rock community & one can easily see why.  But that isn't why she's famous.  She's famous b/c she is an insanely talented singer & guitarist . . . who just happens to be pretty hot too. :)

Lzzy Hale has certainly become a sex symbol in the rock community & one can easily see why. But that isn’t why she’s famous. She’s famous b/c she is an insanely talented singer & guitarist . . . who just happens to be pretty hot too. 🙂

Again, the point is that girls (& boys) need to grow up with greater ambitions than becoming the next Kim Kardashian or owning countless designer purses that cost more than some people’s monthly wages.

So, ladies, I beg of you, if you want a little R-E-S-P-E-C-T, stop watching the Kardashians.  Stop spending a thousand dollars on a purse (unless you REALLY have that kind of money to blow & nothing better to do with it).  Wear as much or as little make-up as you like, but either way do it because it makes YOU happy, not because of who it will attract.  And if you own Paris Hilton’s book or any of the countless magazines featuring her or Kim or any other such idiots, kindly throw them in the fire or the paper shredder & watch your IQ soar.'Hello, how can I offend you?'

If by chance I’ve offended you, I’m sorry but I’m not sorry.

**P.S. Here’s the link to P!nk’s “Stupid Girls”

18 Ways Modern Society Infuriates Me

This post is meant to be both humorous & thought-provoking.  I invite you to laugh with me.  But please think with me also . . .

  1. We create & consume porn by the truckload & watch Miley Cyrus twerk on TV, but we’re afraid to discuss real sexuality & issues that actually matter like birth control, teen pregnancy, breastfeeding, & rape/sexual abuse.
  2. We complain about the lack of decent guys (& girls) but we participate in a hook-up culture that promotes zero self-respect & commitment.  We say we want to keep things simple, not realizing that sex is never simple, yet relationships needn’t be half as complicated as we seem to make them.
  3. The two major political parties are a farce.  Anyone who says otherwise is kidding themselves.political parties
  4. Religious groups are becoming increasingly polarized.  As more & more people stray from mainstream religion, those who remain are becoming increasingly radical.
  5. The people who oppose abortion 100% of the time regardless of circumstances are very often the exact same people who oppose birth control or at least do not support the notion that easily accessible birth control would help reduce the incidence of abortion.
  6. Our economy sucks but the average wedding still costs upwards of $20,000.
  7. Skinny jeans are still in style.skinny jeans
  8. We’re still holding onto the idea that cholesterol is the main culprit behind heart disease when research has shown time & time again that this is absolutely false.
  9. The American school system foregoes teaching Spanish & other “foreign” languages until middle & high school, WELL past the prime age at which the brain is capable of learning new languages.
  10. Rock radio stations are increasingly hard to find.
  11. Bro country exists . . . And there is enough of it to warrant naming this god-awful phenomenon.bro country
  12. TV shows & movies almost NEVER get Southern accents right.  Apparently no one in Hollywood has ever actually been to the South.
  13. There is a large segment of the population who still believes homosexuality is wrong.  I just can’t compute that one at all.
  14. The average cashier in America hasn’t been instructed on the importance of handing customers their change with all the bills facing in the same direction.  The OCD/pseudo-OCD population of America, of which I am part, collectively cringes.
  15. Everyone seems to believe in separation of church & state for every religion except their own.
  16. Speaking of religion, you can believe anything you want in the name of religion, you can even exhibit prejudice & discrimination against certain groups of people, but if you object to traditional religion (at least parts of it anyway) because of logical fallacies, suddenly YOU’RE the crazy one.
  17. Jersey Shore existed.
  18. Kim Kardashian has a career.kardashian news


The Greatest Expression of Love (It’s Not a Ring!!)

Today while reading an article online I came across a link to another article entitled “Five Ways to Get the Engagement Ring You Want.”  I think something inside of me died when I read that.  Actually maybe I should say something came alive, a part of me that was so angry & disappointed in our culture that seeing that article made me want to hurl my computer across the room.  I don’t know about y’all, but my brain is still a bit miffed at the fact that people are writing such articles, & not only that, but professional newspapers are publishing these articles!  Good lord, if we as women want to be viewed as the intellectual equals of men, may I suggest that we stop pandering to such ridiculous ideas of what being a woman means?  If we want to be seen as equal partners in marriage (or just relationships in general), maybe focusing less on what kind of ring we’re going to wear would be a great place to start

Kim Kardashian's ridiculous engagement ring . . . for a marriage that lasted less than 90 days . . .

Kim Kardashian’s ridiculous engagement ring . . . for a marriage that lasted less than 90 days . . .

On a slightly different topic, lately I’ve been seeing a link shared on Facebook about some kind of really sweet proposal story.  I haven’t watched it because I’m not a hopeless romantic & such things just don’t interest me.  I’ve also never seen or read The Notebook or any of the other popular Nicholas Sparks movies/books.  In fact that entire genre makes me want to puke.  Then there are the inevitable posts in magazines about the gigantic (& just plain gaudy) engagement rings that celebrities wear (see the above picture!).  Lest you should think I am a grump, please let me explain why these things are anathema to me.

I’ve never been enticed by the idea of public or over-the-top marriage proposals.  One of my biggest goals in life is to not be judgmental so I won’t go so far as to say I think these things are wrong.  Of course not.  But I just don’t see the appeal.  To me, getting married (or having any type of serious long-term relationship) is all about sharing real life with someone.  It’s about understanding that real life isn’t always exciting or even super interesting.  It’s sharing all of the little day-to-day events of life, like going to the grocery store, cleaning up after the dog, & vacuuming the carpets.  Lots of people can have fun together at concerts or the beach or on vacation in the Caribbean.  It’s when you can have fun with someone doing all the mundane little things than make up real life, that you know you’re onto something special.  Maybe it’s because I am at heart a bit of an introvert, but the idea of being asked to marry someone in front of thousands of people at a baseball game or some other such public event makes me cringe.  To me, a proposal is an intimate thing to be shared with your lover & no one else.  In any case, my point is that a proposal that isn’t public or elaborately planned out isn’t any less romantic at all.

When I got engaged I remember the inevitable questions about how it happened, & part of me regretted that I didn’t have a better “story” to share, but deep down I was so glad I didn’t.  I’m still so glad that my husband proposed to me in a very casual way without even having bought a ring yet.  I love that so much because it implies that the decision was very much something we arrived at together & he’ll never have to feel like he “bought me” with a ring.

Coming back to the ring discussion, my husband & I were “engaged” in our hearts for a long time before we actually got engaged.  We knew for years that we wanted to get married but we didn’t want to officially get engaged till we were much closer to graduating from college & coming close to a time at which we could realistically get married.  Naturally we had discussed the issue of an engagement ring long before he actually proposed & part of me hated the idea of a ring altogether.  It just feels like some sort of ancient tradition that labels me as property, & therefore part of me wanted to skip it altogether.  But I also recognized that this is such an established cultural tradition that skipping it would cause people to say & think all kinds of horrible things about us, so in the end we decided it wasn’t worth that risk.  So we discussed the kinds of rings we liked & discovered that we had very different ideas about what makes a pretty ring (I didn’t even want a diamond because I much prefer green or blue stones but we decided not to buck that tradition too).  I refused to let my husband spend more than a certain amount on the ring because I knew that we had more important things to spend money on than a piece of jewelry that realistically I knew I wouldn’t even wear that often (as a nurse, there is too much risk of losing it at work or worse yet of carrying germs on the ring).  In the end it worked out perfectly that my husband proposed to me on Black Friday (three years ago tomorrow!!) because we were able to pick out a ring together that we both really liked & that would have ordinarily been way out of our price range (he swears he didn’t plan that on purpose & as little as he thinks about shopping, I believe him).  Some people think it’s very odd that we picked out the ring together but I loved doing it that way.  To me, it represents the way we try to make all important (& sometimes even not so important) decisions in our relationship.  We discuss the pros & cons of various actions & then arrive at a decision that we feel to be mutually beneficial.

In summary, what I’m trying to say is that the focus on rings & other such “symbols” of love is absurd.  Some people are horrified when I say that my husband & I rarely wear our wedding rings (ok, actually, he never wears his & I wear mine once or twice a week when I’m not at work & remember to put them on), but my response is always this: a ring is just a symbol & what it stands for is FAR more important than the ring itself.  I hope this post hasn’t come across as arrogant or as if I’m trying to say that my relationship is perfect.  Of course it isn’t.  There is no such thing as a perfect relationship because people, like life, aren’t perfect.  It just horrifies me to think that enough women are so obsessed with getting “the perfect ring” that entire articles are written to help them in this quest.  How ludicrous!  If we as women want men to see us as more than superficial brats, we have got to realize that obsessing over engagement rings needs to stop.  The deeper message here is that we must realize that expensive gifts are not the greatest expressions of love.  The greatest expression of love involves spending the greatest gift any of us can ever give to anyone: time, the one gift we can never get back.  The greatest way to prove your love to someone, regardless of gender, is to spend time with them even when they are sick, sad, depressed, or generally not at their best.  (This applies to romantic or non-romantic relationships alike.)  Engagement rings are just a symbol of the eternal nature of that love.  Nothing more, nothing less.  As a society, I think we would do well to understand this.