a modest rebuttal

So, this exists. And it hurts my brain. (Also, linking to that blog is painful, but is a good example of Insipid Shit That Ladies Are Supposed To Like.)

Point/counterpoint! It's worth noting that my lovely Vicious Trollops co-blogger A Lady is somewhat more, well, ladylike than I am, and will disagree with me on bits of this. (Hence why it's here and not on Vicious Trollops. But you should read Vicious Trollops, too, because in my wholly unbiased opinion, it's worthwhile! Plus there's that whole How To Date Us post already in existence.) And it's all heteronormative up in hurr, but this is genderless, I promise.

1) If you want to go out with her on the weekend, ask her by Tuesday. Do NOT ask her at 8 p.m. on Friday. This was awesome. It showed me that he was considerate of my schedule, valued my time and was serious about wanting to get on my calendar. There is nothing worse than a wishy-washy guy. If a guy is interested and respects you, he won't take any chances.
  • Not a lot of argument from me on this, actually. Spontaneity is great (a 4 pm email saying "do you have dinner plans? No? Then can I meet you for dinner?" is good); asking me on Thursday what I'm doing on Friday means that I'll likely already have other plans. Color-coded calendar, etc.- and yes, this is a bit of a pain, but for real, scheduling is just convenient. However, the whole tone of "...valued my time and was serious about wanting to get on my calendar... If a guy is interested and respects you, he won't take any chances" is just massively grating. It's not respect, it's just practicality. I might have plans to see a show on Saturday night, but if I know in advance that you want to hang out on Saturday night, I'll get an extra ticket.
2) Plan the first date. Once she says yes, take a day or two to research what you want to do and where you want to take her. The first few dates are on the guy to pull together. I HATE when a guy asks me to pick a restaurant or dating activity in the early days. I don't know what his budget is like. Even if I want to go somewhere really nice, I'll never ask for that and come off as a gold digger. A guy should take you there because he wants to take you there.
  • Pah. Have an idea, float the idea, but jesus, it's not that fucking hard. Generally "want to go to Awesome Activity/eat something good/drink something delicious" is a pretty good idea. And the whole "golddigger" thing bugs. Because clearly dating is transactional and ladies are only after anyone for money, right? Fuck that.
3) Pay for the date. This should go without saying, but I'm just going to make sure this is clear. I'll usually pay for a few little things, like concessions at the theater, if I like the guy, but a guy should always plan to pay for everything. If she wants to go halfzies on the bill, tell her to put her money away. If a girl "doesn't like it when a guy pays," she probably just doesn't like you and want to feel like she owes you anything. Even the most independent woman appreciates nice gestures.
  • Fuck that. See "golddigger", above. I expect to split the tab. If someone says "I'd really like to get this", then yeah okay, but I never ever ever expect anyone to pay for me and my admittedly often expensive tastes.
4) Pre-date banter is awesome. Send a few texts that are not overly flirty, but more fun and quippy. It shows that you're excited to see her and helps build up the anticipation. By the time Friday rolls around, the conversation is already friendly and easy.
  • Banter is always good. No argument here.
5) Pick her up at her apartment. Whether you have to walk there, cab there, train there, just do it. In this case, the restaurant was actually in his neighborhood and he still met me at mine. That gesture did not go unnoticed.
  • HELL TO THE NO. That's fucking creepy. If the date does not go well, then I have to think "shit, and now they know where I live, and I'm gonna have to hope they don't just 'happen to be in the neighborhood' in an attempt to run into me". Times when meeting at apartment is a good idea: when I invite you to do so. Otherwise, I'd find this highly sketchy. I suppose if one is picking me up in a car, then yes, that's fine, but I don't like being transit-dependent on anyone for a first date. It closes the exit window of "this did not go well, I need to get the hell out".
6) Don't go in for the kill. Treat it like a first date. One that, if it's good, will be followed up by second, third and fourth date. It takes me awhile to warm up to somebody. My date was the perfect gentleman. It was so refreshing to be respected like that.
  • Pshaw. If a first date goes well, I'm definitely making out with you, and probably in a shameless public manner. No shame in being like "daaaamn, chemistry, please to roll around halfnaked now". This whole expectation of Ladies Should Be Demure is infantilizing. I can make up my own mind about whether I want to hook up with you or not, and I shall follow through.
7) Text her right away and tell her that you want to see her again. Amazing.
  • Go ahead, but don't get all twitchy if I don't text you back. I'm probably asleep.
8) Get in touch with her by Tuesday and get on her schedule for the weekend.
  • Follow-up plans are good, yes. I shan't argue with that.
See, this RedEye blogger is not 100% wrong, just like 50% wrong. But way to reinforce the stupid idea that dating is a transactional and golddiggery affair! Oh, feminism sheds a tiny tear.


cookie monster

At last weekend's festive holiday gathering ("let's all make a bunch of christmas cookies and eat frosting and sing along to Jingle Cats and dammit, why did the gingerbread horse not come out right?"), I made a big batch of pfeffernusse. These have always been my Festive Holiday Treat. Pfeffernusse come in light and dark versions, but I much prefer the dark one- so much so that I didn't bother to get the recipe for the light version from my grandma. Nothing personal, grandma.

It seems that everyone else at the party grew up with a different expectation of pfeffernusse than I did, however. They all wondered why mine were so small (the size of half-dollars, rather than the size of Oreos), and why I didn't roll them in powdered sugar. I'd never heard of such things, but I suppose it's entirely possible that there is more than one way to make this cookie.

Foolishness! This is My Family's Way, and thus, the Right Way.

(Why no photos of the cookies? Um, because I've eaten them all already. Oops.)

Grandma's Pfeffernusse (or "peppernuts", which is a less charming word to say)

1/2 C shortening (Yes, it hurt me a bit to buy Crisco for this recipe. But if it's good enough for my grandma, it's good enough for me. Don't judge.)
2 C brown sugar
2 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbls hot water
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
3 1/2 C flour

Cream the shortening with the sugar; add eggs and beat until all is mixed. Add the salt, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Dissolve the baking soda in the hot water and add this to the dough. Add the vanilla. Mix in the flour (you'll be using a wooden spoon by this point, most likely) in 3 or 4 additions.
The dough should be smooth, not crumbly, and have a slightly tacky feel to it.
Roll out ropes of this (with a circumference about that of one's thumb) and cut into small chunks. (About the size of a thumbnail? or about the size of one's thumb from knuckle to tip? Y'know, smallish.)
Place these on a greased cookie sheet (or on one lined with parchment paper). Bake at 350 degrees for about 6-7 minutes. Watch them closely, they get overdone quickly.

These are sort of hard little cookies- some are chewy, but most are rather crumbly. The best (and correct!) way to eat them is to float them atop the hot beverage of your choice (hot chocolate, irish coffee, whatever) and then scoop them up with a spoon. Don't let them sink!



OPI's "Domestic Goddess" polish, in both matte and regular finish, disappoints. I first bought the matte, and blamed the streaks on the formula. Surely the regular shiny finish would be better, I thought!

Gorgeous perfect color, utterly shitty opacity. This is streaky as all hell, even after my uncharacteristically careful application of a base and top coat.


scarlet o'hellyeah

I think a theme song is only appropriate here. (This has totally made its way to The Creepy/Sexy Mix.)

I've had this cape nearly a year now (origin: middle-of-nowhere Nebraska thrift store, something like $15), and I don't wear it nearly often enough. I'd pass it by in the closet, thinking "ugh, I just don't want to have to acknowledge people today, and everyone feels the need to say hello when I wear this", until I realized that buying a bright fuckoff red cape with fur trim is an indication that yes, this is for looking at. (And showing off on one's blog, obvs.) Comment away, passers-by. Wallflowers don't wear winterwear such as this, after all.

Red wool cape with rabbit fur collar, vintage; opera-length
gloves, vintage; boring black tights; boots, Enzo Angiolini.

I also had a board meeting this morning and needed to wear something that said "listen up, yo". Red will do that, especially as I rarely wear red. (The dress is more a true red than this picture will do justice: a blue-red, not nearly as magenta as it looks in this shot.)

Fold-neck dress, Target; belt, vintage; Until There's A Cure bracelet; Allumonde ring; watch, vintage.