Shirts Belonging to the
Gentle Reader, how long do I have to go without blogging before you start sending me solicitous letters of concern for my health, my Internet connection, and the distribution of my assets after death, huh???
I’ve got a backlog of stuff to write about, which summer lassitude will mostly doom to obscurity… but here are a few of the gender and science things:
- Someone’s started a geek feminism wiki. The entries are still pretty sketchy – the “women in science” article is just an empty link – but what a great concept!
- I’ve always assumed that the reason no one has ever marketed a male hormonal birth control is that it is a difficult biological problem. Apparently that’s no longer true; there are reasonable (if less than ideal) systems in advanced stages of development, but intractable kneejerk sexism on the part of drug company executives leads them to consistently underestimate the potential market. Because the concept doesn’t seem profitable, no one is investing in the final stage of clinical trials. File it under “patriarchy hurts men too”:
“You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink,” says Dr. David Handelsman, an Australian researcher who has spent two decades studying male contraceptives, including an implant-injection system that delivers testosterone via an implant in the arm, plus a progestin in four yearly injections. “The pharmaceutical industry is completely disconnected from the public and medical perceptions of need.”
If even a small percentage of sexually active men agreed to try a new method of birth control, that would amount to a colossal number of potential consumers. That’s why [director of the Male Contraception Coalition Kirsten] Thompson doesn’t believe the drug industry’s hesitance to develop male hormonal birth control is merely about money. “The biggest hurdle that I’ve encountered in trying to share this information is a sort of knee-jerk reaction that men aren’t interested in these kinds of contraceptives and that women won’t trust them to take them,” she says. “Neither of those assertions are supported by the data.”
- Dr. Isis discovered that half of the most gratuitously cleavaged women on television are in STEM professions.
- The August Scientiae is up, in a part of the Internet no one thinks of as “real blogs” ’cause it’s populated by lots of women.
Most women’s tops, on television or otherwise, can be divided into the following categories:
- Crisply tailored
- Modestly draped
- Suggestively draped
- Tight sweaters
- Conceiving of breasts as incompressible floating orbs
- Expediting the transformation from buttoned-up nerd to breathless movie love interest
- Romanticized visions of an exotic Other
- Revealing a touch of cleavage which grows and shrinks in the eye of the beholder
- Revealing a touch of cleavage which grows and shrinks in the eye of a Beholder, unless you make a saving throw
- Requiring a special bra
- Drawn with a very fine camel hair brush
- Shirts that from a long way off look like flies
During my first year in college, my body finally left its gawky adolescence and these options gradually dropped away from me. After gaining some weight last spring I am left with the following taxonomy:
- Unprofessionally boobulous
- Shirts which appear to be professional attire in the morning, but when some slobberfaced lecher looks at you the wrong way in the afternoon they are revealed to have been unprofessionally boobulous all along
… yeah, okay, I have no actual lesson about womanhood in science to draw from these lists, but it’s been several months since I last made a gratuitous Borges reference and my literary clock is ticking, you know?
Also, I am going to drop a bunch of money on fancy photography next month, and still haven’t figured out what to wear, so I’ve got necklines on the brain to a particularly uncustomary extent. You’d think wedding dresses would all be drawn with very fine camel-hair brushes, but you would be wrong. Mostly, from a long way off they look like maggots.