Tag Archives: Lady Stuff

Lady Show: The Conversation

3 May

I think I might have found my new favorite show. I love nothing more than ladies talkin’ about bein’ ladies (check out my blog title for proof), and that’s exactly what The Conversation is. Host/Photographer/Wife/Mom/Superwoman Amanda de Cadenet interviews women about topics that are actually interesting. She doesn’t ask them about whatever movie they’re working on or fluff like that. Instead, she talks to Jane Fonda about feeling whole without a man, or to Gwyneth Paltrow about postpartum depression, or to Sarah Silverman about the importance of female camaraderie, or to Zoe Saldana about the decision to have children. This is the show for you if you miss Oprah but also you wish Oprah was more down to Earth. Amanda de Cadenet is smart, funny, and delightful, even if she doesn’t hide gifts under her studio audience’s chairs (or have a studio audience).

This show is amazing because, unlike other women’s shows with similar titles (The View, The Talk), it actually focuses on real conversations between women about their lives. Not the “She can do it all, and so can you!” pseudo-inspirational bullshit we’ve come to expect from our magazines and television shows, but actual real lives. It is reassuring for me to realize that Gwyneth Paltrow doesn’t have all of her shit together all the time, or that Jane Fonda is still working some things out at 70. That’s real life!

Also you learn that Jane Fonda’s fake knee makes certain sex positions uncomfortable. The more you know!

Watch the first episode of The Conversation here! If you’ve seen it, let me know what you think!

Lady Tip# 3.5: More, More, More Self-Promotion

22 Mar

After my post on self-promotion, I found this super-informative video from Design Sponge. It’s all about, you guessed it, reupholstering furniture.

Just kidding. It’s about self-promotion, duh. I know all of the Welcome to Ladyville readers are great writers, crafters, bakers, artists, and performers, so I couldn’t help but share it with you. Also check out the Design Sponge Biz Ladies blog for more useful tips.

Image via Design Sponge.

A Conversation Between My Boyfriend and Me

21 Mar

After reading this article on Yes and Yes about being childless by choice:

H: That just seems really cut and dry to me. Like, an article on being childless sounds boring.
Me: I did an entire presentation on the childfree movement in college! In my women’s studies class! It’s anything but cut and dry!
H: Oh. (long pause) Was it boring?

Anyway, as it turns out he didn’t know about doctor refusal to grant tubal ligation or, like, anything about being childfree because (as A Dude) he doesn’t have to worry about that sort of thing.

As for me, I plan on raising a small army of children someday (or 3. So it’s a really small army), but respecting other women’s choices is what being a feminist is all about. Super interesting!

Please, Someone Give Lena Dunham Some Pants

23 Feb

This weekend, I watched Tiny Furniture, a movie I’d been wanting to see for a long time. I didn’t really like it, which isn’t the point. I think Lena Dunham is very funny and talented and interesting, and I’m not saying it’s a bad movie. It’s just, I felt like Aura was a friend I liked but who was making really terrible decisions repeatedly, and I could say things like, “Hey, maybe you shouldn’t have unprotected sex in a pipe” all I wanted, but it wasn’t going to stop her from having unprotected sex in a pipe, you know? You know.

So anyway, Lena Dunham’s show Girls is coming out soon, and I’m pretending it even matters that I’m kind of excited about it. I don’t even have television, let alone HBO. I also don’t understand how to download things (imagine me, swatting at my computer feebly, like a monkey trying to understand the glowing box). It looks funny, but the bigger point is that I’m concerned about Lena Dunham. Not even about her character’s unprotected pipe sex this time.

Lena Dunham, where are your pants? Aura spent the majority of Tiny Furniture sans pants, to which I say whatever. She is a woman in her (mother’s) own home. She is free to not wear pants, I guess. She was without pants so much that it started to seem strange, but I figured it was just a character choice Lena Dunham made. Then I watched the trailer for Girls, and guess who isn’t wearing pants AGAIN? LENA DUNHAM! It’s starting to seem less like a character choice and more just like a personal preference Lena Dunham has for pantsless living.
No pants, like usual

I understand this, in theory. I wear skirts almost every day because I find tights more comfortable than jeans, and the second I get home I change into yoga pants. But I am covering the lower half of my body, which is an important thing for me. I guess what I’m asking is: Is it normal to just not wear pants whenever possible? Because here’s my thing…the appeal of wearing no pants is comfort, right? But how am I supposed to feel comfortable knowing that someone could show up to my apartment at any moment, and there I would be, no pants? There’s a scene in Tiny Furniture where Lena Dunham has to wrap a blanket around her body to answer the door because she isn’t wearing pants. I don’t want to wrap a blanket around my body! I want to be ready to greet the world. Also, what if there’s a fire? Every second counts. You don’t have time to be grabbing pants. Also again, I don’t have blinds up in my kitchen yet, and if you’re walking by just the right way you can kind of see into the living room and, you know what, forget it. You don’t need a detailed description of my place.

Maybe this is just a personal quirk of mine, because I’m going to be honest with you, I like to do my hair and makeup all the time. Even when I’m staying at home and no one is going to see me. Judge away! Call me a vain, naracissistic asshole! I literally cannot concentrate on anything I’m doing if I know that my blow dried, non-straightened hair is looking like this:

And you know what? Last week I was sick, and everyone at work kept telling me how terrible I looked and that I should go home. And the thing was, I knew I didn’t look bad because I was sick. I just didn’t wear makeup all week. That’s how bad it is, you guys. I need to be wearing makeup all the time. I just…I just need to be kind of put together. Just a little bit. I need to be wearing pants.

So, frankly, Lena Dunham, I don’t understand you and your pantsless ways. Not one bit.

Lady Inspiration: Jenny Slate

14 Oct

I was so pissed as a six-year-old that I had a child’s body–not because I wanted to have sex; I just wanted to be a woman. And I love being a woman. I love my bras, I love my tampons–I literally just love being a woman. – Jenny Slate in Bust’s Oct/Nov issue

Sometime soon I’ll have to do a post about how much I love Jenny Slate. I mean, I love her with a crazy, ridiculous passion because she is so cool and so fearless and so funny. But she is so silly, also, because no one loves tampons! No one. Maybe tampon companies, because do you know how much those things cost? Like a million dollars. In the pie chart that is my monthly budget, tampons are taking up a much greater percentage than I would like. I would like for them to take up NO percentage, because I would like for the government to give me them for free. But that’s whole different post. Jenny Slate, yay!

!!!!!!! [BxB] [EPISODE 3.03] !!!!!!! from Dean Fleischer-Camp on Vimeo.

Lady Inspiration: Beyonce

11 Oct

As a child I trained myself to dance in very high heels. At 13, in Destiny’s Child, we were told to wear heels, but at first we couldn’t walk in them. We couldn’t keep our knees straight. But we learned, and that became the image of Destiny’s Child: so young and so glamorous. Now I have a rule that my dancers have to wear their heels when I’m wearing my heels. They say, ‘Please take your shoes off, Beyoncé.’ At home, I’m always barefoot. And I have a heavy walk without heels. When they hear me thumping through the house, they say, ‘Oh, Beyonce’s up!’ – Beyonce in W Magazine

I consider myself a lady, but I can’t walk in heels. Just can’t. Dorothy Michaels looked better in heels than I do. Maybe all I needed was a Svengali-like father-manager to force me to wear uncomfortable shoes when I was a child.

Also, how much do you like to think of Beyonce’s “heavy walk”? I can’t stop thinking about Bey stomping around the house and it’s making me so happy.

Lady Inspiration: Debbie Stoller on Martha Stewart

16 Sep

The reason that second wave feminists realized that that kind of work was so frustrating to women was because they were limited to it, but also that it was never valued by the culture. Women’s work was always much less valued than anything that men did, whether they were garbage men or executives. Anything that men did was more valuable than what women did. Also, all this work was always presented to women as something they had to do to satisfy their husbands and their children. Whereas Martha Stewart that same amount of work, showing its value, and she has no husband, her children are grown – she presents this stuff as something to do for your own pleasure, to enrich your life. – Debbie Stoller on Martha Stewart, from Feministing.

Martha Stewart is yet another example of a woman that would be viewed completely differently if she were a man. I’m so tired of hearing negative opinions about Martha, Oprah, and Hillary Clinton when they possess the exact leadership qualities we admire in a man.
Also, I know that picture has nothing to do with the quote, but just…look at it. It will never not make me laugh.

Ladyville 101

16 Aug

For someone who has a blog called Welcome to Ladyville, I’m not very good at being a lady. I blame this on growing up with brothers and always being around a lot of men. Although my mom taught me lots of important skills, like cooking and sewing, I never really learned about lady stuff like makeup or hair. Anything hyper-feminine is definitely not valued in my family, as my mom is fond of saying she won’t get manicures because she’d ruin them immediately with all the work she does and also who has all that free time to get massages and facials?

As much as I want to fit in, I still feel uncomfortable in lady-centric situations. Since I like to think of myself as a proactive gal, I’ve devised a crash course in all things feminine. My hope is that after I’ve experienced/read/watched all the items on this list, I’ll feel less like a 14 year old boy and more like a grown ass woman.


1. Watch the first season of Sex and the City
Do you know how often ladies start a sentence with, “You know that episode of Sex and the City when…”? Very often. And unless they are asking, “Do you know that episode of Sex and the City where they go to that godawful looking club where everyone sits on beds and Michael Showalter is a guest star and Charlotte has a bad threesome?” I am not going to know what they’re talking about. Because I’ve seen about five episodes of SATC, and at least three of them have been that episode.

2. Watch lady movies
My mom and I have been to exactly one movie together, and that was Little Women in the 3rd grade. That means that all of the many, many movies I saw as a child were with my dad. There was a lot of Star Wars and Jurassic Park, but not a lot of lady stuff. Even though I now gravitate towards films starring, written by, and/or directed by women, there are still a lot of films aimed towards women that I haven’t seen. Like The Notebook! Or Beaches! Or Terms of Endearment! Even if all of those movies are terrible, I can guarantee I will like exactly one thing about each of them (respectively: Ryan Gosling, Bette Midler, Jack Nicholson).

3. Get a manicure and/or pedicure.
Sure, I keep my nails in a constant coat of chipped polish, but I’ve never had them professionally done.

4. Get a bra fitting.
“Do your boobs hang low? Do they wobble to and fro? Chances are they do—eight out of 10 women are wearing the wrong size bra! Not only can the right bra eliminate sagging, it can make you appear slimmer and take years off your looks. “Women of America,” Oprah declares, “you need to rise up and get a proper bra fitting.””-Oprah
They do not wobble to and fro, Oprah. They do not! All insults aside, I’m intrigued by this belief of Oprah’s that the right bra can take years off my looks. I already look 17–will I finally be able to look 12? Also, what if I’m actually a DD cup? I’m pretty sure I’m a DD cup.

5. Read Eat, Pray, Love
So far the only one of these I’m really confident in is “eat.”

6. Plan a bridal shower for my BFF.
This is going to be the ultimate test of my lady-mettle. I’m ready for the challenge.

7. Learn more about Oprah.
Just in general, I feel like I don’t know enough about O. She’s the patron saint of aspirational women everywhere.

This is my list so far; if you have any suggestions, put them in the comments! I’ll put together a final list soon and get started. Hopefully I’ll come out of this with some fly nails and a real appreciation of Sarah Jessica Parker.

Wild Flag

3 Aug

You all know my feelings on Carrie Brownstein. If you don’t, let me recap all the ways she’s fantastic:

1. Portlandia/ThunderAnt
2. Sleater-Kinney
3. NPR
4. Do you need another reason? Well, here’s one:

Her band, Wild Flag, is so amazing that it makes me wonder: is Carrie Brownstein bad at anything? Maybe she is a really terrible cook, or maybe she can’t stay organized or return phone calls. I bet she is great at all of those things, too.

Things Men Don’t Understand

31 Jul

1. Carol Channing. I’ve yet to meet a straight man under 40 who knows who she is.

2. What UTI and IUD stand for. They’re never going to have to deal with either.

3. Why you like Adele and Florence and the Machine. You know how dogs can hear high-pitched noises that the human ear can’t detect? I think that’s what’s going on with Adele and Florence. All the men I know seem perplexed by their success.

4. Women’s pants sizes.

5.Short-sleeved jackets.

6. Nail art. The fingernail is a tiny canvas, gentlemen.

7. Sexual assault statistics. Men can never believe this, while all the women I’ve talked to are like, “Yeah, sounds about right.”