Tag: Words

Hooray for the bitches who mother those oft-cited SOBs

Recently the President of the United States used his usual level of tasteful eloquence to call NFL players who kneel during the National Anthem sons of bitches. Teresa Kaepernick, mother of Colin Kaepernick who famously began taking the knee during the National Anthem to protest racist police violence, had the perfect comeback: “Guess that makes me... Read more »

Is the word "ladies" gender neutral?

Is “guys” gender neutral? Some say yes and use guys to refer to groups of men and women. Others say guys is sexist, which is why I made a list of 40 gender neutral alternatives to saying “you guys.” One word I did not consider when making that list was “ladies,” but why shouldn’t I? If “guys”... Read more »

The deja vu of Chicago's tree-lined streets

I had an appointment after work, so instead of getting off at my usual L stop and walking down the tree-lined street that leads to my house, I got off at a different L stop and walked down a different tree-lined street. Chicago has a lot of tree-lined residential streets. Many of them look quite... Read more »

40 gender-neutral alternatives to saying "you guys"

Is “you guys” a gender-neutral term? I must admit that I have a habit of using it as such. I grew up with The Electric Company and then The Goonies, which both proudly used the phrase, “Hey, you guys!!!!” I didn’t think much about if for a long time, but is it offensive and exclusionary... Read more »

Lin-Manuel Miranda's Tony Awards Sonnet and the power of poetry

At the Tony Awards, Lin-Manuel Miranda continued to be a treasure. When the creator of Hamilton won his Tony for best score, Miranda read a sonnet instead of giving a traditional acceptance speech. The beautiful poem was dedicated to his wife Vanessa and also touched on the mass shooting at a gay nightclub in Orlando... Read more »

I am tired

I am tired
I am tired, but I am not encircled by a tire. I am sluggish, but I am not a slug. I am drained, but I am not a bathtub. I am spent, but I am not legal currency. I am wiped out, but I’ve never surfed. I’m somnolent, but I’m not a sommelier. I am... Read more »

Why say Jared Fogle had "sex with minors" but Molly Shattuck "raped?"

Former Baltimore Ravens Cheerleader Molly Shattuck has been sentenced to 48 weekends in jail for raping a teenage boy. Most headlines about the case use that word: rape. This is correct because sex with a minor is statutory rape. Period. Why then do headlines about Jared Fogle use the terms “underage sex” or “sex with... Read more »

Who said "well-behaved women seldom make history?"

Who said "well-behaved women seldom make history?"
“Well-behaved women seldom make history.” You may have seen that quote on bumper stickers or t-shirts, or maybe you’ve seen it as “Well-behaved women rarely make history.” The quote often appears without attribution. I’ve sometimes seen it attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt and Marilyn Monroe. But who really said “well-behaved women seldom make history?” Laurel Thatcher... Read more »

Everything is cool (except how often I say "cool")

The LEGO Movie told us that “Everything is awesome,” but according to me everything is “cool.” I say cool a lot. It’s a verbal tic. I say it without thinking about it. I’m sure I often say it without even realizing it. Saying cool this much is not cool. Frequently “cool” is my verbal version... Read more »

3 books I don't want my children to read

“Growing up, we were allowed to read any book in the house,” writes Maria Casale in her essay for the New York Times titled “This Book is Too Old for You.” The piece has prompted some online discussion about whether or not parents should censor what their kids read. Reading those comments prompted me to... Read more »