The Sexist

The Morning After: Boobquake Edition

* Today is "Boobquake," the day where women are encouraged to show excessive amounts of cleavage in order to disprove the theory of Iranian cleric Hojatoleslam Kazem Sedighi, who posited that scantily-dressed women cause earthquakes. Local participants are encouraged to haul their breasts over to Dupont Circle from noon to 12:30 p.m. As for me, I'm showing about as much cleavage as I generally do—not much—but as Amanda Marcotte points out, I don't have to dress particularly immodestly to be blamed for a natural disaster—because "by Iranian cleric standards, every day in America is boobquake."

* Thinking it's a bit counter-intuitive to stick it to misogynists by flashing some cleave? A counter-protest, "Brainquake," encourages women to fight Sedighi's words by "show[ing] off their résumés, CVs, honors, prizes, and accomplishments." Speaking as a creative writing major with minimal cleavage, I will instead be participating in "Blogquake," in which I make some sort of point about the oppression of women by just blogging about boobs. Boobs, boobs, boobs.

* What the fuck is this headline? "Women Engage in Barebacking at Higher Rates Than Gay Men." The piece opens: "For all the flack gay men get for their sexual antics, it turns out the ladies have them beat for an oft-chastised but ever-present-in-porn act—barebacking." Hey, way to get personal! It takes two to bareback, so why focus all the shaming on the receptive partner? And as one commenter on the piece points out, there's no need to drag lesbians into this: "Editors: Parallelism in style, and fairness require the headline to read: HETEROSEXUAL Women Engage in Barebacking at Higher Rates Than Gay Men."

* Cracked writer Christina H.'s piece, "Five Mistakes Women (Like Me!) Make on the Internet," chastises women for ever thinking that anyone is ever being sexist to them:

women who expect to be treated better on the Web are often more likely to accuse anyone who disagrees with them of being afraid of a "strong opinionated woman." Not only is this as bad as playing the race card, it insults all the other ladies in that online community who haven't been bashed, since it implies that they're not intelligent enough to be persecuted by your imaginary conspiracy.

The author—who is, if I'm reading this right, too intelligent to not be persecuted by the imaginary conspiracy of sexism—was apparently not dismissive of women enough to actually be accepted by the Cracked crowd. She netted several hundred comments like this one: "This article was only mildly amusing, kind of like when a friend gets diagnosed with testicular cancer. Mostly though it just came off as another female rant with a pinch of humor. That said: TITS OR GTFO."

*Hysteria! points to this horrific feature in the New York Times' T Magazine which asks the eternal question: So, was Simone de Beauvoir hot, or what? Her photographs say "yes"; her ardent feminist beliefs say "no."

Photo via Ian Muttoo, Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0

  • noodlez


  • tophersez

    Hey, in addition to the Boobquake rally at noon today, there's a happy hour at Madam's Organ tonight. Boobquake, brainquake, and blogquake participants and supporters are all welcome. Here's a link to the facebook page:!/event.php?eid=116052401755690

  • mike

    is that Rob Kampia's car?

  • Rick Mangus

    Neat car!

  • kza

    With that "barebacking" stat, it does take two to do that, but in my own experiences the only reason I've done it is because I was pressured by the girl I was having sex with and I didn't want to not get laid. A few of my girlfriends have said they can't feel anything with a condom on so what other choice did we have.

  • Mike

    While I'm no fan of Iran, could it be possible that the words were mistranslated? The famous wipe Israel off the map has been translated to mean wipe the regime from time, similar to what we do every four years when we elect a new president. Here in America, the word nigger is often understood to be someone who's ignorant. The root word is niger, which is Latin for black.

  • figleaf

    "HETEROSEXUAL Women Engage in Barebacking at Higher Rates Than Gay Men"

    That headline rewrite still misses your takes-too-to-tango point, Amanda. It's even more accurate to say simply that "Heterosexuals Engage in Barebacking at Higher Rates than Gay Men."

    Anyway, I agree with you that it's unsettling the way that in both gay and hetero constructions only the recipient "counts." Which makes no sense since the recipient's partner must first have gotten his or her infection from someone else.


    Speaking of only recipients "counting," while writing this I realized that while we've got the nice, descriptive word "recipient" for one kind of partner we don't really have a corresponding word for his or her partner. Top doesn't really cut it since recipients can be both initiators and aggressors. Neither does "giver" work since, for instance the "giver" of a blowjob, who typically does all the work, is also considered the recipient. The recipient's partner is sometimes called the "active" party but again see blowjobs. And saying "the recipient infected the donor with syphilis" just doesn't sound right. And obviously "the man" doesn't work in all cases either. Anyway, seems like that little soft spot in the lexicon might reflect the similarly soft spot in the way we contemplate the risks of barebacking.


  • kza

    Who considers the give of oral a recipient? A recipient of what? Jizz? I don't think many people actually recieve that...

  • Amanda Hess

    It's a phallocentric view of sex, so the receptive partner is the one "taking" the dick, in their vagina, anus, or mouth. You receive the dick into your mouth, even if you don't receive the jizz.

  • Sarah

    Hello, fellow creative-writing major! :)

  • Sarah

    Hello, fellow creative-writing major! :)

    Btw, I think the idea of "playing the rape card" is bullshit and doesn't exist. Rather, I think what really happens is that people play the "playing the rape card" myth to apologize for or otherwise dismiss genuine acts of racism.

  • snobographer

    Brainquake doesn't seem to be getting as much attention as boobquake, for some reason.

  • Queen_George

    Thanks for the Hysteria shout-out, Amanda! We got more traffic today than we've had like, ever. About 800X more traffic, to be exact.

    Also, thanks for mentioning Brainquake. We had somewhat of a comments explosion over our own bit about Boobquake, so I kind of wish we'd had Brainquake to talk about instead.