Wednesday Videos: Ice Skating Dinosaur is My Everything

WednesdayVideoThis ice skating T Rex is my everything. You can’t give up all hope in humanity when this sort of thing is happening.

There’s a whole YouTube channel of this kind of glorious bliss. I could watch it all day. I’m acting all the video now, for you, my readers. For instance, here’s our friend in love:

Here he is dancing ballet:


If he can do it, so can we, I figure. So get out there and do something improbable today! Or stay home and watch T Rex video, whatever, that’s also a valid life choice.

After the Avengers: A New Anthology!

31JHwpfUn9L._SX278_BO1,204,203,200_I’m thrilled to be part of the new anthology After the Avengers: From Joss Whedon’s Hottest, Newest Franchises to the Future of the Whedonverse. It’s available as a eBook from Amazon for $7.99 and includes essays on Whedon’s comics, independent movies, and Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.  My essay, “Watching the Whore: The Treatment of Jules in Cabin in the Woods,” explores the way the characters, the audience, and the directors of Whedon’s quirky horror movie are complicit in Jules’ fate. Other essays speculate about future Shakespeare projects, and tackle how Whedon is seen cross-culturally. It’s an ambitious, wide-ranging anthology.

Right now excerpts from three essays are available for free online. “I’m Every Bit The S.H.I.E.L.D Agent You Are: Exploring Opposing  Masculinities”, by Scott Interrante, examines the contrast between Grant Ward and Leo Fitz, as well as male characters in other Whedon properties.

“Though This be Madness, Yet There is Method in It: Speculating on Adaptations of Shakespeare,” by Carl Wilson, wonders what might be next for Whedon after Much Ado About Nothing.

“Whedon’s Women: Melinda May and Maria Hill as Transgressive Superheroines,” by Dr. Leanne McRae discusses how these characters function in the culture constructs of superheroes.

I hope you’ll check this anthology out, and remember that an honest review is the greatest gift you can give an author (besides coffee).


Between the Lines Book Club: The Book Club Cookbook

between the lines book club logoHello book clubbers! I hope everyone has found a romance to read this month, as discussed in my last Between the Lines post. Can’t wait to see everyone in person in Sacramento on June 25, 2016, at the newly refurbished Arden Dimick Library!

Recently I read The Book Club Cookbook, by Judy Gelman and Vicki Levy Krupp. I fell in love with this cookbook for the following reasons:

  • It gives descriptions of book clubs all over America, each of which has a different focus and a different chemistry. It was so fun to compare these different groups.
  • It talks about how food fits thematically into various specific books – how the inclusion of food affects the reader’s perception of the story and the characters.
  • It explores how different clubs use food to enhance their experience.
  • All the food sounds delicious.

I’m not much of a cook, personally, but I liked the approach of one group of non-cooks who had some small food item at each meeting that related to the book, and members had to guess how. For instance, the leader brought little honey candies to a discussion of A Secret Life of Bees. Some members were more ambitious, but keeping it simple seems to have been part of the challenge. What do you think, book clubbers? Shall we take our snacks up a notch?

You can find my full-length review of The Book Club Cookbook at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.



Heroines of Science: Links!

Berta Caceres 2015 Goldman Environmental Award Recipient

Berta Caceres 

I’ve been spending a lot of time writing about historical amazing science people at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books, and in doing so I’ve almost forgotten to watch for amazing science heroes who are working right now. So this entry is a links entry that I hope will lead you to some stories of women in the sciences (and related fields) who are kicking ass all over the place.

This link comes from Max Fagin, who wrote a post for us about Vera Rubin. Enjoy this article, “30 Most Innovative Women Professors Alive Today.” This includes such luminaries as Sarah Bergbreiter, who works in microrobotics, Lisa Randall, an expert in particle physics, and Susan Lindquist, molecular biologist. has a special “Women in Science” issues that shows many of the triumphs and challenges women face in science today.

Women are on the forefront of environmental movements around the world. On March 3, 2016, Honduran activist Berta Cáceres was assassinated. This is a terrible loss to Honduras and to all of us. Cáceres was a leader in attempting to protect the rainforest from illegal logging and other forms of exploration, From Democracy Now:

According to Global Witness, Honduras has become the deadliest country in the world for environmentalists. Between 2010 and 2014, 101 environmental campaigners were killed in the country.

Wednesday Videos Explain the Hymen

WednesdayVideoHonestly. Y’all need to know this. For one thing, it’s basic anatomy. For another thing, there are real-life consequences of entire societies not knowing what a hymen is. Plus, this video is super funny. It’s frank, but also PG. For more, check out SBSarah’s hilarious rant, “Where is the Hymen?” at Smart Bitches, Trashy Books.