Sunday, June 19, 2011

The 1% Solution

Thursday, June 09, 2011

Every Day I Write the Book

In parallel with the book I'm writing, I've commissioned a study about attitudes with regards to homeschooling. The more participants we get, the more relevant the data becomes, which is where you come in. We are particularly interested in hearing from homeschoolers, especially those who have graduated, but anyone with a dog in this hunt with regards to education is highly encouraged to participate. We want students, parents, homeschooled, regular school, unschooled, charter school, online school, everybody.

Please take the survey yourself and please forward it promiscuously to people who have a few minutes to spare. The survey is "smart". It will only ask relevant questions based on prior responses so a typical session will take from 3 to 12 minutes to complete depending upon your answers.

And please know that I'm sending out a highly sincere "Thank you" to everyone who helps. Since the survey is about attitudes towards education, if you want to make sure your voice is in there, you have to take the survey. The survey is not affiliated with any group, community, commercial enterprise or marketing activity. All responses will remain confidential and secure. No personal information will be sold, transferred or exploited for any purpose other than continued research in the field of education in general and home-schooling in particular. I would never lie about that because I fear karma and I like to think terrible things happen to people who use private information unethically.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

I've Got to Hand it To Me

Dear Men of Power and Repute,

Did you note how I called you “Men”? This is because I know you are, each and every one of you, male. You are not female. With highly rare exceptions, you possess both an X and a Y chromosome. Your voice is probably, but not certainly, lower than mine. You have an Adam’s apple.

You have quite a few things because you are male. And lately I’ve become very concerned that some of you don’t think we women know this about you. Let me clear the air right now; there is no woman over the age of five who doesn’t know you have a penis. Barring some sort of fireworks incident we’re pretty certain it’s there, and we also understand you know it’s there. It probably looks much like other penises, but slightly different in its own way. It’s a special snowflake, your penis. You’re probably pleased with it. I see no reason why you shouldn’t be.

This does not mean I want to have it sent to me as a picture. There are quite a few things which give you delight that I don’t need to see. Let’s assume you really enjoy playing lacrosse. I’m happy for you. Seeing your lacrosse sticks won’t make me more interested in them if I don’t already want to play lacrosse. In fact, if you’re harping on the greatness of your lacrosse sticks I’m probably not going to want to play any game with you at all. You want to make the average woman over 25 dewy-eyed? Send a picture of you putting your children to bed without making a big production out of it.

This might be a failure of communication. Heterosexual men, I’ve been told, sometimes console themselves on bad days by thinking: Hey, you never know. Diane from HR might just walk into my office right now and take off her shirt. The chance that spontaneous nudity might happen cheers the average male psyche every time. The Internet knows this and is more than willing to provide such diversion. And being fundamentally generous, men of power and repute have decided to extend the favor to women they kind of know a little bit on the Internet. Maybe they’re thinking it would be great if someone extended that courtesy to their wives? No, men of power and repute probably aren’t quite that generous.

You remember your wife, right?

And then later these men are surprised when their munificent missives are (you should pardon the expression) exposed to public scrutiny and ridicule, and they are saddened because the picture of their penis was meant as a gift; meant to delight. It’s the penis of a person with power! It’s a power-penis! Only now it’s a punchline-penis. And it was all so avoidable.

Let me sum this up, because you are busy, powerful, reputable men. At least right now.

1. We know you’re male. We don’t need visual proof.

2. A woman isn't as excited by finding nudity in her in-box as she is by finding someone emptying the dishwasher while she has a glass of wine and watches “The Voice.”

3. The Internet is forever. Emails don’t just go away because you are powerful and reputable. Matter of fact, your photo-penis will travel further than a flight attendent.

4. You will be discovered because 9% of the American population is unemployed and has a great deal of spare time. If you’re in the government, fixing the unemployment statistic might be a little higher on your to-do list than sexting your new friends.

5. Even Silvio Berluscone hasn’t been caught sending pictures of his penis yet. Consider that you are now sleazier than the Prime Minister who gave us the phrase “Bunga Bunga party.”

6. Your power and your repute will be as nothing compared to the new fact that you dress left.

Hope this helps. No hard feelings...wait, scratch that.


American Women