Monday, January 3, 2011

2010 places on the net that were (and I hope will continue to be) important to me: Here are some of the high lights.

* I added a Not Safe For Work warning next to a few of these. But really guys, if you work in a place where you have to be careful what you look at what are you doing reading my blog at the workplace? Use your heads.

Genderfork is just a beautiful place to be. It’s created to be a positive place to embrace and celebrate the gender diversity in our world. It always makes me smile because I know there will always be something cool/beautiful/uplifting posted there. I’m used to being different for so many different reasons but sometimes I get tired when there is no one around me who is even a little bit similar to me. When I go to Genderfork I can remind myself that I’m not the only one who doesn’t fit the norms and that isn’t always a bad thing.  

Dicebox NSFW
Dicebox is the only online comic I have consistently read since it started in 2002.  It’s just one of those things in my life that never changes. No matter what I’m going through or how my life is changing Jenn Manley Lee’s art will always be breathtakingly beautiful, the storyline of Dicebox nicely complex and the relationship between Molly and Griffen amusing. Besides this comic was where I learned about gender-neutral pronouns in more then a strictly theoretical way.

If you’re a knitter or crochet-er Ravelry is the place to be. I’m not a die hard knitter like my Mom but I have been known to knit a hat or two during long committee meetings. Ravelry is a little like Facebook in that you have a profile and you can join groups and talk to other knitters or crochet-doers (I’m not sure what to call you guys). They also have a huge search engine full of patterns, yarn stores, books, and supplies. If you want to know what other people are making out of that yarn you just got go on Ravelry. If you want to see if you can find a hat patter with ear flats that’s also free go on Ravelry. If you want to see pictures of what this patter is going to look like once you’re done and you don’t want to rely on the tiny black and white picture at the bottom of the patter go on Revelry. It’s just that cool.

This is an incredibly adorable comic-blog by a transman and his genderqueer partner in New Zealand. I’ve loved every single entry so far and can empathize with it a lot. It’s not just how gender issues are talked about, but also the strips on anxiety, the X-Men, butch mice and sweater-vests make me glad I’m not the only one who thinks about these things.

I have to admit it I’m a little bit of a snob when it comes to cooking. I love to cook and part of my job these days is to cook. Which means that I just can’t turn off the at little voice in the back of my head that say “I could do better.” Vegan blog’s I’m particularly hard on. I’m always reading them and thinking, they could use less expensive ingredients or there is an easier way to do this, or but I can’t eat this and buy local at the same time. Vegan Dad’s blog isn’t like that though. It’s become one of my two go-to places for vegan cooking. Why because the recipe’s are easy, fast, cheep-er and delicious. I haven’t made a bad thing off of this site.

When I am an professional academic I study race, gender, sexuality as these concepts have changed over time. I’ve found that one of the best ways to do this is to study images that reflect societal ideas and ideals regarding any or all of these concepts. However, while there as been lots of brilliant work done on gender and race both in theory and in American society, there is not that kind of body of work on sexuality. When I say I study sexuality I mean not just sexual orientation but sexuality more broadly. My perception of academia is this is not widely encouraged. More over historical theory tends to look at sexualized images as strictly who is being oppressed by whom and how does this image support larger systems of procession. There is no or very little acknowledgement that an image might mean different things to different people and a sexual one doubly so. Male Submission Art has meant so much to me because for the first time I am presented with thoughtful commentary on what makes pictures sexual and to whom. I appreciate and respect the work being done by maymay, the site maintainer, immensely. I also find many of these images sexy or attractive myself which is rare when it comes to visual erotica.  

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