Thursday, May 16, 2013
I'm not saying that this quote doesn't disgust me. It's a moronic viewpoint that perpetuates too many terrible viewpoints to count. This is the type of mentality that results in kids being bullied for not having a certain brand of clothing and girls having eating disorders to they can look like all the other super cool Barbies in the cafeteria. I think the man is an idiot and should've known better than to actually say that statement in an interview. And the business major in me shakes my head at the huge (no pun intended) chunk of the market that this company is missing out on. After all, it's all about money. However, I just don't get why people are just now realizing that A&F is run by a bunch of douchebags.
First of all, this comment is seven years old. Would we not have been equally outraged seven years ago? I honestly think that the Erin of 2006 would be more pissed than the Erin of 2013, but whatever. I've never been able to shop at Abercrombie & Fitch and I honestly never saw the appeal. Even as a [stupid, image-focused, materialistic] teenager all their crap was way too expensive to waste money on. And then they started blaring all that crappy music and pumping that toxic, bro-tastic "cologne" throughout the store which (to this day) makes me hold my breath if I have to walk by the place. And I'm pretty sure I remember some big to do about their catalogs having nude models. Nude models...to sell clothes.
I've never had the ideal A&F body type; I'm not certain why that's a bigger deal now in 2013 than it was when people my age actually shopped at that store in the early 2000's, but apparently it is. I think I had one A&F shirt that I happened upon in some sort of consignment store and miraculously fit me. Everyone is acting as though every other clothing line in the world is so considerate towards anyone who may be a little overweight, and that is a damn, dirty lie.
Plenty of clothing lines operate under the same philosophy as Abercrombie & Fitch, they've just never come right out and said it. I have a specific memory of being in an Express looking for jeans when I was in high school and being unable to find the size 13/14. I asked a sales girl about it and she told me that there might be some of those sizes somewhere but that the company was only going to go up to size 10/12 now so if I could find any, they'd be old. The Erin of that year was irked; and she may or may not have looked at that girl and said, "Let me get this straight. I keep hearing about how America is becoming more and more obese and you people are getting rid of our clothes?"
I'm not defending what Mike Jeffries says or does. I'm just saying that I don't understand why anyone is surprised. I'm fairly certain that anyone who would be offended enough by the his comments to stop shopping there, is already not shopping at A&F. If you're going to boycott A&F for their marketing techniques, you'd better be ready to boycott a lot of other stores too because Abercrombie is not alone.
So he responded that he was as fresh as an Irish Spring, since that's the soap he uses. For whatever reason, the phrase "Irish spring" made my mind jump to "summer's eve". I didn't say that it made sense, that's just how my mind works (deal with it). Naturally I then found myself thinking about the line of lady parts products called Summer's Eve. I've actually written about these products before; long, long ago in my very second blog post.
Anyway, back to my realization. I thought about the typical summer evening in Kentucky (or anywhere in the South for that matter). There is no way that the people behind the name "Summer's Eve" have spent any significant time in the South.
A Southern summer evening is only slightly less miserable than a Southern summer day. It's hot, humid, and muggy. You're sweaty even though you're not moving and you're too exhausted to move. Plus there are probably mosquitoes and June bugs all over the freaking place. Nothing about that says, "freshness" to me.
I wonder if the product does well in Southern markets or if it's more like the Chevy Nova not selling in Spanish-speaking countries since no va means "doesn't go" in Spanish (which according to the Wikipedia link is an urban legend, when did that happen?!). Something to think about there.
Wednesday, May 8, 2013
Over the past couple of months, my car has been have a love affair with my bank account. I have been less than thrilled about the relationship. I'm typing this post from the waiting room at Sears Auto Center. Let's see, where did it all begin?
I drive a 2007 Honda Accord and it's a great car. However, want to know what year the iPod hookup came standard on the Accord? 2008. So I've been meaning to get that installed for awhile now. For Christmas I got the money to do just that. I figured I'd go to the dealer. I'd already talked to them about it and I didn't want just some random person messing with my car...and I'm too lazy to look into various options.
The appointment was set for an early March afternoon. There was also a recall on something and they were going to try to do that too. It would take about an hour. At least that's what they told me at Don Jacobs Honda. I want to call attention to the name of the business, and you'll see why soon enough.
When I got there, I found out that the recall would take several hours, so I set up an appointment for a day I didn't have to go to school. I didn't mind that since they hadn't promised to do that part of the service at that particular moment. Oh, and as long as they're working on it, my passenger side door no longer cares to lock or unlock automatically. After a solid 2 hours in the waiting room (thank God for my iPad), I was informed that they didn't have the right cable for the hookup or it was faulty or something. So now the original reason I brought my car in would have to wait until my other appointment. But don't worry, I didn't leave without having something done!
"There's a big chunk out of one of your front tires," they said. "We recommend replacing tires two at a time and since you've had to wait here we'll charge you for just the tires and not the labor." I actually knew about replacing tires two at a time, so I figured alright, go for it. "And, it would cost $100 just to open up the door and diagnose the problem let alone fix it," they told me. I figured it was cheaper for me to lean over and use my arm to lock and unlock the door, for free. About $300 later, I was on my way...not listening to my iPod.
Fast forward to the next appointment. My original plan was to wait there because it was only going to take a few hours. Luckily my brother had come home and was able to give me a lift. The shop looked busy. "There are going to be a lot of people hopping on and off your car today," they told me. I thought to myself, "Why wouldn't you just knock all the work out and get the car out of the way? Well, maybe that's why I teach Spanish rather than run an auto shop."
After about 4 hours or so, I get a call. The iPod hookup has still not been installed and the recall was in process. But apparently my front brake pads were at "about 5%," so we gotta fix those. I wondered how they'd missed that item when I'd been in two weeks earlier. Amy Jo later brought up the fact that I had the rear brakes replaced in December and they'd said my front brakes should be good for awhile. But whatever. A few hours later, no iPod but hey let's talk about alignment. They promise that it's going to be done by the end of business that day (7:30 pm or so). They even had a guy staying late to work on it, they said. A little while later, "Well it's definitely going to be ready first thing tomorrow morning. Oh and PS, you need some fluid replaced...we can't tell which one. It's either brake or transmission. We do that for $85 a piece. And do you need a rental car? Blah blah blah." Don't worry, I drew the line at the damn fluids. You can't tell which one it is? Seriously? There's no test you can do?
That's when I called Amy Jo and gave her the lowdown. So she calls down there and let's them know what's up. She knows cars and she knows they've been screwing me and if that car is not ready by noon (that's right, pushed back to noon) tomorrow there will be hell to pay." Later that night we discuss how she's always heard that Don Jacobs is notorious for this type of BS. Hmm, that would've been nice to know before now.
So at about 11:47 the next morning, she calls them. And what do you know, they juuuuust finished. A big part of me wanted them to miss the deadline because I wanted to watch my mom totally lose her cool at the dealership. But alas, that was not meant to be. Another $600 or so later, ta-da here's my car! For those of you keeping score at home, that's between $900-$1,000 I've spent on my car in about a 3 week period. I had planned to spend $300.
But wait! What about that mystery fluid that was dirty or whatever? I told my friend Gilfy about it. "Come to Sears," he said, "we do that for like $36." Sold. I took my car over the next day after work. He did a little litmus paper test (or car pregnancy test as I like to call it) on my fluids. See, I KNEW there was a test they could've done! He told me the fluids were fine. He even asked one of his colleagues to be sure. "What else on my car was perfectly fine?" I asked myself.
Then there was a blissful period in which all I had to do was fill 'er up with gas. That, I could handle. In early May, the oil light came on but I knew it was coming so I stayed cool. I planned out the world's most productive Saturday, complete with the world's most beautiful to do list. Oil change was #2 on the list, right after dropping the dog off to be groomed. There was no wait at all at VIOC. Sweet! I couldn't believe how fast it was going. I was going to crush my to do list.
"This back passenger tire is really low. There are two nails in it." Wait, wait, wait, wait. What? Are you shitting me? The Saturday of Productivity would be taking a detour via S&S Tire. Luckily Amy Jo could pick me up and let me use her car. Now, as previously mentioned, tires should be replaced in twos...so I was looking at 2 more tires. And an alignment because that's certainly been all jacked up driving on those crap tires.
Come to find out, the back tires were older than dirt. As in 2007 & 2008. They were down to their last bits of rubber. One had an impact bump on it; probably from hitting a curb or sidewalk...I wish I weren't familiar with that, but I'm not the best driver. All I could think of was, "Why didn't Don Jacobs try to get me for that, too?" The people at S&S Tire told me that anyone who knew anything should've told me about the tires. So, they (Don Jacobs Honda) charge me for crap I don't need while not fixing the things I do. Huh. "What an odd way to do business," thought the girl with a degree in business.
That was Saturday. Surely to the good Lord there could not be any more. Why hello, Tuesday. What's that car? You're making a strange whiny, chirpy noise. That seems foreboding. My boyfriend later diagnosed this issue as a fan belt. It's not a big deal but I was beyond frustrated. So I rolled on over to Sears after work and told them that I needed a fan belt belted or whatever it's called. It's all fixed now, and it wasn't very expensive but it just felt like it's all hit me at once. My car is almost 6 years old, so it makes sense. I understand it...but that doesn't mean I have to like it. I'm not going to jinx myself by saying that nothing else will go wrong. For all I know, there's a family of possums living in the wheel wells or something.
I suppose that's the end of my car saga. I'm long-winded. The moral of the story is: don't ever take your car to Don Jacobs Honda. They are shady folk. My plan was to buy another Honda there whenever I need a new car. That is no longer my plan.
Friday, April 26, 2013
Living in the buckle of the Bible Belt has both advantages and disadvantages. I'm sort of blanking on the advantages at the moment, but I'm sure there are some. Unfortunately, the disadvantages come to mind much quicker than the advantages. Don't get me wrong, I love my hometown and I have every intention of spending my life here. But there are things I see and hear sometimes that I could do without.
There are a lot of people (some of them well-meaning) who broadcast a number of viewpoints under the guise of Christianity that I simply don't agree with. I don't claim to know every little thing in the Bible nor do I claim to know God's exact stance on the hot button issues in our society today. But I am fairly confident in saying that some of these things I've seen and heard are flat out wrong.
For example, Westboro Baptist Church is wrong. The people crossing the country with Fred Phelps as he pickets the funerals of soldiers and talks about how much "God hates fags" are wrong. That man does not represent my faith in any way, shape, or form. In fact he makes me sick.
The other thing I'm confident in is the knowledge that these people are making it harder for other Christians to reach non-Christians. A lot of people will talk about how Christians are persecuted in the United States, and to an extent that's true. But for the most part, Christians have a pretty sweet set-up here. We can practice our faith openly and since the majority of the country identifies with some form of Christianity, we benefit from a number of small privileges throughout the year (such as getting time off for Christian holidays like Christmas). The other thing about the persecution of Christians in the United States is that it's people who claim to be Christians who get the ball rolling--and I'm not just talking about the blatantly obvious Phelps of the world.
I would say that most non-Christians don't harbor ill-will towards Christians. They are happy to respect our beliefs, provided that we respect theirs. When you come across someone who is particularly outspoken regarding Christianity it's because they've had some sort of run-in with someone who maybe isn't the best example of the faith. There are some Christians out there who don't see the importance in respecting the beliefs of others. Granted, a lot of them are still devoting a fair amount of time to exposing Barack Obama as a secret Muslim and/or attempting to ban both sex education and evolution from being taught in the public school systems which leaves little time in one's schedule for tolerance.
Here are a few things I've seen and heard lately that make me shake my head:
- "We believe in God. Join the Right Club. John 3:16" bumper sticker (and apparently a billboard that I thankfully missed). If you read the story, you'll see that the whole thing was one church's childish response to a billboard put up to advertise a convention of non-believers.
- "God doesn't believe in atheists" bumper sticker. I saw this little gem on the way home tonight. Am I the only one who thinks that the tone of this bumper sticker would be best followed by Nelson Muntz from The Simpsons saying his classic, "Ha ha" catchphrase? It strikes me as so obnoxious. God loves atheists just as much as he loves the rest of us. A real Christian knows that God loves all people regardless of how they feel about him. Does a parent stop loving their child because he/she makes some bad decisions? No! And that's what God is; he's a father. He's always going to be there for all of us, no matter what. To me, this person is telling whoever follows their Ford Taurus that if they've turned their back on God then he's turned his back on them as well.
- "Each gender should conform to the set stereotype" philosophy. As my friend Chad pointed out the other day, this simply isn't Biblical. There's no line in the Bible about how boys must like playing with army men, shooting hoops, and firing BB guns. Some boys don't like those things, and you know what? That's 100% OK. Some girls don't like makeup, dresses, and the mall. Again, that's 100% OK. The world would be pretty boring if we all fit in these standard molds based on gender. There are some Christians who have strong opinions about the so-called "sissification" of boys which offends me on two levels. As previously stated, I'm offended by the notion that we have a pre-determined set of behaviors that we need to adhere to. I'm also enough of a feminist to be offended when people view a boy/man adopting a behavior that society has deemed "feminine". It offends me because those people see woman as inferior to men; they don't want a boy doing something "girly" because they view it as being beneath him. But I could go on and on about this topic. Maybe I will...another time.
I suppose I've ranted enough for tonight. I just want to go on record saying that a lot of people claiming to be Christians in this world do not represent me.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
I also really wish I had a giant hamster ball. There's an episode of The Simpsons where Bart gets Panda Virus and has to live in a bubble for a week. And also Lisa pretends to be a college student. It's a good episode. It's called Little Girl in the Big Ten and it's in season 13 (because I know you needed all that information). I'm going to refrain from telling you what disc it's on.
I appear to have gotten sidetracked on that one. So, Bart has to be in one of those big bubbles and he seems to enjoy it. He also helps out the nerds and spins in the mud and gets people dirty; all in all, a good day in my book.
Back to my original topic: I'm pretty introverted. In the words of April on Parks & Rec, "I hate talking. To people. About things." The thing about being an introvert is that it's really easy for people to just think that you're a bitch. I mean, I am a bitch but that's a completely unrelated characteristic and something that people should discover after they've discovered my introvertedness. I also make up my own words, which is just a characteristic of being awesome.
I did actually reach outside my giant hamster ball and manage to send out some friend requests to people I work with. I've been there since August, so I think it's safe to add these people on the platform that is social media.
I know I missed a bunch of people, but I got exhausted from all the social butterfly action of scrolling and clicking on names. But I'll get them all...eventually.
So now I can creep on them and they can creep on me. What could be more social than that?
|Oh, no big deal...just an awesome national radio host|
commenting on my Facebook status.
Anyway. So when I get in the car after school, my radio is still set to the adult contemporary station that plays Bob & Sheri. In the afternoon, they play The John Tesh Radio Show. At first I hated it, but then I realized that it's like The USA Today of radio shows. He's always got some interesting factoids for my drive home; like the 5 things employers say will get you the job, or whatever. He also has a lot of relationship advice, and I like to compare his advice with what I'm actually doing. Just the other day he taught me what guys consider to be the perfect amount of PDA (a quick kiss on the lips, FYI) as well as how they prefer to hold hands (interlocked fingers as opposed to palm-to-palm). Thanks, John.
So I'm listening to John yesterday when he tells me some story about a doctor refusing to see a female patient because she weighs 200 pounds. He talked about how it was actually legal for the doctor to do that and why some doctors are refusing to see "obese" (although I don't think 200 pounds is obese). And in case you were wondering, he seemed a bit appalled by the story. I've been thinking about that story and thought I'd write about it. But then I went to find a link and realized that this all went down in August 2012.
John was trying to act like this just happened. Now I feel as though I can't gripe about it because it's not particularly recent. So first I was irritated at this doctor, and now I'm irritated at John Tesh. Whether or not I stay mad at him hinges completely on what advice he gives me tomorrow. And just in case you want closure on the whole doctor issue, here we go:
This doctor is now turning away patients over a certain weight because [allegedly] members of her staff were getting injured assisting these patients. She refers them to a nearby hospital that has some special center for obesity or something. I cannot imagine how mortifying it would be if I were to be turned away from a doctor because I'm overweight. As though I don't have enough of a complex about that anyway. And although 200 pounds isn't skinny, it's not what most average people would consider to be obese.
In my mind, obese is a lot bigger than 200 pounds. And, they made no mention of how tall the woman is. If she's really tall, she's going to be heavier to begin with. So maybe she's really tall and just a bit overweight. What about a 200 pound man? Would they turn away a man that size? It's the same amount of weight, just in a different distribution.
I will say that John Tesh made some solid points about doctors refusing overweight patients. He pointed out that it takes more time to see overweight patients because it takes longer to examine them and therefore doctors see less patients in a day which equals less money. It's also easier to misdiagnose something in an overweight person so the risk of getting sued is higher and some doctors just don't want to deal with any of that.
So much for that Hippopotamus Oath, as Homer Simpson calls it. Yes, I know it's actually the Hippocratic Oath but I like calling it the Hippopotamus Oath. The whole reason you became a doctor was to help people...turning them away doesn't seem helpful. It's one thing if the person is like 900 pounds and the doctor's office literally doesn't have the proper equipment, etc. but to turn away someone whose weight [in all honesty] probably isn't that much more than a lot of our weights is ridiculous.
Monday, April 22, 2013
I've decided to go to China this summer! There's a mission trip to teach English to middle and high school students in a city called Shangri-La in July and I signed up. The trip is from July 10-30. I just signed up fairly recently and it's been a bit of a whirlwind ever since. I've been working on writing my sponsor letter in order to raise money since the trip costs $3,500. I've created a Facebook event to try and advertise about the trip as well.
Shangri-La is in the Yunnan Province of southwest China. It's a fairly small city, inhabited by mostly Tibetan people. The city is up in the mountains; the city itself is something like 10,000 ft. above sea-level but the mountains around it are as high as 16,000 ft. sea-level. And it hasn't always been called Shangri-La; the name of the city was changed in 2001 to promote tourism in the area.
And speaking of the trip, I've got to get on addressing all my letters!