Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Girls, girls, girls

This morning was stressful. Soon my shiny new office will be ready and we will be able to start welcoming students to the new médiathèque. It may also be getting a rebranding, so that's really exciting - names are important, but not as important as the thing, as Juliet was so keen to point out - a Rose by any other name would smell as sweet. It's true; if you have a friend called Rose, ask her to pretend to be Jennifer for a day, and you'll notice she still smells of rainforests and sunlight. And sweat. Just a bit. She's human. We all are.

The problem with a shiny new office, however, is that it needs shiny new fittings and shiny new lights and that means shiny new drills need to be used to bore holes in walls, which would be absolutely top-hole and spiffing if my new office were not next to my current office. Making phone calls while a workman kicks his power drill up to 11 and goes to town on the poor wall is impossible, and conversation in the office became a little strained. Still, I powered through the tasks that needed doing, and before long I was ready to head into my basement to measure more things. My supervisor wants a plan ready for the new occupants of my basement office, and so I'm measuring and teaching myself Sketchup and very frequently cursing under my breath because I've accidentally spent twenty minutes making a gorgeous desk and only just realised it's floating two metres off the floor. And I have no idea how to get it to obey gravity, so for the moment whoever moves in next will need to make do with an anti-grav desk.

We also finally sorted out the books that we're keeping and the books that we're giving to anyone who wants them along with a load of VHS tapes and cassettes, in case Doc Brown turns up.

Not the Doc Brown from yesterday's blog. (Although thank you for reading so regularly.) The other one. Big hair. Owns a Delorean.

That's the bunny.

Incidentally, did you recognise him the first time you saw him as that destroyer of childhoods Judge Doom, from Who Framed Roger Rabbit? I did, and it was not a pleasant moment. I kept expecting him to do this:


And he didn't. I got to the end of Back To The Future and was so tense I couldn't stand up. My mother actually used me as a doorstop for an hour before I relaxed. Sensible women, my mother.

All of that was a lot of verbiage for the joke that we have VHS tapes and they're old fashioned, but I am quite sure you'll agree it was worth it. If you are a student in the place in which I work and, for some reason, have a VHS tape player, you may come and see me and help yourself at lunchtime.

I had my first French class today, which was interesting. We focussed on the future simple tense, which was quite fun. The teacher is very animated and the exercises are quite fun, so I may well appropriate them for my own classes because plagiarism is the highest form of flattery. I would say without boasting that I am one of two students with an already good level, but it's really interesting to see how I've gotten rusty through needing only relatively basic French and tenses. Several times I found myself struggling for words that I really ought to know, but it was nice to get back into the swing of speaking French with a variety of people.

It's also interesting to see where I've changed; I've not been in a classroom setting (as a pupil) for quite some time, and so I was surprised to find myself encouraging my classmates to answer and pushing them to take centre stage. Those who remember me from shared classrooms in the hazy days of youth will attest to the fact that I was an insufferable know-it-all, a boy whose arm was the greatest short-twitch muscle ever seen. I could answer a question the teacher hadn't finished asking. Hell, sometimes I even answered questions they hadn't planned on asking. I was the uncool kind of disruptive kid, the one the teacher and the rest of the students hate.

I am now a thoroughly more chilled out chappy, though that's not to say I don't get a bit cross when things like this

Taken from artist's Tumblr, http://roseaposey.tumblr.com/post/39795409283/judgments
(which, by the way, is a piece of art criticising the slut-shaming, it's-your-fault-because-you-dress-like-that attitude which is way too fucking pervasive) appear on my feed titled "Use this as a reference guide." I'm bound to get a tiny bit irritated with anyone who is so apparently unable to control their animal instincts, so stuck in the Stone Age that they need women to cover up from neck to ankle. What utter twattery.

Do you know how to tell if a woman is asking for it?

She opens her mouth and she asks for it. 

She can be as naked as the day she was born and if she isn't asking then you need to man the fuck up and walk on.

Gorram, we live in a world where we have instant access to all humanity's knowledge, we live longer, we can fucking fly through the air and I still have dumbasses posting this as a "reference guide" like we're still living in caves and hunting saber-toothed-tigers and are literally only prevented from committing sexual assault because our potential victims cover themselves up. 

Gor-ram.

It's not my place to lecture anyone on feminism but: if you're a girl or a woman and you agree with that picture then think about what that means. It means you think guys should have the right to decide how you dress. It means that sexual assault is partly your fault.

And they don't. And it isn't.