48 thoughts on “Frilly Feminism: or, I am a Badass Homemaker

  1. I think you have a friend who can make you this T-shirt! A ladle makes a fine weapon. You can also whip someone with a leek, and hurl beets at the unwary. And whoever dares confront you will face the wrath of Zombunny!

  2. I’m prety sure if I didn’t cook dinner for my kids–they would starve. Shall I be a feminist, or a baby killer?

    Chicks who wear Dr. Martens are the bad-assedest (it’s a word) chicks to roam the Earth. I know this becuase I have worn out 3 pair in my lifetime–and I’m 100% BAD ASS!

    1. Bethany, I KNEW you were badass. No one with hair like that could be anything less. πŸ˜€

      AND, you can feed your kids AND be a feminist. It’s not either-or. Dualistic thinking makes me crazy.

  3. I hate when “feminist” enthusiasts bash other women for their life choices. You’re right, women should be able to choose their own lifestyle. I may not have the ability to bake and garden, but those are skills that should be praised, not discouraged. It bugs the crap outta me that people look down their noses on us normal – REAL – women because we aren’t rock stars or fictional characters. Publicity stunts like this are despicable.

  4. THIS—> “To allow women to live life on their own terms, to CHOOSE what they want to do and who they want to be. No woman should be confined to the domestic sphere if she doesn’t wish to be. And no woman should be exiled from the domestic sphere because another woman says it isn’t worthy of a feminist.”

    Amen sistah! I support myself, I’m not married (yet) and I happen to ADORE cooking and growing my own freaking tomatoes. If that makes me not enough of a bad-ass, well oh well. Women will never be equal as long as we continue to beat each other down for our passions. According to the author, if a man blogged about organic produce, cupcakes, and sewing “survival gear” would he be seen as too domestic? I think not. GRRR. She made me so angry. But I loved your response, my dear. FREE CHOICE FOR ALL!

    *Excuse me while I go back to preparing my heirloom tomato, avocado, and bacon panini.*

  5. Beautiful. Well said. I’m speechless at the profundity of your logic and your expression of it, and I wholeheartedly concur. Now… can you tell me why I cannot grow spearmint to save my life?

    1. Thank you! And hahaha

      As for spearmint . . . some plants just won’t grow for some people. I murder chamomile every time I try to grow it, and all my friends have oodles of it.

      My first question on growing mint might be, how is your soil? Mints like well drained soils. They do better with being watered, then allowed to dry out.

      Also, how cold are your winters? Are you growing mint in the ground or a pot? SO many factors could be the issue . . . it grows like crazy here, in a big whiskey barrel in the sun but our winters are very mild, so I don’t know how it would do in a harsh winter.

      1. Well, I live in Albuquerque and it has been pretty hot this summer. I have it in a pot with (I hope) good soil. I bought the plants from my farmer’s markets two years in a row and I’ve killed about 6 of them now. Actually, I’ve killed lots of stuff… everything really: Rosemary, Basil, Thyme, Marjoram, you name it, I’ve killed it. I suppose I don’t know how much to water them. They sit in a sunny window but if I open the curtains they wither. Same if I put them outside. They struggle with the curtains closed, too. I do have a Thai Basil outside that grew like gang busters last year and reseeded itself to for another go ’round. Sigh… I’m about ready to give up.

  6. When I was in high school, a particular fad hit the community. Suddenly you’d see wrestlers, lacrosse players, football players, swimmers– some of the most tough and hardcore athletes we had at our school, both male and female– knitting almost compulsively. They knitted scarves, hats gloves, etc, because it helped them focus to keep their hands occupied, because it made awesome cheap Christmas/Hanukkah/Ramadan/Yule presents, and because it was just plain badass. You’ve heard my spiel on the amount of money I’ve saved by mending and making my own clothes, and my mother saves even more through the power of her green thumb. But then, my mother’s the practical type, who tried to instill in us important skills like sewing, cooking, budgeting, natural medicine, etc. She also made a big deal of telling me over and over and over and over again that I could, should and would do whatever I wanted to do, and that the only stipulation was that I should work hard, hone my talents and do it well. And from the sound of it, you’re telling your own daughter to do the exact same thing, and that’s the most progressive, feminist– and most importantly, humanist– thing I can think of.

  7. Oh, and, for the record, the only way I’ve ever managed to make plants grow is to plant them outside and not go anywhere near them until I’m ready to harvest. My mom’s got a green thumb, but I’ve got a remarkable talent for murdering plants. We had a lot of spearmint in the backyard that grew according to that ideology, actually.

    1. Benign neglect does seem to make a lot of plants happy. Those are the plants I prefer! And yeah, I’ve never quite understood why useful skills aren’t more appreciated in GENERAL. But I applaud your mother for instilling good values in you! πŸ˜€

  8. Ahem. – Dramatic Pause Followed By Epic Voice –

    I Will make this T-Shirt of Awesome!

    also. I deliberately didn’t read the Huff post. I don’t need to get mad and fuck them anyway.
    And as always I applaud your rant. Fine show.

    1. OH OH OH.

      You need to make another drawing. “Maid of Awesome”.

      With, like, a badass french maid or something. Or maybe a Maid/Superhero. Like American Made from the Tick or something.

  9. YES. YES! That article disgusts me. My sister’s a huge feminist and an adorer of all things pink and frilly. I’m a feminist, and okay, I can’t cook, but I’m gonna learn how to some day! The seeming fear of so-called /feminine/ traits is absurd – why should women be discouraged from domestic activities they enjoy?

    Fake feminist: “DON’T GO IN THE KITCHEN! That’s what they WANT YOU TO DO!”

    Me: “But, um, I’m hungry -”


    Me: “…cookies are yummy”

    seriously, people.

  10. Hurrah! HURRAH! HURRAH!!!!! This is the best, most intelligent and inspiring rant I have read in years, and it made me feel better about myself than I have in months. THANK YOU!!

  11. I refused to read the article because I don’t want to be mad right now. I’m not in the mood πŸ˜‰
    But I do agree that domestic arts should be abandoned in the pursuit of a modern woman. They are arts. They should be respected, whether done by a woman or a man.

  12. Michelle this post was excellent.

    Just one comment for all you over the top huffington post feminists….I’m raising my boys to be sexist pigs because I am teaching them to open doors for women out of courtesy and respect.

    So there.

  13. Right fucking on, my friend! You don’t have to act like a man to be a feminist. Isn’t feminism about women having the CHOICE to do what they want? Why do people not get that? It’s not about eschewing the traditional, so-called feminine stuff. It’s about having the OPTION to do something else if you WANT to.

    Personally, I hate pink, I haven’t worn a dress in at least a decade and don’t even own one. I despise cooking and refuse to do it, and when I win the lottery I am never cleaning a single other thing for the rest of my life. Oh, and I have tattoos, okay? Tattoos. Not frilly. I’ve also dated women.

    I also make jewelry, crochet, have a live-in male lover and wear makeup.

    All these things I do or refuse to do are for no other reason than what I want. That is what feminism is about.

    P.S. Michelle, will you marry me? Isn’t polyandry legal in Oregon? πŸ˜‰

  14. Michelle,
    First of all — I’m glad you included the link, because the comments were AWESOME. Basically, everyone just told the little prig off.

    I love your post here and agree with everything you said. As an old-school (1960s) feminist, I have bad-ass cred up the yinyang — and I can CREATE anything, GROW anything, and BUILD anything. Plus, at 61 I still look passable in lycra spandex LOL. None of which makes me better or worse than the next person, or more or less a feminist.

    I’m tired of other people telling me what a feminist is supposed to be, especially some feminist-come-lately who confuses her butch fantasies with feminist gospel. Not that there’s anything wrong with badass butch fantasies, but to label everyone else as “not a real feminist” shows a serious lack of reality.

    I think the author is pissed because she blames the lack of badass women in the blogosphere, for her lack of a badass girlfriend. “If only there were more macho leather dykes…” HAHA

    I think she’s also pissed (and more than a little jealous) because she doesn’t have a creative bone in her body. So she eats name-brand foods (genetically modified) and wears name-brand clothing (3rd World sweat shop labor) cuz that crafty home-grown stuff is just too girly.

    “Ranting right here beside you.”

  15. AUGH. Just AUGH. We’re homemakers because we CHOOSE to be. Because we love our families, and we love keeping them happy and healthy with homecooked meals that WE prepare. Nothing warms my heart more than sharing good coversation w/my family at dinner over a meal I made for them. BONDING. Isn’t that OUR responsibility? To keep the family together?

    I abhor housework, but I do it because who else will? House elves?? Last I checked, Dobby met a bad end. Like you, I’m crafty. I used to sew all of my daughter’s dresses. Even won some ribbons in the county fair for them. Does that make me a wuss? Well, if ever there was an apocalypse where all of the clothes manufacters and factories were shut down, who would have all the power? The seamstresses. They’d hold the cards. Because peeps need clothes to survive. To SURVIVE. It’s not like we have fur all over our bodies to keep us warm in the cold. Or to keep us dry when it rains. And say the apocalypse reached further, into our food supply. The gardening gurus would be our saviors.

    These are not hobbies. They’re choices.

    Great post, Michelle. And wow, makes me want to knock some heads together in true Three Stooges style.

  16. I loved the RANT, Michelle! As usual, you’re completely made of AWESOME! =)

    It occurred to me while reading your post that one of parallels to the “women in their place” movement is the rise of the radical right winged bible thumpers. You know how god likes women to be subservient, right? I personally love strong, and independent women and would rather be with a “peer” than a “mushy whiner” who always looks for me to take the lead.

    I don’t want to take a stance on the whole Feminist issue, mainly because that should be left to the individual and not “labeled.” Just thought I’d throw in my 2Β’ worth.

  17. Michelle,

    You are the most amazing woman I know. Thanks for the great rant. Like you, I believe the ultimate success in feminism is the ability to choose how to live as a woman. We all have strengths and weaknesses–gender be damned–and passions and dislikes. It makes us who we are–and being true to our inherent nature is the pinnacle of feminism, not telling others how to live.

    Love you!

  18. I don’t think I could’ve said it better myself, sister. I hope YOUR post gets more attention than the article that inspired it, and then I’ll forgive the article author for having initiated it. πŸ˜‰

  19. You, my dear, are the most badass friend I have. And the added benefit to being your friend is that you have given me extra veggies and plants from your badass garden, extra eggs from your badass chickens and knitted me a badass goddess (among other things) with your badass knitting skills. I wouldn’t want you any other way. Oh, and I think the article was hype too. Asshats.

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