The other day I came across a feminist blog on Wordpress and one particular entry really stood out to me. In fact, I read it several times in order to determine if this could easily apply to what many Lolitas face on a daily basis when they go out in public with their frilly clothing.
The title of this blog entry is (wait for it.....) "I like the way your tits bounce" and it features several instances of the author's experiences with being catcalled on the street by men, among other things. As women, unless we're wearing a parka or a giant plastic bubble around our bodies chances are high that we're going to face some street harassment. And I think those chances are doubled considering what WE wear out in public, sadly.
How many times has someone made a rude comment to you about your clothing or body while out in public? I imagine all of you will say this has happened at least once. I know it's happened before to me. Oh I know we all get our fair share of compliments too, but harassment is almost guaranteed and not just because we're women, but because we're women wearing a rather peculiar fashion.
According to this blog "Experiencing harassment on almost a day-to-day basis isn’t simply annoying: it’s a reminder that your clothes, your face, your body,you are constantly on display, and up for critique by any slack-jawed gawker who can force a loud enough utterance out of his mouth. As our own aliasmitch pointed out in his post Slut Shaming and Street Harassment, street harassment is “fundamentally built upon the idea that women’s bodies are public property”, and may therefore be commented upon, looked at, or touched. On an individual level, these actions are disrespectful and dehumanizing, but they also serve a much bigger purpose: keeping women out of public places."
When we walk down the street in our Lolita finery, we walk with the anticipation of someone yelling something at us. We cross the street early to avoid groups of males or construction sites. Most of us also make sure to avoid groups of teenagers, as they can be especially harsh in their judgments. How many of us refuse to walk alone in Lolita? Get a cup of coffee in Lolita? Visit the library in Lolita?
And with any kind of verbal harassment comes the fear of physical assault. I haven't read too many stories of Lolitas being physically assaulted or attacked but I know that is DOES happen. So what are we to do? We can ignore it, playing the passive victim and hoping it'll go away or we can speak up and yell back at our harassers - both tactics which do very little to actually put a stop to verbal attacks.
Don't despair though, there is a proactive way to handle street harassment. Here are some smart and reliable intervention skills meant to diffuse the situation in a non-violent but assertive way, courtesy of Marty Langelan, an expert on harassment and harassment intervention:
The All-Purpose Statement: When someone feels the need to comment on your appearance, simply look them in the eye and in a calm, matter-of-fact voice, say “stop harassing women. I don’t like it- no one likes it. Show some respect.” This simple statement is surprisingly effective- most harassers will back off, some will even- dare I say it- apologize! If he gets defensive, simply repeat yourself. He wouldn’t be defensive if he didn’t think what he said was stupid in the first place.
The A-B-C Technique: “When you do A (the behavior you don’t want), the effect is B (how you feel), and I want C (the specific replacement behavior) from now on.” Be calm and concrete- it’s very difficult to ignore shitty behavior when it’s blatantly called out.
The Socratic Question: Face your harasser, and ask him why he just did a specific behavior. For example: “That’s so interesting- why did you just blow a kiss at me from your window?” The dumber the action, the more difficult it is to explain. If he gets defensive, stick to your question and watch him flounder for an answer. Or end it on your terms by calmly saying, “There’s no excuse for that. No one likes it.”
The Spotlight: This one is my personal favorite. When someone says something stupid to you, ask them to repeat themselves. “I’m sorry, could you repeat that, please?” Statements like “I like the way your tits bounce” usually sound dumber the second time around, and forcing someone to take accountability for what they said or did often results in embarrassment. I actually got to use this method just the other night. After catching the aforementioned young gentleman fake smack my ass, I stared at him, raised an eyebrow and asked him if he’d like to repeat what he did for the rest of the audience. He stepped back, started stammering, and made his exit faster than you can say “douchebag”.
If you want to have a look see at this entry yourself, visit the link above or click here: jmuwomensstudentcaucus
It seems I've been tagged to do this Versatile Blogger thing bouncing around the interwebz, so here it is, 7 facts about me:
1. I used to be addicted to Chapstick. Like, I couldn't even sleep if it wasn't near me.
2. I'm a natural redhead. More auburn actually.
3. I have a green thumb. I love plants!
4. I used to have a silver and purple Betta named Confucious. He got sick and died though.
5. I dated a cross-dresser once.
6. I can't eat most sweet things. It makes my teeth hurt.
7. Autumn is my favorite season. I'm a Goth like that. ^_~
And now, I select the following Bloggers to continue this meme:
I'm not sure how familiar you all are with the band Lolita KompleX. They're an Austrian metal band featuring a female vocalist who wears lovely Lolita coordinates during performances and now, music videos. I'm actually quite fond of their music and the fact that the singer wears Lolita is just a perk!
Check them if you haven't already!
The other day I came across a Lolita web comic by an artist named Lilly Higgs. As I read through the first arc, I was amazed at how easily I could relate to something like that - a lone Lolita in a small town, relying on the internet for other Lolita friends and sharing her coordinates online with the rest of the Lolita community.
This comic tells the story of Emily, an 18 year old Sweet Lolita who finds herself questioning her fashion choices after being viciously torn apart in an online forum, similar to getoffegl or loli_secrets. It was a sad story, but the saddest part is that it's all based off true events.
It was this comic that actually prompted me to visit some of these Livejournal communities and what I found there appalled me. Here we are, girls (and boys) of an alternative fashion subculture, tearing each other apart over some ruffles and lace. It's really rather...pathetic. I saw "secrets" about people who didn't even come close to deserving such slander, silly commentaries about how this person looks awful in bonnets or the color pink...and other such nonsense. Most of it was downright cruel.
What really baffles me is that you don't see this in other fashion subcultures. I've been part of the Goth scene for a while now and with so many different sub-styles of Goth you'd think the factions would be eating each other by now, but that's simply not the case. There's a sense of community there and encouragement. I may prefer Victorian mourning clothes over cyberlox and pvc, but I can still appreciate that each person has their own interpretation of a style...who am I to say what looks "good" and what doesn't?
So why all this viciousness in Lolita? Why all the catty drama and bickering? It's not very lady-like and it doesn't make one a better Lolita - it just makes them a bitch. I wouldn't be very surprised now if someone decides to post something nasty about me after reading this, but it does disappoint me. Shouldn't we be sticking together and giving each other support? The rest of the world thinks we look like a bunch of fairy-tale loonies. We shouldn't be thinking the same thing of each other just because we don't all wear the exact same coordinate or dress in the exact same way.
*sigh* I'm tired of ranting, so I'll stop now. If you want to read Confessions of an American Lolita (which is adorable by the way) visit it here: Click Me! ^_^
First and foremost...
Thanks so much to all my followers. I finally have 50 now which means I should probably do something special. Well, how about this -- once I get a sewing machine I'll make something awesome for a give-away. Everyone loves give-aways right?
Moving on, Moondust Sprinkles is having a give-away on her blog! In honor of her graduating fashion school, she is giving away a gorgeous OP of her own design and making, called the Felicity OP. It really is something and would be a wonderful addition to anyone's wardrobe. It's also available on her shop, but if you enter her give-away you could win a free one!
Beautiful isn't it? Enter here: Moondust Sprinkles: Upcoming Graduation Give-Away!
Now for my weekly update: Honestly, I didn't do much over the week. Well, I made a trip to the thrift store on foot, which drew quite a few stares. Although I don't know why, I was in a pretty toned down Goth coordinate. Anywho, I managed to find two nice cardigans for under $10. This is why I adore thrift shops, mhmm.
The weekend was horrendous. It rained, both Chris and I were in horrible moods, plus I had a migraine all of Sunday. I'm really hoping things look up this week. I really want to dress up this week and if the weather doesn't cooperate that won't be fun at all. I've really been enjoying this warm and sunny thing going on as of late. But I hear it's supposed to rain and possibly even snow again - oh no!
No photos of the cardigans yet, or of my new shoes from Target ^_^, but I'll take some soon. Laterz~
I apologize for the lack of entries over the weekend and I missed my Monday Mania thing as well. I suppose that's what happens when you have a busy weekend being stood up by your friend who was only in town for a few days and then contracting the flu on top of menstruation. But I'm better now, so hopefully we'll see more posts here.
Last Saturday I dressed up my favorite Bodyline dress with gold accents, since it's not something I've seen done before. I'm quite happy with how it turned out...
Apparently, and according to an LJ user on Daily_Lolita, I look stoned in my photos and should learn to apply my makeup differently. I secretly took offense to this comment, since it wasn't said in the politest of ways - and have been contemplating ever actually posting photos online again. I've decided I won't post to D_L anymore, but I will continue to put photos here...at least until I receive another negative comment on my appearance. I really can't help the way my eyes are shaped and if this gives me the appearance of being "stoned" then so be it.
Moving on - I was supposed to see my friend Emily this weekend while she was up from Iowa, but she choose instead to hang out with a bunch of losers and get drunk all weekend. She even blew off our Sunday morning coffee plans and used the excuse that she "forgot" Chris' number. Pfft yeah right....besides it's listed plain as day on his Facebook profile.
I guess she's coming back up around Easter as well, but I doubt I'll see her then either. Holidays and all, you know.
Well I'm off to go fix myself something to eat and read a book. The weather is beautiful today and I plan to enjoy it until the sun goes down. Adieu!~
Fudge, it's cold out here! Hurry up and take the picture!
I'm sure just about everyone has heard about AP's second release of Sugary Carnival by now. While I'm not a fan of Sweet Lolita nor do I care much about prints, how many of them there are, and what they sell for - I think this is an interesting topic.
Anyways, it always seems like a brand will do another release of a popular print only when there are a lot of replicas floating around. It seems to be a way to counteract that sort of thing and make sure that people are only buying the "true" brand version. But you know, if a print is going to be so popular and it sells out right away you'd think that these brands would be prepared and have another release or restock already lined up.
Because replicas are inevitable.
So another release, like AP's Sugary Carnival or Melty Chocolate, is great for people who missed it the first time around. Now they don't have to skulk around the egl_comm_sales community and pray someone is going to sell it for under $700. For those who do intend to scalp these poor consumers and up the price to ridiculous amounts, a second release is bad. It's also bad for those who got screwed paying that $700 for a dress they believed would never be on the market again.
That's why I'm saying Lolita brands should be a little less exclusive about their prints and how many they make or sell. This is a fashion that anyone should be able to get their hands on if they truly desire it. Why should only those who keep their eyes and wallets glued to a brand site or shopping service have access?
What do you think?