So I've been a bit down lately, and most of the books on my shelf are, as always, either a bummer or just way to freaking dense or I've read them approximately 5000 times. So I went to my neighborhood feminist bookstore today in the hopes of picking up something funny and not too intense to kill time tonight.
What I ended up with is a book called "Kiss My Tiara: How to Rule the World as a Smartmouth Goddess" by Susan Jane Gilman. As a rule, I'm not big on books like this: young feminists hoping to advise and inspire other young feminists on how to make their lives better, usually packaged with a cutesy title and some sort of femmey signifier (in this case, a big pair of pink lips) on the cover. But... I have a hard time just picking things up in bookstores. It seems like I've either never heard of it or it's too expensive (the book I wanted to buy, Nina Hartley's "How To Have Sex Like A Porn Star", was $26) or whatever. And I have Susan Jane Gilman's other book, a collection of personal essays titled "Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress", and I love it. It's one of my few "funny books" and as such I've read it until i want to puke.
But this book...is driving me crazy. There are funny moments (one of the chapters is called "Niceness: Barf"), but I'm getting really annoyed by her repeated use of certain phrases and quotes from her elderly and feisty grandmother. (Her grandmother sounds like a hoot, but any sort of repetitive device like that gets on my nerves after a few chapters.) What's really driving me up the wall is this particular phrase: "we all, straight or gay, man or woman, want (insert topic here)." Aside from the fact that it feels like she's saying this every other page, this book is patently not for at least queers. I can't speak for men, but I am queer and this book is resonating zilch with me in terms of practical advice or telling me anything I didn't already know. If she's truly trying to write a book that is trying to reach any of the demographics other than "straight female", why are all the pronouns indicative of straight female perspecitive about partners? I don't know why exactly this is pissing me off so much tonight, but I guess I really just hate false inclusion. It's fine (or at least not a huge sin) to write a book for straight girls, but stop pretending it's something different.
Anyway, I'm on the verge of the token "lesbian relationship" chapter, which I suspect will not improve my mood. Ah well. Perhaps I'll try and trade it in for something else tomorrow.