My mind seems to be in a…

My mind seems to be in a constant ferment these days; I suspect it's at least partly the university atmosphere. There are so many people thinking so intensely all around me -- it's contagious.

This, of course, doesn't mean that I necessarily think about anything all that profound. Topics I focused on today (for at least fifteen minutes of quality thinking time) included:

  • still trying to figure out what to do about me and Kev
  • whether I'll have time to have brunch on Sunday
  • what would I want to cook for brunch
  • whether I get paid today, and if I don't, can I afford to eat until I do?
  • what there is left to eat in the house (answer: not much, but with a few onions and some garlic from Kevin, I can make fish and egg curry, which will last me 'til Saturday)
  • Barthes (reading Camera Lucida, which is touching and brilliant -- Arthur, you should read this, as should anyone interested in photography)
  • making connections between that and Barthes' Mythologies (which everyone should read, but especially Jed and Shmuel and Columbine)
  • the real differences I see between erotica/pornography (Barthes discusses this at times, and I mostly agree with him)
  • starting to write a column in my head about it
  • trying to decide whether I should attempt to do editorials for CS regularly again
  • why are the Harry Potter books so successful? (re-reading bits of one over ramen for lunch)
  • more Barthes; missing my mother because of the way he talks about his
  • logging on when I get to campus and explaining to the Fem-SF list why they might want to commit to an online webzine to promote women in sf (and how much it would cost them in money and time)
  • etc. and so on, finally getting to class where I mostly concentrate on class but also end up thinking a fair bit about skirts, which is where this list is ending and aren't you grateful?
Randomness. I wish I had a little computer in my brain (yes, I know my brain is a computer, but I mean a secretary-type computer attached) to organize all of this nonsense, chucking the dreck and keeping the really good bits.

Skirts. I was thinking about skirts because I'm one of the few women in the class who wears one, and in fact, I have just generally seen fewer short skirts in Salt Lake than I do in the Bay Area. I think this is because the LDS women tend to wear long skirts, and the non-LDS women tend to wear practical pants or shorts, but I'm not sure. The two women I hang out with here, Susan and Mara, both rarely wear skirts, though I think for different reasons (Mara tends to wear chic jeans/pants outfits; Susan tends to wear shorts and a t-shirt).

I really like skirts (and dresses even more) for their comfort value -- they're rotten for tromping around in the woods, but if you know that all you're going to be doing that day is taking a bus to campus, sitting in class, and then either taking a bus or walking home, then a skirted piece of clothing is a cool and comfortable and easy item to wear. They're practical -- you can just a slip a dress on over whatever underwear you do or don't choose to wear, slide your feet into some sandals and go.

Of course, the question of underwear does bring up all the feminist concerns with skirts, which I usually don't think about but do tend to pop up in my lit theory class, since the teacher is mostly a pants-wearing-type and we talk about this stuff occasionally. Issues of accessibility -- ease of access and the desire for/openness to same. Can you really wear a skirt without underwear (even a long one) and not be aware of what most people would think of you if they knew? And even if you do wear underwear, it's still a lot less of a barrier than a pair of blue jeans would be (as you undoubtedly know if you've ever tried to shimmy out of blue jeans in a hurry (especially if your skin is kind of damp, or if you're wearing combat boots which you have to unlace first)).

Is it betraying my gender if I like the idea of being easy to access at times -- or of having easy access to someone else? Guys in kilts are sexy, no? Is that equivalent to saying 'take me (rape me), please!'? Or, if not equivalent, is it at least contributing to the problem?

Oof. Heavy thoughts for a fluffy Thursday afternoon. I think I'd best go home and make fish curry instead, and then curl up with my student papers and do some nice solid grading. Wish I weren't so sleepy, though. A nap sounds far more appealing at the moment.

(I really am looking forward to reading their papers -- it's the sheer mass of them that's a bit daunting at the moment).

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