In our ever-expanding effort to bring you, dear readers, more thoughtful content, pictures of cats and celebrity rants, Heartless Doll is proud to announce that we've taken on our very first slave intern! Who is this go-getting young person clearly desperate for any byline available? The prestigious University of Missouri journalism department's own Geoff George. (Yes, it's a boy! Don't judge--he's the only one who applied.)
I asked Geoff to introduce himself, so I'll let him take over from here. What say you, Mr. George?
Geoff George here, your humble 25-year-old journalism student and intern from The University of Missouri, by way of Iowa. For about a week now I've been telling people I'll be researching and writing for a "feminist blog." This term usually turns them quiet, and their eyes register something between confusion and suspicion, and I try to explain (badly) that it's a blog about "ladythings," a discussion area for pop culture and political stories about women and of interest to women.
"And you're writing for it," they say. " ... Yeah." " ... Huh."
Obviously, half their confusion is based on the fact that I'm a dude, but let's face it: There's no universal definition for feminism, and a lot of people just aren't sure what it means when something is described as "feminist." It brings up questions, even for me. Can men be included? Is it more a fight for power or for equality? Does that question miss the point? Am I actually allowed to refer to the readers here as "dolls", or is that insulting? What if I say something else insulting? Is it even correct to call this blog feminist?
To use some buzzwords, there's a lack of crosstalk between communities, a semi-entrenchment toward what is most comfortable and known, and my hope is that, by being here, I can keep myself from contributing to that problem. I'll be posting while keeping my other eye on your comments, and I'll try to disprove my supposed allegiance to a hegemony I never asked to be a part of. That said, thanks for including me in the conversation, and I look forward to the summer.
Let's give Geoff a doll-worthy welcome. He'll be doing some link-goodness roundups for us and also writing weekly features that I also hope will make for bigger and better conversations about what it means to be a feminist.
OMG, can you believe how much we drank/that dude we met/what Jenny's boyfriend said last week/yesterday/in high school? And my, doesn't that shirt/dress/Star Trek uniform look lovely on you this morning! I'm so glad we're besties.
In the interest of remaining besties, we Dolls are trying to make ourselves ever more accessible to you, our lovely readers. That means we've got two new ways to keep in touch, and neither of them involve daiquiri-laden girls' nights out or getting pedis ... not in this economy, anyway. No! We're all about the intert00bs, and we reckon you are, too.
So, if you're a Twitter fiend, please consider following HD's twat-a-twitter, where we will bring you post update nuggets and random observations from HDland. And if you're looking for yet another person to nag all day while your friends with real jobs are in meetings, hit up HD on AOL Instant Messenger, SN "HeartlessDollVVM." For the time being, I'll be running both the Twitter and the AIM, so there's no need to be scared of getting some soulless flak in place of a warm, loving Heartless Doll who wants to hear all about your news tips and fun things.
As a kind of sealed-with-our-own-blood-and-spit-and-Blanche digital handshake, please take a moment and watch this awesome Golden Girls clip with me.
We here at Heartless Doll know we're awesome, but apparently we underestimated the sheer extent of our awesomeness. Last week our pals at Urlesque nominated us for their annual "Best New Site" award, as part of the 2008 "Urlies." Though we didn't make the final cut -- I shake my fist at you, Zoomdoggle -- we did get darn close, joining other nominees like Public School Intelligensia, Videogum, and We Heart It. Thanks for the love, Urlesque. We think you're awesome too, even if we don't have an official, fancy pants award to prove it.
Sometimes giving your personal info to absolute strangers leads to happiness, apparently. When I first got an email from the folks over at Coraline asking for my home address so they could deliver me a secret package, I thought two things: "What the heck is Coraline?" and "No way!" As I learned more about the project -- which turns out to be a movie adaptation of a creepily awesome Neil Gaiman kids book (trailer here) -- I got more interested. Then I learned what the animation team was sending. In their own words:
We know that this movie is something special - so to get the word out
in a meaningful way, we chose to reach out to kindred spirits such as
yourself. The gifts we've assembled vary in their exact contents - but Coraline
is a stop-motion feature, and thus some of the packages will include
bits and bobbles and whatnots from the set itself. Some will have
storyboards and directors notes. A few will have life-sized gifts that
take inspiration from the film. And all will include a key that unlocks
access to unique footage about the making of the film itself.
Okay, sounds cool, right? So I sent my address off to the Coraline
team and promptly forgot all about it. Until I received a package in
the mail last week, that is. What was inside? Only the awesomest piece
of swag ever created. Specifically, I was sent a handmade wooden box,
one of only fifty, which contained a still from the movie, a
personalized letter, and tiny bits of the set. The whole thing has this
amazing, fetishized, Joseph Cornell feel. Check out the photos for yourself. As for me, I'm smitten.
Congrats, PR guys and gals. With this
amazing gift you have solidified my undying devotion. Now I'll surely
be blogging regularly about how much I'm looking forward to the movie --
which comes out early 2009. Oh, and I'll be hugging my box. Though I do slightly covet the other boxes that got sent out. Now if only
I had buttons for eyes...
West Coast locals, rejoice! This Friday marks the start of Arse Elektronika 2008, a three-day conference on sex and technology held right here in San Francisco. The theme of this year's conference is "Do androids sleep with electric sheep?" That's right, we're talking the convergence of sex and science fiction. Presentations include: "Prosthetics and Future Fetishism," "Mechanical Morality and Robot Love," and something called "Fuck Space, Slashing the Ocean," plus much much more. Tickets for all three days are only $40 ($20 for a single day). So if you live anywhere nearby you should swing by CELLspace and join the fun.
Still not convinced? Then hear this, lovers of all things tantalizingly techie. Yours truly will also be presenting. Specifically, I'm be giving a talk about power dynamics in erotic video game fan fiction: what it means when gamers write sexy stories about the characters they love. I'm scheduled to go on at 3 p.m. on Friday. I'd promise lots of inappropriate references to Princess Peach's underwear, but the entire conference should prove wonderfully inappropriate, so all I can promise is you'll see me in the flesh. The squishy, nervous, excited flesh. Come!