Saturday, May 07, 2005

My Mom Is A Wave Of Feminist You Don't Even Have Numbers For Yet

What with all the electoral fracas yesterday, there was scant time for my customary bemusement at the 'Women' section of G2. So here I am back for belated bemusement.

'The feminist' had solicited reader nominations for 'the most interesting feminist alive today', a ploy that might, to the hardhearted reader, whiff ever so slightly of Eau du fond de la barrique profoundly unshocking in a column doomed from the get-go by an abject failure to define the parameters of its ideological existence. We, however, are all about the flexibility and forgiving openness here, and we don't think that at all.

The last reader submission read as follows:
I nominate my mother, aged 89. My dad was killed by the Japanese in another useless war. She skivvied to send me to a grammar school. Living as a housekeeper all her life, she reflects daily, without much complaint, on life then and now. She desires and requires nothing. Generous, she seeks no glory, but a quiet death, to join my dad.

Now this is a construction of 'feminist' genuinely new to me, and that's a phenomenon that doesn't happen every day. Who knew feminism actually consisted in uncomplainingly performing menial labor and wanting nothing from anyone but to die as quickly as possible so as to get out of everyone's way? Truly, an 'interesting feminist' indeed, though clearly not 'alive today' for too much longer, if she has her way.

I could perhaps have been forgiven for supposing that this was instead a nomination for World's Most Implausibly Convenient Mother.

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