Body Image Done Right: Colbie Caillat’s “Try”

Colbie Caillat at the beginning of the "Try" music video. Simple and stunning, just like the song.

Colbie Caillat at the beginning of the “Try” music video. Simple and stunning, just like the song.

A lot of artists have produced well-intentioned songs dealing with body image and self-esteem as of late. Though these tracks have a good feel and move the music industry in the right direction, several of them miss the mark: John Legend’s patronizing “You & I,” Bruno Mars’s subtly sexist “Just The Way You Are,” and even Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass,” which veers into the realm of skinny-shaming and man-appeasement. However, Colbie Caillat hits all the right notes with “Try” – instead of pushing women to respect themselves in a certain way, she tells them to love themselves without condition, no matter what anyone else thinks. Continue reading

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Subtle Sexism: Bruno Mars’s “Just The Way You Are”

In an interview about his song “Just The Way You Are,” Bruno Mars assumes that all women crave compliments about their beauty. Even though he states in another interview that he “wasn’t thinking of anything deep or poetic” when writing his lyrics, I have not written about pop music in forever, so I will dedicate this post to deconstructing my dislike for “Just The Way You Are,” because the song makes female worth synonymous with physical appearance, and it implies that women should find self-acceptance through men, instead of themselves. Continue reading

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My Gay Duty, and Other Vague Misnomers

As a gay guy, I often ask myself: how much personal responsibility do I have in the lgbtq community? I have read books, watched movies, and looked up organizations on-campus to volunteer with when I return to school in the fall. Through this blog I have shared some of my experiences. And yet, I still lack a clear definition of how much I need to do. How much of the weight falls on my shoulders? What is my gay duty?

Answer: It doesn’t exist. Sort of. Continue reading

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Personal Update: 600,000 Views, 450 Posts, and Ratchet Parking

The day after I published my post about hating straight white men, my blog reached 600,000 views – huzzah! This post itself acts as my 450th, and thus, I thought I would reward everyone and make their confidence as drivers increase indirectly by sharing a picture of my somewhat ratchet parking, from the folder on my computer titled “Ratchet Parking Compilation”: Continue reading

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Why You Shouldn’t Hate Straight White Men

“I’m scared to talk about what’s bothering me,” he said.

“I’m scared to walk back to the dorm at night alone,” she said.

A few months ago, I locked myself in my college’s library to study for final exams. While procrastinating focusing on Social Psychology, I overheard a conversation between a boy and a girl studying in the cubicles to my right.

He shuffled some of his books around. “It’s not a big deal anyway. Every time I try to talk about it with her, I feel weird-,”

“Yeah, well, you should see me every time I go out.” She sighed, either from the stress of finals or the minutiae of her friend’s problem. “If you think you have it bad, try imagining every guy in the room thinking you want it just because you’re wearing a short dress.”

The aspiring therapist inside of me wanted to reach out and console both of them about their issues, but instead, I shook my head, turned up my music, and saved their conversation as material for a future blog post.

Does anyone see how this post actually contributes to equality? Because I don't.

Does anyone see how this post actually contributes to equality? Because I don’t.

I identify as male, so I will not pretend to know what it feels like to be catcalled, paid less for equal performance, or judged just based on my appearance. Continue reading

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Personal Update: Thomas, Revisited

About a month and a half into summer vacation, I still have not published much on this blog. I ask myself why: is it a bad case of writer’s block, or have I lost interest? At first I wondered whether I was just waiting until after I got my license to start anything serious, but even after attaining it after endangering the lives of me and my examiner, here I am writing this post. Continue reading

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An Unquiet Mind by Kay Redfield Jamison

Cover via Goodreads.

Cover via Goodreads.

Rating: 5/5 stars.

In her bold autobiography An Unquiet Mind, Kay Redfield Jamison details her struggle with bipolar disorder in the midst of her career as a clinical psychologist. First published in 1994, this book highlights Jamison’s bravery: with such a prestigious academic position and a CV full of work related to manic-depressive disorder, she risked her reputation and her ethos by writing this wonderful, heart-wrenching volume. Continue reading

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Filed under 5 stars, Book Reviews, Books