May 2010 Archives

The Jillian Michaels Thing

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First, my response at Momversation:

A few things.

First, we cannot have a discussion about judgment wherein people apply judgment as the basis of their response. "Nutjob?" Seriously?

More importantly, when I taped my question, it was around five minutes long, the length of an entire Momversation episode. I began with explaining how two of my girlfriends, who are adoptive mothers due to fertility issues, were unhappy that someone to whom they looked up would sort of view pregnancy as a negative, an experience they would give limbs to experience. That was edited out but my remark about pregnancy remained.

Pregnancy is part of motherhood as well, and for many women, the first step.

I also remarked that is it really in the best interest of a child to seemingly discourage adoption?

I can argue this issue either way and quite honestly, I don't give a crap what Jillian Michaels thinks. I could care less. I don't read women's fitness magazines, I wouldn't know or care who this woman was if I fell over her in my living room, but it is an interesting topic and I found it interesting based upon my girlfriends' reactions. I was posing a question and in an attempt to prove how bad judgment is, some selflessly chose to demonstrate it.

But, who could blame them? Seriously? I was careful with my response in this and the way I came across was exactly what I wanted to avoid.

However. My point about when choosing to become a parent, or even after becoming a parent, it should be about your child, not what you look like, I still hold to that. Now that, if you choose to do so, can be judged and disassembled.

Thanks for the responses. :)
This is when I wish we could see the full videos so you get the full sentiment.

I don't think it's a pro-choice issue, I think it's an issue of becoming a parent and your first thought is about self, not about your kid. If that's judgmental, then so be it, but I hate that we live in an era where if things sound the least bit off we are prohibited, by the chain of political correctness, by venturing further and saying such.

I get that some women have neuroses about body image - but to the point where it dictates how you create your family? Doesn't it seem enabling to not say "what's the big deal?" The whole point is that I can argue this both ways and I was posing a question but only one side was used.

I'll return to this space shortly but a radio show awaits.  

Programming Note - *Updated

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Tomorrow I'll be a call-in guest on the Wendy Williams Show around 9:30 a.m. eastern discussing competitive and judgmental parenting. Tune in!

It's for all the mothers who've ever wanted to holler MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS whenever a busybody decides to make how you parent part of their concern. More on this later. 

*This morning's segment was just rainchecked. No worries, there's always next time. 




Sharp Dressed Man

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Blues Brothers

Sometime over the past year Ewan has developed an affinity for the Blues Brothers ensemble. He's always had a thing for hats; now, if I'd let him, he'd wear, play, and sleep in his little hand-me-down suits and ties. (His Grim Reaper phase passed sometime last year.)

Blues Brothers at the movies

He's got a pin in that hat. It's a child's hat that I found in a vintage store somewhere in Missouri wine country. I saw it and it said "EWAN." He's way cooler than I ever was at his age ... or even as a teenager, sadly. 

Cue ZZ Top's "Sharp Dressed Man"

"It's the best hat ever," He said after I brought it home and presented it to him. "Thank you for seeing it and getting it for me mama," he said in his adorable chipmunk voice. Then he scampered off to the bathroom to climb atop the toilet and stare in the mirror at himself wearing his new hat. 

Bullettes

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Randomly.

- Sometimes its worth re-reading what I wrote about trademarks a couple of years ago. Please, when you are setting out to title your new website, make sure that you aren't causing confusion with other mamas' ways of earning money for their little ones. Golden rule! It may seem like it isn't a big thing but it can be, which is why in this age of personal branding (gag, right?) you should proceed with caution. 

- I'm still playing catch-up from last weekend. My Mother's Day redux is this Saturday, lunch after visiting my friend's bakery and contributing to a drive to collect supplies for men and women serving overseas. No one should ever have to go without wet wipes or nice deodorant while serving in the desert and eating MREs for months on end. 

- Liam is dealing with a difficult kid in one of his homeschool classes. Sigh. The kid told Liam that he was going to "beat him" over something. Liam had rolled his eyes in response; since Liam's had boxing lessons (his grandpa is a corner man in the local boxing scene here and helps train fighters), I told him that I would have responded with: "I'm here now. What are you waiting for?" Harsh? Liam has such a sweet heart. He almost fell over when I told him that not everyone in the world will like him. The best, most relatable example I could think to give him of this was me. 

"I don't care if he likes me. It doesn't change what I think of him," Liam concluded. I love how he knows who he is and won't allow outside perception to change that. More on this later. 

- I'm working to restore comments on this website. I shut them down last year when things got crazy but I've met more and more people over the past year who are truly open-minded (where have you been?! I'm so glad to see you!) and something else has been restored. Technically, it's not as easy as a click of a button with MT but I'm working on it. 

- I'm working on something that may be using more words than I can spread across the webernetz in the next couple of weeks but I will be in and out with things. 

This Year's Mother's Day Sucked

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Radio City/Rockefeller Center

I didn't take many photos in NYC because I left my Nikon at home, thinking that it was going to be a quick trip, in and out, filled with television stuff and meeting folks afterwards. On Mother's Day. 

I didn't realize that as I pulled up to the hotel on Sunday night, literally, as I was struggling with my bags on the sidewalk I had a CBS "Early Show" producer on my phone, in my ear, telling me that even though everything had been right as rain ten minutes ago, suddenly the segment was cancelled, no reason why. What a great Mother's Day. 

More to share, but I've a show to prepare for and two boys who need their hair combed. I'll finish this story later today. 

**And now for the long version. 

A CBS producer called me a week or so ago about featuring some Momversation ladies on the "Early Show." I directed her to the brains behind Momversation and soon after Heather Armstrong, Rebecca Woolf, and I were booked to be on the show. Every one of us has dealt with television, we're not stupid about production, I work in radio for a living and do national television frequently, in addition to PJTV. None of us in our experiences with broadcasting have ever encountered what we encountered on Mother's Day. 

Producers were switched out in the middle of the preproduction process, sometimes it happens if there are many segment producers running around, but I shrugged it off. We were told that the focus may be changing and then were reassured that no, our purpose for going -- promoting Momversation -- was still intact and we would still speak on the topic from that perspective. 

Flash forward to Sunday night when the three of us were fighting hunger pains because we missed a nice Mother's Day meal with our families. I get it, it happens, particularly in a news-driven show in a daypart.  They attributed it to the Kagan nomination but I can't help but wonder if media, White House press corps, et al. knew that the White House was going to hold a Monday morning presser before the three of us stepped on a plane and flew cross-country. I'd been hearing rumors about it from my little corner of the blogosphere.

I called the producers to whom we had spoken after the decision was rendered, hoping to get a firsthand reason but I never heard back. The louder our stomachs growled the angrier I got and I asked Amanda in travel to arrange to cover our dinner, which CBS did. (Thanks, Amanda, for being so awesomely accessible!) It was the only meal we had that day. I went to bed and stared at a photo of my boys, my phone's wallpaper, until the phone timed its light out. 

I visited some friends at Fox the next day and their producers (some of whom are veterans from other networks), with whom I've never had anything but a pleasant experience, were surprised that the decision to cut the segment wasn't made before we flew out. I'm not going to put myself in the shoes of the people who have to call the shots at CBS or blame the messenger, though sometimes doing so sends a message, but, dude. 

I know some people online are Twittering about all the atrocities in the world and "can we get perspective?" OK, you try leaving for a whirlwind business trip on a day when you know that all your family is getting together, you deal with getting a fill-in for your show and making sure all the loose ends are knotted, that all your kids homeschool lessons are in place so they don't miss anything the day that you're gone, you go speak in Kansas City and drive across the state the next day with your family so you can hop a plane for an in total six hour trip cross-country. We were looking forward to it and were willing to sacrifice or reschedule the one day that's officially ours to make it happen. It was going to be a segment by mothers, for mothers. 

Yes, we're moms. I know it's often like, shocking for some to realize that moms are women who work be it outside or inside the home, and their entire existence as a parent isn't wholly defined by the product of procreation, but rather enriched, blessed by it -- which makes it all the more important that they are treated as courteously as possible, especially on Mother's Day. 

Happy Mama's Day

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Popping in real quick to with everyone a happy Mother's Day. Hopping a plane to NYC this afternoon. I'll be on CBS's Early Show tomorrow with some of the other Momversation ladies. 

(Still on Twitter, though.)


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