Monday, September 28, 2009

Micro-Managing Marriage

According to the October 2009 issue of Redbook, there is a phenomenon that has most likely always existed, but now a name has been coined. Social psychologist, Carin Rubenstein wrote the book called The Superior Wife Syndrome.

I believe in this syndrome, but not necessarily in the way which Rubenstein reported, “Wives run the show while their husbands sit back and take it easy. Women are the CEOs of their households, and their husbands are more like employees.”

What show? And under what circumstances? One, I would never consider myself to be running the show over on Adoline Ave., but I certainly saw my mother run a 7-bedroom house full of six children, most at different schools, with different extra-curricular activities, one of whom had severe disabilities, and still manage to make an after-school snack and dinner at 6, with all eight of us sitting around the table, whether we liked it or not.

However, having been married, I no longer consider my father to have been sitting back and taking it easy. It was difficult to see at the time, since my life consisted only of me in my eyes, I went to school, I came home, and then my father came home and turned on the game, or read the newspaper. Whether or not he actually did these things, I cannot be sure, because, as a teenager, I had little use for either one of my parents, failing to realize they were the ones keeping me alive by feeding me and providing a car, gas, shelter, and other teenage necessities.

But what about life outside me, me, me? My father went to work every day, for some years commuting a couple hours a day. He made good money, and worked hard, and provided a very good life for me and my siblings.

So back to Superior Wife Syndrome. Unfortunately I have run in circles where the wife, or more often, the Baby Momma, supported a lazy, uninterested-in-work, drug abuser. So the significant other runs around taking care of the kids, cleaning, trying to support the household while the husband would “sit back and take it easy.” These are not the readers of Rebdook, and not the households this article is referring to.

So who are these lucky men? They’re not men like my father who worked 40+ hours a week to support a family of 8, and they’re not really the Baby Daddy either. Well, the gist of the article is not an argument for whether or not this pattern exists. It was more unoriginal, about how this can build resentment in both partners, how it affects relationships, and how to break the disorder.

Certainly the media, and by media, I really mean television (Everybody Loves Raymond, Desperate Housewives, even Family Guy) has portrayed men as too incompetent to help out around the house. I won’t lie; I think my dad played that card, too, sometimes. But in reality, is it really men’s incompetence or the unwillingness of the women in the house to let the men do some things?

An example: As a young child, I had chores. I thought it was very important for me to do my chores, or the bathroom would not be clean, the floor would remain covered in crumbs from the boys eating popcorn in front of the TV, or we would have no clean dishes. But when I say I was a young child, I mean it. Like, four years old. How good is a four-year-old at cleaning the bathroom? The point was not to help the house get clean; it was to teach me the importance of housework, to learn how to clean, and to feel that I was helping out the every-expanding family. I was a part of the home.

A quote from the Redbook article by a woman who we shall call only Mrs. New Jersey for the purposes of this blog stated: “If my husband was in charge, our living room would have stadium seating, our TV would be sitting on beer boxes, and all dinners would consist of something wrapped in bacon!”

First of all, I would love for all of my dinners to be wrapped in bacon. But second of all, so what? By not giving our husbands a share of the responsibility of the home where we spend so much of our lives, we are taking away the little (or large) pieces of himself that we love so much that we wanted to share our home with him. I’m not saying go back to the bachelor pad of his single days, but build a home with the responsibilities together.

I think Mrs. New Jersey may be underestimating her husband, but even if she’s not, can she give up a little responsibility and let him run with it? She wouldn’t be the first one to have a television set on beer boxes, or stadium seating, although I think that’s an exaggeration. Maybe if she would include him in setting up their home, he would surprise her. Maybe she can give him some space to do his own thing, and would it be so bad if he set the den up like a movie theater? Or even mounted deer heads on the wall, decorated with foam fingers, or other stereotypical “guy” stuff?

The other point I want to make is, is Mr. New Jersey really sitting back and taking it easy? Or is he working 40+ hours a week helping to support her life style of non-beer-box television sets?

I am a firm believer in marriage being a partnership. At 28, I won’t pretend to be a marriage expert, but I have seen successful marriages and unsuccessful ones. I think I have a pretty good handle on some of the important pieces of a successful marriage, and some of the detrimental characteristics of an unsuccessful marriage.

My husband and I both work full time. I also go to school full time and he has a lot of social responsibilities aside from his job. We are very busy, and we split the mandatory responsibility and the joy of having a home together. We both cook, we both clean (him more than me, I admit), and we contribute to the household budget. I wouldn’t want him micro-managing our home and I wouldn’t want to do it myself. I also wouldn’t sit back and take it easy if he did all the work, because I would still be working full-time, going to school full-time, and spending time with my friends and family. I want to be part of our home, and I want my husband to be part of our home.


Yorio, Nicole. (2009, October Day). Are you a wife-in-chief? Rebook, p. 102-105.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Wearing your president

Making political statements on the red carpet has never gone out of style.
This one, though, was considered the worst fashion choice at the Emmy's, held September 21st.

The girl?
Victoria Rowell, daytime soap opera star.
The dress?
Made by an unidentified designer (Heck, Rowell may have sewed it herself) of a fabric available on, commemorating President Obama's visit to Ghana this past July.

And now, the inevitable question(s):
Why did she wear that to the Emmy's?
When asked who the designer of the dress was, Rowell told reporters, "a statement," smiling as she explained her support for Obama's health care reform plan. As a foster child who watched her mother struggle to get her children approved for health care, Rowell represents one of 25,000 youth who emancipate from the system annually without health care coverage.
Was it appropriate for the event?
Critics disapproved, but what do they know? They tell us not to watch certain movies that become cult classics, not to read books that make us think. I, for one, think that the perfect place to talk about a cause that you are passionate about is in a public setting.
Did it accomplish its purpose?
I would overwhelmingly say yes; it bumped up her c-list status to b-list.
Case in point - 70,000 pages currently in search results on google for "rowell obama," constituting a brand-new buzz among fashionista journalists and fans of the late Mr. Blackwell.
As for this journalist, looking up my hotmail account on lead me to discover who Victoria Rowell is - a strong woman who used her celebrity to start a non-profit helping kids in foster care; a woman who posted the Obama dress picture as the first in a photo slideshow on her Web site.
You go, girl!



Thursday, September 24, 2009

Remember, You are never alone

Just a short clip that means a lot to me at the moment.

Sidenote: Been meaning to share it for a while - the day it was posted felt like one of the loneliest days of my life.

Thank goodness, I am never truly alone.

P.S. If you ever have the opportunity to be in a race, do it. I'll never forget the Spirit Rally relay race I participated in at BYU-Idaho, running a lap around the track to a cheering crowd, and cheering teammates :) It's wonderful how similar Sister Dalton's experience captures my feelings.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The New Craft Corner-Andrea's Bruschetta

Tonight, after a day of fasting, I made bruschetta for the first time. I've had it before, and I like it, but I don't really know how to make it. From my not knowing, I made the best I have ever had.

8-10 servings

1/2 baguette sourdough bread

1 tomato

3 garlic cloves

shredded parmesan cheese



balsamic vinegar

olive oil

Brown 8-10 slices of the bread in a frying pan in butter.

Meanwhile, chop the tomato and garlic. Mix with parmesan cheese, basil, and parsley, being careful not to mash. Add a little balsamic vinegar and olive oil. When the bread is done, top with the tomato mixture. It is heavenly.

I am not a chef, nor a recipe writer, but I am a good cook, and I never measure. Use the unmeasured ingredients with your common sense.

Try it and let me know what you think.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Christian Siriano line at Payless

I am fiercely in love.

With a shoe!

(Probably doesn't help that I work there.)

Oh, and did I mention I deal with these kinds of customers...

(at both Lane Bryant and Payless)


Monday, September 7, 2009

Marketing-Promoting the Gay Agenda?

This May Levi’s launched a White-Knot for Equality campaign to align with its new Memorial Day to Labor Day white clothing line. The White-Knot for Equality is an organization that is pro-gay rights. The symbol is a white ribbon tied in a knot (

Several celebrities have been seen sporting the white knot which prompted Levi’s to ask permission to use White Knots as part of its marketing. Levi’s has also signed on with Logo, a gay cable television station and with the movie, Milk. Levi’s premiered a commercial where a man walks off with a beautiful woman after putting a pair of Levi’s on, and aired an identical commercial where the same man walks off with a hot guy after putting the jeans on.

August 3rd Ron Prentice, executive director of Restoring Marriage and Protecting California Children (www.protectmarriage .com), accused Levi’s of helping to push the gay agenda, asking do they want his money or his vote. Are they selling clothes or gay marriage?

Is Levi’s trying to push the gay agenda, or making good marketing sense?

Campbell’s, Ford, American Airlines, Pepsi, Apple, Ikea, and Chevrolet have all been “exposed” as pushing the gay agenda. This has lead to boycotts and bashing in blogs and forums for organizations like Restoring Marriage and Protecting California Children.

Has it also lead to an increase in sales?

In 2005 the American Family Association boycotted Ford for buying corporate ads in gay publications. Most sources agree that Ford decided to pull the ads, and then reversed their decision, but Ford’s reasons are unclear.

In fact, these kinds of ads have seen a 28% increase in recent years. Which leads me to wonder, are Ford and other companies pushing the gay agenda or trying to increase sales?

G. William Domhoff, Professor of Sociology at UC Santa Cruz states that money rules in America ( So when gays start bringing in the money, regardless of the gay agenda, morals, or conscience, companies will advertise to the LGBTQI population.

As someone once told me, “This is the way capitalism works, if [you] don’t like it, perhaps [you] should explore immigration opportunities in North Korea.”

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Fresno Magazine-Everything I'm Not

So I've lived in Fresno for a few years now, and I have grudgingly grown to love it. I like the diversity, the culture (yes, there is culture here, if you can come a little ways south), the people and the Tower District specifically.

Fresno Magazine is not a clear representation of Fresno. It should really be called North Fresno Magazine. Or Sprawlville Magazine. It features ads by plastic surgeons, upscale restaurants, and stories about makeovers, apparently.

Fresno Magazine's mission statement is: To celebrate the Fresno area by building community pride & awareness through a shared creative voice.

Sounds good, right? But featured in the last edition was the first of the "Fabulous At Any Age" series. A well-deserving woman was chosen for a makeover.

I'm all for a makeover. I have been known to cut and/or dye my hair, and buy a new wardrobe. At 29, that's really all I need.

It wasn't enough for the first woman in the series of five. Protecting her name, Ms. X, a stay-at-home mom, was given the works-hair, make-up, clothing, even dental work. And plastic surgery.

Fresno Magazine submitted the press release, stating, "[Ms.X] wants to regain her confidence and feel like a woman again." They announced the unveiling to parade Ms. X's new look at a local restaurant.

Did I mention Ms. X is 23?

Fresno Magazine is a world of plastic surgery, botox, and fake tans. I don't want to be hypocritical, so I'm being a little careful. I am not against any of these things, but note the name of the blog.

You can be fabulous at any age (even 23!). With a little "work."

The Mission Statement-by Megan and Andrea

This is the blog of 5 friends. We work, we are educated, we are strong. We possess and own our inner beauty. We are passionate about life and don't care if our viewpoint challenges the status quo. We think for ourselves and value education and family. We wear our clothes more than once, and believe our bodies are beautiful. Our names are Andrea, Megan, Karen, Lisa and Amy. And we are real women.