Middle Fingers Up
Heyyyyyy there, Dames Nation!
Welcome to this very special, leather jacket-clad, red lipstick-painted, estrogen-scented, and hella lady-centered edition of Two Bossy Dames. We are your guest Bossy Bros, Ally and Amy: co-instigators of the online feminist community #girlgang. We’re super into things like gender equality, yelling about amazing women doing amazing things, intersectionality, and misandry. We are basically the riot grrl garage band of the internet. How do you join the #girlgang, you ask? It’s super easy--do you support women? You DO? Congratulations, you’re in. There are no forms or cards or secret passwords, because #girlgang isn’t a club, it’s a state of mind.
We’re delighted to bring you this all-lady edition of your usual newsletter. Buckle up!
*intense record scratch*
HOLD UPPPPP. What’s that you say?? There’s something special about today??? It’s DAME MARGARET’S BIRTHDAY????
Happy birthday, darling! We are so #blessed to know the Dames IRL and yes: Margaret is as good of a hugger as you imagine her to be. It’s like being enveloped in a perfect blanket while a puppy in a bowtie brings you a flute of champagne. Since Dame M is too modest to curate her greatness in her own newsletter, the #girlgang is just going to have to do it for her. Here are some of our FAVE Margaret moments!:
Could there possibly be anymore more twee and perfect than Margaret talking about picture books? WE THINK NOT.
Remember that time Margaret was included in a UK calendar of fictional librarians? And they didn’t tell her about it? (Margaret is not fictional.) (She only gives that illusion.)
Margaret has her own podcast and has guest-starred on many other podcasts (soooo internet famous, gang), but we especially love this episode of the Worst Bestsellers where she talks about Tyra Banks’s Modelland. Smize, everyone.
ANYWAY we deeply love Margaret and wish her the HAPPIEST OF BIRTHDAYS. Celebrate!
Ally’s Top 5(ish)
I’m a human woman on the internet, so obviously I love Ann Friedman. “Non-Fiction by Non-Men” talks a lot about her writing process and how she sees the world around her. It’s poignant and lovely. (Also she got to wear a jet pack?!)
This piece on women and anger hit me where I LIVE, y’all. Turns out, not only is anger in women constantly policed societally (obviously), but it’s SELF-policed to an extent that women and girls no longer even know what anger even feels like. We’ve got to learn that it’s ok to be angry and we’ve got to teach little girls that it’s ok to be angry. This is all perpetuated by cultural biases against women, and we have to fight against it before it kills us.
Slate’s in praise of the auntie slayed me. I grew up in a Big Fat Lebanese Family and aunts and auntie-cousins were a huge part of my childhood and continue to be important in my life. I don’t have kids, but I do have two perfect nieces and a beautiful nephew whom I adore and I’m delighted to be able to be part of my friends’ kids lives. Motherhood might not be for me, but I will celebrate with relish the other roles that women can fill in the lives of children.
The Philippines elected Geraldine Roman, a transgender woman, to congress. This is a first for the Southeast Asian country that is traditionally pretty conservative. Roman represents the Bataan province and comes from a political family--she knows her stuff. In light of all of the hatred and backlash against our trans sisters right now in the US, this is a breath of fresh air in the way of international news. We wish Ms. Roman all the best on her congressional career!!
Omg, this tumblr post about lipstick that our friend and gang member Kaitreblogged is HILARIOUS and PERFECT and set off a storm of #DamesBros texts about the quest for the perfect red and at least one trip to the drugstore. It is funny and helpful and also kicks gender norms and expectations to the curb, which we LOVE here in the gang. Do you, y’all. In whatever way you want. (FYI, your co-instigators’ own favorite reds can be found here (Ally) and here, in Beso (Amy).) [Ed. Note: Dame S. is still hunting for her perfect red, but Dame M.'s is right here, although she is verrryyyy interested in this one here.]
Our Personal Hero is comics writer Kelly Sue DeConnick. If you’re not into comics, you might not be familiar with Kelly Sue...but you should be. Threadless interviewed her and she is a delight. One of her current projects is a book called Bitch Planet, in which women who don’t conform to patriarchal gender standards are deemed non-compliant and jailed. This #girlgang? We are FULLY non-compliant.
(Yes, that’s us. Yes, we’re amazing. Yes, the NC stands for non-compliant)
Amy’s Top 5(ish)
JAWS even has a piercing grip riiiiight on his abdomen!
It is a truth universally acknowledged that a single dudebro in possession of weak will must be totally baffled and grossed out by menstruation. Which is why a list of ‘Dude’ Movie gifs for explaining periods is the perfect antidote to the ridiculousness that is our society’s aversion to menstrual cycles.
Rookie is the teen media I wish I’d had in my own youth (though gUrl.com had some of that indie feel back in The Day), but even as a grown-ass lady I find it constantly enlightening, inspiring, and affirming. This week I stumbled on the intensely practical life skills series via How to Help Someone Who is Vomiting in Public. I’m not sure what could be more #girlgang than helping a fellow lady survive that truly terrible situation, but I’ll understand if you’d rather start with one about Crying in Public or Being A Good Houseguest.
Sister duo Chloe x Halle have popped up a couple times in the last two years - first after Beyonce endorsed their cover of one of her songs and then again when Queen Bey’s company Parkwood Entertainment signed a huge deal with them. The young women made an appearance in Lemonade basically moments before dropping their own debut album, Sweet Symphony. You can stream plenty of this sophisticated pop online and watch their first video. This guest editor can’t get enough, and especially enjoys how much of it is delightfully reminiscent of Janelle Monae.
As my bro Ally mentioned, our trans sisters are enduring some truly garbage discrimination right now. In light of the North Carolina legislature passing a huge anti-lgbt bill, many companies and performers are canceling commitments within their state lines. For someone like Laura Jane Grace, though, the choice to perform in NC is a deeply personal. Despite legislative bullshit and a truly dangerous climate, the trans lead singer of Against Me!kept her NC schedule. As if that weren’t badass enough, she BURNED her birth certificate on stage. That is #girlgang as fuck, Laura Jane. We salute you.
This is a little tidbit of info I learned ages ago but stumbled across anew just this week: Back in the 1970’s, Loretta Lynn released a song called "The Pill." Yes. THAT Loretta Lynn. THAT pill. It’s hard to imagine a country music star releasing such a gutsy song today, let alone 30+ years ago. The song was held back for several years by her record label and banned from most radio stations. The more things change, the more they stay the same.
Misan-twee as hell (get ittttt??)
Maisie gets it.
We CANNOT EVEN with this: pink. Fossils. Jurassic Park reference. Hell. Yes.
This twee shop is one of Dame Sophie’s favorites! this perfect individual knits twee as hell hats with some beautifully #girlgang messages. This onehelpfully calls out any man who dares to harass you on the street, just point! Preferably with your middle finger. Stock up for next winter. Or this winter, Southern Hemisphere readers!
These pins from Autostraddle perfectly inhabit the spirit of misan-twee! Luckily, one of our lovely gang members/friends already bought us someso we can embrace our misandry with style.
The only knife-blade lipstick that will make it past TSA. (Fun fact, in her youth Amy owned an actual lipstick disguised razor blade.)
No Friday with the #girlgang would be complete, Dames Nation, without this treasured weekly tradition - I Don’t Give a Fuck Friday. All day, every day, society demands a metric fuck-ton of things from women. The way we look, act, feel, think, and react are all under constant scrutiny. Some days we gotta play along - to get that job, to pay the bills, just to survive. But on Fridays, in the safety of our gang, we Don’t. Give. A. Fuck. Join us in lettin’ loose however we damn well please and telling the world we don’t have time for its shit.
Here’s a glimpse into our Friday feed, and you can hit the entire IDGAF Friday archive here.
Anna Kendrick is a frequent contributor to IDGAF Friday. SHE DOES NOT CARE.
JENIFER, ROZ, AND BRANDY DON’T WANT NOBODY.
WHEW. Newsletters are harddd work, y’all. Thanks so much for having us, Dames Nation! It’s been an absolute blast. If you like what you've read and want more:
Join the #girlgang and let us help you keep your finger on the pulse of the feminist internet. We love shining light on amazing women and giving you tips on how you can use your time, money, and voice to support them.
Got something to say or share? We are so here for that. Our feature #girlgang voices is a safe space for any woman to anonymously (or not so anonymously, depending on choice) let their voice be heard about issues that are important to them.
And of course, we like fun projects, like the list we curated of Lemonade media by black women that the Dames featured a couple of weeks ago (we’ve since updated it with more links!).
Our ask box is always open, or we’d love to hear from you at email@example.com.
Editor's Note from Your Dames <3 <3
Two quick notes. Slightly sad reminder: There will be no new newsletter next week, as your Dames are taking Memorial Day Weekend to SCHEME. BUT! Extremely happy reveal! We will be hosting a livetweet of THE PRINCESS BRIDE on Sunday, June 5th, at 8 PM! In the meantime: