feminism

All posts tagged feminism

Just Call Me Honey!

Published February 21, 2021 by Maryanne

Blink your eye and there’s yet another thing that offends people — particularly women.

I guess I missed the memo that “honey” is now offensive. I did not know that. However some young feminist pointed out to me that I am “part of the problem” because I don’t see how “honey” is offensive.

I’m sorry. I don’t.

Maybe it’s generational, as I am 57-years-old. But I’ve been called “honey” by both men and women since I was a little girl and I think it’s absolutely adorable. One time I was called “honey bunny” by an older gum-cracking waitress. It brought me right back to the 1960s. I felt special.

Anytime I hear “honey” I think of something positive — the land of milk and honey or an incredible woman, like in the song “Honey” by Bobby Goldsboro. The young bride died young and he is longing for her. Honey is all things good.

Other great songs with the word “honey” include: “Just Like Honey” by Jesus and Mary Chain; “Sugar Sugar” – oh, honey honey by Ron Dante; and “Honey Pie” by the Beatles.

Angel guitarist Punky Meadows calls his lady friends “honey” on Facebook. I’d be honored if Punky Meadows called me “honey.”

Honey is a term of endearment. It means you are awesome. When someone calls you “honey” it means they like you. But sadly, now you can’t even say nice things like “honey” or “sweetie” in a work environment. Instead we get the cold “ma’am.” And to me, THAT is disturbing. People have been so brainwashed about what is politically correct, that we’ve become so robotic. It’s a wonder young people even pair up anymore because there is nothing sexy about the way they talk. They are so homogenized.

And before you start thinking of me as some misogyny-tolerating Trump supporter — I’m not. However, I am a person who thinks for myself and doesn’t jump on the politically correct band wagon when I feel it’s not necessary. If being feminist means standing up for what you believe in, I will call my own party on their bullshit. And for the record, I had this conversation with a female Democratic feminist last night who agrees with me 100 percent.

With all the issues we COULD fight about, nitpicking over something harmless like “honey,” YOU — not me — are part of the problem. So, keep stressing yourself out over it. Me, I’ll just enjoy it. Just call me Honey!

Maryanne Christiano-Mistretta can be reached at: maryannechristiano@gmail.com.

She is available for blogging, ghost writing, writing. She is also available for book signings and motivational speaking engagements (via ZOOM during covid). She is now coaching aspiring writers via ZOOM.

Maryanne is the author of the following books:

“Be (Extra)Ordinary: 10 Ways to Become Your Own Hero” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback or Kindle version, visit:Be (Extra)Ordinary

“I Don’t Want to Be Like You” is available on Amazon. To get your paperback, Kindle or audio copy, go here: I Don’t Want To Be Like You

Her fiction book “Love Cats” second printing is now available, under the pen name Krystianna Mercury, from Pink Flamingo. You can purchase it here: Love Cats

National Old Maids Day

Published June 4, 2015 by Maryanne

maryanne & art2005 – Still single in my early 40s, the modern old maid!

Today is National Old Maids Day.

Old Maid refers to an older, childless woman who was never married. For sure I thought I was headed towards spinsterhood (and happily so) until I met the love of my life at age 42. (Now pushing 52, we’ve been happily married three years and together nine!)

Thank God the world wised up and realizes that women are worth so much more than a ring on their finger and banging out kids. Some of us (me!) were late bloomers and didn’t even realize our potential until later in life. In the above photo I’m selling art in Union Square. I didn’t even realize I had that talent in me until I temporarily baby sat a 9-year-old girl!

Then in the summer of 2008 I started my own business (https://peartreeenterprises.wordpress.com/) which was at first a variety of things, now honed to my greatest loves: writing/journalism, ghost writing/book editing and public speaking.

As a young working woman in the 1980s, life was a little more difficult. There was severe pressure to get married. Everyone was expected to be paired up like Noah’s Ark. And, yeah, while love is the greatest quest for all, I wanted even more in life. I wanted it ALL! I wanted someone who not only adored me, but respected my dreams and aspirations.

I worked very good jobs in the 1980s, at corporate businesses. But that’s not where my head was at. My desire to be creative and make money doing so outweighed any desire to marry and breed. So once I was able to be a full time writer, that’s when I was able to fully concentrate on love and being with someone good for me.

In my recent book “Love Cats” (http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00YBGVJQS/) I address the “old maid” issue via my character Janey.

Janey starts out as a smart character who wants a guy with substance. Though when she meets one, her insecurities get the best of her and she subconsciously does everything she could to kill the relationship. Though the difference between me and her is that while creative success is what drove me, Janey doesn’t need any kind of success as she’s already a wealthy trust fund and she’s simply driven by her own selfishness.

Whatever motivates us to stay single (work, fear, waiting for the right one, etc.) I think it’s super cool that in these modern times women are viewed as so much more and we no longer have to live in “shame” because we aren’t hooked up.

I tell everyone who asks my advice, to wait. Wait until you meet that one of a kind soul mate who rocks your world. There is no need to settle. Nor was there a need to settle 30 years ago either, we just took more shit from people for not settling. I’ve avoided certain relatives for years because they were more interested in who I was dating and how serious it was. Not my career, not my interests, not my dreams or desires. Just who I was dating and if marriage was in the cards.

I dreaded those horrible questions, yet stuck to my guns and never settled.

Mind you, when I say “never settled” while I did date a ton of jerks, I also dated some really cool guys — just not right for ME. I am still friends with some of these guys and my husband likes them too. We are so blessed that we have such an honest relationship with each other. And his ex-girlfriend’s brother is my favorite of all his friends! And that’s another cool blog for a later date, how trust is the most beautiful thing in a relationship.

But back to Janey …

In “Love Cats” Janey’s live-in maid, Lucia refers to her as an “old lady” for not having a ring on her finger — and she’s not even 25 yet! But that’s how it was in the 1980s. So much pressure for a young girl trying to find herself. Too much noise from the peanut gallery. Urgh!

It’s so cool that it’s acceptable today for women to live at home longer, concentrate on their careers, and not even marry at all if they don’t want to. Even though I’m married, I can sigh with relief that there is no pressure on me to bear children and raise a family. My husband and I are perfectly fine with our little love cat, Derick. Life is so good when you don’t have the rest of the world throwing their desires in YOUR face. We’re so blessed to exist in a live and let live time. Let’s keep it that way!

We’ve come a long way baby!

THANK GOD!

wonder-woman

If NJ is the Armpit of the U.S., Short Hills is the B.O.

Published May 6, 2015 by Maryanne

poor

Like Wart Hills, New Jersey

Yesterday I had a Julia Roberts in “Pretty Women” moment.

I was refused service because I’m not as “rich” as the cliques from the area I was shopping in yesterday. I can’t say the name of the venue because when I sent an email complaining to the owner, I promised I wouldn’t (and I always keep my promises). Let’s just say it was an eatery in Short Hills (or as I now call  it, WART HILLS) — where I was ignored while a wrinkly, miserable, too-skinny bitch took care of everyone who came in AFTER me.

Like Julia Roberts said, “Bad move.”

I’m Italian — and we are known for being generous and big tippers. And when I go to a place that’s a little out of my price range, I only go when business is good, so I’m not price haggling (like “rich” people usually do). Hell, half the time I throw things in my bag without even looking at the price tag! I’m not rich, but I am generous and spend like a rich person. (And am very rich in spirit because I’m always smiling and happy). So that lady missed out on very sweet tip.

Plus, you never know who you are talking to — and a professional writer (that would be me) is the LAST person you wanna piss off.

I had a similar experience over the weekend when I refused service at a hair salon in Denville. Let me say, I was dressed beautifully in a summer dress, but people do smell an outsider and in certain towns in New Jersey, that’s what they do because they have nothing better to do than size you up and cast you out in order to feed their egos.

But it’s funny, because one woman who was giving me an evil eye, looking down on me, had her husband right next to her checking me out. Ha! Guys always check out a good looking woman no matter how rich or poor she is. That goes back to Frankie Vali days with the song “Rag Doll” praising the girl from the poor side of town who has got it going on — yeah!

Maybe that’s what gets the goat of these uptight gold-digging c*nts? They spend so much money on themselves yet they are still SO INSECURE that they have to make other women FEEL BAD in order for themselves to feel good.

We all know sexuality goes right to the bone — you don’t need fancy clothes, botox or to be super thin to BE HOT. It must piss these rich bitches off to no end that their husbands, who are contributing to their seven figure salary, are checking out the middle class ladies. HA!

And while we are always speaking of racism and age-ism, etc. let me say here that prejudice against people (especially women vs. women) who are in a lower tax bracket is equally disgusting. Why is this not addressed more often? Why does a lot of money make someone “better” when all it really means is you know how to make a lot of money — that’s all.

Some of the smartest, classiest, prettiest, nicest, talented, creative, most spiritual, etc. people I know are in lower tax brackets.

And these people LAUGH at the Short Hills, New Jersey and their “vastly superior” mentality. Their uniform is hilarious: the attitude, the botox, fish lips, the yoga pants and the prance. For people who make a lot of money, you’d probably expect something just a little more unique, right? It’s like watching a realty show. Or, wait, it IS a reality show! It’s the Housewives of Wart Hills!

And before people think this is a diss on wealthy people in New Jersey, it’s not at all. It’s just certain lily-white areas that you see this kind of wealth-isms like: Millburn and Short Hills, Livingston, Chatham, Madison, Denville, some areas of Montclair (and as a former Montclair resident, it always cracked me up because they separated Montclair from Upper Montclair — BUT the real super mansions were NOT in Upper Montclair, yet those from UPPER Montclair insisted on the “UPPER” when they wrote “Letters to the Editor” to The Montclair Times).

There are wealthy areas in New Jersey where you get no attitude at all — like Princeton, where young men actually hold doors open for you. No one seems to be in a hurry down there and it has a genuine sense of richness, like an old Hollywood movie. Classes can mingle beautifully and we are all one.

My favorite beach in New Jersey is in one of the wealthiest areas: Spring Lake. And while on the beach in the summer, the residents treat my husband and I as if we live there too. It’s always a beautiful experience.

And in Hudson and Bergen counties, where there is more of a variety of ethnic groups, you get a better class of people too. It’s very old school, like living in the 1970s again when people were polite and respectable to each other.

I worked as a journalist most of my adult life and have been to homes of super wealthy people who treated me as an equal, like Paul Kolby who ran New York City’s Bitter End. He lived in Montclair and was one of those who didn’t fit the Montclair stereotype. A very down to earth man, he was, may he rest in peace.

And one of the richest rock stars in the world, Steven Tyler, was an absolute doll to me when I met him at the funeral of his ex-wife Cyrinda Foxe (who I had become close with during my career in music journalism). You’d never see someone like Steven Tyler looking down on others. He’s the salt of the earth.

And guess what else? One of my best friends lives in Short Hills — and she is NOTHING like the imbeciles who trot around thinking they are better than everyone else. She’s the nicest, coolest person in the world — a real angel on earth!

So, it’s all these great experiences I have to focus on before I get myself all caught up in a “rich” stereotype (that is very real). I have to remember that just because a certain clique of people think they are better than others, it’s not me who lacks class — it’s them. (Yeah, I know, another cliche, “money can’t buy you class” — but it’s true!) And I refuse to have these idiots break me and turn me into one of them by reacting as they would.

There are two things I always say to myself when I am a victim of wealth-ism (or in any situation where someone tries to belittle me or put me down so they could make themselves feel BIGGER):

1. Something a friend said a long time ago, which was GENIUS. “Some people think they are better than others. Some people’s math is wrong.”

AND … my favorite …

2. To belittle is to BE LITTLE.

Or I can just be really funny and tell these delusional jerks they remind me of the toque macque monkeys who have a caste system. Oh … no … wait … those monkeys are so much cuter than the residents of Wart Hills, New Jersey will ever be!

 

My “NotMom” Interview

Published March 27, 2015 by Maryanne

SAM_6304Proud Kitty Mom!

Hello Gang!

As some of you know I’ll be speaking at the NotMom Summit this October, in Cleveland. I’m honored to also have been recently interviewed for the NotMom website.

Please check out my female-positive interview here: http://thenotmom.com/the-notmom-interview-maryanne-christiano-mistretta-author-of-on-the-guest-list/

Angelina’s Jolie’s “Maleficent” — a Fairy Tale with Great Depth

Published March 23, 2015 by Maryanne

maleficent_aAngelina Jolie as Maleficent

Okay, so I’m a little late on the “Maleficent” band wagon. I’m a busy lady, what can I say? So last night as my husband and I settled down to relax, he suggested “Maleficent” as it was On Demand.

I said “Sure,” as I’m always one for a wicked fairytale.

NOTE: CONTAINS SPOILERS, don’t read if you haven’t seen yet.

Then I was more than pleasantly surprised as the storyline developed. A movie, produced by Angelina Jolie, was much more than a fairytale … it was an empowering movie for women. Kudos to Jolie for not only doing a wondrous job acting (her best since “Gia” in my little opinion) but directing too and bringing an important message to young girls: True love exists, but not overnight.

As a young fairy, Maleficent quickly learns the evils of the world, as her love bubble bursts after Stefan, her first and only love, screws her over in order to advance himself in his career. He not only leaves her, but takes her wings to become king.

Maleficent becomes bitter and even more so when Stefan, now King, has a child — born not out of love but out of greed. Maleficent puts a curse on the child that on her 16th birthday, she will fall into a deep sleep and never wake up.

Stefan begs Maleficent for mercy and Maleficent softens the curse, that the child will wake up if kissed by true love. However, the curse is not so soft, as Maleficent, in her bitterness, believes there is no true love.

Stefan sends his child, Aurora, to live with the fairies, so they could protect her until after her 16th birthday. During this time, the fairies don’t do such a great job and Maleficent ends of caring for the child. It’s inevitable that she falls in love with the child — a child she once hated. And the child sees her as her “Fairy Godmother.” As a side note, one of the fairies blessed the child with happy days and to never be blue. (The child is played by Elle Fanning. And earlier by Eleanor Worthington Cox, and Angelina’s own child, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt. Young Maleficent is played by breathtaking beauties Ella Purnell and Isobelle Molly.)

And after Aurora falls asleep on her 16th birthday, it’s not the prince who awakens her, but Maleficient, illustrating the true, unconditional love between mother-figure and child.

Though the fairytale does have a happy ending, and Aurora does reunite with the prince, who you imagine eventually does love her.

I absolutely loved this spin on the fairytale, illustrating that true love is not infatuation and that it takes time. It also shows how love can soften the most broken heart and how there is good in all of us.

And there’s even more.

You can read just how deep Angelina Jolie’s version of the story is on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maleficent_%28film%29

It’s a haunting, enchanting tale that will stay with you a very long time. The vulnerability Jolie expresses as Maleficent is priceless. The visuals are stunning. And the cast is perfect!