Most summer nights, we go for a walk after dinner, enjoying the gentle evening air and fading sun. Lately, Sugar D and have spent these walks debating the risks and benefits of moving to Toronto, what we want in a new (to us) house, and lamenting a nearby townhouse development being built on a lot that used to be full of mature trees but which was completely razed a couple of weeks ago.
Tonight, I talked about the book I'm reading right now, Shutterbabe: Adventures in Love and War, by Deborah Copaken Kogan. It's a riveting memoir about Copaken Kogan's experiences as a photojournalist in the late eighties, with equal parts feminism and photography. I haven't finished it yet, but already I can recommend it highly, especially for anyone with an interest in photography.
Photojournalism is very much a male-dominated profession, and Copaken Kogan experienced considerable discrimination and harassment, not to mention personal risks in covering mujahideen in Afganistan, junkies in Switzerland, gangs in LA, and anti-poaching efforts in Zimbabwe. The structure of the book is compelling: three parts, titled respectively, "Develop," "Stop," and "Fix," each with two chapters named after different men in her life. Some parts are horrifying, others achingly sad, some embarrassing, others empowering, all of them absolutely engaging.
Anyways, I was telling Sugar D about how much I'm enjoying the book, and how it recounts many of the author's sexual experiences, both good and really bad. At first, I wondered about this retelling of sexual capers, even though I myself have retold my own similar stories. But as her stories get more intimate and disturbing, I realize that this book is another way of attempting to change our culture's sexual double standard (the one that allows men to sleep with many women as normal behaviour but declares women doing the exact same thing as sluts); that just because she has a husband and family doesn't mean she should disown or bury her (hi)story. It is important that she, and others as we're able to, speak up.
Just as I was telling Sugar D about one particularly disturbing experience of hers in Paris, I noticed an enormous amount of flesh and suspicious folds in a window out of the corner of my eye. I saw the biggest c0ck I've ever seen, with the biggest, shiniest red lips I've ever seen wrapped around it. Yep, I busted a neighbour watching p0rn. Not only that, the neighbour was watching it on the biggest screen tv I have EVER seen. It must have been five feet across at least. AND they had all the curtains open. A side window could be an honest oversight, but the front window as well? I don't think so, not with that big of a tv facing it.
We had our little giggle, recognizing how apropos and ironic the p0rn sighting was, given what I'd been talking about, and then I went back to my discussion of the book. I live in a classy neighbourhood.
Weekend Reading: The Trying to Rally Edition
2 days ago