Eating chocolate bars encourages sexism?

There’s a new ad for Snickers bars in Australia.

It shows workmen on an inner city building site catcalling women passersby. But instead of the expected sexist remarks, the men call out encouraging – one might even say feminist – messages.

“Oi, that colour really works on you. Have a productive day” one shouts.  Another says “a woman’s place is wherever she chooses.”

Apparently, while the “tradies” were actors – or at least in on the stunt – the passersby, and their reactions, were spontaneous and genuine.

The  big reveal at the end is of course the Snickers tag-line “You’re not you when you’re hungry.”

Part of me found the ad funny – especially the reaction of the women on the receiving end of some very unexpected compliments. And part of me thought, “well, it does highlight sexism.”

But in the end I found myself slightly confused.

The implication seems to be that without Snickers bars, workmen are not just charming and complimentary towards women, but a virtual agit-prop feminist flashmob.

Yes please, I’ll have more of that!

As an ad designed to sell Snickers bars, it seems to suggest that boorish sexism is normal and somehow ok. But perhaps there is a deeper, more subversive reading:

Consuming 250 calories of milk chocolate (sugar, cocoa butter, chocolate, skim milk, lactose, milkfat, soy lecithin, artificial flavor), peanuts, corn syrup, sugar, milkfat, skim milk, partially hydrogenated soybean oil, lactose, salt, egg whites, chocolate, artificial flavor – which may contain almonds and does contain 12 grams of fat,  27 grams of sugars and 120mg of sodium facilitates sexist behaviour.

Remove that from your diet and you’ll be a nicer person.

 

 

 

 

Now that introverted is the new black …

intj-head

Introverted, Intuitive, Thinking and Judging: this is apparently my Myers-Briggs personality type, although I’m about 50:50 on Thinking. Thank you CPP for the cool graphic.

Having spent years feeling guilty, inadequate, and generally crap that I:

a) don’t particularly enjoy a lot of social occasions and want to leave early or not go at all,

b) find an awful lot of people loud, vacuous  and annoying, and

c) adore my own company …

… it is something of a relief to find that I’m not misanthropic – just an introvert.

To judge by all the feature articles in various media lately (Do Introverts Make Better LeadersIntrovert or Extrovert: What Style is More Likely to Get You a Big Promotion At Work?, Why the World Needs Introverts, 6 Dos and Don’ts for Dating an Introvert) introversion has arrived, it’s cool … it’s the new black.

We introverts should celebrate the fact that we now so popular … quietly, singly, and in the privacy of our own homes.

INTJ stress-head. Thanks to CPP for this cool graphic too.

INTJ stress-head. Thanks to CPP for this cool graphic too.

Yes to all of the above … a reminder why I like being self-employed and working from home.

Thank you to Chris at 61 Musings for getting me thinking about introversion and introducing me to these graphics – especially my stress-head.

 

 

 

Wordless Wednesday: in an autumn mood

Mainly dull with patches of colour. A metaphor for today? Photo: Su Leslie, 2014

Mainly dull with patches of colour. A metaphor for today? Photo: Su Leslie, 2014

After weeks of mainly glorious sunshine, we’re experiencing a few more overcast and cooler days.

Ryuchi Sakamoto’s Energy Flow perfectly captures how I feel today.

Here are some other Wordless Wednesdays I like:

http://woollymuses.wordpress.com/2014/03/26/wordless-wednesday-breast-care/

http://thisworldasiseeit.wordpress.com/2014/03/25/truly-wordless-wednesday-2/

http://pm11887.wordpress.com/2014/03/20/wordless-wednesday-part-two/

wordless (just a bit after) wednesday

http://bookwormntx.wordpress.com/2014/03/20/wordless-wednesday-31914/

http://htheblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/no-swimming-wordless-wednesday/

 

 

Reflection and distortion: too close to call

sunglasses painted

Sunglasses stall, Takapuna Market. Photo: Su Leslie, 2013. Edited with Pixlr Express.

Does it make sense to talk about reality, when we see ourselves mainly in reflection? And if we take away the notion of real – then distortion becomes a bit redundant too. I liked this photo, but thought I’d edit it to make it “less real” for this challenge. A statement about what how we see the world, or just a bit of fun?

I also like this song by Little Man Tate, variously called ‘Reflection in his Sunglasses’ and ‘Audrey Hepburn.’

He thought they fell in love
He thought they shared a moment
He thought she was looking deep into his eyes
Right into his very soul
But she was just checking her hair in the reflection of his sunglasses

— Little Man Tate ‘Reflection in his Sunglasses’

This post was written for the Daily Post Weekly Photo Challenge. Here are some others on the subject that I enjoyed:

http://marantophotography.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflection/

weekly photo challenge: reflections

http://theamateurcamera.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://quotidianhudsonriver.com/2014/03/22/3-22-14-weekly-photo-challenge/

http://jrsyjueco.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections-2/

http://hellisjones.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://susipet.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/weekly-photo-challenge-refelections/

http://angelinem.wordpress.com/2014/03/22/abstract-reflections/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

http://wingingitandwinning.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://no1queenie.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/reflection-2/

http://debz2653.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections-me-and-my-shadow/

http://debz2653.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflection/

http://alienorajt.wordpress.com/2014/03/21/reflections-weekly-photo-challenge/

http://makinglifesparkle.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://marsowords.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/migratory-reflections-v2/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflection

http://cancerisnotpink.wordpress.com/2014/03/21/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://morganebyloosphoto.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections/

http://northumbrianlight.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/sandy-reflections/

http://mycyberhouserules.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-more-reflections-underover-the-water/

http://tishfarrell.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/reflections-on-wolverhampton/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Reflections

WPC – Reflections of Rock (3)

http://jeffsinonphotography.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/reflecting-upon-nature/

http://memoriesaremadeofthisblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/23/weekly-photo-challenge-reflections-2/

Black and white: theft or focus?

Ramon Robertson, 'Void' 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014.

Ramon Robertson, ‘Void’ 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014.

Auckland is enjoying a gloriously sunny week, and yesterday I finally managed to visit the Harbourview Sculpture Trail in Te Atatu. I have an interest in sculpture as an art form, (Travel Theme: Sculpture) and a particular interest in the Te Atatu event as it is one of several in Auckland that have sprung up in response to the success of NZ Sculpture OnShore – the first outdoor sculpture exhibition in Auckland, and an event with which I’ve become very involved.

Because of the weather, my photos from yesterday are wildly colourful, so it has been interesting to strip away the colour and focus instead on the forms of the sculptures themselves.

Ramon Robertson is a Scottish artist now resident in New Zealand. His work ‘Void’ consists of a series of figures atop a tall wooden structure – contemplating their existence, or staring into the void.

Ramon Robertson, 'The Void', 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014.

Ramon Robertson, ‘The Void’, 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014.

Figures are also central to Anton Forde‘s ‘Te Atatu Revisited’ –  a group of carved kuia (elderly Maori women).

Anton Forde, 'Te Atatu Revisited', 2014. Photo; Su Leslie 2014

Anton Forde, ‘Te Atatu Revisited’, 2014. Photo; Su Leslie 2014

The Kuia are carved from gorgeous red-brown hardwood, so the photographic challenge was to still capture something of the strength and wisdom of the women in whose hands the well-being of families and communities resides. I’ve relied on emphasizing the grain of the wood – distinct against the unfocused background – to suggest the age-lines and maturity of the figures.

Plant forms provide the inspiration for much of the work at Harbourview. Juliette Laird’s ‘Transplantation’ consists of a grove of “trees” with colourful knitted leaves and wound wool branches. These remind us of a time – not so long ago – when West Auckland was home to many orchards and vineyards, planted by European settlers in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Would these introduced plants have seemed as ‘alien’ to the environment then as their knitted counterparts do now?

Juliette Laird, 'Transplantations', 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014

Detail: Juliette Laird, ‘Transplantation’, 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014

Juliette Laird, 'Transplantations', 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014

Juliette Laird, ‘Transplantation’, 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014

Carol Robinson created a series of ceramic pods on steel poles  which she “planted” in a pond to sway gently and sit beautifully amongst the “real” plants. The colour palette of the pods is mainly black and white, but with  blue and red centres. Without that burst of colour, I’ve had to rely on trying to emphasise the texture of the design.

Pods

Carol Robinson, ‘Pods’, 2014. Photo: Su Leslie, 2014.

‘On Angels’ Wings’ by the Expressive Art Group, is the one piece I think actually works better in black and white. When I de-saturated the shot, it revealed the bright white hands which make up the wings, with much greater clarity than I’d seen in the colour original.

hand wings b&w

Expressive Art Group, ‘On Angels’ Wings’, 2014. Photo: Su Leslie 2014

This post was written for Sally’s Black & White Challenge at Lens and Pens by Sally. I’ve noticed that I seem to gravitate towards images of art for this particular theme. I think for me that is the challenge – to somehow retain and convey the beauty of the art even as I’m taking away a part of it.

Art is a deliberate act; a construction of beauty and meaning and power in which the colours chosen by the artist – and provided by the setting  – are an integral part of experiencing the work. Does art lose it’s power when stripped of this component? I suppose one could make the same argument about photographs themselves -particularly photos of three dimensional art.

And maybe that is the point of photography; by taking away some elements the photographer is inviting us to contemplate others.

Have I achieved that with any of my images? You judge.

Images shot on iPhone4 and edited with Pixlr Express.

Here are some black and white images from the challenge that I I’ve enjoyed:

http://sustainabilitea.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-challege-black-and-white-beauty-in-simple-things/

http://pictograf.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-challenge-black-and-white/

http://completelydisappear.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/the-overcast-sky/

http://irisgreenwald.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-challenge-the-phone-as-your-lens-black-and-white/

http://angelinem.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-challenge-black-and-white-in-the-bar/

http://piecesofstarlight.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/9194/

http://shareandconnect.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-challenge-black-and-white-4/

iPhone Monday: 3-17-14

Horse of a Different Color (Phoneography Challenge)

http://firebonnet.com/2014/03/17/phoneography-bw-philodendron-bipinnatifidum/

http://allkindsaeverything.wordpress.com/2014/03/19/phoneography-challenge-black-and-white-arrival-of-spring/

Inside #2: on the constuction of social space

Standing on the outside, it's tempting to invent stories about the people inside. Photo: Su Leslie, 2013

On the outside looking in on those inside looking out. Photo: Su Leslie, 2013

The notion of ‘inside’ connotes not only physical space, but a whole social and psychological landscape.

To be inside can mean to be safe, to be part of a group, to share in privilege – or even to be locked up in prison.

Inside and outside become dichotomous states, or perhaps poles of a continuum.

The sociologist Erving Goffman used the metaphor of theatre to understand how we humans, as social beings, construct ourselves for different audiences. He suggested that – depending on circumstance and audience – we have ‘front of house’ selves and ‘backstage’ selves. The further inside the theatre of our lives we allow people the more of our backstage selves is revealed to them.

Those on the outside are witness to our most managed performances, while those we permit inside the workings of our theatre witness the make-up and costumes, the props, backdrops, wings and general chaos of the performer’s work.

Waiting for the curtain to rise on a family wedding. A performance for which expectations are known - yet the potential for slippage is great. Photo: Tony Gray, 2006.

Waiting for the curtain to rise on a family wedding. Inside the family circle, yet giving a performance involving an ensemble cast drawn from all parts of the bride and groom’s lives. The potential for slippage is great. Photo: Tony Gray, 2006.

In The Presentation of Self in Everyday Life (1990, Penguin Books) Goffman says

Very commonly the back region of a performance is located at one end of the place where the performance is presented … In general the back region will be the place where the performer can reliably expect that no member of the audience will intrude. (pp.115-116)

I think private homes are a really interesting instance of the inside-outside continuum. We invite people inside our house, but there is (at least in my social circles) an implicit agreement that some parts of a home are ‘public’ spaces for the duration of the invitation, whilst others are private. Even within this interior space we construct ‘inside’ and ‘outside’.

The stairs in my house mark the boundary between "inside" my private sphere and "outside." Visitors don't go upstairs unless invited - and invitations have been rare. Photo: Su Leslie 2011.

The stairs in my house mark the boundary between inside my private sphere and the space that lies outside. Visitors don’t go upstairs unless invited – and invitations have been rare. Photo: Su Leslie 2011.

My partner and I have  lived in our house for 14 years, and couldn’t count how many people we have invited in during that time. I do know, though, how many have been upstairs. Up the stairs in our home is our bedroom, en suite and my office. It is private space. It’s not that it’s messy – we make the bed and don’t leave our laundry strewn over the floor. It is actually quite a beautiful, tranquil space – but it is ours. It lies inside the sphere in which we live out our most private, spontaneous and unguarded life – the area of love and trust and intimacy.

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is “Inside.” You can find out more about it here. And here are some other posts on the theme that I enjoyed:

http://curiositycafe.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-joy/

http://roastbeefandrakija.wordpress.com/2014/03/17/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

weekly photo challenge: inside

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

http://sunriseadventures.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://mithriluna.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/inside-a-book/

http://amcnabb.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://ronmayhewphotography.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/inside-a-vietnamese-brick-kiln/

http://travel-monkey.me/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-3/

http://tehicho.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://pommepal.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-auckland-art-gallery/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

http://lifeisavacation.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/mother-son-sculpture-berlin/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

http://collinesblog.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/view-from-inside/

Inside to safety

Sanctuary knocker; north door of Durham Cathedral. Photo: Su Leslie, 2013

Sanctuary knocker; north door of Durham Cathedral. Photo: Su Leslie, 2013

Churches have long been regarded as a place of sanctuary; once inside people felt they should be safe.

In medieval England, common law recognised the right of those seeking asylum to receive it within a church. Outer doors were fitted with special sanctuary knockers, the theory being that anyone who touched the knocker would be afforded asylum from pursuit for up to 37 days.

This sanctuary knocker, attached to the north door of Durham Cathedral, represented safety and respite for those who required it — inside both the fabric and institution of the Church.

This week’s Daily Post Photo Challenge is “Inside.” You can find out more about it here. And here are some other posts on the theme that I enjoyed:

http://wanderingcows.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://vonnscottbair.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/from-inside-the-last-days-of-joes-cable-car-weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

http://stephenkellycreative.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://travelswithtoby.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://betigaklaten.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-3/

http://pamelaanne68.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://theeternaltraveller.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://woollymuses.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://traveller2006.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://arlsworld.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://wordswewomenwrite.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-3/

http://thatmontrealgirl.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-cartagena-style/

http://thequietimage.wordpress.com/2014/03/16/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/

http://francineinretirement.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-3/

http://shmamaland.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside-2/

http://beccagivens.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/inside-weekly-photo-challenge/

Weekly Photo Challenge: Inside

http://neophytephotographer.wordpress.com/2014/03/15/weekly-photo-challenge-inside/