Spreadin’ Love

Did you watch Do You Think You Can Dance last night?

I've read several articles about this female freelance writer who used a male pseudonym to get noticed.

Harry B points us to a new book, Gender Equality: Transforming Family Divisions of Labor. Looking forward to checking it out, Harry!

If you're looking for a new and exciting book on the Georgian-Russian conflict, check out The Politics of Ethnic Separatism in Russia and Georgia.

ArticleLarge I love reading about women who are making money on Etsy, even if they are putting in a lot of hours. 

A mommyblogger tweets as her son drowns and after he drowns.


26 thoughts on “Spreadin’ Love

  1. The Gender Equality book sounds like the policy-oriented version of the general-audience book “Getting to 50/50.” [Link attempt failed. Hunh.]

  2. O my God. Much as I enjoy reading this and other blogs, this would not be where I would discuss the death of my daughter (which pray God will not occur until after mine), and Laura McKenna would not be part of the community I would turn to for support in such a situation (nor would Megan McArdle, nor Eugene Volokh etc.).

  3. Wow, people will blame technology (and, of course, bad mommies) for anything. If she’d been vacuuming when her son drowned, would someone have blamed the cult of housekeeping?
    I’ve been following the male/female blogger incident and its fallout with interest. Given th clear sexism Chartrand was responding to, it surprised me how quickly various commenters turned around and blamed feminism for keeping women down.

  4. You wrote, “tweets as her son drowns”.
    At 5:38 she called 911.
    At 6:12 she posted the message, asking her online community friends to pray for her kid.
    That was 34 minutes later, she might have been at the hospital already, losing her mind in the waiting room, or driving to the ER following the ambulance.
    The way it is phrased here seems misleading.

  5. The tragic drowning is not a call to arms on Twitter. It is a call to arms on fencing your frickin’ pool. No one should have a backyard pool that can be accessed by an unsupervised toddler. (I say this not to blame the family, who from the little I read had just moved in and may have been in the process of solving the problem, but to suggest follow up actions for others, rather than accusing the mother of having a life.) (Not that anyone here has done that.)

  6. Madeline, from my understanding the pool was fenced. The gate had been left open on accident when they were cleaning other areas of their yard.
    Our pool is not fenced. However, we have a safety cover that is on at all times unless adults are present. Since it takes 20 minutes and two people and tools to take it off, we feel it’s even safer than a fence.
    All the same, the kid could have wandered in the street in front of a car, fallen down stairs, etc. There are many tragic accidents that happen when parents are otherwise occupied.
    We’re humans, we make mistakes, sometimes with tragic results.
    Oh, and I texted 10 friends on the way to the hospital after my father had a heart attack. Not the same, but I understand in some ways why she might have done it. Sometimes the internet feels like talking to universe, easier in some ways than talking to real people. I would think asking the universe to pray for my child when I was desperate for something, anything might occur to someone.

  7. But cell phone users are much worse than non-cell users. Of course, this may be unique to cell phones rather than true of all electronic devices–ipods apparently cause almost no impairment.
    “Even when directly asked, the cell-phone users were less than half as likely to notice the clown as those listening to music players or single individuals without any electronics. People who walked in pairs were the most likely to see the clown.”

  8. Flubber – Sorry, that was an awkward sentence.
    It’s a terrible story. I have major fears of swimming pools and kids. I’m not sure how I could go on living, if one my kids died like that.
    I’m also not sure what I would do with the blog, if a major family tragedy happened like that. My mom and my family would be the first ones that I would turn to. I wouldn’t blog as things were unfolding. I can’t imagine having enough energy to blog even after the fact. What if I got cancer? Would I blog about it? Not sure.

  9. “I have major fears of swimming pools and kids.”
    Ditto (remember the Tommy Lee party where the 4-year-old drowned?). And the thing is, a pool is dangerous even when you’re not home. It’s potentially a magnet for uninvited young visitors with poor judgment.

  10. There’s a pool-drowning scene in Elizabeth McCracken’s excellent novel Niagara Falls All Over Again that is etched on my brain. So awful.
    in re: the cell phone thing, it’s also been demonstrated that kids are least safe with lots of adults around, like at a party, since everyone thinks someone else is watching the kid.

  11. I’ve read several articles about this female freelance writer who used a male pseudonym to get noticed.
    Speaking of this, does anybody else remember “Remington Steele”?

  12. “A recent study found that cell phone users who are walking and talking are pretty oblivious of their surroundings, to the point where they didn’t notice a clown peddling around on a unicycle.
    But, that’s a general phenomenon: if people’s attention is directed elsewhere, they can miss huge things that happen right in front of them.
    (Look at this video and count the number of times the guys in white shirts throw the ball — throw, not catch.)
    Whether cell phones are more attention distracting than other activities is yet to be determined. I’m inclined to believe that a cell phone conversation is more distracting than a real life conversation, because the other person isn’t there, to note salient events along with you. But, that’s the control experiment that needs to be done, before the distraction can be attributed to a cell phone (rather than other comparable distracting situations). In a car, I count kids & food as equivalently distracting, but not radio or conversation with an adult passenger in the passenger seat.

  13. The pool at my previous house was fenced — but not once you were in the pool-side yard. Good thing I was home when the neighbor’s very active 4 year old slithered under the gate (who knew the space was small enough for a determined 4 year old?) and into the pool-side yard & jumped in. I heard the splash and was able to jump in after him. No harm but a lot of fear.
    I cannot bring myself to condemn Shellie Ross. It only takes seconds of inattention for a 2 year old to get into the pool, and only a few more seconds for the child to drown — all the while the parent is calling for the child.

  14. When I was 5, I passed a pool early one morning (we were staying in a small house at the bottom of the garden of a large house with a pool). The toddler of the house was lying face down in the pool — I alerted the house with an unusual level of alacrity (I was a dull child). He was fine in the end. I’ve never trusted a swimming pool since.

  15. Well, in fact I didn’t find it horrific. I was only dimly aware that he was in terrible danger, so dimly that it never consciously occurred to me (I was, as I say, a very dullwitted child, though my very loud alerts were sufficient to raise the household, so I was evidently at some level aware of the urgency). I can’t remember being troubled by it afterwards even. Part of my job is to think about thought experiments about morality, and one famous one (from Peter Singer) concerns a drowning child — I only connected it to my experience a few years ago.
    My dad would remember the kid’s second name (his first was William, and his brothers were Thomas, Edward and James — I haven’t seen them since I was 6) — I should google him sometime.

  16. To elaborate on the dullwittedness – my infant school teachers thought I was ESN (educationally sub-normal, a technical term in those days) for various reasons many of which were probably pretty good. I think being dullwitted may have advantages in childhood (and if you cease to be dullwitted somewhere along the way you don’t even get the disadvantages of being dullwitted in adulthood).

  17. Well, I’m sure that you weren’t dullwitted. Dullwitted children grow into dullwitted adults. No, you probably had a touch of Ian in you, and you outgrew it. Hope my boy does, too. He’ll either be a professor at MIT or institutionalized. We’re still not sure which way things will land.

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