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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:46 pm 
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P.S. If it wasn't clear (I really thought it was, but your reaction makes me think it wasn't), I'm talking about people who have high career ambitions who then shrink back from jumping in fully to fulfill them. People will always have a range of ambitions and it will never make sense for 100% of everyone to apply for the hardest jobs, the longest working hours, the highest pay, whatever. There will always be people who are more suited to raising their kids full time than being in the workforce (although lots of those people are men and there isn't room for those men to do that work most of the time). That's not the people I'm talking about and I can't imagine it's the people Sandberg's talking about, since the impetus for this work for her was observing her coworkers and employees and the choices that they made about what to go for and what not to go for.


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:48 pm 
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That is a lovely way of putting it. And I'm learning a ton from the conversation, so thank you for having it!

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 12:59 pm 
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Ariann wrote:
P.S. If it wasn't clear (I really thought it was, but your reaction makes me think it wasn't), I'm talking about people who have high career ambitions who then shrink back from jumping in fully to fulfill them. People will always have a range of ambitions and it will never make sense for 100% of everyone to apply for the hardest jobs, the longest working hours, the highest pay, whatever. There will always be people who are more suited to raising their kids full time than being in the workforce (although lots of those people are men and there isn't room for those men to do that work most of the time). That's not the people I'm talking about and I can't imagine it's the people Sandberg's talking about, since the impetus for this work for her was observing her coworkers and employees and the choices that they made about what to go for and what not to go for.


It wasn't clear, but I really like your clarification, as I was pretty much typing up the same thing.

I'm really looking forward to reading Sandberg's book... I've read a lot about it (positive and negative). The core idea-- that if you want something, leaning back and waiting for it isn't going to work, you need to go for it-- is really good, but some of her specific ideas (as described in interviews and early reviews) don't jive with me. She does seem to trend strongly towards the "the reason you aren't getting what you want is that you're not trying hard enough!!!!" which is frankly unrealistic in a lot of situations.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 1:28 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
as someone who sold out her career and is hurting other women by not choosing to have a "high power" career.

Stuff like this makes me wonder what people think about me. I have a degree in electrical engineering, but I hated it (and hated the rude sexist racist sexually-harrassing and bullying co-workers more than I ever disliked even the most cantankerous of retail managers) and was SO much happier working in retail (I was a Christmas tree decorator, a florist, a barista, and worked in a betting shop after I got downsized and every one of those jobs was preferable to being an engineer). It was totally worth the pay cut. (So is being a stay-at-home-mom!)

An old roommate of mine was rude enough to talk smack on my life decisions (without ever discussing them with me) behind my back and it made me really mad because he seems to have no idea (or doesn't care) how much happier I am with my life choices. He just thinks I'm foolish because we'd have a lot more money if I'd stayed in engineering (SO not worth it for me).

That said, you will pretty much never hear me complaining about my life choices and even though money is tight, I don't really complain about that either. (It's very limiting, so I sometimes have to bring it up to explain why we can't do certain things or why we don't have certain things, but I always try to point out that I'm just explaining why that is, not complaining.)

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 4:56 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:

And then there is the individual and the general. Yes, generally women should be making strides so that we have much higher representation in the ranks of CEOs, lawyers, scientists etc, but it doesn't make a lot of sense to me to tell individual women that they *have* to make choices that don't call to them.


I don't understand this. The "general women" is a theoretical construct like "the voter" or "the vegans". Who is going to make any change, if it is not the individual? We will never have those higher representations if we just decide to leave the workplace.

Tofulish wrote:
First, women are stepping up to translate their successes in education to success in the workplace and often finding that the workplace isn't cooperating. The onus shouldn't just be on women to step up and fix the system.
Why not? Who else is going to do it? It's not in the interest of anybody else to change the system.

Tofulish wrote:
Does me dropping out of the work world affect other women? Hopefully it sends a message to employers that to retain qualified people you have to be willing to support them in their life choices as well and find ways to encourage more flexibility with work hours etc.


I doubt that very much. If you're gone, you're gone. You're invisible. The only message it sends in my opinion is that nothing needs to change. I think we only can fight for more flexibility right at the workplace. This doesn't work, if we just leave. I mean, how should people know?

Tofulish wrote:
I have now worked in two male-dominated fields and there is just no question in my mind that a) there are messages to women that they should shoot for lower-paying, lower-responsibility work within those fields and that it's super okay to take years out of the workforce, even when there is no pressing concern for their time outside of the workforce and b) that women internalize and don't fight against those messages very, very often, thus missing out on tons of work opportunities and advancement opportunities.


Exactly. Women, individual women, need to fight these messages. At the workplace.

Ariann wrote:
Absolutely, except that we also make choices to accept that status quo (we participate actively in maintaining the patriarchy, sometimes by freer choice, sometimes by more forced choice) by not marrying men who will take half the load (and being totally aware of that upfront and accepting it), by making career choices that make it more "reasonable" for us to take on the extra load, etc. At this point I think men and women have to work tougher to move the goalposts. Women have to step up to translate our successes in education to success in the workplace, men have to step up to assume responsibility for parenting and relationships in the ways that women are already forced to.


This exactly.

Please note: I don't want to jusge anyone. I also think everybody should do what they want and what works for them. I just think these are interesting questions and wanted to offer another viewpoint. I hope I didn't offend anyone. That was not my intention.


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 5:56 pm 
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Mihl wrote:
Tofulish wrote:

And then there is the individual and the general. Yes, generally women should be making strides so that we have much higher representation in the ranks of CEOs, lawyers, scientists etc, but it doesn't make a lot of sense to me to tell individual women that they *have* to make choices that don't call to them.


I don't understand this. The "general women" is a theoretical construct like "the voter" or "the vegans". Who is going to make any change, if it is not the individual? We will never have those higher representations if we just decide to leave the workplace.


My point was that I think its problematic to tell individuals what to do. I'm not going to walk up to an arts major and tell her that the world needs more female physicists, so she should switch majors, for example, and I think that makes as much sense as telling someone who wants to be home that they shouldn't because it hurts the collective. And as far as "we will never have higher representations if we just decide to leave the workplace" I disagree - I think that employers are aware of the fact that they are losing high skill workers and many workplaces work hard to retain these people.

Mihl wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
First, women are stepping up to translate their successes in education to success in the workplace and often finding that the workplace isn't cooperating. The onus shouldn't just be on women to step up and fix the system.
Why not? Who else is going to do it? It's not in the interest of anybody else to change the system.

Many corporations, like Google, AMEX, Kellogg, compete for high skill workers by trying hard to attract and retain skilled employees. Women are not powerless in the equation.

Mihl wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
Does me dropping out of the work world affect other women? Hopefully it sends a message to employers that to retain qualified people you have to be willing to support them in their life choices as well and find ways to encourage more flexibility with work hours etc.


I doubt that very much. If you're gone, you're gone. You're invisible. The only message it sends in my opinion is that nothing needs to change. I think we only can fight for more flexibility right at the workplace. This doesn't work, if we just leave. I mean, how should people know?

Every industry and corporation looks at who they are losing and why. Perhaps not the individual, but certainly as a group.

Mihl wrote:
Please note: I don't want to judge anyone. I also think everybody should do what they want and what works for them. I just think these are interesting questions and wanted to offer another viewpoint. I hope I didn't offend anyone. That was not my intention.


Thank you for your thoughts! I learned so much from your posts! I am glad we can have a conversation about all these issues. I don't want to make anyone uncomfortable either. I just find it a bit harsh to put the entire onus on reforming the workplace on women (and saying that if you don't stay in the workplace then you are creating support for the status quo. Oh and if you don't get what you want, then its because you haven't extended yourself enough or learned how to ask for what you want or married a man who will support you by taking over enough of the childcare responsibility). The truth is that the status quo has multiple causes, and one of the biggest is our society gives (and forces them to take) men a free pass on childcare (not all men and I am not slamming any individuals, but men in general do less than 50% of the care), and all the childcare ends up falling on one parent, instead of on more than one people (it takes a village!). As you remarked in another thread, its problematic if someone who wants to go back to work, can't find good childcare. Its problematic if we have a work world where people need to work for longer than 9-5 and they can't find affordable care for the time they are working. And it is problematic if male partners aren't allowed to take leave or supported in taking time out to parent, if that is what they want to do or what works best for their families. A friend of mine had to fight really hard to get paternity leave, and was roundly mocked for doing so, and then when he came back was not staffed on any deals and was finally forced out. As long as our culture won't let men shoulder equal parts of the childcare burden, its going to continue to fall on women (either mothers or mostly female care workers (which is another topic that is probably beyond the scope of this post).

And I think it is important to acknowledge that the status quo doesn't work for many people, and those people often have to recognize that there are only 24 hours in the day and we all have limited, money, time and energy and sometimes you do have to make choices within the context of the existing system that you might not make if you had more support in the workplace. It is a hard choice to make, because it definitely has associated costs to it, and I don't think we should make that choice harder by telling the women who make that choice that they are hurting other women and should stay in the workplace fighting the patriarchy, if that really doesn't work for them or their families.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2013 6:00 pm 
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Leela has started to want to put ponytails in my husband's hair. He is walking around with the world's tiniest ponytails all over his head and its hilarious.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 12:56 am 
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That's super cute!

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Thu Mar 14, 2013 1:31 pm 
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Mihl wrote:
Who else is going to do it? It's not in the interest of anybody else to change the system.

Thanks for posting this Mihl. It's a good reminder of the power of individuals to change the system. Especially given the history of labour in the US and how work place reforms were won in the past.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 9:38 am 
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I had a dream last night that Hannah from Girls (not Lena Dunham, but Hannah) was fighting with me about how breastfeeding should be called "nipplefeeding." I had to go into a long explanation about why it is actually breastfeeding. It finally ended with me screaming that I could call it whatever I wanted since I shot two babies over six pounds out of my vagina.

Also, jojo was there, and kept using enfamil soy packets in her coffee because they were "totally the same as soymilk."

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 10:18 am 
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pandacookie wrote:
Mihl wrote:
Who else is going to do it? It's not in the interest of anybody else to change the system.

Thanks for posting this Mihl. It's a good reminder of the power of individuals to change the system. Especially given the history of labour in the US and how work place reforms were won in the past.


That's a good point!


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 11:05 am 
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Nice dream dtbk, heh.


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Fri Mar 15, 2013 2:06 pm 
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On men "leaning in" to take up some of the burden of housework and childcare and make space for women to succeed in their careers:

http://www.theatlantic.com/sexes/archiv ... M.facebook


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:08 pm 
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I am 3/4 of the way through my first whole mommy and baby day alone. I am exhaustified!!! Longest day in history. I love hanging out with his cute little self, but having to find new ways to amuse his royal highness when his basket of toys gets boring and constantly rescuing him from peril is tiring. I was planning on doing my usual work-out while he had his afternoon nap and I am too pooped :) Anyone have any stellar ideas for entertaining an 8 month old?


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:17 pm 
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If you can find something that seems illicit to an 8 month old, then it may keep him occupied. A box of kitchen stuff, pulling laundry from a basket, playing with the contents of your wallet, etc. This still works with Freya....Tupperware drawer while I made dinner. :)


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:23 pm 
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I might do some kitchen stuff - he has never seen the wonders of the kitchen cabinet...thanks!


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 5:38 pm 
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Oh yeah, one time when poopiebaby was about that age and I was sick and just needed to rest, I let him sit on the bed next to me with a half-empty box of tissues. He spent 40 minutes pulling them out one by one and ripping them up. Totally worth it.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 8:06 pm 
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hmm. i'm trying to remember. i think the cat entertained her a lot. also, yeah, pretending i didn't see her get into the drawer or box of things she was playing with seemed to make it more interesting than if i explicitly handed her something.

is he crawling? T wasn't, so lack of mobility was both a hindrance and a help. help, because she didn't get very far if i left her unattended for a minute or two, hindrance because she would flip out every time something was out of reach.

on thing you might think about is incorporating baby into your work out instead. a fast paced walk with baby in a carrier on your back is pretty good exercise! he'd probably also be amused by you doing your exercises in front of him (it's a dvd i'm guessing?)


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:27 pm 
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Thanks for the suggestions guys - we made it through the evening and he is now in his beddy-bye (not sleeping). I bet he would totally love the kleenex thing, but he also sticks everything in his mouth and isn't averse to eating paper, so I'm not sure that would work so well with him :)


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2013 9:59 pm 
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My husband yelled at me this morning when he came in and saw that I'd let her empty a box of tissues while I was on the bed watching. I'm glad to know I'm not the only one!


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 2:23 am 
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annasrobbie wrote:
I am 3/4 of the way through my first whole mommy and baby day alone. I am exhaustified!!! Longest day in history. I love hanging out with his cute little self, but having to find new ways to amuse his royal highness when his basket of toys gets boring and constantly rescuing him from peril is tiring. I was planning on doing my usual work-out while he had his afternoon nap and I am too pooped :) Anyone have any stellar ideas for entertaining an 8 month old?

I used to put a bunch of random shiitake into a bag and let my kid go through it. It worked with Beetroot -- I could get about 40 minutes of him taking everything out, examining it, and then putting it back. It didn't work with Raygold, though. Even now, he is just not an independent kid (total momma's boy!). Hopefully, this will change as he gets older or he'll be phoning me every day when he moves out. ;D (I'm sure it will change -- it seemed like Beet would never potty train or wean and he did both last year.)

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 10:18 am 
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We buy small cans of wet cat food by the case and keep it under a kitchen cabinet on the floor (very small kitchen). She can spend forty minutes finding the tray, pulling it out, taking out each can, stacking the cans, moving the cans to the living room one by one. I'm watching her now and I realize she is bringing them to the cat! The cat is asleep with a tower of cat food next to her.


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Miles does the same with the cans of cat food. He stacks them, brings them to the sleeping cats and will even pick up both their bowls, place them on the table with a can next to each of them. Later he helps with the feedings. Its heart tugging.

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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Sun Mar 17, 2013 4:42 pm 
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Aw, sweet babies!


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 Post subject: Re: The Playground randomness thread
PostPosted: Mon Mar 18, 2013 3:03 pm 
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Cat food cans are so fun! Well, cans in general. I can usually get dinner completely cooked while BabyEnchilada sorts through the recycling and places the empty cans back where they go - and somehow he can tell the difference between the cat food and the beans and tomato sauce and stuff that go in different places. He also likes making can towers, or setting them in a line horizontally on the counter. The giant bag of potatoes is stored within his reach, so often he'll get some of those out and add them to his creations :) Who needs toys?!?


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