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Saturday Links: Back From the Dead Edition

Jurassic Park comes to life, Kathleen Hanna ♥s Taylor Swift, and period talk.


"Wooly Mammoth" by Robb Kendrick.

“Wooly Mammoth” by Robb Kendrick.

This NPR story on de-extinction is so fascinating and totally weird. Although my Jurassic Park fantasies might not come true (why this is a “fantasy” to me, who knows) but scientists are seriously developing techniques to clone the DNA of extinct animals in order to resurrect long-gone species from THE DEAD. There are all sorts of ethical questions to raise about this (Are they “playing God?” Is this a good use of resources?); you can read more about the pros and cons on National Geographic.

Emma S.
I just wrote about my love for Veronica Mars for Rookie, and today this ball of golden sunshine dropped into my lap. The folks behind Veronica Mars (creator Rob Thomas and star Kristen Bell) are raising funds to make a Veronica Mars movie. There are still 28 days to go and they are already way past their two-million-dollar goal! Give them some cash if you want to get in on the amazing thank-you rewards. VERONICA MARS: THE MOVIE, you guys!


I was very jealous of folks down at SXSW this week (especially everyone who got to go to the Rookie event!) and this article about the premiere of The Punk Singer, a documentary about Kathleen Hanna, the lead singer of Bikini Kill, Le Tigre, and the Julie Ruin, as well as my high school hero and role model, was the cherry on top of my deep, deep envy. In the movie, Kathleen talks publicly for the first time about her struggle with Lyme Disease, which struck a chord with me because one of my best friends (someone who was brought into my life by Bikini Kill’s music, actually!) was recently diagnosed with the condition, and, as with Hanna, it took her doctors a very long time to figure out what was wrong with her. Hanna speaks very honestly about her embarrassment over being sick, and how she kept her disease secret because she wanted to maintain the myth of her own invulnerability. Her willingness to expose her humanness on film makes me admire her even more.

Because there’s no such thing as too much Kathleen Hanna, let me direct your attention to this really candid and warm interview she gave to The Daily Beast a few days ago. My favorite parts are when she talks about getting an abortion when she was a teenager, and doesn’t try to apologize for it, but instead presents it as the best decision she could have made:

It was the first time I took responsibility for my actions. I messed up, had sex without contraception, and got pregnant at 15. It was the first time I realized I wanted a life…. I thought, I would not be able to have the life I want unless I do this. When I was in Bikini Kill, I thought, Wow, if I had had that baby, I wouldn’t have been able to do all the things I’ve done.… It’s about women not dying in back-alley abortions, but it’s also about women saying: “My life is worth it, too. I deserve to have control over my life and my health care.” Imagine if a man was told, “You can’t make the decision to have a vasectomy.”

…and the part where she fangirls out over Taylor Swift:

I’m totally into Taylor Swift. I think she has super-clever lyrics, and I love that she writes her own music. Some of the themes she writes about are stuff I wish was there for me when I was in high school, and I’m so happy she really cares about her female fans. She’s not catering to a male audience and is writing music for other girls. I don’t care if she calls herself a feminist or not. There is something that she’s doing that feels feminist to me in that she really seems to have a lot of control over what her career is doing. She’s 23. People say she’s dating all these guys. Well, yeah, she’s a young person and is dating all these people ’cause that’s what you do when you’re young. John Mayer can fuck 84 people in one day and nobody calls him a slut.

I discovered a new role model this week in a man named Turtle, who reacted to a stranger’s calling him a faggot on the street by doing this:

I wish I were brave enough (and, let’s be real, male enough) to do that the next time someone says something gross to me.

Aaaaand finally, do you LOVE TO LAUGH? Then you will join me in welcoming this new comedy channel on l’internet created by Sarah Silverman, Tim and Eric, Michael Cera, and Reggie Watts called Jash. I do not know what that name means nor what kinds of videos they’re going to be posting, but they are promising the comedians they work with “complete creative autonomy,” and their launch announcement is pretty adorable:


Arafa & Aisha – Bububu, Zanzibar.

Arafa & Aisha – Bububu, Zanzibar.

The Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti’s project Toy Stories is incredibly beautiful and moving. Gabriele took photos of children from around the world with their most prized possessions. It seems very telling that the children from richer countries seemed more possessive about their toys.

David Laferriere is such a cool dad. Every day he takes Sharpie to plastic and livens up his sons’ lunch boxes with fun sandwich bag art. I love the magic cat, bowling dog, and his son’s friend that he drew as a special request. You can see all the rest here.

I’ve been traveling around a lot by myself for the past few weeks, and I’ve been thinking about what it means to be a tourist versus a traveler, an elective outsider, and a woman by herself. This week, the American Reader posted this fascinating essay by Vanessa Veselka in which she argues that women hitchhikers are seen as reckless, damaged, and expendable—both in literature and in real life—while the men of On the Road, Huck Finn, etc. are glorified for their risky behavior and courage. She hopes there is another kind of story possible, and I do, too.

"Untitled" by Mike Brodie.

“Untitled” by Mike Brodie.

In something like synchronicity, this week the blog It’s Nice That posted stunning pictures of young hitchhikers from 2004 by the photographer Mike Brodie. I love how the subjects seem so tender and so tough at the same time.


Photo by Fieldguided.

Photo via Fieldguided

Petra and I just co-curated a huge group show here in Toronto at the Ontario College of Art and Design’s Student Gallery. We called it The Period Piece: The Gynolandscape. Fieldguided took amazing photos of everyone’s art. The show was an incredible group effort, so I don’t feel like I’m just bragging about my own work by telling you about it!

Speaking of PERIODS, the fun and educational site Crankytown not only features a puppet talking about them, but also a cartoon nurse. The site is having a video competition right now and the deadline is March 31st, so SUBMIT! Or just SPONSOR A PERIOD! ♦


  • saramarit March 16th, 2013 12:44 PM

    Great article on the female road narrative, I would definitely like to read/see more.

  • annika March 16th, 2013 1:14 PM

    aww the hitchhikers remind me of my sister.

  • kolumbia March 16th, 2013 2:10 PM

    I LOVE the interview with Kathleen Hanna!! *fangirling so hard*

  • InProgress March 16th, 2013 4:20 PM

    Veronica Mars movie!! I’m fangirling so much! Thank you for sharing the news Rookie!!

  • Lascelles March 16th, 2013 4:38 PM

    My hero of the week is Nicole Scott. Samsung sucks.


  • InProgress March 16th, 2013 5:02 PM

    Veronica Mars movie!! Whoop! Go marshmallows, past 3.5 mill in 3 days! Rookie, thanks for sharing the news! You’re the best

  • unicornconnect March 16th, 2013 6:23 PM

    That Turtle guy is such a legend!!!! The hitchhikers and kids with their toys were perfect. AND the period piece photos are beautiful.

    Ahhhh, so much awesomeness.

  • azultardis March 16th, 2013 9:46 PM

    I agree, there’s something about Taylor very feminist,so I like her and that’s it.I don’t care if she dates a lot of guys,we all do it when we’re young so whatever

  • purrr March 17th, 2013 6:01 AM

    i don’t think you have to be ‘male’ in order to videotape a stranger douchebag trying to get away from you.

    • n March 17th, 2013 9:44 PM

      agree with you 100%. surprised and bummed by that statement.

      • Anaheed March 17th, 2013 9:47 PM

        I don’t think you “have” to be male to do that either, but I do think it’s easier to confront a man if you are close to his size and strength, which, on average, a man is more likely to be than a woman is.

        • Anaheed March 18th, 2013 12:07 AM

          (And for the record Turtle’s example inspired me to chase down and yell at a dude last night who jumped into my dog’s face and purposely [and successfully] tried to freak him out. So, I am totally not saying that women can’t follow/yell at/film guys. I encourage it! I just think it’s important to acknowledge that walking around by yourself is different for women and men, and that inviting/inciting the anger of men is also different depending on your gender presentation.)

        • Coco Jane March 18th, 2013 4:55 PM

          Agreed. I have followed, confronted, and screamed at men who have catcalled or yelled at me in public. Most times ended with similar “get over it/get away from me” retorts from the guys, one time a guy actually apologized for what he said to me. But I’ve also had times where I yelled back at a guy and he got way too physically confrontational and I had to back down for my own safety.

        • purrr March 22nd, 2013 8:54 AM

          there was an article just recently on here by tyler, in which he led us to the thought that this fear of strangers and walking around alone has been conditioned for females, but the learnt caution didn’t go anywhere even when he transitioned.

          being taught to be timid on the street just seems like another type of social control. there really isn’t anything ‘male’ about turtles confrontation, it wasn’t SO dangerous that a ~typical woman couldn’t do it (it’s light outside, there appear to be people around, the whole thing is on video).

          i think the only really ‘male’ thing about this response is the fact that he even bothered with a response.. like, i’m the type of girl that will throw her freshly bought eggs at a windowshield of a car where i’m being cat-called from on my way from the grocery store, and sometimes i surprise rude strangers with banshee-like shrieks, but often i just don’t really have the time or energy left in me to do anything other than flip people off. i don’t think ~normal men get called ‘fags’ as often as women are harassed (or flamboyant looking men) so that’s really the only difference. they have more energy and rage because it isn’t a common occurrence. :(

  • momobaby March 17th, 2013 11:12 AM

    The Toy Stories pictures are incredible. The contrast between all of the children is heartbreaking, but at the same time they look so happy about their favorite toy.

    (Also, yeah, being male does’t have anything to do with standing up to an ass)

    All around I loved it :)