buzza idgi are you trying to damage the credibility of the woman who basically just announced she wrote a book about a man who raped her
― autistic boy is surprisingly good at basketball (silby), Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:39 (eight years ago) link
it's tough when you can only speak in the form of revived threads
― mookieproof, Thursday, 10 January 2013 07:53 (eight years ago) link
seemed like zachylon wanted the context of the wiki quote so i provided it?
― buzza, Thursday, 10 January 2013 08:02 (eight years ago) link
thank you for posting it
she does make a clear distinction between the two types of genocide tho she doesn't mark it with "cultural" or something similar. she does 'equate' the two but that's sort of the idea, while the wiki editor left out any of that context and framed it like "she compared this one tiny linguistic choice with the holocaust", fuck wiki
― #guy #guy fieri #poop #hallway (zachlyon), Thursday, 10 January 2013 08:56 (eight years ago) link
― Broken Clock Britain (Noodle Vague), Thursday, 10 January 2013 09:18 (eight years ago) link
I have a lot of thoughts about this whole thing and also some feelings but none are organized enough to share except for, Jesus, Lady--at least when I did that I didn't write a book about it.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 14:49 (eight years ago) link
considering that one of the major goals of feminism was to protect women from the power imbalances present in domestic relationships, it's not super surprising that valdes' paean to how feminism got romance wrong and how there's something special about a real man turned out to be about an abusive asshole. i don't mean to suggest that she deserves what happened in the least, but there is a sort of irony that the very political principles she decried in the context of this relationship turned out to be especially relevant to her needs.
― Mordy, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:01 (eight years ago) link
xp On second thought that makes it sound like my experience was as extreme as hers: it was not. I also didn't put it in those terms of submission etc or posit that it revealed anything about how feminism has failed us. And I didn't have to jump out of a moving truck although after getting hit by an actual car frankly I'd take another one of those accidents over another of those relationships.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:03 (eight years ago) link
there is a sort of irony that the very political principles she decried in the context of this relationship turned out to be especially relevant to her needs.
It's not like that's a coincidence. She decried them because she was being told to.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:07 (eight years ago) link
really want some blogger to try to get a reaction out of christina hoff summers
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:13 (eight years ago) link
I usually assume "How I did X and Changed My Life" memoirists are flighty, superficial and unrealistic people, because shit just doesn't work like that. This is a particularly egregious example.
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:25 (eight years ago) link
This is a horrible horrible story.
― emil.y, Thursday, 10 January 2013 15:40 (eight years ago) link
btw, I regret my above post, having apparently made it without really reading most of the story in her blog post.
However, the blog post is now gone.
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:44 (eight years ago) link
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:44 (eight years ago) link
this just got a little clusterfuckier
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:46 (eight years ago) link
without the followup blog post this is kind of incoherent
she wrote a fluffy romance novel that seems to spend half its time scolding modern feminism, then revealed that the man she was writing about raped and abused her and (this is where things are fuzzy to me) the whole novel was a double-feint?
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:52 (eight years ago) link
it's a memior!
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:53 (eight years ago) link
so, replace "romance novel" with "memoir"; is the rest accurate?
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (eight years ago) link
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:54 (eight years ago) link
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (eight years ago) link
Given some of the things she was also saying about her publisher I wonder if that had something to do with it.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:55 (eight years ago) link
Was just wondering the same thing.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link
not really a double feint in my reading; the now-gone blog post says the memior was written a couple years ago while still under the heavy influence of the guy and (i think?) before the most egregious instances of abuse had happened
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link
the memoir was finished 2 years ago and some shit has gone down since then.
― an eagle named "small government" (call all destroyer), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link
she also previously blogged about her breakup with him without as far as I can tell mentioning abuse or rape, which of course doesn't mean it didn't happen. But she wrote things like,
I am grateful for this entire experience, and I do not view this breakup as in any way being counter to the message of my book. I still love Steve, and I am convinced that I always will. This breakup hurts more than my divorce, because the depth and intensity of the love was the most profound thing I have experienced, other than being a mother.
I probably should have seen it coming, given what little I knew of his dating/family/job/friendship history. I ignored the red flags, and I chose to live in a state of hope. That’s not a bad thing, really. It was a glorious 1.5 years. Best of my life. I would not trade them for anything. I have never felt more at peace, and more alive, and more on fire with wanting than I did at his little house in the middle of nowhere, lying next to him in the deathly quiet of night. I am a completely changed human being for having known this man, in every way, and so the basic message of the memoir remains true, and always will. This relationship changed me, and just because it has been taken from me does not mean I am no longer changed. I am forever changed, better, new, reborn, wiser. Should I someday ever get to that place again where I feel I’m able to have another relationship (seems unlikely right now) I’d like to think my future boyfriend will owe Steve a thank-you letter for the woman I became with him — a gentler, more compassionate, more thoughtful and womanly version of the person I’d always been.
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:57 (eight years ago) link
when did the alleged abuse go down?
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 16:58 (eight years ago) link
(blog post was October 2012)
The now-removed post also says that she sugar-coated things for her blog so that readers wouldn't know how bad it was.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (eight years ago) link
redacted blog post
I’ve had more than a dozen books published, but never have I had a publication day come and go without so much as an email from my editor, wishing me well — until now. With the recent publication of my first memoir, The Feminist & The Cowboy: An Unlikely Love Story, I have had the odd experience of having been essentially shunned by my publisher, one assumes because the reality of my life more than a year after having turned in the final manuscript is different from the ending one might have liked to have seen if my life were the made-for-TV movie or fairy tale my publisher seemed to have hoped they might market my book as. I have been advised not to discuss any of this publicly, to just accept this cold shoulder and lack of support as my penance for the crime of being openly broken up with the cowboy when I should have just pretended we were still together long enough to sell books. I have tried to be cooperative, but as the early reviews come rolling in for the book I feel compelled to come clean — totally clean — with my readers. I do this because I think it will help to make sense of a book that in many ways just doesn’t make sense to healthy people, and because I believe very firmly that the truth is the only currency a writer has, and that if there is any hope of redeeming this book and making it meaningful it lies in the full story of my relationship with the cowboy and not just in the candy-coated version that appears in the book.
The first thing I think readers need to understand is just how much time it takes for a book to go from a writer’s computer files to a bookstore shelf. It takes more than a year, usually. That year is used for things like cover design, advance publicity for magazines, visits with book buyers from members of the sales team. So the version of my life that hit shelves last week is actually more than two years old.
That said, a lot can happen in two years, especially when you’re in a relationship with a man as complicated and volatile as the cowboy. There has been some confusion because in addition to the book I have also kept a sporadic blog about my ongoing relationship with the cowboy. Those who followed the blog understood that things changed, and they followed along with me. But for those reviewers who are new to the party, just learning about me from the memoir and then seeing on my blog that the relationship described in the book both wasn’t what it seemed, eventually, and is not in existence anymore, there is understandably a sense of having been the victim of a bait-and-switch operation. I am truly sorry for this, and I wish to reassure readers that no one in the world feels more the victim of bait and switch than I.
What I mean by this is that while I set out to write a memoir that was a love letter to a man I was deeply in love with, a man who challenged me in myriad ways, a man who changed my life profoundly, a man I respected and honored greatly at the time, what I actually wrote was a handbook for women on how to fall in love with a manipulative, controlling, abusive narcissist. The fascinating thing about the release of the book, for me, has been just how many reviewers have seen what I failed to see when I wrote the book: That the cowboy was controlling and abusive. I simply never saw it then. I admired and nearly worshipped the man. One reviewer described her disappointment in having learned that I was still with him at the end of the book, saying that she could not help but to think of cult members as she read my adoring account of a man who, to her eyes and through nothing but my journalistic descriptions of his interactions with me, was obviously a domineering abuser. It hurts to read reviews like that, but it is also empowering for me now. See, while I didn’t understand just what kind of man I’d fallen for at the start, and during the writing of the book, the longer we were together the more obvious it became.
That said, I want to come clean with something else. There is a LOT you don’t know about the cowboy and how he treated me. I kept a lot of it under wraps, because I had turned a book in and I was trying to be a good contract employee and not completely sabotage the book by telling the whole story on my blog. But with my publisher’s complete lack of support now, and with the reviews so clearly describing for me the fact that healthy women, whole women, are able to recognize in the cowboy a dangerous man that I was, in my blindness and lack of experience with abusive men, unable to see, I feel that the only possible way for any of this to make sense to anyone is for the entire story to be known. To be honest about it puts me in danger — real physical danger — so I am reluctant. But I also feel I owe it to my loyal readers and fans to be truthful now. It is the decent thing to do.
One reader wrote to me via a comment on this blog, condemning me for finding the cowboy’s behaviors abusive now, where I said they were wonderful before. This would be a fair condemnation if it were true. Though I have referred to the cowboy being abusive on my blog, I have never listed the reasons I believe this. If all you had to go on was the book, you could very well jump to the same conclusion my critic did. I don’t blame her, and I totally understand.
I have been working on a sequel about the cowboy and me, and though I am quite sure my publisher won’t want it I will likely self-publish it soon. In it, I plan to detail the ways I was fooled and manipulated, the mistakes I made in choosing to ignore red flags, the many unfortunate ways that I started to subsume and lose myself in order to please an unpleasable and controlling man. I hope that in doing so I will help to make sense of the first book, both for you guys and for myself. What I want to emphasize here is that the first book was NOT an attempt to sell a lie; it was a sincere, heartfelt memoir that came during the honeymoon period of an abusive relationship, before I understood just how much danger I was putting myself in, with me justifying the hints of violence through my own romanticized version of the American cowboy icon and, unfortunately, with me blinded by this man’s almost unfathomable physical beauty, which was almost impossible to reconcile with the brutality that this most handsome shell encased.
In the interest of retaining some respectability, I will tell you a few of the more painful moments, so that you can understand just how quickly things changed and just how violently they escalated. I do this as a warning to other women, too. For many years, I simply scratched my head at women in abusive relationships, unable to understand why they stayed, judgmental of them for not being smarter. What I didn’t understand was just how masterful some men can be at the seduction and honeymoon phase, just how ruthlessly perfect they can present themselves to be, before the screw begins to tighten, and tighten, until you one day wake up and don’t even recognize yourself anymore.
The worst of it began in April last year, when I discovered the cowboy and I had accidentally become pregnant. While I am pro-choice in theory, I am pro-life for myself. I could not abort that child. It went against everything I believed. And so, even though I was 43 years old and have Lupus, even though my pregnancy with my son had been a living hell 12 years before, I decided I would have the child. When I sat down face to face with the cowboy to discuss the situation, he was very kind at the start. He was supportive and said he wanted to help us sort out the best way to handle things. When I told him I was going to have the child, I expected he’d be supportive, even if he, like I, was overwhelmed by the idea of becoming parents to an infant at our ages (he was 53). Instead, his eyes grew snake cold. He glared at me, and moved away from me. He was angry, and told me very clearly: “Looks like you’ve made up your mind, but here’s what you need to know. You can have me, or you can have the baby, but you can’t have both.” I was stunned. I balked. “You don’t mean that,” I said. “You say you love me and my son, you wouldn’t just leave us because I’ve decided to have your child.” He smirked then, his eyes crueler and colder than anything I’d ever seen, and he said, simply, “Watch me.” With that, he got up, got the overnight bag he’d brought to my house in the city, and he walked out the door to return to the ranch, four hours away. He did not answer my phone calls or emails after that. I was dead to him.
I grieved harder than I have ever grieved in my life, absolutely astonished that any human being could contain within him the capacity to be so mean and selfish. I called many friends and family, and they got me through it. I tried to forget the cowboy, and kept the breakup and pregnancy a secret for the sake of my publisher, continued to post cheerful blogs about my supposed relationship. It was hell on earth. I tried to figure out how I was going to make it, how I was going to be a single mother while enduring what promised to be a painful and difficult pregnancy, how I would raise a newborn while still caring for my adolescent son, who would likely have to step in to be a mini-daddy for his sibling. It was truly awful. But I made my choice. The baby. Not the cowboy.
Then, at my first prenatal ultrasound appointment, the technician told me something terrifying. There was no baby anymore. The blood tests said I was pregnant, but there was no detectable sack or embryo. They rushed me to the hospital, thinking I was having an ectopic pregnancy. After observing me for a week, they concluded instead that I had miscarried. My father contacted the cowboy to let him know how distraught I was, how much I was suffering. This is because my father truly had sympathy for the cowboy, whom he saw as “a tragic figure,” because the cowboy had his shining moments, where he clearly longed to truly connect and love, but was unable to do either meaningfully because of severe abuses he had suffered as a child. The cowboy rushed to the hospital, full of apologies. We reconciled, because I was weak and stupid and wanted him to be the man I had once believed he was, the man I wrote about in the memoir I’d turned in months before. I wanted to make the fairy tale come true again. I wanted things the way I’d thought they were.
Things changed for good then, though. We tried to muddle through, but it just got worse and worse. There were certainly moments of great beauty and love, I cannot deny that, but underlying it all was this unrest, this unfortunate beast that would raise its head now and then, and more and more frequently. There were signs of physical violence to come, textbook signals. The cowboy bragging nonstop about all the fights he’d been in, all the men he’d put in the hospital, while polishing his guns in front of me, letting me know just what I might be in for if I got out of line again. There was the time we had an argument, the time I dared to challenge him and insist that I was right about something, when he, furious with me and so much bigger than me, simply dragged me down the hall to the bedroom, bent me over, and took me, telling me as he did so that I must never forget who was in charge, that I must learn to be nicer, that I must learn…to obey. Yes. I am not proud. I was so beaten down by then, from the constant daily criticisms, from the constant erosion of my self esteem, that I just took it, and wept, and apologized, and promised to do better. I did not think I would become someone like that. And there was a part of me hidden away inside, kept safe, that watched it all and waited for my chance to escape… There was the night we argued at my house, and he was going to leave, as he always did, stonewalling and locking me out being his favorite weapons, his silent treatments going on sometimes for weeks on end, the emails finally coming in which he said he was willing to come back as long as I changed a long list of things about myself, and me always caving in…but that night, he was brutal again, when I tried to say I was sorry, when I tried to stop the inevitable stonewalling, he glared, called me a mouthy cunt, told me to get to my side of the bed and not touch him, told me that he couldn’t stand the sight of me, told me that if I really wanted to impress him then I’d be a good girl and just shut the fuck up, and his finger poking me in the chest, and then wagged in my face, telling me that my biggest problem, the reason he would never marry me after all, was that I was a woman who just didn’t know when to shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up, and me saying I would, that I would be quiet, and turning my back to him so he wouldn’t hear me cry, and him feeling the bed shake anyway and yelling at me that I was pathetic, that if I wanted him to stay then I better stop fucking crying, and me running into my closet with my phone to fall in a heap on the floor and text myself so that in the morning I’d remember that this was NOT okay, that this was NOT love, and him pretending the next morning that nothing had happened.
The last day I saw him, I jumped out of a moving truck to get away from him. He was in a rage. He’d called me a useless cunt this time, a mouthy bitch, all manner of names. He’d told me what a terrible mother I was. He’d attacked, attacked, attacked, all because I didn’t say hello to him the right way when he came back from running the dogs on the ranch. He was convinced I was being bratty because I didn’t react with enough enthusiasm to his return. This unleashed an avalanche of hatred. I stood there in the sun, disbelieving, trying to reason with him. He told me that I needed to leave. “Get your shit and let’s go,” he said. It was getting late, and he knew I hated driving home from the ranch in the dark because so much of the rural highway out there had no cell service. If I got a flat tire or something I’d be doomed. I asked if I could just stay in the guest room until the morning. “You can either get your shit and put it in the truck yourself,” he said, “or I will drag you by the hair, beat your ass to the ground, hog-tie you with duct tape, and throw your ass in the back of the truck. One way or another, you will be leaving. You decide.” He meant it. By this time, he had raised his hand to me on at least three occasions, but had yet to strike me. He always blamed me for this. I drove him to it. Anyway, I got in the truck, and we started to leave. I was hysterical, and afraid, and he began to talk about how much he wanted to beat my ass down. The truck was going slowly, and the look in his eye was terrifying. I really believed he would kill me. He’d hinted at it. So I opened the door, and I jumped. I thought I’d land on my feet. I didn’t. I landed facedown on a bunch of rocks, nearly crushed under the back tires, dislocating my shoulder, badly cut and bruised everywhere, my hip filling with blood. I screamed. He stopped the truck, walked over, looked at me on the ground as I begged him to call an ambulance. “Only you would be stupid enough to jump out of a moving truck,” he told me. He did not help me, or come near me. Instead, he said he was going to the hunting lodge to get some witnesses, in case I tried to tell the police he had done this to me. In that instant, I finally fucking understood — this man did not love me. He could not love anyone. He was alone in his anger and paranoia. I pushed my shoulder back into joint, struggled to my feet, and terrified he’d kill me, I got my dog out of the back seat, and my purse, and I ran for the hills. I hid in ravines and canyons, behind juniper bushes, and walked the 16 miles back to my car. I drove away, and never saw him again.
That is what’s going on. That is why the release of this memoir is so bittersweet for me. The book was true, when I wrote it. But life changed. I didn’t try to fool anyone, or to exploit anything. Rather, I believed in a man who didn’t deserve it. I fell for the incredible charm and manipulations such men are capable of. I failed to see what women who are wiser than I was are clearly seeing as they read my book — that this man was “a jerk,” as one reviewer said. I didn’t know. Worst of all, I wrote about my love and my flexibility and compromises in so glowing and beautiful a way as to secure a book deal from a wonderful publisher, an elite publisher, and now the same publisher is treating me like I have the plague, all because, I feel, I have saved my own life. I didn’t set out to deceive them. No one wanted the fairy tale more than I did! Ironically, being “punished” by the publisher feels a bit like the abusive emotional stonewalling the cowboy would do to me when I didn’t knuckle under and do what HE needed me to do for HIS needs…it’s familiar territory, only now it’s being done to me by a progressive woman in New York. I’m not a commodity. I’m not an object. I’m not a thing to be sold. I am a human being, a writer, an artist, a work in progress, and real life is messy sometimes, especially when it comes to love and abuse. I am deeply wounded by the stonewalling from my editor, as wounded as I ever was when the cowboy did it to me…
I’m sure I’ll get shit for posting this. I’m betraying my publisher, who would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. Hell, I would have liked for me to be the next Ree Drummond. But I wasn’t. I was the only Alisa Valdes, learning as I went along, living honestly and hopefully, trying to love. The only way the memoir works is if it is allowed to be what it IS rather than what others might like for it to have been. What is it? It is a guidebook for women on what falling in love with a controlling abuser looks like. It is a handbook on what NOT to do, what to run away from. I did not know it then. Then, I felt safe and thrilled, impressed with myself for having secured such a hot, strong, strapping, manly man. It was an illusion. Underneath it all was a scared, insecure boy, who talked the talk but didn’t walk the walk, a man who only felt good enough when he was making others feel badly. The memoir is important, and it is valuable, but not without this afterward. The message of the book, as I see it? Even smart, educated, self-sufficient, thoughtful women can get sucked into abusive relationships, and it will happen slowly, a little at a time, like a frog in a pot of cold water that is placed over a low flame, that even someone like me can, sometimes, be slowly boiled to death, that maybe we will write beautifully about how relaxing the warm water is, at first…
Finally, I want to say that I do not blame ranch life or cowboy culture for any of what the cowboy turned out to be. He could have been an accountant and it would have been the same. He was what he was because his own mother and father failed to love him. He was an abused child himself, and that was perhaps the hardest part of it all — that I saw glimpses of that little boy, the boy who so desperately wanted and needed to be loved, and sometimes he was playful, and joyous, and sweet, and happy, sometimes he loved, sometimes he allowed others to love him. Sometimes, we were happy. Blissfully happy. And that’s the part I never understood about abuse — that it doesn’t always feel like abuse. Sometimes, lots of the time, it felt like heaven.
I’m grateful to have gone through it. I learned a lot. I grew a lot. And now I know what so many of you who are reading the book already know — how to spot a controlling, abusive man from the get go. And I assure you: It won’t happen again.
In his own words:
― CGI fridays (Edward III), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:00 (eight years ago) link
that seems plausible I guess
whatever is going on here seems sad and not good and I kind of feel like I want to stop gawking at it now
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:02 (eight years ago) link
"seems plausible I guess" = the sugar-coating part xpost, I wasn't commenting on the story in the blog
― drunk 'n' white's elements of style (Hurting 2), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:04 (eight years ago) link
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:08 (eight years ago) link
I wish ppl would stop using "feel badly."
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:09 (eight years ago) link
She's on the air right now!
Alisa Valdes Alisa Valdes @MizAlisa
About to go live on the radio with Amy Oliver on 1310 KFKA in CO to talk about #feministandcowboy. @gothambooks http://ow.ly/gHCCF
Alisa Valdes @MizAlisa
Listen in! I'm on live. http://ow.ly/gHEeG
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:12 (eight years ago) link
Seems to be talking about language issues right now.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:13 (eight years ago) link
I can see why that post was taken down; actually putting up a video of the dude along with naming and shaming the agent at the publisher seem conducive to getting your ass sued
also I hate myself for this but her idea of physical perfection is a Gelfling cowboy?
― Solange Knowles is my hero (DJP), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:14 (eight years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, January 10, 2013 11:09 AM (1 minute ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
unless they have a congenital insensitivity to pain
― REBEL YELL FOR HUGS (Austerity Ponies), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:14 (eight years ago) link
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:25 (eight years ago) link
her publisher should probably just pulp the books at this point tbh
― autistic boy is surprisingly good at basketball (silby), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:31 (eight years ago) link
The radio interview is annoying but I think it's the interviewer's doing.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:32 (eight years ago) link
did the deleted post come up at all?? crazy if not
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:32 (eight years ago) link
Nothing yet, but the interview is continuing.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:33 (eight years ago) link
So far they've agreed that cowboys are hot and alpha-male behavior is understandably attractive to women because evolution. So this is definitely a good use of my time.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:36 (eight years ago) link
so she basically had a 24-hour window of saying her book was a lie and her cowboy was a rapist? wtf is going on here
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:40 (eight years ago) link
Oh okay now she's saying her new boyfriend wrote the cowboy a thank-you letter for having tamed the shrew. Verbatim, btw. We're done here.
― grossly incorrect register (in orbit), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:40 (eight years ago) link
Yeah this is VERY weird. What the hell.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:42 (eight years ago) link
Ugh. The most dispiriting thing about this is she's confused fuck-worthy with actually interesting for a relationship. Not only does she paint him as immensely unattractive (to me) in her deleted blog post but I immediately shy away from women who tend to be attracted to brutes as they invariably tend to be tedious. If you're attracted to assholes, fine, but don't expect me to listen to you complain that they're assholes later.
― Canaille help you (Michael White), Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:43 (eight years ago) link
― emil.y, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:43 (eight years ago) link
This is all very, very weird to me.
― Ned Raggett, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:52 (eight years ago) link
ned, how did you run into this initially?
― goole, Thursday, 10 January 2013 17:53 (eight years ago) link
His explanation is that he has fibromyalgia and was soaking in the tub to manage pain. I'm not sure that's being challenged, as such.
― Scampo di tutti i Scampi (ShariVari), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 11:52 (one month ago) link
Or rather it's being viewed sceptically but no alternate account of events has been publicised.
― Scampo di tutti i Scampi (ShariVari), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 11:53 (one month ago) link
I understand that you can harass without intending to--but can you harass via an action you didn't even intend to perform? If a boss accidentally tripped and fell into an employee's lap, could that count as sexual harassment? That seems to be the suggestion in the open letter. I don't get it, the response seems plenty strong without it.
― JRN, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:19 (one month ago) link
That letter pretty clearly says "Sure, this one thing might have been accidental, but he's just the kind of asshole who'd do something like this on purpose, and you better believe we've got some stories we could tell."
― but also fuck you (unperson), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:26 (one month ago) link
^^^ that was my take, seems like employees he's treated like shit over the years are all too happy to put this incident into an overall pattern of behavior
― soaring skrrrtpeggios (jon /via/ chi 2.0), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:28 (one month ago) link
the Open Letter is suggesting the harassment was because he had a pattern of being negligent and showing disregard for the staffers, suggesting that he cares little enough about the sensitivities of his co-workers that he wouldn't take precautions to prevent the possibility of something like that even happening (like, perhaps attending the call on audio only, or ....not being in the tub).
but with that being said, it is really fucking easy to fuck up web cam by accident. I had a new laptop once and hit a button in WebEx by mistake and it flipped my camera on while I was shirtless (I immediately ducked under the table and threw a shirt on and flipped camera off).
I teach classes regularly and yes, on days when I haven't been required to use web cam, I always make sure I'm attired for that reason. but I think "this was a freak accident" is probably likely.
― Filibuster Poindexter (Neanderthal), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:37 (one month ago) link
or what unperson and jon said. dammit, took too long to rewrite the message
― Filibuster Poindexter (Neanderthal), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:38 (one month ago) link
Having worked for a couple of years at a small lit magazine of Believer-y proportions, edited by a total asshole who made everyone's lives miserable, the open letter rings completely accurate to me.
― Chuck_Tatum, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:40 (one month ago) link
I guess the point is, some freak accidents are less freaky than others
― Chuck_Tatum, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:41 (one month ago) link
Yeah one rather obvious reading would be "it may have been unintentional, but given our other experiences, we doubt it". So never mind what I said before.
― JRN, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 14:44 (one month ago) link
I'm not sure it's even that - it seems close to 'it may have been unintentional but only someone who doesn't care about their staff's wellbeing could have put themselves in a position to make that mistake in the first place', which idk.
― Scampo di tutti i Scampi (ShariVari), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 15:31 (one month ago) link
Yeah. "I forgot to be careful" is only a hair from "I couldn't be bothered to be careful".
― Chuck_Tatum, Wednesday, 5 May 2021 16:28 (one month ago) link
Not having a shirt on and having one's camera come on by accident is very different from what this guy did, y'all. He literally was on a call, naked. Either he doesn't give a shit or shouldn't have been on the call because he was in too much pain.
― it's like edging for your mind (the table is the table), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 16:54 (one month ago) link
Wondering if there was any benefit to this meeting being a Zoom call instead of a conference call by phone. Dude could still have a job if he’d said that he had to be in the tub because of his medical condition and so maybe a call would be better, or else had kept the camera off for the call for the same reason.
― too cool for zen talk (Eazy), Wednesday, 5 May 2021 17:40 (one month ago) link
The article did not quote anyone else who had been present, and so there was little room for Shenk’s exposure to be interpreted as anything more than an unfortunate mistake. Staffers were incensed. “This article is all he needs to get himself another job where he can endanger people,” a colleague wrote to me. This was the first we were hearing about a bathtub, and several other details in the article seemed to be acting as convenient distractions; for instance, the “mesh shirt” Shenk was supposedly wearing had appeared on screen to be a normal-looking white t-shirt.
― Mark E. Smith died this year. Or, maybe last year. (bernard snowy), Thursday, 6 May 2021 20:47 (one month ago) link
yeah I'm inclined to believe his employees' account, pretty fucked how many journalistic publications spiked the employee comments.
― Feta Van Cheese (Neanderthal), Thursday, 6 May 2021 21:16 (one month ago) link
Skyhorse Publishing has picked up the Philip Roth biography. Check out their website to see the other fine, fine books they publish...
― but also fuck you (unperson), Monday, 17 May 2021 21:08 (four weeks ago) link
I think I've got one of their Robert F Jones books. Since when did they become associated with Night Shade Books? I love Night Shade.
― Robert Adam Gilmour, Monday, 17 May 2021 21:23 (four weeks ago) link
They publish all sorts of stuff, literally no filter
― Tsar Bombadil (James Morrison), Tuesday, 18 May 2021 08:38 (four weeks ago) link
Skyhorse Publishing’s House of HorrorsSkyhorse Publishing, literary home to Michael Cohen, Woody Allen, and Alan Dershowitz, has struggled with bigger problems than a roster of political unsavories. Interviews suggest a history of workplace toxicity and inappropriate behavior.
Skyhorse Publishing, literary home to Michael Cohen, Woody Allen, and Alan Dershowitz, has struggled with bigger problems than a roster of political unsavories. Interviews suggest a history of workplace toxicity and inappropriate behavior.
― bobo honkin' slobo babe (sic), Tuesday, 18 May 2021 19:19 (four weeks ago) link
― Clara Lemlich stan account (silby), Tuesday, 18 May 2021 19:45 (four weeks ago) link