November 30th is just One of Those Days, historically speaking. More to the point, it is not a day we look back at and think “that was a great day for women.”
According to my research (which involved drinking a diet coke and eating some pumpkin muffins), the problems began with Joe Neanderthal. Poor Joe got caught up watching football games and left Mrs. Neanderthal with all the housework and their passel of children (I’ve been looking for a way to use the word passel—I win!). Mrs. N. did not appreciate this division of labor, and whacked Joe on the head with a handy rock. Fortunately for Joe, he had a very thick head and hardly noticed the whack. Unfortunately, since he hardly noticed the whack, he didn’t change his behavior and ended up sleeping outside the cave for a week.
Moving on to slightly more documented activities.
On November 30, 1886, the Folies Bergère introduced a new format featuring women in elaborate costumes made from 1 square inch of fabric. Over the next few years, most of the costume budget was funneled into elaborate sets. Actually, the costumes were incredibly expensive, incredibly elaborate constructions that covered exactly nothing. The whole movement did nothing for women’s rights or respect for women.
On November 20, 1954, Mrs. Elizabeth Hodges was minding her own business, enjoying a nap in her living room (for the record, I applaud the idea of a nap), when a meteorite crashed through the roof of her house in Sylacauga, AL, bounced off a radio, and ricocheted into her hip. Mrs. Elizabeth Hodges did not consider this an ideal way to wake up from a nap (for the record, I wouldn’t either). The meteorite was 8.5 pounds and was 7 inches in length. Mrs. Elizabeth Hodges gave the meteorite a good talking to (that’s how they do things in Sylacauga), and called the authorities to deal with the rock and tend to her bruise. You’ll be glad to know that Mrs. Hodges was not permanently injured, but she did suffer an excessive fear of falling rocks for the rest of her life.
On November 30, 1989, America was introduced to its “first female serial killer.” To its credit, America attempted to decline the opportunity for said introduction, but Aileen Wuomos rather forced the issue. Aileen wasn’t in fact the first female serial killer in the country, but she became dang famous and the name stuck.
The short version is that Aileen had a terrible life, progressed from drunk driving to assault to armed robbery to murder, and was eventually caught. She was sentenced to death for having killed at least 7 men. Aileen claimed she was innocent and that all the killings were in self-defense.
Personally, I plan to try to reverse the female misfortunes of November 30th by baking cookies (and perhaps taking a nap). Here’s to a reversal of fortune.
It’s been great having you home for the last few days, kiddo. Have a great end to the semester and we’ll see you in a few weeks.