Dear Lee Pace,

Hey, great to see you in all these movies! I’m glad you’ve broken through and all that, but…. Look, I don’t want to use the word hacky. I’ve loved you in just about everything I’ve seen you in, but as a villain, you go balls to the wall in a not charming or terribly layered way. Ronin was pretty one note, you know? I know that seems silly but after Loki, the bar is pretty high to not just play a villain flat. All I ask is you not fully abandon your quirky indie roots, ok? You’re just so excellent when you have a complete character to play, it’d be a shame to see you go full blockbuster mode.

But seriously, congratulations! Good job, man!

Much love-

Dear Everyone,

This is a thing that worries me – that being overweight or underweight are places that people feel they can comment. That our bodies are areas for discussion, as if they are public property, when in reality, they are the most personal and private thing we will every possess as individuals. And it seems this conversation is often framed as being unhealthy is what is unattractive. That you are unattractive because you are unhealthy. That it is not a strange external pressure that is molding you into a shape, but that everyone feels deeply for your personal well being. It’s an altruistic way to dress up shallow concepts.

Unhealthy and unattractive are not the same thing. You can be unhealthy and someone will still find you attractive. You can be healthy and a person can find you unattractive. Those two things are not corollaries. Applying a one size fits all stereotype to attraction is really one of the dumbest things we can do to each other and ourselves. Some people are attracted to the same gender, a specific ethnicity, a larger than average body type – at the end of the day, I hope that it’s not the body you love, but the person who pilots it. Let the appearance that piques your interest be from the soul casting light on the inside. Beauty exists in this world in every single person – it’s up to each individual to share their own and to see it in others.

So, you know, take a breath, relax and forgive yourself for not being the person you feel like you have to be to be loved. You will be loved. Just be willing to allow others that same grace.

From my heart to yours-

Further Reading: Misogyny in Technology

For anyone who is interested in learning more – and possibly wanting to know why I wrote such a heavily vitriolic Dear [Blank] to the men in tech – feel free to read more at any of the following links. You are also welcome to ask me any questions. This is a subject that is near and dear to my heart and I feel that awareness is part of what creates change.

Technology’s Man Problem

What the RadiumOne CEO’s Firing Means

The Website that Says It All

Why The Tech Industry’s Sexism Problem Isn’t Going Away

Peter Shih “10 Things I Hate About SF” Backlash

Timeline of Incidents

I also have a post in my Let’s Talk About category speaking to general sexism in the workplace. That post in part describes a very common experience for women in technology, but it applies to most workplaces that are dominated by men. Personally, I think part of the behavior is from posturing – so men, who really feel like women are only good for objectifying, get to say whatever they want and feel legitimized and men, who don’t, go with the flow or endorse it so as not to be on the outs.

There’s also a phrase that runs around – brogrammer or brogrammer culture – which is a point of contention with a lot of people. I can speak to it, but despite the sexism I’ve encountered and seen, I’ve only met one real brogrammer, but I sincerely doubt he would have called himself that.

Hope that helps satisfy your curiosity and/or helps broaden your understanding.

Dear Men In Tech (Who View Women As Objects, Trophies, Conquests and/or Prizes),

Just because a single, attractive woman is in your general vicinity doesn’t mean she wants to screw you. Really. I pinky swear. They operate with their own thoughts and experiences and a lot of the time, that means they really, really don’t want to sleep with you. You should have matured beyond this fraternity mentality already.

Zero Love Forever –

P.S. Luckily, there are cool guys who are happily married/in relationships/single and have no interest in this ridiculousness. There are just a disgusting amount of men – married or not – who seem to think if you have a vagina, you clearly want them all up in it.

(Edited 5/7/14 for clarity and language. I got a little salty there.)

 

Dear Mark Strong,

I’m fine with you trying to sell me a Jaguar (is Tom Hiddleston as nice in person as he seems? Did you get to ride in the helicopter too? If not, you should have made sure to ride in the helicopter. Make a point to next time), but why the hell are you trying to sell me shitty beer? I trusted you!

Lots of love despite this rank betrayal-

Dear Tehachapi,

You are hickish in a way that the rest of California can only aspire to be (the carhartts! The carhaaarrtttss!!), but you have a sushi place, a gas station and a drive thru Starbucks all within a three block radius. It’s that kind of forward thinking that makes me want to hop on your lap and call you baby.

All my love-

Dear Jack Gleeson,

This is what freedom feels like. Hopefully people will stop confusing you with the character you play now. Go live your life in peace.

An appropriate amount of love from one stranger to another-