Convenience Whores

For those of you who may not have heard about the recent controversy involving Target's contributions to Tom Emmer's political campaign, please read this.

If you are familiar, please read on.

As a strong supporter of human rights, boycotting Target seemed like the least I could do in this situation. Sure, it was always fun getting Hello Kitty stickers for a dollar and the popcorn they sell in the snack shop is unbelievably salty and delicious, but my values will beat out a cat without a mouth and high sodium levels any day. After reading up on the situation, I called every member of my family to explain to them the implications of their shopping at this store. You may or may not know this, but my mother is a huge shopper. If the Target corporation were to suffer from losing any customer, she's probably the one. Even though I told my dad (although Best Buy applies more to him) and my sisters, it was the most important to get the message through to my mom. When I spoke to her, she seemed genuinely interested in staying away. Was I naive to believe that it would last?
Of course.
Fast forward a few weeks to today, when she called me from Walmart to ask if there was anything I wanted. I asked for a toaster oven, because I've got a soft spot for them. She called me a few minutes later, and tells me that she's having trouble finding a decent one. Now, as much as I happen to like them, toaster ovens aren't exactly an urgent matter so I assured her it wasn't of the greatest importance that I have one today. Still, about an hour later, she walked through the door exclaiming, "I got you a toaster oven!"
Anyone else would thank their mother and move on, but I couldn't help feeling as though I'd been wronged. The following scene went something like this:
Corinne: "Where did you buy it?"
Mom: "From the store."
C: "What store?"
M: "Walmart. I went to the Tricounty one."
C: "Show me the receipt."
M: "I don't even know where it is. Here, let's get the toaster out of the car."
(At this point, we walk out to the car. She opens the door, and the toaster oven is sitting in the back seat in a Walmart bag. Sitting next to it? Target brand laundry detergent. The conversation ended when I pointed this out to her, asked for the receipt and bought my own toaster oven online. Hello, Amazon Prime free shipping. My mom continued to try to justify her actions, including lying to me about where she bought it, by telling me that it was convenient.)
Convenience. I thought about this for a while, and wondered how much is actually done in the interest of what's easiest. How often is the right thing abandoned for the quick fix? Is it really more simple to do the easy thing and lie about it than it is just to stick to your values in the first place?

I'm taking back that toaster oven tomorrow.



Today while riding in a car [on the way back from a SOX game-- we won!] with my three fellow guy friends [Bryan, Jeff, Adam] I switched the Ipod and the music that was playing to my Ipod and to a podcast that is done by the two wonderful ladies of The Stuff Mom Never Told You. The podcast was one on "Does size really matter?" Unfortunately, we didn't get to listen to the whole 27 minute podcast, but I thought it was a significant improvement for my guy friends to a) even let me change the music that was playing in the car, even though I had shotgun and b) to let me change it to a podcast on whether or not size mattered!

I found that Jeff was more engaged than Bryan or Adam, but it made me really happy that for those few minutes they listened and gave it a chance, however small.

I don't know if I'll "get-away" with doing it again, unless I am the driver, but it was unplanned and it went nicely. If only our destination had been 28 minutes away. . .but let me ask, does size really matter?

-Sonja Mata


An Obvious Salute

Fuck butterflies. My stomach was a tube, Augustus shot up and down, only in your presence. Tippy toeing across the hardwood floor, comfort and adrenaline were always baked together making one hell of a treat to eat. I've excluded others and secluded myself from the rest. No other cooperation has ever felt as fulfilling, even when we'd share messy sentences through one, a guarded mouth and the other, a set of expressive eyes. I'd tried my hand at co-existing with men I'd eventually find myself itchy around. Itchy enough to oust myself like a coward. But even when you became my nemesis, someone I battled playfully everyday after, I never wanted to leave your side. The same conversation leaks it's way through the phone in order to disturb what I always thought could be smooth, separate waters, if only I could keep the subject at bay. It was real but only in retrospect. I was too busy trying to convince myself that my very existence wasn't a tricky dream. It felt real when I washed your dishes... twice. It felt real when you defended me in front of a very hairy past. It felt real when you'd meow. It felt real exploring the universe, translation, dragging my legs through the bars and alleys of Athens. It felt real when you drove me in my warm, cozy car. It felt real when you were big spoon. It felt real when you asked me to be nice to you. You are honest, beautiful, a victim, an archer, hilarious, a catalyst for creativity, and Snow White's Queen. Simultaneously my first, my best friend, and my daughter. My wish is that someone will cherish and respect you and you can do the same for them. I'm saddened that the next will not be you but I am so grateful that you'll be there to see me through the rest. Fuck butterflies, I'll take a tube in my stomach every time after and seek nothing less.

-Jessica Link