Image meme time!

Ok, since others have done so (including AnnieMcPhee), I might as well redo this one (I believe I’ve filled that Meme on my livejournal blog, but anyways, new pics have certainly appeared since)…

The idea of this meme is simple: Use Google Image to search for the answers to those questions about you and pick an image from the first page of answers. Kinda silly, but it can be pretty funny (granted, AnnieMcPhee’s drunk Santa and naked Richard Simmons pics will be hard to beat…).

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The strength of genes in my family…

Reading Nudemuse’s latest entry in which she mentions the Fat Women of Color Carnival announcement over at Fatshionista made me think of something about myself. I started wondering whether I would be or not eligible to participate in that carnival.

You see, even though I am officially caucasian, I seem to have Native American blood in me that goes back at the very least to my maternal great-grandfather’s mother (back in those days in Quebec, Native girls who’d be raised by the religious communities or grown ones who’d marry a white man would get their culture and identity erased into a totally clean slate. Gone was their maiden name (as they’d receive a new Christian name) or the info about their tribe. As the generations pass, their racial history is completely gone; even worse, many of these tribes had oral history traditions, which can only survive if they’re transmitted from one generation to the next. Who knows how much we have lost?

Anyways, because of the way that Native women were assimilated into the French-Canadian society, we have no idea who my Native ancestor was or where she came from exactly. One thing’s for sure, though: she had very strong genes. Strong enough to be passed down at least 4 generations without being too diluded (despite the French-Canadian blood among my relatives and I). She probably was a tall and fat woman — all the men in that side of the family were tall and fat (although it’s not so obvious among my direct family, as my grandfather was a blondish skinny man with blue eyes). The genes were also strong enough that my great-grandfather as a young man could have passed for my brother. I remember watching a documentary about the Montagnais (Innu) tribe with my mom, and how we noticed that several interviewed people looked like our relatives. And a few years back, my mom had gone to a reserve with a friend who officially had her First Nations status. They went to some store and my mom received the First Nations discount, no questions asked.

I grew up pretty oblivious to the notion of native blood. In fact, I only became aware of it (and so much more so in racist form) toward the end of high school, when bullies started calling me “Agaguk” (the name of a classic Quebec literature Inuit character). In a way that traumatized me more than name-callings over my weight, as for years I had a tendency to get very defensive if anyone asked me if I were Native. I’ve since learned to relax about it (as long as the person is only asking to know, not as a way to attack me, of course, but this isn’t high school anymore so it doesn’t happen).

So, I’ve come to peace with the notion of having Native blood. And even though I spent my teenage years thinking I was ugly (I remember so well being 16-17, so convinced that I’d never, ever have a boyfriend…), I now know it’s not the case. However, I do look different from most people I know, and people tend to remember me. Of course, as a teen, that was a hard thing to deal with, as we all want to conform to the masses, not stand out.

This is what I look like:

BTW, if anyone ever wants to listen to Native American music, I can never recommend enough Robbie Robertson’s Music for the Native Americans, which he made in collaboration with musicians from various tribes from throughout North America, including Quebec’s Kashtin. It’s the kind of album that brings out the creative juices in me. 🙂

Big girl, you are beautiful

Others in the fatosphere have discussed the merits (and shortcomings) of Mika’s song Big girl you are beautiful, but this is not why I’m writing this entry.

I like that song a lot and I think it’s more positive than anything else, especially considering how popular Mika is. And even then, I’m surprised that the song made it as a single — not because it doesn’t deserve a video or to be made a single, but simply because normally a song like this one would end up being totally ignored by the decision makers who are involved in the singles selection process.

Anyway, all this to say that it was a pleasant surprise last fall when I entered the Aldo shoe store on trendy Mont-Royal street just as the song played (it happened that they were playing the whole album — still, they didn’t skip the song) and that it is so now when mainstream pop music radio stations are playing it.

Here’s the song’s video, while we’re at it (sure, the ladies’ size doesn’t run the gamut as much as they could, but it’s already more than baby steps. Especially coming from a young, talented — and quite popular — artist like Mika).

OMG! Boobiegate over at the Age of Conan game!

*cross-posted to a couple of my blogs, including Livejournal and the 30 Lives blog*

O noes, horny male gamers who like to confuse their videogames and their pr0n fantasies are pissed off because the latest patch to the Age of Conan MMORPG accidently shrank the boob size of the game’s female characters…

http://adweek.blogs.com/adfreak/2008/06/gamers-will-not.html (warning — the link’s links, and possibly the link itself, lead to serious sanity points-draining nerd territory and are also be NSFW)

You know… this is completely unacceptable! After all, only young, single, straight adult males play videogames! You know, why have flat-chested girls like Olive Oyl (Popeye) or Pauline (Donkey Kong) in videogames? Heck, Mario dumped Pauline for Princess Peach! Or what about that plus-size gaming queen of the 80s, Ms. Pac-Man? Totally unacceptable in this age of so-called obesity crisis! Keep her away from the power pellets and put her on the Wii Fit asap!!!

Seriously, I’m getting really sick and tired of videogame designers thinking that there must be only one gamer demographic out there. There should not be a correlation between a female videogame character’s boob size and the quality of the game. Would have Tomb Raider been as popular has Lara Croft been a plain-jane type? Dunno. On the other hand, the bra size of Samus does not impact the quality of the Metroid series. I couldn’t care less how sexy and eye-candy a character is, if the game is good. However, if it serves as a lazy cop-out to cover the fact that the game is crappy, then go back to the designing board and come up with a game with solid gameplay.

Personally, if you’re threatening to cancel your subscription to a MMORPG just because the female characters are suddenly less male-porn fantasy material, either you’re not a gamer, or the game itself actually sucks.

It’s days like this where I really like my CTRL-ALT-DEL webcomic t-shirt featuring the series’ Lilah, saying “Girls play videogames too. You’d know this if you went out of the house sometimes”.