Calling All Superwomen: Step up for Our Foremothers, Never Step Down.


Our foremothers are angry. They don’t, first of all, like all the credit being given to the forefathers. They resent it.

Where would those very forefathers be without foremothers? Granted, we aren’t quite feeling all warm and fuzzy about the forefathers, even cringing at some of their behavior. Quite frankly, it is nothing to brag about in many cases.

Anyway, now listen, we don’t need giant carved likenesses of our foremothers in granite on mountains, or statues in town squares. We don’t have giant head envy. Or sword or musket envy. Or any envy, okay? Never did. It was never about that, and is still not. We’re quite secure being women. However, that translates differently for each of us.

The thing is, we’re all human beings. The question is, why do you have to put us down to feel better? I’m not talking to you if you don’t do this. And if you do? Stop it, immediately, it’s asinine and hurtful.

What we want is respect. Didn’t you hear the woman sing about it? The Queen of Soul, I mean, not Beyonce — she’s a youngin.’ A lot to learn still. Aretha spelled it out for you, for goodness’ sake. Sang it loud and clear. So some props to the ladies would be decent right about now. This is not an attack on men, so don’t go getting up on your chest-beating soapbox. Yeah, I said that.

This sister is getting very pissed off at the We’re offended baloney. “Men are being attacked…” Why think that? Did you do the bad thing? No? Then why be offended? It’s not a warlock-hunt, trust me. If it were, you’d know it.

I just read in an article, “… Men are not sure how to act at the Christmas party. We don’t know anymore what is flirting and what’s crossing the line.” Really, man? Come on. Don’t make me spit out my pumpkin latte. It’s simple. Keep your hands to yourself, preferably on your dish of ziti or sushi. Have a little decorum. Self-control.

The mistletoe is a seasonal decoration, not an excuse to shoot tequila and stick your tongue down anyone’s gob. A Santa hat is not an invitation to a lap dance. Don’t get cute and play dumb. You’re not an elf. It’s Christmas, not a bacchanal.

Men are confused? Ah, my heart bleeds. Men are not one damn bit confused. They got caught. And they are on notice. Not all men. Keep up. Some of the male gender have stepped out of bounds and done dirty filthy things no woman asked for, and they got called out on it. Period. End of story.

Keep your johnson under wraps, unless invited, by a sober woman, who isn’t a minor, isn’t your friend’s daughter or your daughter’s friend, or your employee, or your colleague, or your student, or your work partner, or your band mate, or your groupies, and we will all be just fine. No one is taking potshots at you personally.

If you know how to behave around women, then kudos for you. Your mama and daddy or elders taught you well. If you’re a lecherous pig, then expect consequences. You keep doing it and don’t get caught right away, and it catches up to you one day, which it will, then expect a revolution. We have had enough. Knock it off!

Attention, young gals: The foremothers did not fight and die as suffragettes so you could toss aside your feminine power and also your right to vote. Wake up. Put down the lip gloss and listen. Register to vote. Get active. Read a book. I recommend The Alphabet Versus The Goddess by Leonard Shlain to start.

Learn about the sisterhood. Not the cult on Big Love. Sisterhood, not sister wives. Even they are throwing off the hair-sprayed braids and pioneer garb.

Aspire to be more than a booty call. More than the Kardashians’ lost sister. Your mothers didn’t go back to school or work two jobs so you could sext your privates to some adolescent to share with his Goonie friends. Get wise. Get educated. Girls rule, remember? Okay. FYI, stop acting like a second thought. Be your own first thought and lose the losers and users. Be yourself. Stand out.

The crowd needs a new leader. Raise your hand and your voice. You all have something to say. There’s no let. You go ahead and speak. They will listen. And if they don’t? Move on to someone who does. Or talk louder. If this doesn’t apply to you, pass it on to someone it does apply to. The ones coming up might need schooling. Not everyone was raised by Wonder Woman, you know.

I had to fight tooth and nail for my voice and power, because my mother was raised during The Depression, and she had secrets and shame and God-fearing Catholicism, and she was later in a profession surrounded by madmen and cocktail dresses and Frank Sinatra music, and she didn’t rock the boat and no one asked questions. It wasn’t ladylike. That lady was a tramp. What was the man, a jerk?

Don’t get me started. And don’t waste my hard work being brainwashed. Step away from the Kool-Aid and Fireball shots. Dare to be unique. Choose your friends wisely. Go a step up, never down. Friends don’t tell your secrets on you. Learn this and find another tribe. A few good girls or women. That’s all you need. Look for a woman you can trust. We’re out there. We’ll listen. We have stories of our own.

Not that much has changed, except the waiting. You have technology. We had one wall phone and a paper diary. The thing is, you’re not alone. We’re here. We always were. From the very beginning.


Nanci LaGarenne is a freelance writer from Montauk, via Brooklyn, who writes for Dan’s Papers and contributes essays to The Montauk Sun newspaper. She has written two novels, ‘Cheap Fish’ and ‘Refuge’, and is currently working on her third.


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Rebelle Society
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