Archive for August, 2011

Thanks to Sheila and the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence blog for letting us reprint this LOL post on Bachelor Pad vs. Finland’s World-Wide Wife Carrying Competition..

Sheila Johnson directs the violence prevention program at Women’s Center of Rhode Island and teaches part-time courses in literature and women’s studies for the University of Maine’s distance education program. Her favorite writer is Jeanette Winterson and her favorite celebrities are Owen Wilson, Woody Allen, Emma Thompson, and Carl Kasell. Sheila is a blog team member for Women’s Fund of Rhode Island and guest blogger for the Rhode Island Coalition Against Domestic Violence. She attends the UMass Boston Women in Politics and Public Policy graduate program.

HEAVE HO by Sheila Johnson

Remember the good old days when a woman found a husband by hanging around the village until Mr. Right threw her over his shoulder, and carried her into the night? You are probably shaking your head and saying, “Thank god that barbaric practice no longer exists!” Or does it?

For the past sixteen years, Finland has held the World-Wide Wife Carrying Competition (WWWCC). Last month, 47 couples from 10 countries competed in front of 6500 spectators.  Husbands carry their wives for 250 meter race over obstacles, including a water jump. The prize: the winning wife’s weight in beer. Men, competition, women’s bodies, and beer, need I say more about its popularity?

The Finns acknowledge that the practice is rooted in male dominance and violence (they don’t actually use these words), but the sport has taken on a more self-conscious irony over the years. One of the competition’s many rules is that everyone must have fun. Watch this YouTube video and you will hear roars of laughter from spectators and contestants alike. What’s funnier than a man collapsing from the weight of a woman on his back? There is also a rule about the woman’s weight. She must be a minimum of 107 lbs. If she is any less, she can carry stones. The lighter the better? Wrong, the lighter the woman, the lighter the beer.

I had to ask myself is it okay to laugh at a practice that is based on a tradition of abduction and rape? In this case, for me, the answer is yes. The competition is fun and lighthearted. Everyone laughs. No one is being exploited. The women are fully dressed.

Last week, I saw something that reminded me of wife carrying on ABC’s “Bachelor Pad.” The season’s first episode featured “The Hook Up,” a competition where a man and a bikini-clad woman cling to each other while dangling 10-feet high. From the grimaces, curt complaints, and whining, it is clear the couple is not having fun. They are hot, sweaty, and in great discomfort. Arguments ensue as soon as the woman is dropped onto a bed. She’s too heavy, he is not strong enough. She squirmed, he was bored. She could have gone forever, he had no stamina. (more…)

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FILM UPDATE: Celebrities in Disgrace screens in Vancouver at the Columbia Gorge International Film Festival….

If you like to Rock N’ Read,

Jay Farrar (photo: insurgentcountry.net)

check out the WORD X WORD FEST. this past week in Pittsfield, MA near Tanglewood, where performers included Gov. Deval Patrick, Wes Stace, Mia Dyson, Douglass Truth– and star rocker Jay Farrar, whose warm-up act for his awesome set on August 18 was yours truly.

Check out the handmade Beach promo below (shot by my son and decorated by his pal David).  Rock on, WordXWord!

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Attention, Generation Facebook: This just in–

shamelessplug is expanding the bounderies of self-promotion for your famously shamelessly self-promoting Generation.

So shuffle along, Generation X and your slacker successors, Generation Whatever.  A new wave of media-savvy Gen. Facebookers have arrived.  And they have a new tool, created by the same shameless force that created (here comes our own self-promo) our new website for TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA as well as our page for the film Celebrities in Disgrace (which screens in Vancouver next week) plus our very own Celeb.s blog.  The man behind the designs: Leo Ferre of ShamelessDesigns.

Here, in its own words, is the deal on his new venture,  shamelessplug:

Shamelessplug is here to help promote Indie artists and bands all for free. We want to bring a light to them, to help increase their fan base and bring them more exposure. Shamelessplug provides a way for bands and artists to put up their show flyers and let all their fans and friends know where they are playing next. We will do whatever it takes to get millions of visitors to come to our site to see all of the show flyers. Our goal is to have Shamelessplug be the main spot where Indie fans come to search for their favorite musicians and to find new music to follow and see live.

For more on how to take part, visit (and spread the word about): shamelessplug.com

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Welcome ALL MY CHILDREN fans…Blog fans, check out new websites SHAMELESS PLUG & TONYA & NANCY: THE ROCK OPERA

Tigh Rickman holds a BA and MFA in creative writing from Bradford College and the Stonecoast MFA respectively. In 1998 he worked as a writer’s intern at All My Children where he researched and composed the biographies of Adam and Stuart Chandler, later published on ABC.com and Soapcentral.com. Along with Sarah Kowalski, Tigh is a frequent contributor to Celebrities in Disgrace, opining on ABC’s ‘real life’ soap operas, The Bachelor and The Bachelorette.


Adam Chandler

Chandler Mansion

300 River Road

Pine Valley, PA


Dear Mr. Chandler,

I don’t think you’re such a bad guy.  No really, in spite of what most everyone says, I don’t. Look at it this way – if I were to show you a man who grew up in some Virginia backwater, overcame the tragic loss of his sister at a young age, spent his early adulthood scraping by on his wits as a carnie, and somehow managed to pull himself up by the bootstraps, start Chandler Enterprises and in so doing become one of the wealthiest people in the country, you’d say it was the American dream, right? Well, apparently not in Pine Valley. Here you have to kiss the Martin family’s ass all the time and play nice-nice with a populace comprised primarily of recovering murders, adulterers and kidnappers. And what’ve you done? Some white lies and half-truths here, a little gaslighting there, all sprinkled liberally with some shady, but for the most part legal, dealings and there you have it. All you’ve done is employ the tactics that made you a success in your professional life and apply them to your personal life. It’s not like you’ve ever killed anybody (at least not intentionally or directly, that is).

Of course, it doesn’t help having had a twin brother like Stuart. I know you loved him dearly, but you must admit that at times he was a bit hard to take. Oh, saintly Stuart Chandler, the selfless, gentle being whose soft-spoken kindness was an example to us all. Give me a break. While you live in the ornately foreboding Chandler Mansion, Stuart lived rent-free in the modest Gate House at the edge of the property, his days filled with painting and looking at butterflies. In other words, he was a freeloading milquetoast. If Mother Theresa had a twin sibling that bland she’d end up being labeled the ‘evil’ one by comparison, too. And there always has to be the ‘evil’ one, doesn’t there? (more…)

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