The rot sets in: my timekeeping is going slowly down the drain. Still, better late than never!

In fact, I’m being terribly slow generally, because since I don’t read that pinnacle of reporting, The Metro, anymore, I find that I’m even further behind what’s in the news than I used to be. The Metro was always at least a day behind, but I seem to have completely blanked the Russell Brand debacle from my mind – quite impressive, I’d say.

Which of course means that I feel a bit silly trying to sum it up now, but hey, it’s still worthy of a little analysis.

Very quickly: Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand, as part of a pre-recorded programme, called Andrew Sachs and said a number of very stupid, very crass things. Including “he [Brand] fucked your granddaughter”. Charming.

Leaving aside the fact that anybody who informs a woman’s grandfather of her sex life fully deserves to be smacked down with a statement to the effect that “he’s shite in bed” — we still live in a society in which the stud/slut dichotomy runs riot. Which means, simply put, that the only harm done to Brand’s reputation is that he looks like even more of a fool than he did before; but Georgina Baillie is still much more likely to be judged for having had sex. To see why this might be true, you only have to look at the photographs (try here) of Ms. Baillie that have been used to accompany the relevant articles. Any coincidence that they’ve all found photos of her in various sexy outfits? I think not. Yes, she’s a burlesque dancer. No, it’s not relevant.

Moving on, and US election jitters have been setting in all over blogland. And in the real world too. Shocking, I know!

The sheer number of prejudices up for public display have been astonishing. Sexism, classism, racism, Islamophobia (yes, it’s a word!)…. but at least it’s made people turn out this time round. Saying that, Ken Livingstone lost with more votes in the last London mayoral election than he won with in the election before. But still! It was democracy in action! I’m only a little bit bitter!

With the US acting as the undisputed bully of the playground, I think it’s reasonable for me to be twitchy at the thought of the republicans getting McCain and Palin in. Because it’s a bit scary to think that their Vice President would be somebody that wants to charge women for their rape kits. Among all of the other terrible things.

Others have commented far more coherently and eloquently than I ever could about this, so I’ll provide some links for this and feel that my duty is done! Sarah Palin got her own section in a fairly recent Carnival of Feminists at Green Gabbro, and Amelia from Female Impersonator also had good points to make.

Last things last, and once again, something is bad for pregnant women.

This Bad Science article is worth linking to, because it highlights a very similar problem, namely: bad science and sloppy journalism.

Caffeine is now bad.

Or is it?

But a little light drinking never hurt anybody.

Except when it did.

And, in a related note, have fun playing “disembodied woman picture” bingo whilst reading. Articles on pregnacy seem to have been given a special dispensation to not ever include a woman’s head in the photo. More thoughts and analysis on this, plus more examples here, here, and here. It’s worth following the links that they include, too.

Bonus link: Bad Science covers the abortion debate. We like the Bad Science column!