Orange is the New Not Sexy

OITNB Read time: 3 minutes

If you ever find yourself needing to wean off women, try watching a few episodes of Orange is the New Black. Netflix will do you so good with its own new TV series. By the end of the 13-episodes, you’ll know that women are capable of being untamed, pooping weirdos. (Men, we are already aware that you are very capable.) I think unsexy may be a new phase for television series. People are always beheaded on Game of Thrones. Breaking Bad exhibits the grimy side of life. Women are disgusting on Orange is the New Black. Leave it to a bunch of buzzing from Buzzfeed to have me believe that I was going to become a stray idiot if I didn’t quickly begin this dirty path to prison (though the series JUST aired). Based on a true story, though? ON IT.

Imagine a woman from Whole Foods, the kind who brings her own shopping bag to carry her organic produce and Free Trade Colombian roast. She has totally embraced her yuppi-ness, complete with a cute Jewish-fiancé-writer. Their names are Piper and Larry, aww. Can’t you already picture their beady little eyes? Now imagine Piper in prison. Isn’t that soo sexy? Almost. In her curious, soul-searching twenties, Piper dated an International Drug Pusher. Impassioned by her lust for danger and love for her girlfriend, Piper strapped on a wig and moved some drug money around. (This naughty pied Piper doesn’t only like pipes.) But the lust eventually wore off and Piper moved on to a more predictable, purely straight life. 10 years later, her past lurks back and the life she created is compromised. She’s convicted and sent to prison.

Piper is immersed into a world no book could have prepared her for. Prison does and doesn’t have rules all at the same time. The inmates carry the hype of this show. Everything is raw and sticky. The vomit, lesbian sex, catfights, and rap battles are in yo’ face. The best part of this show is how well they develop EVERY SINGLE character. Flashbacks of their past and personality twists will make you smirk and appreciate every inmate. They barter with candy bars and form racial alliances. The bathroom stalls have no doors. Paper towels are a novelty; you wipe off messes with pads.

The character dynamics of the inmates seem ironically unreal. A Russian redhead is the kitchen ringmaster. A jacked teeth meth-head leads the Jesus crusade. A firefighter transsexual is the hairstylist. The super zen yoga lady can kick your ass. The prison administrators range from creep to sad creep. The prison politics will have you sympathizing in every episode.

You have to face who you are in prison and deal with your injustices. Each story can be it’s own, a philosophy we tend to forget in most TV series. And because of all of this, you realize that every Beauty you know in this world can easily mold into a savage Beast in the barred prison world. It is extremely unsexy but so, so excellent to see women unrefined and at an unhinged core of themselves.

I Would Like You to Know About This: Violence Against Women

I failed myself as a woman the past few years. I've been known for my anti-feminist jokes. They were misguided by extreme feminism – mostly the misogynists you picture when you hear the word "Feminism". Truthfully: I was naive. There are gender equality gaps in the workforce and the discrepancies are narrowing but the reality of women being mistreated still exists. This is my last summer before the career world and if I didn't begin substantial volunteering now, it would not gain traction later on down the road. We like to care about poverty, hunger, violence and injustice but many of us cannot empathize. I needed exposure. Yet, no matter where we live in the US, it’s easy to unravel our issues.

Going down the highway from downtown was a different kind of forever this time. There was no traffic. My insides swirled and I just got in my car and started crying. I guess I finally got it. I just had my first orientation at Genesis Women’s Shelter. A few weeks before graduation, it became evident to me that I needed to emotionally challenge myself in many ways. Genesis is a shelter for battered women and their children. Everyone has their trials but these aren't my trials, these are our trials. Domestic violence is one of our trials as humanity.

Here’s a correlation to remind us of what this household violence perpetuates: 85% of men in prison have been exposed to domestic violence while growing up.

Domestic violence has only crossed my path indirectly, maybe a friend’s friend or neighbors cousin. I did not know how to help them. Though emotional intelligence is a strength of mine, I doubt I would be able to detect these kind of disturbances in peoples relationships.

There are a few reasons domestic violence within a couple goes undetected. One main reason: women are afraid. They're afraid of  upsetting their spouse, losing their family, and believe they are dependent. Fear alone will empower battered women with the ability to lead normal lives in front of others. If their friends find out they are abused - physically or psychologically, it will only arouse the abuser more. To these women, it is an important and painful cycle to avoid.

Getting inside the outreach facility for Genesis was justifiably complicated. The actual shelter is at an undisclosed location. I walked into a room where women (and some men) ranging from high school to retirement age sat sharing "Why?”. Why are you here? Why do you want to volunteer? At first, it was a few but then it was half the room that had experienced violence in their time. Now they wanted to give back.

“I’m here to give back.”

Give back what? The sole idea that they had made it safely out of their situation, maybe with some help, have led them to want to give back? Some didn't even have help but they’re there to give back. I sat floored with admiration.

“When I called the police, they told me I had to get out myself and I could not take my children.”

“My first husband found me in California. He sent a letter stating, “I know where you are”.

Except for the part where I introduced myself and my desire to volunteer, I was silent. I’m not usually quiet but what was I supposed to say? “Yeah, my life and people in them have been totally great; I'm here to emotionally enrich myself. Sorry about what happened.”

No.

These women did not share their stories, they were there like me: wanting to help. The more I heard, the more I was appalled by my own naivety.

1 in 4 women experience violence in their lifetime. That means that the lady driving cruising 40 mph on the highway or the one carrying a whaling baby at the grocery line perhaps at a bad day. It’s overwhelming to even have these thoughts. I've only known great guys. But with my luck aside, there is a serious men’s issue within sour communities.

As outlined in a pretty spectacular TED Talk, there needs to be a paradigm shift. Domestic Violence is largely a men’s issue, a leadership issue. The burden to teach the youth should fall on adult men with power. They are leaders of this cause and should be held accountable for the crimes, the inaction, and the ignorance regarding the severity of this issue.

Men should interrupt each other and not stand for tactless jokes against women. There should be no blurred lines regarding violence in our peer culture. That way, men who perpetuate this hate, this abuse, lose their status in society As a result, we could see a radical drop in abuse. We could stop forgetting that it's happening.

Its not fair to our mothers and sisters to lack introspection regarding domestic violence. People like Chris Brown should not be allowed to perform anywhere or have influence among our youth. I don’t think as individuals we can be silent bystanders as these perpetrators continue their heinous antics.

Every city has their resources. In Dallas, one of them is Genesis. They have gone out of their way to be smarter than the abuser, to provide help to women discretely, and to help them start new lives methodically.

Genesis provides:

A 24 Hour Hotline, an emergency shelter, counseling, housing, daycare, recovery, child play therapy, an onsite school, case management, job readiness, and legal counseling – all free of charge.

We assume wonderful facilities like this exist and it allows us to sleep at night. But before I came here, I would not be able to properly redirect a friend in need if she came to me. That’s pretty disappointing. So, I want you to know.

Genesis

I Will Marry Your Creeper

My peers are getting engaged and married. 90% of them are out of straight no where. I didn't even know half of you had boyfriends. It seems like guys never have girlfriends to begin with so again, no idea what kind of witchcraft you all practice. What make concerns me, but mostly makes me laugh, is when "creepers" get engaged/married. I remember thinking back in 2009 that no chick would ever date this obsessive weirdo in my class. I've seen their tactics yet now there's a woman wanting to reproduce with them.

"I do" not get it. Here's something I do get: ladies, whomever we decide to settle down with will have once been some other chicks' creeper. Every guy is, at some point, gameless and shameless.

Your fiance: He's intelligent. His family is kind. He makes you laugh every day. He's getting promoted really soon. He takes you out on thoughtful dates. And oh, he used to whisper disturbing things to this girl in his PoliSci class back in college.

I'm not hating here. In fact, I've started to counter creepster behavior with extreme, non-reverse psychology. When a random guy (who knows nothing about what goes on inside your head or has even heard you speak) asks you out, make it real easy on him. Let him find out everything about you in the most maniacal manner.

Example: At the gas station

"WELL SAY GURL, what are youuu doing tonight?"

Normally women will scoff and drive off. New response:

"I'm doing lots of things tonight! But we just met so if you want, you can definitely get my number right this instant. Forget it, let me just call you now so I know you got it so we can FO SHO have each others' numbers. In case your phone dies at some point in life, add me on Facebook! I wanna see your profile pics! My girlfriends will probably ask for them tonight anyway because I'm going to be talking about how charming this all is. Do you work? Ahh, lets connect on Linkedin. My gas is still pumping so lets follow each other on Twitter. I'm SO motivational on Twitter. It'll be fun. Oh, you need to go? Well lets take a selfie and instagram it, BOYFRIEND."

Do not let him get a word in this entire time. Ladies, let's be creepin' too. Its 2013 and all about equality now.

Girls' Night

I'm still not sure what we really mean when we say GIRLS' NIGHT! I’ve been “out with the girls”, at “dinner with the girls”, had a “girls night in” and variations of this she-bang. But....why do we do this? Maybe women are all secretly normal but on Girls' Night, things get strange . There’s always this chick who needs a no-judgment situation to eat chocolate covered strawberries. They’re not even tasty. The flavors fight for your attention in your mouth and the chocolate flakes off ungracefully.

There’s also a photographer of the group will document every critical event, providing you a play-by-play of the entire night for every social media outlet to endure the following day.

[Picture of the champagne and chocolate strawberries]

[Picture of all the girls toasting with chocolate strawberries in hand]

[Picture of all the girls pouting before they head out to town, oh haaaaay]

While this is going on, two members of this female clan will secretly be feuding over some kind of irreconcilable difference. Most of the night will include accommodating for their self-deprecating needs. THEN, one of the other girls will begin the night with an almost rehearsed monologue about the benefits of being single, the overall sense of freedom, and the endless demand of boys she gets to entertain. Near the end of the night, this same girl will mope around wondering who to pester via text, fail and then re-download Tinder.

Within this Girls’ Night dynamic also lies the  character who is totally content with her life. She may have a man but the point to remember is that she never needed one. She kind of has some extra squish but ugh, she works it so well. She never broadcasts how delicious her latte was that morning and you’ve only heard rumors that perhaps she enjoys the company of her cat. Listen girls, we hate her for this! During Girls’ Night, every time someone complains, she assures them that everything will work out in the end...the audacity.

Probably the worst kind of Girls' Night is when its a Bachelorette Party. Every town boasts a delightful Piano Bar but the tireless raid of women wearing feathers and penis tiaras suffocate Piano Bars. They request the entire Grease album, emasculating men and depriving other people of their Piano cover to Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'." It's a f-ing dictatorship run by the disastrous product of the Cheerleader effect.

There is also the self-appointed Game-Stopper: the anti-christ of a Wingman. Her goal the entire night is to make sure no other member of the Girls' Night breaks the one rule: No Boys, No Toys. She'll be all, "Excuse me, I get that you're a handsome dude with a successful start-up but my girl friend isn't interested in you. We're having girls' night." Goodbye, Future Husband.

And at last, the ~:~Girl Who Loves Her Boyfriend <3 ~:~. It was difficult to convince this girl to come out, she probably hasn't even had estrogen exposure in months because she's always so busy with the love of her life. Most of Girls' Night will be her expressing her unyielding gratitude for such great girl friends and how she really should do this more often. And that's the last time she ever does Girls' Night.