Skip to content

Dear Internet:

You and me, we need a break today. I just deleted a 5,000-word blog post about the “Tina Fey Backlash” that was apparently caused by me writing a few blog posts all of which emphasized how I think Tina Fey is super funny and I love like 80% of her work. Because, who cares? There was a backlash! My name got mentioned in regard to it a few times! This is much like the time that I started the Taylor Swift Backlash like four months ahead of schedule, and got yelled at about it, in that it is essentially trivial and no-one will care about it in two weeks and my sense of it as a phenomenon is primarily informed by the fact that, in direct violation of my own Rules for Internet, I keep reading things what got my name in ’em. I know less about the volcano that just apparently exploded Iceland than I do about everyone’s various feelings on the Tina Fey Backlash, and, my God: A country is covered in DEADLY VOLCANIC ASH, apparently, the sort of thing that KILLED THE DINOSAURS, a country has BEEN EXPLODED BY VOLCANO, and I am sitting here like, “but seriously! I like that TV show! I don’t hate that TV show at all! It makes me sad that you think I hate that TV show, because I like that TV show! TV show!” Ugh. At this point, I want to start a backlash against MYSELF.

But. This weekend, Internet! My experience of this weekend was very uneven! It was so great sometimes, when I was not on the Internet! And then, other times, when I was on the Internet, I got what has to be the 57,000th e-mail about how someone hates me because I wrote that blog post about Andrea Dworkin a year ago. Like: I don’t know what this compulsion people have is all about, this thing where they are like, “so, I’m a stranger who didn’t like something you wrote. Want to hear about it?” Uh, no. No, thank you. This was maybe the most fun e-mail I’ve ever gotten about the Andrea Dworkin thing, however, in that it made much the same points that every other e-mail along these lines has made — Real feminists don’t fight with other feminists! Real feminists fight with MEN! — but was, apparently, written by a man. I don’t know anything else about him — surprisingly, I did not click through to his blog — but the “I’m a dude” message was kind of overt. (UPDATE: Oh, okay, fuck me, I clicked through. Sample line: “Being oppressed means people impact your life who you didn’t invite into it.” Huh.) So I guess I COULD be fighting with a man, right now, if I felt like it! Thanks to this e-mail, I can accomplish “fighting with another feminist” and “fighting with a man” SIMULTANEOUSLY!

But also, I don’t want to. I don’t want to fight with other feminists or with men or with anybody, right now; I am all fighted out, for the moment. The Internet, though: It just keeps coming! Like, here is another thing I read because it had my name in it: A hate blog, written specifically for and about Amanda Marcotte. Apparently, publishing a guest post  that is linked to by Amanda Marcotte gets you written up by all the prominent Amanda Marcotte Hate Blog journals and trade publications.

I’d never heard of Tiger Beatdown, but it’s apparently a fairly significant site in the feminist blogosphere.

Oh, how nice of you to say!

The proprietor of TB is Sady Doyle, who is obsessed with her comment section.

They’ll put that one on my tombstone. Right next to “cared more about TV shows than people dying in natural disasters or of awful diseases; is dead now, so let’s all go watch TV.”

She admits to editing and deleting comments with which she disagrees, and she recently wrote three posts totaling 6,000 words on a single commenter who pissed her off. Clearly, Sady is the picture of maturity and stability.


It’s not like there aren’t real problems in the world. Here’s some real problem, for you: I was in the subway, with the dude I’m dating, and some kids started hollering racial insults at him. Teenagers. They sounded young. And my boyfriend was cool about it; he just started walking away, not making eye contact, doing what I suppose one does in this situation, but I was the asshole who froze and almost looked back. So clearly, they were trying to get attention — they were calling AT him, trying to get him to look around — and my attention was what they needed to escalate the situation. So we kept walking, though, and it was all cool, and then I heard one of them say, “push ’em onto the tracks,” and sure enough, in about 0.5 seconds, one of the kids, a really huge one, got between me and the wall and the track — it was one of the passages that is really narrow, in Union Square, where the stairs come down — and sort of purposefully bumped me toward the tracks. I did stumble. I said “sorry,” because you say “sorry” to the guy who might also be the guy who was just talking with his friends about killing you and your boyfriend in public, because despite popular rumor I do have a tiny little fraction of common sense in my head and I know not to Start A Confrontation if it might result in you getting somebody killed, and the kid just looked down at me and said, “you BETTER be sorry.” I can’t even analyze the racial dynamics of the situation with any degree of accuracy, because the kids were also people of color, and I am a white person, and I just don’t fully understand any of this because I am so fucking privileged, because I am not the person who gets hollered at and called “Jackie Chan” by teenagers looking to feel tough, but, I mean: These kids, they probably weren’t actually murderers, right? They probably just wanted to scare us? Because I’m white and he’s not, or just because of him because how fucking self-absorbed is it to think that I had anything to do with it, or just because they wanted to scare the hell out of some people to prove that they occupied that space and could influence it, or whatever, what I know is, I got pushed toward some subway tracks this weekend. Somehow this seems way more serious than people on the Internet doing casual drive-by insultings of strangers, and somehow it seems like the same thing, and I don’t know any more, really, what it’s all about. I watched him board a train and I watched him leave town for the next six weeks and I went to a party and I thought I could drink more than I could and I fell down and I broke somebody’s glass and then I got in a cab and cried, because: This weekend, for fuck’s sake.

And, I don’t know, Internet. I love you. But I am really busy starting the Sady Doyle Backlash, right now. Does anyone have a Tumblr about it? Someone should have a Tumblr. Look: I started one already. Let me know if you want to contribute, I’ll add you on.


  1. Travis wrote:

    Obsessed with your comments section? Maybe…personally, I’ve always thought you’ve had a pretty unhealthy relationship with your RSS feed.

    It’s just a web feed format used to publish frequently updated works! Get over it!

    (I also think you’re awesome!)

    Wednesday, April 21, 2010 at 5:48 pm | Permalink
  2. JMS wrote:

    You know what? If people don’t want to read a particular post you’re making, like BONERS TWO: ELECTRIC BOOGALOO or BONERS THREE IN 3D, they could just scroll on past.

    It’s pretty extreme, I know, but there it is. I am so sorry for the folks who are obviously being taken hostage by someone who forces them to read every one of your posts (or every one of Amanda Marcotte’s, for that matter).

    Wednesday, April 21, 2010 at 6:58 pm | Permalink
  3. Evan (a lady) wrote:

    I have a guest post for the STFU Sady Doyle backlash blog:

    Geez Sady Doyle, what is wrong with you? Bringing to my attention the things that were already nagging at me by stating them in a clear way that makes me laugh? That is so messed up. Thanks to you, I have an increased awareness of how pop culture interacts with cultural realities and it is totally making my relationship with my favorite shows and movies way more complicated. I can no longer enjoy Dexter with a clear conscience. Oh wait, I could never do that! Now I am just noticing the sexism of making all the female characters stereotypes (virgin/seductress love interests, bitchy control freak/emotionally unstable boss lady characters, etc.) and perpetuating the whole “women lie about rape to hurt men” thing, as well as the murder and violence that is somehow ingeniously interspersed with humor and other things that make me sympathetic to the sociopath serial killer main character that is already so confusing. So THANKS A LOT for making me think about and engage with stuff. Because thinking about stuff is terrible and being aware of oneself and how one fits in the world for better or worse is totally not a step in the right direction. Telling personal anecdotes that other women can relate to and make us feel we’re not alone in wanting to not have to constantly fight for the right to an opinion or representation in popular media is just awful. Who do you think you are?

    You’re Sady Fucking Doyle.
    Don’t let the haters get you down.

    I’m so sorry you had a shitty day.

    (I haven’t had time to read all the comments, so I apologize if someone has beat me to the sarcastic Sady Doyle backlash comment)

    Thursday, April 22, 2010 at 4:47 am | Permalink
  4. Simon C. wrote:

    @JMS: I’m holding out for BONERS 4 EVER, personally.

    Thursday, April 22, 2010 at 11:27 am | Permalink
  5. George wrote:

    Um, the subway thing? Is now going to be my response to concern trolls who get all vapory over me riding my bike. Sure I can get hit by an inattentive driver (and have been!), but at least aggressive teenagers will not try to murder me by train.

    Also, as I am an internet stranger you should take my opinion at its full value of exchange (=$.02), but I don’t think I like this new Tumblr. I liked your previous one better. I know it is hard, when the internet strangers keep throwing their $.02 on, not to let the weight bring you down. But you can put all those $.02 in a sock, and swing that sock back at anyone who takes a swing at you. My metaphor is clumsy, but what I am trying to say is, don’t let the bastards get you down, because you are awesome.

    Yaka-wow, y’all.

    Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 4:17 pm | Permalink
  6. Simon wrote:

    Sady Fucking Doyle kicks arse.

    And call me a big girl’s blouse, but I WANT to read about your personal experiences, partly because many are universal or at least empathise-able, and partly because what you write is so incredibly, satisfyingly spot-on.

    If I want to read about weapons and their technical specifications, or a *completely* objective opinion about women’s sports being boring, there are plenty of opportunities on dudely blogs. I don’t, though.

    Sunday, April 25, 2010 at 6:45 pm | Permalink
  7. Fnord Prefect wrote:

    Hi George@56, I am just wondering why you chose to c&p the entire text of my comment @50?

    Monday, April 26, 2010 at 2:36 pm | Permalink
  8. What a frightening and off-putting experience at the subway! Freaky.

    I have a Tumblr, and would like to contribute. ^_^ I am a ladynerd and game designer. Linky above.

    Thursday, April 29, 2010 at 1:38 pm | Permalink