Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bridesmaids - The Movie

This entry is not about "money, markets or changing the world" but I feel called to share. Two nights ago I went to see the film Bridesmaids with my mom and it was absolutely entertaining and hilarious. Ok I admit it, I have a somewhat crude sense of humor at times, but can you blame me after spending over 10 years on a trading floor? The film was written by two fabulous women writers, Kristen Wiig ( who is also the main actor) and Annie Mumolo. It "took its cue from the success of buddy comedies like “The Hangover,” but aimed it at a female cast and female anxieties, with a poop scene as its most memorable set piece. In the process, the Judd Apatow-produced Universal comedy seems to have single-handedly gestated a new movie genre." ( read the full article here)

For the record I really did not like The Hangover. I also disliked Knocked Up (both were DVD rentals and I am embarrassed to even say I watched them) so you might call me a hypocrite for loving Bridesmaids but I am willing to live with that. I hope I am the type of person that can take a joke but that genre of 'guy flicks' were women are only strippers, sex-toys or nagging girlfriends or wives makes me crazy. Sadly most 'chick flicks' are still about women whose lives are almost completely defined in relationship to men, this one too to some extent, but it was still absolutely hilarious. Where it played off female anxieties that were not related to guys were it's funniest moments for me.

I have to go back and see it again with my husband and maybe some other dudes to see if they how they felt about the movie. I read some great reviews of the film and one guy called it the "anti-chick flick' - meaning it was a chick flick that he actually liked. Did it portray men in a somewhat stereotyped and sexist manner? Well yes but that the male reviews I read did not seem to have a problem with that.

Will it gestate a new movie genre? I am not so sure but I am willing to give other such films a try. I am loving that this film is a huge success and is sending a message to Hollywood that films for women, featuring women, written my women, that don't follow the 'rules' can be hugely successful.

So I have this idea for a comedic film. It is a set in an alternative universe where women are the main breadwinners, have all the power, and it is the men that are trying to break in. Think "Working Girl" but gender reversed. Think MadMen, but gender reverses. If anyone knows Kristin Wiig can you please give her my number?

Go see the film and get ready to laugh yourself silly. Warning it is rated R for a reason.

Sunday, June 12, 2011


It has been a while since I have written about GOLD. For that matter it has been a while since I have written about the markets in general. John Hathaway is a personal friend, a lovely human being, and a brilliant investor. Read what he has to say about GOLD and perhaps more importantly, the US dollar. I agree.

The price of gold is more about the declining value of the US dollar, they it is about an intrinsic value of the commodity. He makes some strong claims in this piece including this one about how the government has artificially held down nominal interest rates - "That amounts to outright theft of wealth by government from its citizens and more recently non-U.S. investors." Bottom line - not good. Stay with the piece, it is a long one, but indeed very educational.

Thursday, June 9, 2011


Pat Mitchell is one of my favorite women on the planet. I can think of few others that advocate for the advancement of women and girls more then Pat. She serves as President for The Paley Center of Media which "with locations in New York and Los Angeles, leads the discussion about the cultural, creative, and social significance of television, radio, and emerging platforms for the professional community and media-interested public."

In a blog posted today she talks about a new initiative called She’s Making Media. It is a "new series of programs that puts a slightly different lens on the subject of women’s role in media. We are going to celebrate, curate, and build a special collection (and a new television series) with women who are making media for a very specific purpose." The program was launched earlier this month with playwright, performer, artist, and activist Eve Ensler. "She is making media that makes the world safer for women and girls."

At our recent Women Moving Millions gathering in April we had the pleasure of participating in a conversation with both these amazing women. ( photo above ) The topic of the discussion was how to leverage media to create social change. There is likely no better example of that then the work of Eve Ensler. "From her productions of the groundbreaking play, The Vagina Monologues (5000 performances a year in 140 countries raising 80 million dollars to end violence against women and girls) to her television documentaries, books and social media campaigns, Eve and V-DAY, the organization she built, are inspiring examples of making media that matters and, in fact, changes lives. My(Pat's) hour interview with Eve, featuring excerpts from the plays and films, will be posted on Paley Center’s video section within the next couple of weeks and an edited version will be part of a new TV series, network to be announced later." Check back to the Paley site to watch.

One thing that Eve said that has really stuck with me is this concept of "thingafying." The idea that if we just do this thing, or that thing, then problems will be solved. In the world of economic development that thing might we provide a girl with an education, or access to health services, or a micro loan. The reality is that issues like violence and poverty are very complex and we need to acknowledge that complexity and structure it in to the solutions we are championing.

Thanks to Eve and Pat for the amazing role models you are to all of us. Love you.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Women and Ambition

Please click here for a co-authored piece I wrote with the most fabulous Courtney Martin on women and ambition just published with Alternet. Coincidently I was just interviewed by the Center for Work Life Policy for an article on this same topic. Bottom line is the need to our own success while "acknowledging the ways in which we continue to benefit from unearned privilege." I hope you like the piece!

Courtney is a fabulous feminist writer and speaker. She is the author of three books DO IT ANYWAY: The New Generation of Activists, Click: When We Knew We Were Feminists, and Perfect Girls, Starving Daughters. I love them all. Every single one of them is a must read and a PERFECT gift for a graduating girl.