Who Am I? Why Am I Here?

So you may be wondering who the bald, bespectacled fellow in the upper-left corner of this post is, and why he’s posting on Shakesville. Then again, you may not; for one thing, you could be reading this on an RSS feed, and thus you may not have seen any picture. You may not pay attention to pictures in general, instead choosing to focus on the written word exclusively. And even if you did notice, you probably just thought that perhaps Mustang Bobby had chosen an even-more-improbable photograph to accompany his posts.

Alas, the photo is of me, Jeff Fecke, and you’ll be either happy, unhappy, or largely unaffected by the news that I’m going to be joining the gang here at Shakesville.

Some few of you may be familiar with my Blog of the Moderate Left, notable primarily because it hasn’t been particularly moderate since mid-2003. A few more may have read some of my work at Minnesota Monitor, where I’m a writer and reporter.

As for my personal life, I’m 33, which is the age at which you begin to forget exactly how old you are. I’m divorced, and the father of a smart, talented, and loving four-year-old who will be starting Kindergarten in the fall. I live in Eagan, Minnesota, which is a suburb of St. Paul, in a nondescript two-bedroom apartment. I also own a cat who, like me, weighs about 75% more than would be ideal.

Melissa has asked me to come aboard to write about gender issues and feminism, which may seem strange, given that my 23rd gene pair is XY. It shouldn’t, of course: equality is good for everyone, and men (and women) who are resistant to evolution in gender roles are standing in the way of a truly equitable and just society. I’ve believed for some time that pro-feminist men have a responsibility to speak out in support of women’s equal rights, for the simple reason that many anti-feminists are less reflexively able to ignore men than women. That very fact is, of course, insane, but its insanity makes it no less true — and that means some tenors and basses may help break through the walls by lending their force to the altos and sopranos.

Thus I hope to add my voice to an already strong chorus of men and women on this site arguing for the simple proposition that individuals should be able to chart their own destinies, free from people telling them that their desires are too masculine or feminine. My hope is that, in my own small way, I can help to make the adult world my daughter will enter in a decade-and-a-half a more welcoming and supportive one than now exists.

So that’s me. Expect me to complain a lot, occasionally post quasi-witty graphics, and every once and a while diverge from gender issues to complain about George W. Bush, praise They Might Be Giants, or complain about George W. Bush while praising They Might Be Giants. Hopefully you all enjoy it, and if not, well, just look for the bald, bespectacled guy’s picture — and avoid it.



Filed under 10_jeff_fecke

28 responses to “Who Am I? Why Am I Here?

  1. Upper left, love.

    I checked my left-right sneakers to be sure.

  2. Jeff Fecke

    I know, I caught it just as you noted it.

    There has to be at least one glaring, embarrassing error in an introductory post. Otherwise, what’s the fun?

  3. I’d have to check my fun-fun sneakers to be answer you, but…wrong shoes.

  4. SAP

    Huzzah! Fresh meat!

    Er, I mean, welcome aboard, sir! πŸ™‚

  5. Welcome, Jeff! And what a terrific first post! I’m looking forward to reading many more.

    Melissa has a talent for picking wonderful writers and thinkers on all of the issues we blog about.

    Which reminds me — Kate, I don’t think I noted your arrival on these shores when it happened… so welcome! I’m really glad you are here!

  6. A hearty shake of the Portly Poms-Poms to ye, Jeff!

    My faith in Liss’ taste in writers for Shakes has never been disappointed (and that’s a shake of the Portly-Poms to each and every one of you Soap-boxers and Spore-Radicals, too!)

  7. Kate Harding

    Thanks, Kathy! And welcome, Jeff! Glad I’m not the newest kid in town anymore. And I really look forward to seeing what you have to say.

  8. Liz

    Love the idea of complaining about Bush while praising TMBG! “The sun is a mass of incandescent gas — and incidentally, global warming is real!”


    Looking forward to seeing what you have to say, Jeff. Welcome!

  9. Anne

    Hi and welcome from Minneapolis! Is the heat driving you crazy, too?!?

  10. Jeff Fecke

    My apartment has an outdoor pool, so my daughter’s loving that. I actually am something of an anomaly among Minnesotans in that I actually like the heat. This is about as good as it gets in my book — as long as you can occasionally go inside and enjoy the air conditioning. πŸ˜›

  11. Anne

    Nice! I’m usually a total heat-hater, but last year I spent five months in Australia, so I’m dealing better with it this year…I’m also crankier than most about the heat because I don’t have air conditioning! I do always marvel at the fact that people actually decided to settle here before climate control, given how cold the winters are and how hot the summers are — but I’m grateful that it happened, because I love this place!

  12. “It’s Istanbul, not Constantinople – the Bush State Department really needs to get caught up on recent developments in the Middle East.”

  13. Howdy Jeff and ‘woof!’.

  14. Welcome, Jeff — and my picture could never be mistaken for yours; I’d have to lose 19 years and grow a little more facial hair. πŸ™‚

    Just as a matter of connection, St. Paul is my ancestral homeland on my father’s side of the family, and I spent two years in the Twin Cities in grad school — but that was about the time you were learning to walk, so I guess we missed each other.

    Welcome to the gang. I trust Melissa taught you the secret handshake.

  15. Dee

    Welcome, welcome!

  16. I trust Melissa taught you the secret handshake.

    We have a secret handshake?? No wonder I always feel left out.

    Oh, and welcome, Jeff πŸ˜‰


  17. Thanks everyone!

    One assumes when I write my TMBG/Bush post, I’ll be able to work in “I built a little empire/On some crazy garbage/Called the blood of the exploited working class.”

  18. Kate217

    I’m thrilled to see you here, as I’ve been a reader of your Moderate Left blog for a while.

    You actually made one other glaring mistake in your intro. You do not “own” a cat, your cat “owns” you. πŸ™‚

  19. Melissa McEwan

    We have a secret handshake?? No wonder I always feel left out.

    Don’t pretend like you don’t know it. It’s the one where I grab your ass.

  20. Brynn

    Welcome, Jeff!! And Kate, too, as I was MIA when you first came aboard!!

  21. “Don’t pretend like you don’t know it. It’s the one where I grab your ass.”

    I understand why that’s not in the Shakespedia, it being a secret and all. πŸ˜‰

  22. Bravo! and welcome. Reading your post from an RSS stream, it was particularly well written, addressing my thoughts exactly as I was having them. The mind melding possibilities are endless when we simply anticipate one another, and the remarkable coherence of the liberal blogosphere is testament to this.

  23. Pingback: Daily Round-Up at Shakesville

  24. Welcome Sweetie, we need all the people of good intent that we can gather!

  25. Arkades

    Welcome, Jeff!

  26. Happy to see you here, Jeff. Always appreciate your comments and your posts elsewhere.

    When I was a Minnesotan, I hated the heat, but have learned to like it since moving to North Carolina. It’s really kind of pleasant; who knew?

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