First, the yoga pants. Never mind the fact the guy was "joking". Most women, young or old, look slatternly in yoga pants. At the moment, I forget what we call them in the UK. It is surely not "pants" which here means either "underpants" or "terrible." (Leggings?) At any rate, some poor chap in the USA wrote a letter to his local paper complaining about women wearing yoga pants in the same way we might complain about men wearing Speedos, and the result was death threats, a parade of yoga pants and world infamy.
Now, yoga pants are comfortable, and the black ones play into some inner female delusion that tight black leg-coverings somehow render those legs wonderfully attractive. I have some myself, which I confess I have occasionally worn to Tesco, not just for the gym or striding about the Historical Policies in my wellies. I hereby apologize to my neighbours and beg clemency on the grounds that I always wore a longish coat with them.
Keeping inside the law, women "can" wear whatever we want but that won't stop other people from thinking we look like right daft cows when we wear it. It would be loving our neighbours as ourselves if we presented a inoffensive appearance. Meanwhile, wouldn't we rather give off "kind of girl I'd like to marry" signals instead of "Amsterdam window" vibes?
Second, "scientific" study purported to show that men aren't attracted to smart women. This is old news, but it appeared in my Facebook homepage yesterday, and various women of conservative mien fussed about it in the comments. I wrote something like, "Men like smart women. Smart women know that men aren't attracted to women who need to best them in 'who's smarter' contests." A male friend followed that up, and a woman contradicted him, so I gave him a Facebook "like."
I wish I had known in grade school how socially important it is to give "likes" to boys and men. At this late date, I cannot think of any natural opportunities that arose. I suppose "Hey, great presentation in Famous Canadians class!" or "Boy, you really know how to draw a tank" would have been appropriate.
According to Watching the English, however, English girls and boys flirt by hurling insults at each other. On the other hand, Watching the English stresses that the English are very uncomfortable with bragging and boasting and are wont to say things like, "Well, yes, er, um, I did go to Oxford, but I'm quite thick, really."
Thinking about it, "Yes, I do have all the hallmarks of high intelligence, but I'm quite thick really" is a way of showing a man that you are not in competition with him and are therefore a restful personality, such as he might want to find at home. What is needed is a touch of old-fashioned (and highly male) compartmentalizing and hypocrisy. There's a way to be at work, and there's a way to be at parties. Of course, this is only if you care to inspire affection in male hearts. If you don't, brag as much as you like, Harvard grad. How dare that highly eligible man think he might have had a chance against your mighty brain.
Third, I was asked to join a Polish dancing troupe, but I thought that was a bit too much cultural appropriation for a Toronto woman with nary a drop of polskiego krwi in her żyłach. Also, dancing almost always makes me feel foolish. Still, I was up late browsing this exciting site. There are few circumstances under which I would wear traditional Polish folk dress (e.g. as a disguise while fleeing an assassin), but I have loved Polish folk motifs since I was a tiny child. A folkowy raincoat would be smashing.
Fourth, I see that a Trappist abbot is demoting himself so that his abbey isn't shut down. It is not made clear why his abbey is in danger, but I suppose it is because the monks have returned to pre-conciliar Trappist ways. I simply cannot imagine why certain Catholics hate Catholic traditions so much and want them banished to the past. Fifty years of praying for vocations and harping about "the young", but then when the young discover traditional vocations... Eeek! No! No! It's working! Shut it down!!!!! Apparently a trend is "sign of the times" only when it is ugly, cheap, easy or of interest to an ethnographer.