Raging Grannies join 5000 in Montreal pro-choice march

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martin dufresne
Raging Grannies join 5000 in Montreal pro-choice march


martin dufresne

My tomatoes-pelted Benedict XVI impersonation made the front page of Montreal's free [url=http://www.readmetro.com/show/en/Montreal/20080929/1/1/]daily[/url] along with the [url=http://www.raginggrannies.com/]Raging Grannies[/url], reaching a million Montrealers! (Note subtle reference to [url=http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pataphysics]Pataphysics[/url] in my papal crozier...)
A very supportive [url=http://www.readmetro.com/show/en/Montreal/20080929/1/3/]article[/url] about the demo and the issue was printed on page 3 of that issue of METRO, with another photo.

[ 30 September 2008: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]


(me mom's a raging granny too)


Why the spotlight on the Raging Grannies? It was a very important demonstration, all in all.

Sadly, I wasn't there as I had a housing co-op general assembly. [img]frown.gif" border="0[/img]

martin dufresne

The spotlight on the Raging Grannies (and the Pope!) is because of the MЙTRO photographer's choice. (Did you open the link?) It did give a very festive, kick-ass demo a choice front page spot in the most widely-read media in the city (not a common occurence for feminists in a mainstream media.)
Sorry you weren't there. I hope you can make next Sunday's anti-Harper demo, which should be another great success:


Ne manquez pas la grande manifestation unitaire dimanche prochain le 5 octobre а Montrйal.

Une grande manifestation partira du Square Dorchester (angle Peel et Renй Lйvesque / Mйtro Peel). Le rassemblement pour le dйpart est а 12h30; la manif sera suivie d'un grand rassemblement populaire en face de la Place des Arts; le tout devrait se terminer vers 15h00.

Les thиmes abordйs lors de ce rassemblement seront [b]les droits des femmes, l'environnement, la culture, la guerre, le travail (incluant l'assurance-emploi), la lutte contre la pauvretй (incluant le logement) et les droits des peuples autochtones[/b], en lien avec les politiques et
les intentions conservatrices.

[url=http://www.unissonsnosvoix.ca/]Video vignettes of Quebeckers explaining why they stand up to Harper (French)[/url]

[ 01 October 2008: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]


Yes, I'll definitely be there (Cat-goddess willing) on the 5th. I put up a notice at Bread and Roses and was planning to do it here and at En Masse as well.

Yep, saw the grannies and the Pope and had a good laugh - though you make a much friendlier Pope than the dour Benny Ratzo. JP2, who was just as rightwing in substance, did seem like a friendlier-type guy, which is why the old fart was so "beloved". Guess we are fortunate that this old Inquisitor Pope -yep, headed the relooked office of the inquisition (now "Doctrine of the Faith", if I recall - don't feel like looking it up on the Vatican site) has so much less charisma.

I was taken up with tenants' rights stuff all weekend - one of the people organising a meeting for tenants requesting a place in a new co-op development (in the notorious slums on Christophe-Colomb north of Jarry, which the city has taken over from the slumlord and is in the process of thoroughly redoing) and my own co-op. All the tenants' associations will be marching under the banner of the parent association FRAPRU, calling for "Billions for housing, nothing for war".

I think the Grannies bother me more as I near the age I could be one of them (as a boomer, of course I could biologically be a grandparent). Sure, they are playing on the stereotype of dotty but kind and wise older women, but at the same time they make me cringe a bit because I feel their schtick is reinforcing such outlooks.

Any younger demonstrator who calls me "Madame" will be guaranteed to get an earful for a good half-hour. Up with such contempt I will not put - I'm not their fucking mother.

martin dufresne

I haven't studied Ratzinger closely, but I have to work at staying more in character (hunched up and the evil grin) if I want to get on Letterman or "Tout le monde en parle"...

The Raging Grannies may exploit the "dottiness" stereotype you mention, but their songs and chutzpah are uncompromising. A friend of mine who is 55 and dresses what could be called "dotty" says that many young folks thank her for making ageing seem like a creative, fun, in-your-face place to be. Helps them avoid giving up on their life early and devolving to some stereotypical subservient mommy track.

[ 01 October 2008: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]


Depends on what you mean by "dotty". But it is so hard for women over 40 to find interesting clothing that doesn't look a) corporate b) mumsy c) designed for their teenaged daughter or niece or d) for their elderly mum that it is a dilemma for all of us.

But most of the people my age, men or women, don't dress "dotty", "geezerish" or "old" - I don't mean the kind of people who dress like overaged teenagers, but just in normal clothing a 30 yr old might wear too. I can't bear being pushed into the desexualised, dehumanised "50 plus" category...

That really does bother me about the whole Raging Granny act, fearless though they are. Ageing isn't "fun", it is the pits, though the alternative is admittedly worse. Nor is it a place to be, it is a biological process. But while ageing isn't remotely fun, people who are no longer in the first bloom of youth certainly can be, and I know a lot of young codgers and stick-in-the-muds.

[ 01 October 2008: Message edited by: lagatta ]

martin dufresne

Well, I disagree with your slagging creative clothing as something "designed for their teenaged daughter or niece". Isn't some ageism built into your putdown of women pushing limits with their appearance as the behaviour of "overaged teenagers"?

[ 01 October 2008: Message edited by: martin dufresne ]


Did you change sexism to ageism as I was working on my post?

I SPECIFICALLY stated "men and women", because it is very sexist indeed to decry women who dress like 15-year-olds as "mutton dressed as lamb" while giving Mick Jagger a pass.

"people my age, men or women, don't dress "dotty", "geezerish" or "old" - I don't mean the kind of people who dress like overaged teenagers, but just in normal clothing a 30 yr old might wear too".

How can it be ageist if I'm talking about people of my own cohort? And I certainly don't want people to have to be conventional ("corporate" or "mumsy"), but you know the kind of person I mean, of either gender.

Martin, I know you don't follow blogs where women moan about the lack of attractive - and creative - clothing available for our cohort, but when we talk about clothing for teens, we do not mean anything "creative" or "artsy-fartsy" (I'm rather artsty-fartsy myself, given the fields I work in), we mean what could be called bluntly "le look pйtasse/pitoune" - with very low-cut jeans and teenie tops, and the rest of that. The stuff you might find at Le Chвteau, or American Apparel - the latter with its borderline paedophilic ad campaigns...

martin dufresne

Hi Lagatta,
I am not sure I understand your allusion here ("Did you change sexism to ageism as I was working on my post?"), but it's ageism I was addressing. I often do some back-editing but not in this case.
Re: sexism, since you mention it, isn't it clear that women are under a lot more pressure about their looks than we men are? And this only gets worse as one reaches a "dignified" age... Hence my friend's experience of youngsters of both genders elated at seeing that someone can still dress and look kooky at 55 and beyond - a key message of the Raging Grannies.
I am sure we agree in supporting any woman (or man for that matter) dressing and looking as s/he damn wants, regardless of labels such as "overaged teenager", "dotty", "pйtasse", "pitoune" that suggest one must only look a certain way, given one's age. Especially if one is female.
(Ya heard it from the Pope!)