A post today at SocImages about today’s Father’s Day doodle at Google talked about the class implications of using a necktie to symbolize “father.” As Lisa Wade discusses in the post, this directly positions “father” as a middle class, white collar person who is the family breadearner because of his office job. It also calls to the “tradition” (often mocked) of giving such a father a necktie as a Father’s Day gift. (One might recall an early episode of The Cosby Show where Cliff demands better Father’s Day gifts because of the plethora of tacky gifts his children have given, one of which was a necktie which had lights spelling out dad that blinked when a switch was flipped.) The necktie = dad idea suggests that the importance of a father is directly linked to his work outside the home, not his work fathering. Lisa asked: “Can you imagine a Mother’s Day symbol emphasizing her workplace instead of her time at home?”
This led to me wonder how Google has been depicting mothers, if dads are neckties and therefore breadwinners. Fortunately, I didn’t have to idly think about it, because Google archives their holiday/event related Doodle changes. If you go back, you can see the differences between Mother’s Day and Father’s Day doodles starting in 2000, the first year they had them.
Rather than steal Google’s bandwidth or download all their images, even though this is for critique purposes, I’ve instead linked to each doodle artwork in the descriptions below.
So over the span of 11 years of doodles, we see not a single depiction of Mother’s Day having anything to do with humans mothering. Mother’s Day is symbolized every year and in every doodle with a flower somewhere, and once with a maternal animal. Actual women, while still doing a supermajority of childrearing work worldwide, do not figure in Google’s representations of what Mother’s Day is about in any fashion, in any country, in any year.
Additionally, one Mother’s Day doodle is a retread of a “women’s day” doodle, neatly solidifying the overarching theme of the Mother’s Day doodles: feminized and pretty and floral, but not showing actual women, and not certainly not depicting women doing the work that earns them the honor of the holiday to begin with.
Father’s Day began with paternal animals, the mythical “papa bear.” Once the doodles segued to humans, for the first several years the men were not shown doing the work of fathering, but instead having a day off from any fathering duty and in two instances, not paying any attention to their children who were engaged in activity that requires adult supervision (using a lawnmower and snorkeling). Where human children are shown, the majority are depicted or coded as male; the only clearly presented female child is dressed in a bikini. Only one of the logos has a depiction of people who might not be white, but the people are very small and it’s quite ambiguous.
Several doodles go to the necktie (and hat) representation of a white collar and/or upper socioeconomic class breadwinner father. The hammock father doodles allude to a middle class homeowning family (with so much lawn the maintenance of it wears the father out) with a father who deserves to set aside all responsibilities, including the safety of his children, because he works so hard.
All in all, these holiday doodles are fairly problematic. They definitely portray a message about the merit of women and women’s work (little to none) to whomever in Google’s vast team is responsible for the doodles. They also show how easy it is (and how willing Google is) to reinforce stereotypical western societal stereotypes and privileged class mores with repeated depictions of white, middle+ class men who are only engaged with their kids during playtime.
Google has previously come under fire for their non-holiday doodles, which celebrate historical events and the birthdays of notable historical figures. There has been a stunning paucity of commemoration of women and their achievements, especially women in the realms of science or academia that has only recently began to turn around. Interestingly, Shelby Knox wrote in that critique:
And yet here, on the day celebrating women solely via motherhood status, Google disappears the women, once more.
…we’ve lived with the myth that men created the world and everything good in it for long enough. As long as men get to designate who and what in history is important, young women will continue to learn that all their sex has contributed throughout all of history is their wombs.
Google says that they take feedback seriously so I offer only this suggestion: either give mothers some parity of depiction or just admit that you’re not interested in even basic recognition of women via the Google Doodles, so that we’ll know.
Er, right. Because ripping off service workers and making assumptions about their monthly budgets and salaries doesn’t make you an asshole, asshole. Tip your fucking bartender, jerkwad. And the person who cuts your hair. And your waiter.
Every time I see or hear “a tip is something you earn” it comes packed with this subliminal “dance, monkey, dance!”
No. Understand that the gratuity you pay is part of the service you pay for. If someone is atrocious, they deserve less tip. But if someone does their job right, you tip them right. For the most part, that’s all they can do, because there isn’t really much of a difference between doing it right and doing it A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! I’m thinking of Moe in that episode where he turns the bar into a family restaurant and Rod and/or Todd eat the burning nachos off his head.
Factor in tip before you go somewhere where tips are expected. If you do not think you’ll be able to tip, do not go there. Find an alternative. Buy less food, buy cheaper food off the menu. If you can pay $15 for a meal at a restaurant with a waiter, you can probably buy something just as nourishing and maybe as satisfactory for $12 plus tip. I hate how capitalistic this sounds but tipping your serviceperson is a part of the expense. I’m a caterer. I deliver and set up large orders, mostly for meetings. The expected tip is 10-15%, with 20% for “difficult” orders. That doesn’t happen. If the order is large enough, 5% is not disappointing for me. In the past week, I’ve had several $500 orders that tipped me zero. You always have orders that tip zero, because people think that if they’re already paying so much for their food, they shouldn’t have to tip you. Because that’s too much money. Not even a few dollars! Though a coworker did recently get an ELEVEN CENT tip on a $300 order. I recently got a $100 tip on a $4000 order. It was technically $50 because it took two of us to get the whole thing there. Yes, I was disappointed in a $50 tip. But I also spent the entire week preparing that order, and I worked hours overtime the nights before. I gutted my car of absolutely everything in order to make room for only half of it, and my room is currently filled with the innards of my car. That order gave me nightmares. There should be an automatic gratuity charged for orders intended to feed more than 500 people.
At least they gave something. Every one of these $500 orders that tip nothing — your meeting does not need every single platter of food you ordered. That food is not going to disappear at the end of the meeting, you WILL throw some of it out. You do not need that many sandwiches. You could order two fewer sandwiches, still feed everyone fine, and have enough leftover to pay me ANYTHING. Instead, you actually look at the receipt as you sign it, see the line that reads “Tip:” and just… ignore it.
And I don’t care if you’re a church either. Whenever church people don’t tip me on three-figure orders, they give me this look like, you did a good deed, son. Not a fucking charity, your church organizational meeting does not need that much food, give me the fucking money you owe.(via ironstring)
See, here’s where I have a problem: if you’re a caterer, either raise your prices to reflect the actual work involved in providing your service or include an automatic gratuity in the bill. I would never think to tip a caterer (and the owner of a business, traditionally, is never tipped, for obvious reasons) because the cost of the labor should be a part of the charge that’s written in black and white on the bill, not passed off to me to make a judgment call on.
Businesses and business owners continue to do this. They set artificially low prices on their products that don’t take service into consideration, they short-shrift their labor, and then it somehow becomes the customer’s fault when we’re not properly making up the difference, even in places where there’s no good reason — like catering, or the person who drives the hotel’s airport shuttle or the person who delivers flowers or pizza — for tips to be necessary to ensure that the person is properly compensated.
It’s really kind of rich that this is constantly being positioned as customers being inappropriate, customers being cheap, customers being assholes who don’t value good service. Business owners are the ones who are really being cheap and exploiting labor. Go rant at your bosses who think it’s reasonable to pay you “server minimum” (still under $3 an hour in some states) or even national minimum wage to serve $20 and $30 entrees. Go rant at your bosses who could easily put an automatic gratuity on catering orders or similar services, but don’t or won’t. Go rant at your bosses who could make the “free” airport shuttle $1 per bag (which is about what people tip) and increase your salary.
Yes, it’s a cultural expectation — but not universal. The barista at the Starbucks does nothing more for me than put ice and coffee or ice and tea in a cup, but I’m meant to put a dollar in her tip jar for that. Meanwhile, at the Quiznos next door, my sandwich is made directly to order, extra red pepper, not so much lettuce, hmm a little more honey mustard please, and there’s no tip cup. But those employees aren’t making more than the Starbucks barista per hour, and don’t have Starbucks benefits, either. Where are the rants about that?
We need to get realistic. This is a labor-management issue. This is not a employee-patron issue, or rather, it shouldn’t be. It is not my job to directly pay or enhance the wage of someone else’s employee and I resent like hell that when I don’t do so to the employee’s satisfaction, I’m the asshole, and not the person who hired them at $3.50 an hour and was entirely the one who said “dance monkey dance” if they wanted to make an actual living wage.
Nina Funnell, discussing Internet abuse and cyberbullying. Be advised that this article opens with a description of a violent physical assault and attempted rape and includes samples of hateful abuse from email/comments sections. (via meloukhia)
This was my 7777th like, so I felt reblogging was appropriate. Beyond this, it is a fabulous quote (and I expect it to be a fabulous article when I read it in just a moment).(via criptheatrequeer)