Things that are not wars.

1.  Cupcakes.

2.  Restaurants.

3.  Pawn shops.

4.  football.

5.  Scrabble.

6.  junkyards.

7.  sororities, blogs, 6th grade, cliques.

8.  Parking your car.

9.  any sort of food, really.

10.  Decorating your house.

This meme has gotten really old and it bugs me.  War sucks.  Cupcakes do not suck.  Even losing a competition does not suck as much as war.  Grr.

(Still acceptable is Iron Chef‘s use of “battle” to refer to their secret ingredient.  Because it’s awesome, that’s why.)

#2:  I think I saw a Daily Show riff on this recently…  Ah yes, how Fox News was making the argument that the war on women is overblown and not really a war… and yet…

Grumpy readers:  what is the stupidest kind of “war” you have seen lately?

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37 Responses to “Things that are not wars.”

  1. Alyssa Says:

    I just saw an ad for “Craft Wars”…I think they’re going to make a “war” show about every domestic-type duty. What’s next? Stain Wars? Lawn Mowing Wars? Diaper Changing Wars?

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      ROFL. Oh man. As if mommy wars weren’t enough.

      Stain wars sounds like a pretty good idea though– lots of marketing opportunities. And no doubt good tips for saving clothing.

      • rented life Says:

        haha, and I thought of Stain wars as staining wood. As you might guess, I’ve given up on any war on the other kind of stain, but I love my wood projects :)

        I hate the mommy wars phrase–I feel like it adds to the isolation, especially when so many non-moms and moms are on the same page. If talk shows, etc, would stop pitting the moms against each other and the rest of us against each other, it would be nice.

  2. CG Says:

    I’m fine losing the diaper-changing war. You can have them all.

  3. bardiac Says:

    Drugs, terror, etc, all run by government officials whose nickname is “Drug [or whatever] Tsar,” because we really, really need a dictatorial approach to complex social problems. Except, not.

  4. Debbie M Says:

    Wow, a stupid, obnoxious idea that my employer is not using! Yea! We did hire a “Champion” for graduation, to siphon off huge piles of money, I mean to improve graduation rates, but I have not heard even one person mention any graduation wars!

  5. chacha1 Says:

    Gotta be contrarian and say actually cupcakes DO kind of suck, a lot of the time. Give me a good muffin anyday. These fancy-pants cupcakes I’ve tried, ever since they became the in thing, are just boring dry cake with a gigantic glob of overly sweet frosting. If I want that much sugar, I’ll eat a candy bar. Or a Hostess Sno-Ball.

    I do not, however, disagree with your basic premise. :-) “War” is definitely over-used and the over-use of the word weakens its impact. “War” should be considered the worst-case scenario, something to be avoided by every means available, not shorthand for a trivial contest.

    As to the conservative war on women … since it is and has been socially disruptive, economically destructive, physically violent, and motivated entirely by ideology, I think “war” actually qualifies as a descriptor here.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      chacha– that’s because people in LA don’t know how to use butter, seriously. It’s all about the frosting and appearance in LA and that sucks. The one good place to get cupcakes in the greater Los Angeles area is in a little shop in Eagle Rock right near Occidental. They’re not too sweet and they use actual butter.

      Agreed re: war on women, much more of a war than the faux war on Christmas (as the Daily Show points out).

      • oilandgarlic Says:

        Butter??? In cupcakes?! Oh the horror…to our skinny L.A. selves!

      • nicoleandmaggie Says:

        The best croissants we’ve found in the US are in Santa Monica… they not only use butter, they use cultured butter.

        Oh how sad, the internet tells me that they’re (Le Pain du Jour) under new ownership and the croissants are no longer as good. Sorrow sorrow.

  6. chacha1 Says:

    dammit, now I want a Sno-Ball!

  7. See Debt Run (@seedebtrun) Says:

    As much as I would prefer a cupcake war to an actual war any ol’ day, I agree that it belittles war in its real meaning. I think this happens so much, though, that most people aren’t bothered by it anymore. It’s been made cute (yes, I’m gagging) to pretend like a cupcake decorator is going to war. Kind of sickening if you think about it…which I hadn’t until reading this!
    -M

  8. Mados Says:

    I am not so sure about number 8.

  9. becca Says:

    Fox News, for coining (or popularizing) “war on marriage” and “war on Christmas” are Unfit To Opine about the “war on women”.

  10. bogart Says:

    I didn’t think I had anything to add to this discussion, but then I heard a sort-of related blurb on NPR last re: bullying. (Simplistic summary — bullying is bad and it’s good we’re addressing that, but not everything that is unkind constitutes bullying and plenty of what gets promoted on “reality” TV, etc., as good and funny is bullying. I’m more sympathetic to the first 2 points (though I don’t watch much reality TV), but, OK).

    Which reminded me of how I’m wondering at what point my crunchy-granola-raised-Kumbaya-why-didn’t-the-big-bad-wolf-and-the-pigs-just-talk-it-out rising kindergartner is going to learn about the bad stuff and how he’s going to react to that.

    DS’s kids’ recreational soccer team this past spring (his first such experience) had a kid on it who (at just 3!) had totally mastered the following idea and the mechanics required: Get soccer ball. Kick soccer ball and run toward goal. Kick ball into goal. He was a tow-headed charmer built like a (small) tank who at practices would do this over and over and over again while the other kids, DS included, would sort of futz around and not manage to stop him. When discussing the various characters on the team (after practice, with me), DS would refer to this one as “the bully.” You know, because he hogged the ball and could operate it effectively. We had to go over the idea that that is not bullying, though I’m not sure the point ever got through.

    • nicoleandmaggie Says:

      I heard that story on my drive home yesterday! (I think maybe that’s why I had a nightmare about having to hire Lindsay Lohan as a research assistant for a reality show that my school was sponsoring somehow.)

      Still, I think there’s something to be said for learning to behave professionally and politely. There are professional ways to react to inappropriate behavior, and it was awesome seeing them modeled in DC’s Montessori. I don’t particularly want to see DC on a reality show when ze grows up!

      The anti-bullying thing isn’t so prevalent here because we live in red rural nowhere where it’s still ok to bully homosexuals because the Bible says so (Note: it doesn’t).

      • bogart Says:

        Ooh, that’s a brutal nightmare. I am so sorry.

        Yes, absolutely. I am very definitely not in favor of bullying and I absolutely believe in behaving professionally and politely. I will note, though, that I think it’s also useful to be aware that not everyone does behave nicely all the time, that not every problem/disagreement can be solved through consensus/talking-it-out and indeed that there is a sort of a superficial niceness that is itself as or more brutal than just being mean (can you tell I live in the South, bless my heart?). Also, that playing soccer effectively (or even hogging the ball) does not constitute being a bully, an idea that still cracks me up.

      • nicoleandmaggie Says:

        Yeah, you’re right.

        Around here I don’t think anyone would even think those kinds of things though (playing soccer as bullying), because bullying is still ok. And there are professional ways to respond to bullies, and to stand up for oneself, even when bullies are not being professional.

  11. bogart Says:

    Makes sense. And actually one of my concerns for DS is that we live in a crunchy blue zone in a red state, so, right, the larger environment is similar to yours, but our immediate environment isn’t. Believe me, plenty of folks here have the same, ah, Biblical typo you referenced above.

  12. bogart Says:

    … and (and heaven knows this is an old trope, but both sides are old (the “war on …” / “battling … ” side and, though less so, the “actually …” side)) there turns out also to be IMO a well-written NYT piece on an aspect of this, here: http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/21/life-interrupted-fighting-cancer-and-myself/?hpw

    • bogart Says:

      … oh gee, my DH commented on the basics of that yesterday. Perhaps it’s time for me to start my 2012 campaign contribution activities.

  13. Pamela Says:

    Until they actually feature a fight to the death with these activities, I suggest the producers stop calling them wars!

  14. Anandi Raman Creath (@anandi) Says:

    I have to give props to my company, who agrees with your statement re: War. We used to have “War Team” and “War Room” meetings to discuss/argue pending issues prior to a software release, and that term has been actively phased out in favor of “Ship Room” or other non-violent terms. I like that they are deliberate about language in that way.

  15. Meredith Says:

    Absolutely with you on letting Iron Chef still battle out and agreeing with the rest–when desserts get so violent??


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