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Dangerous Betty Friedan; Plus Drew Peterson

Somewhere along the line I came to think of Betty Friedan as the very mainstream mother of modern feminism, someone who dared to point out, back in the 1950s, that women were capable of much more than being housewives. I ran into her once in Sag Harbor: She stopped everything and gave me a good interview. What I didn't know is that, according to Human Events, her book "The Feminine Mystique" is one of the 10 most "harmful" books of the past two centuries. She made the list alongside Hitler, Marx and Mao. And also Keynes and Kinsey. Who knew??

[From the Post, June 21, 1999:

Down the sidewalk comes an elegant older lady, her face strikingly familiar. Isn't that . . . Betty Friedan? Indeed it is. The writers swarm Sag Harbor, as they have since Steinbeck moved here in the '50s, writing in a tiny backyard gazebo and taking his whaler every afternoon to the flounder beds.

"I know Tommy Harris. He is this sweet Southern person, and underneath is this sadistic imagination," Friedan says, laughing.

Friedan talks her way into a closed restaurant, the Paradise, and over a Cobb salad continues with this refrain, that Harris is the most well-mannered, charming fellow, a delightful dinner companion, positively courtly. And so it's really a mystery: How can it be that this consummate gentleman is the creator of one of the most fiendish characters in all of literature, Hannibal Lecter?]

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A-blog goes tabloid:

Most disastrous interview ever: Matt Lauer talked to this guy Drew Peterson about his missing wife. Peterson could not bring himself to show any emotion. Hmmmm....Something fishy here?

"Are you worried she may never come back?" Lauer asked about Stacy Peterson.

"I don't know, I have no idea," Peterson responded, then added: "Yes I am, my kids need a mom."

Peterson concluded the interview by once again asking Stacy to return. "Basically, I'd like to have her publicly show herself so we can clear this up," he said.

Peterson, who was a 29-year veteran of the Bolingbrook Police Department, has been named by investigators as a suspect in the disappearance of his 23-year-old wife. He has not been charged in connection with the cases involving either of his two wives.

More here.

And check this out: 'Stacy Peterson was 17 when she and the 47-year-old Peterson got engaged. When they met, Peterson was still married to his third wife, Kathleen Savio, who died under mysterious circumstances after he and Stacy tied the knot.'

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Boodle mining:

Tim brought up the Ombuds column on Tim Page. If you haven't read it, check out the wonderful piece Tim did for The New Yorker about Asperger's Syndrome: "My pervasive childhood memory is an excruciating awareness of my own strangeness." It's a courageous memoir.

Admiral Mudge tells us about boats:

' Tim, I hate to deliver another wee dent to your street cred, but your "one mast, one sail" definition of a catboat is wrong. What makes a "cat rig" is having the first mast all the way up in the bow (the "eye") of the boat; hence there is, for example, such as thing as a "cat ketch" (see this and this and especially this for examples. Here's an "environmentally friendly" one -- so it says -- designed to track whales. A popular type of small boat common to New England and the Chesapeake, called a "Sharpie," was often cat-rigged or even cat-ketch-rigged. See this.

By Joel Achenbach  |  November 19, 2007; 1:03 PM ET
 
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