Posts

What the Hell are We Doing Here

What the hell are we doing here?

What the hell are we doing here? Well, a little history wouldn’t be amiss…

The two of us have been friends for a REALLY. LONG. TIME. More than 30 years. We are so lucky to have one another. We’ve provided each other support, through major life challenges, but also through the drudgery of everyday life, with unwavering encouragement, empathy and humor.

One day, in the midst of a typical sweary, bizarre text exchange, we came up with an idea for a mobile app business. Wouldn’t that be fun? We’ll make a kazillion dollars and make the world a better place at the same time. We laughed and went on with our lives.

A few months later, I was in the car listening to a podcast (this will be frequent narrative) and I heard an interview with Melinda Gates. She was talking about the economic impact of the unpaid labor that women do, every day, across the globe.  This idea was so obvious, but it was framed in a way I hadn’t considered before and directly related to the business idea we had.

So in typical fashion, I texted Aileen.  CALL ME!!!  I LEARNED SOMETHING IN A PODCAST!!!

Ring. Ring.

Felicia:  (in a very fast and excited voice)  “HEEELLLLO! Hey, you know that business idea we talked about months ago?”
Aileen: “Yeah.”
Felicia:  “We should DO it!  It’s a really good idea, I don’t think anyone else is doing it and you need to listen to the Call Your Girlfriend episode where Amina and Ann interview Melinda Gates.  It’s so amazing.”
Aileen:  “Sure.  I’m in.”

We met in Santa Monica and went to the Getty Villa.  We walked around pretending to look at the art for about a half an hour and then spent several hours at the cafe eating hummus, drinking wine and brainstorming.  We realized that in addition to our original app idea, we had half a dozen more ideas that were also compelling.

We holed up in a hotel room and came up with the name “Persistiny,” a made up word inspired by the BS Mitch McConnell pulled on Elizabeth Warren and the idea that we were going to have to jump some serious hurdles to do this and the greek art we had just seen and that the domain name was available.

We hired a lawyer to draft the business documents and Persistiny was born.

Great, now what?  We knew that our idea was good, but how to go about building an app and getting people to download it?  We realized that the strength behind the idea was in the community, the common experience that many women share through the unpaid labor they perform.  Clearly we needed to build the community first.  Let’s start this conversation and have some fun along the way.  We never stop thinking and we rarely stop talking, so let’s build a blog and social media platform where we not only share our story (which is one of white, liberal, cisgendered, heterosexual privilege), but let’s create a platform where women from all walks of life can talk about what unpaid labor means to them.  Of course, we’ll also talk about other things we love; food and booze and books and podcasts, mobile apps we like and mobile apps we hate, women we admire and let’s be honest, random thoughts that pop into our heads.

The whole idea here is to build a community, so if you’re interested in contributing to the conversation, reach out to us at info@persistiny.com.  We truly hope to build a lively and interactive community, which is going to require many kinds of voices.

So that, my friends, is what the hell we are doing here.  We hope you’ll join us.

Get In Touch info@persistiny.com

Back to the Beginning of RuPual's Drag Race

Back to the Beginning of RuPaul’s Drag Race

Okay. Deep breath. There have been 11 seasons of RuPaul’s Drag Race. On August 19th of this year it was announced that there will be a 12th season. Many marriages don’t last as long as this show. And do you know why? Because most people do not work as hard on their marriages as RuPaul works on this show. So, in honor of RuPaul’s work and Older Son’s and my dear friend Cynthia’s love of this show, I am going back to the beginning of RuPaul’s Drag Race. I will either rewatch or watch for the first time all 11 seasons. 

I am not committing to All Stars. There are 5 seasons of that show. That’s 16 seasons. I am only one person and I do need to do other things. If I end a gibbering idiot at the end of this, so be it. Join me as I go back to the beginning of RuPaul’s Drag Race.

You gotta work.

From an excellent article by  

Since “Drag Race” first aired in 2009, the conversation around identity and gender has shifted tremendously. For all the show has done to challenge its audience’s notions of masculinity and femininity, it has shied away, until the most recent season, from any serious discussion about the ways the drag community intersects the trans one. There have been trans queens on the show, but the topic is a touchy one in the drag community. For most drag artists, the point is the performance; it is not their sole identity. But for those queens who identify as trans or nonbinary, their stage persona is not necessarily a performance. The centerpiece of the show is the contestants’ transforming themselves into queens, and then, after each competition, taking off their wigs and removing synthetic breasts to reappear as men. For years, “Drag Race” prioritized entertainment over any nuances of the culture. Much of the queens’ vernacular, body language and movements come from the drag world’s — especially white queens’ — interpretation of black femininity. I’ve always been uncomfortable with that phenomenon, despite how much I enjoy the show. In his essay “ ‘Draguating’ to Normal,” the academic Josh Morrison argues that by using the bodies of women, people of color and other marginalized groups, “through an often loving, well-intentioned impersonation of them,” drag “unintentionally does them discursive violence.”

Veronica Mars Lives On

Veronica Mars Lives On!

Thank you, universe! I am so happy that Veronica Mars lives on to annoy the seedier denizens of Neptune. If you are a Marshmallow, you have already watched all of the new episodes of Veronica Mars on Hulu. If you are not a Marshmallow, then have I got a treat for you. Read more

Newsletters are News Again

Newsletters are News Again

I am weary of social media. The snide comments. The inflammatory headlines for boring articles. The ordinary people setting themselves up as experts on topics actual experts spent decades becoming knowledgeable about. The endless ads for washable shoes and girdles. I just want a guide to interesting destinations around the internet. Read more

Tend Early Adopter Program

Tend Early Adopter Program

It’s been three weeks since Tend made its debut on the App Store and Google Play, and it has been an absolute dream to see women using the app in the way we envisioned. What’s even more exciting is to get feedback on new and different ways women are using the app and the incredible ideas they have to make it even better!

For those of you not familiar, Tend is a task manager and journal that allows women to keep track of the many, many things they do each day to care for their families and loved ones. This work is vital, but so much of it is so invisible that it doesn’t even make it onto to-do lists, but it does consume a significant portion of our time.

Our guiding principle as a company is to build content and products that support women where they are. To do that, we HAVE to listen to the women who are using our products and continue to develop features that serve them. That’s where you come into the picture. We want to make Tend work for your life. That’s why we created the Tend Early Adopter Program.

Tend Early Adopters agree to use the app for a minimum of 30 days and answer a concise survey each week for 6 weeks. Each survey should take no longer than 5 minutes. If you prefer to do it all at once, you will have access to a comprehensive survey at the end of the program.

In exchange, we will send you a thank you gift of your choice; a Persisitny pouch, handcrafted in India by women using recycled saris, or a Tend icon Popsocket for your phone. I just put mine on, and I am obsessed with it! We’ll also enter you in a drawing for a $100 Amazon gift card.

The program runs through September 8th, so you only have this week to join! All you have to do is download Tend: Task Manager & Journal from the App Store or Google Play. You will receive an email immediately with instructions for joining the Early Adopter Program. We can’t wait to hear what you think!

TEND

It’s Here! Tend is Finally Here!

It’s been just over two years since Aileen and I sat in the cafe at the Getty Villa and fleshed out our concept for a mobile app that helps women to give value to the work they do each day for their loved ones. Today we are thrilled to announce that the first version of Tend: Task Manager and Journal is finally available for download on the App Store and Google Play.

With Tend, you can keep track of how you spend your day using an effortless task manager, then take a moment to journal your thoughts and reflect on your priorities. Here is what you can expect to see in Tend 1.0:

→ Add Daily Tasks: Select from a comprehensive list of caregiving jobs

→ Add Details: Note how many times you completed a task and how much time it took

→ Quotes: Get inspired with a library of motivational quotes to brighten your day

→ Add Journal Entries: Do a quick mental health check in, jot down a note, and add photos

→ Dashboard: See your important work in a snapshot, track it over time and see trends in your mood

→ Personalize: Use the profile to customize your task list and select sweary language in your quotes 

Tend is a journal & task manager, but most importantly, it’s an outlet for self-reflection and celebration. This is not about self-improvement or increased productivity. We already know that you’re doing amazing things. You deserve to acknowledge them.

This first version has many of the features we envisioned, but for to Tend to serve as many women as possible, we want your feedback! Tell us what you love, what you hate, and what’s missing by joining our Early Adopter Program. Once you download Tend, click on the link in the welcome email and opt into the program. It’s your opportunity to make sure Tend reflects your experience as a mother and caregiver.

If the Early Adopter Program is too much of a commitment, but you have questions, feedback, or concerns about the app, please reach out to us at info@persistiny.com.

We also encourage you to join our ongoing conversation about caregiving and your experience by joining our private Facebook group, Tending the Home Fires.

We are so pleased to share Tend with you. We can’t wait to hear what you think!

we are never meeting in real life

We Are Never Meeting In Real Life

Do yourself a favor and read We are Never Meeting in Real Life by Samantha Irby. Her work belongs in your life. She knows of what she speaks. You can open this book to any page, begin reading and instantly want to find the beginning of her thread. Most books aren’t like that. I can open them to any page, read a bit, feel happy or irritated then close the book and get on with my life. Not so with Irby. She pulls me in and keeps me right where she wants  me. Read more

Tina Fey

Older son once wrote on his Instagram profile, “I’m not real sure what goes here but Tina Fey, if you are reading this, I love you.” And I couldn’t have agreed with him more. Read more

RBG

Please God, let this woman live forever.

Amen.

All the Moms

All the Moms

Dear All the Moms,

We see you working. Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, we know you are doing your best.  Read more