There appears to be a specific racist micro-trend for white lady celebrities using black and Asian women as disparaging examples of what they don't want to be.
It started when food writer Alison Roman name-checked the people's princess Chrissy Teigen and professionally inoffensive Marie Kondo as 'horrifying' sell-outs. Alison's big racist mistake was failing to mention any of the many, many, many not-Asian women who have also been more successful than her. Indeed, I can attest to the fact that it's much easier to sell Gwyneth Paltrow as a villain than Marie Kondo (who has not acknowledged the viral s**t-show).
Two hours after Chrissy tweeted that she was 'bummed' and the internet pointed out Alison's racist misogyny, the food writer apologised privately and publicly to Teigen. Soon after she wrote a much longer apology in which she interrogated her white privilege and took full responsibility for her words, and gave her email address for feedback. Chrissy had publicly forgiven her - and then last week The New York Times put Alison on leave.
Lana Del Rey must have fancied some of the action - because no sooner than the internet had processed Roman's cancellation, Del Rey threw her hat into the tone-deaf Olympics with a bizarre Instagram post describing her "question for the culture".
Lana started by listing a series of black female artists who "have number ones with songs about being sexy, wearing no clothes, cheating etc". Only one of those mentioned was white - Ariana Grande (it's possible Del Rey didn't know Grande is white, thanks to her dedication to a deliberately confusing shade of spray-tan).
Lana wasn't happy that she wasn't enjoying the same response to her songs "about being embodied, feeling beautiful by being in love". Incredibly, she believes that as a 'delicate' (white, middle-class woman) she is not represented in feminism. Incredibly, she describes herself as "not not a feminist". Incredibly, she doesn't appear to know that Nicki Minaj and Cardi B's sexuality comes with lashings of criticism, shaming and overt racism.
Lana says she's accused of "setting women back hundreds of years", but that's an accolade usually reserved for Nicki and Cardi too; she credits herself with having "paved the way for other women to stop 'putting on a happy face'," as if the 1970s never happened.
Despite the patient explanations of why her post was racist, Lana doubled down, saying she wasn't listing women of colour, but her favourite singers; that she wasn't advocating for white women, but for a 'delicate personality'.
Alison Roman quickly learnt that not identifying as a racist doesn't mean you're not a bit racist. "The fact that it didn't occur to me that I had singled out two Asian women is one hundred percent a function of my privilege (being blind to racial insensitivities is a discriminatory luxury)". Lana's not there yet, or is engaged in some manner of performance art: either way, to use her turn of phrase: it's not not racist. The diatribe was all in aid of the two (two!) books of poems she's publishing, as well as an album out in September.
Good luck with that, hun.
It's being said often enough at the moment, but it really is important to remember the small joys and little pleasures.
For example, up until last week I hadn't thought about Ben Foden once. If you had told 2019-me that I would go two full months without losing sleep over Ben Foden, I wouldn't have believed you. The man just couldn't stop himself. But lockdown and a heavily pregnant new wife seemed to have slowed down this relentless bro, and his stream of infuriating public pronouncements.
Until, that is, last week, when my sleep was cursed once again by Foden and the perhaps inevitable headline, "Ben Foden films wife in labour as she calls him a 'f**king a*****e'."
Foden moved to the US a couple of years to play out his waning rugby career. He defended his lacklustre contribution to the sport by claiming that, in fact, this was the year he was planning on, "knuckling down and being a player". He said: "I'm going to be 35 in the summer and maybe it is time to get out ... I wanted to help get New York on the rugby map, maybe win a championship with them and go out on a high, but obviously that can't happen now." Nice save Ben, that is definitely what sports history will remember you as: the man who would have put New York on the rugby map, if it hadn't have been for that pesky pandemic.
Mother-in-laws are the worst. Self-centred, boring - always banging on about how you should stick to building space rockets instead of tweeting dangerous anti-scientific pandemic nonsense aligning yourself with the Trumps. The worst!
Elon Musk knows this. His mother-in-law (or, to be exact, the mother of his partner and grandmother of his new baby) has been firing off exasperated tweets about Musk's alienating and problematic behaviour since the dawn of Corona.
Sandy Garossino is not the only woman who can't believe the sort of man her child has procreated with, but she's definitely the one with the broadest public consensus: a few short months ago Musk was untouchable - he got away with calling the caver who helped in the 2018 rescue of trapped Thai schoolboys a 'pedo'. For years, accusations of prolific lying, failing to give due credit, and safety violations and poor treatment of employees have failed to take the sheen off Teflon Wonderboy Elon Musk - the man with a more dedicated, adoring and cognitively dissonant fanbase than Michael Jackson.
At the height of cancel culture, Musk - a white cishet billionaire man - thrived. But when the global pandemic arrived, he found himself on the wrong side of history, tweeting: "The coronavirus panic is dumb", and - with all the confidence of a white cishet billionaire - he decided to stay there, offering unfounded Trumpian predictions about infection rates and statements about children being immune. Musk apologists have found it difficult to defend their hero amidst his defiance of his state's lockdown order, reopening his California Tesla plant and bringing thousands of employees into work.
Last week, Musk jumped the shark by urging his followers to 'take the red pill' - a Matrix reference that has been co-opted by the alt-right/men's rights activist lot to refer to their ideology; Ivanka Trump said, "Taken!"; the director of the Matrix replied 'F*** both of you'; Sandy Garossino engaged in the time-honoured passive-aggressive tradition of sub-tweeting (tweeting about someone, without tagging them) "If your partner went through a challenging pregnancy and childbirth in the last two weeks, and you were over 16 years old, would you be blaring MRA bulls*** on Twitter right now?" Mothers-in-law, eh?