On Mother's Day I put together a couple of video slideshows: one for my mother, and one for Catie's mother, Lisa. Both videos featured musical accompaniment from Frank Sinatra. In these lean times (pretty much my whole life) , a video is my go-to gift for birthdays and holidays, and Sinatra is my go-to music for Mother's Day videos. My mom is probably a bigger fan of Johnny Mathis, or at least she used to be, but I can't really do too much with Mathis. He's too romantic for your Mom, but Sinatra is all-encompasing, and all Moms love him.
I really liked the video I made for Lisa. It was a collection of captures from Catie's "Silly Face Challenge" set to "You Make Me Feel So Young". I just love a Catie Wayne slide show. God knows how many I've made over the last three years, and this one was really one of my favories. I showed it to my friend Victoria. Victoria is in her sixties, and a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. She's an intelligent, competent, kind-hearted woman who loves animals but nevertheless has a jagged streak of rage running right through her. She's always angry-- at other drivers, at characters on TV, at Republicans, and, lord knows, at me.
But she loved my little slideshow video. "This is the best video you've ever made.", she said. "As a feminist..., she trailed off, and begain again. "This young woman owns her body. She owns herself. Do you know what I mean?"
I didn't know what Sinatra or silly faces had to do with it, but I've always felt that one of the reasons why Catie returned to the internet was a primal need to claim her own image. Yeah, she needed money for college, and what she said over and over about giving other people a lift, touching people's lives, that's definitely real. But claiming her own image was always on the agenda.
Or was it? I mean, did she ever really think about it like that? She just walked in, and she owned it.
They fought her tooth and nail, the Men Who Would Be Queen. They bitched about her copyrighting her videos. Their reasons for complaining were mostly symbolic, but if you'd take her side, they'd complain that her reasons for establishing copyright were mostly symbolic, as if their symbolic reasons mattered more than hers. You'd see them in Unichan lamenting the time "before Boxxy became a product." But what they were really complaining about was that Boxxy had become a person. A meme doesn't need the money from t-shirts. A person needs money, not only for college and for a webcam that isn't shitty, but simply to live.
The Queen had needs, and she wanted to rule herself.
But did she fight them back? Not really, because she didn't have to.
Most people, men and women alike, would have fought anyway, they would have gotten into long bickering flame wars. But even though a majority of the public still see Catie as her Boxxy persona, Catie herself is all about quiet authority.
She just owned it. Because she owns it.