September 8, 2020

"After years of accidents stemming from gender-reveal parties, the woman who is widely credited with starting the trend has a new message for excited parents-to-be: 'Stop it.'"

"'Stop having these stupid parties,' blogger Jenna Myers Karvunidis said in a Facebook post on Monday after learning about the El Dorado Fire. 'For the love of God, stop burning things down.' Karvunidis popularized the gender-reveal party when she threw one to announce her oldest daughter’s sex in 2008. She and her husband cut into a cake filled with pink frosting, and she wrote about the family event on her blog High Gloss and Sauce. But the increasingly dramatic, and often dangerous, events that her party spawned have left Karvunidis begging people to leave the trend in the past. 'It was 116 degrees in Pasadena yesterday and this tool thought it would be smart to light a fire' to announce his unborn child’s sex, she wrote. 'Toxic masculinity is men thinking they need to explode something because simply enjoying a baby party is for sissies.'... Her thinking also changed because of her daughters’ diverse range of gender expression. Her oldest daughter wears suits, she said, but another daughter cried when Santa Claus brought her Legos on Christmas because she thought it was a 'boy' toy. 'Now I think the whole thing is not great at all,' she told the Guardian. 'The problem is they overemphasize one aspect of a person.'"

From "A gender-reveal stunt sparked a California wildfire that has forced 21,000 people to evacuate" (WaPo).

70 comments:

tim maguire said...

I was with her until she got to “toxic masculinity.” Everything after that was garbage. Of course she thought of the gender-reveal party, as though that needed to be marked. And now she’s upset by how people are marking it and blaming men for the consequences of her self-promotion. Even while pleading with people to just be normal, she can’t help being a loopy sexist twit.

Darrell said...

Use jazz hands at all your parties. People need a safe space from noise makers like fireworks and loud voices!

Jamie said...

Well, they are a pretty dumb and unnecessary reason for a party, but I think she's overthinking it with all the toxic-masculinity garbage. I wonder if she'd feel the same (not about the exploding things but about the toxic masculinity) if she had sons instead of daughters...

Basically the gender-reveal gimmicks are a way to get all the male partners to go to a baby shower, aren't they? But is it really that hard these days? Once baby showers became drinking events and baby paraphernalia stopped being uniformly pastel and ruffly and traditionally feminine, I'd imagine everybody just started treating them like any other party.

But I'll admit, it does seem to cut against the biological-sex-versus-gender-expression argument (that argument being that only the latter is a real thing), to declare a baby's gender before the baby has chosen how to express it.

Mike Sylwester said...

Democracy Dies in Darkness!

Big Mike said...

Wait! Tens of thousands of acres burned. 21,000 people forced to evacuate. Did the article at least say whether the baby is going to be a boy or a girl? The Post article is behind a paywall but a Google search brought up a a similar article posted by CNN. But the CNN article veered off to discuss a similar wildfire in Arizona (42,000 acres burned in Arizona to announce that it’s a boy!)

William said...

Is toxic masculinity the sole or deciding factor in choosing to have a gender reveal party? Toxic feminism causes many women to make such errors in judgment.... Gender reveal parties, like baby showers, sound like the kind of thing women are into. I don't blame them. We all look for ways to make our ephemera seem like significant and important events..... Guys do like fireworks and bonfires however. I don't think that's toxic though. Stupid yes, but not toxic.

Clyde said...

Their whole frickin' state is on fire and they are setting off pyrotechnics for gender reveal parties? I think we've reached peak California.

Clyde said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
David Begley said...

“Diverse range of gender expression.” That phrase didn’t exist a dozen years ago.

Robert Roy said...

Wait, why the hell is wearing suits a "gender expression"? I increasingly feel like the transgender movement is just reinforcing rigid stereotypes and trying to force people into either/or choices. I've never felt the need to express myself as being a woman despite being a man who occasionally does cross-stitch.

buwaya said...

Im not sure who or what is sillier.

The very stupid "gender reveal" party thing, which are baby shower Part II.
Or this woman telling people not to hold parties.

One does not have to start forest fires to have a second bite at a baby shower.

Kai Akker said...

Our children were born well before "Gender Reveal" parties were, um, invented. Aren't humans great?! I can't believe we had to miss out on this cool trend.

Limited Perspective said...

Would you knock off the Babylon Bee satire. As you said, it's not that original or funny. The narcissist telling other people not to be narcissists has been done a thousand times. It's not original and not funny anymore.

And the crazy lady's kids becoming crazy it's been done enough already.

MikeR said...

She has blood on her hands, it seems. This is all her fault.
But she wants to blame it on men.

MayBee said...

It is just one aspect of a person.

I'm really not on board with the parties, though. It's the apex of the Instagram 'my life is for you to celebrate' culture. One more step in life to try to get other people to celebrate *you*.
In the meantime, there is a wondrous way to have a really surprising gender reveal and all you have to do to create it is...wait until the baby is born.

Rory said...

"Toxic masculinity is men thinking they need to explode something because simply enjoying a baby party is for sissies.”

Conspiracy theory consists largely of taking isolated instances and generalizing them. Bigotry largely consists of directing that generalization at some group, most of whom are just minding their own business and trying to get through life.

MadisonMan said...

"'The problem is they overemphasize one aspect of a person.'"
How does she reconcile this viewpoint with her scream at toxic masculinity?

tim in vermont said...

I have family that lives near this fire. This is the second fire this summer, the first one was arson, the arsonist was out on bail from a previous arson a few weeks before when he tried to set a house on fire, this time he walked along the road setting fields on fire. Arson should carry the death penalty in California.

Temujin said...

Our kids (my stepfamily) have all had multiple gender reveal parties for the grandkids births. I've never understood it, but what I've seen is that there is a lot put into it. And with successive years, births, and more of their friends doing it, there's now an amount of competition for the most creative, mysterious, interesting, and whatever else. The last one happened recently, during the Wuhan era. It was done with family and friends scattered all over the country, on Zoom. The camera kinda missed the timing of the indoor 'explosion' of confetti and other assorted things. Really, I'm not sure anyone saw it or got it. They ended up telling us all what it is, then we all hung up. Even during Wuhan the process had to be maintained.

it's ridiculous. Get a cake. Or, just tell everyone who asks. Then get on with parenting.

tim in vermont said...

Trying to entice men to go to a baby shower is a sin against nature in the first place.

iowan2 said...

Gender reveal parties, then 15 month later a birthday party for the little one that sets the parents back $2500, 2years after that, $5 grand for Ballett, and taekwondo lessons, a little Montessori, and all is good. For the parents that are social climbers.

Everyone has to learn that birthing babies is not a big deal.

Tom T. said...

So she now realizes that girls adopt a diverse range of gender expression, but she's still perfectly comfortable automatically throwing around the gender-essentialist term "toxic masculinity"? She hasn't learned anything.

tim in vermont said...

"'Toxic masculinity is men thinking they need to explode something because simply enjoying a baby party is for sissies.’.”

No, that’s stupidity. Baby parties aren’t for “sissies,” they are for women, toxic femininity is inflicting them on men. Crack could write a book on toxic feminine stupidity.

Mid-Life Lawyer said...

It's refreshing to see a disaster not blamed on Trump but merely on toxic masculinity. And in WaPo! Progress!

Fernandinande said...

“Diverse range of gender expression.” That phrase didn’t exist a dozen years ago.

It used be to be called a "personality".

It was 116 degrees in Pasadena yesterday

The highest temp in Pasadena for the past week was 109.

I suppose the silly person would like the Catholic church to quit using smoke to announce a new Pope: white smoke=good Pope; black smoke=evil Pope.

Quaestor said...

How does a "gender reveal" party work? Do the guests visually inspect the baby's genitalia?

Sebastian said...

"Toxic masculinity is men"

. . . fighting fires?

Darrell said...

We always shot a few hundred rounds each in the back yard range whenever we held a gender reveal party. We thought everyone did that.

mikee said...

Back in 1989, when I was a Georgia Tech postdoc, I did a gender reveal by posting the sonogram of my son on my office door, enlarged to several times life sized. It was a perfect crotch shot of my little fella, and never failed to surprise when faculty and students would stop to look. This was before gender reveals were a thing, so I wasn't announcing my child's sex so much as bragging about his equipment.

Wince said...

An accident "stemming from gender reveal party" sounds like a bris gone horribly wrong.

pdug said...

Girls must think they're nonbinary now if they like legos

Michael K said...

My family has had a whole series of new babies the past two years and I have never heard of such nonsense. We must be normal. Photos exchanged, photos on Facebook. Local celebrations. Only one in California. Maybe that's it.

JRoberts said...

"It was 116 degrees in Pasadena yesterday"

So what. Yucaipa and Oak Glen are a 60-90 minute drive from Pasadena.

I used drive through Yucaipa everyday to work in Oak Glen. It used to be a beautiful area (and quite conservative politically) until the loons from Los Angeles moved in and ruined it.

D.D. Driver said...

As a pedant, I must point out that these are not "gender" reveal parties anyway. They are Baby Sex Parties.

The gender-reveal party should not be scheduled for a number of years.

DanTheMan said...

Somehow, Mrs. DtM and I managed to tell our family and friends the gender of our children without fireworks, or a cake, or even a party, if you can believe that.

It can be done.

tommyesq said...

"It was 116 degrees in Pasadena yesterday and this tool thought it would be smart to light a fire' to announce his unborn child’s sex, she wrote. 'Toxic masculinity is men thinking they need to explode something because simply enjoying a baby party is for sissies."

Not a single thing in the article says that this, or any of the other fires that have been started by such devices, was decided, put together, and/or ignited by a man, and certainly not a man acting alone - in each instance it was a "couple." What are the odds that a guy decided to throw a gender reveal party on his own? Or does she simply assume that women are completely without agency and follow their husband's/boyfriend's/baby daddy's commands without comment or question?

Big Mike said...

I’m old fashioned enough to believe that gender reveal should happen when the baby slides out.

I also believe that pyrotechnic displays should only happen in your own back yard. Just burn down your own house and at most a few people dumb enough to have you for a neighbor.

Howard said...

Hahaha. From the previous headlines, I thought that the gender reveal party was for the coming out of a transsexual. Technically, it's a sex reveal party. Nevermind.

Paul Snively said...

Jenna Meyers Karvunidis: The problem is they overemphasize one aspect of a person.

Welcome to the party, pal.

Fernandinande said...


"Gender reveal" parties are examples of toxic femininity, women thinking they need to reveal something because they're sissies.

Roger Sweeny said...

"Toxic masculinity" I am getting so tired of hate masquerading as concern.

Mary Beth said...

I resent the "toxic masculinity" bit. I like exploding things and I consider myself totally feminine. I have never been to a gender reveal party and don't see the reason for them. When I had my kids, if people asked whether I knew if I was having a girl or a boy, I told them. No big deal, it's not like I invented having babies.

I can see why people are looking for alternatives to colored cake. That much food dye will have you questioning the state of your health the next time you poop. If you want to have a party to celebrate your baby's genitals, how about handing out packages for the guests to unwrap. Inside they'll find either a dildo or a fleshlight. That'll get the neighbors talking. Notoriety is almost as good as celebrity.

mockturtle said...

By all means, let's blame 'toxic masculinity'. Why is this not hate speech, if we're going to accede to such absurdity in opposition to free speech?

Can Of Cheese for Hunter said...

I despise all the parties women throw for engagement, wedding, baby,... in goes on an on...
f off already.

mockturtle said...

Maybe I'm old fashioned [or just old] but I liked it better back in the day when we learned the baby's gender when they were born. All these ultrasounds, under the guise of medical necessity, are unnecessary.

Ice Nine said...

Well of course - this was all about toxic masculinity. What a sexist dolt Katie Shepherd is.

I was dragged to one of these stupid, self-absorbed "gender reveal" parties once and they are about nothing but *toxic femininity*. The men could give a shit. Trust me, that blue smoke bomb "explosion" was for Mom, not for Dad.

dgstock said...

If there is any true social justice in the world this kid will be branded with the nickname Sparky.

Joe Smith said...

Sounds like she can't monetize it anymore.

If it weren't for toxic masculinity, she and the rest of her sex would be sleeping on grass mats in a lean-to and foraging for nuts and berries.

Instead, we asshole men have invented and built 95% of the things that allow her to lead a life unimaginable to kings of yesteryear.

Show some gratitude.

Surprised there's no dig at Trump.

Michael K said...

Instead, we asshole men have invented and built 95% of the things that allow her to lead a life unimaginable to kings of yesteryear.

There is a leftist (what else?) group investigating that 95% of the people in science textbooks are men. Serious problem. California has started with the electrical grid and air conditioning. Soon they will get it all dismantled.

Greg The Class Traitor said...

Karvunidis popularized the gender-reveal party when she threw one to announce her oldest daughter’s sex in 2008.

Whever wrote that will be cancelled.

Because there is no "biological sex", there's just "gender".

Haven't you been listening to the trans activists? The non-binary individuals?

Guildofcannonballs said...

Just like Patton had done battle in previous lives, so has this woman started previous fires, specifically directly 1871 Chicago.

Mrs. O'Leary, under different names, has been walking Earth for 400+ years causing fires, sometimes indirectly, and blaming it on men.

Also, some women with an oral fixation substitute B. Spears lyrics to "Toxic" to include the phrase "You're toxic, I'm s*&&*^% on ^&%^. I'm adDICted to you, don't you know that you're toxic" and that has something to do with all this claimed "toxic masculinity" too.

Tina Trent said...

A better analogy for "toxic masculinity" is "pernicious femininity."

In graduate school, I was "instructed" to substitute the term "vaginal integrity" for any occasion that might seem to call for saying out loud that someone "has balls." I personally could imagine no such occasion in an academic setting, but the gender-queers (their term, not mine) felt the need to proactively insist that we have one.

I have no idea what they say now that "vagina" is verboten territory as a synecdoche for "women."

But I'm sure there are cakes for all of these things.

mccullough said...

So is it a boy or a girl?

Earnest Prole said...

My wife hosted five gender reveal parties and called them all “childbirth.”

JAORE said...

OK, I understand the pink and blue. What colors do you assign to the other 32, no 64, no 77 genders?

If one of my grandchildren ever have a gender reveal party I'll load the explosion with mauve powder. Leave 'em guessing.

ALP said...

Boom = male asshole gender-reveal celebrant. Glitter = female asshole gender-reveal celebrant.

While the glitter doesn't harm in such a dramatic way, I think it gets into the nearby water systems and is a hazard to fish ect. Biodegradable glitter was invented for a reason.

Funny story. I was working at a historic garden that people often used for photo sessions. Very popular for that. The first time I ever heard "gender reveal" was when a young woman came up to me when I was working that day to ask if it was ok to host one at the site. I thought it was a party for someone who had gone through gender reassignment surgery!

NorthOfTheOneOhOne said...

Joe Smith said...

Sounds like she can't monetize it anymore.

Nah, she's trying to save her monetization with the 'Toxic Masculinity' quote. She can't tell her marks er...ah...followers not to have the parties because no one ever made money telling modern young women to not be vain. She probably does feel the need to distance herself from it in case she's name in a lawsuit. So, how do you accomplish both? Blame the men.

n.n said...

Sex and sex-correlatd gender. Clothing is a social issue, specifically society's compelling interest to normalize a favorable juxtaposition of the sexes: boy chases girl chases boy.

n.n said...

Sex and sex-correlatd gender. Clothing is a social issue, specifically society's compelling interest to normalize a favorable juxtaposition of the sexes: boy chases girl chases boy.

childbirth

The old-fashioned party as it were.

What colors do you assign to the other 32, no 64, no 77 genders?

The transgender or Rainbow spectrum: no blacks, no browns, and featuring the shredded remains of white. It's an exclusive party.

Guildofcannonballs said...

https://www.fadedpage.com/books/20171232/html.php#ch26

"Rule Four: The wife who keeps saying, “Isn’t that just like a man?” and the husband who keeps saying, “Oh, well, you know how women are,” are likely to grow farther and farther apart through the years. These famous generalizations have the effect of reducing an individual to the anonymous status of a mere unit in a mass. The wife who, just in time, comes upon her husband about to fry an egg in a dry skillet should not classify him with all other males but should give him the accolade of a special distinction. She might say, for example, “George, no other man in the world would try to do a thing like that.” Similarly, a husband watching his wife laboring to start the car without turning on the ignition should not say to the gardener or a passer-by, “Oh, well, you know, etc.” Instead, he should remark to his wife, “I’ve seen a lot of women in my life, Nellie, but I’ve never seen one who could touch you.”

Certain critics of this rule will point out that the specific comments I would substitute for the old familiar generalities do not solve the problem. They will maintain that the husband and wife will be sore and sulky for several days, no matter what is said. One wife, reading Rule Four over my shoulder, exclaimed, “Isn’t that just like a man?” This brings us right back where we started. Oh, well, you know how women are!" - Thurber

Yancey Ward said...

What do you want to bet that it was the mother who told the father to go get some fireworks for the party?

I'm Not Sure said...

"But I'm sure there are cakes for all of these things."

Hats, too.

wholelottasplainin' said...

To show how rotten this "gender identity" crap is, the portal for the Lahey Health organization includes separate fields for new patients to enter their "Legal Sex" and "Sex Assigned at Birth".

Science!!! Medicine!!

I next expect them to add a field for "Astrological Sign".

KellyM said...

All of these parties - bridal/Jack & Jill /baby showers are just stupid and a blatant money grab. And you can throw christening parties in the mix, too. Whatever happened to keeping private things private?

Blogger Fernandinande said...

"....I suppose the silly person would like the Catholic church to quit using smoke to announce a new Pope: white smoke=good Pope; black smoke=evil Pope."

Um, Fernandinande, it's white smoke = new Pope elected; black smoke = no election, voting continues.

JaimeRoberto said...

I guess calling it a Sex Reveal Party might attract the wrong crowd and some serious toxic masculinity.

Bunkypotatohead said...

Gov Newsome is gonna be upset if they didn't have masks on while they were setting the state on fire.

Kirk Parker said...

Tina,

Really? They didn't tell you to use the phrase "has a big brass vag"???

Charlie said...

Why are we assuming there are only two genders?????????

Big Mike said...

@Guildogcannonballs (9:50), do you mean you’ve found the woman responsible for the Great London Fire of 1666?

Tina Trent said...

I'm deadly serious: it was part of our orientation. I mean class orientation of course: sexual orientation took an eff of a lot longer.

The only information I should have been looking for was the closest door with an "exit" sign. Insane asylum. But now I'm glad I did it. It was a pointed political education in the insanity ahead.