Sadie Hawkins Day! I didn’t know anything for sure about it. The vibrations though with which the name permeates our culture and whatever the holiday celebrates have always seemed a wee bit strange and a wee bit weird but also lighthearted. It is celebrated on November 13th 1 and lo and behold today is November 13th so I feel ordained and oddly compelled to inform myself of the wisdom or lack of wisdom passed on by this Holiday.
It would appear to be a very American holiday but the Scots and my Irish ancestors might argue with that since they celebrate something comparable on February 29th called of course “Leap Year.”2 But that is another story!
The American story is that Al Capp, a famous and brilliant cartoon artist of the last century,3 depicted in his daily cartoon, Lil Abner, the trials and tribulations of a hillbilly town called Dogpatch. The most powerful and the richest man in Dogpatch was named Hezekiah Hawkins who had a daughter named Sadie and at the advanced age of 35 she had not married. Sadie was also “the homeliest gal in all them hills” and her father was scared that she would spend her life at home – as a spinster, a terrible and humiliating fate for any woman in Dogpatch. 4
So this locally powerful and rich man declared a Sadie Hawkins Day whereby all the eligible bachelors would enter a race, Sadie would run after them, and what ever man came in last had to marry her. The spinsters of Dogpatch loved this arrangement and so did the readers/followers of the cartoon.5 So by popular demand Capp had to have a Sadie Hawkins Day every year. The first Sadie Hawkins Day was on November 13th, 1937 and it continued to be celebrated every year for 40 years.6 Two years after it began, high schools and colleges across the country started having a Sadie Hawkins Day where girls asked boys for dates, an unheard of practice before then.7
In its early years, Sadie Hawkins Day was regarded as an empowerment day for women.8 Women could do the asking and didn’t have to endure the embarrassment of sitting around until someone asked them to dance etc. In later years, however, with the onset of feminism, Sadie Hawkins Day came to be regarded as misogynistic.9 After all, Al Capp referred to Sadie as the homeliest woman in Dogpatch, and Al Capp himself, far from being a rescuer of women, had a reputation of being a philanderer and a sexual harasser.10 Goldie Hawn wrote of his effort to seduce her and there were hints that he also tried to molest Grace Kelly.11
But in his later years, Al Capp who had dedicated much of his life to helping the less fortunate in society, helped the female cartoonist Hilda Terry to get accepted into the National Cartoonist Society, a society which had a policy of denying women admission.12
Capp was definitely a complicated figure and for feminist scholars a controversial one as well. He was widely accepted by critics as a brilliant satirist and humorist in the vein of such famous satirists as Jonathan Swift, Mark Twain, Dostoevsky, and Rabelais.13 Because the characters of Dogpatch were regarded worldwide as a blistering critique of the American South,14 his portrayal of women despite his own sexist problems, can also be seen as a critique of men’s misogynist conceptions and perceptions of women. In one of his public statements, he said, “The real powers in America are women—the wives and sweethearts behind the masculine dummies….”15
What then to make of Sadie Hawkins Day? It is clear that like Jonathan Swift’s biting satire of the Anglo Saxon ruling class in 18th century Ireland in “A Modest Proposal,”16 Capp’s satire of the mountain folk in Kentucky and West Virginia reveal his disdain for the men of that area, how they treated each other and how they treated women and perhaps too for how women allowed themselves to be treated.
What was initially for me a light hearted study of Sadie Hawkins Day turned into a reminder of the sobering reality of man’s inhumanity to man and to woman, and of the amazing ignorance underlying that inhumanity, and of how easily people allow themselves to be seduced into regarding the commemoration of a “Sadie Hawkins Day” as lighthearted and humorous.
How can the culture avoid making serious lapses of judgment? How can there be such a poverty of wisdom not only in regard to properly valuing men and women but also in discerning the truth of a situation and unabashedly declaring that truth?
Mahendra Trivedi, the author of the Trivedi EffectR, teaches that it is faulty conditioning from birth onwards that creates and fosters a culture’s blindness to truth.17 The Trivedi EffectR which connects one to the Life Force energy of the Creator, can reverse that conditioning and free one from tragic slavery to the delusions that prevent us from seeing, acknowledging, and adhering to the truth in our thoughts, words, and actions.
The powerful Life Force energy of the Trivedi EffectR is forging a new science for the 21st century and beyond, and because it has been tested under strenuous laboratory conditions by scientists is confounding those scientists who are mystified by it but can’t deny the results they see with their own eyes.18
I can attest personally to the power of Life Force energy. It has broken down so much of my own conditioning and is transforming my body, mind, and spirit into a state of overall wellbeing. All that it requires of me is a deeper and deeper trust in the source of this energy, the limitless intelligence of the universe. I am stronger physically, look younger, am happier than I have ever been. I urge everyone to avail themselves of this energy by visiting my own website eileenmeagher.com or www. trivedieffect/ science.
- Sadie Hawkins “biography” at deniskitchen.com
- Mikkelson, B.; Mikkelson, D.P. (2010), “The Privilege of Ladies”, The Urban Legends Reference Pages, snopes.com and Virtually no laws of Margaret survive. Indeed, none concerning her subjects are recorded in the twelve volume Acts of the Parliaments of Scotland (1814–75) covering the period 1124–1707 (two laws concerning young Margaret herself are recorded on pages 424 & 441–2 of volume I).
- Sadie Hawkins “biography” at deniskitchen.com
- Hillbilly: A Cultural History of an American Icon by Anthony Harkins (2004, Oxford Univ. Press) pp. 124–136
- Goldie Hawn Remembers the Casting-Couch Sexual Predator Who Left Her in Tears and Hawn, Goldie (2006-02-28). A Lotus Grows in the Mud. Penguin. ISBN 9781101205327.
- Brown, Rodger, “Dogpatch USA: The Road to Hokum” article, Southern Changes The Journal of the Southern Regional Council, Vol. 15, No. 3, 1993, pp. 18-26
- M. Thomas Inge, “Li’l Abner, Snuffy, Pogo, and Friends: The South in the American Comic Strip,” Southern Quarterly (2011) 48#2 pp 6-74
- Al Capp.” The Real Powers in America” Real Magazine. December 1952
- Swift, “A Modest Proposal” – Andromeda.rutgers.edu/~jlynch/Texts/modest/html
- www. Trivedieffect.com