This summer, Princeton professor Anne-Marie Slaughter explained Why Women Can’t Have It All. (Patriarchy, still.)

Then, in August, Congressman Todd Akin explained why women can’t get pregnant from “legitimate rape.” (Sperm killing micro-attack gnomes)

This coming Sunday, the New York Times magazine is going to explain Why Women Can’t Do Pull-Ups.  It has something to do with physics and physiology.

It’s a stupid article, citing a study where 17 women who couldn’t do a pull-up did a 3-month long exercise program to “strengthen the biceps and the latissimus dorsi.” When the women were put back on the bar, 4 of the women knocked out a pull-up, and 13 did not. This, along with some irrelevant wah wah wah about people with long arms (which, last I checked, included men, women, and everyone in between) having long levers, was Tara Parker-Pope’s evidence that women can’t do pull-ups.

But stupid can be great. It has pushed Tara Parker-Pope up into the top ten of NYTime’s most-emailed articles, an unusual spot for a health blog post.  Nevermind that most of the people emailing have in their subject line: Check it out – dumbest NYTimes article ever.

Stupid is also great because there’s something magical about phrases starting with “Women can’t…” It gets my little sperm killing micro-attack gnomes revved up. If I were Catholic I would be right up there with Diane Dougherty trying to get myself ordained as a female priest, excommunication be damned. If I were a Marine, I’d be clamoring to be assigned to a combat unit, and I don’t even enjoy killing people. If I was a Mormon, I’d be trying to marry me four husbands. Wait. No I won’t. Four wives.

Anyway, I’m not Catholic. Nor am I a Marine or a Mormon. What I am is someone who can do pull-ups.

This is not the result of any physiological freakiness or warp in the laws of physics. It came from doing pull-ups. And here’s my promise to you as we kick off the 2d year of queerfit:

You will be able to do pull-ups.

Our Tuesday spot in Phoenix Park II has a pull-up structure, and once we count up our nickels from our squat-a-thon, we’re going to guerrilla build a pull-up structure in our Saturday spot. And then we’re going to do lots and lots of pull-ups – jumping pull-ups, pull-ups with bands, ring rows, kipping pull-ups – until everyone who is coming regularly gets a damned pull-up.

Then, my attack gnomes will be satisfied, and you will be stronger than the New York Times thinks you can be.

One last day to get some cash money into the squat-a-thon, friends! See you tomorrow to do those squats.