About me, you, and the epic shit we must do

patti carlyleIf you landed here by way of Google, *certain* you had coined a new wry turn of phrase—pardon my french + some fuck you sass—please accept my condolences. A million crappy clothing marketers have beaten you to it. And me. I, too, so thought I was the first.

Welcome! This may be the only site in your search results *not* selling shredded t-shirts, frilly skirts or purses sure to choke you out in an elevator door mishap.

Counterculture curator

I’ve toyed with the pardonmyfringe concept for a while. It reflects my pervasive impulse to apologize for my intensity, passion and natural antagonism. A #sorryimnotsorry nod to the fear of taking up too much space in a world governed by narrow and binary expectations for a straight, thirty-something, white woman in the Rust Belt.

I’m a progressive, feminist and activist in Cleveland, Ohio. Probably a socialist, too. I do a lot of pointing and linking and have a generally demanding check-this-out-itude, but it’s because I ♥ you, and want you to take a peek behind the curtain with me. I invite you to look at our culture with a more critical eye, and view yourself with a more loving one.

choose authenticity brene brownOh, right.

I’m also a dedicated Brené Brown groupie and recovering perfectionist, so my writing predictably leans into embracing vulnerability and the hard work of personal transformation. That, friends, takes up *a lot* of space. I encourage you to do the same.

Social change ninja

Listen I’m not your most unconventional friend. I have no tattoos. Most of my more interesting piercings have closed up. I drive a Subaru. Aesthetic mainstreaminess makes me the ideal social change ninja…I might be any flat-ironed mom at your PTA, with a passion platform rivaling the New Deal and the War on Poverty combined. Hey, if *you* are that mom at your PTA, please reach out. We can swap old shirts from the Northern Sun catalog and plan and #OccupyBakesale.

I am so glad you are here, lost shredded shirt seeker and strident feminist alike. If you’re feeling even more friendly, you can find me on Facebook, Twitter, or Google+, if that’s your thing.


  1. Carol Humphries

    Hi! I really need to read more from you on this subject – have you written any books? If so, I would buy them for sure. Thanks for your honesty and for sharing your very personal thoughts on this subject, which so many of us struggle with every single day. I am going to print what you have written, and will try to read it every day to help me become stronger and more aware of why I do what I do, and how to make changes for good. Thank you so much. – Carol H.

  2. Ha! I totally have old Northern Sun merch. But mine are mostly irreverent religious bumper stickers. There is one t-shirt with a nativity scene silhouetted on the horizon and a cartoon talk balloon that says, “It’s a girl!”

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