She’s Also A Genius, You Know. Just Sayin’.

The proud pastafarian, posed for the picture
A colander capping her head
An atheist activist, genius to boot,
As the news stories well may have read—
There’s no story in that; that won’t sell any ads,
Let’s just write about kittens instead…
Oh, wait—did we mention she used to do porn?
So that’s how the story was led.

My news aggregator nearly exploded this morning with stories of the latest Pastafarian to have her drivers license photo taken while wearing a colander. This was in Utah, so the notion that someone could relatively easily (she brought documents to make her case, but it did not take much convincing) challenge (in a good humored way) the establishment might have explained why there were so many stories.

But that wasn’t it. I mean, that was the whole story, with the exception of some personal details about the woman involved (that particular link, hat tip to Paul Fidalgo, rather than my aggregator–it happens to also be the only story to present Ms. Steinhauser in a reasonable and favorable light). For one, she is a member of Mensa, with a tested IQ of 156, but that was only mentioned in two stories I saw (and in one, to make fun of her–Wonkette mentioned that her Mensa membership was “a priori evidence that she’s simply insufferable at parties”). But the real reason for the profusion of stories is that she is a former porn actress (screen name Asia Carrera). Every story managed to mention this bit of irrelevant personal info. Many led with it. Some made it the headline.

Well, not irrelevant. She, no doubt, is fully aware of the source of her fame, and she has not shied away from it–indeed, she fought with Mensa to be published on their list of prominent members. And now, thanks to media gawking, the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster gets another moment in the public eye.

Well, in the Spectrum article, anyway. The rest seem to drop all interest in atheism, pastafarianism, the FSM… they run out of room right after they mention she used to do porn.


  1. Cuttlefish says

    Thanks for the correction–although I’ve gone with an indefinite article instead.

    Wait… Ok, I don’t honestly know if you were correcting a gendered possessive pronoun to non-gendered, knowing something about Steinhauser’s preferences that I don’t, or whether this is a religious correction (like “wearing the cross” instead of “wearing a cross”). If the latter, I throw myself on the mercy of the court of utter ignorance, rather than just regular ignorance.

  2. Cuttlefish says

    I can’t help but wonder what the difference in hits might be had I titled this “You’ll Never Believe What Porn Star Asia Carrera Is Wearing In New Photo!”

    But that would rather defeat the whole purpose of the post.

  3. cafeeineaddicted says

    This could be a case of simply using a more commonly known screen name. More people likely know who Asia Carrera was than Jessica Steinhauser.

  4. Cuttlefish says

    Oh, I have no doubt that is the name by which she is better known. But this story had everything to do with her atheism and activism, with Pastafarianism and challenges to religious establishment, and really nothing at all to do with why she is known. The Spectrum article suggests that if her porn past had anything to do with it, it is tied in with her activism (fighting with Mensa to acknowledge her), such than any mention of her career without that tie-in is really just salacious. And it would have been easy to link a dozen such articles where the article (all edits from an initial AP article) keeps the porn and little else. Maybe adds an old photo–you know, for identification purposes–but doesn’t have room for more. And the comments (since all the readers know is that she used to be in adult movies, and now she has a colander on her head) assume she is a nutcase, rather than a first amendment activist.

    The sad thing is, there was a story there (as, again, the Spectrum demonstrates), and it was missed to make room for a pic with some cleavage.

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