Had it not been for my succumbing to the guilty pleasure of watching American Idol last week, I might never have remembered International Women's Day.
Idol judge Steven Tyler wished a female contestant a happy International Women's Day as an afterthought as he critiqued her performance.
He was a day late then, but at least he remembered and reminded me.
International Women's Day was celebrated for the 100th time on March 8. Maybe I was overly occupied with living and missed the celebration. Maybe women have arrived, and therefore the celebration is unnecessary.
Regardless, I heard nothing about this. In fact, I'm hearing very little if anything about March being Women's History Month.
We women must have arrived, and I just didn't get the memo.
Well, in some ways we have.
According to "Women in America: Indicators of Social and Economic Well-Being," a report released last week by the White House, more women are attending colleges and universities than men, and more women are earning degrees.
We're still not earning the same amount of money as men do, but the gap is closing ever so slowly. In 2009, women, ages 25-34, earned 89 percent of the paycheck for men in the same age group. That was a 21 percent increase since 1979. For men and women ages 45-54, the increase over 20 years was 17 percent.
On the home front, fewer women are getting married, and when we do, it tends to be at an older age. We are having children later if we have them at all, which fewer women find necessary.
Women are still living longer than men, although the guys are catching up.
When layoffs rolled through our communities like a boulder, women fared better than men. The report cited our employment in the health care industry, which didn't feel the effects of the recession as much as other industries, as a key to that statistic.
All of that is well and good. I wanted to put that out there first.
But overwhelmingly, the one area in which women suffer the most, where women are underappreciated and overrepresented, is in domestic violence.
While the rate of homicides against women overall has declined since 1993, women still made up 70 percent of the victims killed by an intimate partner in 2007. That proportion is basically unchanged since 1993, according to the report.
Fewer black women, formerly the largest group, are the victims of homicide, but the number of white women murdered remains level.
Those numbers are reason to celebrate, albeit briefly.
So, why didn't we?
And why didn't we highlight how little impact such a designation has for most women on the planet, who are the victims of war and religious and cultural oppression, and men who gain power from such violence.
We should have at least mentioned 60 Minutes journalist Lara Logan who in February was beaten and sexually assaulted while covering the rebellion in Egypt.
Instead, many reports blamed her, saying she, a woman, shouldn't have been over there doing her job. Is reporting rebellion overseas a man's job?
All is not lost, however. We can still make up for our forgetfulness.
The University of Kentucky African American Studies and Research Program is presenting its 17th Annual Black Women's Conference on March 19, 23 and 24.
It began as a way to highlight issues affecting black women during Women's History Month. Those issues actually affect the community as a whole because black women are not an island.
This year's theme is "Activism in the 21st Century," which is a reminder of past and current activism with an eye to the future. Obviously AASRP doesn't think women have arrived yet.
You can check out the conference schedule, which starts with a free panel discussion and lunch from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., at the Lyric Theatre & Cultural Arts Center on March 19, at www.uky.edu/AS/AASRP or call (859) 257-4270.
Things are better, but there is so much more to be done. So remind me if I forget next March 8. I'll try to do better reminding you.