What Would A Dude Do?

16 Feb

I have a general policy that if something hurts, restricts my movement, or is likely to cause long-term health problems or discomfort, I won’t do it if that’s at all possible. I’m pretty sure that anyone who reads this will agree that this is a fairly sound policy, and one that dovetails with common sense and basic human instincts and tendencies. So why, then, do everyday women’s fashion and grooming practices seem to contradict such a simple set of guidelines?

I often wonder whether people will take me to be condemning women for choosing to wear revealing and/or restricting clothing and say that I’m adding to the problem of sexism by trying to add my own set of restrictions on what women ought to be doing. But that’s not really what I’m about. It’s my theory that, were it not for the fact that women are constantly inundated with the message that they are worthless if they aren’t sexually appealing, they wouldn’t wear uncomfortable and restrictive clothing anymore because the entire impetus for enduring the discomfort that wearing such attire entails would have been obviated. Really, why is sexiness the main criterion in choosing clothing, supplanting even utility and comfort?

I have a little test I apply when I stumble upon something I suspect is sexist or detrimental to women. If it’s media, I imagine that the woman being depicted is a man. If it’s a behavior expected of women, I imagine what a man would say to someone who suggested he do it. It almost never fails: if the switcheroo results in a sense of absurdity, I’ve found some sexist shit. If you think about it, fashion is kind of a catch-22 for women; men get to call us ugly (and therefore virtually worthless) if we don’t contort and torture our bodies in order to fulfill their standard of beauty, then they get to make fun of us for being insane when we do the things required to fit that model. Well, fuck that. I normally think this is a terrible idea, but when it comes to fashion and grooming, I’m advocating applying the test of “What would a dude do?” Here is a list of things that many women do regularly that most men would never consider doing, and that women should stop doing, with a handy little set of reasons why they aren’t cool and some alternatives.

 

  • · The problem: Pube (or any) waxing

° Why it isn’t cool: I’ve never done it, but I’m pretty sure it hurts, like a LOT, and that alone is reason enough not to do it. But if your own physical pain isn’t enough to override the insidious influence of the porn industry, think about what it means when dudes prefer women with no pubic hair.

° What you should do instead: Date people who are attracted to natural adult women, not children or plastic dolls.

  • · The problem: High-heeled and pointy-toed shoes

° Why they aren’t cool: Again, the main reason not to do this is that it causes physical pain, but it also restricts movement and causes long-term health problems. I used to work at a shoe store and I eventually got used to walking around for 8 or 9 hours in 4-inch heels with sharply pointed toes, but the sensation of wearing shoes like this for the first time should warn anyone off of doing it ever again. High-heeled shoes, especially those of the stiletto variety, vastly increase your likelihood of breaking your feet and ankles, and they force your toes into positions that will guarantee you bone spurs, bunions, and plenty of other heinous foot problems in middle and old age.

° What you should do instead: For fuck’s sake, don’t get your little toe shortened so you can keep wearing them. What would a dude do? He’d get some comfortable shoes and retain his ability to walk without fear of breaking his feet or incurring long-term damage, that’s what. Get some sneakers or flat shoes that at least somewhat follow the shape of the human foot rather than a garden spade.

  • · The problem: Make-up

° Why it isn’t cool: Women still make 70 cents on the dollar for what men make, so why are we spending 15 times what they do on grooming products? Make-up is not only a waste of money, it’s also a complete waste of time. Even if it only takes 5 minutes, it’s still too much. You could spend that 5 minutes reading my blog, thinking about ways to take down the man-chine, vandalizing misogynistic bus-stop ads, smoking angel dust, or sleeping. And then you wouldn’t have to deal with feeling like there was shit all over your face all day. Just imagine a situation in which your eye itches and you can just rub it, worrying not about exacerbating the problem by rubbing mascara flakes into your eye.

° What you should do instead: Not wear make-up. If your own money/time/comfort aren’t important enough to get you to knock off the face painting, just think about the fact that women have to paint themselves in order to be attractive. That situation ought to change, since it means that nature has been subverted and we are no longer born with what we need to propagate the species.

  • · The problem: Fake fingernails

° Why they aren’t cool: Let’s see… I can pay $30 to waste an hour of my life sniffing chemicals and making my hands less useful? Sweet! Although going to the nail salon does afford one the opportunity to get gossiped about in Vietnamese, it’s a waste of money and it isn’t good for you. The chemicals are carcinogenic, most salons aren’t sanitary, and they smell like a toxic waste dump. Plus, fake long fingernails make typing, dialing a phone, picking your nose, and… everything else you do with your hands harder. There’s a reason the only place you saw fake fingernails until about 20 years ago was in the porn industry: long fingernails are meant for people who do nothing but have sex and get looked at.

° What you should do instead: If you must have long nails, stick with growing your own pinkie nails out a la Chinese taxi drivers. But really, that’s also kind of stupid. Leave them short.

  • · The problem: Restrictive and impractical clothing

° Why it isn’t cool: Uh, it restricts movement. Anything that is so tight that it keeps you from being able to run, do the Kid ‘n’ Play, or step over things, and anything that will expose your private bits if you move the wrong way is a ridiculous imposition. And then there are impractical items of clothing like those fucking ridiculous short sweatshirts that leave the midriff exposed and those turtleneck tank tops. If it’s warm enough out to not clothe your midriff or arms, why the fuck do you need a sweatshirt or a turtleneck? What that means is that either a) you are suffering being too hot in order to wear the silly garment, or, more likely, b) you are suffering being too cold on one part of your body in order to sexualize yourself in spite of cold weather. Either way, it’s even dumber than wearing flip-flops with jeans.

° What you should do instead: Get some pants and a t-shirt.

  • · The problem: Plastic surgery

° Why it isn’t cool: The risks of death and disfigurement are pretty good reasons to not do something. I once had a neighbor whose friend had gotten a LOT of plastic surgery done all at once. For some strange reason, her body rejected the foreign objects she had implanted in her cheeks and chin, and didn’t respond well to having large chunks of flesh removed (imagine that!), so she ended up having to go through a year-long series of operations to try to correct the problems created by the first set, none of which were free of charge. She spent hundreds of thousands of dollars and came out looking vastly less attractive than she had been in the first place. People think that stories like this are rare, but the truth is that they aren’t. A much too large proportion of cosmetic surgeries require what plastic surgeons euphemistically call “revision”. What that actually means is that they come out so fucked up that more surgery is required to fix the scarring, misshapenness, or other such deformity caused by the first surgery. It is terrifically disturbing that we’ve reached a point in which people don’t seem to think it unreasonable to have surgery, an option usually deemed a last resort when it comes to actual physical disorders, in order to make themselves more porkable.

° What you should do instead: Get counseling. If you’re considering having an operation for cosmetic reasons, you’ve absorbed the more nefarious messages of our distorted culture to the point that you’ve completely lost the plot.

 


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164 Responses to “What Would A Dude Do?”

  1. syndicalist702 February 27, 2008 at 5:00 PM #

    Your blog kicks ass. Hands down. I’m bookmarking it.

    Thanks.
    J

  2. Nine Deuce February 27, 2008 at 5:26 PM #

    Thanks! I’m new at it, so it’s nice to hear.

  3. syndicalist702 February 27, 2008 at 6:14 PM #

    I’m new at feminism. My wife struggled for years to get me to see things from her point of view. I wanted to, but I just couldn’t do it from my privileged position. I’m still wrapping my head around it all, which is what brings me to blogs like yours. You tackle the contradictions I see in the movement, such as this “sex-positive” rubbish, with a convincing monologue that pokes numerous holes in even the highest attempt at articulating patriarchal bullshit.

    Needless to say, conversation is much more positive and enriching between my wife and I since I began to understand just how much at a disadvantage women are in our society.

  4. Genevieve March 5, 2008 at 6:39 AM #

    Re: fake fingernails…
    When I was in sixth grade a bunch of girls decided to put them on for school picture day (which is ridiculous since all you see in a school picture is your face anyway). Then they had to take them off for gym class. I saw how seemingly annoying it was to do this, and I commented: “I’m never wearing fake fingernails.” One of the girls responded by saying: “Well, they’re what’s popular, so you have to.”
    Makes me sad now that at age eleven, she was already conforming to the annoying-and-impractical-beauty-rituals-are-necessary mentality.

  5. Nine Deuce March 5, 2008 at 3:28 PM #

    I think I remember wearing Lee press-on nails at a very young age and thinking, “This is stupid. I can’t use my hands or they fall off.”

  6. Genevieve March 6, 2008 at 12:25 AM #

    Yeah–it would’ve been really ridiculous for me, what with all my piano and flute lessons.

  7. Bill March 20, 2008 at 2:48 AM #

    When will women give up all the makeup / botox garbage?

    I’ve been seeing a lady who insists on the whole make-up thing. Indeed, one of her main concerns is that the creep she used to stay with won’t give back all her brushes and rouge and stuff. And now she wants botox.

    I want to kiss her lips, not her lipstick!

    But ultimately, it is HER body. HER decision. If this is what SHE wants to do, neither I nor anyone else has any right to say she can’t.

    I just don’t want to be accused of misogny when I am not forcing her, or even encouraging her, to wear makeup.

  8. Nine Deuce March 20, 2008 at 3:52 AM #

    Bill – women will give up make-up and Botox as soon as they no longer believe that their worth is determined by how attractive men find them. That’s it. I agree that women’s choice of what they do with their own bodies is their own business, but I think that the decisions a lot of women make in that regard are influenced to a large extent by our culture’s obsession with fascistic beauty standards. I’m not accusing anyone of misogyny, but I am asking people to examine their own behaviors and attitudes to see if they are contributing to women’s perception that what matters most about them is their appearance.

  9. Michelle March 20, 2008 at 11:39 AM #

    I like your post and agree with what you’re saying, however I personally don’t have a problem with make-up per se. I know many feminist women who choose to wear make-up and enjoy it, wear it for fun and a means of self-expression & yet I don’t question their feminism. I think we can have a feminist world where women would still wear make-up, the difference being that they wouldn’t be ‘expected’ to, they wouldn’t have to conform to mainstream, homogenous standards of appropriate femininity and the make-up wouldn’t be stuffed full of carcinogens and other harmful substances.

    Oh, and I love the name of your blog!

  10. Bill March 20, 2008 at 6:27 PM #

    Michelle,

    Excellent point. Feminism should be about empowering women, not trading slaveowners from a male one to a female one. If a woman wishes to be “butch” or “fem” or something in between: it should be about her own choices, and dealing with her own reality, as opposed to fitting in with either the mainstream OR the alternative vision of what she is supposed to look like.

  11. Nine Deuce March 20, 2008 at 11:44 PM #

    I agree that feminism is about empowering women. But it’s also about freeing them from the negative influences of the beauty industry. I don’t care what anyone decides they want to look like. What I do care about is that a lot of people are making the decision to go through these procedures because they’ve been beaten over the head so often with the idea that all that matters about them is their sex appeal that they can no longer make the decision freely.

  12. Feminist Avatar March 21, 2008 at 3:32 PM #

    In eighteenth century Europe, men used to wear a LOT of make-up and large wigs- more than their female counterparts. Their Victorian descendents thought them very effeminate, (which by Victorian standards they were- with men wearing make-up and weeping and fainting at the drop of a hat- ah! the culture of sensibility) .

    I absolutely think that women are forced to wear make-up today to conform to a particular image of beauty, which is sexist. But, at a theoretical level, is painting your skin any different from indulging in any other fashion culture? It is often the meaning that we give to the action that is problematic, rather than the action itself. And while deforming your body is of course hugely problematic (although not a behaviour that is only limited to women), performativity is fun. Dressing up the body to give it meaning can be pleasurable and transgressive (and trangressive femininity can be no less time-consuming or expensive), and, in our current historical context, no fashion decision is value free, whether we like it or not.

  13. bonobobabe March 24, 2008 at 4:02 AM #

    I just found your blog. You rock!

    Yeah, fuck all the feminine grooming shit. No makeup, comfy clothes, comfy shoes.

  14. moni187que March 28, 2008 at 2:21 AM #

    blasphemy ..schsaphmey on you..Make Up is a way of life for some people, for those that arent wearing it , well they should.They probably do, not all the time ,not even most of the time. But from time to time they put it on. Personally, I consider it art, not a hassle not a chore not cuz I want men to look at me an say oh my god she is pretty cuz of her mac eyeshadow..fucking spare me , you know me. And I take offense to that one , so what if I spend way to much money on expensive make up. its what I like , I make the money , I pay my bills and whatever I want to fucking spend at sephora I will gladly spend, why ? Cuz its for me, about me , something I like to do. And I like to put make up on other people as well. Make up has given me opportunities in my life that nothing else has. Ive gotten to meet and work with fabulous amazing people through the make up world. Now on to fake nails, well all I can say on that one is at least I go to the white girl shops.. and I dont pay shit its free, and I love my ghetto white trash glitter east county nails….but not as much as I love you.. So let it commence.. The reign of terror on me for speaking my mind up on this piece…

  15. SAAM March 28, 2008 at 5:14 PM #

    Hmm… I have a drawer full of makeup, which I wear occasionally, like once a month, and only because I want to. Waxing: freaking NEVER!! (That goes for shaving my private pedals as well: never). High heels: the last time I wore high heels was at my sister’s wedding 21 years. They went well with the tux and tails I was wearing. (I have really nice feet, if I do say so myself!) Fake fingernails: WHAT is up with that anyway? Dumb. If I can’t wipe my ass, then, no thanks. Restrictive clothing: ask my trackpants. Plastic surgery: hmmmm in all seriousness if I ever had a mastectomy, then I’d THINK about getting a boob job (but probably not!) As for anything else: NOPE. I am lucky at the age of 41 to have no wrinkles (yet) but I want to age with dignity and not look like I’m on a screenshot of a rollerscoaster ride.

  16. Tara April 22, 2008 at 10:57 PM #

    I like what you’re saying, but as far as the short sweatshirts – people usually wear them over another shirt…and the turtleneck tank tops are good for covering hickeys in the workplace, or wearing underneath another shirt when you don’t want your arms to get bulky from too many sleeves. And further, most of your alternatives are “Don’t do it.” Get creative! Instead of fake fingernails, get a French Manicure that makes your fingernails look longer than they actually are.

  17. Nine Deuce April 23, 2008 at 12:29 AM #

    Tara – I think my general advice is that women stop spending their time and money on beauty treatments that can be uncomfortable and bad for their health. If men aren’t asked to do it, I don’t think women ought to be, so that would include French manicures. I’m not telling anyone they haven’t got the right to get their nails painted or wear whatever clothing they want to wear, but I am arguing that the cultural requirement that women fit a specific mold should be examined and done away with.

  18. Kate April 23, 2008 at 3:23 AM #

    Why does everyone assume that I like to wear nice-looking clothes and make-up sometimes because I’ve been programmed to do so? I think THAT assumption is almost as misogynistic as what you’re talking about in the first place. Women can’t get beyond that programming and do something like wear make-up just ’cause they want to? Fuck that noise. I don’t wear clothes that look nice on me because I think it will attract men. I wear them because I like them and I WANT to wear them. I don’t wake up and think about how my outfit is gonna attract a dude; I think about whether it’s comfortable and looks presentable for work. Sheesh. Women are capable of just doing things ’cause they want to.

  19. Nine Deuce April 23, 2008 at 3:29 AM #

    Kate – I wouldn’t argue with your right to do something because you want to. I did notice, though, that you referred to choosing things because of comfort, which is basically the point of this whole post. I’m saying people shouldn’t do things that harm them for the sake of attracting men. It’s fine with me if you want to wear make-up and whatever kind of clothing you want to wear, but if attracting men doesn’t matter to you, then why do you want to wear make-up? If it just makes you feel more comfortable, why is it that it does? Because it’s easier to go along with what’s expected of you than to feel like people are ignoring you or looking at you funny if you don’t?

  20. Adam April 23, 2008 at 3:54 AM #

    I have waxed/shaved my pubic area a few times… and I’m a man of the dude type. I don’t do it regularly (I’m currently in a relationship, and my girlfriend prefers au natural). I don’t feel that I am required by society to do so, or not. I wouldn’t mind having plastic surgery, but I wouldn’t do anything major.

    The things you have mentioned are indicators of a society where the sexes are unequal. They are not the causes by any means, they are only the symptoms. Stop being angry at the effects of the system and put some righteous indignation into changing the way children are taught about the sexes, or the way that young women vacuously consume things that are ‘popular’, or the rest of the world where women aren’t even given rights.

    Your statement about men criticizing women for rejecting fashion while simultaneously thinking them insane for following trends lumped men together. There are two distinct groups, those who condone fashion and respect those who adhere to it, and those who think adherents of fashion are crazy. Please do not demonize men in the pursuit of equality.

  21. Nine Deuce April 23, 2008 at 4:03 AM #

    Adam – I am aware that what I’m discussing is a manifestation of patriarchy, not a cause, but I also believe that these are ways in which people can resist the forces that perpetuate inequality. This post is not written out of anger, but rather is an analysis of some of the strangest behaviors human women exhibit, strange behaviors that seem completely natural because we have come to accept them.

    I do address the topics you mentioned. I have written several posts about the influences of advertising, entertainment, children’s toys, etc. on our conceptions of gender roles.

    I don’t generally lump all men together; I go out of my way here to qualify statements about men and women. I’m not demonizing anyone, but rather pointing out what goes on in the vast majority of cases. No one can account for every contingency, and so I focus on what’s most common.

  22. Sitta April 23, 2008 at 4:56 AM #

    Hey, I enjoyed the original post and will keep that line “what would a dude do?” in mind… in fact, I nominate it for a broader application. Both sexes can learn a lot from one another, as we’ve (in general) been socialized so differently (not even to mention possible biological bases for difference). So I learn a lot from my guy friends… say, about not overthinking things, and remembering that if i don’t care for myself i can’t very well care for others.

    (Disclaimer: I do realize that what anyone can learn from the other sex will be different for everybody, and I could have learned these traits from female friends… but in our culture they often seem to be “masculine” traits. Okay, did i get through that without deeply offending anyone?)

    also, I want everyone to remember that women can be really, really critical of one another. I wore makeup and tried to keep up with what was “hot” and new through highschool not for guys, but because if i didn’t i feared i’d have no girlfriends.

    I hear a lot of blaming men and patriarchy… and the root may be here, but if we’re talking symptoms of it anyway, lets start the charity at home and just chill a bit, be kind to one another (whether we see makeup as a form of personal expression or patriarchal shackles).

  23. Patricia April 23, 2008 at 5:21 AM #

    Hmm. I agree with all your statements, I believe in dressing for comfort, have never had fake nails (or even a manicure) and I can’t stand the concept of plastic surgery.

    But, I do wear makeup. Not the face-caking kind, I just wear stuff around my eyes, because I like it. My fiancé couldn’t care less. As for the waxing/shaving, I do it (when I feel like it, ie have nothing better to do) because it’s neater. It makes my feel more confident in my undies.

    I think g-strings should be added to that uncomfortable clothing thing. I tried them a couple times and I wear them very rarely, in cases when I’m not wearing jeans, which is rare.

    I just get so sad when I see other girls my age. I just finished university and I did not see the practicality in wearing heels and a mini skirt if you’re going to be walking around on campus all day.

    I could go on and on about society and its stupidity, but I should probably leave it to those that are better at it than me.

    But I do throw a fit every time I see a Bratz doll. I’ve been trying to convince my three year old sister that her Bratz bedspread is not cool.

    Where are the positive cartoon role models for today’s younger generation? There really is just Bratz and Barbie. Even in Disney movies the women have massive breasts, tiny waists and ugliness is indicative of evil.

  24. Nine Deuce April 23, 2008 at 5:28 AM #

    Patricia – Have you seen my post on Bratz?

  25. Rachel April 23, 2008 at 5:53 AM #

    It makes me feel better to know there are other women out there that have some common sense. Great blog. I am really enjoying it.

  26. wannabeadesigirl April 23, 2008 at 6:13 AM #

    I agree with all of your points, except for the makeup. For me a thin layer of foundation and blush takes all of a minute to apply. I do agree that a mountain of makeup is just ridiculous, and from a psychological point of view could be considered a way of hiding from the world.
    I also used my makeup to provide bruises, scrapes, bitemarks, and scars for me and my bestfriend when the Role playing mood came upon us.

  27. K B April 23, 2008 at 7:40 AM #

    The “what would a dude do” question is amusing, since I myself actually wear numerous gender-nonspecific or male-specific clothing items – alongside or without notably feminine items (like the scarf I wore after I got my hair cut quite short – I wore it because my neck was actually cold! Then I became fond of it, so I kept wearing it until it got too hot).

    I like how you addressed all of the things that you addressed.

    And as for makeup, I suppose just as an aside, I do sometimes (being a teenager without a job) wear heavy black eyeliner (and nothing else) just for the sake of it, and I do wear necklaces sometimes, although they’re more shows of interests like band shirts than actual decorations… and in any case, none of this is to really make myself “attractive” per se to guys, but just to express what kind of styles (generally male or gender-nonspecific styles, but sometimes feminine as well) inspire me and struck me on that particular day.

    I enjoy my current position of being able to go with or without makeup entirely of my choosing.

    @wannabe: I think that last part about makeup doesn’t really apply to the way that the post is using it, as it is a more personal thing than just trying to conform to the standard set (or perceived standard set) to make yourself more sexual or appealing to men (or women, but here it’s men being discussed).

  28. Kate April 23, 2008 at 12:11 PM #

    Nine Deuce–I like to wear make-up because *I* have made the decision that I look nice wearing it. I can make decisions that go along with what society expects without being some kind of puppet, because I have a brain. The fact that you assume every woman is out there just to get a dude to bone her or whatever is kind of abhorrent. Sure, plenty of women have that attitude, but plenty of us who do some of those things do not.

  29. Amananta April 23, 2008 at 6:26 PM #

    Oh my, you stepped in the pile of “OH MY GOD YOU ARE TRYING TO TAKE AWAY OUR PRECIOUS MAKEUP!” drones who won’t stop to read and think about what you’re actually saying. Good luck with that.
    Great post!

  30. Nine Deuce April 23, 2008 at 6:31 PM #

    Amanata – I’ve noticed that. I thought I was pretty clear about the reasons why people choose to wear make-up, but a lot of people aren’t hearing me or don’t want to.

  31. Kathy April 23, 2008 at 6:53 PM #

    With regards make-up, I think the important thing is how much you depend on it. If you like to add extra definition to your eyes every now and then, or feel like portraying a certain ‘style’, I don’t really see the problem. It can be a way of expressing yourself.

    However, if you get to the stage where you couldn’t imagine leaving the house without ‘your face on’, I think the dependency is a little too strong. Make-up per se isn’t a feminist issue, its the degree to which a painted face is linked with self-worth.

  32. Vale April 24, 2008 at 11:40 AM #

    I think you’re losing a major point.
    Yes, you’re right, women should only wear whatever make them feel comfortable in their skin, and not being forced to do otherwise by any other standard, that’s not their own… But.
    They’re not the only one to blame(although i personally think part of the problem is in our heads).
    Yes, you said that women “must” fix to standards they didn’t make, but you make it too easy to solve.
    You say make-up is bad and uncomfortable, you’re right, but I don’t know any man that find attractive a girl with no make-up at all,and that wears large,casual clothes…They say they do,but reality is, it’s not like that. Every imperfection is enlarged and criticized. So girls are excluded, not seen by anybody. How can they find a way to gain confidence? It’s a bad thing to say, but you don’t own confidence in yourself if everybody else point at you all the time, especially when you’re a teen. THAT is the problem, for me. You can stop thinking about attract men when you’re adult and confident in your possibilities, but when you grow up you’re fragile to other’s judgment… And that influence the person you’ll be in the future, in one way or another…

  33. Nine Deuce April 24, 2008 at 1:46 PM #

    I understand that men don’t tend to be attracted to women who don’t follow the “rules” as they’ve been laid down. I say the answer is to avoid those kinds of men. There are men who don’t like make-up, and there are men who aren’t as superficial. I know that my advice might be difficult for a girl in high school to follow, but adults can very well do it.

  34. khooray April 24, 2008 at 3:10 PM #

    These are all funny coming from a guy….when I wear t-shirts and blah clothes all the time and no makeup 3/4 the time and I’ve been single for 10 years. Ever see a chick w/ the long hair, overmade up face, big boobs and skin showing, fake nails and high heels ever being ignored? Hardly. If you ever look at personal ads, this is what men want/expect from a woman. Unfortunately, ‘normal’ women are put down, called fat, and otherwise rejected. I say fuck you all if that’s how you really feel. Good luck finding that Barbie bimbo to have your kids and have any kind of realistic purpose in your life besides being in your bed.

  35. Jess April 24, 2008 at 6:54 PM #

    Personally, I feel like feminism is about giving women a choice. We should not HAVE to make ourselves artificial in order to be attractive, but if we WANT to wear heels or makeup, it should be okay. The whole pornstar/stripper culture we have now is not bad because it promotes sex, it’s bad because it promotes FAKING sex in order to be popular and liked. It promotes only one kind of beauty and ignores all others. Having long nails and big boobs is fine (if impractical and expensive), it just shouldn’t be a requirement in order to get noticed.

  36. Patricia April 25, 2008 at 7:19 AM #

    Yes, I did read your blog about Bratz, it was kind of a comment on that one as well.

    It’s so refreshing to find someone whose brain actually works… I can’t stand pornography and stripping and the like because of the objectification of women, and I get chastised because these women are “doing what they can with what they have” and the fact that I don’t like it makes me terribly conservative, or so say my work colleagues.

    I have nothing against sex, or being sexy, but it’s totally a personal thing.

    I agree with your sentiments about sex and how it’s exclusively an expression of love.

  37. Dale April 25, 2008 at 11:49 PM #

    You are my dream girl! Are you married?

  38. Nine Deuce April 25, 2008 at 11:52 PM #

    Thanks, but I’m off the market (and I don’t smoke pot).

  39. Anonymous April 26, 2008 at 12:35 AM #

    I’ve long tried to convince my girlfriend that she doesn’t need to go through all that crap to look sexy. :/ Hasn’t worked though.

  40. David April 26, 2008 at 3:03 AM #

    I don’t like it when women wear make-up. I don’t find high heels attractive. I’ve never told a girlfriend how to dress. There are lots of guys that feel the same way.

    I also don’t think that all women who “dress up” are doing it for men. A lot of women like fashion.

    A woman isn’t fat or a slob just because she’s not wearing couture. There are plenty of beautiful women who dress well in casual clothes. If it’s the superficial men who are attracted to fake boobs and revealing clothing, then why are the women of substance trying to attract those men?

    I know that we can only generalize, and that many women/girls have eating disorders and body image problems. There is definitely a problem here that doesn’t have an easy solution. But it needs to be pointed out that NOT all women feel affected by society’s standards.

    I’m decent looking, but I’m not tall or well-built. Women usually don’t give me a second look. There is a double standard. Men can’t control their height or baldness. Women need to appreciate men who aren’t perfect either. Or, maybe the impossibly high standards set for women has caused them to become more superficial themselves.

    Life isn’t fair. If we didn’t have this topic to complain about, it would be some other injustice. Just try to make the best of your own life.

  41. A Nonny Mouse April 26, 2008 at 4:08 AM #

    Why, oh why, are feminists so preoccupied with whether or not women are putting glop on their skin or hair? Don’t we have more serious stuff to think about? Reproductive rights, for example?

    As for “what would a dude do” – based on my experience with dudes, sometimes they dress up and look really nice, and sometimes they wear sweatshirts and ripped jeans and look like total schlubs. But the difference between dudes and chicks is that no one judges a dude based on what he wears, or takes him more or less seriously based on what he is wearing at the moment, or tells him what he may or may not do with his own body (i.e. what kind of shoes he may and may not wear, what he may or may not do with his nails, or what he may or may not put on his face).

  42. Nine Deuce April 26, 2008 at 4:14 AM #

    A Nonny Mouse – see the larger context of the post, as well as all my other posts, for a discussion of many, many feminist issues. This post is about women harming their health to fit into fascistic beauty standards, not whether they put make-up on per se. Jesus Christ, people, grasp the whole context, not just the minor details!

  43. L April 26, 2008 at 6:13 AM #

    Jesus Christ, people, grasp the whole context, not just the minor details!

    is exactly what I was thinking. Criminy! Like, read the actual post!

    I was just thinking about how even nail polish cuts down on my productivity time. I spend a lot of time typing (I write; I’m in school), and if I were to paint my fingernails, I wouldn’t be able to write as much as I do without chipping or smearing the color. I still paint my toenails every few months, and it’s still a hassle, though it’s one I’m okay with. I have to walk funny to keep the paint from getting on the carpet, and I don’t see my boyfriend doing any silly shit like that. All this fashion-y stuff sure feels like a conspiracy to keep women otherwise occupied with stupid wastes of time, money, and brainspace instead of working on inspiring the revolution.

    When it comes to makeup, I wear it sometimes too, but I also recognize that it’s a time-consumer that dudes don’t (have to) endure (as often), which makes it automatically sexist. Additionally, it doesn’t constitute my identity. And I could give a fuck less what my boyfriend thinks of my face — if he doesn’t think I’m hot or whatever without makeup, then he can just go away. (Also, when I read a feminist writing about makeup, I don’t take it personally and go directly into defensive mode. Instead, I think, hm, maybe this person has a point about how much time I’m spending on something that ultimately matters not at all.)

  44. Janet April 26, 2008 at 6:30 AM #

    A Nonny Mouse – a dude is not judged based on what he wears, or taken more or less seriously? You’re kidding right? Go on a job interview for anything other than a minimum wage job and see how both sexes are judged based on how they look. My husband has been turned down for positions he was over qualified for strictly because he went in jeans and a T-shirt. I have also had this problem. I think both sexes have unrealistic expectations forced on them by society. My son is ridiculed in school for not playing sports. My daughter is shuned for not dressing like a Barbie doll. All I can say is I’m proud of them for being true to themselves.

    This blog is not about make-up or fake nails, it’s about the unhealthy lengths we as a society are going to to try and fit in. It needs to stop. I’ve had friends (when I was in High School) that nearly died because of anorexia. This is a plague and needs to be recognized as such. We laugh now at women who used to powder their faces with lead, take opiates to make their eyes look bigger, or cram themselves into corsets to try and get the perfect 12 inch waist; but why don’t we look at plastic surgery the same way? There should be nothing wrong with being yourself and I think that was the point.

  45. A brain washed teen April 26, 2008 at 3:05 PM #

    I am totally loving your blog by the way, and I agree with everything you’re saying.

    I used to be of the belief that wearing make up was completely pointless and couldn’t understand why people did it, then my self esteem took an all time low and I just wanted to fit in more, so i looked around at all the other girls in my year that seemed happy, and oh guess what? they were wearing make up. So I plastered my face in the stuff like everyone else, and wore very skimpy clothes because I wanted to show off my rockin’ body for some reason. I still don’t really understand the need for that.

    I’ve been home schooled for the past year now and I wear make up /very/ occasionally, completely don’t see the need for skimpy clothes, and can’t help but laugh out loud when I see the girls that I wanted to be like in the streets. They just look like child hookers.

    But I don’t think girls are given the same chance that I was, to take a step back from modern society and just laugh at it. Laugh at what you /think/ it demands of you. Because it doesn’t, it’s just a myth that’s been promoted, you don’t have to wear make up or any of those silly lil things you have to, if you actually talk to normal down to earth men about it, you’ll find out they don’t care. But they’ve got to fight the brain washing as well, they’re being told they’ve got to have a perfect girlfriend, that that makes you successful in life.

    And I;m with Janet, this post wasn’t just about false fingernails, it was about just being who you are without feeling pressured into it.

  46. heidik April 26, 2008 at 3:54 PM #

    i agree with your premise but i think some of the things we women do that are ridiculous are not so bad in moderation AND if you do it for your own personal enjoyment. i like wearing jeans and tshirts and sneakers. a lot. but i do like wearing stilettos and makeup once or twice a month. not for my boyfriend, not for the men i may meet, i like the way i feel in it just as much as i like the way i feel everyday in tshirts. as far as shaving & waxing, i was into that long before i realized it was a porn-induced mentality because honestly, i find hair to be a pain in the ass.

    plus, we should take advantage of being able to wear this crap and dress up how we want, cause there are plenty of (straight or gay) men who probably want to wear makeup and heels and can’t get away with it based on the same stereotypes.

    its all about being happy with yourself, whatever that takes and it is ok if it includes some of the external ideas like shaving, surgery or wearing practically nothing.

  47. Emily April 28, 2008 at 12:41 AM #

    While I enjoyed and agreed with the blog, I find it poor logic to find a problem and simply say, “Don’t do it.” as a solution. There are mindsets to be changed by more convincing evidence than it-hurts-don’t-do-it.

  48. L April 28, 2008 at 3:30 AM #

    Actually, Emily, I would really like to know what you think would be a more effective way of getting this kind of information out to women. This post apparently wasn’t very effective, given all the comments from women defending their very right to wear makeup because it makes them oh so happy to have to put on clown faces for teh menz. How would you convince yourself and your female friends that wearing makeup and painful shoes is a waste of time better spent reading about feminism and starting the revolution?

  49. Nine Deuce April 28, 2008 at 3:35 AM #

    Emily – What, from an instinctive standpoint, is a better reason for not doing something than that it hurts? I can’t think of a more compelling argument.

  50. Erin April 28, 2008 at 4:36 AM #

    I enjoyed your article very much; and you’re right. What could be more simple than avoiding what hurts?

    I’m concerned by some of the adverse reactions to your piece. Personally, I shave my legs and pubic hair, because I love the feel afterwards and hair itches me. I like to dress up and wear makeup sometimes. But your suggestions are not, to me, offensive at all. I’m content with my personal reasons and decisions. I think it’s wonderful someone is able to offer a strong counterpoint to the mass mentality.

    It sounds like many of your readers have been thinking critically about the herd mentality for a long time, which is great, but I think that’s why they may feel ‘attacked’. But I still remember thinking I had to be like the images in magazines to be liked (ugh, high school), that I would never find love until I looked ‘perfect’… and it took a message like this to snap me out of it! This, at that stage of my life, was what I needed to hear to start me thinking for myself. I’m glad that so many others, male/female/thirdspace have gone past this to the critical thinking stage.

    Readers, if you think back to the great teachers in your life, they were pleased when you answered questions the way you had been taught. They were even more pleased when you started forming your own informed questions about the answers.

  51. L April 28, 2008 at 10:16 PM #

    I found a comment by nightgigjo on the boards (in the jogging while female thread) that I think works well with this thread:

    In a way, our appearance IS something we do, according to the [patriarchy], anyway. The performance of femininity is a performance; an activity, something that women are encouraged, bullied, brainwashed into doing. It’s what the P is harping on us daily to do, glorifying compliance, trying to keep us too busy worrying about accomplishing what the [patriarchy] wants from us that we don’t have time or energy to realize that this is a form of oppression.

    What the P[atriarchy] wants us to do becomes, in the minds of the P-brainwashed, What We Do. Since the process is invisible to Teh Menz, it becomes What We Are.

    Once her actions can be confused with her inherent self, the woman becomes (to the P) an object, and no longer a human being.

    What this does, of course, is exactly what you just described: it automatically downplays whatever else a woman might do into virtual non-existence. Her entire raison d’etre is P-compliance.

  52. Nine Deuce April 28, 2008 at 10:23 PM #

    L – That’s an excellent piece. Thanks for posting it.

  53. chlorophyll April 29, 2008 at 3:41 AM #

    Agree with L’s post about gender as performative. Deuce/L, have you read Judith Butler? I took a graduate philosophy course last year and was assigned some chapters, but her writing was too inaccessible for me. Critical theory is something I like in idea, but can’t comprehend in written form … I think I’m philosophically dyslexic or something. Anyway, I liked her ideas — she wrote about performative gender.

  54. Nine Deuce April 29, 2008 at 3:43 AM #

    I will read her at some point I’m sure, although I absolutely LOATHE critical theory as a whole. I’m all about empiricism, which I guess makes me passe or something, but I just get irritated with circumlocutory abstractions.

  55. L April 29, 2008 at 4:16 AM #

    I’m the odd one of the bunch — I love reading critical theory (yes, I realize that makes me a high-falutin’ white-girl academic, exactly the kind of feminist many other feminists despise — can’t do much about it, I guess) and got a kick out of reading “The Performativity of Gender.” I’m on a performativity bender right now — everything I see has a performative feel to it, not just gender expression.

    Reading that folks don’t really like to read the critical theory stuff inspires me — maybe I’ll “translate” a few essays into non-theoretician speak this summer. I think that’s what we do anyway as feminist bloggers, and I think Nine has done a great job with the issue of porn in a layperson way, but maybe I’ll go even more specific with my feminist reader.

  56. chlorophyll April 29, 2008 at 4:20 AM #

    Yeah critical theory doesn’t strike me as being too ontological or straightforward in nature, it seems to deal with linguistics and semiotics more than anything else. Something happened with postmodern philosophy when it stopped being about consciousness/existence and more about the micropolitics of the text versus the actual ideology of historical philosophy. Although, Judith Butler seems to have taken feminism from its grassroots origins into a rather inaccessible sphere of hardcore academia.

  57. chlorophyll April 29, 2008 at 4:32 AM #

    The first response was to Deuce, and to L — I don’t think feminists hate each other, I think differing schools of thought might hold juxtaposing ideas regarding certain approaches to presenting/managing Feminism as a public idea. I’m guessing that different social classes have different views on what feminism is. For the most part, though, I think grassroots feminism is dead in terms of mainstream appeal. It seems to have been cemented in history and compensated for as evidenced by the commonality of Women’s Studies classes in nearly every college (and even high school) curriculum. Graduate-level academia seems to be the only contemporary environment where hardcore feminism seems to be able to be taken seriously now.

  58. chlorophyll April 29, 2008 at 4:37 AM #

    ** forgot to put this in the last post (wow, three posts in a row!) —

    That would also be a really great idea L, to paraphrase relevant excerpts from Butler (and maybe her partner Brown, too). In a world of Wikipedia and Sparknotes … that would probably be the more preferable alternative to actually reading the book. For lazyass undergrads like me, anyway.

  59. Nine Deuce April 29, 2008 at 7:51 PM #

    L – I, also being a high-falutin’ white-girl academic, do a lot of reading of critical theory, but I still get sleepy just at the thought. Maybe it’s my discipline (history) that makes me so averse to it. I have friends at school who love it, but I must be missing the gene or something.

    I planned (and I think it’s working) for this site to be accessible to the average person with an interest in gender issues and a few cuss words. But we definitely need some translations of critical theory that you don’t have to be in graduate school to understand. I wholly support any such effort, because there are some really valuable ideas out there that people are missing out on.

  60. superC May 17, 2008 at 3:57 AM #

    When I go to the pharmacy, just because it makes me laugh, I like to notice just how differently I’m treated by 99% of the employees at the makeup counter if I walk by them in sweatpants with no bra, no makeup (weekend mode) vs. made up with neat hair, heels and the like (work mode).

    When I’m dressed up I get treated quite nicely and when I’m dressed down I’m completely ignored. I don’t think they view me as a potential sale based on whether I’m wearing makeup or not, I honestly think their perception of how much money I have is directly aligned with how much perceived effort I put into my appearance.

    If my husband walks into a store wearing a suit, he’s treated respectfully. If he’s in street clothes he gets followed around or worse (true story), gets mistaken for a high school student. People associate your outward appearance with some sort of status, whether social, financial, or whatever.

    My Mom grew up on a farm with three brothers, and she leans more toward this blog’s tune than I do. She’s instilled some great values in me and I’ve grown up with a realistic view of the world. I appreciate that we were only allowed one “brand name” article of clothing a year and that she cared about more important things than getting her nails done.

    It wasn’t a severe upbringing, but on the other hand I think I might have rebelled against my Mom’s non-girly attitude. I must admit I was into fashion magazines, but in a realistic way. I understood that much of it was laughable and appreciated that it was there for entertainment. Most importantly, I was aware that it was potentially harmful to my self-esteem. My best friends would scratch out Naomi Campbell’s eyes with a pen because she had a perfect body.

    In high school I was probably one of those people that you look at and think “either they don’t care what anyone else thinks, or if they care way too much”. I liked to shock on a certain level, and was pretty much anti-bra, anti-anything with a heel, minimal makeup.

    It wasn’t until my early 20s that I became truly comfortable with my femininity. By that time I had a comfy corporate job and actually had some disposable income. Now nearing 30, I choose to wear heels, eye makeup, skirts, fitted clothing, etc. I shave my pubes- personal preference (also have no issues with porn). I do hate long painted nails (hello, I use my hands!) and I think plastic surgery is completely retarded.

    When it comes to the workplace, I think it’s almost disrespectful to come to work with no makeup, no thought put into your appearance, chipped toenail polish or whatever. But I don’t automatically think minimal grooming = slob. It differs on an individual level.

    It fascinates me that 50 or so years ago, things like heels, nylons and skirts were the norm for women, although it is wrong that the only male equivalent I can come up with is hats! But I think it’s interesting and somewhat romantic that people presented themselves that way.

    Whether I’m a well-balanced individual or not, I think the most crucial thing is that my parents managed to raise me to have confidence and high self-esteem. I’m realistic about the world around me. I would hate for anyone to think that I spent a great deal of time in front of my makeup mirror, I would puke if I spent any huge amount of money on clothing or beauty items, but heels make me feel sexy and empowered. I’ve been addicted since I tried them. And by the way as much as we’re bashed over the head with mineral foundation marketing….it is an awesome invention! Makeup can make you look healthier if executed properly.

    This is why I mentioned the perception of status, with the emphasis on financial status. Looking back, why would I have cared about heels and hair and purses in high school if I had virtually no income and therefore, mindspace and effort, to allot toward such things. I can afford to make more appearance-related choices now. I’m not sure if my choices are good, bad, a product of society or my upbringing. Just wanted to bring that to the table.

  61. Kim May 17, 2008 at 4:01 AM #

    My only “problem” here is make up. I don’t wear much though. But waxing pubes – no way. High Heeled Shoes – only if I’m on my back and they are up in the air, if you get my drift. Fake fingernails – ICK! Restrictive clothing – sorry but life is too short to be uncomfortable. And last but not least – plastic surgery. I used to want fake tits because mine are so underwhelming. I finally realized that if I couldn’t be happy with the body God/Goddess gave me, then I had worse problems than little tits. Feel me, dog?
    Great blog. You articulated things that I have felt but couldn’t because I lack the talent to put them in words.

  62. gcWall May 17, 2008 at 4:47 PM #

    It is ridiculous when lazy people attempt to turn laziness into a movement, in this case under the cover of feminism.

    Some disfigured people do not wish to remain disfigured. Some women like to emphasis their femininity. Oh, horrors.

    Obsessing over one’s appearance is a problem, but if one is not o.c.d. it is not a “problem”.

    What other modern enhancements should we dispose of? Garbage disposals? Dishwashers? Perfumes? Deoderants? Toothpaste? Go completely natural, stop bathing and grooming, you’ll be much happier for it. You won’t have any friends and will be thought of as a freak, especially as the hair creeps out from under your armpits and looks like fur on your legs so that you look like the Wild Man from Borneo, but enjoy the arrogance of knowing what is best for others.

    Lead the charge into the brave new world of naturalness where laziness is raised to the level of a virtue.

  63. Nine Deuce May 18, 2008 at 9:54 PM #

    geWall – I don’t want to interrupt your Botox sesh or anything, but I had to reply. Are men lazy for not wearing make-up and high heels? All I’m arguing is that we not be asked to submit to things men aren’t. We can all bathe until our skin cracks, I’m down with that. What I’m not down with is being told that I’m blowing it if I don’t look like a porn star or an anime character.

    Obsessing over one’s appearance is definitely a problem, because it points to the fact that women are little valued in our society for anything but their appearances, and even if they are, appearance is still the chief measure of women’s worth. When whether someone wants to fuck me trumps my life’s work, I call that a fucking problem.

    If you consider plastic surgery and ever-more harsh chemicals and shit we’re supposed to put on ourselves to raise our hot-or-not quotient “modern conveniences,” you’re stupid. There’s a difference between things that make life easier for us and things that make it easier for others to tell us how to be us.

  64. Urvi May 20, 2008 at 5:58 AM #

    Proud I-Don’t-Do-These-Things-er!

    Thanks for the terrific list! =)

  65. Urvi May 20, 2008 at 6:51 AM #

    Additional comments:

    My family has always pressured me to be more “feminine”–but I’ve always rejected–and have never understood–their viewpoint, especially since we have always struggled with our financial situation. In spite of this, their pressure almost always took me down in tears. Was I ugly or lazy because, as a teen, I cared whether my parents were running up a credit card debt?

    I was harassed in high school by people who didn’t care to understand me. Suffice to say I had my own share of self-esteem problems from this. I no longer believe that it all arose from my appearance, since I no longer consider myself to be ugly. It was more of a mixture of problems that arose from high school cliquish attitudes, racism, and pop culture. Most girls crumble under these pressures. So why is it encouraged so encouraged? (Side note: If anyone can come up with an answer to this question and put a stop to it–I hypothesize that you would rid teen girls of 60 percent of their problems and empower them with so many choices.)

    I am happy to say that, as a college student out on a full scholarship, I’ve gotten away from that restrictive environment. I can now say that I have a sweet boyfriend who looks past my make-up-less, short-and-heel-less, hairy exterior to makes me believe that I’m beautiful. I have a job–doing what I love–that doesn’t require me to wear heels or make-up for success. And while I may be living in my own little bubble environment (an environment I CHOSE to enter)–I can say that I make my own choices now. And I’ve fallen in love with it. I’ve promised myself that, from now on, I will make my own choices–and believe I’m right and beautiful for making them.

    I understand that there exist women who feel they must mask themselves with make-up and walk in heels to ensure their success in the workplace and in the social sphere–but honestly, in my own opinion, I’m not sure how true this perception really is. Can a well-groomed woman survive in the workplace–even if she does not wear heels? I think so. I cannot prove it. But I’ll die trying. (Isn’t it time?)

    As a physics major whose fallen in love with the academic world, I am practically bound to go into a field that won’t judge me on my appearance, although this does not necessarily mean that I won’t be judged on my sex. Why is this?

    So many questions. And ramblings. This comment turned out to be more incoherent than I really intended. But–these are only a few of the thoughts that this blog entry and the comments have inspired in my mind.

    Cheers!
    Urvi

  66. Nine Deuce May 20, 2008 at 4:46 PM #

    Urvi – I plan to address just the sort of high school behavior you mentioned in my new series. I think it may be one of the worst forms of terrorism women face.

  67. black rose May 23, 2008 at 7:51 AM #

    About the fake nails…I went to the shore with a friend of mine some years ago,(I was in about the 7th grade) and she had brought all this beauty crap with her. She bugged me and bugged me to put fake nails on me and I was like “Hell no!” So, like the silly girl she was, she glued them on my while I was asleep. I couldn’t beat Kirby’s Dreamland 2 because of those stupid things! So I broke them off and risked screwing up my nails because I had no idea how to get them off…screw fake nails….they have no use…

  68. black rose May 23, 2008 at 8:12 AM #

    Also, I want to put out I also shave my pubes, as does my boyfriend. It’s just a preference we have.
    Makeup and sexy clothes is also something I like, because some days I feel like wearing hooker boots and fishnets with some cool eyeshadow. Other than that I agree. Doing something because you want to is different than basing your world on your looks. Plus if I was in those nice dresses and skirts and stuff all the time, how would I hop fences while urban exploring, and if I was so worried about my eyeliner melting off how could I run around in a summer rain? Sometimes those things are not practical

  69. black rose May 23, 2008 at 8:16 AM #

    One more thing, and I swear I am done. This is a little off topic but I don’t know where to ask. I want to see what you think.

    I work at a supermarket, and there are only women as cashier’s and all the young boys (Like 17-19) run the carts. I know 1 guy who has ever done cashier in my store. Why is that? I mean has anyone seen guy cashiers at a supermarket?

  70. Nine Deuce May 23, 2008 at 7:37 PM #

    Men generally have better career options and see a grocery store as a stepping stone, or interim, job on their way to better things. Women tend to stick around places like that for the security, benefits, and relatively high wages so they can take care of their families, which they are often doing on their own.

  71. Agrees-with-you May 27, 2008 at 8:54 PM #

    I subscribe to none of the above-mentioned stereotypes and wonder at those who do. Glad there are other sensible souls out there

  72. Konservo May 28, 2008 at 7:07 AM #

    I have a general policy that if something hurts, restricts my movement, or is likely to cause long-term health problems or discomfort, I won’t do it if that’s at all possible.

    That’s very Epicurean of you.

    Really, why is sexiness the main criterion in choosing clothing, supplanting even utility and comfort?

    Perhaps some find utility in what they perceive to be “sexiness.”

    It almost never fails: if the switcheroo results in a sense of absurdity, I’ve found some sexist shit.

    Hmm… perhaps. What about shaving one’s chest? It seems to me that some women would find it reasonable to shave or wax or get rid of unwanted chest hair, but so do men? Is this an absurdity that men needlessly engage in?

    I’m not saying that this one example means that it’s fine for women to feel pressured into doing uncomfortable things in the name of fashion or sexiness. I just think that the ol’ switcheroo might not be sufficient by itself.

    It’s also disturbing to me, because I thinking asking “what a dude would do” is irrelevant. I only do things that are logical to me, if other dudes happen to make the same decisions… well, frankly, I don’t really give a shit. And, to be honest, I’m a bit surprised that you’re using “what a dude would do” as a standard against which to measure one’s actions. Dudes do some pretty dumb things.

    But, as for the points you make in the list, there isn’t really much mention of what dudes would do in the situation, so perhaps that standard isn’t as necessary as the title of this post might imply.

  73. L May 28, 2008 at 5:04 PM #

    What about shaving one’s chest? It seems to me that some women would find it reasonable to shave or wax or get rid of unwanted chest hair, but so do men[.] Is this an absurdity that men needlessly engage in?

    I’m not saying that this one example means that it’s fine for women to feel pressured into doing uncomfortable things in the name of fashion or sexiness. I just think that the ol’ switcheroo might not be sufficient by itself.

    Yes, it is an absurdity that men needlessly engage in.

    In any case, how many men shave their chests for cosmetic reasons? And how many men’s magazines offer tips and tools and tricks about how best to shave your chest without pain or for the best smoothness? Yeah, not that many and not that often. You could just take a quick jaunt to the store to compare the infrequent discussions of men’s chest-shaving habits in men’s media with the constant articles about waxing and shaving and other methods of hair removal in women’s fashion magazines. I hardly think your “counter example” offers any sufficient evidence that “the ol’ switcheroo” is useless.

    I only do things that are logical to me, if other dudes happen to make the same decisions… well, frankly, I don’t really give a shit.

    Ahahaha the irony, it is killing me. Again! You’ve missed the point! I read this blog in part so I can watch you miss the point over and over and over again — it amuses me so.

    Dudes do some pretty dumb things.

    Agreed. Which is why this post is pretty much limited to the “logical” choices dudes make regarding wearing comfortable clothes and cosmetic.

    I’m seriously wondering whether you can actually read, Konservo.

  74. Konservo May 28, 2008 at 6:09 PM #

    nine deuce,

    The list does talk about what a dude’s reactions might be, but, it seems to me, only the second appeals to the switcheroo: “What would a dude do? He’d get some comfortable shoes.”

    L,

    I didn’t say that the switcheroo is useless. I said that it “might not be sufficient by itself,” meaning it might not be sufficient by itself in determining whether or not actions are the result of rational thinking or if they are merely a by-product of social pressure.

  75. Angry Reptile Keeper May 28, 2008 at 10:59 PM #

    Y’know, I just realized something that I find interesting/disgusting.

    In my 24 years, I’ve heard many, many people say (mostly women) that women and girls who don’t wear makeup or sexy clothes have “low self esteem”, and then turn around and call them slutty if they do.

    How’s that for a catch-22? Women just can’t win, it seems.

  76. L May 28, 2008 at 11:12 PM #

    I’d like to know who here is arguing that the switching method is sufficient by itself, Konservo.

  77. Konservo May 29, 2008 at 1:04 AM #

    L,

    I don’t think anyone is taking that position, however, I don’t presume to know how and what others are thinking.

    The reason I clarified my previous remark is because you wrote:

    I hardly think your “counter example” offers any sufficient evidence that “the ol’ switcheroo” is useless. – L

    However, that’s not what I was saying. I never meant to imply that it was useless. If that’s how it sounded, then I’ll try to be more clear next time.

    Have a good evening (if you’re on the East coast of the US), all.

  78. L May 29, 2008 at 2:34 AM #

    Thanks, I am aware that you didn’t say useless. I used another word for your argument that I thought was fitting but apparently was not in your opinion. My point remains that no one here is arguing that this is the only way to determine anything at all, and for you to critique this post by saying it’s not sufficient by itself is not only irrelevant but also just a little stupid.

  79. Jane May 29, 2008 at 11:01 PM #

    I really appreciate your blog. Thank you for writing it. It surprises me to see such vehement responses in defense of makeup and shaving; I don’t understand why people feel so aggravated?
    Anyway, I wear makeup, shave, would never go near fake nails or tanning booths, waxing does hurt like hell and no one should do it, think that surgery for cosmetic reasons is dangerously taken for granted in our culture (cosmetic reconstruction surgery is another topic however), and I mainly spend my time in flats and wear high heels when I want to feel sexy.
    From reading your blog, I’m going to give my choices in general adornment more thought as to where they come from. To clarify, it’s obvious where I got the idea that all that would be nice in the first place, but whether or not it is something I’ll continue needs examination into my motives.
    I don’t believe there is anything critically wrong in adornment itself, it’s been part of other cultures before ours where both and men and women have or have not worn makeup. What I think is the problem is the delivery. Advertisers continually degrade women and bully them (terr’rize them) into believing they are inadequate without whatsoever product. And that there is some ideal, that they are not naturally, to strive for. Further, that that ideal is a falsely portrayed image of a human being is fucking despicable
    As for the teenagers… Being a teenager is more than just coming into one’s sexuality. It is also about coming into one’s power and that is denied many teenage girls with the message that comes to them through advertising that the only thing that matters about them is their looks and their boinkablility. How fucked up that so many girls need to walk the line of being just attractive enough that she’s liked but not too much so that she’s labeled a slut. What these girls need is to stop seeing each other as competition, and the only way to do that is to stop comparing each other to one another and thereby eliminating the desperate need to put another girl down by labeling her a slut or whatever. Teenage girls also need examples of positive womaness. Then experiments into makeup won’t be their only means of self-exploration/expression. Everything in teen pop culture is based on sex. There is so much more to being a human being. Movies and media need to explore girls coming into their power and being powerful- and that power has nothing to do with sexual manipulation which really is only warping yourself into someone else’s fantasy because your not powerful and confident enough to say what you want or get it yourself.
    Damn-it I want to see more in the media than sexy young girls acting like dumbasses so we can all just move on with our lives.
    There’s my rant.

  80. Nine Deuce May 29, 2008 at 11:04 PM #

    Amen.

  81. Nine Deuce May 29, 2008 at 11:06 PM #

    Konservo – The implication is that men wouldn’t do any of the things I’ve listed here, and so women ought to give some thought to why they are doing them.

  82. Screaming Lemur July 21, 2008 at 1:41 AM #

    I really <3 this blog.
    “Would a dude do it?” Is going to become my new litmus test.
    When I explained to my (very butch) partner some of the things that girls do to be “pretty”, she just shook her head and said “chicks are weird, man”. Weird? (well, yes, but) Try brainwashed, honey. IBTP.

  83. ms. jared August 27, 2008 at 10:38 PM #

    i just recently found your blog via genderberg and wanted to say that i LOVE it! your writing style kills.

    i just had to comment on this post because it reminded me of “The Great Makeup Wars of ’06” (http://msjared.blogspot.com/2006/06/beauty-and-feminism-part-duh-deux.html)

    i can’t wrap my head around why people can’t understand that just because THEY do something and THEY consider themselves feminists, EVERY action they take is NOT by default, feminist.

    i am a feminist and i wear makeup. that doesn’t mean that wearing makeup is feminist.

    i don’t wear makeup because of “choice” or because i love it or think it’s fun, i wear it because i’m conforming to the societal expectations of my workplace so that they respect me and treat me decently. if i didn’t wear makeup i wouldn’t be “taken seriously” and would be seen as a slob or a frump who doesn’t care enough to “make an effort”.

    and that is sexist and totally not cool. there are a buttload of schleppy looking guys in the office, but they’re taken seriously no matter what, simply because they have penis.

    we can’t all do everything, all the time. i rebel in my own ways, sometimes blatantly and in your face, sometimes subtly and covertly. we all just do what we can, and i think that’s okay. it’s better to do SOMETHING than nothing, just because you can’t do everything.

    anyway, i hope this doesn’t come across like i’m arguing with you because i’m not. i am in 100% agreement with all of your points. i just wish we lived in a society where women were TRULY free and didn’t have to conform to rigid gender stereotypes/presentation in order to pay the rent. one can dream…

  84. alex December 30, 2008 at 10:31 PM #

    One time, I decided to dress up and wear make up, ’cause I had some free time on my hand and I felt like it. But I was bombarded by a bunch of ‘so who’s the lucky guy?’ or ‘are you going on a date?’
    Why is it that if I want to dress up it has to be because I want to attract an attention of my opposite gender?

  85. rgoodchild January 26, 2009 at 6:21 PM #

    hey…
    i love this…
    I wrote for a woman’s mag- would be be allowed to reproduce this (and credit your blog?)

    :)

    thank you!

  86. Nine Deuce January 26, 2009 at 6:24 PM #

    Sure, it’s fine by me!

  87. Alina March 2, 2009 at 11:49 PM #

    I kinda have a different theory to putting make up on and uncomfy shoes and other fashion regarded things.

    I enjoy wearing high heels even if my feet hurt I very much like them and I do not think its because I want men to find me attractive.I am into Fashion and I like looking”stylish” and most of the time it doesnt look sexy or sexually appealing but it can be uncomfy.

    I think it sucks that some women do wear high heels and uncomfy clothing because they want male attention,but then u have women like me who entirely do it because of a fashion reason same with make up I feel prettier with make up on and again its not for men Its in humans nature to wanna look good,men drove us so far that being a feminist sometimes includes kinda having to not wear any of this things that can mistacenly being interpretated as sexy.

    I wanna be a feminist ,but I wanna wear make up high heels and uncomfy clothes and u know why!?!?!It has nothing to do with men.But I feel like I cannot be taken serious as a feminist if I wear make up and not an obvious rebelious appereance,but thats how it is.I think many people see this 2 things going together being a feminist and having to kinda let go of “nice” outfits,wich is a shame it shouldnt be that way.We should be able to wear high heels ,wear make up without any1 thinking we do it to be appreciated by men ,that would be some nice piece of freedom.

    Even u dear Nine Deuce assume that most women wear uncomfy stuff to appeal men,but I for myself and other women dont and I hate it if it ever comes over that way.

    I wanna be able to maybe even lok what is classed as sexy or nice without men objectifying me.

  88. hexy March 3, 2009 at 3:28 AM #

    Personally, I think the problem is that these things are gendered, not that they exist in the first place. But then, I hang out with a bunch of queers, and am quite familiar with non-beauty-ritual adhering women and beauty-ritual-adhering men. I don’t think the answer is to get rid of makeup, etc, but to break down the makeup = feminine = female construct. Discouraging women who enjoy performing artificial femininity from doing so and instead promoting a different model of preferred appearance is just going to lead to a different class of women feeling miserable and pressured to perform a constructed gender identity that isn’t theirs.

    My ideal fluffy clouds and unicorns post-patriarchal future is one in which both men and women can make genuine choices to engage or not to engage in any or all of the beauty rituals described, with a few “get rid of the intrinsic capitalist bullshit” tweaks. I do not believe that no women and no men, ever, would choose these things without our current societal programming. Especially the waxing/shaving… there are reasons other than the aesthetic for hair removal. The last time I let my bush grow back in it lasted all of two weeks. I was so incredibly frustrated by the decreased sensation and the subsequent loss of enjoyment of sex. That said, of course I’m aware many women would not choose it if they weren’t pressured into it… and that some men would.

    I find it really bothersome to see things that are currently strictly gender coded as “female” dismissed as stupid and frivolous. It’s certainly not feminist who most often utter those opinions… it’s men. They simultaneously expect female-coded beauty rituals to be performed for their benefit, and loudly deride them as strange, stupid things that strange, stupid women do. This plays into both misogyny and homophobia.

    Oh, and the nails? I have fake nails… the proper kind, not the ones that go PING! and fly off whenever you use your hands. I’m not going to babble on about how much I love the things, because as rightly pointed out that’s irrelevant. I am going to point out that this particular body mod, for me at least, is incredibly useful. They actually add to the functionality of my hands, not detract from it.

  89. Sara March 15, 2009 at 5:19 AM #

    While I agree with many of the things that you say, some of them bother me.
    I as much as you am concerned about feminism. However, I am also concerned about racism.
    “Although going to the nail salon does afford one the opportunity to get gossiped about in Vietnamese, it’s a waste of money and it isn’t good for you.” Hm, this seems pretty racist to me, and I think that racism is counterproductive to feminism.
    Also, criticizing wearing flip-flops with jeans? I do that because it’s comfortable. Flip-flops and jeans have nothing to do with being overtly sexual or ‘feminized’, so why do you mention it? Oh right, because it is your personal opinion that it is stupid. If this is that case, how am I supposed to take the rest of your opinions seriously? I understand the points you are trying to make, and I agree with you. However, why are you insulting your sisters as you make them?

    • Nine Deuce March 15, 2009 at 5:35 AM #

      I don’t know that it’s racist to say that one is likely to hear Vietnamese in a nail salon. If you think it is, why is that?

      The bit about flip-flops and jeans is just a personal opinion, it’s got nothing to do with feminism. It seems illogical to me; if it’s too hot to wear shoes, it should be too hot to wear jeans. But if you’re comfortable in them, rock on.

  90. Aileen Wuornos April 14, 2009 at 11:21 AM #

    Okay so I’m very late on the boat for this one but god damn, does this post kick fucking ass. I think I’m going to have to print one of these out and give it to my mum haha haha haha.
    My nails are long because I need them to make my nefarious activities easier. But for other nefarious activities they do need to go.

    It just depends on what miscreant behaviour I chose to indulge in.

    • kendallmck April 30, 2009 at 3:44 PM #

      If the “nefarious” activities you’re describing include splitting blunts, scooping shake, and wrapping splifs, I’m right there with you. So much easier with nails.

      I read your comments on my blog – I know what’s up ;)

  91. kendallmck April 30, 2009 at 3:42 PM #

    Don’t forget the ol’ clothes-women-are-culturally-required-to-wear-in-a-male-dominated-society-often-present-a-viable-excuse-for-sexual-assault deelio. “But I couldn’t HELP but rape her because she was wearing heels/a low cut shirt/a skirt/a sports bra!” “If you don’t want to attract that kind of attention, you shouldn’t dress like that. What do you expect?” etc..

    Makeup and fake nails: guilty, guilty, guilty as charged. But I do have to say that the few times I’ll really pile on the colorful, crazy shit, it’s more theater and art than anything else (kind of like tattoos). And honestly, I don’t know what I would have done without concealer to get me through those 10 years of chronic acne. I think there is something to be said for corrective makeup, and while I always resented the fact that dudes could grow beards or facial hair to cover their zits, I really felt like being able to wear makeup to even out my skin without being judged for it was the one time the patriarchy worked in my favor. Constant breakouts are miserable for EVERYONE and make everybody feel self conscious, but the makeup option isn’t really socially acceptable for men.

    It would be nice if attractiveness wasn’t so culturally important both men and women could walk around with pizza face and feel ok about it, but honestly, having giant red spots and cysts constantly decorating your face seems like something that would suck in even the most utopian society. It’s seriously, seriously difficult to deal with both mentally and physically, and corrective makeup effectively saved my social life during that time. That’s not to say I LIKED wearing concealer – I didn’t. I hated that I had to spend money and time, and my activities would be restricted because of it (I couldn’t just have an impromptu swimming sesh, for instance)…but the alternative was way worse. My skin literally has cleared up just in the past 3 months for the first time since I was 14 (I guess my hormones finally balanced out) and all the scaring has pretty much faded away, and I can’t tell you how nice it’s been to not wear face makeup…but if I start breaking out again, I’m busting out the Bare Minerals immediately.

    (That being said, I’ve always thought a full face of foundation is disgusting. The idea that you can’t get wet, sweaty, or your face can’t touch ANYTHING without leaving a swipe of greasy, beige residue is gross to the max. Even when my skin was at its absolute worst, I would only cover the rough spots. Actually, most of the women I know that wear a full face of foundation actually have flawless skin underneath. It’s maddening.)

    Oh, and like other commenters here, I actually found that my hands were infinitely more useful with fake nails. It sounds crazy, but they were like having a Swiss Army Knife on your fingers – I’d cut boxes open with them, scoop things, they’re great for splitting blunts, it’s actually easier to pick your nose, typing was easy, I could comb my hair with them, and they really didn’t make any of my normal activities (including bowling) any more difficult. Also – not going to lie – I loved the way they looked. They were tacky, gaudy, and trashy (I wore them long, rounded/almost pointy, and always had them painted bright colors and sometimes with designs), which is, honestly, kind of my style.

    I’ve had fake nails on and off since I was 17 or so (off now), and there’s no way I would have kept doing it if it severely limited my lifestyle in any way. But I HAVE spent a lot of time and money on them over the years – money I was lucky enough to have to spend on something so silly – and I’ve often chided myself for being a bad little feminist. Trust me, the irony doesn’t escape me.

    None of these things are an excuse for participating in obviously patriarchal activities. I’m not here to defend the merits of fake nails and makeup (except for, again, corrective makeup), but sometimes there’s a little more to it. I really love fucking around with gender in a blatant, theatrical way, and I like to do so with gaudy drag makeup and busted-ass fake nails. When I get all Anna Nicole-d out men tend to find me way LESS attractive, but I do it because it’s fun and art to me. I also think it’s interesting to juxtapose that overtly feminine ish with traditionally “masculine” things, like hairy pits (which I also sport), fake mustaches, and dude clothes.

    Or I’m just a tool of the patriarchy. Whatever. I’ve made my peace with the fact that women’s lib and glittery, red lipstick don’t really jive.

    (And let me tell you, not shaving your pits or pubes ends up being a pretty basic indicator of whether or not a guy is an asshole. If dude is grossed out because I don’t look like a prepubescent girl, I literally have no place for him in my life. Ever.)

  92. Imaginary September 28, 2009 at 1:58 PM #

    I really like your blog. However, I wear a lot of make-up, for a couple reasons.

    A) because it helps me express myself (which is pretty much a lie because if I actually express myself and wear the spiritual war-paint that I like wearing, I get yelled at). So I make consessions and just wear some glitter and dark eye shadow.

    And B) Because my step-dad is less of a prick when I wear face paint that makes him think I have rad punk friends who will kick him with combat boots. Or at least I don’t look as innocent when I war paint up. Whatever, I don’t feel as creeped out when I lie about who I am. It feels like he’s disrespecting someone tougher than I. I hate him. I wish to wear my face paint without getting scared. People think I’m a freak.

  93. Amelia (Barcodes AU) November 17, 2009 at 1:24 AM #

    Great post here, thanks ;) Maybe I should start asking myself that question as a test for whether something sucks for women: “what if this person was a man?” Women’s fashion is so sexualised it annoys me to pieces.

  94. Satan February 17, 2010 at 7:05 AM #

    Honestly, it’s kind of obvious that men push this agenda of beauty prevailing over practicality–but why is it that I find most feminists ignore the female component of this?

    You’re just as much to blame as the men–if not more so. You’re the ONLY ones who can change it, or so believe it. Yet, almost nothing has really gone anywhere in terms of how women are viewed. It just seems more convoluted and hush hush nowadays. It’s like slaves enslaving slaves. I can never really understand it, and I try to bring it to other girl’s attention that they aren’t better than someone else just because they are prettier, have bigger breasts, better asses, whatever physical trait they have that is subscribed in my particular subset of my culture in my particular country. There are plenty of places that respect bigger bellies, smaller breasts, bigger hips, breasts that sag, breasts that point outward, etc.

    And I deeply get offended when women think they can control me because they are the ideal of beauty. And, I’d rather not someone read this as if I am some embittered prick. I am cognizant of it. When a girl bats her eyes at me and expects me to yield to her, she will find another thing coming. The typical ‘homely’ girl will get my undivided attention because she usually has something intelligent and worthwhile to say because she actually had to develop a personality! Most of the time at least, I am not assuming beauty = stupidity, and actually there may be an opposite correlation, but I am digressing. I’m pretty much impervious to female beauty. It is often used as a bludgeoning weapon, or as a stick to lean on. I am unaffected by it, and typically repulsed in the manner it is presented, and I find myself getting talked to like I am an idiot when I tell a black girl to stop using weaves. That whole ideal that white girls have prettier hair is absurd to me. I love an ethnic girl’s hair, or a white girl’s hair, or an Asian girl’s hair, or whatever girl’s hair. I love girls. They are all beautiful–but I know that black girls especially feel they must fit the ideal in the American society that you have to have long flowing hair, or that the black woman’s vagina is discolored, or disgusting, makes me upset. When I bring that to their attention they get mad at me? I’m starting to think that some women really enjoy playing the game. This, absurdly demoralizing game that ultimately we all lose. In the end, we all lose. Men and women just frankly do not understand each other, and I don’t even know how to go about the dialogue to bring it to their attention that they are playing right into the hands of PEOPLE who are looking to make a quick buck, and appeal to people’s insecurities to get it. And men are being targeted in a different way. Just look at the abundance of “get ripped in 4 weeks!” Certainly it’s not on the level of the kind of BOMBARDMENT women are getting, but we are catching up. Soon we’ll have a whole generation of boys taking steroids and creatine to bulk up so people will find them desirable. Nowadays we [men, I am not included in this...masculinity is more than my money or what I own] just believe it’s a fat wallet–but once we put the selective qualities of a good mate, or rather, invent them as being indicated by a man’s bicep circumference then we’ll end up in the same boat with women. Fighting what is happening to women now will save boys and girls forever.

    I’ll give a good example. I’m in great shape for my age. I’m in great shape for most men at any age–and I am very physically fit. My biceps and everything on me has definition, and I have a six pack, but that’s not good enough for some girls. I have been told to my face that I do not compare to other guys who pretty much just work out all day, and have no personalities. This is what I feel like my kids are going to end up competing with when I have them. If I was a little pudgy, or maybe not well-defined I could maybe understand, but I so fit I am vascular. But apparently I am not fit enough.

    We are living in exponentially trivializing times people. Time to start waking the hell up.

    Sexism is a matter of exploitation–the gender, or the sex is not important. If a woman can do it, she will. If a man can do it, he will. Anthropology will back me up on that one. Matriarchal societies are not better than patriarchal. They both suck.

    I’m starting to just really hate feminism, not because of what it stands for, but clearly because of the retardation in it across every single conceivable spectrum. No one seems to understand that this problem is a human problem. Not a man problem. Not a woman problem. It is a problem in the fundamental nature of humans. We exploit resources. We can turn anything into a resource; including human lives and their well-being if it means they will buy more of X product or will get Y pill.

    I’m tired of the man-bashing nonsense. Some men [as myself] are feminists. Not every man at the top of the chain is cackling fiendishly while shuffling his hands. I am sure most affluent men and women are so privileged as to not care about women, men, black, Hispanic, [insert people here]. Who really cares when you have money? You could be a green troll with horns growing out of your elbows and people will still listen to you. Money talks. All this bullshit, walks.

    The real demon is money, and media. Get rid of that and maybe we’ll return to egalitarianism present in the youth of our species when we were mere hunter-gatherers.

    Capitalism is your devil. And, no I am not a communist–but clearly sexism is endemic to the system.

    • Nine Deuce February 17, 2010 at 7:14 AM #

      I’m certainly anti-capitalism, but patriarchy existed long before capitalism. There is such a thing as overlapping oppression, and if you don’t think women have it worse than men, you’re out of your mind. Do you think it’s easier to be poor and male or poor and female, for example?

  95. Andrew February 17, 2010 at 9:24 AM #

    I think what bother’s a lot of people is the fact that feminism seems content to limit itself to correcting harms that affect women. This might be pragmatic, but it creates an ideological inference that exploitation of women is the only exploitation worthy of addressing. I often ask my friends who are members or “historically marginalized groups” why these groups should be protected before others, when individuals of any or all groups may be discriminated against for arbitrary reasons.

    It might be hard to document all transgressions against all peoples. It might be incumbent upon you to point out the subtle brand of misogyny that is often present in the media, at the expense of focusing on other issues. That is understandable. You are going to have a huge problem though as long as “man” is synonymous with oppressor and “woman” is synonymous with oppressed. It might be fun, or even right 90% of the time, but it comes dangerously close to drawing categories that don’t reflect reality, and thus, don’t address the problem.

    I guess the question is…if we both understand that women, just like men, can be exploitive, harmful, self-interested human beings…what relevance is the male/female distinction? Rooting constructed traits in immutable characteristics sounds a lot like the kind of logic that justified early racism, and not the kind of progressive thought aimed at transcending it.

  96. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:05 AM #

    Women clearly have it significantly worse. Where did I indicate otherwise? I am merely bringing it to their attention that imbalances exist in both sexes quite equally when you subtract how negatively or positively each are affected. More often men get a boost where women get a down. I just don’t know how feminism will succeed without targeting men. The black suffrage movement wasn’t won with black people alone. Plenty of people from different creeds enlisted themselves in the fight. More men are needed for this. Many many more. It needs to be fashionable, or common sense to be a feminist as a man. When that can be attained, we’ll all get a taste of the real sexual freedom we’ve been denied. Both are imprisoned by gendering. But, ultimately a capital system creates massive imbalances and seeks to reproduce them. It doesn’t really matter what you are so long as you have economic power. I don’t think most people are so sinister–I think most people are just stupid and apathetic, or cynical.

    We need more male feminists–just as many as women if not more. Boys need to grow up into feminists. And girls need to grow up as masculinists. They both need to appreciate the others qualities without prejudice or twisted facts–we cannot directly understand each other. Our brains behave in significantly different ways and even though our intelligences are relatively the same, they are different intelligences and the way we communicate, act, and feel is evident in that. Men and women don’t think the same. It’s another reason why this is so damn hard to do.

    I don’t understand why women do the things they do. I can only speculate and try to find evidence for it. That’s all I can do.

    • Nine Deuce February 18, 2010 at 2:06 AM #

      The problem in the “you need men to succeed” argument is that it usually means “you need to take men’s interests into account ahead of your own” and that’s a bit tiring, considering the fact that women are ALWAYS being asked to take men’s interests into account and we’d rather not be told, once we form a movement of our own, that we have to let men tell us what we should be working for. Girls already grow up as masculinists. We are trained from the day we’re born how to please men. Feminism is about getting out from under that and being free to be us rather than objects for men’s consumption. What the world has plenty of is women who spend their time thinking about what men need.

  97. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:22 AM #

    Andrew, you elucidated my view in eloquent fashion!

    That is precisely what I am trying to illuminate. This is not a dilemma that men have enacted against women. We USED to be egalitarian–then it changed.

    Just look at our cousins, the apes. The Bonobo society is relatively peaceful, and they often use sex as a way of bonding and the women are in control by banding together–their sexuality has been balanced. The women are not exploiting the men, and the men get to have as much sex as they want, and it is a negotiable thing of affection and bonding. Of course I am not suggesting we act this way, but it’s a lesson in our own sexuality.

    Whereas, the Chimpanzee often rapes females, and it is kind of a coming of age for a young chimpanzee male to be able to wrangle up all the females and brutalize them. They often kill the young of other apes, and often gang rape, and kill others, etc. These kind of behaviors are enabled because of the fact that Chimpanzee females do not eat together and the hunt for food often leaves them searching alone. This leads to a destabilization in the sexual dynamic and the chimpanzee females are getting down-trodden, and destroyed.

    This is the same thing in human society. Something shifted us out of that equilibrium that we once long had. It is probably what is responsible for our mainly cooperative behavior [our original level of sexual conflict about 250,000-100,000 years ago]. I do not think it is in our nature to judge, or be violent–or even to want to rape. I think that those things are almost certainly created through the imbalances of the gender. Since rape is about power and not sex then it must be produced from the imbalance of PERCEIVED power. This is always an illusion because women are only physically weaker–in any other capacity they are our equals, and sometimes betters, and vice versa. Our more localized thinking makes us better in mathematics, their well connected thinking leads them to be excellent linguists. Both are valuable and wonderful qualities.

    But I’m running around my point: the point is we need to address the dynamic as a whole. Not as one oppressing the other [even though it appears that way]. It is something that needs to be uprooted from the consciousness of children, and many people are defensive over what their children learn. They wish to instill their beliefs in them–to replicate the same information they have learned as to pass on their mind sort to speak.

    People are highly resistant to this, but I sometimes feel like this is the echo of an awful beast that rose out of bushes, berries, and skins. It has perpetuated and reproduced only because it can, and not because of any reason other than we can always quash our opposition [women] with violence–and once we reach a point where violence is dissuaded in nearly every sense we find we wage the war in the mind by disassembling meanings like feminist into someone who hates men, or doesn’t wear a bra, or shaves their head, etc.

    We lost our violent edge. We can’t cleave a woman’s heart in half literally, or drown them, or rape them [well apparently we still can and we'll blame them for it]–we do it figuratively now, and it’s probably more effective.

    This is not a man’s issue–this is a human issue. It is human at its core. We belong to the same set of genetic instructions, differing in one chromosome. If we address this as a natural issue that can be resolved through some intelligent nurturing then we might get somewhere.

    Saying it’s man’s fault is as clever as saying that it’s the cloud’s fault it is raining. Gravity is ultimately to blame, or even condensation if you want to go in another direction–in any event, I just don’t see how the nature of the problem is being truly addressed. This is purely a sexual conflict. Approaching it as such with a calm head may lead us to better understanding why this is so easily reproduced despite evidence that women should be treated differently.

  98. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:25 AM #

    Masculinism isn’t male worship anymore than feminism is female worship. It’s about women as well as men. But there are injustices on both sides–the bigger issue is always going to be feminism, but both should be addressed before we go running after one and forgetting the other. We need a serious balance correction here.

    Also, I don’t recall where I said that men’s needs are more important than women’s. Women started the whole damn movement, so they are pretty much responsible for the paradigm itself. What I am saying is that MORE men need to subscribe–not that they need to bastardize it with their own notions of what feminism SHOULD be. It is clear what it SHOULD be. It should be about the equality between gender, and the most pressing problem in the equality is the way women are perceived and treated–the glass ceilings, and all the double standards, etc.

    • Nine Deuce February 18, 2010 at 2:27 AM #

      The point is, we don’t need to balance things out by tipping the focus away from feminism and toward men, because feminism is about trying to correct the current imbalance, in which the focus is almost always on men and what they want.

  99. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:33 AM #

    This isn’t about tipping the focus away from women. I am saying that we should tip the focus to the human race itself. It’s like feminists like to attack the lion from the front. Get it from every side!

    • Nine Deuce February 18, 2010 at 2:36 AM #

      I don’t disagree that the systems of inequality that we face number more than just one, but I’m going to use my energy and expertise to attack the two I think are most detrimental to humanity: misogyny and capitalism. But anyway, what is your prescription? Do you not realize that it’s not your place to tell me how to do my feminist activism?

  100. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:35 AM #

    Nine Deuce, you are clearly misunderstanding me. This isn’t about what MEN want. Women even subscribe to the beliefs of what MEN want. I’ve seen girls think X girls are pretty and agree with a bunch of guys. This is a human issue.

    I’m a man, and I what I want is vastly different than you would imagine. Don’t paint me with that brush. The real problem is the idea of what men want, not men themselves–we don’t really want this crap. We don’t even know what we want, people tell us when we are young, impressionable and stupid, and it’s easy to teach us in such a pathetic brain-washable state.

    I was a victim of masculinization, and I’ve been scrapping that whole heap of crap ever since.

  101. Satan February 18, 2010 at 2:38 AM #

    Those probably are the most detrimental to society. But I think in the benefit of women we need to find a new angle to finally generate enough energy for these thoughts to emerge in the public consciousness as common sense. Right now this stuff is philosophy. It’s novel ethics. We need this to become common sense.

    • Nine Deuce February 18, 2010 at 2:41 AM #

      I agree. So go be a part of that happening, because that’s what I’m doing.

  102. Satan February 18, 2010 at 3:07 AM #

    That’s pretty much all I think about sometimes. I’ve always an overbearing sense of fairness–to the point it faults me and makes my loyalties dissolve because I realize my biases. :S

  103. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 12:33 AM #

    Satan, your contributions to this thread are nothing less than the epitome of the self-centered pig-ignorance of most men about feminism and its shibboleths. You obviously don’t understand the concept of male privilege, you believe male violence and male power have no connection and are merely “human” problems, you actually subscribe to bogus gender essentialist claims about the supposed differences in male and female intelligence as they are influenced by “biology” or “genes” or monkeys, or whatever, you construct some facile analogy between a cloud raining and a dude being a violent misogynist pig (why do you hate clouds, feminists!?), you repeatedly suggest to Nine Deuce that she calm down, have a “level head,” and demonstrate some “common sense,” condescend to her about the aims and means of feminism, and then, most egregiously, you blithely purport to being a victim, too.

    Shorter Satan: me me me me me me me. You gals should be paying attention to me and my big brain and my big dick and my big grand thoughts you’ve never had to listen to in a thousand billion years, I’m so fucking cool and rational and philosophical, I’ve got all the answers, listen to me, look at me, pay attention to me me me me me as a I bombard some chick’s weblog with my answers to the world’s fucking problems.

    Meanwhile, you can’t answer a single practical question Nine Deuce poses, ‘cos you have no idea what you’re writing about.

    You do, however, recognize that most men want to rape and murder women. Good on ya.

  104. Satan February 19, 2010 at 3:02 AM #

    I don’t know the gender of anyone I was replying to, so my responses were gender neutral.

    [Edited - no being an abusive asshole, dude.] If you continue to blame us as a group, and not correctly blame the establishment, or the idea that is reproducing itself then you will get nowhere. Being a man is part of our identity as much as being a woman is probably a part of yours–I’m a little different. I do not identify myself as a man, or a woman. I have male sexual organs, but aside from that I try to make as many choices against my gendering as possible without turning too many heads.

    So anyway, every time I read a piece of feminist literature, or a story of what it was like, I am very moved by it all, but in the midst of it I pretty much see women blaming MEN as a whole, or MANNESS as the problem. This is my issue.

    This is the WRONG way to approach it. Martin Luther King didn’t say that WHITE people were intrinsically evil–he saw a world where they both could be together…equally I think that feminism wants a world where we are equals, together, etc., but it is clear that it isn’t in the undertones of the message: men are the problem.

    Now, at least no one is saying to kill us all, or castrate us, but I feel like I am being emotionally castrated for simply being a man. I just do not subscribe to anything without critical or rational thought.

    I don’t rape, because I wouldn’t want to be raped. I don’t hurt others because I wouldn’t want to be hurt. I don’t hate because it is a painful and often debilitating emotion, etc.

    I just probably splurged a little too much on my thoughts–and I don’t need to apologize for that. Men are repressed as much as women, but absolutely differently. Women get screwed [a typical 'male' way of describing something bad by using sexual references], but men get locked into place [military conscription, being forced to go to college, work until they die, deal with horribly dangerous working conditions, they are the MOST EXPENDABLE SEX (women and children first!)].

    If you want to keep ignoring that fact, all right. Women may not have been able to get a greater education, and certainly less opportunities are available, but men and women are still expected in particular roles–being a man is clearly advantageous, and I feel sad to say I wouldn’t really want to be a woman because of that, at least in this day and age because of the stratification we have.

    If maybe you take the venom out of it maybe we can get the other half of the world in the boat. We need male feminists as much as female feminists.

    We’re equals. We need each other. Denying it will result in no momentum–since clearly the power is mainly in my sex’s court, and you have to persuade these poor, miserably contrived bastards that what they’ve believed is wrong–dead wrong.

    I feel that sometimes women, and men are too emotionally attached to the identity of their sex, and often fail to see our intimate connection and similarities.

    Take it for what it is. I don’t really care.

  105. Satan February 19, 2010 at 3:12 AM #

    Also, I never once indicated that male power and male privilege DIDN’T cause all the violence. That’s kind of obvious–but it’s a sexual conflict. Blaming men for it is just kind of stupid ultimately. You can blame the individual–but why blame the sex? Just because I’m a man does not mean I am violent, or coercive. I respect women, and I try my best to be understanding.

    But, I can’t understand the insurmountable hatred that seems to ooze from SOME feminists. I can read it between the lines.

    And honestly, I understand the hatred. If there is any at all in some women’s minds. I read an article once called “Schroedinger’s rapist” and it really opened my eyes to how women see men. They don’t know if we are a rapist until we rape them. And it’s true. I understand the aversion toward men. We ARE GROOMED that way. Just as much as the rich are groomed in another way.

    But the grooming is the problem–these people are born innocent, and are transformed into these forms because they are not given contradictory evidence, and no critical thought goes into this process of developing these personalities.

    You have to say to men for once: it isn’t your fault you are so fucked up. It’s societies fault. They abandoned women. They abandoned sanity. Simply blaming men as if they would be this way if left to their own devices, as if it is something that bubbles up through puberty…is asinine.

    Even if it was something intrinsic in men, a good amount of nurture would tame it out of us for good. I’m a good example of that. I grew up in a saturated environment of misogyny, and tricking girls into having sex, and essentially rapists that I didn’t identify as such back then because no one ever really felt it was that way. I lived in a bizzaro world, and often felt like it was all out of control. I used to watch guys just crowd around girls who were drunk and all grope her, and honestly I was too scared back then to do anything, and too young to know what to do. I have heard girls being raped behind closed doors when I was 8 years old. So please, I don’t really want to hear that I don’t know about male violence, and how disgusting they can be.

    I had barely any thoughts of my own to get. I’ve always been a feminist I’d say, but I really don’t know when I really became one. When I really started to look at my own stupidity, and these assumptions that were given to me. Things I never challenged.

    It was a long time before I could really listen to a woman and take her words as seriously as a man’s [aside from my mother], and I’m deeply, and utterly ashamed of that. But, a lot of men wouldn’t be the way they are if they were raised properly.

    I know I wouldn’t have been such a piece of shit.

  106. Satan February 19, 2010 at 3:26 AM #

    Sorry to like, post bomb this, but I guess I should just apologize if I came off as an arrogant, thick-headed dick. I really try not to, but I am so frustrated by the aversion to feminism, and I feel like it is at a serious roadblock. It had amazing success early until men began to pervert the message, and effectively dissuade men and women from embracing it.

    I guess I just rant sometimes. I just wish there was a solution. This is the biggest, and most ugliest problem I ever have to think about. And it consumes me sometimes. Because, I don’t even know how to get out of it. I hate this world sometimes because I know girls are having their genitals mutilated for men. I know girls are being committed to marriages to disgusting pedophiles, or they are being killed in China for the ‘seeming’ necessity of the male heir.

    I’m pretty aware of the IDEA of maleness being superior and thus leading to the eradication, and exploitation of women. Maleness is exonerated, and celebrated through our history. Only men seem to make the world move according to history books.

    But this is all wrong…wrong…wrong…wrong. The idea of maleness > femaleness is as dumb to me as females and males.

    There are more than two genders, and plenty of societies from aboriginals to native americans have had 3 or more genders.

    I know the gender game. We only have two, when clearly more than two exist. But, anyway…I just hope you understand me better. If you don’t, all right. Hate me with all your might.

  107. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 5:48 AM #

    Now you’re A Nice Guy, I see.

    …I’m a little different. I do not identify myself as a man, or a woman. I have male sexual organs, but aside from that I try to make as many choices against my gendering as possible without turning too many heads.

    Quite apart from anything else, you’re being completely disingenuous here, Satan. In your comments above, you routinely employ the first-person plural when talking about men’s experiences as though they were homogenous. Further, most everything you said was a defense of men’s experiences and privileges. “We” don’t want to do this, “we” feel that, such as the bit when you (singular) deem women your (plural) “opposition” and admit you (plural) feel some (ostensibly deeply-seeded) desire to drive an axe into women:

    People are highly resistant to this, but I sometimes feel like this is the echo of an awful beast that rose out of bushes, berries, and skins. It has perpetuated and reproduced only because it can, and not because of any reason other than we can always quash our opposition [women] with violence–and once we reach a point where violence is dissuaded in nearly every sense we find we wage the war in the mind by disassembling meanings like feminist into someone who hates men, or doesn’t wear a bra, or shaves their head, etc.

    We lost our violent edge. We can’t cleave a woman’s heart in half literally, or drown them, or rape them [well apparently we still can and we'll blame them for it]–we do it figuratively now, and it’s probably more effective.

    Emphasis mine.

  108. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 7:16 AM #

    I don’t know the gender of anyone I was replying to, so my responses were gender neutral.

    Are you suggesting that you didn’t know the author of this weblog was a woman? The only reason you could fail to note this sort of blindingly obvious fact is if you didn’t actually read the essay to which you’re responding, as she makes it abundantly clear in that essay that she resists adopting behavior that as a woman she is expected to adopt. And, my question is: if you didn’t read the essay, why would you respond in the first instance?

    Contrary to your back-tracking in the last three comments, you’re not a feminist ally. Contrary to what you believe, feminism doesn’t need men to succeed and feminism isn’t a failure because it does not appeal to men; feminism needs men to get out of the way, step out of the spot-light, shut their mouths, and listen. Finally, feminism has not been “perverted” by men who have succeeded in dissuading the majority of women and almost all men from embracing it. As you have found in your own experiences, feminism requires people to acknowledge deeply troubling truths about themselves and their culture. Their enemies deemed first-wave feminists mad, hysterical, ugly virgins; second-wave feminists were bra-burning, uptight, man-hating bitches. The only reason the third-wave gets a modicum of respect from liberal d00dz (when and if it does get respect) is because it has embraced patriarchal norms (rape culture, porn, prostitution) as “empowering” and “feminist.” Feminists aren’t given to crying because their beliefs might antagonize some random dude; antagonizing random dudes is sometimes the point and pleasure of the whole enterprise.

    I also find it absolutely laughable that you want an internet cookie because after years of apparently acting like a entitled prick and abusing the women in your life, you’ve decided women are human (or, in your estimate, women are just like men). Congratulations on this discovery, but yours is not the universal male experience and not every feminist man is a “born again” who has sins he must absolve. It’s never particularly gratifying to learn what men think about other men, but it’s especially disheartening to read that men truly believe all other men are goons. Also, while it’s wonderful that you acknowledge the existence of social conditioning, admitting the existence of patriarchy and its influences over your behavior does not absolve you of guilt for acting like a misogynist, so, again, contrary to what you say above, men should always be blamed when they act like dicks and should never have to be tricked (through goading, coddling, or appeals that flatter their egos) to treat one-half of the human race decently.

  109. isme February 19, 2010 at 2:57 PM #

    “So anyway, every time I read a piece of feminist literature, or a story of what it was like, I am very moved by it all, but in the midst of it I pretty much see women blaming MEN as a whole, or MANNESS as the problem. This is my issue.

    This is the WRONG way to approach it. Martin Luther King didn’t say that WHITE people were intrinsically evil–he saw a world where they both could be together…equally I think that feminism wants a world where we are equals, together, etc., but it is clear that it isn’t in the undertones of the message: men are the problem. ”

    I agree with you on that, somewhat. I don’t like the way a discussion can switch between one member of a group to all of a group…being blamed for what my ancestors did to someone else’s ancestors several generations before I was born, for example, gets tiresome.

    On the other hand, is it “if it doesn’t apply to you, then it doesn’t apply to you”? It gets thrown around alot here…would you prefer people copied and pasted “who are___________” after each use of the word “men”?

    “feminism doesn’t need men to succeed and feminism isn’t a failure because it does not appeal to men; feminism needs men to get out of the way, step out of the spot-light, shut their mouths, and listen.”

    I dunno about that…the distinction seems a bit woolly in practice.

  110. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 4:21 PM #

    Well, male feminist allies needn’t necessarily contribute anything to a discussion, but merely not hinder discussion or attempt to sabotage change engineered by women. Hypothetically, a feminist uprising would only need women. Hypothetically, feminist progress could be achieved politically by policy change and through a significant increase in representation of women as elected and appointed representatives and by the will of female voters. What feminism does not need, as I far as I am personally concerned, is to routinely apply salves to dudes’ bruised egos, or to make feminism “about” men, “misandry,” or whatever anti-feminist men think it needs to make it less radical. Ya know?

  111. Satan February 19, 2010 at 4:39 PM #

    “antagonizing random dudes is sometimes the point and pleasure of the whole enterprise.”

    Yeah, that’s called sexism. You’re a failure as a anyone who believes in sexual equality Saurs. You really are. Go grow up and stop the man-hating nonsense.

    Men, and women need to learn to be cohesive again. That is all I was saying, and you take it that men are trying to take over feminism. Hahaha.

    So whether you want to believe it or not. We need the entire world behind this. Men, women, black, white, tan, red, whatever.

    This is still a fundamentally HUMAN problem, and until it is addressed as such you will find NO progress whatsoever, and every man you meet will roll their eyes at you when you spout off about this crap.

    I find more success in educating other men when I explain how they’ve been abused by the system itself. They are less likely to take offense, and the cognitive dissonance is lessened when their PERSONAL IDENTITY isn’t at stake.

    Men identify with ‘male’ culture. Women identify with ‘female’ culture. Both are stupid, and make believe to me. Men and women can act how they choose–subscribing the gender is a mainly forced practice. We do gender all day, every day and never realize it.

    But, that’s not my point. My point is you are going to get nowhere in the minds of those who are actually holding the power if you continue to point the finger at their entire identity as human beings.

    Why change? We’re just bastards anyway from birth. With your attitude, I feel I should just be smothered in a pillow to death at birth while you grow vats of female embryos in a petri dish ala twilight zone. I wonder if that would appease your disdain.

  112. Satan February 19, 2010 at 4:41 PM #

    Feminism needs men. Men need women. Women need men.

    You wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for that fact. Go ahead. Deny it.

    We can make a better world for both of us–infinitely better. That is all I am concerned about. We are both fucked as far as I can tell. Men will be men, and only men, and women will be women, and only women.

    The scope of human realities and experiences are dwindling in this vapid culture.

  113. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 6:36 PM #

    There’s no such thing as separate and distinct male and female “cultures.” We’re livin’ in a patriarchy. That’s dude culture. And your declaration that feminism needs dudes is a point of contention between us. I don’t believe it does, and I especially don’t believe feminism needs dudes like you, who threaten to take their ball and go home (roll their eyes at you, I believe you wrote, be still my beating heart at the possibility of a sarcastic eye-roll), give up the whole feminist routine, because some random person on the interweb hurt their feelings. “Good luck with your little project, ladies, but unless you cater to my every whim, allow me to act like a victim, and explain to me how feminism is going to personally help me, it ain’t gonna happen.”

    I rarely comment on this weblog because I prefer reading the discussion and the arguments, which are largely conducted between women and feminist men. It’s a beautiful thing. And it harshes my buzz to read an anti-feminist, dudesplainin’ derailer who in his first comment complains about women’s “sexual” “power” (NB that women have no sexual power under patriarchy, an erection is neither an admission of respect nor of weakness, and that it’s not particularly difficult or necessarily rewarding to elicit an erection, anyway), refers to women as “girls,” admits that he harangues black woman about their bodies and how they choose to adorn or not to adorn them, and sings that omnipresent sensitive dude lament about how, despite his good looks and big brain, women think he’s too nice to sleep with. Later, of course, you admit to having grown up with the belief that it’s normal to trick women into sleeping with you which to my finely-tuned ears sounds like rape.

    That is all I was saying, and you take it that men are trying to take over feminism.

    No. You wrote that men have “perverted” feminism. Men have yet to take an active role in actual feminism, so they haven’t perverted it. From the outside looking in, a great deal of men have disparaged feminism in broad terms, but since their objections are largely irrational and self-centered, I don’t consider this a “perversion” of aims or means. It’s merely a defensive reaction against something that threatens their privilege and threatens to exclude them from making decisions about women, which they take to be their god-given right.

    My point is you are going to get nowhere in the minds of those who are actually holding the power if you continue to point the finger at their entire identity as human beings.

    I don’t particularly mind questioning anyone’s identity if that identity is a mirror image of patriarchy. Personally, I’m not at all interested in changing the minds of dudes and dudettes in power; I’m interested in permanently removing them from power and allowing someone else a go.

  114. Saurs February 19, 2010 at 8:38 PM #

    With your attitude, I feel I should just be smothered in a pillow to death at birth while you grow vats of female embryos in a petri dish ala twilight zone.

    Where in the world do you anti-feminist hyperbolic caricatures come up with this science fiction, anyway?

    Your original comments expressed the notion that you are beginning to hate feminism and you feel that it has come off the rails, and that feminists should instead focus their ire and attention on what you want them to focus on — something about the vacuity of capitalism, or some such. Feminism is a women’s movement, first and foremost. Not every feminist believes that men should be excluded from participating, to be sure. However, feminism is not limited to changing social attitudes, eliminating gendered behavior and the conditioning of gender behavior, and, as you would have it, reuniting “the sexes” into a cohesive whole in which men and women (still a binary, there) play their proscribed roles. (Point in fact, no feminist believes that harmony between the so-called sexes is the ultimate end of feminism, regardless of the means.) There are some distinct differences between academic/intellectual feminism and feminist activism, and there are those who believe the aforementioned social and cultural changes can only be affected after political change* — eg full reproductive rights for women, publicly-funded childcare, the elimination of the wages gap and the creation of equal opportunity, the creation of a viable third political party in the US that is committed to the equal representation of women in positions of leadership, legislation that fully supports the unconditional bodily autonomy of all people, and so forth. It’s unlikely that progress will be achieved at once or in a single sweep; changes such as those above may, in fact, be achieved in waves. There is a legitimate argument to be made that no additional civil rights can be accorded to women without female participation in government — the so-called thirty-percent solution is one such argument.

    Regardless, change will not happen if women politely sit down with every man they meet, hold his hand, and calmly and rationally explain anything and everything to him. That’s not their job, and that’s also catering to the notion that inequality is merely theoretical and not something that women experience every day. If men feel disaffected with their lot, they can educate themselves to the point at which they can comfortably speak to other feminists without acting defensively and counter-productively and at which they can acknowledge women’s experiences without attempting to disprove them. Nothing can be accomplished if women continue to have to be care-takers, hand-holders, teachers, and mommies to men. The solution is not, as you say it, to tell men its not their fault. As much as I hate to sound like a motivational speaker, each person has the option of being part of the solution or part of the problem.

    (And despite what you wrote above, Nine Deuce is most certainly part of the solution by writing her weblog. It’s awesome. Thanks, 9/2.)

    *Totally US-centric, here.

  115. Satan February 20, 2010 at 12:14 AM #

    I’ll address your first post, then I’ll write another one for the second:

    Anyway, “There’s no such thing as separate and distinct male and female “cultures.” We’re livin’ in a patriarchy. That’s dude culture.”

    No. It’s OLD MAN’S CULTURE. Seriously, I am the one who gets sent to die–I am the one who has to work in the mines–this is all about old men and keeping their power.

    Just look at any ‘great’ scientist. Old men with enormous beards. It isn’t about men in general. It’s about older men–much older.

    But, that’s a slight distinction, you can disagree with me.

    “I especially don’t believe feminism needs dudes like you, who threaten to take their ball and go home.”

    I never said that. I’d like to know when I implied that–what I was trying to say was that if someone wasn’t so ingrained in this philosophy as I am they would be deterred immediately. You will never shake me off. But, you can easily throw a few men in the opposite direction with your patently derisive tone toward men in general.

    You should really stop doing that. How would you like it if I said feminism doesn’t need women like you because you don’t agree with my point of view? Feminism is evolving, and changing–just as all philosophy and ethics do. Don’t exclude me because you think I am a worthless man. I am sick of that as much as you are indubitably sick of men insinuating, or certainly thinking you aren’t capable of things when you are.

    ‘“Good luck with your little project, ladies, but unless you cater to my every whim, allow me to act like a victim, and explain to me how feminism is going to personally help me, it ain’t gonna happen.”’

    If only that was how I felt! Too bad your strawmen fall down so easy–or should I say strawwomen. Anyway, this is not about me. I don’t care about me. I am not important at all. The mechanism of change is what I was talking about–how do you expect to change the imagination of people at large when you’ve excluded the target? If men are responsible for this–and as individuals they certainly are, but not as a whole. My penis does not make me want to hurt you, or ridicule you, and it certainly doesn’t make me think you’re stupid at all. But, when I am born, like a religion I am indoctrinated into gender, and all the privileges that are imbued in it, or all the curses with it–depending on what organs I get. You get the same treatment too–most likely. Unless your parents are sane.

    But, if you continue to exclude the mechanism that is forming these conventions you will always be a step behind. This is not about men, or women to me. It’s about both of us. Binary or not. We are the same thing molecule for molecule. The differences are so dismally small that I barely find them worth noting. We have to be gendered in order to make the distinction. Otherwise men would be walking around asking, “hey, are you a girl?” We’re mildly dimorphic. You can find differences in anything, but there really aren’t any significant ones between men and women except for maybe their period, and maybe a man’s physical strength in the upper body.

    Big deal.

    So please, don’t make this like I want someone to listen to me and do something for me. I want cohesiveness–I am tired of getting stupid looks when I say I am a feminist. I am tired of girls laughing at me when I say it. I am tired of guys doing that too.

    “NB that women have no sexual power under patriarchy”

    I don’t understand what you mean honestly. Most women don’t get raped and coerced into sex…many do, but clearly we’re not running TOTALLY amok here.

    “Later, of course, you admit to having grown up with the belief that it’s normal to trick women into sleeping with you which to my finely-tuned ears sounds like rape.”

    Here we go again with the bad reading comprehension. I said I grew up around people like that. I never did that kind of stuff. I have always tried to be as honest as I could be. We’re all young, and we all grow up differently and mature at different rates. Unfortunately I have learning disabilities and I was placed into special programs for children with learning difficulties at a very young age which disadvantaged me tremendously and now I have to struggle with nearly everything–that aside…I never participated, or condoned that behavior. I was often the guy trying to take the poor girls who were drunk home and get them back safe while the rest of the guys would be trying to pull them into bathrooms and bedrooms and trying to get them even more trashed. I knew it was rape then, and I know it now.

    I just didn’t know what to do back then. Nowadays I’ll probably break someone’s neck if I saw that happening.

    Do you know how scary it is in a situation like that? Of course you do. Because you’re the one it can happen to–not me. But vicariously I felt scared. And, I feel like a failure for not being able to help others–male or female. I was merely expressing my grievances of others and you misinterpret it as if I adopted the misogyny that was all around me.

    I never adopted a hatred of women ever. But, I adopted an apathy toward SOME things about women, and even a dislike because a lot of girls used to make fun of me because I was too muscular. So I often was often butt-hurt about that. I used to whine about how girls like little wirey guys. But, that’s their choice. I’m not particularly attractive to most women. So, I have to deal with it. But back then I was too stupid, and extremely immature to know how to cope, so I may have formed ideas about women that were stupid, but certainly not on the level of hate, or viewing them as inferiors.

    In fact, I am absolutely amazed, and scared of women. I feel that they can put me in my place faster than anyone, and honestly you intimidate the hell out of me because I know for certain you will misconstrue what I am saying and make me feel like a jackass again. So congratulations on that.

    In any event, I understand what rape is like. I don’t really care if you don’t believe me, but I was raped by an older boy for over a year when I was 13. So I know what it’s like to be out of control, and dominated, and mindfucked and eventually learning to accept it and even believe I wanted it just so I could rationalize all the pain I felt. So, I may never know what it’s like for a girl, but I know what it’s like for a boy.

    “despite his good looks and big brain, women think he’s too nice to sleep with. ”

    I wish I was good looking in today’s world. Maybe 1930’s good looking, but certainly not this era. I have hard features. And my brain is big. I have an enormous head, but no women think I am too nice to sleep with. I’ve slept with a lot of women. But it’s not something I say that I am proud of. I wish I would have just ended up with one person. But that’s not how it is, and I’ll continue to make crappy choices.

    “women as “girls,””

    Ooh semantics. Big deal.

    Also, the thing about black girls…what the hell are you talking about? I just get pissed off when I hear a black girl feel bad because her vagina is ‘discolored’ because it isn’t a fresh pink like a white woman’s. Or when a black girl feels that she has to wear extensions or a weave because they don’t have ‘white’ girl hair. Feminism for the most part is a white person’s game–a white woman’s game. Womanism is where it’s at. Being black is great. Having dark eyes, and their crinkling frizzy hair is beautiful.

    I just wish they could appreciate it as much as I do. Instead of adorning themselves with white-culture.

    I’m a Native American, so I kind of dislike ‘American’ culture. I’m sick of men saying they’d screw a black girl but never marry them, etc. And all these black girls go around their entire life thinking they have to look white in order to be attractive so they talk like white people, and walk like them, and dress like them, etc. Their culture is so displaced from the rest of society that a black person has to reject it to be taken seriously and adopt a ‘vanilla’ inside.

    You can take that for what it is too. I don’t care anymore. I think you just like to fight the more I read.

    “No. You wrote that men have “perverted” feminism.”

    More failure in reading comprehension…you are really testing my patience. I thought this was going to be easy, but I feel like I have to keep expounding the SAME THING. Men HAVE perverted the meaning of feminism at large–they have not actually done anything to it in any formal sense. But people associate feminism with no bras, ugly women, man-haters, and lesbians, etc. You already know that though. What I was trying to elucidate is that there is an active force [usually employed by men] to continue to spread this infectiously stupid meme.

    “I don’t particularly mind questioning anyone’s identity if that identity is a mirror image of patriarchy. Personally, I’m not at all interested in changing the minds of dudes and dudettes in power; I’m interested in permanently removing them from power and allowing someone else a go.”

    Yes, let’s let women have a turn at the steering wheel–you’re just as good at crashing as we are. This is the undertones I was talking about, but you converted them into overtones. You just straight up hate men because you believe our affiliation with patriarchy is something that we revel in in some deep almost philosophical sense. Men don’t even think about it. That’s the privilege of privilege–the invisibility of it. But I am preaching to the choir here.

  116. Satan February 20, 2010 at 12:28 AM #

    “Where in the world do you anti-feminist hyperbolic caricatures come up with this science fiction, anyway?”

    I’m an antifeminist hyperbolic caricature? Thanks. Why do you wish to displace me so much? If you really think I am so damn wrong why not educate me, and show me that I am wrong? Prove it to me, and I’ll accept your evidence so long as it is logical and actually follows your premises.

    I am a person who will yield to persuasion in an instant. I don’t move my goal posts, and I don’t wish to remain the same person day to day–I’ll learn not a damn thing that way.

    “Your original comments expressed the notion that you are beginning to hate feminism and you feel that it has come off the rails, and that feminists should instead focus their ire and attention on what you want them to focus on — something about the vacuity of capitalism, or some such.”

    How am I supposed to take you seriously if you just glaze over what I was saying and don’t actually absorb it? Clearly you have your own bone to pick with men and I’m getting the brunt of it because you’re just pissy. If you had read what I wrote you would probably agree with me. It’s all right though. I forgive you.

    “Regardless, change will not happen if women politely sit down with every man they meet, hold his hand, and calmly and rationally explain anything and everything to him. That’s not their job, and that’s also catering to the notion that inequality is merely theoretical and not something that women experience every day.”

    So you should run up screaming and ranting and raving instead like a hysterical idiot? I don’t see calmly and rationally explaining something as a poor course of action. These men are damaged–quite literally brainwashed and incapacitated in a big way. Most of them can’t imagine what you and I believe.

    And how is that making it seem theoretical? And also, why are you using the world theoretical like that? Theories are something that are proven by evidence and facts, or axioms. It is purely theoretical that women are oppressed–we can observe it, and use statistics and other things to amass evidence of it. It is purely theory in that sense.

    So, yes it should be explained in such a way. You have a better idea? Or are you just going to shoot me down and offer nothing in return?

    “Nothing can be accomplished if women continue to have to be care-takers, hand-holders, teachers, and mommies to men.”

    What should they be instead then? Irate scientists? What is the alternative to this? Without an instructive force behind this, how will this information be proliferated amongst us?

    We [men] screwed this whole situation up. I can agree with that. But, it’s way beyond our control at this point. And, unfortunately only women are the ones who will ever be the most cognizant of this inequality. I can only sympathize and empathize. I will never know it, or truly understand it. I realize my limitations there.

    But if you want to change something–we need a dialogue between men and women. We do think differently. It’s a fact. I just don’t know how you believe it is effective to make men feel like crap for how they are [they should, but that's another story]. Cognitive dissonance is a strong force–you may put them in their place, but they’ll rationalize their way right out of it to dissuade the waves of pain that will come in the realization of the patriarchy’s real power and utility. People do mental gymnastics all the time to rationalize horrible behavior. Even I have done it. I have become a better critical thinker as of late but it won’t save me from my human frailties forever.

    In any event, it was interesting discussing this with you. I feel like you really are a pissed off person, very pissed off, and rightfully so. Just don’t lump me together with the rest of the fecal matter that is keeping this world down. I’m trying my very best to make sure that whatever ideas I pass on are in the best interest for my species as a whole.

  117. Satan February 20, 2010 at 1:04 AM #

    Also, to illuminate…”They are less likely to take offense, and the cognitive dissonance is lessened when their PERSONAL IDENTITY isn’t at stake.”

    What I mean is this:

    If I tell a man that because he’s a man, or that men are like X then his identity is at stake. Ouch. Hard to change.

    If I phrase it that the system [something external] has influenced his choices by the fact he was uncritical as a child then it can be seen externally. Then their actions can be seen as guided by that and not by themselves–this lessens the cognitive dissonance and allows them to get rid of these ideas more easily. Eventually they can learn to accept their actions, and take responsibility for it.

    Trying to get men to leap their perspective is dangerously malignant to feminism. That’s like asking a Christian to stop believing in God. Most men who aren’t black or ethnic in America will probably identify themselves first as men. Unfortunately language doesn’t permit us to correctly state things, so most things I say are intellectually dishonest based on the way our language is itself. When I say men, I am directing it as a particular group of men who are for the most part unwashed in critical thinking, and women’s rights. I don’t have to state this, but it isn’t always assumed–especially by THOSE type of men.

    When I say men, I don’t really include myself in that because the category I am referring to is that type of person with male genitalia. I don’t associate myself with that. If I died I hope no one would say how manly I am. Even though manliness is hilariously stupid and I enjoy watching it, or seeing it caricatured. You know, smashing their heads into things, or seeing who can get hurt the most. More in an absurd way though. Um, but this is my problem I guess in a nutshell. If I didn’t go on a nigh verbose rant originally it could have been succinctly stated as such.

    But, I guess I’m a windbag.

  118. Saurs February 20, 2010 at 5:20 AM #

    Dude, I’m not angry, irate, “hysterical,” or “pissy,” I’m not ranting and raving, I don’t hate all men, I don’t need to calm down, and I certainly don’t care if I’m “testing [your] patience.”

    No. It’s OLD MAN’S CULTURE. Seriously, I am the one who gets sent to die–I am the one who has to work in the mines–this is all about old men and keeping their power.

    I don’t think you understand what patriarchy means, or you are simply extrapolating its meaning from the related word pater. And I’m not comfortable with this argument, which is made often and usually by anti-feminist men, generally to the tune of “men die in war and down mines for the sake of women and children! Men are the oppressed laboring classes!” For one thing, conscription (in the US) doesn’t exist anymore, plenty of dudes sit on their behinds in call centers these days, and women are and have for the most part always been perfectly free or at least one-hundred percent physically able to work as laborers and as skilled tradespeople. For most of humanity’s history, in fact, women have done the bulk of the labor, have born and reared nearly every child without the help of men, have gathered or cultivated the bulk of the food (some estimates are 70 percent of daily caloric intake) for their families and communities, and have probably co-operatively invented and advanced all the most worthwhile shit, like agriculture, mid-wifery, pottery, tool-making, heaps of oral culture.

    Also, the thing about black girls…what the hell are you talking about? I just get pissed off when I hear a black girl feel bad because her vagina is ‘discolored’ because it isn’t a fresh pink like a white woman’s. Or when a black girl feels that she has to wear extensions or a weave because they don’t have ‘white’ girl hair. Feminism for the most part is a white person’s game–a white woman’s game. Womanism is where it’s at. Being black is great. Having dark eyes, and their crinkling frizzy hair is beautiful.

    I just wish they could appreciate it as much as I do. Instead of adorning themselves with white-culture.

    Look, your enthusiasm for the ways WOC look may emanate from truly altruistic, decent impulses, but like it or not, you’re acting entitled and dudely when you give women a lecture about their choices, and especially about the choices related to their physical appearance. As you well know, women don’t have to look the way you want them to, and especially don’t have to live up to your standards of being “natural” or “ethnic.” It’s not a fucking compliment that you like kinky hair, dude. You seem to agree that women are obliged to alter their appearance according to proscribed, gendered, racist and transitory conventions of beauty. That’s good, because that is, of course, the topic of Nine Deuce’s essay above. What you seem unable to understand is that women don’t like and ought not to be told what to do, even if you, in your wisdom, think that what they’re doing is wrong, self-destructive, or contrary to your own principles. Women are forever being rescued from themselves by kindly men feigning chivalry (by dudes who think dark eyes are sexy or whatever). It’s not feminist protocol to tell women to stop what they’re doing right now! That’s not feminist, young lady! You’re just hurting yourself in the long-run! See how paternalistic that sounds, how all-knowing? The entire world needs to trust women more and allow them to make their own decisions, even ones they may regret, even ones that are actively unhealthy. In short, it’s none of your fucking business what black women do or do not to to fucking survive. (And, furthermore, you are not nor will you ever be the arbiter of a black women’s beauty standards, the dude who’s going to decide whether or not a chick is selling out by measuring her hip size or scrutinizing her hair.) As you have experienced first-hand, it’s hard being a feminist, it’s not all fun ‘n’ games, and women, especially, are often punished for it. You shouldn’t try to punish, shame, guilt, or “teach” women about their choices; you should respect their choices and allow them to come to important realizations on their own, with your support and understanding. That is what you can do as a feminist man. And, for the record, I agree with you that feminist men are allies in teaching other men.

    …honestly you intimidate the hell out of me because I know for certain you will misconstrue what I am saying and make me feel like a jackass again. So congratulations on that.

    This is the point at which I’m meant to gasp, flutter my hands protectively over you, and reassure you that your feelings and junk have value, too. Stop being so self-pitying, please.

    Why do you wish to displace me so much?

    I’m not displacing you and I’m not pretending your personal experiences aren’t relevant, because I’m not going to address the personal experiences you’ve shared above, period. You came waltzing into this thread acting like an entitled baby and expecting the women here to shudder in horror at the thought that we might lose a potential ally because he doesn’t like what we’re doing. Nine Deuce didn’t budge nor take the bait, so you moved on to subtler tactics, which I think is disingenuous and manipulative.

    If you really think I am so damn wrong why not educate me, and show me that I am wrong? Prove it to me, and I’ll accept your evidence so long as it is logical and actually follows your premises.

    I am a person who will yield to persuasion in an instant. I don’t move my goal posts, and I don’t wish to remain the same person day to day–I’ll learn not a damn thing that way.

    I don’t have anything to prove to you, beyond my original point, in my original comment, which you can re-read above at your leisure. I don’t engage in discussion with people who ask me to explain shit to them, and then imply that I move goal posts and that I’m illogical. You wouldn’t really know anything about my rhetorical capabilities because all I’ve done is leveled some fairly mild criticism your way about your entitled fucking egocentric thread-derailing tactics. And that’s all I intend to do, ‘cos as I said before, it’s not my fucking job to educate you. End of.

  119. Eirwen February 20, 2010 at 6:07 AM #

    Satan, have you read 9/2’s new post, on men taking up too much space? Because you’ve taken up an awful lot of space on this particular post trying to defend yourself, and still not really getting the point.

  120. Satan February 20, 2010 at 4:11 PM #

    Okay, stop calling me a dude. I don’t hang five and catch waves all day. It’s annoying, okay Chick?

    I don’t understand what possesses you so deeply as to try to get a rile out of me every time I say something and misconstrue it so evidently.

    So I am just going to let you think you’ve made some sort of excellent point. You’re just simply irate and misunderstanding. You view men as coercive and generally manipulative so you subscribe anything I say to those parameters and viola you can find that in anything someone says.

    Too bad you don’t read my content and you just read my gender. If I did the same you’d have a point.

    “I don’t engage in discussion with people who ask me to explain shit to them, and then imply that I move goal posts and that I’m illogical.”

    Like that part, what are you talking about? Do you know what you are talking about at all? Where did I imply that? Or did you assume that because you may internally believe you are illogical and move your goal posts?

    Because I never implied it. I was earnestly asking you to explain yourself better and I was explaining what parameters would easily satisfy explanation for me. If you don’t want to help me understand your point of view, then I never will and I will continue to run around in your mind as a ‘dude’ who will continue to ‘lecture’ women with my ‘dude’ like privilege being ‘dude’ like in everything I do. So no offense, you sound as bigotted as the men you claim are. Stop calling me a dude–I know you mean it in an insulting way, or at least I can assume that just like you’ve been assuming nearly everything about me–from being a rapist to being an antifeminist hyperbolic caricature.

    You sound like an irate moron to me. But, I really doubt you are. And it’s not healthy to be angry, or mad, or pissy. It’s not good for women to be acting like men. We die earlier for a reason. Because we are given the right to be mad all the time. We murder ourselves with our own emotions. If you want to join us in that, go ahead. You can die early too.

    “You shouldn’t try to punish, shame, guilt, or “teach” women about their choices”

    I can count on one hand how many times I’ve been unprompted in talking about their ‘choices’.

    “Does this look nice on me? Do you like this weave? Do you like blah blah blah?”

    So I give them my opinion and I’m a paternalistic dick. Of course! How downright brilliant.

    You need to lay off the haterade, miss. It really is going to destroy your brain because if you met me in real life I am sure we’d be friends, or at least not at such an impasse about something I can see we obviously agree about.

    If you could give me the benefit of the doubt instead of scrutinizing my words so carefully as if I am indicating prejudices and deep seeded bigotries then we may get somewhere!

    I certainly have issues beyond what you can imagine for a man, because you’re not a man. And, vice versa. But just don’t attack me as if I have some malevolent purpose in my actions, or if I go around like a taskmaster trying to get women into line.

    “This is the point at which I’m meant to gasp, flutter my hands protectively over you, and reassure you that your feelings and junk have value, too. Stop being so self-pitying, please.”

    Stop being so presumptuous. My feelings don’t need protection. I’m past that point. But I merely wanted to predict your behavior and show you how utterly predictable you really are. You did precisely the same thing again, and you seem to be unyielding in your ability to contrive a reality of me that is patently untrue.

    I never ran in here screaming “imma take my ball home if you peoples don’t listen to me!”

    I know plenty of women who agree with me that feminism is clearly flawed in its capacity to paint men as a problem. If I developed a philosophy that did the same for women you’d be crying–but that philosophy already exists. We’re living in it right now.

    So why do you treat me like I’m just a guy? I don’t treat you like you’re just a girl. In fact, I don’t understand the difference between us based on gender. I can see the differences in the way we talk, but that’s it. I don’t see anything implicit in what you say that indicates femaleness, or maleness.

    So have some decency and stop disregarding me because I have a penis. Plus, I am the only one saying anything at all, and you just sit back and attack. It’s really quite formulaic–you’ll attack this too despite the fact I am not even attacking you, or anything. I state my opinions and you run away on a fanciful adventure where I rape, and beat up women all day.

    “all I’ve done is leveled some fairly mild criticism your”

    I wouldn’t say your criticisms are mild when you implied I was a rapist earlier. I doubt you have any rhetorical capabilities when you speak like that to people. So far all you’ve seem to have done is oppose everything I say, and twist it into whatever you want it to be. If that is your rhetorical ability it is deeply appalling and intellectually dishonest. You can keep doing that if you want to, but you aren’t getting anywhere with anyone that way.

    “For most of humanity’s history, in fact, women have done the bulk of the labor, have born and reared nearly every child without the help of men, have gathered or cultivated the bulk of the food (some estimates are 70 percent of daily caloric intake) for their families and communities, and have probably co-operatively invented and advanced all the most worthwhile shit, like agriculture, mid-wifery, pottery, tool-making, heaps of oral culture.”

    Okay, now this is a straight up lie. Or at least, half lies.

    Firstly, women got 80% of the food source, easily. Secondly, women did not raise children alone. I don’t know where you got that from, but women were virtually equals if not greaters to men during that period, and men stayed with them. Why would a man leave his genetic material behind so a competitor and kill his children or rape his partner? That is so stupid. Monogamy evolved through that system.

    And no offense, but women did not advance most of the ‘worthwhile’ shit. Not because they couldn’t. But just because they just frankly didn’t. After a certain point men began to take over in the realms of philosophy, art, religion, warfare, etc. Unfortunately we could not get a stronger female perspective on all of these things. If you can even say there is a female perspective that is completely unique from a man’s. Women were excluded from human history. Even if they were involved, they went under pseudonyms, which only accumulated more male prestige.

    Agriculture was dominated by men, clearly–that is where the imbalance started. The means of production became the means of power. If it wasn’t for men getting there first and leaving women in the unpaid and unappreciated midwifery and pottery and all that what not then they would probably still be equals. Those things don’t put food on the table, so men assumed women were worth less than they really were–and that was the dawn of the false consciousness of women.

    Women did make a lot of tools though, but I don’t feel they independently came up with all of it. Men and women most likely found uses of things together. But, I am basing that on my knowledge of native tribes in the Americas.

    And for the bulk of human history men and women worked together. That’s probably the part you hate the most. Now I know I am talking to someone who really views women as a triumph of human ingenuity and spirit and men as these lazy pieces of crap who sit on a log and eat all their food. Given we did eat MOST of the food. But without men bringing in the precious protein we’d all be dead right now, and equally we’d be dead if the women didn’t bring in the rest of the food source [which was mainly berries, fruits, vegetables, etc.]. Women were also good at helping men track prey, but men were also great at understanding poisons and where to hunt. Men were well adapted to what they did, and women were well adapted to what they did. That’s evolution, baby. It’s not always fair. But women didn’t have to run 10 miles a day to find 20 pounds of food. They could walk 10 miles and do that, and know where it is reliably. You can’t act like because they brought in more food that they had to do the bulk of the labor. You are living in a dream world.

    And if you really want to know something strange, women and men both were probably polygamous to some degree. Women would often have sex with the ‘alpha’ male and then get a softer looking man to take care of the child. Birds do this trick too, and monkeys, and a whole slew of species trick men like this. It’s called exploitation. Women exploited men in such a way to fool them into thinking that baby has their genes. And then they waste their adult life trying to help this baby survive that doesn’t even share their genes.

    That’s evolution, baby! So face it. Women aren’t perfect. You will exploit any chance you get, and so will men. I could give you a thousand stories of where women exploit men or vice versa, but it’s not worth it. It falls on deaf ears. You love women to the point of being blind to them.

    I’m done here. I think you’ve totally exasperated me mentally through your sheer willfulness to say stupid shit.

  121. Satan February 20, 2010 at 4:12 PM #

    I didn’t read any post by this person. I just happened to stumble into this page after hours of looking at stuff. I don’t care whose shitty blog this is. Do you think I really cared about that part? It’s a blog. Who cares? Everyone blogs. Everyone whines. It’s narcissism at its finest.

  122. Satan February 20, 2010 at 4:19 PM #

    @ Eirwen,

    This is an internet blog. Even though the internet is a real thing, and we are all real people here I don’t see how I am taking up space objectively. You can lower my font size, or completely disregard what I’ve said all together–now if I had gotten on the bus and spread my legs out and made it impossible to sit next to me, sure.

    Being a man is about taking up the most amount of space. At least in American culture. But, I don’t see how that’s relevant to an internet blog.

    Maybe I’m taking up too much ‘mental space’? Whatever, this is just asinine. What if I said I was a woman? Why is it that there is a constant distinction between me and women? If I didn’t reveal myself as a guy and said I was a girl I clearly would have been treated with a modicum of respect.

    Maybe I should just lie about my gender from now on. It doesn’t seem to do me much good with your types.

  123. Satan February 20, 2010 at 4:22 PM #

    One last thing! How the hell did I derail a thread that is over two years old!? In internet logo that’s called bumping. Actually, this is called resurrecting. And I don’t give a damn what this person was talking about cosmetics and what not–no offense but I’ve seen this point written a thousand times more eloquently by other women. So I wasn’t impressed by it at all.

    You can all keep sucking on her teet though if you want, I don’t care.

  124. Saurs February 21, 2010 at 5:11 AM #

    I didn’t read any post by this person. I just happened to stumble into this page after hours of looking at stuff. I don’t care whose shitty blog this is.

    Dude, you’re such a lying shithead, it’s not even funny. The bulk of your first comment was in response to and an apology for the stupid shit Nine Deuce was railing against, quite efficiently, all without your input or assistance. You just happened to make the topic — that women shouldn’t have to put themselves through physical pain in the pursuit of ridiculous beauty standards and should instead take a cue from dudes when contemplating their person — all about yourself, your inadequacies, your Dudely Muscular Body. No-one’s interested, guy.

  125. Saurs February 21, 2010 at 5:26 AM #

    And if you really want to know something strange, women and men both were probably polygamous to some degree. Women would often have sex with the ‘alpha’ male and then get a softer looking man to take care of the child. Birds do this trick too, and monkeys, and a whole slew of species trick men like this. It’s called exploitation. Women exploited men in such a way to fool them into thinking that baby has their genes. And then they waste their adult life trying to help this baby survive that doesn’t even share their genes.

    Aw, you sound like you’re speaking from personal experience, there, bub. Why do you hate women so much? Don’t you know that all that bile and misplaced rage is only going to make you end up a bitter, lonely, old spinster, with only his cats as company? Anger is bad for your blood pressure, and creates wrinkles. I think what you need is a nice roll in the hay, to loosen you up a bit.

    I’m done here. I think you’ve totally exasperated me mentally through your sheer willfulness to say stupid shit.

    Wait, come back! We were just getting to the bit where you pulled out some fancy evo-psych bullshit to explain why men like nubile Hooters waitresses and women like fancy baubles! Don’t go!

  126. isme February 21, 2010 at 6:04 AM #

    So…you’ll be storming off and not returning now?

  127. Faith February 21, 2010 at 4:13 PM #

    “So…you’ll be storming off and not returning now?”

    One can only hope. That was one of the greatest convoluted passive aggressive messes I believe I’ve ever encountered in my life.

  128. Immir April 2, 2010 at 12:42 AM #

    I understand why people defend make-up and say it’s choice and all that.
    Whatever. I say it’s not make-up that is the problem- it’s WHY women are wearing make-up that is a problem. It’s not for self-expression, it’s shame and fear.

  129. Imaginary May 15, 2010 at 9:55 PM #

    Thank Goddess that stupid man left. Why should any womyn apologize for hating men? I hate men; I’ve never been given a reason not to.

  130. joy May 17, 2010 at 2:01 PM #

    How did this thread escape my eagle-eye gaze?!

    To the woman (my apologies if you still post here; I forgot your handle while scrolling through ‘Satan’s’ whinging and can’t risk my eyes to find it again now) who feels that shaving her pubes makes sex feel better —

    What did women do before porn made shaving popular? Nobody must have liked sex.
    This was, in fact, probably a true statement before, say, the sexual “revolution,” but there was surely a time in the ’60s and ’70s when some women liked sex at least some of the time.

    Do you think it could just be that your partner is terrible?

    Now, my anecdote? I’ve waxed the old bush before. Don’t any more. When I do deem to sleep with a dude now that I’m sporting a thicket, I tend to like it -better-, because dudes who are comfortable sleeping with ladies who have thickets are probably dudes who have at least some non-porn knowledge of how to make their dicks work.

    Sorry if that’s crass. But seriously, there has got to be something other than “presence of totally natural body hair” to blame for a lousy time between the sheets.

    Also, as per “hair itches”? Only if you shave it and it’s growing back. Which traps you in an endless cycle of hair-itch-shave-hair-itch-shave. When one lets hair grow, on any part of the body (legs, pits, crotch), it eventually reaches a threshold whereat it itches no less often than the hair on one’s head. Society just tells us not to scratch it.

  131. Miss Andrist May 17, 2010 at 10:51 PM #

    @Joy:

    Women have been engaging in depilation since men decided being hirsute is masculine. Men are hairy so women have to be hairless. Just another thing they get to be that we don’t. Women have been shaving, waxing, Nair-ing (lye!) and I can’t remember the name of the technique but it involves rolling a thread of cotton or wool over your skin which catches hairs and rips them out at the root.

    Don’t you love how men insist we do this for each other? Like anything but duress could cause a person to do that.

    -Miss Andrist

  132. isme May 18, 2010 at 6:29 AM #

    I dunno about that. Yes, that certainly is a factor, but hairlessness has also become associated with cleanliness.

  133. joy May 18, 2010 at 11:29 AM #

    “Don’t you love how men insist we do this for each other? Like anything but duress could cause a person to do that.”

    Yes, it’s insane! Truly nutty. I’ve been studying it with interest, both on the internet (ie, on this blog and Twisty’s) where the subject comes up and Second-Wavers relate their locker-room/picket (thicket?) line experiences, and in books such as Our Bodies, Ourselves (I have a copy of each edition up to, I think, 1993) —
    and while I have no information regarding depilation, say, prior 1940s, otherwise I think I have a pretty sound interpretation of the phenomenon.

    Of course, it goes back to a “We have it, so to remind ourselves that They’re Different, we must convince them that they can’t!” game with men.

    That, and a lot of them are closet, if not open, pedophiles.

  134. wiggles May 18, 2010 at 4:22 PM #

    Saurs
    February 19, 2010 at 6:36 PM

    Men have yet to take an active role in actual feminism, so they haven’t perverted it.

    Those male anti-rape groups are doing it. They’re not mainstream at all, and I’ve seen some groups or individual male anti-VAW activists that were sort of paternalistic and gross, but mostly they’re guys picking up their share of the workload for a damn change.

  135. wiggles May 18, 2010 at 6:23 PM #

    Women only started shaving their legs and pits around the flapper era, when skirts became shorter and sleeveless dresses came into style.
    They finally get out of those damn corsets and along comes some new form of physical oppression to fill the void.
    I’d rather be expected to shave my legs and pits than to have my internal organs squished into an 18-inch space, but obviously neither of these choices are optimal.

  136. Luna Fortuna May 19, 2010 at 1:12 AM #

    I am getting inspiration from your writing. I am a feminist in a lot of ways, but until I read this entry, I never stopped to think about why it is automatically good that I dropped 40 lbs in the 4 months since I stopped breastfeeding my daughter. Why am I taking value from getting comments from my co-workers (military)? From putting thoughts of porking a new mother in their heads? Disgusting. I have wanted a full-fat, egg, cheese, jalepeno and hashbrown breakfast burrito for months. It is going to take more strength of character for me to eat the damn thing than it does for me to diet.
    Thank you for writing. I will be reading through your site regularly looking for strength and ideas.

  137. Miss Andrist May 21, 2010 at 4:53 AM #

    The string method is credited as having been invented by the Egyptians, who ostensibly used cotton threads, and adopted by the Greco-Roman-Etruscan peoples as superior to lye- and lemon-based acidic treatments. I wish I were making this shit up.

  138. joy May 21, 2010 at 3:38 PM #

    “I dunno about that. Yes, that certainly is a factor, but hairlessness has also become associated with cleanliness.”

    If you say it is a factor, then you DO “know about that.” Saying “I dunno about that” kind of makes you sound like an apologist, and you aren’t (really) one.

    I’ve thought about the “cleanliness” thing too. Just didn’t write about it. Probably so has Miss Andrist. That does not negate our points.

    The cleanliness thing is bull, anyway. I haven’t shaved my bush in a year and just stopped shaving my pits a week ago; with regular (ie, every other day or every three days if it’s cold out) showering, I don’t get crotch stink any more AND my armpits already don’t smell bad either.
    Well, they smell like salt and bicycle grease at worst (I also don’t use deodorant, only dabs of rose oil), and only start to smell like “B.O.” if I get anxiety-sweat.

    But women aren’t encouraged to “let it grow” and see what happens, so very few people know. Plus I guess I’m weird in that I take delight in my own underarm smell (the salt smell, not the anxiety smell) and even the smell of iron when I’m bleeding — so not everybody’s standards are the same …

    It just seems logical that hair in one’s armpits or hair on one’s crotch is no less “dirty” than hair on one’s head. Yeah, it can get rank if you don’t wash it, but most people wash.
    And if it was really such a hygiene problem, guys would be advised to shave for “cleanliness” too. They aren’t, but you know? Their pits sweat just like women’s pits do. Their balls sweat. Their dicks smell. Shocker. Human beings.

    It’s tied in with the “female parts = dirty” thing. But we’ll be considered dirty no matter what we do, so why the hell not stop shaving? Unless it’s a matter of harassment at work — hey, we’re going to be harassed on the street anyway, too, so that’s not even much of an excuse.

    People probably get horrible mental images of tangled pubes full of ickiness. Again, with washing, this is not a problem. (TMI, but I even condition mine as well, to make them soft and shiny.) And again, I raise, have these people never seen a dude’s pubic hair post-ejaculation?

    Either everyone’s filthy or everyone’s clean. Our parts are no less “icky” than dudes’ parts, and the standard to which we are held is an absurdly false construct of the patriarchy.

  139. isme May 23, 2010 at 9:24 AM #

    “The cleanliness thing is bull, anyway.”

    I didn’t mean to say it wasn’t, just that it was perceived to be. IIRC, that was part of the reason why Graeco-Roman men would remove body hair, for example.

  140. joy May 23, 2010 at 11:54 AM #

    Sure, it’s fine, I just used the opportunity to preach to the choir. It’s a bad habit.

  141. ACIE June 1, 2010 at 9:19 PM #

    o.o Oh god. I found a comment I’d written at 18/19. (Blackrose) Holy shit. Well, I re-stumbled this, and I still feel generally the same. I still shave, because my new(er) AKA not the same guy I was dating when I wrote that, does, too. He has a lot more body hair than I do, so it’s just easier for both of us to shave. He’s a bear, and I prefer not to have body hair.

    I personally love doing make-up, just because I like doing creative things with eye make up, and other makeup in general( Like when I did half color, half black make-up, with white foundation and black/red lipstick. It looked nice with my corset, top hat, and skirt)

    As for fake nails, I just grow mine. It’s easier.

    As for clothes, I wear corsets. I love the way they look and feel. As a goth kid (Moreso now than before) I love the culture, and want a real boned corset. They can be uncomfortable, but I love them.

    I don’t wear pointy shoes. The ones I had were actually comfortable, but they broke. I just wear boots, now.

  142. Valley January 5, 2011 at 10:57 PM #

    Honestly make up is awesome!

    wait for it…

    For artwork! Gives a very cool almost watercolor or chalk style portrait.

  143. Megan July 28, 2011 at 10:58 PM #

    I read a few initial comment volleys. Nice Deuce, you seemed resistant to the points others were making and always found a way to revolve back into what seemed a little evolving and little adjusting view. Much of what you wrote in this article is problematic. Infinitely more so what you imply. This is blunt fact and I will brook no argument on this point. You should recognize this in a way that is genuine instead of a mere lip service to open mindedness, to appropriating input. I said ‘seem’ because I recognize the inherent presumptuousness of my own opinion, yet I would not want to be likewise disregarded, as I posses too the ability to reason and have come to this conclusion. That means something whether you agree or not, the mere fact that I think or feel that there are problems here. It is an insanely complication issue. So please consider the criticism you have received — people who believe themselves reasonable and intelligent are as intolerant as those they deconstruct, due to those very qualities and the accompanying confidence in oneself (Why is this? Because most people believe themselves to be reasonable and intelligent. I think *I* am reasonable, reasonably intelligent. Am I wrong to you?). This is dangerous no matter the person and what they believe. Finally, do not speak down to people; I encounter this regularly on feminist blogs when posters reply to commenters. (I recognize also this is maybe condescending.)
    Otherwise, excellent observations. Scarcely made with such conviction and lack of self depreciation. I appreciate and admire a firm stance, although I just criticized you for it.

  144. Megan July 28, 2011 at 11:25 PM #

    Commenter Joy, who will likely never read this reply. “What did women do before porn made shaving popular? Nobody must have liked sex.
    This was, in fact, probably a true statement before, say, the sexual “revolution,” but there was surely a time in the ’60s and ’70s when some women liked sex at least some of the time.
    Do you think it could just be that your partner is terrible?”

    Yikes. Does she think it could just be that her partner is terrible? My god. Is that “concern”? It’s awful intolerant, infantilizing, and insulting for a “helpful suggestion”. Might inquire as to whether she breathes often enough or changes her underwear daily. You bulldozed entirely over her right to opinion, drowned out her voice as though it was worthless for not conforming to what you believe. I say this not because you disagreed but because you were rude about it. Nobody must have liked sex? I doubt they ever experienced sex whilst shaved in this hypothetical 60’s and 70’s you understand so intimately, and certainly it would have always been a matter of personal preference just like it is today. That this occurs at all is reason for speculation and “concern” on behalf of the double x in society, yes, but is it not right to dismiss a person for a choice on the grounds that it is a ‘stupid choice’ in a debate. At least, not in this particular debate.

  145. Megan July 29, 2011 at 12:41 AM #

    – Aw, you sound like you’re speaking from personal experience, there, bub.

    — “So…you’ll be storming off and not returning now?”
    One can only hope. That was one of the greatest convoluted passive aggressive messes I believe I’ve ever encountered in my life.

    Are these two responses actually decent? I found myself sympathizing with the ‘dude’, he was trying (did not read his first comments, only the so called “back tracking” ones, but am commenting on the manner of his reception when it became more apparent he was not a troll by design) to “grow” as a person and male feminist.

    A lot of his ideas were wrong, and ones on the right track were a little problematic (how completely evil, and he’s totally alone in that). He never really understood the responses he received or evinced real appreciation for them or respect for the writers. Yet neither did he receive respect, and less patience, to me lack of consideration, for his good although misguided intentions.

    Believe feminism should be the sole providence of women (oh, and that’s not supporting a binary or non-fluid gender identities?) it has been awhile since the thought had occurred to me, but as a budding feminist I vehemently hated the concept of men and did not want them to steal feminism. A valid concern, not that this needs be said. But say this. It does not seem courteous to engage in debate, then fall back on this ‘we don’t want you here anyway’, or else include this as some kind of point of fact like it is relevant when already in the middle of a discussion with the person.

    Person, indeed. Was this forgotten? I seriously wonder if I am stupid so as to not understand what really occurred and how wrong he was so that he deserved it all, but the way he was treated seemed unnecessarily contemptuous. JUST as far as being a nice person goes and respecting the essential right to dignity of all people — this is my whole comment. Being ‘nice’ is something I consider important, and because I believe I am not the only one, I ask sincerely was he treated ‘badly’? Does this matter to you, whether the answer is yes or no?

    I really feel his treatment was bordering horrible. Am I wrong? Being self indulgent? Is this passive aggressive whining?

    You may have judged him on his content but you implied that merely being male was also a factor. I may be too third wave, but I believe this is also sexist. Or else simply ‘not nice’ and should be acknowledged as such. Feminism does not mean you must be a perfect ideal . . . but you might try. But that’s just my preference when it comes to peoples behavior, and such ideology can be very restrictive. Certainly woman flounder under the pressure to be a ‘good girl’, so why should you have to be Nice Nancy’s and “hold someones hand”? I can’t really answer that beyond “just because” and that it is my personal morality. But that’s weak, maybe. It’s not just mine. If we’re allowed to be frank, I guess I think you were an arrogant asshole. Why did I even write a long “Oh excuse me pardon me” explanation? Jesus, I too am afraid. And why? Just to get this out of my system, fuckitty fuck fuck. This is the FUCKING internet. Woo! Feel free to disagree, that is the beauty of it.

    I mean, you couldn’t understand at all where his defensiveness was coming from? That’s bullshit. You didn’t consider him. That’s your prerogative, but own it. Perhaps you did, and as I said, I don’t understand? But isn’t that an easy way to shut someone down. “You don’t understand, you’ll never understand, just piss off.”

  146. Megan July 29, 2011 at 1:17 AM #

    Er, forgotten point. What does it mean to “take up too much space” during a discussion that affected an attitude of accepting all coherent opinion? I felt, reading other responses, that I could respond myself. Are only positive and highly relevant posts desired, as inherently more worthy than quote unquote negative or confused posts? I would think the existence of this article is an indication of an intent to inform, teach, an invitation to learn. But only the people who know everything already, or know enough to fit in well enough? If anyone needs an article and discussion it’s a privilege denying mansplaining man. Yet that again asserts my opinion that niceties trump the right to a space without encountering and having to put up with shit . . . but *not* that it is a woman’s job, once again, to take men by the hand and wipe away their tears. But that I *do* think that is feminisms job to promote social progress directly or indirectly, eradicating ignorance, and that no one feminist really has the right to say otherwise. As “we” say, nothing happens in a vacuum. Feminism will be for men as it is for women, just the way I will love a son as I love a daughter, and no hypothetical possibility world wherein women become just like the men before them by in part disregarding the ‘opposite’ gender changes my idea of that.
    I do think men take up a lot of space, ESPECIALLY, it seems, wherever feminist women congregate. Only in this particular case I think he did not receive enough consideration as an individual, instead was categorized as merely another product of patriarchy invading an otherwise enlightened environment. Maybe I care too much about his feelings.

  147. skeptifem July 31, 2011 at 1:09 AM #

    “You bulldozed entirely over her right to opinion, drowned out her voice as though it was worthless for not conforming to what you believe. I say this not because you disagreed but because you were rude about it. ”

    Truth is truth, even if it is said with a couple of “fucks” or some rudeness tossed in. People who give more of a fuck about how nicely something is said than the content of the argument are intellectually dishonest.

    As for “bulldozing” over the right to an opinion-what the hell does that even mean? Does someone need to say “you have every right to your opinion” each time they disagree to avoid the accusation, or what? It seems to me like unless you are in a position to delete comments its impossible to have any affect on the persons right to an opinion. Having a lively debate assumes the right to an opinion about the subject matter to begin with, doesn’t it?

  148. Valarie July 31, 2011 at 10:30 PM #

    Megan-why on Earth do we need to respect a man who basically said he hated Feminism, that we were wasting our time trying to change men, because it was really in their evolution, and that we ought to be teaching him if he was so wrong, because it was our job to make feminism more palatable to men like him. Also, why focus on men, since they aren’t the real issue but capitalism-and then went on to say how men and women have spent EONS in an egalitarian society with nothing to back this up, just his say so, and then spent nine hundred lengthy messages saying all the little women needed to calm down and attack the root of the problem which is the patriarchy but CAPITALISM!!!

    Per space, while the internet may not have the space of my room per se, when Satan came into this thread and basically demanded our attention with his lengthy responses and not really answering questions. Should he be treated with kid gloves simply because he might have learned something he could easily have learned before he ever came into this particular space? Again, no, he isn’t on the bus with me trying to hog space, or even in a physical room with me, but his baggage is taking up space. His words are taking up space and when I read them they take up space within me. So yes, I agree that Satan is taking up SPACE even if that SPACE seems nebulous.

    Also, why should a man who starts by telling us how feminism is something he hates, who equates it right with sexism because women really do run the world (must apologize to Beyonce) and our anger isn’t healthy for us…so we should embrace him why exactly? I just don’t get why we always have to be nice. I am not sure nice gets you anywhere.

  149. lizor August 1, 2011 at 7:50 AM #

    Thanks skeptifem. I was going to reply but I fell asleep somewhere shortly after he wondered what it meant to “take up too much space”.

  150. Hecate August 1, 2011 at 11:25 PM #

    Really good points, Valarie. Men are afraid of angry women for many reasons, but I think the crucial one is that anger motivates women to actually do something about their situation. ‘Anger’ probably sounds a lot like the word ‘agency’ to men, and that’s the last thing they want us to have out there in the world.

    I am an older woman now – 38 to be exact. And while that is not ancient, exactly, it seems like the first time in my life that a happy little spark of wisdom is starting to shine its light on me. I no longer have to conform to the standards of men who are afraid of me on the occasion I get a little sarcastic, or find myself in a fit of righteous rage. I don’t have to ‘pretend’ that clueless, lumbering men are entertaining to me any more either. Though goddess only knows why I ever did in the first place.

    I take the initiative for a lot more in my life now than ever before, and I feel much better for it. And on top of that, I take responsibility for and own everything I feel. I take my anger and on some days, use it to make a much-needed change, and on others, I coddle it like it’s my very own baby. I feel more confident and self-possessed. There are no longer any apologies being sent to men on my behalf for anything I feel, desire or act upon. And that’s a good thing, because it’s not as though any children or animals were hurt in the process. Well, the odd male ego may have been. But the ego is nothing and those who act from it are also nothing. This is what clarity feels like, and I crave and value it every second of the day.

  151. lizor August 2, 2011 at 5:30 AM #

    Isn’t it neat the way Megan’s and Satan’s writing style is almost identical? Kismet?

    Isn’t it a nifty coincidence that Satan mused that if he came here in the guise of a female, others on this thread would be more enthusiastic about being patronized by him?

  152. M. August 2, 2011 at 9:52 AM #

    @ Ms. Andrist

    “Men are hairy so women have to be hairless.”

    I had a prof tell the class something basically along these lines. He was trying to explain why certain things are considered sexy: to be sexy, you exaggerate what is typically seen as masculine or feminine.

    I wish I had said, if that’s the case, why aren’t men expected to be a literal hairball if we can’t have ANY body hair…

    That stupid prof…he was always spewing forth some lie.

  153. joy August 2, 2011 at 4:55 PM #

    I read you, Megan. I just don’t care.

    Thanks, skeptifem, for having the patience I don’t.

  154. Sugarpuss August 7, 2011 at 1:44 AM #

    Horribly late to this party, but…

    Satan said:

    once we put the selective qualities of a good mate, or rather, invent them as being indicated by a man’s bicep circumference then we’ll end up in the same boat with women

    Oh noooez! Well, we certainly can’t have men being subjected to any irrational beauty standards; that shit is for the womenfolk.

    Notice how women’s issues are viewed as entirely unimportant, until they affect men too? Even breast cancer awareness isn’t really about women’s health; it’s about ensuring that the menz don’t lose their precious eye candy. Where is the concern for, say, Irritable Bowel Syndrome (much more common in women)? Oh wait, that’s not sexy. No brown ribbons for us (they’ll reserve those for the prostate enlargement/cancer awareness movement).

  155. joy August 7, 2011 at 5:20 PM #

    Thanks for pulling out and stomping apart that sweet tidbit of delusion, Sugarpuss.

    I’m not even sure what he was talking about. I mean … I know all I really care about in a man is his bicep circumference. I’m sure every other radical feminist totally agrees. That’s what this whole ‘feminism’ thing is about: imposing artificial beauty standards (especially regarding the manly girth of upper arms) on men.

  156. Sugarpuss August 12, 2011 at 8:40 AM #

    @Joy: And even if all women did care about was the size of a man’s bicep, how is that unreasonable, considering men’s obsession with breast size (among other things)? Which brings us back to “What Would A Dude Do?”… and the answer is simply this: he’d fall back on the evo-psych mansplanation of being “hardwired” to find certain physical traits more attractive than others.

    Sooo… Satan (and any other man that may be lurking about), if women aren’t attracted to your scrawny arms, don’t behave like a bitter shrew. Females are hardwired to seek out the strongest male specimens. This is just nature at work, and it’s not always politically correct. Girls will be girls; deal with it and move on. We cant change who we are any more than you can prevent yourself from pulling down your pants and taking a crap in aisle six at Home Depot. We must all obey our primal instincts, regardless of the consequences. Just because our species has evolved, that doesn’t mean we should act like it. :P

  157. joy August 18, 2011 at 2:17 PM #

    *yes.*

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