Women have always fought

This piece by Kameron Hurley at A Dribble of Ink is awesomazing.  It looks at the ways in which we allow narratives to perpetuate negative stereotypes about women.

I actually watched a TV show recently that was supposedly about this traumatic experience a young girl went through, but was, in fact, simply tossed in so that the two male characters in the show could fight over it, and argue about which of them was at fault because of what happened to her. It was the most flagrant erasure of a female character and her experiences that I’d seen in some time. She’s literally in the room with them while they fight about it, revealing all these character things about them while she sort of fades into the background.

We forget what the story’s about. We erase women in our stories who, in our own lives, are powerful, forthright, intelligent, terrifying people. Women stab and maim and kill and lead and manage and own and run. We know that. We experience it every day. We see it.

But this is our narrative: two men fighting loudly in a room, and a woman snuffling in a corner.

Dude, have you ever thought that maybe it’s you?

Word of the day: Incel.  It’s short for Involuntary Celibacy.  According to Wikipedia, it’s

chronic near-total or total absence in a person’s sexuality of intimate relationships or sexual intercourse that is occurring for reasons other than voluntary celibacy, asexuality, antisexualism, or sexual abstinence.  It is the psycho-social opposite of having a sex life.

Sounds pretty terrible, right?  It get’s worse:

Most incels are not physically unattractive and exhibit the same social behaviours as their peers who have sex lives.  A few of the involuntarily celibate population may have discernible personality disorders that preclude current and future sexual opportunities, but the small amount of research done on this subject indicates that the incel population are on the whole socially normal, otherwise healthy individuals whose frustration is merely a product of their lack of sex, and not vice versa.

But when you read a little further, you realise that this is not the whole story.  The real story is that this is a made-up condition that is used by socially awkward men to explain their inability to find a girlfriend.

Being an “incel” means you get to sit around feeling sorry for yourself, blaming your loneliness on everyone but yourself.  After all, you are a “socially normal, otherwise healthy” individual.  It’s not your fault that women aren’t throwing themselves at you; it’s their fault.  And if it’s their fault, there’s no reason for you to ask whether there might be something wrong with you..

It seems almost inevitable that this “it’s not my fault, it’s everybody else” kindergarten-level kind of thinking will end in this totally loony tunes fest of self-pity and hate.  This guy, as the name of his blog indicates, feels that governments should pay women to go on dates with guys like him.  Here are some choice excerpts:

Government should offer women money to go on blind dates.  These women would freely apply for such program, as would incel men.  Every woman would have a limit of 30 dates.  If she doesn’t find a suitable partner during those 30 days she will be fired to prevent scammers – however, she would be paid the full sum, as would a woman who finds a partner during one of these 30 dates.

Newsflash, dude!  The world is FULL of women looking for boyfriends!  You don’t have to pay them!  All you have to do is turn yourself into someone who they would want to have for a boyfriend.  And that starts with not feeling so damn sorry for yourself.  Get out there and get a life.  Find an interest, a hobby, something to talk to women about.  Take care of your appearance and your health.  See a therapist; get on medication if necessary.  Work at your career, so that women will see a financially stable potential partner instead of a dead-beat loser.  Develop friendships.  This will help you to improve your social skills and increase your opportunities for meeting potential mates.

For example…  Physical consequences like the lack of penile sensation.  Mental consequences like the fact that I’m seeing women who would like me as priceless goods (it’s a comparison, manginas and feminists, I don’t think they’re goods), which they are in a way because I can’t find one to like me.  Like the fact that I’m notably bitter and weird to most women even if I don’t tell them anything I talk about here, or the fact that I’m extremely attracted to high schools girls because they kinda represent what I lost in my teenage years (they’re legal here).

If you can’t find some who wants to be in a relationship with you now, this paying-women-for-dates thing is not going to solve your problem.  YOU are the problem, not the women you’re dating.  As long as you carry on this creepy self-pitying misogyny act, you will never get a second date.

Due to their phobia, love-shy males can’t be treated as pure incel males.  In order for them to be cured their erotophobia must be defeated.  To achieve this goal women, all of whom would freely apply and be paid for it, would teach these men how to cuddle and kiss – which, to most of them, would be their first experience of these things.  In the end, once their phobia has receded,  there would be an option of these women sleeping with them, but only if both parties agree.  If any of these males refuse to have their first time that way their wishes would be respected, same if any of the women refuse to have sex with a male.

Right.  You’re scared of women, so the government must pay women to cuddle and kiss you until you get over it.  No dude.  I understand that you are lonely and horny and you think that some government-sponsored cuddles and kisses (and sex) will make it all better.  This is NOT CORRECT.  Your problems are bigger than that.  See a therapist!

The world/government does not owe you love, sex or happiness.  If you work at it, though, you might get lucky and find one or even all three.

All of this will probably never go away.  I mean, it might, but only after years of a very happy relationship (which is quite unlikely) or great successes with many beautiful women (if anything, that’s about 100 times less likely than the possibility that I will find one girl I will be happy with, so unlikely that I am certainly more likely to win the lottery, while I theoretically have more chances of finding the right girl than winning the lottery).

The saddest part is that this poor bastard doesn’t realise that there are two people in a relationship, and hard work is required from both of them to make it a happy relationship.  He seems to imagine that he is going to find a girl who is willing to be his girlfriend, and then he is going to be happy, end of story.  Kind of like how some people think that they are going to buy their dream car/house/boat/handbag/shoes/body, and then they are going to be happy.  Except a car doesn’t have its own inner life, with thoughts and emotions and needs, etc.

Boy, is he in for a surprise when he realises that a woman is neither a blow-up doll nor a fairy with a magical “happiness” wand, but a walking, breathing PERSON with feelings and dreams and needs of her own!  And that she might actually expect him to behave like a real person instead of an emotionally stunted douchebag who expects her to “make” him happy!

Let’s hope this guy doesn’t find a girlfriend.  Just think of all the misery that will be avoided, both by the woman and any offspring that might have resulted from such a doomed union..

Go read this, it’s hilarious

I came across this awesome piece by Ron Hauge in the New Yorker.  It’s about what the Garden of Eden would look like if it were run by Republicans.  My favourite bits:

In the beginning the LORD created the Heavens and the Earth, featuring a handful  of small but helpful lands offshore. On the sixth day He built Adam by Himself,  requiring not any government assistance.

Woman was made vice-president of Man’s corporation and for her an office was  constructed with a ceiling made of glass.

Eve was condemned to a lifetime of painful childbirth with no exception for the  health of the mother.

Uuuurrrggh!

Cityslicker (similar to Groupon) sent me an ad the other day for a special on Lego toys.  This is the right time of year for these types of promotions as Christmas is approaching.  Unfortunately the promotion looks like this:

For Boys

 

This makes me so angry I can’t even get the words out…

Being better

Sitting in a restaurant in an upmarket area of Joburg with a friend last week, she made the comment that we seemed to be surrounded by rich people, and that it was making her feel intimidated.  Why do we feel like having more money makes you a better person?

What does it mean to be better than someone else?  I think this is a meaningless concept.  Someone can be richer than you, more attractive than you, more intelligent, more charming, have more friends, be more virtuous, etc. but does any of these qualities equate to being somehow better, or more worthy?

The all-too-easy to forget fact is that while people like to believe they are responsible for their own success, this is seldom true.  Most of us are simply a product of the opportunities available to us as a result of the time and place we were born in.  I am healthy, intelligent, attractive, educated, well-read and well-travelled.  For this I have to thank my parents for the gift of their genetic material and for being white, educated and middle-class in a time and place when being so meant you could raise your children to the life I am currently living.

Although I didn’t squander my opportunities, I also cannot boast to have made the best possible use of them.  I did not rise from the middle classes to become a captain of industry, a ground-breaking scientific researcher, a famous novelist or artist.

The same can be said of most of the people we meet.  I wish someone would tell the Republicans, the Tories and the Conservatives that.

Passing for straight

I went on a walking tour exploring the gay and lesbian history of Hillbrow last weekend.  It was awesome (yo Gabriel).  The tour covers an area of Joburg that I would never normally visit and I really did learn a lot of things I’d never suspected before.  My girlfriend went with me and so did two friends of ours, a male gay couple.  The other people on the tour, a lesbian and a gay man, were strangers to us.

As we neared the end of the tour, they both commented on how strange it was that we were so interested in gay people, and were surprised when I told them that all four of us were gay and were in fact couples.  Now I’ve been told before that I “don’t look like a lesbian”, and that my girlfriend and I both present as “quite feminine”, so their surprise didn’t come as a big shock to me.

It does make me sad that in order to feel like you belong in the gay community you’re expected to adopt the “gay uniform”.  Being gay is an important part of my identity, but it’s far from the most important part, and when I make choices about my appearance I don’t think about wanting to “look straight”, or about wanting to “look gay” for that matter.  To be honest, when I go clothes shopping the most important consideration is comfort, followed by price, followed by the need to cover all the wobbly bits.

If you make judgements about people based on their appearance you should be prepared to be surprised a lot.