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Sunday, April 09, 2006

Mailvox: the elusive epicenter of normality

Pretty Lady issues a pronouncement:

I am afraid the time has come to speak strongly to you, my dear. This sort of thing is not for you to say. You are not the Representational Male, hard as you strive to be so. This is not a put-down; it is simply so. You are too Odd and Quirky. You drink blue drinks. You are Right Out as the Representational Male. Thank goodness.

The Lady is too kind. I am seldom paying attention, but if I have heard things correctly, Spacebunny and others in our social circle tend to use words such as "bizarre", "alien planet" and "asychronous orbit" when describing my habits. However, the fact that even I can interact successfully with the Representational Male demonstrates how genuinely accepting and easy to get along with men truly are.

The rules are simple. It took me some time to figure them out, but once I did, I found that they were universally applicable, across language and culture. Once you understand that men are pack animals at heart, it's not hard to see how they operate.

1. Shut the hell up. When granted entry into a new group of men, speak only when spoken to until it is clear that you have been accepted as an equal.

2. Accept every challenge. If you lose, accept defeat gracefully and acknowledge the winner while looking him in the eye. Trash talk is only acceptable among friends and only from winners.

3. Don't take verbal banter personally. Smile and accept it, or give it back but in a friendly manner and with the same or a lesser amount of venom. The same goes for physical banter, except you should up the ante by a single step in order to dissuade those prone to bullying.

4. (For women mainly.) Never ever pass judgement on the group or something it collectively enjoys. To do so is not only offensive, but ensures that you will never be accepted because you have publicly declared yourself to be apart from it, if not superior to it. For example, this is why Spacebunny is tolerated by the NFL-watching gang while the other wives are not; she knows better than to whine about what the cheerleaders are wearing or their silicone content.

5. Understand that you are responsible to defend the group and its members in all circumstances. During my first soccer game in Italy, a defender took me down hard enough to draw a yellow. I had just joined the team two weeks before and didn't even know the names of all my teammates; there were several I hadn't met before that game. Nevertheless, three of them were immediately in the defender's face, not because they gave a damn about me, but because they knew their responsibility as members of the group/team/pack.

6. Accept and follow the leader's orders without open questioning or criticism, no matter how strange. If you have suggestions for improvement, offer them later, in private. I am much better tactically than the coach of my team, but I never challenge his authority or criticize any of his decisions, not even the incredibly dumb ones. (For example, starting three slow, out-of-shape guys in the midfield - two on the wings! - put us into a hole on Friday night that we couldn't overcome.) But I've noticed that he's begun to make some changes based on earlier observations we discussed.

As for what the Representational Man prefers in women, I suggest that Pretty Lady reconsider the accuracy of my assertion in light of the following point. Everyone accepts that most women are not attracted to men who, although intelligent, behave with the social grace of water buffaloes dressed like circus clowns. Men and women alike refer dismissively to these men as geeks and nerds. Why, then, would any man be attracted to the female version, self-professed intelligent women who never cease to loudly and boorishly announce their intelligence, their degrees and their career accomplishments to all and sundry?

If men were as attracted to law degrees as long hair, gentlemen's clubs would feature scantily clad women reading from Black's instead of sporting those gorgeous stripper manes. The evidence strongly suggests that what men like is very, very different from that which nominally intelligent women believe they should like. The fact that these intelligent women can neither recognize nor accept the realities does not speak well of the utility of their intelligence.

I, however, as the Distillation of Elite Womanhood, may make any such pronouncements that I like. We superior females must maintain some privileges.

But of course....

And meanwhile, Lauren attemps a little spin:

The many libertarians and anti-feminists who comment on Feministe will be surprised to know that everyone who posts comments on a feminist site is a spokesperson for feminism.

If Lauren will be so kind as to provide us with a list of accepted spokespersons for feminism, we shall be pleased to direct our criticisms accordingly. Of course, as we have recently seen, feminists are so desperate to avoid damnning criticism that they have recently declared Betty Friedan, Andrea Dworkin and Simone de Beauvoir to be unrepresentative of feminism despite their canonical status among feminists, leaving one to marvel at how dishonest and intellectually incoherent today's feminists are.

Furthermore, as Lauren surely knows very well, the view expressed by the Feministe commenter is a very common one among feminists and has been echoed by many of her commenters. It is even probable that she shares it herself; if we are incorrect and Lauren is secretly pining for a man who is less intelligent, less educated and less successful than her, we hope she will let us know and we shall post a correction. Ironically, feminists, at least the straight ones, have a stronger urge to do the conventional "marrying up" than do most of their more traditional counterparts. Unfortunately for them, but fortunately for society, their very accomplishments work against them by limiting the pool of their prospective mates... and, of course, most of the men they consider to be worthy of their glorious selves are intelligent enough to avoid any serious involvement with them.

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