What I Got Will Knock Your Pride Aside, Part 1

(this one writ by our Alexa)

So you think it’s all fun and games, being female.  From Cindy Lauper, you know that “girls just wanna have fun.”  (Yes and no.  I want to have fun, but that ain’t all I want.)  I’ll bet you even crank up the volume on your car stereo for Jay-Z’s 99 Problems (But A Bitch Ain’t One).  The owner here has graciously given me a moment to set the record straight, or at least tell you a little about the costs and benefits ratio of being a girl.

She just can’t help . . . . being a girl. — Van Hunt

Hey, girl. –#Ryan_Gosling

Let’s look first at the “softer” costs for ladies.  In order to just be considered feminine, many rituals are required, or at least expected of you to fight back at the hairy, rough-elbowed forces of nature and maintain a socially constructed definition of femininity. In other words, you gotta keep that stuff clean, shaved, perfumed, pampered and coiffed. Ladies, you know how long it takes us to get ready to go public, and men, y’all (or most) have waited, waited, waited for us to be ready to face the public.  Let’s say it takes an hour every morning, and more like two hours on a date night.  That’s reasonable.

I’m only talking basics: All the washing (often, already clean, but we worry, because we’re conditioned that way), moisturizing, plucking, priming, scrubbing, applications of lotions (each different for your face, hands, body . . . . do leave-in hair products count as lotion?), Secret or Dry Idea (of note, I don’t know even one women who thinks one application is enough), hair styling mousse or whatever you need for straight or curly, ’cause we never like what we have, body fragrance mist (add one layer each if you scent-brand with lotion, powder, glimmer, cologne), three or four rituals of oral hygiene (brush, floss, rinse, compulsive checking of your bag for Altoids or mints because the first three may not be enough).

Now you can start the long, often frustrating processes of putting your face on, styling your hair, and trying on clothes until you find something that’ll do, with matching accessories and shoes. Notice I didn’t count hair flips, mirror checks, nail polish maintenance, or a hundred and ten other small (but essential) items.

You know what’s sad about this?  You know what pisses me off?  Ninety-nine times out of a hundred, your husband/boyfriend/partner won’t even notice.  When they notice, something has Gone Wrong (like OMG, your hair after that straightener stuff you bought, or J.H. Krispies, that dress looked hot on the mannequin, but it looks like Halloween on you.)

Now after all this maintenance work and prep, you’re exhausted and righteous-bitchy.  What do you do?  What do women always do?


Next time, we’ll explore Why Women Are So Sorry, All The Time.


49 Responses to “What I Got Will Knock Your Pride Aside, Part 1”

  1. 1 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 4:51 pm

    I never was much into the physical end of all of that, and have learned better over the years not to buy into the psychological end of it either.

    It’s kind of like enabling pedophilia.

    Also, if any men reading this feel the urge to discuss how horribly men are oppressed by women, I’ll save you some time. I. Don’t. Care. Sure, I may care about individual men who are having a hard time, but those predictable whinging false equivalencies leave me cold. Go start your own discussion. Don’t threadjack. You’re welcome.

  2. 2 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 5:09 pm

    oppressed men? HAHAHAHAHAHA!! one item i neglected to mention up there is after we, most of us, some of us, do all these things, what does a man do? men can spit, burp, fart . . . whatever they want, and do.

  3. 3 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    Miep, check out the magazines at the checkout. there are dozens, all designed to make women feel bad about themselves.

  4. 4 bluenred March 3, 2013 at 5:10 pm

    Now wait just a dern minute.

    The best “body fragrance,” especially when one is referencing the holy of holies, is that which is natural.

    This is true only of wimmins, of course. Men don’t have “body fragrance.” They just stink.

    • 5 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 5:14 pm

      say what? without artifice or fragrance, a man who is just clean smells heavenly. nobody in the world wants to smell like a woman. women work hard not to and pay hundreds a year not to.

      • 6 bluenred March 3, 2013 at 5:35 pm

        You is wrong. And this has been confirmed by Science. ; )

        Further, there have been Official Studies that have determined that 78% of all men, when they prepare to leave the house, confine themselves to the following three ablutions:

        (1) Sniff armpits.

        (2) Rub index finger across front teeth.

        (3) Zip fly.

        And some 39% of these men fail to perform one or more of these acts.

        It has additionally been determined that 43% of men believe it violates federal law to wear socks that match, or that do not have holes in them.

        Finally, when asked what sort of comb they prefer, 81% of men responded “hat.”

        • 7 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 5:41 pm

          honeybee, i’m wrong about a long list of things. on this one, i iz NOT wrong.

          there’s a very exotic natural scent most men have, assuming they shower and change their drawers regularly.

          i’m sorry but when did Science hook up with real mens? women don’t care if your socks don’t match or your fly ain’t zipped. these little items give us an opportunity to feel good, for once, about how we got it together on the basics. 😉

          • 8 bluenred March 3, 2013 at 5:52 pm

            You are flying in the face of Science. Like the well-known 2006 Study that determined that the malaria mosquito is equally attracted to limburger cheese, unwashed human feet, and any nearby man. ; )

      • 10 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:43 pm

        There do exist men who don’t have a heart attack if a woman hasn’t shaved off every hair below the neck on her body and doused her crotch with Lysol. It’s possible they are rare. We live in a sick culture.

      • 12 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:59 pm

        I would guess sebaceous glands. Sebum is odorless but starts smelling as it decays. Thus a clean man would smell of faintly decaying sebum, and an unwashed one of more substantially decaying sebum. But women have them too and I have no idea whether this works both ways.

        Far as the holy of holies goes, that is a truly complex smell and critters don’t generally evolve complex stuff that serves no purpose. It also would explain pubic hair, which is about increasing surface area for scent dispersal. I can only assume that all this washing and shaving is about keeping us from being so distracted by all this that we are incapable of thinking about anything else. And that’s why we have porn, to counterbalance this effect. Lecture over 🙂

  5. 15 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 5:51 pm

    i kinda didn’t want to go here, but since you don’t watch televisions or read the lady magazines, here’s just one bit of “helpful” wisdom women get these days:

    How To Ask For A Raise: First, Wash Your Crotch.

    • 16 bluenred March 3, 2013 at 5:53 pm

      I haven’t clicked the link yet, but the title seems to indicate that one is supposed to wash their crotch while actually asking for the raise.

      • 17 alexadiaz27 March 3, 2013 at 6:02 pm

        the sexist, patronizing advertising pisses me off. it’s everywhere. they really think women are just dumb children who need to be told every little thing to do every day.

        • 18 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:40 pm

          Feedback otherwise left as standalone comments here. Basically the deal is that there are three political camps of men: conservatives, liberals, and guys who aren’t afraid of feminists. The conservatives think we’re property, the liberals think we’re whores, and the guys who aren’t afraid of feminists think we’re people. There may be some crossover between the last two groups, but reading reddit has left me wondering about that.

          Anyway, the best way to get women to be obedient property or whores is to undermine our sense of ourselves as competent adults.

          I don’t write this to diss whores who are doing it for the money. I do like to throw rocks at guys who try to argue women into being more promiscuous. Boundaries are absolute. It’s not our fault if they’re too cheap to pay for prostitutes and can’t figure out that they are no more entitled to anything from women than women are entitled to anything from men, except mutual respect. And there is nothing more of a turnoff than guys who cannot graciously take “no” for an answer.

          Obviously sex is a huge problem in our culture, with the endless useless efforts to repress it, and I’m sure that’s hard on men, but since they have most of the political and economic power, they should look to their own camp as to exactly what the problem is.

          • 19 Alexa March 4, 2013 at 3:28 pm

            here’s a dumb question. what is reddit, exactly?

            • 20 Miep O'Brien March 4, 2013 at 3:45 pm

              It’s what replaced Digg. It’s basically a linksharing service with a text option. You can upvote or downvote things and you can have as many accounts as you want. Aaron Swartz was a major writer of the software.

              Like so many user sites, it was apparently better in the past. But it’s good software, you can join whatever groups you want and filter out the rest, and you can start your own groups. DKIV was clearly inspired to some extent by reddit. I don’t much go there anymore though, because I can’t take the misogyny. It’s possible to filter out the worst of it but it tends to creep in everywhere.

    • 21 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 8:24 pm

      I myself have found it possible to keep my finger on the pulse of the popular culture by reading 9gag, which is apparently where new memes go to be born. From this I have learned that Bieber and Honey Boo-Boo are widely despised among young geeks, and also much incomprehensible stuff about gaming.

      The memes are getting repetitive, but Advice Mallard is an interesting new development, because it’s mostly serious (except for Malicious Advice Mallard). “Actual Sexual Advice Mallard” is intriguing, with such gems as “don’t hit her cervix, she’ll cry.” And it’s all free!

  6. 22 bluenred March 3, 2013 at 6:01 pm

    Not really off-topic: is Honey Boo Boo the most scarifying being of the millennium, or what? ; 0

  7. 35 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:21 pm

    Dern, I go off to the grocery store for awhile, and come back to twenty-six comments! You both better not have used them all up.

  8. 36 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:26 pm

    Okay, as to the smell issue, it’s rather a matter of what one is used to. I’ll take this opportunity to note that I read a piece in the NYT maybe 20 years ago? about researchers who were studying human pheromones. They seemed unclear as to whether humans had pheromones at all, which seemed exceptionally odd, but in any case they’d come to the tentative conclusion that male pheromones are in sweat and female ones were in urine. They also suggested that male pheromones acted on women as mood levelers and menstrual cycle regulators. They did not explain what they thought female pheromones did.

  9. 37 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 7:29 pm

    Women apologize all the time to compensate for all the times men fail to apologize when they ought to.

    Magazines at checkout counters are designed to teach women about ways to lose ten pounds, and share tasty new recipes for desserts.

    Also have you ever noticed that the women in the pictures all have identical noses?

    People who look like magazine covers scare me.

  10. 40 Miep O'Brien March 3, 2013 at 8:36 pm

    In the spirit of some parts of the dialog above, I read a fun novel the other day, entitled “The Hope Valley Hubcap King,” by Sean Murphy, who looks First Nations but surely must be at least part Irish. Sean is a long-term Zen student, and this novel, which won the Hemingway award for best first novel, is sort of about Zen and sort of a spoof of Zen, which, if you think about it, is really quite much the essence of Zen.

    Anyway, towards, the end, a couple of lines stuck with me. (maybe a little paraphrased.)

    “Maybe life has better things to do than *mean* something.”

    “We cover it with our conventions, but left to its own devices, it’s likely to just run around stark naked.”

  11. 42 mieprowan March 3, 2013 at 9:55 pm

    Reblogged this on There Are So Many Things Wrong With This and commented:
    Yes, there are many things wrong with magazines that tell women to Lysol their crotches prior to appearing in public – and much more!

  12. 47 roger March 4, 2013 at 7:48 am

    Maybe we live in a zoo… http://www.bbc.co.uk/nature/21621643 … an’ maybe we’re chimps. (we are – see Diamond’s “the third chimpanzee”)

    • 48 Miep O'Brien March 4, 2013 at 12:09 pm

      IIRC we share something like 93% the same genetic material. One definition of conspecifics is that they have fertile offspring, a more reasonable one is that they mate and have fertile offspring under natural conditions.

      I don’t know whether anybody has ever looked into breeding humans with chimps, that kind of thing being Off Limits, but it is pure hubris that we are in Homo, not Pan.

    • 49 bluenred March 5, 2013 at 8:09 am

      I think that chimp thing probably holds true for humans, as far as females using more gestures of aggression when communicating with other females.

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