It’s The Women’s Thing
I cannot say, “Me too,” as some other males are doing right now, because it’d be presumptuous.
I’ve never had to worry about a single thing being denied me because of my genitals or skin color, and — as my old pal John Spencer Bergman has pointed out — because I have identified as straight throughout my life.
I’ve never had to fight off the advances of some carbuncular old prick. I’ve never had a job or any other asset dangled in front of me if only I’d “lay back and enjoy it.” For that matter, I’ve never had anybody dangle a carbuncular old prick in front of me either.
You want to know why?
Dumb freaking luck.
I didn’t choose to be white, male, and mostly straight. It just happened.
Just the way some black lesbian didn’t choose her characteristics. Nor did she choose to have carbuncular old pricks dangle their carbuncular old pricks in front of her.
So, no, not “Me too.”
But people who happen to possess vaginas or identify as such can count on me to stand behind them as they fight this real fight.
I happened upon a statement by one of the more influential editors of my life, a fellow named Mike Miner, who was able to find some readable thread in my scribblings whenever I turned in a manuscript to the venerable Chicago Reader back in my Windy City days. The Reader, BTW, fostered an extremely sober, no-nonsense style of writing among its stable of freelancers, most called-for in a wild bull like me who, given free rein, would have giddily run on like a college sophomore under the first-time influence of mescaline.
Anyway, Mike Miner was also the Reader‘s media observer, bylining the weekly Hot Type column, so he’s always had something worthwhile to say about our American culture. And even though he’s now retired, he occasionally pitches some pith when he feels the urge.
For instance, this “Me too” thing has moved him, as well. Here’s what he has to say about it:
After a day reading Facebook posts that began “Me too,” I spent the evening more aware than I usually am of the TV ads that invest women with all sorts of agency, depicting them all as handsome, decisive, smart as a whip, and in command of every social situation. Men not so much, and perhaps even a little goofy and intimidated — just like in most sitcoms. I’m afraid these ads send a message that frightens men without comforting women, as there seems to be so little correlation with the world women actually live in.
More evidence — as if we needed it — that this holy land is indeed, in the words of Chris Hedges, an empire of illusion.
Do yourself a favor and click on over to WFHB’s website and check out Doug Storm’s interview with one of the lead actors and the dramaturg of the IU Wells-Metz Theatre production of “Three Sisters,” running through October 21st.
The little piece opens with the dramaturg attempting to answer the Q: Who was Anton Chekhov?
BTW: I had no idea what a dramaturg was (or is) before hearing this piece last night. I tried to figure it out and then looked it up to see if I was right. I wasn’t.
That’s one thing I’ve learned living in a college town — a hell of a lot of people around here speak in an intentionally opaque, priestly language. I prefer plain talk. In other words, I certainly eschew circumlocution and I essay never to be prolix.
More than half of Americans believe a house can be haunted, acc’d’g to a Chapman University survey.
The survey also finds the most likely believer in paranormal things would be a religious, conservative, female living in the sparsely populated West — Wyoming, say, or Nevada.