Guest Post: Double Standards.

When Scarlett said that she would appreciate an infrequent, but regular contribution to her blog from an anti-feminist perspective, I had no idea where to start. Everybody knows that various feminists all present an enormous variety of contrary positions masquerading as undeniable truths. However, due to a happy accident, I came across some of her inspiration, and found it inspired me as well.

“If a girl is thin, she is accused of being ‘anorexic’; if her weight is higher than the cruelly restrictive ideal, she’s ‘fat’ and ‘doesn’t take care of herself’ or ‘has no self control.’ If she wears cute, trendy clothes she ‘only wants attention’ and if she wears sweats and jeans, she ‘doesn’t make an effort.’ If she’s perceived as sexually attractive, andespeciallyif she shows her own sexual side, she’s likely to be called a ‘slut.’ If her sexuality and her body are concealed, she’s a ‘prude.’ As you’ve probably figured out, the cards are stacked against you. You cannot win, at least not if you define winning as dressing and behaving in a way likely to win approval (or at least decent respect) from everyone.”

This can be found at Musings of an Inappropriate Woman, where this situation is blamed upon the masculine expression of cultural contempt for girls and women. And listen up ladies: these dirty old men, I’m sure, exist. There are lines, and they are crossed. By men. Dirty old men. Who ultimately want to have sex with you. But they’d probably be thrilled with less. Yes, it’s true, the dirty old men with no self respect operating on the fuel of hedonism are definitely horrid, even when viewed objectively rather than through the contemporary cultural lenses through which all gender issues are presently perceived.

But consider this: If a guy approaches you attempting to discern whether or not you are interested, he’s a sleaze. Doesn’t approach you: gutless. If he doesn’t hook up that night, he’s a loser amongst mates. If he does: player to the other women. If he pursues a woman that does not have the approval of others, he’s bagged out by said mates. In contrast, if she’s “too hot” for him he’s punching above his weight class and it’ll never last. If he’s a virgin, the girls will giggle and the guys guffaw. But if he goes home with too many women per week, month or year, his life is shallow according to the women and he risks going against the man-code of “bros before hos”.

So, you see, it’s not just women who are open to cultural interpretations that label them with contempt. Furthermore, as the composition of troops that hold the “battle lines” between feminism and masculism continue to conform less and less to the genders of the combatants, the criticisms on modern man begin to flow from both sides of the gender divide.

The point being? These girlsthese womenwho cannot win with how they are perceived, are not alone. In addition, why be so up in arms about the concept of a “slut” when you would use the term “man-slut” willy-nilly? If a man advances on a woman and is told no, and continues, I’ll help any feminist paint the sign that says “DOM” then hold my gun on him while she hangs it round his neck. But it seems to me that blaming the men who suffer the same conditions and lack the political correctness women enjoy when blaming the other gender deserve a voice as well. Blaming the problem on the dirty old menmany of whom may not, perhaps, be as dirty or as old as they seemis a fallacy. If they had vaginas they’d be called cougars, and that’s, like, totally cool. If you want to strike at the foundations of the problem, attack constructions of gender perception, rather than blaming people who are subject to exactly the same problem as the females in question.

And just because I want anyone who reads this to knowI paused halfway through composing this post to cook my own dinner, wash my own clothes, and iron my own shirts. Seriously.

— Andrew Frank.

Elsewhere: [Musings of an Inappropriate Woman] Guest Post: Your Body is Never the Problem—A Letter to a 16-Year-Old on Clothing, Style & Creepy Old Men.

Sh*t My Kids Ruined.

And on the “well-behaved children” note comes some results of not so well behaved children.

Our very own Picasso… meets Bed, Bath N’ Table.

Directly from the horse’s mouth: “I asked my son to bring me the iPod… in the time it took him to walk across the room, he disabled my iPod for 39 YEARS… I’ll be 79 before it unlocks.”

I wonder if this kid can draw the letters “O”, “M” and “G”?

Makes me rethink the whole four kids thing…

This, cos it’s just plain CUTE.

And this, cos it’s just plain GROSS. (“Note… diaper on floor”. Shit… literally.)

When Her Life is Better Than Mine.

From (In)Courage blog comes this little gem:

“I have a friend. She lives in an amazing home. She has well-behaved children and more than enough money for every need and want. Oh, and she’s beautiful…

“I’m never going to have a house like my friend. And no matter how much I try, I’ll never have her body (insert another cupcake here). But that’s okay. I’m not supposed to.”

Elsewhere: [(In) Courage] When Her Life is Better Than Mine.

Book Review: The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner by Stephenie Meyer.

 

I got over all the Twilight hoopla early on, becoming obsessed with the first movie when it came out in late 2008, then devouring the four tomes in quick succession.

While I stand by my contention that the first film was greatindie-esque and unselfconscious, before all the money started rolling in and they tried to top themselves. Bring back Catherine Hardwicke, I say!the books are so bad they could’ve been written by a grade sixer.

And that goes for The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner, too.

But at less than $15 and 178 pages, I flew through it in a few public transport sittings, and it is a must-have for fans, if only to add a hardback edition to the bookshelf’s collection of black and red spines.

The novella follows the “short second life” (duh) of 16-year-old Bree Tanner, who was a newborn vampire introduced in Eclipse, created by Riley and Victoria in their quest to overthrow the Cullens and get to Bella Swan.

In a nutshell, she falls in love with fellow newborn Diego, and they discover together that Riley has been lying to them about what Victoria created them for, amongst other things. One night when they’re hunting, they get sidetracked and stay out too late. Diego shows Bree that the sunlight won’t turn them to ashes, contrary to what Riley asserts. Enter fellow coven member, Fred, who has the ability to repel others with his mind, but chooses to befriend, or rather protect, Bree.

Then comes the action which Twilight fans will be familiar with, when Victoria and Riley lead their coven into battle against the Cullens and the werewolves, who definitely possess the element of surprise, and are devoured by them. Diego dies early on, and Fred diverts his focus to escaping the Volturi, who were liaising with Victoria in her attempt to capture Bella and who arrive after the slaughter to claim Bree’s life, as we all know from Eclipse.

A kind Carlisle Cullen offers to let Bree, the sole survivor, go if she promises not to fight. However, when Jane arrives, Bree realises she has nothing to live for anymore, with Diego dead and Fred gone, and succumbs to the Volturi quietly.

There are no chapters, and the action takes place mostly via dialogue between Bree, Riley, Diego, Fred, and later, Carlisle and his family.

All in all, a pretty tiresome effort by Meyer, but could we reallyexpect much else?

Magazines: Michael Jackson Tribute.

To commemorate the one year anniversary of The King of Pop Michael Jackson’s death, I thought I would post some of my favourite covers that have emerged over the past year… and being an avid MJ fan, of course I collected almost every one!

Vanity Fair, September 2009. Part of a split cover with “Fallen Angel” Farrah Fawcett.

Rolling Stone (Australia), September 2009. Doing his thang.

Grazia (Australia), July 6 2009. The tabloids getting in on the Balmain-ia surrounding the death of the “King of Fashion”.

GQ (US), September 2009. “When Michael Was Cool”, with jerry curl and all.

Q (UK), August 2009. This issue went to print before Jackson’s death in anticipation of his shows at London’s O2 Arena, and the editor’s letter issues an apology for anyone who may have taken offense to the poignant cover image.

Time, July 7 2009. This is by far my favourite cover, not just of Time or Jackson, but of magazines in general.