Re: Liberal Dude Erotica

1

Bits of it made me literally laugh out loud, which is rare for 'humour' on the internet.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:25 PM
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2

To repeat a comment I made at the other place the last time someone oppressed me with this misrepresentation—not all liberal "dudes" are like that.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:30 PM
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3

It actually is funny but who is it aimed at? The character falls into an uncanny valley between overconfident horndog and intimidated self-conscious nice-guy feminist. Does that mix exist in the real world?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:44 PM
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I laughed, and then felt guilty about laughing on the same basis as 2. Funny as it is, this isn't a stereotype I run into on the hoof much.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:44 PM
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5

I hated him too much to enjoy it.


Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:45 PM
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6

Crossed with 3. That guy does exist -- he just had a very public meltdown on Twitter -- but I don't think he's common.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:45 PM
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7

I mean, outside of Hugo Schwyzer. Who was just kind of a con artist.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:45 PM
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8

If I had hit post SECONDS earlier I could have been the first to mention Hugo Schwyzer.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:46 PM
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9

I'm willing to just laugh at this early bit:

Ted didn't often discuss menstruation but when he did, he made sure women knew how they were doing it wrong.

And leave it at that.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:55 PM
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10

I wish I could tell if 2 were (intentional) irony or not.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:55 PM
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11

Because Freddie deBoer was taking some hits over at LGM, I reread the Sady Doyle BONERS threads recently. The tiger beat down crew seemed to think this guys exists a lot (I take it the guy who wears "this is what a feminist looks like" shirts to get laid counts as an instance).


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:57 PM
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Well, it's a caricature, but I don't think Hugo Schwyzer was the only guy in history who managed to combine feminist rhetoric with PUA methods and goals.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:57 PM
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There's also, eh, this is probably not the motivation for someone writing at The Toast, and it's certainly not the only possible motivation. But this kind of making fun of feminist guys sometimes sounds sort of like "liberals are the real racists!"


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:58 PM
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Only ready he first half, but this guy exists and I can imagine a universe where I'd approximate him. For every virtue there is a failure state that coopts it into self interest.

Of course, his PhD should be in atheist feminism.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 12:59 PM
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Oh, I'm sure there's more than none of this sort of thing. I just don't think it's endemic.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:00 PM
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16

That was way too long to read.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:03 PM
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17

I can imagine a universe where I'd approximate him. For every virtue there is a failure state that coopts it into self interest.

I think that's what makes it funny; regardless of whether all that many feminist guys actually go bad like that, it is a visible possibility. And while I was saying that I don't run into this guy much, I did just remember one from college, who was pretty much exactly this.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:06 PM
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18

10 - You need to imagine Neb bursting through a wall hey-Koolaid style.


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:09 PM
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19

18: Not attacking a boat?


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:09 PM
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20

I implored my artist friend to do a drawing of a moleoid asserting "not all Mole-Men", but I suspect what he will actually give me when he gets around to it is "not all Hans Molemen".


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:11 PM
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21

Wait, isn't Nosflow's comment 2 a joke? If not, it should be.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:19 PM
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22

The tiger beat down crew seemed to think this guys exists a lot (I take it the guy who wears "this is what a feminist looks like" shirts to get laid counts as an instance).

Yeah, Reason Magazine and Ross Douthat think this guy exists a lot too. There's always the temptation to think that all the social advantages are going to frauds and phonies, and you are too virtuous to play their games.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:19 PM
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23

Wait, aren't I pwnd?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:19 PM
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24

Now that I think about it, 2 is clearly a joke. I just kind of think that this is a situation where "not all liberal men" actually has a fair amount of validity.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:20 PM
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Does that mix exist in the real world?

Yes.

Also note the picture of Ted from How I Met Your Mother.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:22 PM
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26

Not all comment 2s are jokes, you know.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:26 PM
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27

Anyhow, feminist women should be glad that dudes want to be feminists to get laid. What's the proposed equally effective incentive mechanism.

Personally, I recognize myself more in this guy.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:28 PM
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Anyhow, feminist women should be glad that dudes want to be feminists to get laid. What's the proposed equally effective incentive mechanism.

Personally, I recognize myself more in this guy.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:28 PM
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Anyhow, feminist women should be glad that dudes want to be feminists to get laid. What's the proposed equally effective incentive mechanism.

Personally, I recognize myself more in this guy.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:28 PM
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30

How the fuck did the fuck.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:29 PM
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31

17: It is funny, but it hits close to home, which makes it mostly cringeworthy for me. Then again, I also have trouble watching TV shows and movies where characters do embarrassing things.

20: I laughed, in the physical sense, at "not all Hans Molemen." In that voice! I wish I had someone I could share that joke audibly with.

I'm kind of amazed that it took that long to see that 2 is a joke, both because of the highfalutin "oppress me with this misrepresentation" and the hugeness of the "not all men" meme.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:31 PM
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highfalutin "oppress me with this misrepresentation"

You may have noticed that neB talks like that all the time. Which I approve of, but it's not really a change in register when he's kidding.

(Yes, it is obviously a joke when I think for a moment, I just had a spontaneous "not all liberal men" reaction to the piece when I read it, so I was primed to get it wrong.)


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:34 PM
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33

You may have noticed that neB talks like that all the time

Ton lla Neb!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:35 PM
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34

It seems clear that 2 was intentionally a joke. We should now proceed to consider whether it was also intentionally trolling, or whether that was just serendipity. I favor the former theory, on the grounds that nosflow is subtle.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:37 PM
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35

Good lord OBVIOUSLY 2 is a joke.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:38 PM
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36

Sorry widget! It was just serendipity!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:38 PM
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37

the hugeness of the "not all men" meme

In certain corners of the internet anyway.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:39 PM
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38

True, but I thought educated white male Americans talking about their own oppression means either they're joking or they're assholes. Or both. Or in a hopeless pit of self-referential sarcasm, hopeless waiting for a stack overflow to start anew.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:40 PM
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39

neb appreciates nipples for more than just their ability to indicate temperature.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:40 PM
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40

I'd make a death-of-the-author argument in response to 36, but it's probably better just to gesture towards one instead.


Posted by: widget | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:41 PM
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41

I can't figure out if 35 is a joke.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:42 PM
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42

I'm with dalriata about "not all Hans Molemen", for the record.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:44 PM
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43

41: Maybe you told it wrong.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:45 PM
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44

I did just remember one from college, who was pretty much exactly this

Transparent or plausible? Successful or ridiculous?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:49 PM
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45

Plausible and successful -- he had sex with most of the straight women in the house I lived in, and not with me out of contrariness more than because I really saw through him. In retrospect, ridiculous, but in the environment he was in, it was working.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:54 PM
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46

This is exactly the kind of guy that Adelle Waldman's recent novel is about, no? Haven't read, but I did read the stupid Douthat column about it:

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/15/opinion/sunday/douthat-the-daughter-theory.html


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:55 PM
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47

But even despite knowing one of them, so I do agree that there's a type out there to be mocked, I still don't like the title of the piece as "Liberal Dude". It's a type, but it's not a dominant or even terribly frequent type among liberal dudes.

The piece is really funny though, if I cut loose from thinking the title is unfair.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 1:59 PM
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48

47: Are you also bothered by SWPL?


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:02 PM
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49

Degree of feminism and ability to get laid are entirely uncorrelated, just like any other political belief. This applies to both men and women.


Posted by: dz | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:03 PM
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50

48: Have you met me?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:06 PM
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49: this is totally true. In fact, anyone who thinks that people are getting an unfair advantage in the getting-laid department through professing feminism is demonstrating that they don't understand the whole process very well, and probably aren't getting much themselves.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:07 PM
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Yep. The specific guy I'm thinking of wasn't particularly unusually feminist by the standards of his social circle, he was just very successful at using it as part of a line.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:10 PM
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53

Hmph. I think my romance novel idea for the Somali Pirate/multi-racial ship captain was way better.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:11 PM
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54

48: ...no? But point taken.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:13 PM
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55

54->50


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:13 PM
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56

Actually, I can't remember if you were around for the great SWPL infestation of the blog. I suppose if not, that could have been a straight question.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:14 PM
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57

Actually, I can't remember if you were around for the great SWPL infestation of the blog

It ended?


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:16 PM
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58

There's lots and lots of PUA "feminist" guys on the radical left. Sometimes they even rape people. It's more than a little annoying. But, then again, there are some really genuine, sincere feminist guys who get laid all the time too.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:18 PM
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59

I loled.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:19 PM
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60

YOLOLO.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:20 PM
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61

And it tastes just like cherry cola


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:23 PM
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62

Then again, I also have trouble watching TV shows and movies where characters do embarrassing things.

You're in good company, brother.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:23 PM
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63

57: Talking about the acronym died down, anyway.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:23 PM
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64

Just read the Douhat piece. I remember Barbara Ehrenreich writing at length about commitment-avoiding men in the '80s.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:36 PM
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65

People. "Lib-bro" is right there for the taking.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:37 PM
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66

I read it yesterday and thought it was funny, if overdone in some parts. The comments below were pretty silly, turning what seemed like lots of instances of ordinary googly-eyed flattery or clumsy goofiness into examples of Mansplaining Fake-feminist PUAs. I mean, I get that being hit on all the time is annoying and all, but "NOT ONE HOUR AGO I heard a dude mentioning a Noam Chomsky talk he is going to later today"? I mean . . . so what? But commenters. That's what they do. Except here. And other places I comment at. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I agree with LB in 4, not quite sure who it's parodying. Maybe if I lived closer to a big campus.

I kind of like what PGD said in 3, though I think "nice guy" is the wrong phrase. ("Nice guys" are those creeps who pretend to be platonic besties but cry a lot about how they deserve some pussy for, well, being nice.) If you dialed the piece down from the parody to recognizable people you'd probably wind up with a lot of politically well-intentioned guys who just aren't great dudes personally. It's not sinister, just not conscious of the disconnect. Or sometimes they are, maybe, but in a sort of Catholic confessional kind of way.


Posted by: Dud Par | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:42 PM
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Yeah. I don't know that the guy I'm thinking of was insincere, exactly, about being a feminist. He was a manipulative, sleazy jerk, but in contexts not related to whether or not he was getting laid, I don't recall thinking of him as less feminist than anyone else.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 2:45 PM
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56: I think I postdate it (but 57's obvious quip is obvious). It was intended to be a straight question but I suppose if I thought harder about it your response would've been obvious.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:06 PM
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69

Poking around The Toast, as one does when a site is linked and one should be working, I found this fanfiction arguing that Paul (the "real estate novelist who never had time for a wife") and Davy ("who's still in the navy and probably will be for life") from the song Piano Man were gay. Was that not supposed to have been explicit in the song originally? Or, at least unambiguously implicit? Or was I just overreading the implication all along?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:40 PM
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70

Pop lyrics are supposed to mean something?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:52 PM
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#69 I was always more concerned about "the man at the bar sitting next to me ... making love to his tonic and gin" which had surely got to be a hygiene violation if nothing else. Some other poor bastard is going to be drinking out of that glass tomorrow!


Posted by: dsquared | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:53 PM
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72

Sometimes I think of them as comprehensible. Not often, but sometimes.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:54 PM
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I always thought that was the obvious reading. But then, Liz, you and I apprehend things that women who look like you don't normally catch--I can see your beautiful mind working when I look at you, just a little bit slower than mine.


Posted by: Gonerill | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:56 PM
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74

Was that not supposed to have been explicit in the song originally? Or, at least unambiguously implicit?

I think this depends entirely on what people at the time would have thought.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:57 PM
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I always thought that Paul and Davey were lovers, but then, reading up on Billy Joel as one does when one is from Long Island, I came across an interview with Joel in which he talked about the people who inspired those characters, and somehow it made clear that they were not romantically involved. The level of sadness I felt on learning this was completely unjustified.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 3:59 PM
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76

||

From a paper I'm grading:

"Con/gress does not have the power to outlaw sna/acking while driving"

You can pry my Corn Nuts from my cold dead hands, you jack-booted thugs!

|>


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:06 PM
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77

What about congress while driving?


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:11 PM
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78

@69: Huh...that interpretation literally never crossed my mind until I read your comment just now.

I suppose I'm just being slow. I always took it as implying that Paul & Davey's chronic singleness was due to patheticness rather than volition.


Posted by: AcademicLurker | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:17 PM
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79

I always thought that Paul and Davey were lovers

I confess this never occurred to me.


Posted by: slolernr | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:20 PM
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78: Me too, especially as that's the general tenor of the song. Their being lovers, even with their furtiveness, would be uncharacteristically happy for that bunch. Unless Joel was trying to say something homophobic.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:48 PM
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81

76: Congress has the power to regulate postal roads! If only your school forced students to read the Constitution.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:50 PM
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82

76: They can outlaw driving across state lines to snack.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:50 PM
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83

Congress can outlaw corn nuts, but not organic beef jerky or almonds.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:52 PM
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84

83: I believe the technical term for those powers you will choose to endow upon the husk of democratic institutions is "derived powers."


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:55 PM
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85

If you actually read the Constitution, you will learn that the Ninth Amendment says "The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage the absolute right of Robert Halford to be in charge of everything."


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 4:59 PM
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86

Oh come on, people. In the navy? Never had time for a wife? Rum sodomy and the lash, for sure.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:09 PM
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87

Given the depressingness of the song, I figured they were both gay, closeted, and not lovers. So, patheticness, yes.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:12 PM
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88

Congress can threaten the states with withdrawal of highway funds if they do not outlaw eating cornnuts while driving. Supreme Court says so. Just as long as it doesn't involve providing healthcare to poor people, because sovereign dignitude.


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:12 PM
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89

Thank god, I still disagree with LB.


Posted by: FL | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:13 PM
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90

Some truths are always with us.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:15 PM
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91

Paul could be gay and Davy not.


Posted by: Dud Par | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:32 PM
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92

Huh. I was going to make an In the Navy joke, but looking at the dates of the two songs, Piano Man is five years earlier. Never mind.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:35 PM
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Count me among those who assumed Paul and Davy were pathetic and straight, not furtive lovers. Even with the possibility floated, it seems unlikely that Billy could write a subtle line like that.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:36 PM
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94

I mean, the naval implications remain obvious, despite losing the support of the Village People.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:36 PM
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95

Billy Joel sure ain't no Lou Reed.


Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:37 PM
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96

It's only gay if you do it in port Paul.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:39 PM
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97

What's wrong with being a real estate novelist? Like half the great books involve real estate.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:40 PM
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Nobody (with the possible exception of ogged) got the joke in the linked piece.

PGD in 3:

Does that mix exist in the real world?

No it doesn't and that's the point. It's not about a liberal dude, but about a liberal dude's fantasy. It's right there in the title: Liberal Dude Erotica.

PGD and Dud Par correctly make the connection to nice guy-ism. This is the Nice Guy masturbation fantasy, and the fact that this is not the way the world works is the source of Nice Guy disillusionment.


Posted by: politicalfootball | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:42 PM
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This is totally different from the Nice Guy fantasy, which is that some attractive woman the Nice Guy has fixated on will suddenly realize that his unassuming qualities actually make him preferable to her more superficially attractive other romantic options. This is a fantasy about being charismatically glamorous through being leftier/feministier-than-thou, which is not at all the same thing. And of course it's supposed to be a fantasy; we've been talking about the existence or non-existence of guys who try to pull it off with varying degrees of success.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:51 PM
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For Megan: SF Public Press has an interesting article on groundwater depletion and increased seismic activity. Would post link but on phone. Simultaneous subsidence of valley floor and uplift of mountains...not erotica but possibly mind blowing...


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:55 PM
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101

69, et al: The definitive take.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 5:57 PM
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102

Slolernr! Long time no read!

I think I told the story here in the last few months of singing Piano Man on factory breaks in '74. When they come to set me on fire, I hope I remember the Sch'ma but I'm sure I'll remember every word of Piano Man

Another vote for losers, no gay vibe.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:21 PM
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101: I'm not sure when McSweeney's has ever had the definitive take on 69.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:40 PM
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102: I'm really bad at processing song lyrics. I mishear nearly everything and can't remember parts I understood. The few songs I do know? Are really bad songs. The boyfriend is very, very good with lyrics and was shocked to find me kind of singing along to Kelly Clarkson a couple weeks ago.
Him: You know the words to this?
Me, shamefaced: Yeah.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:49 PM
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104: don't feel bad. Just the other day I heard Adele. I was all "whoever this is can really sing!"


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:50 PM
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Thanks, dairy queen. I saw that, but haven't read it because I am already so disgusted that there will be no effort to recover the costs of damage to infrastructure caused by subsidence. I am sure that roads and overpasses in the Valley are going to need a lot of additional repair, and everyone's going to be all, gas taxes? General fund? Maybe some bonds. When we know full well who the vandals are.

I was also pleased to see this in Slate. Somewhat immodestly, I believe I am the single person who introduced an objection to producing the world's almonds in California into the water policy conversation. I never heard anyone else object to them before I started blogging about it years ago.


Posted by: Megan | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:55 PM
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83: Via hysterical other place linkage, I understand the FDA will be banning walnuts.

If you want a picture of the future, imagine a jackbooted FDA thug stomping on your walnuts...forever.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 6:59 PM
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108

The love-sick, sensitive young man used to be a figure of some stature and dignity in our culture. I'm listening now, while working at home to Schubert's Winterreise, Fischer-Dieskau/Gerald Moore. Plenty of self-pity, but no trace the narrator is held in contempt. Or that passage at the end of Joyce's The Dead, where Gabriel Conroy is awed by the boy who stood in the garden, caught sick and died.

What happened, or what easy distinction is there to be made? Does this figure exist or is he unimaginable anymore?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 7:02 PM
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109

Heard Wintereeise in Portland this winter, stepdaughter & her guy hadn't heard it live before. We walked out together and they were like "interesting ending! Guess he decided to move on!" ummm, say we parental types, usually interpreted as suicide...pause in conversation...felt like such a pill! Still managed to buck up and have a lovely dinner.

That var of hero very specifically romantic, not sure our culture can do irony free romanticism anymore.

But we'll always have Schubert!


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 7:12 PM
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110

I'm heartened by there being two comment 69 jokes in one day.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 7:13 PM
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110: of course; anything else would be unfeminist.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 7:15 PM
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Stepdaughter & her guy had a piece of it, though. The culture that honored this didn't expect death as more than a metaphor. The listener identified with and found a place for his/her own feelings, which were of the same kind.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 7:16 PM
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113

When they come to set me on fire, I hope I remember the Sch'ma but I'm sure I'll remember every word of Piano Man

Sorry, liberal dude erotica, this is the best thing on the internet today.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 8:07 PM
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oh, and there are bits of Liberal Dude Erotica that don't quite land, but overall, I totally imagined myself as that dude in college, and it came back pretty strongly during my brief between-wives episode. I had a touch more Don Draper in my approach -- assertive dancefloor leading, maybe -- but you could easily call l.d.e. the guiding rubric.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 8:10 PM
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"The Guiding Rubric" would be a good pseud.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 8:21 PM
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That link is hilarious, and I have definitely encountered that type of guy. I also feel the risk of becoming him, and a lot of my dating misadventures have come from overzealous attempts to avoid that.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 8:41 PM
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This made me laugh:

and the Fox News anchor he'd hate-masturbated to last week

But please tell me this not actually a thing?

I totally knew a Liberal Dude like this in college. He never lacked for female companionship (IYKWIM), and he favoured a certain type: very cute, somewhat fey, and prone to suicidal ideation.


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 9:00 PM
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"this not actually" s/b "this is not actually"


Posted by: Just Plain Jane | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 9:02 PM
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I'm listening now, while working at home to

Someone should compose a liberal dude Eroica.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 10:14 PM
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104: if it was "Since U Been Gone", you have nothing to apologize for.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-14-14 10:50 PM
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Name change.

I found the erotica funny in parts. More sympathetically, I think lots of "liberal dudes" feel anxiety over being caught between growing up indoctrinated into mainstream beauty standards and gender norms and intellectually knowing they're problematic. That can lead to things like, "she had great cleavage, not that he noticed." It's common for men I know with conventionally attractive girlfriends to make some sort of apologetic comment that they normally like older women, or larger women, or women who don't conform to mainstream norms in XX ways, but it just so happened that this woman hit on them and now they're dating. If I had a nickel for all the men who've told me that they don't like slender blondes with hourglass figures, or petite Asian women, then, well, I'd have a lot of nickels.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:22 AM
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I think lots of "liberal dudes" feel anxiety over being caught between growing up indoctrinated into mainstream beauty standards and gender norms and intellectually knowing they're problematic.

Yeah, this is definitely a tension I feel.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:40 AM
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It's not just mainstream beauty standards, though; there's also the issue of how to interact with women in general. There is a lot of socialization pushing in the direction of a "male gaze" attitude where assessing sexual attractiveness is part of any interaction with a woman. I'm not sure how to get around this, or whether it's even possible at all.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:49 AM
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I guess that could be folded into "gender norms," come to think of it.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:49 AM
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Axiomatic to liberal dude erotica: finding a little something in everyone to bestow with the male gaze. Big girl, you are beautiful.

(Mika, granted, is guilty of some other go-to.)


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:53 AM
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This poster, from Evanston's Lucky Platter, may be the ur-text of l.d.e....

(if you can't read the text, you can find it here, although of course the poster omits the last line.)


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 12:57 AM
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Come to think, you know who's a recognizable version of this guy, allowing for the era? Mr Mybug from Cold Comfort Farm. He's not good at it, but still.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:44 AM
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127: Ha! Yes.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 4:50 AM
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Times have changed. For all this has been linked around, no one seems to care that the person who wrote it is a prostitute (and a smart one--that interview is good).


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:35 AM
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Wow, she is a really good writer . (And doing well financially as a prostitute!). Much rather read her other stuff than this.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:59 AM
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130: the second job probably has a higher status. There is a Chinese word, "yu", meaning originally "to sell one's children for food in time of famine" which has the additional modern meaning of "doing freelance journalism".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:06 AM
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To sell one's children to be used as food or in exchange for good?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:07 AM
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I don't know.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:12 AM
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Yeah, that piece is also very good.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:14 AM
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123: Yeah, sadly this.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:19 AM
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She's a rich prostitute, wherefore no one cares. Plenty of people would care if she was a $20 crack whore.

And yes, a good writer. Best of luck to her.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:32 AM
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121: Princess Bride or building me up just to let me down?
I don't think I've ever heard someone comment apologetically about their own girlfriend's attractiveness, but I guess it's unlikely I'd be included in that conversation.

123/135: What makes you think you're not simultaneously being evaluated on a scale of Gilbert Gottfried to Ryan Gosling? I don't especially resent the line of thought unless it means someone's going to act like a dick (because I wasn't cute enough to be nice to) or is staring inappropriately.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:34 AM
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What makes you think you're not simultaneously being evaluated on a scale of Gilbert Gottfried to Ryan Gosling?

That's a false dichotomy! What if a guy had Ryan Gosling's voice but Gilbert Gottfried's body?! Meeeow!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:35 AM
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I realized this morning that missing the dorm experience has left me with a fundamentally different outlook, so that Winterreise seems to speak to my experience in a way it wouldn't to most modern educated people. Perhaps familiarity really does breed contempt, or at least a relation to others very different from my own.

My reaction to LB's story yesterday was how hard it would be for me to look some people, eventually a lot of people in the face. I feel sheltered from all that. I can remember reacting in a similar way to Megan's wedding scene stories, however long ago that was.

In the Army you can keep to yourself, the concerns of your day are far removed from real life, from anything you want to be or think you are. But that privacy seems unlikely in college dorms.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:47 AM
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121: Why don't we go around, and everybody... everybody say a race that you are attracted to sexually. I will go last. Go.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:48 AM
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140: okay, uh, Na'vi.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:52 AM
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I am a jet plane, but I've been curious about dinosaurs all my life.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:53 AM
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140: Pierson's puppeteers.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:57 AM
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140: Formula One.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:58 AM
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140. 800 metres hurdles.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:59 AM
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I mean, come on. Two highly dextrous and sensitive mouths. Imagine the possibilities.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:01 AM
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FROGMEN


Posted by: OPINIONATED GRANDMA | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:02 AM
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Depending on how you count, I have at least 5, and probably more, friends who do sex work. And a couple of them are, in fact, prostitutes. And it's been interesting to look at my own attitudes shifting around that. For one thing, I hadn't realized how much creepier working in a strip club might be than actually being a prostitute. But apparently, it's way creepier. In contrast to what the essay linked in 129 says about attractiveness and male gaze and stuff, when you work in a strip club, you're constantly, constantly being picked apart and having all your flaws cataloged and commented on. And it sounds like there's a lot more pressure in that case to fake friendliness. Which makes sense I guess, as if you're with someone 1-on-1, it's easier to look for their good points, versus talking to several dozen people in a night and having to convince them that you want to be their friend with benefits.

I guess what I'm saying is, we all grow up in this culture with a huge weight of mythology around sex work that, if it was ever true, certainly doesn't map very well to the experiences of many actual 21st century US sex workers. And so many of our responses are colored by that, and it undermines the very things people would like to see change about sex work. I feel like shaking people and saying "Wake up! Really understand that this person is actually just like you, and has all of your concerns and worries and joys and boredom. Don't double-reify him or her with your moral vagueness!"


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:02 AM
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148: I think "US" is doing a great deal of hard labor in that second paragraph.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:05 AM
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when you work in a strip club, you're constantly, constantly being picked apart and having all your flaws cataloged and commented on

By the other performers, or by the customers? Surely people don't pay to go to strip clubs just to sit there and be rude to the strippers?


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:05 AM
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Let's leave Ann Coulter out of this.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:07 AM
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Surely people don't pay to go to strip clubs just to sit there and be rude to the strippers?

Business plan!


Posted by: OPINIONATED MEN'S RIGHTS ACTIVIST/PICKUP ARTIST/ENTREPRENEUR | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:07 AM
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149: Sure, to some extent. But I would guess that a lot of the conditions are not much different in other industrialized countries, and even in the Third World, many of the same things obtain.

150: Both, actually. Apparently, there are some people who go to strip clubs and part of the kick is that they get to be really open about the hierarchy of attractiveness and where you, the stripper, fit into it. And in a context where, for the most part, the object of your gaze isn't allowed to backtalk you.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:09 AM
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(Also by the management)


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:10 AM
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Oh, ugh.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:14 AM
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Further to 149: Okay, if you want to say there are 10,000 prostitutes in Bangladesh or wherever, or even people who've been "trafficked" into the US, and their lives are living hells, then yes, my friends' experiences don't have much to do with that, and a whole different set of concerns is in operation. But a lot of the discourse assumes that it is completely impossible for the voluntary, self-aware, relatively happy prostitute or other sex worker to even exist, and that's bullshit.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:15 AM
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Wry Cooter to show in the fifth.


Posted by: BABY NEEDS A NEW PAIR OF SHOES | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:16 AM
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That was an awkward time to come in with that joke.


Posted by: BABY NEEDS A NEW PAIR OF SHOES | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:20 AM
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Charlotte Shane on "enthusiastic consent."

I both identify with her comments about how the worst/most difficult clients are the ones who want her to "genuinely" be into it/come/want them, and find it quite disturbing - are you *not* supposed to get pleasure out of a partner's pleasure? How do you know whether you're motivated by love or ego?


Posted by: dz | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:40 AM
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How do you know whether you're motivated by love or ego?

Whether or not you have to pay the person you're with seems like it could be important information along those lines.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:48 AM
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Yeah but, from the comments:

'"Some of you are speculating that the worst clients would be the best lovers are wrong." Yes. Anyone who makes [sex] about their own ego is not going to be a good lover, and that's often what the "I want to please YOU" is really all about.'


Posted by: dz | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 7:54 AM
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161: Yeah, I guess my sense is that there's a hierarchy of oppressive creepiness: (1) being invested in a sex partner's pleasure because you care about their feelings and enjoy making them enjoy themselves (not creepy at all -- this is my sense of how it's supposed to work). And we can be talking true love here, or just mutually enjoyable sex.); (2) not giving a damn about your sex partner's pleasure and just wanting to do exactly what you want to them (creepy, but I suppose in the presence of consent, not necessarily wrongful); (3) wanting to do exactly what you want to your sex partner without any real consideration of their needs and desires, but demanding that they take pleasure in it because having access to their body isn't enough, you need to control what's going on in their head as well (wildly creepy, and basically why I find prostitution repellent even where the sex workers involved aren't in grinding misery).


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:08 AM
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everybody say a race that you are attracted to sexually

Ever since last April, the Boston Marathon.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:17 AM
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I think (3) of 162 overstates what the typical john wants from a prostitute. I assume there are some who fit the mold, but I imagine most just want to get off and don't much care what the sex worker thinks or feels (within reason - I assume if she's obviously hating every minute of it there'd be an issue).


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:18 AM
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Well, click through and read 159 -- it doesn't seem to be all johns, but enough to be a problem. And it certainly seems to be something that's an issue in some non-prostitution relationships; a dynamic like that is something to do with why faking orgasm is a thing that happens.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:21 AM
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I assume there are some who fit the mold, but I imagine most just want to get off and don't much care what the sex worker thinks or feels

The nature of sex work and johns really are very context-dependent.

According to a friend who is a former sex worker, for example, escort service work really is about providing "the girlfriend experience".


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:30 AM
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137: I'm sure it happens all the time. But I can't read other peoples minds, and in a lot of situations I'm the one with privileged status, so I need to work with my own issues. Also, blah blah patriarchy blah blah constant societal reinforcement of male gaze etc., that stuff probably matters, right? I just find it mildly annoying and depressing that it can't be entirely shut off, as I'd rather do without most of the time.

Saying this from a position of ignorant privilege, I wouldn't mind being constantly ranked on and reminded of the Godfrey-Gosling spectrum (Sifu: go with the other voice/body pairing!), as I'd like to have a better body self image and the external impetus of a harsh female gaze would probably help. Although I imagine I'd tire of it if I was constantly reminded of it.

140: Half-elves. (Especially chaotic good ones, IYKWIMAITYD.)


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:30 AM
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I guess I don't have very good intuitions about johns since it's far from my experience and I really could not see myself ever purchasing the services of a sex worker. Strip clubs skeeve me out badly enough. I can't imagine actually having sex with someone who was paid to fake interest in me.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:32 AM
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I'd like to have a better body self image and the external impetus of a harsh female gaze would probably help

I could see how you might feel that impetus might help lead you to do salutary things to your actual body, but being reminded constantly of where you fall short doesn't sound like a very good recipe for a better self image, particularly.


Posted by: redfoxtailshrub | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:35 AM
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Start out by going to Hooters and work your way down.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:35 AM
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170 to 168.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:35 AM
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(Sifu: go with the other voice/body pairing!)

Oh, no, I don't think.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:36 AM
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I just find it mildly annoying and depressing that it can't be entirely shut off, as I'd rather do without most of the time.

You might enjoy the Ted Chiang story, "Liking What You See: A Documentary"


Posted by: NickS | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:42 AM
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Speaking of self-image, if somebody has gained ten pounds and not gone up a size in pants, does that mean their leg muscles are getting ripped from running or that their gut is just pushing the pants down to an lower level with the same circumference?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:45 AM
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169: Yeah, fair point. Those would be fairly divorced, unless I became totally friggin' hot (and even then).

172: It'd be the most interesting pairing, if not the best. (Although I'm saying this in ignorance of what Gosling sounds like.)

173: Thanks, will give a look later.


Posted by: dalriata | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:47 AM
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174: Cankles?


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:50 AM
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It's more of a bigger thigh kind of thing.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:51 AM
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why faking orgasm is a thing that happens.

I'm sorry, what's this now?


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:54 AM
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175.3: kind of whiny.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 8:58 AM
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General warning: if you are at work, don't click on the link to 'titsandass.com' in 159.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:04 AM
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I did, but then I closed it after I noticed the URL.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:05 AM
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127: Point of Mybug as a character is that he is precisely this guy told from Flora's POV, therefore we see failure. Link told from Mybug's POV, therefore success. Story of Dick Hawk Monitor's ball ends rather differently when retailed by Mybug.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:05 AM
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Cold Comfort Rashomon. Like it.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:06 AM
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180: The second word is sass. You ruined her clever name.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:06 AM
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182 is very true and surely someone has suggested Dick Hawk Monitor as a pseud before, right?


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:08 AM
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Can't decide whether Urk's POV tempting as a fictional experience or to be avoided at all costs...


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:08 AM
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LB's 162.3 seems a little off to me. I think it's that the guy, rather than wanting to do something he likes, wants to do something he thinks his partner ought to like (but doesn't actually want or care to know what this particular person likes). Then, she needs to like it, so he feels he's a magician in the sack. Frex, the guy who says something like, "My ex used to love it when I --" and gets all sulky if it isn't a big hit with the new girl. I bet it's exacerbated when the fellow is paying, since he probably wants to convince himself that he's not bad in bed, he's misjudged by those shallow/golddigging/ageist/crazy bitches he meets through more conventional means who don't know what they're missing by not giving him a proper chance.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:18 AM
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Oh sure, that's going to be part of it too. But think of (what I am going to call without any particular evidence) the paradigmatic fake orgasm case: it's a guy who expects his partner to be able to come from vaginal penetration alone without clitoral stimulation, and a woman faking it to go along with that expectation. That seems to me to be pretty clear "I want the sex that I want, without having to worry about my partner's desires or pleasure, but I expect her to enjoy it as much as I do and in the same way."

But you're right that the thing you're talking about -- "the guy, rather than wanting to do something he likes, wants to do something he thinks his partner ought to like (but doesn't actually want or care to know what this particular person likes)" -- is a related but distinguishable thing. Still creepy, though.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:27 AM
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166.last: Yeah, GFE seems to be the main value-added these days, outside of actual S&M stuff. (Inside of actual S&M stuff you're not allowed to read, worm!) Per my sex worker friends.

Even my friends who do more strippy-type stuff say that the main emotional need they seem to be fulfilling is a relief from loneliness.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:29 AM
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I was really hoping this was going to be an earnest reply to 140.


Posted by: Dud Par | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:33 AM
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This seems like a good thread to talk about the Katha Pollitt and Melissa Gira Grant flap over sex work, if that hasn't happenned already. Entre: https://www.jacobinmag.com/2014/04/katha-pollitts-quality-control/

I have many thoughts that I probably can't post until I have time tonight.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:35 AM
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the main emotional need they seem to be fulfilling is a relief from loneliness

Do you think that's new? My impression has been that's always been an aspect of it.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:37 AM
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Damn it, 190 was supposed to quote this:

"Depending on how you count, I have at least 5, and probably more"


Posted by: Dud Par | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:38 AM
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Loneliness began in 1963.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:39 AM
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192: Paul Simon agrees.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:39 AM
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188: I guess I think that the first is less creepy than the second, which is why I was suggesting it. I'd classify the first as more selfish jerk. The second is someone who needs to figure out that women are people.


Posted by: ydnew | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:41 AM
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191: Yeah, that is interesting, and I think it's very much linked to the issues identified in 159.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:42 AM
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I get more pleasure out of my girlfriend's orgasms than my own, and I'm pretty sure she feels the same way. Which makes for an interesting paradox where selfishness = selflessness and vice versa.


Posted by: Admiral Adama | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:53 AM
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["Feels the same way" = she prefers my orgasms to her own]


Posted by: Admiral Adama | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:53 AM
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198 -- I think that's actually pretty common. I mean, the other person's orgasm is one of the major things you get out of sex that you can't get out of masturbation.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:58 AM
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''What is it men in women do require?
The lineaments of Gratified Desire.
What is it women do in men require?
The lineaments of Gratified Desire.''


Posted by: William Blake | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:02 AM
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Right, which is what sets up the pattern I've been talking about. Great when things are actually mutual, but really sort of ghastly when you combine a desire for your partner's enjoyment with an indifference to what's necessary to bring it about.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:04 AM
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198: Same here. Honestly, the male orgasm is kind of annoying.


Posted by: High King Niall | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:04 AM
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198. Doesn't everybody over the age of 25?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:09 AM
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197: The sex work conversation is very interesting, and I don't think it's as obvious as either side wants it to be (NEWS FLASH). Charlotte Shane had this piece in Jacobin about the erasure of sex workers' voices from the debate, which is a good response to Pollitt, but there still seems to be a sex worker proletariat that is neither brutally trafficked nor culturally capitalized whose voice is very, very hard to find. (This may be less so internationally, given the list of activist organizations that Shane cites.)

Shane takes pains to distinguish herself from the happy hooker writing about her Loboutins and private jetaways, but it's pretty clear that she's writing from some degree of privilege. Of course, that privilege -- knowledge worker privilege, generally -- is one that's eroding rapidly, which is why I always circle back to labor rights and power as the best frame for this discussion, whatever its relationship to a particularly intimate form of male privilege.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:20 AM
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with an indifference to what's necessary

What about an inability, a baffling and humiliating failure?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:25 AM
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The paradox in 198 brings the thread to its climax*, I think, especially paired with 168.

At a recent bachelor party I attended the host had some strippers come to our hotel suite for a couple of hours. I wasn't even comfortable asking for them to make me a drink, never mind to give me a lap dance.

But it's not that I'm a prude or (that) socially awkward. Two weeks before that I initiated a hookup that, despite its impulsiveness, required a certain amount of engineering to get off**. I barely knew the other party, although I've barely known her for years, and it was mutually known from the start that it wasn't prelude to anything else.

Then what's the difference? It's not that there are mutual rewards in the second scenario; sex workers are compensated, after all. So it has to be ego tied into the selfishness/selflessness paradox. The knowing that the other person is getting something she wants makes you getting what you want more satisfactory. It's the symmetry of the reward that drives the distinction, as opposed to the mutuality or equivalence, and it's the same thing that drives successful longer/deeper/more serious relationships too, whether sexual or emotional.

*Sorry.
**Sorry.


Posted by: Dud Par | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:27 AM
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I liked her piece on rape and sexual assault.


Posted by: urple | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:27 AM
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206: Stop talking about me!


Posted by: peep | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:28 AM
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137: Childhood nickname, but I'm sure I'll let yins down at some point.

208: The article, which I also liked, reminds me of the line from "Once upon a time in the West" when the heroine is threatened with rape: "If you want to, you can lay me over the table and amuse yourself. And even call in your men. Well. No woman ever died from that. When you're finished, all I'll need will be a tub of boiling water, and I'll be exactly what I was before - with just another filthy memory."


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:47 AM
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193: I had the exact same thought!


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:56 AM
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208: Thanks for that link, the Diski piece she references is extremely powerful, I remember very clearly reading it in the print edition when it wad first published, having heard nothing about it beforehand. Amazing, and the experience of reading it on a Sunday afternoon without any preamble was astonishing. Suddenly reading such a clear and perceptive recounting of a young adolescent female experience, realizing how vanishingly rare that is despite my strong identification with it, the accuracy. Whole realm of common human experience rarely seen in print.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 11:28 AM
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I've just noticed, and want to appreciate that 202 is, typically, written to be gender neutral, once you read past "what I've been talking about."


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 11:42 AM
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That piece on rape and sexual assault raises a lot of issues that I think are closely related to the discussion of sex work. E.g. this passage:

When we refuse to acknowledge the possibility that a rape could be anything less than a tsunami of emotional and mental destruction for a woman, we establish a fantasy of absolute male sexual power and absolute female vulnerability. We are, in essence, honoring the timeless belief that a woman's worth, self-respect, and ability to function within society are dictated exclusively by the sexual use of her body.

Has I think something to do with the idea that sex work must always be shaming (for women), separably from working conditions, and regardless of whether or how it is chosen.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:22 PM
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204: I'd always thought so too, but ending up with a partner who not only strenuously disagrees but thinks I have a warped perspective for thinking that way has not worked out perfectly. I have no idea how rare this actually is.


Posted by: Edith Roosevelt | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:40 PM
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Is your partner a liberal?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:50 PM
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215: Although, if I'm reading this straight, you think his orgasms are more important than yours, and so does he. Sounds like everyone's happy.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 1:53 PM
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I don't know any sex workers, but I know several members of the state legislature.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 2:39 PM
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Following up on 191, Melissa Gira Grant, and what Leftist should think or do about sex work.

It's important--in fact crucial for any hope of collective politics--that people earning a wage have consciousness of how they are all in the same boat of being compelled to sell their labor--which other people get rich from the fruits of--in order to acquire the means live. But Jacobin writers jump quickly from that to denying any political or moral valence to what one does for a living other than i's part in the class structure of capitalism (from the article linked in 191):

I suggest the reverse: the nature of a product is irrelevant to how we should theorize, legislate, or organize the labor involved in producing it.

That, to me, is crazy and wrong.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:03 PM
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i's

its


Posted by: CB | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:05 PM
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denying any political or moral valence to what one does for a living other than i's part in the class structure of capitalism

Well yeah, but if that's what we're latching onto, shouldn't the discussion be about weapons designers or currency traders or private prison wardens?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:20 PM
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219: I more or less agree with what you're saying but I don't think Grant is going all the way with the argument you're criticizing. I think she's trying to get at saying it is illegitimate to make the worker responsible for all the consequences of consumption of the good they produce. If, arguendo, in a sexist society, there is some tendency for the bartering of money for sexual services to reinforce sexist attitudes, this is not the responsibility of the sex worker any more than the high incidence of diabetes in a society that offers inadequate exercise is the responsibility of the server in the ice cream shop. You need to argue instead that there is something fundamentally dehumanizing or immoral in the activity of producing or exchanging the good -- excessive ice cream consumption is a social problem but there is nothing in the labor activity of producing or serving ice cream that makes the worker responsible for that. As Grant puts it, "workers are not socially responsible for whatever may come from their work".

Now, I think that most blanket arguments against sex work (in other words, arguments against sex work that are totally independent of the labor conditions of the work and the consent of the workers) *do* rely on arguments that the exchange of sex for money is fundamentally immoral and dehumanizing in a way that, say, the exchange of large blocks of time under the control of a hostile boss and away from your children for money are not dehumanizing. I find left arguments against sex work somewhat frustrating because they come right up to that point but then don't fully make the argument or explain what is fundamentally and uniquely dehumanizing about sex work. I suspect that is because the argument would be an essentially conservative argument about the special nature of sex. I am pretty sympathetic to social conservatism myself in a lot of contexts, so I might not be hostile to those arguments, but I don't really see them clearly made.


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:23 PM
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Indeed, why is the drug dealer a pariah and the liquor store clerk a respected member of society?


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:37 PM
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Here, because of a union.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 5:40 PM
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which is why I always circle back to labor rights
and power as the best frame for this discussion,
whatever its relationship to a particularly intimate form
of male privilege.

This discussion reminded me of the line from Irving Kristol that "a liberal is a person who sees a 14-year-old girl performing sex acts on stage and worries about whether she's being paid minimum wage."


Posted by: knecht ruprecht | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:48 PM
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Well is she?


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 6:56 PM
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Aren't a lot of the anti-prostitution arguments related to trafficking? Legalization doesn't seem to reduce trafficking the way it did with alcohol or might do with drugs. Sex work is very high profit, which makes it more vulnerable to criminal exploitation than other forms of manual labor. Secondly, the high profits are inherent to the nature of the product sold don't seem to be dependent on the illegality of the product artificially inflating the price, which is maybe why legalization hasn't reduced trafficking.


Posted by: Buttercup | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:38 PM
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Well is she?

Of course not, job killer.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:48 PM
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227: Maybe, but it turns out trafficking itself is a complicated phenomenon that isn't very well understood.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 9:53 PM
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227, 229: Paging J, Robot. J, Robot to the white courtesy phone please.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:05 PM
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was shocked to find me kind of singing along to Kelly Clarkson a couple weeks ago.

If it's "Since U Been Gone" I am dying to do it at karaoke but nervous that it will actually be outside of my means.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:06 PM
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Smearcase if you do "Since U Been Gone" at karaoke a) I want to be there and b) I will buy you all the drinks to make sure this happens.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:16 PM
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Let's leave Ann Coulter out of this.

I didn't realize until some meme about her popped up yesterday that she's had some very bad work done, and I am really not that good at spotting that.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:17 PM
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232: I have gotten gradually less inhibited about karaoke over the last ~4 years (i.e. since the first time I did it SOME OF YOU WERE THERE) but am reluctant to do things that are likely to veer right out of my vocal range, like that song. But yeah maybe with drinks. I somehow found my falsetto for Cee-Lo's "Fuck You" when I had had a few so you never know.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:20 PM
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Oh great, now I'm going to have an Ann Coulter image search in my google history. Thanks a lot, Smearcase.


Posted by: Eggplant | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:21 PM
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(235: But I mean right? What is that thing her mouth is doing?)

Somewhere in the middle of this thread I wondered about linking the Louis CK thing where he says "you're not fat" to a woman he's on a date with and she reacts at length, but I figure any Louis CK clip is always already posted.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:34 PM
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236: How about a Slate piece on it? (You can probably tell where I get all my information about the world these days.)


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 10:37 PM
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Paging J, Robot. J, Robot to the white courtesy phone please.

You'll never get her to show up that way. Try dangling a baby instead.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 05-15-14 11:25 PM
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204: what? I mean...sometimes my partner's orgasms are more important to me than mine, but in general? no.
231 et seq.: I thought we had determined some time ago itfa that mr. smearcase's signature karaoke song was led zeppelin's "the song remains the same," right? and by "was" I mean "I said it ought to be" because that would be the single greatest signature karaoke song of all time. on account of not having any vocals till 1 min 33, after a kick-ass fucking guitar solo. also, part of it is unsingably high. but since we are on the subject, y'all should all take a moment to listen to "over the hills and far away," because that is a goddamn amazing song. time signature on the guitar intro is really tricky.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:54 AM
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227: One thing I've noticed is that law enforcement and "advocates" tend to play around with statistics quite a bit. So you'll see something like: "Human trafficking is a $3 billion per year industry in the US. Girls are trafficked from as far away as Russia or Thailand to work in the US sex industry." Completely eliding the fact that a lot of "trafficking" is coyotes helping people immigrate without documentation so they can work far more mundane jobs in restaurant kitchens or wherever.

Just riding the bus home from work yesterday, I looked up and saw a Very Serious PSA ad (black background, sans serif type) about an anti-trafficking hotline. Made me wonder what people might say if you could go back to 1914 and ask them "In 100 years, do you think panics over 'white slavery' will still be a feature of American life?" Cf. Taken etc.

None of this is to say that people who do find themselves in such a situation should not have access to whatever support and protection society can offer, nor that pimps are not, by and large, fairly disgusting people. But way too much of the activism is promoting stuff that just makes it harder on all sex workers and doesn't target the people who need the most help very effectively.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:35 AM
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240.1 is a very good point, and the reason that I really don't like the phrase "human trafficking" at all, because it sounds like it should mean "trafficking in humans" - i.e. the slave trade - and in fact it also (mostly?) means "paid-for facilitation of illegal immigration". If we want to talk about forced labour or slavery or prostitution, we should talk about that. But using them as a hook to actually (mostly?) talk about illegal immigration is dishonest.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:40 AM
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I think the word 'slavery' works well enough to describe the most odious parts of trafficking, the parts where law enforcement should focus. Whether the person enslaved is forced to do sex work or not seems to me a secondary consideration. Forced sex work is a lot nastier than forced domestic labor, but the key issue remains force, which makes them both slavery.


Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:55 AM
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239.2 -- My son is currently in a full on LZ phase, with special emphasis on Houses of the Holy. Truly one of the joys of parenthood.

(Last night, we listened to the Page/Plant record No Quarter -- last vinyl I ever bought, I think -- at house shaking volume.)


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:02 AM
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(He was pretty shocked to learn that the first record his mom ever bought was LZ2.)


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:03 AM
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In the UK most (I think) forced labour is in agriculture and related sectors. Is this not the case in the US? I would have expected it to be.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:06 AM
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Better half just this moment using the Floyd's Wish You Were Here to wake up the thirteen year old. Also prospect of giant bowl of fresh berries and yogurt and pancakes, so it isn't all abuse here.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:07 AM
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245: If you count being deceptive about the work and/or cheating on pay, yes.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:09 AM
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Charley, that Montana campaign is everywhere. I rode on an el car this week with the Montana ads everywhere, even on the ceiling, as well as applied to the outside of the car.

This El Car of Sky.

In reaction--don't take this personally, it's left over from annoyance at ancient ads for Alberta they remind me of--I looked up as promised the 4 images from Montana in Robert Frank's The Americans. All soft focus bw, all close or medium. Only one a landscape in any sense, out a hotel window up a street, in the rain, you can see some hills. All from Butte.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:11 AM
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My son, a dominant Wolfcub, has carried a torch for Pink Floyd on vinyl since he was about 13. There are three working turntables in our house, ours and each of the kids'.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:13 AM
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Oh, yeah, lots of PF moments around here in the last couple of years.

Like all joys of parenthood, it's transient. The boy's GF returned to town late last night from 3 months knocking around New Zealand, so we're not expecting to see much of him for a while.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:26 AM
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248 -- It's supposed to make you want to come and spend money. Come and spend money!


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:28 AM
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245: I wasn't aware that the Morecambe Bay lot were forced labourers. As far as I know they were working in the UK voluntarily (though illegally, and in illegally bad conditions, and for illegally low pay).

See here: http://www.jrf.org.uk/publications/forced-labour-uk

Making the point that many forced workers are not trafficked, and many trafficked people are not forced labour: "The definition and scope of forced labour are poorly understood, including differences between human trafficking, slavery and exploitation. Consensus is needed on forced labour indicators relevant for assessing the scope and scale of forced labour in the UK, and to assist legal proceedings. Relatively little case law exists."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:34 AM
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Led Zep is overrated. War, Creedence, Sly and the Family Stone, Santana-- all so much better. Floyd is great, Stones are OK. Brits just have a hard time with blues.


Posted by: lw | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 8:03 AM
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222 is a much better version of the argument than the things I've seen on Jacobin. But my concern is exactly the gist of 221. What you decide to do for a living should--in a highly context-sensitive way--be morally evaluable (though I'm more inclined to put the weight of judgment on whether certain occupations should exist, rather than on whether someone is a bad person for doing them).

In the particular case of sex work, I don't really have any problems with "the work", but I am in a privileged position with respect to whatever negative consequences sex work might have for women. What I am really against is rejecting anti-prostitution feminist arguments out of something like "wage labor essentialism": the idea that, since sex work is wage work, the only problems it can have are the problems that wage work has generally. Example of that sentiment:

It's undeniably true that many sex workers, if they had access to another source of income, would either leave the sex industry or demand better conditions for themselves. But the same could be said of supermarket checkers or factory workers. And that, ultimately, is the only argument against sex work that I think holds up: it's work, and work is often terrible.

In a way, I had similar problems with the criticisms of "do what you love". It is, again, stupid to criticize people who are stuck in jobs they don't like. It is also an important point that the "do what you love" mantra can play an ideological role in certain kinds of exploitation. My problem is that this argument quickly moves from those premises to the idea that the essence of labor is just its role as a means of compensation and that valuing certain kinds of activity over others means "the devaluation of actual work--and more importantly, the dehumanization of the vast majority of laborers"(from the linked article). Some jobs really are just bullshit that wouldn't exist if we had a saner world, and some jobs would be acknowledged as meaningful, fulfilling, or enjoyable for their own sake. Of course, even in a socialist utopia, there would be labor that is socially necessary and tedious. But you would want to honor and reward the people doing that work not just with Socialist Realist propaganda posters about the dignity of all labor, but with more free time to do things they find personally meaningful, fulfilling, or just enjoyable.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 9:39 AM
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What would the role of prostitution be in a socialist utopia?


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 2:26 PM
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Some jobs really are just bullshit that wouldn't exist if we had a saner world, and some jobs would be acknowledged as meaningful, fulfilling, or enjoyable for their own sake.

This seems utterly divorced from the article, and advice, in question. I would bet that no one who has sincerely uttered "do what you love" goes on to say "by which I mean, act to change society so that you can fish in the morning, criticize in the afternoon, etc., if that's what you love". They always mean "it's your fault if you don't like your bullshit job".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:16 PM
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"goes on" s/b "has gone on".


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:17 PM
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I mostly do what I love. And I often hate it.


Posted by: Von Wafer | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:19 PM
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256 is right on. Experiencing increasing identification with targets of socialist utopia propaganda of yore as constantly bombarded with business school bullshit slogans, lean in crapola and exhortations to aim! ever! higher! be! constantly! connected!


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:22 PM
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What would the role of prostitution be in a socialist utopia?

Nothing is more ridiculous than the virtuous indignation of our bourgeois at the community of women which, they pretend, is to be openly and officially established by the Communists. The Communists have no need to introduce free love; it has existed almost from time immemorial.


Posted by: Karl Marx | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:23 PM
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Cosign 260.


Posted by: Friedrich Engels | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:24 PM
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253 -- Creedence? Are you kidding?

I'm reminded, though, to see if I can find my copy of Tom Fogerty's Excalibur.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 3:31 PM
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242: and, possibly complicating things, it seems to be characteristic of really bad work environments that sex acts are required in addition. Burn shit down.

Criminally Bulgar, would you agree with ``do what you love, but get paid for what's useful''?


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 4:12 PM
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Whoo-hoo! 7818 on DIVE!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 5:47 PM
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About a decade ago a Polish newspaper did a long investigative report on the trafficking of women from the Balkans, particularly Moldova and Romania, into Poland for prostitution. Their description of what was going on went against the standard narratives of women lured with promises of non sex-work jobs and then forced into prostitution, but it was still pretty horrible. Basically, the thugs who ran the operations were pretty honest - the women were told in advance what it was about and the actual real amount of money they would be getting. The catch was that while a very desperate woman looking at living on fifty bucks a month in some godforsaken village could easily find herself thinking that fucking five to ten dudes a day, six days a week for a thousand bucks a month plus living expenses looked like a lesser evil, once confronted with the reality of what they signed up for they could and often did have second thoughts. And there was no way out. The 'contracts' were for six months or a year and if they tried to get out before the term was up, they found out that while the thugs they were dealing with might be honest ones, they were still brutal vicious violent bastards - beatings, rapes, attacks on relatives back home.

I don't have a moral problem with high end sex work since I can imagine people doing that even if they had an option of mediocre but non-horrible work for a lowish but decent wage plus good benefits. But my impression is that most sex work is not of the high end variety.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 6:25 PM
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I read one of the linked articles by Charlotte Shane, in which she says she was "only" sexually assaulted twice. One of those was just a garden-variety rape, one resulted in anal tearing for which she needed surgery.

Even a crappy job, like stocking goods at Wal-Mart, generally doesn't result in you being literally anally raped and requiring surgery. I'm going to conclude that maybe sex work has specifically horrible elements that don't make it just like any other lame McJob. And Shane was presumably a higher-end sex worker.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:19 PM
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There was at least one thing I read - based on what happened in Sweden, maybe? - claiming that whatever decriminalizing of sex work they'd done didn't help much, because part of what the johns wanted was the ability to mistreat and abuse the sex workers. So the legal-ish sex workers might have been fine, but there was plenty of demand for sex workers who were in no position to complain to anybody. It was profoundly depressing.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 05-16-14 7:35 PM
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Melissa Grant was on This Is Hell with Chuck Merz this morning. Came off very well, I must say.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 9:59 AM
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266: I thought about it that way too, but there's also the question of whether she's saying two isn't too bad a number for a sex worker or just for a woman in general. I don't know.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:04 AM
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266, 269: She recounts three incidents, but says that she doesn't call any of them rape. (Of course why she is disinclined to call the incidents rape is partly what the piece is about.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:17 AM
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Given that the high-end estimate of prevalence of rape that I've seen among women in general is one in four, lifetime, twice in a lifetime is eight times as bad as that. Maybe not all that wildly remarkable, but worse than average.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:18 AM
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270: Well, she goes back and forth. In the sentence below, she refers to something as her rape, maybe only the third of the three incidents?

Just as I would like the right to experience my rape as not particularly upsetting, so I recognize the rights of others to experience it as the single most horrible incident in their life.

Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:25 AM
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272: Right. I think she ends up along the lines of "people who insist rape is unbearably awful are what keep me from calling these rapes -- if I can aver both "rape" and "not awful" at the same time, then I'll call them rapes."


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:29 AM
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My only point is that this seems like something pretty qualitatively different than having a jerky manager at Burger King.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:30 AM
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271: This is anecdotal, but I personally find it very common for women who identify as sexual assault survivors (which is part of the dynamic she's looking at, I know) to end up in situations where something on the spectrum of sexual assaults happens again, for a lot of reasons.


Posted by: Thorn | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:31 AM
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Charley, that Montana campaign is everywhere.

I've stopped seeing this billboard around here. Maybe someone at the campaign finally glanced at a map.


Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:37 AM
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274: Yeah, I'm with you on that. This is one of those situations where I'm really unsure of my position -- I accept that there are at least some sex workers who think that sex work is a good choice for them as a profession. But even reading things from sex workers like Shane who fall into that category, I don't find myself moving off the belief that in a better world, it wouldn't be anyone's best option.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 10:47 AM
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256 is great.

The link in 159 (and even more, the comments thread) is also interesting since it implies that she and some of the other experienced sex workers commenting on the piece experience a continuing issue in separating intimacy and paid sex -- that it's a tricky line, irritating/unpleasant when crossed, and maintaining it is a constant hassle. That's a difference between sex work and a routine job where you have to smile and pretend to like somebody.

266 is right, but that's also why high-end sex work pays a couple of orders of magnitude more than Walmart. The subtext of that article is 'yeah, I won't lie, my occupation involves a greater risk of forced sex than other occupations, but I want the right to run that risk in exchange for the other benefits of the work, and non-consensual sex is a more complicated thing than it's generally made out to be'


Posted by: PGD | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:11 AM
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71 I was always more concerned about "the man at the bar sitting next to me ... making love to his tonic and gin" which had surely got to be a hygiene violation if nothing else.

At what point did the phrase "making love" switch from meaning "wooing" to "having sex with"? It clearly happened before I was born but seems to be used in movies of the 40s and maybe 50s in the more innocent way. I assume that in the early 70s when the song was written it clearly had a sexual connotation, but the past is confusing.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:30 AM
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I would guess that it became primarily a synonym for "having sexual intercourse" right around the late 60s and early 70s, when having sex started being more a subject of open, polite conversation and so there was an increased need for polite vocabulary. But I think Billy Joel's probably going for the older usage there, or at least I hope so, what with the hygiene issues and all.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:44 AM
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279. Good point. Before my consciousness of such matters, i.e, circa 1965. On the other hand, by the time I stopped studying French, "baiser" still meant "kiss".


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:50 AM
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276 -- Or realized that while the campaign is designed to get people to visit in the winter (when you can only enter from Montana) -- there being no reason to try to get more people to the park in summer -- snarky people were saying "look at a map, loser" and not thinking about how much they'd enjoy the park without the hordes.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:50 AM
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Montana -- Gateway to Yellowstone when anyone with half a brain would want to go there

or maybe it's

Montana -- Gateway to Yellowstone for people who travel with their dogs, and therefore need to spend the night outside the park


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:54 AM
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Montana -- Go ahead, hike in from Idaho, we don't care

Montana -- Have you actually been to Wyoming?


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 11:57 AM
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We entered the park from Montana, having spent the night in Billings. Nursing my old 75 Nova over the Shoshone Pass with a leaking radiator, which leaked at altitude even though it didn't at home. July, 1985.

Gotta say I liked Montana as well or better than any Western state to look at. That's really all we could do, even though we were on a leisurely trip to a wedding in Idaho Falls.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:00 PM
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Being a feminist in order to get laid, while it's pretty morally low, is at least more intellectually reasonable than being a feminist because you actually believe it. I have a hard time believing that anyone really believes all the bullshit about 'bodily autonomy' and 'abortion rights', for example, since it's self evidently silly. I suspect a lot of pro-choice men are pro-choice because it allows them to use women for and then conveniently dispose of the consequences. If you people were honest about that, it would save us all a lot of time.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:12 PM
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140: White. No Jews, though.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:18 PM
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I tested my memory just now, and got most of the following, at least the first 10 words or so, verbatim.

This is from Hemingway's A Very Short Story, published as a vignette chapter of In Our Time (1924):

Living in the muddy, rainy town in the winter, the major of the battalion made love to Luz, and she had never known Italians before, and finally wrote to the States that theirs had only been a boy and girl affair.

I've said before that my son's high school English teacher, a youngish woman, really got to him through that book. He responded to it, as I had years before, profoundly. I could quote passages after forty years. I was just as surprised she would teach that book, anathema by definition to such as she--my wife for instance--when we were young as by the quality of her teaching, a level I didn't experience before my last years of college.

In the quoted passage, I would say the phrase connotes both meanings at once, one euphemising the other. In the context of that story, where un-self-aware euphemisms function almost poetically, the transition is being marked, almost recorded.


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:18 PM
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287: Hector? I'd appreciate it if you got lost. Or at least brought cake.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:24 PM
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289:

Also, Hugo Schwyzer was the feminist par excellence for ten years, you assholes can't disown him now. He will be the face of feminism for the next century.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:42 PM
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That's not cake.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:45 PM
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I imagine 290 ending with a super villain cackle, like so. Also, 256 is a fair cop.


Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:53 PM
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Thanks to crappy cartoons, my daughter has mastered the supervillain cackle. It's adorable.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 12:58 PM
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Skeletor will, I hope, be the face of something for the next century.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:02 PM
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The face of Greyskull?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:06 PM
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I don't know who Grey Skull is, but I do know that Schwyzer lived out the implications of the liberal feminitwit creed


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:16 PM
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Okay, cake is hard. But any kind of baked goods will do in a pinch. Waffles? Beignets?


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:20 PM
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296: great comment or greatest comment?


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:31 PM
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Offered in a loving spirit to LB: beignets fried, not baked; waffles made on an iron, i.e., two-sided griddle - also not baked. Perhaps you are search your way towards a hard, dried out weevily ship's biscuit? Suspect that's the best HSC will be able to offer.

Suggest it be offered to Halford, on theory that the protein content of the insects will overcome the carbohydrate content. But honestly more because feel RH may be best situated to deal appropriate with HSC, in light of your and neb's polite requests being ignored.

IOW, unleash the hounds of Halfordism.


Posted by: dairy queen | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:32 PM
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Halfordismo, of course, is the very antithesis of cake.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:35 PM
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I DON'T KNOW WHO YOU ARE EITHER, MAC.


Posted by: OPINIONATED GREY SKULL | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:36 PM
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Grey Skull was the villain in the black-and-white, moodier, more artistic version of Captain America: The First Avenger, directed by Robert Wiene from a screenplay by Hans Janowitz and Carl Mayer.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:43 PM
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I love Expressionist cinema.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:45 PM
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||
Checking in now and then from replacing storm windows with screens, up and down ladders.

We have established that I am not married to Stella Dubois, so can't expect immediate and tangible rewards, if any.

In fact, I'm reminded of the storm-window-changing in Bellow's Herzog, where the task becomes the symbol of his humiliation, of how he has been manipulated. He keeps returning to the episode in the course of the novel.

My wife has convinced her book club to read The Adventures of Augie March next time. I don't think I'll have the time to reread it and participate.

|>


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:50 PM
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And I love waffles and beignets. Never has a greater level of comity ever been reached.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 1:52 PM
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299:

It's interesting how the first reaction of you people, when you hear an uncomfortable truth, is to silence the messenger. clearly, you folks want an echo chamber , where you can brush away hard truths by calling them 'racist, sexist, antisemitic, homophobic' or whatever else.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:05 PM
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Go get banned by Crooked Timber again.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:17 PM
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Hector, if you're going to sound like you're typing from the troller's telemarketing script, you'll have to show me your tits. It's a feminist rule I have.

And I don't understand, my brown brother, why "Hector St. Clare." At least Hect Heccascatman, or something gesturing at some cultural pride.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:20 PM
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I'm going to teach my daughter the phrase "the uncomfortable truth", as in "Daddy, the uncomfortable truth is that I need candy." That will also be adorable.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:34 PM
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Ogged,

I could show you my pecs, I guess. but how would you know it was me?


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:38 PM
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but how would you know it was me?

70s big?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 2:56 PM
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an uncomfortable truth

Who's a little troll, then? Who's a little troll? Is it you? I think it is! What a naughty little troll! Gootchy-goo, gootchy-gootchy-goo! Such a big boy! Such a naughty boy! Say peek-a-boo! Say peek-a-boo!


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 3:04 PM
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I'll know.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 3:26 PM
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It's interesting how the first reaction of you people, when you hear an uncomfortable truth smell something foul, is to silence the messenger ask the guy smeared head to toe in shit to leave.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 3:26 PM
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Apostropher,

There is nothing foul about the beliefs (for example ) that abortion is murder, that women are less interested in and suited for leadership and dominance, that most wives will be happiest submitting to their husbands, that racial groups differ in cognitive and behavioral traits, and that religions such as Judaism, Buddhism, Scientology and Papuan cannibal cults are inferior to Christianity. on the contrary, these are unfashionable but beautiful and compelling truths.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 3:55 PM
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Ugh, this is so fucking dull.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:10 PM
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Can't you Pauly Shore him or something?


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:10 PM
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Been done. Maybe Gilbert Gottfried?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:12 PM
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It's kind of weird to see someone troll without apparent awareness that they've trolled here before and been asked to leave and had mostly gone away, and thst people's responses in this thread are not first responses.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:18 PM
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Nah, that's standard trollery. "What are you so annoyed at? There's no history here, and I haven't said anything outrageous in the last half-minute."


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:22 PM
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I'm teaching Sunday School tomorrow, but I can't remember which one off Chrstianity's beautiful truths compels pathetic people to act like feces-smothered morons online.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:31 PM
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Yes, dull.

My oldest is the goalkeeper for his high school's lacrosse team. Last night they continued a defense-driven run through the playoffs and pulled the upset over East Chapel Hill to make it to the state 4A semifinals. I threw some pictures in the Flickr pool.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:32 PM
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(Which I realize is only marginally more interesting, but this is totally a parenting blog now, right?)


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:36 PM
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Yay! Hawaii was very cute in her first dance recital this afternoon.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:38 PM
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Hector, once I figured out who you were, I felt sorry that you had lost your father young, and that maybe you felt compelled to run all over the Internet taking your pain out on others. But you have lost my sympathy, and if you continue to hang out here I'll write to your lab director about your alter ego.


Posted by: Bibi Netanyahu | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:39 PM
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Wow, that was unexpected.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:41 PM
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Wait, what what? Outing people for trolling is not really how we roll around here. Ask Hector to leave, if you like (I can't really object; he is dull), but threatening to out him to his lab director isn't kosher halal.


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:47 PM
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332 et seq (less 325): awesome.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:48 PM
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It is allowed under most Orthodox Papuan cannibal cults.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:49 PM
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Unexpected indeed.

Sally's being trolled by a friend of hers who has suddenly gone all free-market-fundamentalist, socialism can never work because without the possibility of getting rich no one will ever work, and it's driving her batty.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:49 PM
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And yeah, Bibi, whoever you are? It's not that I'm absolutely categorically opposed to outing for trolling, but Hector's not there yet. I'm with Ogged.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:50 PM
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322: Maybe he'll get a scholarship to the local university with a well-known team.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:52 PM
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331: You are so wrong about Hector. He is well known and absolutely "there." He isn't here to turn over a new leaf.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:52 PM
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Sorry moderators, please delete if you want. But Hector, go away.


Posted by: Bibi Netanyahu | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:54 PM
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who has suddenly gone all free-market-fundamentalist, socialism can never work because without the possibility of getting rich no one will ever work

Rand, do you think?


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 4:59 PM
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335: or AP Economics.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:01 PM
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He is well known and absolutely "there."

I know him from CT. But unless he's actually harassing someone or threatening violence, I'm on team banning, not outing.

Meta discussion! 5000 comments!


Posted by: ogged | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:03 PM
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Bibi Netanyahu,

Bye bye.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:06 PM
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337: oh,I totally misread the exchange. Still. So hard not to support it when it is someone so prone to toxic drive-bys.

LB may thus be correct... But I'm not convinced. Healthily doubting?


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:15 PM
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333: Oh, I've seen him at CT -- it's not that he's got any value to have around; I was perfectly happy to ask him to leave, and I'm pretty tolerant about trolls. But he hasn't annoyed us, here, enough yet to make real world consequences appropriate.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:33 PM
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335: I suspect that he's just messing with her, but I can't tell from here.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:34 PM
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or AP Economics

Seriously? I never took an AP course--I don't think we had them--nor an honors course, nor was there anything like economics. But that seems like a weird takeaway from a high school class.

If you've experienced this or something like it, do tell.

All I'd be thinking would be "So what are you working for, Mr. Filkins?"


Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 5:39 PM
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I can see it being a trolololo reaction to a stupid presentation of intro econ, yeah.


Posted by: Turgid Jacobian | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 6:30 PM
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OT for New Yorkers: Just like with the Frick, you guys get more of our extra culture.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 6:48 PM
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325:

To flesh that out a bit more: I'd like to apologize for annoying you folks, and I don't intend to comment here any longer. Your house, your rules. I think you folks are all deeply *wrong* about a whole lot of stuff, to a degree that revolts me, but I'm not going to convince you, you're not going to convince me, and all my commenting here is going to cause is a nuisance. Sorry for wasting your time.


Posted by: Hector_St_Clare | Link to this comment | 05-17-14 7:31 PM
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