Saturday, July 21, 2012

The Write Woman

I'm a serious writer and I want a woman who loves to read. Not just any reading material-- she has to love to read things that I find worthy. Also, she can write if she wants to, I guess, but nothing useful, just breathlessly cerebral literary vehicles. Is that too much to ask?


(You can read the actual dysfunction here in an essay on why a guy named Ryan Britt broke up with a smarty pants scientist-like person who didn't read correctly for his tastes. The writing isn't bad, but the thought behind it is.)

There is a special place in hell reserved for seemingly progressive, sensitive men who are dedicated to equality and feminism right up until a woman does something better than they do it. Give me a beater-clad son of the soil telling me to get back in the kitchen any day next to a guy in a corduroy jacket with leather patches telling me his PhD wife thinks she understands Vonnegut. Shut up.

My favorite sentiment of the original post is this heart-tugging little number at the end:
"For some, writing that changes the world is a huge turn-on, and that’s great. For me, it’s a little smarter, and maybe a little sexier, when a woman is content to just turn the pages and sigh."
Thank god. Looks like I can drop out of law school and dedicate my spare time to reading Tea Obrecht and old copies of Harper's. It is so much sexier than reading critically, which is to say it is less threatening to men.

Granted, the subject of the essay was why he broke up with this woman, so clearly he had to find something wrong with her. I believe this article because people do break up for ridiculously flakey reasons like, "She hasn't read the right books the right way." That's why dating should be like Logan's Run, except at 30, instead of having a glowing plastic dot in your hand, you knock up whoever you are currently dating up and have to marry them. Now it doesn't matter if her favorite book is "one of Grisham's later works" and she puts American cheese slices in her lasagna, because you are stuck with her forever or at least until you can afford to divorce her and pay child support.

But there's a whole other post about why we are all selfishly dumping perfectly good people because they take too long to order coffee. That's not the problem here. The problem is that his whole complaint is using a "you order coffee wrong" complaint to mask a "you are too smart" insecurity. There is a luxury to being single and cutting ties with people because they don't fill you with butterflies all the time. That luxury spoils people into believing what they do is so important that their partner can't help but play a supporting role and therefore shouldn't call attention by being different or complicated. If society were equal, this would just lead to fights over who gets to park their Outback in the garage. But society isn't equal and women are still expected to bear the brunt of homemaking at the expense of their careers. Put those two factors together and you get a man who wants a woman to be smart, but only the kind of smart that he likes: the soft smart, without the math. You know, the kind of smart that he is. Because he's great. Just be him, but not as good.


4 comments:

  1. Oh, snap! You responded wonderfully to this post of an egotistical jerk. What the heck? A-hole. Some men, truly, don't deserve one wasted breath of our time, you know?

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    1. I know! I normally don't respond to other bloggers (particularly this late after the post was published) but this was just ridiculous.

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  2. another amazing piece from the snarkiest lady i know - and apparently the most restrained?!? how are you not in jail for manslaughter??

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    1. Verbal thrashings are thankfully still legal.

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I love comments. They make me feel like I'm not talking to myself. I try to reply to all of them, eventually.