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Showing posts from April, 2015

Men, the Appendix, and My Little Pony

There is a section in Antiartists where one of the characters claims that men are not needed any more, that it used to be that men were needed to club mastodons or fight off marauders, but that those days are past.  He says that a man is like the appendix of women: useless, and if it goes bad it might just kill you.

The book, I think, is mostly about our sense of identity, and how that identity is tangled up in what we believe the world around us expects.  That identity is tied up in our jobs, and our sexuality, our families and our religions.  It often seems that our identity is defined for us, that there is no escaping expectations, no escaping the pressures and forces of our environments.  There are stories, of course, of those that break free from that, that go their own way, that express their identity as they see fit regardless of the consequences, and that is great for them, but I suspect most of us never really get to find out who we think we are outside of those forces and…

Men, the Appendix, and My Little Pony

There is a section in Antiartists where one of the characters claims that men are not needed any more, that it used to be that men were needed to club mastodons or fight off marauders, but that those days are past.  He says that a man is like the appendix of women: useless, and if it goes bad it might just kill you.

The book, I think, is mostly about our sense of identity, and how that identity is tangled up in what we believe the world around us expects.  That identity is tied up in our jobs, and our sexuality, our families and our religions.  It often seems that our identity is defined for us, that there is no escaping expectations, no escaping the pressures and forces of our environments.  There are stories, of course, of those that break free from that, that go their own way, that express their identity as they see fit regardless of the consequences, and that is great for them, but I suspect most of us never really get to find out who we think we are outside of those forces an…

Go to hell, Grandpa Joe

I love Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.  The real one, not that godforsaken Tim Burton/Johnny Depp atrocity.  Gene Wilder is brilliant and though his Willy Wonka is friendly and warm, he is also clearly a little unhinged.  The morality tale is the classic that everyone remembers and adores, and the one I feel is best representative of Roald Dahl's book, which I recently read to my boys and is as brilliant and funny and crazy as you might remember.

That being said, I hate Grandpa Joe.

Charlie is a paragon of virtue throughout the whole tale.  He is honest and open and not subject to all the awfulness and excesses of the other Golden Ticket holders.  I will never understand why he chose to take Grandpa Joe instead of his hardworking and long-suffering mother.  In all other ways (with one notable exception, which I will get into in a second), Charlie makes all the right decisions, and stands for all the virtue and goodness that our parents wanted for us, and that we want for our…

Go to hell, Grandpa Joe

I love Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.  The real one, not that godforsaken Tim Burton/Johnny Depp atrocity.  Gene Wilder is brilliant and though his Willy Wonka is friendly and warm, he is also clearly a little unhinged.  The morality tale is the classic that everyone remembers and adores, and the one I feel is best representative of Roald Dahl's book, which I recently read to my boys and is as brilliant and funny and crazy as you might remember.

That being said, I hate Grandpa Joe.

Charlie is a paragon of virtue throughout the whole tale.  He is honest and open and not subject to all the awfulness and excesses of the other Golden Ticket holders.  I will never understand why he chose to take Grandpa Joe instead of his hardworking and long-suffering mother.  In all other ways (with one notable exception, which I will get into in a second), Charlie makes all the right decisions, and stands for all the virtue and goodness that our parents wanted for us, and that we want for o…

Advice for Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

I hate Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.  Not the actual reindeer, not the character Rudolph, but the whole story, the whole message behind it. 

It goes something like this: Rudolph is born.  Rudolph looks different.  Rudolph is made to feel like a freak.  Rudolph is not protected by the very people that are supposed to protect him from shit like this.  Rudolph can not face the hatred and runs away.  Rudolph then finds some other freaks that have been likewise ridiculed into exile.  Rudolph returns home where suddenly he finds himself celebrated because the assholes that ran him out have found a use for him.

I hate this story.  The other asshole reindeer never have any self discovery, like maybe they shouldn't be fucking with people that are different.  No, they just realize that even a freak like Rudolph can be useful.

It ends on what seems like a high note:  Rudolph is rightfully presented as a hero, and the others are all contrite.

You had better sit down Rudolph; I have some bad …

Advice for Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer

I hate Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer.  Not the actual reindeer, not the character Rudolph, but the whole story, the whole message behind it. 

It goes something like this: Rudolph is born.  Rudolph looks different.  Rudolph is made to feel like a freak.  Rudolph is not protected by the very people that are supposed to protect him from shit like this.  Rudolph can not face the hatred and runs away.  Rudolph then finds some other freaks that have been likewise ridiculed into exile.  Rudolph returns home where suddenly he finds himself celebrated because the assholes that ran him out have found a use for him.

I hate this story.  The other asshole reindeer never have any self discovery, like maybe they shouldn't be fucking with people that are different.  No, they just realize that even a freak like Rudolph can be useful.

It ends on what seems like a high note:  Rudolph is rightfully presented as a hero, and the others are all contrite.

You had better sit down Rudolph; I have some …