« Is Sex Necessary? | Main | Here and There »

July 22, 2009

"I Am Erin Andrews"

A while back, John Hawkins made a video called "I Am Sarah Palin":

I've thought about his video several times over the past few days while taking in the controversy over the creepy and criminal filming of sportscaster Erin Andrews. It wasn't that long ago that Sarah Palin was subjected to the same treatment. Funny, I can't recall the last time I heard a male politician referred to by his own side as a Vice President I'd Like to Fuck. When some Lefty pundits wrote about having sexual fantasies about Barack Obama, most bloggers on the right wondered if they'd gone off their meds? It was completely understandable - a compliment, in fact! - to yammer on about how you masturbate to photos of Sarah Palin, though. After all, you'd hit it, wouldn't you?

Before this story landed in my Inbox, I had no idea who Andrews was, and until last night I was trying very hard to be non-confrontational about this. But after thinking it over I believe some of the things being said deserve a response. I think they deserve a response not because they're substantive, original, or even terribly compelling arguments. What they do seem to be is both widely held and ferociously defended.

I've been heartened to see a few men react to both the maker of the video and those who gleefully and unapolagetically flog it with disgust. Most have said nothing. Not being a big fan of the forced denunciation school of blogging, I'm not much inclined to infer anything from their silence. On the other hand when I read comments like this one (sadly echoed over the last few days on pretty much every single post I've seen) I can't help wondering if men and women really are from different planets after all?

Erin Andrews is babelicious, to be sure, but she’d be so much hotter if she embraced her hotness, developed a sense of humor and posed for Playboy already. She’d get a big check, ESPN would get a boost in ratings and no sleazebag could profit off some grainy video anymore.

Let me get this straight. This woman's privacy was invaded, some jerk took photos of her naked and splashed them all over the internet, causing other jerks to damn near kill themselves compounding the offense. And the remedy is that Andrews ought to have a better sense of humor since everyone knows men are (if la meme du jour is to be believed) utterly incapable of controlling themselves?

For some odd reason, I'm reminded of a famous cartoon and caption contest in the New Yorker.

Surely I can't be the only one who, reading such dreck, suddenly finds herself transported to the Boulevard St. Germaine; doomed to wander about in an existentialist fugue, desperately pulling on a half spent Gauloise as she ponders the essential meaninglessness of life in a world bereft of an omiscient Deity, antiquated notions of good and evil or the approval of our new Socialist overlords. It's hard to think of another example which better sums up my distain for the "Get over it, ladies - men are pigs" school of moral philosophy. It seems odd to hear so many men cheerfully reduce themselves to no more than a set of biological urges that totally clobber their critical thinking functions.

What message are women to take from this? That men can't control themselves?

Thanks. I feel safer already. Personally I've never been a huge fan of the "all men are perverts/closet rapists/selfish and stupid louts" school of thought, but once you've heard the erstwhile targets of such reductive and unthoughtful sentiments embrace them a few hundred times you begin to wonder if better living through chemistry isn't preferable to an unmedicated existence? There seem to be endless variations on the trope but they all have one thing in common: they open up a dark, frightening abyss that theatens to swallow my generally rose colored view of men whole.

Don't get me wrong. I understand the impulse to look. We all have impulses - often powerful ones - that conflict with our values. What I don't understand is the cynical decision to repeatedly exploit someone else's misfortune:

It’s American Power, a supposedly conservative blog, gleefully trumpeting an illegal nude video made out of Erin Andrews through a hole drilled in her hotel room–a criminal act. But who cares if it’s criminal, if it might increase one’s traffic?

For days I went out of my way not to make this personal. I've had many conservations with Donald in the past. As he repeatedly points out, he's hardly the only one who seems unable to understand that daring to work as a sportscaster or being "newsworthy" does not constitute voluntary surrender of the right to privacy in situations where any of us ought to have a reasonable expectation of privacy:

I wouldn't photograph my neighbor in a bikini by the pool, getting out of the shower topless, or shaving her legs in the bathroom. I am linking to the post though, for the purposes of argument. The difference between the Erin Andrew link and those links right here is that the latter have absolutely zero news values.

Good thing his neighbor isn't a Gold Star mother whose son was just killed in Iraq or Afghanistan! That would be newsworthy, and according to the media public curiosity about sensationalistic stories trumps all over considerations. It would seem many folks agree. The rationalizations go on and on:

Who is Erin Andrews and why should I care/be surprised that she has a video of her naked? Doesn’t every female celeb under 30?

Gee, I don't know. Perhaps because a crime was committed here? Or could it be that being a 'female celeb' doesn't constitute consent to be violated by total strangers. But wait a minute! Other people did it too and that makes it hunky-dory!

If you looked at the video, linked above, you're now a consumer of the perversion. Shame on you!

Oddly, I don't recall being impressed the first time my 5 year old son exclaimed, "But Mom! Other people do it all the time!". But then I suppose if you find criminal acts "hot" it's not surprising that you might not be too down with that whole "consent" thing:

I have no problems reporting on a hot news story of a hot ESPN news reporter who's the victim of a crime, with direct links. Nope, doesn't bother me at all.

The important thing to remember here is that this isn't about right, wrong, or the importance of treating other human beings with dignity and respect. It's not about how easy it is to see only what we wish to see:

Bill didn’t move very quickly and, in fact, you could say he even shuffled a bit, as if he suffered from some sort of injury. His gray hair and wrinkled face made him appear ancient to a group of young cadets. And his crooked smile, well, it looked a little funny. Face it, Bill was an old man working in a young person’s world. What did he have to offer us on a personal level?

Finally, maybe it was Mr. Crawford’s personality that rendered him almost invisible to the young people around him. Bill was shy, almost painfully so. He seldom spoke to a cadet unless they addressed him first, and that didn’t happen very often. Our janitor always buried himself in his work, moving about with stooped shoulders, a quiet gait, and an averted gaze. If he noticed the hustle and bustle of cadet life around him, it was hard to tell.

So, for whatever reason, Bill blended into the woodwork and became just another fixture around the squadron. The Academy, one of our nation’s premier leadership laboratories, kept us busy from dawn till dusk. And Mr. Crawford...well, he was just a janitor.

The thing is, just as Bill wasn't just a janitor, Erin Andrews isn't yet another "hot" celebrity with a sleazy nude video. She is a young woman who did absolutely nothing to invite such stunningly callous and disrespectful treatment. It doesn't take a brain surgeon to imagine how you'd feel if you, your wife, or daughter were violated and humiliated in this manner.

It does require the willingness to look beyond your own urges for a moment and realize that just because you like leering at naked women doesn't mean they enjoy being leered at. You might even begin to wonder what other women think when we're confronted with such statements? If you're really up for a novel thought, you might even begin to realize that when you contend that you wouldn't treat your own kin that way (but it's OK to treat someone else's kin like that) or that you are helpless to control your sexual urges, you're telling us that it doesn't really matter how we conduct ourselves: we're fair game. What are we to think when we see competent, intelligent, hard working professionals like Palin and Andrews reduced to someone's pornographic fantasy (though neither did anything to invite that kind of contemptuous commentary)? After all, men enjoy looking at naked women. If we women had any sense at all, we'd shut up, strip down and give them what they want.

Let's face it. Anyone who thinks differently is exhibiting "disturbed Victorian insecurities":

... a second thing I learned from reporting this story is that there are a lot of uptight conservatives. I'm not linking to them here. But, I'll be clear: As I noted today, in an e-mail exchange as the Andrews post went viral, "right-bloggers will turn on themselves faster than a hyena to a carcass if another blogger expresses a view outside of the accepted cocoon." I can only wonder what kind of disturbed Victorian insecurities are unleashed when right-bloggers see "one of their own" report on a news story like this, including relevant links.

I see his point. The many men who have taken exception to the exploitation of this unfortunate incident really need to work on their self esteem (and don't even get me started on their obvious sexual issues).

Sheesh. Men :p

Posted by Cassandra at July 22, 2009 08:20 AM

Trackback Pings

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.villainouscompany.com/mt/mt-tb.cgi/3020

Comments

It is only news if we make it so. Stick with the real story which is the violation of privacy and lack of respect for the intrinsic value of our fellow human beings. These bottom feeders should be denied an audience.

In the old days these people would be shunned. I think that is appropriate in cases such as this. Deny them the audience they crave and let the law loose on the perps. I dislike giving these voyeurs any publicity at all as they attack an innocent woman and attempt to paint as hypocrites people with morals, ethics and values.

Shame and scorn is their due as civilized society turns its collective back on them.

Posted by: vet66 at July 22, 2009 10:28 AM

That was my initial inclination, vet66. But there's a problem with that.

Sometimes, a sense of shame is all that prevents us from doing things we know we shouldn't do. We have laws and penalties because we've learned over centuries of human existence that in the aggregate, a sizeable portion of humanity isn't deterred by conscience alone. Also, sometimes people refuse to stop and think until someone grabs them by the shirt collar.

In thinking about this story, what I kept coming back to was that study about rogue teenaged male elephants being restrained by responsible adult male elephants. That was, in the end, what made them straighten up and fly right - a negative response from other males.

I think a very big problem with today's world is that any time someone attempts to talk about how we ought to behave, the notion that no one has the right to judge anyone else and morality is all relative pops up like Whack a Mole.

I don't like - *really*, really don't like, being put in a position where I believe I need to take someone else to task. But sometimes, silence is mistaken for approbation or tacit consent.

I realize I have zero ability to compel the standard I have defended here and that's as it should be. What I can do is make the argument for why this way is better.

The Internet being what it is, people are free to chew on it, spit it out, or swallow it in whole or in part. That's up to them. What I can't do is remain silent. If that causes some to say I'm a prude with issues rather than facing my arguments head on, I can live with that :p

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 10:46 AM

I had intentionally avoided saying anything about it, as mentioned in the comments to your earlier post, as a way of not drawing attention to it. I'd never heard of the lady; you hadn't heard of the lady; the post you linked to stated that he'd never heard of the lady; so I figured, if lots of us don't even know she exists, the best thing to do is to simply not mention it. Fewer people who might be tempted to go and look will know to go.

I gather that ship may have sailed, from today's post.

Posted by: Grim at July 22, 2009 10:53 AM

I think that when the story is the number one search term on Google and the major networks are reporting on it, that ship has sailed :p

Please understand that I meant to imply no duty to write about this. I just thought long and hard about it and was disturbed enough by what I was seeing to think I ought to weigh in.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 10:58 AM

Someone who engages in, rationalizes and promotes voyeurism is a voyeur. I choose not to associate with them, or support their products (and yes, I'm down to pretty much zero TV time any more.) I don't understand what the whole "right wing/left wing" thing has to do with it - The measure of a person is in their actions, not their self perception.

Posted by: Pogue at July 22, 2009 11:39 AM

There seem to be endless variations on the trope but they all have one thing in common: they open up a dark, frightening abyss that theatens to swallow my generally rose colored view of men whole.

Ditto. It doesn't succeed in doing so in my case, but it does tempt me to indulge my anger and insecurities by painting all (or even 95%) of men with a "they're all pigs, who needs 'em" brush.

Which is terribly pathetic when I consider what I said a couple days ago about to of the men who are regulars here. The two I had in mind ARE good men. Sometimes they just seem so ridiculously rare...

I admit, Cassie, I don't understand, either.

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 11:42 AM

The difference between the Erin Andrew link and those links right here is that the latter have absolutely zero news values.

This is complete and utter bull$h!7. I believe this is the 2nd time this story has been brought up here without once ever linking the video in question. There is absolutely no need to view the video in question in order to facilitate discussion on the topic.

My livid terrier tendencies leads me in the direction that what consenting adults do is completely fine (even if it's of a pornographic/exhibitionist bent), but the absolute key phrase here is consenting. The exploitation of a non-consenting person (whether sexual or otherwise) is distinctly non-kosher. I don't give a [aeronautical intercourse] what supposed justifications you have.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 22, 2009 11:54 AM

That nailed the issue pretty well M'lady. And like you said, it may be disturbing to some only if the victim were their wife, their daughter, or their loved one.

Then again, in this age of cultural sophistication when attitudes about, well everything, and particularly <sarc> victimless crimes or crimes where the victim is not violated in any meaningful way, relatively speaking of course </sarc>, maybe these same folks would enjoy having a loved one exploited in similar fashion.

BTW, when you were

"transported to the Boulevard St. Germaine; doomed to wander about in an existentialist fugue, desperately pulling on a half spent Gauloise as she ponders the essential meaninglessness of life in a world bereft of an omiscient Deity, antiquated notions of good and evil or the approval of our new Socialist overlords."
I found myself sitting at a small table in an outdoor cafe and all of a sudden, someone slapped me!

And for the record, as a knuckle-dragging Neanderthal with a vision, I do aspire to evolve towards and acquire a Victorian attitude, someday... In the meantime, I'll stand by my earlier position regarding the application of justice on any who would make any of my tribe a victim of their exploitations.

Posted by: bthun at July 22, 2009 12:05 PM

My livid terrier tendencies leads me in the direction that what consenting adults do is completely fine (even if it's of a pornographic/exhibitionist bent), but the absolute key phrase here is consenting. The exploitation of a non-consenting person (whether sexual or otherwise) is distinctly non-kosher.

BINGO. Two more tangential points are the phenom Fbl brings up (such arguments undermine the respect women in general have for men in general) and the fact that we're already uncomfortably aware of the way a lot of men view women no matter how we try to ignore it. If you tell women that essentially we're fair game no matter how we conduct ourselves...

Wow. Just wow. I don't even know where to begin with that one.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 12:08 PM

What I can't get past here is that many of the arguments implicitly confirm the worst sort of male bashing stereotypes. I can't understand why any man would want to be thought of in that fashion.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 12:11 PM

"many of the arguments implicitly confirm the worst sort of male bashing stereotypes. I can't understand why any man would want to be thought of in that fashion."
Cassandra, they agree with this because it makes their lives easier. You do not have to strive to be better because "everyone knows you are a dirty shovinistic pig" and with such low standards, just a tiny no-effort improvement gets you major browny points both in the boardroom and in the bedroom.

Posted by: olga at July 22, 2009 12:31 PM

I think you're right, olga.

I just can't understand having that little self respect.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 12:38 PM

Olga and Cassandra,

I think part of what's going on here is a chicken/egg issue. For how long have men been put down and dismissed for the very things they see as masculine?--aggression, competitiveness, contributions to home/society through physical labor, strong sexual drives, etc. Men got bashed so much for it they started getting the message that to get what they wanted (sex/women), they had to repress all that because it was bad/ugly/unacceptable. Men get bashed that long for something they see as essential to their nature (when properly harnessed) and they are bound to not be feeling so good about themselves anymore. It's a damned if you do, damned if you don't sort of thing. You might as well give up and be a beast, which maybe many immature/weak men are doing.

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 12:53 PM

"I just can't understand having that little self respect."
But isn't that the conditioning that the young'uns have been receiving for the past, what? Three or four decades? No matter what, the old "I'm ok, you're ok" is the salve. Self-esteem above all else, regardless!

Seems to me that self-respect is born from self-restraint, from self-deprivation for a greater good, from accomplishments. Does any of this count for much anymore?

"Patience means self-suffering." - Mahatma Gandhi
And how likely is that in our *cough* *cough* *hack* now culture?

Posted by: bthun at July 22, 2009 12:56 PM

The thing is, being female and growing up in a very female household, the very traits that make men so different have always fascinated me and I'm grateful they are there. I LOVE the "masculine" aspects of men because while they certainly have expression my own makeup, those characteristics are expressed very differently among the men I know. I mean, the best thing about being in a physical relationship (beyond the emotional connections) is being desired and pursued. The very existence of that desire is heady stuff (and of course dangerous if the woman misinterprets it). And yet women beat and berate their men until they cower in the corner and then point that aggressiveness and sexuality in another direction. And then the women wonder why all their man does is lust after pictures of naked women. You've reduced him to nothing more than an ignorant beast, so why shouldn't he act like one?

Of course, a strong man should be able to resist the pressure to give up and take the easiest route, but not all people are rock-sold. And the pressure he's feeling is no different than the dilemma I mentioned trying to avoid above (letting my anger and insecurity tarnish my opinion of all men).

Sometimes I wanna deliver a slap upside the head to both genders. Just line 'em up and let me at 'em. You're ruining it for the rest of us. :P

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 01:01 PM

*heads outside since I've already been slapped once today... in the middle of a French movie daydream, circa 1960's, black and white no less*

Posted by: bthun at July 22, 2009 01:06 PM

Okay, I wandered off topic a bit there (maybe this has more to do with the previous post). The point is, vast numbers of people are being terribly cruel and unthinking to the opposite gender. On one hand we've got guys acting like they have only one brain and it's the tiny one. On the other hand we've got women acting out their insecurities by being ball-breaking you-know-whats.

Like I said, line them both up and let me try and knock some sense into them.

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 01:08 PM

bthun, you'd be excluded from the head-lapping, as would most of the gentlemen here.

At least today... :P

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 01:09 PM

Oops! MEGA typo above.

Please be kind...

*hitting the road for awhile. Not wanting to see what's here when she gets back*

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 01:13 PM

Oh, I totally understand the 'fight or flight' response with guys. But let's be fair to women here too.

Just as we wish women would try harder to understand men (who, by the way, are notoriously reticent to do anything so mundane as explaining how they think or talking problems out), I think a reciprocal sense of fairness suggests that this is oft easier said than done.

When guys clam up, women think, "Oh, I must not be doing a good job of communicating ... I'll talk more/louder."

We all know how successful that can be when part of the problem is that he doesn't want to talk about it at *all* :p

An associated problem is that guys often reinforce the very behavior they don't want women to engage it (nagging, criticism, etc) when they ignore us unless we pitch a fit, then suddenly give in to what they previously resisted, just to get a moment of peace. Hmmm... let's put on our detective hat here: if you consistently reward a behavior, does it generally decline?

Nope. That said, women can definitely be bossy and more than that, downright insensitive at times to the male need not to talk everything to death/rehash their feeeeeeeeeeeeeeeelings :p I know this is definitely an area I totally did not "get" until my husband finally broke down and explained how he feels.

Now that I know, I try really hard to restrain the innate feminine "urge" to massage a topic until the man chews his own leg off to get away.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 01:28 PM

On the topic of Ms. Andrews, I'd not heard of the lady before your first post on this, Miss Cass. And at the time, I didn't think it was worth commenting on because the only "news" here was a report of criminal activity and they hadn't caught the perp yet. So as "news" it was a pretty lame story. The only other comment I have on the original "story" is when did we start publishing the names of victims of sex crimes?

I did not watch the video, I did not follow past the first link you provided (seeing as how it contained all the relevant information to explain why you were angry), and honestly, it was a non-issue to me. The woman was a victim of a crime, a sex crime no less, and despite the fact that the lady is on television, that still really doesn't excuse re-victimizing her by putting her name out there, much less linking to the video.

As for the original blogger's ass-covering preemptive attack of "I can only wonder what kind of disturbed Victorian insecurities are unleashed when right-bloggers see 'one of their own' report on a news story like this," well... maybe the fact that people of conscience are supposed to behave like decent folks might have something to do with this. I by no means have "disturbed Victorian insecurities". I have a filthy mouth (even in mixed company at times to my great shame), I have a greater than average appreciation of what my mother referred to as "potty humor", I am pretty libertarian about what other folks do in the privacy of their own bedrooms/bathrooms/kitchens/whatever, I don't even really shy away from pictures of nekkid people. It doesn't bother me. Viewing evidence of a sex crime, outside of court in the process of evaluating it as evidence in prosecution, strikes me as pretty disgusting behavior. And claiming my disapproval of linking to it is like saying I have a weird unnatural hang-up because I find you a disgusting human being if you link to child porn. Both are illegal, both exploit the victim, and if you find the exploitation of another human being AGAINST THEIR WILL arousing, I'd say you might need to seek professional help/a jail cell. Your choice... or not.

I'm actually quite saddened that I even need to comment on this. And I know you were not addressing your ire towards me or the other guys here Miss Cass, but apparently some "conservative bloggers" who can even SEE the firestorm coming to the point that they need to preemptively attack their critics, don't quite realize that this might be an indication that they're in the wrong. Regardless of political persuasion.

Posted by: MikeD at July 22, 2009 01:48 PM

When guys clam up, women think, "Oh, I must not be doing a good job of communicating ... I'll talk more/louder."

Oh lord, do I know this one. And honestly, most of the time I just let it wash over me as much as possible and agree with her over and over again until she stops. Because I KNOW what she's doing, and I KNOW she feels the need to make sure I'm 100% completely on board with what she's saying even though she had my agreement on the matter 25 minutes ago, because after all, I might just be agreeing to not hurt her feelings so she needs to explain it three OTHER ways to make sure I see the full and clear logic she's using to establish why we should do it her way and...

But sometimes, I just stop her and say "Honey, I understand... you don't need to keep explaining, I've already agreed. Can we now let this conversation end?" But that normally gets her upset. And at that point she thinks I just agreed in the first place so that she'd shut up. Which is never actually the case. I have never ONCE agreed to something unless I actually... you know... AGREED to it.

I understand the niceties of female communication can dictate that agreement does not necessarily mean that the other party is satisfied with the resolution. And I understand that she's attempting to make certain I am satisfied with the resolution. But ladies... that's TOTALLY not a guy thing. If we've agreed, continuing to "explain why" it's such a good idea starts to make us no longer want to agree with it. It turns it into nagging.

Posted by: MikeD at July 22, 2009 01:56 PM

Is this just a regression to the mean, or does it actually mean something?

Seriously, it's too bad that dueling is out of fasion and illegal now, because people would not say and do some of these outrageous things if someone would call them on it.

Could you imagine Todd Palin challenging Letterman to a duel, and actually putting a large, gaping wound in his head? That would stop a lot of this nastiness dead in its tracks (I wish), as the sort of man that engages in this is basically a coward/bully. Men with dignity and personal courage would never (well, maybe) engage in this sort of thing, publically.
Criminy, what an disgusting display of juvenile behavior.

PS. I spent very nice morning in June of 2002 walking down the Avenue St. Germain in Paris. There are worse ways to spend your time....

Posted by: Don Brouhaha at July 22, 2009 02:10 PM

When guys clam up, women think, "Oh, I must not be doing a good job of communicating ... I'll talk more/louder." ....Oh lord, do I know this one.

Sadly, so does the poor Spousal Unit :p Pity the man -- he's in Hell.

heh :)

Seriously, I have caught myself doing this. I know - or think I know - why your wife gets upset when you try to bring the torment to an end.

For women, communication is just as much about sharing our feelings and feeling listened to as it is about conveying information. For us, it's kinda cathartic. Your willingness to "share", even if it's limited to a dazed "Yes dear" [FERTHELOVEOFMIKE, MAKE IT STOP!!!], is tangible evidence that you love us - after all, we'd do the same for you in a heartbeat.

The fact that y'all view this kind of emotional support as a fate only slightly less desirable than Death is really quite irrelevant :p Or rather, it requires real effort for us to step outside our own skins when we're already upset and see things your way!

None of which is to say we shouldn't try our damndest to do it anyway.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 02:20 PM

I've likened the male/female communication thing to that old adage about handling a snarling dog: if you run away, he'll chase (and possibly bite) you :p

Of course, if you stay you have to listen to him snarl at you. Face it guys, you're doomed!

Seriously, most women, once they *genuinely* understand, will try to meet you halfway. After all, you guys are our whole world.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 02:23 PM

Oops! MEGA typo above. Please be kind...

Noooooo pro'lem, FuzzyBee. 'Cept you can't consider me one of the *rare* men anymore. It hit 150ºF on the ramp today, so I'm sorta "medium / well-done"...

Posted by: BillT at July 22, 2009 02:24 PM

Sadly, so does the poor Spousal Unit :p Pity the man -- he's in Hell.

I daresay he'd disagree with you ma'am.

For women, communication is just as much about sharing our feelings and feeling listened to as it is about conveying information. For us, it's kinda cathartic. Your willingness to "share", even if it's limited to a dazed "Yes dear" [FERTHELOVEOFMIKE, MAKE IT STOP!!!], is tangible evidence that you love us - after all, we'd do the same for you in a heartbeat.

Heh, the dreaded "yes dear". That actually makes her angry. She knows the "yes dear" is one step above "oh would you just shut yer pie hole!" I tend more to the "oh yeah", "you're right", "oh, believe me, I know" stuff. After about 10 minutes of that, I just need to make eye contact with her and say "I'm glad we talked about this." And it makes her happy.

It's all about sacrifice. If it were anyone else on the planet, they'd have been talking to the back of my head long before. But I love her. I want her to be happy. And if letting her drone on for an inordinate amount of time will let her be happy, then it's really not asking all that much, is it?

By the same token, she'll also occasionally realize what's happening and say "oh, I'm doing it again, aren't I?" And I just smile.

Posted by: MikeD at July 22, 2009 03:24 PM

... people would not say and do some of these outrageous things if someone would call them on it.

I can't tell you how leery I am of raising certain subjects. A guy can say he thinks certain things and it's assumed he's a disinterested observer. A woman says the exactly same thing and "Whoa!" - she's emotional, insecure, or controlling.

I just wish we could get beyond assuming we know why someone said something and address the comment on the merits. But in my experience it's far easier to attack the messenger than rebut to his or her argument.

This is true for both men and women - our motivations are inferred from our gender when in reality it's not that always that straightforward.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 03:27 PM

"Now that I know, I try really hard to restrain the innate feminine "urge" to massage a topic until the man chews his own leg off to get away." Don't worry, you haven't crossed the line till he chews off the other leg so it won't happen again... ;P

Posted by: Pogue at July 22, 2009 03:28 PM

And I just smile.

:)

Me, too. The biggest reason I'm as willing as I am to try and understand my spouse is that he extends the same courtesy to me. Reciprocity rocks.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 03:30 PM

Don't worry, you haven't crossed the line till he chews off the other leg so it won't happen again... ;P

There's a certain look he gets on his face when we're arguing that invariably reminds me of a passage from Dune about the difference between humans and animals.

An animal is willing to chew off his own leg to escape a trap. But a human endures the pain hoping the hunter will return and present him with the opportunity to eliminate a threat to his kind. :p

Sometimes I can just see the wheels turning: "The Pain! Kull wahad... the pain!!!!"

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 03:34 PM

> Ditto. It doesn't succeed in doing so in my case, but it does tempt me to indulge my anger and insecurities by painting all (or even 95%) of men with a "they're all pigs, who needs 'em" brush.

Ladies, as I have noted before -- stop rewarding men who are assholes, and you might wind up with a world with fewer assholes.

Cass, don't you DARE paint me with that friggin' brush. I don't give a damned who she is or what her politics or ideals are -- As Nixon put it:

"It is the responsibility of the media to look at the president with a microscope, but they go too far when they use a proctoscope."

This, OTOH, isn't even journalism -- it's paparazzi. Very BAD paparazzi. Like throwing paint on your 5yo and photographing your face. And, if it weren't for the potential downside, being a paparazzi should be a terminal offense.

People -- including but not limited to men -- who defend pushing stuff like this into the public eye are grade-A assholes.

This is as much a case of media sensationalism, though:

"What about Obama's health care proposals?"
Oh, look, Michael Jackson Died!

"What about Obama's 24 Trillion in potential liabilities?"
Oh, look, Walter Cronkite Died!

"Do you think Obama's coming down on the wrong side in Honduras and Iran?"
Oh, look, a clandestinely shot nude video of Erin Andrews!

... and so on.

Anything to avoid actually relevant social questions that might reflect badly on the PotUS with the mostest.

You'll note how few of these kinds of ridiculous distractions there were back when the Iraq Body Count was the nightly lead.

But no one thinks about that...

Posted by: Lucrezia at July 22, 2009 03:42 PM


P.S. -- In this link of yourswith regards to this:

"women have had to overcome obstacles not faced by their male counterparts."

You know, they also have had obstacles removed which males have had to overcome.

There's a plus side and a down side to being a woman, just as there is to being a man.

It is unlikely that this will change.

And damned near impossible that those things be made identical, for dozens of what I would hope are fairly obvious reasons.


"What Feminism has contributed to women's options must be supported. But when Feminists suggest that God might be a She without [ever considering] that the Devil might also be female, they must be opposed."
- Warren Farrell -

The above comment about the trials of being a female sportscaster, while true, carefully avoids the consideration that the Devil might be female.

Posted by: Lucrezia at July 22, 2009 03:50 PM

DOH! Change the name for a joke a week or so ago, get burnt by not noticing it now!

Above, all me, for anyone not looking at the EMA...

:-/

Posted by: Obloodyhell at July 22, 2009 03:52 PM

The above comment about the trials of being a female sportscaster, while true, carefully avoids the consideration that the Devil might be female.

True, but Andrews' reputation has been one of professionalism and hard work. Are we (having no reasonable evidence to the contrary) to assume the worst of her and act accordingly?

Seems kind of harsh, but that argument has been made too ;p

I agree: saying female sportscasters face challenges men don't face is not at all tantamount to saying male sportscasters face no challenges or denying that being female confers benefits as well as disadvantages. I still think it's a bit unfair to penalize her for being female and "hot", just as it would have been unfair for me to paint you with the broad brush... had I actually done so.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 04:14 PM

She knows the "yes dear" is one step above "oh would you just shut yer pie hole!" I tend more to the "oh yeah", "you're right", "oh, believe me, I know" stuff.

Heh. My husband is fond of, "Right. Got it. Move on." :p

It's all I can do not to clock him when he says that. You've got to love a Marine - there's not a whole lot of tiptoeing through the tulips. On the other hand, he can be the world's kindest and gentlest person at times, so I figure the terseness is a feature and not a bug.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 04:20 PM

This was wrong and pathetic. She was in her hotel room being private and doing private things -- not on a Key West beach in public like some people I know.

Anyone who tried to view the video knowing the circumstances in which it was recorded deserved the computer virus they may have received according to MSNBC.

Posted by: man riding unicycle naked at July 22, 2009 04:22 PM

Heh. My husband is fond of, "Right. Got it. Move on." :p

Good man. But that's totally a guy thing. "I have acknowledged your information, let's now go to something more productive." It's actually quite related to the whole shopping vs buying.

I do not shop. I walk into a store with a list of what I am going to purchase, I find those items, I purchase them. I leave.

My wife shops. The list is a starting point for her. She gets those items, and walks around looking at everything else. Some of which might even get purchased. But regardless of how long ago she was in that same store, everything must still be looked at in case something is new or on sale.

She's no more wrong than I am right. It's just different. But it's a source of contention between us.

Posted by: MikeD at July 22, 2009 04:35 PM

I do not shop. I walk into a store with a list of what I am going to purchase, I find those items, I purchase them. I leave.

I call it "Speed Shopping", and it's how I shop too. I don't even go down an aisle unless there's something on my list there. But then I'm a bit weird that way.

Posted by: Cassandra at July 22, 2009 04:39 PM

"Like I said, line them both up and let me try and knock some sense into them."

The question is: would you want the step stool or the painting ladder for that, Fuzzy? :)

Posted by: ry at July 22, 2009 05:30 PM

I agree with everyone here, that what happened to Ms. Andrews is disgusting. I hope that eventually they will track down the guilty party. If/when they do, that person will spend the rest of their life as a registered sex offender.

However, I don't think Ms. Andrews's profession has anything to do with what occurred to her. A pervert saw an attractive woman and filmed her. She could have been an attractive teacher, and I think the pervert would have still filmed her.

Bringing up what challenges a woman may or may not face in the world of sports broadcasting, is not germane to the story.

Posted by: BuckeyeTom at July 22, 2009 07:40 PM

Ladies, as I have noted before -- stop rewarding men who are assholes, and you might wind up with a world with fewer assholes.

And what about those of us who never rewarded the assholes and still have a world full of assholes?

Yes, I'm having a bad day. Wanna make something of it? :P

Hey, ry... Ha. Ha. Ha. If I wasn't so tired, I'd tell you to start running. Instead, you can just line up with the rest of them. :P

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 10:44 PM

Oh, and bring the step ladder. :P

Posted by: FbL at July 22, 2009 10:45 PM

I've stopped, for the most part (I think) doing the blah blah blah about emotions. Now I just do blah blah blah about politics, so I won't get hurt when his eyes glaze over. Then I just apologize and open my laptop.

Posted by: Little Miss Attila at July 22, 2009 11:31 PM

Yes, I'm having a bad day. Wanna make something of it?

Well, give him some paisley silk and two yards of Belgian lace and I'll bet the weatherman could...

Posted by: BillT at July 23, 2009 08:35 AM

And what about those of us who never rewarded the assholes and still have a world full of assholes?

Well, you have to suffer for the sins of others.


No, it ain't fair.

Just like the guys who never rewarded the golddiggers who shrunk their brain to inflate their chest.

Posted by: Yu-Ain Gonnano at July 23, 2009 09:58 AM

Hunh. Goes with "racism".

Read around the feminist/leftoid blogs. Absolute and definitional: All men are pigs and instruments of Teh Patriarchy except a few sensitive homosexuals. Nothing excuses them, nothing ameliorates that, claims of support are lies, partial support or support with reservations is no support at all and in fact defines "him" as allied with the enemy. Any argument that this might not be fully and entirely the case is a declaration that the arguer is fully aligned with Teh Patriarchy and determined to Keep Women Down, and is therefore a total villain with no redeeming characteristics who may be attacked on the same terms as a pedophile or rapist, which is in fact what such a person is.

This is what is taught as if it were the Laws of Thermodynamics. This is the environment, the Way Things Work.

And if that's the case, if you're a deep-dyed villain of blackest stripe regardless of behavior -- what price behavior? More pointedly, what price behavioral restraint? If no effort is sufficient, why make any effort at all?

So you get crap like this. Men can do as they please, and it doesn't even reinforce the stereotype, which is fully established and can't be reinforced any more than the Sun can be made brighter. Islamists can be supported because from where they sit there's no difference between the Irani who "married" his victims and your husband, and after all the Islamists oppose American Hegemony® and hate George Bush.

And that's the libretto of that opera.

(gah. I hate comment systems that aggressively strip out all the break tags)

Posted by: Ric Locke at July 23, 2009 01:04 PM

Erin Andrews is smokin’ hot. There’s no disputing that. Oh sure, if you don’t like leggy, bosomy beautiful women, then I’m sure that your subscription to Playgirl is up to date. Nevertheless, Erin Andrews is empirically attractive and I would enjoy seeing her sans clothing; seeing being the operative word as I’m happily married. But I can’t bring myself to go and look at the video because it the filming was a violation, a criminal act. Imagine your wife, mother, sister or good friend hanging out naked in her hotel room. Now imagine that some turd not only films her through a peephole, he posts in on the Innertubes. Anyone think that this would be right, or that you wouldn’t seriously want to kick the pond scum’s ass? Unlike Paris Hilton, talentless slut extraordinaire, who I’m certain knew that the video would be released and that her inexplicable popularity would grow, Ms. Andrews did not ask for this violation, nor should she have expected anything like this to come out. Will it make her more popular? I’m certain that some people went from Erin Andrews who? to Oh yeah: her.

So while I admit that seeing her in her birthday suit would normally hold great appeal for me, I’ve decided to not drop myself below the gutter in which I live and watch. The filming was criminal, a violation and profoundly creepy. And anyone who tries to defend linking to it is pretty much pond scum.

Posted by: physics geek at July 28, 2009 09:31 AM

Post a comment

To reduce comment spam, comments on older posts are put into moderation 5 days after the last activity. Comments with more than one link also go into moderation. If you don't see your comment after posting it, try refreshing the screen. If you still don't see it, your comment is probably in the moderation queue.




Remember Me?

(you may use HTML tags for style)