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November 18, 2013

Incroyable!

Colorado University students compare the recent "doyougotcoverage" ads to a sexist ad from the 1930s:

Full marks to the young woman who pointed out how demeaning the ad was to men, too.

CWCID

Posted by Cassandra at November 18, 2013 08:00 PM

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I understand why the Obamacare advertisement is juvenile and shallow - Known Thine Audience. But what I can't understand is why the Juvenile and Shallow believe the advertisement from the 1930's is sexist. Can't they read?

Posted by: spd rdr at November 18, 2013 11:22 PM

I didn't look very hard at the 1930s ad (the print was small and I've never understood the point of going back to the 1930s searching for things to get my pantyhose in a twist about when there's so much gratuitous offense on offer right here in 2013).

I Googled and read the older ad, and you're right. It isn't sexist (nor is it sleazy in the way the 2013 ad is). The message is a good one - work hard and cheerfully, and your husband will find you more attractive. Not sure that's actually true for most people - my experience of humans of both sexes has been pretty much the opposite: husbands complain all the time that their wives spend all their time caring for the house and kids and don't look 19 any more. But at least it isn't encouraging kids to be freeloading scumbags :p

The old ad reminded me of the Bible verse about the good wife:

Who can find a virtuous woman? for her price is far above rubies.

The heart of her husband doth safely trust in her, so that he shall have no need of spoil.

She will do him good and not evil all the days of her life.

There are lots of verses like that in the Bible, but most of them advise women to be industrious and men to value virtue and industriousness more than physical beauty or superficial adornments.

Over the weekend we attended the Marine Corps Ball, and I had kind of a weird experience. We were walking into the ball room to find our table, and a woman about my age came running up to me to ask me all about letting my hair go grey :p It was really kind of surreal - I hadn't really thought about it, but although there were several women my age there, I was quite literally the only one who wasn't dying her hair.

I have no objection to makeup (I wear it to work every day) or to all the other stuff women do to make themselves more attractive to men. I want to be as attractive as I can be with reasonable effort and expense too. But it just struck me that simply choosing not to color my hair was such a big deal that it aroused comment.

And I do worry about it from time to time: does it bother my husband (who is also going grey)? But it also really bugs me that the vast majority of women feel they have to reverse the changes age brings to us all. There's no real intellectual consistency in my view of things - I do wear makeup. But on the rare occasions when we travel somewhere (usually the South) where older women have actual grey hair, it's almost startling.

Aye chihuahua, what a mixed up world we live in!

Posted by: Cassandra at November 19, 2013 08:02 AM

*Gasp!* You don't dye your hair????
BUT YOUR HUSBAND WON"T LOVE YOU ANYMORE!!!!
Sheesh. Didn't they teach you girls anything in Home Ec?

Re: The 30's advertisement- I read it as being pretty much a paean to the Wonders of Womanhood. "Me like woman. Work like man, but smell better. How do that? Pep pills? Me gotta get some too! Make woman happy." Corny? Sure, but that was like 80 years ago - before people knew about sex. Now, of course, people know all about sex, starting around the age of seven, but it's still the same old attraction. Take, for instance, any one of the 34,598 commercials for Cialis that pop up during Sunday football. What's going on there? Man gets excited while watching wife paint patio bench, or play tennis, or row a boat, or change the in the tractor. Whatever. " Me like woman work like man. Take pep pills. Make woman happy."

Now compare the young couple in the Obamacare ad: She's busy checking her meds, and the smarmy guy next to her isn't even paying any attention. She's, like, so last night, dude. If that's what passes for Modern Romance, I'll take the old sweaty Me Like Woman sexism.

Posted by: spd rdr at November 19, 2013 11:06 AM

I do color my hair to hid my gray, but I found my first gray hair when I was a freshman in college. I still have more not-gray hair, but I also don't color it with a matching shade of brown. I used to get blonde highlights (done professionally), but that got too expensive, so I switched to a "dark auburn" out of a box I can do myself. Just did a touch-up last night, in fact. Since I'm a newlywed and don't have kids, I don't feel like I'm old enough to just let the gray take over, even if I am older now than my mother was when I graduated high school... The husband doesn't care whether I color my hair (or wear makeup, which I do most times when I am leaving the house). He just wants me to feel good about myself and my appearance :-)

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at November 19, 2013 11:43 AM

MLB, I didn't color my hair when the first gray came in (I actually liked it!) but then I did color my hair for a while - I actually used henna rather than regular hair color.

Trust me - I don't have anything against hair color. It's pretty neat that we can do that sort of thing if we want to. It just seemed kind of weird to me that *not* coloring it is so uncommon.

If I'm honest, I have to admit that I'm still getting used to it. Some days I love it, and some days I don't but overall, I'm a happy camper :)

Posted by: Cassandra at November 19, 2013 12:06 PM

Now, of course, people know all about sex, starting around the age of seven, but it's still the same old attraction. Take, for instance, any one of the 34,598 commercials for Cialis that pop up during Sunday football. What's going on there? Man gets excited while watching wife paint patio bench, or play tennis, or row a boat, or change the in the tractor. Whatever. " Me like woman work like man. Take pep pills. Make woman happy."

Now compare the young couple in the Obamacare ad: She's busy checking her meds, and the smarmy guy next to her isn't even paying any attention. She's, like, so last night, dude. If that's what passes for Modern Romance, I'll take the old sweaty Me Like Woman sexism.

He really was smarmy looking, wasn't he? They're a match made in... well, somewhere. The kind of guy people think is attractive to the distaff side, but most women I know react to with a silent, "Ewwwwwww...." and a shudder. Oh well, I guess it takes all types.

Anyway, there's a lot to be said for the good old fashioned "me like the opposite sex" view of things.

Posted by: Cassandra at November 19, 2013 12:14 PM

Also, last time I saw you MLB, you were looking pretty hot! :) I remember how pretty your hair was.

Posted by: Cassandra at November 19, 2013 12:16 PM

My wife had the most gorgeous auburn hair, but I thought she was quite the stunner bald to, chemotherapy does that. Her hair came back completely gray and she loves it.

I of course learned the more valuable lesson of keeping one's priorities straight.

Posted by: Allen at November 19, 2013 12:58 PM

Over the weekend we attended the Marine Corps Ball, and I had kind of a weird experience. We were walking into the ball room to find our table, and a woman about my age came running up to me to ask me all about letting my hair go grey :p It was really kind of surreal - I hadn't really thought about it, but although there were several women my age there, I was quite literally the only one who wasn't dying her hair.

My wife used to dye her hair in her 20s! But I asked her to stop many years ago, when we were first together. I think the silver amongst the black is lovely.

Posted by: Grim at November 19, 2013 01:06 PM

Having aquired a full shock of grey hair in my blonde locks when I was 19, I used to just bleach the whole thing out. Then, sometime after the VES was born, I said, "Fukitol" and let it go. Not long after the dye grew out, I learned it was all grey. That's when I realized I had been practicing an exercise in futility.
As for make-up, MH used to ask why I didn't wear it very often, until we attended the wedding of a fellow Marine. Within minutes of applying mascara my eyes looked like I'd been lighting up with Waylon, Willie and the boys - I'm extremely sensitive to make-up. It was then that he said, "Don't ever do that again. Especially for me."

Posted by: DL Sly at November 19, 2013 01:31 PM

And now, thread music.
0>;~}

Posted by: DL Sly at November 19, 2013 01:36 PM

My wife would be all grey if she didn't color her hair, and would probably look older than me (she is 7 years younger).

I am turning grey, and all my facial hair is pretty much white (if I let it grow out). So those full beards really make me look old now.

My eldest sister is 63, and she is starting to turn grey (at last). My next oldest sister (61) would again be all grey is she didn't dye her hair. And my youngest sister (52) is turning grey also, but her older husband is grey, and she looks fine with her hair turning as it is.

Time wears on us all, but it is mostly in your mind. In my head I don't feel that old, but then that guy that peers at me in the mirror in the morning, yeah, he's gettin' up there.

Posted by: Don Brouhaha at November 19, 2013 07:06 PM

I still look like I'm 27.
in the mirror, anyway.

Posted by: spd rdr at November 19, 2013 07:15 PM

I still look like I'm 27.

Twenty-seven, twenty-shmeven - don't think I can't still reach you with this ruler, mr rdr.

WHAP WHAP WHAP!!!! :)

Posted by: Sister Mary Bag O'Metaphors at November 19, 2013 08:11 PM

Observations:
- Men used to be allowed to age gracefully; it was simply part of life. Over the last few years I've seen endless ads for drugs (Viagra and ilk, testosterone hormone therapy, etc) or exercise programs that 'put the zip back into your life' so you can act like your thirty again.

- My mother had blond hair when young, but it started to darken in her thirties, and she started bleaching. Hair dye is obviously tough on hair, and a full head of nice soft naturally graying hair is more attractive than damaged dyed hair of any color.

Best Regards,

Posted by: CAPT Mike at November 20, 2013 02:35 AM

Men used to be allowed to age gracefully; it was simply part of life. Over the last few years I've seen endless ads for drugs (Viagra and ilk, testosterone hormone therapy, etc) or exercise programs that 'put the zip back into your life' so you can act like your thirty again.

The spousal unit has noticed this too. Kind of puts a new twist on "surrender gracefully the things of youth", doesn't it? Aging isn't a disease, but it's treated that way in advertising.

FWIW, I think older men are so much more interesting than younger ones. Sure, the younger ones can be almost heart stoppingly beautiful (OK, handsome) but there's not much "there", there with a 20 year old. Nothing to hold the interest.

I've never understand older women drooling over younger men. I think they look wonderful and hope I never lose the ability to appreciate beauty in the human form, but can't imagine wanting to be involved with one.

I just don't have the patience!

Posted by: Cassandra at November 20, 2013 06:24 PM

Amen, Sister!
0>;~}

Posted by: DL Sly at November 20, 2013 08:20 PM

Why, thank you, Cass. However, you have me at a loss - when did you see me? Although I did attend two of the Milblog Conferences in Arlington, I don't remember actually getting to meet you in person...

The husband is salt & pepper, but he wears his hair in a buzz (he says he'll just shave it all off if the hairline recedes too much). If it gets to be close to a half inch in length, he says he has "hippie hair" :-P

Posted by: Miss Ladybug at November 22, 2013 09:29 PM