“I need you to prove to me that you’re not like all the others,” she said, staring deeply into his eyes.
He thought about it for a while and then he did. He walked away from her and never once looked back.
“I need you to prove to me that you’re not like all the others,” she said, staring deeply into his eyes.
He thought about it for a while and then he did. He walked away from her and never once looked back.
(1) (2) , (2) (1) !
1 = “fuck”
2 = “you”
Hey ladies! Did you know that so many of your marital woes can be solved by a daily application of any over the counter douche? It’s true!
But it’s not like you think.
You see, back in day some intrepid female chemists working for a major chemical company came up with an ingenious solution for the problem plaguing so many women: their husbands. Knowing that the kind of men who are most problematic are also those least likely to investigate anything even remotely vaginal, those nameless feminist heroes hatched their clever plan.
They developed a simple chemical additive that is used in all “feminine hygiene” products to this day. It works just fine for it’s stated purpose in the product, but it also has a second function.
If you have a problem husband, simply feel him one tablespoon of douche every day. It doesn’t matter if it is cooked or not, the chemical will do its work either way. Timelines will vary, but if you keep this up, your husband will develop terminal bowel cancer within three to five years. This is not a joke. It works.
Women have quietly been spreading the word about douche’s true purpose for years. Thanks to this wonderful “life hygiene” product, so many women have been enjoying the freedom that being a widow with a full inheritance can bring.
As an interesting aside, this practice is also the true etymology for the word, “douchebag.” He is indeed. And his days are numbered.
(The following is a rant I wrote years ago that I happened to stumble on today. It being Valentine’s Day, I thought I may as well polish it up and then post it. Now, please keep in mind that I haven’t lived in North America for many years, so my thoughts on this holiday may well be completely off base with today’s sensibilities. If that is so, then please regard this as a time capsule from a less enlightened time.)
Ah, Valentine’s Day. A lovey-dovey holiday upon which women shoot feminism in the knees for the benefit of sugar and flower companies.
How does Valentine’s Day have anything to do with feminism, you might ask? I’m glad you did!
The entire engine that drives the holiday is “romance.” Not true romance, but the consumer driven retail version. Capitalism doing what it does: amplifying a basic human or societal impulse with advertising and then exploiting it.
The “romance” here is all about the male partner jumping through hoops set out by his female. He buys her shit solely for the purpose of keeping her happy, and to avoid being tarred and feathered as a “bad” boyfriend or husband by her friends and family.
This is a reinforcement of what ought to be an archaic practice in courtship: the male essentially buying his access to females. In the patriarchal model, the male provides everything: he pays. The the early stages of courtship, the female need only provide her presence and, at a certain stage sexual access.
Valentines Day, as it is pitched, sold, and policed through our societal norms and expectations does nothing but reinforce that pattern. Men buy the shit and women consume it. There is no reciprocity beyond the assumption of a guaranteed lay.
So, if a woman says they are truly a feminist, and at the same time care deeply about what their man buys for them on this bullshit, made-up holiday, they are full of shit.
Further, any men who claim they actually enjoy this fucked up holiday are lying. They have been trained and, like a good puppy, are performing just as expected for the meager treats their master sees fit to grant them.
Imagine trying to explain cheese to your new pall, Leafy Greenbuds, a space alien who has no concept of food because her folk derive their nutrition through photosynthesis. You show Leafy a cow, and then explain the milk thing (a la Arthur Dent with the Nutri-Matic on the Heart of Gold [if you don’t get this reference: Shame on you!]), then bacterial cultures, aging, and whatever else.
Leafy’s utter mortification is palpable. She can’t understand that cheese is the pinnacle of human civilization.
Yeah, Leafy, if you think about it too carefully it is really gross. But what do you want from us? We can’t just suck on dirt and photosynthesise our nutrition. And do remember that we’re a species that also licks each other’s genitals for fun. It’s not like your little inter-species orgies with the insect folk aren’t pretty weird by our standards.
As an aside, while you’re here, be careful that someone here on earth doesn’t try to smoke you. We do that too.
When I was in my late twenties I moved to Japan to teach English for two years. When I returned to Canada, I struck up a correspondence with a Japanese woman I had worked with at my school. She came to visit me for a few weeks and one thing led to another, as they do.
For the purposes of this piece, we’ll call this woman, Keiko.
After Keiko returned to Japan, our original plan had been for her to come back to Canada for a longer visit. However, family obligations kept her from being able to. Also at the time, my job was really turning up the suck, and I was having no luck finding anything better (or even comparable). So I realized that returning to Japan was the best thing for me romantically and professionally. It totally was, too. We’ll have been married for ten years next month.
However, outside of my immediate family, who were very supportive, there was a lot of resistance to me returning to Japan, and the different ways it was articulated was quite interesting.
I had been aware for some time about the bubble of altered reality that most white men in North America are equipped with. “Racism? Prejudice? These don’t exist!” I learned this fairly early on when I started working with a Sikh man at the gas station. Again and again, regular customers who I had always known to be polite and reasonable would fly off the handle in ignorant tirades at him over the most petty bullshit. Of course, as “polite” Canadians, they had been long since trained to avoid any overt racist language, so to my coworker they just seemed like plain old assholes. To me, I realized there was something else going on. It turns out there are a lot fewer assholes in a white male’s world.
So I wasn’t too surprised when Keiko and I would go out places and receive what I now refer to as my “inter-racial couple customer service downgrade.” But my friends are all reasonable and open-minded people, right? I mean, what complaints could they possibly have about this?
I expected flak from my more typically blue-collar circle of friends, but was surprised when Keiko’s visit was a wild hit with them. This was a trans-pacific booty call of epic proportions, and my status among them was upgraded to full-on player. Most of these guys remained completely positive about my relationship and my move to Japan. (“You mean they pay you to sit around and shoot the shit with Japanese hotties? Fuck man, go! GO! Go live the dream for all of us!”) However there were exceptions; ironically from the people who style themselves as more enlightened.
“How can you go back to Japan, with how they treat women over there?”
What do you mean by that? Not that there aren’t issues, certainly there are, but what do you know about them?
“Well, there’s all that foot binding!” (No shit. I’ve had this fucking conversation multiple times.)
Uhhhhhhh. No. That’s China. Or, was, actually, since they stopped doing it almost a century ago.
“Well, they abort or just throw away baby girls!”
Again, that’s China. They are different places, right? Babies of either sex are cherished to a degree that borders on mania in Japan.
“Well, they’re weird sexually.”
Really? How have you ascertained that?
“Well their porn is all rapey. How could you want to be with Japanese women, since they all want to be raped.” (No shit. People have said this to me.)
Okay, then, if we’re going to play the Let’s Judge Women Based on The Porn Men Watch game, how’s about we turn that around on North America? If you were to judge North American sex lives on the more vanilla porn produced there, giving a blowjob is the only foreplay women need for unlubed anal sex. Then, if you want to get into rapey predatory stuff, we don’t even need to talk about the full on rape fantasy porn, what about GirlsDoPorn and all the casting couch horseshit? Nothing unpleasant going on there? No? Okay then, we’ll just keep pretending that North American culture is totally perfect and normal. Nothing to see here, move along.
If you watch the vast majority of Japanese porn with the sound off, the only distinguishing feature is how bland and pedestrian it all is. Yes, those squeaky, “I’m being raped,” noises the women make is weird and off-putting, no doubt. What this feature of Japanese porn says about Japanese men’s fantasies and turn ons is certainly debatable and potentially significant in a cultural analyses, but it should also be remembered it is no more real than all the, “Oh! YEAH! Fuck my ass! Oooooo!” bullshit in American porn. It also does not mean that all Japanese porn consumers like it. It’s probably much the same situation as all the women in American 90s porn wearing high heels: it double loads a scene to cover a wider base of consumers. The shoe fetishists got something, and the shoes were easily ignored by those who didn’t give a shit for them.
So mainstream American porn producers think men want to fantasize that women love going mouth to ass to mouth and getting coated in semen, and Japanese porn producers think that men want to fantasize that taking their cock is painful. And keep in mind that porn producers are fucking idiots at just one remove from pimps, so let’s not take what they think too seriously, shall we?
Be all that as it may, I was suddenly in this weird position of defending an entire culture and country from the random ravings of people who had no idea what they were talking about. What was really going on was that they were sorry to see me go. They missed me when I went the last time, it looked very much like this time was going to be longer term, if not permanent, and they didn’t want me to leave. But, being men, they wouldn’t admit to any feelings on the subject, and instead adopted a bullshit, moral high ground position from which to be a cunt and vent their anger. I just had to suck up the worst for a little while, and once I was married I only had to do the, “Pardon me? Did you just call my wife a Jap? Well, she is Japanese, so I think you did,” routine the once before most folks got the message. Those that didn’t have not proved any great loss to me.
Another group that exhibited extreme displeasure at my move was almost all of the non-familial women in my life. At that time, I had finished picking up the pieces from getting dumped by my spouse of ten years and bottoming out in a spectacular, alcoholic crash. But I was now sober, employed, in good shape, and looking more and more like a prospect for at least some casual fun. A plague-rat no longer. Yay!
When I got into the long-distance relationship with Keiko, and let it be known that I was taking it seriously, I figured the attention I was getting would diminish.
Boy, was I wrong. It seems that in the North American sexual climate at that time, being a desirable male in a committed long-distance relationship was some kind of invitation to be used as a disposable booty call by every down-to-fuck female who could get near me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaming them for it, and the attention was flattering. I guess it’s the same phenomenon that makes a wedding ring such a pussy magnet: fucking a married man provides sex without all the potential danger of male emotional entanglements and delusions (or, at least, it probably seems that way in the wishful thinking initial stages). In this way of thinking, a man in a long-distance relationship is even better: he’s guaranteed horny, and obviously has his long-term sights set on someone else.
That was all well and good, except for one catch: I don’t cheat. I never have. Not even a little bit. So you can tempt me all you want, I’m not going to bite. Just try not to take it personally; I aint fuckin anyone, but if I were, I would most certainly exchange some fuck faces with you on any timetable you cared to devise.
But they did take it personally. And when word got around that I was taking the whole “Japanese thing” seriously, oh boy was there a lot of hostility. I do run with a more educated bunch, generally, so the nastiness was never fully articulated, but it was there. I had a real feeling that it was coming from notions of competition: Team Caucasian vs. Team Asian in the strictly racial sense, and the slightly more philosophically evolved, Team North American Feminism vs. Team Patriarchal Foreign Paradigm.
This was pretty fun to fuck around with, I must say. I’d already run the gauntlet of full on ignorance with chaps prone to regarding a punch in the face as an acceptable stage of human interaction, so this was minor. I’ve also had a liberal arts education, so I can play your little games with the best of them, thank you very much. With the racial side, there isn’t much for you to say that isn’t going to come off as anti-miscegenation. With the more intellectual savvy types, you want to talk patriarchal society? That’s fine; I’ll just counter with cultural imperialism. Either way, it’s all just so much more posturing to tart up and cloak what you’re really mad about. And I don’t really know what that is, but I can venture a generalized guess. Maybe it’s a bit threatening when an attractive, respectful to women and yet masculine man gets completely fucked over at the buffet of North American monogamy, and he decides to say “fuck it, I think I’ll try something different this time.” Perhaps your white knuckled refusal to criticize a fellow woman, no matter what she does isn’t serving your cause in the long run, and you don’t like it when a specimen such as myself slips through the cracks. Or maybe not. Maybe you’re completely right and I am just a patriarchal douchebag who’s looking for a subservient stereotype to service my every need. Either way, I don’t really give a fuck. Peace out; it’s been a slice.
This takes me to my final observations about the negative reactions concerning my moving to Japan to marry a Japanese woman. These observations are more generalized, and not based on any specific instances; they’re more simply an attempt to articulate my long-term ruminations on the topic.
When I was really gearing up for the move, one of my smarter friends gave me the best caution I received from anyone. I don’t think he was trying to talk me out of it, it was more that he wanted to be sure I was moving forward with my eyes wide open. This I appreciated, and his caution was well noted. He said that in an international relationship, the only practical outcome for its long-term survival is that one of the partners say goodbye to their homeland for all practical purposes. I can’t disagree, and I have made that choice. I already had, deep down inside, when he talked to me about it; I just hadn’t articulated it in those clear terms yet.
I think this truth is the missing puzzle piece on what was so disturbing for so many in my move to Japan. This was not a one thing leading to another, happenstance kind of thing. This was me, eyes wide open, making the conscious choice to leave Canada and move to Japan. This led to several conversations that went basically along these lines:
“When are the two of you coming back to Canada?”
We aren’t. The job market sucks for me, and is basically nonexistent for Keiko, so there’s really no professional incentive to do that. Keiko has said she is willing to live in Canada for a time, but was clear right from the start that she needs to return to Japan when her mother gets elderly and needs her help. She was also clear, in no uncertain terms, that she will not raise her children anywhere but Japan.
That last revelation has consistently been the one to really set people aback. It took me a while to get my head around what was going on, but another clue came from some other cautions people would give me when things were just beginning:
“Careful, she probably just wants an easy way to move to Canada.”
Yeah, but she doesn’t want to move to Canada. The overwhelming majority of Japanese people have absolutely no interest in living anywhere but Japan.
People in Canada really don’t like hearing this. Combine this reaction with the one to Keiko’s refusal to rear children in Canada, and we have our finger on a major revealing issue here.
You see, in your average North American’s mind, the rest of the world all want to be like them. Ours is the culture that matters. Our culture is the cock of the world that penetrates others and injects them with the seeds of our ideas and thoughts. All those foreigners want to move here and be like us. They should do things our way, think our way, and want our way.
Well, sorry, they don’t. Not even a little bit, in most cases. And when a white man in his prime of life decides to emigrate from Canada to Asia, this is deeply unsettling for many people. This is not how their world is supposed to work.
Just before Keiko’s first visit to Canada, many people liked joking about my mail order bride. However, when I was heading back over here, there were not so many laughs when I joked that Keiko’s mail order husband was on his way. This is not how the world is supposed to work.
Sorry, times change. There is no natural primacy to North American culture. The clock has already run out on that; only the perceptions of chauvinists lag behind the reality. Joke and pat yourselves on the back all you want about the lack of Chinese women, but do understand that the laws of supply and demand do not serve America alone. When the caucasian mail order brides start flowing that way, as they will, perhaps these notions of cultural supremacy so many North Americans cling to can start to implode.
This is the way the world works. Get used to it.
A fork in the road. Which way to go?
Of course loyalty is in play. Principles. Ideals.
It is not so very difficult to stay true when the only choice is to adhere to, or to betray, your values.
But what of conflicting loyalties?
What of different principles that run to cross purposes?
When at these intersections of life, what shall we betray? What loyalties and principles are inviolate? Which are disposable?
Often the only way to choose is to move in the direction that hurts less.
Make that choice and live with the consequences. Accept the pain along with the joy.
These stresses and difficulties are simply the bumps and jostles of a life well spent.
And such is life.
I would like to start this piece with a one man play entitled:
Me: “Hmm, lets see what’s going on in Facebook.”
Me, literally ten seconds later and three swipes into my feed: “I immediately regret this decision! What the fuck is wrong with you fucking people? How could I know this many stupid people? Is it because I’m stupid? Gaaaaaa!”
Me: *loses will to live *
I hope you enjoyed the play. I certainly did not, but that is kinda its point.
Now, you might think, “why follow these people if being exposed to them and their ideas is that upsetting to you?”
This is a good question. I’m glad you asked.
I do this because I think it is important to remind myself that people like this, and their ideas, exist. It is far to easy to forget about them. And then when things like QAnon rear up and actually affect the world political stage, we get completely blindsided by it.
So to the anti-vaxxers; the conspiracy theorists; the Trumpists; and the Canadians going on about gun rights with Second Amendment arguments:
Thank you! Your stupidity has inoculated me (quite ironically, in some cases) against the full-blown infection of toxic stupidity the last four years has become. Thanks to your earnest showcase of the nightmare that is your thought process (or lack thereof). You have helped me survive. Thank you.
Even when you don’t agree with them, it’s good to make oneself aware of other modes of thinking, from time to time. This can help mitigate the dangers of getting trapped in an echo chamber. If you don’t know what that is, then you’re somehow new to the internet (welcome!), or are not very bright. (Check it out, if need be: Echo Chamber)
The internet is full of echo chambers. It is a perfectly crafted engine for them. If you enjoy this kind of thing, then far be it from me to tell you it isn’t good. How you enjoy wasting your time is entirely your business. But I am here to tell you that if you are engaging in these kinds of communities, then what you’re up to is about as productive as a circle jerk. Don’t kid yourself that you’re fighting the good fight, or educating the people. You’re simply entertaining yourself and a bunch of other people who think just like you do.
Now, for those who are busy actively generating content for their chamber’s community, it is common to venture out into the “world” (comment threads) to take the fight to the enemy. This also can be a great way to generate new content.
In this endeavor, there is a tendency to find the worst morons from the opposing camp, and then to use their shittiness to paint their whole group with. I’m sure this is fun. Just do not forget when doing this that you are essentially picking a fight with the village idiot of your enemy town. You may as well be eating cheezies and making your genitals orange for all the good you are doing your cause. As well, it is very likely that you are the village idiot of your town and simply have not realized it. Bird of a feather, and all that.
Like I said, if you enjoy wasting your time this way, that’s your business. But if you engage in a lot of this kind of behavior, I’m going to make certain assumptions about you. (Not that you should care.)
I will assume that you are someone who feels the need to craft an identity out of a cause. This may be one step up in maturity from doing so about the kind of movie, book series, or music you like, but you certainly have not cleared adolescent thinking either. You have the desire to communicate and be perceived, but not the ability to articulate your own thoughts. You don’t yet understand the deeper thinking and philosophy inherent to your own cause, and neither can you think critically to properly dissect the position of an opposing one. So you hunt about for examples of the worst kinds of offenders to make fun of. Little shared tidbits of wit and cleverness are compiled over endless circuits around your favorite echo chamber.
This is the, “I don’t really understand what I like/am yet, but I know fucking well what I hate,” stage of thinking. That’s fine; it’s a normal stage of intellectual development. Just don’t expect to be taken too seriously.
When I’m the target of abuse from folks at this kind of level, it’s like I’m enjoying a walk on a fine day and some some genetic mistake of a teenager with rotten teeth calls out to inform me that my fashion is lame. It is really not a big deal.
You should never assume that anyone you meet, online or otherwise, knows how to think. Least of all if they rely on political talking points or echo chamber reblogs for the bulk of their “personal” narrative. If you operate with the assumption that everyone can’t think, until they prove to you otherwise, you’re going to be a lot happier.
“Oh, what’s this blog? Why, it is someone saying that all blacks/whites/hispanics/gays/breeders/men/feminists/cis gender should be deported/killed/cancelled. Do I need to take this person seriously? Let me think. Hmmmmmm… Oh! Wait a minute! No. They’re an idiot! Problem solved.”
See? Easy. No muss, no fuss.
A bunch of tattoos and an alternative lifestyle (be it Christian fundamentalist, gun-loving militia, or whatever else) do not magically imbue intelligence or infallibility. Nor do they make someone more interesting (but that’s another essay).
Of course, perhaps getting angry at idiots is a favorite hobby of yours. If that’s the case, if you want to try to level up your thinking, I suggest sitting yourself down and asking yourself the following question, in all gravity:
“Am I an idiot?”
If you can answer no, you’re probably lying to yourself. But, maybe it’s simply that you like slumming with idiots on occasion, which means you’re probably just a troll.
When you wander into someone else’s club house to stir up shit you are either trolling or saying implicitly that their thoughts and ideas have merit; essentially, that you are at their level.
Let me go on the record here that I basically agree with about 70% of the feminist and other “social justice” material that I see on my feed. (Do keep in mind: that number is probably as high as it is because I don’t follow idiots; this doesn’t mean I agree with 70% of that kind of material on the internet as a whole.) Then there’s that last 30% where I’m, “uhhh… you lost me there.”
And guess what? It doesn’t fucking matter. Beyond it simply not mattering to me, why would I assume that my thoughts about it would matter to those who are circulating the idea? Is it my job to fix these people? To set some nonexistent record straight? Or, in getting into it, would I simply be imposing my entitled ass into where it doesn’t belong?
If I had to grow up being dominated by dipshit white men, I’d be ornery too. (Hang on… I was. And I am. Aha.) Especially when so many white folks have pissed away every advantage they’ve been given by their psychopathic ancestors, and do nothing but bitch and moan about other people’s malfunctions without ever examining their own.
When people make themselves a community to hate on white people or men or white men, or whoever the fuck, just leave them be. Whether you are a target of their ire or not. They have made it abundantly clear that your voice and perspective is unwelcome. So why impose? Do you honestly think that the one thing missing in every human interaction is hearing your opinion?
Of course if they come into your house with their shit, then do what you will.
I may get pretty opinionated here, but this is my place to give vent to my internal world. Essentially, I’m yelling and throwing whisky bottles at a brick wall in my own house. When folks decide to come to the window and listen, that’s their business. Enter at your own risk.
I have no doubt whatsoever that there are plenty of, say, lesbian people of color who (if they were somehow made aware of me) would like nothing more than to chop me up into little pieces, starting with my genitals, to send me back to Germany and England. That’s okay. If I ever meet one and they try it, I’ll defend myself to the best of my ability. Until then, have fun ranting about it.
Glad to be of service.
If we all discovered that the world was going to end in 24 hours (say because a meteor was coming, or the President of the United States had a bad prostate exam), I think there would be a lot of men who’d be like:
“Well, that’s it! I’m emptying the kids’ college funds and blowing it all on hookers!”
And then the hookers would be:
“What the fuck, doods? We all have one day left to live and you think I’m gonna spend it blowing you for money? Get fucked! Somewhere else, I mean. Scoot!”
And the hookers would be right. Those men should have got a bottle of scotch, baked a cake, and sweet talked their wife.
Good luck getting her to blow you now, buddy. There you are, all ruddy with unpleasant lust, clutching your useless money like an asshole.
Ending your time on Earth pretty much the same way you lived it.
This right here, my friends, highlights the fundamental flaws of capitalism.
It’s like a coin. You can’t have one face without the other. As much as you might love looking at heads, sooner or later tails is going to turn up.
On the one side there’s the marvelous exhilaration of the creative burst after a long period of inactivity. The satisfaction of solving a problem that has been plaguing you for years.
It’s really, really good.
And then, when that washes out, the coin flips over. We suffer the realization that all our productivity, hard work, and sacrifice has had no tangible effect on our life. Nor, most likely, will it ever.
Your creative output leading to some kind of big payday or widespread celebration of you as an artist is a fantasy in the same realm as winning the lottery.
Here we are, gazing at tails.
The key is to keep working. Sooner or later, that coin will flip over again. Now, if we persist, we may realize the real purpose of creativity. It is not achieving that fantasy of a successful outcome.
It is having those moments where we flip that coin over through our productivity, hard work, and sacrifice. It is having this to hold onto when we are adrift and questioning who we are.
That’s all there is.