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« DVD Journal: "Shoot 'Em Up" | Main | Which to See? »

June 23, 2008


Michael Blowhard writes:

Dear Blowhards --

* Behold some seriously beautiful graphic design.

* Critic David Sterritt tries to explain why Hitchcock's "Vertigo" continues to fascinate.

* Painter Laurie Fendrich wonders why anyone should major in painting. (This link and the one above thanks to Matt Mullenix.)

* Tyler Cowen doesn't think that new 3-D technology will save movies.

* Isegoria notices that Alaskan Airlines has had some success redesigning its check-in process. Let's hope the other airlines take note.

* Asians like techno.

* One little shot of collagen and -- "Yes, yes, yes!!!" she cried. (Link thanks to Charlton Griffin.)

* Another find from Charlton: How to make a light bulb.

* Steve Bodio riffs through a lot of books that he's read recently, including a "Zen Buddhist dog book."

* Sister Wolf thinks there's no getting around it: Men are boring.

* An especially nice couple of lines from Lester Hunt: "I have never had sex with a virgin and intend to avoid doing so for the rest of my life. Why someone would want to have sex with a completely inexperienced partner is literally beyond my comprehension." I find innocence overrated too, particularly where sex partners are concerned.

* Anne Thompson notices yet more cutbacks at old-media shops.

*MBlowhard Rewind: I tried to come up with a way to salvage the word "intellectual."



posted by Michael at June 23, 2008


Wow, Sister W. You're pretty hot! And your pit hair seems more playful than aggressive, nice and curlycuey and feminine, even humorous.

You do have a challenging expression on your face, though. If you raised your arms at me, I'd smile and wave. But I'd feel a mite nervous if at the same time you were giving me that LOOK. An odd combo of impishness, imperiousness and impenetrability. Your pits seem positively extraverted by comparison.

Oh, and men are boring. It's sad that our society has lost, if it ever had, the idea, that a man, to be a man, should know how to a) dress, b) dance, and c) talk to women. The only "Men's Movement" worth supporting would be one that taught men how to do those three things. I suspect the movement would have to be run by women.

Posted by: PatrickH on June 23, 2008 3:58 PM

I must be a very boring male (even though I have little-to-no interest in sports) by PatrickH's definition anyway. I know how to dress (myself),
I can't dance (though I spent several weeks in tap-dance class as an undergraduate), and I find most people bores. Lacking sports-chat smalltalk, I guess a lot of people would find me boring.

As far as male vs female conversational styles, I'll just quote a recurring conversation I have with my wife:

Narr: What time do we eat?

Wife: Look, I had to handle some calls, and run by the grocery, then Cindy called, and the a/c went off for about half an hour!

N: So, when do we eat?


Posted by: Narr on June 23, 2008 6:56 PM

If I grant Sis that men are boring will she grant me that women are exasperating?


Posted by: ricpic on June 23, 2008 7:40 PM

women are exasperating

Sis included. She pits me off.

Posted by: Mr Neet on June 23, 2008 9:18 PM

Thank you Patrick H, for noticing my hotness. I am very very hot. Perhaps I should have mentioned it myself.

Mr. Neet, stupid puns are a waste of time for all of us.

Ricpic, I will indeed grant you that. A very insightful friend (male) once summed it up like this: "Men are stupid, women are crazy." Who can argue with such elemental truth?

Posted by: Sister Wolf on June 23, 2008 11:15 PM

I heard another version -- "men are ridiculous, women are pathetic." That rings true too, in its own way.

Posted by: Michael Blowhard on June 24, 2008 12:53 AM

Was your male friend gay, SW, by any chance? I can't see many straight guys saying "Men are stupid", categorically, lumping themselves in with other men.

In any case, it ain't true. Some men are; others are average, others still are above average. Come to think of it, the same holds true for women!

Women aren't crazy, either. Just irrational and unaccountable for their words, thoughts, and deeds. :)

Posted by: anon on June 24, 2008 12:59 AM

Haha! Michael, I think it's the other way around.

Anon, he is one of the smartest men I've ever met. If you could understand the words stupid and crazy in their broadest meaning, the maxim might work for you. How about substituting 'dense' and 'neurotic'?

Posted by: Sister Wolf on June 24, 2008 2:18 AM

I'm a man, and that means not only "I'm With Stupid" like the tee says, I AM STUPID. And I am. After all, we win all the Darwin Awards, don't we?

Item: A PERSON down in Houston sought to impress HIS OR HER friends by performing russian roulette in front of them. Using a semi-automatic pistol. HE OR SHE wasn't entirely a damn fool, and made sure to remove all but one of the bullets from the semi-automatic pistol before "playing" HIS OR HER little game of bravado. Needless to say, pistols of the type HE OR SHE used automatically chamber even a single round, hence the name of the pistol type.

You are allowed NO GUESSES AT ALL as to the "gender" of the MAN OR WOMAN in the story above.

As for "ridiculous" and "pathetic" it could be reversed and still apply. "Stupid" and "crazy"...nope, they fit nice and snug.

I think it was a Republican who said, "There are two parties in America: the Stupid Party and the Evil Party. I am proud to say that I am a member of the Stupid Party."

Well, there are two sexes in America (but no "genders" actually; genders are just made-up feminist made-up-stuff that's all made up), the Stupid Sex and the Crazy Sex. I am proud to say that I am, and will always be, a member of the Stupid Sex.

Posted by: PatrickH on June 24, 2008 10:35 AM

Mr Neet: She pits me off
Sister Wolf: Mr. Neet, stupid puns are a waste of time for all of us.

I thought that's what you wanted to do!

Posted by: Mr Neet, Chairman and CEO, Enemies of Peter, Inc. on June 24, 2008 10:40 AM

Actually, those boring men are probably in the midst of 3 realities:
1) They are at a party of the wives' friends, not his. Therefore, if he is too good as a conversationalist, he might have to face being accused of hitting on one of her friends. The husbands of wives' friends usually are not those we'd choose for buddies (that would be an interesting paper someday), and again one has to be mindful of something potentially getting back to the wife.
2) The group has hit the stasis point in that all the good stories have been told (or that can be told to the group), the two or three recent games have been evaluated, and all that's left is politics or religion, which most folks in their right minds just avoid after a certain point. For one, I am not interested in hearing a wingnut explain to me yet again why we should be at war.
3) He has been instructed to "behave" and not embarrass her, so he's doing just that.

Also, men's small talk is completely different from woman's small talk.

Posted by: yahmdallah on June 24, 2008 11:20 AM

Patrick H, women aren't stupid enough to play Russian Roulette!

Yahmdallah: Do those men even want to be at this party? They probably wish they were somewhere else, where they didn't have to talk. I'm being serious here.

Even among the gay couples I know, the more 'feminine' partner will provide most of the conversation.

As for male small it different when there are no women in the next room? If so, I'd love to know what makes it 'different!'

Posted by: Sister Wolf on June 24, 2008 5:17 PM

Jonathan Rauch's classic essay on the Care and Feeding of Introverts is actually relevant here.

Posted by: PatrickH on June 24, 2008 5:31 PM

Are there any woman talks shows or radio where this sort of womanly communication takes place or is this strictly limited to private coversation?

I remember when Oprah and -i think it was - Maya Angelou were reclining in a bed wearing pajamas and chatting. Perhaps, if those of us of the man persuasion would wear a smart pair of PJs, we might gush forth with blissful conversation songbirds...tangled in Sister Wolf's pit hair.

Posted by: sN on June 25, 2008 1:50 AM

Men are boring? Absurd.

In conversation men tend toward exchanging information and arguing about things. Most men don't have any interesting information or interesting opinions.

The way women talk to each other there doesn't even need to be another person except in so far as you need another person to cut down for her choice in shoes or hairstyle (if she's lower than you on the woman scale) or kiss her ass about her shoes or purse or hairstyle (if she's higher than you on the woman scale). Conversation that isn't implicitly a status competition is basically just chatter with no content.

On the other hand the few people who do see things differently and do have intelligent things to say about the world are almost all men.

Posted by: Steve Johnson on June 25, 2008 2:49 PM songbirds...yes!

If only Steve Johnson could hear a real conversation between actual women. He might be enlightened or entertained, but judging from his opinion I'm worried that he might be terrified!

Posted by: Sister Wolf on June 25, 2008 4:50 PM

" songbirds...yes!"

That's it! You hit the nail on the head.

Posted by: Steve Johnson on June 26, 2008 5:41 AM

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