Point/Counterpoint Part Deux

To further the ongoing war between the sexes, my arch-nemesis, Handsome Dick Manitoba, posted his response to my last blog here: MANIBLOG.

I know, I know…the mind reels! So many words rushing through my brain! And most of them foul!
Dear HDM,

Firstly, you DID call that scene in “The Wanderers” a work of “PURE GENIUS”. Your words, not mine. Ginkgo Biloba, anyone? And I never claimed “Nosferatu, The Vampyre” or the Addams Family movie were hip. Just that the first one interested me as a young girl more than watching a bunch of actors who were clearly over the age of 20 playing two-digit IQ’ed teenage boys doing their thing on the streets of New York, and that the second one featured a truly hilarious scene of female comedy.

The burning question of the hour is, however: why is it that every frigging Jew from New York City thinks his birthplace is the center of the Universe? And you’re all convinced that the rest of us are equally fascinated. I would bet a large sum of money that you have dragged my patient and beautiful BFF to said neighborhood in the Bronx to point out all the “landmarks” ad nauseum:

“And here is where I fingered my first girlfriend…Her name was Melanie…” I’m sure Zoe was captivated by every second of this tour of the holy land. “Tell me again, HDM, about how they cranked the cars with that little handle when you were a boy!”

Okay, just kidding on that last line. But seriously, all New York born and bred men think their own personal childhood locales are so much more interesting than they actually are. I will give you this, however, Mr. Manitoba. I do get that “The Wanderers” is a period piece capturing a part of history that is appreciated by many. Just not me. Or your wife.

NOW, let’s get on to that ridiculous photo. Posting it does not make you a sexist pig. You are actually NOT a sexist pig, Richard. You like women and you have no visible issues with women in power. Look at who you married! Look at who you are arguing with. You are, however, a complete IDIOT.

I say this will all due respect.

Finding a beautiful woman attractive is normal, but what you do with that attraction is what separates the men from the boys and either gets you praise: “GOOD BOY, YOU DIDN’T TWIST YOUR NECK TO CHECK OUT THAT WOMAN’S ASS ON THE STREET, HERE’S A NICE BLOW JOB.” or derision: “SIR, YOU ARE AN IDIOT.”

Posting photos of other women that you find attractive (in this manner) is incredibly disrespectful to your wife and your marriage. And it’s juvenile. Why not just tape a Farrah poster on the back of your bedroom door?  Lemme break it down for you:

Woman are raised to compete with one another in a much more insidious manner than men. Society places a value on us according to our looks. A man can look like a warthog but if he’s successful, he’s golden. A woman doesn’t have that luxury. It doesn’t matter how successful she is, if she’s not high on the food chain of societal beauty standards, she is “less than” and often a joke. A normal woman, who has borne and is raising your child, cleans your house, finds your lost items, and deals with your braying ass day after day, cannot compete with an airbrushed still photo of a model who has been painstakingly and professionally lit, coiffed, painted and wonderbra-ed within an inch of her life, and who sits there quietly two dimensional, never whining about how much it hurts to hike in heels or nagging you that she is tired of falling into the toilet late at night because you forget to put the damn seat down.

Real live women are faced with these images all day long, and even though we know the perfection is unattainable, we compare ourselves unfavorably as if it were. The images often make us feel shitty. We don’t look that good, we can’t be that skinny, we can’t go back in time and become teenagers again, we can’t be flawless. Hell, the model in that photo isn’t even that flawless. It takes a very confident woman to resist the low-self-esteem pull of this constant stream of manufactured images, and it helps to have a strong, supportive male by her side.

So why, Richard, you overgrown teenager, would you post a photo like this when it does not make your wife feel special or good about herself? Especially as it will not get you anywhere you want to be (i.e. naked with your hot wife), because the last thing a woman wants to do is sidle up and get busy with a guy who has just posted a photo of another woman. So you’re essentially cock-blocking your own damn self. Which makes you an idiot.

Ladies and gentleman of the jury. I rest my case.

And thusly, you must be punished, HDM, so here’s some more female hilarity for you. You already know this one so you can sing along during the last chorus. Hopefully it will do you some good. Tell Zoe to call me. We’re due for a girl’s night out!


For those of you who aren’t on Facebook, let me give you a little backstory. 

Mr. Handsome Dick Manitoba, husband to my bff Zoe Hansen, and an endless source of amusement, got in a little argument with me the other day when he described a practice laid out in that movie favored by New York men of…ahem…a certain age called “The Wanderers”. This practice is called “elbow tittin'”.
I saw the movie when I was a teenager, and it seemed okay but it didn’t move me. This is not a statement about the quality of the film, just as a female child from Michigan in the 70’s, a story about marginally intelligent New York mooks set the 50’s was not high on my list of imperative viewing. Much higher on the list that year was “Nosferatu, The Vampyre” in which I learned that I wanted to look like Isabel Adjani, and “Rock and Roll High School”, in which I learned that it was possible to meet the Ramones if you wanted it badly enough.

But I digress. So Richard, while standing behind the bar of his fine establishment Manitoba’s and impeding his long-suffering wife from doing her best work as the bartender, described Elbow Tittin’ to me. He said it is a bump and grope: first the man fake bumps into the woman, then he cops a quick feel of her boob.


I said, “How is that a funny thing to do, Richard? It’s a minor form of sexual assault and it’s very upsetting to the woman on the receiving end.”

To which he responded with a bit of sputtering which ended with, “Well, you are a Nazi lesbian!” 

And then Zoe and I immediately set upon screaming phrases like “sexist pig” at him in unison until he ran out of the bar with his ears covered. As he left he shouted out a blog challenge at me, something to the effect of, “Mary, you ignorant slut! This is not over! I will blog you to the death!” 

I called out after him, in my best Cher from “Clueless” imitation, “AS IF!”
But he was not kidding! That bastard! Richard threw down the gauntlet this afternoon, with THE MARY RAFFAELE-HANDSOME DICK MANITOBA BLOG WARS, on his aptly titled “Maniblog”. I laid my eyes upon the link on my facebook page, spit out the bite of salad I was masticating and raised a fist to the sky and shouted, “AS GOD IS MY WITNESS, RICHARD MANITOBA, I WILL TURN YOU INTO A SENSITIVE, FEMALE EMPOWERING, 21ST CENTURY MAN IF IT’S THE LAST THING I DO!!!”

Okay, that’s not true. I just rolled my eyes and thought, well, this is good. Having to blog a response tonight means I can postpone vacuuming for a day. So thank you for that, HDM. I hate vacuuming.
So I first had to refresh my memory on this dumbass movie. Here’s the scene:
I will say that it’s mildly amusing, and it’s nice that a woman wins out in the end against this obnoxious, pathetic, childish behavior, even if the woman in question is portrayed as a caricature, the underlying message being that a tall, self-sufficient female is little more than a man in a dress, and not someone to be taken seriously or loved in any real way. 
And if you break it down, what is elbow titting anyway, except a simplistic way to take a woman down a peg or two, to show her that the power of her sexual appeal is not so strong that it can’t be toppled with a show of snarky neanderthal physicality.

So what do you have really? Little boys huddled in groups who can’t handle the way women make them feel inside (horny, frightened, confused?) so they resort to making them feel shitty in order to feel more powerful and in control using the most base manner possible. And if the woman wins, she wasn’t worth the effort anyway.
So, Richard Manitoba, pure comic genius? I think not. Sexist and dated? Perhaps. But I know that that wrinkly, dangly, fuzzy and weirdly changeable sac between your legs colors your perception in a way I might never fully understand. And thus, for the moment, I shall simply agree to disagree, and leave you with this, a true scene of comic genius featuring that brilliant female Joan Cusack. 

I think it might remind you of two screaming females in your life:

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