Monday, April 07, 2008

Euphemisms

[Update: I've modified the post slightly in response to a comment by Uncle and a brief interview with my husband to clarify his position on the topic.]

Psychology test: I'm going to give you a phrase, and you tell me what immediately comes to mind. Ready?

Gentlemen's club.

OK, did you immediately think of port and cigars ... or boobs and beer? (Be honest.) More on this in a moment.

First, I'll register my confusion over why married men enjoy places that feature hot babes serving beer and wings or cutting your hair or whatever. My husband doesn't understand it either. Modesty prevents me from telling you the name he has for the more extreme "gentlemen's" places, but he in essence expresses confusion as to why a man would want to get sexually aroused without any hope of fulfillment. To paraphrase C. S. Lewis, who also finds the concept perplexing, it's like a hungry person finding pleasure in being shown food and having it taken away. I understand the difference between places like Hooter's and strip clubs, but to me they're in the same spectrum. I don't see the point of ogling. For a married man, it's expressing an intention which can never be fulfilled (if he has any integrity, that is).

Now to the point, which is to elaborate on my immediate reaction to reading this over at Uncle's, which wasn't moral indignation, but irritation over the hijacking and corruption of yet another perfectly good word: gentleman. Nevermind that in the last century or so its usage has come to mean something other than its original definition, it has always implied a certain kind of behavior in a man that is civilized and well-mannered. Ironically, it's now associated with something rather the opposite, thus we are conditioned upon hearing "gentlemen's [whatever]" to think, not of men in sport coats enjoying each other's company, but of something involving scantily clad (or not clad at all) women. To be fair, "ladies' night" at the local club can likewise invoke images of women acting in a way not at all congruent with that of a refined, well-bred female; but it's just as often associated with innocuous occurences, like the waiving of a cover charge at the local pub or shooting range. The word "gentleman" is much more corrupted, and if my little psych-test at the beginning didn't convince you, just Google "gentleman's club" and see what you get.

Words have meaning, and when those are corrupted it diminishes our ability to discern and -- to invoke the original meaning of another unfairly corrupted word -- discriminate. Moreover, it's dishonesty. Someone might make the case that "gentlemen's [whatever]" was meant to be jovially ironic, but I think it's an attempt to put a dignified face on something that's not dignified. Hence, my general dislike for euphemisms. If you like to indulge in something, own it. Call it what it is. In that spirit, I offer the following to any entrepreneur who wants to open his own barber shop that appeals to a certain kind of man: Titty McGee's Good-Time Haircuttin' Shop. (Carnaby suggests "Shoppe" for that old-timey sense of licentiousness.)

29 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

i think part of the confusion comes from the fact you and your hubby think we (or at least I) get sexually aroused. Ogling and getting a woody are different.

-SayUncle

4/07/2008 9:08 AM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

What's the difference? I'm not being facetious, I really don't understand the diff, and no one can explain it to me.

BTW, I just asked my husband, and he gets the difference. He just doesn't see the point in going to those places, especially as a married man.

But that wasn't the point of the post.

4/07/2008 9:32 AM  
Blogger Kevin said...

Sarah, I get your point. I've been in one titty bar since I got married, and that was because of business (honest!).

But (at the risk of objectifying women) has your husband ever enjoyed going to a car show and looking at automobiles he could never afford?

Beautiful women are, well, beautiful. It can be pleasant to be around them. Though I will also state that the overwhelming majority of men who go to the kind of establishments you mention are as far from gentlemen as one could imagine, and are not there for the aesthetics.

Sex (the promise of, the suggestion of, even the hint of) sells, and it does so especially well with the male of the species. We understand that it's fantasy - that doesn't make the experience any less pleasant, so long as you don't think too deeply about it.

But you're right - the euphemism is intended to make something which is ungentlemanly more socially acceptable.

4/07/2008 1:53 PM  
Blogger Gringo_Malo said...

Really, a gentleman is just a guy who doesn't need to work for a living. At least, that's what the word seemed to mean to Shakespeare in Act IV, Scene III of Henry V.

Henry's cousin Westmoreland says:

O that we now had here
But one ten thousand of those men in England
That do no work to-day!

This launches the king into his pre-battle speech, which concludes:

We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition:
And gentlemen in England now a-bed
Shall think themselves accursed they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

I've always wanted to be a gentleman. All I lack is money.

4/07/2008 3:02 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Right, Gringo. As a big fan of Jane Austen, I'm familiar with the original meaning of the word "gentleman." Nice life if you can get it. ;-)

Kevin,

I am lucky in that my husband has never once been to a nudie bar and has no desire to change that. He's been to Hooter's and some of the local variations on that, but only because his (mostly unmarried) buddies out-voted him on where to go for guy's night out. I'm sure he doesn't mind the view, but he still thinks the whole thing is pretty lame.

I can kinda sorta see where you're coming from, in the sense that I know men are visual and it's nice to look at something pretty. Heck, I'm not going to gouge my eyes out to avoid looking at a sweaty, shirtless Russell Crowe. But I see a difference between looking at something from afar and putting yourself within touching distance. My husband knows I have a "movie crush" on Crowe, but I wouldn't patronize a restaurant/bar where buff, shirtless men wait on me, because that just seems to cross the line of disrespect. I don't know if I could explain the difference any better than that.

4/07/2008 4:03 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...

I understand your position on respect, but I think you must realize that different people grasp that concept differently. One thing you and your husband share is one understanding of what is or isn't disrespectful of the other. Uncle and his wife share a different understanding, as do my wife and I.

Different strokes.

The problems really begin when one party has an understanding that differs greatly from the other's.

I think one of the functions of organized religion is to normalize what is "proper" behavior in a society. Don't you?

4/07/2008 6:37 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Yes, I do.

And I agree with your point about different strokes. I was very careful to marry a man who shares my views so that we wouldn't make each other miserable. It's fine if Uncle and his wife are in agreement about his patronizing certain establishments. That's why I didn't make a big deal out of the "morality" of it -- I, personally, just don't understand the appeal. Never will.

The real point of my post was the whole "gentlemen's" facade. That really gets under my skin.

4/07/2008 6:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nevermind that in the last century or so its usage has come to mean something other than its original definition, it has always implied a certain kind of behavior in a man that is civilized and well-mannered.

well, no, it hasn't always meant the same thing. there's been at least one period in history when the common understanding of "gentleman" was as a synonym of the modern word "thug":

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gentleman#Sir_George_Sitwell

and now it seems to be swinging back that way again; nothing new under the sun.

4/08/2008 6:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ironically, C.S. Lewis also decried the change in the meaning of the word Gentleman. Of course, his complaint was that it used to mean a person who owned land, and nothing more. He didn't like the fact that its usefulness had been diminished to include those effects which tended to go with land ownership at the time. Namely, wealthy, kind, honorable. Of course, as originally used, being a gentleman didn't automatically imply those effects, but later they became affects and the canonical use changed to match it.

-cliff

4/08/2008 7:16 AM  
Blogger Sailorcurt said...

Or perhaps it stems from (my)belief that "gentlemanly" behavior amongst the gentrified has always been somewhat of an act.

An outside portrayal of behaviors designed to mask the true nature of the beast. IMHO this mask of "gentlemanly" behaviors were often assumed in a narcissistic effort to assume self-righteous superiority over the "commoners" rather than to provide any actual value added to society or civilization.

In that context, "gentleman's club" fits because it is a place where "gentlemen" can put aside the facade and express their truly boorish side...which we all possess in differing measures and express in differing manners.

Just a thought.

4/08/2008 7:31 AM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

The first time I ever went to a strip club was when my wife wanted to go. I didn't really see the point but she wanted to so we did. We have not been back.

I've been to several since when "the guys I was with" wanted to go. But I don't see the appeal. If I can't touch then what is the point?

But I realize I'm in a much different situation than most. My wife and I also belong to a sex club and when we go there we get to see and do a lot more than what goes on in a "Gentleman's Club", Hooters, or a strip club. Hooters is really bland compared to the stuff we see (and do).

4/08/2008 8:34 AM  
Anonymous CL said...

"Hence, my general dislike for euphemisms. If you like to indulge in something, own it. Call it what it is."

We live in a society that is base on euphemisms... I mean when you have a president debating the meaing of the word "IS".

Marketing is based on this to sell you an idea, to get you to buy the idea and thus their product.

4/08/2008 9:06 AM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Alpha Geek -- Either you're pulling my leg... or ick.

4/08/2008 9:33 AM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

Nope. I'm not pulling your leg.

Check out the link. We've been members there since 1979. The last time I went to the club was last Wednesday and I had a great time. Did a threesome with woman on her first visit to the club and another guy I have known for years. She was thrilled. It was something she has wanted to try for years and is looking forward to going back again.

What she was especially surprised at was that the club was created by a woman for women. The woman have all the power and are completely in control there. It's a little bit of an exaggeration but then men are just there as toys for the women. And in the past few years they sometimes have had to turn women away because there are too many single women and not enough men to keep the proper men to women ratio.

The men are real gentlemen there. If they step out of line they can permanently lose their membership.

4/08/2008 10:12 AM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Alpha -- I'm not going to check the link. If you're serious, I find your lifestyle pathetic and depressing. Why even bother being married.

4/08/2008 10:43 AM  
Blogger carnaby said...

Lynnwood Washington? That's just 10 minutes from where I live. There's got to be a pun there somewhere. Lynn-wood. Did a woman named Lynn start the club?

4/08/2008 11:12 AM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

Carnaby, Lorna and her husband Norbert started the club in their personal residence in September of 1979. Since then the club has become world renowned. Many people regard it as the finest club of its type in the world. IIRC there are about 10,000 members--including one VIP that every U.S. citizen with any political awareness would immediately recognize. The thought crossed my mind of "outing" them if they didn't vote the way I wanted on a particularly critical "issue of the century" type thing. But besides blackmail being illegal they apparently plan to vote with the good guys without any encouragement from me.

Stickwick, I find it odd that you apparently think sexual monogamy is the only reason to be married. My wife and I are married (over 30 years now) because we love each other, raised our children together, enjoy doing things together, and just plain like being together.

How sad and pathetic that you think marriage has no purpose other than to restrict your freedom and that of someone else.

But this is getting way off topic and has the potential to run very long into debates on morals, ethics, and other stuff. If someone wants to discuss it further with me send me an email: alphageek AT writeme.com. And if someone is too chicken to check the place out on their own I'd be glad to take them as my guest sometime.

4/08/2008 1:39 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Alpha Geek,

How sad and pathetic that you think marriage has no purpose other than to restrict your freedom and that of someone else.

I don't see it as a restriction of my freedom. I made a promise to forsake all others, as did my husband, because that's what we both want. It's a forsaking of a momentary impulse for a much bigger pay-off down the road. If neither you nor your wife care to uphold that promise (unless you omitted that from your wedding vows), then, instead of betraying a covenant, why not just live together and share all of the other things you value about your relationship?

Putting the morality angle aside, I think indulging in any kind of hyper-stimulating activity -- drugs, excessive drinking, promiscuity -- is very unhealthy for the individual, both physically and emotionally. That's why I find lifestyles based on physical indulgence depressing: in the end it can only lead to unhappiness and poor health. I also find it pathetic, because it's on the same behavioral level as rats and chimpanzees who will indulge themselves to the point of death given the opportunity.

4/08/2008 3:05 PM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

We agreed to this lifestyle before we married. Among other things marriage is about making a commitment to spend the rest of our lives together--which we did and are honoring.

I have never even sampled an illegal recreational drug. My wife tried smoking some pot a couple times 29 years ago. She didn't like it and hasn't touched it since.

The amount of alcohol we consume is on the order of zero to one drinks per month.

Our health is very good (I do have a slight problem with cholesterol but that is mostly genetic and not sexual lifestyle related), thank you for your concerns. Our happiness is doing quite well also.

Are there any other faulty stereotypes/insults you would like to sling at me?

Here is what the woman I met at the club last week had to say when I asked her a similar question after her first visit:

Some of my preconceived ideas were:

You need to have a really hot, in-shape body to participate.

You must be completely comfortable wandering around nude.

You need to have cute, "in style" underwear, because everyone will see it.

Once you enter ANY play area, it's "anything goes", and you don't have the option of saying no. (By far, my biggest concern.)

The people in attendance would be much skankier, cruder and nothing like the "regular" people I met.

The environment would be much more male-oriented, with women being treated poorly.

So, clearly not what I witnessed.


Stickwick, I would like to thank you for reminding me there is a good reason for me to remain "in the closet" about this lifestyle. No matter how comfortable and natural things appear there are still lots of people out there that are very hostile and unaccepting of people they perceive as "different".

4/08/2008 4:16 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

I am hostile to, and very much disapprove of, your lifestyle. But I accept it inasmuch as I have no desire to make your activities illegal and I wish no particular harm to come to you. That's called tolerance. It doesn't mean I have to welcome what you do with open arms. So perhaps you can exercise some tolerance, yourself, and accept the fact that I am under no obligation to celebrate your lifestyle. And recognize that I perceive you as different, because you are different from me.

Incidentally, if you're so comfortable with the naturalness of what you're doing, why do you feel the need to justify yourself here?

4/08/2008 8:04 PM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

"Justifying myself"? I explained why I didn't have any interest in "gentleman's clubs", Hooters, and the like. You "came out swinging" (pardon the pun) with some severe misconceptions.

It's no different than if you had "come out of the closet" as a gun owner in the presence of life member of the Brady Bunch who reluctantly agreed you had the constitutionally protected right to own a hunting rifle. Come to think of it--all the misconceptions, stereotypes, etc. came to the surface in pretty much the same way too. "Pathetic", "depressing", "ik". Isn't that what the anti-gunners say about gun owners?

In as that I wish no harm come to you or wish to force my lifestyle on you I'm perplexed as to why you are admittedly hostile. Why does it matter to you what our friends, my wife, and I do behind closed doors? Why not just say, "That's very different and not for me."? You having and expressing hostility when I can't see that it affects you baffles me. Do you have the same sort of issues with interracial marriage? How about different religions or atheists?

I have a hypothesis as to why the hostility exists but I would prefer to get your explanation first. Or perhaps we should just drop it. Your choice.

4/08/2008 8:30 PM  
Blogger carnaby said...

Alpha, you've been very reasonable and well-tempered, and we appreciate that. Gun -nuts have to be careful to be considerate on public forums as well, and I understand your comparison.

I still consider your lifestyle to be over-indulgent, and I have a feeling that you will suffer for it at some point. I also don't see the point in taking sex to that level when I am already perfectly satisfied by my one partner. Of course, you can come back with "well that's what the anti-gunners say about guns... why do you need them."

Fine. Where does it end? Are those places to which people go to have sex with horses just great and dandy? Is that a wonderful lifestyle? After all, nobody gets hurt (well, except for that guy who died with a perforated colon) and the horses seem to enjoy it. How about polygamy? How about necrophilia? How about... where does it end?

Now, I don't think these places should be banned, but I sure am not going to celebrate nor condone what goes on there. Besides being an affront to God, in which view you obviously do not partake, I think the behavior is objectively unhealthy.

I conjecture further that over-indulgence in sexual activities is probably responsible for most erectile dysfunction as well as most prostate problems.

4/09/2008 7:23 AM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

I don't think I have any misconceptions, Alpha. You think I have misconceptions, but no matter how rosy a picture you try to paint, it's the promiscuity I find extremely objectionable. That's a defining aspect of your lifestyle, so it's impossible that misconceptions are clouding the issue. There are very few other types of behaviors I find as objectionable. Interracial marriage? That's a non-sequitur as far as this debate goes. I am concerned only with the conscious decisions people make about their behavior. Incidentally, I find the concept of two homosexuals in a permanent monogamous relationship infinitely more healthy and acceptable than the lifestyle you choose.

It's no different than if you had "come out of the closet" as a gun owner in the presence of life member of the Brady Bunch who reluctantly agreed you had the constitutionally protected right to own a hunting rifle.

Yes, it is different. I'm not reluctant about this. I fully support your right to choose what to do with your own life, as long as you are not hurting anyone else. I am not trying to restrict your freedom in any way. I am simply expressing my disgust, which you don't seem able to accept.

In fact, it seems as though you are trying to set yourself up as some kind of victim of oppression and paint me as a thoughtless bigot. I can see the point of doing this with an opponent who wants to vote your rights away, but since I don't, I can't figure out why it matters to you what I think.

4/09/2008 7:45 AM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

Sorry for the long delay in responding. I had a busy day at work followed by my wife coming home after being out of town. We went to bed early and got up late. :-)

Stickwick, your misconceptions are that our lifestyle "can only lead to unhappiness and poor health". We have been in this lifestyle for nearly 30 years and are still happy and in good health. And we know many others that have been in the lifestyle a similar amount of time with the same results.

We can also point out people that were very unhappy in monogamous marriages and when they broke out of those unnecessary restrictions felt like a great weight had been lifted off of them. One woman told me she divorced two different husbands "who were good men" because after about two years being monogamous she felt like she was being suffocated. She was unwilling to cheat on them and so divorced them before finding new partners. Now she and her boyfriend attend the club together and are much happier. She regrets divorcing her first husband in particular as he now attends the same club with a new wife.

Another woman I talked to about this is a psychologist and married for 30 years before she and her husband joined the club. Monogamy was a constant struggle for her and was a source of depression, anger, and frustration. She and her husband discovered the lifestyle and she realized there wasn't anything wrong with her. It was that society had imposed restrictions on them that were unnecessary and inappropriate for them.

I could easily tell the stories of dozens of other men and women that were unhappy and in some cases nearly suicidal until they found a peer group that accepted their fundamental natures as normal and acceptable. And then even after decades of participation in the lifestyle are still happy, healthy and functional in the world.

As far as me caring what you think, I don't. But I do care what you say in public. You express your disgust, you claimed it was unhealthy--both physically and mentally. The latter two are misconceptions on your part. I can no more be quiet than I could if someone expressed their disgust with gun owners, and claimed the "assault weapon" ban saved 1000 children a year from being machine gunned to death.

I wasn't going to bring it up but since you did, yes, it is very clear you are a bigot. You wouldn't even click on a link to read even the slightest bit of information about a club that caters to my lifestyle. You apparently have no desire to gather further information that might cause you to challenge your beliefs. I have offered to take people as my guest to the club for them to check out the place. Given your attitude I can't imagine you even considering that. What would you think of someone that had that attitude about going to the range to even watch someone shoot a gun? Isn't that the classic definition of a bigot?

Carnaby, thank you for seeing thing much more clearly, responding more rationally, and recognizing the obvious comparison to gun ownership.

You ask a good question, "Where does it end?" For me, and nearly everyone I have talked to about that topic the answer is, "Consenting adults.". Polygamy? Sure, why not? I know one guy in Seattle that has had two wives for last ten years or so. And I know a woman in Idaho that has had two husbands for about ten years and picked up a third about five years ago. They seem to be getting along as well as the more conventional marriages I know.

As far as being "objectively unhealthy"--can you provide the data that supports that conclusion? And especially your conjecture about "over-indulgence in sexual activities is probably responsible for most erectile dysfunction as well as most prostate problems"? The data I have seen has conclusions along the lines of "use it or lose it".

And before you respond think about driving a car for recreation. Isn't that "objectively unhealthy"? People are injured and die in car accidents all the time. Snow skiing, swimming, and to a lesser extent participating in shooting sports all have risks associated with them. The question is not, "Are the risks zero?" The question is "Are the risks worth the rewards?"

4/10/2008 1:08 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

I have something to learn from my gentle brother. I'm probably coming across a little too hellfire and brimstone here. Let me try to tone it down a bit.

Given your attitude I can't imagine you even considering that.

You would be correct. What would be the point? I am very content with my lifestyle, and, honestly, would prefer to be as ignorant of this sort of thing as possible.

Here's what I don't get. It's utterly bizarre to me the notion that anyone would be suicidal at the prospect of only being able to have sex with one person. The sensations are the same. Why does the vagina or penis have to be attached to a different person for it to be enjoyable?

As far as being a bigot goes, I don't think I am. A bigot is intolerant. A gun-bigot, for instance, is someone who hates guns and wants to take everyone's guns away. I don't think it's unreasonable for people to be apprehensive about guns. But, if they are willing to tolerate me having a gun, why would I give a damn if they don't like guns? Likewise, I tolerate what you do. I just find it very objectionable, and I will say so when someone publicly volunteers that information.

So, I see your point that you feel obligated to clear up whatever misconceptions you think I have. I would probably feel compelled to do the same with someone who hates guns. But only to a point. If someone says it's dangerous to have a gun in the home, but considers it strictly a personal choice, then really why should I care what he thinks?

Anyway, I still disagree that your lifestyle is healthy. My brother has more to say about that, so I'll let him take it from here.

4/10/2008 3:03 PM  
Anonymous Alpha Geek said...

I didn't/don't have a problem with your opinions. I took issue with expression of claimed facts.

Of course there is no point in you learning more about it if you (and your husband!) are content with your current lifestyle. But with your admitted and desired ignorance you are hardly in a position to have justification for your opinions. I'm fine with that as long as you don't imply or claim your opinions have universal validity.

There are a lot of things about human behavior and sexuality that are bizarre. I have zero interest in sex with men. Some men are attracted exclusively to men. Some people become highly aroused by bondage, pain, or humiliation (none of those are for me). These are totally bizarre at first glance (there are some workable theories that may explain it but that is an advanced topic). Most men (count me out on this one too) become highly aroused by watching women have sex with each other. Why should that be?

Desire by men for multiple partners is well documented. Not all men, but certainly a majority. Desire by women for multiple partners is less well documented and known but recent data is showing up some surprising results. Read "The Female Brain" for some eye-opening stuff. In the book (which I don't have access to right now) a study was quoted that showed (via DNA tests done for other reasons) that about 10% of the children in the U.S. have the wrong father on their birth certificate. It turns out that during a women's most fertile time of the month actually have a stronger attraction to men other than their husbands, and are willing to take higher risks during that time. A number of those women become pregnant by another man and carry that baby to term with their husband believing it is his.

If you acknowledge that there is variation in such desire. And I assume you must because you claim you have zero desire for others and yet there is hard data that show a surprising number of women get pregnant from men not their husband. Then think about what the distribution of that variation might be like. Is it a normal curve? Is it bi or trimodal? Most likely it is some sort of normal curve or variation thereof. Now think about what you might find at the tails of that curve.

I can tell you from personal experience that after being monogamous for a year or more the desire for another partner becomes, very, very strong. It's nearly all I can think about. It's every bit as strong a desire, and similar in nature, as if I had not had sex for several weeks. Bizarre? Okay. Whatever. That doesn't mean it doesn't exist. And I have talked to many women that felt the same way. Here is a quote from one woman I met at the club:

I was driving around late one night and turned around in a motel parking lot. These two truck drivers asked me to have coffee with them ... it was the first time I ever had sex with two men at the same time. It was like being plugged into an electric circuit -- I knew then I could never be in a sexually monogamous relationship again.


Another woman I introduced to the club used that same exact last sentence after attending her first party.

I could tell you story after story after story of women and men that came to the same conclusion after trying, sometimes for decades, to be monogamous. It just wasn't working for them. Some people have a very strong desire, which if not met, is harmful to their mental health.

As a side note, for the Christians, not everyone is in agreement that their religion requires monogamy. See for example the agapeswingersWaOr Yahoo Group. Sometime, if you are interested ask me to tell you the story of the Southern Baptist woman that attended the club for a year and a half without ever taking off her clothes and what changed her mind about holding back.

Another thing I meant to mention about the victim thing--I took the NRA Refuse To Be A Victim class. ;-)

4/10/2008 6:33 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

You're free to do what you want, Alpha, but you're not free to want what you want.

I will pray for you.

The last thing I will mention is that you might want to read The Great Divorce by C. S. Lewis.

4/10/2008 9:52 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

aroused without any hope of fulfillment

This is the purpose of the various food, home remodeling, auto rebuilding, sports instruction, science (especially when it focuses on photography) and travel networks. No one, without subsidy, could eat, travel, photograph, rebuild, or spare the time necessary for one percent of what they see on TV. ven the political/news networks arouse people to...torpor: no one not independently wealthy can take up thousands of causes propounded on tv.

4/11/2008 1:46 PM  
Blogger Stickwick Stapers said...

Most of the people who watch the kinds of programs you mention do get to enjoy those things to a reasonable degree. I mean, who isn't able to cook? Who can't pick up a hammer and some paint and fix up their house a bit? I'd compare going to strip clubs or Hooter's to watching Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous. It's just looking at someone else's glitzy stuff.

But you do have a point with the news analogy. I know people who are major news junkies. I don't see the purpose in that either.

4/11/2008 9:54 PM  

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