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 Post subject: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 3:41 pm 
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I am not comparing the stupid stuff directed at men with the stupid stuff directed at women. I am not ranking injustices. That said, while the dominant culture does favor and reward and privilege men in loads of ways, it also denigrates them. (The dominant culture pretty much hates everyone, just some more or less than others.) The dominant culture wants to put us all in boxes, although I understand that the boxes it wants to put men in are a lot roomier and not as dangerous.

What inspires this post is a silly ad. I'm not someone who believes that advertising—while inherently corrupt and deceptive and occasionally harmful—represents a deliberate attempt to reinforce societal norms. Or that it is the principle way in which culture is communicated. (I think it exists solely to manipulate people. If advertisers thought they could more effectively manipulate people with life-affirming messages of personal agency, they'd switch to that.)

Here is the silly ad.
Image

What do fathers like? Fast cars and motorcycles, meat, and comic books. And, of course, they want to be little kids again. You can't really take them seriously as adults. They're kind of stupid. They just want to play and be fed. They're like big, dumb bears.

And if a man doesn't want this stuff? If he likes gardening, art, building dollhouses, or (gasp!) veganism, well...

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:08 pm 
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Ugh, I hate that. Recently my sister was watching TV and I heard a commercial for hot dogs say something like "men: easier fed than understood." As cynical as I am about advertising, that one really bothered me.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 4:44 pm 
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I just want to play and be fed! I want to be a big dumb bear! However if I had a kid and they bought me any of that shiitake for father's day I'd be pretty pissed off, just get me socks or something.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 5:14 pm 
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I hate the "dads are all dumb! Men don't know how to put diapers on! Men like big trucks and hooting at ladies and eating cows, Etc" stuff too FF. It bugs me even more now that I have two sons, who I would like to have enjoy whatever they end up naturally liking.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 6:31 pm 
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and this


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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:19 pm 
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Every time that McDonald's ad comes on that says something like "what kind of beef is in our burgers? ...its the same beef that makes men MEN." I want to fling something at the tv.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 7:33 pm 
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#UGH

also, I love Target Women.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:06 pm 
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FootFace wants us to buy him Father's Day gifts, is what he's saying.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 8:58 pm 
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
FootFace wants us to buy him Father's Day gifts, is what he's saying.


Like an enormous sausage?

I agree with your point FF, and I do think that it sucks that men are given a pretty narrow range of societally-sanctioned expression. I don't know if one can say that women or men are better or worse off. I know plenty of men who fall outside the mainstream "acceptable" box, and sometimes I think that the male box leaves even less room for deviation than the female one does.

All men are real men.

And I guess it begs the question, "if a man isn't a "real man" what is he?"

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:04 pm 
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With the exception of the sausage book (sub chili or BBQ), I've probably bought books on most of those subjects for my dad for gifts.

I'm not sure what that means. He also made me read them all too. And now I have a motorcycle.

Actually, I guess it's kind of amusing that my dad fits so neatly into their box while he is one of the most open minded people you could meet, and certainly never foisted gender stereotypes on me as a kid. He got down on his hands and knees and played with Barbie's, StarWars, construction, etc with me as a kid. Though Im pretty sure the comic books he bought me were just ones he wanted himself.

And when I was chew baca for Halloween in 4th grade, he rigged up an actual light up saber.

Gender stereotypes suck. Boys are still too embarrassed to take the culinary classes at the HS (wtf--most chefs are men; women have a hard time there) and the tech/STEM/adv math/computer classes are 90% boys.

(I bought my dad a bird watching book for fathers day. Apparently we don't have enough of those in the house...)

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:07 pm 
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The whole "real" anything is bullshiitake.

Eta: Tofulish, I think you are right.

When I was a kid, everyone thought it was really cute when I went on motorcycle trips with my dad, etc. those same people would have found a son baking or sewing with my mom (she liked doing those things) odd.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:16 pm 
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I also hate this whole "women are complicated and men are simple" crepe. It puts such a lot of pressure for the success of a relationship on women and takes it off men, because of course no man could ever understand a woman. If you want to understand me, listen to what I am saying.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 9:18 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
And I guess it begs the question, "if a man isn't a "real man" what is he?"

A woman! Which is the worst.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:08 pm 
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Nebraskalaska wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
And I guess it begs the question, "if a man isn't a "real man" what is he?"

A woman! Which is the worst.


Oh for serious. I would absolutely die.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 10:20 pm 
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Chewbacca didn't use a lightsaber, so I'm totally confused.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 11:24 pm 
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FootFace wrote:
Chewbacca didn't use a lightsaber, so I'm totally confused.


Kid. Halloween. Something that lights up to wave around!

Are you that mean person that would have made a 10yr old cry for having an inaccurate costume? My mom made it too and my dad hand painted the mask.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Sun Jun 10, 2012 11:49 pm 
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coldandsleepy wrote:
Nebraskalaska wrote:
Tofulish wrote:
And I guess it begs the question, "if a man isn't a "real man" what is he?"

A woman! Which is the worst.


Oh for serious. I would absolutely die.


...do we need to have a talk?

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:30 am 
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I agree that the ad is silly. And I too dislike that there is a limited set of interests that are socially acceptable for those who identify as men. But on a very visceral level, the thing that actually bothers me the most about that ad is the insinuation that a book about sausages will feed anyone's creative side.


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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:49 am 
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mrsbadmouth wrote:
FootFace wants us to buy him Father's Day gifts, is what he's saying.


True.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 12:53 am 
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At Christmas time, Amazon had some gift guides for various categories of people. I looked through them all, and the ones that had the most things that I'd want were Grandma and Teenage Boy.


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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 1:19 am 
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broseph wrote:
But on a very visceral level, the thing that actually bothers me the most about that ad is the insinuation that a book about sausages will feed anyone's creative side.

I don't think I follow. what kind of man are you? clearly not a real one

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:25 am 
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Wouldn't looking at a book of sausages be, you know, kind of gay?

Let me know when there's a book of donuts for me to peruse. (Or bagels. I like Jewish girls too.)

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:49 am 
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What I find extra disappointing about this ad is that it's from DK. I (for apparently no good reason) expect better of them.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:26 am 
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Tofulish wrote:
I also hate this whole "women are complicated and men are simple" crepe. It puts such a lot of pressure for the success of a relationship on women and takes it off men, because of course no man could ever understand a woman. If you want to understand me, listen to what I am saying.

It also grossly underestimates men as intelligent, thinking, perceiving, and competent individuals.

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 Post subject: Re: Real men
PostPosted: Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:47 am 
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I always had the hardest time figuring out what to get my dad for father's day when I was a kid. I mean, maybe I could have gotten him tools because he didn't have any but I don't think it would have made him very happy. Buying cards was always the worst because they were always about golf and other things that my Dad had zero interest in. It seems so stupid that I had trouble now because my Dad loves records and novels aka the easiest to buy presents ever. But I guess music and books is for boys and sissies, not real men.

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