Interlude: Tigger Warning

“Oh no! My childhood! Ruined!”

“Again?”

“For real this time, Hatboy! My entire childhood, or more specifically my early adulthood, ruined!”

“I’m sorry, Creepy, but I’ve already assumed that a series of monumentally screwed-up things happened to you in the course of your childhood, so the idea that some development in pop culture could have retroactively ruined it is … well, it’s a little difficult to accept.”

“Ruined!”

“Especially when it happens every week.”

“For real! Right in the childhood! And also in the feels! The feels, Hatboy!”

“Alright, what is it this time?”

“Offspring’s song? Self Esteem?”

“Oh boy. Okay Methuselah, what about it?”

“Did you know it was about rape, Hatboy?”

“I can’t say I ever thought about it quite so analytically, but … okay, now that you mention it, I guess the female antagonist did arguably take advantage of a man who had shown himself to be an insufficient judge of character to-”

“No, no, no no no no – the woman was raped, Hatboy! It’s despicable!”

“The woman? Are we talking about the same song? ‘I know I’m being used, that’s okay ‘cos I like the abuse, oh-way-ohh’? That song?”

“The very same!”

“The song about the hopeless guy who can’t dump his girlfriend no matter how much of a hostile, unfaithful emotional vampire she is? That one?”

“Yes, don’t you see? Don’t you see?”

“Well, now I’m actually thinking about it, I guess I would have to come down on the side of that song having no actual victims, just a pair of pretty despicable people who probably deserve each other and are destined for a life of misery unless one or both of them grows up … I’m really not seeing how the protagonist is guilty of anything but being a bit of a doormat.”

“She turns up drunk, Hatboy! And he has sex with her!”

“Now hold on a cotton-pickin’ minute there, Creepy…”

“Clear rape!”

“But-”

“Also, that cotton thing, I think that was racist too. But let’s fix you one small step at a time. I’m here for you, Hatboy. Support is very important.”

“Thanks for that. Anyway, I’m pretty sure a drunk woman has to be incapable of consent before it becomes rape. I’m no lawyer but I think a bit of alcohol-fuelled horniness or regrettably-impaired judgement is-”

“Not at all, not at all! All it takes is the impaired judgement. She doesn’t have to be unconscious – she just has to be intoxicated enough to do something she wouldn’t do sober.”

“So is every person who has ever been on the wrong side of a pair of beer goggles also a victim of rape, or is it just women?”

“Don’t try to victim-blame. It’s grotesque.”

“Look, I think it’s safe to say she would do it sober, since this wasn’t their first roll in the proverbial hay.”

“Ah, but the only information in the song is ‘She’s drunk again, Hatboy. Emphasis mine. It’s certainly not the first time she has been taken advantage of in this way. In fact, by this stage in her life it may be institutionalised victimhood.”

“But isn’t the rest of that line ‘and looking to score, emphasis mine? Playing into the male-as-trophy objectifying-misandrist mind-set?”

“More victim-blaming.”

“It only becomes victim-blaming once you rationally establish the woman as a victim. Until then, you can’t dismiss counterpoints as victim-blaming. And it seems unlikely that she only ever had sex with this guy when she was drunk. And she did actively come to his house.”

“Only because she was out of control!”

“Isn’t it sort of … sexist … to assume a woman has that little responsibility for her own actions? That little control over what – pardon the expression – she puts into her body?”

“Oh, I see. Despite your attempt to disgust me into not seeing.”

“What?”

“And I suppose you would have this same entitled male shitlord opinion if the poor innocent ‘protagonist’ had been the one plying her with drinks for the very purpose of having sex with her?”

“Well, that probably would make a difference to my opinion of the case, but he wasn’t the one plying her with drinks. One of his other friends – the ones she sleeps around with, according to the song – was probably the one plying her with drinks, while the protagonist waited hopelessly at home trying to summon up the courage to escape from a toxic relationship. Plus, unless this woman was drunk all the time, presumably she was sober at some point and didn’t actively claim that she’d done something she wouldn’t have otherwise done. In fact, she says that she wants only him, to paraphrase the lyric. Unless you’re saying that this all occurs within a drunken context, too.”

“Aha! But he says in his very own words, Hatboy, ‘Now I know I should say “No”’. He knows that he’s taking advantage of an inebriated, not to mention emotionally confused and vulnerable woman, and using her for sex! He hasn’t been taught not to rape!”

“Actually, the reason he acknowledges that he should refuse her is that she’s abused their relationship at every turn and he should have the self-worth and courage to call her out on it. It’s why the song is called Self Esteem, Creepy.”

“So you might think, Hatboy, so you might think … with your entrenched views and your ingrained, blinkered attitudes. So innocent, and yet so detrimental to humanity’s chances for enlightenment.”

“Oh boy.”

“But in fact, the song title is a comment on the very pervasiveness of rape culture in our society. Indeed, the very next line, ‘I may be dumb but I’m not a dweeb’, encapsulates the entire issue of rape and male entitlement in a nutshell! He has been educated by the patriarchy to think that if he fails to rape a woman that he has the opportunity to rape, he’s some kind of pathetic nerdlinger! The song is called Self Esteem because the only way he can have self esteem is to force his will on a drugged female!”

“You really need to spend less time watching YouTube videos.”

“Trying to cut off the flow of truth will not make the issue go away! You’re nothing but a vile rape apologist!”

“In the dramatically unlikely event that I ever turned out to have raped someone, I think the very least I could do is apologise for it, yes. And, you know, also go to jail.”

“Don’t you take that flippant tone with me!”

“You really leave me little recourse.”

“And the female protagonist – or antagonist, as you called her in your own words, Hatboy, antagonist, automatically assigning her the role of villain – has internalised misogyny telling her that promiscuity and her scoring, her disposing of men in the same way men do to women, essentially putting herself into a self-destructive downward spiral of abuse, is the only way to behave and prosper in a culture so steeped in-”

“So you admit that her behaviour is negative and that women acting in this way are no better than the men who do the same thing?”

“Don’t try to manspread yourself over my points!”

“That doesn’t mean what you seem to think it means. In fact, I’m not sure I want to know what you think it means.”

“Next you’ll try telling me that it was a different time, and that those attitudes are a thing of the past.”

“Let’s not go nuts, it was 1993. We’re not exactly talking about the era of women not being allowed to vote and male homemakers being a-”

“Aren’t we, Hatboy? Aren’t we? Have those times really changed? Have they?”

“Music has certainly gone downhill since grunge happened, but I don’t think you can blame that on entitled male shitlords.”

“Can’t I, by gum? What about Courtney Love?”

“She’s a-”

“Oh, now the conspiracies and the trans-hatred come out and play!”

“I don’t think she ever trans-”

“No, wait, do you see what I did there, with ‘Come Out and Play’?”

“Yes. Yes I see.”

“A little acknowledgement, please.”

“Yes, Creepy, it was very good. But you’re bouncing all over the place like … like that attention-deficit tiger with a spring for a tail.”

“Oh, pooh.”

“Why am I always automatically Pooh?”

“Because you’re too fat to be Piglet.”

“You can be so mean when you’re crusading.”

“Sort of the point, Hatboy.”

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20 Responses to Interlude: Tigger Warning

  1. brknwntr says:

    There are so many levels in this post.

  2. brknwntr says:

    Why the double post?

  3. brknwntr says:

    It went away. WordPress, making me look crazy in new and exciting ways.

  4. dreameling says:

    Brilliant. 🙂

    Somehow you’ve managed to keep Creepy in character. I mean, by the end, that feels totally Creepy.

    Note on terminology: You really should’ve found a place for “toxic masculinity”, which is possibly my least favorite phrase of the decade. (You did use “toxic”, though, so points for that.)

    • dreameling says:

      PS. I should’ve replied already on Friday, so I could’ve written “lol, this was so funny yesterday”. But, really, that wouldn’t’ve been true.

    • stchucky says:

      Somehow you’ve managed to keep Creepy in character. I mean, by the end, that feels totally Creepy.

      Thanks! I was concerned about that at the start. But the thing about Creepy is, basically you can have him express any outrageous and contradictory world-views, and keep him in character because sooner or later it becomes obvious that he can’t possibly really believe any of it. He’s just saying words, and since he started saying words, he’s going to keep on saying words until Hatboy gives up.

      Creepy is the Devil’s Advocate that the Devil gets when he can’t afford Keanu Reeves and the state provides an advocate for him.

      Note on terminology: You really should’ve found a place for “toxic masculinity”, which is possibly my least favorite phrase of the decade.

      Haven’t heard that one myself, although I wasn’t exactly trying to get them all in there. I missed out “mansplaining” (because “manspreading” was funnier out of context) and a few other classics that you and Aaron vomited onto my comments section on Thursday, including of course the whole “cis”-prefix thing (Creepy may just say words, but I think even he would have trouble working that into a straight-up dialogue like this one … although if they had gone on much longer he might have). To be honest I felt “shitlord” was a bit forced in there, but it had to be said.

      • aaronthepatriot says:

        Oh a “straight-up” dialogue, eh? How fucking insensitive, you cis scum! LOL at all of this, it was awesome. And I love the idea of C coming to the feminist side, even though he would be trolling it of course. Either way, it’s quite amusing given some of the news group history of him.

        This was awesome, and inspired. What made you think of the song, for this purpose?

      • stchucky says:

        Heh, oh, C would certainly take this side of the debate. If anyone tried to play it any other way, he’d take it even further and make them out to be the misogynists.

        Like I say, that day was a bit of a weird blur but I’m pretty sure the song was on the radio in the car as I was dropping Wump and Toop at daycare. And it just went from there.

        Yes. I drove a car that day.

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