Thursday, October 2, 2014

There Is Nothing Like a Dame

There is nothing like a dame.
Nothing in the world.
There is nothing you can name that is anything like a dame. …
There are no books like a dame.
And nothing looks like a dame.
And nothing acts like a dame.
Or attracts like a dame.
While I was innocently skimming an article on the best small towns in America, my eye was caught by the thumbnail for this celebration of a man caught ogling female anatomy. It reminded me of the recent cover of one of our supermarket tabloids, which featured either President Obama ogling a young woman’s breasts or some cowardly Photoshopping. Hey, if the son of god incarnate can’t ogle boobs with impunity, no one can, right? On the other hand, if even he does it, it must be pretty common, dontcha think?
Of course in today’s busybody society the point of catching Mr. Butt-Ogler in the very act was more to titillate (buttilate?) the female readers than to condemn him. (“How naughty [giggle]! Lucky girl!”) But there is a serious issue here: the same people who giggle at Mr. Butt-Ogler are the same people God commands us to call to Christ, and they are quick to speak of the hypocrisy of Christian men sneaking peeks at naked girls in print and online.
True confessions time. Walk me into an art gallery (or whatever) with a picture of unadorned female anatomy to one side, and anything else—landscapes, whizbangs, great moments in sports, you name it—on the other side will get looked at second and with less attention to detail. Boobs? Buns? Bushes? Yes, please!
I don’t seem to be alone. Hugh Hefner made a name and a fortune giving men visual access to female anatomy, and I can tell you from experience that the number of staples holding the pages together was greatly exceeded by the number of eyes that looked at the pictures. (The most notable exception, of course, would be issues bought by Christian men who bought them and hid them.) With naked women by the thousands available at the click of a mouse, and adverisements for everything from TV shows to auto parts featuring curves and cleavages, methinks anyone who thinks men are not going to check out a woman’s anatomy when the data are easily accessible is hopelessly naïve.
We hear the implications for men ad nauseum: Don’t look! Keep your eyes on the eyes (or on the floor or on the trees or on your iPhone)!
Yeah, right. For one thing, the chief advantage of learning to read is that you can read whenever you want to. A corollary of that is that when you see printing, you want to know what it says. So if a T-shirt tightly embracing a curvaceous thorax has writing on it, one can expect me to want to read it because I want to read it. At the same time, as surely as water runs downhill, I’ll be processing the female anatomy behind the writing. Small print and an unclear font or unclear wording, and it will take longer to read. You can do the math from there.
But what about your wife? Does she want you reading T-shirts on beatiful bosoms?
No, of course not. But keeping a resolution not to read is easier made than kept. You don’t look convinced. OK, you win: easy or not, we’re not supposed to ogle. Where looking appreciatively ends and ogling begins, I can’t begin to tell you. Fortunately, my vision is failing, so the question is becoming less urgent. You say even blind men can lust? Well then, maybe it would be better if men and women were never in the same place. But that would be blaming women and I can’t do that? The responsibility is really all on us men?
Does knowing that the water I mentioned earlier runs downhill have any implication for women? I would suggest that if you don’t want the water to run downhill, you want the sluice to be as level as possible. Yes, it’s the man’s responsibility to level the sluice, but give him some help.
Ladies, to be brief, the less we know about your boobs, the less likely we are to be interested in finding out more. If guys can see everything above and inboard of your nipples, you can expect us to be checking out the details and mentally weighing up their chances of adding to the data bank. Should we be doing so? No. But it will take an act of the will for us to move on. How difficult do you want that act of the will to be?
Let me let you in on another well-known little secret. As interesting and varied as women’s boobs are, that’s not really where a man’s interest goes. Desmond Morris in The Naked Ape, postulated (and I suppose provided some data—forty years is a long time to remember such details) that the interest in boobs actually was derived from the interest in buns, hence, I suppose, the expression “a piece of ass.” Furthermore, a friend who worked in a part of Papua New Guinea where the women didn’t necessarily cover their breasts surprised me with the news that girlie magazines brought in from the outside were hot items in his village—not for the boobs but for the bushes. Either way, as crazy as guys are about what girls keep in their shirts, they’re even crazier about what they keep in their pants.
Fast forward thirty years. I’m walking down the sidewalk and being approached by a jogger. It doesn’t take me long to figure out from the silhouette that the jogger is female. She has nice legs. Her thighs don’t rub in the middle. In fact, by the time she’s within forty feet, I have a pretty good idea what she looks like naked neck to knees—all that’s missing is the color scheme. Oh, wait, I shouldn’t be ogling. So I look away and resolve to look away earlier the next time. Yeah, right.
I’m not sure a twenty- or thirty-something is going to get on with life quite so easily. I know I sure as hell didn’t when I was one.
What’s the point of all this?
Girls, there are precious few men out there worth being chased by. Between the feminized education system and the sex-saturated culture, thirty is the new fifteen, and even those men who aren’t financial adolescents don’t necessarily know that a woman isn’t just a whizbang that bleeds. Yes, it’s their responsibility to think about things other than your uniquely female anatomy. But the first qualification most men look for in a wife is that she be female. That’s where they start, and it’s where they’ll stay unless there’s a good reason to move on. If you want them to get beyond that point quickly, consider giving them less to concentrate on at the starting line.

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