Monday, October 31, 2005

Fear of Feminists

Play dumb: get a man for life. Be smart: get healthy, wealthy and wise. Now ladies, you figure out what the real choice is there. I just can't believe that it is as romantically difficult to be an attractive, independent woman as my clever, fiery heroine Ms. Dowd is making it out to be in The NYT Sunday Mag yesterday.

Maybe in NYC, but I can't say I've ever dumbed myself down to get a guy to go out with me. Chances are, that's just because I don't have nearly as much dumbing-down to do as Ms. Dowd. I'm already half-way there on a good day. (And all the way there after two cosmos.) Any achievements, alas, are hardly of an intimidating variety; I can only hope to be of some ground-shaking professional stature one day. Most women can only be so fortunate as to have any chance of putting this scary, semi-elitist theory to the test.

Here's an excerpt:

Men, apparently, learn early to protect their eggshell egos from high-achieving women. The girls said they hid the fact that they went to Harvard from guys they met because it was the kiss of death. "The H-bomb," they dubbed it. "As soon as you say Harvard Business School . . . that's the end of the conversation," Ani Vartanian said. "As soon as the guys say, 'Oh, I go to Harvard Business School,' all the girls start falling into them."

(Lemme tell you ladies, I've trolled for dates on the highest of professional rungs before; never been so bored in my life.)

But wait, there be more:

Many women continue to fear that the more they accomplish, the more they may have to sacrifice. They worry that men still veer away from "challenging" women because of a male atavistic desire to be the superior force in a relationship.

Good grief, this is ludicrous! I don't want to get into some silly bragging realm, but I always thought that by being smart and nicely put together (and what a chore that is (not) in this TV-stupified, Wal-Mart ridden, unhealthy, unattractive, mega-church, semi-literate, drop-dead boring culture) one attracts the best, and weeds out the kind of guy you wouldn't be caught (yawning) with.

Then again, I have the good fortune of living in the South and having been raised "southern," where, fortunately, no one ever told me you had to weed all of the wit and personality out of your life to be a successful, smart, sexy, happy, independent-minded woman. Or feminist.

Maureen hon, if you need a good time to go along with that Dream Job, I invite you to the ATL. Ain't too many good 'ole southern boys going to turn down a chance to see those red pumps fly across the bedroom, unless it's opening day for deer huntin', of course. And if it gets serious, well, you'll always have meat on the table!

Full What's A Modern Girl To Do? story here.


doro said...


I tried to e-mail your post to Ms.Dowd, but found I don't have the right kind of NYTimes account--$$.

One might speculate that she became a fishnet hose and red 4-inch heels kind of gal to overcome the connotations of her last name, don't you think?

No offense, Maureen--you succeeded.

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