Thursday, July 29, 2010

This is why we can't have nice things

I started reading this, thinking "Wow, you're really missing the point." Then it developed into "Um, wow, you're a terrifying person."

It's about Mad Men, so I've checked for major spoilers, and luckily, it's light on them. A certain coblogger is missing out.

He starts off soft with #10, but let's take a few highlights:

No.9 - Sleep with the boss's secretary

Sleeping with your secretary is one thing, but going after your boss’ secretary -- that’s something even the ballsiest guys wouldn’t do today. When Peggy shows up as Don’s new secretary, Pete blatantly hits on her. Even though he’s rebuffed and even though he’s on the eve of getting married, he still goes over to her place for a booty call. She knows he’s a weasel, but she sleeps with him again in his office. Today, you can’t even call her a secretary, let alone call her a "dirty slut" in the heat of passion.

I didn't want to quote the whole thing, but man, this is creepy. He apparently wants to be as creepy as possible while still being able to have sex, AND be as mean as possible during. Obviously, anyone who writes this piece is going to, you know, be the kind of guy who watches Schindler’s List and roots for the Germans. But this is pretty early to just announce that he wants to yell slurs at women for sleeping with him, and he’s only interested in the ones who would object – you can call people anything you want if they’re into it; you just get in trouble for pissing people off. Secondary point: you’re completely free to sleep with the boss’s secretary in 2010. It was the kind of thing that would get you in trouble in 1960 more than the present, because remarkably, we don’t think of secretaries as the sexual property of their bosses any more. This guy just failed to get with his boss’s secretary.

No.8 - Make sexist jokes

While only the most misogynist among us wants to hurt women with our comments, there would be something great about being able to openly make sexist jokes like Roger Sterling.

We don’t want to hurt women, we just want to say hurtful things to them while not noticing if it does any damage!

No.6 - Orchestrate huge pranks

They spend work hours planning and executing pranks, like filling Pete’s office with a Chinese laundry service: “Who put the Chinamen in my office?” When Don hears about the prank, he doesn’t worry about harassment or "hate crimes.”

Um, hey, the thing about the prank that’s funny isn’t that it’s racialized. He just wants to shout ethnic slurs, apparently.

No.5 - Be politically incorrect

People in today’s society are so ready to be offended. They go looking for it by over-reading into every thing that is said about race, religion and sex. It’s getting to the point no one can make a slightly offensive joke. Mad Men just say whatever they want. Roger asks Don: “Have we hired any Jews?” Draper replies: “Not on my watch!”

Umm, what the fuck? I don’t think I’m oversensitive when I think it’s offensive that someone wouldn’t hire Jews. They’re joking about the fact that they hate Jews. And it’s not offensive in the way that curse words are offensive. It’s offensive because it’s the kind of thing that really makes life suck for people. There were neighborhoods my dad and his parents couldn’t live in in 1960 New York. Definitely couldn’t go to the country clubs where big business deals were conducted. It’s not a question of sensitivity. It fucking sucked that firms like Sterling Cooper didn’t hire Jews in 1960.

I’m not going to bother to quote #4, but he gets the name of the firm wrong (he probably thinks that 30 Rock is a hilarious sendup of life at the BBC), and then comes off as objectively pro-rape. Not even objectively – subjectively pro-rape.

The rest seems to be whining about Facebook and responsibility. Yawn. But seriously, this guy is terrifying.

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