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misogyny

MoltenMetalMama – another of my many titles – is a self-professed slut. If you’ve read anything on this blog, you’ll know. If you’ve read my blog serial “Quantum Demonology”, you will know that the protagonist and I are, in fact, not so very different.

Now, there are sluts, slags, skanks and even slut wannabes. My personal definition of slutdom is as follows:

A slut is a woman of any sexual orientation who takes control of her own sexuality, is not afraid to use it, is not afraid to venture into uncharted territory for kicks or revelations, cares nothing for convention or morals defined by anyone other than herself, and above all else, shows a certain discrimination. In other words, she’s smart enough – yes, a slut has brains, surprised? – to settle for what she wants, and she doesn’t want just anyone with a certain appendage, no matter the persuasion. Sluts are selective.

Skanks and slags, on the other hand, will do anyone, will put out for anything. Nothing wrong with that, if that’s what they want.

Sluts, however, are rarely that desperate. Even at my age, which takes both self discipline and dedication. Especially at my age.

World-class sluts, the ones who have thought about it, and many of us do, know that the war of the sexes – or should that be the War of Sex? – comes down to six words.

We’ve got it. They want it.

Or so I thought until yesterday, that is.

Welcome to the world of dick. The d in that last word should, by rights, be capitalized, but I refuse. I refuse to give that level of credence? Credibility? Credit? To that kind of…how shall I put it…

Satire would be the correct word, I guess. If by satire you mean the kind of vitriol that sticks in your craw and refuses to budge no matter how hard you swallow (and I do!), the sort of verbal poison that rubs you down like a Brillo pad on tender membranes, then yes – I’ll be generous, wtf. Satire.

Satire of a sublimely, nay, supremely asinine kind.

Yesterday, by accident, I came across the website of the notorious, nay, infamous! – Dick Masterson.

I should have known there would be trouble with that for a pseudonym. I should have known, when the URL is…
menarebetterthanwomen.com

O…K. One of THOSE…

Now, readers, I am no stranger to misogyny, and I have the albums to prove it. But metal misogyny, as I’ve noted before, is of a particular, not-quite-convincing sort, the kind not even the performers themselves can deliver without planting their tongues somewhere in someone’s cheek. (If not always their own.)

So, back to the…erm…satire. I somehow make my way – planting indelible cast-iron doorstops on the doors of my mind to keep them from slamming shut from the backdraft – through part 3 of “Why Women Hate Sex”, and I’m sorry to say it but I’m still none the wiser, and remember, I’m a slut and frankly, surprised. I am, after all, a) a woman, and b) a slut who loves sex. Supposedly, we hate sex because it means we have to lose control. We hate it because we’re allergic to the effluvium that comes with it.

Well, blow my mind! And here I am, using condoms all these years, so how the fuck would I know?

Um, yeah. About that…loss of control Thang. That’s like, totally the point, right? Or is that another obvious oversight on my pathetic part, since obviously, I come with a built-in manufacturing defect – being a woman and all. Did I mention the part about men loving fast cars and “loose women”? Errr – contradiction? Ya think? Since he spent all those words explaining Why Women Hate Sex? If “loose women” are women, after all, shouldn’t they hate sex, too? Or are they only after the tip you stuff into their pasties after a lap dance? In other words – you’re paying for attention? But that’s OK. You’re a MAN.

Uh-huh. I rest my case.

Satire. OK. So out there, you – nor I, apparently, not that I have any IQ worth mentioning except in a negative sense – simply cannot and should not take it without at least a ton of salt – kosher or non, sea- or rock, your choice.

So why don’t I think it’s funny? Have I misplaced my sense of humor? Dislocated my sense of irony? Have I proven without a doubt now that I really AM an inferior species of being without a brain?

Actually, I think what gets my goat is the fact that this – exemplar of the “hypermasculine” variety, although not my kind – is making a bomb and a name for himself by capitalizing on the inherent misogyny of this so-called best of all worlds, by giving himself free reign to state the kind of locker-room drivel most of the men I hang out with will only say after a bottle of Jack D’s and only to get my goat, but then again, I have a thing about guys with brains, who apparently have a thing for short, busty sluts with large vocabularies and short fuses.

My rant would have ended there, but this morning, yet another internet mind bomb went off in my sorry excuse of cerebrum. A famous Danish feminist wrote in a national Danish newspaper this morning how she’s considering cancelling her membership to a nationwide gym chain, because they’re now offering “strip fitness” classes. She objects to the pornification of women.

In other words, ladies and gents, a backlash of a particularly nefarious and insidious kind. Not enough, that we have to look like porn stars to be considered desirable – there went any illusions I have ever owned as to my now disreputable “desirability”. Then again, I’m well past the age of 35, so according to Dick Masterson, I’ve apparently lost my “whore pass” a whopping twelve years ago. Not enough, that all body hair beneath our upper hairlines has to be removed in a painful or repetitive fashion. Not enough, that our racks are not big enough (call in the saline implants, pronto!) or else too big, too low, too saggy, too old. Not enough, that practically every teenaged girl I know hates her body with a purple fashion, because it’s not pornified enough.

The power has been returned to its “rightful” owners – men. Men who get to define desire, men who get to demand pornification, men who get what in art history is called The Gaze returned to them, and let the ladies run around like headless chickens to conform to that near impossible ideal. Let the ladies attend strip fitness classes, so they know what to do with a pole longer than ten inches. Let those ladies grovel in the face of awesome masculine superiority. Shove those pretty, Botoxed faces right where they belong, and any guy worth the name knows where that is, just so long as they get to grab her by the hair and show her who’s boss.

Or else just – reject it altogether. Maybe I should, seeing as I’m too old. I don’t look like a porn star, but I still have my moments.

Even if I do think that any pole longer than ten inches is an awful waste!

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Image: pibillwarner.wordpress.com

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In the interests of furthering my musical education – or my inner maladjusted teenager, take your pick – I recently watched a BBC4 documentary on the history of heavy metal called “Heavy Metal Britannia”. It traced the origins of British heavy metal through the hazy days of influences such as Blue Cheer, Iron Butterfly, the Yardbirds and Cream, to Led Zeppelin, Uriah Heep and Deep Purple on to the embryonic beginnings of bands such as Black Sabbath and Judas Priest in the Stygian industrial wastelands of Birmingham, and all the way to the Eighties, when Judas Priest and Iron Maiden ruled the world, or at least the world of aural metal, the territory left over that the likes of Yngwie Malmsteen hadn’t conquered yet.

Documentaries such as this one usually pack some hidden agenda, a buried subtext in black or white – the team behind it either digs it, or doesn’t, but there’s rarely any kind of middle ground. So I won’t even get into my entire gripe about the craptacular songs they used to illustrate what BBC4 defines as “heavy metal”, quotation marks included.

What really made me wonder was a throwaway statement that was meant to be ignored, overlooked and likely forgotten. The speaker had a certain cringe in his voice as he said it, a twinge of

I-so-did-not-say-that

.

Since I am a thoroughly perverted, corrupt, filthy-minded female who pays attention, I caught it. I not only caught it, I had a long hard look – and started thinking.

Always a perilous exercise.

C’mon. Your curiosity is killing you, right?

Apparently, back in the day, back in the Eighties when I was (much) young(er) and still had a few illusions punk hadn’t killed off, metal was – a guy thing.

Well, blow my mind!

That’s right. Hair bands were for female delectation, which is why, I’m guessing, Brett Michaels turned it into his entire career.

REAL metalheads – the kind who took it seriously, the kind who lived for it, the kind who headbanged at every opportunity, the ones who wanted it LOUD, who liked it PROUD, who wanted nothing more than in-your-face-all-out-aural-Armageddon…were walking testaments to testosterone who preferred more of the same as their musical justification for existence.

Right. We fluffy-minded females were just around for the ride, because our boyfriends dug it, because the dudes were smokin’, because – ladies, let’s face it, it didn’t get hip for us until the Nineties, at least in any way we could admit to in public without blushing. Chris Cornell has a lot to answer for.

Misogyny and music have a long and interleaved history, and metal and misogyny no less. So let’s start with that one.

I hate, detest and loathe stereotyping, I hate orthodoxy, I hate, despise and disdain people who have an urge to pigeonhole everything and nothing into tidy, small-minded labels, roles and sub-cultures that are easily defined, easily grasped by the masses, and just as easily digested.

I hate it because I’m one of those irritating people who just happen to think that great music is great music and who gives a dipshit if it comes with corpse paint? Or even corpses, artfully deranged?

On my planet, music is music. Period. I like all sorts and all kinds, but as I’ve grown older, I’ve gotten darker. It’s the loss of all those illusions. It’s killing me, I’m tellin’ ya.

And wowee, here we go, wheel in the dank and dirty misogyny in all its gory glory – a long and distinguished list of dedicated testosterone bombs whom I dare not name wailing over w-o-m-a-n one way or another.

Once you get to the point where you can actually decipher the lyrics – and pick a genre, any kind of death, doom, thrash, grindcore, nu-metal whatthefuckever, there’s no lack of creatively phrased ways of stating, just as a former boyfriend did to my face one time, that women are the root of ALL evil. Whether it’s Danni Filth in “Nymphetamine” or Peter Steele’s brilliantly titled “I know you’re fucking someone else” (no hidden lights under THAT bushel, with the axe on the D train to Brighton Beach following, any day) – it’s all – bad.

Oh, for the misery we ladies so love to inflict!

What would music be without it?

What makes me wonder – just because I am that kind of pervert – is whether it’s misconstrued as misogyny when all I’m hearing are many different versions and flavors of that age-old standby –

‘you’ve-got-it-and-I-want-it-BAD.’

That’s right. The entire devolution of male and female relations in eight words. And at least eighty thousand songs, some obvious, some not so much.

Meanwhile, since the misogynistic Eighties (take my word for that), things have changed. Gene Simmons once famously stated that women will not be able to play hard rock until they learn how to acknowledge that part of themselves that’s hairy and stinks.

Since then, many metal-minded women can do that quite as well as anyone, even with Hollywood wax jobs.

For which I, for one, am profoundly grateful. As profoundly grateful as I am for all the rest of them – the testosterone bombs bewailing or berating their harsh fates at the hands of the Liliths of this world.

Let’s face it – it gave us some spectacular songs.

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