Laura Sessions Stepp is wondering what it means to be manly, and of course she has to resort to the cultural phenomenon of the last 30 minutes, Pirates of the Caribbean 3, and has invented an overwrought story that modern men are all confused by this swishy style personified by Captain Jack Sparrow — the fey sway, the frilly shirt, the lace on the wrist — and that all this business of empowering women is so stressful to young men.
I’m sorry, it’s too ridiculous for words. The only people who could possibly pull off that pirate style are Johnny Depp and Prince.* And I think it’s quite reasonable that women should be assertive and laugh away any fellow thinks the right pastels and properly gilded accessories will cause them to swoon into his arms.
Besides, I saw the movie, and know who the real masculine role models are. Grubby fellows who only occasionally shave and who have extraordinarily poor dental hygiene and a tendency to belch and wipe the excess rum off their faces with their sleeves. I swear, the fashionistas ought to be looking at these guys for fashion trends. This is where it’s at, bros.
It’s what I settle for, anyway.
At least until a few more years pass and biotechnology progresses so I can aspire to the full tentacle look, that is.
*OK, not entirely true. Connlann can pull it off—but then, he inherited his looks from his mom and his attitude from his dad.