The feminine isn’t an absolute

I’m not going to take advice from anyone with the word “alpha” in their username, a rule that seems to work fairly robustly.

It’s strange that anyone would have such a binary view of how women should be. You know that it’s possible to appreciate spiders without chugging beer and smashing cans on your forehead, right? And that arachnophobia isn’t a parameter on the femininity spectrum? People are more complex than that.

But who am I to talk? My vision of idealized femininity was fixed in the 1960s.

I wonder what she thinks of spiders? I’m pretty sure she would have seen them as one of our fellow creatures, man, you know, like part of nature.


  1. wzrd1 says

    Following the advice of anyone warning of a slippery slope while nowhere near an actual slope leaves one in danger of sliding down that slippery slope into the shit.
    This message was typed on level land…

  2. Thornapple says

    It’s even stranger that “alpha” males like the above think they have an actual understanding what “femininity” actually means. Even worse when mainsplaining their understanding to actual women, be it online or to their faces

  3. jenorafeuer says

    The first line, “My girl is afraid of spiders and that’s sexy.”

    And my thought was pretty much, “So, to you it’s ‘sexy’ for a woman to be afraid of something harmless thus giving you the opportunity to play-act the ‘great protector’ for the least possible amount of effort. That… really doesn’t say positive things about you or your ‘alphaness’.”

  4. says

    My vision of idealized femininity was also fixed in the 1960s, although more from Star Trek than The Smothers Brothers, I’m afraid.
    Green chicks, android twins, Sally Kellerman with glowing eyes…even the Nazi babe, all influenced this impressionable youth. All good, as long as they don’t turn out to be salt-sucking monsters. That’s the deal-breaker.

  5. silvrhalide says

    What if the girl in question is a 5 year old girl who isn’t afraid of mice because she has pet mice and isn’t afraid of spiders because she thinks they are pretty?
    Is she not “feminine” enough for this knob?
    When she turns into a teenager, will she have to pretend to be afraid, so this underwhelming, underperforming knob won’t socially harass, stalk and/or bully her for not being “feminine” enough, because stomping spiders in front of a girl makes him feel like a man and is also about the limit of his usefulness?

    What if the teenage girl holds on to her true self and still likes mice and spiders? Wouldn’t that leave TFG shit out of luck? Heck, he might have get some actual skills AND a likable personality if he wants to get a girlfriend! And that would take effort!

    I guess it’s just easier for this knob to put women in smaller boxes than it is to grow into a bigger person.

    While this knob clearly will not think the 5 year old girl who isn’t afraid of spiders and mice as feminine, will he also consider her not sexy? (SPOILER: NO ONE should think of any 5 year old as “sexy”.) Although given how hard incels/PUAs/MRAs are trying to normalize pedophilia, I think it is unfortunately a question worth asking.
    HINT: If you mean “women”, then SAY “women”. Do not call actual women “girls”.

    Just a reminder that toxic societal messages about femininity and worth start EARLY and are pervasive.

  6. moonslicer says

    @ #4 & #6

    I looked into it. The “Hippie Chick” was played by the actress Leigh French.

  7. says

    My general rule: Anyone who calls themselves an “alpha” “sigma” or “chad” is insecure about their masculinity, desperately seeking out validation from people who drank the same Kool-Aid.

  8. dbarkdog says

    Well my wife and daughter would be concerned about the spider’s welfare and certainly not afraid of it. The certainly would not behave like the drama boys in the video in the next post. I wonder whether it has occurred to alpha dude that some of us find strong and competent women much more attractive than the helpless creatures of their fantasy.

  9. dbarkdog says

    Oops. I failed to reckon with lag and posted the same point twice. I shall return to lurker status.

  10. anthrosciguy says

    She did the “Share a Little Tea with Goldie” segment. The one with Don Knotts was terrific:

    Goldie: “Tea? Don’t worry, it’s just regular tea.”
    Don: “Thank you.”
    Goldie (holding sugar lump): “Sugar?”
    Don: “NO!”

    Maybe you had to be there.

  11. says

    “You know that it’s possible to appreciate spiders without chugging beer and smashing cans on your forehead, right? ”

    Do you have any proof of that? And you call yourself a scientist.

  12. whheydt says

    My late wife wasn’t afraid of spiders or mice. She was definitely feminine. She didn’t drink so the chugging beer and smashing the cans would have been right out.
    She also had a degree in Linguistics from UC Berkeley, was a Trekkie (to the point that she researched and wrote the first two years of the Star Trek Concordance). She had two novels and about 30 short stories published.

  13. magistramarla says

    Seems to me that your wife and I would have gotten along well.
    My degree is in Classical languages, and I am definitely a Trekkie.
    I wish that I could have met her.
    So sorry for your loss.

  14. Ed Seedhouse says

    If I was, say, 30 years younger I could definitely go for a woman like the one described by the guy you were replying to.

  15. birgerjohansson says

    My vision of femininity was also set in the 1960s by a science fiction series; the German Raumpatrouille, contemporary with Star Trek. They had a woman space admiral.

    Fear of creepy-crawlies is incorporated from the people around you at an early age. If they are cool with spiders, you will be cool.

  16. tuatara says

    My partner would simply not have been interested in me if I were into killing innocent spiders or mice, chuggng beer and crushing the empties on my own meat fore -head (but she can swear like a trooper – she is English after all).
    Rivelino’s vision of masculinity is the toxic version that no women I know actually like.

  17. whheydt says

    Re: tuatara @ #23…
    It was a standing joke between us that, had I been interested in football or other popular culture sports, she would never have given me a second look.

    Re: magistramarla @ #20 and Ed Seedhouse @ #21…
    She was also active in the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA). Her first SCA event was the second one ever held. She did a fair amount of bardic work in the SCA. And, indeed, it was in the SCA that we met. Moastly because I showed up at my first event using a drop spindle and she was trying the get a spinners guild going.

  18. StevoR says

    Femininity and masculinity are subjective and in the beholders eyes almost by definition.

    Odysseus wept. Jesus wept.

    Pink was once a “boys colour” & blue a woman’s -and both still can be and are.

    So many varying roles and exampels of what they can be Stereotypes ain’t reality though myab eb somehwat based on statistics of waht many prefer to do and be and yeah..

    Oh & both woemna and men can eb into or outta sports, arts, science, whatever and this has no actual bearing ontheir gender. Aside from, y’know bigits bein’ bigiots.

    Oh & #8 silvrhalide & #3 Thornapple & #5 jenorafeuer nailed it here & are spot on too.

  19. says

    I recently read a short fantasy story about a young woman who wasn’t afraid of spiders: A Gown of Spider Silk by A.G. Marshall. If anyone is interested it’s available at Amazon for .99. It’s also in a collection of six short stories, which may also interest people.