Monday, May 11, 2015

Degrading Behavior

I've been watching a lot of Puberty Blues today.  I've grown to like it. But I've also been having waves of depression through out the day.  Since I was a happy camper yesterday, I have reason to believe the show is the cause of my negative emotional state.

Puberty Blues is mostly about teenage girls who let surfer boys treat them like shit.  It's depressing to think of women allowing men to treat them like that.

Lord Wiki made me feel a little bit better though by telling me that the famous book, the show is based on, has a feminist slant.  From what he says, Puberty Blues is not just about women putting themselves in degrading situations, but about women pulling themselves OUT of the degradation.

Okay. And I also should admit that Lord Wiki had to explain a few things to me. I didn't quite understand what was going on in the show.  These girls are so eager to hook up with these boys. They don't complain that the boys aren't interested in talking to them, and only want sex.  Nor do the girls complain when the boys demand that the girls fetch food for them.  I wondered...was this common behavior in the late 1970's?  The only women I ever imagined acting this way were groupies.

WELL...what I didn't get and Lord Wiki had to tell me is that the girls on the show ARE groupies. Instead of being rockstar groupies, they're surfer groupies.

The show makes me wonder how many of us would sink to such behavior if we were put in that situation?

And what are those situations?

I'd say it was mostly A) being attracted to someone to the point of idolization. And they're much less attracted to us. B) Wanting to be part of a group.

In Puberty Blues, it seems to be more about the latter. Sue (Brenna Knight) and Debbie (Ashleigh Cummings) want to be part of the surfer clique; and seem happy to hook up with any surfer that will take them.

Even those of us who are not groupies, probably have allowed ourselves to be treated like shit at times, because we wanted to be loved and accepted.  What might be even more depressing is the idea that we might sometimes play the other part in the scenario—take advantage of someone's devotion to us.  We might not demand they have sex with us, or fetch us our chiko rolls and redskins.  But we might treat them like dirt in other ways.  Maybe more subtle ways...but it still can be hurtful.