Saturday, March 5, 2016

Agony Uncles, Sexism, Familiar Faces, and Romance

1. Started watching an episode of Home and Away.

2. Finished watching the episode.

3. Started watching an episode of Agony Uncles.

It seems to be about the plight of men.

I'm not sure I'm in the mood for that right now.

I'm feeling kind of sexist this week.  Or really. I'm tired of the sexism I see from men.  

For example, yesterday I read a disturbing article about heart disease being ignored and misdiagnosed in women.  

And there are a million other things like that around the world—some much more serious, and some much more trivial.

I don't think all or most men are obnoxious, sexist pigs.  But I think most of them probably have an ingrained subtle type of sexism.  What's really sad is I also see this subtle ingrained sexism in women (against women!) as well.  

2. Understood that men have a tough time of it too. And they face sexism as well.

Maybe Agony Uncles will remind me to be sympathetic about that.  

3. Saw celebrities from Agony Uncles that I recognize. I don't remember seeing their names on IMDb when I checked yesterday.

Maybe I'm not familiar enough with their names.

Well, I think I might have seen Lawrence Leung.  I know his name.

Then I also might have seen the actor from Tangle—the one who played Ben Mendelsohn's brother.  I don't know his name.

And there was another guy.  I forgot his name, but I think I just looked for it recently.  I think it's Damien something, but not the Damien who did the sugar movie.  

4. Googled and saw the sugar guy is a Damon, not Damien.  

5. Saw that the Damien guy is Damien Walshe-Howling.  

6. Started to Look through the cast list again.  Yesterday I looked only at the first few names, the ones on the page before you ask to see ALL of them. 

The actor from Tangle is Kick Gurry. 

Stephen Curry from The Secret Life of Us is also in the cast.

7. Saw Adam Elliot, the filmmaker, in the cast.

8. Had a sexist moment of my own.

I saw Kate Jenkinson, and wasn't going to mention her. Why? Because she's a woman, and I had it in my mind that this is a man's show.

What the hell?

9. Wanted to mention other Australians (male OR female!) that are familiar to me—Craig McLachlan,  Josh Lawson, Brett Tucker, Damien Walshe-Howling, Amanda Vanstone, Lawrence Leung, Maya Strange, Leah Purcell, Dawn Fraser, Dave Hughes, Kerri-Ann Kennerley, and Patrick McGorry.

There's also a Wendy Harmer. That name sounds vaguely familar to me.  

And I'm not sure about Leah Purcell. The name seems familiar, but I have no idea who she is.  

10. Saw that Leah Purcell is an Aboriginal actress.  

I guess I saw her in Love My Way.  She was in a few episodes of the third season.

Then again, I don't think I watched much of the third season. I kind of gave up on the show.

11. Looked at Wendy Harmer's filmography.  Nothing rings a bell for me. I think I've confused her with someone else.  

12. Started to feel more excited about Agony Uncles.

I like watching shows where I recognize many people.  

The thing is, though, when I watch shows with unfamiliar people, those people then become ones that are familiar to me.  The more I watch Australian television, the more familar people I get stored in my brain. 

13. Reminded by Agony Uncles that men are often the ones who have to initiate hetero-romantic encounters.  

Does that make it harder for them? Or is it harder for the women who have to sit around and wait, OR not sit around and wait and risk coming across as being too forward?  

It's been over twenty years since I've been in the partner-seeking game.  Maybe there's more evenness now?

Do most girls feel okay texting a guy first; or does she feel pressured to get a text from him first?  

How about in bars? Can a girl buy a guy a drink?  Well, of course she can. But will she be seen by most people as typical? Brave? Too forward? Aggressive? 

At school dances, is there an even number of girls asking the boys out, or do most boys have the task of asking a girl?

14. Amused by something one of the guys says on the show.  He says his strategy in meeting men is to spill a drink on them.  If they freak out about their clothes, it shows him they're too hung up on that kind of stuff.

That's pretty awful, but funny. 

15. Could imagine myself getting hung about certain items of clothing.

It's not about the money usually, because most of my clothes are hand-me-downs or from thrift shops. But I'm very picky about clothes and if I like something, I might be wearing it for decades.  I might get sad if a favorite item of clothing was ruined.

16.  Liked that Waleed Ally, and another man on the show, advise men to spend most of the conversation asking the other person about themselves.  

Though I say if the person keeps answering the questions, and never asks any questions of their own, run far far away.  

17. Thought about how I was taught to ask questions, and I'm glad about that.  I think what I had to learn on my own, though, was to show interest in the answers and ask follow up questions.

I think some narcissistic conversationalists fail to even ask any questions.  They show no or very little interest in the other person.  When they have conversations, they act like a celebrity being interviewed.  

Then there are other people who dutifully ask questions, but they don't respond to the answers.  Or they quickly change the conversation over to themselves.

So, how was your trip to Australia?

Great. It—

Where did you go?

To Melbourne, Sydney, and—

Oh, we've never been to Melbourne. Did you go to Queensland?  We went there and...blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.  

18. Thought of emails.

I've gotten many where there are no, or very little, questions about my life. The person just talks on and on about themselves.

Then I've gotten emails where someone asks questions. I answer, and then I get no response to what I've said.  I sit there thinking, uh...hello? What? Were you just collecting information?  

19. Saw men on the show talk about which women to avoid.

More than one said girls with father issues. That would include me.  

I think it's the same with men and mother issues. If they have negative feelings about their mother, it could play a part in how they feel about women in general.

20. Thought it also might be challenging if a man or woman's relationship with their parent is too positive.  They might too often put their parents wishes and needs before their partner's. They also might use their idealistic view of their parent as a measuring bar when judging the choices and behavior of their partner.  

21. Thought it's probably best to find a partner who has a close and positive relationship with their parent, but in a realistic rather than idealistic way.

22. Amused by Adam Elliot's advice. If you're a hairy gay man, seek out a man who's not hairy. Otherwise it will be like a velcro situation.  

23. Finished watching the episode.

I thought it was pretty interesting.

I look forward to seeing more of the show.

24. Wanted to mention that I started reading a new Australian novel last night—Lost in Kakadu.

It's a romance novel.

I can't read too many romance novels without getting annoyed. But I don't think I've read one in awhile, so I have a decent amount of tolerance right now.

I'm actually enjoying it.  

I think I took to it, because I could relate to the beginning on some level.

There's a woman whose husband treats her with absolute disdain.  On top of that, her daughter is bitchy to her and shows more affection towards the woman's rival.  

Well, what I should really say is I've had DAYS in my life that feel that way.  Fortunately, I'm not treated like absolute trash on a regular basis.

There are days, though, where I feel worthless and unloved.  

There are days where I feel no one is on my side.  

Those days can be quite lonely.  

25. Accidentally saw a spoiler for the book on Amazon.

It shocked me a bit.

It seems this book might not be as typical a romance as I expected.

One of the husbands in it reminds me a lot of my husband.

I remember thinking that when I read the book years ago.

27. Considered the idea that I don't exist, and maybe I'm just a character in a Moriarty-sister novel.

I FEEL like I'm real. But so do characters in books I read. How often do we see characters in novels questioning their realness?  I've seen it very few times. Maybe only once, actually. 

Characters usually assume they're real, just like I assume I'm real.  They're NOT real, so then it could be the case that I'm not real either.