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Sunday, December 2, 2012

On women who aren't... part 1

So in my last post I talked about Susan Venker's silly op-ed piece on, which I am once again dignifying with a response. Because actually, it got me thinking about what men really want.
See, I talk to a lot of guys too, and I think that Venker's wrong about what men really want. Of course men don't want some angry domineering ball-buster (I mean, well, some of them really, really do, but only in the Biblical sense, if you know what I mean), but banging and blaming simply aren't what mainstream feminism is about. And I posit that some of the women that men love most would not be who they were if they were Women, by Susan Venker's definition.

Tina Fey

Tina Fey may have scorched the cover of Esquire with her incredible hotness...

But the Tina Fey that men (and women) first fell in love with everywhere looked more like this:

Gorgeous, yes, but also brainy, wearing minimal makeup, and sporting a scar that might have kept her from the screen entirely a few generations ago. A scar that she never hides from the camera, that isn't even touched out in photos, though it easily could be, a scar that might have shamed someone like her grandmother from leaving the house.
And you probably wouldn't see either Tina Fey on TV if not for the groundwork laid down by the feminist movement. The first because respectable women did not appear scantily clad on the cover of a men's magazine, and the second because she might not be on television if not for her ambition in another field. Tina Fey didn't begin as a performer on Saturday Night Live, but as a writer - a woman in an overwhelmingly male-dominated field - one of only four women on a writing team of more than 20. When she became the head writer for Saturday Night Live in 1999, she was the first woman ever to fill the position. A few years later, she did what surprisingly few women have done - she created a hit television show: 30 Rock, which is loosely based on her experience at SNL. 
Fey doesn't just show up in tons of "most beautiful people" lists and on the covers of men's magazines, fashion magazines, and feminist magazines; she's also consistently ranked one of the most powerful and influential people in Hollywood.
If her husband, composer Jeff Richmond has a problem with being married to an ambitious, educated, successful, working mom, he hasn't said so. They've been married for 11 years - which is like, a century in Hollywood marriage years.
There are thousands of women in Hollywood more thin and beautiful than she is; the reason men and women love her is that she's hilarious, talented, strong, and brilliant. She's everything Venker claims a Woman isn't, but I don't know many straight men who would kick this woman out of bed. Or gay men. Or straight women...

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