Monday, November 05, 2007

Where Have All The Cojones Gone?

“He needs to be a badass, like Steve McQueen.”

A writer friend and I were talking about his new script. He’s written a fabulous throwback to the great action suspense films of the 70s and we were brainstorming on who could play the lead.

“Tim Olyphant!” I chirped, relishing my Deadwood hero.

“Right vibe but too old.”

He was right. Not that Tim’s old but part in question calls for a twentysomething. So who in the world of Hollywood fits that bill these days? Who would play young Steve McQueen? We pondered this for a while longer and came up dry. We could not think of one manly actor in this whole town.

Now, as a lifelong poet-loving anglo-phile, I dig the whole emo thing as much as the next girl but the universal androgeny of the modern male is getting disturbing. I kind of want my eyeliner back.

Sharing tales of missing masculinity with girlfriends, I hear the same stories echoed back at me. It seems a girl can’t get a manly man in this town. It’s absolutely insane. We spent our teens and twenties being good girls, worrying about our overall partner counts and making sure (ill-considered one night stands aside) to only sleep with men who meant something – who really loved us. Now in our thirties, we’re less deluded, more well-rounded, fascinating babes and we can’t get laid to save our lives. Guys, it seems, have turned frigid.

My girlfriends in relationships talk about how, more often than not, it’s their man who’s not in the mood. I myself spent many teary moments in my last relationship crying myself to sleep as I wondered what was wrong with me.

My singleton friends share tales of meeting guys who seem interested – with whom they’d be totally willing – and the guys never follow up. “I can’t even get a decent one night stand if I wanted to,” a friend wailed recounting a night of dancing at a club and being flirted with all night by a young buck only to watch him leave laughing with his guy friends. So I ask for the frustrated females everywhere: what is wrong with the modern male?

Are guys really so afraid of rejection that they don’t try anymore? Have they actually lost their libidos? Are they all secretly gay? We really want to know.

I’m not saying I’m craving a return to the James Bond misogyny where a guy just took a girl even if she said no. And I’m not suggesting we just want sex for sex’s sake. We still want love and partnership and all the rest of it. But right here and now let’s dispel the myth that girls are the ones who could take it or leave it. I didn’t make it through the repression of my twenties just to hit puritanical thirties.

And apparently, we’re also dispelling the myth that guys want it and are on all the time. Much like realizing unicorns aren’t real, and if you’re a good person good things will come to you, this is one myth that really sucks to let go of.



Blogger Brea said...

i talk about this issue ALL THE TIME. what's going on??

12:02 PM  
Anonymous Mutant poodle said...

I think it depends on what you mean by manly man. I'll assume that you're talking about internal, as opposed to external (cowboy/race car driver/fireman) criteria, and just say that manly men are those who know who they are and what they want, and perhaps those are what are in short supply in this town.

There are those who don't know who they are but want desperately to get laid - but I imagine those are pretty easy to sniff out.

As for the libido of guys in a relationship, it can just be stuff - it happens to all of us, after all - or it could be, sadly, that old Bill Maher line: Show me a beautiful woman and I'll show you a guy who's tired of f___ing her.

Politically incorrect, indeed.

2:33 PM  

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