Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Because Apparently the Choices Are Tweedle-dum or Tweedle-dee


Yesterday I was reading Nem's blog and came across a link to a blog titled "Why Mormon Girls Stay Single." There were no details, it was just a link thrown out with a request for Nem to look at it a little bit closer and some day in the future share her thoughts. Not knowing anything about the blog, I skimmed a couple of posts, thinking that it was authored by a couple of funny female roommates with a healthy dose of self-deprecation about single, Mormon women. But closer scrutiny told me that it must be a couple of guys writing. Sure enough, post-ers PP and EQP were acronyms for "Peter Priesthood" and "Elder's Quorum President." This should have been my first red flag: all manner of false doctrine might be shared under cover of righteousness and leadership.

After a few fairly informative and funny-ish posts, I looked at their archive and was drawn to the post titled "Hatin' on the Hot Chick." It was not informative, nor even funny-ish. Unless, of course, pure mean-ness is the new funny.

Their gripe is, of course, that women get jealous of the girl who seems to get all the dates. This girl is, of course, the "Hot Chick." (In my apartment we called this girl the "Naked Mole Rat." Which is a very funny story with a definite science geek angle that might need to be told some time.) There is a legitimate point here--women do tend to, often with unexpected results that backfire, undermine one another when it comes to dating. Married women sometime act this way too; it may not be men that are at stake, but women still will attempt to outshine one another in our own imitation at corporate climbing. However, after the initial sentence or two, the Hot Chick post quickly deteriorates into something that caused my gag reflex to work overtime and make me fear for a future when LDS men have bought hook line and sinker into pop culture.

In another post, PP and EQP insist that "all" (since they seem to speak for all) men are looking for women who are independent, assertive and confident. Yet in the above referenced post they make the following thesis statement, "Here's the deal . . . we want to date the hot girl too!" Which seems to negate all else these boys claim to be looking for. But not to worry, the good brethren throw single women everywhere a bone with the best advice I've ever heard. "Make yourself hot." And what is the prize for this Paris Hilton-like descent into babe-dom? "We'll reward your efforts with a nice meal, an occasional movie," (there is even another post that gives advice about what kind of movies and nice, classic girly books to say you are interested in) "and a possible make out." At this point, every single women is probably panting with eagerness and thinking, "Goody!" Forget about emulating any positive role model you've ever met or read about. Heck! Forget about following the Savior's example! It is all about taking "drastic measures to get hot."
But lest we think that there is no hope for girls who are not "hot," let's look at this gemstone paragraph, "Guys never hang around girls because they're 'good friends'. They are just biding their time waiting for an open invitation for some nookie. Give it to them, they will love you more than any 'McDreamy' who's not even wasting his time on you."
It is hard to say on how many levels these three sentences are wrong. When I was a single, at least a pre-mi single, several of my closest friends were guys. There is no way they could have wanted to hang out with me because we had wonderful conversations and hilarious times. I'm fairly convinced that it will come as a shock to every single one of them that what they were really waiting for a was a make-out from my 20 year old self. Remember all those racquetball games, boys? Now I know what you were REALLY up to. It is a wonder that your fabulous wives will even speak to me for the jealousy they must each feel.

What PP and EQP (and probably many single men and too many husbands) seem to be missing is the realization that Hot Chick is just a woman too. And, I'm sorry to say, she might even have more security issues than Regular Chick. In the morning, Hot Chick also has b.o., haltosis and bed head. Hot Chick's gorgeous hair color, luscious skin and lovely feet look a lot less attractive when she is no longer paying the hairdresser, the MaryKay saleslady and the monthly pedicurist herself. She'll turn into a chocolate-loving Harpie every 28 days who dares say the word Tampax in your presence. She will come with student loans, family issues and relationship baggage, as will Regular Chick. Also, if she is really the pure and naive vision of loveliness these brilliant BYU alum no doubt insist on, she will have no more clue about sex than Regular Chick, so you can put THAT fantasy to rest right now. She will put on a minimum of 30 pounds when she is pregnant, but it might be 60 or 70 or . . . you get the picture. That same pregnancy will leave stretch marks on her lovely once-fakey-tanned tummy. Night after sleepless night of nursing babies will cause Hot Chick to put her hair in a ponytail every day, or heaven forbid, cut off that big sexy hair all together. Hot Chick will probably be a lot more likely to insist on the tummy tuck and the boob job after the babies--after all, you have taught her what the cost of your love is.

And no chick, hot or otherwise, will be immune to life's inevitable challenges. Maybe what single Mormon men (and women) need to say when they look at the opposite sex is, "How will this person handle it when we are out of work for six months?" "Will this person be happy with three kids in a two bedroom apartment?" "Will this person crack under the pressure when our children come home with inevitable problems?" "Will this person validate my emotions, even when they are unreasonable, and love me over the rough times?" And married people need to remember their own humanity when trying to scrutinize Partner's faults too closely.

There is another incomprehensibly asinine paragraph in the Hot Chick post, comparing women (and I guess men too, the analogy is a little bit vague) to cars. Basically, don't go looking for a Mercedes Benz when you are a Ford Focus. To this glittering nugget of wisdom I'd like to say that I can probably count on one hand the number of men I would say were anything more than an Edsel before age 25 or 30. You see, PP and EQP, what makes a man attractive to a woman has less to do with money, power or looks (all variations on the "size matters" theme) is COMMITMENT. When a man shows, over time, that he will be there day in and day out even when it is hard, even when life is real and difficult, then it matters a whole lot less how "hot" he was to begin with and is about who is becoming. When a woman knows that a man loves her, really loves her, she will reciprocate in ways even she doesn't know she's capable of: in her eyes you will become the prince of her dreams that comes in the door every night; the Mercedes in the driveway, the lover she snuggles next to as she falls into her dreams each night.

And a man who would give up all of that for "hot?" Well, he really deserves to sleep alone every night. PP and EQP think they have figured out why Mormon women are single? In reality they have exactly pinpointed why Mormon men are: because too many of them would trade their birthright for a mess of pottage.

Their blog has been very instructive, however; it is has given me a great example of what kind of boys NOT to raise.


CaLM RAPIDS said...

Er has a few naked mole rat roommates and it's really hard to explain to her that when it comes time to be serious with someone, guys are going to be looking for the smart, confident ones who are doing something worthwhile with their lives. Not the ones who can't think for themselves, swear, lie, manipulate and use their 'friends' and skip church. And, hopefully, the smart girls will attract the smart guys who have better things to do than blog about hot chicks.

Nerd Goddess said...

I did not when I was dating, and do not now, think I am "hot." I had self-confident issues, I was lonely, and life overall was not very fun. Strangely enough, my husband felt the same way when he was dating. After we met, grew to love each other, and got married, we've come to realize the truly beautiful or handsome qualities in each other, but also we've found ourselves deeply committed in a healthy, growing relationship. We're still young. We've only been married about a month. I know there's a lot of life ahead of us, but I know my husband would handle it. I'd rather have him any day than one of those meatheads who wrote that blog.

Thanks for the rant. :)

P.P. & E.Q.P. said...

I just love your comments!!!! It flatters me how much time you have put on this blog to recognize lil ol' me! However, I wonder about this urgency you have to raise your boys differently than I was assumingly raised. I am just a boy with no hangups. I don't smoke, drink, swear, lie, or skip out on church. I am cordial and friendly with everyone I meet and have a very strong familial unit. Just to give you insight on my blog, this is strictly satire and I am only just touching on things guys and girls in the singles wards talk about. I am not conjuring falsehoods, however I am just documenting the gripes and concerns that we as YSA all have at least once or twice heard, but have left taboo to talk about. I would never want to make a negative comment to personally offend an individual. I think it's better. As for stalking your page, Google Alerts did it for me, so don't get all flustered that someone actually is checking out your site to learn about you and your wonderful family. Excuse me, but I need to get back to my actual career. Now stop being bitter, please? You know you love me! XOXO

Janssen said...

Speechless!! That comment is just fodder for many a blog post.

Anyway, I too followed that link from Nemesis' comments yesterday (after seeing your comment), read a few posts and then had to just close the window because it was that that bad.

Also, we should pretend not to read Twilight? Because it's better to pretend to read "acceptable" books than to own up to reading something for the fun of it?

I must stop now, before I've written an entire post about it. But yes, I agree with you on every point.

Melanie said...

Fabulous post! Honestly, I may print this one out and . . .put it somewhere . . .or, better yet, forward it on to every guy I know. Being a YSA is an exciting, frustrating, thrilling, heart-wrenching experience. My theory for this (and probably every other situation in life) is that we're all imperfect beings just trying to do the best we can.

chris w said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
chris w said...

LOL!!! I have a feeling that "Peter" is going to look back on this post when he is married and has kids (especially if he has a girl) and is going to cringe at the things that came out of his mouth. At least I hope. :)

STM, PLEASE tell (in only the wonderful way you could) the naked mole rat analogy. I told it to my YW in a very non-"hatin' on the hot chick" way. Ahh...good science geek/single memories.

Suburban Hippie said...

This post is brilliant. PP & EQP is a moron.

Kimberly Bluestocking said...

I really try to communicate to my Young Women class that what you really want in a spouse is someone you can depend on in the trenches of life. All the world teaches them to value are looks and charm, but after marriage those turn to ashes in your mouth if you can't respect and depend on your spouse.

On the flip side, if you marry someone with good character who'll stand strong by your side, you'll always feel like they're the most handsome, charming person you know. Talk about a win-win. :)

Slyck and Slim said...

I loved this post! That is exactly the reason I was so anti-guy in college. I sent the link to my YSA in-laws for their feedback.

Science Teacher Mommy said...

Girls: What a bunch of gorgeous, fabulous friends I have.

Peter: NOW who's hatin' on the hot chick?

Anonymous said...

WOW!!! This post is awesome! I also agree with everything you said and wow Peter is great to stop by and notice your blog. I wonder though if he or she for that matter is really who they say they are. Call me a cynic, but maybe they are trying to come the male version of Seriously so Blessed. Also this is RA, but I don't want anyone coming on my blog from this comment.

amyjane said...

Thanks for writing this for me. I checked out th blog after seeing the link on Nem's as well, and thought all these things, but didn't have to words to say them.
You're a great writer and I think it's awesome that you tell it like it is.
Also, yeah. The part where you talked about being able to handle being jobless, or getting up all night with a sick baby, or whatever. That's what it all comes down to. Not being able to make out really good.
Some people's kids...

chosha said...

"...because too many of them would trade their birthright for a mess of pottage."

Exactly. And I agreed with everything else you said, too. I'm also laughing that Peter felt the need to defend himself and say how nice he is really, all while leaving a catty and petty comment. I've also been irked on that blog to see how they refer to girls giving them a hard time as a 'sweet spirit' with all its mean, sarcastic implications. Could they be more typical Mormon-boy asses? No, I think not.

And do you have the right to critique their 'suggestions'? Given the Rolls Royce marriage you and the boy have built together, absolutely. I'd rather be single than end up with a self-righteous PP or EQP, that's for sure.

Science Teacher Mommy said...

Anonymous--About the satire thing: there are some very funny bits on there (the eating at McDonald's post gave me the giggles) that would certainly count as satire, but the author doesn't always stay "in character" the way the hilarious ladies of Seriously So Blessed manage to. I even noticed that Peter and co have started giving advice to their followers that could almost be deemed legit. I also find it funny that all of their followers are women--some who praise these boys up and down for their hilarity (hoping for a date?) or blasting them for their viciousness (as if they care).

amyjane--don't get me wrong, making out IS nice, just not the most important qualification. :)

chosha--"Rolls Royce?" You are sweet, but hardly. If we are going with the car analogy then we are more like a very reliable mini van that needs carefully scheduled maintenance.

Sherry said...

I checked out the blog; I followed from the comment on Nem's post also.

You know, I didn't think it was that great or that bad. I just thought it was dumb. I recognized that it was meant to be satirical, but I didn't think it was funny. I read a few posts, got bored and left.

denedu said...

This whole topic makes me glad to not be in the whole dating pool. It was a bit "old" back then to have to deal with...sure glad I don't have to put up with it now. Well, at least not until my boys are older. ACK! :)

emandtrev said...

Agreed with Anonymous that Peter Pathetic is trying to make some kind of blog name for himself (or themselves, as the case may be) to the tune of Seriously So Blessed. I pretty much think it is seriously so sad. Good for you for posting about this. I too looked at their blog after I saw the comment on Nem's blog, but closed it in disgust after reading just a bit. Ick.

simple easy and quick said...

Yes, I remember a few raquetball games, (sorry about hitting you in the back of the head that one time). Anyway, a possible make out was never what I was aiming for, I just didn't want to get beat by a girl, espiecally not by the one I always concidered the 'Hot Chick.'

Why were you the 'Hot Chick' in my eyes? Because you were, and still are (based on the blogs I've read) independent, assertive and confident. The top three qualities I love in my own 'Hot Chick' wife.

Take Care,

chosha said...

Well you know your 'car' better than I do, but I still get the feeling you two are trading up year by year. It definitely has Rolls Royce potential. :)

The Grahams said...

I can't believe you got Peter himself to commment. You're an impressive gal, thanks for sharing and posting the link. How did you find it again?? I'll have to go read more. I'm happy that neither one of us married a PP & EQP.

k8 said...

i'm glad to find that i'm not the only one who thought that post was absurd. the real reason i'm a single mormon girl? because the singles wards are clogged with THAT kind of boy. And that's not a guy who will be teaching MY kiddies now to treat each other.

Why Mormon Girls REALLY Stay Single said...