Libertine in Dreams

life in e-motion


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It begins with me

Earlier today, I began writing an entry about this rape* issue and the follow-on commentary printed in the Observer.  But then I remembered where I was and what people here in Samoa are like.  This is the same crap that happens over and over again, and wagging my finger at a bunch of chauvinist, decrepit, old men ensures only two things:  1) a tight ass from clenching and 2) a convivial conversation piece for stubborn men like that.

I decided I would save my energy and make sure that the people in my life know how I feel about such happenings.

I have seen, all too often, the dismissive attitudes of those who should care and who should address the problems of incest, rape, assault within their own family groups, circle of friends and their own communities.  It’s easy to judge and accuse those people of doing those despicable things, but what about your own backyard?  

For me, I will acknowledge that I have family members who were habitually abused.  Unsurprisingly it was discovered that, in time, they became abusers themselves.  It is embarrassing and awful to admit, but I have memories of at least three relatives trying to groom me.  One was a woman.

It took me a long time to accept that it was okay not to like these people and despite the looks of disapproval from other family members – that it was okay not to say hello, kiss or even look at them.  God can forgive them.  I don’t have to.

With every newspaper article highlighting the depravity of our community, it is so very sad to see that the monsters are usually those in plain sight.  It isn’t surprising, but it is just so sad.
These people are in positions of trust and power in family circles.  What they lack in conscience, they make up for with the pageantry of deviant charm and illusory characterization of humanity.  The dregs of humanity.

No one wants to admit that their own blood can be capable of such monstrosity.  I don’t know how many times I have heard these words, “E leai a se aiga e le kupu ai mea faapea” (This sort of thing happens in every family, or, There’s no family that hasn’t been affected by this).  This attitude screams denial and is asking me to accept the status quo.  Well that’s not good enough for me.

While I can’t change the mindset of old, I can do something about the future.

I made a promise to myself and to all that I hold dear, that I would never tolerate such behaviour.  But more importantly, I vow to teach my children the value of another human being and to respect and love one another.  It seems a banal vow, but there are horrific examples abound to make me think this is something I cannot leave to chance.
I will affect my own circle and do what I can where I am most effective and where my opinion matters the most.  I start with me and mine.

[*For background.  Here and here.]

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How attractive are you to men?

Having just read this delightful little number on brainpickings.org I thought I might make a few notes, to personalize it somewhat.

This is from Esquire’s Handbook for Hosts: A Time-Honoured Guide to the Perfect Party.

 

1. Do you bring the names of other men into the conversation to give yourself a sought-after appearance? 
Don’t. This may give a man a sense of inferiority — he is uncomfortable with you, and soon drifts away to someone else. It may make him wonder how much talking you do about him.
Subtext here is – put your ho flag down for 5 goddamn minutes.
If you have to sing your own praises then you’re not really that sought after.
There’s nothing sexier than someone who doesn’t make a big fuss over themselves.

2.  Do you wear clothes that make you a little more up-to-the-minute than the other women in your set?
Good — provided your taste is reliable and that the clothes suit you. Men may rant about the “crazy hat” but they swell with pride when their lady companions arouse admiring stares.
This is true from the Man’s perspective, although..don’t ever forget that clothes DO NOT make the person.
If you are beautiful on the inside, your inner radiance will take the centre stage. And not your faded tshirt or hand-me-down dress. The same goes for those who only buy expensive clothes because they feel it heightens their social status. If you are ugly on the inside, no collection of MENA or Tav dresses is going to fix the shadow that follows you. Smile bitch. It won’t kill you.
Don’t be afraid to wear whatever the hell you want to wear.
On a personal note, I wear whatever fits me, whatever my lovely cousins gift me, and buy whatever I can afford. My style is Roseanne Barr meets Elizabeth Taylor. A retired Liz Taylor, but still!!

3.  If you are asked to get another girl for a foursome, do you pick one obviously less attractive than you are?
You are unwise to do so. Get the most glamorous girl you know, and both men will be pleased.
Oh Esquire. How times have changed the popular meaning of words. (Ok getting my head out of the gutter now).
In this fertilisation race we are on from puberty, it is smart for a girl to employ all her wiles to ensnare a partner worthy of eggsploitation. Why should she make her goal that much more unattainable by inviting along a prettier and smarter rival? (Ps, a real rival is both pretty AND smart. Not one or the other because that’s not much competition when you really think about it. Please think about it).
Ok, ok, so the “right” answer here would be to take someone who would be the right fit for the second gentleman. If your own beauty and brains are not appreciated by someone in this foursome, then you probably need to find a new crew for that evening stroll. Or quit being a pimp.

4. Do you make a point of building up other women, even those you dislike, in discussing them with a man?
This is sound practice. But don’t put it on so thick that it sounds like a line.
If you are self-aware enough to know you can do this, then do it. If you aren’t, then you should probably steer clear of these kinds of discussions (here’s how you can find out – think of someone you HATE. Now list 5 positive aspects about that person. If you can’t, then you do not pass go here..move on to #5).

5. Do men marvel at your capacity for holding liquor?
A great mistake: it gives you a fast reputation and runs into money — the man’s money — besides.
I agree, but for another reason: no one should ever be proud of being able to drink a tank of booze and remain amongst the living. What exactly are you proud of? Your ability to destroy your liver/kidneys faster than anyone else? Well congratulations. You win impaired vision, poor decision-making and memory loss. The plus side is that if you make it out of your 20s and decide that you no longer feel excited about getting sozzled and possibly getting carried to your car every weekend, you’re probably going to be ok. Probably.
On a personal note, holding one’s liquor is not a quality I value in anyone and especially my mate. His ability to bring me to orgasm means more.

6. How many comfortable chairs are there in your living room?
At least two, I hope. No man can fall in love unless he has a chance to relax and he can’t if either of you sits bolt upright.
So this is why a love story never starts in a church pew.
Carseats are rather comfortable. Oh my how times have changed.

7. Do you keep men interested by hinting that later — not tonight — you’ll be really demonstrative?
This is a low trick and one that a surprising number of men see through at once. If you kiss a man, it should be for your own pleasure and not to reward him.
Again with the change in context and use of language. I suppose in 1950 this would have only ever meant a kiss, but modern times would suggest that this is a promise of a circle jerk or standup69 farewell.
Although I have to point out that I absolutely agree with the sentiment that a kiss should be for my own pleasure and not a reward for him. Very good advice.

8.  Do you make things easier for a man by suggesting that he climb into a car first, if he’s driving, or by asking him not to stand up when you come into the room?
This is an error — men know that they are supposed to show these signs of consideration to a girl and they respect her more if she takes them as a matter of course.
I don’t make it easier but I absolutely adore it when he opens my door for me. It makes me all warm and fuzzy and rather receptive to other suggestions from him, like “Let’s go for a walk up Palisi. We need to exercise”.
I also open doors for people and let them through first. Because I am not a rude dickhead who just pushes past people to get to the other side.

9. Do you ever embarrass a man by telling him he’s good-looking or has big muscles or is too, too intelligent?
Try it! Almost any man can stand almost any amount of flattery, however obvious, without embarrassment or surprise.
Agreed. They fucking love it.

10. Do you knit when you are having a cozy, fireside evening with a man?
For some reason, men hate to see a woman doing anything with her hands when talking to her. Undivided attention is best.
Because men are babies. Nothing short of a teat will shut them up.

11. Do you either play bridge or dance really well?
If not, take steps to correct this at once. You’re better off if you do both well, but one talent is mandatory.
Twerking does not apply. Unless you want the rest of your life to be a series of twerking performances at family weddings and reunions. I suggest you learn a siva Samoa.
Or learn to play bingo. Acceptable in almost all, if not all, mainstream religions and nothing says God-fearing womanly purity than gathering weekly at the viper’s pit and gambling for Jesus.

12. Are you so beautifully groomed that you make an average man feel like a lout when he takes you out?
Fine. Men are extremely critical of any imperfection in a girl’s neatness. If he feels like a lout once, the average escort will take pains to be better-dressed himself the next time.
Completely agree. Don’t ever drop your standards to make him feel comfortable and if he is critical of your appearance, or tries to tell you how to dress, then he really isn’t happy with you just as you are. You are something wonderful.

13. Do you, when you have first met a really attractive man, clinch your future acquaintance by some polite variation of “Come up and see me sometime”?
It often helps out on the occasions when the man is too shy to make the first advance himself.
Just make sure he’s not currently sharing a bed with another woman, especially if it’s his wife. A really attractive man is usually being clinched by multiple other advanced variables.

14. Do you keep your friendships warm by chatty calls to your men friends at their offices?
This is fatal.
Until the jealousy gene is eliminated, this is fatal.

15.  Do you use artificial conversation gambits like “What movie would you choose if you had to see it every week for a year?” to start talk with a shy dinner partner?
A very good plan — someone has to start the conversation and a question like this can keep it rolling for quite awhile.
Thinking of a conversation as a gambit should be left to investigative journalists. Just be yourself – if that means you’re an asshole, then so be it. But make sure you smile. Men love it when you smile.

16. Do you save yourself wear and tear by not troubling to entertain men bores?
A grave mistake. Bores have their uses since a clever girl can practice her conversation on them, with nothing much to lose. Besides, they often have attractive friends.
This is called Friend-Zoning. Please don’t be a prick-tease. Be nice and what not, but don’t lead someone on or use them to get to their hot friend. Only fucktards do that. How would you feel if your crush used you to get through to your best friend or sister? Sucky feeling aaye.

17. Do you suffer from indecision when ordering dinner or drinks in a restaurant with a man?
This maddens them — learn to make up your mind rapidly.
Take your time. Order what you want. Chances are, the meal will be the highlight of the night if he is going to get mad at you for trying to figure out what you want to eat. Besides, you will be so hungry after starving yourself all day to look nice for your date. Fuck it. You deserve a good meal.