Thursday, December 01, 2005

It's Because He Like Boys 

Atrios links to Garance Franke-Ruta at Tapped talking about John Derbyshire. Garance reacts with a big "EEEWWWW" to the fact that the Derb apparently only things women (girls) are attractive from about age 15 to 20. She quotes the Derb:
Jennifer's bristols. Did I buy, or browse, a copy of the November 17 GQ, in order to get a look at Jennifer Aniston's bristols?** No, I didn't. While I have no doubt that Ms. Aniston is a paragon of charm, wit, and intelligence, she is also 36 years old. Even with the strenuous body-hardening exercise routines now compulsory for movie stars, at age 36 the forces of nature have won out over the view-worthiness of the unsupported female bust.

It is, in fact, a sad truth about human life that beyond our salad days, very few of us are interesting to look at in the buff. Added to that sadness is the very unfair truth that a woman's salad days are shorter than a man's — really, in this precise context, only from about 15 to 20. The Nautilus and the treadmill can add a half decade or so, but by 36 the bloom is definitely off the rose. Very few of us, however, can face up to this fact honestly, and I am sure this diary item will generate more angry e-mails of protest than everything else I have written this month.
In another quote, she finds Derb saying this:
Conservatives, as I recall, are the ones who believe that "human nature has no history." It follows that we are at ease with the fact that the human female is visually attractive to the human male at, or shortly after, puberty, and for only a few brief years thereafter.
I think we can all agree that Garance's "EW" is the correct response. However, it's not the full response. It's clear to me (and Guth will agree with me, I'm sure), that this is just another way of Derb rationalizing to himself the fact that he is not, in actuality, attracted to women. I think what's unsaid in his writing, but at the forefront of his mind is: "of course, while women are only attractive for a few weeks at age 17 (when they're not menstruating, of course [another thing left unsaid--he's also a mysogynist]), boys and men are attractive throughout their lives." I mean, anyone this homophobic is clearly gay.

UPDATE: More Derb here.
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