Tuesday, July 31, 2007
The Monster we sleep with
Joss Whedon was at Comic-con, and no I didn't get to meet him.
Next to David Milch, Bergman (RIP), Wilder, and Chris Claremont, Joss is of course one of the genius storytellers of the last century. I don't say this lightly, given as I believe storytelling is the sacred job of shamans, and that it and indoor plumbing are what separate us from apes.
Joss has dedicated his Hollywood career and his philanthropy to understanding and empowering females, and has my utter respect. Many of you probably never watched "Buffy the Vampire Slayer", but it's apt that college courses exist to dissect the mythology and messages of the series.
The most beloved and excrutiating season is Two, wherein the arc is the fallout of Buffy succumbing to the physical charms of her supposed soul mate Angel, the vampire. Obviously, the rudimentary conflict of their relationship is built into their monikers: Buffy the Vampire Slayer loves Angel the Vampire.
But Joss doesn't settle for cheap fears. He goes for the primal-seated horror, and turns the season into every woman's worst nightmare: that the loving, infatuated man you fall asleep with post-coitus turns into the covertly hostile, indifferent, afraid-of-commitment freak show women wake up to.
Joss is a Samurai Master, so he of course takes this storyline to the negation of the negation: Angel has transformed back into the evil Angelus because of the perfect moment of orgasm while in love, and is now bent on killing Buffy's family and friends in front of her for giving him human emotion.
It was written ten years ago. Yet it's even more relevant now that I'm in my thirties, competing for men my age with nineteen-year-olds who learned sex-ed by watching internet porn and model their dating behavior on Paris Hilton.
Does one give it away for the price of dinner like our slutty little sisters, knowing full well we will never hear from the man again? Or do we say good night chastely, and drive home to our goody drawer filled with Rabbits, Magic Wands, lube to plug into another night of solitary love, knowing he won't call because we're too much work?
Both choices suck, and are all that's on the dating buffet. The only other choice is to give up personal identity to one of the overbearing suitors bent on caging with motherhood, and that...that is not an option. Especially not when it comes from a space of owning instead of partnership. Men in their 30s might be afraid of love, but women in their 30s are legitimately afraid of slavery.
The dream of equal partnership equally desired? Well...who the fuck do you know who has that?
Talking with girlfriends my age, we lament many things. Chief among them is that now that we are phsycially insatiable, it's almost impossible to find a man our age who actually wants to have sex. Worse, once you find one and lower your standards to hoping to have sex with them on a regular basis without any kind of male-petrifying emotion involved, men would rather conquer once and move on to the next bimbo. Especially in southern California, the drive to experience new outweighs a sure thing.
While that's satisying biologically to them, it's physically torturous to women because a one-night-stand realeases a hormone in our brains punishing us with extreme depression for violating the more advantageous biological strategy of mating with someone who gives a shit about us and won't discard us after sex. The depression level is so severe that positive memories from the night are erased, and even Ben and Jerry's Chunky Monkey can't make the harsh punishment for the brief pleasure worth it.
Brief is really the key, because no matter how good the sex was in the moment, that moment was in the past. Once you start me up, I'll never stop. So while a man wakes up with his biochemistry satisfied by the romance leading to sex the previous night, mission accomplished, the woman wakes up ready to cum again with the person who gave her an orgasm. Getting kicked out of bed without breakfast does not unfortunately trigger that craved orgasm.
Perhaps if women are to evolve and survive, they will have to learn to orgasm from rejection.
The only logical conclusion to the above is that it's better to be celibate. No highs followed by stronger lows, just an even-keel middle ground as a sexless but productive member of society.
Get the feeling Mother Nature abhors women?
A girlfriend asked me recently if understanding biochemistry and Evolutionary Psychology as predetermined destiny helped me any in dealing with the hormones that cause depression after a fun one night stand.
Nope. Not at all.
FAN TRANSCRIPT of Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Cut to Angelus's apartment. Buffy opens the door. She walks over to the bed and sees it's been made. One of his shirts is laid out on it. She goes over to the bed and reaches for the shirt. Behind her Angelus steps over to a statue, picks up a necklace hanging from it and puts it on. Buffy turns, sees him.
Buffy: Angel! (runs to him)
She kisses him and they hug.
Buffy: Oh, my God! I was so worried!
Angelus: I didn't mean to frighten you.
Buffy: Where did you go?
Angelus: Been around.
Buffy: Ohhh. Oh, my God! (hugs him again) I was freaking out! You just disappeared.
Angelus: What? I took off. (goes to his bed for the shirt)
Buffy: (confused) But you didn't say anything. You just left.
Angelus: (pulls on the shirt) Yeah. Like I really wanted to stick around after that.
Angelus: You got a lot to learn about men, kiddo. Although I guess you proved that last night.
Buffy: What are you saying?
Angelus: Let's not make an issue out of it, okay? (goes for his coat)In fact, let's not talk about it at all. (pulls it on) It happened.
Buffy: I, I don't understand. Was it m-me? (meekly) Was I not good?
Angelus: (laughs) You were great. Really. (snidely) I thought you were a pro.
Buffy: How can you say this to me?
Angelus: Lighten up. It was a good time. It doesn't mean like we have to make a big deal.
Buffy: It *is* a big deal!
Angelus: It's what? Bells ringing, fireworks, a dulcet choir of pretty little birdies? (laughs) Come on, Buffy. It's not like I've never been there before.
He reaches his hand up to her face and she jerks back.
Buffy: Don't touch me.
Angelus: (shakes his finger at her) I should've known you wouldn't be able to handle it. (starts to go)
Buffy: Angel! (he stops and faces her) (teary-eyed) I love you.
Angelus: (points coolly at her) Love you, too. (turns away)
I'll call you.