Friday, 14 May 2010

Who writes these things: the girlie secrets edition

Dear Jane Hoskyn,

Please stop talking.

Because even if you are using 'girl' correctly to mean "a female child between zero and eighteen years of age", and not adult women (for which there is a whole other word who knew?), this list is still a ridiculous mishmash of juvenile, misogynist bullshit. To wit:

1. When we get whistled at in the street, we feel uncomfortable and we’ll always tut and roll our eyes. But we’re awesomely flattered and we’d be gutted if it stopped.


2. We will never grow out of our fascination with pop stars. A guy can be completely ordinary-looking, but we will fancy him if he’s in a band.

No. Not that musicians aren't particularly attractive often for reasons beyond their physical appearance, but so are plenty other people. And yes, since we aren't perpetually 12 with boy band posters next to the Pollock in the living room, we do outgrow our fascination with pop stars. We may move on to fascination with 'serious musicians', but that's something else entirely.

And let me state now that even though I've duplicated it in the interest of continuity, the 'we' here is problematic. Because she's talking about a certain type of woman, from a certain cultural background, with privilege of a certain nature and amount, so as with most of these things, 'we' really means 'my friends and I'. It's fine if that's what you mean, but if that is what you mean, you should make that clear. We've spent too long trying to highlight women's heterogeneity to have to stand for articles like this one confirming that the whole diversity thing is nonsense and we're all really just the same person.

3. We are more likely to fancy a guy if his ex-girlfriends are really pretty.

4. We can be put off a guy by finding out that his ex-girlfriends are a bit ugly.

5. When we look through your Facebook photos, we’re looking to see how pretty or ugly your ex-girlfriends are.

6. We look through your Facebook photos a lot, and we really hope that you haven’t downloaded anything that reveals who looks at them the most.

Really? Does this woman live on a Lisa Frank sticker? Of course, history of partners is important, but for reasons that go slightly deeper than just "oh em gee ur totes prettier than her!!1!1"

7. Here’s how to make us fall for you. One day, come on to us so strong that we’re a bit weirded out by it. Then totally fail to ring us. We’ll wonder what we did wrong, and we won’t be able to stop thinking about you.

This is just disturbing, especially since I'm not sure of the gamut of reactions the author intends to cover with the words 'so strong' and 'a bit weirded out'. These to my mind could include anything from a meet-the-parents too early on and a quizzical look to stalking and seeking a protective order. But the real damage here is suggesting that women secretly love abusive, manipulative behaviour.

8. The above strategy isn’t foolproof. We may just lose interest. It depends on how much we liked you in the first place.

9. We often don’t know how much we liked you in the first place. We may have to wait until you don’t phone us. If we’re disappointed, it proves that we fancy you. If we’re not, it proves that we don’t. It’s like when you toss a coin to help you make a decision.

Decisions. They hurt our brainz.

10. Stop trying to understand how our minds work. Even we don’t understand how our minds work.

In fact, we have no minds. No thoughts, no intellect. Our heads are just filled with pink cotton wool and Justin Bieber songs.

And that's in the first 10 alone, consecutively. No breaks.


42. During breakouts we get up at 6am and cover our spots with concealer while you’re sleeping.

Who does this? No, really. Who?

But the gem is saved for the end, I think (emphasis mine):

53. We’re all little girls inside. You make us cry far more easily than you realise.

And here, gentlefolk, is the finale. The overt statement at the end of an entire article spent infantilizing and homogenizing all women. Of course we cry, but it's not because we're little girls. Hurt feelings, grief or whatever might cause tears are completely valid among adults. When we're hurt and cry, it's because we're hurt, not because we're children. Still, thanks for confirming the notion that women are just big crybabies who will throw a fit when you take our lollipops away. Well done, you.

[Via Liss and Emily at Shakesville]


  1. 36. We find female strippers sexier than male strippers. But that doesn’t mean we want to snog any of them.

    37. However we do wish we were gay sometimes, if only to get oral sex from someone who really knows what they’re doing.

    Because lesbians and bisexuals ... just don't exist, apparently. Or if they do, they're really just straight women in it for the oral.


  2. ...
    I'm too nauseated by the examples to go and read the actual list.

  3. My blood pressure reached max heights at point 49 and 50.
    Engaging in sexual activities without really wanting it/being horny is like raping yourself!
    And faking orgasms is one of the most antifeminist things you can actually DO. I'll never get it... what FOR?? If that, what your partner does, is not the right thing to turn you on, you probably should TELL him (unless he's a telepath), instead of encouraging him doing the wrong thing. (and if he [or she] doesn't care about that, you should keep your legs shut anyway, resp. spread it elsewhere).
    And if you don't want or are not able to come, that's also ok.
    BUT. DON'T. FAKE. IT. (please!!)
    Sorry, I got a bit enraged -.-


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