The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

29 January 2003

Fuzzy logic

Well, okay:

In one hour alone of [a British TV production of] Sons and Lovers, there were nine explicit sex scenes involving full-frontal nudity — and all of it filmed without recourse to hair remover. If this sends a shudder down your spine, you're not alone. After all, it has somehow become the accepted wisdom that women should be bald from the forehead down, save for a mild eruption at pubic level — and only then if it's kept as trim as a well-groomed box hedge.

Not even I would have had the nerve to use the term "box hedge" in this context. And American television, at least the ad-supported stuff, probably isn't ready for D. H. Lawrence, let alone female hirsuteness. It took Playboy sixteen years (!) to get up enough nerve to display any shrubbery at all.

But back to this Guardian piece by Mimi Spencer:

You might hate the bitter truth, but it has everything to do with the fact that men prefer us that way. And if that's the case, surely this is something we should have overcome by now — in the same way that we have ditched eyelash-fluttering, corsetry and bustles.

Eyelash-fluttering is passé? Horrors!

Truth be told, I really don't believe that a guy's level of, um, enlightenment correlates particularly well with his enthusiasm (or lack thereof) for body hair; historically, testosterone has demonstrated itself to be quite indifferent to ostensibly higher brain functions.

I will state for the record that it is most unlike me, upon seeing the drapes, to speculate as to the nature of the carpet. (This is undoubtedly due to the fact that I can imagine no circumstances under which I would be able to make the comparison with any degree of precision.)

Back to Mimi:

In her study on the relationship between a woman's politics and sexual orientation and the shaving of her legs and underarms, Dr Susan Basow, professor of psychology at Pennsylvania's Lafayette College, found that the majority of women who did not shave their legs identified as "very strong feminists and/or as not exclusively heterosexual", and the major reason they did not shave was for political reasons.

Was "Who the hell has time?" one of the options on the questionnaire?

Really, I don't expect anyone to endure the torment of a bikini wax (I assume it's a torment; I'm in no mood to check this empirically), but I wasn't that crazy about Helena Bonham Carter before she played Ari.

Oh, and the Number One sign your next-door neighbor is a Playboy Playmate: Her lawn is completely bare, except for a narrow strip on each side.

Posted at 4:04 AM to Dyssynergy

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Hmmm. Lawn wax. Good idea. I'll patent it and pay you a 1% royalty for the idea.

Posted by: Kevin McGehee at 6:16 AM on 29 January 2003

"Did not shave for political reasons"

There are times when you have to intervene in someone's life and tell them to snap out of it. At any rate, it's always fun to read articles about people tilting at the windmills of human biology and sexual attraction to little avail.

Personally, I refuse to have anything sexual to do with a woman who has a better mustache than me.

Posted by: Paul at 12:39 PM on 29 January 2003

Oddly enough, Sam Elliott and Wilford Brimley have that same rule.

Posted by: Kevin McGehee at 8:48 PM on 29 January 2003

Good grief.

For those ladies who insist that feminine shaving is some sort of male-patriarchal-oppressor thing---- BOLLOCKS.
The body-hair thing is far more biological than cultural. Femininity, with the accompanying hormones, is instinctively associated with less body hair.


Posted by: RHJunior at 8:45 AM on 2 February 2003