Back in April, an unusually-uninformed putative spokesman for all things Islamic — decide for yourself whether that phrase should be submitted to the Department of Redundancy Department — declared that the display of women's bodies was a contributing factor to seismic disturbances. This garnered the sort of response it deserved: guffaws, occasionally supplemented by photographs, and at least once by actual scientific data.

It also caused me to trip over my own hormones, as witness this exchange following Little Miss Attila's participation in Boobquake:

CGH: "You know, if you weren't so damn beautiful, I might have reacted badly to this blatant display."

LMA: "You don't want 'beautiful.' You want 'quirky, with a nice rack.'

CGH: "Doesn't matter what I want, actually. (That much, at least, I have learned.)"

Now if there's anything I hate, it's looking like I'm coming on to a woman who blogs, even if she is quirky with a nice rack. (My own Standard Criteria — sweet smile, nice legs — also here apply.) I worry that sop doing will undermine my credibility: over the years, I've managed to build up a site audience that is about 60 percent female, something I am quite unreasonably proud of, given my long-standing (and apparently false) contention that women don't pay any attention to me. One reason I've been able to arrange meet-ups with several online gal-pals during the World Tour years was the fact that they knew I wasn't going to try anything.

For this reason, I didn't bother to mention The 20 Hottest Conservative Women In The New Media (2010 Edition), as determined by a panel of, um, leading experts, nor did I attempt to second-guess their selections. I will say that the women chosen are definitely easy on the eyes, most of them probably meet the Standard Criteria with ease, and I don't have any reasonable expectation of encountering any of them in person.

This is not to say that I disapprove of such a display. I am, however, distrustful of my reactions to such things, and as a result, I tend to shy away from them. (I shy away from things like Hot Men 2010: The Hottest Conservative Men mostly because I'd rather not be reminded of how far I fall short.) Besides, objecting to this sort of thing on the grounds of, um, objectification can only be done convincingly by people who are actually fully resistant to the call of beauty, which disqualifies 99-point-something percent of the human race right off the bat, and the rest, you don't want to hear from anyway.

Dr. Melissa Clouthier, who was a judge for the Hot Men, tweeted last night:

It seems to me that a healthy guy has a healthy self-view--self-aware, maybe a little cocky but not an arrogant jerk.

I don't know how healthy my self-view is, but I do try to avoid coming across as an arrogant jerk. Sometimes I even succeed.

The Vent

#680
  8 June 2010

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