Quote of the week

Austin has its share of metrosexuals. Maybe more than its share; I don’t get down there often enough to take inventory. But Daphne has seen plenty already:

There was one disconcerting note in my beauty palace travels today; men. They were clients in every place I visited. Men tanning and bronzing. Men getting their nails buffed. Men coloring their hair and asking about highlights. Men waiting patiently for botox and lasering. Men, reams of men, getting beauty treatments. Not gay men, big old straight men with wedding rings, most in their late thirties through early fifties, driving convertible, midnight blue Beamers.

It was more than wrong, it struck a repulsive nerve. I appreciate a tanned, well honed male with clean nails as much as the next girl, but I’d rather see that guy busy with a belt full of tools, driving a backhoe, or working his mojo on an athletic field rather than sitting patiently in a beauty parlor, reading the latest issue of Vanity Fair, while waiting for his curly back hair to get ripped off by a softly murmuring piece of Asian compliance. These guys were probably oblivious to the fact that their manhood was diminished the moment they entered my women’s realm of vanity.

Go dig a ditch, plant the back forty, fix a carburetor, build furniture, coach a team, write a wonder, run a race, ride a horse, help a needy kid or hit the bike for a cross country spin. Behave like you own a bagful of testosterone.

And that goes for you too, Matthew.


  1. canadienne »

    24 July 2009 · 11:06 am

    Have to admit that I am a bit leery of these generalizations, since I know a gentleman who has both the tool belt and the hair products.

  2. CGHill »

    24 July 2009 · 11:13 am

    After the deluge of Hair Club for Men ads this week, I am pretty much persuaded that peacocks, if they don’t preen, waste away to nothing.

  3. fillyjonk »

    24 July 2009 · 3:57 pm

    I don’t know, but I think I’d be very uncomfortable dating a fellow who spent more time in the stylist’s chair than I did.

    And only part of that would be the fear that he would start pushing me to be higher-maintenance about my appearance. (I exercise, wash, comb my hair, dress, and put on makeup. THAT SHOULD BE ENOUGH.)

  4. CGHill »

    24 July 2009 · 8:17 pm

    The chap in front of me at the pharmacy today had apparently taken considerable care to make sure his toenails matched his T-shirt, which accounts for no small amount of discomfiture, even in a town where tattooed wonder Robert Swift used to play a little bit of basketball.

  5. Jacqueline »

    26 July 2009 · 10:09 pm

    I have been reading an interesting book titled _Looks: Why They Matter More Than You Think_. It’s a well-put-together summary of tons and tons of research into the role personal attractiveness plays in various aspects of our lives, published by the American Management Association (!). Recommended (although it’s a bit depressing when you realize how much of an impact lookism has on every aspect of our lives).

    One of the studies cited found that the importance of personal attractiveness in a mate (as reported in surveys asking people to prioritize characteristics of potential mates) has jumped tremendously over the past ~60 years for both men and women, most dramatically since the spread of television.

    The author speculates that spending so much time looking at beautiful people on TV has changed our collective opinion of the importance of personal attractiveness as well as our standards for what we consider to be attractive. Almost everyone we see on TV has had his or her appearance professionally polished in some manner, and regular people are just trying to keep up with what they subconsciously perceive as “the competition” and “what people look like.”

    I wonder if anyone has done any comparison studies between the US and UK? They put much uglier people on British TV. :)

  6. CGHill »

    26 July 2009 · 10:26 pm

    No wonder my dance card is blank.

    Arguably, we don’t actually look any better than we did 60 years ago, but we’re supposed to try harder to keep up the image. Or something like that. If nothing else, this keeps cosmetic surgeons in business, and they may be one of the last outposts of medicine where something resembling a free market still exists.

    I comfort myself with the thought that my mercurial moods are every bit as much of a buzzkill as my uninspiring appearance. :)

  7. CGHill »

    26 July 2009 · 10:59 pm

    I stand corrected: apparently women, though not men, are getting better-looking.

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