Herself has a thing or two to say today. Adult themes are involved. You have been warned!
By now, I'm sure you've heard of the movie Magic Mike that arrives in the theaters this week. The advertisements promise a plethora of almost unbelievably buff, gyrating hunks of manliness in various stages of undress, including (if one watches the red band trailer) hints of a view of a Man Package or two. Women all over the internet, it appears, are swooning and drooling and exclaiming all about this movie.
To which I respond: Meh.
I will certainly acknowledge that many women (and certainly some men as well) no doubt find the men of Magic Mike to be handsome specimens of humankind. I admit that I watched the trailers and found the actors to be certainly well-muscled individuals. I do appreciate a man who can dance well. All the same.... just no.
As we have discussed previously, attractiveness in men requires a certain amount of humbleness; however, the well-oiled look that is sported by the characters in Magic Mike -- and that could only be attained by hours and hours of daily workouts in the gym -- shows no such modesty. Instead, it bespeaks of a "look at me" attitude that, in my opinion, would arrive hand-in-hand with a certain self-centeredness that would make such a man a very poor lover. It would be all about him, how he looked, how much he could show off, how one (including himself) would worship his muscle-bound physique.
That is not what desire is about.
What do women really want sexually? That's a complex question. I perused a very lengthy New York Times article that describes the scientific research addressing women's desire. There is no consensus or unifying theory. One thing appears clear, though: for women, desire is far more a mental event than a physical one. Bodily arousal is separate and distinct entity from desire itself.
That certainly complicates matters for the ladies. And, no doubt, for the gentlemen with them.
One particular idea that I read seemed to be on point for me: the thought that it is being desired, rather than desiring, that forms the basis for female arousal. This makes quite a bit of sense. Male strippers such as those depicted in Magic Mike are exhibiting themselves as objects of desire. (Actually, come to think of it, female strippers could be described as displaying themselves similarly.) That is why I find Magic Mike to be unappealing: I am not necessarily interested in lusting after a man. I am far more tantalized by the thought that a man yearns for me.
That certainly seems like rather a naked statement (no pun intended). I suspect I am not alone among women, though, in feeling this way. Contemplate it. And tell me what you think.
In which I get my comeuppance
3 days ago