Monday, January 02, 2006

Margaret Cho and Book TV

We watch Book TV which can be quite interesting sometimes. It’s often very entertaining. Stay with me here a minute, I'll explain. I just watched a show with Margaret Cho hawking her new book, I have Chosen to Stay and Fight. She was into the Q&A part of her little talk when I came in, so I missed the speech. But, I have to say, it was very enlightening. Someone asked Ms. Cho how hard it is for a female comic to make it as a stand-up comedian. It seems, according to Ms. Cho, that male comics don’t like female comics because they are threatened by them. ‘Women are funnier than men.’ She said. ‘We don’t laugh at their jokes and it makes them mad.’ She continued. ‘That’s why most successful women comics are lesbians, we don’t care what the men think of us so we just stand there and don’t laugh at them.’ She explains how the men want control over everything and therefore if they don’t laugh at their jokes they don’t like the women and therefore make the women have to work harder to get to the same place men get. She went on about this for a little bit. About how women are smarter, funnier and overall better than men. While I was listening to her I found myself wondering, just right out of the blue, for no apparent reason, what the female version of a misogynist is. You know, if a man who hates women is a misogynist, then a woman who hates men is a …… ??? Obviously, that would be a mister-ogynist! But wait - there is more still! Someone asked her about straight men who hang out with lesbians. She got really excited about this and said, ‘Oh mmmyyyyy Goooooddddd!!!! I love it! I mean, whenever a straight male does ANYTHING right it’s got to be a good thing, RIGHT!?!?!?!?!?!’. I mean, like, AM I RIGHT!?!?! A random thought flipped through my mind, ‘Her father must have been abusive to her when she was a child’. Where’d that thought come from? Several of her guests shamelessly bowed down and worshiped her, verbally. ‘In 100 years you will be the comic that people will look back on and understand the profound influence you are having on this generation.’ I thought, 'This guy is barking up the wrong tree with his verbiage, she’s already declared she’s a lesbian. Surely he doesn’t think saying those things to her will help him get lucky.' Another of her guests asked her what she thinks of schools in the ever backward ‘Middle America’ teaching ‘Intelligent Design’. ‘Oh, that makes me so mad!’ She screamed. ‘I mean soooo mad!’ ‘It’s so stuuupid! Really stupid, you know, like, I mean really STUPID.’ ‘Do those people really want to raise their children to be as stoopid at they are?’ ‘I mean, you know, like, stoopid, I just think it’s stupid. Why do they call it intelligent, cause it’s just stupid’. I listened intently to this profound and well thought out argument against the teaching of intelligent design. She talked on it for a couple of minutes barely taking a breath. For the sake of space I’ll summarize, she seems to think intelligent design is ‘stupid’. One last topic was brought up. Someone asked her about a film she has written, starred in and produced. She rolled her eyes. It seems, this is an independent film and is truly a great work of art. Unfortunately, there are a lot of stupid people who just don’t get it. ‘You know, like, if people see ‘independent production’ they need subtitles to understand it’. You know? Like. Yeah. I get it. We’re stupid. I think that means the movie isn't making any money. The general gist of Ms. Cho’s talk was how glad she is that she lives in an enclave that is enlightened and open to alternative lifestyles. Open minded people, that’s what she likes. Anyone who isn’t open-minded (by her definition) is ‘stoopid’. Really, really stupid. That seems to include anyone who doesn’t live in California, all males except the ones that are enlightened enough to hang out with lesbians and women who are ‘into the whole hair, nail, beauty thing’. Now, who would have thought Book TV could be THAT entertaining. I’m not a wealthy or famous comedian, movie star or musician, so I’m quite sure that Ms. Cho will not be interested in anything I have to say. But, supposing I had the power to get a ‘stoopid’ book published and to get myself on Book TV and to get a crowd there to hear me. I would have a little advice for Ms. Cho and her Hobbyworld cohorts. First, you really shouldn’t try to wing it by doing a Q&A – stick to the script. I’ve seen your act a time or two and you can be funny sometimes, but going like well, you know, on and on, and saying things like, that’s just, you know, like, really really stupid, like, man, I just hate when people don’t get it, you know, like that, you kinda lose the illusion that you might have sense. Second, listening to you made me think of Barbra Streisand. She can sing good, but when she quits singing, nobody really wants to hear her talk. Again, stick to the script. Third, you, like Barbra, have been lucky enough to make gazillions of dollars doing something like singing or stand-up comedy. You are living in a country in which you can stand up and say any stoopid thing you want to say and the worst that will happen to you is people might not buy your book, go to your concerts or go see your movie. Nobody is going to line you up against the wall and shoot you for sedition. Forth, you, like Barbra, have made your gazillion dollars in your lives because of the guy that works in the factory that built your car. The guy that works in the cotton mill that works the machines that weave the cloth that makes your clothes. The guy that cleans your houses, answers your doors, drives you places, fixes your meals and in Barbra’s case, makes sure there are always rose petals in her toilet. The people you so arrogantly demean, the backward ‘Middle American’ are the very people that made you rich. They are also the people who put their necks out there to make sure you have the right to say whatever you want to say. Their children, our children, are the ones that will fight for your right to be just as arrogant and demeaning to us as you want to be. You have the freedom to speak and behave pretty much any way you want. I know you don't like it, but we, the Middle Americans, have the freedom to work hard and speak, behave and believe as we want. Freedom goes both ways. Meanwhile, sit back, enjoy your chauffeur driven ride. We’ve got your back.