In which the spinster aunt offers a foodly analogy illustrating the slitheringly unctuous manner in which patriarchy swizzles its way into the refrigerators of our individual human essentiae and establishes itself as a standard component in the ideological sandwiches of our superfatted lives.
One of my cherished bloggerly pleasures is the commentary I receive from blamers who get it. And by it I mean It. It’s ironic, I suppose, that I am considered by persons who actually know me to be a lovable crackpot, and that many of my friends and family would rather die screaming than audit my views on lipstick.
Of course I do have pals with feminist leanings (insofar as they’re pro-choice and are for equal pay and all that), but lately I have become alarmed. A couple of conversations I’ve had recently with some of these chumps have made it abundantly clear that normal people just don’t think about this women-as-sex-class stuff, or even care about it all that much. Patriarchy, they protest when I just won’t leave it alone, can’t be as pervasive as I claim, and they have proof: their husband does the laundry. Their boss never pinches their ass. They never feel pressured to take pole-dancing lessons. One of them even called me out for my disparaging remarks about femininity. To my horror, she hadn’t realized there is not just a distinction, but a world-o-difference between femininity and the state of being female. It was an awkward moment. I felt all gulpy.
So it’s a good thing that it’s not really my job to entruthen my friends, because the entruth is, I have failed utterly to hip them to patriarchy’s invisible enormity.
But how? How does a rational being perceive a laundry-doin’ husband or an unpinched butt as sufficient evidence that she inhabits a fantastical patriarchy-free zone? Particularly after her devoted chum (me) spends the better part of a halfway decent lunch pointing out all the ways in which she has her head up her butt?
Well, aside from my abrasive, hectoring oratory style (listed by a majority of Playboy Bunnies as a turn-off) I believe one reason women are truth-resistant is because patriarchy is like mayonnaise.
Women are the bright young happy-go-lucky eggs, who wanna singa — you’ll have to imagine sentient Warner Brothers cartoon eggs with liberal arts degrees — about the springa, to traipse through the forest examining bugs with magnifying glasses, to lounge by a snackling fire reading Mrs Dalloway and what-not, when, THWACK! Some asshole cracks’em open, yanks out their yolks, exploits their lecithin, and whisks’em up until their identities are lost forever. Then in comes the olive oil — which represents Patriarchal Ideology in this masterful analogy — and they (the same “they” that are responsible for everything untoward and unreasonable that has been chapping the Twisty hide for the past 47 years) dribble it in slowly, so it isn’t noticeable at first. But then they whisk in more and more it until it’s all one big, taut, glib emulsion and you can’t tell where the slimy oily patriarchy stops and the disenfranchised ova begin.
What you have, after the violently whisked olive oilian incursion, is an unvarying whitish ooze, reminiscent of the unpleasant discharges of unhealthy membranes, wherein patriarchy holds the pitiful broken eggs in thrall to a sauce to which everyone is fanatically devoted even though it is really bad for you. On top of that, few people outside a small coterie of epicures even knows where mayonnaise comes from or what it is made of. To the general populace, mayonnaise is ‘mayo’, is mass-produced by greed-encrusted conglomerates, comes in a jar, is present in every refrigerator and is wildly consumed with vulgar insouciance. Nary a thought is given to why it’s there or what it is or whether its ubiquity as a tasteless commercial condiment or its ideological components really do very much at all to dignify the human condition.
You’ll note that many kids, their patriarchal indoctrination as yet incomplete, are grossed out by mayonnaise. Well, now you know why.