Sensitive Is the New Manly
Jeremy Greenberg’s ManWords: Real Words for Real Men
Review by John Bear
ManWords: Real Words for Real Men
But not quiteable.
First of all, I reject this “man” thing outright. Greenberg seems to be suggesting that manly things are limited to suicidal drinking, conspicuous consumption of meat, flatulence and woman hate/lust. This is, for better or worse, dude stuff, but there is much more to being a man. Like prostate cancer.
Up until, say, 50 years ago, almost all art and literature resided in the man realm (see James Brown’s “It's a Man's Man's Man's World”). Everything outside of childbirth and other lady problems used to be reserved for us XYs.
As of late, “man” has been reduced to hyper-masculine balderdash, a false protest against the perceived loss of standing in an increasingly coed world. “The Man Show” was a good example of this sub-moronic phenomenon. And look at every light beer commercial ever.
Fellas, it's time to take back “man” from the beer-bonging, date-raping, knuckle-dragging mouth breathers.
Now the world has been blessed with ManWords, wherein its author proudly reports that he teaches his twin toddler sons “alpha male behavior” and says “whatever” when his wife tells him he’s loaded the dishwasher incorrectly.
Nice attitude. Here are a few man words Greenberg should learn: “child support payments,” “custody dispute” and “Daddy,” as in your kids calling some other guy “Daddy.”
The book is in essence a dictionary of “manly” vocabulary words and ones to avoid “lest ye sound too effeminate and anger thy Lord God, who is a macho Lord” (Ecclesiastes 25:17). Greenberg instructs, for instance, never to say “snarky.” Such gall on this guy. Snarky is not gender-specific. It's a state of mind that afflicts three out of five smart people.
Approved words include things like Viagra (there’s a lot of penis stuff in the book, along with menstruation and even a rape joke). Greenberg writes, “a pill that causes boners; guys should not feel any shame about using a medication to compensate for the fact that the one thing that defines them as a man no longer functions correctly.”
Low point: “Roofies (noun): a type of medicine that cures a woman of not wanting to put out.” Greenberg backpedals a bit when he writes that a date rapist would also want roofies when he’s raped in prison. George Carlin said that rape can be funny. Hard to imagine. It’s not funny here, nor is the rest of this book for that matter. Reading it was somehow demeaning to me as both a man and a reasonable facsimile of a woman (more on that some other time). It’s offensive to the point that it drives one to political correctness. I hate that feeling.
Fellas, it's time to take back “man” from the beer-bonging, date-raping, knuckle-dragging mouth breathers. Contrary to the book’s assertion, a pony keg is enough for five people, and ladies, your time is nigh. I, for one, welcome the coming gynocracy. I would be thrilled to stay on as your humble slave.
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