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Non-thinking nostalgia fest


Doomed Harlottt

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Inspired by her own recent ruminations on the travesty of female commercial airline pilots, Laura Wood (aka the non-Thinking Housewife) has posted a recommendation of the old movie, Man in the Sky, about a pilot. The financial solvency of his company depends on marketing a new plane. During some kind of test run, problems occur, but rather than ditch the plane in the ocean, he manages a daring landing. His wife is terrified and upset with him for risking his life, but he then explains why a man's gotta do what a man's gotta do. Laura calls it a "sensitive exploration of the psychology of the male provider." Her commenters rush to express mourning for the lost era when men were men and women were bystanders.

A whiney but manly man named Neals Anders-Thal says:

I am 47 years of age and was, with my two brothers, raised for the world of John Mitchell. Men did what had to be done and their women stood by, even if they didn’t, couldn’t, understand.

Sure as hell, it’s not like that today. Feeling a twinge of blue, truth be told. But no time for that now. I face a death-struggle over house paint and must prepare. I am not kidding, mainly. My freedom and my children are at stake. Actually, they are at stake 24/7. Pray for me, a throwback to when men were men and women did not use children as a blunt force object.

Ha ha! You thought I was engaging in hyperbole but no, Mr. Anders-Thal literally misses the era when "women stood by." And he is only 2 years older than my husband! (In fact, I should show this to my husband because he never believes me when I remind him how much more male-dominated the world was when we were kids. As a boy, he could afford to be oblivious to these things.) Not sure what house paint issue Mr. Anders-Thal might be facing, but I definitely get the sense that, in a perfect world, he would be far too important to deal with such petty matters.

A commenter named Fitzgerald then follows up, inspired by Mr. Anders-Thal's comment:

This hit me in the solar plexis. I am roughly the same age, and I have two brothers oddly enough, and am stuck in a bit of time warp myself. I’m an old movie buff so these films speak directly to me. Now that I’m middle-aged they represent a flight of fancy, a glimpse into another world that no longer exists and I mourn for it knowing all the while they papered over the negatives of bygone eras, I still would have preferred it over today’s world in many ways. My ex-wife never understood what I did for a living, nor was capable of really grasping it frankly, and didn’t stand by me. She was like so many women today.

See, it seems to me that these guys should be excited about feminism. With the flooding of women into the labor market, a man's wife is far more likely to understand and appreciate his work, because she is often doing the same work or something comparable! Men with wives who work or who have been in the workforce don't have to deal with having their nearest and dearest misunderstand their worklives, and they don't have to deal with the pressure of being the sole provider. Of course, the trade off is that they are no longer treated as deities at home, and they are expected to concern themselves with household matters the many men consider beneath them. And the traditionalist men can't seem to get past that trade off.

And, of course, there is a bit of racism in the mix as well, with one commenter noting sadly that Apollo 13was the "last movie ever made to show an all white male world, comprised of experienced, dedicated and capable men." As someone who is just able to remember that lost world of near total white male domination, I just boggle at the thought that anyone would be nostalgic for it. But I guess that's because I would have been one of those women standing by in those days.

EDITED to correct typos.

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I see "Neals Anders-Thal" and think "Neanderthal" (or, in new orthography, Neandertal). Is this a brilliant troll, or did someone accidentally pick an ironic user name?

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Holy shit!!! It must be a troll, a brilliant, brilliant troll. I got the name slightly wrong, so it is actually Neal Anders-Thal, which is even closer. That one "s" in "Anders" is obviously just for subtlety.

So, fess up, free jingerites. Which one of you did this? I think I love you.

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I’m an old movie buff so these films speak directly to me.

Wait, you mean one should base their real lives off of what they see in old timey movies? Well alrighty then. I'm off to go stand over a subway grate to air my nether regions out (while passersby get to watch my skirt blow up over my head).

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See, it seems to me that these guys should be excited about feminism. With the flooding of women into the labor market, a man's wife is far more likely to understand and appreciate his work, because she is often doing the same work or something comparable!

Silly Doomed Harlottt, that's not what "understanding" means! The definition of "understanding" is "appreciates that my bitching and moaning about my job day-in-and-day-out means she's lucky she doesn't have to venture out in the Big Bad World and she should be grateful I provide for all her silly womanly needs in exhange for sex, children, raising the children, cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, cooking, telling me what a manly man I am, etc and she should never, ever complain".

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Wait, you mean one should base their real lives off of what they see in old timey movies? Well alrighty then. I'm off to go stand over a subway grate to air my nether regions out (while passersby get to watch my skirt blow up over my head).

I'll join you, but I will be a fashionable heiress who solves crimes when she's not shopping, drinking, telling her butler to mix more drinks or playing with her schnauzer. It's martini-o'clock somewhere!

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I've had the argument with my father that there was no such thing as the good old days portrayed in old movies and TV shows. People have always been having sex outside marriage, having affairs, fighting, etc. His response is that, yes, it happened, but people didn't TALK about it back then. Everything was kept quiet. The problem with that, though, is people also refused to talk about rape, spousal abuse, child abuse, etc. I'd rather have it all out there than all hidden with people pretending every family is like the Cleavers.

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Guest Anonymous

I'll join you, but I will be a fashionable heiress who solves crimes when she's not shopping, drinking, telling her butler to mix more drinks or playing with her schnauzer. It's martini-o'clock somewhere!

I'm going to buy a little black dress and a string of pearls, then move into the same building as George Peppard.

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I am 47 years of age and was, with my two brothers, raised for the world of John Mitchell. Men did what had to be done and their women stood by, even if they didn’t, couldn’t, understand.

Sure as hell, it’s not like that today. Feeling a twinge of blue, truth be told. But no time for that now. I face a death-struggle over house paint and must prepare. I am not kidding, mainly. My freedom and my children are at stake. Actually, they are at stake 24/7. Pray for me, a throwback to when men were men and women did not use children as a blunt force object.

I guess Mr. Nea-Ander-Thal (or whatever) hasn't read many history books, otherwise he might have heard of Rosie the Riveter, or the Women Air Force Service Pilots during WWII, or the women who worked in clothing and other factories in deplorable conditions and basically risked their lives to do so (The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire comes to mind). There is no such thing as the 'good ol' days'.

If I didn't know better, I would say he was a teenage girl. They are usually whiny and overly dramatic. His children's life is at stake over house paint? ~ seriously?

P.S. I want to spend the night in a motel room with a shirtless Clark Gable ~ sigh.

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I see "Neals Anders-Thal" and think "Neanderthal" (or, in new orthography, Neandertal). Is this a brilliant troll, or did someone accidentally pick an ironic user name?

My thoughts EXACTLY...

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My dad is 60 and told me that girls could do anything boys could do except be a father. I am so glad he didn't raise me to think that my place in life was to stand on the sidelines.

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