nocutename
Berkeley, California
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Feb 25 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@67: Agree totally. Also, the difference between "chutzpah" and "balls" or "guts" is in the degree of arrogance or can-you-believe-it-ness in the former. It's closer to "nerve" than it is to "guts" or "courage," but it's very, very rarely used in a positive way. It almost always signals disapproval, as in, "can you believe the nerve of that guy?" The classic Leo Rosten definition of chutzpah is the man who murders his father and mother and then throws himself at the mercy of the court because he's an orphan.
Feb 25 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
Sometimes words spring up in a more organic way. Sometimes they're a reaction to something or someone that hits a nerve, like santorum. There is just what I feel is an over-studied agenda behind "clitzpah," with some pretty lofty goals. Sea Otter and I joked about it being like "fetch," but in some ways it really is like fetch.
Feb 25 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
In general, I prefer non-gendered language to talk about qualities that any of us can have, such as assertiveness or boldness or courage. Or cowardice, meanness, un-generosity. I like precision in language, for one thing, and for another, almost all the gendered expressions seem to me to praise certain qualities or traits for being "male," while denigrating other traits or qualities for being essentially "female." " Man up." "Don't be a pussy." "He's got/ She's got/ that takes balls." "Grow a pair." Calling someone a "dick," while an insult, is nowhere near as strong a condemnation as calling someone a "cunt," at least in the United States (I understand that "cunt" has a different connotation in other English-speaking parts of the world, and can be said in polite company, sometimes, depending on how casual the group is). I can call something someone did a "dick move" and it will be seen as criticism, yes, but not necessarily as the highest of insults. Calling a woman a cunt is generally treated as the very worst invective and is used very sparingly.

So we can subvert gender by saying a woman "has balls," or "she's a dick," or a woman can tell someone to "suck my dick" (not sure whether that differs from a woman telling someone to "eat me") or just say "suck it." We also can try to even up the gendered language by introducing new locutions such as "ovary up," or neologisms such as "clitzpah" (notably both these are meant to celebrate, not denigrate, the female). Or we can simply not use gendered language to connote either good or bad qualities: She's got guts. He's gutsy. She's got moxie. Don't be a coward. Get some guts. Get some courage. Deal with it. She's a jerk / He's a twit / idiot / creep. Or, as CMDwannabe points out, since we all have one, it's totally gender-neutral (though it didn't use to be directed at women) to call someone an "asshole." Maybe calling women assholes is the best sign of achieving parity there is.
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Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@49: Maybe because this way we could all read a phrase like "drinking deep from the bowels of the internet," and then Dan's subsequent riffs on it?

The better question is why give screen space to letter #3, but maybe Dan was looking forward to reading what amounts to written eye rolls.
Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@43: Exactly, milkshake. Plus, despite my never having used the word "clitzpah," my teenage daughter still inexplicably discusses her female body and her sexuality with me.

@46: Sea Otter, you set me up so well back @ 37, I couldn't resist.
Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@41: So you really think that coming up with the silly, forced "clitzpah" as a way to say a woman has guts or is bold is going to somehow make young women decide to talk about their sex lives with older, more well-informed women, rather than with people their own age because now the "stigma" they have felt about having female body parts has been removed?

Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@Philophile: I don't quite understand your hostility to me. I mean, what I think is your hostility to me, because I don't really understand you. Not just in your recent post to me @ 239, but always. So perhaps I responded to your post @ 236 in a way that offended you. If so, I apologize
I find our communications styles to differ so much in degree as to become a difference in kind.
Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@seandr: "This thread has me realizing that I prefer natural, organic language over politically processed contrivances such as "clitzpah". It just tastes more like real food, even if the flavors are sometimes a little tart." Yeah "Clitzpah" and its like are too contrived, too self-consciously affirming and cute.
It's too strained to adopt stuff like this.
I think "gutsy" is so fetch.
Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
@236: I prefer to have different words that encompass the different motivations, because behavior that looks the same but stems from different causes makes a difference to the participants. Hotwifing can be an outcome of sexual generosity or it can signal a power dynamic wherein the man has control over his partner, including who she will have sex with. I have no interest in being with a man who wants to be humiliated by my having sex with someone else. I don't want a relationship with a man who gets turned on by feeling himself to be inadequate to satisfy me. I very much want to be with either a man who wants to share me with others because of some combination of the following:
1) he thinks I'm hot and that other men will enjoy having sex with me
2) he likes the idea of controlling my sex life
3) he wants to see me get off with someone else because he's a bit of a voyeur.

If we only have the one word to describe a man who enjoys having his partner fuck other men, and someone introduced himself to me with it, I wouldn't know whether his fantasies and mine meshed.

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Feb 24 nocutename commented on Savage Love.
Hey Dan, I know you edit these letters sometimes. Did SNAFU say his boyfriend slept for 15 hours a day every day or once in a while. Seems to make a huge difference.