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« The Last and Least in Africa | Main | He saved 2 million lives »

July 22, 2008

Man Post: Advertisers & ’Homophobia’

Mr_t In Ad Age, Bob Garfield goes after advertising agency BBDO for its supposedly "homophobic" spots. The Mr. T Snickers ad is evidently beyond the pale:

Now, from AMV BBDO, London, another Snickers spot, in which a butt-wiggling race walker is just too effeminate for Mr. T's liking. The snarling scourge of all things sissified chases after the guy in a pickup. "You a disgrace to the man race!" he bellows. "It's time to run like a real man!" -- whereupon the terrorized wimp is mowed down with a candy-spewing Gatling gun and admonished to "Get some nuts!"

The pun behind the campaign is obvious, adolescent and unfunny. The sentiment behind it is simply sick.

Thankfully, some sensible readers tell Garfield what's what. David Wojciechowski takes the snarky approach (which I, naturally, like):

Let's put an end to all ads that can be possibly, in the slightest way, misconstrued to offend anyone and anything. We could probably get a real 1984 thing going. Let's stop every ad that shows men as either being incompetent cooks or at cleaning while the woman has that "I know better" look. Any kids ad where the kids overcome the adults because the adults aren't cool enough.

Precisely. The *real* problem is that there are certain protected classes at whom no one is allowed to poke fun, while open season on the others -- suburban men in particular -- never ends. We'll have true equality when we can joke about anyone in our society.

Hubert Boulos, from Paris, is a bit more to the point, directing his own Gatling gun at Garfield:

It reminded me of the politically correct freaks that used to roam on campuses accusing every white man to be a racist homophobic rapist. ... You are stirring [trouble]... just like those stupid PC college brats of the 90s. Grow up!

(Image © AMV BBDO/Snickers)

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Comments

Steve (SBK)

I thought this comment was correct:
"I think you're taking this too personally, and also ignoring the general trend toward absurdity that is occurring at the moment. Effeminate speedwalkers being chased by Mr. T with a gattling gun-truck is pure nonsense, not veiled hate-speech.

Humor is nothing more than a logical train wreck." (comment by SEAN MULHOLLAND, SAN FRANCISCO, CA)

Honestly, I laugh just reading his (Sean's) description of the commercial: because it IS nonsense. Many commercials are little escapist worlds that don't *actually* exist - where baby's discuss buying stock online, shirt stains talk to the person wearing the shirt, choirs appear singing Carmina Burana to beer drinkers in a bar, and don't get me started on what car salesmen can do. Honestly, I question whether people are seeing what is being presented... or what they *want* to see.

Agreed: "We'll have true equality when we can joke about anyone in our society."

Some people just don't get it (but are very serious in their attempts).

I'm glad this bypassed me: "It reminded me of the politically correct freaks that used to roam on campuses accusing every white man to be a racist homophobic rapist."

Jason Taylor

Oddly enoough I think the reviewer was partly right. But the important point wasn't "homophobia". The add was saying that real men are bullies and that is what was wrong.

Allen

Due to my deep conviction that Everything Jason Taylor Says Is True, I can't really disagree. That said, I find that my thinking is more in line with Steve's. This is nothing more than a silly ad. Sure, it's sophomoric as well; and it hardly lifts our culture to some higher plane. Indeed, one could legitimately criticize it, if one must, to contributing to a baser culture.

What I find absurd is that certain groups and their advocates are SO on guard for anything that they can possibly perceive as an affront. No one should be offended by this add.

Maybe Mr. Gatling, that his grave invention has been repurposed as a high-velocity trans-fats distributor...

Really, need each of us establish our public gravitas by claiming indignation over the most benign comedy? 'Tis the PC way.

Chris Clukey

Jason, if this ad says that real men are bullies, then that means that the latest E-Trade ad campaign is a warning to watch your baby carefully lest he become a day trader, and Pepsi's SuperBowl ad means that if you buy enough Pepsi you can turn Justin Timberlake's groin to mush with a mailbox post.

And let's not get started on the Emerald Nuts ads. Keep your head on a swivel, because Robert Goulet could be in your cubicle messing with your stuff right now. Watch out for the "Addicted To Love" girls, too...they can fly, you know.

Rolley Haggard

There's a word for this phenomenon -- pathological-hypersensitivity.

I like someone's rejoinder to such nonsense -- "Your taking offense at [whatever] offends me."

Allen

Chris, You're killing me! My only question: Why couldn't Pepsi have made the mailbox post a little more stout?

Allen

Rolley, Your calm use of reason offends me. Irrationality and hyperbole only please - this is PC Country!

Steve (SBK)

Allen, (love the word gravitas, so apropos to the "I'm serious about this" people).

I agree that the commercial is sophomoric (at best). In fact, most commercials are. In fact, most television shows are. In fact, we'd probably do well to all shut off our televisions.
... but then, we'd have too much time to entertain ourselves.

Allen

Is this Latin Poker? I'll see your "gravitas" and raise you an "apropos"?

I fold. Never studied Latin.

Steve (SBK)

Haha!
I never did either, much to my chagrin. Now I have a distinct disadvantage when trying to learn something more of any of the Romance Languages, or for that matter... anything written before 1960 - always spiced with a Latin phrase or two... BAM!, unless it's newly discovered species (i.e. what other recent writings contain Latin?).

Ergo, sic transit gloria mundi.

FriarThom

We are all God's children. God designed us to occupy our temporal life in all shapes, sizes and colors. He gave us unique gifts. God gave us gender. God removed a rib from Adam and created Eve. Prior to that event, Adam was both genders. Since that event, Adam and Eve, man and woman descend from one flesh and may naturally express their gender identities uniquely.

Our brothers who are more effeminate and our sisters who are more masculine are bullied by a coarse culture that worships the masculinity of the football star and the femininity of the cheerleader. This bullying can have extreme and tragic consequences.

http://adage.com/garfield/post?article_id=129767

Jennifer Fullerton

I always find it refreshing to hear this point of view. I am so tired of "walking on eggshells" every time I need to speak in reference to certain types of people, for fear something I may say innocently will be taken out of context or "offend" somebody, YET as a Christian I can get offended everyday and it just doesn't matter. My sister ran into a situation recently with her son's boy scout troop. They were having some type of get together for Christmas. They wanted each "group" to have their own table to show how they celebrate the holiday. They had a table set up for Kwanza, Hanukkah, an a few others. When asked who was going to set up a table with the Nativity, my sister was told that they didn't want to do that becaue they didn't want to offend anyone. My sister stated emphatically that SHE was offended by that. Soooo, I guess my kids can learn about how everyone else celebrates Christmas, but others can't learn about how WE do?? Well, to make a long story short, my sister (and a few other parents) got their Christian table for Christmas (after some arguing). It is just so sad how society is so quick to coddle certain "minorites" and completely ignore others.

Chris Clukey

FriarThom, if Adam was both genders before God used the rib, why does God's word refer to Adam as "the man" and describe "his nostrils" in Genesis 2:7? Note that at the point the nostrils are mentioned, Adam isn't even alive yet.

After Adam is alive, well and commanded to take care of the garden, God describes him (in 2:18) as "the man." In 2:21 Adam is described as "the man" or "he" a total of four times, including one time when the rib Eve was formed from is called "one of the man's ribs."

Can you explain why the Bible's account differs so much from your account, and why Jesus did not offer a clarification in Matthew 19?

Chris Clukey

[In Yiddsh comedian voice that will probably offend someone on the Internet, possibly Bob Garfield] Thanks, Allen...I slay because I love!

As for the mailbox post, I can't join you in wishing that on Mr. Timberlake. I'm no fan of his, but there are some things a man has to stand with his fellow guys on, and getting one's groin turned to mush is one of those things. Wouldn't wish it on him or anyone this side of Osama bin Laden. As Robert Heinlein said, one should never strike a man in the groin unless they're prepared to kill him immediately thereafter. :-)

Also, thanks for this: Your Pepsi ad question reminded me of an earlier Pepsi campaign that showed a customer earning enough Pepsi points to win a Harrier fighter jet. Pepsi was actually sued by a man who earned that same number of points and demanded that Pepsi give him a Harrier. I wonder if Bob Garfield thought that guy should definitely be flying a multi-million dollar weapon system to work every day, or if back then he was clued in to the fact that TV ad absurdity is not meant to portray reality.

Allen

FriarThom,

I agree with you - there are effeminate men and the Church should accept them. But if a man puts on a dress, am I supposed to act nonchalant, perhaps noting "Hey, nice dress" if it is well designed and a good fit?

I'm not sure that effeminate men are really what this ad is poking fun at. I really think it's making fun of racewalking. And believe me - I understand that FAR too well! As a lifelong runner and lifelong shinsplint-sufferer, I discovered, about 7 or 8 years ago, that the only cure for my shinsplints was to (1) never run two days in a row, and (2) mix in one day of shin-strengthening race walking into my regimen! This was both useful and mortifying to discover, because RACEWALKING LOOKS MEGA-GOOFY. [This is a scientifically demonstrable fact; I invite all to look it up.]

Now, I've found a way to get the same benefits from a power-walking style not so swishy, but it's hardly my favorite thing to do in public. I mean, I wear my toughest tough-guy scowl when I do it, you know?

Allen

Jennifer,

What?? You expect public schools to allow Christianity equal representation to other religions?? That's *crazy.*

I bet you think children ought to be allowed to wear crosses and meet before school to pray too? Outrageous! I'm calling the ACLU!

Allen

Actually Steve pointed out something I missed in FriarThom's comment ... the "before the rib ... Adam was both genders" bit. My stated agreement with FT was about the need to treat men who have more effeminate mannerisms lovingly and as peers. Not the speculation about man as simultaneously being two genders in a natural state. That's ... creative.

Allen

Points to Chris for the last-word Scripture verses. Thanks.

Also, Chris, I really don't appreciate and am deeply offended by the obvious glee you get from the Harrier jet story. That wasn't fair at all. It took me a long time to collect all those Pepsi points!

Chris Clukey

Harriers are really hard to fly, Allen. You'd be better off with an F-16 anyway...though I'm not sure what kind of points you collect to get one of those. Maybe you can call up General Dynamics and ask.

Jennifer Fullerton

Allen--see, now if I was one of those "easily offended" people, we'd have a problem, now wouldn't we?? :-)

It's so nice to have a forum like this where you can share so openly!! :)

FriarThom

Genesis 2:21-23

[Kink James Version]
And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;

And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.

And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.

[English Standard Version]
So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and while he slept took one of his ribs and closed up its place with flesh. And the rib that the LORD God had taken from the man he made into a woman and brought her to the man. Then the man said,

"This at last is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man."

[Young's Literal Translation]
And Jehovah God causeth a deep sleep to fall upon the man, and he sleepeth, and He taketh one of his ribs, and closeth up flesh in its stead.

And Jehovah God buildeth up the rib which He hath taken out of the man into a woman, and bringeth her in unto the man;

and the man saith, `This [is] the [proper] step! bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh!' for this it is called Woman, for from a man hath this been taken;

[Darby Translation]
And Jehovah Elohim caused a deep sleep to fall upon Man; and he slept. And he took one of his ribs and closed up flesh in its stead.

And Jehovah Elohim built the rib that he had taken from Man into a woman; and brought her to Man.

And Man said, This time it is bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh: this shall be called Woman, because this was taken out of a man.

[Holman Christian Standard Bible]
So the LORD God caused a deep sleep to come over the man, and he slept. God took one of his ribs and closed the flesh at that place. Then the LORD God made the rib He had taken from the man into a woman and brought her to the man.

And the man said: This one, at last, is bone of my bone, and flesh of my flesh;
this one will be called woman, for she was taken from man.

Chris Clukey

FriarThom, you have not only not answered my question, but the passage supports my position in every version you've offered. It seems you believe that the text suppports your position in some obvious way, but verses using "the man," "him" and "his" to discuss Adam aren't going to help me understand why you maintain that the Bible is describing a dual-gendered being. I need you to explain it to me or there's no communication going on.

So, can you please explain why the Bible's account differs so much from your account, and why Jesus did not offer a clarification in Matthew 19?

FriarThom

Women was taken out of man. How could that be if she wasn't in man before she was taken out?

Allen

FriarThom & Chris,

I can't say that I foresaw this bizarre debate about Genesis 2. But I do think, FriarThom, that your case is made exceedingly difficult by the Freudian slip "Kink James Version".


Jennifer,

Yep, share away. Thanks for joining the convo.


Chris,

Re Harrier & F-16: PLEASE do NOT so tempt my inner Military Aircraft Geek. Seriously, years prior to becoming a wait-list candidate for the Air Force Academy (hopelessly stuck behind some general's kid, no doubt), I was the only middle schooler prowling the annual Air Force Association convention amidst countless Pentagon & military industry types. I considered Jane's All The World's Aircraft literature. And when the F-16 AFTI test plane was introduced, with its fore canards and voice-activated controls, I considered it a spiritual, life-changing event.

So please ... PLEASE ... refrain from tempting my Inner Military Aircraft Geek, lest I involuntarily blurt out embarrassing evidence thereof.

Thanks.

20 MILLIMETER GATLING GUN!

>

F100 TURBOFAN!

>

F-16XL DOUBLE-DELTA WINGS!

>

FriarThom

Good catch Allen. That's what happens when you comment before fully awakening.

Chris,

Matthew 19 is a good question. Why do you think that Jesus whittled two chapters of creation down to one single question?

Matthew is really beside the point isn't it? This post is not about the equal worth of men and women, which is what Jesus was teaching in Matthew 19. This post is about censorship and Christian ethics as they apply to people who don't express their gender "correctly", even if they may be world class athletes. Actually, this topic was taken up in the 1966 Cary Grant movie "Walk Don't Run".

Chris Clukey

FriarThom, you wrote:

"Women was taken out of man. How could that be if she wasn't in man before she was taken out?"

First, let's look to God's word. In the versions you cited, Gen. 2:22 describes God's creation of the woman (using the rib) this way:

"made he a woman"

"he made into a woman"

"buildeth up the rib which He hath taken out of the man into a woman"

"built the rib that he had taken from Man into a woman"

"made the rib He had taken from the man into a woman"

The NIV says...

"God made a woman from the rib"

...The NASB says...

"God fashioned into a woman the rib"

...The Amplified says...

"And the rib or part of his side which the Lord God had taken from the man He built up and made into a woman"

...And the NKJV reads...

"the rib which the LORD God had taken from man He made into a woman"

So, you can see why I answer your question with a question: If Adam was both genders because woman was already in man, why did God have to make, build or fashion the woman? Shouldn't she have already been in there?

And if she was already in there, why was she only represented by a bone that made up around 1% of Adam's body mass? It seems like there should have been an awful lot more girl in there than 1 bone out of 206, wouldn't you agree?

Also, if this interpretation is so obvious from reading the plain text, why has the Jewish community missed it for 4,000 years and the Christian community missed it for 2,000 years?

Second, I do have a straight answer for you. I have a daughter. She could not exist if she hadn't received genetic material from me, carried to an egg in her mother's womb by one of my sperm. That sperm even carried the X chromosome that makes her a beautiful young woman instead of a strapping young man, and now every one of the billions of cells in her body carries my genetic material. So, someone could describe her conception by saying she (or at least, an indispensible part of her) was "taken out of a man" and then she was fashioned by God in another location. But does that mean I was part female prior to her conception? Of course not.

I also have two sons. Both were "taken out of woman" and both carry her genetic material in every cell. Would someone be able to say that my wife was both genders while she was pregnant with them? Of course not. Vive la difference!

So, the orthodox interpretation of these verses (Adam was a male and part of his body was used to build the female, making them one flesh) fits the facts, and your interpretation conflicts with the facts. At least that's how it looks to me. Feel free to correct me if I'm wrong.

And again, one would wonder why Jesus wouldn't offer a correction to the Pharisees in Matthew 19 when he taught on gender and marriage using Genesis 2.

Chris Clukey

Alan--

So, if I were to mention the Raptor, Growler and Osprey coming online, that would be a bad thing?

:-)

Allen

Saw an Osprey fly over when we were at the beach a couple months ago. So weird to see in the air. Not that I'd want to fly one. The V-22, the AV-8 ... I guess the Marines like em unstable. The VSTOL capabilities are awesome, but the widow-maker reputations are well-earned as I understand it. Yeeesh.

FriarThom

Chris,

If woman was not in man, God would have made her from dust just as he made man. Instead she was taken out. God's taking woman out of man is very different from your sperm being "taken out" of you. That didn't change you (although it may mellowed you out for a while). When woman was taken out, it changed man from what he (or shall we say "Ze") originally was, both genders, to what he was afterwards, half the genders. Thus the following passage:

"Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh."

Scriptural marriage is the joining of the two genders back into their original form, one flesh.

Chris Clukey

FriarThom,

Your question ("Why do you think that Jesus whittled two chapters of creation down to one single question?") would only be relevant if the Pharisees had asked Jesus about Creation as a whole and He had responded by asking them the one question He chose. However, they asked him a question about divorce and he responded with a question about the nature of marriage. He wasn't whittling, He was staying on topic.

Then we come to the assertion that fictional works that use racewalking for comedy fodder are examples of gender bullying. All I can say about that is that next time you stop by the kitchen to fill your coffee cup, you should choose decaf. You may also want to consider that in "Walk Don't run" the racewalker is the romantic lead; Cary Grant is trying to get him and Samantha Eggars' character together.

Finally, you still haven't explained why if Adam was both genders prior to Eve's creation, the Bible (and God directly) refers to him with solely male descriptors. Again, the orthodox interpretation fits the facts, but yours doesn't.

Chris Clukey

Allen, I will admit that the Osprey's engines leak oil like a British sports car, but I think it will be a pretty safe bird over the long haul. Definitely more stable than those four little thrust streams the Harrier balances on.

Of course, I like the KC-135 a lot, since I used to own one back in the early Nineties. :-)

This is pretty nice, too:

http://www.airliners.net/search/photo.search?regsearch=3716&distinct_entry=true

Chris Clukey

I have to wonder, what should we make of the episode of "Malcom in the Middle" in which the not-even-remotely-effeminate Dad, Hal, takes up racewalking? Hal's racewalking nemesis is also not effeminate, and is even shown surrounded by hot female groupies. And yet the episode plays the sport for laughs, playing up the silly-looking gait involved.

Can't figure out where the gender bullying is there, but maybe Garfield or FriarThom can help me out.

Jason Taylor

Saw an Osprey fly over when we were at the beach a couple months ago. So weird to see in the air. Not that I'd want to fly one. The V-22, the AV-8 ... I guess the Marines like em unstable. The VSTOL capabilities are awesome, but the widow-maker reputations are well-earned as I understand it. Yeeesh.
----------------------------

The thing was almost cancelled. Glad it wasn't, I was something of an unofficial member of the Osprey Lobby. I forget exactly why-gotta look that up someday.

FriarThom

Chris Clukey,

Why did you ask me this question:

"Can you explain why the Bible's account differs so much from your account, and why Jesus did not offer a clarification in Matthew 19?"

When you knew the answer all along:

"Your question...would only be relevant if the Pharisees had asked Jesus about Creation as a whole and He had responded by asking them the one question He chose. However, ... He was staying on topic."

I never directly answered the question because the answer was obvious, unless you meant to ask some other question. Did you? If so, what was it?

Adam is referred to as "he" because his (see, pronouns are hard. I guess I could have said his/her but that's awkward) bi-gendered being was momentary - just as his bodily being prior to receiving the breath of life was momentary. Also, throughout the Bible, God is referred to as "He", but God has no gender. The choice of "He" is an editorial convention.

My scriptural reference to Genesis was meant to provide a foundation for an understanding of gender. The fact is that most men produce some female hormones and most females produce some male hormones. We all don't fit into neat little 100% pure male/female packages. In order to compensate for the reality of the impure gender binary, our culture dictates acceptable behaviors, i.e. men don't wiggle their hips when they walk. Apparently, the popular culture also instructs men who are insecure with their own masculinity to bring out the "guns", be they Snickers gattling guns or V-22 Osprey warcraft when there is even the slightest hint that it's perfectly normal to be effeminate and a "real man". You have to feel sorry for the men behind the guns and ponder that "perhaps she doth protest too much".

Chris Clukey

FriarThom,

I'm a big enough man (or woman, or chickdude, or whatever it is you think I am) that I won't bother being offended by your hoplophobic comment at the end of your post, but I would like to take a moment to note the hypocrisy of it. You feel you can lecture people here on their supposed bullying of the effeminate simply because they don't interpret a candy bar ad the same way you do, but it's in bounds for you to slander every American male who has chosen a military career, including myself and Allen personally. You appear to have a rather large plank in your eye, sir.

Plus, it really is quite silly for you to keep issuing said lectures while you operate on the assumption that disagreeing with your interpretation of Genesis 2 means one is also in favor of assaulting people different from them. Again, you seem to be exhibiting the same sort of prejudice you rail against.

Now, about gender...First, you say that "Adam is referred to as "he" because his...bi-gendered being was momentary - just as his bodily being prior to receiving the breath of life was momentary." Well, the problem is that if we use that standard, you can call every adult you meet an embryo, a first grader, a virgin, a senior citizen, corpse, etc. You could call Jesus and Lazarus "those two dead guys." You could say Moses was a shepherd his entire life.

Also, why wouldn't the Bible fully detail the bi-gendered concept or even introduce a pronoun to deal with it? If the writers of Futurama could handle that (http://theinfosphere.org/Yivo) why couldn't Moses? Moreover, if we accept your theory, God Himself is calling Adam something he (oops, should I say shkle?) clearly isn't in Genesis 2:18. Are you saying God was speaking something other than the truth, or are you saying that the writer of Genesis
recorded God saying something He (oops, should I say Shkle?) did not actually say?

Then there's this:

"Also, throughout the Bible, God is referred to as 'He', but God has no gender. The choice of 'He' is an editorial convention."

Really? Could you please cite evidence for that? Any Bible verse that mentions that God is genderless will do just fine. If you have none, can you please
share your reason for concluding that God is genderless?

Lastly, you speak of "a foundation for an understanding of gender" but I don't see that you have one of your own, since you are mangling the science as badly as you mangled the theology. Fortunately, I'm glad to help. Men and women are not a mix of genders because of some cross-use hormones any more than a dog is part cat if it gets cat fur in its mouth. Hormones are just one aspect of gender, and are more a reflection of it than a part of it. The most important is the XX and XY chromosomal combinations; no matter what else happens, these make a female a female and a male a male, and estrogen and testosterone do nothing to dilute them. After that there are the primary sexual characteristics (genitalia) and secondary characteristics like breasts, facial hair...all those little extras. The idea that a woman (for example) is a certain percentage male because of some tiny amount of testosterone in her system is no more accurate than believing that a woman who has large breasts is more of a woman than one who has small breasts.

In my world (and the world of science) a man really is 100% male. If he lisps or walks with a wiggle to his hips he's still a man. Therefore I am obligated to treat him as such. But using your paradigm, he (and every other man) is not a man, but a chickdude, a galguy. It's just a false scientific justification for the stuff you are speaking against.

labrialumn

The crudity of the ad is disturbing because it illustrates the increasing crudity of our apostate culture. But we ought to be deeply offended and repulsed by homosexuality, as God Himself is. If we are not, we are further from Christlikeness, and thus, from Christ.

Jason Taylor

Oh, by the way Allen, I forgot. I am glad you have a deep conviction that everything Jason Taylor says is true. It is nice to know that someone here realizes how much this world was blessed by my sublime intellect.

Steve (SBK)

Chris,
Good comments in reply to FriarThom.
In reality (to some, an ethereal place), some people enjoy sitting on the fringe of the fringe in regard to science and theology and common sense and logic.

As you point out, gender becomes meaningless if it is so fluid. Exactly following FriarThom's logic, we're all Bananas (thanks to our shared genetic information). Also, believe it or not, males and females both use the same chemical elements to incorporate their beings.

Also, of course, the biblical narrative makes no sense if you take FT's view, because we have no reason why God should even create a woman: Adam was all-that-was-required.

Also, in these passages, God is never referred to as 'man' or 'woman', unlike, say, the sexual beings he created. It's always "LORD God", "Jehovah God", or "Jehovah Elohim".

And, I could go on... but of course, I agree with you Chris, and am just reiterating things that FT has overlooked. Still, like I said, it'll probably be a fruitless exercise - because of the enjoyment many get from being unorthodox.

(On a related note: I've been away for a while because my wife and I have just had a beautiful, wondrous, little, male child. All are healthy and well, and God is so gracious).

Chris Clukey

Steve (SBK)--

Thanks for your kudos and your excellent comments, and congratulations on the birth of your beautiful, wondrous little chickdude! :-)

BTW, your banana comment makes sense. I've also heard that humans and cabbages share approximately 40% of their DNA. Kinda puts the "Chimps and humans share 98% of their DNA" inperspective, eh?

Gina Dalfonzo

Yes, congratulations to you and your wife, Steve!

Allen

Friends,

Apologies for my delayed response...


Chris,

Right on re racewalking. We all know it looks painfully unmanly. If we can't say that anything is or is not manly, then we declare there to be no differences between the sexes. And anyone who makes such a declaration, no matter how well-intentioned, either lacks honesty about what they perceive or is oddly oblivious to observable truth.

I do hope to see that Malcolm In The Middle episode at some point. Sounds hilarious!

Now ... what on earth do you mean by "I used to own a KC-135." Come on ... are you serious?? You *owned* one??

And ... "chickdude" ... HA!

Oh, and one note: I actually was never in the military. When I didn't get the spot at the USAFA, my focus moved toward law enforcement. So I've got police experience, but not military. Just to clarify, since I evidently left you with another impression at some point.


Labrialumn,

Your comment is fine. But I've never understood this hierarchy of sin that you seem to have created. Or perhaps the fact that one of them seems to be your personal hobby-horse is not actually indicative of such a hierarchy, but rather simply that: a hobby-horse. Which would be understandable I suppose. Goodness knows I ride my own hobby-horses.


Jason,

You may have just blown my conviction. Why? Follow this logic: I also had a similarly deep conviction that Jason Taylor is never humorous. And now look: you break out the (dry, natch) humor on us! So ... if that conviction about Jason Taylor proved false, how can I maintain my confidence in my other conviction about Jason Taylor?

So disappointing ... it's like watching a hero implode before a fanboy's very eyes...


Steve,

Congrats on the birth of your son! Great stuff, that.

Chris Clukey

Allen--

Out on the flightline we used to say that the crew chief owned the aircraft (after all, his name is on the side of it and everything) and he just let the pilots borrow it occasionally. I have to admit mine was more like a timeshare, since I only "owned" it on my shift, and the real top dog was a Tech Sergeant who was on the next shift in the rotation; i.e., when I was working days he was working swings, etc.

Also, thanks for making those streets safer. I did figure you hadn't been in the military, which is why I used the phrase "chosen a military career" but I appreciate the clarification nonetheless. Besides, since law enforcement officers often carry weapons, you are probably part of the gun totin' anti-racewalker gender oppression.

Allen

Re "owned": Ah, now I get it. OK. I may now DISown my own bewilderment.

And you're right about my participation in the oppression. In fact, when my Snickers gun failed, I brought my MilkyWay backup to bear. Sometimes, I'd "go cyclic" with that bad boy and let the candy really fly.

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