In the underappreciated 1988 Woody Allen film “Another Woman,” actor Ian Holm, playing a pompously erudite heart surgeon, utters the classic sentence: “I accept your condemnation.” Zing! The surgeon is throwing a party at his old-school Connecticut house for his fiancé and former mistress, a women’s college philosophy professor named Marion (played by Gena Rowlands with mousy brown hair) when his mentally-unstable ex-wife (Betty Buckley) enters and ends up causing a scene in front of a small crowd of white people holding cocktails, all of whom look nervous in in a cordial but uneasy fashion meant to fade into the background. The Surgeon chastises his ex-wife for acting in poor taste and she retorts with something like: “an expert on taste is an affair with a philosophy professor at a Holiday Inn while your wife is having her ovaries removed.” Snap! Hence his comeback. That line has always stayed with me, I accept your condemnation. The way he says it is purely utilitarian, just to get rid of the ex-wife, but the basic recognition he has of knowing he let her down and just doesn’t care, well, that’s the hook. The message is: what you feel about me, what you say about me, what you fool yourself into thinking is important to me is none of my business. Just get your crazy ass out of my party. Byee.
Last weekend I drove out to the country to visit my Aunt and Uncle and enjoyed the next-to-last weekend of the summer season with plenty of socializing and a sail on their boat. During a walk on the rocks of the beach with my Aunt we stopped in to say hi to a neighbor and long-time family friend, a salty old dog with a waterfront gazebo and tales of how much he can’t stand the town and its uptight council of thick-headed republicans. When I asked how these town folk felt about Trump a silence came over our threesome and my Aunt immediately said: “We can’t talk politics out here until after the election.” She’s a staunch Clinton supporter (Hillary anyway) and salty dog apparently loves Trump. I backed off and continued to enjoy the view from the gazebo. The polarizing divide continues even amongst the really white people of the eastern Long Island shores. I stand my ground while riding the fence of futility as everyone else remains entitled to their point of view. Condemnation accepted. Game over. Nobody wins except Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg and Beyoncé.
A popular publication that I sometimes work for grabbed my weary ire today with a headline about Trump’s female campaign manager “caught” victim blaming on a PBS show from 2013. Ooh, ahh, must be a real smoking gun, make room on the mantle for the Pulitzer! Turns out her alleged victim-shaming words were as follows: “If we (women-folk) were physiologically- not mentally, emotionally, professionally- equal to men, if we were physiologically strong as men, rape wouldn’t exist.” This was said during a roundtable discussion shortly after the Pentagon lifted its ban on women in combat roles and the ensuing necessity for male and female fitness tests. Now, the statement is ridiculous, coming from a female TV talking head perspective on rape; emotionally charged and swimming in the grey area of prevention-versus-cure. However, this isn’t really victim shaming/blaming. Rape would exist no matter how strong the weakest woman is. Anyone with enough sense to turn the page knows that. Big bad world filled with people who just didn’t get enough love and support as kids. Basically she’s giving a hypothetical example of what Republicans still (in 2016) think is fundamental 1950’s idealism- if only we teach the world to sing in perfect harmony then nothing bad will ever happen again, never never never. But, falling on the sword of the Social Justice Warriorism of liberal media tugging at the pea brains of reactionary hashtagging millennials is not my bag, man, I can only dig an argument with true opposing viewpoints. My visceral anguish at the meaninglessness of life will have to wait until I force myself to sit through the Rob Lowe Comedy Central Roast where Republicunt “author” (hehe) Ann Coulter was the actual surprise Roastee. I’m disappointed in this fluff and glam publication for giving in to the thin-skin-ism that plagues the virtual generation that watches TV on iPhone’s whilst sipping $6 coffee. I’ll save my views of why maybe it’s not entirely the millennials’ fault that they are all such weak little pussies for another time.
Last night I caught Andrew Dice Clay’s new Showtime #realitydocufiction series and found it somewhat entertaining. Dice seems to have softened a bit in old age, or at least begun the process of self-satirization which is the ultimate peace on earth according to me. Petite and all-girls-school accented Natasha Leggero as Dice’s girlfriend; now there’s some seriously thought-out casting. The premier episode had Dice gambling in Vegas in order to give a $2K envelope to his girlfriend’s brother who was marrying his boyfriend in the casino across the street. At the actual wedding Dice saves the grooms from a long, long, long life of heartache by kicking the bad luck Elvis preacher out and replacing him with a Liza in black sequins. “May you have a long and healthy life of cocksucking together!” OH! Even Dice knows to get the gays on your side means you’ve accepted everyone else’s condemnation and still you just don’t give a fuck. Always close with a positive visual. Keeps em wanting more.