There's a really interesting conversation going on over at At My Knit's End over the Maureen Dowd article in last Sunday's NYT Sunday Magazine. Maureen essentially asks:
Why do young women wanna be 50's housewives again?
Why do men of any age want young women who wanna be housewives?
Isn't this just an awful backlash against all of the gender progress we were promised by Gloria Steinem and company?
Oh, and why can't I, an attractive and highly prominient NYT columnist, get a date? I'll pay my fair share. Oh, is that wrong?
Without screaming "biological imperative" at the top of her lungs, Blue Gal would like to point out the following:
This "feminism brought us into the workplace" is a buncha crap. Women went into the workplace in droves in the late '60's early '70's because real wages did not keep up with inflation. Feminism may have given some women a way to rationalize such, but mommy did it for the money, 'cause you can't keep up your standard of living on one salary anymore.
Young women today are a stupid as in any other generation. Blue Gal her own self was never so stupid with her head in the clouds as when she was 23 years old. Dreaming of being a housewife in Barbie's dream house and looking like Barbie/Jessica Simpson/a Maxim girl is just normal stupid dreaming on the part of females who have not grown up yet. It is not the End Of Feminism As We Knew It. Feminism as we knew it never existed, ladies. It was all in our heads. Get over it.
Now, to those girls who want the "Mrs." label and are dreaming of living the fifties dream model, a little wake up call. Blue Gal is only gonna mention a few facts 'cause otherwise this could take all day and she's got laundry to do. Imagine, if you will, that your dream comes true. It's the 50's again, and you are Happy Homemaker.
1. You do not have your own car. That's right. You get your husband's car on "market day" after you drive him to work. One day per week. And while the car is made of solid steel and gets just about the same mileage as today's Hummer, it's got something called a "clutch" which makes it much more difficult to park. Don't worry, you only have it one day a week. The other four days you are at home and car-less.
2. At home, you do not have cable, the internet, a cell phone, a cordless phone, or a microwave. You may have one credit card, but it has your husband's name on it. There is no Target, no Gap, no Old Navy. Catalog shopping? It's called Sears and Roebuck, baby. You are not without things to do, though, because you spend so much of your day ironing.
3. You do not know who got voted off the island, what Homer Simpson is up to, or which desperate housewife will get laid this week. You own exactly one Black and white TV with three channels. The shows go off at 11 pm and show a test image until 6:30 am.
4. Your husband works at something called a "manufacturing job" which in addition to a salary provides him with "benefits" and something called a "pension." (These things existed then, but they do not now. You might want to look them up.) His job both stresses him out and bores him, so he takes refuge in hard liquor when he comes home. If he wants sex and you don't, all the conjugal rights are in his corner. And remember, even Betty Friedan's husband smacked her around after a couple of belts. You might have to get used to it; the 1950's police rarely intervene in "domestic issues." [Actually, Blue Gal stands corrected. Feminism did make a difference in this arena. Hitting or raping your wife is now a crime in all 50 states. Thanks, Gloria.]
4. You smoke, your husband smokes, all your friends smoke. You all stink like smoke, but nobody has a sense of smell from all the smoking. If you get cancer, you die. End of story.
5. There is no such thing as Prozac, South Beach Diet, or thong underwear. And you will not go out of the house without wearing one of these:
Have fun back there, girls.