Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Inspector Clouseau

I only remember three things from the Pink Panther movies:

  1. "rit of felous jage"

  2. finger amputation

  3. goose bumps at the nudist colony

But there's got to be a scene where Clouseau turns confession into evidence because he's determined to finger the criminal. I think it would go like this:

Thief: I broke in through a museum window after hours and stole the jewels. They're under my bed in my apartment. You'll find them there.

Clouseau: And where were you last night?

Thief: At the museum.

Clouseau: Don't you know that the museum is CLOSED at night? Why were you there?

Thief: To steal the jewels.

Clouseau: Ah, so you ADMIT being at the museum after hours!

Thief: Of course. I told you, I stole the jewels.

Clouseau: Tell me ... Do you have any expensive jewels?

Thief: You'll find them under my bed.

Clouseau: Ah ha! Where did a poor grubber like YOU get expensive jewels, my dear?

Thief: I stole them from the museum.

Clouseau: Enough of your lies! Constable, search the suspect's apartment! I have a pretty good suspicion we'll find the jewels there. Heh heh heh...

In just the same way, a reader of my blog called 'exposed' has accused me of rampant sexism. On August 5, I wrote about a school friend who I "treated ... like trash too much of the time."

Later in the same post I wrote:

Looking back on it now, I ridiculed him and his thinking the way my father ridiculed my mother. I hierarchically feminized him in our friendship.

Exposed commented:

you "feminized" him in your relationship? not dominated huh? hmm...the rampant sexism sneaks through again dear.

I emailed exposed, and found out that exposed is quite serious. So let's look at it seriously.

Ridicule, per se, without any justification being given, is something most of us would consider a bad thing done by mean people. Earlier in the post in question, I wrote that the ridicule of a dominant boy made me so angry that I tried to kick his shins. Apparently I also think ridicule for no reason is bad. Since I raise the topic of my father ridiculing my mother, it is possible that I am framing the issue in terms of relations between the sexes, and that I may be aware of the concept of sexism. In describing ridicule without purpose inflicted by a man on a woman, it is even possible that I am describing sexist oppression.

It is possible that I don't approve of sexist oppression. Yes, I am sexist, just like I am racist: Anyone raised in this society absorbs those poisons.

Then I write that "I hierarchically feminized him in our friendship." The phrase "hierarchically feminized" sounds like a bad thing. Earlier in the same post I had derided the hierarchical social structures some kids create: "a pyramid of monkeys crapping on each other." Apparently, I think hierarchical social structures without good cause are bad. So, to "hierarchically feminize" someone -- especially when equated to a father ridiculing a mother without cause -- is probably something the writer does not endorse.

It is also possible that I used the phrase "hierarchically feminized" rather than "hierarchically dominated" in order to highlight the sexism inherent in both my father and myself.

It's not only possible. Any intelligent, educated reader would see it in this piece, and not conclude that I was accidentally revealing my own, unexamined, sexism.

Exposed is intelligent, and is educated (though not always about spelling). Exposed could have easily perceived this piece for what it was. But exposed chose to read nefarity1 into it. From this I conclude that I represent something special to exposed, whose mind will turn confession into evidence to make a case.

1. May not be in the dictionary, but should be.
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