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The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Men, Women, and Everything In Between

Jersey Shore. Just the name brings about universal images of hot tub sexcapades and naked, drunken debauchery. I remember when I first saw an episode of the beloved reality show. I had wondered how much of it could actually be real. After all, I had never met people that were so utterly shameless. Luckily enough, a girl’s night out on the hipster filled street of Abbott Kinney cured me of my curiosity. A man at the bar struck up a conversation with my friend and I, and when we asked him what he did for a living, he said he was one of the producers on Jersey Shore. My emotions were a mix of excitement and disgust. I politely asked him what he thought of the show, and whether the cast was really as promiscuous (which was putting it lightly) as they seemed. He assured me that they were, and said he actually thought it was quite refreshing. Of course, my constant need to speak my views led our conversation to become an hour-long debate on whether or not people should be completely free spirits. His argument was that we are taught to feel guilty about certain actions and behaviors, but that as human beings, we aren’t supposed to. Perhaps I haven’t lived here for long enough, but it seems to me that most of the youth in Los Angeles have much of the same view as my new friend, the producer of Jersey Shore.
Men talk about women like they are bodies molded in different shapes and sizes for their personal preference. Sex is not about attraction or love anymore, it is about convenience. Women aren’t much better. They seem to have lost their ability, or maybe even their desire, to be respected. Just the fact that Jersey Shore has become such a big hit, for whatever reason, shows how society has deemed it acceptable. My complaints are not against sex itself, on the contrary, I believe we should enjoy life what it lasts. I have just always thought that what happens before sex, is as important as what happens during. Getting to know someone, learning what you have in common, flirting over drinks or dinner, those are things we used to want, even need, before we decided to let someone get to know us in the most intimate way possible. All it takes now is an ass grab on the dance floor, a couple of comments on how hot someone looks, and a lot of cheap alcohol.
It is impossible not to see how sexualized women have become, and how publically accepted that idea has become. Yes, most women want to be sexy, and yes, men have the right to be attracted to sexy women. But being sexy is just as much about the way a person presents themselves through what they say and how they act, as the way they look and dress. One of the most attractive things to me is when a man asks how my day is going. Not how hot my legs look in a dress, not how beautiful my smile is or how kissable my lips are, just simply asking, “so, how is your day going?” Such a simple question shows two extremely important things. 1) They are interested in our lives, and 2) They see us equals. My view of sex may be a tad romanticized, but it’s not as if I am saying we need to live in a Disney movie. In fact, it is much more simple than I think people realize. We want to teach our kids to enjoy someone’s company with their clothes on, so we should too. Respect should be something men and women alike demand, not a bonus we get if we’re lucky enough to run in to someone who still gives it.


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