I wrote recently of the frequency with which men in films and especially TV sitcoms were made out to be buffoons and women made out to be sensible like Hillary Clinton or Blondie when she deals with Dagwood or Helga when she deals with Hägar the Horrible… Need I go on?
Which brings me to a reader named Jep Jones in Potchefstroom. Jep was responding to a column I wrote long ago about a PG film on television. “PG” indicates that “parental guidance” is advised. In the film a dentist derived thrills from seducing women in his chair, then killing them.
I wondered how a parent would guide a child through such a film.
Jep suggested that I seek an audience with the TV umpires who determine such ratings. He felt I should suggest to them some more explicit categories such as FF – “Fathers being made fools of”.
Like me, Jep was also fed up with this anti-male trend, which has now become a tradition.
VLSN, as we all know, means the film contains “violence, (bad) language, sex and nudity”.
A VLSN film is certain to involve a tough guy who walks like a cowboy with a watermelon under each arm, shoots everybody, creates spectacular explosions, has women shedding their clothes and uses very rude words.
But, as Jep says, we should also be warned when a film is really dumb. He suggests BD – suitable only for the “brain dead”.
And LLS – the film “lacks language skills”.
Jep mentions film dialogues that consist mainly of swear words and suggests an MS category – “mainly swearing”?
He says PP could indicate that the director has the IQ of a pot plant.
B – for boring.
PS – predictable script
OA – Oprah again
I would like to add IB – incredibly boring.
MCC – mainly car chases (with exploding vehicles and lots of sirens).
ADAACBS – “Another documentary about Australians catching bloody snakes”.
Should I Join?An anonymous letter from somebody around my age is now doing the rounds on the Net. It asks: Should I really join Facebook?
The writer says: “When I bought my BlackBerry, I thought about the 30-year business I ran with 1 800 employees, all this without a cellphone that plays music, games, takes videos, pictures, texting or communicating with Facebook and Twitter. I signed up, under duress, for Twitter and Facebook so that my seven kids, their spouses and my grandkids could communicate with me in the modern way.
“That was before one of my grandkids hooked me up for Tweeter, Tweetree, Twhirl, TwitterFon, Tweetie and TweetDeck and Twitpix. My phone was beeping every three minutes with the details of everything except the family’s bowel movements. I’m not ready to live like this. I now keep my cellphone in the garage in my golf bag.
“The kids bought me a GPS because they say I keep getting lost. I keep that in a box under my tool bench with the Bluetooth I am supposed to use when I drive.
“I mean the GPS looked pretty smart on my dashboard, but the lady inside that gadget was a most annoying person.
“Whenever I went wrong she would sarcastically say: ‘Re-calc-u-lating.’ You would think that she could be nicer. It was like she could barely tolerate me. It was not a good relationship.
“When I get really lost I now telephone my wife and tell her the name of the cross streets – and while she is starting to develop the same tone as the GPS lady, at least she loves me.”