Vowel Movement: It’s your fault I suck

I know. It’s been a while. It’s not my fault – I got a job. Kind of. And then I got sick. But I’m better now. Kind of. Better AND I have money. Kind of.

I’ve also been procrastinating because I used up all of my writerly rage on those last couple of blog entries. I began to fear that I no longer had things to get pissed off about (or things about which I could get pissed off).

Then the internet sent me Amanda Chatel. Flying Spaghetti Monster be praised!

If you haven’t heard of Amanda Chatel, it’s because she thinks you’re a huge idiot and doesn’t want you to know her, plebeian. Yet, in defiance of all logic – not one of Amanda’s strong suits, admittedly – she would still really like you to read her SUPER HILARIOUS SATIRE, “What does a man’s pet say about his romantic potential?”

For tl;dr crowd: the usefulness and availability of a man’s dick is directly tied to his pet proclivities, which makes perfect sense if he’s regularly giving his dog the business, but not if you live in a world that wasn’t conceived for a rejected draft of Sex and the City.


Dear diary: today I felt a glimmer of remorse for my years of materialism and oppressive, unforgivable self-absorption, so I ate a man's face. All better! <3

So read it and bask, BASK in Amanda’s nuanced humor, which does not read AT ALL like the passive-aggressive diary of a bitchy, codependent megalomaniac from whose grasping, desperate vagina men’s genitals wither in self-defense. Her punchline is subtle – so subtle, you practically don’t even notice it. OKAY? Because she’s FUCKING SUBTLE.

Right.

So after this poorly researched (since when the fuck are ferrets rodents?) little slice of cliché did the rounds on Yahoo! and Fark, Amanda started getting some feedback from pet owners of both sexes, all of whom independently arrived at the conclusion that Amanda “Provocateur” Chatel is bursting at the ear holes with shit. They were surprisingly accurate for a bunch of humorless troglodytes who don’t know true genius when they see it.


WHY HAVE YOU FAILED AMANDA. WHY.

See? This is YOUR FAULT, you fucking retards.

So naturally, not seeing ANY evidence that this was not, in fact, the brainchild of yet another two-dimensional, unoriginal caricature of a woman whose every mannerism was painstakingly cultivated between the pages of Us Weekly, I assumed Amanda Chatel really believes that any man who owns a pet snake “drives a Camaro and rock a Metallica shirt circa 1986,” and that if he wants me to, god forbid, watch him FEED the icky, scaly monster, I should “Run. Run. Run.”

AMANDA HAS SPOKEN.

And then she blocked me. It made exactly the same sound as a teenager screaming, “YOU DON’T FUCKING UNDERSTAND ME AND I HATE YOU” seconds before slamming her bedroom door and bursting into tears. I laughed. So much. So, so much.

Remember when I said, “You can’t make your audience do 100% of the work and still call yourself a communicator”? That wasn’t something I made up for funsies. I said it because there are people in the world who do this all the time. Glenn Beck. Ann Coulter. Every modernist poet ever (I’m looking at you, Wallace Stevens). It happens every time someone writes like shit and then gets their hackles up because we don’t understand them.

It’s natural to fear rejection, especially where creative work is concerned. Creating anything for an audience involves a lot of emotional risk. We come pre-programmed with defenses, justifications, and excuses to help mitigate an onslaught of criticism – because we don’t want to think that it is we, the creators, who are flawed. I have done this. Everyone has done this.

It’s not that being wrong itself is particularly scary. It’s that being wrong forces you to self-examine. AND THAT IS FUCKING HARD.

A few weeks ago, I posted an anti-homophobia video that was intentionally controversial – and though I felt very passionate about it, and prepared to stand by it no matter what, I braced myself for a wave of negative opinion. In fact, there was a moment where I strongly considered not posting it at all. What if this was a mistake? What if it was badly written or badly filmed? What if people hated it? Worse, what if people just didn’t get it? My own actors (and of course my mother) had reservations about whether people would understand that the piece is meant to mock abusive behavior. And when the consequences of failure could mean getting pelted by old fruit, soda cans, or Molotov cocktails, one feels, you know. A skosh concerned.

Luckily, 90,000+ views, a Huffington Post reblog, a Dan Savage retweet, and a few thousand Tumblr posts later, the only backlash has come from a smattering of trolls (I think I’ve rejected maybe five comments out of nearly 200) and the semi-literate bigoted douchenozzles themselves. I know that I have a legit success on my hands, of which I should (and do) feel rightly proud.

So on the one hand, it’s not a bad idea not to give too much of a fuck what people think, or else you’ll never make anything at all. Making that video scared me. Applying for jobs scared me. Writing this blog scares me. Asking for help or approval is no different than getting naked in front of someone for the first time. If you’re wrong, the damage could be irreversible. But if you’re right, the payoff could be huge. (And sexy.)

But if you DO fail – if your message falls flat, or if you’re in over your head, or, fuck, if you just not as talented as you thought you were – the only correct response is to ask yourself where YOU went wrong. You cannot delude yourself that you are a victim of some mass conspiracy to misunderstand you. The numbers are not in your favor. If you have to tell us what you meant, you didn’t say it well the first time. Get over it and just do better next time. Unless you decide to alienate your readership. Then there won’t freaking BE a next time.

The great thing about the Amanda Chatels of the world is that their attitudes are inherently self-limiting. They won’t get very far because they are neither adaptable nor introspective; they will inevitably be surpassed by writers who may fail, but who will see those failures for what they are: opportunities to learn and evolve.

All that said, I now present to you my take on Amanda Chatel’s article. I’m calling it, “What a man’s pet says about his romantic potential: Uppity Bitch Edition.”

In romance, first impressions are everything. Sure, you could always take a chance on someone and see where things go, but communicating is hard and anyway, your ovaries aren’t getting any younger. Why invest in a relationship when you could just make snap judgments based on completely arbitrary bullshit your embittered mother spilled out in one of her few semi-lucid moments between bouts of compulsive drinking?

That’s the great thing about pets. Because there are only, like, five kinds of men, you can learn a lot about a guy based on his choice of pet, especially since animals and people are pretty much identical. Next time you’re seeking a suitable means to satisfy your unquenchable vagina’s blackest cravings, suss out the mark’s pet and hope he doesn’t love it more than he loves buying enough shit to keep you quiet.

Dog
Dogs are big stupid slobbering shit machines, just like your boyfriend. They belong together. In fact, you’re probably better off having sex with the dog. At least HE’LL cuddle after, AMIRITE LADIES?

Cat
Cats are beautiful, sleek, and mysterious — in other words, competition. Kind of like your guy’s ex-girlfriend. And, like your guy’s ex, cats are also needy, standoffish, and best neutralized inside a flaming sack left on your heartthrob’s doorstep.


But not this guy. For God's sake, do not come between this man and his pussy.

Fish
The only time men and fish should be in the same room is if the man is a dentist. Check: is the man a dentist? If yes, have sex with him IMMEDIATELY. Take his wallet while he’s sleeping.

Parrot
The great thing about parrots is they live a really, really long time, so that will be something you can take when you outlive your guy because he died of a heart attack or old age or the arsenic you put in his wine or whatever.

Rabbit
If your guy owns a rabbit, it’s ‘cause he’s cute and snuggly and can have a ton of sex and will make you so many babies you won’t even have to pretend you took your birth control when you really didn’t because you love him so much you just don’t want to lose him, why can’t he just understand that?

Rodent
FACT: No one loved rodents more than Hitler.

Ferret
This doesn’t really need its own category; unlike rabbits and rodents, ferrets and rodents are pretty much exactly the same thing, like sharks and dolphins. But it’s worth pointing out that the only men who own ferrets probably also do really weird things like play Dungeonmasters & Dragons and dress up like Star Trek.

Iguana
It is fine if a man owns an iguana. It is NOT FINE if that’s what he’s named his penis. Unless it falls off as a defense mechanism. If that happens, you should breathe a sigh of relief because then you won’t have to pretend to enjoy sex or experience emotions!

Snake
Everyone knows that only one type of person likes snakes, and that person is the PERFECT MAN because he is probably a badass who drives a Harley and has tattoos and loves to watch The Big Game, which means he is made of testosterone. Remember, ladies: at least if he’s hitting you, he isn’t ignoring you.

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Comments

  1. Jay Thomason says:

    I think angrychattel could take lessons heh.

  2. Wow, your take on Chattel’s article made me laugh and the video you made is an interesting way to look at homophobia.
    It’s hard to take criticism but as you said, the only way to be gracious about it is to see it as an opportunity to learn and grow.

  3. I love it when you piss off stupid people, Charlotte. I also love it when you use their own stupidity as a cudgel to beat them half to death. So, nicely done on both counts! Now, to go get myself a motorcycle and a motherfucking snake…

  4. I really get angry when people say “Oh, it’s just a joke,” when it’s an article or video that’s both badly made and insulting. Even if she’s going for parody, then it better be damn clear that it’s parody … if that means some hyperbole, then so be it. I really can’t stand when writers stand behind the parody or joke scapegoat just because they wrote a crappy piece.

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