January 05, 2006

A Primer on Self-Respect

If you’re even remotely like us, dear reader, you get well-nigh all of your intellectual sustenance from Newsweek magazine, the mercilessly highbrow publication that prints some of the most important lucubrations in American history. We, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” like to think of Newsweek as the 21st century’s answer to T.S. Eliot’s defunct Criterion, only a tad more cosmopolitan.

Why, just think of all the fantastic morsels you get in an issue of Newsweek: Fun facts about rappers-cum-rapists in the “culture” pages; an insipid Soccer-Mom gripe from Anna Quindlen; short puff-pieces on Billy Joel. Move over, Lionel Trilling; Newsweek is our official arbiter of taste. We’d flush a Koran down a toilet just to get our hands on an issue.

Allow us to offer you a splendid example of the intellectual seriousness on display in each number of Newsweek. For the December 12 issue, one Steve Friess—obviously the Dwight Macdonald of his generation—penned an article entitled “Betting on the Studs.”

No, it isn’t about John Steinbeck. That would be so demotic. The kicker to the piece informs us that it focuses on a far more learned topic: “Madam Heidi Fleiss is back—and building an all-male bordello in the desert. Is even Nevada ready for this?”

We know what you are thinking, dear reader: That’s a darned good question. And a mighty intellectual one, too.

In the course of his lengthy thought-piece, Mr. Friess offers one sentence that is simply hysterical. It provided us, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” with yet another Thank God We Read Newsweek Moment. So take that, Robert Hughes and you other nincompoops at Time.

The sentence, which pertains to the fact that Ms. Fleiss’ male bordello is located “an hour-and-a-half from the Las Vegas Strip,” reads as follows:

“What self-respecting woman would drive that far for sex when it’s so easy to find here in Vegas?” asks Jessica Martini, 28, of Houston, standing in line last week to buy tickets to “Thunder from Down Under,” a male-stripper review.

Oh, that’s simply delicious. A woman lined up to see male strippers is expatiating on self-respect. To which we respond: What self-respecting woman lined up at a strip club would cast aspersions at women who would head to a bordello out of town? If you ask us, that’s also a darn fine query.

Posted at January 5, 2006 12:01 AM | TrackBack