Girl News

What Girls Want

By Kate Carraway

womenwant

OOPSIE. Wrote this last week in the disgusting spirit of Black Friday, because I forgot about Thanksgiving. But, it’s not as though we can’t still get hard into what we want, as opposed to what we need and what we have, which is—let’s face it—dumb. I mean, it’s almost Christmassssss (you have to hiss it at the end). Yes? Yes.

Want seems to me to be mostly ineffable. Like, is there anything bigger and more impossible and more demanding? Nope! So it’s weird that the way in which “want” is conceived in real terms is either a fucking sick disaster (see: deadly human carnage wrought over free-trade nonsense like two-dollar waffle irons) (also see: how dated that Black Friday reference is in just a week? OOPSIE) or just boring (look around you; look at how you live; see the squandered opportunities and minor horrifics of an entire life). When I think about what I want, even as a distant abstraction, I feel like I have to go pee-pee, which is how I know I don’t have a handle on it.

Also, my mom just told me that if I don’t email her some links to stuff that I want for Christmas I won’t get anything, which is not an empty threat.

ATTENTION

My favorite thing—by favorite I mean for amusement and reinforcement of an increasingly bleak world-view—is when you say “I am doing X” and then a guy instinctively, predictably goes “Oh, I like/do not like/know about/do not know about X,” swiftly transforming your experience into their version of your experience, or—GONG—their own experience. There is a lot wrong with female socialization, but one thing we don’t do a lot of is interrupt each other, and especially not to project a hologram right where someone else is standing that reinforces and coddles our existing sense of self. BOYS, RIGHT?

Anyway, that’s not all of the time, and only performed by the ones who are sensitive, who make being sensitive 75% of their identity, but are actually only sensitive in one direction. (Guess which direction it is!)

What I want is attention paid to what I am actually saying, not just to the generalities of it. When I do get this kind of attention, it’s so shocking that it feels too close, and I’m all “I don’t want to talk about it anymore,” which I totally get is just unfair.

I also want to be allowed to throw a mini-tantrum once in a while—just ONCE IN A WHILE, nothing ridic—and have the relevant boy not apply a whole Charter of Rights and Freedoms to his feelings about the situation. It’s like I/we/girls am/are only allowed to act out in certain sexified or jokeified ways now that guys have the Feminist card to play about double-standards. What I want is to knock some stuff over occasionally, and smoke inside when I’ve had a shitty afternoon, and not have to be subject to the whole thing of, like, “That’s immature.” I know. Don’t care. I have a feeling that southern belles in the 50s got away with a lot more bullshit than we do.

NO ATTENTION

Just sprinting along with our theme, here: Some precariously alive dude of the pissed-pants variety recently said/yelled “You got what I want but do you got what I need?” at me on the street which I thought was notable for its rhythmic value, if not specificity. Anyway, I could really do the fuck without any stranger-man talking to me and my friends and every single girl, even while she’s wearing snowpants and a ballcap, all the time every day, so much so that living in a city becomes a Grand Theft Auto-esque journey that veers toward over-40 sexual obscurity and is fraught with emotional violence and 100-mile-an-hour shame-spirals about whether or not leopard-print booties are in fact "asking for it."

PREZZIES

I want candy canes and candy-cane-flavored anything; weaponized golden jewelries; functional toys like bubble guns and Jenga; luxury alcohol; nerd-oriented gift cards; and an envelope stuffed with cash. I can buy all that garbage because I work constantly but when someone hands you a pack of gum because they remember that you like the blue kind it’s better than eleventy millions of anything.

PURPOSE

The only two things that matter for “humanness” are love and work, at least according to Freud, who was admittedly a dick. The thing about work is that for it to be meaningful there has to be purpose behind it, and it’s purpose that we’re so often without. Liiiiike, when you can do anything, what do you do? (That we’ve coded this as #whitegirlproblems is a degrading, nauseating problem all on its own, especially since Michael Azerrad made the good point that Dinosaur Jr. invented it.) I don’t have any idea, but wanting to know what you want seems like the biggest, Oz-est, life-iest want of all. It feels very uncomfortably queertimes to lay it out like this but I don’t see a good way around it. I do know as of today that the chair I’ve been sitting in at my therapist’s office is actually a recliner and I’ve missed out on Freud-style laydowns for months.

BETTER STUFF

I can accept that I exist as a human to buy things, make my parents feel anxious until I get married and procreate, and… nothing else. But could we at least be offered better shit in the interim between gorgeous ignorance and death? Like, did you see the Victoria’s Secret fashion show, by which I mean the infinitely more regressive Toddlers and Tiaras for tall ladies? (And did you see the inbred-looking/Oliver Peoples/Jacobim Mugatu motherfucker who designs embroidered bra-capes for models who don’t have enough tit to put between your teeth?) Offer me something I want so that I don’t have to furiously tear through the tidbits about “art” and “fiction” in makeup magazines, and be gaymansplained about fashion, and be told by women who work 80-hour weeks in office buildings that sex is about shadowy limbs and diamonds and some fairy-lit idea of obligation. I’m going to print this out and nail it to the door of the Condé Nast building.

REAL TALK

Welp, I also want “real talk” to be a thing everybody says again, like at the end of every sentence. OK? Do it for me.

I feel like I can basically dig on anything at all that happens to me, except for whatever it is I don’t actually know about. Do you feel me? If someone spits in my face I’m like “EUGH!” but also “Sure, OK.” That I get. (And, perhaps this is too revealing of my personal BDSM preferences but the only dude who ever actually spit on me turned out to be an airtight #1 aide-de-camp for a long while.) But when someone acts like they want to spit in your face but then kind of hangs around just occasionally giving you spitty-face looks it’s like, what is happeninininininggggg? And very twisted and horrible.

The primary thing that dudes haven’t figured out yet is that it’s less wounding to say “I don’t want this” and walk away than damage-controlling their way into a thousand more hurty feelies.

GOOD PROTEIN OPTIONS

In order to feel somewhat good--assuming that I haven’t seen a video about just-sprung-from-a-lab beagles feeling the grass and the sun for the first time, and been summarily brainhatefucked by it--I have to suck down protein a few times a day. I honestly don’t understand how anybody eats a muffin for breakfast and doesn’t then crawl on blistering hands and knees into an uncomfortable hibernation. Getting non-vile protein during a regular Life Day is too hard, unless I’m nuzzled up at my mom and dad’s house (aka waiting for balanced meals to appear in front of me in between Zzzzzs). Like, corner-store nuts and milk are fine once, but you can’t do that in front of people. The free food at the various “events” I am supposed to go to for my fake journalism career will only ever be pastry plus goat cheese plus a twig or leaf of some kind and then the flutes of bubbly breastmilk that I will knock the corny, flat-ironed hooknastys over for. And the meat at most restaurants is sketchy as fuck. What I want is for some agent of kindness to appear every couple of hours with a plate of sashimi and a glass of icy lemon-water. If that happened I would be the head of the IMF for suresies.

FOR “DON’T TAKE IT PERSONAL” BY MONICA TO BE QUEUED UP ON YOUR ITUNES THE VERY MOMENT YOUR PERIOD STARTS

What’s better? Zero things are better.

FUN

I already have fun. I’m way past that thing of having to pay for it or plan it out with the appropriate little audience of friends and boys and boyfriends. Making a little bag of popcorn and doing the Running Man while it pops is a heavy rager if you have #perspective. BUT, I want to have fun as a serious, not-kidding life-objective and on the same par as men, who pretty much get to pursue their creative interests and weed jones and sexual wonderlands until they feel like yawning into responsibility. I want to never ever worry about the fun I have compromising anything that is supposed to be feminine and safe and calm, not because I don’t like that proto-girl stuff--BECAUSE I DO, SO MUCH--but because I want fun to co-exist as a social standard and not just in my own brain. Like, I want fun to be a girl-quality that is as valuable as cute, because isn’t it?

GUYS KNOWING STUFF ABOUT BEDSHEETS

This transpired between me and my friend Paul, who is good-looking and smart.

Dude: I only have one set of sheets. ONE. I’ve been sleeping on a bare mattress for a week, what the fuck is that?

Me: That's you fucking kidding me. WASH YOUR SHEETS!

Dude: I did last night. However I didn’t put them on the mattress.

Me: Listen, you need to put your sheets on. Your sweat and skin are getting into your mattress when it’s not covered. And you can’t ever get it out!

Dude: I’m fine with that.

Me: That’s wrong. That’s wretched!

Dude: If you saw my mattress, you’d know that skin flakes and sweat are the least of my worries. There is one large stain that looks a lot like I gutted a small child on my bed but it's just wine.

Me: I’m puking I’m puking I’m puking.

TO WATCH NETFLIX MOVIES IN A COZY BED-COCOON INSTEAD OF WORKING

So, byeeeee!

Previously - Girls and Holidays

Follow Kate on Twitter @KateCarraway

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