This story is over 5 years old.


Girl News - Girls and Gross Stuff

If anything is in flux about girls, and who girls are and are allowed to be in the world (if we care?), it's our relationship to gross stuff.
October 28, 2011, 12:00am

If anything is in flux about girls, and who girls are and are allowed to be in the world (if we care?), it’s our relationship to gross stuff. If you’re all “But girls can make cock/cum/fart jokes in movies now!” you’re right, but how we’re supposed to be gross—really, actually, honestly gross, not gross-for-sexy gross—in regular society is still mad regulated by snoozefest gender stuff.

See: Seth Rogen. Forget that he’s a one-note stoner, can you imagine if any girl actress had teeth like him? PROVED! Can you imagine if the girls we care about in filthy, drunk bands were even remotely as objectively unattractive as their dude equivs, who girls are still hot for? PROVED! I don’t even like gross stuff that much, aside from the cleaner, blood-not-shit side of punk (that I even typed “fart” violates all of my personal doctrines) but there is a continuum of it that relates to girls, to every one of us. I drank a lot of Prosecco last night so I’m glad I chose such a stunningly obvious topic.



Growing a sickitating hill of matter right under your arm skin because you spend most of the day posting stuff on Tumblr and writing extensive emails about nothing is the low end of girldom.


This weird state created GG Allin and Lisa Crystal Carver and Sarah Silverman, all of whom are important to me and all of whom worked/are working different threads of disgusting. What’s UP, New Hampshire?


We’re all “oooh sex is normal and good and interesting, let’s talk about it all the time, ooooh” and that’s pretty wrong. Guys get it the worst for this, even though in my experience girls are the ones who need to rip into your coffee break to tell you about the sex they’re having while guys will give you a kind of nod thing, maybe a little shoulder shimmy. Enough, girls!

Like, I write about sex constantly (but never really talk about it because that’s rude, other than doing “Schwing” jokes with those long mushrooms), but unless I’m thinking about or watching or hearing about sex that I can imagineer my way into, it’s totally gnarly. It’s supposed to be; if we found the dissociative, creamy stuff of other people’s actual, actual sex life hot, we would still be feral. (Were humans ever feral? No, right? Oh yeah: cats are gross.)


They shit in your house and it just sits there until you throw it out? A dog would never do that to you, unless he was a baby or old and sick. And their hair is all on your coat and you talk about it like it’s just there and it’s normal that it’s there, like, it’s just a piece of lint? That is grosser than anything I can think of! I wish that all dogs were girls and all cats were boys. That would make sense.



Hate these guys.


Do you ever start to talk about how you feel about something but are so bored by it immediately that you forget what you were saying? That’s like the time, late at night, when I couldn’t remember if my on-off boyfriend and I were “together” or not. The general experience of having feelings and knowing them and discussing them with your people is the most important thing, but really, the minutiae of feelings and communicating them (so selfish!) is just about the grossest thing I can think of.


Ever take B-12 vitamins because one of your 18 other vitamins or minerals or your birth control pill or whatever makes you need it? S’gross.


A used condom is a trophy, not a gross thing. I mean, it goes in the garbage, but being weird about touching it is your developmental disability, not mine. A condom wrapper, though, remains universally not thrown out, across a wide spectrum of my and my friends’ boyfriends. Why not throw it out? Just throw it out. ??!!


Most things about the gynecologist these days are just fine; anyone who knows anything has a chick doctor who says “This is my hand; this is the speculum.” I really think we’ve reached an exciting moment where the collective consciousness, not including whoever writes the disturbing television show Whitney, has come to terms with the gynecologist being no more or less conceptually funny or embarrassing than the dentist. But. But! Occasionally the grossnesses of vagina doctoring becomes harshly apparent, like, when during a physical in a faraway city an old, white, man doctor guy accidentally poked my cervix instead of scraping it, and it hurt so much that I briefly passed out; the next day, I remembered what happened and fainted AGAIN! I am firmly against any and all uses of “cray-cray” but that really was double-cray.



I’ve broken my thumb (fell off my bike), ankle (fell in a ditch while doing adventures), and my nose (the perils of the vast and unknowable ocean!). All of those felt, sounded and looked fucking gross but all of them (especially the nose) were cool to have broken. This is just a gross-brag and has nothing to do with girls.


When you feel like smoking a cigarette in public, or getting high inside with the windows closed, or drinking so intently that you’re basically just snapping off the relevant facts of existence, it’s great. But when you have to be around other people having their moment of that it’s all appalling. I do such cuntface to people who violate my comfy zone with daytime cigarette smoke, hours after I burned through half a pack outside of a bar. So, OK: both the sensation of other people’s drug use and the girlish compunction to judge it is gross.


My friend Rob is like “Oh are you writing about throwing up again?” as a joke (that joke sucks, Rob) because I guess it’s supposed to be a horrible shame thing? Disagree. Obviously throwing up, up-close, especially when it’s a hard one, is gross. And yet, throwing up can also be elegant and restorative and is for some people not so different than a good sleep. Sidestepping the issues of bulimia, the not-good effects of all that stomach acid and the occasional popped blood vessel, throwing up (“barf” is OK; never come at me with “ralph” or “puke”) has its own entire etiquette, like, you can talk about doing it after you do it, as long as it just means that you’re bright-eyed and ready to get back in the car; there are OK places to do it, even like quietly out the open door of a parked taxi while your date fake laughs too loud and too long to cover the sound, or in a planter beside the nice grocery store in your sister’s neighborhood (nobody suspects anything there! Try it!) or in the parking garage of a nice condo building (hilarious). (I guess the moral of the story is to always barf on rich people things.)



That was a trick! The jizz (gross word) of a guy you like tastes better than a vanilla milkshake. Don’t be a fucking child.


When your menstrual blood is mad at you, it gets together with all of the other menstrual blood (I believe these bloods to be individual sheets of the uterine lining, onion-skin thick and light red but rubbery like a Fruit Roll-Up) and forms an alliance and comes out as one, single, terrible globule. I have a light period, probably because I’m soooo nice, but when this mutiny happens, usually once every cycle, it’s unbelievably upsetting.


Sometimes, like when you’re going on a two-week vacation in 48 hours but still have many days worth of work to do, you just show up at your office with an Ativan hangover (What! I couldn’t sleep! ) and then bop to the coffee shop with your work buddies and eventually, some short hours later, wake up at your desk and are like “Am I wearing a gauzy white summertime shirt, cowboy boots, a serious-face pencil skirt, and a grunge-era jacket?” Yes, you are.


Nope, never. Never talk about this. You never do it, you’ve never seen it, you’ve never heard of it. “Girls shit roses,” is this line that I hear sometimes. But, guess what, Chiquita Banana? Nope: that puts “girls” and “shit” too close together and that is not on. Until being a girl is not objectively twice as hard and stupid as being a guy, we don’t shit.



For like three months I’ve been going after the remaining inch of the Dr. Pepper Lipsmacker I keep in the occasional table in my entryway (I painted the wall in there a hateful shade of blue; when I come home I pretend I’m in some jagoff’s unused study on the Upper East Side). The tube is all burnished silver from the label rubbing off; I have a pile of other Lipsmackers that still twist up, all over my house; I have, I think, like a couple thousand in checking, and every time I walk by I forget about whatever I’m doing and try to dig out these wax crumbs for no reason other than they’re there.


Tina Fey said that only in comedy does an obedient white girl from the suburbs count as diversity (or, similar: someone has my copy of her book). Why this is gross is because being called “obedient” makes me wet. Don’t front, you are too now.

Previously - Girls and Makeup

Follow Kate on Twitter @KateCarraway