How Lovely to Be a Woman? I think not.

First of all, huge thanks to all of you who have requested to follow along on my angst-driven new site. I love the pants off of all of you, and I’m really enjoying experimenting with my writing a bit.

Now, moving on.

Last night over dinner, my date and I played a little game that I love. It’s actually one of my most favorite games in the whole world.

Desert Island movies.

I know, it’s so simple. But it combines my two favorite pastimes- movies, and talking about movies. How can you go wrong with that?

Basically, you just go back and forth telling your favorite movies of all time and why. Sooo… errrmmm… maybe it’s not technically a game, but it turned out to be a really good ice-breaker. Plus, I’m much more inclined to like someone if they have good taste in film. What? Like you would date someone who claimed that “Wicker Man” (the remake) is actually a good film.

On my drive back home, I recounted the movies that I had said I wouldn’t be able to live without.

10. The Princess Bride

9. Back to the Future Trilogy (They all count as 1)

8. Anchorman

7. The Jerk

6. The Truman Show

5. High Fidelity

4. The Big Lebowski

3. Garden State

2. Big Fish

1. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

I realized though, that I hadn’t included any movies from my absolute favorite genre of film. The Musical.

I know that for most people, musicals are either take’em or leave’em. And for me? I’ve always took them. I was raised on Musicals. I’ve can recite every word to the soundtrack of Hair. I’ve seen Little Shop of Horrors more than most men have watched Pulp Fiction. And I’ve wanted to BE Kim McAfee in Bye Bye Birdie for as long as I can remember.

Today I felt a little nostalgic so I decided to download the Bye Bye Birdie soundtrack to listen to as I worked. At first it made me happy. I was singing along jovially at my desk to “One Last Kiss,” and “Put on a Happy Face.” But when “How Lovely to be a Woman” came on, my attitude turned cold.

I realized that I was raised on a lie. I mean, the lyrics to this happy-go-lucky anthem about womanhood are complete and utter bullshit. I can admit that yes, it’s a musical… it’s supposed to be schmaltzy. But this? Is going overboard. IT”S LIES!!!! At least when you apply it to my life.  Take a look.

When you’re a skinny child of fourteen,
Wide with braces from ear to ear,
You doubt that you will ever be appealing.

It starts off OK enough. I was never a skinny child, but since I did wear braces and have the self-esteem of a leprechaun, I can let that slide.

Then Hallelujah! You are fifteen
And the braces disappear
And your skin is smooth and clear
And you have that happy grown-up female feeling.

There was nothing about 15 that made me scream Hallelujah. Except for maybe the fact that I was so inept at algebra that my teacher suggested I be the theater director’s assistant instead of receiving another F in math. I did lose the braces but they were replaced with a painful retainer. My skin was definitely not smooth or clear. And I’m pretty sure that ‘happy grown up feeling”  she’s referring to is said in sarcasm and is referring to the wrath of having painful cramps, mood swings, and the task of wearing a big bulky diaper between your legs for a week out of every month.

How lovely to be a woman,
The wait was well worth while;
How lovely to wear mascara
And smile a woman’s smile.

First of all, in what world does being 15 constitute being a “woman”?  At the age of fifteen I couldn’t even drive myself to the movies, much less pay for my ticket. I may have had a few weeks in my life where wearing mascara seemed glamorous, but it was only a matter of time before I found out that if you put it on, you have to take it off or you’ll end up looking like a drug whore; and that’s a pain in the ass.

How lovely to have a figure,
That’s round instead of flat;
Whenever you hear boys whistle,
You’re what they’re whistling at.

Who wants a round figure? I mean I get that at fifteen the boys prone to say things like “If you didn’t have feet would you wear shoes? Then why do you wear a bra?” But round? No thank you. I think that’s one of the things that we women tend to avoid.

And umm. Guys who whistle are just creepy by any account. I’ve found that if a guy whistles at you, he’s either:

1. A construction worker

2. A yard man.

or 3. A creepy old man.

None of those are men who I want whistling at me.

It’s wonderful to feel
The way a woman feels;
It gives you such a glow just to know
You’re wearing lipstick and heels!

I would die a happy woman if I could avoid ever wearing heels again. The only glow they give me is the glow of pain.

How lovely to be a woman
And have one job to do;
To pick out a boy and train him
And then when you are through,
You’ve made him the man you want him to be!

Now this part I can get on board with. I would love to live in a society where it was my job to pick out a boy to be perfect little slave gentleman. I would make mine cook me eggs every morning and give me 3 hour massages every evening. He would hate football and like to iron. He would like to dance, have a nice reading voice, and laugh at everything that I say. I wouldn’t stop at one. I would be really, really good at my job and train about seven of them. I would never have to deal with dirty laundry or dishes again.

Life’s lovely when you’re a woman like me!
How wonderful to know
The things a woman knows;
How marvelous to wait for a date
In simply beautiful clothes!

I don’t know about most “women,” but I’m a freaking wreck before a date. I run through every possible scenario and we’ve already broken up 4 times in my head before we even sit down for dinner. Plus, I’m too poor to have beautiful anything right now. My clothes are all 3 sizes too big and completely out of style.

How lovely to be a woman
And change from boys to men,
To go to a fancy nightclub
And stay out after ten.
How lovely to be so grown-up and free!
Life’s lovely when you’re a woman like me!

I really don’t get this one at all. This song was supposed to be written about a girl who was living in the fifties. Were times that much better back then? I know when I was 15, I didn’t get to stay out after 10 unless I lied to my parents. I wasn’t allowed to even enter a nightclub, much less a fancy one. And boys were definitely still boys.

I don’t know. Maybe I’m just bitter because it’s a certain time of the month. I think I’ll go listen to The Sound of Music. There can’t possibly be anything ion that soundtrack that could piss me off.

Except maybe “16 going on 17.”

Musicals suck.


Related posts:

  1. That time I almost beat a woman to death with frozen chicken…
  2. Sometimes at night I like to dress up like a woman.
  3. Why I’m a terrible woman and don’t care…
  4. I owe it all-a to my momma. Hollah!
  5. Basically, I’m awesome
  • Matt_J

    What? There’s another site? *reads previous post* Oh…right…*whistles innocently*

    Anyway, yeah, that song totally sucks. You should listen to “Into the Woods”. It’s all about killing and maiming and how people aren’t really what they seem. It’s more like real life than real life! Er…something.

  • Sada

    I just listened to the Bye Bye Birdie soundtrack a month or two ago! Hilarious. I’m not even on board with the boy-training part.

    Staying out after ten is pretty great though.

  • Anonymous

    I didn’t request an invite to the other blog. I feel like I was forced into it against my will. Do you still love the pants of me?

    I think Repo: The Genetic Opera would be in my top 10 movies. It’s not technically an musical though, it’s an opera. Is Dr Horrible a movie? It’s a musical, but it only goes for 45 minutes, and it was just an Internet thingy. But there is only 1 of them. How is “movie” defined?

    Anyway, some muiscals / operas are pretty cool. The one you sang from though doesn’t sound like my style. Though I do love the sarcastic type comments someone was making during the singing. Were they singing too? I guess I’ll have to YouTube it.

  • JustMe

    Well, the secret to why that song pisses you off and sounds all wrong? It was written by an old dude. WTF do THEY know about it?

  • Nikki

    I prefer to be a woman I think. Most men can’t have multiple orgasms. Plus I hate to lift heavy things. I have a fear of smashing my fingers.

    Did I hear someone say angsty blog? Sign me up!

  • Andigayle1980

    HAHAAA to pick out a boy and train him? Yeah that is the way it works. Ridiculous. But I think I would rather be a girl than a boy. Don’t want to deal with having balls, you never know what can go wrong there. LOL Oh and Anchorman is in my top 10 as well, I heard they were making a sequel!

  • JD at I Do Things

    I think I’d be singing a totally different song for 15-year-olds hanging out at nightclubs. And it wouldn’t be a jaunty one.

    Ah, the “glow of pain.” Yes, that’s what being a woman is all about. Jerks.

  • kathryn

    Honey, I also have fond memories of the songs and movie Bye Bye Birdie. That is, I DID until I caught it on cable a few months ago. I couldn’t sit through it…I was gagging too much. Talk about out-dated subject matter….and girls fainting left and right….and…and…and.
    I agree w/you on the whole entire song. Sometimes, I think it’s better to stick with those fond memories…whilst leaving them as just that: memories!

  • Hip Hop Hippie

    I adore you. Over and over and over again.

  • Michelle

    This is completely hilarious! And totally true. Musicals are sometimes great, but yeah, ridiculous.

  • Sherri

    My the song was written by Mormons. Or an Amish person. I’m pretty sure they consider girls to be “women” by the age of 3.

  • Sage

    Eternal Sunshine of The Spotless Mind is one of my favourite movies, up there with Donnie Darko :-)