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The Hand that Rocks the Banana

If we listen carefully, pilule we can hear the soft click of a MacBook Air writing Sincere Objection to this, seek


Famous for playing a character called, visit this site I think, “B.J.” in the television program Full House, Candace Cameron Bure has grown into the sort of adult human female who says things like,

I am not a passive person, but I chose to fall into a more submissive role in our relationship because I wanted to do everything in my power to make my marriage and family work.

Who would have thought US prime time, a forcing-house for radical ides and a known birthplace for revolution, could reproduce such ultra-conservative thinking?

Not me, Sonny Jim! That’s why I’m writing an Angry Editorial for Jezebel that begins,

While some will dismiss Cameron’s suggestion that women submit to their husbands as irrelevant celebrity prattle, the plain fact is her credo actively illustrates t?h?e? ?c?e?l?e?b?r?i?t?y? ?o?u?t?r?a?g?e? ?c?y?c?l?e? ?t?h?a?t? ?f?e?e?d?s? ?c?l?i?c?k?s? the real oppression many women experience.

Which it doesn’t, of course. Cameron is as useful in understanding gender relations as a banana is in justifying the existence of g-d. Check this Kirk Cameron guy from Growing Pains—which as far as I understand it is essentially Full House without those eerie twins—showing us how the (genetically modified present-day consumer) banana threatens Richard Dawkins thought by being intelligent in its design,

Just as sillier atheists will bother to combat K Cameron’s lunacy, sillier femmos will deign to argue with C Cameron’s Fifty Shades-tinged slave fantasy.

Feminist social and traditional media networks are actively and knowingly and successfully targeted to sell this stuff. From Masterchef’s Battle of the Sexes campaign to “misogynist” beer ads and books by bints who shouldn’t be allowed to have a pencil ALL get sold not by their merits but by a predictable and anticipated and planned opposition to them.

A book like Candace Cameron’s pops up every few years and is almost always purchased in significant numbers. The Rules was not dissimilar and I remember other secular books that instruct ladies to live frozen in the meat-jelly of mid-century marriage.

I couldn’t give a tinker’s cuss for someone’s sexy fetish. If you want to serve devilled eggs up on your back to your Man while singing devotionals and asking Have I Pleased You, Master? go for it, Sunshine. I don’t find it any more troubling or convincing that Women Who Run With The Wolves.

This is not really a topic for debate but it has already become one.

If there is any lesson to be learned from such rot as Cameron’s, it is only that analysis of an oppressed social class in modern liberal democracy have become very, very good at saying not only THEY CHOOSE THEIR CHOICE while they’re obviously abiding by rules (as we all are) but by explaining away submission as a form of moral power.

Just as some well-meaning white people cling to the idea that it is the ‘mysticism’ of brown people that keeps them poor in capital but rich in guiding spirituality, the idea that women secretly rule the world by playful stealth plays out very well. The Hand That Rocks the Cradle Is The Hand that Rules the World, sort of thing.

It is frustrating that this very same fixation with the myth of Power by Powerlessness will play out in the editorials being written this minute about Candace. Serious analysis of irrelevant pap is a waste of energy and comic analysis of irrelevant pap achieves little but a laugh.

When Peter Cook opened his London club The Establishment, he said it would be modelled on,

those wonderful Berlin cabarets…which did so much to stop the rise of Hitler and prevent the outbreak of the Second World War.

Make it a big deal or make it a topic of ridicule, either way, making Cameron a topic for discussion about anything re-establishes the myth of women’s power by stealth that my imaginary Angry Editorial in Jezebel seeks to decry.

A mate of mine showed me this the other day. The author says,

In any given week, the internet will be in an uproar over the latest sensational headline. Ani DiFranco’s racism. Beyonce’s feminism. Duck Dynasty’s bigotry. It doesn’t stop.

The author asks why celebrity is used as the locus for social justice discussion.

I think we need to look at marketing strategies instead of feminism to find a partial answer. And there we will find: Because chicks dig it. And have for some time.

For decades, women’s magazines have behaved as Upwrothy, Mamamia, GetUp, Jezebel and any Celebrity Social Justice sites do. Which is to say, they identify a problem and then offer its solution.

Just as Cosmopolitan might have once suggested You’re Not Satisfying Your Man and then proposed sticking your finger up his bottom, Upworthy suggests The World Is Not Satisfying the Human Rights Charter and proposes getting ANGRY and sharing this important video as a solution. Useful as a recipe for social change as a recipe for devilled eggs.

Frankly, you’d be better off sticking your finger and a dozen devilled eggs up your boyfriend’s bottom than sharing anything on Upworthy where problems and solutions are tied up in a pretty pink bow of the sort Cameron may have worn in her hair on Full House.

Even though many women’s interest sites posit themselves as invested in radical feminism, what they are, in fact, are a replay of the one-stop Fuck it Up and Fix It shop. Women have become so inured to buying useless shit, they can’t even smell it anymore.

This is not to say that the social problems discussed aren’t real ones but the way they are discussed in a Movie of The Week One Woman’s Battle Over Adversity style is very hyperreal. Or, to be less kind, it is a simulation of activism. And a replay of what women have done for years which is accept the fiction that they are powerful because The Hand That Rocks the Cradle in the hand that wields the genetically modified banana.

Now. If you’ll excuse me. I have some devilled eggs to prepare.  In a Georges Bataille way if you know what I mean, nudge wink.

(This palaver was ripped from Facebook discussions I had with two very funny friends and Authors of Note, Amal Awad and Clem Bastow. So blame those bitches.)

4 Responses to “The Hand that Rocks the Banana”

  1. CAP says:

    All the Gender based magazine and celebrity rags are trash . I see how they appeal to teenagers who are trying to work out where they fit into an adult world, or what it is to be a “man” or “woman”… sad that these are the examples on hand but I at least understand them trying to work out themselves. If the person whose hand is rocking the cradle has a Cosmo or Ralph in the other hand, it is no wonder this crap continues to make headlines however.

    I don’t understand how this type of media has so much appeal with adults though. Surely past 17 at the latest it’s obvious they are fatuous drivel, as is the confected rage at a B-Grade x-child actor from the 80s or 90s they pass as breaking news. How can the opinion of Cameron be relevant when her opinion is that she doesn’t have one anyway… she leaves the thinking to hubby. Religion is not much of a friend to ladies. It’s astonishing it’s taking so long to ween girls off it, and that little sound bites like this can get so much traction. I bet her book is featured on every Christian run TV talk show in America now so all those growing Christian girls know, that even if you had a successful career at one point, it’s completely ok to switch off yourself and play follow the man when the chance arises.

    People are strange.

  2. Simon says:

    Come on the guy with the banana is comedy gold. the lord ought to be pretty happy with that bit of work. Notice how the banana is slightly phallic shaped , so after I’ve done fondling it and watching my friends hand twitch uncomfortably in his lap , I can insert it up his ass while using hardly any lube at all. So many vegetables and fruits fit perfectly up my friends ass and so there must be a god , some of you atheists might point to the cauliflower or the broccoli , but I say god invented the blender and enema , so see , god has an answer for everything. Skadoosh.

  3. Zoe says:

    This is a spot-on assessment. To contribute if I can: the funnest thing about the banana video is that all bananas are sterile Neolithic mutant clones. Natural bananas are full of seeds. ‘Natural’ bananas, however, went extinct a long long time ago, because humans were only into the freaky clone ones.

    So he’s right that bananas are spot-on for humans, but that’s because we only permitted the spot-on ones to survive.

    Here you go: http://www.theguardian.com/science/2003/jan/16/gm.science

    Love your work, Helen :)

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