Once again, it’s time for a male politician to introduce us to an outlandish character, one we meet in the course of either sending indiscreet texts or making tone-deaf remarks about women. For the record, I am NOT taking Mike Huckabee’s remarks out of context. I know he was saying he believes Democrats are the ones “making women believe they are helpless without Uncle Sugar providing them a prescription for birth control because they cannot control their libido or their reproductive system without the help of the government.” You know, because the Democrats’ real war on women is forcing us to make our own decisions and denying us mandatory transvaginal ultrasounds . . . ? Not to mention an apparently confused idea of exactly what birth control pills do .
At any rate, Huckabee’s remarks were yet another example of why men of both parties should stay away from sex — from talking about it, from texting about it, and certainly from making up middle-school-worthy aliases. Fortunately, I was raised by a feminist mother, which had some disadvantages. I was never allowed to have a Barbie because my mom disapproved of the unrealistic body image expectations generated by a doll whose real life measurements would be 39-21-33, who would be 6′ and weigh 100 lbs. . . but I digress.
Anyway, as an unpopular, late-blooming geeky high school sophomore (whose real life measurements at the time were approximately 24-24-24), I came in for a fair amount of name-calling and teasing. One day I complained to my mother about the football captain in my physics class who constantly leered at me, saying, “Hey, Mayer, your place or mine?” which made his buddies erupt in raucous laughter. Remember, this was way before anyone had heard of sexual harassment. Indeed, it was only a couple of years after girls were finally allowed to wear pants at my school!
Mom suggested I try joking back, a piece of advice that reminds me of the scene in A Tree Grows In Brooklyn in which Francie is ostracized by the other girls at her first job until she laughs at something. Like I said, I was a geek! So the next day, when he re-used the same joke for the 47th time (and confirmed that he was a jock and no scholar-athlete), I retorted, “How about my place tonight and yours tomorrow, if you’re man enough?” His friends laughed, he turned beet red, and that was the end of the teasing. I learned a valuable lesson!
In other words, Mike Huckabee just wrote my next song for me.