Page Six: Still Written by Assholes

by Shaker Esme, a sociologist with legal ambitions who spends her days selling comics to the masses and her nights listening to angry people scream at her for a low wage. In her spare time, she yells at the television for perpetuating the patriarchy.

April 27, 2009 --

Kate Winslet could easily be a cougar if she wanted. A Page Six spy saw the 33-year-old Oscar winner walking down Sixth Avenue at 26th Street the other day with a male friend, "wearing working-out gear. Two high-school guys, who had no idea who she was, were totally hitting on her. They followed her to Seventh Avenue and kept commenting on her big, hot booty and how sexy she was." But the composed mother of two "completely ignored them," our witness said.
A friend of mine linked me to this article this weekend. I don't really know what his motivation was behind the link, but it got me ranting. It's the NY Post, which is trash anyway, and it's Page Six, which is like the trash left behind by people who dig through trash looking for slightly less trashy trash to cover their heads in the rain, but it just perfectly encapsulates a way of thinking about sexual harassment that it got me pissed off.

I mean, to begin with, there's the really obvious way of thinking of women as disposable after the age of 30, wherein it is somehow shocking or newsworthy that young men would be attracted to someone with double-x chromosomes at the geriatric age of 33.

Then there's the double standard of it being noteworthy when "older" women are paired with younger men, in ways that it is not commented upon when the men are older and the women younger, to the point where women who date younger men have a dehumanizing slang term aimed at them ("cougar").

There's the fact that we should be shocked that not only was the woman in the circumstance existing in the twilight of life at the creaking at the joints age of 33, she wasn't even dressed in her patriarchally approved costume of high heels, push up bra, thong and miniskirt, but working-out gear, committing the high sin of comfort.

And there's the element of the male gaze being the only thing of importance here. "Incredibly beautiful celebrity woman still seen as beautiful" is not news. The news is that an incredibly beautiful woman managed to be catcalled by a couple of teenage douchebags and yet somehow resist the urge to do her duty as a woman and fuck them right there in the street for still thinking she was fuckable at the ripe age of not-20-anymore.

To top it off, she's supposed to be flattered by some assholes sexually harassing her as she goes about her day to day activities, on top of being stalked by a self-described "spy" (I'm pretty sure we call that stalking here in the good old U-S-of-A).

If the person who wrote this was a feminist journalist, it would be headlined "Woman Sexually Harassed by Boys Old Enough to Know Better: Youth not excuse for being a douchebag." And if we lived in a truly good society, that would be a noteworthy occurrence.

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