One Drop Of Rain …

Elsewhere in this body of work Hugo has made the point that the oppressor invariably perceives himself as the victim, indeed as fighting for his very existence under the threat of extinction. Weird as it may seem to those on the wrong end of their struggle for survival, this applies to the Nazis, modern white supremacists, and many homophobes. Even short of the spectre of extermination, it is surely a general principle that one does not understand how vulnerable one’s opponents feel. Louis-Ferdinand Céline has a startling line, which in double translation through Danish (never a good idea, but I have no choice) goes something like this: “Women, whose sexual ability is never lost, fail to comprehend that for men, despite all their priapism, one drop of rain and everything shrinks in upon itself!”

It is certainly true that men are sexually fragile creatures, and the more a man’s sense of self-worth depends on his ability to get it up, the more dangerously he is living. I think Céline is correct also in pointing out how little aware women are of this. But suppose we turn it around. When men are paralysed by female beauty, sometimes resenting its possessor, are we sufficiently aware how precarious the Girl from Ipanema feels? Those who know beautiful women as something other than sex objects, know that none of them feels beautiful. They may have noted the reaction of others as a bizarre fact, which they then milk for all it is worth, but nobody actually feels it. They may think themselves only average and be interested in other things, but it is commoner for them to yearn desperately after beauty without being aware that they already have it.

That yearning is very profitable, in a way not limited to the beautification industry itself, already vast though never counted properly; we must include “shopping therapy”. Without female insecurity the global economy would immediately collapse. The Man knows that unhappy women spend more money, and therefore seeks to make them unhappy through advertising. This is often condemned in terms of “unrealistic ideals”, which is often true but not the whole story. Because most women feel, by nature or indoctrination, that they have already fallen short of even objectively realistic ideals. Nobody has the right boobs, or nose, or hair, or whatever – nobody. In this way, therefore, women share in what Céline describes as a male vulnerability: one drop of rain and whatever you have, shrinks to nothing.

Posted on June 14, 2020 at 11:19 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink
In: BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, The Life Unbeautiful

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