Quick Take: What the Heck is Going on Here?

I have had it.  Enough is enough.  What is this world coming to?  We are beginning to sound like a bunch of 3 year olds. 

I am a grown ass woman, damn it!  And I’ve earned my right to speak as such.

What has prompted this most recent rant?  An article from the New York Times Style section which was sent to me yesterday by an equally disgruntled friend.   Written by Stephanie Rosenbloom, “What Did You Call It?” waxes endlessly and unnecessarily about the use of the nouveau word, “vajayjay” as a euphemism for vagina. “Vajayjay” was introduced on an episode of Grey’s Anatomy and Oprah got a hold of it and now you got every middle-aged woman talking about her vajayjay.

I am not a conspiracy theorist but this vajayjay seems like another attempt to sanitize, with the result infantilizing, the American lexicon.   

Those Parts Down There

Ma and Pa Thompson kept it real…Sometimes too real.  Alongside my parents, I watched violent R-rated movies.  No cinema was too bloody or graphic for their little boos…I mean children. The exposure did not lead me to kill, maim or destroy just on occasion to yell, scream or curse a few people out.   But I digress.   In the spirit of keeping it real, we, the family Thompson, called genitalia by their proper names – penis and vagina…not George and Nancy.

In stark contrast, I had a female friend with three small children who created the names “heehee”, “whowho” for said body parts.  All I have to say is whywhy?  Imagine the confusion when they have their first sexual experience. 

“Baby, I want to (blank) your heehee.”

“Heehee? What they hell are you laughing at?”

Where are my N-words at?

I was listening to a Kat Williams comedy special this weekend on Comedy Central.  It was damn near refreshing to hear an ADULT speak so freely and use harsh language, including the N-word, to express thoughtful ideas.  

By the way Al, Jesse, et. al, banning the N-word hasn’t stopped teens, especially black teens, from using the word excessively.  (For the record, hearing the N-word bandied about by not always so literate youngsters drives me out of my damn, not darn, mind.) 

Here’s what comedian D.L. Hughley had to say during a recent newspaper interview about the ban on the N-word:

“I think it’s dumb. Richard Pryor and Martin Luther King existed around the same time but Martin Luther King never called Richard Pryor and said, ‘Could you stop using the N-word? It’s making our struggle that much harder.’ And that’s because Martin Luther King was trying to affect real change, significant change for the benefit of a people. Not esoteric change that really wouldn’t change anything. I think even if you stop saying the N-word tomorrow, it wouldn’t make schools better in our community, it wouldn’t change the fact that 70 percent of our kids are born to single-parent homes, wouldn’t reduce the AIDS epidemic in our community, it wouldn’t stop people from going to jail. More black people die from not exercising and eating fried food than ever died from the N-word. You don’t go to the doctor and he says, ‘Your cholesterol is down. Have you been using the N-word lately?'”

The F Words

There is the f-word, and thanks to former Grey’s Anatomy’s star Isaiah Washington’s rant against gay cast member T. R. Knight (What’s up with that show?), there is another f-word not to be uttered publicly regardless of the context.  

Before you know it, there will be yet another f-word that we won’t be able to utter…fat.  

Are we going to start calling fat people, “calorically challenged”?  Or are we going to create another euphemism like “fataytay”. Oh Bertha is not as big as a house, she’s just fatatay.  

I Am a  Person not a Crayola Crayon

Hang in there.  I am almost done. 

Most mainstream media avoid racially charged topics like they are…the word…”vagina”.   But when they do attempt to address them, it’s often awkward and painful to watch especially when the anchors/pundits/talking heads make an attempt to use the least offensive words to describe an ethnic or racial group. 

My least favorite of those monikers is “people of color” – the use of which chaps my black ass.  I’ve heard Joe Scarborough of MSNBC’s Morning Joe use this term with relative frequency.  I’d like to ask him one simple question:  Who the hell are you talking about?  Blacks?  Latinos?  Asians? Biracials? Martians?   The statement belies the assumption that whites are not included among those “of color” and makes the rest of us sounds like some mushy mess.

Homeboy, last time I checked, white people come in various hues…dare I say colors… such as pink, various shades of olive and light brown in the summer.  And if you see a “white” person coming towards you, run like a mofo because that s.o.b. is probably an escapee from a local cemetery.

Oh, I know what some of  you pitiful PC folks are thinking, “Personally, I don’t see color.” Quit your lying. I dare you to say that to the police officer when he pulls you over for running a red light.  

Well, I can could go on forever but I won’t.  You’ve got things to do and so do I.   (If you are waiting for a cheap vajayjay joke, it ain’t coming…yet.) 

Update

Does it ever end?  Now, the Tyra Banks Show is having its own version of the Vagina Dialogues (No, I didn’t make a mistake, this is how it is billed. With Tyra, it has to be a two-way conversation.).  Called, “What’s Up Down There?”, the show is set to air on Monday, November 5 and will provide women with the answers  “to all the questions they were afraid to ask.” 

I am sure after this show, the vagina will need some throat spray and a sabbatical.

   
 


3 thoughts on “Quick Take: What the Heck is Going on Here?

  1. I am the equally disgruntled friend. I am disgruntled. I am indignant. Hell, I am damn angry about that damn NY Times article (DNYTA). It ruined my ability to savor my Sunday morning cup of French Roast. So, I have crawled back under the covers. I have cried. I have screamed. I have analyzed my visceral reaction against the DNYTA.

    You see, I am more annoyed by the fact that fact that the NY Times took notice than by the word “vajayjay” itself. The NY Times is perpetuating the use of this word. They are practically endorsing it. Who is next? The New Yorker? The Economist? The Guardian? Is there nothing better to which to devote a column–even in the self-satisfied Style section–than to repeating the words of Opraypray-she-retiretays-soon. I have distilled my annoyance into an equally annoying list:

    First, I am annoyed that the NY Times published an article on the use of the word “vajayjay.”

    Second, I am annoyed that Steven Pinker contributed expert testimony to the article. Really Dr. Pinker–is the field of cognitive linguistics not sufficiently challenging to occupy 100% of your attention or are you such a whore for a citation that you could not turn down an interview with the Times, even about such a silly and uninteresting phenomena as American woman choosing their words from “Grey’s Anatomy,” not from “Gray’s Anatomy.”

    Third, I am annoyed that the NY Times attempted to grant vajayjay cache by attributing it to African American poetics. Yes, that sounds like a very hip and savvy analysis of the phenomena of reduplication, but how patronizing! No culture wants to take credit for “vajayjay.” Jazz? Yes! Peepee? No! Zora Neale Hurston, Langston Hughs, James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, and Toni Cade Bambera? Yes! Caca? Poopoo? No! Infantile names for human anatomy? Hell no. Shame on you NY Times.

    Reduplication is not a cultural phenomena; it is a phonological process practiced by children under age three who are still learning to use language. Reduplication also exists in pidgin languages used by two cultures who do not share a common language.
    This begs the questions: are we a nation of 3 year olds or are we unable to communicate about female sexuality except in overly simplified language which is not native to any culture?

    Last, I am annoyed that as the DNYTA suggests reduplication of “jayjay” serves to neutralize the vagina and that women are embracing en masse this neutralization which depicts the female sex organ as clean, safe, and non-threatening to our simultaneously sex-phobic and sex-obsessed culture. Such neutralization renders the vagina non-wet, non-stimulated, non-orgasmic, and ultimately asexual. A wet vajayjay begs for a towel, not for a condom.

    In closing, Ms. Opraypray, I beg of you, one fabulous bitch to another, please, please, next time you are flying through the sky in a bungee harness, and you experience vaginal discomfort, say it loud, say it proud, “My vagina hurts like a motherfucker!”

  2. Well, I am a Canadian Sex Trade worker, who, I gotta tell you, feeels so insulted at this word, that I couldnt watch her any longer. Now, Im not an Oprah fan( I get that she’s done amazing things and all, but she is NOT Jesus!!!!!!! I myself feel that she is a little too high on herself, after all, charitable acts do not need to be publicized to matter, right? So, now that we have this cute name, are we all going to discuss our VAGINAS more? I mean, over lunch, is it ok to talk about our vajayjays? I personally think she set herself back a fair number of years by employing such a cutsie name. Well, our VAGINAS, make us women………. just cos Oprah says it, doesnt mean as women, we need to follow. Frankly, if we all, like little sheep follow Oprah,…… well is that so much better than being subservient to a man? I htink that Oprah has been given, and given herself WAAYYYYYtoo much power in our world. True enough, she is responsible for enlightening tons of women everywhree. But only according to her whim…… so the hottest new spiritual guide or book is what we should follow now, instead of, say Maya Angelou, whom she so overly plugged ten years ago, i guess she,s not hot anymore, (so is GOD hot as well? and do we wait for oprah to tell us?.)……… you get my drift…… its time women saw ms Oprah for what she is, another 50 yr old women, who is imperfect, and just HAPPENS to control a time slot……. by the way, my VAGINA is fine, thanks…….

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