Pussy Prerogative

Dear JLo:

I hate football.  I never watch the Super Bowl.  Teenage Me once watched the Rose Bowl because I was dating a boy who watched the Rose Bowl with his extended family.  He tried diligently to explain the game.  I did not listen with rapt attention, fascinated as I was with his grandmother’s incredible braids.

Football is our enlightened equivalent of gladiatorial fighting in the Colosseum.   Teams, comprised primarily of African-American men, are generally “owned” by White men.  Now, the warriors only fight to the Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy or the Total Destruction of the Knee instead of to the Death.

I’m off my soapbox.  Thx 4 listening.

Back to you.  Almost.  As I mentioned, I don’t watch the Super Bowl.  Occasionally, I’ll catch the half-time show in real time if Ace is watching.  More often, I check out the act after-the-fact.  A quick trip down memory lane (with the help of Google) shows us that half-time shows historically relied heavily on Up With People and marching bands.  The world shifted in 1993.

Michael Jackson, the King of the Crotch Grab (his own and others’),  did absolutely nothing for the first 77 seconds after he hit center stage.  He did absolutely nothing and people went completely ballistic.  After a minute and seven seconds, he turned his head.  Pandemonium ensued.  He went on to grab his crotch.  A lot.  In fact, his crotch is the entire beat of “Billie Jean.”  Without it, there simply would be no tune.  He ended the show surrounded by children, with a babe in his arms, singing “We Are the World.”

Bono didn’t grab his crotch in 2002.  Neither did he lip sync.  In 2004, as you recall, there was a bit of a kerfluffle with Janet Jackson.  The kerfluffle participants, JJ and JT, have gone on to relative obscurity and relative royalty, respectively.  The woman of color is the one who was shunned.  Shocking.  In retrospect, the way out of this situation would’ve been to borrow a baby from the crowd and breastfeed her/him on national TV.  Texas, believe it or not, passed a law in 1995 stating that mothers could breastfeed anywhere in the state, public or private.

2007 brought the man who requested “Can u make it rain harder?”  Prince.  His guitar fingerboard became a gigantic erect penis and he wasn’t barred from subsequent Grammy Awards ceremonies.

Beyonce didn’t grab her crotch in 2013.  More remarkably, she didn’t break her ankle whilst dancing in wicked heels.  I think of Bruno as a crotch-grabber.  The 2014 TV crew must’ve censored.  Red Hot Chili Pepper’s front man Anthony Kiedis (who in the world thought RHCP + Bruno was a marriage made in heaven?) managed a grab moment.  In 2017, Lady Gaga’s crotch definitely got some closeup airtime but no grabbing.

Which brings us back to you.  Culturally, we aren’t used to seeing women grab their own crotch.  Women’s crotches/butts/breasts are grabbed all the time.  By other people.  Without explicit consent.  I just heard Peggy Orenstein speak about her new book Boys & Sex.  In her conversations with young people, she found that men are disconnected from their feelings while women are disconnected from their bodies.

I read your performance as ironic – the juxtaposition of your incredible feats of athleticism  (“I dare you to try that horizontal pole situation, gentlemen.”) and then your hard stare combined with a crotchgrab (“We all know you can do this, boys.”).  You are not disconnected from your body.  Your body is strong and beautiful and powerful.  I wish you had written “MINE” across your belly with a Sharpie and an arrow pointing down.

The only person who can grab your pussy is YOU.  (“Take that, Mr. President.”)

Sincerely,

Anne, three weeks your junior, threw-out-my-back-on-Monday-with-a-sneeze

PS: Don’t forget to get your colonoscopy.  You’re fifty.

 

Musical Moment

 

 

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