Ladies and gentlemen of the internet, I’ve been accused of many things during my time writing here at Eyeball Circus. Being too good at lovemaking. Having fists far too dangerous to be out in public. Getting Glenn Beck’s mom pregnant on 19 different occasions. I’ve had all manner of horrible and completely true indictments carelessly hurled at me. Additionally, you could say that I’ve been flippant in the past about describing something as ‘the stupidest thing I’ve ever read’. Well, all that ends today. I’d like to present you with a line-by-line analysis of what is, without question, the most batshit insane, ill-reasoned, stupid fucking thing I’ve ever read. Enter this article titled “The 3 Letter Word That Cuts Women Down Every Day” by a young woman named Cameron Schaeffer. In the interest of not spoiling the adventure we’re about to embark on together, let’s just jump right in. Her words are in italics, my responses are normal. She begins:
“The seasons have just changed, and I always want something new. Recently, I was looking in the mirror after a shower. I decided I wanted change. I have a very love-hate relationship with my hair.”
The thesis of this article is about how language is allegedly used to oppress women. Three sentences in and she’s already babbling about her hair. From this, we can infer two things. One, that if hair is her starting point she’s got a long uphill battle to write through if she’s going to convince me about some sort of linguistic prejudice. Two, I’m now 99.9% positive she will fail miserably to prove this thesis, and it takes every ounce of my strength to not stop reading entirely.
“I love its uniqueness — it seems signature to me. But I’m never really satisfied.”
Holy shit, I already hate this article more than I’ve ever hated anything. Most writers like to lead off with a narrative hook that makes people interested in the rest of the story. Her narrative hook so far is “so I had an idle thought about getting a haircut the other day”. I’m on the edge of my fucking seat.
“Frustrated, I decided to text my friend. After a quick exchange of opinions about my hair, our conversation ended with, “Well you don’t want it to be too short or too long.”
If a friend of mine texted me about what haircut they should get, I’d probably be too busy deleting their number and setting my phone on fire to reply. It was Halloween recently, so I’ll say that if regular boring is a spooky face carved on a pumpkin, this bullshit essay is low budget torture porn. If this idiot had written Pride and Prejudice, the opening sentence would read: “It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of 50 fun and simple meals to tone your tummy and make your father love you again! Also, take this quiz to see which of these budget friendly and fashion forward scarves will best accentuate YOUR vagina!”
“What she said was harmless, but it still caused an epiphany.”
Everyone knows all of history’s great epiphanies were arrived at by quiet contemplation of what hairstyle you should get next. Legend has it that Gottfriend Leibniz was trying to decide between French and Dutch braids when he invented calculus.
“There is no proper way for a woman to cut her hair, let alone do anything right in this world.”
Wow, that took a hard left turn so quickly my fucking retinas just detached. Far be it from me to accuse you of overselling your point, but I’m having a hard time understanding how you being boring and terrible about your haircut means that every woman on the planet is a wretched abomination.
“There seems to be an unobtainable one-millimeter-wide mark of perfection, and none of us can reach it. Everything is too this or too that.”
You understand that these things you’re describing are called ‘opinions’, correct? And that they’re subjective? Also, aside from myself, nobody is objectively perfect. I’d like to say it’s a gift and a burden, but considering the fact that I’m sitting on a throne made of lingerie models offering me cash and bricks of cocaine, it’s not much of a burden. Sorry the rest of the world, I win.
“We see it every day in the tabloids. For example, one day a female celebrity is too revealing and the next day she is too matronly. In my experience, I rarely hear too thrown around about men. You hear someone say, “He’s short,” but you seldom hear “too short.”
Tell me, author of this article who is a college freshman (ha!), ‘in your experience’ have you ever heard the expression ‘grasping for straws’? Also, get back to me when you’ve developed an appreciation for old school west coast hip hop.
Pictured: rapper Too Short being far Too Naked for my liking.
Not to mention the fact that it’s trivial to find countless examples of men being referred to using the adverb ‘too’. For instance:
In fairness, searching the first 3 random adjectives that came to my mind only gave me a little over 350 million results in total, which is clearly a negligible margin of error. You’re right, dumb bitch who wrote this article! The word ‘too’ is clearly only used on women! At this point, it seemed like a waste of time to keep reading since her thesis is factually and demonstrably false, but fuck it, let’s see what other garbage she farts all over her keyboard.
“I hear women and men alike each day describing women as too something. But what does it really mean when you call a woman too? I asked myself, “too what?” I have determined that too means you’re calling a woman too far away from your idyllic vision of what a woman should be. Something as small as calling a woman’s dress too long or her muscles too built has a much larger social construct. With all the varying tastes and cultures in this world, it is impossible for a woman — or anyone, for that matter — to fulfill everyone’s criteria. And why is it our responsibility to satisfy them, anyway?”
I have bad news for you lady: the entire world is a conspiracy hell bent on telling you that your ugly dress makes you a bad person. Also, you betrayed your article’s entire point and didn’t even realize it when you said “it’s impossible for a woman – or anyone for that matter – to fulfill everyone’s criteria”. In fairness, I guess it’s plausible that you were referring to dolphins or flowers and not men when you said ‘anyone’. At this point in your article, there’s no assumption too stupid to make about you.
“My epiphany about this word surprised me. I view myself as a well-versed feminist, but I never realized how deeply a three-letter adverb could cut. Of course I’m not deeply offended by something as innocent as my friend thinking my hair is too short or too long. What makes me furious is the constant strain on females to find their unreachable perfect self. This realization really struck me when I figured out that I’ve never been satisfied with myself. My internal opinion is always that I’m too this or too that. I, like most women, have been deprived of self-satisfaction and appreciation because of this word and this attitude.”
Newsflash dipshit: it’s not the dictionary’s fault that you’ve got low self esteem because you can’t find a hair style that works for you. If you want someone to blame, take it up with the high school English teacher that used a voodoo curse to turn your stylist’s hands into flippers.
“I spent this past summer being a counselor at an overnight camp. Before I left, I remember feeling slightly too thin. Nothing medically concerning — my concern was more innocuous than that. It had been a stressful year, and I saw myself as gaunt. Then I departed for one of the best summers of my life. Being a counselor was truly transformative; it was the first time I felt really impactful. It taught me so much about myself, and it was critical to my growth to see the world through a child’s eyes once again.”
Hopefully those children got medals for helping a young, skinny, American woman feel better about herself. I can’t wait to see the movie version of your story. It’s a tale of triumph over adversity that simply needs to be told.
Starring Snoop Dogg as the ‘too skinny’ Cameron Schaeffer!
“Sadly, though, those wonderful few weeks at camp passed by. As soon as I arrived home, I took a look around to see the changes in my house — and, finally, the mirror. “Hmm, a little too plump,” I thought to myself. How in the span of one summer did I go from one opposite to another? I didn’t. I weighed myself and I was at the exact weight I had been when I left. I was never too anything; I was just myself. It was all social pressure and perception. Instead of reflecting on what a beautiful and salient journey the summer had been, I was focusing on an irrelevant and made-up detail. Part of that is admittedly tied to my personality. But I think it’s also related to the continual cultural flaws in the way we view and critique women. It’s immensely difficult to prioritize what’s important when we critique ourselves constantly as a result of the world’s harsh judgment.”
You realize that semantically speaking saying ‘a little plump’ and ‘a little TOO plump’ are essentially the same thing, right? Pardon my incredulity, but I’m having a hard time bridging the logical gap between your body image issues and your bizarre, forced attacks on English syntax. If you’re the exact same weight (as you plainly stated), then it follows that your perception is clearly untrustworthy. Has it ever occurred to you that your perception of language and how it’s used is equally untrustworthy? You’re probably right though; a human female with body image issues is clearly too rare and unheard of for it to be anything other than a sinister plot by those devious fucks over at Merriam Webster.
Everyone knows they’re in cahoots with Weight Watchers and medical grade tapeworms!
“How would anyone feel if they were trying their hardest to look presentable, be successful in their career or education, raise children, have an engaging love and social life, and hold it all together — all as they were told it wasn’t enough. It is suffocating to walk through the jungle of media and vanity that is our world, as it subliminally whispers in your ear, “You’re not what you should be.” It goes beyond looks, even. In every context, it seems to be damned if you do and damned if you don’t for women. It’s either she’s too prude or she’s too promiscuous, she’s too delicate and girly or she’s too aggressive and masculine, she’s too dumb or she’s too bookish. The list goes on.”
If this sounds familiar, you’ll probably recognize it as the typical ‘what does it all meeeean?’ phase we all went through when we were college freshman. Look lady, I know you probably came into this essay hot out of Philosophy 101, but that doesn’t make your point any less fucking stupid. Self-esteem issues aren’t a women-only problem, you rock eating moron. You’re portraying the world like men are these super-confident beacons of self-assurance that are immune to all criticism and women are lowly weaklings who feel crushed under the weight of every offhand comment that enters their fragile fucking heads. I don’t think you’re doing your gender any favors here, to be honest. As far as being ‘too prude or too promiscuous’, etc, at the end there, you’re just listing opposites like it proves some kind of fucking point. The hypothetical person that’s saying you’re ‘too prude’ or ‘too promiscuous’ is just one person expressing their individual viewpoint, it’s not indicative of some worldwide nefarious scheme to throw bear traps on the path to self confidence. Sure, in your ideal fantasy world nobody has any opinions on anything on the off chance they might hurt someone’s feelings, but in the real world you have to be a fucking adult and not let every innocuous turn of phrase shake you to your core. It’s time to toughen up sweet tits, because the rest of the world is a lot different than your parents; it doesn’t have to love you unconditionally.
“So what can we do? Well, there are an avalanche of issues women face — from rape to pay inequality to the defunding of Planned Parenthood. I would love to wake up tomorrow morning and see a completely egalitarian world outside, but I am not naive. Women are still objects to a disturbingly large number of people. If society continues on in this way, women will always be unfairly judged. But there are small and achievable steps we can take. We should call on both genders to cut the word too from their vocabulary when discussing women. If we ever want an end to the way females are put in boxes, this is the beginning of an important and tumultuous journey ahead.”
Yes, conflating rape and defunding Planned Parenthood with the word ‘too’ is totally reasonable. Good job idiot, you’re a modern day fucking superhero.
YOU DID IT!
We all would love to live in a perfect egalitarian utopia, but eliminating the word ‘too’ from the dictionary isn’t how we’ll get there, you psychotic dipshit. Policing language like an over-zealous hall monitor isn’t going to do shit to change the deeper core problems in society. It’s like saying you got rid of the homeless problem because you no longer call them homeless.
“I’ve got great news! You’re not homeless anymore! We’re calling it being ‘creatively located’ because it’s less offensive! You’re welcome!”
“As I looked in the mirror at my hair that day, I wanted change. After more thought about the word too, I now need change. Not the kind of easy change that can be achieved with an hour or so at the hairdresser’s — the kind of change that prevents those young female campers who changed my life from ever feeling like they are not enough. The kind of big change that positively alters our society’s conduct towards women as a group.”
Someday we’ll all look back on this and marvel at how one woman’s haircut changed America forever. In all seriousness, I’m having a hard time telling whether or not you’re being sarcastic or if you’re just a fucking idiot. If a friend of yours telling you not to cut your hair too short inspires you to wage a one woman war against all of society than I sincerely hope you never have to face any actual adversity in your life, because you’d probably wind up having a nervous breakdown and hunting children for sport. Trust me, showing up to a job interview wearing a headband made of human teeth never goes over well. If that wasn’t the case I’d be the proud regional manager of Kinkos as we speak.
“On the women’s side of this issue, we can create change by telling ourselves and others, “I am more than enough, and I am exactly who I should be.” Every day we should remind ourselves that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Not just in a literal appearance sense, but in every part of who we are. If someone calls you too bitchy, for example, do not be afraid to remind them that you’re not too bitchy, you’re the right amount of assertive and empowered. I cannot emphasize enough how important it is for women to stand up for themselves. It is not our fault that we are treated unfairly and always considered “too” something. We are the right amount of strong to counter this bullshit.”
Yes, and every morning we should paint our faces like unicorns until our entire lives become rainbows and magic! I’m all for standing up for yourself, but blindly ignoring criticism isn’t the best way to make friends. But nevermind all that; you’re a precious shining star and the world is lucky to have you.
At this rate it’s only a manner of time before we can’t produce trophies fast enough to keep up with you earning them!
“I’d like to conclude this rightfully indignant rant by taking personal responsibility. A whole lot of sexism is in how men treat women, but there is another facet to misogyny: internalized sexism. Internalized sexism happens when women themselves mistreat other women based on their gender. Even as a devout feminist, I have personally described women in harsh ways that I’d never apply to a man. I have used the word too in an insensitive way when describing or analyzing a woman. But after teaching myself this lesson, I am taking a vow to ban the word too from my vocabulary. I encourage others to take a look at themselves on the spectrum of injustice. We are all a part of it, and it is important to make a personal change, if that’s not too much to ask.”
For perspective, I’d like to properly define our terms:
I hate to break it to you, but the word ‘too’ does not inspire hatred, dislike, mistrust, or prejudice against women. Frankly, it’s kind of insulting to women that you think it does. It’s just a weird semantic jerk off fest you’re doing to prove to everyone how thoughtful and forward thinking you are. Well, the sad reality is that nobody gives a shit. Sorry Cameron, the universe is cold and unfeeling, and will ultimately ignore your bullshit crusade for precisely that reason: it’s bullshit.