As is my wont… I had another of my distinctly ICNALDMTR moments this past Wednesday (12 Sept). Seemingly, anyway. I was at my English-styled pub haunt-of-late, preparing for another grueling face-off with the Snot Grad Students, when I made a bit of conversation with a coupla players from the squad 26+6=2. (Confidential to Kara & her boys/girls in Brit Inn Pub Quiz League: Cora Mc Manus totally beat you to that arithmetic genius over ten years ago. But carry on. I doubt that she remembers anyway.) We were conversing about central/northern Wisconsin locales, & what drew them to Milwaukee (each being from Wausau… (I knew a #### from there, once, name of Cassie; & I still don’t know, ‘was she being friendly, or was she keen?’)), when the bar-maid walked over, looking to take a drink order. &, presto, I stepped in it. We entreated her to the conversation, & it came up that I had been told — I still shan’t reveal by whom — that the bar-maid was looking to be expecting. (I had never thought of that, myself. It’s notever the a, b, c, d, efg, h, i, j, k, lmnop consideration that pops to my mind when she crosses my path. (What does? Nothing… you need to know.)) Apparently, though, one is not supposed ever to say, ‘you seem pregnant’, to a female.
Now, I already knew this, & in the back of my mind, I’m sure, I was aware that I was overstepping at least two bounds, but I shared the anonymous third party’s observation all the same. Why? Why, as well, is it improper — daresay most, radically uncouth — to speculate, to a woman, about her pregnancy or lack thereof?
To the first question, though.
Why I said what I said, under the circumstances in which I said those words, owes to adolescent naievete-cum-resentment. I refer, of course, to the legend of “Popsicle Girl”. (I am leery about sharing her name, as previous allusion to high-school boasts & taunts has brought me scornful e:mail from the subject of the one instance during which I did.)
As it stood, JW (initials will suffice) was an honours student, i.e. on the accelerated track at our mutual high-school alma mater, pom-pon (pom-pom?) girl, &, if my running-mates of the time were to be believed (& I did believe), a wanton slut of the most loathsome practice; namely, that she enjoyed having her various paramours stick frozen dessert treats into the confine of her vagina. & this last was not merely a once-recited bromide or jest, but a semi-frequent observation, among the males and females in the assemblage (Cathy-with-a-C, Retroviral Jerry, Drezdn — I’m looking at you), with all disrespect intended for a classmate with whom they had minimal acquaintance, & even less interest in acquainting. (& that for obvious reason!)
JW was a preppy — to a point, I assume; I never drew that vibe from her… she was “just a girl, she looked like girls look” — “honours” student, doing enough sucking-up to get by, while making sure to make plenty of time for sucking-off.
She dressed “alternative”, or so described Cathy-with-a-C, one day, in repeating JW’s conversation; enjoyed going to Mad Planet (back when it was a big gay disco, with a Thursday all-ages nite); seemed to favour the athlete class in mating; & was superficial with everybody, but especially those not in her clique.
Basically, my running-mates — even Cathy-with-a-C, herself a bit of the teenage bicycle — loathed JW more than they loathed any of the popular students. JW — she, they singled out for persecution.
How best to go about it? Create &/or fan the flame of a sexual myth ascribed to JW. So, “Popsicle Girl”; or, in the language of “Clerks”, ‘popsicle-fucker’. & never mind that just three years, or less, if you want, the same people with whom I ran, who found the idea of a kink like popsicle-penetration absolutely, mind-bottlingly repulsive, had their sexual world-view do a 180 that would have had them thinking popsicle-fucking to be blase, if they were the type to indulge in real self-examination, not just self-agony. No, they hated JW, & they hated precisely because she was a popsicle-fucker. (It seemed to encompass all the faults of her preppy, pom-pon girlhood.)
& with all this, I went along. I never offered rebuttal nor refutation. I never asked them to consider more broadly the implication of their accusation. I just accepted it. I figured, if somebody’s saying it, it must be true. I mean, people do all kinds of things in the bed; why not include frozen foods as sex toys?
I suppose, too, in that regard, I did diverge from my friends’s interest in the perpetuation of the myth. Sure, like them, I found the activity of popsicle-fucking a bit bizarre, & thought it something in
which I would not involve myself, but my memorization of the fact (when in fact we had no idea if this were actually something we could know, as fact) of popsicle-fucking, involving JW, did not owe to a generalized antipathy to her, or more broadly those kinds of girls. I went along… because I was friends with Retroviral Jerry, Mike, Cathy-with-a-C, Matt SS, et. al., while I was only acquainted with JW from having 11th grade American Lit in the same section as her. Like most in that age, the teens, I followed where my peer-cohort led me.
Now, once I severed ties with them, in the early part of this, the second willenium, I evaluated the preceding five years, & one of my regrets — not the largest, but neither small fry — was blindly, naievely following my friends’s lead in attacking the integrity of somebody they didn’t even know for reasons that never should have been deemed offensive (& that within thirty months they would consider to be down-right tame).
Fast-forward to my residence at the Brit Inn’s pub quiz, starting April ’07, & carrying forth to, at the least, last Wednesday. In my visitations to said establishment, I came to know various of the staff & competitors, none of whom I consider in malform; in fact, several I find quite witty, & all but a few (cough, Snot Grad Students, cough) exceedingly pleasant (though that could be the alcohol). So, to hear one of the other habitue of the pub quiz say, “You know”, then point to the bar-maid, “she’s pregnant”, it rubbed me completely wrong. Here was someone speaking out-of-turn — I know, pot… kettle… black, yes, yes — about someone they hardly know, with regard to something about her that they don’t know at all. It’s just not something I’ve done.
I’m not the one who confabulated toast — or, at the least, embellished it — nor the one who invested the entirety of JW’s impropriety in her purported popsicle-fucking. I was around those, sure, & tittered over them, though much moreso the first, but I was also fifteen, sixteen — still growing into myself. But, yes, I’ve been around those who have made it stock-in-trade to demean others with hearsay & myth.
But, as I said, I did not encounter the same level of invidious intent in the assertion of the bar-maid’s pregnancy as I did in my teenage, early-twenties friendships’s & the attendant kink dishing. There was, of course, a subtext of “oh, she’s easy, a frequent copulator, & isn’t even smart enough to use the pill or make the dude where a condom”, but that was a minor detail. I most certainly think that the habitue in question thought that the bar-maid was going to have (another) child. But in that case, he should have just inquired of her, “So, how far along are you?”
He shouldn’t have told me, nor anyone else; leastways, not first-off. He also should not have made it seem like a state secret. He should have just asked the principal. He should not have put somebody else in the position of harbouring his multifarious ideations.
And that is another thing… why is it oh, so impolitic to ask a woman if she’s pregnant? I know why I’ve been told this is so, that to posit pregnancy in the face of ignorance, then to find out that the opposite (barren uterus) is the case, means that the woman looks fat, but that could not be a flimsier reason if you wet it down for five minutes with heavy-water. Point of fact, the “pregnancy = fat” equation is just something that unselfconcious overweight &/or obese women want to perpetuate so that they can become aggrieved when asked if they are pregnant. (“Oh, you think I’m pregnant? Do I look pregnant? No. I’m just a little overweight” — even if she is very obviously pushing three digits overweight, it’s always ‘just a little’ — “and I know that. & I don’t need scum like you rubbing it in”.) Further, it is something that slender &/or average women fear, especially when not pregnant, because if they’re getting fat without the added baby-weight, imagine what they will be like pregnant.
In fact, pregnant bulging in the abdominal develops distinctly from cellulitic bulging of the abdomen, & other parts. For one, especially in the early stage of pregnancy, the bulge is convex, straight-on, & no wider than the measure from flank to flank. Two, it is limited to the abdomen, & in smaller measure the bust, as the breasts expand with the introduction of active milk production. Three, the typical pregnancy retains a rigidity in the skin — sometimes, even, greater rigidity than before pregnancy & on other skin locations — that is lacking in the merely overweight &/or obese.
Now, let’s consider the simple fat, non-pregnant. They’re excessive weight tends to occur over the whole of the corpus (fat thighs, fat ass, potbelly), though in some, it will predominate in one locale (“two scoops of chocolate, hold the cones… Mix-a-Lot gonna make ye moan”). As well, it tends to be flabby — axiomatic, yes, yes — & not taut, as is the case of uterine expansion.
Pregnant does not equal fat, therefore. & it’s best the truly fat come to understand that.