A Critic's Meta Review: 4/5
I am not a real boy; I am a puppet. That is what I feel the real story is - the one that should have been told, that we are all in the process of telling ourselves now. We are all, to an extent, Pinocchios, slaves to our Geppettos. Living in the ghetto of metro/politan fly-swallowing, “aye”-hollering, sly collar-thin believers in a fate which is not ours to shape, shake, or make great, but merely just to take and move towards like a traffic light, or a graphic fight somewhere on the roadside, where we’ll sit so toad-eyed, glued to the blues, confused by the fumes, exhumed from the snooze.
Trying to figure out whose is whose.
Ah, much better. You know, I have to do that sometimes. It’s not that I want to - I really do have to. If I don’t do it, then I will actually be convinced that the opening sentence of this review is, in fact, true. It is only through these silly little exercises that I can get enough neurons firing in different directions to convince myself that it is not actually the case and that I am, indeed, a real boy. So take that, you big-nosed freak.
I AM A REAL BOY.
I AM A REAL MAN.
I still cringe when I hear people speak of what “real men” are supposed to do - as opposed to those soy-based “fake” men, or whatever their conception of a gender role defying imposter may be. The mark of a real man, I have realized, is avoiding getting into discussions about what the mark of a “real man” is.
Some would disagree. Jeffrey Lebowski (the other Lebowski - the millionaire) believes that being a man means being prepared to do the right thing, whatever the cost. The Dude, on the other hand, would suggest that perhaps a pair of testicles would suffice. I am inclined to agree. At the end of the day, it really just boils down to anatomy. Even then, things are changing, rapidly. Gone are the days when you could simply look at someone and say “this is definitely a man”. I have had coworkers with full goatees that preferred feminine pronouns. Okay, I have had one coworker who fit that description. Really nice girl - er, lady - er, woman - er...person? We’ll go with person. Neutral enough.
The animated Disney adaptation of this story used to scare the bejesus out of me when I was a young lad. When they all started turning into donkeys, I nearly pooted in my tighty-whities. I may have been in Huggies at the time, actually.
Poor mother. Poor, poor mother.