All this sturm und drang over a story that has nothing particularly remarkable to show or say.
Women going all #MeToo not realizing how misplaced this sounds when referencing a woman who is the actual aggressor, who initiates, and in which we (thanks to the omniscience of the narrator) actually get to see her explicitly and mentally consent. Men getting all hurt when in fact the man suffers almost not at all and loses almost nothing at all, then acts terribly in the end.
Both characters in the story are dishonest, manipulative narcissists mainly in love with themselves, and whose losses and suffering amount essentially to ego bruises after a considered effort to exploit someone else as means to inflate said egos.
Who the “someone else” was hardly mattered to either of them; it could have been anyone. Neither took any steps to actually know the person, nor showed any restraint in using them despite not knowing them in the least. The point wasn’t to actually engage in real terms with another human being, it was to leverage a fellow human being as yet another consumable resource in entirely inward-facing self-identity-building. The only thing that either had on their mind—happy and not happy—was their own selfhood—said “selfhood” being the poison that is destroying modernity, the runaway Hollywood-level success of Zen in America notwithstanding.
In short, what nobody’s saying is:
- Both of the characters in the story are consenting adults, and both are horrible, selfish people with no integrity who have no business being allowed out into public.
- All of the readers who identify with either character reveal themselves to be horrible, selfish people with no integrity who have no business being allowed out in to public.
If you identify with this story, as woman or as man, you ought to be embarrassed. You have just outed yourself; you don’t see human beings across from you at the table. And your chattering about the story on Twitter or Facebook or wherever is merely you promoting you, justifying you, building you, asking for social currency for you, etc., all without any regard for anyone else—just like these characters with which you so identify.
So many essays on “why this story went viral” and all of them got it wrong.
The real reason that it went viral is ironic and darkly hilarious. Even a send-up of hand-wringing narcissists impatient to place themselves at the center of the universe gets hand-wringing narcissists impatient to place themselves at the center of the universe all hot and bothered.
Yet another (literally) “self”-serving, disgusting, misguided pile of self-expression animates the same old self-serving, disgusting, misguided national public.
Two selfish people date. Not surprisingly, it doesn’t go well. Both end up primarily bothered by how this affects themselves. Selfish national public says “OMG, #MeToo!” And all of it is fiction in service of the self.
Film at 11.