The other day, a chorus of Reddit neophytes greeted a clip from Conan featuring a droll but friendly exchange/clash between the greatest sidekick ever, Andy Richter, and unfunny henchwoman, Chelsea Handler, with cyber-cheers and pumped fists and hollers of hoo-ya. They presumed, in their delusional little minds, that they had witnessed some serious comeuppance on the part of Richter for a rather weak defense he slung back at the jack-off-of-all-trades pop cultural female icon who had just owned the chubby comedian.
Richter, having acknowledged that he enjoys swimming in the ocean, is suddenly the target of Handler’s caustic, belittling retort, “You must…do you float a lot in the ocean?” Richter shrugs and answers weakly with a barb that is hardly the greatest comeback ever. “Sure…what, do you sink? It might be that cast iron heart.”
His desperate offense-is-the-best-defense snark is sniveled, but it falls flat as a worthy response to Handler’s ad hominem bullying.
(Incidentally, I love Andy Richter…I’m just calling it as I see it).
The exchange was hailed as the “greatest comeback ever” by Redditors. This is ridiculous. Who would dare voice such a claim other than some young cyberfiend with zero knowledge of the female creature? Only from this undersexed perspective could Richter’s retort be remotely considered a decent defense against the fat-shaming, emasculating put-down.
If that is what today’s young males consider a worthy riposte against a scornful, aggressive Alpha woman’s insults, Western American culture is in sorry-ass shape.
You never attempt to sincerely insult a woman by alluding to her cast iron heart/meanness/cruelty/insensitivity/fiendish nature/assertiveness/bitchiness/bossiness. To do so is to bring your butter-knife to the gunfight. These descriptors are praise to women’s ears, especially women of the 21st century. If young guys believe women don’t like being perceived as such, they really have a lot of catching up to do in the battle of the sexes. Women eat that kind of slander up! A woman will feel privately empowered and proud at being the receiving end of such accusations. Richter resorted to a default simpering Beta state here when confronted with the unqualified slings of personal attack that only women can get away in public (ie, imagine if the roles had been reversed). Richter probably buys into the “all women are special snowflakes” mentality and thus, has integrated the mindset that this is the self-perception that pleases them and makes them giddy, when in reality, women hate being perceived as retiring snowflakes; they’d rather be slushy, shit-encrusted mud wreaking havoc on your weak male spirit.
Insult Handler’s age, her wrinkled skin, her weathered appearance. This is how to hurt. Shoot to kill, not to vaguely malign.
Insulting a woman’s vanity is the surest way into her cast iron heart.