The Dream Café

Steven Brust: “A masterful storyteller of contagious glee and self-deprecating badassery” —Skyler White

Texas Wisdom #3

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One day Annie Sue Perkins came to visit Billy-Bob Gautama and said, “Goat, if I freely explore my sensual needs and desires, am I in danger of harming my spiritual growth?”  Billy-Bob said, “Get in the truck, bitch.”  This is how Annie Sue Perkins achieved enlightenment.

corwin

Author: corwin

Site administrative account, so probably Corwin, Felix or DD-B.

0 Comments

  1. What could Texans have done to you to make this hateful, insulting thing seem amusing?

  2. Hey, who said you could get out of the truck?

  3. Raymond @ 1:
    Its a time honored tradition to trash the state you live in, then defend it to the death from anyone outside of state.
    Please see the early work of any comedian if reference is needed.

  4. He didn’t trash Texas, he trashed women. He’s saying that women gain wisdom by welcoming contemptuous treatment and accepting our status as whores whose main purpose in life is to give sex to men whenever they want it, a view respondant #2 seems to hold as well.

    It actually has nothing to do with Texas, except the attempt to make it come across as homey rather than viciously insulting. So to be more accurate the question should be, what woman so offended his manhood he felt this was a necessary and appropriate response.

    Also, Raymond is my last name, not my given name.

  5. L. Raymond@4:
    There’s a parable about this someplace. Writer finds out from his agent that there is a course on his books being taught at a college. He attends, anonymously, mistaken for another student. He listens, sitting in the back, scribbling intently. His agent asks the next day what he found out.
    The writer replies that he never knew he was writing about important social issues, about the role of gender in society, or the struggle against depression. He was pretty certain he had just written a book.

    I am not arguing your right to interpret and view a small post, intended to be humorous, which obviously struck a nerve with you. I think its a long jump from a fairly sarcastic post (see the previous two) to a generalization about degrading and insulting all women.
    A valid question is asked, and a typical asshole male response is given. If we make every one of these posts a generalization, all males are worthless layabouts who lie and can’t hold a job, not to mention being as dumb as the day is long.

    In my opinion, this is being taken out of context. It didn’t say if her enlightenment was followed by getting in the truck – or from walking away. It doesn’t say if she’s a prostitute, or a woman at a bus stop. But that’s my viewpoint, and I dislike painting a sweeping vista based off two sentences. I think our viewpoints will continue to differ, on this post at least.

    (as for the Raymond / L. Raymond, I acknowledge my ability to highlight and copy/paste using the laptop touchpad is failuriffic, not deliberate)

  6. We’re all assuming Annie and Billy-Bob are people. I mean, if you take the fact that Annie calls Gautama “Goat” and the fact that a male goat is a “billy goat.” Going along that tract, since Billy-Bob calls Annie a bitch, perhaps Annie is a dog. So he’s just calling a female dog a female dog, and what’s wrong with that, right?

    Say, this is the farmer’s truck, and the dog’s contemplating copulation with the billy goat’s nannies. Or with the billy goat himself. Either way, he might find this disturbing, thus requesting that she keep herself in the truck. And it dawns on her that—

    No, I’m sorry. I can’t keep going with this.

    It’s a joke. Like the funny kind, only offensive. But if you look real hard, you can see that it’s making fun of the offensive viewpoint, a matter that TechSlave did an excellent job of backing up.

    But hey, no one’s going to stop people from taking offense at jokes. There’s a line for that; it winds halfway around the world and back on itself so the people in the line can bicker with one another instead of talking over those of us who are laughing. Or, no. Nobody ever gets in the line, because people would much rather go to the places that offend them so they can scowl at all the people who are there to enjoy themselves.

    Later, when we’re done enjoying ourselves, we’ll go to the places The Offended go to have a good time, and show offense at their manner of enjoying themselves.

    It’s like nobody’s allowed to laugh anymore, for the constant fear of our laughter being offensive to someone. Those of us who treasure laughter have to learn to laugh at those who are constantly offended.

    By the way, I’m a woman. And I live in Texas. And I thought it was funny. And I really don’t care what you call me. The truth is, I should probably just get in the truck.

  7. The “geeze it’s a joke” defense is not a totally credible defense. If the joke had substituted a black woman and the word nigger, instead of bitch, would it still be funny? Undoubtedly to some it would. For myself when I come across a ‘joke’ that is pejorative against a class of people based on phenotype characteristics I don’t particularly feel offended, usually words don’t have that big an affect on me. Most often I feel disappointed in the individual, my opinion of them is diminished.

    This particular ‘joke’ has some gray area though, is it a joke aimed against women? Or is it a joke aimed at idiotic thought patterns/misogyny found in (some) Texans (substitute any group of people who think that way)? Now, I do not know SZB beyond his books and having ridden in an elevator with him about 15 years ago. However, going out on a limb, I think it is the latter, attitude, that the jab is directed against. But… I could be wrong I suppose.

  8. It’s not funny, is what the problem is, not that it’s offensive. Most good humor is offensive, one way or another. This one is just lame, however. There’s no need to deconstruct it to figure that out.

  9. wow….

    first of all…i would be interested to know what SZB’s opinion of this debate is….but i’m not sure i care enough

    second…if it’s a joke, then it’s dangerously close to becoming folk anecdote, if it wasn’t that to begin with…

    third…as with any anecdote, it is open to interpretation….i chose to see it as follows: ASP has a question about spiritual wisdom vs carnal desire (an age-old conflict)…the answer she gets is that if she followed carnal desire by getting into the truck, her spiritual growth would be diminished (by allowing herself to be objectified and debased). That (to me) is her enlightenment. The anecdote never says which path she chooses. And of course, the anecdote never really says what the author’s opinion is.

    The interpretation merely reflects the interpreter’s opinion.

    The locality of the anecdote doesn’t necessarily speak ill of Texans, nor of women. Merely of proximity to where the anecdote originated or location of the author at the time the joke was created…as in “this could happen in YOUR town right here…”

    Bottom line: interpretation (or lack of) is the reader’s responsibility and perogative. If you found it funny, much joy to you; if you found it insightful, may you have wisdom; if you found it offensive, then look elsewhere.

  10. and here I just thought the joke was women attempting to make sex difficult when it’s really more simple than that.
    The old joke, “If sex is a pain in the butt, you’re doing it wrong.”
    It’s not offensive or non-offensive; it’s just a statement about how males and females, possibly forced by society approach copulation differently.

  11. Some very interesting responses, but allow me to let you in on the joke. The enlightenment comes from seeing how people respond to the “joke” that is really just bait. Bait that was spiced up to make it all the more appetizing. Now we know more about each other.

    That’s my opinion and I am not judging any of it. Or it could be Steve was just making a joke, as TechSlave said.

  12. Hey, as far as I’m concerned, any bit or topic that leads to a charged discussion is, in my opinion, a success — no matter what the original intent 😀

  13. It’s a koan.

    It’s not supposed to have a single set answer, or single way to view it. Koans are meant to inspire thought and introspection in the mind of the hearer, hopefully leading to enlightenment.

    Debate over where it is distasteful, degrading, or unfunny is irrelevant, or rather, they are beside the main point.

    You won’t find enlightenment in the comment thread of an internet koan, but in the response you have to the koan privately.

    As a koan, it’s pretty funny.

    (did you hear the one about the student who asked the master about enlightenment, and the master threw the student out the window? the master jumped out after the student, and landed on him. the student became enlightened.)

  14. g.sue: “The thing to remember about Zen is that hitting your teacher is always a valid answer.” — Michael Butler

  15. If by ‘enlightenment’ you mean she learned better than to ask BBG for advice.

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