Daily Archives: March 23, 2021

Back To Basics

A truly excellent blog post from Father Z moves me to some reflections I would like to share with you.

The theme of the post seems, on the whole, very clear to me: effeminate priests go after the TLM private masses in St Peter because .. they don’t like the manliness of it all.

One part stands out:

At times I teasingly refer to the FFLF, the “Female Fun Limitation Factor” which I picked up from a radio host of my native place. The FFLF is defined as that effect produced on one or more males having fun together – maybe being noisy or doing something a little risky – when a female, of any age, asks in that special tone of voice, “Do you really think you should be doing that?”, and in all its variations including The Look and other non-verbal signals.  The FFLF suppresses.

Well I had to stop and think here.

I have lived in three Countries.

In Italy, at that time, there was no FFLF that could be seen in public. Any female effort at “FLF” would have had to be worked out, more or less patiently, in the kitchen. God forbid, a man is seen by his friends as being remote-controlled by his wife! Mind: I am sure that such female efforts were underway, here and there, all the time. But I am also sure that they were difficult endeavours, destined to failure with all but the weakest of husbands. As to The Look in public, that was, how should I put it, beyond the realm of the thinkable.

Years later, I moved to Germany. Germany was, for an American, surprisingly “traditional” in its outlook. You would, in fact, be surprised at the sheer number of Germans who work in the big city but live in a small village, with all the consequences this brings. It wasn’t Italy, though, and I could clearly see that men were far less masculine, and women could, oftentimes, be more assertive than it’s good for them. It was in this Country that I heard, with horror, what to this day remains, to me, pure abomination: a young father telling me how proud he was that he could be a stay-at-home father so that his wife could pursue her career; this way, centuries of Patriarchate could be, what… what exactly?… Shown as the proper way of living?

Still, a lot (not all) of German women knew better than to give an open show of FLF; because the village is small, you know, and your man shouldn’t look like a beta boy in public.

Then I moved to the UK, and here I saw that things were even worse than in already emasculated Germany. Atrocious expressions like SWMBO (“she who must be obeyed”; the cringeworthy, embarrassed admission of one’s own lack of trousers), or “happy wife, happy life” (ditto) were exchanged among grown men as if they were something smart to say. In this Country, the FFLF factor is absolutely massive and all-pervasive. As I write this, millions of grown, adult men – who often are the only earning spouse – discuss with absolute nonchalance, with their male friends and colleagues, the necessity to get their wife’s permission to buy this or that toy for themselves; the fact that they a) make the money, and b) have already decided that this is something that can be done, is clearly set at nought. Here, men publicly advertise their position as beta boys and working bees of the queen bee at home.

I can’t put in words how I despise them; and I seldom lack words.

So, coming back to Father Z’s beautiful phrase, I could not but avoid thinking this: that if the cultural environment in which we live came back to put an end to the FFLF in everyday life, and outside of a church setting, those little bitches in the Vatican would have a much more difficult life, too.

One can dream, eh?

For now, I would be happy enough if every one of my male readers would make an inner resolution to:

1) for the rest of his life, never again say SWMBO, “happy wife, happy life” or such like embarrassing, cringeworthy turns of phrase. Not even as a joke.

2) for the same duration, never accept any show of FLF, much less The Look, from both their wives and the wives of their friends. (Trust me: “Do you really think you should be doing that, Mundabor?” said no woman, ever…).

I suggest, instead of the usages of soy-plagued XXI Century America, the use of perfectly valid, life-affirming expressions like “me Tarzan, you Jane”, “happy husband, happy life”, and the immortal “go back to the kitchen, darling”.

We have trouble in bigger things, because we have forgotten the basics.

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