Back when I was a kid, growing up on the mean streets of Mahopac, N.Y., I learned the rules of shit-talking engagement.
Rule 1. Don’t talk shit to people who can (and will) beat you up.
Rule 2. Don’t talk shit to those who truly can’t defend themselves.
Rule 3. Don’t talk shit about an area where you, personally, also struggle.
To me, Rule 3 was always the most important. At the time, for example, our star basketball guy was Larry Glover, a center who went on to play at Norfolk State. Were I to approach Larry and say, “You’re game is fucking soft!” he’d (rightly) laugh in my face. Had we played one on one, I suspect Larry would have beaten me, oh, 10-2—if I were shooting well.
The point is, don’t sling yang in subject areas that can only make you look foolish, stupid and little. It never pays off.
My hometown of Mahopac, N.Y. is small, obscure, pretty—and, at time, a prime producer of awesome news content. That’s why I Google “Mahopac” once a week or so, and that’s why I know about the most recent hot development; a story so ludicrous that it oozes a bit of People, a bit of Us Weekly, a bit of Entertainment Weekly, a bit of Moron Today. According to multiple sources (as well as a recording), Ray Cote, president of the town’s school board, was caught on tape (at a recent meeting) calling an attendee, “chubby wubby.” His exact quote (in reference to the mother of six children): “Oh, I know, I know. This one here, ‘Chubby wubby.’ She gets fatter and fatter at every meeting. She really does.”
Here’s what I love about this. Absolutely love. Ray Cote, judger of fat women, ain’t much to look at. Hell, check out the above photo. I’m not saying he’s ugly, and I’m also not saying I’m Tom Cruise. But there’s a reason guys with seven chins and fat necks and receding hairlines (cough, cough) keep quiet when it comes to the physical appearances of others. Actually, lemme add to that thought: There’s a reason even people like Brad Pitt and Halle Berry keep quite when it comes to the physical appearances of others—because it’s a juvenile, asshole, bullshit thing to judge and appraise.
I don’t know what the woman Cote slammed looks like, but can she be that much more unattractive than he is? Or, for that matter, I am?
It happens to be a thing many guys do, even when we reach our 30s, 40s, 50s, 60s. There’s still a significant amount of “Check out the ass on her …” and “Man, I’d dig into those …” even when that ass and those are 1,000 times out of the league of reasonable possibilities. Men are dogs. Men are pigs. Men are happy to gauge the appearances of others, while never turning the gaze inward.