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"Is u ass bif?" The Question of Our Time?

Is U ass bif?
Bif, such an ass!

Let’s take a quick break from all that gamer aggro to take a quick peek at the CreepyPM subreddit, where we find this lovely little Grindr exchange, posted by Jacob of rniraclewhip.tumblr.com, featuring a man with a strange question:

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I think our questioner was just being kind here, pretending that he actually was asking about ass size. No, his question was actually a very clever literary reference that went over Jacob’s head but which I picked up right away because I am so very, very smart.

It’s a reference to a famous scene in Death of a Salesman.  Biff Loman is telling his brother Happy about a job interview that didn’t quite go as planned.

BIFF (breathlessly): I did a terrible thing today, Hap. It’s been the strangest day I ever went through. I’m all numb, I swear.

HAPPY: You mean he wouldn’t see you?

BIFF: Well, I waited six hours for him, see? All day. Kept sending my name in. Even tried to date his secretary so she’d get me to him, but no soap.

HAPPY: Because you’re not showin’ the old confidence, Biff. He remembered you, didn’t he?

BIFF (stopping Happy with a gesture): Finally, about five o’clock, he comes out. Didn’t remember who I was or anything. I felt like such an idiot, Hap.

HAPPY: Did you tell him my Florida idea?

BIFF: He walked away. I saw him for one minute. I got so mad I could’ve torn the walls down! How the hell did I ever get the idea I was a salesman there? I even believed myself that I’d been a salesman for him! And then he gave me one look and — I realized what a ridiculous lie my whole life has been! We’ve been talking in a dream for fifteen years. I was a shipping clerk.

HAPPY: What’d you do?

BIFF (with great tension and wonder): Well, he left, see. And the secretary went out. I was all alone in the waiting room. I don’t know what came over me, Hap. The next thing I know I’m in his office — paneled walls, everything. I can’t explain it. I — Hap, I took his fountain pen.

HAPPY: (Angrily.) Is u ass, bif?

Is you ass, bif?

This is truly the question of our time.

EDIT: Ok, I changed the Death of a Salesman quote. Dammit, this dopey joke is funny to ME.

 

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Michael McG
Michael McG
7 years ago

Yeah, implying that someone looking for casual sex doesn’t deserve manners or respect is essentially slut shaming.

So entering a space where the bodies of people are explicitly sexualized means that one shouldn’t expect one’s body to be sexualized?

I’m honestly confused as to why people are conflating entering sexualized spaces with consenting to have one’s boundaries violated. If someone else does or says something that one does not like about themone is perfectly within one’s rights to tell them fuck offand take further actions such as reporting to management work to law enforcement undesirable behavior continues. In fact, I will say that it is an assertion of one’s respect and self worth to do so.

Simultaneously, however, if one does not want comments such as “Do you have a nice ass?”–some things that I have been asked several times while cruising, one should not enter into spaces where such comments or questions are considered acceptable discourse.

sparky
sparky
7 years ago

Michael McG:

So entering a space where the bodies of people are explicitly sexualized means that one shouldn’t expect one’s body to be sexualized?

So entering into a sexualized space means that others are completely right and ok to comment upon your body in any negative way they see fit, and you don’t have a right to be insulted by negative comments about your body? That’s what’s happening in the OP.

I’m honestly confused as to why people are conflating entering sexualized spaces with consenting to have one’s boundaries violated.

No one’s said that. You seem to be heavily implying that if a person enters into a sexualized space then they shouldn’t be surprised or upset if their boundaries are violated, though.

If someone else does or says something that one does not like about themone is perfectly within one’s rights to tell them fuck offand take further actions such as reporting to management work to law enforcement undesirable behavior continues. In fact, I will say that it is an assertion of one’s respect and self worth to do so.

And that is exactly what the man in the OP did. Bif guy asked an insulting question and the man in the OP told him that was none of his business. Then bif guy told him to “fuck off.” Told him to “fuck off” for enforcing his boundaries. Don’t see anything wrong with that there?

Robert
Robert
7 years ago

Regarding high school books – we read Ethan Frome. Gah. That is one grim book. None of us got it in any real way; we’d never even lived through a New England winter, much less the pain of a frustrated, dead-end life. I now sympathize with the teacher, but at the time it felt like emptying a crate full of excelsior with a pair of tweezers.

andiexist
andiexist
7 years ago

[blockquote]Simultaneously, however, if one does not want comments such as “Do you have a nice ass?”–some things that I have been asked several times while cruising, one should not enter into spaces where such comments or questions are considered acceptable discourse.[/blockquote]

So, when so many men seem to think it’s acceptable to catcall, should women never go out onto the street? Or onto the internet as well? Oh, or to school or work. Someone might see them gardening or something if they left the house…

Basically, being gay does not give someone the right to objectify potential partners.

andiexist
andiexist
7 years ago

Oh hey, my first blockquote monster!

andiexist
andiexist
7 years ago

…wait, that was the opposite of block quote monster.

contrapangloss
7 years ago

Andiexist, try replacing your [brackets with <pointy things! Going in the appropriate direction, of course.

Alice
Alice
7 years ago

Thank you David for making me laugh harder than I have in months.

http://diylol.com/meme-generator/hamlet–2/memes/is-u-ass-bif-or-is-u-ass-no-bif

Michael McG
Michael McG
7 years ago

So, when so many men seem to think it’s acceptable to catcall, should women never go out onto the street? Or onto the internet as well? Oh, or to school or work. Someone might see them gardening or something if they left the house…

Basically, being gay does not give someone the right to objectify potential partners.

Could you kindly show me where that is a sensible interpretation of what I posted?

Look people who use hook-up apps and go to bathhouses our sex clubs–all things which I do–are seeking out explicitly sexualized space and can therefore expect more sexualized behavior from others using that space.

I would not welcome anyone cat calling me or grabbing my ass as I walked down the street. I don’t really know what I would do if it happened, but I certainly wouldn’t consider it appropriate general-public behavior. However, I would accept that type of interaction as part of the solicitation for sex in a bathhouse. What transpires afterwards could perfectly acceptably to include my telling the cat caller our ass grabber to go fuck himself our my fucking around with him.

The issue here is that being cat called or grabbed is not so transgressive of the social norms in the sexualized spaces I enter that it in itself constitutes harassment our assault. Continued unwanted comments or contact would most certainly comprise harassment/assault, but the explicit sexualization of the space renders interactions such as touching others’ genitals–which would otherwise be considered utterly inappropriate behaviors outside the space, at least provisionally acceptable.

Within the larger discussion of the OP, I was never objecting to how Yellow (bif?) responded to Blue (bif’s interlocutor): I see nothing worthy of criticism in the exchange at all. I was however trying to explain–now obviously and hopelessly unclearly–how Blue’s initial conduct might not be, as kittehserf put it, “brain breaking” in its social density.

Michael McG
Michael McG
7 years ago

I see my proofreading efforts were not as successful as I had hoped.

“[C]at caller our ass grabber” should read “cat caller or ass grabber”.

andiexist
andiexist
7 years ago

@Michael

I was attempting to illustrate how going off what people who do that sort of thing think is acceptable is not going to get good results.

So, here’s a more relevant comparison: By your logic, women who do not want to be harassed should not go to bars. People are capable of wanting respectful partners for casual sex. No matter what the particular subculture you are in is like, it is NEVER okay to harass someone or act like they are obligated to have sex with you. Period, end of story.

Any “that is what it is like” is just an illustration of “you know, we should really teach people how to behave with people they want to have sex with.”

Myoo
Myoo
7 years ago

@Michael McG

The issue here is that being cat called or grabbed is not so transgressive of the social norms in the sexualized spaces I enter that it in itself constitutes harassment our assault.

Then the social norms in those places need to change. Groping someone without their consent is sexual assault, no matter how sexualized a place is.
If I went to an orgy, I would expect to see people fucking there, but that does not mean that people can just start fucking me without my consent, now does it?

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
7 years ago

Michael, go read the OP again. When the man being asked if his ass is “biff” attempts to draw a boundary, the other guy tells him to fuck off. If you really don’t see why that makes the interaction not OK I’m not sure what else to try in terms of explaining why people find his behavior inappropriate.

Being in a sexualized space doesn’t mean that you’ve forfeited your right to draw boundaries, or that it’s OK for other people to chastise you for attempting to enforce them. People always retain the right to tell other people to knock it off, no matter how sexualized the space.

blahlistic (@blahlistic)

Just because a gay man is on grindr, it doesn’t make it ok to make your first question about his ass size.
At least if you have any hope of being able to tap said ass, because ( and I say this as a slutty person) even sluts have standards, alright?

Treat them with respect and kindness if you want some.

Michael McG
Michael McG
7 years ago

So is the objection to the guy who drew a boundary being told to fuck off? Or is objection to the ass-size question in the first place?

Because Myoo skipped directly from being at an orgy to being raped orgy all the way over being propositioned at an orgy which was the analog to what the situation was in the OP.

My point has always been that certain behaviors that are never acceptable in non-sexualized spaces (e.g.asking questions about a person’s body, touching others’ bodies, etc) might be acceptable and expected to occur in sexualized. Of course, the person being asked or touched had the right to refuse the question or touch, but I am disputing whether, the sexualized nature of the space, the question or touch is as wholly inappropriate as most posters insist they are.

Myoo
Myoo
7 years ago

@Michael McG

Of course, the person being asked or touched had the right to refuse the question or touch, but I am disputing whether, the sexualized nature of the space, the question or touch is as wholly inappropriate as most posters insist they are.

If you start off by groping a person, then that person can hardly refuse the touch, can they? They can complain about it, sure, but then they might get subjected to people telling them that it’s just “the way things are”, and that these are the “social norms” in these places, and if they don’t like it then they should get out.
Why is it the “social norm” to just go straight to asking about people’s body parts and groping, anyway? Why are the creepers the ones the social norms are catering to? Just because it’s “the way things are” doesn’t mean it’s the way things should be.

kittehserf - MOD
kittehserf - MOD
7 years ago

I was however trying to explain–now obviously and hopelessly unclearly–how Blue’s initial conduct might not be, as kittehserf put it, “brain breaking” in its social density.

Maybe some of us just have higher expectations of people’s behaviour even in a sexualised context. At the very least the creep was being crass and disgusting in his approach, as the respondent made pretty clear. Creep was also chockfull of outraged entitlement, not an attitude likely to win friends, let alone sexual partners.

What the hell makes you think any of his behaviour was acceptable? Do you really think “sexualised context” means treating people like fucktoys is okay?

cassandrakitty
cassandrakitty
7 years ago

The thing is, Michael seems to be trying to put forward an argument that it’s generally agreed that this behavior is acceptable on Grindr. If that was true, though, this little snippet of conversation would never have ended up getting the attention that it has, and the second guy probably wouldn’t have objected to the question. So basically what he’s arguing is that people in those spaces who don’t like the more crass approaches need to shut up.

Sorry, Michael, but my sympathies are with the people who want to be able to complain about crass behavior without being told to shut up.

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