Friday, October the 7th, 2005

No, seriously, do they even exist?

Most of, if not all, the women I know can effortlessly kick my ass if they so chose.

Everyone’s read or been told the fairy tales, and everyone’s seen the Disney cartoons. You know, the ones which go something like so: beautiful princess-type is taken against her will by this evil doer → the charming, courageous and strong prince-type rescues her → all is well and they live together happily ever after.

Do these supposed, “pretty, weak females, whose only purpose is to be easily taken against their will and held captive” exist in reality?


But do men have to be all prince-like— confident, strong, brave, dashing, …—to be deemed worthy?

Apparently, yes.


Why does society expect this of men? Do they need these attributes to be able to rescue these mythical weaklings from mythical evil doers? Do they need them to save themselves from the evil doers? Why?

The worlds potrayed in these stories aren’t true. Also, our world isn’t in some prehistoric state where the size of your biceps or your club matter.

The world today is different.

And yet, we’re caught up in “the old ways” of judging worthiness of mates.

And that’s stupid, not because of something profound, but because it means I am alone.

The preceding piece—written ages ago—was a precursor to the ideas that eventually ended up in this post. I found it while rummaging through some earlier notes and decided to milk it for what it’s worth.

This is a printer-friendly version of the journal entry “Where are the damsels in distress?” from actuality.log. Visit to read the original entry and follow any responses to it.

4 Responses to “Where are the damsels in distress?”

  1. Joni says:

    Oh, god. I know what you mean. I have a friend who can routinely rip an engine apart, clean it and put it back together again. She has an entire transmission in the guest bedroom. But she gets all helpless and fluttery around guys. Pretending not to know how to change her oil. Once, I kicked her under the table.


  2. pundit says:

    That’s so strange. None of the women I know are like this; as in they go all out to show off such—even if traditionally pegged to be non-feminine—skills (from gear-heads to extreme sport). It’s not like I’m threatened in any way. I am this quiet, gentle little person who’s curious and knows a bit. I don’t even claim to be all macho and gung-ho about anything.

    My problem here (as I tried to articulate in this post), is that if they’re happy being ripping engines apart, and I’m happy baking a cake, why not just leave things be as they are? Why is it that society and media dictate that she has to act all helpless and fluttery (when I’m clearly incapable), and me feeling like a wimp because I can’t stand getting my hands greasey?

    And I have this private joke going in my head which I was planning to unleashing after I ‘got done’ with my studies. I’d probably be the first ever PhD in Mechanical Engineering who doesn’t know how to change a flat tyre. And honestly doesn’t even care!

  3. Brian V. Mansur says:

    Bit late for a reply, but in regards to: Do these supposed, “pretty, weak females, whose only purpose is to be easily taken against their will and held captive” exist in reality?

    I don’t know about “weak” or “only purpose” but there most certainly and horrifyingly are literally hundreds of thousands if not millions of girls and women worldwide in sexual slavery. If you haven’t looked into it yet, you can visit many governmental and non-governmental organization (NGO) websites to get educated on the this urgent and underserved issue. Try googling Not-For-Sale, Polaris Project, International Justice Mission (IJM) for groups that have great primers. If you want to support an org that rescues and/or provides recovery services to victims, check out IJM, Nvader, and Hagar International (among many others that desperately need more funds).

  4. pundit says:

    A comment after seven years!

    Thanks Brian, I will look into these groups and support them.

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