People shouldn't dignify the videogame-playing and hard partying of some 20-something [sic] males as a phase of self-discovery, says Kay S. Hymowitz in the conservative City Journal. She suggests the so-called Young Single Male grow up before he wrecks society (article not yet available online).
Dignify? We should be glorified.
It is not a phase of self-discovery. It is the discovery. Has Ms. Hymowitz ever walked home through Tompkins Square Park at sunrise with a cigarette dangling in her mouth, sunny-side-up detritus on the corner of her lips, serenaded by the birds as she plays an impromptu game of tag with a homeless junkie? No? Her life has no meaning.
Ms. Hymowitz will never know the pleasure of slaughtering a Templar knight during a hard-fought battle in Assassins' Creed. She will never relate to the highs and lows we feel upon throwing a pick in NCAA 2008, only to recover a fumble and watch a fat defensive lineman spin his way into the end zone.
Such joys are not self-discovery; they are reasons to live.
Men are increasingly delaying marriage to their late 20s and beyond. As seen in movies such as the "40-Year-Old Virgin" or "Knocked Up," they fill their prolonged bachelorhood by watching gross-out videos on the Internet, playing videogames and flitting from one half-serious girlfriend to another.Ms. Hymowitz's knowledge of my people is based solely on the work of arch-conservative comic Judd Apatow, whose pro-life propaganda flick Knocked Up turned the clock back to 1972. She sleepwalks through history, unaware that all across America, cakes are being given to grateful pedestrians, cookies are being drop-kicked into thoroughfares and Nerf missiles are hurtling into nuts. Her ignorance is further shown by limiting her critique to "gross-out videos" and "half-serious girlfriend[s]," when for many of my people (not necessarily me) the truth is closer to rampant internet pornography and consequence-free sex.
Ms. Hymowitz is equal parts ignorant and jealous.
Unlike bachelors past, Young Single Males no longer bother posing as sophisticates.
Instead, they indulge in scatological jokes and chugging contests.
This is not exclusive of sophistication.
Partly this is a backlash against feminism, says Ms. Hymowitz.
If that's the case, and I don't think it is, then feminism is the best thing that ever happened to my people: "Women now have the franchise and a right to choose. Our revenge shall be beer and video games."
More fundamentally, pop culture has given the seal of approval to the long-running discomfort men have felt for the responsibilities of family life. Articles in Playboy were describing marriage as an encumbrance long before modern feminism arrived.
Stupid old scold.
The downside to this attitude shows up in novels like Nick Hornby's "About a Boy" and Benjamin Kunkel's "Indecision." In these stories, the protagonists' serial indulgence of easy pleasures leaves them isolated from others, with few aspirations.
No, "About a Boy" is about how Hugh Grant helped a kid become famous for singing a Roberta Flack cover, and "Indecision" is about how young authors shouldn't be too precious. As to aspirations, Mario Manningham once won a Heisman in NCAA '07 while under my tutelage. And that's just one thing that comes to mind.
For Ms. Hymowitz, who has written extensively and sometimes critically about how the family has changed over the past 30 years, young men especially "need a culture that can help them define worthy aspirations," says Ms. Hymowitz. "Adults don't emerge. They're made."
Unfortunately, adults are in fact made, and the calendar is the culprit.
Ms. Hymowitz's disgraceful, bigoted assault cannot stand. She appears to favor a world free of birth control, where young man accidentally impregnate their girlfriends and spend the rest of their lives in quiet servitude to an accidental child, dominated by regret, emotional repression and fear. Or, as I prefer to call think of it, my hometown.