Cathy–Farewell and Good Riddance

“Ca-li-forn-ia gurls are un-re-li-a-ble, fro-sted flakes with nuts on top…

Doc-tor Spock would find this song i-llo-gi-cal, oh no oh noooooo…”

For those wondering how the heck Katy Perry (whoever she is) stumbled onto this blog, it is because finally somebody has offered something that is as vacuous and vapid as Barack Obama. Even by California standards, a song celebrating the lack of substance in California has been outdone.

In fact, it might be one of the five most substanceless offerings in the history of words, and the only phrase not offered by Mr. Obama

(Although I can picture him at a Barbara Boxer fundraiser telling the crowd “West Coast Represent!” Boxer would pretend to know what he was talking about.)

The other phrases are “hope,” “change,” “yes we can,” and “Girl Power!”

Ok, I admit it, Mr. Obama did not say the last one. That was the Spice Girls. It is so easy to get confused when one offers meaningless slogans. They all blend in to one giant ball of shallowness.

This brings me to the queen of shallow, a fictional woman who after three decades of babbling and complaining about nonsense will finally be leaving us.

Cathy is saying goodbye on October 3rd for good. Cathy Guisewite (the cartoonist) will still live, but her cartoon character Cathy will go.

Men everywhere should high five over this.

I have nothing against Cathy Guisewite. I have never met her. Her comic strip was apolitical, and certainly not mean. She could very well be a lovely human being.

Yet “Cathy” represented everything that could possibly be wrong with women. If one were to take every negative quality about women and somehow combine them into one gigantic disastrous train wreck, Cathy would be it.

(Men have plenty of bad qualities. We just don’t brag about them in print.)

Cathy was neurotic, obsessing over her weight and her inability to get her boyfriend to marry her. Then he did marry her, loved her just the way she was, and she responded by remaining as obsessive and compulsive as ever. Many times poor Irving would wonder what exactly he did wrong, and why she was upset for no particular reason.

For those who want to save hundreds of thousands of dollars on therapy bills, let me help save people money.

Men are literal creatures. If you want to understand us, take the words at face value.

Comedian Chris Rock phrases it in a very tactless manner. “Men want three things…food…sex…silence…feed me, f*ck me, and shut the f*ck up.”

I am going to be more tactful (for once).

I am a simple guy. Think of me as the doll with the string in the back. You pull the string. It only says three or four things. “I’m hungry.” “I’m thirsty.” “I’m sleepy.” “I want to watch the ballgame.”

(It says one other thing but again I am trying to be tactful here.)

If I am upset because my team lost, it does not mean I think the woman in my life is fat or ugly. It really does mean that I get way too worked up over football. Yeah, guys take this stuff hard.

Picture a conversation taking place between couple all across the globe.

Woman: How do I look in this outfit?

Man: (I am never going to get out of this conversation alive).

You look beautiful (a sincere answer).

Woman: What does that mean?

Man (oh dear lord here we go. My evening is about to get ruined.)

It means you look beautiful.

(This is followed by questions that make a presidential press conference after a scandal look like a walk in the park. The man gets in trouble, wondering how a compliment could go so wrong.)

Again, men have plenty of flaws. Belching in public (which I never do…I am civilized) is not a rite of male passage. It is bad manners.

Some guys are abusers. They abuse women physically, sexually, and psychologically. These men should be locked in a cage where guys like myself can beat the daylights out of them while yelling at them, “Stop messing it up for the rest of us!”

The difference is that men actually try to hide their flaws. If they don’t, they should.

Cathy Comic, who I understand does not represent all women (too many of them, even if not a plurality) celebrates the woman as an insecurity driven lunatic. She even bought a dog as a replacement for the baby that would “never” come. I felt for the dog.

Look, if I go bald, I may have to sell my family for Rogaine. Or I can be sane and accept what life offers. I gained a few pounds and did what people should do in that situation…I bought bigger clothing.

Cathy took pride in her neuroses. This had the effect of many women looking at Cathy and thinking, “I can relate, girlfriend.”

This is not something to be proud of. Driving everybody around you crazy because of neuroses is not positive. Cathy cannot and should not ever be accepted as the norm for female behavior. If it is, the war between the sexes will become Armageddon. Ironically, the women will be mad when we try to fight and also when we try to surrender.

Life is about decisions, and most decision matrices have right and wrong decisions. Yet in the world of Cathy, every decision Irving made was wrong. If “A” is wrong and “Not A” is also wrong, is it no wonder that the Irvings of the world beat their heads against the wall?

I know some will claim that I am playing the role of Dan Quayle criticizing Murphy Brown (he was right, Candace Bergen was smug), but Cathy cannot be “just fictional” and also “resonate.”

Too many women today are nuts. Part of it is the feminist mistake of the 1970s that told them that they did not need men.

(Ironically while many of these women became spinsters, the original flaming feminist leaders happily settled into marriage. They also married upward. There is no sin in finding security in wealthy men, but the hypocrisy was typical outraged activist behavior.)

(A deeper irony was that Cathy was no feminist. The feminists probably hated her for caring what others thought.)

Men and women need each other. We are better off when we communicate with each other in a normal manner. This involves listening to each other.

Yet listening and being tolerant does not mean accepting lunacy. I am not your father or your brother or your ex-girlfriend. I am a totally different guy. The fact that a guy with a goatee and glasses made you feel bad 10 years ago does not mean I will.

For those who think I am projecting my own experiences, I have been one of the lucky ones. Most of the relationships I have had have been healthy. We did not get married, but I did not think they needed to be committed to a mental institution. My grandparents were happy. My parents are happy. I am a basically happy guy.

My friends have not always been so lucky.

I just cannot look at Cathy and think that anything positive can come from her bizarre behavior. It certainly does not make for healthy relationships.

Dysfunction does not have to be the norm. Lunacy does not have to be the order of the day. Constant hassles over nonsense does not need to be what life is about.

As one of my male friends, who married a normal (yes they do exist) woman, once said, “I like coming home to her.”

My parents have a refrigerator magnet that says “happiness is being married to your best friend.” I am sure it helps matters that my mother is not crazy.

I will say for the Milli Vanillionth time that there are plenty of things men can do to improve. This certainly includes me.

Yet if women want a good head start on making things better on their end, be the anti-Cathy.

Observe her, and never be like her.

Cathy, you were not a bad (fictional) person. You were never malicious. You had a good heart.

You were just crazy.

You should have been locked up years ago or given enough sedatives to calm you.

After 34 years, maybe it is time for women to observe a better role model. Between a neurotic weight obsessed lunatic and a model stick figure who is an anorexic’s dream, there is a middle ground. A great example would be “Sally Forth.”

Sally is a wife, mother, and ardent feminist. Yet her husband is not a Phil Donahue pansy (although he does hide on the really bad days, which is understandable). Sally is not a ranting, raving momzilla. Sally is a great portrayal of a woman as a moderate feminist…proud to be female, assertive, yet pleasant.

Goodbye Cathy. Do not let the door hit your rumpus on the way out.

As for your rumpus, I have no comment whatsoever. I don’t make any comments where there are only wrong answers that will take years off my life while allowing me to catch your contagious insanity.

As a friend of mine (who happened to be black) said to me a decade ago, “The differences between black and white are nothing compared to the differences between men and women. As long as you are a man, there is a chance I can understand you.”

May gender relations somehow get better before everyone is miserable and all hope for happiness is extinguished.

It starts by celebrating healthy minds and quarantining the damaged ones far away from the dating and marriage pools.

Screwed up people almost never get better. They only drag the healthy people down.

Cathy was not funny. She was destructive.

Goodbye Cathy. Farewell and good riddance.


One Response to “Cathy–Farewell and Good Riddance”

  1. Well, though I was no fan of “Cathy” (I just don’t go for that sort of “insecurity humor”), I certainly don’t think she was “destructive.” That’s just over the top. If anything, I think Cathy represented something ‘ve thought my entire life – the Baby Boomers liked a lot of really insipid entertainment. From the Love Boat and Gilligan’s Island, to Cathy and Family Circus, there was a huge market of Boomers out there who apparently will laugh at the corniest cr@ppola ever. But then, I suppose, every generation has its saps. Today they watch “Reality TV” (which has about as much to do with “Reality” as the Spaghetti Monster), listen to their very own new brand of the same old cr@ppy pop music, and think Rug Rats and Friends are really funny.

    For every generation, there’s always an element for which there’s no accounting for taste.


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