Features | Awards

The Martin Prince Snapdragon Award for Unintentional Yet Enthusiastic Challenges to Heternormative Signifiers

By Christopher Alexander | 12 December 2012

Masculin Masculin: A Play in One Act Examining Twenty-First Century Machismo and the Stultifying, Violent Effects that Patriarchy Has on Its Own Beneficiaries, Namely White Heterosexual Men, and the Actual Coarsening of Gender Norms in a Supposed Age of Cross Pollination, Represented in this Imagined Conversation Between the Author and Several Suburban Gym Members in a Locker Room After the Author has Danced to “Call Me Maybe.”

[CHRISTOPHER is being cornered and surrounded by large, muscular men. All are only in their boxer shorts. CHRISTOPHER is notably hairier and shorter.]

CHRISTOPHER: No, friends, brothers, open your minds, free yourselves! Don’t you see what pawns you’ve become? It’s impossible to dislike this song, and not to dance in your underwear while it plays in public—albeit a public space surrounded by people at their most private, this is true, but brother you’re splitting hairs. Or frosting the tips of those hairs, but either way, let me finish. By eying me so bewilderingly, you’re merely confirming the role that’s been assigned to you by the same patriarchy that’s enslaved our courageous sisters across the treadmill. This same ultra machismo that pushes your emotions down into the flowerbeds of your pectoral muscles, where, watered by Jäger bombs and HGH, they blossom into malignant tumors—this finely sculpted chin-strapped mask forbids you from listening to any “lightweight,” “catchy,” “girly” music, and this is unjust, brothers! We should be against whatever could possibly be against this! For what reward can there be refusing this song’s abundant charm? At what price such stone-faced absence of guile? What cost remaining forever unimpressed by music this giddy? This extraordinary rockist stance which you exhibit is the tell-tale symptom of your male-centric illness! You have crippled your pleasure centers and dulled your tastes in the name of public identification of maleness! Or authenticity, maleness’ cleverer brother! What’s that? Yes, “rockist”—even you, fist-pumping Guido man! Don’t you see that the truly noble and subversive—I would argue, adult, and ergo manly— action is to dance around like the happy, carefree spirit it wants to cajole out of your muscular cage? Like this? [Christopher proceeds to swivel his hips in a manner not unlike the young Forest Gump.] In your underwear? Around men who are much stronger than you? In their underwear?

CROWD: [Punches]