Friday, November 7, 2008
"Thick dignity is your key to success" reads the subject line of the topmost email in today's junk pile. Now, I have better sense than to Google a phrase like "thick dignity," but I have to say there's something almost literary there -- even if it is meant to sell Viagra. Thick dignity -- simultaneously virile and righteous. Who opposes dignity, after all? Especially dignity for those previously acquainted with the supreme indignity of a less-than-righteous instrument of justice in our eternal sexual power struggle -- who is frigid, who is impotent, who gets the girl -- the subtext of every American pop radio classic. "Success" here meaning everything from pleasing the wife to scoring the blingy babe at the hotel bar, to securing your position at the company in these economically-uncertain times. "Key" being, of course, a helpful visual clue, the original Freudian allusion. "Thick dignity is the key to your success." I'm sure being female automatically disqualifies me from having any more than a symbolic interest in the product. After all, Viagra doesn't claim to save marriages. If they wanted to promote fidelity and loyalty, the drug manufacturers would perhaps instead invest in products designed to make men more comfortable while they do the things I'd really prefer.