Thursday, December 31, 2015

Disney Infinity for Xbox

...or should I say, "Infinitely Boring"??

Last Christmas, my Unit and I bought the Disney Infinity 2.0 game for Xbox 360.  I kept seeing ads for it that looked pretty awesome, and we don't have nearly enough two-player games.  Plus, with all the Marvel characters, what's not to like?!?  We bought the Marvel starter set, and I tried to "limit" myself with number of add-ons, like a good Leonard.  As I picked up Groot and slowly set him on counter, my Unit says, "Where's the raccoon??  You can't have him without the raccoon!!"
"What's a raccoon?  Ain't no thing like me, except me!"
Not too bad for someone who had only seen Guardians of the Galaxy once.  So I raced back to grab Rocket Raccoon, and then I went a little crazy with the characters I "had" to have.  We bought the game and went home.
And we set up the game.
And we tried to figure it out.
And she had a lot of fun playing as Thor and picking up my Iron Man and throwing him across rooms and such.  And we did missions.  And missions.  And more missions.

And then we noticed something:  they were all the fucking same thing.  All missions were basically the same, no matter which game we were playing.  Lots of "shoot 'em up before the time runs out" stuff.  And if you're a ten- or twelve-year-old boy, that might be interesting, but we were bored quickly.  There was no storytelling, little to no problem-solving, definitely no RPG.

And everyone talked about how great the "Toy Box" feature was.  So I took some time to investigate that feature, and it ended with me nearly throwing the Xbox across the room.  It was so clunky and hard to use; it took me some hours just to build Cinderella's castle (and it's only one piece!).  And after all of that, it didn't "do" anything!  I couldn't even go inside or open the doors; it was like reliving my disastrous trip to Disneyland all over again.  What gives?  Frankly, I didn't want to build games; I wanted to play them.  That's kind of the point.

I went online and checked other reviews, and there were people with similar frustrations to mine:  all shoot 'em up repeats, and apparently the 1.0 Toy Box was a lot easier to use and a lot more fun.

We hadn't opened all of the plastic packages, so I suggested we return them for either the cash or a better game.  My Unit insisted we keep them because we might change our minds.  So they've sat -- the unopened boxes, the Disney Infinity console, and several Avengers -- on a bookshelf gathering dust for the past year.

Now (almost a year to the day), I see Disney has released a 3.0 version with Star Wars characters.  I'm not so interested in the new Star Wars characters (NO, Leonard STILL hasn't seen the movie yet!  STOP ASKING!), but I wonder if they brought back some things from 1.0 that were great?  Or made it easier to use or at least more interesting?

What say you, fellow nerds?  Leonard needs your help.

Tuesday, December 29, 2015

NYE Curse

It's that time of year again:  Leonard's New Year's Eve Curse.  Each year, I start to think about plans for NYE; perhaps I'll venture out during "amateur night" as we call it.  And then I remember.  No, I can't go out.  We want to keep the collateral damage to a minimum.

For the past 10+ years, the horrible things that have happened to me have happened either on New Year's Eve itself or within the first month of January1.  Here is a list of past things that have happened, in no particular order:
  • robbed at gunpoint
  • concussion
  • locked out of my apartment.  At midnight.  With my dog.  But no cell phone.
  • car breaking down on the highway.  Late at night.  Bad part of town.
  • trip to the ER for emergency plastic surgery
  • a series of broken car windows (retaliation from our jackass neighbor -- repeatedly).
  • endoscopy and colonoscopy
So if you see me and I'm asking about New Year's Eve plans, kindly remind me of this list.  Even better, just hand me all of the leftover bubble-wrap from your holiday shopping and shipping and walk away.  Run.  Save yourself!


1With the exception of lightning car.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Feminist Xmas Songs



My friend selfdog turned me onto the trend #FeministXmasSongs on Twitter.  Leonard is rarely on Twitter, though, so instead we posted several to Facebook over the Christmas holiday.  By request, I have compiled them here.  Please note, these are not in the original order posted, rather by popularity (using Facebook's oh-so-scientific system of "likes").

#10 "Santa Claus Is Comin' to Town"
He sees you when you're sleeping
He knows when you're awake
He doesn't respect the boundaries you've set,
So, girl, get a restraining order.
You don't owe him anything, no matter how many dates you've been on.
#9 "O Holy Night"
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother --
And our sister!
Women can be slaves, too, y'know.
And in His name all oppression shall cease -- black lives matter!
But please leave your (straight) white (male) savior complex at home.
#8 "I Saw Mommy Kissin' Santa Claus"
I saw Mommy kissing Santa Claus
Underneath the mistletoe last night
She didn't see me creep
Because I'm a creepy little kid
With an Oedipus complex.
#7 "Frosty the Snowman"
Frosty the Snowman
Was a jolly, happy soul
With a corncob pipe and a button nose
And two eyes made out of coal
Frosty the Snowperson
Is a gender neutral character
Because a pipe and coal doesn't make one a "man."
#6 "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen"
God rest ye merry gentlemen --
Seriously?!??
#5 "Santa, Baby"
Santa baby, forgot to mention one little thing -- a ring.
I don't mean on the phone;
You can just text me
Because I know my worth isn't dependent upon the monetary value of "gifts."
#4 "Santa, Baby" again
Think of all the fun I've missed;
Think of all the fellas that I haven't kissed;
Because the patriarchy shames women who have a healthy sex life.
Next year I could be just as good,
Since we're only rewarding women who claim to be virgins.
#3 "Silver Bells"
City sidewalks, busy sidewalks.
Dressed in holiday style
In the air there's a feeling of Christmas
Children laughing,
People passing,
Meeting smile after smile
People smiling because they want to,
Not because someone insisted they do so.
It's just a smile, not an invitation for harassment, Mr. Street-Shopper!
My public person is not for you to comment upon.
#2 "Walking in a Winter Wonderland"
In the meadow we can build a snowman
And pretend that he is Parson Brown
He'll say, "Are you married?"
We'll say, "That's really none of your business; we're two consenting adults."
#1 (and Leonard's personal favorite) "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer"
Grandma got run over by a reindeer
Walking home from our house Christmas Eve
You can say there's no such thing as Santa
But as for me and Grandpa,
We know that Western literary tradition punishes women who show independence.
Honorable Mentions:

Several of Leonard's friends joined the movement as well.  Here are their contributions (reposted with permission).

Serena "In the Bleak Midwinter"
What can I give him? Poor as I am? anything I want because consent is like tea! Seriously, if someone said they didn't want tea, you wouldn't make em drink tea! Give me heart, if I want to! It's up to me!!! 
Liz "Little Drummer Boy"
Come they told me
Pa rum pum pum pum
A new-born king to see,
Or not, which is totally fine,
Because consent is important,
Especially when you're teaching
Kids that they have agency over
Their own bodies. And forcing them
To feign affection in order to avoid
Hurting someone's feeling is
Participating in rape culture.
Jamie "Carol of the Bells"
 Hark! How the bells, sweet silver bells
All seem to say, "Throw cares away."
Christmas is here, bringing good cheer or not, because it's ok to feel however you want to feel, you don't have to smile just to make others feel ok with you.
To young and old, meek and the bold, and also the middle aged because women don't have to be only young or old no mater what the Hollywood anti aging machine tells us about standards of beauty.
Ding, dong, ding, dong, that is their song.
Michael "Baby, It's Cold Outside"
 - I really can't stay...
- Baby it's cold outside--so bundle up and have a pleasant evening.
(End of Song.)
Tess "Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer"
 I know dashers and dancers and prancers and vixens and none of them deserve to be judged by what society says they should be!
Image compliments of University College London Union
P.S.  "Baby, It's Cold Outside" has received several requests.  I know there has already been a "Honest" video about it (which I haven't watched yet).  As it is a trifecta of date rape, guilt-trips, and slut-shaming, it deserves its own blog post (forthcoming).

Sunday, November 29, 2015

No No NaNoWriMo!

Even though tomorrow is the last day of the month, I'm going to go ahead and call it:  NaNoWriMo was an utter failure.  That is, if you're defining "failure" as not completing the goal of 50,000 words or any semblance of a novel.  Then yes, total and abject failure.  I logged a measly 3,970 words, and I will freely admit that I cheated:  some of the words were words I had written before.  This book (should it ever happen) is a collection of stories, some of which I have already written in one fashion or another.  So a good 2,000 of those words were cut and pasted into a new document and used in my word count.

I knew going in that I probably would fail.  Working full-time, rehearsing for a show that opens three days from now, no real accountability....it was doomed to fail from the start.

Here's where it didn't fail, though:

  • Familiarity:  I now know what the site looks like and how to use it (mostly) for next time.  I jumped in with both feet, which needed to happen.
  • Reassurance:  Attempting to collect and organize and even write down my stories gave me the (re)assurance I needed that I do, indeed, have plenty of material for a creative non-fiction book.
  • Stories:  I remembered some new pieces that have happened (but I haven't written down yet), started on some others, and in general, pushed past the fear that accompanies writing -- at least for 3,970 words I did.  Now to just keep pushing consistently.
I WILL write a novel, goddammit!  Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow, but some day......and it's going to be awesome.


P.S.  Yes, I know I've mixed two classic movie references.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

On Words, Racism, and Musical Theatre

Hoagie. Po' boy. Grinder. Muffuletta. BLT. Grilled cheese. Sub. Reuben. Club. PB&J. No matter what you call 'em, sandwiches are delicious, and yet another thing we Yanks stole from the British (tasty, tasty thievery).

What does this have to do with the above-mentioned subjects, Leonard??
I'm getting there!  Patience, reader.

The other night, several of my cast mates from my current show and I went out after rehearsal for drinks and snacks.  We went to a new place, directly across the street from our "old place."  The old place has become rather bitchy, sloppy, and put-upon when we try to spend money there; the new place has been very accommodating to performers wanting a late-night bite.

The new joint was jumping and quite loud.  We got a table and were perusing menus whilst waiting for our poor harried server.  One section of the menu listed, "Sandbos, Wraps, and Hot Dogs."  At least three of the six of us asked each other independently, "What's a 'sandbo'?"  There was no explanation on the menu of what made this particular delicacy different from other sandwich configurations.  Was it a combination of a sandwich and a hot dog?  Maybe a sandwich and a kebab?

When our overworked (but still delightfully sweet) server returned, we asked her, practically in unison, "What's a sandbo?"

"It's a sandwich," she said, somewhat deflated.

Nothing special.  Just a sandwich.

We were also disappointed.  "Oh."
"We're going to change it," she said.  "People have been getting offended."
"Offended??  Why?"

What about a sandwich could offend people?  Are those people also offended by fun and tasty goodness?

"Apparently it means something else in other places.  People have, like, thrown down the menus and left."

That is some serious sandwich offensiveness.  We were still puzzled.  What kind of dirty connotation did "sandbo" have elsewhere?  And then it hit me.

"They're thinking of sambo," I said, trying to enunciate clearly to point out the difference (plus, it was still loud).  I even spelled the two words to make my point (again, still loud).  "As in, 'little black Sambo.'  It's a derogatory term for black people."
The waitress looked amazed and then said, "Some of the people who were offended were African-American!"
"They sound similar, so..."
"I'm telling my manager.  He couldn't figure it out either," and off she went.

Now, I could take this moment to say I made this connection because I have a Master's degree in Literature, because I've spent six years teaching English, but that'd be complete and utter bullshit.  I made the connection because of musical theatre -- the musical Hair, to be exact.  The character Hud (who Wikipedia describes as a "militant African-American") sings a song in which he lists nearly all the derogatory terms for people of color out there (at least that were out there around 1967, when Hair was written).  The song's title is actually one of those terms:  "Colored Spade."  I made the connection because I could hear the song in my head when I heard "sandbo" (or "sambo").

Racism is a cultural thing.  It is a learned behavior.  As such, derogatory terms change depending on one's culture, region, language, and geography.  In Indiana, the word "Hoosier" is a good thing if one is a basketball fan.  When I moved to St. Louis, I found that it also meant "white trash" or "redneck," connotations it didn't have growing up in Nebraska and Iowa.  The parents of a high school friend of mine couldn't believe a local news station used the word "spook" when talking about Halloween and "ghosts and goblins."  They were originally from the Pacific Northwest and knew that "spook" was also a derogatory term for black people; my sixteen-year-old self had no idea.  While "sambo" was still prolific in the 1960s, many people today wouldn't recognize it, like our server and her manager.

So thanks, musical theatre and Hair, for the history and language lesson!  By the way, "Colored Spade" is also on my list of "Songs You Can't Sing in Public."  Several songs from Hair are ("Black Boys," "Sodomy") as well as "Everyone's a Little Bit Racist" and "My Girlfriend Who Lives in Canada" from Avenue Q.  You can find the full lyrics (and learn more racist terms and several Southern delicacies) for the song here.


Wondering why I don't use the term "African-American" myself?  Read this post.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

3:30 a.m. Thoughts: Karmic Credit Plan

My Unit and I often disagree about the workings of the Universe or "fate" or whatever you'd like to call it (neither of us are "God" or religious people).  She tends to believe that things happen for a reason -- all things -- often in ways we don't realize or that aren't immediately apparent. (I did write up a story of when I saw this philosophy in action, but I can't find it at the moment). I tend to be a "Sometimes shit just happens" person, especially when I cannot see a reason in what has transpired.

My favorite recent example is #lightningcar.  There is no good reason for lightning to strike one's car.  In the almost month that followed, trying to get my car fixed, I could find no "good" thing to come of it.  It did not lead to any new opportunities (as weird things often can).  It just happened.   It happened, and it sucked.  (Yes, I'm fine; I was not in the car when lightning hit, but nearby in my house.)

This morning around 3:30 a.m., unable to fall asleep, I had an astounding (and horrifying) thought:  what if, when bad shit does happen, the reason is on the other side of the world?  Somewhere, far away from me, is a person to whom good things are happening -- things over which they have no control or maybe even things they don't appear to deserve.  In order to keep balance in the Universe, the payment has to come from somewhere, so BAM!  Lightning strikes my car.  Or a person gets rear-ended at a stoplight.  Or you spill your morning coffee all over your new outfit.  Your mileage may vary, but you get my point.

People who we think are "lucky"  or people to whom good things happens, especially if/when they don't appear to have "earned" them, are perhaps just on the plus column of Karma's checks and balances.  People who seem to have bad luck, those of us who just can't catch a break -- we're paying the price for the people above.  The payment (or energy) has to come from somewhere, right?

There's a tiny bit of comfort in knowing that my (or your) bad day, bad luck, random shit that happens, could be because someone out there is finally getting the break deserve; there's (teeny) comfort in having a reason why things happen.
There's a terror and horror in the realization that we have no control over this system of checks and balances; that there may be no rhyme or reason why who gets what, so long as it all balances in the end.

And that, kids, is why I've been awake since the wee hours of the morning.


Saturday, March 28, 2015

Regarding Indiana and Religious Freedom (UPDATED)

This has been on my mind a lot, ever since the story first broke about a gay couple attempting to get a wedding cake and they were denied service.  Actually, it goes back farther than that.  This is an issue that has complicated my poor brain ever since, on one of my very first dates, I saw the sign in a local diner that said, "Management reserves the right to refuse service."  High school Leonard thought, That's probably for unruly patrons and/or drunk people they have to kick out.  But High School Leonard kept thinking (dangerous), What about people they don't like?  What about high school students like us?  Could they just refuse service and kick us out?  Do we go to jail?  Who will call my mom to bail me out?  But I digress...

Regarding the gay couple and their wedding cake, even my Unit said, "Why would a gay couple want to take their business to people who discriminate?"

My answer was that the couple probably didn't know about the business's beliefs.  Perhaps the business was recommended to them by a (presumably straight) friend?  They were, after all, just looking for a good cake, not trying to "make a statement" or confront bigots1.

And then I thought What would I do in that situation?  After being confronted with such discrimination, I certainly wouldn't want to give that business any of my hard-earned money.  But I also wouldn't let it slide either.  A patented Leonard Strongly Worded Letter would probably come into play, but then what?

We all can basically agree that such discrimination is wrong, but what about the reverse?  There is also the story of a woman at a bakery who refused to write a customer's hate-filled message on a cake.  Again, what would you or I do if asked to write something horrible, say something about Nazis and racists and babies, on an item?  As good human beings, we would refuse, wouldn't we?

So how can we make sure that situation A doesn't occur, but that the person refusing in situation B isn't punished under the same laws?  How can we keep religion OUT of businesses, but keep ethics IN?  I don't have the answers to these questions, despite the fact that they keep going around in my head.

It should be noted, though, that while we are outraged at Indiana's seemingly backwards step in lawmaking, they are only the latest but certainly not the only state with a religious freedom bill.  In fact, they are only one of twenty states with similar laws with similar wording.  According to The Washington Post, the following states have "Religious Freedom Restoration Acts":
  • Alabama
  • Arizona
  • Connecticut
  • Florida
  • Idaho
  • Illinois
  • Indiana
  • Kansas
  • Kentucky
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • Missouri
  • New Mexico
  • Oklahoma
  • Pennsylvania
  • Rhode Island
  • South Carolina
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
All the states' acts seem to "share language" with a federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA) signed by President Clinton way back in 1993 (Schwarz).  That act (and Indiana's) say "governments should not substantially burden religious exercise without compelling justification" (U.S. Code 42, Chapter 21B, 2000bb).  Even Leonard is having a hard time breaking down that language.  I guess I'm not understanding what they mean by "burden."
Update:  This is the best explanation I've seen so far:  "The measure, which takes effect in July, prohibits state laws that “substantially burden” a person’s ability to follow his or her religious beliefs. The definition of “person” includes religious institutions, businesses and associations" (LGBTQ Nation Staff Reports).  That does help to clarify things just a bit.  The way the 1993 act is written reads as if the government is forcing "religious exercise" on people; rather somehow not allowing people to exercise their religion.

Please note that the quoted is piece is only one of FIVE findings of this piece of federal legislature.  Point 5 states that "the compelling interest test as set forth in prior Federal court rulings is a workable test for striking sensible balances between religious liberty and competing prior governmental interests(U.S. Code 42, Chapter 21B, 2000bb).

Also the Washington Post piece, when speaking of the Act cited above, does not mention that

  • it was deemed unconstitutional when applied to states in 1997
  • it is still applied to federal government
  • some states (as mentioned above) continued to use this language when passing their own local laws, despite the federal act being ruled as unconstitutional on the state level
More on the history of this complicated act, its passage, etc. can be found on the always helpful Wikipedia.

So your point, Leonard?
I guess my point is that it's complicated.  The act is complicated, as is its wording.  While perhaps started with the best of intentions (perhaps for things like Situation B), the law appears to be used for other purposes (and we all know where good intentions lead).  And why aren't we protesting the other nineteen states (including my own) who have similar laws?  How are those laws being enacted and enforced?  As I said before, I don't have the answers to any of these, only more questions.



1 Needs verification.

Friday, March 13, 2015

Episode III: Revenge of the Cysts

"What a horrible, candle-snuffing word [...] 'just.'"
J.M. Barrie (Johnny Depp), Finding Neverland (2004) 



Back when our princess and the pea situation was going on, the nondenominational witch OB/GYN (who I have since fired) said my ovarian cysts were "just a couple of centimeters" big.

And that stuck with me.  Here we are, nearly two years (and two doctors) later, and Leonard is getting a little tired of having medical devices stuck into her orifices.

"But why, Leonard?  Why are you complaining?  They're just a couple of centimeters big."

You know what else is "just a couple of centimeters"?  A penny.  A dime.  A nickel.

Let's try an experiment:  why don't you stick a nickel up your nostril1.  Oh, you want it removed now?  Why?  It's just a couple of centimeters.  How about swallowing the nickel and letting it ruminate in your stomach for a bit.  No?  How about your ear, your eye, or your colon?  No, that doesn't sound like fun?  "Just a couple of centimeters" doesn't really matter when the object should not be in your body, when your body is not designed to fit said object, when said object is pressing against other parts of your body and causing problems.

Leonard fired that last craptastic doctor.  That last craptastic doctor ignored the pain and the symptoms and tried stuff that didn't work.  Plus, she made me feel bad about myself.  The new doctor (we'll have to give her a name soon) has given Leonard ALL THE INFO.  Leonard could give you the measurements of her uterus should the situation require it!

So, to recollect, in the past five months, Leonard has had:
  • 2 blood draws
  • 1 X-ray
  • 1 endoscopy
  • 1 colonoscopy
  • 2 ultrasounds

Current diagnoses now include:
  • anemia
  • Grade A esophagitis
  • 1 anal fissure
  • 3.2 centimeter cyst on left ovary 
  • 7 mm. "hyperdense polypoid lesion"
  • 10 mm. thickening of the endometrium

Up next is a thing I still can't type yet, but it involves shooting a saline solution up Leonard's vajayjay.  So, y'know, I've got that goin' for me...



1 Leonard can fit an entire quarter up her nostril.2
2 Leonard does not do "the quarter trick" anymore, ever since one got stuck up there.3
3 While Leonard was at work.4
4 Leonard was the shift manager at the time.5
5 Co-workers and underlings called her "Nostril-damus" for some time after.

Saturday, March 7, 2015

Today's the Day!

"The only thing that separates us from the animals is our ability to accessorize."
-Clairee Blech (Olympia Dukakis), Steel Magnolias (1989) 


I shouldn't be nervous, but I am.  Today is Day #1 of a two-day photo shoot.  But I'm not the model this time.  I'm the hair and make-up stylist.

Hair, make-up, and costumes (or "playing dress-up") is one of the main things I enjoy about theatre, so let's hope it translates to the camera.  People are counting on me for my esoteric knowledge of victory rolls, red lipstick, and wig caps!  I already had a stress dream about it last night (in which I forgot several key items), so I know I'm right on track.

During a conversation with a co-star about visual arts, I said that I "had no talent" in that area.  I come from a long line of artists, but I can't draw (or paint or sculpt or photograph) for shit.  My co-star disagreed.  She said that I "have an editorial eye."  And that stuck with me.  I'd like to think she was right.  I know what I want in my head when trying to achieve certain looks.

At any rate, we can all thank Leonard's mother for this.  Because of her most of my childhood was spent watching musicals and movies from Hollywood's Golden Age; that has played no small part in my desire to play dress-up all the time.  And like my acting, I have no formal education in hair/make-up.  Just trial and errors, a mother who sold Mary Kay cosmetics for a very long time, and now, YouTube tutorials.

Below is the tutorial I used to teach myself how to do victory rolls:


When this photo shoot is complete, I'm sure the Frogman will have things to post, including (possibly) some "behind the scenes" stuff in which you may see me poking about.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Back in Bitch Mode: But Wait, There's Cake!

This blog has been devoid of new posts for far too long.  So, of course, Leonard is back with something to complain about.  This time we turn our feminist analytic eye to Maroon 5.

The more I hear from you, Maroon 5, the less I like you.  Yes, even you, Adam Levine.  In fact, especially you, Adam Levine.  There is, of course, the outrage over the video for the song "Animals," featuring Levine's real-life wife.  As the article points out, the song already says some pretty disgusting things, like "I'm preyin' on you tonight."  Not okay, Maroon 5!  I'm not going to waste my time dissecting it; the linked HuffPost article already does a good job.  This song has joined the ranks of "Blurred Lines" for me -- meaning I turn the station as soon as it comes on.

Instead, let's look at the "harmless" song "Sugar."  And let us, for the time being, ignore that it is a rip off of Prince's "U Got the Look."  Seriously.  The first time I heard the song, I thought I was hearing a cover of a Prince song, just couldn't put my finger on which one.

Since that first hearing, I inevitably catch the song during its bridge of :

I want that red velvet
I want that sugar sweet
Don't let nobody touch it
Unless that somebody's me
I gotta be a man
There ain't no other way

So, before Leonard starts frothing at the mouth, let's take a look-see.  "Sugar," of course, is a euphemism for specifically kisses, more generally loving actions/affection.  Angela Landsbury even uses it in the 1961 Elvis Presley film Blue Hawaii -- in which she plays Elvis' mother.  Let that sink in for a bit.



So Adam Levine1 wants our "sugar."  Okay, fine.  But our "red velvet"?  He's not talking about the cake, ladies and gentlemen.  "Velvet" is a euphemism for "vagina"; in fact, "tipping the velvet" means cunnilingus (see also:  Tipping the Velvet by Sarah Waters).  "Red velvet" is even more explicit as labia is generally pinkish colored.

So Adam Levine wants my vagina now.  Alright, fine.  BUT, here's the problem(s):  "Don't let nobody touch it / Unless that somebody's me."  Excuse me?  You do not have agency over my body parts, Adam Levine; only I do.  You do not get to say who gets to touch it.  Saying "don't let nobody touch it" even excludes me from touching myself (and that's certainly not going to happen).  IF I let someone else "touch it," that's my decision, whether it's the "you" (here Adam Levine) or someone else.

But wait, there's more!
"I gotta be a man / There ain't no other way"
So apparently Adam Levine's masculinity depends on his ability to touch and/or control my body?  Don't look at me that way, readers.  He said it!  In fact, he just said that the ONLY way to "be a man" (whatever the fuck that means) is to have my body.

Masculinity is so many other things, and one person's ability to "feel" masculine (or feminine or whatever) is not up to some other person.  Just as I have agency over my body, so do you have control over how you want to feel and/or explore your gender.  Don't bring my red velvet labia into it.

In short, the song is gross, though possibly not as obviously offensive as "Animals."  But to top it all off, the "official video" for the song shows Maroon 5 supposedly crashing wedding receptions and singing this song to newlyweds (straight newlyweds, I should add).  Eww.



1In all fairness to Mr. Levine, a true rhetorical analysis would not confuse him, the singer, with the speaker of the song (thank you, New Criticism). We typically say "the speaker," just like when dealing with poetry. But it's funnier to say Adam Levine wants Leonard's vagina.