Boxers Schmoxers


I was reading WordPress blogs, and a comment submitted by somebody calling himself something like Lobotomy Joe (feel free to use this name for your next blog) pooh-poohed the idea that Vietnamese women have a “sisterhood” that views men as a different and slightly incorrigable species, and that they can use non-verbal, nearly paranormal means, to communicate and make the world a more amicable place for them, and their men, to live in. To bolster his argument, L. Joe paraphrased a quote, maybe it came from the Bible: “When I see two women kiss I think of two boxers touching gloves.”

I had to write my own comment in response:

“Two boxers touching gloves” is very cute, and I’d love to know if there is a source for it.

Having said that, I also want to say, “boxers schmoxers.” The blogpost is not a thesis for a doctoral degree; it’s a comment about living in Asia and observing a kind of unstated relationship that exists between women in Vietnam. However, I do find myself in agreement with you about another point you make, because as a foreigner living in Asia (15 years in China, 2 in Vietnam) I can categorically state that we are all, ALL, as you say, “naive.”

But naivety is not a bad thing, it adds to the charm of living in places far away (geographically, and more so, culturally) from the countries in which we were born. Before I ever set foot in Asia I asked my college classmates what came to mind when they thought of Asia, and without exception they said, “disease, poverty, famine.” Since then I have learned to keep my own “naive” thoughts to myself, because I thought Asia was where I’d walk into a mysterious, dark pub one day and see a curtain of hanging beads through which a very beautiful woman sitting at a table would be eyeing me. Needless to say, in all the years I’ve been here I have yet to find this woman, and the only beaded curtains I’ve seen have been in a few shops, and now, co-incidentally, in the doorway to the kitchen of the house I’m renting.

And another point, there ain’t no “sisterhood” and there ain’t no “mafia.” Both are terms of endearment for groups of people adhering to a particular lifestyle. So, let’s not take each other to task over terms of endearment. Again, having said that, what I have seen, almost on a daily basis in China, is what appears to be two old friends gladhanding and backslapping each other in an animated and friendly conversation while picking over strawberries. I only slowly come to realize that they are not friends at all, and that they have just met each other at the fruit stand for the first time. Chinese, and Vietnamese, are way more sociable than the people where I “come from,” thank you very much.

Finally, I don’t think “An unstoppable sisterhood” is seriously saying at the end of the post that men will someday lose all relevant roles in society to women–except for, maybe, baby making. Comments made “tongue in cheek” are recognized by most people as such, so come on over and join the fun!

The above was written as a comment on the below blog’s post:


About soaringdragons

Twenty years and still alive--in China, that is. I write about China and the world of spirit--all very non-expertly--and whatever else strikes my fancy. You'll find posts on even days of the month.
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One Response to Boxers Schmoxers

  1. Fanboy Joe says:

    Not “Lobotomy Joe” but “Fanboy Joe”. I’d be interested to see if you can spot the reference.

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