I had a conversation with a guy friend recently in which he told me that my friend Pam’s intelligence, humor, friendliness, beauty, and kick-ass pool playing skills were not enough to make her attractive because she was “just a barfly.” Another good friend told me that he would never have a relationship with a woman he met in a bar because he wouldn’t want to be with a woman “like that.” I challenged them both on their sexist double standards and I’ve been mildly obsessed with the idea of The Barfly ever since.
(Okay, before you go questioning my choice of friends, let me just say that I live in a small town. If I didn’t begrudgingly tolerate feminist ignorance among my friends I would have exactly zero of them)
So I decided to do a little investigation into this whole Barfly thing. The official definition is a person who spends a lot of time drinking in bars. However, the slang definition, according to the oft-cited Urban Dictionary, is as follows:
1. A bar fly is a sleezy woman that hangs out at bars with no other intent but to hook up with a man for the night. Bar flies normally leave a wet stain or mark on bar stools. They are disgusting whores.
2. A heavy drinking woman with a mom face but milf-like qualities such as a nice rack and a small ass. Can be surprisingly tight in the vagina. Will deny being a bar fly.
Apparently there are several synonyms and spin-offs to the Barfly. Yay!
A chick who hangs at the bar on a daily basis, fucks whover buys her drinks/drugs and thinks she’s hip to the scene.
Horribly skanky girls that regularly occupy the local bars trying to hit on bartenders in the attempt to integrate their alcoholic or otherly abused life with someone who is trying to earn money to get through college by holding a part-time job because they want their futures to be stable enough to avoid people like this.
A stupid drunk ass bitch who goes to the bar strictly to spread her taco.
A loser whore who tramps around the bar looking for anything that has anything between its legs.
A woman that takes a man’s offer to buy her a drink with no intentions of dancing or going home with him. After the girl gets the drink she will usually “recieve a phone call that her brothers in the hospital and she has to go”
Similar to Barfly but a MUCH Nastier Uglier Version, that not even all the alcohol in the world could get you to sleep with her.
Ugly drunk women who always seems to be at the end of the bar. Will go home with anyone who has at least 5 dollars in pocket.
Ah, there’s nothing quite like the sneak-up reminder of how despised women are. Especially the ones who go out into public.
I have many things to say about the Barfly, but I’ll have to say them in another post because for now, the Urban Dictionary has gotten me all kinds of riled up.
The tagline: “A slang dictionary with your definitions. Define your world.”
My world. Funny.
Under the current reviewing system, newly submitted definitions are entered into the editing queue before appearing on the site. Volunteer editors vote to accept or reject definitions in the queue…Each submission is reviewed by a number of volunteers (the exact number varies, but lies between two and nine), with controversial definitions being viewed by more people. Definitions with more accept votes than reject votes appear on the site.
The quality control issues with that site are obviously enormous and I realize that the bulk of entries are being written by teenage boys (but wait – is the fact that the guys writing this crap are young supposed to make me feel better about the world?), but I’m still quite unnerved by the fact that entries are actually reviewed before being posted and this kind of shit still gets up there. Hot damn, the hate is palpable. These entries were approved, for chrissake.
Ever read the forums at the bottom of movie pages on IMDB? Or the comments on any girl’s YouTube video? Or spam subject lines? My inbox terrorizes me daily. The internet has made it possible to spew hate before unsuspecting and oddly captive readers, the likes of which have never been seen before.
Online public spaces are so often dominated by proud misogyny. Boys write for boys as the default audience and women are intruders, lucky to be let in and laughed at and threatened when they try to point out that they’re actual people and not sex dolls or cartoon characters or ideas. Websites where anyone can say anything inevitably and tragically become places for men to alienate and degrade women; to remind us that we exist on the margins of humanity. Anonymity + no rules = the truth comes out. The gloves are off. No reason to pretend. And it feels fucking awful.
Please, dear feminist readers, start a blog if you haven’t already and write in it if you have. We need more places where we can go to escape the hate.