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Thursday, July 18, 2013

What Marian Rivera’s being the Philippines’ sexiest woman means

Another SMS voting contest, another so-called winner. So Marian Rivera is this year’s “sexiest” woman in the Philippines according to the results of a popularity contest organized by men’s magazineFHM.
Congratulations, Ms Marian. I suppose one can be considered to be “sexy” when there is enough of yourself routinely publicly exposed for the highly visual male of the species to deliver their judgment over their celphones. To be fair though, she’s also supposedly exposed a bit of what’s inside her head some time ago — at least if the account that published the following tweet is really hers…
Of course men, being men, will likely consider ladies who say “standing oblation” even sexier. Which is why Marian is the Philippines’ sexiest womanagain. And which is why, to the chagrin of those self-described feminists out there who would like to think they succeed in their careers because of their brains, many otherwise intelligent women have adopted playing dumb as survival strategies.
The FHM “victory party” is an interesting juxtaposition to the battle currently being fought in the Supreme Court over the right to define certain biological milestones in the various repdoructive processes that go on inside a fertile woman’s body. Unfortunately for the whole “Uphold Reproductive Health Law” thing that is keeping that noisy community of “socially-aware” tweetizens entertained at the moment, when I think of the notion of “reproductive health”, the image of half-naked women in outlandish costumes gyrating on a catwalk in front of throngs of men capturing the spectacle with their smart phones is what comes to mind. Actually, I couldn’t even consider most of them “half-naked” — more like 99.8% naked.
But, see, that to me is what being reproductively “healthy” is all about at its most primal. When you’ve got it, flaunt it. FHM celebrates that simple fact, lots of women who are confident they’ve got it oblige, and the best of Pinoy malehood respond with gusto. Why do even ordinary women wear short skirts and even shorter shorts? Because that’s what we do as sexual beings. Showbiz merely exaggerates this inclination, but these being exaggerations do not in any way make the inclination less real.
The really pointless effort of forcing the issue of what “reproductive health” means from the point of view of the self-appointed morally-upright and socially-just among us all but highlights the foolishness of the idea that we can intellectualize sexuality. Marian Rivera emerging again as the country’s “sexiest woman” in this triumph of technologically-enabled crowdsourcingreminds us of that.
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