I saw the male stripper flick, Magic Mike, starring Channing Tatum (himself a former “male dancer”) and Matthew McConaughey (a Texas boy I think we can all agree has missed some teachable moments along the way– like the moment where someone was trying to teach him to put a shirt on and put his doobie down).
Anyway, notwithstanding my own deep-seated sexual repression (remember, I am more aroused by Coscto than the soft porn in Fifty Shades), I was sure I could enjoy it for what it was: a movie with some six packs and gyrations and probably a great soundtrack. (When the invitation for the movie came, I decided to put aside any socio-political objections I harbor about objectifying men, so this is not where this post is going, because OH MY GOD HOW BORING WOULD THAT BE?)
But, after about 25 minutes, I proved that I was missing the point of Magic Mike and that I was helpless to bring my focus to the raw sexual appeal of mostly-naked men. So, this movie accomplished what a combined total of 28 months of breast-feeding, 3 years and 1 week of wiping the snotty noses of the children who bear my genes, and spending more money on baby carriers than food could never do.
Yes, it took this movie to show me that I have crossed so far into the deep thicket of motherhood that I have lost all previous trails– like the one that would allow me to enjoy Channing Tatum’s abs and, well, everything north or south thereof.
What was it that convinced me that my libido had atrophied in favor of my overdeveloped mother muscles? Good question.
Here are the 5 things I thought about during Magic Mike that convinced me I am more mom than woman:
1. Hand sanitizer: I swear to Christmas, I caught myself looking for hand sanitizer on the screen. “Why doesn’t the strip club have a dispenser right off stage left where the dancers have ingress and egress to the stage?” (Seriously? This is what I am looking for during this movie? And, who uses the word “egress”?)
2. Pulled muscles: Of course I was worried about the men pulling their muscles as they shimmied around the stage. I gasped audibly when the “Fireman” pulled his back lifting the heavy-set woman over his head. I couldn’t stop wondering if there was adequate first-aid backstage. It didn’t seem like the type of club that would keep a well-stocked supply of ibuprofen or ace bandages.
3. Apartment safety: I almost had to breathe into a paper bag during every scene in Brook’s apartment. First of all, she lived alone (until her brother came to live on her couch) on the first floor. As my mom says, “that’s the floor where you can get murdered.” The setting was a somewhat seedy neighborhood in Tampa, so WHY WAS SHE LIVING ON THE MURDER FLOOR? Also, when Magic Mike knocks on her door at 11PM, she looked through a peephole in an unchained door. That chain should have been locked! Also, her blinds were open. So, let’s review: Single woman living along in seedy neighborhood who fails to fasten the safety chain on her door and leaves her blinds open? WHAT ARE YOU DOING, STEVEN SODERBERGH? TRYING TO KILL ME?
4. Water Safety: Did you notice during the scene where Channing and the Kid jump into the water from the bridge that they did NOT check the depth before diving? I wondered if I had walked into a horror movie. Did they not know that moms would see this movie and care about (1) the safety of the actors and (2) cinematic depictions proper water safety?
5. Stripper health: At one point, the elder statesman of the strip club, “Tarzan,” collapsed back stage. During the following scene, I could see the outline of his fallen body, off to the right. I couldn’t concentrate on Channing counting his money or Matthew being all slick and tan, because TARZAN HAD A SEIZURE. Was I not supposed to care about that? Is that just what happens when you are a 40-something stripper? Collapsing is just part of the job?
Finally, I kept wondering where the Lance Armstrong cameo was. I have never, ever picked up an US Magazine and seen McConaughey without a shirtless Lance on a dirt bike. He could have played the biker stripper!