‘Protect Trans Kids’ Is The Clit Of The Culture Wars

by Shelt Garner

If you want to see how fucked up American politics are, look no further than the issue of “protect trans kids.” Because of all the disinformation flying around this issue — from both sides — I’ve given some serious thought to what I think about the issue.

The key take away from this particular clusterfuck is….there really aren’t that many “trans kids” to protect. It’s not like there are thousands of children who are demanding they take the medical steps necessary to transition. There are a lot of sexually confused kids — like there have always been since the dawn of time — who don’t know what they are or what they want and they’re being used as pawns on “both sides” to make political points.

Because the Left makes a big deal about “protect trans kids,” the Right flips out that there are “trans kids” that need to be “protected” in the first place.

The whole thing is very very fucked up because, from my experience, if you don’t cling to the established center-Left narrative about “protect trans kids” even though there really aren’t that many trans kids to protect….you are in for shit ton of trouble. From both sides! Either the Left things you’re Satan, or the Right demands you becoming just as hysterical as they are about this issue — and other culture war issues — for them to accept you.

Ugh. Fuck all that.

I totally validate the alarm and anger that a lot of Trans Rights advocates have stimming from violence and all that. My only concern is maybe be a little less crazy when it comes to demanding everyone hone to the extremist dictates of the “protect trans kids” narrative.

Could Phoebe Waller-Bridge Be The Next James Bond?

by Shelt Garner

I’ve heard some chatter here and about that Phoebe Waller-Bridge might be tapped to write and direct the next James Bond movie. She already did a touch up of the No Time To Die script and she apparently really impressed the James Bond family in the process.

Given the dynamics of Hollywood, it’s at least within the realm of possibility that Waller-Bridge might not only write and direct the next James Bond, but BE James Bond. How they would pull this particular hattrick off, I don’t know, but that’s why they pay them the big bucks.

They did kill James Bond off in the last movie, so anything is possible. Even though Waller-Bridge would do a great job as James Bond, if a woman was James Bond every “anti-woke” crusader worth their talking head status on Fox News would freak the fuck out in a very, very public manner.

And, remember, there were rumors that the producers of the next Indy movie wanted to use time-travel to reboot the franchise so Waller-Bridge would be the next Indy. Apparently, at least according to the dubious YouTube movie grapevine, that idea has been shelved.

Anyway, it will be interesting how things develop going forward. Waller-Bridge definitely is a very talented woman and of all the people I could think of who might bring back the good olde days of campy James Bond updated for modern sensibilities, Waller-Bridge is definitely at the top of the list.

Woke Hollywood Is Sexless Hollywood

by Shelt Garner

One of the reasons why I’m so pleased with the appearance of the movie No Hard Feelings is it’s a saucy, spicy “hard comedy” like I remember back in the 1980s. With the rise of Hollywood’s bifurcation into Woke and Comic Book genre movies all the sauciness has been drained from the movie going experience.

I fucking hate this woke test.

It’s all very strange.

Most people explain it this way: with the rise of abundant online porn, the #MeToo moment and “intimacy co-ordinators” Hollywood has just given up on giving adults the type of entertainment they once had.

I definitely believe there is credence to this idea, just like there is credence to the idea that all the angry young men who might otherwise start a punk or rock band now are keyboard warriors on Reddit.

And, yet, the case could be made that if we go from the success of Cocaine Bear to an equally successful No Hard Feelings that all the quibbles that Hollywood has had about saucy, raunchy hard comedies will fade away.

Hollywood as it should be. Wink.

But the thing I’m worried about is sexless the “woke cancel culture mob” is when it comes to entertainment. Gen Z apparently wants everyone to be “realistic” (read: unattractive) in their media and they also totally “over” any sort of sexxy time in entertainment for some strange reason.

So, we have no sex and we have no rock and the only thing we have left is drugs.

It’s all very curious. But there is a market for adult-oriented, saucy entertainment like The Wolf of Wall Street, The Wedding Crashers and The Hangover.

So, there is a possibility that if No Hard Feelings is a hit that Jennifer Lawrence will join Tom Cruise as someone who “saved Hollywood’s ass.” I do wonder how much the pandemic is responsible for this New Era in Hollywood in the sense that it scared the ever living shit out of movie studio executives to the point that they decided to go back to basics.

The Fucking Woke Hypocrisy of FilmTok Gets On My Nerves

by Shelt Garner

Ok, I got beef with the film reviewing community of Tik-Tok. Too often, they go out of their fucking woke way to shit on movies like Avatar — Way of Water for some bullshit woke reason.

Fuck this test.

And, yet, they liked Babylon?

I don’t get it. I really liked Babylon, too, but you would think the tender hearted people of woke FilmTok would not be able to bear how gratuitous and over the top the movie was. I’m reminded of the one time I used Twitter clone Mastodon, only to be driven off the service by fucking woke cocksuckers who jumped on me the moment I didn’t follow their strict woke orthodoxy. They, too, did not see the contradiction when they told me they like Dave Chappelle and Richard Pryor.

It’s because of bullshit like that that we’re probably going to lose our democracy. When “cultural Leftists” have such a strict orthodoxy that they attack anyone who doesn’t know the ends and outs of their “woke” agenda that the efforts to keep America a democracy falls into serious, serious trouble.

I just had to get that out of my system. I fucking hate the woke orthodoxy because of how dangerous it is for democracy. Sometimes you want to tell a story that will “trigger” people — because that’s the whole point! The issue should be telling a great story, not if two women have a conversation about something other than a man.

Fuck that.

My frustration with the “woke” agenda grows the better my first novel gets. Given how much representation there is in this novel — and who I am as a CIS white male — half the readership will think I’m too woke and half its audience will think I’m an evil representative ogre of the patriarchy because I’m writing from a non-white, non-male POV at times. (Ok, maybe a lot.)

But that’s my vision and I’m willing to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune over it.

I Am Not Perfect

by Shelt Garner

Occasionally, I find myself daydreaming about writing not just under a pen name, but taking up an assume identity to get these novels published. I am so woefully imperfect that as this first novel gets better and better and I come within — at least in my own mind — shouting distance of getting published I review in my mind all the very flawed-human things I’ve done over the years.

I’ve managed not to do anything illegal over the years, but I have done a lot of things — usually because of booze — that make me wince now that I am an old, wiser graybeard. It just seems if I came up with the character of a 24-year-old transgendered Hispanic girl then maybe I could somehow find success without instantaneously being canceled for stupid shit I did in Seoul nearly 20 years ago.

Whenever I think shit like this, two things happen.

One, my ego kicks in and I’m like, “Fuck it, we’ll do it live.” Meanwhile, I also think of the old saw, “It’s better to have loved and lost than never loved at all.” So, yeah, I know I may be courting disaster by putting myself in the public eye by writing a really great pop novel — but at least I will have written a really great pop novel.

At this point, the object of writing this novel isn’t so much to get rich and famous — even though that would be great — it’s to prove a fucking point: I don’t suck.

I can tell a great story, if nothing else. So I’m willing to risk the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune if it comes to that.

It’s When People Come At Me From The Political Left That I Don’t Know What To Do

by Shelt Garner

I continue to brood about what, exactly, is the “woke cancel culture mob” and if it even exists. At the moment, all I know is that being “woke” simply means whatever it needs to mean so Ron DeSantis gets closer to being POTUS. That’s it — it means everything and nothing.

And, yet, from my own personal experiences on Twitter, there definitely does seem to be a small, but vocal, group of people who would fit the description of being “woke.” I think a better description of them would be “cultural Leftists.” They tend to be extremely touchy about things like pronouns, being “triggered,” the broadest, most complex definition of a what a “woman” is, all the while being totally oblivious to the rise of cold, hard MAGA Nazism.

They’re so busy making people like me who are generally on their side feel bad for not following their very strict orthodoxy about this or that “woke” thing that they totally miss that, in the end, both they the “woke” and me the “unwoke” could endup in the same Trump branded weaponized ICE camp. I’m sure I’m stumbling across some sort of political rule of thumb about how fascism takes over a democracy.

I think what’s most important is that, in general, the center-Left really needs to work on its messaging. When I have to spend five minutes wading through the “anti-MAGA people are all woke members of the cancel culture mob who want to turn everyone gay” narrative from my Traditionalist relatives whenever I try to talk to them about politics — American democracy has a problem.

It’s so bad that it is literally impossible for my Traditionalist relatives to distinguish between Democrats and pretty much the spawn of gay satan…oh boy. All I know is, the “gay scare” of 2022 – 2023 is alive and well in my little corner of the universe. I just want my otherwise sane Traditionalist relatives to help me defeat MAGA Nazism…but they’re just too consumed with the cultural wars to even think about it seriously.

All of this is very touchy and difficult to write about because, well, the “woke cancel culture mob” is known to fly off the handle if you don’t totally, absolutely agree with them on their most extreme positions. Which, of course, proves me point.

Anyway, I fucking hate MAGA Nazis. I just wish cultural Leftists would be willing to cool it and work with more centrist people like me to defeat the rise of fascism in the United States.

The ‘Woke’ Tik-Tok Critiques Of ‘Avatar 2’ Are Bonkers

by Shelt Garner

Let me first say that I’m not a perfect man. In fact, relative to the purer-than-Caesar’s -Wife expectations of the “woke cancel culture mob” I truly have fallen short of the glory that is Christ. I have drunk too much in the past. I have gotten drunk and ranted about things in a way that did not fit the established media narrative. Also, before I start — fuck MAGA Nazi cocksuckers.

I was rather aghast at the “woke” critique of Avatar 2 — The Wave of Water on Tik-Tok. The Leftist critique, apparently is that the movie wallows in “white savior” tropes and does a lot of cultural appropriation. I am aghast because I was so busy generally enjoying the movie that neither one of those “woke” Leftist criticisms even entered my mind as I watched.

Not that I didn’t notice the underlying pandering to both Red and Blue in the movie here and there. It was definitely there. The bad guys were cool in a “Reds with a cultural chip on their shoulder” way and the good guys were definitely downlow woke.

But the idea that you ding the movie not for being too long and too self-indulgent, but rather for the more esoteric “white savior” trope and cultural appropriation seems a little bit of a reach. Not that I’m not validating those “woke” criticisms. Ok, I get it, but if you’re all that wrapped up in something like that that the vast majority of your average American middle-of-the-road viewer in a suburb won’t notice — you’re the reason why most Oscar movies are a just not that popular with the average person.

The point is to tell a good to great story. That’s it. When you’re done with your story, is a good one? Did you, using subtext, get your point across? Did people leave the movie entertained? I mean, if you really wanted to all fucking woke about things, you would definitely trash Top Gun: Maverick because it glorified the military in a very unwoke manner — even though it definitely told a great story that really entertained people.

I say all this because I’m hard at work on my own story — a novel. And I have done everything in my power for their to be “representation” in the novel, for it to feel inclusive. And, yet, because the country is so fucking divided into Red and Blue, half the audience will probably think it’s too “woke” while the other half will scream at the top of their lungs that a middle aged CIS white male has no right to write from the POV of a non male, non white person.

We’re so fucking divided that you really, truly can’t win. I am again reminded of the MAGA Nazi fascination with the question “What is a woman.” They love the question because it’s an easy bludgeon to use against woke people who have to pause for a moment before they answer the question. So, of course, Nazi MAGA cocksuckers hone in on that question, wallow in it, in an effort to make the center-Left look as out of touch as possible.

Anyway, there comes a point when you just have to accept to endure the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune.

Pondering What Is Known About ‘Indiana Jones & The Dial Of Destiny’

by Shelt Garner

From the title alone, it seems as though there may be some time travel involved in the latest Indiana Jones movie. But for me, the really intriguing element to the movie is the status of Phoebe Waller-Bridge. It sure would make a lot of sense for her to take up the fedora for a continuation of the franchise in some way.

While from what I’ve read of these things, both Harrison Ford and the producers of the film say this is not the case — so goes Ford so goes Indy — I still have a suspicion that they’re at least going to dangle the idea of Waller-Bridge somehow being an Indy-like character going forward.

Of course, if she did, the usual culture warrior suspects would come out of the woodwork to scream at the top of their lungs that the “woke cancel culture mob” is destroying yet another beloved American institution. But I would be all for Waller-Bridge being our new Indy.

I think she’s got exactly what it takes to for the role. I just don’t know how they would manage to shoehorn her character into the “Indiana Jones and the…” nomenclature. I suppose they would just keep “x and the x” system of naming in the spirit of the Ford-helmed films.

It would be interesting to see a Waller-Bridge type character doing Indy-style gallivanting in the 1970s and 80s. But I suspect what MIGHT happen, is if there is any recasting that we would see a hard reboot of the franchise in the guise of someone playing a “young” Indy having adventures in, say WW1 or so. I know there were the “Young Indy” adventures, but I’m thinking something closer to whatever the character might have been up to in their 20s.

I don’t really know the chronology of the character, so, lulz.

Having said all that, I still think Waller-Bridge would be a great Dr. Susan Calvin. There are the short stories in that universe that could be adapted into movies, my favorite being “Liar!”

But, anyway, lulz. No one listens to me.

Of ‘Wokeness’ & Hollywood

by Shelt Garner

The thing about trying to understand what it means to be “woke” is the two sides see the concept so differently — and its use has become so loaded — that it’s very, very difficult to pin down exactly what the fuck it actually means in real terms.

For people on the center-Right, the term “woke” is a dog whistle used whenever they want to essentially “Red Pill” the audience into thinking the center-Left wants to “cancel” anyone white straight Christian who doesn’t want to be “submit” not just to the forces of America’s majority minority future, but be gay and secular to boot.

Meanwhile, this weird definition of what it means to be “woke” so confuses the issue that the term can pretty much mean anything it needs to mean at any particular moment for a center-Right person. For me, being “woke” is when someone from the Left of me attacks me on some cultural issue and I get really angry because we’re on the same side! The side that wants to defeat the rise of fascist, autocratic MAGA.

Generally, I believe the “woke agenda” rather pragmatic, given the changes demonstrably taking place within America’s population. So, in that sense, whenever a MAGA cocksucker starts ranting about the “woke cancel culture mob,” it’s really a rearguard action against general societal changes happening within the country at the moment.

But I even I have to admit that sometimes the center-Left is full of shit. And oversensitive shit, to boot. They can really get worked up about the minutiae of genders and pronouns, which leaves me extremely frustrated because of how democracy itself is at stake.

I’m also really annoyed with “woke Hollywood” and how they’re pretty oblivious to what audiences want at the moment. The producers of “woke” films are so busy sucking their own cocks that when they fail with yet another gay romcom they get all upset and dismayed — oblivious to the fact that MAYBE the average movie goer isn’t really all that interested in a gay romcom? I validate the gay romcom’s existence, but maybe the producers of such films should temper their expectations just A LITTLE BIT.

Meanwhile, the mood of the country is such that movies like “She Said” are dismissed by audiences as just another angry feminist “woke” movie. I say this as someone who loved the book the movie is based on and know that if the country wasn’t so fucking polarized at the moment, maybe movies like “She Said,” which apparently is a lot like the vastly more successful “Spotlight” might more mainstream success.

It is dismaying to me how the people on one of my favorite podcasts — Little Gold Men — can really be clueless as to what the average movie goer wants. I love the podcast a great deal, but, folks, did you really think Bros was going to be a mainstream hit? Really? Even if it was a regular gay Annie Hall is was going to face an upstream battle to garner any success.

Bros and other gay romcoms are coming out in the middle of the clusterfuck of the Gay Scare of 2022 and so…uhhhh….they’re probably doomed to be, like She Said, dismissed by general audiences as “too woke.”

Anyway. I think there is a media space for movies like Bros and Spoiler Alert and She Said. But maybe not right now. That’s just not the zeitgeist. The country is tearing itself apart and if you produce a movie that in any way could be thought of as “woke,” then, well, I would, like I said, temper your expectations some.

I suppose when we have a National Divorce and a Second American Civil War that the sticky wicket of what it means to be “woke” as well as “woke Hollywood” will finally get straightened out and we won’t have to worry about that anymore.

Too bad we’re going to have to bomb ourselves into the Stone Age to gain that satisfaction.

In Defense Of Male Authors Writing From A Woman’s POV In Fiction

by Shelt Garner

I go where this novel takes me. And when I started this latest version of this story, or put another way, when I decided to start the story not in late 2019 but in early 1995, I had no idea where things would take me. But, here I am. Staring at my computer screen trying my best to write a scene from my heroine’s POV as she swoons for a dude she ultimately has sex with.

I’m well aware that “woke” people think that by definition, I’m being transgressive by even attempting such a thing. To them a man can never use his imagination to write from a female point of view — no matter what. It’s like some immutable law of nature or something.

Fuck that.

If I’m going to tell the story I want to tell, then not only am I going to use third person intimate to depict a woman going on a date, I’m also going to write from the POV of a nearly 16-year-old boy. That’s just the story I want to tell because I know, in the end, the payoff will be huge in the sense that fans of this project (if they ever exist) will have five more novels (at at least) to look forward to.

I say this even as I am well aware that I have to be very careful how I proceed. I have to be very careful in what I write, very conservative about how I go about things. If I don’t, then I’m going to make a fool out of myself and join a legion of other male writers who write about “girl stuff” and do nothing but embarrass themselves and cause women to giggle.

I guess the point is — don’t assume I can’t pull this kind of stuff off just because of who I am. I do have an imagination, you know. And, for the purposes of art and fiction I’m willing to — very carefully — wade into the problematic and perilous waters of being a middle age CIS white man writing from a woman’s POV in third person intimate.

I totally get why some “woke” people hate on my ilk for doing what I’m attempting to do. I totally validate it. And, yet, those people can suck it if they say I totally prohibited, by definition, from even doing it to begin with. Judge me for what I can do, not for who I am.