In doing so set a course for adventure, and later shipwreck.
January 24, 2019 10:34 AM   Subscribe

"I had a whole gaggle of 100-point bucks in my sights, sleeping peacefully on their feet, like cows. The way they were lined up, I could take down the whole clan in a single shot of gun, clean through their magnificent oversized brains. That’d be enough (deer) meat to last Nora and the baby through the harsh Amarillo winter. " Poorly Researched Men’s Fiction
posted by If only I had a penguin... (46 comments total) 42 users marked this as a favorite
 
Not far off the actual mark, being that you're really just stringing the bosoms and bloodshed together - the wonderfully bad, borderline bonkers Man's Life magazine of the 50s and 60s is maybe the purest real world distillation of the genre.
posted by ryanshepard at 11:06 AM on January 24 [11 favorites]


Then I rolled up my flannel sleeves, exposing my prodigious forearms, and lay down on one of those square wheely things we used to play with in gym class. I slid under the old girl’s sleek, ageless body, and set my greasy paws to work on that carbmuretor.

How'd you know this is what I needed today? Thank you!
posted by Melismata at 11:17 AM on January 24 [8 favorites]


"wrought iron fishing stick" would be a good sockpuppet name.
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:29 AM on January 24 [4 favorites]


Also: Horse powder
posted by Greg_Ace at 11:29 AM on January 24 [1 favorite]


I'm pretty sure every one of those books with a painting of a man fighting a bunch of crabs on the cover reads exactly like this.
posted by tobascodagama at 11:36 AM on January 24 [5 favorites]


Poorly Researched Men’s Fiction

and here I was expecting the core tenets of the Republican Party, but I suppose this will have to do:

But — feeling especially brash thanks to one Mr. Jeff Daniels — I let the wind take the wheel, and in doing so set a course for adventure, and later shipwreck.
posted by philip-random at 11:41 AM on January 24 [9 favorites]


This reminds me of a bunch of weird things that Jonathan Franzen has written.

In "The Corrections" he wrote about one character having rivets in his ear... I think he meant plugs. And in one of his other books he kept on writing about characters going to a store to buy a liter of beer. In the USA. Was he talking about 40s? He writes like an alien who has closely observed humans but hasn't really gotten all the details down. And it drives home how a little wrong thing can just land with a thud and totally interrupt a narrative's inertia and flow, and you also wonder how nobody in the editing process caught it.
posted by entropone at 11:51 AM on January 24 [33 favorites]


>...the wonderfully bad, borderline bonkers Man's Life magazine of the 50s and 60s...

Me: "Hmm, how bonkers can it...HOLY SHIT"
posted by The Card Cheat at 12:07 PM on January 24 [7 favorites]


Don't you guys hate when you hear ladies screaming in the wilderness from your horse hair tent and you go to save them only to discover it's two lynxes having a shouting match so you have to strangle them both at the same time one in each hand to stop them from killing you and then you're so tired that you sit down on a piece of shale overlooking a subterranean grotto in the high Alps and find out you have a hangnail which you bite off as you stare up at the full moon?

This comment was written by my pecs.
posted by saysthis at 12:09 PM on January 24 [33 favorites]


MEFITES RIPPED MY FLESH

They also said unkind things about my grammar.
posted by zamboni at 12:13 PM on January 24 [15 favorites]


Pecked to Death by Pedants
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:16 PM on January 24 [10 favorites]


Why does this make me suddenly crave a shot of the ol' Jeff Daniels?
posted by capricorn at 12:17 PM on January 24 [5 favorites]


Similarly, Mitchell and Webb's series of tv writers who can't be bothered to do research.
posted by Silentgoldfish at 12:28 PM on January 24 [6 favorites]


> MEFITES RIPPED MY FLESH

Rzzz!
posted by boo_radley at 12:31 PM on January 24 [3 favorites]


By the way, for anyone looking for good travel/adventure writing, check out Tim Cahill (GoodReads link).
posted by Greg_Ace at 12:42 PM on January 24 [3 favorites]


I could never drink more than a fourth of Jeff Daniel’s. That green label is strong! Says 80 watts on the can, but I’m thinking it had to be more like 90 volts at least. It always threw a pipe-wrench in my plans for the evening.
posted by Devils Rancher at 1:01 PM on January 24 [17 favorites]


The Card Cheat: ">...the wonderfully bad, borderline bonkers Man's Life magazine of the 50s and 60s...

Me: "Hmm, how bonkers can it...HOLY SHIT"
"

PLEASE TELL ME THESE MAGAZINES ARE EASILY AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD SOMEWHERE

(I need to know more about the girl pirates of the Yangtze. For a friend.)
posted by chavenet at 1:11 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


The protagonist didn't once fuck* anything, so this must be the Reader's Digest adaptation.

* Or at least an activity that seems like it might be fucking, though with less consent, more inexplicable metaphors and a general ignorance of anatomy.
posted by maxwelton at 1:13 PM on January 24 [5 favorites]


Do I smell pipe tobacco in here somewhere? And shaving soap?
posted by wenestvedt at 1:25 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


"Hammer, nails, screws, screwdrivers (flathead and bumpy), measuring tape, Scotch tape, scissors, glue, paperclips, and every wrench, nut, bolt, button, and safety pin known to man."

Sounds like my tool belt!
posted by Grandysaur at 1:43 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


/casts some serious side-eye at "bumpy screwdriver"
posted by Greg_Ace at 1:50 PM on January 24 [6 favorites]


That tool belt would weigh several thousand pounds.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 1:50 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


I mean, walnuts aren't that heavy.
posted by Grandysaur at 1:52 PM on January 24 [1 favorite]




Seriously, the 'Weasels Ripped My Flesh' cover of man's life is amazing! I hadn't seen it before, and can easily understand why zappa named an album for it.
posted by kaibutsu at 2:41 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


But how could anyone resist an article titled Death Fight For Love at the Slaughterhouse Bordello?
posted by Greg_Ace at 3:07 PM on January 24 [4 favorites]


Those made my teeth hurt. I say that as a manly man who, just this past weekend, successfully repaired a gas dryer without killing anyone, setting fire to anything, or causing even one explosion.

Death Fight for Love at the Slaughterhouse Bordello should be a Fallout DLC. Or Saint's Row. Can't tell.
posted by GCU Sweet and Full of Grace at 3:33 PM on January 24 [1 favorite]


The Man's Life cover that says "why women hate the American male" sounds like current reactionary conservative bitching and moaning.

Some things never change, I guess.
posted by flaterik at 3:41 PM on January 24 [6 favorites]


Why is there so much water on those Man's Life covers? Do you guys really spend that much time waist-deep in rivers?
posted by The corpse in the library at 4:25 PM on January 24 [1 favorite]


I gotta say, the times when I’ve been waist-deep in rivers (or bays, or bayous, or inlets) have been more interesting than average.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 4:33 PM on January 24 [3 favorites]


so the illustrators don't have to paint dicks, obvs
posted by Jon_Evil at 4:43 PM on January 24 [4 favorites]


If it's too late to change my user name to Lust Wizard I'll just have to set about becoming one.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:52 PM on January 24 [1 favorite]


The Man's Life cover that says "why women hate the American male" sounds like current reactionary conservative bitching and moaning.

Don't rush to judge -- it's mens' fault!

Masculine Inadequacies
Drive Women Nuts!


And from that same cover,

CHEWED TO BITS
BY GIANT TURTLES


between that and the weasels, the mag has this ongoing theme of the hero under siege by tiny creatures, what are they getting at there?
posted by Sauce Trough at 4:55 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


Some things never change, I guess.

OUR TRIGGER-HAPPY COPS.
posted by ryanshepard at 5:10 PM on January 24


That passage reminds me: When you say something like "we sure trimmed their sails" you're saying that you helped them go *faster*, since to trim a sail is to optimize its angle to the wind.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 5:32 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


Yeah that just doesn’t jive with the correct meaning.
posted by Devils Rancher at 5:55 PM on January 24 [6 favorites]


PLEASE TELL ME THESE MAGAZINES ARE EASILY AVAILABLE FOR DOWNLOAD SOMEWHERE

(I need to know more about the girl pirates of the Yangtze. For a friend.)
posted by chavenet at 5:11 AM on January 25 [1 favorite +] [!]


(chavenet doesn't know it, but I'm the friend)
These magazines were also colloquially called "armpit slicks", "men's sweat magazines" or "the sweats", especially by people in the magazine publishing or distribution trades.

During their peak in the late 1950s, approximately 130 men's adventure magazines were being published simultaneously.

Typical titles which relied on especially lurid and salacious cover illustrations include Man's Story, Men Today, World of Men, and Man's Epic.
If anyone feels like searching. I know I do.
posted by saysthis at 9:28 PM on January 24 [2 favorites]


Lest anyone think this sort of buffoonery only took place in the past, my year-long subscription to Kindle Unlimited has revealed to me apparently "unlimited" amounts of poorly written zombie and post-apocalyptic novels whose prose could have fit unaltered straight into that McSweeney's parody article. It's a guilty pleasure to read them sometimes, when I am in the mood for mindless crap, which is surprisingly often after a stressful day.
posted by seasparrow at 10:10 PM on January 24 [1 favorite]


Please tell me that openly reading something like "World of Men" would have been as repellent when the mags were current as it would be today?
posted by maxwelton at 1:02 AM on January 25


Please tell me that openly reading something like "World of Men" would have been as repellent when the mags were current as it would be today?

Hmm, repellent in the way I'm inferring from your question as being offensive for racism and sexism, probably not, at least nothing like today, but I think they still weren't something most would read in public for being seen as lurid and exploitative in how they presented their content. A bit like how comics were seen, but with the added knowledge of more explicit sexual content attached. Almost more of a class issue in how the subject matter was presented rather than what the subject matter was, in a sense. Open references to sex were frowned upon or worse, but racist and sexist material was fine as long as it had a sheen of social respectability in its presentation.

That's judging from both the media I've seen from the era and how that media portrayed things like World of Men magazine.
posted by gusottertrout at 1:36 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


Do you guys really spend that much time waist-deep in rivers?

I'm waist-deep in a river right now.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:24 AM on January 25 [2 favorites]


Yeah that just doesn’t jive with the correct meaning.

Don't you mean jibe?
posted by tobascodagama at 5:16 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


I thought that might be a trap.
posted by Kirth Gerson at 7:07 AM on January 25


Mr. Bad Example: "Do you guys really spend that much time waist-deep in rivers?

I'm waist-deep in a river right now.
"

Eponysterical!
posted by chavenet at 7:13 AM on January 25 [1 favorite]


Don't you mean jibe?
posted by tobascodagama


Satire does not need to be a blunt instrument, like a foootball bat. It can sometimes be subtle, like a curveball from right under the basket.
posted by Devils Rancher at 12:37 PM on January 25 [5 favorites]


> I need to know more about the girl pirates of the Yangtze.

Straight answer: they probably were thinking of Cheng I Sao and her crews, which included men, women, and children.
posted by The corpse in the library at 2:28 PM on January 25 [1 favorite]


« Older A social network just for Vermont   |   DETECTING AGILE BS Newer »


You are not currently logged in. Log in or create a new account to post comments.