F— You, Carrie Bradshaw

October 10, 2012

Although I weep for straight women when it comes to the dating scene, men don’t have it much easier. I think the major breakdown between Mars dwellers and the counterparts on Venus is that, like species from different planets, the two sexes don’t speak the same language. The next time you’re at a mostly straight get together, notice who is talking to who. It’s always all the men huddled in one corner talking about sports, weather and boobs and the women on the opposite side of the room cackling about Botox, the latest trash novel and how their boyfriends are troglodytes. Despite that major communication breakdown, men and women have been getting together, procreating and living in fragile harmony for millennia.

But all that changed on June 6, 1998.

When Carrie Bradshaw burst on the scene as the main character in Sex and The City, she was an instant success. She was not so pretty that women were intimidated, but hot enough that every man still wanted to sleep with her. She seemed to have the perfect life: a great apartment in New York City, a job that required no office hours and a group of friends that seemed to think everything she did and said was fabulous. She really seemed to be the culmination of a contemporary woman in today’s society.

God, I hope not.

Not only was Carrie Bradshaw a completely unsustainable character, she also embodied everything that I, and every other productive member of society dislike about how women treat other people.

Example 1: Aiden.

Aiden Quinn was everything any straight woman would want in a companion. He was handsome, gainfully employed and worshiped the ground Carrie strutted on in her $400 shoes. And what did she do to him? She refused to wear the engagement ring he bought her (instead stringing it on a necklace around her neck) and she totally cheated on him with that sleeze bag, Big. What kind of message does that send? It says “Women, stay away from available, attractive, attentive men.”

Example 2: Finances.

First of all, a freelance writer for a third rate newspaper in New York City would earn enough money to live in Carrie’s apartment, afford her extensive wardrobe and be able to go out every episode to the newest and most hip night clubs and restaurants. Which, I guess, is why Carrie was always having money problems. There was the time that the French architect thought she was a prostitute and left her a thousand dollars after they spent the night together. The moral of that story? Ladies, when you’re a bit cash poor, sleep around and earn some money.

And then, after Aiden came to his senses and dumped Carrie’s cheating behind, she was forced to come up with enough money for a down payment on her condo (Aiden had previously purchased the apartment for her and Carrie to share with an adjacent unit.) Anyhoo, of course she didn’t have enough money. Did she try to secure a loan like a normal person? No. Instead, she got super mad after Charlotte didn’t offer up $50K for Carrie to use, interest free, for a down payment. Then, like any rational human being, Carrie stormed over to so-called best friend’s Park Avenue palace and tore Charlotte a new one. Then what happened? Charlotte gave Carrie her engagement ring from her failed marriage to use as a down payment. Lesson learned from that: When you need something, guilt someone else more fortunate than you into helping out.

Example 3: She smoked.

I mean, what straight guy in his right mind wants to date some chic who smokes? Yes, she did eventually quite, but only because Sarah Jessica Parker got knocked up and couldn’t sustain the lung-charring habit any longer.

So, what has Carrie Bradshaw taught us? That you can dick around really great guys, get paid for having sex with smelly French men, be a complete moron with your finances and literally kill yourself with every puff of a cigarette and still be considered the “it” girl.

So now, thanks to her wildly successful show and two spin-off movies (only one of which is worth watching), Carrie Bradshaw has taught women that they can basically act like complete selfish, lunatic harpies and think they deserve a millionaire husband, a thriving career writing 500 word quips about her slutty friends and meaningless life, and a shoe menagerie that rivals that of Imelda Marcos.

My advice to Carrie Bradshaw: Even though you’re off the air and no longer producing new episodes to warp the minds of straight women everywhere, you’re still there in re-runs and TBS marathons…my only hope is that the next great female sitcom will produce the anti-Carrie and show women that they can be successful by working hard, happy by not treating great guys like lepers and happy without having a shopping addiction.

My advice to straight women: Stop thinking you’re a “Carrie” or even a “Charlotte” or “Miranda” or “Samantha”. They are all archetypes. They do not exist. But you do, so get out there and start living your own life.

My  advice to straight men: The next time your lady friends channels her inner Carrie, channel your inner Big and treat her like shit, never call and then go out and start dating someone else. If she really is like Carrie, she’ll come running back, ready to forgive all your sins.


2 Responses to “F— You, Carrie Bradshaw”

  1. Leah Says:

    I can’t really vote because I dont agree with any of the voting options but I can say I love the show and find it very entertaining and I also totally agree that she is a horrible example to women. But most the women I know (including myself) just find her entertaining and kinda an example of what not to do. I was SO mad when she cheated on Aiden with Big, seriously things were thrown at the tv. However what about characters that are this fucked up and are men? Gonna rant about one of them too? I think you should. It’s only fair. BTW I found this post to be a very interesting read.

  2. Ben Murphy Says:

    I’m so torn as how to vote. On the one hand, that show was so fabulous. I just wish I had a sex life like Samantha’s! On the other hand, you are totally correct that the major stories and themes were completely unrealistic!

    However, Michael, kudos to you for referencing Imelda Marcos! I thought I was the only boy in the late 80’s paying attention to her shoe collection the size of the population of China. —When I wrote a modern version of Dante’s Inferno, she was spending the rest of eternity being trampled by a heard of giant shoes. Those shoes were souls of the subjects she oppressed in the Phillipines.

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