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Author Topic: What has happened to us?  (Read 10991 times)

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Offline Chris BradyTopic starter

What has happened to us?
« on: September 01, 2011, 01:02:33 PM »
Here's something someone sent to me.  She was obviously disturbed by it, but wondered what I thought of it.

And honestly, I'm not entirely sure what to make of it, myself.  Some of this I have seen, some of it sounds conspiracy theory crackpot rantings, and some of it is just plain unfathomable to me.  And so I post this link here and wonder what other people make of it.

http://www.singularity2050.com/2010/01/the-misandry-bubble.html

For the record, the only real thing I agree with is media aspect.  Namely this line in the blog post:

Modern entertainment typically shows businessmen as villains, and husbands as bumbling dimwits that are always under the command of the all-powerful wife, who is never wrong.

Most popular comedies follow this formula almost to a T.

Offline Jude

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2011, 03:42:34 PM »
Quote
At this point, you might be feeling a deep inner emptiness lamenting a bygone age, as the paucity of proudly, inspiringly masculine characters in modern entertainment becomes clear.  Before the 1980s, there were different masculine characters, but today, they are conspicuously absent.  Men are shown either as thuggish degenerates, or as effete androgynes.  Sure, there were remakes of Star Trek and The A-Team, and series finales of Rocky and Indiana Jones.  But where are the new characters?  Why is the vacuum being filled solely with nostalgia?  A single example like Jack Bauer is not sufficient to dispute the much larger trend of masculinity purging.
Dr. Cox and Turk (Scrubs), Jim (The Office), Ron Swanson and Andy (Parks and Recreation), Jack Donagee (30 Rock) -- the list basically goes on and on, and I've only touched manly figures from shows I like.  Some of them are hilariously manly as both a parody of masculinity's most stubborn and ridiculous qualities, yet terribly effective, interesting, compelling characters in spite of it.  I haven't touched on movies, because I don't typically enjoy testosterone flicks, but I am tangentially aware of Jason Statham Transporter series (though he was actually good in Snatch, which was a much more low key role for him).

Are there more diverse celebrities and cultural icons than in the past?  Yes.  Does that mean there is a manliness vacuum?  No.
Quote
This trains women to disrespect men, wives to think poorly of their husbands, and girls to devalue the importance of their fathers, which leads to the normalization of single motherhood (obviously with taxpayer subsidies), despite the reality that most single mothers are not victims, but merely women who rode a carousel of men with reckless abandon.  This, in turn, leads to fatherless young men growing up being told that natural male behavior is wrong, and feminization is normal.  It also leads to women being deceived outright about the realities of the sexual market, where media attempts to normalize single motherhood and attempted 'cougarhood' are glorified, rather than portrayed as the undesirable conditions that they are.
blahblahblah assertions without statistics blahblahblah in my days ranting blahblahblah social conservatism.
Quote
The Primal Nature of Men and Women : Genetic research has shown that before the modern era, 80% of women managed to reproduce, but only 40% of men did.  The obvious conclusion from this is that a few top men had multiple wives, while the bottom 60% had no mating prospects at all.  Women clearly did not mind sharing the top man with multiple other women, ultimately deciding that being one of four women sharing an 'alpha' was still more preferable than having the undivided attention of a 'beta'.  Let us define the top 20% of men as measured by their attractiveness to women, as 'alpha' males while the middle 60% of men will be called 'beta' males.  The bottom 20% are not meaningful in this context.
I'm gonna stop here.  This is complete fantasy.  Applying sociological observations of wolves on human nature has repeatedly shown to be an absurd detraction from reality.

This article just may be the most insane thing I've ever read.

EDIT:  The few stats that he gives are lies.  There is no evidence that backs up a 90% divorce initiated by women rate.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2011, 03:47:54 PM by Jude »

Offline Revolverman

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2011, 04:18:38 PM »
I'm getting sick of hearing about "Rising Crime" When its clearly been falling long term for about 20-30 years. Jude has covered everything else well.

That 80% of woman and 40% of man thing is really fucking hilarious when he JUST talks about having a Father and a Mother.

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2011, 04:51:29 PM »
I'm gonna stop here.  This is complete fantasy.  Applying sociological observations of wolves on human nature has repeatedly shown to be an absurd detraction from reality.

Specially when those observations were incorrect in the first place. (I really despise the alpha myth and its persistence in pop-consciousness. But that's off topic.)

As for the article itself, it's an exercise in lies or misconceptions born out of a nostalgia/confirmation bias soup. It doesn't even earn the distinction of being the most insane thing I have ever read. It strikes me as the rambling of someone with personal dissatisfaction trying to shift blame onto a perceived, counterfactual version of society.

Offline Noelle

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2011, 04:55:03 PM »
I couldn't finish this article.  It sounds to me like one long lament of "the good old days" when men were the head of the household, called all the shots, filled all the executive positions, and played the lead role in every movie. You know what else happened in those days? Institutionalized sexism that barred women from taking any position of prominence, societal expectations that shunned feminine autonomy from her husband, and a perpetual role of subservient home/babymaker.

The slut-shaming in his article is horrifying, among other things, and his targeting of things like female contraception is practically dripping with latent misogyny. The statistics are incredibly dishonest; for instance, maybe men have had a higher rate of unemployment in the short term, but statistics have also shown that they are having an easier time finding jobs as well as moving into jobs traditionally held by women (such as nursing) during the latest recession.

In short: this man doesn't appear to give a shit about equality and I hope no self-respecting woman comes within a hundred feet of this guy. Well, wait, that would probably make you a frigid, controlling bitch...but getting too close would make you a loose homewrecking hussy. Sigh.

Offline Trieste

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2011, 06:43:57 PM »
Haven't read other comments. Am going to answer the OP before reading them.

The first thing I notice about this article is that I cannot find an author's name. I cannot read about the author, I cannot google him and see what rebuttals people have made to him (I'm not really willing to wade into the comments section for it, either). Even clicking on "main" and going to the footer doesn't give me a pen name or a screen name. A domain whois gives me no information. I don't have any idea who is writing this, what their background is, or what their biases may be. That, for me, is a little hinky. I like to know something about an author before I read his views. Is he published? If so, what kind of books does he write? Articles? Who does he write for? What education does he have? What about political leanings? Is it a political website I've been linked to? Is it some random person in the middle of Iowa who is obsessed with mathematics? This makes it difficult to take what the author says in context, because there is no context.

Secondly, I don't watch television and I can come up with modern-day analogues of nearly every one of those entertainers the author showed in that nifty little collage, there. Jean-Luc Picard, meet Horatio Caine. Randy Savage, meet John Cena. And while the author might point out modern roles like that of Charlie Harper from Two and a Half Men as an example of the 'degeneracy' in modern media, I'd like to answer it by pointing out that Grease's Danny Zuko was also kind of scummy. So, in fact, was Indiana Jones. Discounting modern media as writing men off as evil or bumbling also ignores the wonderful portrayal of Professor Xavier in X-Men: First Class. Not only was he reminiscent of Picard's character in his willingness to gently teach and guide, but he is a new take on an old character that I've personally never seen before. I'm sure someone could dig up an early comic or something and say that Professor X doesn't really count as this decade, but I could also answer that by pointing out that the creator of Indiana Jones wasn't exactly renowned for his originality, either.

I'm not even going to address the load of bullshit about women's earning power as compared to men's, because if you really want the numbers on that, go look up the census data and draw your own conclusions. And Oprah Winfrey is to talk shows what Jerry Springer was to family unity. Puh-lease.

In short, it's really easy to write the author off as bitter and overly nostalgic. Because s/he is.

For the record, the only real thing I agree with is media aspect.  Namely this line in the blog post:

Modern entertainment typically shows businessmen as villains, and husbands as bumbling dimwits that are always under the command of the all-powerful wife, who is never wrong.

Most popular comedies follow this formula almost to a T.

Since you're only addressing the media aspect, that is the only aspect I've commented on. (And read, because I could feel my brain cells dying.)

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2011, 08:30:04 PM »
You'll get to hear sometimes that Fight Club represented a kind of rough satire mixed with a "coming of age story" about young men from the lower rungs of society who feel they have been made to grow up in a feminized world where women wield most of the power, a soft-coated power but hard to evade, in school, at home, in the courts and at work. Fathers seem to have gone absent or bent to their wives, men are despised and there is no acceptance of "acting like a man". I think that element of satire and an attempt to reinvent manhood is in the book (never saw the film) though I do not agree about there being that kind of broad rejection of masculinity going on in the real world: to a large degree Pahlaniuk is fighting windmills.

What makes me sorry though is that the image of a "restored male" that comes across in Fight Club is a man stripped of honesty, long-term dependability, intellect, nuances, generosity, education. The guys in the fight club want to be men but they're reduced to thugs, or wannabe thugs, who think it's masculine not to step aside to anyone, not for one moment, except to the guy who can knock you out. They're not the kind anyone would want to marry, at least not for life. They are pictured as if it would be girly to think before you talk, to hold back, to weigh what you'll do, to be interested in anything beyond the last ten years. And I think it has reinforced that kind of image of what masculinity is about to not a few people (men and women) since it appeared.
« Last Edit: September 01, 2011, 08:35:31 PM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2011, 08:53:28 PM »
Except

Spoiler: Click to Show/Hide
at the end of the movie, the guy who started the club is reduced to an impotent shadow, not even possessing his own identity any more.  So

it leaves the impression that 'Fight Club' is something that will eventually destroy you and leave you with nothing.

Offline Trieste

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #8 on: September 01, 2011, 09:00:22 PM »
Regarding Fight Club:

Spoiler: Click to Show/Hide
I took it to mean that the aggressive, don't give a fuck, don't yield to anything personality is really only possible as part of a person. This, in turn, might seem to support the article's point, that entertainment cannot bear to let a manly man stand alone and unchallenged.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #9 on: September 01, 2011, 09:07:03 PM »
Agree, Oniya - in the book they kind of symbolically become alike, they are all gruff, muscular men dressing alike and each one of them can be read as the double of the others. Especially when two of them are in the ring of course. Fighting becomes a ritual that they hope will define them, a bit like the army in the old days, or football.

It doesn't leave them with a lot of chhoices really. Can't help wondering what would have happened to the founder if towards the end of the film he'd magically lost his mojo instead...

Offline Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #10 on: September 01, 2011, 09:17:15 PM »
I see what you mean, Trie.  Louise - I haven't read the book.  I only caught the movie because Mr. Oniya was channel-surfing and decided to stop there (I think I enjoyed it more than he did because of the weirdness aspect. XD)

I think, though, that the message that the blogger missed is that one-dimensional depictions of masculinity are boring, just like one-dimensional depictions of anything are boring.

Offline Violence

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #11 on: September 01, 2011, 10:05:23 PM »
Regarding "Fight Club"
I always felt that the ending of the book was pretty clear about the whole "Tyler's way isn't a good thing" issue.  By the end, the narrator makes it pretty clear that Tyler is the bad guy and not an example by which to live.  Obviously just my interpretation, but the point always just seemed to me: this might have been fun for a while, but nothing good comes from trying to live like this.

Regarding the article:

I read some of the comments others made before me before and thought to myself, "My... such reactions, surely they're all just blowing it out of proportion.  It can't be that bad, right?"

... then I clicked the link. @_@

It was, if anything, far worse than I was anticipating.  I almost want to say that it had to have been trolling.  I wasn't able to get any further than most others seemed to have bothered, but it felt like any time he might have had something close to a point he then buried it as quickly as he could under what could only be described as a misogynistic temper tantrum.

Even the entertainment part seemed pretty ill-informed to me.  I watch a lot of TV and I'm pretty sure that the range of male characters I'm familiar with is far more diverse than "bumbling husband" or "evil business man".  Hell, I can think of at least 3 pretty strong masculine roles from Firefly, by itself.

Offline Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #12 on: September 01, 2011, 10:31:42 PM »
I skimmed a few of his other blog posts, and that guy must have stock in Reynolds Wrap, considering how many layers of tinfoil he's got on his hat.

Offline Sure

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #13 on: September 01, 2011, 10:58:30 PM »
Quote
EDIT:  The few stats that he gives are lies.  There is no evidence that backs up a 90% divorce initiated by women rate.

That statistic comes from American Law and Economics Review, which stated not that 90% of divorces are initiated by women but that 90% of divorces among college educated couples are initiated by women. Same study said women overall file a bit more than two thirds of all divorces in the US. If I recall.

Here's the full citation:
Brinig, Margaret F. and Allen, Douglas W., 'These Boots are Made for Walking': Why Most Divorce Filers are Women ( 2000). American Law and Economics Review, Vol. 2, pp. 126-169, 2000. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=713110

But a lot of what s/he says is poppycock. S/he does occasionally stumble across legitimate points (exempli gratia, unfair family courts), but still couches them in ways that make them unlikely to be well received.

Offline Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2011, 01:52:25 AM »
Considering the misogynistic slant of the blog, I think we're probably not dealing with a 'she' - in the same way that I've never seen the same level of misandry coming from a male writer.

Offline Missy

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #15 on: September 02, 2011, 04:15:37 AM »
It would seem probable that the subject in question is a male, however it is not impossible for a person to become a female misogynist or a male misandrist. If it does seem oddly improbable.

Offline Trieste

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #16 on: September 02, 2011, 06:57:17 AM »
There is no way to tell what gender the author is, so in my post I resorted to using 'he', because English lets me do that and my practicality overrides my feminism. :P

I actually got significantly far into the article. I got down to 'Feminism' as Genuine Misogyny and decided I would rather watch some porn.  ::)

What struck me as amusing was the fact that this author talks about the institution of marriage as a trap whereby women can extract financial support from men even after they get bored with them, while still indulging their "hypergamy". His description of early marriage is factually inaccurate, talking about how men were men and women were virgins. His dismissal of the engagement ring totally ignores the fact that giving something of value to a so-called 'intended' goes much, much farther back than the De Beers cartel. And on, and on, and on, and on. I found it especially enlightening that he put so much emphasis on women's beauty and retaining it through marriage. It's as if he hasn't even heard of the fact that we have an obesity problem in the US. His reference to a 'fatocalypse' was especially adorable.

I have to agree with Oniya with regard to the tin foil.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #17 on: September 02, 2011, 07:50:40 AM »
Beg to differ, Trieste. Sometimes it's possible to say with 99.5% certainty "that's a man writing" or "that's got to be a woman". Even in the absence of a name that would provide any clues, and even when the content is not linked to anything about gender, the sheer load of testosterone in some pieces - dry or fuming - gives away the male gender.

It's amazing how much energy some misogynist bloggers can put into hunting down offenders, proving that "science" shows the supremacy of real men in thinking, strength, endurance and sense of responsibility, and arguing their cause. Week in and week out, posting hundreds of blogs and industrious replies. Obviously some of them don't really have anything else to do in order to kill time, but the sight is kind of captivating.

Offline Reagan

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #18 on: September 02, 2011, 08:01:57 AM »
I have two words for the person who wrote that article and they are: -

Jack Bauer.

There are plenty of positive male role models in entertainment today, you just have to look for them. 

I've recently started watching the Castle series, which is more comedy than it is drama.  Richard Castle, just as an off-the-top-of-my-head example, is portrayed as a successful novelist, intelligent and somewhat maverick investigator, a man of honour and integrity who greatly values the women in his life; daughter, mother and the detective he's shadowing/pining after.  Not only that, he's a successful single father with a well adjusted teenage daughter, on whom he dotes.  And while I'm waving the Fillion Flag here, part of Castle's journey, a character who has taken full advantage of the access his fame gives him to pliant women, is accepting Det Beckett's status as a cop and watching her take her gun and life into her hands every day while he stands back and observes... mostly. 

But even that works both ways.  The respect he has for women is earned, it therefore doesn't apply to the gold-digging pneumatic sluts who cast themselves in his path.  There's a lot of balance in the show that I think is to be applauded.

I suppose you could argue that Beckett's two male subordinate detectives are portrayed as less intelligent as she is but the show has a lot of comedy and their bromance as partners lends itself well to the little spats and competitions they have with one another.  It's a counterpoint to the deeper and unrequited tension between Castle and Beckett.

So yeah, first two shows I thought of and they're both really good examples.

As for the rest of it, well this is clearly a guy who needs to be assessed for the male menopause because he reads like a sack of testosterone.  People like that just pick a scapegoat and see everything through that skewed bias.  If his blatant dysfunction as a man wasn't the fault of every woman on the planet it would no doubt be something equally implausible.

Sometimes you have brave a mirror and realise that the only common denominator in your interactions with others is you.

Offline gaggedLouise

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #19 on: September 02, 2011, 08:31:59 AM »
Being Nordic here, I would cite the films Let the Right One In, its U.S. "remake" Let Me In and the Swedish Millennium trilogy (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo etc) as a bunch of pictures showing interesting, non-standard relations between men and women with the guys being neither outright thugs, nor effeminates, nor stupid and snubbed. Michael Nyqvist has this very appealing ladies' man character in the trilogy; he's both handsome, tricky, boyish, practical and dependable. He's clearly not for sale - and those character traits mirror the actor behind the part too.

And in the second of those films, boxer Paolo Roberto, playing himself (this flamboyant Swedish-Italian champ boxer, actor & trainer is a real person and every bit as "Aww...shucks" as he comes across in the film and book; he's gleefully parodying his own manners a bit in the stride) shows that real men don't have to go 100% serious and insist on being taken as muscular men all the time.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2011, 08:48:20 AM by gaggedLouise »

Offline Utopia

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #20 on: September 02, 2011, 09:51:39 AM »
I really want to believe that this article / so called movement is the invention of a group of highly organized trolls, but that actually seems to come from people who are serious about the nonsense they're sprouting. I think there needs to be some sort of Social Darwin Award invented for stuff like this.

But casting aside the fact that we have one fine specimen of paranoia and delusion here, the very way of proving things in this article is off. The author all to often uses extreme cases in his proofs. That would be fine if he a) marked them as extreme cases (which he does not) or b) was discussing extreme cases (which he does not). (Example? Example. At the very end of the article the author writes: "[...] note that I have provided links to 'feminists' openly calling for slavery, castration, and murder of men without proving him guilty of anything", but instead of pointing out that this is an extreme position that is not shared by the majority of feminists, the author just sweepingly generalizes that every feminist is that way and that feminists therefore are sadistic and can't be reasoned with.)
Lots of the author's statements are not backed up by anything, as it has been pointed out before. And the sites he links to... oh my. I didn't click on any link because at some point my brain imploded from the sheer ridiculousness of this all, but linking to blogs that in turn link a) nowhere or b) nowhere scientific does not equal a proof in any way. Admittedly, I haven't checked the sources for his statistics, but the rest was ridiculous enough.

On the subject of the gender of the author: I am inclined to think that he is male. Others have already pointed out reasons, but I'd like to add some of the sites he links to. I somehow can't imagine that a woman (and any reasonable man) would be able to take things like that seriously, besides the majority of them is more or less clearly written for males.
Articles like "The M3 Model - The Easiest Way To Pick-up" (the old "women don't need respect because deep down they don't want it" myth re-enacted / men sharing ways on how to get her laid over the course of the first date), "Wedded Abyss" (which re-tells exactly what the article does, namely that marriage is used by women to torture men) and "Avoiding the Fate of the AMC" (some sort of "how to keep a 50's relationship with your wife" 101) seem to be constructed for men rather then for women, sometimes even blatantly so ("This article is intended for those of us suckers, fools, naive idiots and morons that either got married before we knew better (such as myself), or are dumb enough to sign on the dotted line for Marriage 2.0. despite knowing better. Yes, we get it, all you MGTOW-ers and PUA-ers  [sic] – getting into Marriage 2.0 with a Western Woman is dumb, crazy and foolhardy." from "Avoiding the Fate of the AMC").

(Fixed a typo.)
« Last Edit: September 02, 2011, 09:56:00 AM by Utopia »

Offline Missy

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #21 on: September 02, 2011, 05:24:20 PM »
The subject does seem to want to be able to replace his older "model" for a younger one judging from some statements. This does seem to be indicative of a masculine individual.

Offline DarklingAlice

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #22 on: September 02, 2011, 05:42:50 PM »
Speculation about the sex or gender of the author seems just about as irrelevant as trying to figure out what kind of toon Judge Doom was. He's obviously a self-deluded nutjob and I am not sure we are going to be able to say much more than that with certainty.

Offline Oniya

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Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #23 on: September 02, 2011, 05:47:26 PM »
Speculation about the sex or gender of the author seems just about as irrelevant as trying to figure out what kind of toon Judge Doom was. He's obviously a self-deluded nutjob and I am not sure we are going to be able to say much more than that with certainty.

True enough, and I think 'nutjob' is probably the best category to leave this blogger in.  Like many things wrapped in tinfoil, 'could be meat, could be cake.  Meat-cake!'

However, in the 'just for grins' department, I went and ran the one article through the 'Gender Guesser' (had to strip out the tables, but otherwise just copy-pasted)

Results:

Total words: 15738

Genre: Informal
  Female = 15416
  Male   = 36786
  Difference = 21370; 70.46%
  Verdict: MALE

Genre: Formal
  Female = 15026
  Male   = 25953
  Difference = 10927; 63.33%
  Verdict: MALE

So, not 99.5%, but this particular widget suggests 'male'.

Offline Caela

Re: What has happened to us?
« Reply #24 on: September 02, 2011, 06:53:18 PM »
I didn't get far into this article before being totally offended. S/he paints single mothers as whores who simple got tripped up riding the meat-merry-go-round and then suck off the gov't tit making everyone else pay for their mistakes.

Being a single mother I wanted to reach through my screen and throttle the hell out of this person. I'm not a single mother because I'm promiscuous, I'm a single mother because the male who helped create my daughter CHOSE not to be a father in her life. I made the choice to respect that decision on his part and I leave him alone so long as he leaves us alone. I'm educated and have a job that allows me to support the both of us in, relative, comfort though we're far from being "wealthy" lol and I've never had to ask a dime from Uncle Sam to do it.

I closed it after that. If I was already that pissed in the first few paragraphs I couldn't imagine my temper cooling if I read further.

@Reagan, Castle is an excellant show! Love him and the tension the writers keep between him and Beckett. I don't see her subordinate detectives as less intelligent then her, but not as driven which is for personal reasons relating to why she became a cop in the first place. They're more laid back and are the comic relief to her seriousness.