Return to Never Saying Sorry, CHAPTER TEN

Da Rules for Da Macho Angst:


RC: Now we’re not saying that a fic can't be good that breaks any of these rules

EH: Well, except for probably #1.

RC: Heck, both of us have broken the vast majority of these in our other fics.

EH: Although never, ever #1. Well, so far anyway.

RC: However these were the rules we developed to guide this exercise in macho angst. 

Rule 1. No making it all better with hot man-on-man sex!

EH: No, this isn’t anti-slash manifesto. After all, I am an unrepentant slash-aholic, and Rebelcat enjoys reading it even if she’s too wimpy to write it.

RC: I did too write slash!

EH: G-rated. (rolls eyes) Anyway, what we’re talking about here are those stories...

RC: In way, way too many fandoms...

EH: Where nothing fixes having been raped or otherwise brutally traumatized than a hard one up the you know where, even if the character’s never done it before in a loving way.

RC: (Shudder) Although, to be fair, shouldn’t we say no making it all better with hot man-on-woman sex. Or hot woman-on-woman sex for that matter.

EH: I swear, I never would have written that story except for peer pressure.

RC: Uh huh. (rolls eyes)

EH: Fine, a revised rule: 

Rule 1.1 While sex with people of the opposite, same or inanimate gender can be a transforming, heart-warming, and/or delightfully fun experience it is not an instant cure-all for psychological, physical and/or other forms of trauma.

RC: Jeez, just how long has it been since you’ve had sex?

EH: Shut. Up. 

Rule 2. No tears, manly or otherwise.

RC: Not that we’re saying that macho guys can't cry... especially as these guys did in canon!

EH: However, it’s easy to get carried away, so we outlawed it as dangerous behavior.

RC: Instead, we had Starsky & Hutch deal with strong emotions the tried and true manly way, through copious alcohol consumption and vomiting.

EH: Although, we had to keep the thigh-clutching, because that's canon with those two.

RC: And that hug you insisted on. (rolls eyes)

EH: The way those two groped each other on prime time you should be grateful I only wanted them to hug once. 

Rule 3. No all-night, soul-bearing, sensitive discussions of the psyche and/or how much they care about each other over copious amounts of ice cream and/or tequilas.

RC: It can be done well . . .

EH: But it can also lead to writing chicks with dicks. Ergo, verboten here.

RC: Hey, did you hear, Adrienne is going to deliberately break this one for fun.

EH: Mmmm, Giles/Ethan macho slash with ice cream. Oh baby. 

Rule 4. No cowering in corners or other behavior of the regressive kind.

RC: Now, some authors have pulled these sorts of actions off magnificently, without the least hint of OOCness.

EH: I know I’m never going to recover from having my heart ripped out and stomped on by Daydreamer’s “Alone.”

RC: However, as we weren’t going to lock our poor macho man in a closet for two years, we couldn’t justify such a radical departure from normal behavior.

EH: After all, for S&H, it’s canon that these tough guys took out their feelings on the furniture at the first sign of angst.

RC: Not that we believe that seventies furniture deserves to be broken into little pieces.

EH: Well . . .

RC: Okay, so maybe we do. 

Rule 5. No harrowing flashbacks.

EH: Normally, I’m an unrepentant harrowing flashbacker.

RC: However such devices could have led us to breaking rules 2, 3, or 4.

EH: So I had to let them go. (sob)

RC: Pull yourself together, I let you keep the flippin’ hug.

EH: It was a manly hug! 

Rule 6. No apologies or expressions of gratitude.

RC: We first dreamed this one up to prevent us from breaking rules 2 and 3.

EH: To our surprise, this rule ended up being the absolute hardest to abide by.

RC: Although, it was a fun challenge for two Canadians to impose on themselves, what with our international reputation.

EH: As overly polite, beer-guzzlin’, pot-smokin’, gay-married terrorist beaver-lovers?

RC: Not. Touching. That. One. 

Rule 7. The traumatized macho character(s) cannot be all better by the end!

RC: Trauma takes a long time to heal, especially given the macho man tendency to repress things, sometimes for decades.

EH: Plus, to be fair, we are denying our macho men the all-powerful, healing option outlined in rule 1. :-) 

Rule 8. No making up defensive rules to defend our approach to this story...

RC: Crap, too late.

EH: So bring on the flames, mon!

RC: Or alternately, you could write your own story. Either use these rules as written, or else deliberately break every single one of them. And then let us know where you’re posting it!

EH: Mmmm, Macho-Angst Fest, I’m lovin’ it.

RC: I’ve created a monster.