Not necessarily frequency response

Joni Mitchell once sang “You Turn Me On, I’m a Radio.” This might have been one of her better metaphors of the day, though she admitted later on that what motivated her was not so much good old primitive lust as the desire to present her record label with a hit single so they’d quit pestering her. (This makes it the moral equivalent of, say, “Elenore” by the Turtles.)

Jack Baruth retunes that particular phrasing:

I’ve often said that female emotion is not FM, it’s AM. In other words, if you want to sleep with a woman, it doesn’t particularly matter whether she loves or hates you. What’s important is the strength of that emotion. If a woman tells you that you are the worst person on earth and that she prays for your violent death twice a day, you might as well start filing another notch on your guitar. If, on the other hand, she tells her friends that you “seem like a nice guy, I guess,” chances are you’ll be available for your nightly guild meeting in WoW after all.

I would contrast this with my own experience, except that no one listens to shortwave anymore.



  1. fillyjonk »

    19 February 2015 · 7:07 am

    I am doing the confused-dog head tilt.

    Granted, I am in many ways far more innocent than others of my generation but I have never felt the slightest desire to bed a man I vehemently disliked.

    Maybe THAT’S part of my problem.

    Or is it that the woman SAYS she hates the man, but is lying to him, and possibly herself? I can’t brain human relationships some days.

  2. CGHill »

    19 February 2015 · 7:23 am

    It stems, I think, from the idea that the opposite of love is not hate but indifference.

  3. fillyjonk »

    19 February 2015 · 7:33 am

    Meh, I haven’t “hated” many people in my life but I’d almost rather be with a guy I was indifferent to than one who filled me with inarticulate rage over how he behaved.

  4. backwoods conservative »

    19 February 2015 · 8:48 am

    Fillyjonk, what I gather from your comments is that even women don’t understand women.

  5. fillyjonk »

    19 February 2015 · 10:05 am

    More likely, *I* don’t understand women. (Or, in general, other people).

    I have a slight case of “engineer brain” as far as interaction goes (I lack the general brilliance of “engineer brain,” and therefore, am not an actual engineer). I take things very literally and don’t like mindgames. And I’m not always good at subtext.

  6. Roger Green »

    19 February 2015 · 10:43 am

    It’s related to fellows in the “friend” category who don’t understand why she’d go out with THAT guy, who treats her badly.

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