Entourage Explains Douches, Assholes and Other Men
I was recently talking to a guy I used to date about the meaning of the word “douche” when describing a guy. Besides making clear that I find it a repulsive term and generally question the intelligence of people who use it, I had to confess that it did, to me, have a very clear meaning. A “douche” is sort of a sub-species of asshole, clearly identifiable by things like excessive hair gel, body sprays, fancy car and disregard for women as anything other than tools of social masturbation. (As opposed to a garden variety asshole, who has a general disregard for all people other than himself or those who can help him gain increasingly higher social status.)
He asked if the “men” of Jersey Shore ( a show that neither of us have watched) are good examples of man-douches. Yes, they are, but they are hyberbolic. The “men” of Jersey Shore are to douche-men what Ren and Stimpy are to dogs and cats.
This led into further queries as to the differences of other types of men out there, like douches, but different, and how they can be identified. We quickly came up with the following terms that we hear thrown about to define men, and I tried to explain how they can be identified: Asshole, Douche, Tool, Bitch and Keeper.
While there is obviously overlap, they can generally be identified. It’s not always clean. Men are complex creatures, and like fine wine can have a primary flavor but be rich with subtle overtones and after tastes. (Stoners, for instance, have an after taste of bleach, but that’s a different subject.) I tend to date assholes with subtle overtones of douche but the after-taste of a keeper that is enough to keep me thinking that “more” is a good idea. I am trying to stop that, so being able to identify them is key.
Later that night I was watching The Emmy’s, and Jane Lynch made the following joke: “People often wonder why I’m a lesbian. Ladies and Gentlemen, the cast of Entourage.” And I realized that before my eyes were not only 4 good reasons to become a lesbian (and one ray of hope,) but also perfect examples of an asshole, a douche, a tool, a bitch and a keeper.
1. THE ASSHOLE: ARI The asshole has a laser-like focus on the acquisition of wealth, power and pussy. Generally speaking, assholes are intelligent, which is what makes them such assholes; they knowingly behave in a way that will hurt other people in order to get what they want. There are as many of them that conform to society’s perceived norms as who eschew those norms completely. In both cases, they do so to the extreme, because they are better than everyone around them. They feel that the world owes them something, and are pretty much just here to collect. The asshole can be harder to identify based solely on visual cues because assholes can exist as geeks, rednecks, jocks, and any other sub-species of the human male.
There is a slightly more pernicious subset of the asshole that is actually very quiet about their assholery. They appear to be nice-guys, “keepers” even, until you realize that their kindness and generosity is a way to suck you in and manipulate you without you knowing it. They are passive aggressive, often “buying” people off by providing them access to something that only they can provide; they seem generous at first, but it’s just how they suck you in and then keep you stuck, hooked to what they’re giving you.
2. THE DOUCHE: TURTLE The douche is sort of a lost and pathetic creature, and is not as inherently cruel or manipulative as the asshole; mostly because he’s not smart enough about manipulating people to be. More than any other type, the douche can be identified by visual cues such as flashy expensive car, excessive branding on clothing and accessories, being overly groomed by too many stinky products, name-dropping and the presence of bling. The douche tries desperately to appear cool by adopting as many of society’s perceived norms as possible, and taking them to a cartoon-like extreme.
Like the garden-variety asshole, the douche is focused on the acquisition of wealth, power and pussy. The primary difference is that he doesn’t feel like the world owes it to him, he’s just catastrophically insecure and thinks that if he gets more of it than anyone else he will actually be “good enough,” and feel better. While Turtle is an extreme example of douchery, with his really cheezy clothes and expensive car, the more subtle variety of douche exists everywhere, especially in cities with a high percentage of tech-geeks who made a lot of money without actually having to do anything. They think they are smart and important because they have money and can prove that they have money, but really, they just got lucky and know it. They try to distract others so that they don’t figure that out.
The distinction between assholes and douches can be hard to make. It gets down to intent. Douches, at their core, are not mean people, they’re just douches.
3. THE TOOL: JOHNNY DRAMA The tool is a guy who can’t think for himself and in a desperate need to feel like he fits in will just do what he thinks the people around him want in order to gain acceptance. He does not have enough long-term focus to really develop a plan for the future, though he is constantly developing amazing plans that will be “the thing” that finally makes him. But he never does it, and is instead focused on just hanging on long enough to whatever situation he is in to gain acceptance and temporary security. These are the hapless henchmen of the assholes and douches.
They are sort of chameleons. If you meet them when they are hanging out with a bunch of partiers, they will fit right in with the partiers. If that’s not working for them, they will renounce it and surround themselves with people from a contrasting extreme, and fit right in with them, adopting all of their customs. As their name suggests, they simply do what needs to be done in order to fit in at the moment. Generally speaking, they won’t intentionally screw anyone over, but they will accidentally do it all the time because they are fundamentally unable to see the big picture.
4. THE BITCH: VINCE The bitch is a very special kind of man, often easily confused for an asshole. A primary difference between the asshole and the bitch is that where the asshole knowingly screws people over, the bitch is just so narcissistic that he is altogether unaware of the people he is screwing over, focused entirely on himself. The bitch is, generally speaking, either very physically attractive and successful, or so unique and special that people just put up with it. Physical beauty or celebrity status make it easy for a man to develop his inner bitch. But it often comes also from being coddled as a result of unique academic talents, artistic talents or inherited status from a family name or legacy of some sort.
The bitch doesn’t really do anything for himself, rather the sheer force of his charisma causes people to want to take care of his every whim and need. This further disables the bitch’s ability to take care of themselves, leading to excessive whining when they don’t get their way or don’t get their needs met by the lackies (often tools and douches) who surround them. They like to think that they are loved and that’s why people do things for them, but really they just can’t do it themselves, and their status is the lifeblood of the douches and tools around them, who suffer from the delusion that status is transferable by osmosis. A bitch is nothing without his tools and douches; tools and douches have no purpose without their bitch.
5. THE KEEPER: ERIC The keeper is, by far, the most common sub-species of men. The keeper is a guy who is able to hang with his pack, but still able to hold on to his own values and focus on a long-term plan that generally does not include screwing people over. He is able to get and keep his shit together without falling for the idea that he constantly needs more money, more things, more power and more pussy. He knows that his friends can be douches, tools, assholes and bitches, but he can see through that and stand by them without supporting – or taking part in – their inane behavior.
The keeper has a strong moral compass and will not say one thing and do another. He will protect himself, but put just as much energy into protecting the people he cares about. Keepers tend to be a little more quiet, awkward even, than other guys, so they are often hard to notice until other people – women, specifically – learn to look past the sound and fury that defines the other 4 primary sub-species of men. When people say things like “the meek shall inherit the earth,” they may well be referring to Keepers finally getting their due.
On the whole, there are more keepers than anything else, but in order to find them, one has to stop enabling the assholery and douchebaggery by rewarding it with money, power and pussy. This should trigger a Darwinian evolution of the male species by which body wash, bling, expensive cars and large-scale sperm casting become counter to the perpetuation of the species and eventually die off as traits of the species.