I had never heard of the group of onanistic internet humans who self-identified as “incel,” which is a portmanteau of the term “involuntary celibate,” until reading about them in Jordan Green’s piece, “Citizen Green: The alt-right hates women, too,” on June 21.
They’ve got their own websites and hashtags, their own terms — a “Stacy” is a sexually unavailable woman, while “Chad” refers to the sort of dude with whom Stacy would rather be spending her time, their own little silo wherein sexual intercourse becomes something that is owed them rather than something that is freely given, a birthright that is being unjustly withheld.
I suppose I had always known about that caste of humanity — almost exclusively male, though there are some female outliers — who for whatever reasons were unable to convince anyone, anywhere, to have sex with them, ever. I was, after all, a bartender for many years. And while I bore witness to many successful unions, I learned more about how not to attract the opposite sex than anything else.
And though I’ve been out of the game for a while, I imagine that labeling one’s self as an involuntary celibate and forming a stupid little club about it is a big, red flag.
Back then, when the world was different, we had a set of derogatory terms reserved for guys like that, most of them rooted in toxic masculinity, a forsaken culture that defined the worth of a man by his ability to rack up sexual partners.
Or, if the fellow was a decent sort, a sympathetic barman might advise such a client on how to better his chances of attaining a successful connection — or, at least, become less repulsive. A better haircut, some new clothes and the resolve to stop being such an A-hole all the time can do wonders for a man’s social calendar.
But there’s something more sinister to incel than there was to the poor slob at the bar. For one, the poor slobs understood that the problem rested with them. These incel fellows don’t seem to understand that inability to attract a sexual partner is nature’s way of making sure you don’t reproduce.
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