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Monday, July 1, 2013

Story: Oceans of Love

Information and comments on the story:

Oceans of Love

from the book: Life Will Get You in the End:
Short stories by David Satterlee

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Read or download this story as a PDF file at: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B4eNv8KtePyKRE9RcHRBdzBRejg/edit?usp=sharing

Life Will Get You in the End:
Short Stories by David Satterlee

Reader's theater for two male voices. A raw and hyper-verbal talk show host just won't let a serious gender-relations author explain his book.

Oceans of Love


Scene – two men are seated across from each other at a desk. Both are in business casual attire.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
(in announcer voice)


Okay, we’re back. For those of you just joining us, you’re listening to conservative shock-talk radio K.R.A.P. – Krap in the morning. This is your host Fred Baxter and you’re listening to Baxter’s Book Bilge.


Our guest in the studio today is Richard Johnson, author of the new book, “Women are Like Oceans and Men are Like Ships.” Richard, welcome to the show.


Richard, you’re a tall man, about 6 foot 3; may I just call you big Dick?

Richard Johnson (Author)

No.


Fred Baxter (interviewer)

Big Johnson?
Richard Johnson (Author)
No.
Fred Baxter (interviewer)
Okaaay then.


Richard, why don’t we move right on to having you tell us a bit about your book.


Is this a self-help book? Are there, you know, pictures?

Richard Johnson (Author)
No.
Fred Baxter (interviewer)
(sighing)


Well, all right, how about you just jump right in there and get this puppy moving.

Richard Johnson (Author)
Thank you Fred. This book is a serious take on the issues of gender relations.


The concept of men being like ships and women like oceans came to me while reading books by two psychologists. Carol Gilligan expanded on Lawrence Kohlberg’s research on stages of moral development. But Gilligan didn’t go far enough, she said that women’s bodies are ornaments while men’s bodies are instruments.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
I like that.


(resuming after an uncomfortable silence)


All right, who was the second psychologist?

Richard Johnson (Author)
That would be Terrence Real. Reading his book about men is when I first realized that men are mostly about rules and “agency,” like being an agent of change: doing things. Gilligan had said that women are about accommodation and communion—that is, about nurturing and maintaining relationships.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
I don’t understand.

Richard Johnson (Author)
I’m not surprised. Let’s use this illustration.


A group of elementary school boys and girls are playing baseball on the playground. The littlest boy strikes out and starts to cry. All the boys just want to move on because the rules say he’s out. All the girls want to give him another chance.


I say that men are like ships because of men’s tendency to navigate directly from point “A” to point “B.” That is, the markedly deliberate way that the masculine acts to achieve a purpose or execute a plan.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
(with a smirk)


Like nailing a…?

Richard Johnson (Author)
(interrupting)


Roof? Yes, home remodeling is an excellent example of acting with a purpose.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
I’m still curious about how women are like oceans.

Richard Johnson (Author)
I say that women are like oceans because the feminine can be deep, powerful, and in constant motion without any particular plan or direction.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
What about women who just want to sit and hold hands or hug you and never let you go?

Richard Johnson (Author)
Yes, they are seeking a feeling of safety, protection and security.


But in that analogy WOMEN are like ships and men are like harbors where the ships go to seek safety.


But that wouldn’t fit with Joan of Arc who led her army into battle and ended up being burned alive at the stake.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
(with another smirk)


Wow, I’ll bet she was a hot date.

Richard Johnson (Author)
Look here, you just keep going a bit overboard.

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
Ha! Overboard! Ships! Oceans!
(Coming back for the fatal blow – with slow deliberation)


Could you be a little more PACIFIC?

Richard Johnson (Author)
(Puts his head on desk and whimpers)

Fred Baxter (interviewer)
(in announcer voice)


Next on Baxter’s Book Bilge after these messages: cruise ship love advice from our favorite traveling gnome. All this coming up next.


HA! SEA SICK! Coming up next!


(giggling continues)


(fade out)
[OK, OK. So not everything has to have socially redeeming value. So sue me. No, really, please don’t.]