“Even though he says he loves me, I’ll never go out with him because YOU saw him FIRST.” That’s Chicks before Dicks.

“Even though she’s super hot, I’m never gonna go out with her, cuz she dumped your brother’s best friend’s cousin.” That’s Bros before Hos.

Ok. That’s the gen-x version of the age-old sisterhood vs. brotherhood conundrum. It also sounds like youthful pack mentality. But this week in Colorado, I had a disturbing revelation. Women are pathetic, men are appalling and they do stick together. Now I’m in deep trouble. So at least hear me out. I was at the Comedy Festival, which happens once a year in Aspen. Buyers go to meet funny, up and coming stem-cell comics, get hideously drunk because of the altitude, schmooze, ski, dine royally on expense accounts and occasionally get laid. But this year was different. First of all, Aspen is so horribly expensive that the only cheap places to eat are the pizza parlor and the crepe cart… the latter being outdoors in front of the historic Wheeler Opera House in 3-below-zero weather. These two places are only acceptable to be seen at for one visit apiece by the non-hoi polloi, or suffer the consequences of being seen as a loser, cheapskate and on your way out of the business. Secondly, the economy stinks, so everyone is sucking it up and tightening their belts. Since no one wanted to be seen at the pizza parlor twice, companies sent less people. And finally, 9-11 has sucked the air right out of silliness, free speech and freewheeling spending. So in that atmosphere of less oxygen and more strife, we met to do some ‘Business of Show.’

We all want to attract the herds to our shows and movies no matter how
artsy-fartsy or indie-schmindie we are. So we act like herds ourselves. We stampede here and there, caught up in the mad dash based on prey, fear, excitement, flow and… well… look at all the reality shows… just plain stupidity. But when there is trouble in the air, the herd closes in tighter and runs faster. It’s safer that way. So why do I think that women are pathetic and men are appalling? Because in two public debates and two interviews of high-powered sociable troglodytes, the women spent an enormous amount of time apologizing and the men spent an enormous amount of time in a pissing contest. The most fun example of this was the free speech debate where Oliver (“Platoon”) Stone rolled his eyes, made faces and snorted loudly out of his nose while Matt (“South Park”) Stone repeatedly called Oliver ‘Bud.’ But was it funny? Not really. It was disturbing and precarious. There was more danger in the air and the herd was forced to stop and watch those two carry on, thus becoming vulnerable. If there was any female in sight on stage, she might have nipped the pissing contest in the bud by acts of contrition, or some lighthearted apologies. And while the women at another event were stepping all over themselves apologizing for even breathing on each other’s sentences, the men (had they been there) might have shown them how to do that victorious Olympic dismount even when the landing might have been a little clunky.

So “Chicks before Dicks” and “Bros before Hos” is an old fashioned theme with new language. But I’m not sure it’s going to work. In order to make the herd run more smoothly, I think we need to mix it up a little. So hum a little West Side Story, think a little Hatfields and McCoys or listen to a little DMX. But remember, in times of trouble, if we don’t ALL stick together, someone’s gonna get killed.