Thursday, February 21, 2013

Hot Asian Girls

...they're clothed. Sorry for any misunderstanding.

Two things we're covering today. First, out of Oddity Central, there's a piece concerning Japanese girls who are renting bare skin out as advertising space. This isn't quite on the level of some guy offering his forehead up to be tattooed with the logo of the highest bidder. It's not the forehead. It's down quite a bit further. See, a long-running fashion in Japan is miniskirts and high socks. That leaves some thigh skin showing, known as 'zettai ryouiki' or absolute territory. There is a TV Tropes page devoted just to that part of the flesh. The idea is, since guys are looking at that part of the girl's body so much anyway, why not put an ad down there?

This is a thing that the woman has to actively sign up for, through a PR company called, naturally, Absolute Territory, and according to Oddity Central, as of November, about 1,300 women had done so. They have to be at least 18. (As it looks from the company site, you can stick a Green Day label down there if you want.)

In China, women are working from a less advantageous position. There is, apparently, a tendency to call women unmarried going into age 27 'leftover women': the women still single after all the other women have gone paired off with men. In your mind, you might think of these women as ugly, but in fact the opposite is true. We're actually talking, chiefly, about the women considered to be most attractive. The thing is, Chinese men are regarded to have a tendency to trade down a grade, and not go after women they consider out of their league. They also tend to marry younger. So eventually, you're left with two types still on the market: really ugly guys, and really pretty, very well-educated girls who naturally want nothing to do with the really ugly guys.

By age 27, women come under increasing pressure to pick someone, marry them and give their parents a grandchild. The term 'leftover women' is used a shaming device, aggressively so in not only state-run media, but also the state-run All-China Women's Federation. It's a device the women labeled with it are now fighting. Under particular fire is a March 2011 article from the Federation entitled "Leftover Women Do Not Deserve Our Sympathy", and included lines such as this:

"These girls hope to further their education in order to increase their competitiveness. The tragedy is, they don't realize that as women age, they are worth less and less. So by the time they get their MA or PhD, they are already old - like yellowed pearls."
Shockingly, that didn't go over well with smart women. (Other articles noted that if the guy goes on to cheat on you, you're supposed to sit there and take it lest the guy lose face. Which pretty much any self-respecting woman would regard as the entire goal of not sitting there and taking it.) You won't find Leftover Women Do Not Deserve Our Sympathy online now, because in the face of righteous fury from the women, the Federation eventually- slowly, slowly eventually- backed down and took the 'leftover women' articles down. They now refer to unmarried women age 27 and over as merely 'old'. The phrase, however, remains otherwise widespread, to the women's chagrin. They will marry who they feel like, when they feel like it.

I'm sure there are plenty of American guys who will line right up.

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