The XX Factor

Christina Hendricks and Her Steel Box

It’s easy to miss some of the more bizarre tidbits culled from the Christina Hendricks’ interview in the Esquire “Women” issue, because, well, Jesus Christ, the PHOTOS . Apparently Christina has a few things she’d like to get off her chest , but what turns out to be more cringeworthy than the unsubtle breast puns are Hendricks’ tips to her male readers. Ever met/read/dated one of those people who think women are bubbling cauldrons of neuroses who hold on to slights and insecurities with the pertinacity of a memory-foam mattress? It seems like Hendricks herself is happy to sexy-up this view. Her warning to men? We ladies remember everything, from whom you said was attractive and what you said about our bodies, and we file it away in our little “steel box” FOREVER:

We remember forever what you say about the bodies of other women. When you mention in passing that a certain woman is attractive - could be someone in the office, a woman on the street, a celebrity, any woman in the world, really - your comment goes into a steel box and it stays there forever. We will file the comment under “Women He Finds Attractive.” It’s not about whether or not we approve of the comment. It’s about learning what you think is sexy and how we might be able to convey it. It’s about keeping our man by knowing what he likes.

We also remember everything you say about our bodies, be it good or bad. Doesn’t matter if it’s a compliment. Could be just a comment. Those things you say are stored away in the steel box, and we remember these things verbatim. We remember what you were wearing and the street corner you were standing on when you said it.

Of course Hendricks is entitled to her steel box and her view, but it’s just so disappointing for obvious reasons. For one, “keeping our man by knowing what he likes” sounds like the ad copy off a 1956 Heinz ketchup ad. I’m also loathe to think of the female psyche as tirelessly working through a collection of insecurities and slights, even compliments, that men are probably unaware they said a day later. It just all sounds so Joan-esque, in the worst way. Maybe Hendricks is a method actor?