It could only be Margaret Cho to debut our new feature, Fag Hag Of The Month. First, because she is an original model, helping define the phrase “fag hag” as we know it today, talking about the ups and downs of being a girl with a lot of gay male friends in her stand up shows, among other issues such as race, gay marriage, and eating pussy. Cho has been doing standup from the age of 16, becoming famous for her outspoken ways in the early 90s, going from the college circuit, to starring in the first sit-com featuring an Asian-American family (All American Girl), to sell-out national and international standup tours, lately 2008’s Beautiful, in which she addressed our notions of what it is to be beautiful. She is currently starring in the sit-com Drop Dead Diva about a pin-thin blonde model who dies tragically and wakes up in the body of a plus-size lawyer with a whole host of self-esteem issues. Her style is a straight up, take-no-prisoners brand of comedy, with added hilarity in the crazy facial expressions and gestures that go down with it, but best of all, she ain’t scared to address the all hallowed gender agenda.
One of my favourite clips is one in which she discusses orgasms, how men don’t really get the difference between being “far” from and “close” to coming, a problem they don’t seem to have, and how easy it is for girls to “lose it” during sex and never get to come at all, while the aim of intercourse between most hetro couples is to get the man to climax, leaving the woman to bank some more sexual frustration ’til next time. So true! And added discomfort occurs when you’re one of those girls who can’t orgasm through penetration, of which Cho counts herself as one. As penetration seems to be the downright most pleasurable thing for guys to do, it is assumed that girls will follow, and we have reams and reams of porn films that delude men into thinking this is fact. Actually, most women can’t come through penetration. That’s right, most. And while this has been labelled “Orgasmic Dysfunction” (as obviously if your needs to answer exactly to men’s, you must be dysfunctional…), Cho is raising a wider and very fundamental issue about our expectations on each other as men or women. Because as Cho points out, way too many women are happy to just live with never really climaxing while her male partner comes night after night. No wonder we’re seen by some as a gaggle of uptight bitches.
But Cho also gets my approval as Fag Hag of the Month as she displays all the best qualities I define Fag Hags to have. Really, you don’t need to have an armful of queer buddies be counted as one in my book, although evidently, the wider your circle of friends the better. More, it is a state of mind that rejects the traditional gender roles assigned to us, whether it’s being a girl with strong opinions, a boy who wears makeup to the clubs, or shopping in the wrong clothes section for the hell of it. By taking the mic as a stand-up, Cho is automatically challenging our assumptions about women and comedy and it’s fucking fantastic, because there is a real lack of women in the industry, and essentially, it boils down to how we as a society don’t take women seriously when they talk, or more worryingly, just don’t think women can be funny. As was once said by one greater than myself, “when a man gets up to speak, people listen; when a woman gets up to speak, people look, and if they like what they see, then they listen.”