Honolulu Lite










by Charles Memminger

Wednesday, March 19, 1997


Yikey Air!
Woman sends manhood aloft

WARNING: This column is rated PG, which stands for Parental Gross-out. So all you parents who are squeamish about reading about body parts, head for the comics.

I've been scanning the wires again and came to a screeching halt when I ran across the headline: "Severed Penis Takes Ride on Helium Balloon."

I don't care how long you've been around -- you see a headline like that, well, it stops you in your tracks. Especially if you're a guy.

It is an unfortunate fact of life that cutting off "da kines" has become something of a sport for scorned women of the '90s.

It didn't begin with Lorena and John Wayne Bobbitt, but that incident certainly put organ-pruning on the map. The incident was the first in which a guy named after a famous macho cowboy actor had his da kine sliced off, thrown from a moving vehicle, then reattached. He went on to star in a porno movie that could have been called "True Grit," but thankfully wasn't.

Now, such mutilation is becoming so commonplace that it's barely interesting.

For instance, I saw a story on the wire with the headline: "Wife Aims At Husband's Penis, Cuts Off Finger."

Generally, I wouldn't have stopped to read it except I was wondering whose finger got cut off, hers or his? It turns out it was his, which, while isn't a good thing, is better than the alternative. Ask any yakuza. Fingers you can live without.

But a headline like "Severed Penis Takes Ride On Helium Balloon" grabs you by the throat and yells "READ ME!"

This is how the story began: "BANGKOK (Reuter) -- A jealous Thai wife cut off her husband's penis in a northeastern town, tied it to a helium-filled balloon and let it fly off, police Monday quoted the victim as saying."

The story said the woman was angry about the man's infidelity. In my book, this is more than anger. Anger is when someone steals your parking space. Anger is getting a paper cut. Slicing off someone's da kine and attaching it to a helium balloon is evil. It is something a villain in a James Bond movie would threaten to do but wouldn't. It is the psychotic co-mingling of torture and whimsy, a combination of the most horrible kind of mutilation (from a man's point of view) and the cheery feelings one gets from seeing a brightly colored balloon dancing through the sky.

It's a horrible, horrible thing to do, although I concede it does make a statement.

I will be the first to admit that men are scum. But this organ-amputation fad has got to stop. According to the Associated Press, jealous Thai wives have cut the organs off more than 42 husbands in the past 15 years.

If those are the numbers from just one slightly prosperous small Asian country, imagine how widespread this insidious practice is worldwide. Imagine how bad it is just among NATO members.

I think I speak for all men when I say to all women (or significant others of those engaged in same-sex relationships): Can't we all just get along? Or at least, can't we just settle our differences without using any sharp kitchen utensils?

And if we can't get along and you feel compelled by Satan to perform unauthorized surgery on your mate (while he is hopefully passed out drunk or otherwise anesthetized), could you at least not introduce extracurricular items into the proceedings such as balloons, radio-controlled vehicles or model rockets?

That's about all I want to say on the subject, except that if half of what they say about Bill Clinton's womanizing is true, he's lucky all he's suffering from is a bum knee. Hillary strikes me as a woman who holds a grudge, has access to many sharp implements and who understands aerodynamic potential of body parts.



Charles Memminger, winner of National Society of Newspaper Columnists awards in 1994 and 1992, writes "Honolulu Lite" Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Write to him at the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, P.O. Box 3080, Honolulu, 96802 or send E-mail to charley@nomayo.com or 71224.113@compuserve.com.



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