After years of whacking all the foul and indecent thoughts that pop up in my head, I think I’ve finally rid myself of the harmful little fantasy of rescuing a damsel in distress. In the fantasy, I would be puttering along in my pickup, rounding a curve at a responsible speed, when a car, hood up and flashers on, would appear before me on the roadside. As I peered into the billowing engine smoke, I would catch my first glimpse. “Lady ahoy,” my heart would leap. Turns out, the lady is none other than Jennifer Love Hewitt. Who would have thought she would have time to get away from the grueling schedule of Hollywood and do a little leisure driving in the boonies? Well, me, of course, it is my fantasy, but the point is if someone doesn’t fix her engine soon, she’ll miss her taping of “Party of Five.”
So I slow down, roll down my window, give her the obligatory, “How ya doing mam? What happens to be your trouble?” She asks if I know anything about cars. I do, of course—again, this is my fantasy—so I pull over, get out, and cut my way through the engine smoke. Here, without coughing, I utter a few manly words like manifold, head gasket, and driveshaft. Then I fiddle with a few miscellaneous parts. Then I tell her to turn the key. The engine roars to life, purrs like a kitten. She thanks me effusively and even gives me a peck on the cheek (this is a PG website after all). Then I get to go tell all my buddies in high school that Jennifer Love Hewitt kissed me.
After a thorough scrubbing of my grey matter, I’m proud to say I’ve finally rid myself of this chauvinistic fantasy. I thought about keeping it and just putting a disclaimer in front, like Disney+ does with Snow White, but I decided that doesn’t go far enough. Instead, I’ve completely banished and replaced it with a fantasy befitting a man in 2021.
In a lot of ways, the new fantasy resembles the old one: namely, a car is broke down, mine, and a good Samaritan in a pickup truck pulls up beside me and asks if I need any help. Turns out, it’s Jennifer Love Hewitt and she happens to know a lot about cars. She utters a few manly words like manifold, head gasket, and drive shaft. Then she fiddles with a few miscellaneous parts. Then she tells me to turn the key. My Camry roars to life, purrs like a kitten. I thank her effusively, and we shake hands, after which I get to go tell all my buddies that I shook hands with Jennifer Love Hewitt.
FYI: Being a happily married man, I had to run this new fantasy past my wife for approval. She approved it, so long as my engine is the only thing Jennifer Love Hewitt revs up.