Listen folks, I may or may not have had a few glasses of champagne and this may or may not be a rant. Just so we’re kind of clear.
I loathe being referred to as “cute” and I absolutely abhor my writing being called “cute”. Why? Because “cute” is patronizing y’all. It’s patronizing as hell. Sure, being called “cute” used to be a nice thing, but around age 14 it stops being nice and starts being repressive. At age 14, “cute” hits its own form of puberty and turns from light fluffiness to ugly patronizingness.
At least, 14 is when I first remember feeling like “cute” was no longer a desirable adjective to be called. “Cute” was what all the popular girls called you when they really meant, “not cool”. “Cute” was what boys called you right before qualifying it with “ but not hot”. “Cute” was what your art teacher called your final project when she really meant, “derivative and without vision”. “Cute” was what your English teacher called the poem you wrote in iambic pentameter when he really meant, “lovesick teens are the worst”. “Cute” is what your Mother called the homecoming dress you had previously loved and then promptly had to trash. Around the age of 14 “cute” stops being cute and morphs into degrading, minimizing, dismissive, and patronizing. “Cute” means “Cute…but….” Once you hit puberty and meander your way into adulthood, “cute” always has a “but” attached and it is that implied “but” that is so patronizing. “Cute” is less than, “cute” is not really good enough.
So, when someone, anyone, refers to my writing, which I’ve put assloads of effort and time into as “cute”, I tend to get a little pissy. Call me sensitive, call me insane, you won’t be the first or the last person to do so, but I know when I’m being patronized and dismissed as “less than” and I’m going to fight like hell against it. How am I going to fight against it? I’m going to drink champagne, write this blog post, and say “Screw you” to anyone who calls it “cute”. Puppies are cute. Babies are cute. So are Lisa Frank notebooks, Shirley Temple movies, kittens, stuffed animals, cupcakes, and penguins. Feel free to call all of those things cute. But don’t call my writing “cute” unless you are looking to start some stuff, because I will start some stuff. Ya dig?