There#8217;s humor in silly magazine awards

Published 12:00 am Thursday, November 15, 2007

Each year People magazine selects its “Sexiest man alive.”

The magazine was lobbied by two-time winners George Clooney and Brad Pitt to name their friend this year’s winner. And it did.

Matt Damon, the 37-year-old actor who has starred in “Good Will Hunting,” “The Departed,” “Syriana,” the “Ocean’s” films and “The Bourne Identity,” claimed his first title.

Email newsletter signup

His wife — Luciana Bozan — said Damon blushed when he learned of the honor.

And well he should have.

This is one area where men and women are totally different. Not that there aren’t a lot of those areas, but this one stands out.

Women are more graceful when it comes to competitions. That’s because there are Little Miss competitions, county fair beauty pageants, state beauty pageants, Miss America and Miss USA pageants.

The arguments about beauty pageants are fierce. Some say they objectify women, others believe they foster confidence in young women and have scholarships that help with their educations, among other attributes.

Both are valid arguments, but that debate is for another time. When women win pageants, the winner is crowned, hugged, kissed and generally celebrated.

For Matt Damon, his friends will laugh at him.

“Sexist man alive?” a friend will chide. “You’re not the sexiest man in this room!”

It will be relentless.

“We should do something,” a friend will say innocently. “But … I’d hate to be seen in public and get shown up by the SEXIEST MAN ALIVE!”

That’s why there aren’t many contests for men. Even if there were, not many men would enter them because they’re half-afraid of the ridicule that would come from winning.

(Note: This does not apply to body builders, many of whom likely have boundless egos.)

Clooney and Pitt probably lobbied for Damon just so they could make fun of him. Clooney, who won the award last year, will probably ask what Damon did in the last 12 months that all of a sudden makes him sexier. After all, ask any woman if she believes Clooney became less sexy.

People, and other magazines for that matter, should have a sense of humor when it comes to these awards. Instead of popular actors, musicians or professional athletes, the magazine should come out of the blue one year and give the honor to somebody like Larry the Cable Guy.

That way at least it would be a person who would be armed with enough wit to handle the abuse.

Rick Greene is the managing editor of The Ironton Tribune. He can be reached at (740) 532-1441 or by e-mail at