There’s been a lot of talk about toxic masculinity lately.

In fact, as an opinion writer for an online news publication who grew up between two separate but extraordinarily well-off households (after my parent’s divorce, yeah, it sucked) and went to a prestigious strict single-sex private school, Toxic Masculinity seems to be all I can ever write about.

It’s everywhere.

From the Australian ball-tampering scandal to African-American hip-hop music, toxic masculinity has infiltrated every different part of my life. And it needs to be called out.

“Banter” – yeah, I was never a fan of it. When I was exposed to it, anyway. To me, it’s just a mechanism used by sportsball morons to uphold their precious white patriarchal stranglehold on society, and simultaneously mask their feelings with the stoic curtain of light-hearted humour.

But, love it or hate it. Christmas is coming up and no doubt we are going to have to be exposed to banter. Whether it’s from your uncle that won’t stop talking about how your new haircut is a bit how ya going, to your 65-year-old boss who you are forced to engage with despite the fact you resent everything he stands for but are too cowardly to address it.

Banter is an epidemic in Australia, and quite often when caught up in it, there is no way out.

That’s what I thought, that was until I heard to tradies bantering while working on a neighbours driveway the other morning outside my mother’s house.

That’s when I learnt the ‘yeah righto…’ call. Which if used correctly can quickly shut down any form of IRL trolling.

Basically what it is, is a gloriously petty way to establish yourself momentarily as the alpha of the circle by associating your opponent with an obscure and ultimately embarrassing doppelganger.

The tradie I saw get burned had big locks of curly red hair, and his colleague referred to him as “fat sideshow bob” it was not only very funny, but also a savage blow. The other blue-collar workers standing around were breathless with laughter.

And it worked for me too yesterday, when I finally worked up the courage to call a loud colleague ‘skinny bill shorten.’ I even said ‘yeah righto’ at the start. My boss laughed, and so did several other executives too. It worked a treat.

And it can work for you too.


About the writer: Jamie Hottake is a 29-year-old upper middle-class content writer who freelances between several online newspapers who are held afloat entirely by clicks that come from outrage-fuelled leftie teacup storms and listicles about Gaytime-themed novelty ice cream products. As a straight white male that’s never worn high-vis and has never been in a fist-fight, Jamie yearns for a sense of victimhood – but mostly has to settle as an ally for minorities, taking it upon himself to horribly articulate their concerns from his perspective. However, on a rare occasion, Jamie finds himself feeling like an outsider, and is very quick to pen 400 words about his uniqueness and vulnerabilities. He lives in a sharehouse with several musicians in Brisbane’s West End and lives in fear of people finding the photos of him attending a friends fancy dress-themed 18th birthday party in 2005, where he was dressed in blackface.


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