Chopsticks

From quite some time ago, this cartoon, posted on a variety of websites:

(#1)

An eating-utensil version of the question so often asked of same-sex couples: which of you is the man and which is the woman?

(Hat tip to Richard Jasper.)

As is so often the case, people have passed around copies of the cartoon because they think it’s entertaining — but without any credit to the artist.

One poster on Facebook thought that it came from Ellen DeGeneres, but it’s dubious indeed that she’s the artist. On the other hand, a reference to chopsticks and same-sex couples is framed succinctly in this image (also unattributed), where it associates the reference with Ellen DeGeneres (but not actually as a quotation from her — though it certainly sounds like the sort of thing she might say):

(#2)

(I haven’t found any site that locates an occasion on which DeGeneres said this.)

I can’t resist adding that chopsticks are employed in such a way that you can assign sexes to them in use. From Wikipedia:

To use chopsticks, the lower chopstick is stationary, and rests at the base of the thumb, and between the ring finger and middle finger. The second chopstick is held like a pencil, using the tips of the thumb, index finger, and middle finger, and it is moved while eating, to pull food into the grasp of the chopsticks.

That is, there’s a “passive” chopstick and an “active” chopstick, and in the usual sexual metaphors for these things, that makes them female and male, respectively. But that’s only when they’re in use. In a drawer, or by your place at the table, you can’t tell them apart.

xx

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