I must confess that until about a year ago I did not have any idea what the term “sexting” meant. I wrongly assumed it had to do with typing sexual messages in the body of a text. For a number of reasons, I was shocked and sorry to hear a friend share the correct definition.
The Brett Favre scandal reminds us of the true meaning of the 21st-century word. For the uninformed — by the way, you should be proud, not ashamed — here’s an explanation: Sexting, when practiced by men, involves a man texting a picture of his brain to a man or woman, depending on the sender’s orientation. Evidently, he hopes this will titillate the recipient.
Nobody wants to be labeled an old fogey who can’t keep up with the times, but you can’t tell me that’s not a strange, strange thing to do. Revolting, actually. Is nothing sacred anymore? Even cave men would be appalled.
More on the Favre scandal in a minute, but before I forget, this whole ordeal reminds me of an old joke.
Question: Why do all men have nicknames for their brains?
Answer: Because they don’t want a stranger doing all their thinking for them.
Back to Favre, who played for the Minnesota Vikings against his old team, the New York Jets, on Monday Night Football in front of the nation in the midst of his humiliating sext scandal.
Deadspin.com broke the story of former Jets in-house sideline reporter Jenn Sterger alleging that Favre had texted her pictures of the organ that does his thinking for him. Favre neither has confirmed nor denied it. The voluptuous Sterger, a former Florida State cowgirl who has done photo shoots for Maxim and Playboy, said she did not take the bait, in part because Favre is too married and too old.
If he did it — the young woman’s story sounds oh-so credible — what was Favre thinking sending her a photo of his brain? If he was trying to prove he’s intelligent, he failed miserably. Better to remain silent and thought a fool than to sext up and remove all doubt.
Until recently, the overexposure of Favre had to do with excessive reporting on whether he would retire in each of the last several offseasons. The new meaning and the firestorm around it led Favre to give a tearful apology to the team for the distraction, reported ESPN’s Michele Tafoya, who takes the word “reporter” from her title “sideline reporter” seriously.
Favre isn’t the first man to be led astray by his brain to the extent he has had to make embarrassing apologies. History is loaded with powerful men letting their minds control them.
The combination of late politician Wibur Mills’ brain, alcohol and a foxy stripper named Fanne made for fascinating reading in the mid ’70s. A photo of Donna Rice sitting on Gary Hart’s lap on a boat killed Hart’s presidential aspirations. Televangelist Jim Bakker couldn’t keep his mind off Jessica Hahn, and that apparently so shocked the preacher’s wife, Tammy Faye Bakker, that her face froze in place, painted eyes wide-open, immobile big smile, no wrinkles.
At least Tiger Woods had the decency to have his multiple affairs behind the back of one of history’s most gorgeous faces without feeling compelled to text photos of the organ where his thoughts originate.