In my naivety, I thought that Sex And The City 2 was just a movie.
But how wrong I was. If it were just a movie, you'd go along with your boyfriend, maybe on a Tuesday night, graze on some nachos for two hours, have a perfunctory chat about its merits, and then head home.
Maybe a bit of water cooler chat the following day at work, but that would be the height of it.
But no. Sex And The City is a defining moment in 2010 for Irish women. Because, while men have the World Cup, women have SATC2. A life- affirming statement of girl power, a chance to bond with your bessies and revel in the superiority of women over men, with some hot shoes thrown in.
Here's what I don't get. Sure, the audience for the World Cup will be mostly men. But if there's a rubbish match on, we'll say so. In fact, we'll hurl abuse at the screen. We will, in short, exercise some quality control. But when it comes to SATC, although many women deep down know it's a pile of poo, to say so is sacrilege. Because it's not just a movie -- it's a "girl thing", and for any girl to break ranks and be honest that, as a movie, it's unspeakable garbage, is to break ranks with the sisterhood, risk excommunication from the girls.
Women harp on about equality, their lack of fair treatment in the workplace, the inequity of pay grades.
They tell you about the so-called glass ceiling that exists in corporate Ireland, preventing talented women from progressing to the highest level. And in a lot of cases, they're absolutely right.
So why is it that so many women not only tolerate, but actually embrace, something as demeaning to them as Sex And The City? Deep down, they must know that it's mindless, lazy junk, which is actually insulting to their intelligence.
Can they not see inside the mindset of those people behind the movie, who must have thought: "Fair enough, it's a pile of poo... no plot, no ideas, but hey, it's got nice clothes and some cool music, and as it's only aimed at women, so it'll do."
In the past few days, I've met nothing but bright, talented women who seem unconcerned about checking their brains in at the door, and embracing this mindless tripe. Why aren't the dial-a-moans who ritually complain about the portrayal of women in the media, particularly when called upon to wear a bikini for a photocall, up in arms about their humiliation of women in SATC, and instead refer to it as harmless fun?
It's 15 years since the Spice Girls stood for girl power, which, however vapid you may think their music, at least suggested that women were talented, capable and independent enough to thrive in what had been perceived as a man's world.
With Sex And The City 2, it seems that women have thrown in the towel, and accepted that all they're good for is shopping, dressing up and giggling inanely at puerile, anti-men jokes.
And at the risk of blowing smoke up your collective asses -- women are better than that.
PORN MAGS -- I CAN OFFER SOME EXPERT ADVICE HERE
I'm delighted to see that Ireland is to have its own, allegedly first, porn magazine. Delighted, because here's a rare occurrence -- something I'm actually qualified to comment on.
Publishing, that is, not porn.
Firstly, this isn't "Ireland's first porn magazine", as the publishers claim. Various others, dating back to the late 1970s, have attempted this type of magazine, and if memory serves me right, convicted fraudster Elio Malocco (left) was behind an Irish top-shelf title called Patrick in the 80s.
It is, according to a spokesman, "exactly what Ireland needs". Of course, the exact opposite is true -- not only will Blue Ireland be a tacky irrelevance which will probably go bust within a few months, it is also strangely out of sync with the times, the publishing equivalent of our entry to the Eurovision. The world of one-handed readership has moved on since the internet, and the idea of men spending €9 on a few unhygienic pictures of tattooed, part-time model Maggie from Dublin is laughable.
Just as out of touch, however, is the Rape Crisis Centre slamming the mag on the basis that "pornography can lead to serious relationship problems". I'm not condoning porn, or this grotty little mag, but if the RCC is asking people to boycott everything that harms relationships, how come it's not picketing all the pubs and bookies?
We weren't cheated or robbed in the Eurovision, we just weren't good enough
There's nothing like the Eurovision Song Contest to bring out conspiracy theories.
First up, we see that Ronan Keating has voiced doubts about the selection process whereby Niamh Kavanagh was chosen to represent Ireland.
Speaking on a documentary about British TV presenter Justin Lee Collins's attempts to have his song -- co-written by Keating -- chosen to represent Ireland, Keating suggested that Niamh Kavanagh's song had been pre-chosen before the Irish Song Contest took place. Well if Ronan is suggesting there was cheating involved, we should be all ears. After all, he's the expert...
All of which is rapidly followed by the theories about why Niamh did so badly in the final. All 38 voting countries had an agenda against Ireland? Every one of them failed to spot the quality of a song that was blindingly obvious to everyone in, er, Ireland? I don't think so...
We complain about the partisan nature of other participating countries, yet blindly stick to our guns about the quality of our entry, when one country after another begs to differ.
We weren't robbed. We weren't part of a conspiracy. And we weren't a victim of the changing tastes of the musical audience. We simply weren't good enough. Get over it.