Ryan Lochte and the Case for the Dumb Hunk

They look good and they believe anything. Bring ‘em on.

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Every so often a guy comes along who is half man, half ham – a man so dumb he could be replaced in any situation by a balloon with a face drawn on it.

That man is Olympic swimmer doofus turned reality TV doofus Ryan Lochte. After winning 11 medals, the sexy idiot is now bringing his unique brand of brainlessness to E! on Sundays, in his new show What Would Ryan Lochte Do? (Answer: Swim and be an idiot).

Of course, Lochte is best known as the be-Speedoed chump who wowed the nation not only with his aquatic prowess, but with the confession that he doesn’t know what the word “douchebag” means. It became clear that chlorinated water was sloshing about in his vacant skull, but who cares? This is a man who says things like, “I like to do fun things,” and “my favorite movie is What Woman Want. The Mel Gibson one.” When he says, “I like fashion,” he shows us his radioactive snot green shoes with RYAN LOCHTE printed on the soles, in case he forgets his name.

Sure, it’s easy to laugh at the way he call his friends “The Lochterage” or the way he turns the word “yeah” into the word “jeah”. But let’s not forget: Dumb hunks are great. They’ll believe anything. They never come back at you with barbed retorts. And they don’t care if you haven’t read any David Foster Wallace… or anything else. They just follow you around with the sweet, unquestioning trust of developmentally challenged children.

And they look fantastic. Remember the young Keanu Reeves, droning “stop the bus” in Speed, or looking confused in a call box in Bill and Ted. SUPER CUTE. Or how about is-he-isn’t-he-dumb art hunk James Franco, who may do a zillion classes at Columbia but looks as if he’d have trouble doing up his own zipper? Hot. As. Hell. After all, sexual attraction is dumb in itself, based on nothing more than a sexy smile and cheekbones that could julienne a carrot.

So let’s all give the Lochtenator a break. He may be little more than sentient meatloaf, but you don’t always need a degree to get a girl’s attention. Besides – and this is probably my favourite thing about dumb guys – you can write anything about them. Nine times out of ten, they can’t even read.

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