Posts Tagged 'blogging'

Because men like to write on public spaces

Tagging, my son calls it.

That weird thing that used to be called graffiti. Now, when I talk about men having a bizarre desire to write things (usually their “tag” which is actually their “name” which is stupid enough  in itself) I am not talking about “street art”. Street art for me is that things Banksy does, or Shepard Fairey or Invader (although it is worth noting these are all men as well). I am talking about that non-art-non-creative defacing of public property that ranges from the changed funny street sign to the dirty words written on park benches.

Now women have been known to carve their boyfriends initials into tree trunks… sometimes accompanied by their own and a heart… but that is about the end of it. This tends to be one of those blokey things.

Those who try to philosophise and glamorize graffiti will usually try to claim authenticity by being anti-establishment. Its status as anti-establishment comes from two main points. The first that it is illegal to deface public property (for some, this gives them ‘street cred’) and secondly, it is thought to be associated with gangs and it isn’t and this gives the graffiti artists a kind of defiant legitimizing; Their total sense of actualisation comes from being misunderstood as something else. (In other words – they will have to continue to be misunderstood in order for them to ‘exist’)

Actually, graffiti is one of those ‘college boy’ acts of subversion like DJ’ing and doing lines at a party. These are banal, conformist acts of ‘subversion’ that are only shocking to middle class white boys who long to be mistaken as tough, wild and most of all free. graffiti is actually a rather ho-hum way of expressing oneself, unless real talent is applied – as in the case of the aforementioned artists – and lets face it, how often does that happen?

In romance novels if men feel the need to be subversive they usually do it properly. They take on an enormous challenge, or as is often the case in romance, they are fighting off the terrifying enemy. there is no need to rush off to perform acts that represent subversion just because they are in college doing exactly what mummy and daddy wanted them to do.

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Because men think stupid is cool

There are some things that men do that women will simply never understand. The best we can hope for is that evolution will take care of eliminating these things over time.

the things I am talking about are those male-centred attributes, objects or pastimes that make no logical sense but that men will defend their right to be, like or perform. It’s not so much the object itself, or the behaviour – its more men’s total fascination with the thing. A fascination that leads them to thinking it is cool, when it most certainly is not.

here is my to ten list of the stupid things that men think are cool:

10) tanks (hello! Tanks are NOT cool)

9) driving dangerously (self explanatory)

8 ) backseat driving (men call this giving instruction)

7) peeing contests / peeing everywhere (!)

6) killing animals (this one is dying out thank god)

5) belching in public (gross)

4) knowing twenty different way’s to open a beer bottle (really, this is NOT cool)

3) soggy sao contests (ummmm…. like REALLY this is NOT cool)

2) making fun of others in public when you are embarrassed (we can see through you)

and the number one is

1) farting in public.

In romance novels none of the above appear.

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Because men will reject a woman for what drew her to him in the first place

It was Socrates who said the unexamined life was not worth living.

A man.

And yet men lives the most unexamined of lives, generally and have a lot of trouble taking responsibility for

One of the most common of these are the men who will be attracted to a certain kind of woman, and then reject her when they grow to realise that what they liked about her was not what they liked in the first place. This will particularly happen in the area of women who need men.

Inevitably – in fact i will go as far as to say without exception – when men are drawn to women because they want to rescue them, eventually they will get rid of  the woman for exactly those same reasons.

Despite all the stereotypes, men can’t stand it when a woman relies on them. They resent women who are clingy and needy, and who demand that he be strength for both of them. Oh sure, he can do it when she is scared of the spider in the corner, or if she doesn’t want to change the lightbulb. When short bursts of masculinity are required, he loves the feeling of being a ‘man.’ However when a sustained support is expected of him, he will either run for the hills or jeopardise the situation in other ways.

And yet, these kinds of women get men easily and frequently. Especially if she’s pretty, they will toss logic out the window and fall at he feet of the helpless woman. And they will do it happily without any thoughts to the consequences or without any recognition of that little voice inside of him that tells him he won’t like her in the morning. A crying woman, a woman who can’t change a tyre, a woman wo can’t read a map – these are all the women men will fall over themselves to help. They are all the women he will walk out on when she throws tantrum number twenty, abandon with flat tyres and make fun of in public about her not being able to read a map.

Men need to realise – and perhaps and examined life would do this – that women who employ these kinds of tactics to get your attention will always use these kinds of tactics. If they understood that, they may be able to prevent themselves from getting into some pretty ugly messes.

In romance novels men are men. they don’t mind if she is weak and needy. If he loves her, he will simply be there for her no matter what. But for women, the heroine is as important as the hero, and so none of the women are needy or manipulative in this fashion anyway.

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Because women take revenge through sex

In the ongoing ever-present conversation between men and women, it is always the men who accuse the women of being unfaithful. Women get accused of it in a way that men don’t.  I don’t mean to imply women don’t accuse men (they definitely do) but the way these infidelities are understood is very different.

The stigma attached to male infidelity is one of a basic understanding – well he’s  a male and he can’t help it.

However, when a woman does it, the stigma implies there is something intrinsically wrong with her. The story around women is muddled. Women are supposed to want sex, but love fidelity (naturally of course) or they are supposed to hate sex. Women who can’t be ‘caught’ for example are always seen as spinsters and treated as frigid.

So, there is a special place in hell reserved for the woman who cheats on her man.

As if following on from this, women will use sex as an act of revenge. Men don’t tend to do this. they will sleep with someone because they want to.  But a woman will use sex in this manner. Not all women of course, but many women will use it to pay a lover back for something that he might have done to her. And this slight can be real or imagined.

It’s hard to know if the reputation came before the behaviour. But it is not difficult to work out why women do this. It is one of the few forms of power women have, therefore it should be no surprise to anyone that they will use it.  I guess if you look at it logically, women have very few avenues available to them to take revenge. Sex is one of the few areas they are granted any sort of power.

Add to this, every man being ‘unable to resist’ every woman, and you have a power ascribed women, that although not necessarily accurate, is still heavily set in mythology.

In romance novels women don’t have sex for revenge. They have sex when they fall in love with the hero – and usually they only have sex with him, and if any one else is involved it is with the consent of both parties. If women need to take revenge out on someone they do it in more clear and constructive ways. They don’t use sex as a weapon, because they have access to other kinds of power.

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Because men expect power without having to be powerful

Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.
Abraham Lincoln

Men love power. They say it is to impress women, but that is about as accurate as the theory that women dress to impress men. Men want power for the same reason women want to look good. to make the others of their sex jealous. To ‘prove’ that they have come first.

So what is a powerful person? Almost every philosophy or theology you will ever read agrees it starts with self-mastery. However, men have missed this point. For them, power resides in the strength of their punch and the quality of their lie.

It is true that men are getting better at resisting the punch. There are very few men in our culture who would defend hitting a woman or a child. there are even men who would resist hitting another man, no matter how much he challenged him to a ‘duel.’

However it is very rare – even in this day and age – to see a man working very hard to improve himself.

Oh, he may want to take more courses in his chosen career path. Or he may be into business books and motivational books. However, how often do you really see a man attempting to practise self-mastery?

And I don’t necessarily mean quitting smoking or losing weight. I mean real self mastery. Like learning how to be nicer to his wife, spend time with the children, and above all fight the ego drives that encourage him to dominate and control every situation, usually to the absolute detriment of all his long terms plans.

Men have largely gotten where they are by mateship and camaraderie. Women know this, because we have so much trouble getting through the ‘glass ceiling’ and being paid the same for equal work. In only very rare exceptions do you see men getting somewhere through intense self-examination, life changing decisions and a challenging of their own ego. It is a very rare man who will not argue  in FAVOUR of his precious ego. Why? Because it is the very key that convinces other men to elevate him, or get him something that he wants. His bravado is far more powerful amongst the world of the powerful (that is other men) because if there is one thing men want to see, it is the lasting enduring power of bravado. They will elevate each other and promote the most useless human being, all in the name of keeping the faith in their egos alive.

In romance novels all the heros are powerful. And they are that good old-fashioned kind of powerful. they are powerful in that they self examine and they allow themselves to grow. Usually they will allow themselves to be transformed by the love of their fine woman. And tat is another reason why women love them so much.

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Because men have no sense of humour

There was an ad campaign in this country a few years back that was very successful. It’s task was to encourage men (younger men particularly) to slow down. Several shots of men racing off at lights or speeding to impress girls, were met with witnesses holding up their pinkie fingers in response. This symbol indicates the witness things the guy must have a really small dick in order to be acting that way.
 
After the ad was on for a while, a report aired on the radio of a distressing case of road rage. A man attacked a woman’s car with a baseball bat on a freeway while she was sitting in it, smashing windscreen, back window and making large dents in her bonnet. When he had to face a judge in court over the incident, the man cited as a genuine defence, she’d held her small pinky finger up at him when he’d cut her off in heavy traffic.
 
Can I tell you? Men can’t take a joke.
 
Guys, if you’re gonna put the whole ‘aggressive-im-better-than-you’ thing out there these days, you gotta expect a little backlash.No one is falling for dragging at lights, two-wheel corners or mufflers that don’t work. The chicks your going to pull are the ones you are embarrassed to be seen with – trust me.
 
Driving dangerously has got to be one of the most stupid, ‘shit-for-brains’ way of attracting mucho attention ever. this went out with the 50’s greasers. please get it through your head that public roads are not the place for extreme sport.
 
Or, at least if you HAVE to do it, understand that you will be made merciless fun of, with no apology forthcoming no matter how much you sulk.
 
For your information, the man who cited the small finger joke as justification for his outrage, was fined, had to pay court costs, and had to pay to fix the woman’s car.
 
In romance novels men use their ‘mucho birthright’ to fight off villains and evil vampires, werewolves, bad counts, dukes earls and cousins. They never, ever use their powers for bullshit because women writers know, that inspires incredulity and mountains of jokes.  And justifiably so.
 

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Because women have no sense of urgency

 
One of the masculine traits I have to confess to admiring is the will to win. There is something that gets triggered in men that sparks a desire to get ahead. Now this is usually seen in misplaced ways – such as racing everyone off at traffic lights, only to be caught up at the next red light (very embarrassing for said males – makes them look like total douches). However, that spark, when controlled and directed into something exciting, is the fire that almost ensures success.
 
This is something women have got to learn.
 
A lot of this is learnt on the sports field. It has been a problem in the past that women didn’t really have access to competitive sports, but they do know and are working their way into that arena more and more as time gores on. 
 
However, women still have to understand that life is made of many small victories and although I do think women are, much better at winning the war than men are (we live longer for a start, which has got to be the ultimate win) we are very bad at winning battles.
 
Women just haven’t worked out yet that small victories mean a lot. 
 
Partly this is because women have no sense of urgency. They don’t get it about how powerful it is to give your absolute best to a project. Women will hold the best part of themselves back in every single one of their endeavours, only ever giving 80%. men know what it feels like to give 100% and therefore often wind up giving 110%. This is how the 4 minute mile gets broken, and then broken and broken and broken again.
 
When women work out that it is essential they push and push themselves, and that the small things in life REALLY matter, they will find that they can compete more powerfully in the day-to-day battle of accomplishments and self-love. For in the end, the only person who really knows that you havent done your absolute best is you, and the person who stands to gain from your 100% best effort is you also. 
 
In romance novels women give 100% all the time, and the women reading it love this about their heroines. Women know they don’t give their very best all the time and that is why they love to read about heroines who do. 
 

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