Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Understanding Men - My Own Daring Generalizations

 17 February 2011

Growing up in a male dominated family has its perks.  Quite a lot, honestly.  
One of which is knowing how they think and operate.  I am what you call a guy's ideal girl friend, am one of them.

(This picture is randomly posted just to tease my girlfriends and my BFFs.   Moving on, I would dare venture into a realm where I almost always end up arguing with my friends about myths they believe about men, or BOYS, in general.  To begin with, it takes two lifetimes (not one) for a boy to turn into a MAN.  Don't hate me for saying that.  I know lots of 60-year old men who are still boys.  My father for one, I think became a man at 60.)

As a little girl, I spent more time playing games with the boys than prettying up my Barbies.
I always played "the bad" guy or the anti-hero; the bank robber, the Indian tribe leader, even the Joker.  My older brother and my male cousins all played out the hero roles.  I flipped and tumbled, grazed my knees and elbows, played dead and I took every shot they fired.  The boys were always so amused, cackling with laughter each time I died or pretended to lose in the game.

They were happy enough I played the villain roles even if that meant a few privileges.  I would always get the biggest slice of the pizza; the first and corner cut of a rectangular cake; double or larger servings of ice cream and get their chocolates and "gummies" to swap my candies with, every Trick or Treat.  If they ever complained, I'd tell them they'll have to play their games without a bad guy.  Of course they wouldn't have that.  They need to be the hero and the star, so someone needs to be villain. And that's the deal.

As teenagers, I pretty much hanged out with the boys, off school and some weekends.  I know of all their girl conquests, their trade secrets and dirty tricks.  (Oh yeah, it took a helluva-guy to ask me out because I had unwanted bodyguards 24/7 plus boys are extremely territorial).

I never really outgrew "male" bonding, I still find guys a lot easier to spar with than women.  Even at the workplace, they hang loose, since they prefer to gossip at the bar.

Boys are easier "read".  I know I am going to be in a lot of trouble writing this up, but this is how much I learned from them and I just want to share a few.

First, boys are very simple.  Not a lot of put-ons, garbage, or what have yous. They don't like gray areas.  When they are hungry, they eat.  Thirsty, they drink. If they don't like a certain movie, they won't watch.  They get sleepy watching chick flicks. They prefer action, sports, science thingies, explorations and adventures, sexy women, not necessarily in that order.

But this is what I see and hear all the time.  It just gets me when women answer noncommittally.

Boy: "Do you wanna eat?", 
Girl: "Oh I dunno, do you?"  
Boy: "Well, if you want to, let's eat. I'm starving." 
Girl: "Oh gee, I dunno, I'm not that hungry." 

Men are creatures of logic.  One plus one is equals to two.   Not talking, not smiling, not looking at him, therefore, equal to angry.  Simple eh?  If you're not angry, but just a little ticked off, then for crying out loud, just say I am pissed off..  Otherwise, you are forcing the guy to make an intelligent guess.  Boys, and men, are extremely "lousy" guessers.  More often than not, they miss the point. Being clear and coherent is something I know men would truly appreciate.
Man:  "Baby, are you angry"?; Woman: (without looking, stares elsewhere) "No." 
Man" "Why don't you wanna look at me?"; Woman: "I just don't want to." 
Man" "Are you upset?  Anything I said or did?"; Woman: "Well, is there anything you have said or done that I should be upset about?"
Man: (long pause) "You wanna tell me about it?"; Woman: "No.  You should know."
Man: (another long awkward pause) "Are you hungry? Do you wanna eat?"; Woman: (breaks down, starts sobbing and talks incoherently, some that I know of, scream)

Boys have an attention span of a 4-year old.  Lengthy arguments and discussions bore them like hell.  (bores me too, actually).  Abstracts, concepts and all that jazz give them "brain freeze".  Not because they're lacking in "smarts".  They just prefer to be doing something else than arguing about some "dead horse" issue or answering "testy" questions.  Research has also shown that verbal skills generally develop much later and slower for boys.  Ergo, the vocabulary for lengthy and rhetorical issues are just way too tiring for them. So why bother?  

And NO, men do not have the ability to think about you every second of the day.

Boys and Men "zone".  They have a particular time in a month, for some in a quarter; when they "zone".

The ZONE is a place where they are alone in their thoughts and moods.  They would seem highly incommunicable.  It's not permanent.  Pretty much like PMS for some women.  But women should respect that zone.  It's private and intimate.  And exclusive.  It is not the best time to pick a fight with men when they are in the zone.  This has nothing to do with their feelings about their loved ones. Just leave them be.  Who knows what goes on in there?

Boys will always choose their "buddies" (even their toys) over girls.  It is useless to force them to choose.  It's downright stupid to ask them to.  They have the loyalty of a "pack".  If you are in love, dating, or married to an "alpha dog", you better make sure you know where your boundaries are.  They will choose the pack.  If the pack calls them because they need him, he will be there.  So get out of the way.  Have a hair spa or something.  Go shopping with your girlfriends.  Again this does not mean your man loves you any less.  Its just totally different.  Women need to learn to deal with that.  I am wise enough to never underestimate the power of "male bonding" and their love affairs with their toys.

Men (boys included) by genetics, are polygamous.  Whilst to-date, women still try to muster up the skill to compartmentalize, men were born with compartments in their hearts.  

It's a huge building complex for some.  There's a room for their "one true love"; a room for their "what ifs"; a room for the "one who got away"; a room where Jessica Alba is, beside the room of Megan Fox, and lots more.  

Okay, if you're crazy, you will ask your man what room you belong to.  That's just so typical.  The truth is going to kill you.  So, don't ask.  Women always tell men to tell the truth and not to lie.  But the men know better.  They need to lie.  Not just for their survival but for the good of all women.

Mom:  "Sweetie, is Mommy pretty?" 
3 year old son: "Yeth Mommy.  Mommy ith the pretti-eths" 
Mom: "Aww, but isn't Kevin's Mom also pretty like Mommy?" 
3-year old son:  "No, only Mommy ith pretty."

And you go on your way, happy as a French fry even if you knew your son was lying between his teeth. They just have the skill early on.  If I want the truth, I would never ask a straight guy. 

Woman:  "Hon, Is my butt too big?"
Man: (looks up from newspaper) "No honey, your butt is perfect." (goes back reading)
Woman:  "No look at it, I can't fit into my jeans, my butt looks like a ton of lard.  Maybe I need some lipo-suction surgery".
Man:  "Hmmm....?  (not looking)  Looks perfect to me."
Woman: (starting to get pissed off) "I said, take a look, I'm so fat.  My butt is all over the place."
Man: (puts paper down on breakfast table) "Uhm ...what? Oh okay, if you say so baby, maybe you should cut down on those blueberry muffins".
Woman:  (shouting) "Wait a minute, did you just say I'm fat?  Did you just imply I should go on a diet?  How dare you! Do you hear me complain about your receding hairline and your sagging beer belly?  Do you?" (starts to whimper ...) 
Man: (stands up, shakes his head, passes gas and leaves)
Women can't handle the truth.  I know I can't.  Not very well.  So, I let them lie.  It saves lives and relationships.

Very important to note, men are almost always hungry.  Everything makes them hungry. Food is the way to a good conversation.*

*You could have smashed the car's radiator but if you tell him you wrecked the car ONLY after a full course meal of rib eye steak, mashed potatoes and a good helping of Caesar's Salad, and his favorite ice cream dessert plus some fresh brewed coffee, he'll just say he will call the Insurance Company next day.  Absolutely no fireworks.  Try it.  Works like a miracle.

Men have a very low tolerance for pain, emotional and even physical. Do you notice how  men act like they're dying when they only have a bad cold?  They whimper, whine and wince like they are inflicted with some kind of a terminal malady.  That should explain why men would have been extremely lousy at childbirth which is why we take that on.. Arguably, you would say, they seem to be able to recover quite easily from broken relationships and failed romances.

On the contrary, they never really recover.  (look I am talking here about "Men" in general, not the deviant wife-beater, woman-abuser, pathological sex maniac, retards and rapists albeit they belong to the same specie).  Remember the congenital compartments in their hearts?  Yes, that's where all the sad stories are hidden and tucked.  Women move on.  We don't keep these horror histories hidden in our hearts, we don't want to.  Men really have a hard time dealing with the pain of rejection and failure but they would like to "appear" they have moved on. Not true, they are way too skillful in hiding it in their heart's little rooms.  

There are several other things I can think of, for instance, men can't multi-task.  Hell, no.  I refuse to push my luck by asking them to do more than one errand at a time. Yeah, just one. Should I want anything bought in the grocery, I list it down, using bold markers. They tend to lose the Post-It notes, so its better to slip a piece of paper in a place where it is safe, their wallets, or right on top of the dashboard. 

Why do men forget anniversaries?  Of course they do.  It's a little detail.  They're kinda big picture, y'know.  They see the entire canvass, but not the smudge on the frame. They will probably remember the scent that you used on your first date, but not the date when it happened.  Cheesy.  But if you seriously want your man to remember dates, put an alarm on their mobile phones.  Then save it as a recurring event.  hahahaha .....

I am sure you can think of other male oddities, feel free to add up to the list.  I believe it takes a lifetime to build a relationship so it is well worth our time to understand what can go wrong given the stark differences.


  1. So true, I always preferred the company of boys, that and having a male child has been enlightening.

  2. PB, haven't you heard men and women are supposed to be same these days, lol. But I think these are true. Men never go over things. That guy in grade 2 who embarrassed him in on the playground is still a prick who gets a glare when they pass each other. We hang onto things like that. Our egos don't bruise, bruises heal, they scar. But we are too cool to let on that anything can hurt us, anger is okay, but not pain or heartache.

  3. Hey, this is the best piece I've read since John Gray (Men are from mars, Women are from Venus). And I've learnt to read men the hard way as i had no brother & dad was out a lot during my growing-up days. College friends were, well just friend, didn't need to understand the guys much, just hang out. And now I have a hubby & a 8 year son, who seem to speak & behave like an alien at times. Gosh, guess it'll take me a lifetime to understand men. Wont be surprised if the sentiment is echoed by them.

  4. Wow. Pretty perceptive shit. Now, can you explain this to every woman I've ever dated, ever, and will ever date in the future, ever, please? LOL.

  5. Yes, some mean are peculiar creatures. But aren’t we all, at one time or another in our lives? As a male, I agree with some of your thoughts. Nice post.

  6. Thank you for stopping by, my friends with great minds!
    DCG and JM99 - nothing beats first hand experience to get both an understanding and appreciation of the men in our life!
    Jamie - so true! The worst damage you can do to a man is bash his ego.
    Diplo and Capricious - thank you for the thumbs up. And yes CP, I will be honored to explain these to the women you ever and ever dated. :)

  7. So true, my dear! I have three older brothers, and so growing up as the youngest AND only girl, I soaked up boy-life like a sponge. It is because of my experiences with my brothers that have helped me be a more understanding wife - yay for big brothers!

  8. Dear Amie,
    I know, having a big bro rocks! I always thought when I was a teenager that it was a pain. But we kinda grew up and will forever have each other's back! They surely taught me how to spot a sleaze ball 10 miles away. Great skill!
    Thanks for stopping by.

  9. Hahah I love this (the pic too).

  10. ha ha this is really cool. I love my sisters for the chicks...dont know how that is in reverse. Men are not often into reading and poetry. I got into writing only last july because i was hot for a bookworm and was ignorant and wanted to impress her. Now im addicted to the same thing i thought was for losers a couple years ago. I feel like my brain works better and i know my knowledge of theenglish language has improved dramatically

  11. “Women forgive but never forget; men forget but never forgive.”
    - The Wheel of Time, Robert Jordan

    Sorry for this seemingly random comment on a post months old, but I saw the link to this post on your most recent entry, and I was keen for a read.

    I didn't realise chicks knew about the 'Zone' guys have, I thought they were oblivious to it. Then again, I also thought most guys didn't get it and it was just me. I tend be a bit of a brooding bastard. It does clear the head though.

    And finally, a woman who knows that guys are not subtle, nuanced creatures... we are obvious. Painfully so, at times. I don't get all this subtle word-play and beating around the bush, just get to the point... or else it's like you said, we'll formulate our own theories and they tend to spiral out of control and lead to wildly innaccurate predictions. Which we discover are wildly inaccurate much too late.

    And yes, we are hungry. Always. It's a state of being.

    Great post and great blog, I'm your new follower.

  12. Thank you Ash, I am delighted you have decided to be a Follower.
    I remember my lessons from being "one of the pack." I have learned well, to know enough to survive the clash of the planets. ;) Hope to see you more often as I like your honesty.

  13. very well said! i enjoyed reading your blog! :)

  14. @sayanything: thanks for stopping by and making a comment.

  15. better than men are from mars and women are from venus, MAKES a lot of sense thinking about how things have been with my gf, and why she cant understand me nor why i cant answer some of her questions directly.. now i have the answers, lololol!


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