His Girl Friday has commented on a much quoted anonymous poem which sets out all the wonderful things about women and which concludes:
However, if there is one flaw in women, it is that they forget their worth.
This is fine and the sisters are entitled to congratulate each other on being women. HGF commented:
This poem is a nice sentiment, and something I think we ladies should take to heart. However, what I would like to mention, as much as we need to nurture and empower our own spirits, are we taking the time to do this with the man in our life?
Funny that because I was thinking much the same thing. The easiest thing in the world is to eulogize our own gender but I'd really like to see a poem by a woman, eulogizing men and all the wonderful aspects of their character. Then I'd like to see a eulogy on women ... written by a man.
What chance we'd ever see those?
Maybe I'll step up and write one about the ladies. As for the praise of men, one blogger I know with a nice turn of phrase and whom I'm sure would be delighted to extol the virtues of men is Welshcakes. Think I'll write to her and commission a poem.
What I'm talking about is, do we women take the time to take our eyes off ourselves and our own matters, and nurture the relationship with our partner?
Now let me address my fellow men:
We're quick to see the faults of women but after all, they're human. What of us - are we perfect? I think not. How many of us measure our self-worth by the notches on our belt? How many men over forty would refuse an affair with a younger woman who leaves herself open to our come-on? How faithful are we to our woman, how long are we prepared to listen for and how seriously do we take what our woman says? How many of us respect her?
Unfortunately, I want to point out that we women are not always direct with what we want, are we? There are those women who play head games (and there are men who do this as well), but what I'm talking about is communication. And communication is not always verbal, is it? Our body language, our facial responses. All in all, what do we communicate to our man?
How incapable are we men of catching the drift, of having the antennae in extended position? Why are we so simple? If all she wants is to be part of what's going on in our heads [and libidos] then what's the big blockage for us?
HGF says that this is what women want most:
-a man (not a cave man, though), independent, to have a quiet confidence; confident in walk and demeanor
-have religious beliefs or more so, a moral integrity
-young at heart/fun loving/good sense of humour
-a provider but not too madly career driven (which translates into being home, available, but providing security 'for the nest')
I love that last little one - very cleverly done, HGF. Seems a reasonable list to me.
Down in the trenches
So that's us being terribly nice to each other in our dance of understanding but to get blunt about it, the story at the front line is a bit different. Women's first major gain in the gender wars was the SNAG [google that]. The trouble was, he was a wimp and so came the Metrosexual, which HGF doesn't want a bar of.
The essential problem is that if women want the traits on the above list, then they're going to be delivered a creature called a Real Man. Now if she is serious about wanting a Real Man and not some female-constructed version like a Metrosexual, then she's going to get this attitude a lot:
I still give up my seat to a woman and hold doors open, and I've only once, in my 53 years, been rebuffed, and I still insist that Mrs Gruff walks on the inside, and will continue to do so. In reducing things to their absolute minimum one risks being typecast but risk is a man's lot, and more 'savoury' than aversion, so I'll indulge myself, as women are wont to do, and say that although I enjoy the company of women, and am happy to squander money on them, and see much in women that is both admirable and desirable, I know that when the call to arms is sounded there isn't time to fret about whether one's bum looks big in chainmail.
Just as men are never going to get their Galatea, so the most women can really hope for is that respect will beget respect, attention will beget attention, kindness will beget kindness and that's about all that can be hoped for.
Incidentally, it was interesting to me that William Gruff and I have been in different parts of the world most of our time and yet he still walks on the outside of the footpath and I do too. I bet he stands up when a lady comes into the room too. And I venture to say that both he and I would appreciate a true lady.
The reason I mentioned all this above is that Ubermouth has done a post on date rape, an interesting topic to be sure. She makes the point:
The problem with sex 'crimes' is that sexuality is so variable and so instinctual that a band- aid legal solution is not a one -size -fits- all protection. Even the cliche 'no means no' is rendered redundant because, even from a woman's perspective, if women are honest, many times no means a definite yes [but for the sake of propriety.....it's no more than a pretense].
This lady can write a great post when she wants and she goes on:
Every woman knows what I am talking about. For men who can't even figure out the correct response to 'do I look fat in this?' how are they supposed to decipher something so complex as 'consent' , or walk such a fine line when so vulnerable under laws which state 'right up until the point of penetration NO MEANS NO' and anything beyond that is a criminally punishable offense? Especially in the heat of the moment when he is beyond 'thinking and reasoning' anyway.
Can't even figure out the correct response? Guilty as charged, I'm afraid. Hee hee. I wrote as a response to HGF, a short while back, this little conversation:
Her: You haven't answered my question.
Him: What question?
Her: You've forgotten already!
Him: Tell me again.
Her: No, if you weren't interested the first time, I'm not telling you again.
Him [stops the car and looks across at her]: Darling, if you don't tell me the question, how can I guess? I'm not a mind reader. [Her lips purse, he puts car into gear and moves off.]
Her [After two minutes of silence]: You don't care about anything I say, do you?
Herein lies his inability [mine actually] to make the correct decision on which question was the relevant one.
The Supreme Court Of Canada decided [and enacted laws to reflect this] that a woman can indeed rape a man if she continues to engage in any sexual conduct against him for the purpose of,and with intention to, engage in penetrable sex despite his clear verbal objections.
Hmmm, not sure about this one. I was once technically raped by a woman for the first two minutes but by the end the crime might have been mine. There is a certain key indicator concerning rockets in pockets which does give the show away a bit.
Of greater seriousness is:
I am guessing that every single woman has legally been raped, if like me, no often means yes but we only show acquiescence, when we've reached the point of no return. Or even if the no was a serious no,but then our body reacted from the unwanted sexual stimuli[but how many times are we glad afterwards that the man didn't listen to our no's?] then rape did legally occur.
Perhaps the problem arises [and I feel almost no one will agree with me here] because there is so much sex with just anyone these days. So a girl goes to a bar, everyone's drinking and there ends up penetration. The sex card was thrown on the table, lots of ribbing and innuendo, which doesn't constitute consent by any means and yet it doesn't discourage total strangers from thinking along those lines about her, believing he might be in with a chance here.
This is the thing about mixed messages - how is a male, whom we've already established has no antennae, especially when young, possibly discern the subtle nuances of the female yes or no, sufficient to avoid a charge of rape? Most males need to 'learn' a regular girlfriend for a month before he can get it right more than he gets it wrong.
So how, in this volatile situation, with alcohol and other drugs impairing the judgement, can the correct decision be made? Even if he was ogling his own girl and pressed the point [unfortunate term, sorry] later, at least there is some chance of getting it right. And he needs to get it right, otherwise he's up in court.
You see what I'm getting at here and in the previous posts so I shan't press this point but leave it there.