The media is chock-a-block with male bonding and man tripping. Just this week the Orlando Sentinel ran a luscious piece on man tripping down in Cabo San Lucas on the tip of the Baja Peninsula. The photographs of rugged men with their shirts open to the breeze, exposing chest hair that would need a machete to tame, riding in dune buggies and bonding around a driftwood fire on the beach, fill the rest of us males with unrequited shame.
But, after all, some of us men have jobs and families and Starbucks tabs to take care of, and can’t just fly off to the ends of the earth with our George Clooney clones for a zombie-fighting, bikini chasing, Harley Davidson, chili cooking extravaganza at the drop of a hat.
So here are some more realistic man trips, for the average nine-to-five Joe:
- 7-11 marathon. See how many convenience store hot dogs you and your buddies can consume before heading to the ER.
- Flattening bottle caps on railroad tracks. This activity is strictly for the bad boy crowd — of which you are certainly a member. Watch out for the yard bulls, or the ghost of Casey Jones!
- Barbershop quartet. What, you think four men singing in close harmony is too tame? Just try it . . . while riding on electric scooters in a No Scooter Zone! You’ll be on the lam from the law in no time, having all sorts of buddy adventures.
Men are that way because they want to be.
Also because women don’t want them to be that way.
And finally because nobody in their right mind would really claim to know what ‘that way’ actually means.
Every time there is a new sex scandal in the news, from Washington or from the Catholic Church in Pennsylvania, or from Hollywood, both men and women sadly shake their heads to sadly admit that, sadly, “Men are that way.”
And sadly, we all seem to accept that vague and uninformative phrase as the ultimate, searing truth about men.
But what if there were an alternative universe where men were never ‘that way,’ but instead ‘this way?’ This way being charming, intelligent, considerate, with no facial hair or preoccupation with female anatomy or desire to gather in masses for sports events while their families stay at home neglected and miserable.
Didn’t Einstein posit such a dimension in one of his quirky little equations? In fact, what kind of man was Einstein? Was he ‘that way’ too? Well, since he was a bona fide genius he was neither ‘that way’ or ‘this way’ but just went his own way, and to heck with anybody else.
And that is probably the way men should behave, the Einstein way. He never got into trouble over women or money or power or even a parking ticket. If men had his hair, they, too, could be any way they wanted. As long as they invented the atomic bomb or something else as useful.
Men don’t get made up unless they’re circus clowns, right? Better think again. The French makeup and perfume monolith Chanel just announced they are bringing out a line of makeup specifically for men. The fashion formers in Paris say they are just going along with the latest trends in the changing concept of masculinity. The bewhiskered, cigar-chomping, plain-faced brute is losing his appeal — going out with the passenger pigeon and the dodo. Instead, a gentler, milder, more caring and clean-faced gentlemen is gaining ground on all fronts. One who is not ashamed to highlight his natural beauty with a little discreet help from a jar or pencil.
So, at least, Chanel wants us to believe as they peddle their new line of creams and other gewgaws for men.
This new line of masculine makeup will make a soft debut in South Korea in October this year, and then go world-wide in November. Just in time to bat your eyelids at the table while carving the roast turkey.
The brand is being called ‘Boy de Chanel.’ The products include:
- A foundation paste that comes in several pastel shades, meant to hide facial blemishes of all kinds — but probably not tattoos.
- A tinted lip balm, to keep lips moist and colorful.
- And an eyebrow pencil to touch up those bushy caterpillars above your eyeballs — in black, brown, ochre, and gray. Excuse me while I run away and join the circus . . .
The website ‘LiveScience’ has a provocative article today on why men lose weight faster than women. A recent research study with two-thousand adults in Australia and New Zealand demonstrated that when men and women go on crash diets together, the men lose weight faster than their female counterparts.
Don’t shoot the messenger, ladies! I’m just reporting the facts. The researchers say that since men have higher metabolic rates than women they will automatically lose more weight than a woman during the same time frame. The good news for women is that when they do start catching up with men in the weight loss race, they tend to lose more of it around their hips than men do. That would explain all those chunky waddling men down at Weight Watchers. They’re not called hipsters for nothin’.
If you read between the lines, however, the report suggests some other reasons men lose weight faster than women:
- Men move more furniture, more often, than women. A woman may move a rug once a year, but most men move grand pianos and cast iron flower pots every other day. At the request of women.
- Men don’t believe in the existence of calories to begin with. So they have no effect on them.
- Men put so much hot sauce on everything that melted fat oozes through their pores like water from a sponge.
- And men just lie more than women.
The New York Times ran a big long article today on how advertisers are turning more and more to sports radio for the male demographic — from pimple popping teens to gum licking geezers. Men, it seems, are hardwired to want to listen to sports jocks talk about golf scores, MLB bull pens, polo ponies (oh go on, you men know you want to own one and name it Sparky), and soccer wingers. Not to be confused with Buffalo Wild Wingers, which are delicious.
Of course, this puts some of us men at a distinct disadvantage. I’m referring to those of us who find sports, all sports, dreadfully boring and irrelevant. We can’t really tell anybody about our ennui when it comes to punting, putting, pitching, and pole vaulting — we would be run out of the Man Club and have to spend the rest of our lives hunting for doilies in the Amazon basin.
So for those who want to fit in, here are the standard male replies to any sports question or comment:
“He don’t know the difference between a jock strap and a defibrillator!”
“Are we gonna talk, or are we gonna drink beer here?”
“The other team got lucky.”
Or, when all else fails, just grunt and scratch yourself. That’s about all sports jocks do on the air anyways.