The book title caught my eye as I raced past it in the bookstore: “Act Like a Lady. Think Like a Man.”
So, I should think about cheeseburgers and sex?
Ba-duh-dum. Thank you! I’m here all week.
Since when do women act better and men think better? Since nobody wrote “Act Like a Man. Think Like a Lady,” I suppose. But that book probably wouldn’t sell as well. And yet, I don’t care about the book. What I do care about is how menfolk think and act, largely because I am surrounded by them here at home and on the soccer field.
Case in point: When I arrived at the indoor soccer field to coach my boys’ team this weekend, one male child proceeded to tell me about the shenanigans in the men’s room before my arrival, regaling me with stories of, let’s say, what men accomplish in there, odoriferously speaking. I noticed that he didn’t offer this story to any of the other mothers — just me — and I thought, He doesn’t realize I’m not one of them. I have finally infultrated them.
For decades, I have been fascinated by how males think. From back in high school, when I was the only girl playing street hockey with my brother and his friends, until now, as the only female coach of a soccer team of middle school boys, I love how the male species thinks because it’s so simple.
Now before you hit “Comment” and rail about stereotypes and cheeseburgers, by “simple” I mean “uncomplicated.” Boys and men — generally speaking of course — lack the tangled web of Queen Bee politics and “she said that she said” crap that can take down friendships as fast as it takes to send a text message.
Rather, boys and men are generally so Point A to Point B that they lack the kind of drama that leaves a mark. The Y chromosome is not responsible for adding “frenemies” to the dictionary, and men sure don’t rule social networking.
If one guy doesn’t like another guy, he tells him, or he hits him, and then it’s over. He doesn’t talk about the other guy behind his back, or pretend to be his friend and then systematically exclude him from social gatherings. When it’s over, it’s over. Except, of course, when they’re big boys with weapons and turf battles. But even then it’s so clear-cut: “I want to kill you.” Men lack nuance. And oh, how I love that.
When I’m home with my three males, I don’t have to turn on my Subtext Filter to figure out what they really mean. They say what they really mean, if they say anything at all. They think like men, and act like them, too. How refreshing.
That’s not to say I’d want to be a man, largely because I like nothing more than being a mother. Also, women’s friendships, when done right, are hard to beat for their support and yes, even their subtext. My women friends “get” me. My menfolk need me. After all these years, I’ve got the best of both worlds. I can already act like a lady and think like a man — and I’m thinking I’d like a cheeseburger for lunch.
Tell us: Surrounded by boys? Got a gaggle of girls? What do you think about acting like a lady and thinking like a man?