Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Planetary confusion

Men are disappointing me.

I’m not talking about my father, my guy friends or Lunchboy. I’m talking about Men, as represented in a book I recently picked up in the hopes of gaining a greater understanding of how the opposite sex deals with life.

Gender relations are usually pretty fascinating as a topic of research, but so far this book is falling flat. Some of the essays are funny and some of them are sad, but they all have a few overriding themes. For the most part, the authors are all male freelance writers married to ambitious, upwardly mobile women who have born them a child or two. The wives are (lovingly) labeled as strong, independent feminists who neither want nor require that their husbands support them in any way. The arrangement seems to work out for the authors, who all seem to be house husbands who don’t do much around the house and are pretty proud of that fact, but not for the wives, who are busy working, running the household and taking care of the children.

Not surprisingly, the guys all write about how their marriages don’t quite have the sexual luster that they used to, because their wives are too busy and too exhausted to put out regularly.

So far I want to tell them all to get a job, do the dishes and stop whining to their wives about sex. Rather than gain a greater understanding of the opposite sex, I have learned the following: Don't marry a freelance writer.

To be completely fair, I also bought the book's female counterpart, which I haven't read yet. I suspect many of the essays are by the wives of those male freelance writers—or by female freelance writers whose husbands don’t do anything around the house, fulfill few if any of their needs and demand sex all the time. I hope I am wrong about this.

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