Am I Gay Enough For Ya?
As I am writing this column, my lovely bride-to-be is picking the ingrown hairs out of my back and shoulders.
Wait! My story gets better…
A friend of mine and I were recently lamenting the fact that neither one of us are as naturally well groomed as a woman might want us to be. I know for sure that if there’s one thing my fiancé wished to change about me it’s that I should take more of an interest in my appearance. She wishes that I would more time in the mirror, grooming myself and making myself look pretty as a matter of pride.
I on the other hand, and my friend agreed, believed that when it doesn’t matter I shouldn’t have to put to the time in. Grooming is for special occasions and work, not for just hanging around the house. At least that’s what I used to think before my fiancés special brand of Marge Simpson’s “gentle nagging” got me to at least shave every other day or at least before she and go out at night.
This topic among many has had me thinking of late that it’s pretty ironic how woman want to be with a “man’s man” but then can’t seem to stand anything about what being a man is all about. Men like stuff, especially my generation of men, whom are admittedly a little slow to grow up.
We like video games, music, TV, movies and sports. I myself like to curl up with a good non-fiction book, but then I’m something of a nerd. My point is, my wonderful fiancé has often pointed out that I spend an inordinate amount of time focusing on exterior things than I do on myself or more intimate details of our lives.
Oh who am I kidding, I’m the say guy that managed to miss a bartender flashing her chest to the entire club in Levittown, NY but can spot someone with Bi-Polar Disorder from a mile away.
Anywho, I have come to the conclusion that on some level, I believe that my fiancé is one of many woman who wish their man was just a little gay…just gay enough to take the proper amount of time and care in their grooming habits. You know the usual suspects; plucked eyebrows, exfoliated skin, waxed bodies, clean shaven face, manicured nails, and freshly pressed clothes.
Any woman reading this would look at this list and say, “Well yeah, your not a homeless person, why shouldn’t you do all that?” And any straight man that reads that list (usually) would say, “What man has that kind of time? I have stuff to do like watch sports, work, exercise, get drunk, and/or blog (OK that last one is just me, but you see my point.)
But many men in fact do take the time to properly groom themselves. These men typically have learned these habits from mothers or sisters and do them if for no other reason than they want to meet women, women who like a well groomed man. Of course the stereotype is that any man who takes that time on themselves instead of something important (like whatever hobby they are interested in) is clearly homosexual.
There’s the rub. Women seem to want both. As a matter of fact Nan Shipley has written a book on the subject, “Is Your Straight Man Gay Enough? The Ultimate Renovation Guide.” According to a review in the Sacramento Bee, “The book purports to aid women in surreptitiously – this is crucial – remaking their hairy, distracted, sports-addled straight men into something a little more like their well-groomed, empathetic gay best friend. The one who likes to shop, listens to her pour her heart out and loves to dance.
In Shipley’s case, her gay best friend is Jason Anthony, a literary agent in New York City who is also her co-author. Together, they have written a funny book that uses stereotypes about men on the straight-gay spectrum in the hope that a clever woman can split the difference to her advantage.”
This actually makes a lot of sense. Women want a guy that will be sympathetic to their needs and one of those needs that they should be made to feel good. One way and probably the most important way is to show how much you care by looking good for her. Now that may not make a lot of sense to guys to the ladies it is the gospel according to Cupid. She becomes special by virtue of the amount of effort your lazy butt puts into your appearance.
Listening to them and being supportive especially in those times when they feel like their world is crumbling around them also helps a bunch. Men are problem solvers. We’re a fairly simplistic bunch. The thing is, sometimes their isn’t a viable solution and all the person needs is someone to vent their frustrations to. As the guy, your job is to be there and give your sweetie a safe place to vent without this need to solve the problem quickly so they can stop talking and you can watch wrestling…wait, never mind that last part.
However, getting back to stereotypes most guys think that what I just described is a little on the gay side. What guy in their right mind wants to listen to a whole lot of whining? The answer is, the guy that wants to see their relationship work, that’s who. Being sensitive to your loves needs, whether its emotional or physical is not gay, it’s the right thing to do. There’s plenty of stuff guys want from their women that under normal circumstances they wouldn’t be willing to do but they do anyway to make us happy. The least we can do is not look like a complete slop when they want to go out to dinner on a Saturday night.
So if you have to be a little “gay” to make your woman happy, what bloody difference does it make? She certainly won’t think less of you because that’s what she wanted in the first place. Like Chris Rock once said, and I’m paraphrasing here, when you were single no woman would touch, then you met one that cleaned you up and now every woman wants to sleep with you. He was exaggerating but the point is clear, if you want to make the woman happy, you have to frolic in the periwinkles of homosexuality every now and then. It’s not the worst price to pay for a lifetime of companionship.