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20 not-so-simple rules

[tongue in cheek, please. thank you.]

I'm more than a week behind on this topic, but I got sidetracked and I'm just now clearing out my list of "things to blog about" from the last ten days or so.

Shell from Across the Atlantic made a list of 20 Ways To Make A Woman Melt. Jim gave it a sort of fisking and the Group Captain responded with 20 Ways To Keep A Man Happy.

After perusing the posts and all comments involved and taking stock of the situation I discovered that I, too, have some things to say on the subject.

Shell's suggestions are in bold; my suggestions follow:

1. Give her the remote (and no groaning when she doesn't click fast enough) I don't need to take the remote from him because we like mostly the same things. TV watching is a shared experience. Besides, if he was annoying me with his click-click-click way of watching tv, I would grab the remote out of his hand and then whack him across the head with it.

2. When she's upset about something, don't try to fix it. Hold her. Don't ever touch me when I'm upset. Ever. Just get me a drink and a cigarette and let me curse up a storm.

3. Surprise her by taking her shopping for a new dress and helping her choose something that makes her look fabulous. I don't wear dresses. Take me shopping for comic books or a DVD. Don't take me to Frederick's of Hollywood so you can dress me up like a hooker and yell out "you like that, don't you?" during sex.

4. Know her favorites: One of the most romantic things I ever read was a man who saw his wife's brand of lipstick on sale and picked her up a tube in her favorite color. Just knowing those little things means a lot. Acting on them--like bringing home her favorite candy bar from the machine at work or having her favorite cd playing when she gets out of the shower--means even more. Ok. I'll live with this one.

5. Corollary: We don't measure gifts in dollars. We measure them in effort. A man who has his assistant order two dozen roses to be delivered on her birthday will not get as much credit as the one who stopped at the florist and picked a single white tulip because he knows it is her favorite. Similarly, taking her shopping for that single dress above means more than sending her to the mall with a credit card. Do not take me shopping for a present. Get it yourself. Think a little. Use your imagination. And don't buy me flowers, which die in a couple of days and there's nothing left to show for them. I'd rather have a book. Or a new set of kitchen knives. The sharper the better, wink, wink.

6. Dry her after her shower. I'll kill you. Dead.

7. Show her respect and affection in public. When my mom met my partner, she commented later that he treats me like a precious treasure. There's nothing quite to compare to hearing your lover complimented by friends and family. My family has banned public displays of affection from my husband and I after that last incident at the park with the police and the cameras and whatnot.

8. Corollary: Treat her friends and family with respect. Only if they deserve it. Which, most of the time (cough*Lewis*cough), they don't.

9. Always take her side. If she's ranting about her boss, sister, neighbor, whoever, don't jump in and defend the other person. Don't think you have to fix the relationship. Just listen. If you can honestly say, "You're right. He shouldn't have done that," then do it. But if you can't, then listening is fine. Whatever you do, don't say, "I'm going to go straighten him out!" If I'm wrong, tell me. If I'm wrong, don't take my side just to make me feel all better. Defend the other person if you think I was being a complete ass. There is nothing more pathetic than a man who agrees with every single thing you do and say. Coddling sucks.

10. When she's working on something, come up behind her and kiss the back of her neck. Just because. Don't interrupt me when I'm writing. Even with a kiss.

11. Compliments work, so long as they are sincere and specific. "You look beautiful" is good. "I love the way that skirt shows off your fabulous legs," is better. To which I will reply, "Then why are you staring at my ass?"

12. Remind her if she's due for a trip to the beauty salon (every 6 weeks for most haircuts--4 weeks for ultra short) and insist that she treat herself to the full shampoo, cut, and style. Take her out afterwards. Tell her she looks so good you want to show her off. Update: Every woman but me thinks this is a terrible idea. All I can say is, my guy can pull it off. YMMV. Bad idea all around. A) If he reminds me that I am due for a trip to the "beauty salon," he will need a trip to the emergency room. B) If you love me, be prepared to take me out even when my hair looks dried and brittle and I'm wearing a hooded sweatshirt and running pants.

13. Rub lotion into her hands. Or feet. Or legs. Or her entire body. Lotion only means one thing in my house and I have days marked off on the calendar when that is allowable.

14. Write a message on the mirror with your finger. When she gets out of the shower, the fog will show it. And then I'll shove a bottle of Windex and some paper towels up his ass.

15. Schedule a professional portrait sitting for the two of you. Or borrow a friend and have him take a roll of snapshots. Have at least one framed picture of you in the home and one in the office, and put the rest in an album. Oh, riiiight. I remember the last time one of his friends took pictures of us. I mean, we made a lot of money, but that's besides the point.

16. Be good to her pets. Walk her dog or dangle toys for her cat. I thought that said strangle the cat. Which would work just fine for me. I have no pets. Two kids and a husband are enough. But the husband does dangle toys in front of the kids, if that counts.

17. Buy a book of short stories, fables or fairy tales and read one to her every night. You know what works even better? Penthouse letters.

18. Brush her hair. Do. Not. Ever. Touch. My. Hair.

19. Surprise her one day by washing, vacuuming, and gassing up her car. Suprise me one day by not leaving your cigarette butts and fast food wrappers in my car.

20. Cuddle. Touch. Kiss. Say I love you. And not just during sex. Please note that touching does not mean poking me repeatedly while making a point.

So there you have it. My revised rules. Keep in mind this is all coming from someone who thinks having a water pistol fight is romantic. And yes, I have personal space issues.

I'll respond to the Group Captain's list next.


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Wait...water pistol fights aren't supposed to be romantic?

jesus christ, if she KIDDING with her list? i mean, honestly? i feel like i should give this list to a girl i start dating. if she agrees with 4 or more out of 20, i should just leave immediately.

personally, if a girl doesn't get off on sarcastic vitriol, usually involving the two of us laughing at a hapless third party, it's not going anywhere. you should also be able to laugh later, preferably in bed, about the same hapless third party.

You can't DO #13 to a pregnant woman without a pee warning attached! It's just not right.

As long as women think this way and refuse to be responsible for their own happiness (and haircuts), we will never be treated, by society, as equals. Yeah, some of this stuff might be nice (though much of it makes me want to hurl), but please, it makes her sound like some deranged soap opera character.

I dunno if you missed part II, or just didn't care...

what do you mean "sort of fisking"? I thought it was pretty good....

This list assumes that the woman is a high-maintenence, spoiled, princess. I'd rather have a t-shirt from Hot Topic than a new dress and I think I'm fully capable of knowing when it's time for a trip to the beauty parlor and I don't need to be reminded. Finding the time to do it, is another story.

The only time, though, I would ever expect a man to "always take my side" is if his mother is badmouthing me in front of him and me. However, if he thinks that she is right, don't say so until she's gone. I've learned this from dealing with both my ex-mother-in-law and my current mother-in-law, who seem to have an issue with letting their sons go. If my mother were cutting down my husband in front of both him and me, I'd take his side in front of her, too. I would rather be told that I'm wrong than have someone always agree with me on everything.

Writing things in the mirror is bad. Anything that was done in a horror movie is not romantic. And I'd probably not notice it, either.

I must not be too bright, but I don't know what the lotion is for.. Am I dumb or just naive?

Those kinds of women are common on Mars. My question is: is there a refund for these kinds of women on Earth?

Ain't any magic formula for making a man or a woman happy except getting to know them as an actual person and then treating them according to how they'd like to be treated. If that's unreasonable, then you're with the wrong person.

I don't know why people think that half the human race is somehow unified enough that you can buy an owner's manual.

I met my wife at a water fight.

It's a long story.

Imperial Falconer

Not even gifts of firearms are allowed in our house.

I got The Mrs. a Jenn-Aire gas range, and a new Kitchen-Aid (in gun-metal color, of course). But those were house-warming presents, which hardly count.

Oh, and I got her favorite paring knife professionally sharpened. She cut herself with it two days later.

Screw romance. We share an office, a bed and trips to the mall and grocery store. We are apart (ie. in different rooms) no longer than half a dozen hours per WEEK, including range time.

Is there a point to this rambling comment? If there was, I forgot.


Every six weeks? I'm lucky if I get my hair cut every six months. And yeah, if a guy reminded me I needed to go to the salon, I'd probably kick his ass.


After reading #13, all I can picture is Stewie leaning over a well, saying "It rubs the lotion on its skin, or else it gets the hose again."

Maybe that's just me, though.

My husbands idea of #12 is telling me that my upper lip is "getting dark", and he always gets a well deserved smack across the head for it! Worse thing is, he has taught my almost 3 year old to check for it!

When I was just a young boy
My mama told me "Son,
Always give her the remote
Don't mess with water guns."
But I squirted a gal in Reno
Just to watch her dry,
Now when I try that lotion thing
She pokes me in the eye.