On Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness
Size matters. That said, one size does not fit all.
So take these words of wisdom with a grain of salt because every man is different. However, most fit under a fairly big tent when it comes to knowing what they like from a woman. That's not to say that if you don't follow these tips he's going to immediately bolt out of the door and hit the ground running, but you might want to keep these in mind if you want your guy to remain your happy camper. Here are a few starters for your consideration. If you’re not sure about them, ask a guy. Better yet, ask a Guy’s Guy.
1. Keep the sex fresh.
Most guys fall into patterns concerning what gets them off, both mentally and physically. And we know they are visual. Their preferences could be for women who are super-fit, thick and delish, lean and mean, the girl next store, women on top, yee-haw cowgirl style, leather and lace, cheerleader, she’s the man, whatever. No judgments here. It’s got to work for both of you. But when guys find something they like, they tend to stick with a proven formula. Yes, men are creatures of habit. If you always serve it up to them the same way, most guys will take it and say thank you. Better yet, if you take whatever they like and kick it up a notch, your guy will follow you around like a puppy dog. But remember: it has to work for you both.
2. His stomach is a tried and true path to his heart.
Yes, guys like to eat and drink. It helps if you enjoy food as much as he does and better yet if one of you likes to cook. And even better yet, that person is you. Most guys today not only know how to cook, but they take pride in their culinary skills. But, sometimes that means being the grill general, not the sous chef, the dessert maker, the baker, the salad dresser, etc. Usually one partner leads the cooking. Yes, I know we're all busy, but guys love to eat a home cooked meal and wash it down with a quality beverage. So if you are so inclined, take charge and every so often feed your guy good, healthy fare. Many single guys live day-to-day by doing take out or the microwave or by grabbing a burger at the local tavern—and that’s it until the weekend. Any help his partner provides concerning food and drink will be welcomed. I promise. If you don’t cook, consider bringing him some healthy take out. And when it comes to drinks, if you and your guy like beer, wine or spirits, drink moderately, but only drink the real good stuff. When you bring home a top-shelf pinot noir—that’s a check plus, my dear.
3. Be supportive of his dream.
Many guy’s lives seem to be built on waking each day to slug it out at the office. And there's nothing wrong with that, but I’ll bet that deep down every guy has a dream. Maybe it’s been squashed or put on hold by economic necessities, time, or responsibilities to others. But, I’ll bet if you take the time, you can open your man up and encourage him to express his personal goals and aspirations. Frankly, you are probably the only one who is asking him, so it's important and he will be appreciative—as long as you’re sincere and not patronizing. And if he has a tangible goal that he has the ability to accomplish, by all means: be there to cheer him on. That’s what partners do for each other.
4. Give him the benefit of the doubt.
Men screw up. A lot. And we usually know when we screw up. The last thing we need is our partner rubbing it in our face. Talk about it, address the core issue and hopefully move on, unless he’s cheating on you. Obviously that's unacceptable and you’ll need to decide if you want to give him another chance or not. You'll know best about that situation so follow your inner compass. I’m not suggesting that you waste your time on a guy who cheats, but every situation is different so find out what drove him into this negative behavior. If it’s a pattern, say "adios amigo". But get the facts. Naturally, there are a lot other situations that guys screw up, but we'll save that for another time.
I hope that’s a start to better understanding guys and managing your relationships. Remember, guys are flawed, but they have promise and need your help to be their very best.
Our Guy's Guy of the Week is Bob Marley, for always spreading a positive vibration.
Are you doing the things that keep your guy happy?
Rule number one: There is no such thing as fight club.
Let’s start with that thought in mind. In my opinion, there's no specific set rules when it comes to guys, gals and dating. I'm a firm believer that women and men deserve respect as adults who can think for themselves. There are tons of books on this subject—most of them written by women for women. Now don’t take this the wrong way: I respect everyone’s right to have an opinion and everyone’s right to buy a book someone’s perspective about building successful relationships. And all of this is just one guy’s point of view. There’s one thing to consider though; most of the books about men are written by women. I’m more of a fan when the writers are accredited experts, psychologists or doctors of human behavior who address their subject matter from a purely objective perspective. But, we know that’s rarely the case. So many times it’s ladies telling ladies what they need to know about men. There’s only one problem with that approach. They’re not men and as we know, it’s not easy to crawl inside the head of the opposite sex.
How Guys Roll
For better or for worse, when it comes to love, most men wing it. Sorry ladies, but that’s how most guys dive into the dating pool. With a nod to today’s technology, a guy sees a woman he likes and strikes up a conversation. From there, it’s on. Sometimes things work out; many times they don’t. When it doesn't work out, the guy brushes himself off and starts the process again. Of course men need to be more circumspect about what happened and what they might do differently before jumping back into the dating pool. But we know that they don’t always do this. It’s one of the reasons I write my blog and at times take guys to task. If a guy made a mistake, it usually has something to do with him not paying attention. Guys are not very good at that and we usually don’t tell each other how to date. Most men do their own thing and don’t overthink what comes natural. Sure, guys need to evolve and do a better job of being aware of a woman’s emotional and physical needs, but I doubt women want men to enter into a state of paralysis through analysis where they become afraid to make a move. A bit more thoughtfulness will help though.
Women’s Rules About Guys
I’ve read the most popular books on this subject and found them well-intended and well-written with some excellent tips for ladies about how to steer a relationship. Bravo. Thumbs down though when they declare an unbreakable code of actions and behaviors. I’m also a tad disturbed by what I interpreted as a controlling tonality and preying on women’s self-esteem. You know, where they tell you that the guy doesn’t find you attractive (gee, thanks) or some laundry list of do’s and don’ts about how to interact with men. Maybe it’s me, but the women I know are whip-smart, successful and capable of making good decisions. I wonder why women find it necessary to live by other women’s standards and specific behaviors. Just asking. Not responding to an text or email before a set number of hours have elapsed? Really? I assume this is meant to be empowering, but a woman needing to be told how long to wait for anything? Women deserve better, especially from other women. And as a guy, I’m not crazy about some of what I’ve read and interpreted as generalizations about men, like we were beamed down from Planet Neanderthal. Love is a two-way street. Let’s look for ways to treat everyone with respect so we can all enjoy the ride. Grammar school was a good venue for digesting someone’s list of do’s and don’ts. We’re all adults here.
What Can We Do?
I was on a media tour right before Valentine’s Day. All of the female hosts who interviewed me wanted to know what women can do to bridge the gap between the sexes. Needless to say I was thrilled by this question. It will be the topic of an upcoming column. Until then I leave you with the following.
At the end of one of my interviews, one of the hosts read the following passage from my novel, THE GUYS’ GUY’S GUIDE TO LOVE. The main character, Max Hallyday, discusses the growing chasm between the sexes with his womanizing best friend, Roger Fox.
“You know, Roger, we all have our issues, but men and women aren’t that different. We’re searching for the same things in life. And when you get to the heart of it, everyone needs to be loved. So why do men and women keep analyzing each other when the truth is so…simple?”
Our Guy's Guy of the Week is Bukowski for breaking all the rules.
Are you living life by your own rules?
The advice I read from the plethora of dating gurus, the more I scratch head and wonder what's really going on.
If men have really become so lame that they need to be reminded that texting photos of their private parts to prospective paramours is a bad idea, then the bar has been lowered too far. Keeping this in mind, I present to you five key areas where men can easily up their game and connect with women.
1. Honesty - This one is numero uno, and for good reason. Besides a Swiss bank account or Ryan Gosling's charm, honesty is probably the most desired trait a woman looks for in a man. And, it's a foundation for being a Guy’s Guy. Simply put, women want men to have goals and be the best version of themselves. If you don’t have honesty committed to muscle memory, you’re going to have trouble with your relationships and with life in general.
2. Reality – So many guys want the bling and the babes, but don’t have much to offer in return. If you’re still living with your Mom, we understand, but don’t expect Beyonce to leave Jay-Z so she can hang in your basement and play video games. For the most part, you usually find a mate that plays at your speed, so if you want a thoroughbred, you better have the chops to beat the competition around the track. Too many young bucks want to date women with bodies like strippers while they have blubber guts from pounding too many McRibs. Get real, amigo.
3. Generosity - Women do not like tightwads. Sure, thriftiness comes in handy, but you’ve got to bust out the cash when you hit it off with the right girl. If she is the right one, she won’t take you to the cleaners. So if she passes muster after a Chardonnay date, ante up and take her to a nice restaurant and PAY THE BILL. No splitting the check on the first date. And put her in a cab after that good night smooch. Even if she wanted to knock boots, she’ll want to tear you apart if she sees you have control of your urges. Trust me, it will be worth the short wait.
4. Empathy – Guess what? Being a woman is hard. Guys can roll out of bed and show up. Women are pressured into bringing it every day of the week. The clothes, the shoes, the hair, the bag. The list keeps going. And she has to take care of your shit, too. A woman’s work truly is never done. Cut her a break, brother.
5. Integrity – If you say you are going to call her, hit up her digits. If you’re no longer interested in dating her, let her know so she can move on. Don’t use a woman with an open heart. Yes, every guy, including myself, has succumbed to his libido and kept doing the walk of shame with a woman he was no longer interested in for one reason only. SEX. Find another lady.
There are lots more where this came from, but ask yourself or your man if he knows how to man up.
Our Guy's Guy of the Week is wrestler Bruno Sammartino, for his long-overdue election to the WWE Hall of Fame.
After all of the endless cosmos-fueled discussions with your BFFs about your boyfriends, will you finally crack the guy code about men’s strange behavior?
Repeat after me—“I do not hate Valentine’s Day.”
But, I dread it and I’d like to have a chat with St. Valentine. He might be a saint, but he’s got some explaining to do. The myths behind this man are as confounding as the commercial celebration of love that sprang from his legend. Was he really beaten to death with clubs, beheaded after restoring sight and hearing to the daughter of his jailer, or was his legend a creation of Chaucer? Until the twentieth century, the tales surrounding this enigmatic man were spun more times than a soggy pair of undies in the dryer. Then the corporations saw the dollar signs and produced syrupy greeting cards, milk chocolate hearts, and costume jewelry to build the “brand”. Because it’s a commercialized holiday we’re also subjected to price gouging at restaurants and florists. My informal research found that when most men and women see February 14th and that big red heart on their calendars they panic.
What comes to mind when we think of Valentine’s Day?
Pressure. If you’re single, Valentine’s Day reminds you very clearly that if you’re not in a relationship that you’re not on the invitation list to life’s love-in. And if you’re in a relationship, then you have to up your game and deliver the goods—big time. Women love flowers and chocolates, and like receiving them unexpectedly… on any other day than Feb. 14th. And if you give her jewelry on V-Day it better be the real stuff.
Men are simple. They love seeing their women dolled up in lingerie, but if her outfit is for the man, then who buys it on Valentine’s Day? Tiptoeing around Victoria’s Secret and sifting through teddies, garters and thongs can be unsettling for a guy. And he probably forgot what size she wears and does not want to make a mistake. You’ve seen the men wandering around the lingerie department, checking out women’s boobs and wondering if they’re the same size as their girlfriend’s. Trust me—men are uncomfortable discussing cup sizes with the sales girl. That’s pressure.
So how can we get through this annual ordeal?
Be flexible and relax. My wife’s birthday is on February 12th so I’m totally screwed. But there’s hope for others. Experts say that February 14th is the best night for single ladies to get lucky. That’s if they can muster up their posse for a manhunt. So, if you are a single guy, get your butt out on that night. And when you hit the bars for once keep your eyes off the hockey game and on those ladies looking for their slice of man-meat. If you’re a guy in a relationship, buy her a well-deserved pampering at a top shelf spa or cook her a romantic dinner and give her flowers and a hand-written card. If you’re a woman, go with the lipstick and push up bra ensemble to rock his world. Trust me, that’s all he wants. As for me, I’m going to clean the condo before taking my wife out to her favorite raw food restaurant. But I’ll do that on her birthday. Then I’ll wish for February 15th.
Our Guy's Guy of the Week? Who else but Cupid, that naughty little cherub.
Valentine’s Day is a day most of us dread.
It’s commercial, pressure-filled, exploitive, and most importantly-- forced and unromantic. I’ll leave all of that to next week’s other Valentine’s Day post. But there are two ways to look at V-Day as it gets pitched our way each and every year. Whether it’s chocolate, flowers, jewelry, vibrating panties, weekend getaways, etc.—you name it and they’re selling it in fire engine red. Here are a few suggestions for how to not only cope, but to have fun and share the love. And that’s the point. Valentine’s Day should be about celebrating heart-felt love. Your Guy’s Guy suggests that the best way to make this a special occasion is by personalizing it. That means making it all about your partner…and not about you.
If love is in the air and you want to fan the flames.
If you’re a guy and you want to get intimate with a woman for the first time the tendency is to buy her lingerie, hoping that she’ll wear it for you on Valentine’s Day. Don’t do it. She is more than aware that you want the show. If you consider my suggestions and it’s meant to be, the show will open to rave reviews... and it will go on and on. Chocolates and flowers and cards and jewelry are always welcomed, but a Guy’s Guy adds intimacy to her gifts that empower them as expressions of love. So instead of doing the expected and buying a printed card at Walgreens, buy her a card that allows you to craft your own special message to her. Remind her of all the things she does that make her special and why you want to get to know her better. Pay attention to the details the way a woman does. Believe me, she will notice and you won’t have to buy her red lingerie. She’ll bring on the black when the time is right and when she does you’d better fasten your seat belt. Other things to consider are attending events together like a sake tasting or a Broadway show that she mentions in passing. Sharing brings couples closer together.
If you want to keep the fires burning.
Again, it is all about personalization. If you buy her jewelry, have it inscribed with a special message. A former paramour once bought me a silver necklace with an understatedly elegant pendant. Nice. When I looked closer she inscribed the underside with, “Love Slave”. Talk about marking your territory. It worked. Of course when my next girlfriend took one look at it, it came off instantly. If you show some effort to personalize your gift when you are in a long-term relationship or marriage, it makes your partner feel appreciated. How about writing down the twenty things she does that make her so special. Why is she so important to your life, what makes her sexy, funny, etc? Make her feel special. That is intimacy.
If you’re going down the sexual path remember to make it all about your special someone. That’s where the lingerie and crazy stuff like vibrating panties and sex toys come into play. All good. That said, you want to make sure that there is as much giving as receiving so that the festivities go all night long. I recently read about an “arousal gap’ between men and women. As we all know, men get worked up faster than women do and sometimes guys get too excited too quickly. Along with the little blue pill and its ilk, and the various oils and lotions that help keep the balls in play, there is—believe it or not, a desensitizing spray for dudes called Promescent. Women like their men to be sensitive, but not that sensitive. And men have been known to go whee-hee--and then oops. A quick spritz could keep the party in full swing. A real Guy’s Guy wants to make his woman happy. It’s not a race to the finish line; the goal is to arrive at the same time so everyone wins. Remember that Valentine’s Day is all about your partner, so have fun. And play safe.
This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is Paul McCartney for writing all of those wonderful silly love songs.
Are you making Valentine’s Day all about your partner?
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- A Guys' Guy's Guide to Spring Cleaning
- NPR Interview with Lisa Davis
- What is a Guy's Guy? (Part III)
- Interview with Linda Strasburg on KTalk Radio
- 4 Ways To Keep Your Guy Happy
- The Guys' Guy's Rules About Rules
- The Guy's Guy Interviewed by Moll Anderson on Sirius XM
- Things Guy's Guys Like (Part 2)
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