Contact Robert Manni:
robert@robertmanni.com
GUYS' GUY'S GUIDES
RSS Subscribe

On Life, Love and the Pursuit of Happiness

Things that Bug Guy's Guys

Robert Manni - Friday, November 17, 2017


Every so often, even us Guy’s Guys need to let off some steam about the state of affairs in our highly dysfunctional world.

We kill animals for their taste while polluting the planet at the same time. We give unbridled power to corporations that are only beholden to shareholder earnings. We pay men more than women for the same work. We invade countries we think might do something to us in the future. On and on it goes, and although Guy’s Guys maintain a steady grip on the wheel of life, once in awhile it’s good to let go with a rant. So consider this post as just that. But, know that some of the little annoyances I’m pointing out are symptoms of bigger issues that plague our culture and its way of thinking.

The bottom line is that unfortunately our society has been programmed to choose fear instead of love and greed over generosity. And as a result, people are approaching life from a position of lack rather than abundance. So even though I’ll be bitching, in true Guy’s Guy style I’ll always seek solutions to our problems and love over fear. So, in no particular order here are a few things that bug the shit out of your Guy’s Guy.

1. Our false sense of choice – If you walk down the aisle of any supermarket or mall you would be fooled into believing that we have an amazing array of choices in our lives. However, that is the furthest thing from the truth. Once old Ronald Reagan loosened up the merger laws and regulations in the eighties, corporations have taken over the world. The rich have gotten richer while the rest of us have been duped into thinking we have so much to choose from, while the choices we have are mostly cosmetic.

Here are a few examples—You can pick almost any flavor of potato chips, soda, or hot sauce, or sneakers but when it comes to your money your choices are limited to the blue banks, the green banks, or the red one. The rates are the same. The service is universally unfriendly because frankly, most banks don’t want to service the small fry accounts. What’s worse is that they won’t have your money if there is ever a run on the banks. It’s a similar situation with the cable companies, although at least they are not holding your investments. Take a look at the monthly rates offered by the two mega companies we choose telecom and cable from and you will see that beyond their advertising noise they’re offering virtually identical plans across the board. But take heart. You can buy bubbleberry vodka or one that tastes like fruity cereal. Face it, amigos. When it comes to the more important issues, unless you have a ton of money, you’ll get the same few, shitty choices as everyone else. The one choice that you can control though is how you feel about what is happening around us and how you can raise consciousness by maintaining a positive vibe in the face of all the doom and gloom.

2. Banking, insurance company, and health care nonsense – Sticking with the same theme, and acknowledging that most of the plans offered are too expensive and very similar, it’s no surprise how lousy the service is from the behemoth companies we are stuck with for our banking, insurance and health care.

You don’t believe me? Try calling your cable carrier and you’ll experience the long, painfully frustrating process of their dealing with even the most insignificant issues. For example, after seven years we needed a new cable remote, so we called our carrier. After spending a half hour on hold and dealing with someone in Southeast Asia about our minor issue, we were promised a new remote, free of charge. When our next bill arrived, we were charged for the remote, but we had never received it. We called back. Same routine. Charged again, but no remote. The third time, after explaining this to the usual unfriendly service reps, we ascertained that the cable company geniuses had sent our remotes to the exact same address as ours, but on the east side on NYC instead of the west side. We finally received a new remote free of charge, but the process took over two months and two hours on the phone.

Here’s another dose of pain. One of the banks I use abruptly deactivated two of my debit cards. No warning, no heads up, just deactivated. The letter they sent me directed me to reactivate my cards and account through their website, but the website would not allow it. It provided a phone number that I promptly called. Unfortunately, when I finally spoke to a rep I was informed that because I lived in NYC I needed to visit a bank branch to reactivate the accounts.  I reminded the rep that my address, where they sent the correspondence in the first place was also in NYC, so why didn’t they tell me to go to a branch then? No answer. And why, as a long-term customer, was I not given notice that my card and account could be deactivated if they were not used by a certain date? Again, no answer. So I stopped by a branch and asked the same question. This time I was told that the deactivation of my accounts was my notice and the next step would be my being forced going to go to the government to get my money back out of what would become a dormant account. How nice! This is what’s happening now, people. Our corporations are too big and they don’t give a shit about individual consumers. And to make matters worse, the genius in the White House is doing everything in his power to give more power to these oversized companies that already have their foot on our throats.

3. The demise of advertising – Since Dos Equis retired the “World’s Most Interesting Man” and before they were then forced to bring back the campaign with a younger version of the guy who looks eerily like Michael Phelps, have there been any ad campaigns worth discussing in recent years? Super Bowl ads used to be delightful, but over the past few years they have been the same boring car and tire ads or promos for shitty Fox shows and super hero movies. And how many times is Pepsi going to deploy the latest cutesy model or singer in the same lame scenarios? And haven’t we seen enough of those Clydesdales plowing through the snow and kicking field goals? Or a hot model teasing us for GoDaddy? The truth is, no creative person working in advertising wants to be working in advertising. There was a time when advertising was cool and was different. That was a short window and has been closed. Nowadays, ad campaigns are short-term fixes purchased by clients who consider their agencies to be vendors that can be stiffed if they don’t like the work. Ads are measured strictly quantitatively, which is unfair because not all advertising immediately results in a direct increase in sales. A good campaign is likeable and builds a relationship and emotional connection between a brand and the consumer. But client marketers no longer have the luxury of time to prove themselves. They need to see results on the scoreboard right now, so most of the ads we see now are ultra “salesy” and promotionally driven. It’s as if those crappy local TV ads have taken over the ad templates for big brands. Have you seen the new KFC campaign with the revolving Colonel Sanders character? In one ad he’s crowing “$5 dollars, 5 dollars, 5 dollars” as he hops along while pointing at platters filled up three variations of the latest KFC “meals”? This ad is far from finger licking’ good, and I’ll bet the agency wants to jump out of the window when the client calls with their latest direction for new work.

Here’s one more sign of the end. Think about how many ads we see built around the premise of people dancing around when they receive or use the brand they are shilling for. From banks to clothing to candy bars, it’s everywhere and it’s lame. Really, now, are happy people the best idea the agencies can come up with?

4. Everybody’s always selling – In the beginning, people thought the Internet was all about everyone searching for information, being entertained, or communicating with each other. It’s still the case, but things changed when someone made that first dollar on the Internet. Then it became a gold rush. I get it. And it’s been great for people named Zuckerberg, etc. You can still find info on anything and meet interesting people from everywhere while you’re streaming a cool podcast. But for the most part, the almighty dollar rules, and so, at times, the selling goes too far. Zero targeting is a media term that we all experience every time we’re online. Oh, you looked at that Wrangler Sherpa jacket at Macys.com? Well I hope you liked it amigo, because you’ll probably be seeing that same wooly denim frock for the next month while you’re clicking from site to site. It’s like a bad penny that you can’t get rid of. It’s annoying, but that’s sales. And how about that random businesswoman who hit you up for a LinkedIn connection? The moment you accepted her connection she messages you to sell you on her SEO business? Aaargh!

5. People who don’t pay attention – Let’s take things down a notch and dig into the insidious behavior of people so wrapped up in their little worlds that they can’t be bothered to show any consideration for anyone but themselves. For example, you are standing on a very long line at a retail store. You have your singular purchase in hand and your credit card ready. The lady in front of you has a pile of stuff to buy. She’s messing with her phone when the next register opens. She shuffles over and slowly unravels all her items. The cashier takes it all and folds each item up after she scans them. You would think this might be the perfect time to TAKE OUT YOUR WALLET. But no. Only after everything has been tallied does she realize that her eyes are bigger than her budget. So now she has to decide what she now doesn’t want. After this delay she is informed of her new total. Only now, does she begin digging through her bag to find her wallet, which is of course at the very bottom. And you are still waiting with credit card in hand. After another few minutes she finally pulls out a credit card, only to be rejected by the store. A discussion ensues before additional items are eliminated from her purchase. Finally she hands over an operable credit card. You get my drift? You see this type of nonsense every darn day. Don’t be that person. PAY ATTENTION.

6. Unaccountability – Since we live a fear-based culture, everyone is petrified of being wrong. People are incredibly defensive, like never before, and even among good friends, it’s rare that any of us hears the words, “Hey, I screwed up. Sorry.” No, we don’t hear that very much because people think that if they have been caught making a mistake they will be fired, executed and fed to the dogs. Relax, amigos. We all make mistakes every day. It’s best to fess up when you make a boo-boo. If people you hang out with are going to be pigheaded and never admit they are ever wrong, are they really your friends? In business, you have to be careful not to mess up, because with no ever admitting to a making a mistake, if someone is caught in an error, everyone piles on because they are relived it was not their fault. So, when it comes to work, be as impeccable as you can. But if you do make an error, fix it and don’t be a dick and blame your assistant if you get outed.

Deep breath. Exhale. Sigh. Shit, I feel better already. As a rule Guy’s Guys don’t bitch and moan, but like I said, every so often we all need to blow shit out and release any pent up tension. As long as we are not judging ourselves or other people too harshly, it’s cool. Everyone is fighting a battle that we probably don’t know about anyway, so be kind, do your best to stay cool and do your best to deal with all of the crazy stuff that’s being thrown at us. Until next time…

This week’s GUY’S GUY OF THE WEEK is NOT Donald Trump. Like him or hate him, here is a man who, not only never admits to an error, but he also rubs people’s face in it at every chance he gets if and when they cross him. Politics aside, this is not the way a Guy’s Guy rolls. So since we are ranting this week, our choice for the anti-Guy’s Guy is DT.

Building Your Digital Dating Presence - Part 1: Getting Started

Robert Manni - Monday, June 06, 2016


“The beginning is the most important part of the work.” Plato, THE REPUBLIC

Before jumping into the digital dating fray, take a deep breath, exhale, and relax. Dating is supposed to be fun, right? As Plato knew so many centuries ago, how we begin often determines our chances for success. Our first steps are critical in making that all-important first impression and drawing the kind of person to you that you want to date. Too often singles rush into online dating fueled by emotional triggers like eagerness, anxiety, and desire. They quickly sign up for a plethora of web services and apps based solely on their friends’ experiences without fully considering which services best fit their particular needs. Then they slap together a profile, upload it, and hope for the best. This kind of approach will rarely bring success. To avoid wasting time attracting and engaging with the wrong people, your digital platform should clearly communicate who your are, what you want, and what you offer to the thousands of singles who will be looking at your profile online. If you take the time to set yourself up the right way, you’ll save yourself a lot of frustration and disappointment and have much better odds for attracting your ideal mate.

HOW MANY DATING SERVICES ARE RIGHT FOR YOU?

Initially, talking to your friends is a good way to get some candid views of what’s out there. They can tell you the pros and cons of the apps and sites they use, but before signing up for any of them. It’s important to determine how much time you really have for dating and how many websites and apps you can handle or else you can get overwhelmed. I suggest choosing no more than three services or apps when starting out. If offered, try a trial membership before committing. This way you can get a feel for the various features before committing to a membership. Keep your initial list to a minimum. Managing a number of subscriptions takes time, so limiting the number makes the process manageable. It also protects your profile from overexposure. Other daters who’ve subscribed to multiple dating services will certainly see your profile as it pops up. Due to the algorithms used by most dating websites, new profiles or profiles with changes usually zoom to the top. If you are over forty and plastered all over dozens dating websites, other prospects may view you as desperate. Another practical consideration is money. Almost all the dating websites and apps charge fees and this can add up quite quickly. Better to reserve more funds for all of those dates you’re going to score. Remember, after you get comfortable with the nuances of online dating, you can always sign up on additional websites.

YOUR PROFILE

Do Your Research - A great way to get started is by looking at other profiles and seeing what others have done that you like. Ask yourself what kind of information was shared and how it was framed that sparked your interest. This includes not only what others included, but also what was left out of these profiles that made you want to know more about that particular person. Scanning profiles doesn’t take long and it can be fun. It’s a worthwhile investment that can help prepare you to craft a winning profile.

Keep it Brief and to the Point - Putting together a crisp, to-the-point bio may sound easy, but many daters over forty including professionals, business executives, and teachers struggle when crafting their online dating ‘resume’. Many are uncertain where to begin and what to highlight in their profile. They over-think the process and weave long, wordy, tedious biographies instead of short, easily digestible profiles. Age is certainly a factor in this. The older we get, the more we’ve seen and done. Many of us may have already gone through first marriages and careers and are already into the second and third chapters of our lives. So it’s better to keep this biography streamlined. Focus on current interests and only include details that are important to you now. Remember, the profile is a reflection of the person who writes it. So regardless of good looks or personal accomplishments, if what they post is overly long, ponderous bio, readers will subconsciously wonder if he or she is boring, too. That’s why it is important to keep your copy focused and on the short side. Everything included should only reinforce your personal brand image.

 On the flip side, keeping things brief does not mean writing so little that things appear disjointed, and for some brevity is a euphemism for laziness. For example, there are a lot of guys who don’t take their profile seriously. They throw a few sentences together and post it with a few random photos. They assume that everyone will know who they are and what they are all about, but, the point is, everyone doesn’t, and most won’t waste time trying to find out when there are so many other profiles that are clearer and easier to read. A dater’s bio and photos are the most critical components of your online dating presence, so it’s worth the time to craft them to a level of the people they want to meet. So, what should you include?

Cover the basics about yourself, the type of person you are looking for, and what you have to offer. That means sharing what you do for a living, where you live, your interests, and the kind of people with whom you like to socialize. A few short paragraphs are all that’s necessary. Keep your profile crisp, short, and fun. Leaving a little mystery and something for the imagination can work wonders.

To be continued…

Five Resolutions You Should Stick to This Year

Robert Manni - Thursday, January 07, 2016


Sadly, by this time in January, many people have already failed at their New Year’s resolutions.

After all, making changes in our behavior is challenging, especially when we bite off more than we can chew. I’ve given up drinking a few times and have lasted three, four and even five months, but denial is tough. Making positive changes is no easier. Fortunately each New Year, month, week, even day is a new opportunity for a fresh start. With that in my mind, your Guy’s Guy offers you a handful of resolutions to make your life and this world a better place. You don't need a new year to start fresh.

1. Less tech, more active living.

We live in an age where technology keeps changing at an exceedingly rapid pace. To succeed in the conscious world, we need to know how to master our phones, apps, and social media or we’ll be viewed like Grandma trying to “turn on the Internet” to Google a cookie recipe. But tech can lead us to more passive lives. We’re watching instead of doing. We’re staring at the LED screen instead of reading and nurturing our imaginations. We’re texting instead of conversing. We’re focusing our attention on video games instead of playing ball in the park. We’re becoming wimps. If we could be mindful about our overreliance on tech and choose more activities that exercise our body, mind and spirit, we’ll be making great strides as a culture.

2. Spend more time in nature.

Every time I step into Central Park the energy changes. There is something special about being outdoors that grounds my spirit with the Earth’s energy. Unless there is a torrential downpour, I always take my young son outside for a walk. And I notice that my son and the toddlers that I frequently see at the playground have less anxiety on their faces than some of the tykes I see on the subway staring at video screens and eating potato chips. With all our creature comforts it’s easy to sit indoors and keep life at arm’s length. But that’s no way to live—step outside whenever you can. Fresh air and nature rejuvenate our spirits.

3. Don’t judge. Accept people as they are.

This one took me a long time. My internal critic has a razor sharp wit and working in advertising exposed me to too many judgments about people and ideas. But I learned, and as usual I learned the hard way. Over the years, I did not build as many relationships as I could have and I dismissed a lot of people who I thought were jackasses. I guess I’m not that different than anyone else in that regard, but I realize now that it’s not my job to have other people see the world through my personal lens. Trying to change people is tedious and frustrating because we cannot see what lurks inside them or what has led them to their behaviors, decisions or perspectives. I know now it’s more productive to work on myself. When we focus on bettering ourselves, we raise our frequency and shed light on the others we come in contact with. Basically, it’s leading by example.

4. Be grateful.

This time last year, I had receiving a medical “diagnosis of opportunity” earlier last year, spent six months in and out of hospitals, doctor’s offices and medical procedures, and had ten puncture scars across my abdomen. It was a tough experience, but I’m thankful. Yes, I’m really, really thankful. My faith was strong, my medical teams were talented and capable, and my body was responsive. And now I am well. The few times I began feeling sorry for myself, I’d invariably learn about a friend or colleague in a far more precarious situation. Each day I awaken with gratitude for my many blessings and good health. Try it for a week.

5. Watch what you eat.

Let’s face it; our food supply has changed. Every day we learn more about the tricks and deceptions of food labeling, the horrible treatment of factory farmed animals and the potential long-term effects of eating processed foods and GMO ingredients. If the food industry has nothing to hide, why don’t they want all the ingredients labeled in clear language? People are sick of their games and also getting sick from the food they consume. Obesity and gastric-related illnesses have become prevalent in a culture that lives too passively and consumes mostly processed food. If you want to stay healthy, eat organic as much as possible and always be mindful of what you consume. It’s probably the most important decision you’ll make each day in regards to your health.

This New Year’s Day you can resolve to quit smoking, hit the gym three times a week or cut out sweets, but you don’t have to wait until the start of a new year to make a better life for yourself. If you treat yourself with respect and love, you’ll be more successful in improving your life than experiencing that week of agony during the first week of January each year.

This week’s—make that this year’s—Guys’ Guys and women, are the wonderful people who have supported my Guy’s Guy brand and the content I crunch out with a goal of making our world a better place. My best wishes to you today, tomorrow, and throughout this coming year!

The Guys' Guy's Guide to MRI

Robert Manni - Friday, September 05, 2014


Sometimes the human body is like an automobile. You take your car to the dealership for an oil change and before you know it, they’re telling you about potential issues in your transmission.

It’s the same with doctors. As a Guy’s Guy I do my very best to stay in shape and treat my body well. I give it good fuel and take it out for a long run a few times a week to blow off built up stress. But, I’ve also put some tough mileage on my tires. As a result over the past few months I had a bout with a small kidney stone. Thankfully, it has passed. I will be sure to do whatever I need to avoid experiencing that off-the charts discomfort again. During the process of sorting out my issue, I was asked to undergo a series of tests. This included a cat scan, an ultrasound and the dreaded MRI. Frankly, I have been so healthy that I invested very little psychic energy in these technologies. But that changed when I was asked to experience this gauntlet of standard tests.

A cat scan is painless. You are forced to drink a liter of creamy barium prior to the process on an empty stomach. Then you lay down and they take photos of your insides.  An ultrasound is easy peezy, too. It’s the same procedure given a pregnant woman. They rub some gel on you and work a stick across the area they want to look at.

An MRI is different and frankly until the day before my test I had no idea how it worked. I consider myself lucky to be so healthy and the experience gave me a lesson in empathy. As a result, I’d like to offer up my two cents on how to deal with this intrusive test. Here is my Guys’ Guy’s Guide to an MRI. Is this relevant to a blog about life, love and the pursuit of happiness? I think so. Let’s file it under “Life”. This is my take on my experience. If you need more official information, do online research and talk to your physician. Okay, that was a disclaimer.

What is MRI?

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is a test that uses a magnetic field and pulses of radio wave energy to make pictures of organs and structures inside the body. So, it uses magnets and radio waves to get a very clear and crisp look inside your body. I read about professional athletes getting MRI’s on their arms or ankles, but that usually consists of slipping the area of interest into a magnetic sleeve for images. When dealing with your core, the process takes on a different flavor.

 

What Is the Process?

You lay on your back on a motorized sliding “bed” and are covered with a “blanket” of magnets. They may or may not strap you in to keep you still.  The machine has a long tube. Mine was about five feet long, although MRI machines vary in size and the size of the opening. But the one I was looking at was a tube.

You are slid inside of it head first or feet first depending on the location of the images needed. I went feet first and was thankfully not strapped down. I could move my arms approximately nine inches to the sides. The tricky part was the tube came fairly close to my face, and I was staring directly at it.

Collecting and processing the images is noisy. You hear lots of loud beeps, bongs and clanking. To diminish the noise, they provide earplugs, headphones and a choice of music. The technicians talk to you during the process, mostly asking you to hold your breath at various times. I assume this is so you keep still. I had to strain to hear them because of the earplugs. Frankly the headphone’s sound quality was not very good and I was not in the mood to listen to the Stones during the procedure.

 

How Long Does it Take?

Tests usually take anywhere from fifteen minutes to an hour. The average is forty-five minutes. If you end up having a procedure following the test and need to return, the process is usually shorter. During my one-hour session, I spent forty minutes pushed all the way in. Then they slid me back out towards the edge of the tube for the second round of “photos” which took about twenty minutes.

 

How Do You Prepare?

Physically, you don’t need to do anything to prepare. You can eat that morning. All you do is change into a hospital gown with the ties facing front and remove your jewelry. Of course, due to all the ligations in the medical business these days, you need to fill out a pile of forms and repeatedly answer a series of the same questions. The one question you are constantly asked is for your name and date of birth. I assume that is so they don’t mistake you for someone else before removing your spleen or whatever. Basically, all you need to do physically is show up.

Psychologically, it’s another story. I did my online due diligence the night before and what I read and saw unnerved me. About fifteen years ago, after working late I found myself trapped in an elevator alone for an hour. Up until that day I had never had an issue with enclosed spaces. But getting stuck in an elevator with limited communication with the outside world can shift your perspective. After that incident I did not enjoy flying or riding the subway for about a year until I used my hypnosis training to get help reprogramming my mental perspective. Even so, being slid into a tube for an hour listening to loud clangs, beeps and bongs was not a desired leisure time activity. I read many articles about how to handle the enclosed space issue. Some suggested closing your eyes, others said, “no way”. The best advice came from my good friend, Rick. He suggested that I simply “go somewhere else”. He was right.

 

The Process

They give you the earplugs, headphones and music and then they slid you into the tube. Boom. The techs also hand you a rubber thingy filled with air that you squeeze if you are feeling uncomfortable. That prompts the tech to slide you out. Apparently no one likes the process.

Although I did inadvertently open my eyes a few times, I kept them closed throughout most of the process and I am glad I did. I did not know how close the proximity of the tube was, although there is some space and nothing to fear, psychologically, you could feel like you are in close quarters. Once we got started, the clanging and banging and noises seemed to go on and on. I lost track of time. I tested out a few meditations, but due to the noise, they felt garbled. I shifted my thoughts into St. Germaine’s Violet Flame chant, “I am a being of violet fire. I am the purity of God’s desire”. As I mentally repeated this waves of violet light washed over me. It was very comforting and I’m grateful this came to me at the perfect time.

After what seemed like an eternity of loud beeps there was a prolonged silence at what I figured afterwards was the forty-minute mark. I waited patiently for a few minutes and then asked the tech what was going on. No answer. I waited some more and asked again. No answer. By now I’m thinking – are they on break?  Finally I squeezed the rubber air hose. One of the techs came on the speaker and told me to hold on because they were waiting for some shots to develop. What could I do? So after another few minutes they slide me out and asked if I was okay. I said, “yeah” and the tech told me they were more than halfway. I nodded and he slid me back inside. Thankfully, for the last series of images my head was close to the outer edge of the tube. I was more “relaxed”.

And then it was over. After, exhaled and wondered how long it will be until the technology evolves into something less intrusive.

 

I’ve got a few things to tend to, but I’m fine. In the meantime, I have been reminded how precious life is and how easy it is to take our health for granted. Just like a top shelf automobile, every so often the human body requires a look under the hood and a tune up.

 

Are you familiar with MRI?

 

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is Raymond Vahan Damadian, an Armenian-American who invented this breakthrough technology in 1969. 

Technology and Dating: Boom or Bust?

Robert Manni - Friday, April 25, 2014


It’s the best of times and the worst of times.

The preponderance of technology into modern life has pulled the world closer together while at the same time creating more separation. Dating is a prime example of this technological fall out with both men and women paying a price. So let’s take a quick look at how technology and social media have enabled dating and also made it more challenging to find mate.

The good stuff.

Hooray for online dating. Everyone is busy and people don’t have the time to troll the bars and clubs to find their mate. Women can hang with their BFF’s while occasionally checking their phones for the next group of guys who reach out and tell them they’re hot.  And dudes can score dates with hot women while sitting at home in their tighty whiteys. Dating online is fast, empowering and fun. If you’re a guy, all you need is spell check, a photo with your shirt on and the patience to mindfully read woman’s person’s profile. After a short message or email you exchange digits and you’re off and running.

When you get together everything can change quickly. But so what if there aren’t any sparks? When you meet online, you can end it with one keystroke— delete. It’s generally considered that people we meet online are disposal and replaceable. That’s not necessarily fair, but it’s how the game is played. So if you can check your feelings at the door, you have a shot at finding a match. And millions do every day. My wife likes to say that she found me online and there are so many others who have found their soul mate online.

Things to keep in mind.

Not everyone has a thick skin and can deal with the cut and dry aspects of online dating. So we need to remind ourselves that there is a human being with real feelings and emotions person behind their online persona. Just because you met online or through an app doesn’t make him or her any less deserving of your respect. Keep your standards high and don’t forget the words— please, excuse me, and thank you. And if she’s interested and it’s not a match, at least let her know that there were no sparkles if she asks.

Another consideration is that, an itchy trigger finger on that delete button could prevent you from getting to know someone who is worth a little extra effort. Not everyone is consistently at the top of his or her game when flirting online or during that first meet up. That’s not to suggest that you waste your time on an obviously bad fit. But if you think about some of your best friends or lovers, did those relationships always begin under the best circumstances?

Oops.

Between Tinder, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat, we live in an age of maximum exposure. And once something finds its way online, it’s there forever. Keep that in mind next time you think it’s acceptable to sext pics of your junk to a lady or before you take that selfie while drinking from that bottle of chocolate whipped cream vodka. These might not be images you want to share with a prospective mate or potential employer.

Technology and social media can be a dater’s best friend or worst enemy.  Always remember that dating is a face-to-face activity. Keep it real, amigo.

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is any dude who picks up the phone and asks a woman out instead of hitting her up by text to see if she wants to hang out. 

The Guys' Guy's Guide to Things That Are Better Now

Robert Manni - Thursday, October 10, 2013


There are so many things wrong today—government shut downs, GMO’s, NSA snooping and Miley’s coated tongue.

It’s too easy to add to the list and bemoan our plight. Instead, let’s go back thirty years to 1983 and compare notes. That was the year Michael Jackson dominated the charts, the Swatch was launched, McNuggets came out and Lotus 1-2-3 was our preferred software.  Here is my Guy’s Guy Guide to Things That Are Better Now. One caveat—technology is more advanced than in 1983, so we’ll put the tech-related items into context. Enjoy!

10. Central Park – From its lush greenery to the calming energy that permeates the sprawling fifty-block area to the expanded running paths and new playgrounds, Central Park keeps getting better. Central Park was, for the most part, a scrubby dump in the seventies and eighties that you could not venture into after dark. With the commitment from the city and the hard work of the Central Park Conservatory, it has been transformed again into the wonderful oasis as it was imagined.

9. Beer – No longer are we limited to old standbys like Bud and Miller. The beer industry has exploded with creativity, craft brews and innumerable fine selections available in bars, taverns and delis. You can even brew your own beer. This is very good news for beer lovers whose idea of excitement in the past was waiting for that shipment of Coors in a refrigerated container to show up on the East Coast.

8. Cooking – I thought about calling this, “Food”, but with the advent of GMO’s and factory farming, food has not gotten better. That said, the world of gastronomy has expanded and in many cities you can sample any kind of cuisine at any hour of the day. The “foodie” movement has given us an education on preparation and matching flavors. If you want more proof, check the frozen food aisle of your local supermarket. The section that once offered a merger selection of TV diners and frozen pizza has now become a smorgasbord of global offerings.

7. Clothing – Let’s face it, people can showcase their personal style a heck of a lot better now than in 1983. Men’s suits are more flattering, mixing and matching of patterns has become an art form and women have an endless selection of shoes, bags and hairstyles to embrace and call their own. Of course there's a down side: we’ve seen the casual movement turn air travel into a parade of tracksuits and ladies, those yoga pants are a bit too ubiquitous now. That said, it’s hard to argue with being comfortable.

6. Publishing – Instead of following the music industry's demise until it embraced digital offerings and sent more bands out on tour, the publishing industry was taken by surprise when self and hybrid and independent offerings created stars. Before they knew it, sales of eBooks were in line with physical book sales. This is great news for both readers and writers. Meanwhile, the publishing industry is busy peddling celebrity books because they don’t require “breaking” a new name or building a brand. Snooki had brand awareness before her novels launched.

5. Social Media – Okay; we didn’t have social media in 1983, and you may not care for those pithy, inspirational sayings from your Facebook friends, being on the receiving end of a poke, reading political rants or seeing photos of someone’s sushi lunch, but keeping in touch with long lost acquaintances can be fun. And if you’re not interested, you can turn it off at any time. Period.

4. Weed – We’re moving from draconian Rockefeller laws to medicinal use, and that’s only the beginning. Pot is going to become legal at some point during the next decade. Why? Follow the money. Marijuana is the next cash crop and it’s ripe for reaping tax revenues.

3. Gay Rights – Who would have conceived of legislation legalizing gay and lesbian marriage back in 1983? We’ve come a long way in accepting and protecting the rights of everyone regardless of their sexual preference. There isn't enough love in the world so let’s hope this will soon become a non-issue.

2. Coffee and Tea - Similar to beer, we’ve moved from a handful of mass brands to a plethora of exotic, great-tasting blends from around the world that are featured in small independent stores on every corner of the city. The same goes for tea. Once there were two big, boring brands on the shelves. Now we have dozens and even yerba mate comes in an array of flavors. That’s a good thing.

1. Broadcast Media – Cable grew from a handful of new channels to the thousands of selections we have today in a short period of time. We can watch whatever we want, whenever we want, wherever we want, with or without commercials on a multitude of devices. That's cool. Okay, I don’t like those housewives shows either, but you know what I mean.

This is just a first pass. There’s also been advances in traditional medicine, an increased awareness of holistic healing and yoga, cell phones with cameras that capture so much more good and bad behavior, and of course Duck Dynasty.

Now that doesn’t necessarily make this a better world than thirty years ago, but it’s too easy to fall into a malaise and cry about once what was. Hey people: things change and they will keep changing faster than they did over the past thirty years. Guy’s Guys look on the bright side. How about you?

Do you appreciate the many changes in our culture since 1983?

 

This week’s Guy’s Guy of the Week is Frederick Law Olmsted who won the Central Park design competition in 1857. Nice work, amigo.

Social Media and Dating: The Good, The Bad, and The "Oops"!

Robert Manni - Thursday, July 18, 2013


It is the best of times. It is the worst of times…for dating.

The deepening integration of technology into our lives has, in many ways, pulled the world closer together. However, when it comes to developing basic social skills and maintaining a sense of privacy and decorum it has also pushed us further apart.  Dating is a prime example of the fallout, with both men and women paying a price.  Let's take a quick look at how technology and social media makes dating easier, while also presenting a few challenges along the way.

The Good.

Hooray for online dating.  I scored tons of dates with hot women while sitting at home in my tightie whiteys.  My wife likes to say that she found me online.  And it saved me years of hanging in clubs, bars and gyms in search of Ms. Right.  Dating online is fast, empowering and fun.  All you need is spell check, a handful of flattering photos, and the mindfulness to read between the lines of another person’s profile before investing your valuable time.  Once you meet, it’s business as usual.  And when you meet online, you can end things swiftly.  There’s an unspoken rule that makes anyone we meet online more disposable.  Sure; it’s not necessarily fair, but I think you’d agree.

The Bad.

Just because you meet someone online doesn’t make him or her less deserving of respect.  That’s the flip side of eliminating someone via one keystroke.  What is intended as expediency can come across as cold.  And although there's an endless pool of prospective partners available online, an itchy trigger finger on the delete button could prevent you from getting to know someone you may have liked had you met them in person, instead of your iPhone.  And when it comes to that first "date" at the coffee shop, not everyone is at the top of his or her game.  That’s not to suggest that you waste time on a bad fit. Just keep in mind that everyone has feelings. After an awkward first date a woman I met online wrote to me and stated that she did not “feel the sparkles”. How could I be upset?

The Oops.

Between Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. we live in an age of maximum exposure.  Once it’s online, it’s there forever.  You need to be mindful when being photographed at the party wearing just your tats and drinking straight out of a bottle of Whipped Cream vodka.  That may not be something you'd want to share with future paramours or potential employers.  My policy when dealing in the online space is if you can’t keep it positive; don’t put it out there. That goes for this post, too. Technology and social media can be a dater’s best friend or worst enemy—it’s up to you to decide.

Our Guy's Guy of the Week is Matti Makkonen, the inventor of the text message.

Be kind, be mindful, be loving and technology will serve you well.

Is Technology Killing Dating?

Robert Manni - Thursday, June 20, 2013


It’s ironic that nowadays, something as easy as dating has become a challenge and obsession. 

Technology has made interpersonal communication and hooking up so easy and disposable that real dating is as difficult now as it was before the Internet or social media enabled our efforts. Before the Internet, guys put themselves on the line when meeting a lady. We’d hit the bar or the gym and organically strike up a conversation that might lead to another conversation that might lead to a drink or a date. Concurrently, women hoped that the right guy would approach them at the bars or the gym. Now everyone’s time is compartmentalized and women are not waiting around. We use technology to engage or keep people away. When the headphones are on, don’t talk to meon the street, in a store, or in the gym. The bar is for your friends or watching the game. If you want to meet someone you go onlinedating sites, FB, Twitter, Instagram, Tinder.  Plink, plink, plink and you’re meeting for coffee. Does anyone know how to talk to somebody new without a handheld device?

There has never been a better time to be a guy. Women are smart, sexy, fit, and financially secure. Don’t send photos of your private parts and keep the cargo pants in the closet until Saturday and you can score at will. Women are looking for good guys to hang with and many don’t want a long-term relationship. They just want to have sex with you. Jackpot! So lots of guys take sex for granted and unfortunately don’t put in the effort to emotionally connect with women. Guys are too busy watching sports or checking their fantasy team stats to know when their perfect match is sitting right across the room with her girlfriends. Older guys know how to approach a woman, even in a group. They’ve had loads of practice getting shot down. It’s like a sales job.  You grow a thick skin and eventually smooth out your pitch.

There’s never been a more interesting time to be a woman. Face it. You don’t need guys for all that much. They’re not that evolved emotionally and you have more opportunities in the work place so you don’t need their money. That leaves sex and companionship and you can get lots of companionship and stimulating conversation from your BFF’s without having to deal with grunting frat boys. That leaves sex. Yes, it is an interesting time for women, not necessarily the best time. Guys need to catch up. I hope you’ll help them. If not, enjoy the sex.

Solution? Your Guy’s Guy wants men to be men. Get out there and introduce yourself to at least three new women per week, the old fashion way. “Hi, I’m Mike.”  Then ask her an open-ended question. Maybe if you’re confident and know how to smile the woman will slip off her ear buds and reply, “Hi, I’m Julie.” Just sayin’.

Is technology helping or hurting your dating life?

Our Guy's Guy of the Week is James Gandolfini for his authentic portrayal of Tony Soprano and for being an authentic Guy's Guy in real life.

Online Dating- Gift or Curse?

Robert Manni - Wednesday, August 03, 2011


Image courtesy of Jeff McNeill

Technology is designed to make life simpler. At least, that’s the idea. With emails, texts and instant messages, we are tethered 24/7 with no escape.  GPS, iTunes, DVR, and millions of websites on every subject from inch worm migration to crocodile mating habits have placed the world at our fingertips. So why do we express a big sigh of relief whenever we shut off our PDA’s?

The same can be said of online dating, and I think the answer is how you view and interface with the technology to make it work for you. If you are a woman, online dating is empowering. Instead of investing your time sitting with your girlfriends in singles bars, eighties-style hoping that the cute guy who bought you those cosmos is not a closet axe murderer, you can send him a wink online and review his dating credentials. Too many typos and fragmented sentences- delete. Too many photos of him without his shirt-delete.  Too many references to his devotion to televised sports or speed metal music, beers and chicken wings with the boys, or mentions of the ex-wife- delete. Then, it’s on to the next guy. It’s as if the man is sending you his resume. And you know ladies, it’s a test.  If his written responses are courteous and humorous, and of course focused on you, there’s that phone call to make sure he doesn’t sound like Joe Pesci’s character in “My Cousin Vinny”.  After that, a coffee date, drinks, or possibly dinner.  And if it works out, you’ve got yourself a real live man. And if his breath stinks and he’s ten years older and twenty-five pounds heavier than described in person, you get that call from your girlfriend. “Oops, I have to get up early tomorrow. It was nice meeting you.”

Guys have it made also. Sit at home in your tighty-whities and scroll through the girls who you would not have the cojones to approach in person and lay your best material on them. If you PAY ATTENTION and figure out how to navigate the paradigm laid out in the preceding paragraph, you’ll get as many shots at the title as your wallet can handle. Then it’s up to you to come through in person. If you are well-dressed, polite, articulate, and have a job or something that sounds like one, you’re on your way.

So how is this not a gift? A-ha! That’s because it’s so easy and there is always another fresh face on those dating websites. In fact, it’s actually too easy to serial-date or delete your latest partner whenever the smallest tremor hits your heart.  Sounds cold.  It is. But that’s because our dating lives can be so active that it’s easy to get pulled out by the tide and get lost in a sea of potential mates swimming in the online waters.  

So, always keep a life preserver around your heart, play safely, and have fun out there. And every so often remember to ask yourself: do I want to be dating online or do I want a relationship? 



Recent Posts


Tags


Archive

Connect with The Author

Visit my profile on YourTango Experts

Buy THE GUYS' GUY'S GUIDE TO LOVE Now!

Watch The Sizzling GGG2Love Video

Listen to Guy's Guy Radio!

What if you knew men's deepest, darkest dating secrets?

Sign up and find out *



Subscribe to: Pre-Launch Signup Form

*You'll receive three tasty chapters of The Guys' Guy's Guide to Love.

What People Are Saying

"THE GUYS' GUY'S GUIDE TO LOVE is the man's successor to Sex And The City
~ Dan Wakefield, author of Going All The Way
"GREAT book, fun read, very 'real'"
~ Janis Spindel, founder of Janis Spindel Serious Matchmaking, Inc.
"Prepare to man up and hunker down for this exuberant guided tour of the male sexual psyche."
~ Ian Kerner, NY Times best-selling author of She Comes First
"A contemporary look at "Mad Men". Very compelling, almost addictive. Manni knows too much about women."
~Judy Wald, "the master manipulator and undisputed leader in the ad placement scene for forty years," according to New York Magazine
"Manni astutely captures the mindset of guys when it comes to dating and relationships. A well-written parable of lust, greed, and ego."
~Brad Berkowitz, author of The 21st Century Guide To Bachelorhood
© All rights reserved. | Privacy Policy