Man Date Rules

Seems like an eternity since I have sat down and blogged anything, but after seeing the movie, I Love You Man, I had to sit down and jot a few lines as to how men relate to one another.

I seem to remember the Summer of 1989 as being the last time that my male friends and I really had great times. We were all about 16 or 15 and it was right before our Junior year in High School. The Summer days were spent driving around in an old beater car and playing basketball till dark and then going to a quickstop for some sort of Slurpee and then the usual talk about what girls we liked and which ones we hated. We were consumed by the dream of having a girlfriend and maybe a better car. The Summer days were long and the conversation was always interesting. Then came the heartache of Junior year in the Fall, and the relationships we had were tested by the very thing that consumed us, namely the opposite sex. It was no longer cool to just hang out, cause his girlfriend didn’t like my girlfriend, or worse, I didn’t have a girlfriend, or the girlfriend didn’t like me, or half a million reasons that did not make sense. The ordeal of Junior year was that women cause wars, and much like the Trojan War, mere boys waged battle and held animosity for each other for the sake of a girlfriend. Senior year followed and it was too late we could never go back to that Summer of ’89 and be just boys. We were men with girlfriends and lives, and even responsibilities. Then Prom came and went and all of a sudden we saw each other and did the one thing we thought we could never do, we forgave each other and put away our grudges and walked away forgetting the wars and battles and the time of peace had come. At the same time, some of us walked away and felt a terrible loneliness. I left Chicago and came to Iowa and my world got a little bigger and a lot different.

In Iowa, I met lots of other guys and made friends. I even mentored a few freshmen, my sophomore year. College seemed more about having shared experiences, than about maintaining strong best-friend relationships. Given that the Internet revolution happened while I was in college, I can see how technology can be isolating for many men, instead of helpful in establishing friendship. Now the Internet is incredibly intricate and it is perplexing to me that as men we all communicate every day, yet have devoted very little of our time to actually becoming better communicators. Yes, we may think it is funny that women have brunch and talk for hours about unimportant events and matters, but in truth women are better communicators. But this rant is not about women, it is about men and how we go about the business of life, outside of work.

The Rules?

The hardest thing about dating in general is that you have to put yourself out there and ask someone else to spend time with you. This can be awkward and uncomfortable for most of us. However, you have to think about it this way, the idea is to have a good time, so it is not about any thing else. Men don’t sit around and talk about feelings, but at the same time, men need to be open and ask for what they want. If you want to go see that new action movie and want someone to tag along with you, say so.

Whatever you do, don’t be pushy or annoying. Men don’t like guys who constantly bother them or ask them for stuff. As my girlfriend reminds me all the time, personal space for men is about ten times larger in radius than it is for women. So don’t tread on me!

Be interesting. It is that simple. No one likes the typical Cheers character that bombards you with useless trivia, but worse is the guy who just wants to be your friend and who happens to bore you to death. You have to bring something to the table. If you are the sports guy, the politics guy, or just the typical comedian, be that guy, just don’t go overboard. With age, comes temperance, you should know a little about everything. Even if you hate sports, you still need to know who The Lakers are.

Man dates are all about the experience. It needs to be fun and somewhat memorable. The hard part is that most men hate lots of things. For example, I use to play golf in my teens. I know the game well, because I had a good golf coach, yet I have not touched a club in more than ten years and if someone asks me to golf, I will always turn them down. It does not interest me. Hate it! Sometimes it just doesn’t work, so be prepared to know that before your date.

Politics and the right conversation. Men can take politics a little too far and let the conversation go downhill before you even realize it. Don’t let political opinions kill your mood. You have to let some things slide. Politics can also be a bad sign that you really can’t be friends too, so before your date you might want to make sure you can even be comfortable if the subject of politics comes up.

Worthless Internet News

Like most everyone today, I’m a hardcore Internet news junkie, but it seems that every week the same story is reprinted and after a while this gets pretty annoying. This is why I’ve put together a list of things I never ever want to read ever again on the Internet.

The Beatles And Paul McCarthy Story

The Beatles broke up in 1970, they made a few good songs, and for the most part I think they sucked! I don’t care if their music is ever available on iTunes and care even less about McCarthy and his lawsuits against Apple. I never ever want to see another Digg story on The Beatles ever again! The only Beatle that was ever cool was George Harrison anyway.

Lindsay Lohan

A short and ginger girl who parties all the time and who can’t seem to control herself. Why is this news? She’s got some talent, but so does Mandy Moore and and Moore is actually better looking. Don’t these young actresses know that alcohol makes you look worse, not better?

Paris Hilton

Worse than Lohan is Hilton. The world does not care how rich or untalented Hilton is, so why does the media flood us with stories of this sad woman?

WMD Story

After billions of dollars spent on the Iraq war and countless lives lost, I think anyone who still saids there were huge stockpiles of WMD’s in Iraq is a total idiot. Let’s face it, Saddam was a small time dictator and not the giant threat that the Bush administration made him out to be. There is no need to continue talking about why we started this war, the conversation needs to be about how we end the war and help solve this huge mess.

Apple’s iPhone and iPod

Yes, Apple’s iPhone and iPods are cool, but until you actually have something important to write about, do not publish another story on how Apple might update the iPod or how the iPhone might have this feature, just freaking wait until Apple saids it. Stop giving Apple all this free publicity.

Celebrities Getting Married or Pregnant

No one cares about anyone getting married anymore, we just care about the divorces. So just publish the divorce stories and we will be happy with those. Use to be a time when people would not talk about getting pregnant, nowadays, having a baby is like having a fashionable accessory. If you don’t have an iPod and a baby, somehow you are not a fashionable celebrity. Stop it. Having a family is not a fashion statement, so please no more pictures of so and so’s baby. Just let celebrities have their families and their private life.

Microsoft Versus Linux

Microsoft is no longer an innovative company. It has become stagnant and predictable. There is no need to publish any stories about how Microsoft hates Linux and open source, everyone knows that Microsoft is expensive and open source is cheaper. The constant chatter about the whole debate is pointless. Microsoft sucks, and so does Linux. Just pick the one that sucks less for you.

God Of War

Over the last couple of weeks, I’ve been running in circles it seems with all the work I have, and so to relieve some stress, I bought God of War for the Playstation 2, and have been playing for some time now. I’m not much of a gamer, in fact, I had not turned on the PS2 in over four months! After playing this game though, it is hard not to get addicted. This is the best video game I have ever played. It is completely cool in every way, from the way you control your character, to the graphics, to the storyline, to the music, and so on. Of course most other games suck compared to God Of War, and while I know God of War 2 is out, I’m not forking over $50 for a game.

God Of War is mature rated, mostly because of the topless nudity it has, but my kid and I had a great time playing it and finishing the game. It was a good bonding experience, and I currently picked up Shadow of the Colossus to see if that would be any fun.

I guess between a hefty work schedule, the NBA Playoffs, my guitars, and trying to get some sleep, I hardly have any time to bond with the family this month. Who knew video games would be the one thing to rescue me from going totally insane this month!

If you do get God of War, make sure you play it with your shirt off, to get the full Kratos experience.