Daily Archives: October 16, 2005

Comparatively speaking…

As promised Iyer, here’s the link…yes, I keep my promises, I’m not a man! I have said before that I like men and in this post I’m going to demonstrate why. But first, dear readers, please trot over to the aforementioned link for a prelude to this post!

I was at a party the other day. My date introduced me to some of his friends, two guys and a girl. We all talked, laughed about stuff, made intelligent conversations (and some stupid jokes) and then said our goodbyes when the party was over. On our way home he asked me what I thought about her (the only lady in the group). I had to think quite a bit and I still didn’t know.

Its like this. Men are so simple….to understand, to read, to react to and to judge. In a matter of minutes I can tell whether I’m going to like a man or not. And almost always I can pinpoint exactly why. I liked all the men I was introduced to at this party. They were friendly and intelligent and nice. They exuded a genuine warmth. They talked about people, expressed their opinions and listened to mine. They talked to me like my listening mattered and listened like my talk mattered.

The woman on the other hand, was cool and inscrutable. I couldn’t read her at all. So much of my liking people has to do with whether I think they like me or not. She was courteous and dignified. She smiled politely when I picked out threads linking us in the form of people we knew in common. She listened seriously when I was telling a joke and laughed softly at just the right moment. And all through I felt like she was going through the motions of being proper. Nowhere was any sign of a real human being caring to show her face to me.

I can’t say for sure that I dislike her though her behaviour annoyed me considerably. After all, a lot of the women I know closely today, started off this way. For some reason, my men friends tend to be openly friendly, even aggressive, sometimes wild people. It is like their true identites are so strong that they are bursting out of any etiquette or polite facades. My girlfriends on the other hand, tend to be quiet, dignified, ‘lady-like’ and reserved to the point of appearing cold. I don’t know why it is but invariably the people I gravitate to fit these patterns.

It is quite possible that I would like this particular lady. It is equally possible that she liked me….I’ve been surprised, many times over by women who have liked me but given cues that are quite the opposite. Maybe it is automatic defenses that are built as a result of conditioning that tells us that we are vulnerable and have a lot more to lose from a mistake than a man does.

There are two people today in my life who have the power to make me cry and have used it. They are my mother and my best friend. Both women. It is not that I don’t associate tears with men. It is just that I have cried over losing men or over the consequences of their actions. The hurts have rarely ever been so deep that I had to show them my tears. And none of them have had a place in my life after that. The women on the other hand….it just is different. They tear me from within; they also heal me.

When it comes to friendship, at any point of time I have a whole lot of male friends and a few very close women friends. Women are like sulphuric acid in my life….potent and powerful, far beyond any man but to be handled sparingly and carefully. The men on the other hand, are oxygen and carbon and hydrogen….the elements that make up life itself. Some combinations work, some don’t…and I’m getting better at balancing them, with time.

The equations are simple with a man (except when I’m complicating them with love and other such anomalies). I can pinpoint the emotions and see the dynamics with some reasonable clarity. Of course complicated men interest me but they are like puzzles that I know I can unravel, given time and due consideration. Sometimes I’m annoyed by their accusations that I think too much but well….their nonchalence over things I consider imp0rtant offset by a tendency to pay attention to trivial seeming things (Sports! Cars! Gizmos! Trophies! Status symbols! Ego!) is almost endearing. Men are easy to love and difficult but not impossible to get over.

It takes so much more effort, on the other hand, to understand a woman, to forgive her faults and to love her. Having done all that, I don’t think it really is possible for me to let go of a woman, even one who hurts me. Women are really complicated. I guess that makes me complicated too. I try not to be so….when I can remember it. I do fall into playing guessing games though. It is fun….its part of being a woman I guess. I’ll leave the being direct and putting the foot into their mouths to the men.

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