Monday, 19 December 2011

The labyrinth that is the mind of woman

A lot has been written on this subject. I have no doubt that a lot more will be written, and my humble efforts will be by no means the most well formed, or conclusive.

There are certain situations that almost all men will find themselves over the course of a relationship. Here they are documented with the safest reponse, and the horror that is the response I may, or may not have given.

Difficult Questions

These are loaded questions that have an honest answer (wrong) and the correct answer.

The weight gambit-

Question: Do I look like I've put on weight?

Safest answer: No, of course not. If anything I think you've lost a couple of pounds.

Why it works: It sounds like the truth, and it's what they wanted to hear. The positive reinforcement of observation shows you care, and pay attention. Good boy.

Terrible answer: Maybe a little bit, but so have I. Your body shape just changes as you get older. I love you regardless.

Why it fails: It may have been the truth, but first of all she doesn't give a shit if you've put on weight. Secondly you're telling her she looks old. Finally you're trying to cover your crimes with an 'i love you'. Get thee to the dog house.

The celebrity delusion-

Question: Do you think {insert your choice of hot celebrity} is attractive?

Safest answer: No. Not at all. She seems a bit false.

Why it works: Immediate negative response. Follow this by what your better half is thinking and you're gold. Of course she's false, I'm glad you agree. Smug face.

Terrible answer: Maybe a little. She seems nice.

Why it fails: It sounds like a lie. What you're actually saying is that if you had the opportunity you'd tear your arms off to sleep with said celebrity, even if that is the truth.

You're also saying that if your significant other looked more like the celebrity in question, you'd love her more.

The ex conumdrum-

Question: Do you still speak to her?

Safest answer: No.

Why it works: This is the only answer to give. Don't be fooled, the truth doesn't set you free. Unless you call 'free' a potentially never ending barney.

Terrible answer: Yeah, we're actually really good friends.

Why it fails: Men have a wonderful ability to seperate emotion from sex. Women do not. By having contact with an ex, you're actually still shagging her. Apparently.

Question: Have you done that {insert menial task} that I asked you to do?

Safest answer: I'm doing it now (drop whatever you are doing and begin menial task).

Why it works: You both know that you'd forgotten. The only way out is to do it without hesistation.

Terrible answer: I was going to do it {give rough estimate}. It will get done, just in a bit (commence staring at TV whilst hammering the playstation joypad like an automaton).

Why it fails: You're ignoring her, and you've forgotten to do something. Not only that you're not admitting you've forgotten, you're pretending you actually planned to do it later. It also highlights that something that is important to her, is not to you. Bad news.

Sticky situations

Not questions as such, but situations that might lead to a similar line of questioning as above.

The work phone call (daytime)-

The set up: You've given her your work number for emergencies. One lunch time she decides to call. You answer the phone, a little anxiously. It's ok it's just a chat. That's quite nice you think. The call draws to it's inevitable close. She says 'I love you'.

You become acutely aware that the office has got very quiet. It's almost as if all the men are listening to see what you do, as are the women. The pause has been too long. You mumble back 'yeah, me too'. Quiet, the receiver goes dead. All the men in the office smirk, you pussied out. All the women scowl, you shit. You're in trouble. Fucksticks.

The fall out: Silence. The cold shoulder, and the dreaded 'there's nothing wrong' statement. Despite you vainly trying to explain the predictament the only way out is to man up and declare your love in the office. Red faces don't last. A woman's memory does.

The work phone call (evening)-

The set up: For whatever reason (hard week, leaving do, Christmas party) you're out with work colleagues. You've made it exceptionally clear you'll be out and that you might not answer your phone.

Your phone rings. You think twice about answering, but you do anyway. It's loud where you are, but you can just about to hear. You're in a throng of colleagues. Your conversation is stunted and unintentionally you sound distant. Next to you Jane from accounts (who's now merry) guffaws loudly in your direction. With crystal clarity it is picked up by the receiver.

'Who's that?' you betroved asks, half angry, half concerned.

'That's Jane from accounts', you innocently reply, 'she's pissed'.

'You've never told me about her'. Short, sharp retort.

'Erm, I never really usually speak to her, that's all. We're all in the pub', again innocently.

'Well I can see you're busy with i Jane i, I'll leave you to it'. Phone goes dead.

The fall out: Similar to the previous situation. You're in trouble for nothing, but you're going to have to take it on the chin. Jane should never be mentioned again.

Meeting friends for drinks, solo-

You've given due notice, you've even put it on the calendar. You've gone through the usual questions, you're not sure when you'll be in, you don't need dinner, and you'll try to be quiet.

You feel confident and happy that a good night lies ahead. You're in the snug chatting away with mates, reminiscing with friends. You decide on a trip back from the loo that you'll ring the mrs. After all you're a nice guy.

Then the unexpected happens. 'When will you be home?'

This is unexpected. You're on the back foot. You weren't going to get in until after lasties with a skin full. No matter how this conversation goes, whether it's a good or bad outcome, you'll be uncomfortable for the rest of the night. You'll probably even leave early. Was this her plan? Maybe.

Meeting friends for drinks, couple-

Her friends: It's going to be a long one, and it's going to cost. Make the best of it and accept this fact early. You might even have fun.

Your friends: Are a distant memory reserved for furtive phone calls.

The final solution-

Should you decide that your relationship has run its course it's important to handle it the right way.

The right way- Meet at a discreet neutral location. Be brutally honest. Prepare for a scene, accept it when it comes.

Don't drunk dial a week later.

The wrong way- Dial her number. Be vague and evasive. Arrange a date when she's out to pick up your stuff.

If you do choose the above option, if you're offered an easy out, take it. 'Is it someone else?'- YES. You'll save on your phone bill, and what will become a very circular conversation.


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