Sunday, February 20, 2011

Dating, sexism and fabulous lemonade

Before getting back to the matter of your gay-man-approach to the first meeting, let’s review. You select a man primarily based on his looks and to a lesser extent on his personality. His current job and his career potential are not part of the equation. You pepper conversation ever so lightly with flattery, as you work your way toward complimenting his body parts. 
At this point any man would be lucky to have you, but one small refining matter remains before moving on to that all important first meeting, sexism. I have never seen this topic mentioned in any other dating advice column/blog, mock or not. And I don’t understand why that would be the case. Sexist comments happen. They can be a mood killer and therefore merit discussion.
To be clear, in this post I’m not referring to your date’s stereotypes inadvertently directed at women but rather potentially your stereotypes naively directed at men.  When I started to date men I have to admit that I was not at first consciously aware of the complete absence of sexist comments but I think that it did immediately contributed very positively to the overall enjoyment of the experience.    
To simplify for the sake of this particular blog post, and by simplify I mean pigeon-hole, I will divide the women I have dated into two distinct camps. The first are the women who while attracted to the male body and male sexuality have strong issues with ‘men’ as a gender. They are complicated, tirade prone and seemingly unhappy ladies. The other category I will simply label as – fans of men. These are the women that would join in, if only in spirit, with the Weather Girls as they belt out their 70’s disco classic ‘It’s Raining Men’. It is to the latter group that I write.

So that we have a shared understanding of what I am talking about with regard to sexism let me give you a hypothetical scenario. You park your sexy sports car and as you are getting out, a young man who is passing by comments, sincerely: “Nice car! Your husband must have a great job.”

Some examples of equivalent female slip-ups which have actually been said to me by women (though not necessarily about me) include:
1)      “A cashier is no job for a man.”
2)      “When the woman of the house is happy, then the house is happy.”
3)      “I’m just not used to a man who can’t do home repair. My father was so handy.”

Should you not see an issue with one or more of the above - you’ve got your work cut out for you. I can help. If nothing else, avoid generalized statements. It sounds simple enough but it is not. And you will, as will your future dates, screw this up. My point it is that sexist remarks will happen from time to time. Don’t become obsessively on guard but it is something to keep in mind. It is also perhaps a suggestion for some tolerance when the shoe is on the other foot. Taking my above car scenario, if you are single and the young man is attractive you could respond with: “Actually I’m not married. Would you like to take a closer look at my car?” Make fabulous lemonade from lemons my dear, it’s the gay man way.

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