A word to the wise

Ryan Lawyer, staff writer

Disclaimer: The observations and hypotheses set forth in this article are gleaned from market research and are presented for readers’ consideration. In my opinion, all women that I have ever lived with or had a significant relationship with are perfect in all regards and do not need to change their behaviors, actions, or opinions. Ever.

Dear men,

Despite what some may think, women do, in fact, make up half of our population and are vital to our existence. Therefore, we must understand them. Now, this is no simple task; a woman can be as sly as a fox. At one moment, you may think she loves you, and then, without notice, she’ll suddenly start yelling at you for not listening, understanding, or helping “the situation.”

There are certain stereotypes that women are accustomed to, such as going to the bathroom in pairs, owning two hundred pairs of shoes, looking “cute” rather than pretty, and asking questions about their bottoms looking good. However, perhaps the easiest way for us men to understand women is not to learn what they do, but rather what they do “differently” than us.

For example, women have a radically different perception of time than men. At a formal event, a situation may arise that a woman would need to visit the ladies’ room to clean up. She will describe the time necessary as “just a minute.” For the woman, the time passed will indeed seem like sixty seconds. However, the man on the outside will watch as half an hour passes by. (Cautionary note: do not comment on the time elapsed; you will be angrily met with a glare and a series of reasons as to why such time was necessary.)

Another example: women have a tendency to assume a relationship is present before such thoughts may have even been considered by the man. In a woman’s mind, going to three or more movies is a clear expression of relationship interest from a man. Men realize that this is only true if one or more of said movies is rated CF, for Chick Flick. And contrary to what men think, for women, “interests” are 100% correlated to emotional commitment.

And this, perhaps, is the crux of the issue. The male species is considered to be emotionally challenged by the female species. The weight of evidence supports her point of view. Consider, for example, the recently-retired Oprah Winfrey. Her retirement show left the Chicago Bulls temporarily homeless before a crucial home game in the NBA playoffs because her show was filmed in their stadium. This is a head-scratcher for men, who just don’t “get” the Oprah thing, even after her 25 years of success.

The simple fact is that Oprah knows how to emote, and she wields this power like a Jedi Mistress. Men cannot hope to attain a Winfreyan level of emotional consciousness, however we could, with practice, be more like Dr. Phil.