How to be a Man

MEN, you need to invent, stake a claim to and then reclaim the word ‘masculinism’  (actually I’ve saved you the bother and invented the word for you, just now.)    Masculinism is simply the belief that men should be as free to whinge on as women are – however nuts, dim, deluded, badly dressed, fat, receding (women’s hair recedes too) lazy and smug those women might be.   We need the word ‘Masculinism’ to become current and fashionable real bad.  You need a label gentlemen, one that will signify your disenchantment with the fairer sex.  One that will give you the right not to be nagged at by the women you marry.  One that will give you the right to procreate and then say ‘sod it’, I’m staying at home for the next 5/10/15 years/forever – dearest wife/life partner, would you mind carrying on doing the bread winning, and the mind-numbing office routine, and the heart attack inducing, hour long commute into and out of work please, while I stay at home doing the hardest job in the world – well next to rocket science that is.

Of course you might be asking yourself, “Am I a Masculinist?  I might not be, I don’t know what it is.  I’m too knackered after coming home from work to help the stay-at-home wife feed the baby/keep the toddlers out of the way so mummy can rest/put those shelves up in the living room, to work out if I’m a Man’s Libber!”

Here is a quick way to work out if you’re a Masculinist:

a) Do you think women talk and whinge on too much
b) Do you often nod off in your chair when they’re mid-whinge or mid-sentence

If you said ‘yes’ to both, then congratulations!  You’re a Masculinist.

But, does being a Masculinist mean I have to hate all women? (I hear the one man who’s reading this cry.)  No, of course not.  You love women – it’s ‘The Woman’ you must hate.  The matriarchal system is at fault here – the one that makes you take your shoes off before entering the living room, the one that complains about towels on the floor, the one that won’t let you smoke indoors, the one that makes you take the rubbish out, the one that makes you drive on the motorway ‘cos of the scary slip road thingy, the one where you can never bring the right things home from the shop.

It’s time that Masculinism and Feminism shared the political stage.  Time that men had the same gossiping, whingeing rights as their polar opposite – the women.  You don’t have to be a particular kind of bloke to be a Masculinist – the movement will accept loutish blokes, thick blokes, stay-at-home blokes, blokes that drive cars with football flags flying out the windows, drunk blokes, blokes who leave the toilet seat up, blokes that amass collections of rubbish in the garden shed, or married blokes that like to pretend, in their heads, that the woman they go to bed with every night is a Victoria Secrets model.

The vexing question of whether a Masculinist should bother to try and look sexy (when the mind is all that matters) is bound to come up.  Of course a Masculinist can spruce himself up if he wants to, and go out on the town with the specific purpose of having a shag – it’s his birthright god dammit!  There are consequences, however, to all this overt manly sexiness, namely having to deal with the ‘come on’ from that slag at the bar who looks like the chavvy one from The Apprentice, you know the gobby one wearing too much make up and with the unfortunate platinum blonde hair.  Never forget that you’re too good for most of the women you will come up against (if you’re lucky) whilst hanging around in the local bar.

As a Masculinist you recognise that all men cannot be tarred with the patriarchy-hating feminist brush.  You understand, deep within your soul, that actually the male of the species is not always after a quick shag; that nights spent draining several beer glasses with your buddies can become routine and monotonous; that quite a lot of men are unconfident and ill at ease in the work place;  that the so called glass ceiling applies as much to those men as to the women who believe their stunning talents are being held back by the old boys’ club.

You renounce the feminist claim that childless men never question whether they have missed out on a vital aspect of their existence, when some of you know the subsequent pain and heartache upon discovering that the partner you chose for life most emphatically does not want children – but you rather do want a couple of sprogs.

You sometimes ask yourself why you, as a man, have to be nice to everyone.  Why you have to offer a sympathetic ear to the women at work who burst into tears at the drop of a hat, or give you their traumatic life story (with all the boring details of how that bloke who dumped them was the scum of the earth, just like the rest of them.)   You will hold back the pertinent information that you were once also cruelly dumped but have never felt the need to publicise the fact to the entire department.   And you will gracefully accept the fact that your doting wife now dotes on the children more than on you. In fact you dote on the little blighters as much as she does, but without ever advertising the fact or resorting to MumsNet.  And you will hand over control of the purse strings, and what does (or doesn’t) go on in the bedroom, and how to bring the kids up, to ‘The Woman’  – while you lay back and think of England (the football team.)

You will be alert to the lie that men never have to decide who they’re going to be on any particular day, as you and your working partner rush around getting breakfast for the kids, packing their school lunches and making the school/nursery runs.  The existential question, am I a husband, father, lover, carer or general dogsbody is not torturing your soul – even though you’re going through exactly the same routine as the woman you live with.   Give yourself the right to moan as much as women do with regard to ‘juggling life and a career’.  Give yourself permission to go down the garden shed/fishing/to the football and say ‘f*ck you misandrists’ (the men-haters – a word we need to set on an equal footing with the over used ‘misogynist’.)  You can tell when misandrous societal pressure is being exerted upon (young) men by calmly enquiring: ‘will women be conscripted into doing military National Service as well – should it ever return?’  If they aren’t, chances are you’re dealing with some total f*cking, gender biased bullshit.

As a Masculinist you recognise that girls are not the only ones being told they have to be a certain way.  You are under just as much societal pressure.  You know that male students worry and fret whilst trying to get the best grades, urged on by parents who remind them that work is hard to come by these days.   You know that young men recoil in fear, as they see the end of university/college days approaching and wonder what the hell am I going to do with my life? – because you’ve been there.  You feel fear, suffer from shyness, maybe develop an eating disorder, sometimes use alcohol to brave social situations, feel less cool than your contemporaries, worry about your appearance – knowing that all these psychological problems are not within the exclusive domain of the female of the species, and are not always caused by the supposed tyranny of horrid men – but here, in the western world, are more often the result of the process of having to grow up and face up to living in a scarily competitive, adult world.

The Masculinist within you knows that gender generalisations take us into dangerous territory and that we’re mostly all in this thing together so, men out there in the internet ether – I urge you to introduce a Zero Tolerance Policy on all the matriarchal bullshit perpetuated by the young, and not so young, female intelligentsia in this 21st century and join the new cause of Masculinism  –  today.

****************************

(based on interview comments made (concerning men) by the sainted feminist and Times columnist Caitlin Moran, along with excerpts lifted from her best selling book ‘How to be a Woman’  –  with appropriate modifications.  The source material from the book can be found at Goodreads.com in the quotes section (a warning, Ms Moran likes to swear – a lot)

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