JJ Vincent actually enjoys some activities that fall outside the stereotypical “man-box”. And he’s ok with that.
“I didn’t mean to watch Hope Floats. It was just in the DVD player.”
“I didn’t mean to watch Pretty Woman. I just stopped on that channel.”
“I know it’s Nicholas Sparks, but you left it in the bathroom.”
“I didn’t use ALL of your Tangerine soap. I just, um, didn’t grab another bottle.”
“How am I supposed to figure you out if I don’t read your magazines? And by the way, this sweater would look great on you.”
Ok, guys. ‘Fess up. You all have a guilty little pleasure or three that you don’t tell anyone about. Ok, maybe your significant other. Maybe your best friend. Maybe. And maybe only after he’s told you his.
It’s something we don’t talk about, except in whispers. We find 10,000 ways to make excuses if we get caught. We keep our stashes hidden. We don’t put them in queue in our video service. We change the titles in our music players.
These are the little “unmanly” secrets we keep.
We pretend to not like chick flicks, chick lit, TV shows about women targeted at women who want to feel superior to other women, the shampoos we get when we get haircuts, the stuffed animals we got from teenage dates, the fluffy comfy bathrobe that we just “happen” to grab and wrap around us, eating the entire pint of ice cream when we’ve had a really bad day.
We go to karaoke and we pick good, strong, manly songs, or Frank Sinatra, when really we just want to belt out some Beyonce or Aretha or Reba. We’ve evolved far enough to love our tiny dogs, but don’t dress them up the way we really want to. Admit it…you’d love to put your chihuahua in a tutu. We punch each other on the arm or body-check each other into a wall or do a poor imitation of the three stooges when all we really want is a hug, a real hug, more than the hug-thump-twice-on-the-back variety. We resist massages while thinking about how nice it would be to lie in a candle lit room getting our muscles turned to mush.
Bathroom locked? It should be. There’s a good chance we’re playing air guitar in the shower or being a rock star with a hair brush. Put your ear to the door. You might catch us singing along to nothing.
We complain about mowing the lawn and doing dishes, but really, sometimes it’s nice to have time to so something relatively brainless while humming the earworm we’ve been stuck with for days. But since it’s the Beib, or Miley, or Abba, or John Denver, whoever our favorite guilty pleasure singer is, we don’t mind it too much. But we think that we in any or all of these, are the Only One.
You are not the only one. It only feels like you are because men are not having these conversations. They are talking about what they like and like to do, see, hear. But I guarantee there’s a lot they aren’t saying. We try to find the right balance between being ourselves and meeting expectations and gender norms in interests and hobbies. Most of you will succeed. Some of us will not, or will fake it to be accepted. Some of you want to keep your secrets secret. Some of you want to share them. Some of you get great ideas from what other people shared and wish you could share them, too. To the guys putting themselves out there, bravo. For the rest of you, it’s ok. There’s no rule book for this.
Gotta go. Steel Magnolias just came back on.
Photo: pathawks / flickr