I ask a male friend of mine, older and perhaps wiser. “Um, the guys I have dated or even just hung out with are only interested in their interests. They are not interested in me or what I am doing. For example, I mention that I have a blog twice to two different males recently and they completely ignore it. I mention that I just did a poetry reading and one whips out his phone and shows me a family member’s poem. What is it with that?”
“Well,” he says, “Men are only interested in what a woman is doing, if they are in love with her.”
“Really?” I say. “Holy crap.”
I am still chewing on this. I have dated various “gentlemen” for a couple of years each since I got divorced. One of them is still a friend. Last month he said, “I think you like writing better than I do.” Um. He has known me since 2008. Powers of observation, like a hawk in flight, heh.
I can think of seven guys since 2007, when my divorce was final, who really showed very little interest in what I was doing. Ok, one of them did read my blog and another admitted to reading at least one post, but refused to EVER comment. What the hell? Meanwhile they want to talk about their collections, their jobs, their lives, their interests.
And so I reexamine my ex-husband. He actually DID listen and WAS interested. Mostly he laughed at me, but medical school and residency were off the scale dysfunctional and ridiculous. And in turn I listened to his golf shots and watched Payne Stewart dress in NFL colors and plus fours.
But I don’t get it. Maybe the younger generations are a lot smarter and I think they are darn smart to say who cares about the XX or XY or XO or XYY chromosomes! There are lots of other chromosomes! Let’s get over race and gender! That stuff is shallow unless you are interested in someone in the pants zone.
And then men complain to me that they do not understand women. Really? I ask if they have ever read a romance novel. One said, “Those are for women. I wouldn’t do that.” So one romance would take away your man credentials? I say, well, you might understand what our culture indoctrinates women with if you did read a romance. Not to mention notice that Disney animation glorifies virginal princesses, but gosh, queens are either dead or evil. Doesn’t seem like a good career choice, breeder for the ruler. Especially if you’ll die in childbirth or turn evil.
I hope my male friend is wrong, but I am paying attention. And noticing if a man is not.