Blog Movement: MAN TIPS

27 May

It’s been a little while, huh? Well, to make up for my unconscionably long absence (ha, as if anyone actually reads this bollocks) here’s a bumper blog post. To any of my readers (chuckle) who’ve been wondering what I’ve been getting up to these past few weeks, here’s a quick précis: a tiny slice of my time has been devoted to uni stuff, a rather larger piece has been taken up by job-hunting and a very substantial chunk indeed has been taken up by sitting on my arse, but the lion’s share of my time has been spent getting wankered in the kind of clubs where, upon entering the men’s toilets, you must immediately assume that they have been recently patronised by an individual with a rare and unfortunate disease known as ‘rectal foreclosure’. Here’s something about girls.)

As much as I’m risking severe sanctions from the ICM (not Integrated Coastal Management, but the International Council of Men) for doing this, one of my girl friends (not my girlfriend, but a friend who is also a girl) recently came to me with a proposal (no, not of marriage, of inter-gender espionage – seriously, how do you guys keep misunderstanding these things?) which interested me, as it involved the giving of advice-which-may-or-may-not-be-useful, a practice at which I excel.

My friend is at a point in her new relationship past which merely being a girl is not enough incentive to keep a boy hanging around – a point at which it starts to become necessary to be a ‘good girlfriend’. My friend, who is by her own admission a complete ditz (and has known me long enough to forgive my dissemination of the fact on my incredibly obscure blog) has asked me to give her some tips on how to go above and beyond as a girlfriend. Given my status as a boy, I feel I am more than qualified to take on this task. It’s vital to note, however, that by giving away secrets such as the ones below, I am in severe danger of having certain crucial parts of my anatomy confiscated by the ICM and kept in a locked box at their world headquarters in Boston, the manliest of cities. (Whoops. Forget I said that, will you?)

I undertake this mission, then, in the hopes that my actions will help in some small way to end this raging war between the sexes, to bring harmony and goodwill to our respective genders, and to generally calm the whole relationship issue down so that we can all concentrate on more important things, like football and the possibility of a quick shag before breakfast.

Here, for your deliberation, are Jack’s Own MAN TIPS.

Investigate, but don’t interfere. Men are always pleased, if slightly taken aback, to find out that their girlfriends know a lot more about their interests than they’re given credit for. Unfortunately, some girls take this knowledge a little too far and commit a cardinal sin against menfolk – they attempt to change their boyfriends. Not only does this never work, many men become offended by their girlfriend’s attempt to remold them and may respond with harsh words, threats of a break-up, or psychotic violence (depending on the girl’s taste in men). To avoid these undesirable scenarios, follow the above maxim. Get to know your boyfriend’s obscure likes and dislikes, and use them to provide constant, near-effortless treats that let your boyfriend know how much you care (or to provide that illusion, for the infernal, soulless harpies among you). Here’s a few examples:

  • Sports: Get to know your man’s team. The following trick will work best for girls who like sports in the first place, but if your personal opinion of sport is ‘vague indifference with a chance of interest’, this little tactic may also work very well for you. First, educate yourself to a basic standard on the rules and conventions of whichever sport he likes the most – little touches like a perfect understanding of football’s offside rule can benefit you hugely in this regard and will impress your fella no end. Then, skim through a few sporting blogs or read newspaper sports pages and try, based on your self-taught understanding of the game, to build up a broad but vague understanding of the sport. This way, you don’t have to spend vital brain power on memorising endless stats (time that could be better spent thinking about shoes). You are, however, able to drop little comments into your regular conversation about the team’s position in the league or how well a certain player’s doing. This will confuse and delight your boyfriend and help to cement his perception of you as the perfect girl – “likes football AND has boobs? Nirvana cometh!” (It’s important to keep in mind that if you actively dislike sporting events, keep away from this maneuver – at best you’ll be dragged into unwanted conversations, at worst you might get dragged into a stadium and forced to watch the whole thing in person. If you feel you’d like to get into a sport, though, this is the best way to do it.) Don’t go overboard, though – if he thinks you know more about the sport than he does, he might become a little bit insecure. Broad statements like “Ooh, I wouldn’t have gone with that lineup on Saturday” or “Shola Ameobi has a head like a fucking cube” are all you need to impress the boy.
  • Food: It is always, always a good idea to learn how to cook. The trick of perfecting and cooking your man’s favourite meals is widespread and a little bit obvious, but here’s a further feather in your cap – cook something his mother made for him back in the day. If you get the chance, interrogate his mum about which of her meals he likes the best and get the recipe, making sure to recreate the meal as accurately as possible. If you unexpectedly serve him Ma’s Patented Spaghetti Bake, circa 1999, after a long day at work, you might as well have the engagement ring in the post. I’m always massively impressed by meals cooked with me and only me in mind. Plus, Jack like food and food make Jack happy, and it’s an interest Jack shares with every man who has ever lived. Again, you don’t have to overdo it – you don’t need to take it upon youself to nourish the guy at every possible opportunity. A few occasional treats will work wonders. It is also paramount that you keep this in mind: you are not his mother. Investigate, don’t interfere. Tattoo it on your forehead.

– Get his mates on-side. Your best bet for quick assimilation into your boyfriend’s social structure is to wait until the fateful night that you ‘meet the friends’ and go on an all-out charm offensive. Far too many of my mates have brought prospective girlfriends who, through shyness or apathy, do exactly the wrong thing on nights out – they don’t talk to anyone except their boy, they follow him around at all times, and they shoot down every other conversation that’s attempted. This is not the way to endear yourself to a group of people. Even if you’re normally shy or retiring on nights out, you have to make the best first impression possible – that way you can slack off later without anyone noticing, if you want to. As soon as you’re introduced to his friends, use every trick in the book – ask them about themselves, mention mutual friends and interests, get a bit of light-hearted banter going. Above all, buy them drinks. Whether it’s a big round or just a few shots – if you get some booze in straight away, the mates will love you forever. Catering to the visceral masculine cravings of the mates is sure to endear you to them, possibly to the point that they start to tell him what a great girl you are when you’re not around. If you achieve this, you’ve accomplished one of the hardest tasks a girlfriend can face.

– Be mature. This too might seem obvious, but it’s unbelievable how many girls choose to ignore it. Do not be petulant. Do not complain about things that are beyond changing. Do not try to throw your weight around. In essence, ignore the inner toddler we occasionally all listen to and be a fucking adult, for God’s sake. In the same way that you shouldn’t try to be his mam, don’t try to make him your dad – that is, a man who’s besotted with you and will do whatever you want him to do regardless of his own wishes. Your boyfriend is not that guy. He is your boyfriend. I am sorry to have to spell it out.

I think that’s about it. Time to move temporarily to Guatemala – I don’t want the ICM‘s superpowered ninja-bears to find me at this address. All my stuff is here and I don’t need scrappy bear-fur all over it. To the docks!

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