So, lately I’ve been lucky enough to be around MEN. By this, I mean, I’ve had the company of guys who exhibit all of the things I love about men-they fix things, they carry things, they pull out your chairs and hold doors for you. And, before you think this is referring to only heterosexuals-not at all. In fact, two of the handiest, most chivalrous men I know are dating each other!
In this city of San Francisco, we are always discussing the Feminine, the Goddess, and expecting the men in our lives to honor these things as well. But, just as you cannot have light without dark, you cannot have feminine energy without masculine. Kali and Durga are some bad ass goddesses, they can handle the strength of Shiva and Rama so why can’t we?
Sadly, I think men here believe the ultimate role model is that guy in the “Man from Marin” skit-a kombucha swilling, purple stretch pant wearing man who “tends towards the yin”. I’ve seen loads of middle-aged men try and pull this off and it’s just sad. Why not be rugged and capable instead? There’s a certain dignity men acquire as a result of a life well lived, and some crow’s feet and scars to show for it.
Also, there is the resilience that men gain both mentally and physically that I love. But, it doesn’t seem to be in vogue here. It wasn’t until I moved to CA that I realized men here are masters of the art form of passive aggressiveness. The idea of “Saying what you mean, and meaning what you say” is foreign in this land.
For a girl who was raised in a community of Irish and Italian blue-collar workers, this form of communication is confusing-especially in relationships. I’d rather have a man who takes a stand, chooses a side and sticks to it and will fight with his bare knuckles to protect the ones he loves.
And, before you think these are qualities only an East Coaster can appreciate, they aren’t. A friend of mine recently went to New York and was astonished how many men helped her with her bags at the airport, on the subway, to her hotel. Having grown up in California, she’d become used to opening her own doors, carrying her own bags, fixing her own things. Not that men should be taskmasters, but if everyone is caught up doing the “feminine” chores, who will do the more “masculine” ones?
I think men are wired to like certain things, evidenced by the thrill all of my male friends show at Burning Man while setting up camp. They are swinging sledgehammers, engineering camp set-up, and wiring generators. Alot of these guys have desk jobs and are professionals of one type or another, but they all love getting down and dirty on the Playa.
So, I want to celebrate men in all of their unshaven, dominant, manly glory!
The “Man from Marin” may be in fashion for some, but this girl is here to say that strong, masculine men should stay that way. I, for one, appreciate all that you are!