When a team lets a player go, he must turn in his playbook. It’s a sacred text. So sacred, in fact, you might end up let go if you lose or compromise your play book.
I’m about to answer questions about my team – my, gender – posed by one of my favorite girl bloggers, Chris Carter, of The Mom Café.
I do this at the risk of having my playbook yanked, my spot on the ‘team’ taken away, my membership card revoked.
Pay attention. That’s a steep price to pay.
Go check out Chris’ blog, here. She’s spiritual, she’s outspoken, she’s brilliant.
Dear Mr. Mister,
There are some things I need to know about you. I need to understand how you think and why you do certain things. I long to be patient with your ways. I hope you will guide me through my concerns and give light to all the women who wonder similar things…
There are so many questions. There are so many things that truly intrigue me about your gender. I will narrow down my inquiry to those things that consume my days living with my husband and see if you may perhaps shed light on these three particular puzzling pieces:
Why do you completely crumble at the first signs of sickness?
Woman’s take: The world could be at war, and yet your poor ailing body sinks into a self-consuming whimpering mess. You can withstand storms that blow through with whistling winds, and yet your sniffles seem to knock you into a world of selfish mourning and an uncanny decline of both mental and emotional health.
You can withstand storms that blow through with whistling winds, and yet your sniffles seem to knock you into a world of selfish mourning and an uncanny decline of both mental and emotional health.
As we women work and battle through our sickness with superpowers we create from the depths of our very soul, you seem to be amiss of anything functional at all, and completely shut down. Yes, we might moan and groan through our sickness…but we endure and keep the world spinning on its axis. We have to.
Man’s response: Even Mahatma Gandhi griped when he stepped on a sharp pebble. But not all fellows are wired to implode at the mere introduction of a virus. Some of us are more prone to accentuate the possibility that a physical injury is, in fact, not just a sore shoulder, but a torn rotator cuff.
That we didn’t just bump our head on a jutting ladder from a parked work truck, but we’ve suffered a Grade III concussion. That when we crumple to the ground gripping our knee, we didn’t just “wrench” it, but it’s likely an ACL, PCL and meniscus tear that will require 18 months of rehabilitation.
We do this because heroes and great leaders in history have overcome so much to become heroes. When we take out the trash despite a head cold (or, as we put it, a SARS attack), we’re like Willis Reed, RGIII and Napoleon rolled into one.
(I think I remember reading that Napoleon fought the War against Austria of 1809 just minutes after stubbing his toe and hitting his funny bone).
We do this because we want to be your hero, too.
How is it, that you can manage multi-million dollar projects and juggle an amazing “to do” list at work, and yet forget to pick up more than two items at the grocery store? (With a list)
Woman’s take: Better yet, how is it that the few chores you need to do at home, or the tasks on your “to do” list for our family… need constant gentle reminders? Do you know your father’s birthday? Why is your pile of laundry still sitting in the same place for a week? Did you simply forget that I have asked you NINE times to put the frame on the wall or do you just like to put things off for weeks on end?
Did you forget that I have asked you NINE times to put the frame on the wall or do you just like to put things off for weeks on end?
I see your spreadsheets and your timelines for your projects, and truly they impress me. Perhaps I should make you some new spreadsheets and timelines so that the bathtub doesn’t have mold or the Christmas outside lights don’t stay up til spring…
Man’s response: Spreadsheets at home? Brilliant. Perhaps, work has it wrong. I’d venture to say that if my boss just leaned over a few times a day and asked, “when is that story due?” or “do you think these blogs are going to write themselves?” I’d be an unmitigated success and a virtual skyrocket up the corporate ladder.
If we men clutter our memories with such trivial facts as extended family birthdays (aren’t you glad we remember yours?), we might not have the capacity to, once or twice a season, not only remember to hang that frame and take down the Christmas lights, but maybe, just maybe, to clean the gutters while we’re up there.
Or remember what wood tone that frame is, and, while we’re in Lowe’s weeks later, turn to you and say, “honey, we should get this shelf to go with that frame you love so much in the den.”
I’ll even hang it for you. Eventually.
Laundry note: If it’s in a pile, it’s in limbo. It’s neither clean nor dirty. There’s a 38% chance we’ll wear it again.Asking if these clothes are clean or dirty is like asking someone through a closed door whether they’re done in the bathroom. If they were done, they wouldn’t be in there.
I get better reception with a toddler or a teen.
Shopping note: For every list item you include that includes the words “with wings” and doesn’t pertain to the Buffalo variety, we’re required by nature to forget 12 aggregate items on future shopping trips. Now you know.
Your listening skills continue to amaze me.
I get better reception with a toddler or a teen. How is it that you need me to repeat the SAME conversation four times for you to finally process the information given? It baffles me to no end, how I can say something and within that very SECOND, you ask me something that I just gave you the details about and you nodded and even gave me eye contact while I was speaking?
How does your mind work?? Do you tune out the moment I start to speak? Do your neurons shoot in random directions as I provide critical (to me) details that you need to know? How is it that you can do conference calls with people in CHINA who speak horrible broken English and yet, our dialogue is misunderstood?
It is truly fascinating to see your mind process intricate details and immediately forget them…within minutes. “What are you talking about?” You ask? If you can stay with me for a minute, I will give you an example:
I say: “ We are going to your mom and dad’s house this Sunday, so I need to bring a side dish and some rolls. We should go after church and get back early. Oh, and remember I have to teach Sunday school that morning.”
You say in reply: “So what are we doing Sunday?”
Fast forward to Sunday:
You ask: “What are we doing today? Do you teach?”
Seriously. That. Bad.
If you only knew what swirls around in our brains.
Man’s response: What? Christmas lights. I heard you the first time.
If you only knew what swirls around in our brains. Fantasy football stats. Barbecue ideas. Whether the song “Bang Your Head” was on the album “Metal Health” or “Quiet Riot II.”
Internal debates about who our favorite female TV meteorologist really is.
What we might have forgotten at the grocery store. (This doesn’t take into account residual musings about Sports Illustrated swimsuit issues of our youth.) Why do you think we have to watch SportsCenter three times in a row to retain anything?
We’re conserving brain space. We figure that because you remember everything, we’d better free up some storage in our own gray matter, so that when the day comes that you can’t remember whether Wednesday is Canasta or Bingo, we’ll have your back.
Chris’ Take: While I am feeling a little guilty for calling you men out on these particular inabilities, I would like to say that there are many, many assets you possess that us women certainly respect and love. I would go on and on about them here, but you know what they are.
You tell us about them all the time. 🙂
Eli’s response: No hard feelings. I have a few questions of my own to ask you on your blog. And yes, we do know about those many assets we possess. See? We can remember stuff.
And we tell you all the time, because you listen.
Speechless. You know when a woman is speechless? When she’s been out done…. 😉
Game still in play, and you’ve got the ball in your hands!! Play book still open…crowds are cheering on both sides. Momentum is brewing and the band is playing… Half-time show has started and the players are in the locker room regrouping and planning their next move.
See you on the field!!!!!
BTW: You had me at “kind of brilliant”. 😉
I would have said $@#%! brilliant, but I don’t like to gush.
I’ve formulated 2.2 of the questions I’m going to send you to answer for your own gender. This sort of feels like a supreme court hearing, with better food.
I’m going to leave that one right where it sits.
Coach, this was a very nice read…and so true. Just had this same discussion with my better half within the past week. Men and women are just wired differently. The quicker women understand that, the better life would be. I’m kidding, ladies, don’t bury me. Seriously, we are wired differently and that is the beauty of it. If we were the same, one of us would be unnecessary.
Thanks MB. We’re like different species, only these different species can actually breed. Like horses and donkeys. If being wired differently is keeping us relevant, I will continue to do my part.
You know you just dug yourself a big ol’ hole just saying that little remark sir MB!! Us women will never EVER forget it, no matter how many times you say “Kidding ladies”. You. Are. Buried. 😉
I have been blessed by the Holy Father to be able to share a home with 4 male’s who at this moment are all in different phases of the flu. Yay me!!!
HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! GOD speed dear woman!!!! 🙂
I think the action of placing you in a home with four sick males was a directive from down below, not up above.
On the bright side, how does Saint Leslie sound to you?
I am laughing my behind off because I really thought it was only Leo and now I know…it is all guys. You have given Leo the greatest gift of all, Eli. The gift of me getting off his back for a little bit because I had no idea it was gender related! And thank you, Chris for letting me know I am not alone. 🙂
So actually, this piece will help all of mankind, when women discover we all have these traits? I wonder what the corresponding action will be when I ask Christine the questions. We all just strive to be understood, you know. We don’t do these things purely to piss you off, but I know it feels that way sometimes.
I wonder if you’d rather have the male model of the 1950s or previous decades, who had these faults but still insisted on running the world.
See? We’re like a breath of fresh air, men of 20-teens.
Oh sweet friend…you are SO not alone!!! 🙂
“Barbecue ideas … “ That SO made me laugh because my guy’s constantly thinking of how he can outdo himself on the grill. Such a fun post … thanks for the giggles.
We men cannot rest on the laurels of last weekend’s kick-ass grilled salmon. If you’re not thinking about your next charcoal conquest, you’re falling behind. And we fellows are more apt to dream up our next dream, rather than pine over 153 examples of it on Pinterest.
Glad you liked this!
This is hilarious. I am sending this to my husband after I write this comment. Chris, you did a great job with your questions! The spreadsheet thing is such a good point. With all the things men can remember at work, why is it so hard to remember your own family member’s birthday? And why am I in charge of remembering your family members’ birthdays? Ha! Looking forward to Eli’s questions on TheMomCafe!
Yes, men should be made aware this can of worms is now open. Chris did a great job of giving the questions, and more than one (showed faith in my ability to multi-task, or at least serial-task). But it wasn’t too much. Three was perfect. Ask yourself, how can I expect a man to remember things like birthdays and cat food brand favorites when he has to remember so much key data at work and to run his fantasy football team?
You’re in charge, dear women, because we’ll mess it up.
Thanks Jennifer!! If I put together a spreadsheet, my hubby would be offended. And yet, that is truly the only solution to the problem!! I wonder how your husband responded to this post…? You will have to see what he says to Eli’s questions!!!
Your playbook is so getting yanked over that shopping list confession. So getting yanked. This was hilarious.
It was so worth getting the truth out though, Ilene. Doesn’t life make perfect sense now?
I’ve had nightmares about the feminine hygiene aisle. Nightmares.
Because just yesterday, upon my husband’s request, I wrote a post-it with an inventory of potential lunch items and put it INSIDE the refrigerator. And it totally WORKED. Spreadsheets? Whiteboards? Check. I’m a believer.
Now you’re getting it. Spread the word. It’s all a sisterhood with y’all. I swear, if one of you pins this, the world will change overnight.
HA! I always say men are CONCRETE beings…they need all forms of communication on BLACK AND WHITE. The only problem is we women see everything in GREY. Hmm… 😉
OK I love this! Enough said. LOL
Well, of course you love it – this is ground-breaking stuff.
I think she means she loves MY questions… stop taking all the credit Eli! LOL
Hahahahahaha!! Chris, I could not have thought of three more pressing questions to ask! They were perfect! I had no idea about the “conserving brain space” theory. It is all clicking in place now.
Yeah, Chris really hit us where we live. Well done. If you have one takeaway from this experience, its that we men are a few levels above just acting and reacting to life. We actually have a bit of a plan. Unbeknownst even to us at times, but a plan, nonetheless.
There were quite a few pressing questions to chose from, so I am so glad you approve of the 3 I did choose!!! I tried to squeeze in a few more pressing peeves in my intro and the ending to make my intentions clear… Us women are SOOOO good at that, aren’t we? LOL
Thanks for this story! I agree that men and women are definitely wired differently. While I write a lot about men not able to do the simple things in life such as call a potential date on the phone, ask them out and actually follow through with it! There are some times that men have the advantage over women such as not having to deal with insane jealousy among one another. Great post! Thanks!
Thanks for checking it out. It’s like we’re from different planets sometimes. We men do sometimes struggle with the “easy” stuff – like sealing up the bag inside the cereal box and wearing underwear *every* day – we are also capable of complex endeavors such as changing oil in a car or identifying which Star Wars bounty hunters action figures use which weapons.
I am not even going to touch the jealousy thing in my response to Chris’ blog, incidentally …
THE CEREAL BOX!!!! YES!!!!! Why is it so DAMN hard to roll up the bag inside after you get your cereal? One more note: DO NOT leave four pebbles left in the “fruity pebbles” bag… Seriously. Ridiculous.
Love this! What a great idea! Chris – you and I are married to the same man. Unbelievable. I had no idea these traits were shared by other men! 😉 You promised me laughs and giggles and you delivered! Eli – You are a hoot! And I have a new favorite daddy blogger. I loved what you said about men wanting to be our heroes too. I forget that idea regularly and will give my husband a huge hug and kiss once he gets over his sniffles and gets up off the couch (I mean once his massive internal injuries sustained in battle have healed)! Well done!
It’s not not these questions haven’t festered since the age of Constantine. I think Joan of Arc asked some of the same questions. These are traits we men share with 95 percent of men, dating back to Fred Flintstone.
Glad to be your new favorite daddy blogger! I don’t take that lightly. And it’s true – we just really would love to be your hero. When you consider that, all the bad stuff we do doesn’t feel that bad, does it?
It sure doesn’t – your hero statement was a gift to me and my husband. I’ll hug him a little tighter whenever I remember it. Thank you!
So good to be understood. I’ve probably upset the balance of nature. Earth might attract the next humongous asteroid because of the utter harmony we’re causing here.
I’ll have to make my questions to Chris as piggish and Cro Magnon-ish as possible.
Eli has a way of throwing in those “sweet spots” from time to time…that’s what I love about him!!! 🙂
I love her ending, lolol. This whole batting back and forth is intriguing. Count me in the locker room waiting for the game to continue.
Her ending, what about mine? This is MY house! haha
I’m giving one helluva pep talk to the fellas right now.
Now Eli, don’t let your pride get in the way… It’s okay if I get some serious praise over at your house. Really, it doesn’t make you any less of a man. 😉
BTW… My ending ROCKED!!!! 😉
Hahaha! I thoroughly enjoyed this post. Chris hit the nail on the head with those questions. Men really are from Mars and women from Venus. Thanks Eli for shedding light on how men think. I can totally hear my hubby answering Chris’s questions the same way.
Truth is funny, isn’t it? I think I said this before, but this felt like a supreme court hearing, but with better drinks than that pitcher of water they always seem to have on the table.
I don’t believe men are from Mars. They would have found some of our dirty socks with the Mars rover, don’t you think?
I bet Venus smells like vanilla. And had George Michael playing on the loudspeakers.
Okay- this is the BEST reply I have ever read… “Venus smells like vanilla? George Michael playing on the loud speakers”? BRILLIANT ELI. You can add: all the dishes and floors are spotless and the spacesuits are washed and folded nice and neat in a pile…while dinner is on the stove.
OH MY GOSH!!!! I just kept saying, “I know, right?!” every time I read your part, Chris! Especially the part about ALL he can accomplish for work then can’t remember anything I ask him to do. Oh, and, especially the part where you’re talking to him and then he responds with a question ANSWERED BY WHAT YOU JUST SAID!…Oh, and the part…well, ALL of them! I know I should know that it’s not only my man who does this stuff…it’s still good to remember that. He’s a good catch even with all his flaws. If he were perfect he’d have no business being married to me!
Oh, Chris did great, all right. Let’s see how she fares when she’s up on the stand next week.
Now see…? That wasn’t so hard now was it? 😉
TAMMY!!!!! We are so in the same boat!!! LOVE this comment!!!!
A little too accurate. Now I want to go smack my husband in the back of the head. Seriously, it’s a good thing we women need you men. And that we’ve been taught that throwing rocks at someone’s head is mean.
Dear Mr. Grosland,
Please wear the enclosed football helmet and mouth guard until further notice.
And you’re welcome.
Okay- you know how I said the other comment was the best one I have ever read? I take that back…
It’s THIS one. LOVE THIS!!!! LOL
Hahaha, very good questions Chris and might I add, very good answers Coach Daddy!! Thanks you two for a very lively and enlightening conversation. Now I see why ESPN is so redundant and why my husband and two sons leave it on ALL day…I get it now! LOL! Anyway, from the looks of it…it’s a draw…you both WIN!
Just wait until you see my questions for Chris! I hope you’re leaving here with some enlightenment. There’s a rhyme behind our reason, after all.
Do I smell a talk show? Hello? The next Regis and Kelly?
(P.S. It will always be Regis.)
(P.P.S. It will never be Kathie Lee.)
Great one, Eli. But I always enjoy reading your stuff. No, seriously. 🙂
Thanks for linking up with #KetchupWithUs again. Come back and see us on the 15th.
I think I’d go nuts on a talk show, with everyone yelling “wooo!” every time you mention a guest or a city. This was a blast to write back in the day with a really good blogger.
Yes, it will always be Regis. And Kathie Lee and Hoda? I will watch C-SPAN first.
Thanks Michele. Your stuff is pretty good too, and I always find something new to read in the #KetchupWithUs links.