Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Manly Affection: Part 1

I was over at a friend’s house the other night, watching some movies. There was a couple in attendance as well, making it a total of three guys and a girl. As the evening continued, the men began to insult each other with increasing vehemence. And then we’d laugh.

NOTE: This is actually a lie. We pretty much insulted each other from the get-go.
The woman eventually raised her hand during a lull in the torrent of abuse and said “Why are you guys so mean to each other?”

The three of us blinked and we looked from one to the other. “’cause we’re guys?” one of us eventually said.

“But you’re all friends,” she protested. “Why do you always insult each other?”

“Oh,” I said, suddenly understanding her point. “That’s how we demonstrate friendship!”

“Huh?” was her response.

I then realized that some women, especially those who haven’t grown up with brothers, may not understand the complex and elegant patterns of male bonding. Every ‘butthead’ is an affirmation of brotherhood. Every ‘ugly hooker’ joke is a ritual designed to weave a delicate web of understanding.

However, every ‘you’re hung like a Chihuahua’ is just us being crude.
Here then is a guide.

In a nutshell: Guys insult each other because that’s how we show affection.


For whatever reason, be it testosterone, primitive hunting rituals, or simply the fact that we’re emotionally stunted man-children, men can’t express affection or friendship the way women do. So we substitute abuse for affection.

For example, I have two older brothers. I haven’t said a civil word to either of them since I was five. This, coincidentally, coincided with the time when they decided to tie me to the couch with a length of rope and then threw pillows at me as I ran in circles, crying.

They maintain that I enjoyed it. Many years of therapy suggest I didn’t, but I digress.

Next Wednesday: Part 2


Buzzcook said...

It's that meaningless assertion of dominance that substitutes for actual violence.
So are you Ralph, Jack, Simon, or Piggy?
Of course girls don't understand this because for them it isn't a game. Trying to fit in with the Heathers is real blood sport.

Jason Janicki said...

To be honest, I don't remember Lord of the Flies well enough to tell you which character I resemble most (though not Piggy). I will also agree that girls are way more vicious than guys about such things, though again it's been a long time since I've seen Heathers :)

spasticfreakshow said...

many years of therapy indeed! over some rope and pillows, but your guy friends can beat you up verbally and it's a sign of love. you should stay away from the lightest s&m, in that case. hahaha - you are always good for a laugh! jason, how's the computer and more importantly, how are the next comic pages coming?

Jason Janicki said...

Thanks, spasticfreakshow! Can I call you spaz?

I don't have any firm info on when the next pages will be up, but rest assured, I'll let you know when we have a solid date.