Men are clever pets? Well, that would certainly explain the leg humping.

April 4, 2011

The gap in time between New Zealand and the Mother Country is now so huge that we have to phone family members well before sparrow’s fart if we have any hope of apprehending them before they become too immersed in their day.

Which would explain why I was still in bed, enveloped in the cosy mists of sleep, while Viking Woman lay beside me explaining the fact of life to one of her daughters.

That’s right, folks: “fact.” Singular. As in one. And Viking Woman’s solitary nugget went something like this: men are little more than clever pets.

Even as I lay in Mr. Sandman’s embrace, I could tell Viking Woman was using “clever” in the loosest possible meaning of the word. The ability to tell time, for instance, as long as the clock is digital. Or possessing the dexterity to use Velcro because, face it, shoelaces were invented by Satan to drive us mad.

The daughter on the other end of the line was, it seems, having Boy Trouble. The inhabitant of Planet Man in question was dragging his feet when it came to establishing a meaningful relationship. I’ve always referred to this move as “being cautious.” Women, it turns out, call it “being a dickhead with commitment issues.” Like it was a bad thing.

It’s been my observation that women have a nasty habit of immersing themselves completely in the deep end of the love pool, and then later wonder why they tend to drown in their own tears. Men, on the other hand, prefer to dip their toes only as far as needed to keep the water flowing at an even temperature. We have no desire to waste time swimming affection laps, not while there’s beer in the fridge and a game on TV.

A female Facebook buddy agreed with Viking Woman’s “pet” analogy.

Well,” she pointed out, “we do feed them, clean up after them, stroke their heads, tell them we love them, let them nuzzle our faces . . .”

The thing is, Viking Woman and my FB friend are both missing the point: men are running the biggest scam in the history of the world. We do not need women to feed us – that’s why the Baby Jesus invented KFC. We do not need women to clean up after us – that’s what shovels are for.

The rest – the stroking, the patting, the verbal appreciation, the nuzzling – well, that’s the price we’re willing to pay for what Viking Woman refers to as “connubial relations.”

There is one fact of life on Planet Man and it is this: we’ll put the least amount of effort as possible into a relationship as long as women continue to insist on doing all the heavy lifting.

Clever pet? I’m thinking yes.

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