Tag Archives: men

Proof that men are born that way.

15 May

Last week Alan almost kicked a ten year old’s ass.

We were checking out a beer garden with live Irish music in Arlington. Sitting on bench with our backs to the building, we toasted each other and began scanning the crowd. A woman sat eating dinner with her two sons at a nearby table. She had her nose in her iPhone, and one of the boys stared at us.

I don’t mean our eyes occasionally met and we both awkwardly looked away. He STARED at us. Constantly. And they didn’t appear to be sweet little boys… we’d seen them before they were seated, raising holy hell with their soccer ball and climbing all over every available bench. They ran the joint like spoiled rich kids – which – given where we were – they probably were.

I noticed  him staring and continued scanning the rest of the crowd. When my eyes got back to Alan, I saw that he was fully engaged with the kid, having a stare-down.

“What are you doing?” I asked.

“That kid won’t stop staring,” he said.

“I know,” I responded. “But do you have to stare back at him?”

“Actually,” he explained, “I do. It’s not just a staring contest, it’s a male dominance thing.”

“Really? Because it LOOKS like a staring contest,” I challenged.

“No,” he informed me, “That little shit knows exactly what he’s doing.”

I looked back at the kid and – sure enough – he was brazenly staring at Alan, not blinking, not  flinching, with a bored/cocky look of entitlement on his face, shoving french fries into his mouth without even glancing at his plate. I could kind of see Alan’s point.

Alan continued to stare at him and I could tell he was actually getting irritated.

“This is ridiculous,” I said. “I’m not buying the dominance thing. Besides – he’s a kid. You’re an adult. Why are you even engaging him?”

“Because it is RUDE. Someone needs to set him straight – he’s way too cocky. I’m tempted to walk over there and ask the mom if they know me, then – when she says no – then ask why her kid has been staring at me non-stop. At least she’ll understand he’s being rude.”

We then spent a few minutes laughing as we imagined how that conversation would go:

“Your kid has been staring at me.”

She ignores us.

“Lady, get your nose out of that phone and look at your rude kid!” 

When we finished laughing, we looked back over and the kid was STILL boring holes into us. Alan, frustrated, ran his hand through his hair. And in turning his head ever so slightly, he happened to notice the flatscreen television screwed to the wall behind him, broadcasting a hockey game.

As it turned out, I saw it at the same time. We both looked at each other with sudden awareness, eyebrows lifted.

Mystery solved.

“So,” I asked him. “When I write this for my blog, should I title it, ‘Encyclopedia Brown and the Case of Mistaken Dominance?’ Or should it be ‘The Case of the Rude Child?’

Apparently he thought BOTH were fantastic ideas, because he didn’t respond. Or maybe we’re having a Silence Contest. I’m really not clear on these things. Must be a guy thing.

Guess it’s time to dye my roots.

30 Aug

Alan and I have been living on different continents for much of the past four months. As a result, he’s viewing me with fresh eyes. At least, I’d like to think that’s what prompted him – completely unprompted – to ask this weekend,”Wow. How dark is your hair naturally?”

I looked at him steadily, and in the pause that allowed me to formulate my thoughts, he continued, “I mean. I’m confused. I’m not seeing the amount of silvers that I usually do, so you must’ve dyed it recently, but the roots are still really dark. Almost brown. How do you do that?”

Admittedly, I find it endearing that he doesn’t realize how most women would take this. (Flashback to when he compared me to a calico cat because I had swirls of blond, brown and gray hair.) And I’m under no illusion that I have great hair or even well-colored hair.

The truth is, I don’t know what my natural color is. I was blond as a child and started swimming in middle school, so my hair has had some degree of chemical treatment since I was 11. Since I now have a ridiculous number of grays on my head (random guess would point to 25%), I color my hair to help them blend in, rather than to chase some fantasy of being blond.

In any case, Alan’s fascination with my hair led me to explain that I couldn’t exactly define “natural,” but I was pretty sure it wasn’t actually blond. He seemed satisfied with that explanation, so we hopped a bus to meet friends in Georgetown for a mid-hurricane brunch.

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