Boys and Girls      February 21, 2005

This week we meet a boy and two girls masquerading as adults. They look like adults. Their birth certificates say they're adults. Yet, they don't act like adults, and their letters are proof that age does not beget maturity. Even worse, their childish whines have pushed our gender-divided advisors to respond in unison. How juvenile!

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Shallow, sexist and a loser

Dear Conversely,

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I recently discovered that my girlfriend, who graduated college last year, took some judo classes in her senior year. When she told me I laughed and made fun of her because she's 125 pounds soaking wet and not muscular. She's drop-dead gorgeous and doesn't look like the type who'd be throwing down on a judo mat. She put up with my taunting for a while, but then she decided to settle things by challenging me to a match. We're the same height but I outweigh her by forty pounds and am athletic. I felt I'd have her pinned in fifteen seconds. Well, I don't know what the hell happened, but I got thrown to the floor repeatedly and pinned by this skinny, blond girl. She had a good laugh and then forgot about it. I, however, feel completely emasculated and it's driving me crazy. I desperately want a rematch so I can regain my sense of manhood. If I had another shot and was better prepared, I know I would beat her. Do you think it's okay to ask for a rematch? I can't seem to let it go.

Her view:

Dear Floored,

You're being silly. I'm sure you let her win subconsciously by not playing up to full level. You were probably laughing half the time and careful not to hurt her. So, do not let this nonsense strain your relationship. Clearly you are the man; clearly you would normally win. Let it go. Act like you are happy she has her little satisfaction about it, and let her win anyway. And forget it. She certainly will.

I'm sure in any physical test you could knock her over, really hurt her and win. So what? That's a given. It does not challenge your masculinity that this one silly event has occurred. Don't nag her for a rematch. Then she will think she really won and you're acting like a girl getting all upset about it. In a month, it will no longer be remembered. Do not damage a great relationship over nonsense.

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His view:

Dear Floored,

Are you serious? I guess you must be, having written in about it.

You should be ashamed of yourself, for even thinking twice about it. For even thinking that it really is in any way emasculating, or—come on—that you feel like less of a man? What kind of man were you to begin with?

You got beaten. A real man takes it like a man. He bows, he accepts, and he concedes to his GIRLFRIEND. This is not the street corner fight with the pesky neighborhood dolt or the class bully or even your best guy friend.

This is a woman. And if you think that you are less of a man because she beat you, then you are probably right.

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You Vote! 47% of Women agree with HER VIEW and 53% with HIS VIEW.

60% of Men agree with HER VIEW and 40% with HIS VIEW.

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