Monday, August 25, 2008

Men, Women, and Dragons

So I've been think lately about the differences between men and women. I think the fairy tale story of the dragon, the princess, and the knight pretty much sums it all up. You know the one. It usually starts with a princess being captured by a terrible dragon and taken to a far away cave where the dragon keeps all his treasure. A brave knight steps up and goes and defeats the dragon single-handedly and marries the princess.

As children, I'm sure we've all heard some variation of that tale (although in a Bostonian government skool, I'm pretty sure it'd be two men or a princess and a manly lady). As children, I'm sure that the boys hear this story and ponder a few things:

-We get a nice sword with armor and a nice horse. We get to ride over the countryside and kill a freakin' dragon. The princess is inconsequential, as she is merely the icing on the cake.

-Depending on the age of the boys, you may view the whole rescue as one giant adrenaline-filled rush followed by crazy sex with a very grateful, hot chick.

For girls I think it's probably much more different. Prince Charming comes along wearing tights (very effective fire retardant, by the way) and manages to best the dragon while not getting a single burn or drop of blood on his skin-tight outfit. He takes her up on his steed and she is whisked away into the sunset to be married (naturally, the white dress means something).

I don't know when this tale got started (probably Sir George and the Dragon, but I'm not much of a literary buff), but it does illustrate the real life expectations that men and women place on their own lives.

Men want adventure. Just about everything a man does or wants to do is adventurous in his own mind. Men want to go forth and kill something. Now, men do replace actual death with a suitable substitute these days, but the bloodlust is there. And after we kill something, we want sex. Psychological impotence is usually because inadequacy in their own lives.

Women want romance. There is nothing more romantic than someone willing to fight for her, in a woman's mind. A knight who goes out there and kills a dragon just to get her back is a knight who finds her captivating and worth something of value.

Today I read the passage in Genesis where Isaac first meets Rebekah. She was brought to him dressed as a princess, nose ring and all. Even when they were older, Isaac pulled the same stunt that his father did: telling the king that she was his sister so he wouldn't be killed and she taken from him. It worked until the king spotted them caressing.

Isaac loved Rebekah. But he would go out and hunt and kill because that gave him a great thrill.

And so I guess when it comes to wives and husbands, I think it is best that men try and do things that make their wives feel special and wives need to let their husbands be. As long as he isn't crossing any kind of lines, like going to a strip club, let him run wild. And guys, always try and do nice things for your wives. Gifts, quality time, pleasant words, whatever else she wants, try and provide it. Even a little bit goes a long way.

This may sound arrogant, coming from a man whose only been married for two years, but I have learned so much from those two years and from many other people along the way. Most of my advice is actually not my own, just repackaged.

Just some final words of caution:

-Ladies, do not place expectations on men. Don't expect him to understand you or to behave exactly like Sir George. He'll probably act more like Shrek.

-Guys, listen to your wives. Include them in your life and don't ignore them. If your wife isn't your best friend, then you need to fix that.