Do your own thing. Don’t wait
Let us draw an analogy between “doing your own thing” and a woman on a chariot. When she meets the man, she can rein those horses in for a short while. It’s fine if the horses prance on the spot, it may even be sexy, but if she halts them altogether and she dismounts and the horses start grazing and grow fat and lazy… where is the attraction in that? Letting them prance for a moment or two and then setting off again, keeps it interesting. He can race to catch up, he may grab the reins and change their direction to follow his, or meet up again later, but waiting for a man is to allow the horses to grow fat and lazy. Men find it boring and predictable and they grow complacent. The moment she is no longer there, he may begin looking for her again. Or he may not.
As men can grow bored when womens’ horses grow fat and lazy, so women can also grow tired or even bored if men prolong the hunt or she may just meet another more interesting hunter along the way. Perhaps women should actually stop waiting for men to catch them and rather focus on all the interesting topics, events and issues in their own lives. One of South Africa’s famous actors once told me: “I wish I could just meet an interesting woman, who has a passion for something. There are many very beautiful women in the world, there are very few interesting women.” He did meet an interesting woman shortly after, and she happened to be beautiful too.
Do your own thing. Be independent, it’s attractive
Men prefer it when a woman does her own thing because it means she does not expect him to entertain her and give up the things he likes doing. Or he does not have to feel guilty about doing his thing. He likes her and he wants to spend time with her but he also wants to keep doing his thing. It’s fortunate if they have shared interests, such as cycling together, but it is not a prerequisite. As long as she has her own thing, whatever it is. So basically, men like an independent bunny? Yes. I told you it’s not fair.
Does this doing her own thing mean that when he asks her for a date, she should cancel other plans to accommodate him? No. If he promised a buddy he would come round Saturday evening and she wants him to take her to the movies, he will still go to the buddy, because he made those plans first. He values loyalty. He values her being loyal to her friends too but only if they invited her out before he did. He does not expect her to cancel gym to be with him, because he won’t. Not because he does not like her, he does like her. He just can’t allow her to rule or control his life. He will decide when he sees her, even if it is every day, if she is not busy doing her thing. Men don’t mind if a woman tells him he can’t see her on a particular day because she has plans, but then she should suggest an alternative date when she is not busy. Else he may interpret a non-committal answer such as: “We can make it some other day…” as a rejection.
Does this situation change when they are committed? I ask the men: If she is reading a book and she is on the last page and he comes in from the garden and calls her to come and see the bird cage he had built for her, does he expect her to put the book down and follow him? “Of course,” they answer. Should she? Of course. And when she asks him to do something for her, what is his first answer? “Must I do it now?” I did not say it is fair. Just smile.
Don’t ask a man when is a convenient time for him to do something. It is never convenient. Just ask: “Would you make a plan please. It would make me very happy.” And smile. He will make a plan. Remember the urgent-rule.
The dating game
Let me describe a woman’s approach to a date: So he asks her out for a date next Saturday evening. The weekend before the date, she embarks on a shopping expedition. She plans to wear her jeans, but she needs a new blouse. So she cruises one of the major shopping centres searching for the perfect blouse. She finds it, but now she needs shoes in a matching colour. She takes another half a day to look for shoes. She finds a pair, but she is not sure if she likes them. At home she hangs the blouse on the closet door so she can see it every night. She works extra hard at Pilates class that week to drop a kilo. Somewhere during the week she finds time during a lunch hour to return to the shopping centre to get that pair of shoes. They are sold out. She rushes off during the next two days’ lunch hours to other shopping centres to find that pair of shoes. She does. She also buys new perfume and lipstick. She remembers to book an appointment at the beauty parlour. She sends a whats-app photo of the blouse to her friend. Friday night she watches DVD’s, but she skips the pizza because she does not want to pick up that kilo. On Saturday morning she gets up at 8 am. She goes to the beauty parlour for a bikini, lip, chin and eyebrow wax, because you never know. While she is there, she gets her nails done because they happen to have the perfect colour to match the lipstick. She gets home at 1pm. She eats something light because she is nervous. Her friend comes over and brings her the perfect set of earrings to match the blouse. They research the guy on Facebook, reread all his whats-app text messages and analyse every word. By 4pm she draws a bath and fills it with aromatic bubbles. She shaves her legs. She washes her hair and conditions it and then she soaks in the bath with a green mask on her face, for 10 minutes. Her friend is happily chatting away. She applies body lotion, talcum powder and deodorant. Her friend blow-dries her hair straight. They also try out the new hair straightener. And they paint her toe nails. She irons the jeans and blouse. Her friend does her make-up. She doesn’t like it and they rinse it off and start all over again. By 6pm she gets dressed. Her pantyhose rip. Her friend dashes off to the shops to buy a new pair. No-one will notice if she wears torn pantyhose under the jeans, but one never knows … We all know what happened to Bridget Jones. She charges her cell phone, checks her handbag for tissues, deodorant, perfume, hair brush, ID, cash and her new lipstick. Her friend kisses her cheek and wishes her good luck. It’s 7 pm. She is dressed, slips on the new shoes, and sprays her new perfume … He arrives 10 minutes late, but he has brought her a bunch of flowers.
The man’s approach to the date: He asks her for the date next Saturday. He works during the week. Saturday morning he sleeps late because he had a boys’ night out the previous night. He gets up and grabs a coffee. He visits his mate. They work on the bike. They lie on the couch and watch a rerun of the rugby match. They pop a few beers. By 6pm he goes home catches a quick shower, uses the deodorant, combs his hair. He drives to her place, stops at the ATM at the petrol station to draw money. He decides to buy a lotto ticket because he feels lucky. He also buys mints because he forgot to brush his teeth. He spots the condoms, but buys a bunch of chrysanthemums instead. That’s why he is 10 minutes late. “You look pretty” he says, “and you smell nice.” She smiles and puts the flowers in a vase.
One of my male friends described his apprehension regarding Valentine’s Day. “Many men dread this day,” he says. “You make a date with a girl, but she has expectations. She expects you to book some fancy exotic restaurant, or to come up with some original idea like a picnic on Table Mountain or something and you live in another province. Then you have to buy the flowers – not from the convenient store, I know, but flowers are 10 times more expensive on Valentine’s Day, and so are the chocolates. And then you remember she is on a diet, so where do you book a restaurant that serves diet food and you skip the chocolates. So do you replace the chocolates with a teddy bear? That may be corny. Then you have to find a card. It is rather embarrassing to a man’s ego to stand in front of the greeting cards stand and select the perfect Valentine’s card. Usually we just pick the first one we see. Or we send an e-card. Then on the 14th you have to send her a message early in the morning before she sends you one. Then it’s the date and you have to dress up and if you happen to work late or get caught in a traffic jam, she does not open the door. It is very stressful to date a girl on Valentine’s Day, so many expectations. So most of us just avoid it,” he sighs. I answer: “Have you ever considered that the girl sometimes just expects you to turn up with a daisy in your hand and take her to a romantic movie? It is spending time with you that is important to her, not the trimmings. If the girl is more interested in the trimmings, you are dating the wrong girl.”
When a woman meets a new man, she daydreams about the first date; what she is going to wear, what she is going to say and how he is going to respond; where they would be going, how he is going to take her hand for the first time… and the daydream ends when he embraces her and kisses her. When a man meets a woman his fantasy begins with the kiss and rapidly progresses from there to getting her naked in bed.