Guys Night Out

Have you ever had one of those weeks that felt insanely busy, only to turn it around with a pathetically lazy weekend?

Come on, I know you have.

For me, that’s what this weekend felt like…although I’m not sure if I was actually lazy or not. Perhaps I just felt like I was lazy. Or maybe I’m just watching my cat’s life and thinking that she and I saw far too much of each other this weekend.

Part of the reason for this is that my wife decided to participate in a Girls Night Out (this phrase must always be capitalized) with  two of her former classmates from grad school. This even sounded like fun to me at first, but my energetic notions of hanging out with beautiful women to the tune of Matrix: Revolutions were not well received. Actually, I’m not sure the suggestion even made it into the receiving area; it’s amazing how fine-tuned a fiancé’s selective hearing skills are. So I was rejected quickly and decisively, a turn of events which left me with not only an open Saturday night but also a million thoughts to ponder.

For one, why isn’t there a such thing as a Guys Night Out anymore? I think we all believe that there is such a thing, but it doesn’t ever actually happen. You just won’t drop by a thirty-year-old guy’s apartment and find dudes draped all over the couch watching Predator. ‘Cause once you get to a certain age, I think there comes a prerequisite that women have to be present at all social events. It’s a strange phenomenon. Ultimately the reason for this is not so obvious, but can be seen via the following scenario:

“Hey, Jim, how ’bout those Dawgs! You know, I was thinking of having some guys over to watch a movie tonight.”

“Oh…uh, okay. What movie?”

All Hell Breaks Loose 3! Have you seen it? It’s gotta be great. There’s even a poster of Anna Kournikova in it.”

“Yeah, I heard! Can’t wait to see it. My little cousin got thrown out of a movie theater trying to get in, and he’s sixteen. It must really be good.”

“So what do you say?”

This becomes the point of death in any such request. If ol’ Jim says yes, then immediately he’s placed himself in a situation where two dudes are watching a movie, with no women present, and no way for either to conclusively prove he’s not gay. That situation is never going to happen, and he must immediately illustrate that it’s never going to happen. Thus he’s left with the only safe response:

“Who else is gonna be there?”

“Well, I haven’t asked anyone else yet.”

Repeat this scenario for each guy, and on Saturday night you’ll somehow still end up with six guys watching ESPN Classic on six different sofas.

Girls, on the other hand, pile on together and count the success of the night by how many collective tears they shed. If Rachel can’t quite get the tear ducts flowing, there’s always Amanda to step in and make up the difference. Let there be no doubt–Amanda will earn her MVP honors on this night. And so it goes. It’s bonding, it’s emotional, and for women it’s just downright effective. Yet it’s absolutely, 100% unimaginable to anyone with a Y chromosome.

My personal theory is that women are from Venus, but guys have competitively taken over every other planet in the solar system. Seriously, just Mars? Are you kidding me? Yet somewhere on each planet there’s a lone guy on his sofa, looking fearfully for other guys while broadcasting to anyone that will listen why his planet is the best planet. And every once in a while, a lady will stroll by, but she never stops on her journey towards Venus. Because there, my friends, on an enormous big screen TV, is the thirty-eighth showing of Steel Magnolias.