A married man’s life is a caricature of a pirate with a parrot on his shoulder.


Men are simple creatures.  We’ve important matters of State to consider like who’ll win the World Cup; will Tottenham return to the glory days of Jimmy Greaves; will Boys Town ever resemble the “Colour Red” we knew and loved; how to exterminate the entire West Indies cricket team. 

We’ve no time for minutiae. Leading candidates for inclusion in that category include searching for things.  So, we put things in exactly the same spot exactly the same way every time.  This wonderful memory aid works brilliantly until you undergo that crucial transmutation from man to husband.  Suddenly, where once a thundering lion stood, there appears a timid, trembling, muttering mouse.  The Lion(ess) is behind you.  Like magic, she finds all your things and re-arranges them to blend with her aesthetics.  Or just to show who’s the boss.

                   “Henry [to Pickering after Eliza has bolted from his narcissism]:

                What in all in heaven could’ve prompted her to go
after such a triumph at the Ball?
What could’ve depressed her?
What could’ve possessed her?
I cannot understand the wretch at all.

                 Women are irrational, that’s all there is to that!
Their heads are full of cotton, hay, and rags!
They’re nothing but exasperating, irritating,
vacillating, calculating, agitating,
maddening and infuriating hags!

                 Pickering, why can’t a woman be more like a man?

                 Pickering: I beg your pardon?

Take the vexed issue of your shampoo bottle.  First, context:  Young, unmarried men, still looking for beautiful female companionship, shampoo every day.  Married men know better.  Married men know that young girls, in the overwhelming majority, believe six-pack abs, square shoulders and all the accessories that helped vote Adam Levine the world’s sexiest man (I want a recount!), are very sexy but a loaded wallet is sexier. Women worth keeping around know man’s sexiest organ.  Pop quiz: Which is it?  No peeking, ladies.  As usual, the answer comes at the end.  Hint: It ain’t hair.

So, married men enter the hair-washing stakes with different objectives.  They wash (hair) as infrequently as possible to avoid itching but as often as necessary to ensure only one application of shampoo per wash is required.  It’s a delicate balance requiring deep thought; detailed research; and precise positioning of the shampoo bottle.  That’s on the bath’s ledge behind and to the right (left if you’re left handed).  New bottles are placed top up but when the levels go below a certain reading, they’re turned over for quick and efficient transfer of shampoo from bottle to hair.  Any married man who takes too long in the shower knows he’ll face an awkward inquisition involving a word resembling how Psycho’s young motel operator might’ve been addressed by his slaves (if he had any).  Timing, order and method are crucial.


                 Why can’t a woman be more like a man?
Men are so honest, so thoroughly square;
eternally noble, historically fair;
who, when you win, will always give your back a pat.
Why can’t a woman be like that?

Oh, no.  Magically entering the bathroom unseen, she heads directly to your shampoo bottle and, clucking at your clumsiness, TURNS THE BOTTLE OVER.  Next time you’re about to shampoo, with less than a minute on the clock, you reach for your shampoo bottle and realise, with that irritated feeling of a pirate with a parrot on his shoulder, that it’ll be past closing time before enough shampoo collects at the bottle’s top.


This re-arrangement of our lives so discombobulates and confuses us that we end up skipping the wash and literally scratching our heads for days.

                   “Why can’t a woman take after a man?
Men are so pleasant, so easy to please;
Wherever you’re with them, you’re always at ease.

                 Would you be slighted if I didn’t speak for hours?

                 Pickering:        Of course not!

                Henry:      Would you be livid if I had a drink or two?

                 Pickering:        Nonsense.

                 Henry:     Would you be wounded if I never sent you flowers?

                 Pickering:        Never.

                 Henry:     Well, why can’t a woman be like you?

A Hymn to Him (Alan Jay Lerner/Frederick Loewe) helped to convert George Bernard Shaw’s play, Pygmalion, into the movie “My Fair Lady”.  It’s a tongue-in-cheek perspective of women from the vantage point of an inveterate, narcissistic bachelor who can’t understand why any woman wouldn’t want to dedicate her life exclusively to HIM. 

Oops, nearly forgot, the sexiest organ in a man’s body is his brain.

Peace and Love

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