Gender Equality. What a journey. Women have become literate and the writing on the wall is now legible. She who laughs last, laughs loudest! I never thought I’d see the day. God knows, I resisted this new social order, the one where both genders would be equal in all respects, but when it became clear that this madness was here to stay, I sat down to think - to wrestle this insanity to the ground - to understand the profound sacrifices we as men have had to make. Here are a few insights.
My objection, I realize now, originated with the unfortunate term “emancipation”. You see, in its simplest analysis, a male thought pattern is a sequence of images - of pictures (much like Pavlov described that of a dog). Thus, the imagery conjured up in my mind whenever I heard the word “emancipation” was focussed on "making it more like a man" - and not on the intended meaning - profound liberation. Thus, the torrid mental imprints of my woman arriving home after a hard day’s toil, reeking of beer and sweat, slapping me on the back, saying "Howzit Bru", and then taking her rightful place next to me at the urinal, well, that was enough to cause a quagmire of unspeakable insecurities and role reversals I simply couldn’t turn my back on. Some things are sacred, you know.
And what of the shadow acts of the bedroom. Yes, this equality thing made its way down the passage, past the kitchen and through the closed door at the end. For millennia, whilst us men were writing The Handbook Of All The Knowledge Of All The World And All That’s Innit, a guide to a satisfying sexual encounter filled little more than the first quarter of one page. That’s all we ever needed to know, after all. Until a female academic from the University of Amsterdam made a rather unsurprising discovery. This brief instructional description in The Handbook was in fact a direct translation of a stone-age rock painting. We also know now that much of what the ancient rock historian painted, was simply inspired by observing the fauna. Hence, at the risk of too much elaboration, one could imagine suggestive, late-night cave-talk, roughly translated, to have included phrases such as: “What about we try the Warthog tonight!” The Lion was understood to be a lot more abrupt and accompanied by neck-biting and grunting, and few had time for the Porcupine, even in that comparatively un-rushed era. The monkey was not practiced at all, since the falling from high trees inevitably resulted in broken bones. Sadly, the crocodile was ignored in the translation for its lack of a rational explanation. Really. That’s what the painting said.
The monotony of cave-man erotica and modern man’s knowledge of the potential of the act as described in The Handbook remained strikingly similar. It revolved around man’s primeval desire to return to all fours. The only positional variation came in later years when missionaries realized that an improved view was possible and turned the whole thing downside up. But I digress.
Women recognized this lack of male imagination early on in their quest for equality and broadened horizons substantially. For that, begrudgingly, I suppose we have to thank them. Ho-ho and well done and all that. We now live comfortably in the resultant age of free tantric ideals. Women made us aware. We saw, we came, they conquered.
So, as with apartheid, it would seem I have to accept that the struggle for gender equality is syphoning into everything. Like fine red dust. And perhaps it’s not all that bad. Yes, women are now allowed to read and write, have opinions and even speak in public, but at least the urinal remains my sole domain. Imagine that. Here, I still stand alone even though I am now, due to the free exchange of ideas between the genders, considering the more comfortable option of sitting down. It seems so much more practical. I don’t have to remain standing, ever vigilantly peering over the stems of tall grass on the lookout for a stalking lion or, God forbid, a peckish Meerkat. Those dangers have disappeared into the fogs of the past. Evolution provided me with options and choices and I am learning how to take women’s advice on how to exercise them. I have, for instance, learned how to cook indoors. (It is almost the same as cooking outside, just with less smoke.)
Churchill said the only thing we learn from history is that we learn nothing from it. With the help of women, I have learned that history is not just one thing after another, like it was when we wrote it. It is now the story of women following behind the incompetencies of men. With a bucket. And we should change the future for history’s sake.
As my tongue comes out of my cheek - I am not sure whether our generation will ever be truly be equal. But we will try. If for nothing else, then that our children will understand that it is right, and it is fair, and it is good, and therefore it should always be sacred - a concept we should protect with our very lives.