In response to Holly Leber's "12 most underrated things about being a woman" piece posted on Thursday, here is a light-hearted look at a few pro's to being a male ... with absolutely no intent to say these things make men better than women. Also, these were just the first things I thought of and I am sure other people can come up with better ones, so if you have more to add, do share in the comments section.
1. Facial and body hair
For most young boys the day their first whiskers grow in is a proud day. There are very few things manlier than a thick beard. I hate shaving. While in the military I absolutely hated having to shave every single day. When I left the military I was freed and so was my facial hair. Sadly, my girlfriend is not a fan, apparently manliness is scratchy or something. Regardless, men not only don’t have to shave their face if they don’t want to, they also don’t have to shave or wax their legs, armpits, or any other area. Personally, I think a little manscaping is a good thing, but men are generally free to let it grow.
2. Upper body strength
Yes, there are strong women. Yes, there are weak men. However, generally men have more upper body strength. We can do more pull-ups, push-ups, and even have an easier time lifting people for keg stands. This ability isn’t as important today as it was in centuries past; when men had to drag carcasses of animals back to the homestead. However, it is something that still is of use on an everyday basis. Granted some men utilize their upper body strength and forget that they also have legs that need strengthening … ::cough cough:: guy in the gym with the Schwarzenegger upper body and 10-year-old boy chicken legs.
3. Being Taller
Some women are tall and some men are short. Generally, men tend to be the taller of the two genders. This is super helpful when reaching things in high up cabinets and also when taunting girls (that you totally don’t like, because she has cooties) in the schoolyard by holding something over your head. It is also useful when a woman needs a little assistance reaching something that may just be out of her reach. Of course this must be done carefully and most of the time only when asked.
4. Getting fat(ter)
Barbie and models have set a pretty difficult (and mostly unattainable and unhealthy) "goal' for females. Males just don’t have the same stigmas around their weight. Obviously, when you are younger the chubby kid may get picked on, but as you grow up that tends to not be common place or acceptable. Women in general tend to have more body issues than men. A man gaining a little tire around their midsection is generally just more accepted. I am not saying that either is right. Personally, I strive to not put on the extra pounds, but if I did (and I have) I wouldn’t be under the same pressure that a woman would be (either actual pressure or assumed pressure). Women are, a lot of the time, more accepting of a little chub in their men than men are of their women.
5. High heels
I honestly do not know how you women do it. Six inch stilettos look horribly uncomfortable to me. In fact, most female footwear looks horribly uncomfortable to me. Men can get away with minimal wear of uncomfortable shoes. Even our dress shoes aren’t really that bad. Every time I see a woman running in heels, I think to myself, “I am pretty damn sure that hurts and I would break my neck doing it.” Kudos must be given to women for your ability and intestinal fortitude to wear those heels. Extra credit must also be given to the pregnant women that do it.
When a man dresses up, at the very most he puts on a tuxedo. Generally, even in business environments men can rely on much simpler options. We don’t have to match our purse to our shoes and our ensemble. Granted I think it is important for any man to dress well, but it is just so much easier for us. Even going out to bars or dinner is easier. I could put on a polo shirt, some slacks, and comfy shoes and be acceptably dressed for most places. Usually the only accessory a guy wears is a belt, maybe a watch. We don’t have to worry about jewelry or earrings. We appreciate the effort you put in. Men should probably put in a little more effort in general.
I have been into stores like Ulta and Sephora a few times. Holy crap you all have a whole lot of stuff that I could not even begin to tell you how to use. I guess there are men that wear makeup too, but they are not in the majority. (also guy liner looks silly) Not only does the process of putting on makeup take up time, but it costs a lot of money. Personally, I am glad that the only stuff I have to buy and utilize is some cologne, hair product, and maybe some lotion. However, as a guy you can get away without even using those things.
8. The gyno and monthly visits
I am very thankful that I do not have to endure the “monthly visit.” I am also thankful that I do not have to ever find out how a speculum feels. I assume most men share my feelings on this. Granted we men get to enjoy an up close and personal prostate exam, but that is later in life and not as frequent. I don’t think much else needs to be said on this.
9. Going topless
I know that you all can do this in NYC now. I also think that far too many men, who should keep their shirt on take advantage of this. However, this social norm enables people like Matthew McConaughey and others to be able to cast off their 100% Cotton layer for all to see. Also, it means less tan lines.
Sports are obviously changing and so are the participants. However, when I was growing, up mostly only boys got to throw on some pads, gloves, or skates and beat the living crap out of each other. I know female athletes can get down and dirty just like the boys, but in general male sports were just more violent. Whether you view this as a good or bad thing is obviously up to you. Personally, I loved playing football and laying a hit on a kid that caused snot bubbles to come out of his nose.
Other than a “cup” men just don’t have to worry about support. We certainly don’t have to worry about panty lines. Running for males doesn't require a garment that ensured their chest didn’t bounce up and down. Getting ready for a night on the town doesn't consist of “honey, can you see my underwear in this dress?” We also, do not have to worry about our undergarments setting off a metal detector of causing imprints in our skin after a long day of wear.
12. We can pee standing up or sitting or even walking
I would be lying if I said at some point in my life, while possibly under the influence of adult beverages (that I may or may not have been legally consuming) that I had not decided to find the nearest tree or dumpster to relieve myself. Heck, I may or may not have done it whilst walking a time or two. This ability was also quite useful while on long convoys in Iraq. I could utilize a bottle without having to leave the safe armor clad confines of my vehicle to relieve my full bladder. Granted there are some shortcomings (no pun intended) that come with this ability. Sometimes, it is hard to aim. Difficulty in aiming usually takes place in the morning or after certain activities has taken place. Yet, as a whole I think most men would not trade the ability to write their name in the snow.