I don't always get a lot of e-mail from readers, but I did this week, and a few readers had some really interesting things to say.
I'll start with Jay, whose cynical outlook borders on old-fashioned woman-hatin':
I once posted some cynical thought something like this somewhere:
Having a wife means a lifetime of being told to grow up. Act your age. Get your mind out of the gutter. She convinces you to satart acting like a responsible adult. Giving up skydiving. Selling the motorcycle when you have kids. She gets you to agree to no more poker night with your buds. And you actually stop looking at other women. You become a good dad to the kids and you take your job seriously, start dressing like a professional, nurturing a career and trying to make something of yourself.
And then, eventually, the day comes when your bride of many years tells her friend, “You know, I'm not sure what it is with my husband but he sure isn’t as interesting as he used to be.”
Sorry. Told you it was cynical.
Hardcore, dude. I get the feeling Jay could probably use a hug or something. I get the feeling Jay and this next e-mailer, Mark, would really enjoy sharing war stories over a beer or two. Here's Mark's tale.
After getting married and having a child, my wife and I realized that, if we were going to have a comfortable standard of living, I should go back to school while keeping my day job. I finished the schooling, got a big promotion and great raise, and started wearing a shirt and tie to work. Things were going well. I got another promotion, my wife was able to cut back to part-time work, spend more time with our now three kids, buy a home, newer second car for wife...the American dream. Fade to black!
We were out to dinner with another couple, and my wife says she wishes I still had my pick-up truck and wore workshirts and jeans and could run home at lunch like I used to when we were first married. Wishes I would grow my hair out longer, despite my creeping hairloss, or get a hair transplant. The other couple, speechless, looked at me. I responded that I wanted the slender, blonde, 5 ft 10, always-happy woman I had married 12 years before, but that I wasn’t 26 anymore and was grateful for what we had today. Lead balloon!
We’ve been divorced 14 years now and she continues to make her new husband’s life impossible.
Mark is kinda my hero now.
Perhaps my favorite e-mail of the week came from a dude who insisted I refer to him by his professional name, D-Rok.
Your article rang true to the depths of me. I am one of the “bad boys” you mention in your article. My nickname is “D-Rok,” for cryin' out loud. I tour with some of the largest shows, around the world, and women love it. They love the fact that I’m connected to rock-n-roll artists. They love that I travel so much, that I’m more comfortable with a rolling suitcase than an armoire. They love the fact that I call them while backstage with the music strangling any sense of conversation, or from a city they’ll probably never get to visit. They love the shiny silver chain on my wallet, the big throwback cuff watch, the ever-present leather motorcycle jacket and the hair that never seems to be groomed. They love the Harley-Davidson and the 1972 Mustang Fastback. They love to listen to the stories of far-off lands and events so far out they should only happen on cable television.
And they love to go home to normal guys like you.
Women don’t actually dig bad boys. They dig the idea of bad boys. I’ve been married once and had more girlfriends than I can remember, but none of them stick around for more than one holiday. As exotic as our lives are to women, when presented with the reality of having a man who isn’t around for weekend movies and random shopping excursions, and lives a lifestyle in which women will do “anything” to get backstage, they run for the suburbs where "threatening" is nothing worse than bad traffic and the nightly news about North County. If I had a nickel for every time I’ve heard “I wish you were around more” or “Your lifestyle is too much for me to handle” we could buy the Post and turn it into… whatever the hell we wanted to.
That blues guitarist was singing the forlorn truth of a “bad boy” in his ballads of loneliness. Guys like me will always have women around, and we will always envy guys like you who always have ONE woman around.
Funny how the grass is greener, isn’t it. I’d say more, but that just about says it all.
I like D-Rok, because he makes me feel better about myself. But, dude, maybe next time you spend an evening with two 23-year-old groupies in a hot tub, do me a favor and snap a few pictures. Then I can, uh, show them to Colette and point out to her how pathetic and skanky the girls are. Or something.
The final mailbag thought this week is by far my favorite one. It's from a reader identified only as "dsparkie37."
Us "normal guys" don't consider you a "normal guy." We consider guys like you metrosexual yuppie douchebags.
Actually, "Metrosexual Yuppie Douchebags" would be a great name for a band. Don't you think?