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To men everywhere, from a woman who’s got your number.

Who here is sick of receiving e-mail forwards like “To women everywhere from a man who’s had enough”?

Normally I have at least a nodding tolerance for such stereotypical humor. Not this time. Maybe it was the wrong time of the month for me to be reading it.

I kid! In fact, I just thought it demanded an answer – especially if it would give me a chance to be just as sexist and condescending as the original author, whoever he is.

So I’ve reprinted his man-ifesto below, with my responses in parentheses after each item.

It’s probably just a matter of time before “To women everywhere…” makes its way to your boyfriend’s or partner’s e-mail account. When it does, you’ll be ready.

1. Learn to work the toilet seat. If it’s up, put it down. We need it up, you need it down. You don’t hear us bitching about you leaving it down. (Guys, guys, guys: We all need it down at some time or another, unless you like the feeling of cold porcelain on your bare backside and/or the possibility of a quick dip. And no, you don’t bitch about us leaving it down, but we certainly hear from you if we drape hand-washed bras over the shower-curtain rod to dry.)

2. All men see in only 16 colors. Peach is a fruit, not a color. (All men see this way? How about Picasso, Van Gogh, Gauguin, Monet…Well, you see my point, even if you choose to see it in a limited palette.)

3. If you won’t dress like Victoria’s Secret Girls, don’t expect us to act like soap-opera guys. (Even Victoria’s Secret Girls don’t dress like Victoria’s Secret Girls when they’re all done work, fellas. You think they want to wear that kind of thing under their Saturday-morning sweats? Remember, your idea of torment in high school was trying to give each other vicious wedgies – yet you expect your girlfriends to wear thongs?)

4. If you think you’re fat, you probably are. Don’t ask us. We refuse to answer. (I’d like to dedicate this response to every beer-bellied guy I’ve ever seen wearing a T-shirt or cap that said, “Save a whale – harpoon a fat chick.” Guys, if we think we’re fat it’s because we happened to be in the room when you were salivating over Playboy’s latest example of airbrushed anorexia. That’s why so many women think they’re fat: because they can’t compete with models and pinups who’ve had silicone implants, collagen injections, and not a single square meal since adolescence. And while we’re on the subject, what’s with the mention of “soap-opera guys”? Nervous that your receding hairline or your expanding waistline can’t compete with those studs on daytime TV?)

5. Birthdays, Valentine’s Day and anniversaries are not quests to see if we can find the perfect present yet again! (You must hang out with some awfully mercenary gals. None of my female friends have ever complained that hubby/boyfriend didn’t come across with the “perfect” present. Well, one did, when her husband gave her an anvil on her birthday. But not all women value a guy because of the size of his, uh, credit limit.)

6. If you ask a question you don’t want an answer to, expect an answer you don’t want to hear. (Remember that, boys, the next time you say, “Do you mind if I have five of my [loudest] friends over every single Monday night and Saturday afternoon during the football, basketball and baseball seasons to watch the game [and smoke cigars and spill beer on the floor every time something exciting happens onscreen and yell at the referees even though they cannot hear them]?” We might give you an answer that you don’t want to hear.)

7. Sometimes we’re not thinking about you. Live with it. Don’t ask us what we’re thinking about unless you are prepared to discuss such topics as navel lint, or the shotgun formation. (Guess what? Sometimes we’re not pinning you to the wall when we ask what you’re thinking about. Sometimes we have to ask because you’ve gone into communications lockdown again and you haven’t said a word since breakfast.)

8. Sunday = sports. It’s like the full moon, or the changing of the tides. Let it be. (PMS = some very physical changes. It, too, is tied to lunar cycles. Let it be, and quit making crude jokes about it. Or you will wish you had.)

9. Shopping is not a sport, and no, we’re never going to think of it that way. (Monster trucks are not a sport, either. Then why do so many guys watch them?)

10. When we have to go somewhere, absolutely anything you wear is fine. Really. (Cool! Then we really can wear yoga pants rather than dress like Victoria’s Secret Girls?)

11. You have enough clothes. You have too many shoes. (You have too many fishing flies, sports memorabilia, photos of old girlfriends and other toys. Let’s call this one a draw.)

12. Crying is blackmail. (Crying is a physical response to fear, anger, sadness or stress. Sulking is blackmail, and in my experience nobody does it better than a guy who’s just heard the answer “no” when he wanted a “yes.”)

13. Ask for what you want. Let’s be clear on this one: Subtle hints don’t work. Strong hints don’t work. Really obvious hints don’t work. Just say it! (Okay, then: We want you guys to stop saying things like “It’s like the full moon, or the changing of the tides” when you want to justify getting your way.)

14. No, we don’t know what day it is. We never will. Mark anniversaries on the calendar. (Whereas it’s a snap to remember things like the opening day of spring training or the first day of trout season.)

15. Peeing standing up is more difficult. We’re bound to miss sometimes. (Then sit down, you numbskull, or clean up after yourself.)

16. Most guys own three pairs of shoes. What makes you think we’d be any good at choosing which pair, out of 30, would look good with your dress? (Oh, that’s right, you can see only 16 colors. Fine, we’ll let you off the hook – but you must promise never to say, “Is that what you’re wearing?”)

17. “Yes” and “no” are perfectly acceptable answers to almost every question. (Does that statement seem simplistic? Yes. Will it help you get laid? No.)

18. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That’s what we do. (What makes you think we want a color-blind guy who pees everywhere but in the bowl telling us how to fix things?)

19. Sympathy is what your girlfriends are for. (They will also let us stay overnight with them, perhaps indefinitely, so perhaps you ought to think about that the next time you brush us off. Also, don’t expect us to commiserate with you about the Bears losing or your boss giving you a hard time or anything else that’s important to you. After all, that’s what your buddies are for.)

20. A headache that lasts for 17 months is a problem. See a doctor. (The “problem” may be you, guys.)

21. Foreign films are best left to foreigners. Unless it’s Bruce Lee or some war flick where it doesn’t really matter what they’re saying anyway. (Admit it: You’re afraid you won’t be able to keep up with the subtitles.)

22. Check your oil. (What, and ruin my nails? Seriously, every woman I know checks her own oil, or has it changed so regularly that she doesn’t need to check it.)

23. It is in neither your best interest nor ours to take the quiz together. (Afraid of what you might find out?)

24. No, it doesn’t matter which quiz. (In other words, especially not the quiz about sexual satisfaction.)

25. Anything we said six months ago is inadmissible in an argument. All comments become null and void after seven days. (Agreed. But only if you stop sulking when we get headaches.)

26. If something we said can be interpreted two ways and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, we meant the other one. (How nice it must be never to have to take responsibility for any unkind, careless or just plain rude thing you ever say. Oh, and by the way, we meant, “It’s one of the smallest we’ve ever seen,” not “the smallest.”)

27. Let us ogle. We’re going to look anyway; it’s genetic. (Let us have headaches. We’re going to, anyway. It’s genetic.)

28. You can either tell us to do something OR tell us how to do something, but not both. (If you let us tell you how to do something – and you know the thing we mean – we’d have a lot fewer headaches.)

29. Whenever possible, please say whatever you have to say during commercials. (Whenever possible, save your comments until after the end of the foreign film.)

30. If it itches, it will be scratched. (If we have PMS, we will kvetch.)

31. Beer is as exciting for us as handbags are for you. (We can already tell that by the bulge in your…belly.)

32. If we ask what’s wrong and you say “nothing,” we will act like nothing’s wrong. We know you’re lying, but it’s just not worth the hassle. (I see. You only care about your significant other when it’s in your best interest to care, e.g., right before you want to initiate sexual congress. Well, guess what, guys: Sometimes that’s not worth the hassle for us. Boy, I feel a headache coming on.)

33. Thank you for reading this. Yes, I know I have to sleep on the couch tonight, but did you know we really don’t mind that — it’s like camping! (Terrific! Just don’t expect us to help you out with your tent pole.)


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37 Comments

  1. OMG !!! To funny and too true !! Made my day .
    Thank You Donna : )

  2. 18. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That’s what we do. (What makes you think we want a color-blind guy who pees everywhere but in the bowl telling us how to fix things?)

    OH HO! This whole thing was great, but your answer to 18 was the most awesome part.

    You made my Sunday, Donna. 🙂 Thanks!

  3. Too Funny. Great Sunday Morning laughs!

  4. SherryH

    Well rebutted, Donna! I just wish I thought it would penetrate the skulls of those who most need to hear it… Thanks for the Sunday morning laugh!

  5. lostAnnfound

    Oh, and by the way, we meant, “It’s one of the smallest we’ve ever seen,” not “the smallest.”

    This one cracked me up!!

    • Donna Freedman

      @lostAnnfound: “I meant the other way, of course. Why are you so mad?”

  6. gabrielle

    This is the most brilliant rejoinder to this I’ve ever seen.

    • Donna Freedman

      @Gabrielle: Thank you! Remember it when people pull this kind of stereotyping on you.

  7. Fantastic. Loved the part about the “tent pole”!!

  8. This is brilliant! I must make copies in order to save my breath. I can just hand these out. I especially like # 14. I was married 14 years and my ex could never remember my birthday or our anniversary, yet he threw a temper tantrum if it looked as though I were forgetting his. I never did.

    “14. No, we don’t know what day it is. We never will. Mark anniversaries on the calendar. (Whereas it’s a snap to remember things like the opening day of spring training or the first day of trout season.)”

  9. Sandra Gonzales

    Donna – Have you always been so spunky? I love your humor!

    • Donna Freedman

      @Sandra Gonzales: How kind of you to frame it as “spunky” vs. “PITA.” Thanks!

  10. Procrastamom

    This is fantastic, Donna! It’s funny how guys can’t remember our anniversaries or their own children’s birthdays, but can tell you the names and numbers and stats (and probably birthdays) of the 1987 lineup of their favourite hockey team.

  11. I was laughing, hard, out loud as I read this and the kids kept saying, “What’s so funny, mom?” “Oh, nothing!….” You made my day, Donna! I needed to laugh like that today, and you were 100% spot-on in everything you said! Bravo!! 🙂

    • Donna Freedman

      @Sue: A good, long laugh has therapeutic qualities. For you, not for your kids — they’re just confused about why milk is coming out of mom’s nose.
      Thanks for reading, and for leaving a comment.

  12. I’ve read this yesterday and had to re-read it today. Still laughing. thanks.

    • Donna Freedman

      @Karla: Thanks! Feel free to share the URL. Knowledge is power. Smart-assery is just a nice side effect.

  13. Nicely done!

    The people who have my email address (almost all) know better than to send me ridiculous forwards so I’ve been spared this before. And by waiting till I was 35 to get married, I’ve been spared most of the excuses, pouting, and whining on this list.

  14. 18 is the best!!!!

  15. This made my day! I laughed so hard! thank you for posting this!

  16. jestjack

    Tooo funny….reminds me of the “soup commercial” where the gal calls the soup company to tell them her “soup diet” is working and wanted to share. BUT a man answers the phone AND …..is less than enthusiastic. At which time she asks to speak to a gal….IMHO they’re gonna sell a lot of soup! ! !

  17. bareheadedwoman

    ~roflmao~ i’ve gotten this, this week! My dad sent it out to needle all my mom’s friends. I’m going to send this in reply to every one on the initial list. #17! hardy har har

    but seriously #1: because when you flush the toilet with the lid up, molecule spray from whatever was in the bowl is now spread over a 6ft space around your toilet which in an only, small city bath, means EVERYTHING! Can’t put the lid down without putting the seat down.

  18. Donna,
    Your rebuttals are masterful! Whoever wrote this probably doesn’t want a relationship. He likely wants a lay, (and then hopes we’ll go away) 🙂

    Nessie

    • Donna Freedman

      @Nessie: Thanks. And to be clear, I’ve got nothing against guys who want sex — but they need to want more than that to get my attention.

  19. As a man I’ve cringed at these stupid lists. To your answers I salute.

    Well done,
    Iain

    • Donna Freedman

      @Iain: And I cringe at the lists full of girly stereotypes. Sigh.
      Thanks for reading, and for leaving a comment.

  20. I LOL at all of these and your rebuttals! 🙂

    I have no idea what a shotgun formation is either!

    This list sounds more like a redneck manifesto and that’s why I laughed…

    • Donna Freedman

      @Eric: I think the shotgun formation has something to do with football. I don’t care enough about football to pursue the matter further.
      Thanks for reading, and for leaving a comment.

  21. Fun reading!

  22. laughing so hard!

    #7… AMEN!! 7. Sometimes we’re not thinking about you. Live with it. Don’t ask us what we’re thinking about unless you are prepared to discuss such topics as navel lint, or the shotgun formation. (Guess what? Sometimes we’re not pinning you to the wall when we ask what you’re thinking about. Sometimes we have to ask because you’ve gone into communications lockdown again and you haven’t said a word since breakfast.)

    Donna – you are definitely spunky! Just found you and will keep reading! Also – love that word – “smart-assery”! I’m gonna use that one if you don’t mind! thanks for your replies – lists like this have always made me so mad!!

  23. nancy

    Read it again, and it’s still funny.

  24. Giggles

    That is so cute how men think they can mold and shape us into what they THINK they want! (LOL)

  25. Happyback

    Totally love it!
    Great rebuttals.
    Keeping this one!

  26. Hilarious and fun–but if every man REALLY thought the way that first letter reads, I’d become a nun! (I’m not even Catholic!)

  27. Joanna Milligan

    Well, since most men can’t even match the color of their socks properly before dressing for a formal business meeting, don’t generalize and lump all women into a pathetic need for “Fashion Advise”, when the majority of us were coach by Vogue in the 1980’s. We ask you questions only to stimulate your brain past the “Caveman Mindset” you have lumped your sex into. Nothing is more interesting to a woman than a man that can see past the “Nose on his face, the dinner on his plate, and this months addition of Playboy Magazine.

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