July 26, 2009

Glimmers of the Cowboy Code?

Buona sera. This article is taking a different approach, and I'm posting it in several places at once because it doesn't fit just one Weblog theme.

I’m suspicious of AskMen.com. Instead of trying to help men be better men, it often has articles written by women that tell men how to please women. And they have those online surveys. These are nowhere near scientific (like the “Top 48 Most Influential Men of 2008” putting B. Hussein Obama ahead of many other tried and true contenders; it was obviously repeat voting done to influence the election). Their “Top 99 Women” can also be influenced by repeat voting, but the motive is fan based.

“...Our 2009 Great Male Survey, a poll that drew over 50,000 participants and more than 2 million responses. We asked our male readers more than 100 questions about their love lives, their jobs, how they spend their leisure time, and their thoughts on current events. The final results paint a surprising picture of the modern man -- and shows just how much he has changed since last year’s edition of the survey...”

This one has a bit more promise for my suspicious mind. Some of the trends caught this cowboy’s eye.

One that made me very happy is that the term “metrosexual” seems to be dying off. According to the survey, men are concerned about their appearances, but not acting feminine about it. Looking good is fine, obsessing about grooming is not. Style and trendiness are still influences in clothing purchases, however. That always bothered me because trends come and go; you can be a slave of trends and spend a small fortune in trying to stay current. Looking neat and being classy are always acceptable, however.

“77% of men surveyed thought that moral standards in business were on the decline”. Well, I have several articles railing against the morality (and incompetence) of business, often to the Michael Corleone level of, “I have to kill you. Nothing personal, it’s just business”. I’m glad to see that I’m not alone in my condemnation of modern business practices! The “Code of the West” had a cornerstone of, “A man’s word is his bond, and a handshake is a binding contract”. (Even if you have something in writing, there’s no guarantee that a hotshot lawyer and four-flushing judge won’t negate your contract anyway.) Those handshake days are gone, but some of us have integrity and live to make our own words have meaning.

It turns out that modern movies and the pr0n industry are wrong: According to the survey, loyalty is in fashion after all. Even if there was no chance of being found out after cheating. Some versions of the Cowboy Code actually spell out respect for women (I think that some do not mention it because it should not have to be said). Now, if we can get respect for parents and the nation’s laws added, we’ll definitely be onto a good trend!

It appears that men are traditional in other areas. Marriage is not dead after all, and men consider themselves “old school” in relationships. Most want to pay for the dates, and also make an effort to be romantic. Men want soul mates with sex appeal. That’s understandable.

I consider myself a cowboy at heart, and old school. Traditional values and all that. So, this comment that AskMen.com inserted was encouraging: “The 2009 Great Male Survey in short? Men are putting a bigger emphasis on home life, returning to traditionalism and dressing the part. Sure, the economy might be on the rocks, but so is our scotch. Let’s toast to the return of the past.”

I’ll drink to that. Barkeep, I’m buying a round for the house!


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