Thursday, June 4, 2015

Can You Hear Me Now? Good!

Old men and I get along great. It sounds sleazy, but I don't mean it that way. Whenever I talk to them, they nod. They hear. They respond accordingly. 

Younger men could be more problematic (e.g. "How do you know that?") The scoffing and snarking as I relate established information can be aggravating.  Especially when the fellow stipulated that he's seeking an "outgoing" gal on his profile. So I should only be "outgoing" about the weather?
Some would like to place this at religion's door, but it's not specific to the realm of the pious. Sheryl Sandberg and Adam Grant tackled this very topic in "Speaking While Female." 

The two authors address this issue strictly in terms of the business world. But really, if men can't handle women talking at the office, that means they can't handle it on a date, either.

Considering how older men have no problem chatting with me, even finding my intelligence delightful, I concluded that the matter doesn't have to do with culture. It has to do with insecurity. 

Younger people are more plagued by ego histrionics than more mature (as in elderly) individuals are. Or, at least, insecurity manifests differently when one reaches a certain age. At 55+, gentlemen seem to be fine with hearing something interesting from a female in her 20s. But a youthful male considers it an attack on his mental acuity or manhood or something. Dude, it's called a "conversation." If you want to me to giggle and gasp, "Like, really?" you should add that to your "seeking" criteria. 

Even on my bad dates I have been able to learn something new. I don't confuse bad behavior with stupidity. I've gathered book recommendations, an intriguing perspective on vocabulary, a meforash I haven't heard before. Plugging up one's ears limits one from all sorts of knowledge.

Are any chaps out there who blurt out, "How do you know that?" Memo: Insulting. If you can't handle a girl knowing something, at least don't be so obvious about it. It doesn't reflect well on you. But I have hope that in a few decades, you'll be an absolute delight to chat with. 


Daniel Saunders said...

Hmm, I find it much easier to talk to women than men. I tend to listen generally in conversations, being shy. Kind of a problem in the frum world where one is really supposed to socialize with one's own gender.

Daniel Saunders said...

I wasn't trying to negate your point in my previous comment (which I realise is what it looked like), just to provide a different perspective.

Princess Lea said...

Again, dear boy, this is not a generalization, more a real-life observation. Of course I've had dates with guys who hear me, but you would not believe how many have said "How do you know that?"

Daniel Saunders said...

Yeah, I know. I just like "talking" to you.

And... "dear boy"?! ;-)

FrumGeek said...

Oh, just go out already!

Princess Lea said...

DS: Too condescending? Great, I'm channeling Lady Catherine de Burgh.

Daniel Saunders said...

No, just very old fashioned. I don't know if anyone ever really spoke like that, but they certainly don't now!

Anonymous said...

Totally know what you mean, PL.
Not so long ago I went out with a guy, who, while very educated/knowledgeable had obviously mostly dated girls who were not. Not that I think of myself as the most worldly type of person or anything, certainly not an expert in world affairs/current events, but the stuff that I *did* know surprised him. He kept saying things like, "Wow, you know that?? I'm really impressed!--maybe he thought I would appreciate it as a compliment, but actually it was more annoying than flattering.

Princess Lea said...

Boy, is that condescending. It creates a gross adult-child relationship that is such a barf when looking for a spouse. It also doesn't make him sound very intelligent, in that he doesn't realize that college, internet, and newspapers are pretty much available to everyone.