Three dimensions

December 13, 2009

I don’t pretend this is new and original, but I’ve found it helpful to be as precise and definite as possible in terms of thinking about how people interact (guy-guy and guy-girl). (Occupational hazard.)

There’s three ways to relate to another human being. (Ok, at least three, but three for now.)

There’s the social level. This is friendship – who do we like to spend time with? If it’s mostly/exclusively other guys, then we might consider that we prefer to socialize with the same sex. That is, homosociality. Preferring to socialize with women might be described as heterosocial. “Socialize” here I think is a little more than just “who do you like to hang out with”, but it’d include that too. I’d argue that most guys are homosocial by nature; it’s easier for us to understand each other than it is to understand women. Not a big deal either way.

(The stereotypical “feminine” gay man is the exception to this. Socializing is based partly on shared interests and mindset/attitude. Friends don’t all have to like exactly the same list of “approved manly” things, but when there’s nothing in common to talk about… it’s a little awkward. Possibly this explains what has been described as “Gay Fatigue”? Tomboys or (I guess) “butch” lesbians would also be exceptions.)

There’s the romantic level. Again, one can have romantic feelings mostly for people of the opposite sex, mostly for people of the same sex, or some of both.

There’s the sexual level. No big surprise that there’s that same spectrum here – sexual desire exclusively for the opposite sex, mostly for the opposite sex, half-and-half, mostly for the same sex, exclusively for the same sex.

So, three dimensions. They’re not automatically related – being strongly homosocial is perfectly compatible with being strongly heteroromantic and heterosexual, or also with being homoromantic and homosexual. “Romance” and “sex” aren’t always linked (“correlated”) either. “Homosexual but heteroromantic” (or hetero for sex but homo for romance) would be awkward, though!

I think the tension about being bi comes, in part, from combining “homosocial” and (partly) homo-sexual with hetero-romantic. I’ve slowly realized that I’m not entirely hetero-romantic, either, or at least there’s one shining exception. Although it really doesn’t feel like the same kind of “romance”, either. Or maybe it’s just that I know that he’s not ever going to want flowers and sparkly shiny jewelry?


Why not strip?

June 17, 2009

“Guys have a thing about being naked in front of other guys.”  Well, of course.  If you’re a guy (at least in the US, and at least under a certain age – see below) then you understand that there’s certain times and places that it’s “okay” to be naked.  And very few of those are in front of other guys.

(Yes, this is written from a particular viewpoint.  I’m aware that many of the guys reading this may not share that viewpoint.  The intent isn’t to offend, merely to describe “majority” behavior. If you just stumbled across this as the first thing you read here, please take some time to read a little more before you flame me for “hate speech”, ‘k?)
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Guest Posts Wanted

April 6, 2009

Hey guys – I’m kinda busy these days and away from my “bro”, but I’m still really interested in stuff about how guys can get close to each other.  I know that people are still stopping by, looking for some help dealing with unexpected feelings and such.  Soooo….

I’d like to open things up for some of you to share your story.  Maybe you’re dealing with being “too close” to a buddy right now, and need a safe anonymous place to get it off your chest.  Maybe you’re already on top of that relationship and have some advice.  I know that there’s been some stories shared in the comments that I’d like to hear more of.

Whichever it is, drop me a line ( about what you’d like to say and we’ll get the ball rolling.

Man Friendships

August 25, 2008

There are several reasons why men were so damn affectionate with each other back in the day. First, men were free to have affectionate man relationships with each other without fear of being called a “queer” because the concept of homosexuality as we know it today didn’t exist then. America didn’t have the strict straight/gay dichotomy that currently exists. Affectionate feelings weren’t strictly labeled as sexual or platonic. There wasn’t even a name for homosexual sex; instead, it was referred to as “the crime that cannot be spoken.” It wasn’t until the turn of the 19th century that psychologists started analyzing homosexuality. When that happened, men in America started to become much more self-conscious about their relationships with their buds and traded the close embraces for a stiff pat on the back. The man hug was born.

From a great new post at The Art of Manliness on Man Friendships. Complete with old-timey photos of guys holding hands!

At the 8 Year Old Level…

June 2, 2008

… instead of the adult level …

Take a moment, if you will, to read about this game from Japan. I’d seen it before but forgot and lost the link until the other day. (Thanks, Woot!)

The play mechanics are simple. Prepare yourself by strapping on the included belt harness and jacking in your Wiimote. A series of toilets are presented on screen and the challenge is to tilt your body to control a never-ending stream of pee. Get as much pee in the toilets as you can while spilling as little on the floor as possible. Sounds easy eh? Well the toilets open and close whack-a-mole style and occasionally the stray cat or other cute critter pops up. Spray a cat for extra points. Get too much pee on the ground and your game is over. ….. And wait until your friends see the multi-player mode with dueling pee streams…

Now, the picture shows a pair of (assumed) Japanese schoolgirls giggling over it, but are there really that many women who want to know what it’s like for the other half? (also known as “the real reason the bathroom floor is damp when you wake up second”) In other words, it seems more like a guys’ game, but it’s pretty easy enough for us to play… except for the whole bit about not necessarily wanting to show off our “wiimotes”.

I’m just barely childish enough that that actually sounds kinda fun. Although only for the multiplayer – I can’t imagine solo play on that one. Or rather the solo play is pretty easy after (1) a quick call to the humane society and (2) a trip to buy a mop.

One weakness – The directions don’t give any guidance on how much beer should be consumed before and during game play. Too much and you might as well just go play it for real.

Also, more games should feature “realistic pee fluid dynamics”. Whether it suits the game or not.

Leaving… him?

March 27, 2008

Was “reminded” the other day by my boss that my job ends this summer. (It was a two-year contract position. Not likely to get renewed, and I don’t think I’d take it if he offered. Not been the best “fit”, that job.)

I basically took the job because it was in the same town as I’d been living in for grad school. And thus, the same town as my bro. It’s a nice college/high-tech town, and I mostly haven’t minded living here so long – 9 years now, when I’d only expected 5, tops! But quite honestly, the real reason I took the job was to stay here with him.

Not that I usually allow myself to think about that…

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Search engine feedback

February 9, 2008

 Again with answering what folks come here for… ’cause it’s easier than thinking of something substantial right now…

> 5 naked guys together video

Why 5?  Isn’t 4 enough?  would 6 be better?

> if a guy acts hyper around you

He’s either caffeinated, sugared up, or on something else.  Or, he likes you.

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