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Breakfast With Dads a Huge Success as 600 “Dads” Show Up In Dallas

Wow!

A school sought 50 men to stand in for absent fathers at ‘Breakfast with Dads’ — nearly 600 showed up

Something somewhat extraordinary happened last month at Billy Earl Dade Middle School in Dallas.

The school — with a student population of nearly 900, about 90 percent from low-income families — planned to host its first “Breakfast with Dads,” according to the Dallas Morning News. About 150 male students, ages 11 to 13, signed up. But event organizers were concerned that some would attend without a male figure at their side, so they put out a call for volunteers who could serve as mentors.

“When a young person sees someone other than their teacher take interest in them, it inspires them. That’s what we want to see happen,” the Rev. Donald Parish Jr., pastor of True Lee Missionary Baptist Church and the event organizer, told the Morning News.

A call for volunteers by children’s advocate Kristina Chäadé Dove‏ — who has served on what is called a site-based decision-making team for the middle school — was published on social media in early December

When the day came for the event, nearly 600 men showed up to help and mentor the boys, some of them volunteering for the first time.

Stephanie Drenka, a Dallas photographer and blogger who works with Dove at Big Thought, a nonprofit organization that works with partners across the city to provide creative learning programs for young people, chronicled the event here in words and photos. She wrote:

Back in December, the team ran into some difficulty when planning their annual “Breakfast with Dads” event. Dade’s community liaison Ellyn Favors mentioned that student participation was low due to young men not having a father/father-figure available to attend the event. Kristina decided to post a call for volunteers on Facebook in the hope of finding 50 male mentors to accompany the middle schoolers…

The unexpected influx of interest led the team to move the event from the cafeteria into the gymnasium so they could house more guests. Kristina engaged the community again in getting volunteers to help with setup and check-in. Team members from Big Thought, the Office of Cultural Affairs, and even Kristina’s personal friends showed up alongside the male mentors to make the event possible…

I will never forget witnessing the young students surrounded by supportive community members. There were so many volunteers, that at times I saw young men huddled in the center of 4-5 mentors. The look of awe- even disbelief- in students’ eyes as they made their way through the crowd of “Dads” was astonishing.

Jamil “The Tie Man” Tucker led the auditorium in a hands-on icebreaker activity. He spoke of learning how to tie a tie as a rite of passage some young men never experience. Mentors handed out ties to the eager students and helped them perfect their half-Windsor knot.

The sight of a necktie may forever bring a tear to my eye.

 
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Posted by on January 7, 2018 in BlackLivesMatter, General, Men, The Post-Racial Life

 

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Consequences…One Pissed Off, Cheated on, Girlfriend

Ouch!

 
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Posted by on May 3, 2017 in Men, Women

 

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At Last! Science Confirms What All Husbands Knew!

If you have ever been on a car trip with your wife/significant other, and gotten lost or try to find someplace and she thinks you are a complete dingbat at finding places…And she is screaming for you to go in what you know is the wrong direction, or to stop and ask someone for directions when you know perfectly well  where you are going…

Hand her this! I suggest keeping a (multiple) copy in the glove box.

Study Says That Men Have The Better Sense Of Direction

The idea that men have a better sense of direction than women is one of the oldest gender cliches. But new research suggests that men really might employ better navigational strategies than women.

Previous studies — including many decades-old experiments on rats in mazes — have shown that men tend to outperform women on tasks requiring spatial awareness and way-finding. Now, the new findings offer a glimpse into why this is the case.

In a new study currently under review, neuroscientists at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, asked 18 male and 18 female participants to use 3D goggles and a joystick for one hour to orient themselves in a virtual maze game. Then, they were given 30 seconds for each of 45 various navigational tasks (for instance, finding a yellow car from different starting points). Meanwhile, the researchers measured their brain activity using fMRI.

“Men’s sense of direction was more effective,” Carl Pintzka, a Ph.D candidate in neuroscience at the university and the study’s lead author, said in a statement. “They quite simply got to their destination faster.”

The researchers found that men used cardinal directions more in their navigation. That means that men tended to use a “world-centered strategy,” going in the general direction of where something was located.

“World-centered strategy means the use of a cognitive map and cardinal directions to find your way,” Pintzka told The Huffington Post in an email. “Women on the other hand used a more egocentric strategy (self-centered), which means they relied more on a route of landmarks to get to the target.”

The world-centered strategy, which the men used, is more flexible since having a sense of direction is less dependent on the starting point. It’s likely that this is why the men ended up completing 50 percent more of the tasks than the women did.

The fMRI scans revealed a number of brain activity differences between the sexes. In men, the hippocampus — a brain region that helps us make sense of cardinal directions — was used more, and a larger hippocampus was associated with better navigational skills. Women relied more on the pre- and orbitofrontal cortex of the brain, which is involved in decision-making. Additionally, men had increased connectivity and synchronicity between important areas for navigation compared to women.

In a second study, which will be published on Feb. 1 in the journal Behavioral Brain Research, 21 women who were given testosterone and 21 women who were not given any hormones underwent the same navigational tasks. The results showed that the women who took testosterone didn’t perform any better, but they did use the hippocampus more when navigating, just like the men in the first experiment.

What does it all mean? Well, the gender differences have more to do with behavior and brain differences than hormones. 

“Our results demonstrate that testosterone had an enhancing effect on certain aspects of spatial cognition in healthy women, but that complex behaviors such as navigation, relying more on learned strategies, are not altered despite increased neuronal activity in relevant brain regions,” Pintzka told HuffPost. “These findings suggest that the male navigation advantage mainly reflects sex differences inbehavioral strategy.”

The researchers simply chalk up these differences to our evolutionary past.

“In ancient times, men were hunters and women were gatherers. Therefore, our brains probably evolved differently,” Pintzka said. “In simple terms, women are faster at finding things in the house, and men are faster at finding the house.”

 

 
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Posted by on December 8, 2015 in Men

 

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Dress for Success?

The Nehru Suit. Apparently some manufacturers are still trying to bring them back.

Went out on one of those computer board “dates” the other day to a lunch with a woman I had met online. Since it was lunch, and a workday – I wore what I normally wear to work… Which is business casual, with the usual attached company badge. The restaurant was a strip mall joint – nothing fancy. The woman in question made a snide comment about my “not dressing up”. In her occupation as an educator, I guess she had never been exposed to the tech world. I gave up explaining what I do a long time ago to non-technical people – leaning towards the “something with computers” amorphism.

I do have and sometimes wear suits in appropriate situations, and in my collection of 10-15, they range from Jos A Banks to Anderson & Sheppard bespoke – typically chosen on the basis of the old business adage – “slightly out dress your customer”. Ergo don’t wear a $10,000 Rubinacci to a meet and greet with your Government clients (wear you Banks), while it is the low end in some boardrooms. The nice thing about Rubinacci is they don’t put their label inside the suit, unless you ask. If you know the fabric look and feel of a high quality suit, you can figure it out (from across the street) even if you don’t know the maker. I have had a few knowledgeable women surreptitiously actually check the label inside the jacket.

Have a friend who was a marketer in the Music Industry years ago. Don’t know if anyone remembers Nehru suits, but they were a big fad back in the early 70’s. My friend flew up o NYC to the Garment district and had a set of 5 made. The problem being after one summer they promptly “went out of style”, leaving him with a closet of expensive unwearable suits.

And about the lady who complained? Needless to say it was a one-dater.

Oh no! Not the Polo shirts!

Polo shirt debate: Dating deal-breaker or still in style?

Love it or hate it, the polo shirt has cemented its role in fashion and pop culture — evoking images of WASPy jocks, prep school suck-ups, Best Buy employees and old-moneyed yacht owners across America.

Ralph Lauren, who helped propel the silhouette from a practical sport shirt (worn by tennis, golf and polo players alike), to an everyday wardrobe staple, is retiring from his Polo-branded empire this year. And as sad as it is to see the fashion legend hang his equestrian-inspired hat, I say it’s time to retire the polo shirt with him.

I know I’m not the only one who finds this casual take on the collared shirt to be a bit offensive. Maybe not as bad as sneakers with dress pants or baggy pants worn low enough to show your boxers … but about as offensive as a single item of men’s clothing can be.

The polo wearer has been made fun of on TV (Blake’s triple polo in “Wet Hot American Summer,” we’re looking at you) and in the movies (Steve Carell’s character in “The 40-Year Old Version” sports a polo shirt in all of the movie posters. As does his pre-makeover character in “Crazy, Stupid, Love.” See a pattern here?). And the ’80s popped-collar polo will forever be seen as the ultimate in obnoxious yuppie styling.

Furthermore, a writer for Real Simple magazine recently cited the polo shirt as a dating dealbreaker — until she discovered that her own personal McDreamy had a closet full of them. But you can always change the way your man dresses, right?

Well, maybe not. My cousin and her fiancé approached me the other day, just as I was about to head to the airport for a flight home. “We need your opinion,” my cousin explained. As I prepared to dole out wedding advice, I was surprised to hear her ask, “What do you think of Robert’s shirt? Can you explain to him that he can’t wear these polo shirts anymore, please?”

While the middle of their relationship is quite literally the last place I want to be, I couldn’t help but (silently) agree with my cousin. Polo shirts belong back in the frat house or exclusively on the golf course, polo field or tennis court where their practical nature can be put to good use. So, unless you are literally picking up a mallet, tennis racket or golf club right now, delve deeper in your closet and find something else to wear. Polo shirts may be the uniform of choice for The Sport of Kings (aka, horse racing), but it’s unacceptable for a family dinner, the office or Sunday brunch.

 
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Posted by on October 19, 2015 in and the Single Life

 

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Picking Up that Check on the First Date

The author of this piece believes that men should always pick up the check on the first date. Have to disagree with this analysis, for a couple of reasons based on several scenarios.

Met through Online Dating Service – Many people now meet through dating services online. Their first date is indeed the first time they have seen each other in person. Statistics show that these dates typically occur within 7-14 days of meeting online. The so called “Starbucks Date” really is a first meeting. Splitting the check in my view is appropriate, in that this may be the first and last date based on mutual chemistry. Everybody having skin in the game tends to keep both sides honest. Have met women who lied about their age, lied about their looks, and lied about their background – and from feedback from women, that is certainly true on the guy’s side as well.

Picking up the check on any subsequent date is appropriate, based on who initiates it. And no, I for one am not dropping $300+ to go to a five star restaurant until I am sure that interest is returned.

Met in Person – If a guy meets a woman through Church, work, club, or social contact – then the guy should pick up the check. You have developed some chemistry and interest. You asked her out. Showing appreciation is appropriate. What you do after that is a mutual decision. Since I tend to date  women who are professionals themselves near my age bracket, they tend to want to establish their independence through either sometimes picking up the check or contributing. I don’t expect it or require it to continue the relationship – but doing so establishes a level of mutual respect, interest, and financial responsibility in that I know every dime she earns isn’t going into those $300 High-heel sneakers, or cute little BMW out in the parking lot. If she is after a long term relationship and not just sex – then I know she is checking me out on the same basis.

Attention, straight men dating women: Here’s why they still — yes, still — expect you to pick up the check

Aside from whether men should hold the door for women, few seemingly frivolous issues have fanned the flames of anti-feminism as much as who should pay for dates between men and women. It’s a subject that seems to never die — see yesterday’s Guardian feature on “Paying while dating” — because there are always a subset of men who insist that it’s absolutely unfair that as the world has gotten closer to gender equality, men are still expected to pick up the check. A 2014 NerdWallet studyfound that 77 percent of over 1,000 U.S. respondents expected men to pick up the check on a first date. Most likely, they will continue to be—perhaps not forever, but certainly for the here and now.

Why? News flash: it’s not about the money, it’s about what the money signifies. “The man should pay on the first date, always. It’s meant to set the tone—that this is and was a date, not a networking opportunity or a new friendship,” founder of online dating concierge service eFlirt and author of “Love @ First Click,” told Salon. “It speaks to a man’s values and shows that he is a gentleman. Most first dates are just a few cocktails, so this shouldn’t be a burden for men. Beyond a first date, the rules change a bit though and it depends on what you do together. For example, if it’s dinner and an after-dinner cocktail for a second date, it’s great for the woman to pay for the cocktails at the second destination. Or, she could plan and pay for the third date. Ultimately, paying the bill on a date shows appreciation. It’s a gesture to let someone know you’re interested in them and appreciate them. That’s why I never suggest splitting the bill. A date should feel like a treat and it doesn’t when it becomes an accounting transaction.”

I have to agree based on my own experience. Showing you’ve thought about the other person is what matters, and on a first date, paying is a way to do that. If you don’t have a lot of money, you can choose an inexpensive date so that you can cover the costs. I once went on a date to a free comedy show with a guy I met online. There were plenty of reasons the date was disastrous—think dead silence for up to ten minutes at a time—but the real rock bottom moment for me was when I said I was going up to the bar to get a drink and asked if he wanted anything (I wasn’t that thirsty but needed to break the tension). He said no but when I returned and reported that the bartender had generously comped my seltzer, he said he wished he’d known or he’d have ordered one! In that case, I was the one offering to pay, but instead of taking me up on it, he made himself seem like an extreme cheapskate. (Guys: don’t do this.)

Yet the who-should-pay decision is a conundrum, as dating and relationship expertWendy Newman, author of “121 First Dates: How to Succeed at Online Dating, Fall in Love, and Live Happily After (Really!),” calls it, one that often leaves both men and women not completely satisfied. “When a man pays for a string of dates for strangers and experiences entitlement or isn’t thanked or appreciated for these efforts it can burn him out. When a woman isn’t treated, often times she doesn’t feel special or cared for,” said Newman.

As further proof that it’s not about money, Los Angeles-based dating expert and radio personality Erin Tillman, who’s single, says “I’ve been on coffee dates with guys where they didn’t pay for my coffee.” That is definitely not the way to go if you want a second date—with Tillman or most women. Based on her own dating history and her clients’ experiences, Tillman told Salon, “if he doesn’t offer to pay, it’s definitely a turnoff.” As she sees it, “It sets a guy up for success. You don’t want to do anything that’s going to ruin your chances of dating someone.” She suggests the guy pay for the first month, or until you’ve established that you’re in a committed relationship.…More…

 
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Posted by on August 30, 2015 in and the Single Life

 

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Tracy McMillan – Why You’re Not Married…Part 2.

So…Tracy – after the third marriage…
Should the bride wear black?

Last year an opinion piece directed towards women by Tracy McMillan caused the Internet Message Boards to light up. Tracy has published a follow on piece n HuffPo – which I am sure is going to cause as much controversy. With only 42% of black women who will ever marry, and the statistics of even divorced black women not looking too good – its probably time to start delving a little deeper into he issue than metro-sexual black men, or all the good men are locked up in Prison. Black women, by and large do the same things as their white counterparts. Reminds me of a conversation with a Jewish woman I dated, when on the first date she volunteered “So you a tired of the black women who are b*tches, and the white ones who are crazy.”

Tracy McMillian

I reminded her about obsessive, too smart Jewish women…

Tracy’s first foray through the minefield is here, and includes the first “6 Reasons” –

1. You’re a B*tch.
Here’s what I mean by b*tch. I mean you’re angry. You probably don’t think you’re angry. You think you’re super smart, or if you’ve been to a lot of therapy, that you’re setting boundaries. But the truth is you’re pissed. At your mom. At the military-industrial complex. At Sarah Palin. And it’s scaring men off.

The deal is: most men just want to marry someone who is nice to them. I am the mother of a 13-year-old boy, which is like living with the single-cell protozoa version of a husband. Here’s what my son wants out of life: macaroni and cheese, a video game, and Kim Kardashian. Have you ever seen Kim Kardashian angry? I didn’t think so. You’ve seen Kim Kardashian smile, wiggle, and make a sex tape. Female anger terrifies men.

Single Guy view – No sane guy out of his teens wants to marry a “b*tch”, “Diva”, or “Queen”. Once those hormones subside a bit about 30, he figures out that while a Diva may be a great “f*ck buddy”, the continued flak of waking up with her for the next 20 years just isn’t worth it.

2. You’re Shallow.
When it comes to choosing a husband, only one thing really, truly matters: character. So it stands to reason that a man’s character should be at the top of the list of things you are looking for, right? But if you’re not married, I already know it isn’t. Because if you were looking for a man of character,you would have found one by now. Men of character are, by definition, willing to commit.

Instead, you are looking for someone tall. Or rich. Or someone who knows what an Eames chair is. Unfortunately, this is not the thinking of a wife. This is the thinking of a teenaged girl. And men of character do not want to marry teenaged girls. Because teenage girls are never happy…

Single Guy view – Go to any black dating website and look at the “want list” of the women there. Whether 4’11” or 6′ tall they all want a guy taller than 5’9″. Since the average height of black men in America is 5’9″ that eliminates 50% of the available men from their searches. Take out married, committed, or in jail – and the number of available black guys gets astonishingly small. Go to any of the Internet dating sites, and over 30 you find a plethora of women over 5’6″ – statistically the largest group. Face it tall ladies – the short girls done stole all your men! If  you are really serious about that relationship – get used to wearing flats. Your feet will thank you when you reach 50.

Searching for Denzel. I have a couple of women business friends I’ve known for a long time who have never been married who are in their early 50’s. One is short, dumpy, and very average looking. A recurring scenario is she meets a wildly successful handsome guy, agonizes over every word he says for months – to find out he’s dating someone else, he’s gay, or has a list of psychological problems that would put a poorer person in an Asylum. She doesn’t even get to bed the guy. She went through this with a guy I know who is probably one of the top 5 most eligible guys in town, who has a successful career, has lots of status,  is wealthy, and a long family pedigree of successful ancestors – all “must haves” in her book. The problem? Every other single woman in town knows this too. If I’ve got 100 Halle Berrys knocking at my door, character be damned in terms of a sex life… I’m not looking for a date with Whoopi. What I’m looking for is a Halle..with a brain.

3. You’re a Slut.
Hooking up with some guy in a hot tub on a rooftop is fine for the ladies of Jersey Shore — but they’re not trying to get married. You are. Which means, unfortunately, that if you’re having sex outside committed relationships, you will have to stop. Why? Because past a certain age, casual sex is like recreational heroin — it doesn’t stay recreational for long. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 3, 2012 in Men, The Post-Racial Life, Women

 

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“Never Make a Pretty Woman Your Wife”…Or Apparently, a Dumb One

Wow – My first thought in reading this article was “this explains the popularity among women of those dreadful Uggs boots!”

Recall this image of Venus Williams –

Looking dumb as a beauty strategy to attract guys.

It also goes a long way to explaining conservative men walking around with tented trousers at the thought of the Sno’ Ho’ – Sarah Palin…

And the lore (and allure) of the “dumb blonde” stereotype.

Do Men Find Dumb-Looking Women More Attractive?

Ask a straight man, “How do you like your women?” and it’s unlikely he’ll answer, “Dumb and sleepy.” But according to new findings, these characteristics—and any other traits suggesting that the lady isn’t particularly alert—are precisely what the human male has evolved to look for in a one-night-stand.

In an article soon to be published in Evolution and Human Behavior, University of Texas–Austin graduate student Cari Goetz and her colleagues explored what they called the sexual exploitability hypothesis. The hypothesis is based on thedifferences between male and female reproductive strategies as humans evolved. For ancestral women, casual intercourse with an emotionally unattached man who had no clear intention of sticking around to raise any resulting offspring constituted a massive genetic gamble. By contrast, for a man with somewhere around 85 million sperm cells churned out every day—per testicle—the frivolous expenditure of gametes was far less detrimental to his genetic interests. Goetz and her team began with the assumption that—because our brains evolved long before prophylactics entered the picture—female cognition is still sensitive to the pregnancy-related consequences of uncommitted sex and women remain more reluctant than men to engage in it. They set out to test the idea that any indication that a woman’s guard is lowered—that she’s “sexually exploitable”—is a turn-on for your average man. “[T]he assessment of a woman’s immediate vulnerability,” surmise the authors, “may be central to the activation of psychological mechanisms related to sexual exploitation.”

Reminds me of an old 60’s song…

This is an inflammatory hypothesis, of course, and the language employed in the field doesn’t help matters. It’s worth noting that in the evolutionary psychology sense, the word exploitable simply means that a woman is willing or can be more easily pressured into having sex—which takes her own desires, rather disturbingly, out of the equation. Even if she’s the aggressor, a prostitute, or a certifiable nymphomaniac, having casual sex with her would still constitute “exploiting” her (or at least her body), according to this model.  Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on May 24, 2012 in and the Single Life

 

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