A few weeks ago I experienced something that made me question my (clearly feminist) ideals. While leaving the home of a mutual friend one evening, a male acquaintance and I realized that the bus and train we’d be taking to our respective homes weren’t running anymore because, you know, it was late. The lights on the street blinked changed from a white walking figure to a red flashing palm and the traffic light glowed yellow to red – my companion ran across the street while I stayed behind, unmotivated by enough to elicit a jaywalk. “See you later, Kaitlin!” I cocked my head to the side in confusion, watching a 25-year-old
man boy duck his head into a cab, leaving a young woman alone on a Chicago street corner at 1 o’clock in the morning.
Ways to be a Man (and thus impress the ladies) I don’t care if you’re 15 or 95 – if you don’t do at least three of the following things, I will think of you as a boy.
- Make sure your friends (or acquaintances) get home at night. This does not mean you have to walk her to the door, but offering any companion the first cab is just basic politeness. Taking the first cab and letting her wait around for another one is the exact opposite.
- Open the door for people. And say thank you when they do the same. It’s the little things you do that make you seem not just kind, but classy.
- When you’re walking down the street, walk on the street side of your companion. It may sound silly, but my dad always walked on the outside and told me it was the sign of a gentleman. Something about getting hit by stray cars first. It’s uncommon and requires extra attention even on the part of your date, which is why it works when they do notice.
- On a first date, offer to pay. I’m all about offering to pay my own way – and any woman worth your time will be, too – but it’s still nice to have a man acknowledge that you’re worth the extra effort. If everything works out you’ll be splitting checks or trading treats anyway. (Plus there’s that whole sex thing that’s much easier to accomplish if you don’t act like an asshole.)
- Compliment her shoes. Or something that implies you weren’t staring at her breasts exclusively. We’ll know it’s bullshit, but appreciate that you’re willing to pretend.
What can a boy do to move up to Man status in your book?