Saturday, September 20, 2008

Dangerous Questions

[This post is mainly for guys; women, of course, are free to read it, but, as they are all too well aware of the techniques revealed within, why would they?]

As regular readers of these wrds can tell you, I recently [earlier this week] became a year older [51, to be exact; I'm not particularly sensitive about aging. It's that sudden stop at the end that bothers me...] As a representative of "experience" on the Blogosphere [not "knowledge", mind you, but "experience"], I'm taking it on myself to alert some of our less-schooled male readers to consider their words carefully, especially when in conversation with A Person we'll call, for sake of identification, That Special Someone [and yes, there is a romantic component at work here. Just so's ya know...]

As anyone who's ever been in A Romantic Relationship can tell you, there are difficult conversations that can creep up at the least desirable
moments [examples of these include inquiries about phone numbers found in your possession, requests for further details on the Person That Special Someone's Best Friend saw you out with last night, and so on]. The dangers of those questions would seem obvious to anyone. Candid replies may not work ideally in these scenarios, but, as always, do what seems best. Remember, honesty is not a bad option [especially if Last Night went better than you'd hoped].

Sometimes, however, questions can come from the worst possible place; the imagination of one or both parties to the relationship [if there are more or less than two parties to said relationship (at least under normal circumstances), get that situation well in hand before any further mayhem can ensue]. There are few questions more terrifying [or more dangerous] to Our Young Man In Love, than the school based around variations on "What if?" You probably have heard of the type: "Honey, if I were to die suddenly [NEVER a good place for the conversation to go], would you start dating again?" Your best option with this type of question is to invoke Phyfe's Rule; nip it in the bud!

But People Who Love can be wily [though, now that I think of it, I don't remember seeing any Road Runner cartoons that speculated on the love life of one Wile E. Coyote. But I digress], asking questions that slide into the hot fantasy category. Example; "Sweetie, if I could share you for the night with any woman in the world [or man, if more suitable to your situation. As always, your mileage may vary], who would it be?" For the love of God, never answer that question! Like a choice between a buzz saw and a vat of acid, there is NO safe option! For example, my quandary: I've always found Jo Frost, Television's SuperNanny, rather hot. Maybe it's the glasses; maybe it's the womanly proportions on that girl; maybe it's the prospect of being sent to the Naughty Chair [I can't wait to see what the "Comments" page does with this revelation]; at any rate, there you are.

Not so long ago, The Woman I Love [certainly not a courtesy title] asked that one; myself, being in a less than rested state, made the mistake of Candor. What in Hell was I thinking? I don't think TWIL was so much offended as completely puzzled by my pick. And there was no explaining it, of course.

So, Young Lovers, whomever you are, hello. Be vewy, vewy careful how you answer the Dangerous Questions. And, for those who MUST ask, follow the Attorney's Principle and NEVER ask a question that you don't know the answer to! Or want to know...

-Mike Riley


Dan Brantley said...

I try to pass on my experience to my sons about such things as you discuss here.
Like the one (and only ever never again) time I forgot to do something for Valentines Day.
Or the time my son made the mistake of suggesting that something his mother cared about "didn't matter"
"Dive Dive!" I yelled at him, but it was too late. Oh, the humanity!
Keep up the good fight my friend. If you can save one of us, it is all worth it.