All the Same
I can’t stand when people (usually women) say that all men are alike. I hate it because it’s not true, and I wish it was.
There are rotten men. Men like my coworker’s boyfriend who lie, yell, belittle, drink too much, and intimidate and get away with it. Men like the creepy man who, after joking that he was old enough to be my father, leered at my chest and licked his lip while I got him his change at work tonight. Men who disappear after getting a woman pregnant, leaving her to fend for herself.
Tonight, I got to be a pastor again, for a moment. A woman came to the counter at about 9:00 PM with a hot cocoa, two donuts, and two king-sized Almond Snickers. A general “hey, how are ya?” opened the floodgates: she owns her own company and today, one employee was on vacation and the other called in sick, leaving her totally on her own. She asked her husband to come help out in the evening, and he said no and stayed home, giving her a 16-hour day. She hadn’t eaten or even drank anything all day. She was headed home, finally, and he was wondering what she was going to make for dinner. She looked at me and said “I am going to eat these huge candy bars – his favorite – for dinner. I don’t care what he does for dinner.” She was so weary. It made my heart ache to see how overlooked and unimportant she felt. I wished her a better evening and she left.
But not all men are the same. There are good men. I like to think most men are good, and it’s just the pricks that get all the attention.
There was a couple in tonight to buy lotto tickets. He handed her the money to give to me because she was at the counter, and when I handed back the change, she absentmindedly put it in her purse. He joked that that’s how things go, and she handed it back.
“He has his change, but I still keep the tickets, so that might be OK anyways!” she said.
“Yeah, but more than that, she’s got my heart, so who cares if she’s got my money, too?” he answered.
She blushed. And giggled.
As they left, an older man, probably in his late sixties or early seventies commented on how nice that was to see. I agreed.
Last night, after a really long day, I checked the conversation between me, BobbyJeff, Timothy, and Cameron. While I was at work, they had a ridiculous conversation that was fun to go back and read. I said I’d missed them, and they asked about and listened to me go on about my day. I was so glad to have them. I thought about how often Brandon listens and says the right things. And about how when my day was so rotten last week, David was the first to ask about it. I remembered how often Colin and the men in my tribe are quick to encourage and build people up. I think of Kenyon, and his desire to have an impeccable character, and how even when we disagree, he doesn’t get mean or lessen our friendship because of it.
I wish that all men were like the latter bunch I described. I wish all men were kind. Funny. Empathic. Respectful.
Of course, a parallel post could be written about women, too. I can think of more than a couple examples of women who could act a whole lot better.
Tonight, though, I’m just really thankful for the guys who set such good examples, the ones I point to when people say, in a derogatory way, “all men are the same.” It makes my heart quite glad to say “no, they aren’t. Want to hear about some of the good ones? I’ve got plenty of examples.”