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Saturday, December 19, 2009

What women like

I spent last weekend at a big masters swimming meet. These meets are always a blast, and have a bit of a cocktail-party-by-the-pool feel to them. I saw a number of people I hadn't seen in years, and that's always fun as well.

Among the people I saw was Benn Doyle, 51, who holds the world record in his age group in the 100 short course meter breaststroke. Ben stands 6' 4" and weighs around 230. He has a little bit of a gut, and is more hawk-faced than classically handsome. But he's nice looking in a rugged sort of way. In any case, the overriding impression he leaves you with is one of masculinity-to-spare, which, for guys, is probably more important than being pretty anyway.

Benn is a veterinarian. I asked how his practice was going, and he replied that he was busy, and hadn't seen any downturn in his business due to the recession: "People just love their pets, and will do anything for them."

He added, with a shrug, "I'm the same way. I cry when I see a baby squirrel run over in the street."

All I could think was, women must absolutely adore this guy. Most women's ideal man is a hulking monster with a kind heart (who also makes money), and Benn is exactly that.

(I also think it helps to be six feet four inches of testosterone on the hoof when you admit to guys you don't know that well that you cry at the sight of a dead baby squirrel.)

Benn explained that the worst thing was to see a squirrel that had been partially run over and was still alive but couldn't move; he said that he always made a point of backing up and running them over again, so their suffering would stop. He then mentioned a buck he had seen in his backyard which had had an arrow sticking out of its chest, and how he had tried -- but failed -- to trap him. "He actually survived for three more weeks," he said sadly.

(It did occur to me that these were just lines -- they're certainly effective ones -- but then I thought, he wouldn't have spent his life being a vet just to buttress this pose.)

I told him that my wife and daughter would be big fans of his.

Of course, being as wise as I am, I also know what women don't like: a strutting bantam rooster who's constantly trying to prove his toughness.

Like me.


Greg said...


I had to laugh at this. Your description of Benn is great. I shared this with a Masters swimmer friend and told her the guy is so masculine it almost hurts to look at him.... esp. since I am a bit on the effeminate side of the spectrum. Your self description is very funny. Good timing. Good writing.

And your 200 fly was an awesome swim. I just wish I had been at the end of the lane at 125 and screamed at your ass to get going. Yeah, great swim.

John Craig said...

Greg --Thank you, but I have to disagree with YOUR self assessment: I've never thought of you as the least bit feminine. In fact, if you're feminine, that pretty much makes me a little girl.

Congratulations again on your WR in the 50 fly; to set that four years into your age group is extremely impressive.

Anonymous said...

Funny. You guys are girly like Bruce Lee is girly.

Steven said...

"I'm the same way. I cry when I see a baby squirrel run over in the street."

what does this remind you of from recently?

John Craig said...

Steven --
True, but I know this guy, and he shows no signs of sociopathy, meaning, he has to be taken at his word here.