There have been increasing episodes where I’ve failed to connect in an appropriate manner when establishing communications with my better half; to paraphrase in her words ‘I don’t listen’. This of course can lead to varying degrees of tension. This is an unfortunate phenomenon that afflicts men around the world, regardless of race or culture, and scientists and medical researchers have been working on this for decades with no solution to date. Much appears to have been written about this issue as well.
In my defence, I do listen, but genetically I suffer from ‘Man Brains’. Which means that physiologically I cannot emulate a woman’s capacity and capability to absorb, sort, catalogue and retain the vast quantities of information that a woman collects everyday. Unfortunately, a man’s simple brain has a limited storage capacity and, while the information is received, it unconsciously gets transferred to some remote corner of the brain where it’s quickly forgotten. Sometimes it does get resurrected days later, as if a switch was thrown, but alas by then it’s often too late.
This phenomenon has actually been studied long and hard by psychologists and the like, and it appears that there is indeed such a thing as a male and female brain. I’ve known this for a long time (but only just found out officially), and I’ve often tried to make attempts to adjust accordingly but, invariably, have failed miserably. It becomes a ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t’ situation.
So I’ve recently gone to the extent of synchronising the calendars that appear on our mobile phones, so that I get visual and aural notification of my wife’s appointments in order to stay ‘attuned’. It’s in my nature to be fully organised (like in the video, everything has a box) and not rely on my sieve of a brain to remember things. It also gives me an out if I don’t know about something if it wasn’t in the calendar. I really am trying my best. So far it’s worked out fairly well. Win-Win!
But now I need to find a solution to another foible. I tend to have this habit when trying to maintain light conversation while I’m doing things, like cooking the night’s meal or whatever, and often forget that I’ve already said something more than once. Such as, ‘It looks like it’s going to be a really cold night’, after looking at the outdoor temperature gauge for the third time, watching it drop from 11C to 7C in less than the half hour between putting the potatoes and roast in the oven. As I said, I sometimes have a memory like a sieve when it comes to such things and, unfortunately, I don’t think anyone has created any device to remedy this particular Man Brain affliction.
“Men forget everything; women remember everything. That’s why men need instant replay in sports. They’ve already forgotten what’s happened.”
― Rita Rudner
Another worrying thing is that my wife has placed a book, ‘As I Was Saying – The Wit & Wisdom of Australian Women’, in a prominent place in the lounge room. I don’t know whether this is some form of message that I need to decrypt or not but, on pondering this issue, I’ve come to the conclusion that some things are better left alone, as the old adage ‘curiosity killed the cat’ comes to mind. Once again, ‘damned if you do, damned if you don’t.’
At the end of the day, men are simple creatures and I don’t think anything is going to change the status quo; as even evolution has tried and failed, or succeeded, in its mission, depending on how you look at it. We are what we are.
I’m now wondering whether I should just run and hide.