(He takes the television remote, punches pause, sighs and leans back in his chair)
Dear Man: What’s wrong? I thought you wanted to watch a movie.
Dear Woman: I did.
Dear Man: So what’s going on? Why the pause?
Dear Woman: I just get tired of these flicks portraying men and women at odds, always fussing with each other–acting like “pretend fighting” is funny, and even flirtatious.
Dear Man: Oh, I just don’t take it seriously. It’s just entertainment.
Dear Woman: But isn’t entertainment supposed to entertain you instead of annoy you? And by the way, without being mean-spirited here, it does affect you.
Dear Man: In what way?
Dear Woman: Sometimes–I’m not saying all the time–both you and I play the little game we see in the movies of poking at each other, thinking it’s funny.
Dear Man: Oh, you’re thinking too much.
Dear Woman: That’s probably the first time you’ve ever said that to me. But truthfully, what comes through our eyes and ears doespenetrate us. Aren’t movies supposed to do that?
Dear Man: I never thought of it that way. So what is it that troubles you the most?
Dear Woman: It’s the bickering. The “pretend fighting.” The ongoing idea that men and women can’t peacefully co-exist until they decide to get along by having make-up sex.
Dear Man: Wow. Is it that serious?
Dear Woman: Yes. I think it’s worse than that. I think there is a sensation that if men and women don’t fume, romance can’t bloom.
Dear Man: So how do you think it should be? Are there conflicts?
Dear Woman: Let’s look at it this way. Both of us eat. Both of us sleep. Both of us pee. Both of us crap. Both of us think. Both of us laugh. Both of us cry. I could go on and on. The similarities we possess are enormous, but we decide to focus on a tiny list of differences.
Dear Man: Such as…?
Dear Woman: Well, I can’t have a baby. And you probably can’t lift a hundred and fifty pounds. I can’t nurse my child. Yet you don’t have the seed to make an offspring. Those should be enhancements.
Dear Man: I still believe you’re over-thinking it.
Dear Woman: Maybe. But I have to tell you, the white people in America came out to minstrel shows and laughed their heads off over actors in black face who were fussing, arguing, doing dumb things and generating what was considered comedic pratfalls. As long as the black race was the butt of a joke, there was no chance for equality.
Dear Man: Isn’t humor a release?
Dear Woman: Maybe. But it’s also a weapon, to keep real feelings at bay so we can insert prejudices.
Dear Man: So what do you suggest?
Dear Woman: A really simple solution. If it’s important enough tofeel, it’s important enough to say, instead of hiding behind some frustration by using a lame joke.
Published by Jonathan Cring