Never having been a guy, I don’t know the first thing about being a Dude. I was born a female and I am quite content to remain a female. Though, I would be lying if I told you all that I didn’t wonder about the male species and why they do the things they do. After many conversations with the Fonz about that very subject, I have gained some knowledge when it comes to the opposite sex. However, there is still so much to learn.
Which is why today’s post is a learning opportunity. The Fonz takes over for Day 3 of Mentor Spotlight Week so that he can educate us all on a specific class of men: Dudes. So without further delay, I give you the Dude himself.
It started simply enough, this ongoing definition of The Dude by use of examples. When your Defining Wonderland author asked her mentor (this Dude), with her usual irrepressible spirit, if I’d be interested in joining her in a zumba class, the words came easily: “Dudes don’t zumba.” Unfortunately, while the use of examples to define a subject is fundamentally flawed, what other choice do you have when words are too ethereal for a thesaurus or dictionary?
Let’s start with a disclaimer. I am a dude (albeit, an old Dude). End of disclaimer.
Dudes are not good or bad, smart or dumb, straight or gay, nerd or jock. Dudes are not necessarily nice or mean. Dudes come in all shapes and sizes. You cannot see a man and anoint him a Dude. While being a dude is not necessarily a great thing, there is no higher compliment to a dude than, “He’s a good dude,” for it’s an acknowledgement among dudes that you have met the unspoken, unwritten criteria that is simply ingrained in Dude DNA.
Dudes can talk sports. I have a friend who is a nice guy, but he’s not a dude because he’s clueless about sports. He’s automatically eliminated. Those of you who once dated a jock who turned out to be an assclown shouldn’t let that taint your opinion and stop reading here. See, the ability to actually play a sport well is irrelevant. Sure, there are athletes who are dudes, but they are the extreme exception, not the rule.
Dudes like music. We sing in the car, in the shower, and maybe even in public (usually after drinking). We play air guitar and keep an imaginary keyboard in our minds that we unfold whenever the Doors “Light My Fire” or Procol Harem’s “Whiter Shade of Pale” comes on our Pandora classic rock station. Most of us have no idea what we’re actually doing, but it’s fun. And dudes like to have fun.
Which brings us to boobs. Dudes like boobs.
I know, this might seem a little redundant since we’ve already established dudes like to have fun. But, and I know some dudes will have a problem accepting this, you CAN have fun without boobs. Though, they do tend to perk up a dude’s mood. To plagiarize an old Coca-Cola ad, “Things go better with boobs.” Now, the cynics among you are probably going back to where I said Dudes can be straight or gay. If that’s a problem for you, I’m guessing you haven’t spent much time around gay men. My gay friends have an appreciation for the female form that rivals that of any heterosexual sex hound.
You’ve probably read this list – music, fun, and, boobs and drawn the natural conclusion that Dudes like strip clubs. Ding, ding, ding!! We have a winner. That said, I haven’t been in a strip club in years. The occasion just hasn’t come up, but if it came up tomorrow, I’d be tempted. Now, you show me a strip club with a free buffet, cheap beer, and a couple of big screen TVs on the side showing The Big Game and I may set up a tent to put my own catheter in so I don’ t miss anything.
At this point, some of you are playing mental thesaurus, trying to find a synonym for a uniquely individual term. That would be a mistake, because Dudes cannot be defined by fun, boobs, and hot wings. It’s a start, but here’s where it can get confusing and lead to the introduction of a ten-cent word… multifaceted. Yes, dudes are multifaceted. It’s a characteristic that ensures our survival and likely dates back to the first Dude. Being multifaceted enables us to drift from event to event and never be completely out-of-place. More importantly, it enables us to procreate, ensuring the survival of the species. It’s the value of making conversation, the art of seeming interested in the truly uninteresting.
Dudes learn early on that if they can talk Emily Brontë, survive NickelFriggin’Back, watch the occasional chick flick, stand in a Victoria’s Secret store without fondling the merchandise, and put up with the friends of the girl we’re actually interested in, we improve our chances of getting laid. And, if we know just enough about the economy, our jobs, our boss’ jobs, work politics, and understand the value of hard work, we also stand a decent chance of landing and holding a good job. It’s almost Darwinian in its simplicity. Steady income + getting laid = relationship = procreation. Barring an ice age, Mayan freakiness, alien invasion, or hot wings bringing about the next plague, Dudes should be ensured survival for a long time.
About the author: The Fonz is a dude. He has spent a lifetime just being a dude. He’s the first in a line of dudes, with a couple of young “dudes-in-training” at home. One is still acquiring a taste for bacon and understanding of the weak-side linebacker blitz, the other still thinks girls have cooties. Should they never achieve full adult Dudehood, the Fonz would be ok with that. The world still has a place for guys who actually care about vampires, reality television, book clubs, and introspection. Of course, that place is usually right under their partner’s thumb, but there’s not much you can do about that.