At Least Say Thank You, Ladies…

I’ve been trying to avoid the Black Gender war thing since I wrote the rebuttal to @BlaqueConscious’ piece on her blog. Seems like some troubles just follow you like a lost mangy mutt once they get a whiff of you. Anywho, I’m somewhat of a gentleman who actually enjoys opening doors for women, helping them get their things in the car at grocery stores, and the like. I don’t expect anything more than a thank you in return. I’m welcoming enough to offer a compliment with no strings attached. I figure if I can get a spread eagle from a compliment, it probably isn’t the smartest idea to swim in those waters. That being said: Ladies…every time a man does something nice for you, doesn’t mean they are trying to fuck.

I understand that the average woman is going to be approached by a number of men in a given setting. I’d say probably ten men will venture a compliment, or even a crude statement they heard from a rap(I couldn’t bring myself to type hip-hop) song. Some women are simply on guard, preventive maintenance, possibly. Of course, there are some women that seem to give me this look. You may have seen it or given a to The eye becomes slightly tighter as if to peir into my soul. I laugh and squint my eye and actually look into their souls. I let them know I’m only being nice, and attempting to emit a better vibration into the megaverse. I can’t begin to tell you the amount of times I’ve had to tell a woman,”Hey, sis! I can’t date rape you off of a simple,’Your shoes like nice,’..”

Maybe I’m wrong. I’ve been told that my words have made a sister’s day, and for the ost part many of the older sisters that I run across take compliments quite well. Sometimes too well, but that is another post!! I would like to ask the more mature sisters to teach the rest of their gender about when guys like myself roamed the earth in packs and could be found more often than pants off the arse. Remind them of the times when a man rushing to open a door didn’t create the misperception that he expected the woman to bend it low. Teach them the long lost art of taking a compliment properly: Smile. Say thank you as if you mean it, and don’t shy away like I’m trying to bite you or something! Please inform that no matter how the guy comes off afterward, the compliment is yours. It was given freely out of someone’s kindness, and whatever ulterior motive you suspect doesn’t have to create a court room interrogation.

No seriously. I’ve told a sister that her hair looked nice, and she went into this speil about how long ago it had been done. I wondered to myself if I had walked up and said, “Damn, looks like your hair ain’t been done in a month, you slouch!” what would the response have been. Given my history with women, I tend to think that I should walk around with a disclaimer on my shirts that says,”Not The One To Discourage, Ladies”. I recall as a teenager, back when the “I want a roughneck” movement was in full swing, I could count on getting the prettiest(common standard based assessment) young ladies with terms like bitch. You laugh or cringe, but I’m writing God’s script here. Seriously, it worked. As I have hopefully matured, and left childish things to the children, I wonder some days. The habit was practiced enough to have become second nature, and that trigger is still a part of my neuro make-up. Although, I’m not attempting to get the woman’s number, it does cause a brief moment of caution to over pass my soul when a woman deflects my attempts to help her, or after giving her a compliment the cold shoulder strut. I suppose I could be overly sensitive on this topic, of course I also suppose I could still be going around calling women out of their names like this guy just did across the street before getting her to smile. Good grief…

Eh…I don’t do it for the plus, but it is nice to know that your words and deeds are welcomed. Social graces are what define a culture and little things like chilvary help to provide those necessary elements of cohesion. It is not enough for me to say that I’m doing it for myself, I’m doing it because it is the human thing to do. I believe that the American Black community has been hit hard with the individualistic virus so hard that we have forgotten who and what we are. We aren’t a people that can afford to speak in minimal terms about much really, let alone actions that allow us to destroy the myths about the savage balck man. (What was it the white gyrl wrote in that e-mail about us and violence?)

Any who..before I get too deep in my public service announcement(too late!!) I would just like the ladies to consider that there are still some nice guys who enjoy being nice guys. I understand that it is not a slight or something that should be taken personally, however it does erode at that very core when you know for a fact that you could say something quite demeaning and get the response you were looking for. I’m not sure if this is some sort of self-hate thing, or what, but it is annoying to say the least.

Eh…maybe I’m crazy to think doing kind should be returned with kind…

30 thoughts on “At Least Say Thank You, Ladies…

  1. It’s a fine line to walk for women.

    As someone who has been harassed on the streets before, as recently as within the past 6 months (fully clothed), it’s difficult to tell who means well and who doesn’t. In addition, many so-called compliments are accompanied by that leering look. You know the look; a friend of mine coined the term “predatory glaze” to describe the eye glaze that occurs when that dirtbag look takes place.

    Not everyone deserves, or is entitled to, a “thank you”.

    On the flip side, I remember a long time ago when I was friends with an ex’s sister. She was in a relationship with this guy and we were going to church that day. I drove. I remember him opening the back door for her and I laughed at him for being a punk. I was quite hardened back then and, therefore, thought that was punk shit. Fast forward to now, where I’m less hardened and have done lots of inner work… and I’m just like her in that respect. I expect to be treated like a lady, even if I’m wearing sneakers and jeans. Anytime my stepfather and I get together, he INSISTS on opening all doors… including my door when I drive. He used to do that with me as a kid, but I found it to be an annoyance back then because I was on some tomboy thug shit. (I couldn’t tell him that, of course; I knew my place as a kid.) Thank goodness for growth and progress.

    Again, it’s a fine line to walk for women. Again, many time one never knows who has good intentions. It’s hoped that women have good intuition and common sense so that negative vibes are blocked off as much as possible.

    1. Not the “dirtbag look”!! hahaha!! Monstrous!!

      Yeah, and I tried my best to handle that angle. As a man who is pretty much just into being a gentleman, it annoys me, but I do understand where it is coming from. I understand that there are going to be some idiots that tarnish the simpliest of gestures. However, as you have stated, there should be a degree of balance. Your thank you shouldn’t have to mean, okay come get some. Which means I need to do a post for the fellas so they can understand that. It seems to me that the more I analyze this gender thing, the more I’m seeing the objectification factor. Whether it is opening doors or signing prenups, we have gotten farther and farther away from developing relationships as humans, and closer to just looking for trade offs. Every time a man decides to act as a gentlemen shouldn’t become a reason for a woman to tense up. There shouldn’t be anything read into the gesture other than it was kind act…move forward. Either the brothers are getting extremely thirsty, or there are some extremely impressionable women who are setting a damaging precedent for other women in that brother’s life. Possibly a little bit of both, but I don’t equate my giving you a compliment or being chivalrous as a pass for some arse.

  2. It’s a fine line to walk for women.

    As someone who has been harassed on the streets before, as recently as within the past 6 months (fully clothed), it’s difficult to tell who means well and who doesn’t. In addition, many so-called compliments are accompanied by that leering look. You know the look; a friend of mine coined the term “predatory glaze” to describe the eye glaze that occurs when that dirtbag look takes place.

    Not everyone deserves, or is entitled to, a “thank you”.

    On the flip side, I remember a long time ago when I was friends with an ex’s sister. She was in a relationship with this guy and we were going to church that day. I drove. I remember him opening the back door for her and I laughed at him for being a punk. I was quite hardened back then and, therefore, thought that was punk shit. Fast forward to now, where I’m less hardened and have done lots of inner work… and I’m just like her in that respect. I expect to be treated like a lady, even if I’m wearing sneakers and jeans. Anytime my stepfather and I get together, he INSISTS on opening all doors… including my door when I drive. He used to do that with me as a kid, but I found it to be an annoyance back then because I was on some tomboy thug shit. (I couldn’t tell him that, of course; I knew my place as a kid.) Thank goodness for growth and progress.

    Again, it’s a fine line to walk for women. Again, many time one never knows who has good intentions. It’s hoped that women have good intuition and common sense so that negative vibes are blocked off as much as possible.

    1. Not the “dirtbag look”!! hahaha!! Monstrous!!

      Yeah, and I tried my best to handle that angle. As a man who is pretty much just into being a gentleman, it annoys me, but I do understand where it is coming from. I understand that there are going to be some idiots that tarnish the simpliest of gestures. However, as you have stated, there should be a degree of balance. Your thank you shouldn’t have to mean, okay come get some. Which means I need to do a post for the fellas so they can understand that. It seems to me that the more I analyze this gender thing, the more I’m seeing the objectification factor. Whether it is opening doors or signing prenups, we have gotten farther and farther away from developing relationships as humans, and closer to just looking for trade offs. Every time a man decides to act as a gentlemen shouldn’t become a reason for a woman to tense up. There shouldn’t be anything read into the gesture other than it was kind act…move forward. Either the brothers are getting extremely thirsty, or there are some extremely impressionable women who are setting a damaging precedent for other women in that brother’s life. Possibly a little bit of both, but I don’t equate my giving you a compliment or being chivalrous as a pass for some arse.

  3. It’s a bit of both. On one hand, men don’t have to do much anymore; they have neither home training nor manners. Some women are so used to it that all that’s needed is a beer and some chicken fingers (true story) to get a woman (or some p—-). On the other hand, the feminist movement caused some problems, including women feeling as if men doing chivalrous things somehow continued the belief that women were dainty creatures who weren’t on equal footing with men.

    Of course, it’s more complicated than what I’m typing here. And besides, my manicure is now fucked up and a couple of my fingers hurt, so let me stop typing for now and see about making my next manicure/pedicure appointment. I am, after all, a lady and need to treat myself as such. Thank you.

    *curtsies as the door is opened to walk into the nail salon*

    1. Beautiful.

      I’m sure there are deeper socio-psychological reasons for this particular pattern of behavior to exist, and I would love to at least get this conversation going. Of course, I don’t want to be the reason your mani/pedi is in need of further attention..*smiles*

  4. It’s a bit of both. On one hand, men don’t have to do much anymore; they have neither home training nor manners. Some women are so used to it that all that’s needed is a beer and some chicken fingers (true story) to get a woman (or some p—-). On the other hand, the feminist movement caused some problems, including women feeling as if men doing chivalrous things somehow continued the belief that women were dainty creatures who weren’t on equal footing with men.

    Of course, it’s more complicated than what I’m typing here. And besides, my manicure is now fucked up and a couple of my fingers hurt, so let me stop typing for now and see about making my next manicure/pedicure appointment. I am, after all, a lady and need to treat myself as such. Thank you.

    *curtsies as the door is opened to walk into the nail salon*

    1. Beautiful.

      I’m sure there are deeper socio-psychological reasons for this particular pattern of behavior to exist, and I would love to at least get this conversation going. Of course, I don’t want to be the reason your mani/pedi is in need of further attention..*smiles*

  5. I’ll continue typing… you plan on paying for my hands and feet? 😐

    There’s too much finger pointing on both sides, yet it’s not that simple. That’s why I hate hearing from people like Steve Hardly and Jimi Izn’tReal. :-/ They only touch the surface – THEIR surfaces (which are far from any kind of handsome) – and probably don’t have the sociological and/or psychological knowledge to delve any deeper than that.

    From, a nerdy half-dainty sociology minor in need of a manicure/pedicure. 😐

    1. I so hope you got that mani/pedi.

      Yeah, the Steve Harvey types sort of put a blotch on the whole situation. There is so much that goes into participation in today’s social climate that I fear that for black people, the simple things may get phazed out. As long as it is always about the behavior we are taught through whatever popular song(can you imagine the little girl that actually thought it would be cool to be “supermanned”?) then I don’t see a change in not only relationship scene, but nothing progressive with regard to male/female relationships.

  6. I’ll continue typing… you plan on paying for my hands and feet? 😐

    There’s too much finger pointing on both sides, yet it’s not that simple. That’s why I hate hearing from people like Steve Hardly and Jimi Izn’tReal. :-/ They only touch the surface – THEIR surfaces (which are far from any kind of handsome) – and probably don’t have the sociological and/or psychological knowledge to delve any deeper than that.

    From, a nerdy half-dainty sociology minor in need of a manicure/pedicure. 😐

    1. I so hope you got that mani/pedi.

      Yeah, the Steve Harvey types sort of put a blotch on the whole situation. There is so much that goes into participation in today’s social climate that I fear that for black people, the simple things may get phazed out. As long as it is always about the behavior we are taught through whatever popular song(can you imagine the little girl that actually thought it would be cool to be “supermanned”?) then I don’t see a change in not only relationship scene, but nothing progressive with regard to male/female relationships.

  7. Exactly. (ILL, girls actually think it’s okay to be “supermanned”? 😐 )

    Some things are simple of course. But with a 70% OOW birth rate amongst Black Americans, people thinking that it’s okay to be a “baby muva” or “baby fava”, an at least 50% overall U.S. divorce rate (it may be closer to 60% now), too many of our boys/men and girls/women going to jail/prison instead of completing an education (and yes, the numbers for girls/women going to jail/prison have jumped dramatically over the past 30-40 years), and WAY too much music and media glorifying all this shit… we don’t need Steve or Jimi or Sherri (and DEFINITELY not Sherri) speaking for us. Some real solid cohesive research needs to be completed on all of this by genuine folks with genuine knowledge, not those muthafuckas. Shit, maybe I’ll do it one of these days. Maybe…..

    Pardon me. My not-so-ladylike mouth spoke for me. Act like a lady, think like a man and shit. 😐

    1. Hhaha!! Eh…I don’t know how much research would yield the necessary solutions, or how we would begin to talk everybody into implementing them. The problem is definitely cultural influences though. I also blame a huge portion of the relationship problem on an educational system that teaches condoms before paying bills, buying a car, buying a house, et al. Not enough focus on life skills, so much of our training is coming from the “Uncle Lukes” of the world…

  8. Exactly. (ILL, girls actually think it’s okay to be “supermanned”? 😐 )

    Some things are simple of course. But with a 70% OOW birth rate amongst Black Americans, people thinking that it’s okay to be a “baby muva” or “baby fava”, an at least 50% overall U.S. divorce rate (it may be closer to 60% now), too many of our boys/men and girls/women going to jail/prison instead of completing an education (and yes, the numbers for girls/women going to jail/prison have jumped dramatically over the past 30-40 years), and WAY too much music and media glorifying all this shit… we don’t need Steve or Jimi or Sherri (and DEFINITELY not Sherri) speaking for us. Some real solid cohesive research needs to be completed on all of this by genuine folks with genuine knowledge, not those muthafuckas. Shit, maybe I’ll do it one of these days. Maybe…..

    Pardon me. My not-so-ladylike mouth spoke for me. Act like a lady, think like a man and shit. 😐

    1. Hhaha!! Eh…I don’t know how much research would yield the necessary solutions, or how we would begin to talk everybody into implementing them. The problem is definitely cultural influences though. I also blame a huge portion of the relationship problem on an educational system that teaches condoms before paying bills, buying a car, buying a house, et al. Not enough focus on life skills, so much of our training is coming from the “Uncle Lukes” of the world…

  9. **sigh** This is your blog hence I’ve entered your world. No one forced me to bookmark or read the entries. Yet, it’s so public that I am reading it while sitting in the bathroom, wearing a ratty robe with my tired looking feet in a leaky Pedispa. I think I can agree to disagree with you over this fact.

    Let me break down the hostility/guarded attitude that sometimes frustrate men:

    { Compliments from the opposite sex who are not related to you/friends(gay or the guys who believe in platonic friendships). This is based on experience and observation. }

    0-10 yrs old: Innocence without trauma/experience. You believe compliments are just compliments.

    10-18 yrs old: You notice a trend. Most guys(not all) don’t compliment unless penis is being offered at the end of the palaver.

    18-35 yrs old: You’ve had experience. Read the book, seen the play and brought the t-shirt. A majority of the compliments are from guys who want to f**k/make love/hit and run/whatever at the end of the build up. Couple this with a bad attitude/catching a woman on a bad day/PMS/etc, It’s classic conditioning…Pavlov’s salivating dogs. If one gets offered daily penis with compliments numerous times, they learn to expect it. In a sense, most people don’t see you for who you really are/your intentions but in the context of themselves. The same as you. You didn’t get a scripted response so you took it personal. You’re human so I’ll forgive you for that. 😉

    40 yrs plus: You’re comfortable with yourself. Men are no longer running after you the way they did in your youth. No daily penis offers. Compliments become just compliments.

    I’ve always made it a point to thank people (woman, man, child and animal) or show my appreciation when they go out of their way to show their best to others. Why? I do it because I WANT to. I love to see people at their best. Not because it’s expected, I had “great parents” who raised me “well” or want others to see me. I favor a genuine Thank you/Sorry much more then a replicated cardboard cutout of the real thing.

    (I’m sure this post is more of a mental commentary over a specific sister/incident yet it comes off as a blanket statement. People don’t have to give you a cookie for every good deed you do.)

    Note: If this is a frustrated man rant for rant’s sake – Ignore the above babble. Resume position and carry on.

    1. HAHAHAHA!! I love it!!!

      Um…well, sort a rant for rants sake, also a way to open up the conversation. Seems to be a lot of “nice guy turned bad guy for women” posts on the web, so I’m a doing a “bad guy turned nice guy, oh this is what they’re talking about” post! I really appreciate that break down. Of course, much of what we discuss is going to be blanket, not calling that a scarecrow, just looking at the brush strokes…(sorry, the metaphors just seemed to tasty to let alone).

      And welcome to the Asylum!! I think you will enjoy your stay!!

  10. **sigh** This is your blog hence I’ve entered your world. No one forced me to bookmark or read the entries. Yet, it’s so public that I am reading it while sitting in the bathroom, wearing a ratty robe with my tired looking feet in a leaky Pedispa. I think I can agree to disagree with you over this fact.

    Let me break down the hostility/guarded attitude that sometimes frustrate men:

    { Compliments from the opposite sex who are not related to you/friends(gay or the guys who believe in platonic friendships). This is based on experience and observation. }

    0-10 yrs old: Innocence without trauma/experience. You believe compliments are just compliments.

    10-18 yrs old: You notice a trend. Most guys(not all) don’t compliment unless penis is being offered at the end of the palaver.

    18-35 yrs old: You’ve had experience. Read the book, seen the play and brought the t-shirt. A majority of the compliments are from guys who want to f**k/make love/hit and run/whatever at the end of the build up. Couple this with a bad attitude/catching a woman on a bad day/PMS/etc, It’s classic conditioning…Pavlov’s salivating dogs. If one gets offered daily penis with compliments numerous times, they learn to expect it. In a sense, most people don’t see you for who you really are/your intentions but in the context of themselves. The same as you. You didn’t get a scripted response so you took it personal. You’re human so I’ll forgive you for that. 😉

    40 yrs plus: You’re comfortable with yourself. Men are no longer running after you the way they did in your youth. No daily penis offers. Compliments become just compliments.

    I’ve always made it a point to thank people (woman, man, child and animal) or show my appreciation when they go out of their way to show their best to others. Why? I do it because I WANT to. I love to see people at their best. Not because it’s expected, I had “great parents” who raised me “well” or want others to see me. I favor a genuine Thank you/Sorry much more then a replicated cardboard cutout of the real thing.

    (I’m sure this post is more of a mental commentary over a specific sister/incident yet it comes off as a blanket statement. People don’t have to give you a cookie for every good deed you do.)

    Note: If this is a frustrated man rant for rant’s sake – Ignore the above babble. Resume position and carry on.

    1. HAHAHAHA!! I love it!!!

      Um…well, sort a rant for rants sake, also a way to open up the conversation. Seems to be a lot of “nice guy turned bad guy for women” posts on the web, so I’m a doing a “bad guy turned nice guy, oh this is what they’re talking about” post! I really appreciate that break down. Of course, much of what we discuss is going to be blanket, not calling that a scarecrow, just looking at the brush strokes…(sorry, the metaphors just seemed to tasty to let alone).

      And welcome to the Asylum!! I think you will enjoy your stay!!

  11. Well I follow you on Twitter, that’s how I got here. On behalf of all the women with manners, I deeply apologize, sir. I am sorry some of my sisters have got you thinking that we all don’t simply appreciate courteous gestures as they are and not foreplay.

    I can only speak for myself and say that I would greatly appreciate and be pleasantly surprised by such compliments and chivalry. I am secure enough in myself and have had enough validation from my late father to accept and appreciate those things without even thinking about giving up my draws.

    So in conclusion, don’t give up on us women. And if no woman says it, THANK YOU. 🙂

    1. Yeah, I try to expect a little bit of understanding on women these days, but even after all this time after writing this piece, I still get that response from some women. But, I am so glad when women such as your Self let me know it is not all, just some.

  12. Well I follow you on Twitter, that’s how I got here. On behalf of all the women with manners, I deeply apologize, sir. I am sorry some of my sisters have got you thinking that we all don’t simply appreciate courteous gestures as they are and not foreplay.

    I can only speak for myself and say that I would greatly appreciate and be pleasantly surprised by such compliments and chivalry. I am secure enough in myself and have had enough validation from my late father to accept and appreciate those things without even thinking about giving up my draws.

    So in conclusion, don’t give up on us women. And if no woman says it, THANK YOU. 🙂

    1. Yeah, I try to expect a little bit of understanding on women these days, but even after all this time after writing this piece, I still get that response from some women. But, I am so glad when women such as your Self let me know it is not all, just some.

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