The Home of Steven Barnes
Author, Teacher, Screenwriter

Monday, November 11, 2013

The "Bear Neccessities" of Love

There’s a joke about two hunters who are chased by a bear.  Bears run faster than humans, so one turned to the other and, despairing, said “we can’t outrun that bear!”
We’ll return to the punch line in a moment.


I recently saw a post that said that the only thing more of a turn-on than a bad boy is a “badass man that has his shit together.”   The post was followed by a series of posts from women saying they’ve been looking for such a man and cannot find one.

I was raised by a single mother, and as a child got to hang out and listen to the way mothers talked about their lives, as if I wasn’t in the room at all, and to watch what went on, and having been raised in a world of women saw male-ness as slightly mysterious and exotic, but never ever something superior.   Different, yes.  The way these women spoke of their lives and their husbands it was glaringly obvious that they didn’t feel inferior in the slightest—they saw that men and women had different roles in the world, if children were to be safe.  That has always been my attitude.

But…I also ran into guys who DID believe women were inferior, and were obligated to do the things that men said, or that men were entitled to privileges women did not have.

And rejected that idea.   Men who would look at women’s  lack of accomplishment in the arts and sciences and fields of discovery and invite me to speculate on just why women were less intelligent or creative or whatever…without grasping the fantastic amount of energy it takes to  raise a family, and that in every culture in the world, women had that primary responsibility. 

Blindness, I thought.   No, as far as I was concerned, men and women weren’t “equal” but complementary in a way that neither was superior or inferior to the other, save by very, very limited and prejudicial definitions, and self-serving filters.

 Oh, yeah, men were great at that.

But so are women.  Tananarive and I have discussed the pity parties on either side: women complaining that there are “no good men” and men complaining that there are “no good women.”  It’s certainly true that women outnumber men, but the complaints sound  to me like someone in a 95% employment economy complaining that “there are no jobs.”

What in the world do statistics have to do with whether YOU, personally, as an individual, have a job or relationship?  Let’s just say that if you’re the kind of person who looks at the bottom stats and attributes your life situation to those problems, your natural partner is a man or woman who does the exact same thing.   Good luck with that.

The man or woman who says that they can’t find the fabulous men or women they desire out there aren’t considering…or are afraid to consider…that they are attracting what they are.  They aren’t noticing the megafauna in the living room: you are attracted to people at your level of energy and integration…and above. And you attract people at your level of energy and integration…and below.
I’ve got good news and bad news, brothers and sisters, if you don’t like what you’re seeing out there, the answer is in the mirror.

That means that fabulous men and women find each other every day, and if you’re not in that company, the responsibility is in your hands.    Forget the statistics.

1932 was the worst year for unemployment in American history, with a 23.6% unemployment rate.   It is estimated that 28% of people will never marry.  That means that the worst case scenario is that you have to be in the top 70%.  You have to be in the top seven out of ten.

You don’t have to be #1.  Don’t have to be the best, the luckiest, the best looking, the richest, the healthiest…just not in the bottom 30%.   And I suggest that you can do that simply by being more honest than the next guy. By taking responsibility for your results on a level that is uncommon.   My brother in law Pat Young had a fabulous attitude toward work: “if there are two jobs out there, I’m getting one of them.”  He’s never been out of work his entire career.  People like that are hard to stop, and the energy they radiate is infectious.   And a man like that attracts a woman like that.
Back to the hunters.  They’re  running from the bear.  One turns to the other and says “we can’t outrun the bear”.  The other, naturally, says “I don’t have to outrun the bear.  I only have to  outrun you.”

The next time there’s a pity party, and your friends invite you to moan about the lack of acceptable partners in the world, if you MUST think of things in statistical terms, I suggest that you smile and nod and sympathize…

While remembering the bear.


No comments: