Sunday, May 2, 2010

One Of The Girls

I had a different post ready to go up, but I was diverted by some arresting statistics. This worked out nicely because I was going to post a secondary item in the sidebar but that item lends credence to what these statistics pointed out so, thanks to being so alert (or easily distracted, take your pick), I can post now everything in a single article, the premise of which is:

Over the course of my life, I have spent an inordinate amount of time in the company of women.

I don't mean to say I am a modern incarnation of Don Juan, wooing women on two continents (having recently and successfully stormed Europe). No, I mean I just always seem to be around women, through no fault (or complaint, for that matter) of my own.

As a young lad, I had an older sister, a doting mother and an absent father. Dad was around—he often stopped in between shifts at the mill and sessions at the bar—but he didn't leave much of an impression. Mostly it was me, mom, my sister and about 6,000 cows.

I was, however, a Boy Scout, so I managed to do my share of male bonding during my teenage years, but just as it looked as if I was on my way toward a wall-balanced life, I joined a charismatic Christian cult. While I did make some male friends there, these organisations tend to draw more females than males, but not the sort who would do you any good, if you get my meaning.

After checking back into hotel reality, I got a job as a keypunch operator. To say this field has a disproportionate number of women would be like saying the ocean is damp; I was the only male in the entire department.

When my children were growing up, I was working nights while my wife worked days, so me and the other moms all got together at day care and, later, for school meetings and such.

As a born-again bachelor, I took up scuba diving, a truly manly sport. But then, ignoring the advice of a good friend (a woman, I might add) I went scuba diving in the Caribbean and, as it had for her, the experience spoiled me. I could no longer face the dark, cold lakes of the Adirondacks, so I sold my gear and became an Irish dancer. I mean, what choice did I have?

I was actually surprised by the predominance of women there, what with Michael Flatley being all the rage, but there was only one other man in the entire class.

So I went to Ireland, met my current wife and settled in Britain. And started a blog. Or three. And, without meaning to, I began to acquire followers. But is what I discovered about them while doing routine blog maintenance this afternoon:

Of my followers, 82.2784810126582% on my Postcards blog, 91.4285714285714% on the Pond Parleys blog and 88.4615384615385% on my writing blog are women. Now, this isn't a complaint, simply an observation, but my intent was to promote myself as an expatriate writer a la Bill Bryson and, instead, I seem to have become an honorary member of the mummy-blogging circuit

So what's a guy to do when he find himself, once again, surrounded by women? Go out and do something that puts him in contact with other people, of course. And that's what I'm going to do.

I have volunteered to assist my wife in her latest endeavour—a sponsored walk. She's doing the walking; I'm just helping out by being a steward. And you can help out by sponsoring her.

Click this link: to donate money toward the cause. The walk is to raise funds for St. Catherine's Hospice, a worthy charity. It's only a half-marathon, and they are only walking, but they are doing it between midnight and six in the morning, so she deserves a bit of support.

Oh, and did I mention this is the Midnight Walk for Women? Twelve hundred women, two thousand flashlights (torches), eighteen hundred bottles of water and me. I expect there will be a few more men there, but here I go again.

Don't worry; I'll bring my camera. Updates to follow.

And thank you for your support.


  1. So that makes me one of the (less than) 18% does it Mike? OK I can live with that. Whilst my circumstances have been a great deal different to your, I too have spent more time in the company of women than I have with men. In fact, with a few exceptions the majority of my close friends earlier in life were female rather than male. In retrospect, I am glad that it has been so. I find the company of women far easier than with some guys I can think of. The only major exception to this would be when attnding live or watching a broadcast of sport - mostly football (soccer for any colonials reading this) - then it has to be with the guys, however much a woman may support the same team it just doesn't work watching with a single or crowd of women.

    Slad to know that there are at least some other guys out there who appreciate your writing Mike :-)

  2. Bully for you! Keep up the good work.

  3. Steve: yes, you are among the few ;0

    Ms Sparrow: Thanks!

  4. I just stumbled upon your blog. I love your writing style.

  5. Anonymous2:44 PM

    I'm so glad to have found your blog. The issue of male trailing spouses was discussed at the recent Families in Global Transition conference in Houston. Have you come across the group STUDS? (Spouses Trailing Under Duress Successfully) You are one of a small tribe, but one which is definitely growing. I have come across two in the last week as a result of my work as a destination services consultant. There is also a LinkedIn group for Trailing Spouses run by a male trailing spouse in New Zealand, Jeff Porter, this is a link to his blog.

  6. Never heard of the group but I just knew there would have to be something like that around. Thanks for the link! Unfortunately, I am not free during the week, so I don't qualify for membership. Maybe after I retire or become independantly weathly ;)