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"A Guide to Men" by Helen Rowland - 04 - Blondes (Cymbals and Kettle-drums)


Temat: Książki

BLONDES NEXT to a mouse or a rich widow, there is nothing on earth that a normal girl dreads so much as a blonde. No matter how many brunettes a man may have married from time to time you can always be perfectly sure that there has been a blonde in his life. A woman with dark hair and eyes may make men admire her, but in order to make one of them propose she must blondine her temperament down to the roots. The dusky Cleopatra may have succeeded in making fools of a few men, but it took a dizzy little blonde like Helen of Troy to make a lot of men make fools of themselves. In order to be popular with men, in these days, a brunette must be either brilliant, interesting, rich or beautiful; but a blonde doesn't have to be anything but a blonde. You may fight a brunette, dearie, as woman to woman, but when you fight a blonde you fight a cherished masculine tradition.[43] Why is it that in all the novels and motion picture plays the vampires and adventuresses have dark hair and black eyes, while the innocent, persecuted angels are all blondes-whereas in real life it is always the other way 'round. Generally speaking, there are two kinds of blondes: blondes by birth and blondes by preference. These are subdivided into golden blondes, diamond blondes, strawberry blondes-and undecided blondes; that is, those who have not yet decided on their favorite shade. Sometimes illness turns a woman's hair gray, and sometimes it merely turns it dark at the roots. A little peroxide is a treacherous thing! All this talk about the "yellow peril" is nonsense. There is no more danger in permitting your husband to employ a pretty blonde stenographer than there is in throwing a lighted match into the wastebasket. When love flies out of the window the tame cat and the sympathetic blonde tip-toe in by opposite doors. CYMBALS AND KETTLE-DRUMS THIS is the great masculine question: Whether it is better to marry and live in the constant fear of one woman's frown or to stay single and live in deadly fear of every woman's smile. "Conscience doth make cowards of us all"-but not until we've emptied the bottle, tired of the flirtation and gotten our money's worth out of the game. Marriage-A souvenir of love. Wanted: A wife who can broil a steak with one hand, powder her nose with the other, rock the cradle with her foot and accompany herself on the harp. (Signed) Everyman. When the girls admire him a young man takes it as a matter of course; but when a widow selects him for her attention he thrills with the knowledge that he is being stamped with the approval of a connoisseur. Before marriage, a man declares that he would lay down his life to serve you; after marriage, he won't even lay down his newspaper to talk to you.[45] If Achilles' only vulnerable spot was in his heel, then his vanity must have gone to his feet, instead of to his head. You can't expect a woman to accomplish much in this life, since she is busy every minute of it either trying to get some man, trying to get along with one, or trying to get rid of one. A man's wife is something like his teeth: He never thinks of her unless she happens to bother him. Life is a tale that is "told": the monk tells his beads, the seer tells fortunes, the lover tells lies-and a woman tells everything. To collect books is a sign of culture, to collect jewels a sign of wealth, but to collect husbands is a sign of paresis. A modern bachelor makes love with his hand on his pulse and his eye on the clock. Oh yes, there is a vast difference between the savage and the civilized man, but it is never apparent to their wives until after breakfast.[46] A sympathetic woman is like a rose which a man wears over his heart; a stupid woman is like a cabbage which he keeps in his kitchen; but a merely "clever" woman is like a dahlia-he knows he ought to admire her, but he had just as lief do so from a distance. While a woman is weeping over the ghost of a dead love in the graveyard of memory, a man is usually off pursuing a lot of little new loves in the garden of forgetfulness. Life is like a poem or a story; the most important thing about it is not that it should be long, but that it should be beautiful and interesting. The older a woman gets the more trusting she becomes; at twenty a man can feed her only diluted flattery; but at forty she can swallow it, straight, without a quiver. No girl who is going to marry need bother to win a college degree; she just naturally becomes a "Master of Arts" and a "Doctor of Philosophy" after catering to an ordinary man for a few years.[47] The average man takes all the natural taste out of his food by covering it with ready-made sauces, and all the personality out of a woman by covering her with his ready-made ideals. Heaven is not a mythical place. It can be found right down in the heart of the man who has found the work he loves and the woman he loves. An ideal lover is one with such a keen dramatic instinct that he can convince himself of his sincerity-even when he knows that he is lying. Love is a matter of chance; matrimony a matter of money, and divorce-a matter of course. Adam was the first man to "misunderstand" a woman. A man is like a park squirrel; if you fling your favors or your charms at his head he will never come up and eat out of your hand. What a man calls his "conscience" is merely the mental action that follows a sentimental reaction after too much wine or love.[48] In the School of Love, a man is forever just taking up a brand new "study" and discovering that all the old loves were nothing but "preparatory practice." The eugenic idea of choosing a husband would be perfectly lovely, only that a husband isn't a matter of choice, but of chance, accident or blind luck. Love is woman's eternal spring, man's eternal fall. It isn't beauty, and it isn't cleverness, and it isn't clothes that make a particular woman fascinating. It is just a sort of magnetic current which seems to run around her and set her eyes a-twinkling-and a man's heart tingling. It is utterly useless to tell a man the honest truth. That is the last thing on earth which a man ever tells a woman-so of course it's the last thing on earth which he ever expects to hear from her. The average man, like "all Gaul," is divided into three parts: his vanity, his digestion and his ambition. Cater to the first, guard the second and stimulate the third-and his love will take care of itself.[49] There is no such tonic for a man's nerve as a capricious wife and no such softener for his backbone as a self-sacrificing one. A man can sit in the moonlight and talk "New Thought" to a pretty girl and at the same time look right into her eyes with all the old, old ones. Bohemia is an oasis in the desert of life where only the rich-in-dreams may go and only the poor-in-purse may stay. There is no way of two people really knowing each other until after they are married and have to share the same dollar, the same table, the same newspaper and the same chiffonier.

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