10 Simple Tests Of Whether You’re A Wimp Or Not

Filed Under Being Cool, Hilarious, Men Attracting Women, Pillar Articles

By now you know all too well that being a “wuss” is not attractive to women at all.

The very essence of what ignites femininity is directly tied to facing fear with courage, coming up with a plan when crisis hits and being a protector when danger and uncertainty loom.

And, well…you just can’t be ANY of those things if you’re a “scaredy-cat”, now can you?

Most of us will never be faced with storming Bin Laden’s camp in Pakistan, landing an airliner in the Hudson River or fending off a pack of wild tigers in the Sri Lankan jungle.

That’s all well and good, but you WILL need to be able to get through normal, everyday life in post-modern culture.

For better or worse, life in that context really does present nearly constant challenges to “man up”…even if they’re small or even subtle ones.

Nevertheless, you can bet your bottom dollar that women are watching.

With that in mind, I hereby present to you ten very basic, simple tests to tell with almost 100% certainty what kind of man you are.

Do you possess even a modicum of the masculine bravery that indicates to a woman that you’re a leader, provider and a protector?

Or are you just a frightened shell of a man…a passive follower who runs from every potential challenge?

Perhaps the FIRST should be based on whether you have the guts to even read on vs. folding up and closing this window because “you can’t bear to look”, right?

But seriously…ah, what the heck. Take a deep breath and go for it…


1. Popcorn Bags

When you make a bag of popcorn, can you fish the bag out of the microwave when it’s done, open it, pour out the contents into a bowl without either using an oven mitt or repeating a staccato chorus of “Ow! Ow! Ow!” the whole time?

Can you crumple up the bag a couple of seconds later without flinching, or do you have to blow into it and bounce it around in the air for half a minute before doing so?

Here’s the truth. A bag of popcorn is hot, but when handled according to the directions it’s not hot enough to fry your fingers. And yes, you really can crumple up the empty bag immediately without injuring yourself.

You can also survive having to take a cold shower if you have to, as well as walking a mile in 100 degree heat with a gas can or jump-starting your neighbor’s car on a cold winter morning.

Only wimps can’t handle reasonable (read: not dangerous) deviations in temperature.

Don’t you dare stick your toe in that swimming pool first if others are already happily enjoying themselves in it. Dive right in, man.

2. Going To The Doctor

Let me be the first to admit, I was once afflicted with this wimpy “disease”…which no doctor was going to cure anyway.

Fortunately, I got over it. But even now I still don’t know what it is about going to the doctor that strikes such fear in men’s hearts, but we’d better all get over it if we know what’s good for us.

When something isn’t quite right with your health, you know it. And that means you also instinctively know that you need to go see a doctor.

Yet a huge percentage of men bury their heads in the sand and pretend nothing is going on and that whatever’s ailing them will go away on its own.

This isn’t only dangerous and irresponsible, it’s freaking wimpy to the max.

Any woman can see that your fear is keeping you from taking the best care of yourself you could. Therefore, you’re also not improving the likelihood that you’ll continue to be there for her and for your future family.

And she isn’t impressed.

3. Public Whining

Children are best known for whining, particularly spoiled and undisciplined ones.

Some men never grow up. They continue to fuss and complain at the first sign of inconvenience or bother all through their adult lives.

Not coincidentally, these are usually the same men who are dateless—often without even realizing why.

Simply put, real men never verbalize their reticence or discomfort toward what they already know needs to be done.

They simply nut up and take care of business. This is like catnip to women.

Notably, what I’m talking about here is NOT to be confused with standing up to injustice, manipulation or the like.

If you’re ever accused of “whining” by someone whose B.S. you’ve just called out, you can let that go in one ear and out the other.

4. Varmints

Here it is: If there’s a spider in the house, it’s YOU who needs to deal with it.

You get extra points for doing the deed without nervously squashing otherwise innocent critters simply because they’ve been found outside of their natural habitat.

The general rule is that if the thing is legitimately dangerous (i.e. scorpion, brown recluse, etc.) then you smash it.

Otherwise, you get some toilet paper, coax it into your grasp and toss it outside.

You should also be okay with catching and removing toads, lizards and other small and harmless creatures.

Even more bonus points are yours if you can catch harmless garden snakes…if only for personal enjoyment. Just don’t “surprise” your girlfriend with it or anything.

5. Flat Tires

Do you know how to change a flat tire? You’d better, because it’s not going to end well for you if SHE has to do it while you stand there and watch helplessly.

In other words, she’d better not have to break a nail because you were unwilling to get your hands dirty. Sorry, but that’s how she’d look at it.

It’s even more to your credit if you actually look forward to changing one, even if in the back of your mind you’re miffed by the inconvenience and the cost of fixing or replacing the thing.

Contrast a guy like that with the quiet majority who don’t even know how to find all the pieces to the jack their car came equipped with, let alone how to use it.

I’ve known guys with full-size pickup trucks who were completely nonplussed as to how to release the spare from where it’s stored below the bed…if they could even find it at all.

6. Driving A Stick Shift

If you’re physically sitting anywhere other than the United States while reading this, you’re probably already scratching your head.

Nevertheless, I remain shocked by the number of guys in this country, at least, who are stopped dead in their tracks if confronted with the requirement to pilot any motor vehicle that’s not equipped with an automatic transmission.

I don’t care if you’re a “car nut” or not, this is important.


Well, first there’s the simple fact that anything cool to drive in this life is better with a manual transmission. That includes 4x4s, motorcycles, and sports cars.

If you’re out rock-hopping in Moab, Utah with an automatic Jeep, don’t come crying to me when that doesn’t work out for you. (Do they even MAKE Jeeps with automatics?)

Manual transmissions make life more fun when you know how to use one.

But far more importantly, there’s going to come a day—sometime soon, if it hasn’t happened already—where you’re going to be called upon to “save the day” by driving someone else’s car. It might even be an emergency.

If, once you jump into the driver’s seat, the very next thought that crosses your mind is, “Oh $#!%, what do I do NOW?” then you’re going to be nobody’s hero.

And that’s usually when some chick orders you to “get out of the frickin’ driver’s seat before someone gets hurt”, leaving you standing there while she whizzes off effortlessly.

Don’t let THAT be the moment that finally persuades you to spend an hour or two in the empty corner of the mall parking lot with a borrowed ’87 Sentra.

For what it’s worth, I’d even recommend taking a few private pilot lessons…you know, just in case you’re ever called upon to land a plane in an emergency. But hey, that’s just the way I think.

7. Trying New Foods

Here’s what women do when a completely new, exotic or somewhat challenging culinary delicacy is placed before them.

They take their little finger and tentatively jab at it with utmost care—so as only to coat the tip of said finger with about twelve molecules of the “lab sample” at hand.

It’s as if they’re playing “Operation” with it.

Then, they stick out the tip of their tongue and reprise the tentative jabbing motion until about three of the twelve anointed molecules have actually invaded their oral cavity.

I have no idea how any woman gets any idea of how something really tastes by doing that, so I therefore have no idea how YOU would either.

So don’t do that. Take a bite of the stuff already and be done with it.

You’re welcome to have a napkin ready in case the process requires reversing. Nobody’s telling you that you have to actually swallow any nasty food. That would have nothing to do with being brave, that’d just be crazy and/or stupid.

8. Shots

Nope, I’m not talking about how many “Jaeger Bombs” you can pound down.

I’m talking about what typically goes on at the doctor’s office.

Assuming you can get past #2 above, the next major cause of much weeping and gnashing of teeth within the medical realm is the dreaded injection.

I promise you with all my heart that the anticipation of whatever pain it causes is MUCH, MUCH greater than the actual pain. Consciously put that theory to the test the next time you get bloodwork done or get a flu vaccine.

For what it’s worth, you should probably get over your phobia of dentists too. Like blood tests, dental work is on the list of life’s inevitabilities.

Oh yeah, and when the opportunity presents itself just rip off a bandage in one fell swoop too, please. And get on with it, already. The sooner it’s over with the better.

9. Standing Up To Customer Service Departments

If you’ve paid good money for something and you’re being treated ridiculously in return, you should make your displeasure known in a civil but nevertheless direct manner.

Don’t let someone who has had more training and experience than you at dealing with irate customers EVER, EVER guilt you into believing you’re the problem if you have a legitimate point.

If you’ve paid for something, you’re the customer and the person selling you the product works for you. Don’t ever let that common, natural fact get clouded by manipulation.

Granted, you’ve got to make sure you have a valid point and you’ve definitely got to give the other side a legit chance to make things right.

But make no mistake, this is another area where women watch how you handle things VERY carefully. If you’re either a “doormat” or a “crybaby” you’re not going to come off as a man who knows how to provide and protect.

Be reasonable and direct when there’s an honest concern, and remain steadfast until it’s resolved. You can’t go wrong that way.

10. Resisting Immature Provocation

I’ve saved the most significant one for last.

What we’re talking about here is remaining “cool under fire” when someone (or even something) royally pisses you off.

The baseline fact underscoring this entire thought is this: Whoever raises his voice and/or loses emotional control first in ANY situation is the one who LOSES.

And LOSERS are usually the ones who lacked confidence, composure and/or sheer balls compared to the prevailing victor.

In other words, they wimped out.

Show the world that you expect to be respected and that you will not kowtow to immaturity or foolishness of any kind.

Pick your battles wisely and rarely, saving your energy for true life and death situations.

Oh, and if you’re actually the one instigating immature confrontations and other overreactions, you’re advertising your wussiness to the world to an exponentially higher degree.


So, how did you do?

In case you happen to be expecting some sort of “grading scale”, I’ve got some news for you. This exercise is “pass/fail”, and the only passing grade is a 100%.

There’s no chance of grading on a curve, either. You’ve got to get all of this stuff right.

The good news is that all of the examples I’ve shared are completely within the realm of your personal control. Did you notice that?

The only question that remains now is this: Are you willing to “man up”, especially if it leads to much greater success with women?

In order to do that, you’ve got to at least be confident when meeting women instead of falling victim to “approach anxiety”. That eleventh factor should probably have been #1, if you think about it. The good news is that you can get that handled today with this free report. If only you knew what women desperately wished you knew…

Be Good,

Scot McKay

P.S. OK, well I guess there are TWO other pretty important questions left to ask. First, do you agree or disagree with my examples? Second, what do you think is missing from my list? I’d love to hear from the ladies as well.

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81 Responses to “10 Simple Tests Of Whether You’re A Wimp Or Not”

  1. Mack Attack

    I live in an large Metropolitan area, and hence, don’t have to (or know how to) drive a car.

    Does that exempt me from 5 and 6?

    • Arnab

      No, you should be able to learn to drive. You can still take lessons at a driver’s education school if you don’t have access to a friend’s car. You should have a license in case you ever need to drive in an emergency, like Scot talked about.

  2. Chris

    Dang it I nail every point but still have a tough time meeting women. Granted once met they usually like me a lot. So maybe we need a point or two that influences the “howdy” moment.

    • Chris, I stopped short of including something about “approach anxiety” on a list like this because it affects SO MANY guys. Plus, I may have had started a riot.

      But yeah man, the truth is that despite what we’ve been told about how showing any interest toward a woman is tantamount to “sexual harassment”, women really do want you to introduce yourself.

      There are tons of great mindsets and practical steps to making that easier. Stick around because we talk about those often.

  3. Elvis Knight

    First off Scot, I always love your blog posts and emails so thanks! I especially liked this one.

    Though, like Mack Attack, I don’t know how to drive a car for similar reasons (no present need). Sounds like I need to get lessons…

  4. thisissomebs

    This is a big pile of bullshit!!!!

  5. Sopwith Camel

    Well, I’m okay except about going to the doctor…
    So I better get to work on that one.

  6. Mike Rudolf

    I do get a kick out of and agree with most of your opinions. I was raised in farm country, and taught self reliance at an early age. Those in charge today could learn a thing or two from my dad…we wasted NOTHING! I was with my wife, the greatest fourteen years of my life (3 boys) and unfortunately she passed a few years ago. FF till today’s dating scene. What in God’s name happened?! I’ve been to the local(s), tried a club or two, and don’t get it. The world changed while I was busy. I’ve actually met guys that don’t know what a Phillips #2 driver is. Am I caught in the next phase of evolution? (Remember the cult films of women ruling planets?) I am beginning to fear tomorrow. The government’s sole responsibility should be to protect it’s people from those who would do us harm. Period. Not interfere with how we live. I think a lot of recognition would be given to men who helped take back some of the power we gave to career politicians. Thanks for letting me ramble a bit. Good luck..

  7. Phil Sebastian

    Hey Scot

    Well done on the wussy test…

    Wish I could say I passed with flying colors.

    Number ten I failed miserably and am working on that never happening again in my life.

    Had to have the lesson first though and then then your example to show me where I could definitely improve.

    I am still sting and smarting from the mental battle but I know once the wounds are healed like a good fight I will have learned one more valuable lesson.

    thanks again Scot

  8. nathan

    I got the first 9, but I am somewhat confused as to the tenth one. I do not disagree with your statements especially, “Pick your battles wisely and rarely, saving your energy for true life and death situations.” But there are times when I get a little out of hand when I feel I have been disrespected. I mean when others treat me in a way I would never treat them in a million years. For example like when I was on a date and this guy walks up and verbally hits on my girl, etc. I can’t sit there and take that despite what she may think of me. It becomes way too personal. Its like the golden rule and dudes who try to move in on a “date” need to be put in their place… What do you think?

    btw. I absolutely love to read your stuff!!!

    • Hello Nathan, thanks for commenting.

      Be sure to keep the title of the bullet point itself in perspective. The elaboration is upon “resisting immature provocation”. Taking having sand kicked in your face, protecting a woman’s honor, etc. is a different scenario altogether.

      The key statement is this one: “The baseline fact underscoring this entire thought is this: Whoever raises his voice and/or loses emotional control first in ANY situation is the one who LOSES.”

  9. Scott

    Yeah Scot…the manual transmission one’s pretty absurd. Where you live in Texas, cars (or trucks?) may or may not be the main way people get around. But in large parts of the country, people take ONLY public transportation or they even bike. In fact, almost all my guy friends bike absolutely everywhere. Scratch that…my GIRL friends ALSO only bike everywhere. Half my friends don’t own a car at all! They bike even in the dead of winter. Maybe Minnesota’s weird, but the stick shift comment is also exceptionally weird to me. Not everywhere is exactly like Texas, my friend 🙂

    • Okay, okay… @Scott, @Mack Attack, @Chris and all you other dudes who live in big cities and don’t know how to drive vehicles with a manual transmission.

      I got several of e-mails about that yesterday, too.

      First off, rest assured that Texas isn’t the only place where manual transmissions are found. If anything, given the number of full-size pickups we have here, we’ve got fewer of ’em statistically speaking.

      But all that is sort of beside the point. Nobody is saying you need to own a car or even use one regularly.

      The point is you should *know how* to operate one, just like every man should know how to tie a tie…even if he almost never wears one.

      I’ve been to a few major cities in my life, and there were TONS of cars, trucks and bikes there. Too many of them, actually. So SOMEONE is driving there, if not you guys.

      That means that you may be called upon to drive someone else’s car should an unusual situation come up.

      And what if you ever LEAVE your city, even if on vacation? If you rent a car in say, Europe or Latin America it’s altogether possible your only option will be to drive a manual transmission.

      Plus, like I said above, you really miss out on a lot of fun in this life when you don’t know how to handle a manual transmission.

      • Frank Watt

        I really like this one. The amount of defensiveness it creates is astounding. I was amazed how even farmers in North America drove vehicles with automatic transmissions. I personally detest driving those machines almost as much as I detest using Windows computers. I can decide for myself when to change gears or where I want to keep configuration files on my computer.

        Most of my female friends also prefer to use a manual transmission and have a low opinion of anyone, even women, who can’t drive one. One of them laughingly told me about an attempted car-jacking attempt in Sydney where the would-be attacker dragged a woman out of her car but had to abandon the attempt when she discovered it had 3 pedals! It would have been even funnier if the attacker was male.

      • ertdfg

        You want a reason to drive a manual?

        Moving trucks.

        If you’re ever moving, or helping someone move… some of those rental trucks (especially in rural areas or at discount rentals) are manual transmission.

        The big ones (Ryder, U-Haul) have been moving away from this; but who can guarantee this won’t come up. Moving day is a bad day to learn you can’t drive your stuff.

  10. Tom

    Number 10 rings particularly true with me. However it does make me think back to the last day of school at GCSE, when this really obnoxious pillock kept openly insulting me and being disrespectful. I dealt with it very calmly, people were acc saying “Tom why dont you smack him one” and he was practically BEGGING for a punch. But I was just like “so what, I know he’s just trying to get a reaction”. But he did cross the line when he made a comment about a family member and I feel like I should’ve gone for him on that one. After he crossed that line, keeping a level head acc made me seem a bit wussy, since surely any man wouldn’t stand for talk like that. My question is, what’s the line between calm composure and knowing when enough is enough- what’s the tipping point? IS there a tipping point?

  11. JP

    Yo Scot,

    I think these 10 rules of thumb about how not be a wuss sum up in a nutshell what a man who “deserves what he wants” should have installed in their nature by the time they hit adulthood.

    For some guys, it may have really hit the nail on the head and for others it might of pissed them off. To be honest, theres still a few of these I need to work on myself. And I thank you for telling me what they are.

    Theres no need for anyone to get upset by them. You’ll know your not a wuss if instead you get inspired by these and look at them as something to improve on and integrate into your personality. I just turned 23 on Friday and living an awesome life here in SoCal and each and every day I wake up is an opportunity to learn something new whether it be with women, or a new sport or how to cook a meal.

    And reading this blog was a good review of some of the things I need to make sure I have handled in my life to be a man all the hunnies desire.

    The one I really need to work on is learning how to drive a stick shift haha. I still don’t know how really. So I’m gonna man up and go learn. I tried learning on the autobahn in Germany with my buddy but it didn’t go so well lol. I’m sure it would be pretty funny/embarrassing not to be able to drive a woman’s stick shift car if she asked you too. So I’m gonna take my cousins car out this week for a spin and get that one handled no doubt.

    As for the others, if you don’t have them handled everybody…don’t fret. The past is the past. Your life begins NOW!! So stop being a wuss and learn what it takes to be a man!!! Women are meant to be girly, men are meant to be…well MEN!!! So start acting like one. Let your testosterone do the work.

    Thanks bud.

  12. Vlad

    A “potential danger
    of 2nd degree burns” from popcorn bags lecture?
    Seriously? 😀

    How about beeing able to deliver a good punch?
    I know, I know…It may seem a little drastic to some of you, and yes, violence should not be the answer, but sometimes it is.Now, I am not a violent guy, but I really think that a man should know how to handel himself in a “stuff hits the fan” situation.
    Plus, it has a lot to do with body coordination and keeping yourself in shape.Believe me, I’ve seen a lot of even intimidating looking guys waving their hands at the punch bag like drunk monkeys…Not a pretty sight, let me tell you…
    And if you don’t know how to hit properly you will most definitely hurt yourself, if so it happens that you have to hit something.
    Fighting even is besides the point here.You’d be surprised at how good 4 or 5 boxing lessons will make you feel.It really works wonders for your self-esteem and integrity as a man.
    Just don’t do anything stupid when you get a hang of it.

    • jeremy

      I don’t think “knowing how to throw a punch” should be included at all. I think its immature to say that being able to fight is a requirement. I had fights when I was 10…..does that mean I’ve been a man most my life? I think what defines a man in “shit hits the fan” situations is the ability to dismantle the situation without ever losing your cool. That’s when you’ve hit puberty.

      • Anna Keppa

        SINCE WHEN has being able to defend yourself bad advice?

        You should tear up your Man Card just for that statement!!!

        • Interesting ideas on this one for sure. I personally believe the higher-end “man” skill is diffusing tension without violence, if for no other reason than “real men” know how to stay out of jail.

          That said, if most TV commercials nowadays are to be believed most guys can’t even stand up to their wives and young children, let alone a legitimate threat to their family’s safety.

          So yes, Anna…a man should know how to defend himself and his loved ones, but should also have solid enough judgment to know when that’s actually called for.

  13. DSDF

    Interesting, but like any other rules, it is their spirit, rather than their letter, that counts. Circumstances alter cases, sometimes dramatically. I’ll even go so far to add that a major masculine characteristic that is like catnip on crack to women is to break rules when it’s dead wrong to follow them.

    I’ll grant that knowing how to drive a stick shift is a great idea, but that’s very much a car nut’s point of view. There are only so many things a person can learn and do. Like a handy person saying someone’s a wimp for not doing emergency electrical or plumbing repairs (which could come in handy way more often than driving a stick, really), or even turning off power to the circuit when changing an outlet or a switch.

    It’s more of a knowledge thing than a masculinity thing. I’ve never had a car with or properly learned to drive a stick — just fooled around with a friend’s car once (mainly out of curiosity and just wanting to experience it) and managed to drive it, and am confident I could if necessary — but one time got my automatic transmission car home after a ball joint came apart by typing it together with a piece of electrical grounding wire I kept in the trunk in case of such an emergency. What’s arguably wimpy is not giving it a shot in an emergency.

    Also, let’s not confuse being a wimp with having a short fuse. Even Robert E. Lee reportedly had a terrible temper. Some situations are just plain frustrating, and when one is pressed for time it’s easy to blow one’s cool.

    As for trying new foods, if someone has severe food allergies, some of the effects of which can be neurological effects that literally can make the person a wimp, with no power to control it, that might not be a good idea. Certain foods make me neurotically depressed and suck all the mojo right out of me and/or make me easily rattled, so I’m quite the “order nazi” at restaurants, though very polite about it, and a great tipper. I consider having the discipline to eat what’s right and BE healthy more manly than eating anything and being unhealthy while taking drugs to mask the symptoms. If offered chocolate covered ants (with milk chocolate), I’d be inclined to say: “No thanks, I’m allergic to milk.”

    But rat, cicadas, larvae… bring ’em on! Alligator is actually pretty tasty. Kinda like pig. You might call it the other other white meat.

    And the point men miss about showing interest is that it’s only regarded as “harassment” if the woman is not interested. The problem being we don’t always know if she’s interested or not until we show interest. If a woman is then rude and nasty, she’s just a woman of inferior character, and the wise man thinks of it not as rejection, but dodging a bullet. Not easy to do, but like anything else, it’s something that can be drilled into the mind over time, like any other training.

    The #1 masculine characteristic of all is to work on the areas where one wants to improve, as I see it.

  14. DSDF

    Good point, Vlad.

    A bit of martial arts training can make a huge difference in being able to handle situations well. Reflexive responses — not only physical, but mental — are developed.

    Even the way you carry yourself broadcasts a certain preparedness that makes idiots less inclined to mess with you.

  15. greggarious

    There were times when men would challenge each other to a duel if insulted, or their woman or family was insulted. Swords, pistols at 20 paces, fisticuffs… These were formal, rule-bound engagements to resolve a point of honor. Almost every society had some kind of ritualized duel to address a man’s honor. So yeah, there comes a point when blatant insults must be dealt with by open challenge. But still, not to lose emotional composure and remain outwardly poised and detached (I wouldn’t say calm) is the essence of what i think Scot is saying. ‘I resent that remark, sir, and require your apology or I demand redress of my honor through ritualized combat.’
    yeah right. In the 21st century? Try: ‘Hey, it’s not okay to speak that way about me/her/my family.’ Even tone, eye contact, relaxed but poised stance. No retaliation for sure. i’ve had this happen and sometimes get an apology, sometime a lame explanation about what the comment ‘really’ meant, and sometimes further provocation. i just stand my ground, make eye contact, and wait for any aggression. The silence often makes an adversary nervous. Hold eye contact and prepare secretly (don’t tense up) to defend yourself if physically touched. It never happens, they fizzle out and back off, and you end up looking like a real man.
    Remember that scene in ‘Crash’, where the corrupt cop feels up the black man’s wife, ostensibly during a weapons check? The husband does nothing–it seems there’s not much he can do–but she gets enraged later that he didn’t try something. What would a real man do in that case? He must try some intervention, or at least follow-up action, if he is going to keep his woman’s regard and respect.

    • Tom

      Yeah I think there is a certain power that comes with just going silent but poised for action. There’s a great scene in The Sopranos where some guy is wearing a cap indoors of a fine restaurant that Tony is a patron of. Tony walks over to the guy and stands there til they guy notices him, then goes “Hey take your hat off”. The guy says something like “hey its my hat I do what I fucking want”. Tony says nothing but he just stares at the guy with this expression of “I am about to fuck you up” and the guy backs down eventually. I suppose when you’er a naturally powerful force of nature you don’t need to raise your voice or flail your arms about like so many chavs do.

  16. Vlad

    Chill, men!
    I wasn’t talking about bar fights for fun!Yes, you should be able to not lose your cool(even in a case of a fight).There is a lot you can and should do to resolve a tense situation before it goes physical.But knowing that you can handel things even if they go physical does a lot for you.It gives you confidence.It makes you more calm and it gives you that “whatever you do, I can and will handle it and you can’t rattle me” vibe.It helps you keep your integrity and hold your nerve.Exactly the opposite of being excessively aggressive, as you can see.
    And as for being a requirement – no, it’s not.It is a choice of being prepared to protect.Protect yourself or anyone else for that matter.
    Just like working out.You are not required to be able to do 10 pullups to quialify as a man.But go and do it, and see if you become less of a man.

    • Gentlemen, bear in mind that #10 isn’t really about starting fights, it’s more about not giving instigators the show they’re hoping for out of you when they provoke you.

      That said, I completely agree that it’s a good thing to know how to defend yourself, but the finer skill is indeed keeping a cool head and prevailing as such.

  17. Steve

    That going to the doctor thing needs balance. If you charge off to a medical professional every time you sneeze, the doctor and his office staff will KNOW you are a wimp. On the other hand, if you wait until a limb is actually severed before seeking assistance, then everyone, including your girlfriend, will KNOW you are an idiot.

    Go to the doctor if you have something that will not heal on its own. Otherwise, slap a band-aid on it or take a tylenol and KCCO.

    • Anonymous

      agreed. There’s a time and place to go to the doctor. One needs to man up when they know something is wrong and go get it dealt with.

  18. Zac

    The doctor thing I kinda disagree on… I rarely go myself because most of the time if I do get sick its something minor like a cold or maybe the flu or something the doctor will most likely say something along the lines of “go to bed, get some rest but first my fee”.

    So I’d say knowing WHEN to go to the doctor rather than simply not going. In Australia if we do our driving test in an automatic we can’t legally drive a manual til we get our full license. I personally can drive a manual, but I can’t say Ill do it without stalling it every now and again.

    Shots don’t bother me, I’m a blood donor so meh to needles… To anyone who has a.problem with needles, I’d say a muscle cramp is easily worse than an injection with a pissy little piece of metal.

    • The “doctor thing” is indeed about getting over the fear of the unknown medically. @Steve Rest assured, swinging the pendulum all the way over to the hypochondriac side was certainly not what I’m encouraging.

  19. Jason A.

    I can say I’ve got all of these down except #6. I haven’t driven a stick-shift since 1991. I even drove a Maserati GT earlier this year that had an automatic transmission. I live in Arizona and prefer an automatic over a manual, especially during rush-hour traffic.

    But I agree with you on this one; it’s good to know how to drive a manual transmission vehicle just in case the situation arises. I suppose I could rent a car with a manual over a weekend.

    And I like your comment about private pilot lessons. I actually have 1.4 hours of flying experience in a Cessna 172.

  20. Cody

    And to those who say the doctor one is silly. Obviously it is up to you, but you have to think also of if you’re at risk.

    If I get the flu, I’d be dead if I didn’t go to the doctor. It’s not a stomach bug, you know. It’s a respiratory virus. Anyone with breathing problems should not ignore that. I never have smoked, don’t even like being around it or smokers, but I do have lung issues. That’s how it goes.

    Yes, knowing when to go is important but so is actually going through. Example: Years ago I had tachycardia along with mild chest pain. That’s concern enough (even though I was 23 or something back then). Then I vomited a slight bit. I got my self to the hospital. Did I expect a heart attack? No. Was I smart to go? Yes. Why? Because it turns out my platelets were being destroyed and fast.

    By that day they were at already a dangerous low level. The next day it was even lower (inpatient). Thankfully I have medical knowledge and I Know myself and I told them what was causing it. I was right. I was out of the hospital in 3 days where I could have been in a mortuary instead. For those who do not know, a risk involved is: i was at risk of bleeding internally even lying down completely still, and still as petrified wood encased in ice.

    Shortly, yes, you should know when to go to the doctor but that’s not something everyone can spend time learning – jobs, etc. – when healthy especially. What you should do more though is go to the doctor when something isn’t right. Sneezing once or twice doesn’t count and I can’t imagine Scot is thinking of that. No, I really doubt that. Sneezing is a common thing and could just be an allergen in your nose. But ignoring something that is not normal for your health is stupid, plain and simple. Sorry but that’s just the truth. And I say that out of caring, not out of insult. I’ve seen a lot and have experienced a lot medically, and it’s remarkable how people ignore very simple things despite never having seen or witnessed it in themselves.

  21. tim

    this is spot on mate, and i need to get on top of number 3, i can be way too critical for stupid things esp inanimate objects

  22. Audrey

    Excellent list! Can we put this on msn.com and have every man read it?

    The top three that I just can’t stand in a man is whining, loosing your cool / going crazy / almost not recognizing you and turning on you as if you were the target when you are not (by the way, is there such a time where loosing your cool is really called for/acceptable? I personally don’t think so — anything short of a loved one’s death news suddenly being dropped on you or something like that. What do you think?), and being a doormat and letting people manipulate you (so unattractive… especially when he ends up justifying it lol).

  23. Karl

    The rules for driving in the US must be different to the UK.

    In the UK if you pass the driving test in an automatic, then your licence only allows you to drive an automatic.

  24. I found this post very amusing and informative. To sum it up, regardless of what women say and regardless of what they do they want a man who is a non “wuss”. Yes they want us to be sensitive and yes they want us to be in touch with our “feminine” side, when it comes right down to it they really want a man who possesses all the qualities you covered. In my own experience it’s not that they want you to be macho man, they just want to know that you could be that when the occasion arises. As always, this was another one of your excellent posts.

  25. Dan

    Where can someone learn how to drive a stick shift? Can you just call up a driving school and take stick shift lessons?

  26. Ardiana the adventurer

    Actually if you display jealousy by standing up to your woman too early it is an attraction killer. So you would indeed be best to shut up. Monitor your woman’s reactions though. If she looks like she isn’t enjoying his advance, take the guy’s arm and tell him for example “the lady doesn’t want to be disturbed”. If he doesn’t believe then get up threateningly. There is a way to handle these things without losing your temper. There are “players” out there who are just doing what people are advised on the “pick up sites” we too go to 🙂

  27. @Dan Yes, pretty much. Believe me, you’ll never look back if and when you learn how.

    @Ardiana I’m not at all convinced that sitting quietly when someone directly hits on the woman you’re with is a good strategy, whether you’ve just met her or known her for years. There’s also something to be said for the 20/20 foresight of not taking a woman you’re already dating to a “meat market” to begin with. I’ve actually written about that before.

  28. Ardiana the adventurer

    1. Alot of people dont make popcorn at home they just go to cinema but I guess its common sense to use protective gear when needed and get it over with. You appear like a wuss if you start making a big deal out of it.

    2. Agreed. Some men don’t go because they think it’s “cool” to just handle deadly diseases by sitting at home. I myself have a sinus infection every time I get a serious cold, which isn’t detectible by doctors. So its really hard for me to get an antibiotic without my mom being there and telling the female doctors what I need. So I just have to hope whenever I get sick it won’t go to my sinuses.

    3. Agree. I’m a quiet guy myself so this is unknown territory for me to speak.

    4. I always use a glass to put over spiders I catch from my house and then slide a newspaper under them. Biggest one I took was 1 inch wide and there are no poisonous creatures in the city I live.

    5. and 6. I’ve never done either of these myself as I don’t own a car. Guess it’s good skill although I cycle everywhere.

    7. I’m always excited to try new foods. Don’t know if this gets points with women that often though. It’s not a bad skill if you’re in the deepest Africa for example and only headhunters’ menu to try…

    8. I have a lot to improve here. I try to avoid injections like the plague. I’m skinny and I black out easily. Last time I went to a blood test the experience was worse than my worst expectation from last time and I got a trauma from it. Now won’t even go to cholesterol tests. Not if I absolutely have to. I also have a trauma from time I had a tooth pulled off and can’t go remove my wisdom teeth, one which has a cavity. I always black out at the eye doctor’s too when my eye pressures are measured. However this only counts if you need to go and the girl is coming to the doctor with you. Otherwise you can just fake you can until then.

    9. I take my issues through with moderate success. But again, this has nothing to do with my masculinity as they’re not her issues. Only if you’re married and you’re dealing with something communal do you have to reveal what happened with CSD to her.

    10. Again, I’m a quiet guy who thinks for a long time before answering. Only time I was provoked to action was when in high school some kids insulted my mom and I nonverbally challenged them into a fight, they took it and it was unavoidable.

  29. KennyG

    From a 100% guy, it’s a good list, and I can’t believe how many men get stuck on these. Too many men raised by women?? A man should also be able to keep the back yard tamed for the kids to play in, answer the door at night, go up to the attic and down to the crawl space to get the luggage and Christmas lights out. And he should be able to hang the lights.

    • While real men probably don’t listen to the OTHER “Kenny G”, they probably SHOULD listen to you. Excellent points.

  30. Jess

    Once again, you hit the nail right on the head. As a relatively girly girl who’s got all 10 of those things down, I’d definitely want my man to be able to handle himself in those situations… Including driving a stick, fellas. My car is a manual and I far prefer driving one. Find it rather rude when a car changes gears without permission. 😉

  31. truck

    Call a suicide hot line kid… This place is NOT for you!!!

  32. Frank Watt

    Good one, @Jess. You have the same idea of rudeness I and quite a number of my female friends have.

    Maybe you also know how to start the engine without using the starter. Using the downhill slope or help from a few friends to push it can get you out of a jam when you have a flat battery or something is wrong with your starter-motor. That’s a basic survivor skill in many parts of the world where anyone who can’t do it is at a considerable disadvantage.

  33. RobGrognerd

    #1 “when you make a BAG of popcorn”

    stop right there and call yourself a wimp

    anything other than popping your own corn on the stove is cause for questioning your manhood

    • Brennan

      Yup, this was the one I was waiting for. Real men pop their own damn corn. 1UP.

      • Well, #1 wasn’t really about the popcorn per se, but touche nonetheless.

        I see you working here, but I’m not personally ready to equate going “old school” and/or “low tech” with “masculinity”.

        You could probably also call out guys who use razors with six blades and “sensitive skin” shave cream instead of “manning up” with a straight razor and soap.

        And you could probably make a case for “real men” only grilling with charcoal rather than propane, fat side up and without BBQ sauce.

        Heck, you could probably even say that “real men” only drive either Fords, Chevys or Mopars.

        But that’s all more “macho” than “masculine”. That sort of stuff tends to have little to do with turning women on. It’s all stuff we bust each other’s balls with.

        • RobGrognerd

          my real argument against microwave popcorn is that it smells great, but “butter flavor” tastes like feet and ass.

          takes the same amount of time to pop some on the stovetop with about a tbsp of oil and you can add real butter

          and my razor has only 5 blades, but I do use regular soap to shave. it feels like shaving with a bar of soap

          • Well, no argument on the popcorn itself. I’ll never disagree with the concept of using fresh/real ingredients in the kitchen. FTW on that one.

            But I love me some menthol shave cream.

  34. Vermin

    No, you don’t get points for gently cradling varmints in toilet paper. If it’s a bug or a rodent, it dies. If it’s a frog, etc., you can take it outside, but man up and just grab it. There’s no coaxing or toilet paper involved.

  35. ertdfg

    Sorry, nothing gets a “trip outside on toilet paper”. If it wanted in once it’ll want in again.

    Spiders in the corners are doing my job and live… Spiders in my face/bed/etc. die. Any other “varmint” of an insect variety gets a viking funeral not a comfy trip.

    Except ants… they get tap lessons and a poison trap where they’re entering.

    And I think you get an exception for allergies (I have none, but I don’t expect my roomie to handle bees/wasps/hornets).

    • @Vermin and ertdfg: While I’m on board with swiftly dispatching anything in one’s face and/or bed at night, I firmly believe that the instant “knee jerk” reaction to a small, harmless creature to “kill, kill, kill it!” is not very manly.

      For what it’s worth, the toilet paper part is “optional” if you so choose, but the irony of the matter is that some insects are actually SO non-threatening that if you hamfist the thing you’ll inadvertently squash it.

      Personally, I treat particularly cool bugs as learning ops for my small kids. Predictably, my wife gasps whenever I pick up walking sticks, giant katydids and locusts, but my son in particular loves it.

      Also FWIW, lizards and toads don’t need TP if you don’t mind getting crapped on here and there.

      • Vermin

        You’re certainly entitled to your choice not to to kill insects, but your contention that that choice somehow makes you more manly than someone who does is as absurd as your practice of putting things in quotation marks for no apparent reason.

        • Don’t confuse the main point, which is actually removing the creatures from the bathroom as opposed to squealing like a girl and running away. Whether or not to kill bugs or not is more open to opinion, but I do personally believe it takes more moxie to take ’em alive than it does to kill ’em dead.

          As for the quotation marks, I use them to connote opinion and/or debatable concepts which falls under acceptable usage. It’s a matter of personal style, however, no doubt.

  36. Most of these are okay. I’d really like to see a little more self-reliance called for. Can you kill a chicken and get it ready to cook? How about any ability to take care of an infant, prepare a meal, balance your checkbook, all those things we all need to do from time to time. Competent human beings need to be able to do an infinite array of tasks. As a very wise man said “specialization is for insects”.

    • Immolate

      That would be Robert Heinlein.

      “A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly”

      • Brennan

        One of the reasons I still appreciate Heinlein after all these years is that he didn’t add “start a religion.”

    • Well, granted. But remember, we’re talking about wimpiness as it relates to masculinity this time around. Many of the essential life skills for “every human being” are more about knowledge and competence than anything else, notwithstanding some of the things from Heinlein’s writings quoted by @Immolate.

      That said, “die gallantly” is a brilliant one. I’m reminded of the movies “The Shootist” and “Gran Torino” there (which are essentially the same movie, really).

  37. twine

    My girlfriends wants EVERYTHING dead. If it has more than 6 legs forget it. Even silverfish, so there is no catch and release program here.

    Tire changing should be expanded to basic repair. It has gotten so bad, my 24 yo coworker looked at me like I told her I walk on water when I mentioned I was upgrading the alternator in my Mustang. “Wait what?!? You’re doing it yourself?!?” I thought she knows no one that can do so much as change an alternator that she thinks it is amazing? Apparently so…

  38. Brennan

    Real men know the difference between “it’s” and “its.” Also, more to the point, we know pronoun-antecedent agreement, with regard to plurality. “Their” is not an acceptable synonym for “he or she.” Change the subject to plural, and it’s no longer an issue.

    Wrong: Everyone should write their sentences correctly.

    Right: All people should write their sentences correctly.

    I can drive a stick as well.


    • @Brennan You forgot, “Real men don’t use apostrophes in plurals”. I just corrected one of those above before you got around to noticing it, apparently. And geez…that’s one of my personal pet peeves, no less.

      Seriously, though, you wouldn’t believe the number of typos and grammar glitches I find when proofreading these things. I shock myself with misuse of “to/too”, “their/there” and “you’re/your” all the time when I certainly know better.

      Inexplicably, I once found “know” in place of “now” in one of my newsletter drafts. (???)

      It’s inevitable that some of these are going to slip through on me.

      Ultimately though, this again really has little to do with masculine courage as opposed to common literacy.

  39. Mark

    Number 9: Standing up…
    I’ve noticed a lot of women I date tend to complain about things I assume are trivial. Maybe they are testing me to see how I handle it.

    She: He put us right under the airconditioner.
    Me: I’m fine.
    She: My steak is overcooked.
    Me: Mine’s pretty good.

    Maybe this is why I’m not married.

    • Well, the air conditioner thing is pretty standard stuff. Typically, women get cold before we do, so you act in her best interest and move to another table. It’s either that or have her distracted all night, all the while thinking you couldn’t care less about her.

      As for the whole idea of complaining about steaks being too well done, that’s exactly why I think every American should be required to spend a few days in India and/or Cambodia.

  40. James

    What about standing up against injustice? Do you look the other way or say/do something about it?

    • That’s a good one, James. It takes guts to stand up to it, and to run away is to wimp out. Look at the shame that wimping out ultimately caused the former leadership at Penn State, for example.

    • TSgt Ciz

      Standing up to injustice isn’t a requirement for being masculine per-se. It is a requirment for being human. I’ve seen plenty of women do it without being the slightest bit butch.
      And I’ve seen some mighty masculine types actually commiting the injustice as well.

  41. TSgt Ciz

    I take issue with #1.
    Truly masculine men eat their popcorn out of the still steeming bag. WTF, you want to missout on all that wholesome goodness stuck on the sides or are you afrais of getting it on your hands?

    • TSgt Ciz

      PS Some of you dudes must not know that there are good u-wave popcorn that uses only real popcorn and taste as good as anything you’d pop the long way.
      And all this bias against u-wave popcorn is laughable. Air pop, oil pop, what the hell ever. I don’t want dishes to deal with and I’m moe into eating what I want and not playing Suzy homemaker in the kitchen. You Nancy-boys want to do that – fine. Make me a sammich while your playing in the kitchen.

      PS Typos are also a feature of masuclinity. I don’t care if my battle scared fingers, complete with permanently broken and errant angles hitting the wrong key or missing others upseets you. I stuck them in places that got them chewed up ~ so now I’m not so great a typist. I also sew horribly and my presentation when serving dinner sucks. Guess I wont make a good wife…

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