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Ali MacLean

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Be a Man, or At Least Jon Hamm

Posted: 06/13/2012 10:30 am

Mad Men's Don Draper is a bad husband. He constantly cheats. He cheats on the women he cheats with. He drinks his meals, and not in a Jamba Juice immunity boost kind of way, but a Bushmills for breakfast way. He will slap his woman around. He is a workaholic. He's not even a good workaholic -- he often leaves in the middle of the workday to go drink or take his wife or mistress somewhere. He is cranky, moody, and cantankerous. He is pretty much crap.

But he looks like Jon Hamm.

So he can get away with pretty much anything. You men, unless you look like Jon Hamm or you are Jon Hamm, cannot. I don't know how I can be clearer about this. If you are not Jon Hamm, you need to be better. It is sad that Don Draper, a fictionalized and deeply flawed, character from the sexist 60s, is more of a man than most men I've met today. Men, you're never going to look like Jon Hamm. But you can do things to possibly improve. Women today are so starved for the very basic forms of decency in dating that they have lionized a horrible character in Draper. They have put him on a pedestal and would date him in a heartbeat, despite his despicable qualities. Even though you will never be Jon Hamm, you can have a leg up here. I don't condone acting like Don Draper. But I do suggest acting like a man.

First of all, Don Draper has a job. I am not belittling the many people out of work today because of the economy. But I am belittling the "maybe I will be a DJ or a maybe I will become a tattoo artist or perhaps a club promoter but I can't think of having a place to live or a girlfriend or a family until I'm at least 55 or 65 until my career takes off but right now I just gotta see where life takes me like maybe Ibiza or Portland?" This 'Dude' will meet his maker by taking a bad hit of Ketamine at a rave, or perhaps fall out a tree he is trying to save. Or maybe he will choke on his own vomit on too many Zima and cokes while nodding to dubsteb at Winter Music Conference. At any rate, that is where life will take him.

Style. Pull up your goddamned pants or go up a size. Maybe eight sizes. Jeggings for men? Seriously. At some point the Garanimals and hyphy crunk look is not flattering. I love rock-n-roll too, but I am starting to realize that no matter how sexy I am, I don't want to be like grandma Cher in the weird see-through onesie thong cat suit. Shudder. Stop with the fake Amish outfits and handlebar mustaches unless, of course, you have been cast in a Steampunk remake of Witness. Stop wearing Japanese cosplay sweatshirts with Pac Man on them if you're actually old enough that you grew up playing Atari. Stop dressing like a child molester in the back of a black van. And for Krishna's sake STOP DRESSING LIKE BON IVER! Own a suit, maybe a Tuxedo, and definitely a pair of dress shoes. You don't have to wear them everyday but there will be occasions you may need them. This doesn't make you any less punk or rock and roll. It doesn't make you part of the 'establishment.' It makes you a grown-up man.

Treat women with respect. You don't have to marry a woman just because you are kind to her. Kindness isn't a form of AIDS. Being good is a sign of leadership. Being emotionally available is a sign of strength. Get over your own fears and bullshit. Hey, try therapy! You might find that you can be a better person. Yes, we know that James Bond never went to therapy, but you will never be able to hang from a cliff by one arm either, so if you aren't strong enough to do that, maybe you aren't strong enough to navigate the dating scene without a little help from a counselor. Don Draper may not be the best example here. Okay, he is a horrible example, but let's just say that he never tried to live off a woman, he never picked up his cell phone during dinner, and he NEVER answered a text in the middle of sex.

I really don't recommend the last one if you want to call yourself a man. Unless, of course, you are trying to draw attention away from your, ahem, short comings.

If that is the case, I suggest you work twice as hard.

 

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