1.Turn off, tune out
Real men don’t listen. I think you can waste a lot of valuable time listening to what people are saying to you and, let’s face it, it’s rarely interesting or important.*
I prefer to listen to the first few words and then try to guess what they are going to say so I can concentrate on what I’m going to say next. 70 per cent of the time I’m 50 per cent right, which is a pretty good average if you consider I haven’t heard a word they’ve said.
*This applies to men and women, I’m an equal opportunities ignorer.
2. Keep Santa guessing
Real men don’t know what they want for Christmas. Despite the fact I’m deeply disappointed every Christmas. I pride myself on not wanting anything. Children want things, women want things, dogs and cats want things, but men don’t. Well they do, but you can’t get respect, medals and glory for Christmas otherwise it would be meaningless: “Look what I got you, a Victoria Cross and an article in The Times about your outstanding contribution to marketing”.
3. Be all-consuming
Real men will eat anything I mean anything. I think the only food I have ever turned down was a boiled goat’s head while hitch-hiking in Yugoslavia in the 1980s. I wasn’t sure if it was a meal or a spell. I’ve eaten haslet (a meatloaf made from the organs of a pig), which on the spectrum of meats is as far apart from spam as spam is to steak. The Chinese eat chicken feet, which is why they will be wearing the trousers on planet Earth for some time to come.
4. Avoid Heat
A real man doesn’t know what cellulite is. Until I was 30 I thought cellulite was a building material used for restoring plasterwork in stately homes. One day I picked up a discarded copy of Heat magazine on a train and I still wasn’t entirely sure. It seemed to be some kind of punishment for success. I put the copy of Heat down quickly remembering real men don’t gossip. I was brought up in an era when gossip was considered a bad thing, like shoplifting or not washing your hands after a trip to the loo. Real men don’t gossip, we judge.
5. Never moisturise
A real man moisturises, but only his saddle. You can’t herd cattle sitting all day on a dry cracked saddle, it’s a chafing nightmare and leads to mayhem. A day rubbing the soft tender skin that comes into contact with the saddle leads to soreness and rashes that makes cowboys irritable and bad-tempered, leading to bar-room fights and rustling. That’s why every cowboy treats his saddle as carefully as he does his horse. A real man would never put moisturiser on his face unless he tripped over in a chemists and crashed into a Nivea display.