Here is my "All Over the Map" from next week's Arkansas Weekly:
There’s obviously no shortage of those who like to dispense their two cents when it comes to relationships. Thousands of books and articles have been written about the very real differences between a man and a woman and how a couple should navigate the perils of a long-term relationship. Yet, break-ups and divorces still happen everyday.
So, what’s the secret to a happy, successful and long-lasting relationship? I’m not that old, so the years may have not yet yielded all of the wisdom a long life can provide. But I consider myself unique in that I’m a fast learner, and I’m a master at recognizing psychological nuances and other behavioral patterns.
I also watch a lot of Lifetime and Home Shopping Network, so that helps as well – particularly when understanding the feminine psyche.
Obviously, some may think I might seem a tad biased in the masculine sense when reflecting on romantic relationships, but that’s simply not true. I’m also mature enough to be evenhanded and fair when evaluating differences between the two sexes.
Ladies and gentlemen, I think the key to a successful relationship is the ability to properly recognize and appreciate the role each person plays in that relationship.
Take, for instance, the role of the male. Studies indicate that the male is usually the breadwinner of the family. So, the female needs to recognize this and understand that men can sometimes be stressed from the pressures of work. Giving the male the freedom to “relax” or “unwind” after work indicates that the female appreciates the hard effort their mate is making in ensuring that she has a roof over her head and food to cook and, ultimately, to eat. A female consistently making complaints to the male about staying at the local watering hole until late at night only causes unneeded high blood pressure on her end and potentially venomous resentment on her partner’s end. A female that allows room for the male to properly transition from the stress of the workday to his home life is a female that appreciates the role of the male in the relationship. At some point, the male will recognize this and reward the female with a dinner at Applebee’s or some additional cash for a new purse or pantyhose.
Conversely, the male should recognize and appreciate the role of the female in the relationship. In fact, it is essential that the male properly delegate the role of the female in the relationship at the outset. This will ensure the female freely adapts to her role as the homemaker, and thus has the ability to make the relationship a success. A proper wife or girlfriend will be encouraged to keep the home clean and fresh, cook delicious meals, and drop whatever she may be doing at a particular moment to go get some Schlitz and Kools whenever the husband or boyfriend demands it. Setting such expectations at the beginning of the relationship can only boost the chances of the female successfully maintaining her role.
It can be common to find flawed relationships, and a study commissioned by the Bob Guccione Center for Relationship Therapy reinforces the need to school the female into properly recognizing her role in the partnership at an early stage. If not, a pattern of misbehavior and defiance on the female’s end will likely develop and torpedo the relationship. To combat this, it is recommended for the male to aggressively condition the female in a manner similar to housebreaking a dog.
|Bob Guccione, or Rob Grace in 35 years, poses with friends.|
For instance, if the female declines to make the male a pimento cheese sandwich, the male should command in a stern voice, “MAKE ME THE DAMN PIMENTO CHEESE SANDWICH NOW, WOMAN!” He should then slam his hand on the nearest table or wall for dramatic effect. In most cases, responding to such rebellion from the female in this fashion immediately solves the problem. In the rare instances where such intolerable behavior continues, the forced implementation of an electronic shock collar around the female’s neck is recommended. When the female refuses to make the pimento cheese sandwich after the above rebuke, the male can simply push the collar’s remote control and continually shock the female until she’s jumping for the refrigerator door faster than a jackrabbit on hot Georgia asphalt in the middle of summer.
So, ladies and gentlemen, I offer this advice free of charge. I sincerely hope that such guidelines will help you with your relationship. I think you’ll find your partnership will be fulfilling and joyous, and “happily ever after” will be a term that will apply to your particular romantic union.
But ladies, remember -- make the damn pimento cheese sandwich when the man calls for it.
(It should be noted that Rob is currently under house arrest as well as under various investigations for stalking at least 13 women across three states. Implementing his “advice” is not encouraged. It should also be noted that he is single. Interested females should stay far, far away. -- Arkansas Weekly editors.)