Apparently, our new Prime Minister doesn’t like mansplaining. This is when a man talks down to a woman by explaining something to her.
She doesn’t like it. Not one little bit. She will stamp her kitten heels if you try to do it.
Remember, this is the Prime Minister who said: “If you believe you are a citizen of the world, you’re a citizen of nowhere”. There ought to be a name for that sort of comment. Womansplaining, perhaps?
Except it doesn’t work when a woman does it. It has to be a man, because it’s a close cousin of that other mortal male sin – manspreading.
I have to admit to some sympathy with womankind over that one. The last think I would want would be Boris’s thighs in close proximity to mine. Now, I must admit that there are some thighs that I wouldn’t mind being forced against mine. There’s the Mem’s, of course. And, um, ah …
… changing the subject …
It’s become a thing, hasn’t it? This “mansp” thing. First there was “manspreading” and then “mansplaining.”
And I have to admit that we’re guilty as charged. The sexiest thing that a woman can say to a man is … “honey, would you please explain the offside rule to me?” That is even sexier than when she says … ah, no, we’d better not go there.
Because the plain truth is that many men love the chance to explain something. It’s not that we’re frustrated teachers, it’s more that we love explanations. We adore cut-out diagrams of technical things. We have secret fantasies of rebuilding a V8 engine in a garage with precision tools, preferably those formula one style nut-undoing guns that go “whirr-whirr”.
The way to a man’s heart is through a Haynes manual and a tub of swarfega. And if you don’t know what swarfega is, just ask a man. He’ll be delighted to tell you.
We’re not talking do to you ladies. We do it with each other. When two man talk, it’s like a pair of stags butting horns in some mossy Gaelic pre-rutting ritual. Each stag tries to get in the hunkiest explanation. It’s how we compare our relatively manliness that doesn’t involve a ruler.
But we’re learning, ladies. Trust me, we are. You don’t want to know about the Millennium Falcon and the Kessell Run. We get it. We’re trying to wean ourselves off the mainsplaining but it’s hard going. We have millennia of evolution to combat. Bear with us. We’ll get there.
Of course, that begs the question of what the next “mansp” will be. Nature abhors a vacuum and the media abhors a series that stops at two. There will have to be at least one more “mansp”. That’s how these things go.
But what? It’s not that easy coming up with “sp” words that men can be accused of. And yes I know that mansplaining cheated by dropping the “ex”. That’s one of those reading, ‘riting and ‘rithmetic thingies that either fall flat or become tremendously annoying ear-worms.
Here are my tips for the next “mansp” words.
“Manspotting” – noticing when a woman is wearing a low-coat blouse or is showing a yard or two of leg.
“Manspouting” – telling someone (often another bloke in the pub) that you know what’s wrong with the world …
“Mansporting” – using obscure sporting references in everyday speech to baffle non-sporty types, such as “in the long grass”, “a hospital ball”, “bowled a googlie”.
“Manspeeding” – everyone adds 10 mph to the speed limit, don’t they?
“Mansplurging” – oh, go on. Just one more.
“Manspitting” – in public. Just no. No, no, no.
“Manspelunking” – deciding that it would make a wonderful hobby to dress up in rubber and go exploring caves.
“Manspanking” – deciding that it would make a wonderful hobby to dress up in rubber and go exploring dungeons.
And my personal favourite – “manspluttering” – wondering what on earth the world is coming to.