Women don’t clamor for guys with ripped six packs. Am I wrong? We’re talking about those toned, well-defined abdominal muscles that grace the covers of magazines for hairless men who drink liquid protein. Clean pants, yes. Dandruff-free hair, definitely. I know for certain ladies appreciate a healthy dude, or at least, a dude who doesn’t have stubby, greasy egg roll fingers and a beer baby bump. But abs you can shave wood with? No. At least, I don’t think so. Ugh. I’m slowly coming to the realization that this might be a lie I’ve told myself. Proof that I might be self-deceiving is in every episode of MTV’s epic anthropological documentary series “Jersey Shore,” where primped pretty people strut and rut in the wild. I watch it purely for research purposes.
It’s a fascinating television event. Partially because I was just not aware that there are that many men out there with such well-developed guts. It’s almost admirable that these meatballs are such golden Adonises. Let’s be honest: going to the gym is boring. Like, Catholic Mass boring. PBS newscast boring. I’d rather attend a lecture on feminist power dynamics in “Twilight: New Moon.” It must take a lot of discipline to hit the gym so often that your beefy arms look juicy enough to split open. Discipline or just singular, shark-like focus. Let’s not forget vanity. The gym is like a public powder room; you’ll never see so many men primp and preen in one place.
Judging from “Jersey Shore,” the prism through which I am currently viewing courtship, abs are to women what boobs are to men. The show’s house mother, Mike “The Situation,” routinely pulls up his shirt for females who then seem to immediately fall into a wang trance. His nickname, of course, refers to his abs. He calls them “The Situation.” This is why my abs (or lack thereof) will hereby be nicknamed “The Unfortunate Circumstance.” I’m not normally this insecure. This must be what it’s like to be a woman who enjoys cake, but also has a subscription to Vogue.
Did I miss some sort of mass Super Tweet about this?
@AllMen Do more crunches if you want some of THIS.
What’s fair is fair, right? Men drool over women with banging bodies. Now, it’s 2010, and women want a little carnal payback. Namely, he-bimbos with cheese grater abdomens. I guess I will now go off to the gym to, how do you say? “Crunch the iron?” “Do the burn?” I will emerge five minutes later, sweaty, wheezing, and mumbling about the virtues of my great personality under my breath. Whatever you ladies want. But I have to admit that I never found men with taut midriffs to be particularly masculine.
Apparently, women want men with bulging pectorals, cut stomachs, and that weird “V” thing near the pelvis. I have none of those things. But for years, I always thought that only three types of men had six-pack abs. Number one: soldiers. Warriors. Delta Force guys and junk like that. Athletes, too. The way I saw it, if you’re going to have muscles, you might as well put those muscles to use. Muscles aren’t an aesthetic. They have a function: ripping phone books in half, putting dudes in triangle choke holds, or karate-chopping the life out of terrorists. Number two: some dudes in showbiz, like wrestlers, or action movie stars, or dancers. Because, at least, they’re making money off of their physique. Fair enough. It’s their job to keep in shape, like a soldier or an athlete. Number three: gay men. Batman could get laid whenever he wanted at a gay club. Because gay men love superhero bodies. Sometimes, I see how hard straight dudes are on women. I mean, I did time as a men’s magazine editor; I was served a nickel and change for judging airbrushed photos of women holding up walls while wearing nothing but wet Kleenex. I can only imagine how hard men are on each other.
Clearly, dudes need to step up their game. Get all Spartan. At the very least, I need to suck in my gut.
Follow John DeVore’s preening narcissism on Twitter.