I’ve always been mystified by men. Maybe it’s my single-parent-mother upbringing that adds to the fascination. A lack of testosterone around the house had me wondering if boys wore pajamas to bed like me or just their underwear. Did they slept with socks on or curl up with their blankets? Somehow I couldn’t imagine my latest teenage crush doing these things. Boys were way too cool for any of that. Soon, I found myself seeking conversation with guys just to understand what made them tick.
Of course those conversations were sometimes pretty transparent, focusing on how my skin tight guess jeans looked on my 14 year old booty, but I digress. Back then it was the rare conversations with boys about the world around us, the things they cared about, the people they looked up to, that had me hungry for more. The male was a foreign species and I wanted to know everything I possibly could.
Yesterday morning while caught in traffic on the highway, two model-worthy guys sat in a white Jeep Wrangler deep in affable conversation. Dark-hair with scruffy beard was driving. Sandy blond hair with a bashful smile was in the passenger seat. Blond guy laughed and covered his face with his arm while dark haired guy cut sideways glances at him and goaded him on. I watched them in my rear view mirror and inserted my own dialogue. What a captivating pair they were.
The most intriguing part was being on the outside looking in. These guys were friends; close friends, I’d venture. I also got the impression they were hetero. All the macho bluster and posturing the addition of a female usually inspires was missing from the scene. What I saw was just pure guy time, simple and easy, males in their natural state.
In my own house I am surrounded by males. I am the lone chick. I watch football, play Xbox, wield a tool or two. I am no dainty flower. And yet, the girl in me is still enthralled. For this reason, I adore writing male characters. I love their dialogue, their quirks, their swagger and their vulnerability. I can only hope I do my dudes justice.