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Archive for January, 2012

The Other Reason Street Harassment Is Wrong

January 31st, 2012 7 comments

Let us all agree street harassment is unacceptable. When a woman is walking down the street, minding her business, and men start cat calling with unwelcome and sometimes rude remarks, giving her all this attention she did not intend to get when she stepped out to pick up a gallon of milk from the store, it is wrong.

And yet, according to this chart I dug up at StopStreetHarassment.com, men are still out here doing it like it’s a national pastime with no signs of stopping.

But I didn’t need to see a chart like this to be aware of the frequency of street harassment because as a man who has partaken in more than his fair share of approaching women on the street, I’ve developed a nose for such activity.

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Jozen On The Radio Talking About Erectile Dysfunction

January 30th, 2012 3 comments

A couple of weeks ago, I linked to a post I wrote about my terrible, embarrassing experience with erectile dysfunction. People have asked me why I incriminated myself in such a way, to which I say, Hey, it’s happened, but it’s not happening. You get my drift.

In any case, the post was for a brand new website dedicated to men’s health called TheCheckup.com. The site is a part of a brand new syndicated radio show, called The Dr. Harry Fisch show, which airs every Saturday night from 7 p.m. — 10 p.m.. The show is classic, call-in talk radio with Dr. Harry Fisch, a gregarious, easy-going personality who makes all his listeners feel more like they’re talking to a doctor in a bar rather than in his office. Dr. Fisch has some excellent and valuable information for men, but I encourage women to listen to because it’s something you can share with other men.

This past Saturday, Dr. Fisch invited me to be a guest on his show to talk at length about my post. I can’t say I was too shy to answer his questions and ask some of my own. The most surprising fact I learned was when Dr. Fisch said he doesn’t hesitate to prescribe Viagra or Cialis to men in their 20s.

Below is the stream for the segment on which I appeared. Please take a listen as soon as you get a chance. If you like what you hear, click here to listen to the show in its entirety.

Thank you for listening to the show. If you just so happen to not be tired of the sound of my voice, and are interested in what I have to say about other topics like the State of the Union, the movie “Red Tails,” and “Love and Hip-Hop,” my colleagues at The Root invited me on to their Confab podcast to discuss all these topics.

Here’s a link to hear the show on TheRoot.com, or if you prefer, a link to download the podcast for free (the one I’m in is at the top).

On Women Nagging And Men Not Listening

January 27th, 2012 8 comments

Anytime there’s an article about a specific problem in relationships and women are to blame, the whole world is tuned out as I read and study every single line with the focus of a Rhodes Scholar.

Today, the Wall Street Journal published an article entitled “Meet The Marriage Killer: It’s More Common Than Adultery and Potentially As Toxic, So Why Is It So Hard to Stop Nagging?”

The article’s writer, Elizabeth Bernstein, attempts to unpack the nagging problem amongst married couples, quoting both real couples who have gone through a nagging phase as well as psychologists who study these types of human behavior issues. As far as some numbers to support her theory of nagging being to marriage what a meteor was to the prehistoric era, Bernstein cites a study done by Dr. Howard Markman, professor of psychology at the University of Denver and co-director of the Center for Marital and Family Studies.

Research that Dr. Markman published in 2010 in the Journal of Family Psychology indicates that couples who became unhappy five years into their marriage had a roughly 20% increase in negative communication patterns consistent with nagging, and a 12% decrease in positive communication. “Nagging is an enemy of love, if allowed to persist,” Dr. Markman says.

As far as who is at fault for all the nagging in a relationship, no concrete numbers are given, but Bernstein does posit a theory, which I found most interesting.

Men are to blame, too, because they don’t always give a clear answer. Sure, a husband might tune his wife out because he is annoyed; nagging can make him feel like a little boy being scolded by his mother. But many times he doesn’t respond because he doesn’t know the answer yet, or he knows the answer will disappoint her.

In a nutshell: Women be nagging.

As a man, it warms my heart to read things like these. I thought, More women should have a friend like Bernstein advising them to quit pestering me over certain things.

Then, I read the article again (remember, Rhodes Scholar like focus), and I started to notice some holes. (To be fair, it’s just an article to provoke discussion on a particular issue. I have to say this because some people tend to think articles are supposed to solve the very problems being discussed within them.)

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A Song For You: Bill Withers, “Hope She’ll Be Happier”

January 26th, 2012 1 comment

For the days when I am unable to write a post, a song for you, my friend. Not all will be sad, not all will be happy, but all will be great.

Listen, enjoy, and comment as you wish.

A Man To Man Lesson On Faith and Family

January 25th, 2012 8 comments

I know I said today’s post would be football term’s for ladies to apply in their dating life, but I’m postponing that topic because something else is on my mind.

This is hard for me to write about without giving some context, bare with me as I unpack a couple of things before moving forward.

I never write about my dad. My late biological father has been written about at length, so has my pop. The man my mother is married to, I refer to him as my step-dad. In my own head, these men are clearly separated and compartmentalized. To the reader, things are probably a little more jumbled, largely because I don’t write about my life in chronological order. I hop around, jumping from memory to memory.

So when I say my dad, understand I am not talking about the men I mentioned above. I am talking about the man whose last name was given to me after he adopted me as his own. He brought my sister into this world. He and my mom were married, but divorced when I was 5 or 6. From then on, he was more of a weekend dad, seeing us about twice a month.

I’ve had my issues with my dad. They’re not as deep as the issues I had with the absence of my biological father or the troubling and complicated relationship I had with my pop, but issues nonetheless. Most of these bore out of how little we saw him even though he never lived too far away. He never raised us so much as he visited us, and there were times my sister and I both resented him for it. The other issue is, how remarkably different he is from my sister and I.

Our dad is a white man from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania who listens to The Doors, wears Wranglers, votes Repubican, loves Pittsburgh sports, the Steelers especially, and watches Nascar. We could not be more opposite if I was night and he, day, which made the physical distance between us feel much farther than it ever really was.

Thankfully, over the years, my issues with him have subsided. We talk most Sundays on the telephone, the conversations mostly brief check-ins, but I am proud to say, occasionally they run long.

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Categories: Family, Stories Tags:

You’re Welcome For This Glossary Of Football Terms To Describe What Happened In The Bedroom

January 24th, 2012 7 comments

Chances are, nothing in today’s post is uniquely originally. I do not claim to have been the first person to write the contents you will read, and because it’s such a no brainer, I had to write this disclaimer first. Any likeness or similarity to another post you see here is strictly by coincidence. It also probably isn’t better than what you’re about to read. – JC

For years, baseball has been man’s sport of choice to use as metaphor when recapping what happened with a girl. The idea, predicated upon the bases on a baseball diamond, was simple: First base, second, base third, base, home plate all implied some sort of progress.

Over the years, the metaphor has understandably become flimsier, specifically the differences between what constitutes second and third base. People have written about this before; I’ve had many conversations with men and women, and none of us seem to agree what takes place on second base versus what takes place on third base. One person told me second base is oral sex, third base is traditional sex, and home plate is a particular kind of sex so inappropriate, I could not bear repeating it lest I want to throw up a little on my keyboard. And here I thought we unanimously agree home plate counted as traditional intercourse, but what do I know?

But last night, as I was watching more highlight’s from my brother’s favorite team the New York Giants win over the 40-whiners, I thought to myself, Why are we still using baseball as a metaphor for discussing what happened with a woman when football is obviously the better sport.

Gentlemen, presenting the glossary of American football terms as metaphor to describe what happened with the hot girl you went home with last night. Ladies, if any of this offends you, please refer to the sentence before this to remind yourself who exactly I am addressing here.

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So You Want Her To Respect You

January 23rd, 2012 11 comments

Throughout grade school and high school, I wanted girls to like me.

They did.

Throughout college, I wanted girls to sleep with me.

They did.

Throughout my 20s when I realized girls like me and girls would sleep with me, I wanted them not to hate me.

They did both hate and not hate me, equally.

Throughout my relationships, I wanted the women who were my girlfriends to love me.

They did. Some of them, others just liked me, but you get the point.

Over six months ago, I turned 30.

Now I want women to respect me.

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Categories: guys Tags:

A Song For People In Love Only

January 20th, 2012 No comments

There are songs for which it is always encouraged to grab a partner and dance. And then there are songs for which, if you’re going to dance, your partner best be the love of your life.

“At Last” is one of those songs.

RIP Etta James. Your voice will live as long as love itself.

(And because I can’t help myself)

If You Want A Man To Wait, Be Interesting (#OccupyThatMind)

January 19th, 2012 26 comments

Let’s resign ourselves to the idea all men care about is one thing. We know what that is, but we underestimate the extent to which it dominates a man’s thoughts.

Women get frustrated, not because they don’t think about the same thing. They most certainly do, usually when they are alone and bored. When with a man, especially a man they just met, they tap into a different part of their mind.

Even if she knows she wants to have sex with the guy, a woman controls her desire. She wants to talk about other things. The problem is these are things a man usually has no interest in talking about, like his five year plan or her five year plan.

No man wants to talk about that. Not on the first date. The first date may be too soon to talk about sex, but five year plans? Let us all do better and try harder.

Men and women are both guilty of having one track minds. Where we differ is the destination. Women want us to steer our minds in the direction they are going, but asking for such a thing is pointless because the whole reason we ask a woman out in the first place is because we want to have sex with her at some point.

Men don’t order meals they don’t want to eat, we don’t ask out women with whom we don’t want to have sex.

So this one track mind us men are guilty of having, we keep it under wraps, out of respect for the woman. The problem is waiting for her can feel like a daunting task if she does not do anything to hold our interest.

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The Strength Of Our Words

January 18th, 2012 5 comments

Author’s Note: Long time readers of this blog, please excuse me if I have written about something similar in the past. I do not mean to repeat myself, but this is an issue that continues to rattle my brain.

A guy once said I was a smooth talker. It was one of my best friends, and he didn’t mean it as a compliment.

We were arguing, over what I do not recall, but as I was explaining my side of the disagreement, he said, “Don’t do it, Jozen. You can talk your way out of anything. I’ve seen you do it and you won’t do it to me.”

I explained to him what I was saying was exactly what I felt and nothing about my words were intended to con my way out of an admission. If I had felt I was in the wrong, I would have no problem admitting as much. He only grew more frustrated and so did I. Defending myself was taken by him as disrespect, trivializing my words as some sort of smooth-talk was his way of slapping me in my face. Had the argument taken place in person, the end result would most likely have been fisticuffs.

The two of us were able to settle our differences eventually and we never talked about the argument again, but obviously I still remember very clearly his attack on me, and I carry it around with me to this day.

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