Monday, July 16, 2007

The Girl Whisperer

by laspapi

as published by The Guardian on Sunday

July 8

The Ready-Made Man & the Material Girl

As I drove with my female friend, Toyin Alli-Hakeem, last night, I noticed a girl at a bus-stop who didn’t take her eyes from me as I attempted to negotiate the bend and traffic. I told my companion, “that girl’s standing with a man, but she’s been staring at me for a while”. Toyin replied, “she’s seen a man in a car that’s air-conditioner tight and thinks she’d prefer that to the public transport her boyfriend’s going to place her in”.

I wondered at the time-tested truth that the grass always looks greener on the other side. This might be so, but the fertilizer and chemicals essential in making the grass that luxurious, will set the teeth of the material girl on edge. For some girls, the allure is the house the “newer” man just bought or his bank account and for others, his great job. However it is, there is a breed of women who are on the look out for the ready-made man.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to be comfortable. I wouldn’t advice a woman to set up a permanent liaison with some guy without a television or a fridge except you both intend to live bohemian lives. There’s nothing as bland as tepid water on a very hot day in the tropics and if you ever plan to have children, it just might be good for your child to be able to tell his or her classmates that “my mummy put my ice-cream in the fridge” as opposed to “my mummy put my ice-cream in an earthen pot”. We’ve all been there and know how these things matter to children.

However, the female that wants a man who has everything in place might be shooting herself in the foot. If a man has sweated blood and tears to make a success of himself without your help or support, there will be an element of paranoia in all he does concerning you. At the back of his mind will be the thought that you might not have found him attractive if he had nothing when you met. These thoughts will be reinforced on days he’s had to work really hard and he comes to meet you home at 5pm still in your nightgown, sprawled across the couch, changing the movie channels.

It is harder for a man to attempt to shake off the female who was there when the skies were grey, the future looked bleak and it seemed no help was coming from on high. Now, in this case, it is not necessary that the woman must have contributed monetarily to the success of this man; often, it is her support and presence in his hard times that are the essential factors remembered when he breaks away from the hard life.

The ready-made man is perfectly aware of how hard it was for him to get to his current position and remembers how he was snubbed by material girls as he sought to find a foot-hold. Except the potential female-partner matches him in material possessions, the suspicions will linger. When the foothold is finally gained, there is usually no sentiment in the choices the ready-made man makes and his actions often give room for the accusation that he is callous.

The world is full of material girls, and there are enough ready-made men willing to take advantage and leave them in the lurch without remorse. However, this doesn’t mean the Whisperer is encouraging females to associate with losers. A man who lacks va-va-voom is a waste of time, and there’s nothing like hungry children around a home to tell you not to waste your time with a full-time dreamer. Girls of all ages should know there’s absolutely nothing wrong in wanting the good things in life. In these days of equality and the emancipation of the sexes, it’s just better that the female seeks to pull her own weight too. It’s wiser to look out for potential in a man and be at the start of the good things than arriving after the full delivery’s taken place.

The automatic human emotions called gratitude and appreciation will stand you in good stead when the rough times come with a partner you helped build.


♥♫♪nyemoni♫♪♥ said...

Too true, a lot of men tend to look suspiciously upon girls they meet after acquiring their "wealth" but Alas! Sometimes, the ladies stick it out with the men through thick and thin, only for the men to throw them out when they feel they have arrived, only to pick a younger, fresher gal..

Noni Moss said...

I feel like I should point out that I like this and think you have some good points but your conclusion is a little disappointing and is ruining any positive feedback I initially had.

How about suggesting that women do things themselves, get their own jobs, strive to be sucessful in their own right so they bring something to the table? It seems that what you are proporting is women should try and be supportive and struggle with their man until he makes it or if they are lucky enough to land some "ready-made man", they should be grateful and pull their weight around the house - at the very least ensure they shower before the man comes home so he doesn't feel like they are just sponging off him.

You dont take into view the many women out there who are "ready-made" in their own right without the help of any men along the way. Nor the many women out there who as sole-breadwinners, actually support their families and look after their men. Does your theory also apply to those men who are trying to sponge of sucessful women?

I'm sorry if I'm maybe being a little harsh. I must have swallowed a feminist pill this morning.

Uzo said...

Too true but its also a catch 22. A lot of men are getting "made" at younger ages and so inevitably, we r meeting men that are already halfway there or at least being comfortable. And i have had a lot of my male friends explain their paranoia at this stage of their lives. So how will they win?

And i am fine thanks...Will be at the show next weekend with my girlfriends....

Anonymous said...

Too true Papi...also very true Nyemoni.I have seen men who achieved success with their wives by their side eventually dump said wife who suffered through thick and thin for younger models that they consider more befitting of their new status.

Idemili said...

Laspapi, she could have been staring at you for a number of reasons:You may have looked like someone, your head might have been an odd shape, she might have been eyeballing your friend, hated the glint from your car...the list is endless.

However, I do support the fact that a girl [or man] should look out for security. Now this may or may not be in the form of a fridge or TV but you get the point. Expecting anything less is useless.

Great post.

Perfectly Human said...

True talk. No one wants to spend thier life wondering if their partner loves them for thier money or for who they are. As you said nothing wrong with wanting to be comfortable therefore the woman should be willing to work to get what she wants with the guy's support and not just sit around waiting for his handouts. Ojukokoro is what it is if you seek out a ready-made man forgetting your own abilities. And for those men who forget the one who helped them in their trying times...i say, more grease to their elbow o...their time will come.

For the love of me said...

Ha,so will i refuse to date a guy because he "arrived" before he met me? No way. The richer, the merrier. Nyemoni why are you always first?

Anonymous said...

Laspapi, it may stand us in good stead but the problem with men who are still living on their dreams is that their women are more often than not, forced to abandon or put on hold their dreams in orderto support their men.

So maybe ready made men also represent the freedom to pursue your own dreams safe in the knowledge thatyour man is fulfilling/already fulfilled his own.

Refinedone said...

"but the fertilizer and chemicals essential in making the grass that luxurious, will set the teeth of the material girl on edge"...So true!

" It’s wiser to look out for potential in a man and be at the start of the good things than arriving after the full delivery’s taken place".... Well said Papi!
A wise woman should look for potential in a man, cos even if you meet him "made" what happens if he looses it all? can he reproduce it? can you stand with him, knowing that he has the ability to make it again!

@nyenomi, that is so true too, there are some men that forget the wife of the youth in the season of plenty,but there are many more that do not(so lets celebrate and put intthe spotligth those men)....Yes, the tempation will come, cos money and power does things to men which also makes them very attrative to
women, that want to ripe where they did not sow.

My 2 cents said...

I think I want to differ in this regard.

Have you even considered the Nigerian factor or for instance,let's switch circumstances around.

What if the female is the one who had it together and wants to tide the man along, in this case society renames her "Sugar mummy" even if he's older.

Or what if the man wants to show gratitude out of pity but still has his hands full from his several babes outside.

Most times society never remembers posterity, they just go with whatever works.

Your argument is one everybody can relate to,but let's just leave if for the ones with a conscience.
I don't blame any girl who looks for security these days, men do the same.

AIVY said...

well written.

Naija Vixen said...

Gosh icecream in an earthen pot? Lol...! You should have broken down the ready made man into two groups: the one who worked hard to get his money and the one who has had money always...because then the struggle becomes a lil bit different. But then again,instead of pinning hopes on just the one person...women should get themselves readymade aswell haba!

laspapi said...

@ nyemoni- there's always the danger of ingratitude in any siuation, 'moni

@ noni- fiery as usual. I wasn't advocating women just being supportive and not doing their own thing, noni. It's a good idea to have more financially independent women around. As for men who live to sponge off women, they're no different from the 'material girl'.

@ uzo- 't will be good to see you and your friends, uzo.Your point about men "arriving" at early ages now gave food for thought.

@ anon- it's the trade-in syndrome

@ idemili- if she was looking at me for other reasons, she was rude. She stared too long.

I agree with you, one should be careful not to carry dead wood.

@ jj- there's a fine balance all must seek in these matters. As for those who forget "the wind beneath their wings", well... karma's coming, as catwalq says

@ for the love of me- honest talk. Still, be ready for anything if he gets it in his head that money was key to affections.

@ dropped in- this is a different perspective from mine but nonetheless you've made very strong points.

@ refinedone- I agree with you, rich or "not so rich", potential should be the key.

@ my 2 cents- been staring at your words for a while. I'll go reflect on them.

@ aivy- Thank you, aivy.

laspapi said...

@ vixen- do you think men who "met money at home" are different from those who "pulled themselves up by their bootstraps"? hmmmm. Food for thought.

I agree with women being "ready made" as well.

Anonymous said...

Well said. But... the girl that was there in the nitty gritty might be no different from the one that came when the glitter set in. Who knows she came at the onset of you doing big things bcos it would be too obvious when u have done your big things. either way, mey the good Lord provide us with the one that will love us and stay in the cycle of good and bad.

Anonymous said... interesting read.
Men could be callous,
why i say; a lady with
vision, though could be
heartbroken; she can't
be broken. She'll march
on undaunted. Hail to her.
By the way, couldn't it
be the other way round?
The guy leeching on a
ready-made babe?

Idemili said...

Yes, women should definitely be ready made. The problem with some women is that they drift about waiting for a man to define them, give them a sense of identity via the route of marriage.

People should complement one another, not supplement one another.

...toyintomato said...

my own view, the girl at the bus stop......
..whoa! nice car, nonsense guy , soon, i am goin to have my own car , with my own money and not deal with the BS of guys, dumpin me, after i have been thru think and thin with him,or better still shallow guys who cant see past their insecurities, that i am here for them and not the wealth
...yes the grass is greener on the other side, but today is my last day at this bus stop.i am goin to be my own "ready made woman"

laspapi said...

Amen, surfing, Amen. I thought there was a request for me to write on how men can spot harpies coming from afar. Don't know what I did to that...this comment moderation...

@ rethots- heart broken but unbroken, well said.
And yes, it could be the other way around. Men mooch off women too.

@ the goddess- here's to being complementary instead of supplementary. No female should seek to obtain validity from a man.

@ toyin tomato- ok, toyin. I'm not going to be presumptious any longer and imagine they were glances of admiration. Blame it on your name-sake, who sat by my side.

Babawilly said...

Nice one. I actually have a joke about a material girl- Amaka on my My Space comedy tracks.(No offence to Igbos o)
9ja society is presently quite materialistic. I think the men are actually worse. Quite competitive. May be too much relative poverty exalts monetary wealth to sky high proportions. Loved your reflections.

Anonymous said...

The ready made man? Interesting title. When you say ready made do we mean ready made because of his career, his social status in society? Reading this has brought a smile to my face. Last Christmas I did some voluntary work for a Homeless Shleter. I meet some people there who would have fitted into the category of the man you described. Fast car, city job but things happened along the way and they lost it all.

Unfortunately our society today measure success through material wealth. Relationships require a lot more than fast cars and social status is it enough to sustain you through the difficult time? What about such things as an individual's qualities, do you bring out the best in each other are such things no longer important.

I suppose not because we want everything now!Remeber it's by god's grace.

Naija Vixen said...

Yes oh 'Papi...based on actual pple that i know sef! The dude who has always known wealth has already resigned himself to the fact that his riches and his personality will always be one entity and is more laidback unlike the man who has worked to get himself into his position...he's always going to be paranoid...but then again,there are always a few exceptions oh!

laspapi said...

@ babawilly- it's the economy that makes Nigerians so materialistic, I think. If the government could look out for its people, allowing them to plan for tomorrow, things might be saner.

@ regal 1- That comment about "made men" ending up in shelters made interesting reading. May that not be our lot.

I agree with you about the qualities of an individual being superior to material wealth.

@ d vixen- "The dude who has always known wealth has already resigned himself to the fact that his riches and his personality will always be one entity "-
Its interesting that you say that. When I was much younger, I used to feel sorry for kids from very wealthy backgrounds because they could never be sure who liked them for themselves or for the trappings of wealth.
"riches and personality being one entity..."you could make a book out of that...

Debo said...

True. very true. its real sad that we females have made guys think we are all for money, gifts, holidays etal. she might have been looking at you for many other reasons but like your friend thought, i would have thought of the same thing too. sure we also have ready made woman who made it without men but i tell people something, i would rather look for a man i complete not a complete man and for those who desert their wives after suffering, u sure know that they are cursed even without the woman saying anything. and that is why one has to pray and commit every relationship into GOD's hands. so you dont make a wrong choice and if God's choice for you is a made man, He would teach you how to handle it

laspapi said...

Hello, debola. I agree that prayer is the key. Thanks for stopping by.