Bil Browning

I'm "only" 2/5th of a man

Filed By Bil Browning | September 19, 2007 2:15 PM | comments

Filed in: The Movement
Tags: gender, gender roles, masculinity, men, sexism, skills, women

Popular Mechanics has an extremely sexist article up called "25 Skills Every Man Should Know." I don't want to hear any of you women complaining about this either - this is for "real" men... Get your asses back in the kitchen, bitchez... Apparently though, I'm only 2/5th of a man. Dammit. All my laundry and gardening skills are a waste of time.

I've marked off the manly skills I have. How many do you have? Let's see how long it is before a woman "tops" my score.

  1. Patch a radiator hose
  2. Protect your computer
  3. Rescue a boater who has capsized
  4. Frame a wall
  5. Retouch digital photos
  6. Back up a trailer
  7. Build a campfire
  8. Fix a dead outlet
  9. Navigate with a map and compass
  10. Use a torque wrench
  11. Sharpen a knife
  12. Perform CPR
  13. Fillet a fish
  14. Maneuver a car out of a skid
  15. Get a car unstuck
  16. Back up data
  17. Paint a room
  18. Mix concrete
  19. Clean a bolt-action rifle
  20. Change oil and filter
  21. Hook up an HDTV
  22. Bleed brakes
  23. Paddle a canoe
  24. Fix a bike flat
  25. Extend your wireless network

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I got 14, but some of those are really... random. As in "not really relevant" to many people these days. Clean a bolt-action rifle? Rescue a capsized boater? They're interesting in theory, but they aren't the sort of skill your average city-dweller would generally have a use for. And I guess retouching digital photos has become a guy skill because they need to enhance their 'assets' for their online personals, eh?

Bil: It looks like I'm not very many either. Go figure.


Hahaha. Oh shit, funniest thing I've read all day. Can't explain why.

Interesting list.

I'm declaring that you can extend your manliness by paying someone else to assist with the efforts.

After all, aren't the top Alpha dogs the leaders and the rest the followers? What do leader do? They command others to do things. What could be more manly than that. ;)

I could figure how to bleed my brakes, but isn't it more manly to tell someone else to do it -- even if it is a mechanic who charges about $200 an hour on a pro-rated basis to do it?

Why frame my own wall when I can pay a contractor to do all of the heavy stuff?

We can all get 25/25 if we all know the right people to call and have a little pocket change to get them to do the assignments!

Wow. This post makes me feel less masculine than normal... and that's an accomplishment.

What a random list. How would you even know if you can rescue a capsized boater? And how the heck does retouching digital photos make you manly (no offense, Bil...)?

Considering i have not done number 6 and i have done number 14 on a motorcycle more times then i care to count......

I know how to do number 3 and have done everything else at least once.

i have to add they left out something important.
Real men can fix leaky faucet or unplug a toilet.

Now where is the list of the 25 things you need to be a Real Woman?

Since i am not a man (never really was) it doesn't count.
But then again being a lesbian i have to over archive a little. :)

It's okay, Bil. I can do all the things you can't so together we make a very manly man.

I think.

kinda weird, but we do.

except I don't navigate with a map and compass. why bother when you can ask directions?

oh wait, I just ruined our manly man combo, didn't I?

So in about 4 hours we found a woman with more of those skills than me. How funny. Sarah, if you're 3/5 of a man would that make you the top in our new combo? This is sounding better and better every minute! So do you think this sexist article even took 4 hours of writing and editing?

I like the comments on the Popular Mechanics webpage for this "article" - every mane there is talking about how they can do all of these things. What manly men read that site!

Me, I got 14.

Patch a radiator hose - easy... cellphone!

Protect your computer - with my body?

Rescue a boater who has capsized - maybe if you ever get me near another large body of water.

Frame a wall - this I can do.... though it may be a bit skewed out of whack, in short, it'd be a rather queer wall.

Retouch digital photos - yep, the "one-touch corrections" button on my photo program that I got with the computer.

Back up a trailer - sure.... just don't say which way.

Build a campfire - sure, I was a Boy Scout.

Fix a dead outlet - I'd be dead.

Navigate with a map and compass - sure I was a Boy Scout! Also a geologist so, this one I can really do.

Use a torque wrench - is this a new sex toy?

Sharpen a knife - inherited this really good auto knife sharpener from dad.

Perform CPR - don't ask.... I won't tell.

Fillet a fish - dang, I've done this.

Maneuver a car out of a skid - last time I did that I ended up in another skid.... the state cop was cute.

Get a car unstuck - have cell phone will call a tow truck!

Back up data - I'd back up Data any day, do I get to be in a Star Trek movie??

Paint a room - I do lovely impressionist art.

Mix concrete - done.

Clean a bolt-action rifle - but of course!

Change oil and filter - only if I have to do so.

Hook up an HDTV - why?

Bleed brakes - why?

Paddle a canoe - should have seen me on Sugar Creek! Falling out when we hit the first bit of swift water was just a ploy.

Fix a bike flat - my bike has four flat tires now...

Extend your wireless network - what wireless network?

When I get real about it I come in at about 60% (3/5ths) man

I suppose I could do some of these thingz if I wanted too...

But I'm pretty so I just make the "real" men do them for me....

I'm sorry, but any benchmark for "real men" does NOT involve the word "computer" or "digital."

I think I got even fewer of these than the author.

And Mike, of course these aren't relevant to the lives of the average city dweller. You can't become a real man by living in a city. Get your ass out to the ranch!

wow, 20 out of 25. But, to be honest some of these were things urbanites would not be used to doing. I'm have lived on a farm, been in the Army, and am now in a smaller city where I build a garage and work in the civil engineering field.

I do agree on the computer stuff for 'real men'. Why not 'kilt me a bare', chopped down a tree, lived off the land for a day, saved a life..... wait.... still got 4 out of 5 lol! The damn bear got away!

Ellen Andersen Ellen Andersen | September 20, 2007 3:44 PM

Um, that's 21 for me, aka 82%. So far, I think I'm only beaten by Sue. Does this mean that I'm more of a real man than you, Bil?

I do want to clear something up...
I hope my comment on plumbing didn't offend anybody.
My father was a plumber and if we wanted the tap to stop dripping and the toilet to work properly we had to fix it ourselves. He did teach me to sweat solder copper pipe without burning down the house.

Take care

I think I got two... a compass and a map, and what was the other one?


Bil, you head Bilerico, and you don't know how to "16. Back up data?"

Yes, we realize that Jerame maybe does this for you, but ...

... maybe we should all enjoy Bilerico a day at a time. Today, blogosphere stardom! Tomorrow ... the Great Bit-Bucket in the Sky!

P.S. Whoddathunk what a "real man" I am! All I have to do is learn how to bleed a brake line and I'll have a perfect score! (Thank God that, in order to be a real man, Popular Mechanics doesn't require me to get an erection!)

P.P.S. Recommended answer to Items 1 thru 25.: "Find the nearest lesbian."

WWell, I figure if being a "girlie man" is good enough for Arnold it's good enough for me...