The Nothing Box


There is something about a rainy, gloomy, day that is heart-warming to me.  It’s days like this that make me think of fireplaces, hot cocoa, warm blankets and a good movie.  Friday doesn’t lend itself to those things…yet.  I still have to find a way to squeeze in the three hours of graduate assistant work, two hours of online teaching, one hour of music practice and PhD work before I can think about relaxing. (exhale)

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Last night I was “relaxing” at my friends restaurant, Bullbranch, and ended up in an interesting conversation: How men and women process the end of their day.  It is no secret that, stereotypically speaking of course, men and women are hard-wired very differently from each other.  Women are relational beings; men are task-oriented.

The discussion circled around this:  Imagine, a couple arrives home from their long day at work.  If you are a woman reading this, what is the first thing we need to do?  Download (smile).  If you are a man, what would you want to do at the end of a day? Decompress (bigger smile). By definition, downloading is the process of copying data; women need to replay the major events of their day.  Not because we want advice, or need help, we just want someone to listen.  By definition, decompress means to calm down or relax.  So when a guy gets home from work, he’s looking for the paper, a video game, the bathroom…while a woman is chasing him around the house trying to dialogue the events of her day.

What I was told, by the guy giving me this example, was if a woman would wait 30 minutes or so, he would eventually be ready to listen to her day.  I couldn’t help but smile as I thought about all the times I would get home at the end of my day and be talking to my dad to get the usual “mhmm…mhmm…”  He was still decompressing; or as my dad likes to put it: “in my nothing box.”  Check out that link to Mark Gungor’s stand-up “nothing boxes.”  The trick is, finding a way for both cultures to happily coexist 😉

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When’s the last time a woman tried to prematurely yank you out of your nothing box; or a man feigned listening to the important discourse of your day?

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4 thoughts on “The Nothing Box

  1. Hmmm…feigning is not cool. I think if the guy’s not ready to listen, he should just be honest about that and the lady should respect it. As long as he gives her his ear when decompressing is finished…otherwise, its selfishness.

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