The Code of the Brotherhood

Living in a college town for so many years has really skewed my perceptions on men.

Thankfully, I no longer have to enter the dating scene looking for a suitable applicant.

However, with so many years of experience interacting with men and women in my peer group I’ve noticed that like the knights of old – men still have an honor code to uphold with each other.

They still form brotherhoods as tight as any group of centurions and have very specific laws for interactions and dealing with conflicts.

As a woman I am an outsider – unaware of the complexities of their interactions – but over the years I’ve figured a few out.

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Artist: awbrunning

  1. Homies over Hoes –

Yes this sentiment has been quoted widely from Boondocks and The Office but are women really paying attention to what it means?

I mean sure, it is easy to get offended at being called a “hoe.”

I don’t think that should stop us from really examining why this attitude is so widely shared.

First of all – there is a certain alliteration to the H&H slogan that makes it appealing to say and the rhyming component of the similar Bros Before Hoes statement really does make it popular as well.

My point is – if it is fun and quick to say it is going to be used. Men would be just as likely to say Friends before Females if it didn’t take so long – and yet probably some of the less crass men do.

Still, we haven’t even addressed why this sentiment is so popularly quoted between guy-friends.To examine this issue we need to take a trip back to before the guys were guys. Back to when they were boys. Awkward boys.

They were roaming the halls of school with books pressed against themselves like shields warding off attacks of embarrassment. They were assaulted by onslaughts of daily humiliation from all sides – everything from acne to gym class.

Their only strength and safety was found in the camaraderie their situation afforded them. Forging the beginning of an unbreakable bond.

They would spend days camping together, sharing peanut butter and jeally sandwiches and taking turns playing computer games. They were friends, buddies and gosh the best pals a guy could have.

And then they became men.

Enter their former adversary – woman.

No longer was their tormentor decked out with pig-tails, braces and other signs of battle.

They now wore softer styles and war-paint smeared pleasingly across their faces. The men were confused, but unable to resist the new war-fare tactics.

One by one their friends were ensnared by women. Tangled into complicated cyclical conversations about what to eat for dinner and the ever dangerous “does this make me look fat” debate.

The men grew scared. After-all, they spent years in isolated harmony and now their ranks were demoralized and scattered.

Every time they tried to establish contact – a poker game, beer drinking get together, sports game or Magic The Gathering tournament (MTG tourney – think geeky poker night) they were forced into submission by their loving girlfriends who had been on the scene for all of 5 minutes in the great scheme of things.

How could they combat such a devious foe? Of course! Guilt!

Enter – Bros before Hoes.

So, don’t take offense and let the guys out of the house.

If you decide to leave him he is going to really need those bros of his.

Besides – once you finally become his wife you get the guilt in your corner.

“Honey, what about me?” (or the children, family time, etc.)

Maybe Michel Scott says it best.

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