Bruno Mars is Really From Venus

If I were asked to think of names that sound truly manly, the list might include names like Silas, Burke, Leroy, Zachary, Isaac, among others.  A rugged name like Bruno might even be near the top of the list.  Bruno might be a good name for a bouncer at the local bar.  “Look out guys, settle down, here comes Bruno.”  Couple a manly first name with a last name shared with the God of war, Mars, and you would think you’ve got a manly man.  For instance, maybe Bruno Mars.  Jim Croce could write a song about “Bad, bad, Bruno Mars, baddest man with the fastest car” or something like that.  Alas, Jim would probably roll over in his grave to hear Bruno Mars associated with Leroy Brown.  Instead of living up to his name and being a bad ass like Leroy, Bruno Mars instead writes sissified songs.  I’m sure he makes a lot of money doing it, (kudos on that, Bruno!) but I don’t like the idea of romance being depicted in the media the way Bruno seems to think it works.

I suspect Bruno really writes his songs for young women, not young men.  It’s too bad that impressionable young men will hear Bruno’s songs on the radio and maybe think his portrayals illustrate how romance works.  If any impressionable young men both think that and bother to read this, let me deconstruct some typically flawed portrayals of romance.

Consider these lyrics:

Same bed but it feels just a little bit bigger nowOur song on the radio but it don’t sound the sameWhen our friends talk about you, all it does is just tear me downCause my heart breaks a little when I hear your name

We’ve all been there.  Unless you’re truly a heartless bastard, it hurts a little bit (or more) to break up with somebody.  Maybe it hurts a little to hear about the ex-, especially if the breakup came as a surprise to you, but let’s not go overboard.  Some anguish is expected, but let’s not suffer from eternal heart break.  (Been there, done that.) Eternal heartbreak is not romantic; it’s actually pathetic.  The world is full of eligible women, an abundance of women in fact.  Go find yourself another.  It’s relatively easy.  Consider this interesting fact:  any desirable woman can find a new boyfriend in less than 2 weeks, on average.  Why should it be any different for a self-respecting man?

Some of you might have put your woman on a pedestal, a quite juvenile mistake, but quite common for guys who live by the myth that there is one perfect woman for them.  (Been there, done that.) Firstly, there are no perfect women.  Secondly, there are many women who are compatible with any given man.  Again, go find another.

The bad romantic portrayal doesn’t stop there.

It all just sounds like oooooh…Mmm, too young, too dumb to realizeThat I should ‘ve bought you flowersAnd held your hand

Ah, the old flower mistake.  A lot of poor guys are exactly so young and dumb to think that they should be giving flowers all the time.  I know I was at one time.  Flowers and other gifts only work when you are already in a relationship, and then only sparingly, like on anniversaries;  NOT monthly anniversaries, but real annual anniversaries of significant events.  Gifts should never be used early in a relationship, and never before a relationship starts.

I remember buying a gift for a high school crush, thinking that a gift is a great way to get to know her.  Oh, how embarrassingly wrong I was.  Logically, it should work, right?  And it seems to work in every romantic comedy that women seem to love so much.  Who doesn’t like a gift?  I’ll tell you who…a real life woman who gets a gift from a guy she barely knows and seldom talks to.  The most important thing to understand is the psychological concept of reciprocity.  By accepting a gift, any normal person feels at least a small degree of obligation to give something in return.  (Salesmen use this tactic all the time.) In the case of dating, a guy makes it abundantly clear what he wants in return; affection.  Here’s a flower, please love me.  WTF?  That’s a sale most women will run away from.

Secondly, you’ve tried to buy her affection, so you’ve implied you think she can be bought.  Basically you’ve positioned her one step away from prostitution.  Is it any wonder a woman will be immediately turned off by a gift?  Gifts, whether flowers, chocolates or others things, are incredibly BAD ideas for attracting women.  Buying their continued affection is terrible way to keep them too.

The bad romantic ideas keep coming.

Should ‘ve gave you all my hoursWhen I had the chanceTake you to every partyCause all you wanted to do was danceNow my baby’s dancingBut she’s dancing with another man

If a man had a chance to give this woman all his hours and didn’t, then good for him!  I’m glad to see a man have a life and interesting things to do on his own.  Women quickly lose respect for men who devote all their time to the woman.  A man needs to have his own interests and activities, male friends, and participate in his community.  This makes him a whole man with a social life.  Women respect that.  With his own life to live, the man brings something new to the relationship.  When his life revolves around the woman, he puts the pressure on the woman to provide all the social interaction.

On the other hand, is it possible that maybe a man had all the hours to give, because he did nothing with them?  Did he contribute to the community?  Donate time to charity?  Did he at least shoot baskets with the guys?  Did he bother to learn to dance?   If he wasted his hours away surfing the Internet, playing World of Warcraft, or sleeping late, he has little to offer a woman in turns of expanding her social standing or position in the community.

Consider the high school football player.  Why does he get the girls when the nerds don’t?  It’s not because he’s a football player. Seriously, it’s not.  It’s because 1) he has learned how to be part of the team; 2) he has learned to work for something that’s bigger than him; 3) he has skills the community values; 4) he understands how to put in the work to achieve something difficult; 5) he has a certain amount of health and probably decent looks; 6) he has a social circle that expands on the social circle of the woman.  These are the things that a woman looks for in a man (probably subconsciously.)

If a man has all these spare hours to give to the girl, I’ll bet he didn’t develop these skills.  He had nothing to offer her, so she went looking for a real man.  Yes, a real man.

If you have a day when you don’t feel like doing anything, instead use that time to better yourself.

Now let’s continue with the deconstruction.

My pride, my ego, my needs, and my selfish waysCaused a good strong woman like you to walk out my lifeNow I never, never get to clean up the mess I made, ohh…And it haunts me every time I close my eyes

Although it hurtsI’ll be the first to say that I was wrongOh, I know I’m probably much too lateTo try and apologize for my mistakesBut I just want you to know

I can pretty much guarantee that if a guy is selfish and looks after his own needs, the woman would respect him much more.  To borrow from Dr. Robert Glover, the man first needs to build a cake of his life, then allow the woman to be the frosting.  The man needs something to bring to the table in a relationship.  Build your life and get what you want from life, and then invite a woman in.  If your life is interesting, then she’ll stay.  If not, she’ll be strong enough and smart enough to walk away.

Of course, after that it has all fallen apart, Bruno suggests you fall back on 20-20 hindsight and passive, apologetic behavior.  There’s absolutely nothing romantic about that.  Grow a pair and move on.  As I said earlier, there is an abundance of women in the world.

There’s nothing manly or romantic in these lyrics.  All I read in these lyrics is a giant whiny bitch, moaning about what he lost.  No wonder the woman found a real man to replace him.  Don’t act like this.

I hope he buys you flowersI hope he holds your handGives you all his hoursWhen he has the chanceTake you to every partyCause I remember how much you loved to danceDo all the things I should ‘ve doneWhen I was your manDo all the things I should ‘ve doneWhen I was your man

Rest assured a good strong woman will find a good strong man, not a whiny bitch.  He’ll treat her as a good strong man, but not like this.  He’ll bring something to table, invite her into his life and expand her horizons.  He’ll take the lead, but he won’t cater to her every whim, nor buy her flowers all the time.  And she’ll like that.

[ Lyrics: ]

Bruno isn’t the only musician with a flawed portrayal of romance.  Check out these Dangerous and Insane lyrics.

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I am a deep thinker, an avid reader, and seeker of manhood.