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The Goddess Speaks

By Glenda Chung Hinchey

Tuesday, April 4, 2000

When Mars and
Venus collide ...

RECENTLY, my husband and I were at a dinner party with two other married couples when one of the guests brought out a board game called "Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus."

In this game, a card reader reads aloud and secretly answers a provocative question about men and women, while the other players try to guess the reader's answer. The object of the game is for the male team or the female team to reach Earth first by matching the responses of the card readers, whether reasonable or not, calling for a good understanding of the mind of the opposite sex.

Each team advances toward the Earth from somewhere in outer space, according to the number of matching answers -- three steps for three matching answers, two steps for two answers, etc.

For example, I picked up a card which stated:

A man gets the most points when he:

A) Brings me flowers
B) Makes me dinner
C) Buys me a surprise gift

I read this question to the others and then secretly chose A . My husband never buys me flowers, considering it a waste of money. Knowing how I feel about flowers, he tried to sway the other men to choose A, but he wasn't convincing enough, and the three men chose B.

Sorry, but my husband can't cook!

The other two women guessed my answer correctly, so the female team advanced toward Earth, while the men stayed put.

Did playing this game and understanding my wishes prompt my husband to change his mind about bringing me flowers?

"Of course not," he said. "I still think it's a waste of money."

Another man said, "The game is just a game, not a life-changing experience."

Although fun, this game sometimes can lead to disturbing revelations. My husband says he was shocked to hear my answer to the following question:

To sleep with a man, I need to be:

A) Interested
B) Involved
C) Desperate

As the card reader, I chose A, but my husband chose B. He believes sex without love is meaningless. I feel sex without desire is meaningless. The others guessed my answer correctly.

If a card reader feels a question is embarrassing or the answers are inappropriate, he or she may pass on an answer and choose "the cave" or "the well."

For instance, one of the men couldn't decide on his fantasy woman (independent, nurturing or challenging) so chose the cave. His wife was disappointed that he hadn't picked "independent," which describes her.

Sometimes, a question can be heartbreaking:

During a serious conversation, it's most annoying when a man:

A) Interrupts
B) Changes the subject
C) Doesn't seem to care

One of the women confided that her husband never listens to her, choosing to walk away while she is speaking.

Another woman said a man who doesn't care is worse than one who interrupts or changes the subject. I, on the other hand, am annoyed when my husband changes the subject.

Funny, shocking, heartbreaking. All of this at a dinner party! The men won two out of three games, which may indicate they do know more about how we feel than they let on.

The men didn't defend themselves even when their wives revealed intimate, negative aspects of their relationships. Who knows what was said after the party. Hopefully, this was just the beginning of improved communication.

Glenda Chung Hinchey is a library assistant
at Liliha Public Library.

The Goddess Speaks runs every Tuesday
and is a column by and about women, our strengths, weaknesses,
quirks and quandaries. If you have something to say, write it and
send it to: The Goddess Speaks, the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, P.O.
Box 3080, Honolulu, 96802, or send e-mail

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