What do women want?

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Young King Arthur was ambushed and imprisoned by the monarch of a neighboring kingdom. The monarch could have killed him, but was moved by Arthur's youth and ideals. So the monarch offered him freedom, as long as he could answer a very difficult question. Arthur would have a year to figure out the answer; if, after a year, he still had no answer, he would be put to death.

The question: What do women really want?

Such a question would perplex even the most knowledgeable man, and, to young Arthur, it seemed an impossible query. But, since it was better than death, he accepted the monarch's proposition to have an answer by year's end.

He returned to his kingdom and began to poll everybody: the princess, the prostitutes, the priests, the wise men, the court jester. He spoke with everyone, but no one could give him a satisfactory answer. Many people advised him to consult the old witch-----only she would know the answer. The price would be high; the witch was famous throughout the kingdom for the exorbitant prices she charged.

The last day of the year arrived and Arthur had no alternative but to talk to the witch. She agreed to answer his question, but he'd have to accept her price first: The old witch wanted to marry Gawain, the most noble of the Knights of the Round Table and Arthur's closest friend!

Young Arthur was horrified: She was hunchbacked and hideous, had only one tooth, smelled like sewage, made obscene noises... etc. He had never encountered such a repugnant creature. He refused to force his friend to marry her and have to endure such a burden.

Gawain, upon learning of the proposal, spoke with Arthur. He told him that nothing was too big a sacrifice compared to Arthur's life and the preservation of the Round Table. Hence, their wedding was proclaimed, and the witch answered Arthur's question thus:

What a woman really wants is to be in charge of her own life.

Everyone instantly knew that the witch had uttered a great truth and that Arthur's life would be spared. And so it was. The neighboring monarch granted Arthur total freedom.

What a wedding Gawain and the witch had! Arthur was torn between relief and anguish. Gawain was proper as always, gentle and courteous. The old witch put her worst manners on display, and generally made everyone very uncomfortable.

The honeymoon hour approached. Gawain, steeling himself for a horrific experience, entered the bedroom. But what a sight awaited him! The most beautiful woman he'd ever seen lay before him! The astounded Gawain asked what had happened. The beauty replied that since he had been so kind to her when she'd appeared as a witch, she would henceforth be her horrible, deformed self half the time, and the other half, she would be her beautiful maiden self. Which would he want her to be during the day, and which during the night?

What a cruel question! Gawain pondered his predicament. During the day, a beautiful woman to show off to his friends, but at night, in the privacy of his home, an old witch? Or would he prefer having by day a hideous witch, but by night a beautiful woman with whom to enjoy many intimate moments?

What would you do? What Gawain chose follows below, but don't read until you've made your own choice.

Noble Gawain replied that he would let her choose for herself. Upon hearing this, she announced that she would be beautiful all the time, because he had respected her enough to let her be in charge of her own life.

What is the moral of this story?

The moral is:

If your woman doesn't get her own way, things are going to get ugly!

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), January 18, 2002


Very good story. Anita.

But the punch line ruined it : "If your woman doesn't get her own way, things are going to get ugly!" That is not the moral of the story, as far as I can see.

Things may still get ugly if the woman DOES get her own way. For that matter, things may get ugly when the MAN is getting HIS way.

That's not because getting your own way is somehow inherently bad. Some people take "getting your own way" to mean being a jerk all the time and just not considering other people at all. Some people will always be jerks no matter what.

The story challenges the old ethos that women are supposed to sacrifice themselves to others more than men are. Of course the women's movement has been around a while, so this is not exactly news. I doubt if YOU believe woman should get her way more than the man should. But with this punch line, it ended up sounding like the same old strident B.S. that people love to hate about the women's movement.

It was a nice twist that Gawain replied that this thing was not HIS choice; he would rather she choose for herself how she wanted to be. This was not one of the options given. When she did, she chose to be beautiful all the time. This was not one of the options given, either.

So to me, the moral of the story is "Think for yourself. When 'given' two choices, consider a third."

-- Debbie (dbspence@pobox.com), January 18, 2002.


-- Debbie (dbspence@pobox.com), January 18, 2002.

-- Debbie (dbspence@pobox.com), January 18, 2002.

#2 sent this to me today in an E-mail, but the comments here have been...um...interesting.

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), January 18, 2002.

What do women really want?

A snake in their couch. ;o)))

Best Wishes,,,,,


-- Z1X4Y7 (Z1X4Y7@aol.com), January 18, 2002.


Wow ~ that's the same thing they said when they tasted my stuffed-squid-and-sauerkraut casserole!

I wonder if it means something....

-- Debbie (dbspence@pobox.com), January 18, 2002.

You're out-of-touch, Z. The snake is now lost SOMEWHERE.

Here's another that #2 sent me today:


Well, this day was a total waste of makeup. Make yourself at home! Clean my kitchen. Who are these kids and why are they calling me Mom? Don't bother me. I'm living happily ever after. Do I look like a people person? This isn't an office. It's Hell with fluorescent lighting. I started out with nothing & still have most of it left. I pretend to work. They pretend to pay me. If I throw a stick, will you leave? You! Off my planet! Therapy is expensive, poppin' bubble wrap is cheap! You choose. Practice random acts of intelligence & senseless acts of self- control. Bottomless pit of needs & wants. I like cats, too. Let's exchange recipes. Friendly checkout clerk. Thanks for keeping me that way! If I want to hear the pitter patter of little feet, I'll put shoes on my cat. Does your train of thought have a caboose? Errors have been made. Others will be blamed. Let me show you how the guards used to do it. And just how may I screw you over today? And your crybaby whiny-assed opinion would be...? I'm not crazy, I've just been in a very bad mood for 30 years. If only you'd use your powers for good instead of evil... See no evil, hear no evil, date no evil. A PBS mind in an MTV world. Allow me to introduce my selves. Sarcasm is just one more service we offer. Whisper my favorite words: "I'll buy it for you." Better living through denial. Whatever kind of look you were going for, you missed. Suburbia: where they tear out the trees & then name streets after them. Adult child of alien invaders. Do they ever shut up on your planet? I'm just working here till a good fast-food job opens up. Are those your eyeballs? I found them in my cleavage. I'm not your type. I'm not inflatable. I'm trying to imagine you with a personality. A cubicle is just a padded cell without a door. Stress is when you wake up screaming & you realize you haven't fallen asleep yet. After I cook the vegetables, what do I do with the wheelchairs? Here I am! Now what are your other two wishes? Back off! You're standing in my aura. I can't remember if I'm the good twin or the evil one. Don't worry. I forgot your name, too! Adults are just kids who owe money. How many times do I have to flush before you go away? I have a computer, a vibrator, & pizza delivery. Why should I leave the house? I just want revenge. Is that so wrong? It's sick the way you people keep having sex without me. I work 40 hours a week to be this poor. You say I'm a bitch like it's a bad thing. Can I trade this job for what's behind door #2? Macho Law forbids me from admitting I'm wrong. Nice perfume. Must you marinate in it? Not all men are annoying. Some are dead. Too may freaks, not enough circuses. Chaos, panic, & disorder-my work here is done. A woman's favorite position is CEO. Ambivalent? Well, yes and no. You look like shit. Is that the style now? Everyone thinks I'm psychotic, except for my friends deep inside the earth. Earth is full. Go home. Is it time for your medication or mine? Did I mention the kick in the groin you'll be receiving if you touch me? I plead contemporary insanity. And which dwarf are you? I refuse to star in your psychodrama. I thought I wanted a career, turns out I just wanted paychecks. How do I set a laser printer to stun? It ain't the size, it's... no, it's the size. Meandering to a different drummer. I'm not tense, just terribly, terribly alert. I majored in liberal arts. Would you like fries with that?

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), January 18, 2002.

Anita, I didn't post the poem. For what it's worth. I shouldn't have jumped your shit in the first place.

-- helen (no@meds.for.this), January 18, 2002.

"Somewhere" includes the couch. A woman and her snake. We could write a book. Perhaps we could make it a sacred text. The snake gives the, hat skulking, naked woman, a cushion from the couch of knowledge of good and evil. It could be a sitcom. We could work the deformed pine into this version. ;o)))

Best Wishes,,,,,


-- Z1X4Y7 (Z1X4Y7@aol.com), January 18, 2002.

Helen: I'm as guilty as you are. Forget about it. *I* have. I like you. There ain't nothing [forgetting about grammar rules here] that will change that.

I never even SUSPECTED you of posting this "poem". First of all, I don't think that you see marriage as SACRED. Everyone here who knows me knows that *I*'m the one who refuses to do the marriage thing. SO just kindof fell into the same thought arena after a few years. Secondly, I ALSO think that you know that I'm nowhere near HALF the age of SO. [It's kindof neat to think that someone does, however.]

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), January 18, 2002.

Z: Keep your voice down. We're not mentioning the snake this week. It took two days for SO to talk to me again after the snake crawled into his speaker. AFAIK, he's still in there, but maybe not.

-- Anita (Anita_S3@hotmail.com), January 19, 2002.

Anita, I was an ass.

This past week has been unreal. Two of the kids came down with something that looks like measles but isn't, so I missed work and had to make it up on the one day off I had to study for my last set of finals. The car broke down with kids scattered to the four winds and tests scheduled and the final review set for that evening.

Then something marvelous happened. Friends offered to loan vehicles, and people all over town were taking care of whichever kid they had with them. Someone told me what was wrong with the car so I could fix it well enough to make it to school. I still had some kids with me at school, so my fellow students and instructor postponed the final review until I could get them farmed out with relatives and make it back.

Without much time to study, I was in dark despair over finishing the program. But it turned out that I knew the stuff. It was all there in my normally forgetful head.

Then I went back to work and got a promotion and a small raise. They even gave me an easier schedule. The money will be enough for us to stay here if we decide to.

Today I've been walking around with no pressure for the first time in forever, and it feels soooo ... wrong! :)

-- helen (too@good.to.be.true.so.when.will.the.other.shoe.drop?), January 22, 2002.

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