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Cowboy Humor

Man Date

Dona Muerte Bride, by Hannah Rose MillerLeft: Dona Muerte Bride, by Hannah Rose

Cowboy Humor by Ben Marshall

We had to cancel our Man Date this week.

Richard, our leader and organizer of what constitutes a Man Movie, was in Eureka over the weekend and unable to coordinate the Monday event.

Our Man Date is pretty simple to explain.

We go to a Man Movie once a week to enjoy films our girlfriends or wives would never see. They wouldn't even watch trailers of some of these things.

I buy a small popcorn, Mark (a founding member along with Richard) buys a small drink and sometimes candy and Richard watches the movie without comfort food. My brother, J.W., buys everything.

When we go into the theater, we sit down in the same row but maintain one empty seat between each of us.

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We attend matinees so we're certain to find entire rows empty so no one usually sits in front of us. An unwritten rule is you don't sit next to the same guy each week. It took J.W. a little time to come to an understandin' on that one.

He sat next to Mark three weeks in a row and finally Mark had to get up and relocate to a seat at the end of the aisle. Nothin' was ever said about it but J.W. hasn't sat next to him since.

Before the show, we keep our conversation to a minimum and afterwards we part company without sayin' much more. It's a cowboy thing.

Pickin' the movie is somewhat more complicated.

A Man Movie can best be explained by comparin' it to a Chick Flick.

Admittedly, I enjoy Jane Austin about as much as Oscar Wilde did. He once said he wanted to dig up her body and beat her to death again with her bones. I may have just lost all my female readers at this point but I'll press on. We will use movies based on Jane Austin books as good examples of Chick Flicks.

Chick Flicks have lots of love and commitment in them. Man Movies do not.

Before you begin to think we're simplistic in our approach to movies, there's more to it than just an aversion to scenes involvin' love and commitment.

There has to be action (mostly gun-shootin' action) and sex can have a part in the script but never real love. Oh, sure, the protagonist can fall in love with a girl but that only means he's likely to have to kill her later on in the movie.

War is a safe backdrop for a Man Movie but the Americans have to always win. That's why my posse has such a hard time understandin' foreign films.

Perhaps the best way to describe what a Man Movie is would be to contrast characters with super powers. If the most powerful character is the good guy, it's a Chick Flick. If he's the bad guy, it's a Man Movie.

Goin' to the movies with my Man Dates has become quite an enjoyable outing. It's been so much fun we've started to eat lunch together before the show.

Unfortunately, the first restaurant we picked was Mac's Kosher Style Delicatessen in Santa Rosa. My Sonoma girlfriend got wind of where we were going to eat and kicked up a fuss.

"I've been wanting to go there forever, Ben," she said to me when she found out. It was clear somethin' was botherin' her by the way her eye was twichin'. "Can I go with you?" she pleaded.

Well, I thought about it for a while before respondin' to her in the most honest way I could. "I guess it would be ok," I said. "But you may have to sit at the counter."

Napa Valley Wineries

Sonoma Wineries

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