So Esquire‘s list of 75 Skills Every Man Should Master has been everywhere lately. It’s a good read, and most of the stuff is applicable to both genders. Here’s my little list of seven things every woman should know how to do, because I lack the stamina to come up with seventy-five:
1. Entertain unexpected company. Invest in a cheeseboard, and then keep a big jar in your cupboard filled with bags of dried apricots and cranberries, almonds, hazelnuts, and a few bars of exceptional chocolate. All of it will keep for a while, if you can refrain from devouring everything while you watch an episode of Lost.
Now, in three minutes, you can dump out some fruit and nuts, chop up a chocolate bar, and arrange it all to maximum effect on the cheeseboard. If you have decent cheese in the fridge, it’s a bonus. Pow! You’re Martha Stewart.
2. Comfort someone in mourning. “I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.” And then as much silence as you can muster.
3. Celebrate. Good stuff is happening all around you. Pour a glass of champagne, pass around a box of chocolate, and say something memorable.
4. Break up with a poisonous friend. I had this friend in junior high, and every time I told her I liked a boy, she suddenly became very attentive towards him. I was too young to realize what was going on at the time, but by high school, and the fourth or fifth crush she’d pinched, I caught on.
Most of us have a friend or acquaintance who always leaves us feeling just a little bit worse. Maybe your mortifying missteps become her favorite amusing anecdotes. Maybe she throws her arm around your boyfriend’s shoulders with suspicious frequency. Maybe she guilt-trips you into piling a few favors atop your already hectic schedule. Whoever she is, stop calling her. Tell her you’re busy — so very busy — until 2050 or so.
5. Give a good blowjob.
6. Dribble a basketball, throw a football, kick a soccer ball. This stuff comes up. If you can’t do anything athletic at all, you start to look like the kind of girl who spends too much time getting mani-pedis.
7. Apologize convincingly. I was wrong. I’m very sorry. It won’t happen again.
If that doesn’t work, you may need to genuflect.