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When yer lurvable CH manor lord was a wee lad sprinkled with fresh down, many illusory obstacles set themselves in his path to mastering the hearts of newly teenaged girls in the plum ripeness of supercuteness. He would carefully listen to them dictate to friends in squealing cadence the qualities they loved about the boys they loved. Words like “cute”, “hottie”, “great body”, “muscular”, “flat stomach”, “bedroom eyes”, “so sweet” and related would zip around from ear to ear, never reaching a depth of analysis beyond the barest superficiality.

Schoolboy CH would then examine himself for this or that girl-approved quality and decide he had come up short compared to the handful of boys who best exemplified what the girls claimed they loved. Momentarily discouraged, CH grit his teeth and put into motion plans of passionate adolescence that would vault him to the ranks of the beloved.

But a funny thing happened on the way to molding himself into the male blueprint drafted by girltongue: CH stayed alert long enough to notice the kinds of boyfriends all that supple teenflesh eventually began to gravitationally orbit. These boyfriends were, in the unsparing judgment only a teenage boy can summon, neither cute nor hot nor muscular nor temperamentally sweet. They were quite often funny-looking, soft, pudgy, awkwardly bony, and clearly unsweet. They did not have bedroom eyes; they had mole eyes.

But one thing they DID have, and a lot of, was preternatural confidence. They walked and talked with bravado. They stood athwart their girlfriends with impassive stubbornness. They nodded with a glaze of coerced recognition in the general direction of the girls who were showering them with admiration and affection. They moped with a practiced air of perpetual dissatisfaction. They were heartlessly cruel and emotionally blank. They crushed romantic hopes like a bulldozer smashing grub life to mush.

And beautiful babes loved them.

From those earliest beginnings, a truism about the soul of woman would guide CH to the heights of romantic bliss. He had learned, and not a moment too soon, to watch what women do and ignore what they say about their romantic needs. For all the men who knew nothing about what women wanted, even fewer women knew themselves.

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