Since I wrote 'Macho Male Friend' (MMF), I've had three hundred and seventy two requests to write a follow up. All of those requests have come from MMF. I spend a significant amount of time listening to his demands, ridiculous theories on life, love and the links between vegetarianism and homosexuality. So I've caved in. With stretched fingers, squeezed palms and gloves to protect me from the beer that seeps from his pores, I'm ready to massage his fat ego with my gentle soft hands.
I have a few examples of his ego to support my accusations. There's the time he was asked if he liked attending comedy shows, he replied, "Comedy not into it, I prefer my own stuff". Or when someone offered advice to me, which MMF did not agree with; he took me aside and said "Believe fifty percent of what you read in the papers, fifty percent of what you see on tv, and everything I tell you". Occasionally I've experienced self awareness from MMF, he messaged me on Friday night; "The forecast for tonight; alcohol, low standards and poor decisions".
I made some bold claims in the last article. I believed it was possible to turn my MMF into an HMF (hippie male friend). My plan was to persuade MMF to attend a hippie dance, within three months, and confest by Easter 2014. It's been at least three months since I wrote that article, but he's been no closer to an ecstatic dance than I have to the MCG. I'm clearly employing the wrong method. I've learnt from working in education, that an incentive or reward can encourage changes in behavior, intention or even belief systems. The reward needs to be something MMF values dearly, beer, footy or tickets to soft rock bands like Pearl Jam, Birds of Tokyo etc. I'm not sure about girls, he's interested but they seem to be a fair way down the list. Given my financial status, lack of motivation and moral objections to buying sex, I've decided the easiest and least expensive option will suffice, beer and cider. The integration of these two alcoholic beverages creates something close to alchemy, in England it's called snakebite, it's effects are so severe that most pubs I frequented, in my youth, refused to serve it. Consumption of this concoction in significant amounts can lead to, loss of memory, extreme behaviors and urine soaked pants. Sounds perfect for my needs. All I have to do is get MMF to drink enough snakebite to lose control of his faculties, bundle him into a car and head off to confest. Technically this is kidnap, but the comedic value of seeing this man, wake up in the middle of hippiedom, would be worth a custodial sentence. And the money I'd make from filming this event could set me up for life.
The issue here is not exclusive to MMF. We all see ourselves in a certain way. I did suggest you'd have a hard time getting me to the MCG. But I've seen two games of AFL in ten years. If i can do footy, surely he can do confest. MMF isn't the only person I know that's declined an invitation to dance with me. There's SMOC and POMM to name and shame two.
The beauty of confest is it's designed to break through preconceptions, by challenging our ideas about what community looks like. Once experienced one is compelled to demonstrate a more accepting and experimental attitude to life. This is all I want for MMF, to experience all aspects of life, not just the stereotypical Aussie stuff. To his credit since he hugged me he's hugged another man, a stranger at the footy. I'd like to claim this as a minor victory.
There's one more thing I can try before 'operation snakebite' gets the green light. Ego manipulation, I simply explain to my MMF that if he doesn't attend confest, then they'll be no more articles about him. That might just work!