28 Skills Every Man Should Have

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You’re born without them, spend a lifetime acquiring them, and check them at the door on your way out – and for what? To survive in the wild? To get rich and retire early? No. You acquire skills so you can be a man of action, because in a world in which everyone outsources and delegates, action is what sets you apart. So what skills would you like your man to have? If your man does not have some of these skills why not show him a few tips that would be helpful for all of you!


1.  Get a Busy Bartender’s Attention

The bartender does not hate you. He just wants patience. And a tip.  Pick your spot well. The best place to stand is at the bartender’s station, where he’s actually mixing the drinks. The farther you are from the station, the longer you’re likely to wait. Have your money in your hand where the bartender can see it, and avoid gesturing. Keep looking at him; he’ll make eye contact when he can. Did I mention no gesturing? That’s important. Tip wellat least 20 percent – or be prepared to wait (and wait and wait) for your next round.

2. Give a Good Massage

Forget the two-minute guilt-trip massage. We deserve a full forty-five minutes of pleasure. So says a woman who knows. 

Squeeze a dime-sized amount of oil into your palm, warming it by rubbing it between your hands. (Repeat as needed.) Start at the shoulders, squeezing them and the back of the neck before working down each arm, all the way to the fingertips, massaging the skin and muscles by kneading, squeezing, and gently pinching between your thumb and fingers. 

After the arms, start back at the neck and work your way down the lower back in horizontal blocks. Make circular, clockwise motions, using the same massage techniques as on the arms but adding the heel of your hand for larger areas. Finish up by using the palm of your hand to work the entire buttock area. The whole thing should ideally take about forty-five minutes, not counting any eventual reciprocity.

3. Buy a Woman Clothing: the only thing I would say about women’s clothing is: please men don’t buy us clothes!

4. Fillet a Fish

So you’ve got a dead fish, a knife, and, well, you should have some gloves for this. Here’s what comes next. Rinse the dead fish using sea or purified water – tap makes it taste funky – and if you’re going to cook it with the skin on, descale it using the dull edge of the fillet knife, scraping against the grain until the surface is smooth.

5. Make Eggs three Ways

Whether scrambled, poached, or sunny-side up, breakfast just got a little better.


Crack three eggs into a bowl. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and a tablespoon of milk. Whisk till extra fluffy, about twenty seconds. Heat pan with butter over medium heat and add eggs. Once they begin to solidify (about twenty seconds), start to softly scramble with a spatula. After another twenty seconds or so, when the eggs are two thirds of the way cooked but still wet, move pan to a cold burner and stir until barely cooked through.


Bring a pot of water to a light boil, and then add one capful of white vinegar. Crack an egg into a cup. Lightly stir the water to get it moving in one direction, then carefully pour egg from cup into the center of the pot. After about two minutes, retrieve egg with a slotted spoon and drain on a paper towel.

Sunny-Side Up

Crack eggs into a generously buttered pan over low-medium heat. Once whites are formed, about three minutes, spoon some excess butter or fat onto the yolk to lightly cook the top for one minute. Remove once the edges of the egg begin to get crispy.

6. Sew a Button

Because you shouldn’t have to ask the wife or your tailor for anything simple enough to do yourself. It even impresses us!

7. Console a Crying Woman

Being a gentleman means carrying a handkerchief, then approaching as if advancing on a wounded animal.

Keep a handkerchief on your person. A clean one, since it’s not for you. It’s for the crying woman.

When you encounter the crying woman (and she needs to be sobbing as if she’s been hurt – never approach a woman who is merely weeping or teary), approach her as if you’re advancing on a wounded animal that might still be able to bite – slowly, thoughtfully. Pull out the handkerchief.

 Say: “I’m sorry to disturb you, but is there anything I can do to help?” 
Whether she responds or not, offer the still-folded handkerchief. Point out that it’s clean. This should make her laugh.

If she hasn’t yet told you to go away (and if she tells you to go away, do so immediately), ask what you might specifically be able to do: stay with her, listen to her problems…
Proceed according to her wishes until she says she’s fine. Tell her to keep the hanky.

8. Calm a Crying Baby

First of all, don’t get all bent out of shape. Accept that the baby’s feelings are legitimate. The infant must perceive your empathy and calm and feel absolutely confident in it. Hold the baby close and walk around. Use the body heat from your torso and a lilting motion, moving at about the speed of a heartbeat. Speak in a low bass voice with a measured rhythm close to the baby’s face. If a few minutes of this treatment doesn’t calm the baby, the only thing that will is breasts. Which you don’t have.

9. Make a fabulous breakfast

Have you never cooked breakfast for children or drunks? Been a Boy Scout? Or had some friends spend the night over and expecting breakfast in the morning?

10. Fix the Toilet

No need to call Gomaa or Hanafy the porter for this easier-than-it-looks household repair. Learn from your plumber next time and then do it yourself!

11. Carve a Turkey

This is a manly exercise worth practicing before.

12. Make a Drink, Just for Her

Some women always know just what they want to drink. Some don’t. Some want a suggestion, a surprise, something light and delicious and just for them. Something like a fruity cocktail.

13. Pick a Ripe Fruit Expertly

Well, a cantaloupe, anyway. First, smell it: Premature melons smell green, grassy, stemmy. Ripe melons have a tendency to smell like the ripe flesh on the inside: sweet, sticky, and mellow. Then squeeze. An unripe cantaloupe is firm and unpleasantly crispy -you’ve had this at buffets. As it ripens, of course, it softens, develops dimples about the size of a thumb, and becomes easily squeezable.  

14. Jump-Start a Car

Find a buddy and grab the jumper cables. You’re five steps away from getting back on the road.

15. Shine a shoe

No more excuses.

16. Drive from coast to coast.

A two-day-long drive next to an open body of water is among the twentieth century’s most meditative gifts to travel.

17.  Do a flip off a diving board.

18. Scuba dive.

Breathing underwater for the first time is a complex and physically paradoxical moment. Every breath you take is loud, tastes bad, and is borne up from a gradually lessening anxiety. It must have been like this when you were born, and it will surely be like this when you die. The beauty is, now you can go deeper.

19. Play the Guitar

Learn three to four chords on the guitar, until you can play one song.

20. Live in a hotel suite for a week if you can afford it!

Lean into the services a good hotel offers as if it were a way of life and it will be. On the first day, order the same breakfast to be delivered to your room at the same time, every day thence. Tell them you like the newspaper on the cart, with no plastic bag. Take long showers. Stop in at the front desk for messages.

Greet the doormen with a twenty. Take walks. Take saunas. Learn the name of the room-service manager. Establish a routine involving a cocktail, the balcony, and a bowl of olives. Tell the concierge to make you seven dinner reservations for seven nights. Tell him to surprise you. After you leave, go back a year later and they will remember your name. At a hotel, it is good to be known.

21. Milk a cow.

So, place your hand on the udder – warm, a little pimply, vaguely wet – squeeze, and pull gently forward. The process is taxing only in terms of patience. The sound in the bucket is like lightly dragging a house key against a thick sheet of tin. Stay with it in service to the next act: the tipping of the bucket. Drink. You may not want another sip – in fact, you might not ever want half-and-half in your coffee again – but there is no denying that what you drink from that bucket is surprisingly warm, undeniably alive, and not at all what you thought milk to be.

22. Throw a real party.

Memorable for something other than cake, party favors or strippers!

23. Start something that scares you.

Deal with your most gnawing fears, the kind that have been present inside you so long that you deal with them mostly by avoiding them. Public speaking, that gut, the drinking thing, money. Make a plan. Like a 100,000 piece puzzle.

24. Cook the same thing (over and over) until you are known for it.

Choose something in between barbecue (the coward’s preference) and chocolate soufflé (stagy and useless on most occasions).

 25. Overspend.

26. Take care of someone else’s three-year-old for a day.

It may be rough going. But you’ll never learn a child’s humanity with a howdy-do. Time is the best gift you can give a child. The parents take time off too.

 28. Give up your seat.

It may mean nothing and you may be refused, but offering your seat is a thread of dignity and respect.

33. Bungee jump.

What the hell!

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