Recently a dispute between two men in their 50’s made the news. This conflict involving next-door-neighbors in an upscale, gated community resulted in one of the men receiving six broken ribs, including three displaced (serious) fractures. The reason for the fight is still unknown, but speculation is it may have been over grass clippings, or some other trivial matter.
This incident only made the news because one of the subjects is a U.S. Senator, but I believe fights such as this, involving middle-age men, happen all over the world on a daily basis. Why are these guys so angry that they are crackin’ ribs over inconsequential matters? It’s all the result of something I’ll call Middle-Age-Man-Rage.
But what causes Middle-Age-Man-Rage? To understand this, we must track a man’s progression through his age periods. The capability of a man to mature is dependent how his ability to manage and control his testosterone. This is much harder than it sounds and if you follow the news, you know some guys never quite figure it out.
Young guys (age 18-30) are filling up with testosterone and are trying to establish their territory and develop their image. They will eagerly resort to fisticuffs (or unfortunately, gunfire) if either of these is threatened. They will fight over almost anything, especially women, with little regard for the consequences.
Men (age 31-49), let’s call them Trayfers, start to show more maturity as their testosterone amount levels out and they learn to manage it. By this time, their territory and image has been reasonably established. They have a better perspective on life and realize that most women are not worth fighting for.
Whoa! Time out! This statement is not a put down to you ladies! Reread the sentence. Even though you are worth competing for, wooing and courting, actual physical confrontations become rare after men reach a certain age. So please calm down. And I did say “most”. Yes, there are some women literally worthy fighting for. If I were single when I was in my 30’s, I would have readily put up my dukes for the likes of Marie Osmond or Shania Twain. Fortunately, (for the other guy) I was never given this opportunity.
Now, you must remember the general description for Trayfers does not apply to men with very high levels of testosterone. These guys will continue to aggressively acquire more image and territory at any cost. They will antagonistically pursue power, money and hoochie. These bass-turds often become CEOs and bosses, not because they are any better or any smarter, but because they just desire it more and eliminate the competition.
But sometime during your 50s, an extremely dreadful change begins. Your testosterone levels steadily decrease resulting in various deleterious changes to your body. In addition, you suffer a pronounced loss of influence. Your “territory” and image (among other things) actually begins to shrink. The results are devastating to the male ego and psyche. For example:
- Young women begin calling you “Sir”, not as a sign of respect, but because you are old. It is code for: “I know you find me beautiful and I know you find me desirous, but you are way too old for me.”
- At work, you are no longer a rising star, but a fading light. You may find yourself reporting to a younger, empty-headed, butthole boss, who is the new golden boy. You may discover you are the oldest one in the room, however your great wisdom gained through experience is deemed inferior to the swell new ideas from the Millennials.
- Your children are now adults and don’t listen to you at all anymore. Your daughter even values the financial advice of her dope-smoking, community-activist husband, more than yours.
- Your wife doesn’t listen to you because she’s heard it all before, numerous times. You are just a broken record in an MP3 world.
- Your female friends start complaining about someone making creepy comments on their Facebook feed. You wonder who this creep is, but then you can’t understand why you just got unfriended.
All this stuff really super fizzes off the ageing male and sends him into Middle-Age-Man-Rage. He becomes a raging lunatic who feels he is in danger of becoming irrelevant.
In response, he begins to behave oddly to prove he is still significance and has a manly presence. He wants to show that he’s still got it. He buys a red sports car, wears a toupee, sloshes on the aftershave, dresses age-inappropriately, marries a trophy-wife and wears lots of bling, etc. This bling thing is the weirdest of all. One gold chain is borderline silly, but more than one is laughable. And to strut around shaking your gold bracelet like it is a chick-lure, is ludicrous.
The middle-age guy is trying to hold on to his territory so he tries to expand his sphere of influence any way he can. This may include cigar smoking, dominating the air space, and manspreading, which is defined as “men sitting in public transport with legs wide apart, thereby covering more than one seat”. (Wikipedia)
Now on this manspreading thing, I will admit that it exists, but I try to give older guys the benefit of the doubt. There may be some things spreading out and expanding which you cannot see. My philosophy is: “Never judge a man until you have walked a mile in his prostate”. Uh, er, well you get the idea.
You have people treating you differently, you are losing your territory, you are losing your influence and you are physically breaking down as more hair is growing on your back than is growing on your head. GRRRRRRRRRRRRRR! You’re even too old to even transform into the Incredible Hulk, instead yourMiddle-Age-Man-Rage can only change you into the Incredible Bulk. Middle-age guys are walking around with a lot of frustration and any little grievance can set them off.
This results in more fights involving guys in their 50’s over stupid, meaningless issues. They will even pick fights with 30-somethings thinking they will kick their @$$ in order to teach them a lesson. And when they were in their 30’s they could indeed kick their @$$. But now they are middle-aged and they are no longer the kicker, they often become the kick-ee. But they try anyway, all due to Middle-Age-Man-Rage.
As their influence and control wanes, middle age guys cling on to anything they can still control. This is why their lawn greatly increases in importance as they age. You will defend your land like a Viking. While a grumpy old man (very low testosterone) can only shake his fist and yell at people to get off his lawn, a middle-age guy, filled with Middle-Age-Man-Rage will physically fight to protect it!
That’s why it wouldn’t surprise me that the fight involving the Senator and his neighbor was about yard maintenance. It has to be something trivial, because both parties are too embarrassed to fess up. And yet, due to Middle-Age-Man-Rage, the result is life-threatening injuries and a 4th-degree assault charge. Yes, Middle-Age-Man-Rage is real, and painful for all involved. Including and maybe especially, their wives.
Middle-Age-Man-Rage is a dangerous thing. So please be kind to us middle-aged guys. We all already super-fizzed off, no need to aggravate us more.