Ake's Pains debuted in the University of Akron Buchtelite in September of 1977. The school's reputation as an institute of higher learning has still not recovered. Ake's Pains returns after a brief 32 year hiatus. It's back, baby!

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Sometimes When We Touch – It’s Inappropriate!

Last time I provided rules for men on hugging females in non-sexual situations. Now it’s time to examine the much grayer area of non-sexual, versus sexual touch. This issue has been vigorously debated due to the enduring behavior of a newly-declared presidential candidate. However, this discussion IS NOT POLITICAL in nature. At the end of the post I will present two simple rules which will bring much needed clarity to this issue.

But First, A Funny Story From My Past

I almost got fired early at my first office job for inappropriate contact with a coworker ……

I had only been working there a short time when I was assigned the task of collecting the purchasing history and prices (it was a wholesaler) of one of our major products. Now today, you would type the part number into the computer system, download the data into an Excel file, and email it off. This would take at most five minutes, depending on spreadsheet formatting.

But this was the early 80’s, so I had to go over to something called a file cabinet, find the paper files that I needed, go back to my desk and write down the information on a paper tablet. The project took me over 6 hours to complete! (Six hours versus five minutes? That might be the most interesting part of this post for many people).

My desk was in the middle of a general work area (I hadn’t even earned my first cubicle yet!). The file cabinets were along the wall behind me, about seven feet directly behind my desk.  Of course, I soon got tired of walking back and forth to the file cabinets and learned how to push off my desk and roll my chair right over to the cabinets. It also helped me not to have to bend over to reach the bottom drawers.  Then I just pushed off the file cabinets to roll right back to my desk.

Of course, the first couple times I checked to make sure no one was at the file cabinets, but by afternoon, I just rolled back and forth routinely. Around 2 p.m., I pushed off my desk, and spun around with my hand extended ready to grab the drawer handle. However, my coworker Diane was bent over, searching the bottom drawer of the cabinet for a file. I slammed my foot down (Fred Flintstone style), my fingers only about an inch from her booty. I gasped, and then quickly moved the chair back to my desk, where I nearly hyper-ventilated, trying to recover from the almost-disaster that would have cost me my job.

Now I know what you are thinking. “Don that would have just been an honest mistake. Everyone would have believed your story and laughed it off.”  Unfortunately, no. This would have not involved grabbing Big Bertha, or even Aging Alice.  No, this was young, smoking-hot Diane. And that rump was Grade A – prime. Those buns would have won a blue ribbon at the state fair.  Guys, it was “Oh My My-rated”.

If I had in deed hit the target, Diane would have screamed and everyone in the vicinity would have known. I don’t think a jury of compassionate nuns would have cleared me. The old, perverted HR manager probably would have said “Ooooh, what did feel like?  Heh, ehhh heh, probably felt real good, didn’t it? Heh, heh, heh. You’re fired, get out of here!” No one would have believed I goosed that hooch by accident.

Non-Sexual Touch

I employ non-sexual touch all the time. Because I joke around constantly, I need to convey when I am not serious or sometimes to just emphasize the point I am making. This is accomplished by tapping the person with the back of my first two fingers. I routinely touch women (and men) this way when talking. Usually it is on the forearm or back of the hand. If seated, it may even be on the knee (but never the thigh and never the bare knee). If I know a woman well, I might put my hand on her shoulder, but only when offering assurance, removing it as soon as I stop speaking. And of course, a single encouraging pat on the back is acceptable.

There has only been one instance where this has caused a problem.  I was talking to the wife of a co-worker at a distance and probably joking around as always do. I then had to immediately walk past her to get where I was going and I gave her my standard 2-finger tap on her upper arm. I walked a couple more steps, when her husband stopped me.

“You touched my wife” he said sternly.  (And I get that some guys are very protective of their woman)

I think I just gave him between an apologetic and confused look, and kept on walking. Of course, what I wanted to say was: “Dude, she ain’t that good looking! C’mon man.” But I like to keep my teeth in my mouth.

Sexual Touch

As I mentioned earlier, the debate about what is appropriate touching initiated by a man, to a woman has been blowing up the Internet. 
No, no, no,no, no!

Here is a list (probably incomplete) of the activates this man has been accused of or videoed doing:

Smelling her hair

Kisses the back of her head

Places and keeps his hands on her shoulders from the back

Then rubs/massages her shoulders

Leans in close to her and nuzzles her neck

Touches/holds/massages her face and neck

Puts hands on her shoulders and whispers in her ear

Grabs her around the waist from behind and holds her

Kisses her forehead

Rubs noses with her

Two Simple Rules

Are these behaviors sexual-touch or non-sexual touch? Here is the way to tell.

For Men: If you would not touch/initiate behavior in this way with another guy, then the touch/behavior is sexual in nature.

This makes things so clear.

Guys, ever smelled/sniffed another guy’s hair? – Didn’t think so …..

Last time you cupped another guy’s face in your hands? – Yeah, right ….

Hand’s around the waist from the back? – Not so much…

Kiss on the forehead?

No, no, no, and nooooooooooooooooooo!

I will admit I have whispered in another guy’s ear, which frequently happened over the years during business presentations.

Me: (whisper, whisper) Our boss is a real butt-head

Colleague: Yeah, huge butt-head

But at no time did this whispering ever include a “neck-nuzzle”!

For Women: You are standing talking to a beautiful, younger woman at an event, when your husband approaches her from behind, massages her shoulders and kisses her forehead. If you are the least bit upset at any type of this behavior – It is sexual touching.

I do know that if I rubbed noses with the chicky-babe in that situation, my nose would not be good for any function, until a week after they removed the cast.

So these are my simple rules for non-sexual versus sexual touch.  Once again, I AM NOT MAKING A POLITICAL statement, judgement, disqualification, endorsement or condemnation.  You political maniacs may now resume your slicing and dicing and figure it all out!

My work here is done ……

Monday, April 22, 2019

Man-Rules For Hugging Women

If things weren’t confusing enough for guys these days, now men are getting confounded about what forms of physical contact with women are socially acceptable. This is a hot topic due to some past “handsy”, and somewhat creepy, behavior by a famous politician which is causing an uproar on traditional and social media.

But don’t fear guys, I’m here to help you make sense of this situation and to provide some rules of behavior in these perilous times. We will look at two types of physical contact: Hugging and Non-Sexual Touch.


You may think hugging is a normal, innocuous behavior, but you would be wrong! And this is because of some frisky guys who don’t follow the rules. A couple years ago, a prominent, local politician had to resign due to one inappropriate hug with a staffer. Now I don’t know if his hands went too high or too low or too active, but something when amiss. He never disputed the accusation and resigned immediately. Also, one of the women accusing the before mentioned famous politician of bad behavior said: He hugged her "just a little bit too long”.

Now I must confess before we deal with this issue, that I once hugged a married woman inappropriately. Worse yet, I committed this naughty act at church, in front of about a thousand people, including the pastor.

The Story

I was a member of my church’s drama team and we were performing a fairly complicated sketch involving six actors. I played the husband, and Paula, a pretty, but not exceptionally beautiful woman, played my wife. At one point in the sketch, we hug.  It’s not important to the story, it’s just a transitional move to get her and another character off stage.

Now we probably rehearsed the skit almost a dozen times that week, but we never actually practiced the hug. Having a man and woman who are married to other people, repeatedly embrace each other over a short period of time is not a wise idea, and rightly frowned upon as a church activity by pastors everywhere.

Sunday morning, we perform the sketch reasonably well and the congregation enjoys it. I am walking down the hall with Paula so we can rejoin the service through the back of the auditorium, when my “wicked man-brain” informs me of something. “Hey Donnie, smooth move placing your hands on her @$$ during the hug. Nice touch!” I immediately stopped walking and said to Paula, “Uh, I had my hands on your butt during the hug! I am so sorry”. I could tell by the look on her face that she had indeed noticed my infraction, but she also could tell by my expression it had been a mistake and she forgave me – as did her husband who was watching, by the way. And I must point out, there was no squeeze. Bun contact, yes. But no squeeze. You can be sure my hands were place higher during the second service performance.  

So because guys are dense, and don’t want to mess up, here are the rules for hugging a woman which you are not romantically involved:

The Rules:

1.    To Hug or Not to Hug, that is the Question

Some people are huggers, they hug everyone. Others are not, and prefer handshakes over hugs. (This one also applies to men in non-business settings). This can create an awkward situation when greeting your platonic female friends and associates. If you initiate a hug and it is rejected, the best course of action is to gently pat her on the back and return quickly to your own personal space. Be sure to remember her preference for future reference.

However, you can also mess up by offering a handshake to a hugger. So you can offend a hugger by not hugging them. Sometime the offer of a handshake is rejected and they initiate the hug or they can shake your hand but are upset with you because you didn’t want to hug them.

Now I know what you are thinking: Don, you said I could get in trouble if I hug the woman, but I can also get in trouble if I don’t hug the woman? This sounds complicated and confusing to me.

And may I remind you we are dealing with women here, so just do the best you can under the circumstances.

2.    Keep Your Hands Above Her Waist

Absolutely no contact is permitted with the buttocks (especially in front of 1,000 people at church). She may have an impressive booty, so focus, focus, focus! And no contact, means no contact – It may be comfortable to rest your hands
No, no, no, no, no!!!!!!!!!!!!!
on the top of that area, but get them up, Son.

3.    Observe the 3-Second Rule – Always Release First

Hey, the old 3-second rule in basketball apply. One-thousand-one, One-thousand-two, release! If you break off the hug too soon, she will think there’s something wrong with her. If she releases the hug before you, you have hugged too long, and she may be irritated about this.

4.    Don’t Squeeze Harder Than She Does
Always allow the woman to control the intensity of the hug, and try to respond back in kind.  Remember, it’s just a hug, you are not dating.  Oh, and no grinding!

5.    Keep You Man-Urges In-Check

On certain occasions you will have the opportunity to hug a smoking-hot woman. Try to focus on the task at hand. The local politician mentioned earlier, apparently lost control when hugging a hottie and went hyper-hansy, probably violating all the rules above and more.  Maybe they had to separate him using the jaws-of-life.  Try to make a mental recording of the hug, which of course you can playback later as many times as you want.


And one note about handshakes. My friend Debbie finds it uncomfortable if a manshake lasts too long. – “We are shaking hands – not holding hands”. Also, she says it’s creepy when a guy employs the two-hand (hand-over-hand) shake. This implies that the contact is more intimate that it should be.

So, there are the man-rules guys. Follow them and you should be able the keep your job, not get slapped in public, and maybe someday even run for public office. And no need to thank me ladies, it’s just part of my job. Although if you want to hug me the next time you see me, well ……

Next Time: What Is Appropriate Touching Behavior?

Tuesday, April 2, 2019

True Confessions: I Once Was A Male Model

There is something I need to confess. I want to get this sordid event from my past out in the open before TMZ, Perez Hilton and others report on it and a scandal erupts. A scandal so salacious, it would knock my book off the New York Times Bestseller list.

Okay (deep breath), here’s my confession: At one time in my life, I worked as a male model. My body was displayed on the Internet and my services were offered for sale. But I want to be clear, I need to emphasize: At no point did I work in the nude, and THERE WAS NO MONEY SHOT.

Now I know at this point you think I am making this up, but I assure you I am not. By the end of this post, I will reveal never-before-seen photographs as visual proof. This is not an April Fool’s joke, I am posting this on April 2. This post is unfortunately true.

It all started a little over ten years ago when I saw an article in the newspaper about a new, local company holding auditions for “actors” to serve as spokespeople in commercial promotional videos. It said models of all ages and types were needed.

I never expected to make much money but it sounded like fun. I had no aspirations of “GOING HOLLYWOOOOOOD!” I did have several years of acting experience, playing such diverse roles as Forrest Gump, Elwood Blues, a newborn infant, and an infomercial announcer, in church sketch dramas. And I had served as a hands model (yeh Seinfeld fans) in an instructional video once.

I passed my on-camera audition easily, even though I was distracted by the extreme hotness of the ladies running this agency. The sweat I had to wipe from my brow was not from the bright lights. I then did a professional photo shoot. Now I did have to pay out of pocket for this. I know this sounds like a scam, but it was not. The session was deep-discounted and involved several wardrobe changes. But I needed to emphasize again: At no time was I nude, not even in the dressing room. And even though I did “work it” some for the camera, THERE WAS NO MONEY SHOT. Although those ladies were so stunning that if they had asked me to disrobe, well, ah, let’s forget I even mentioned that.

The photos turned out well. I still use the headshot picture here on my LinkedIn
profile. My favorite are the basketball player shots. I am around age 50 in the pics, but I look like I am still a “playa”. Regardless, when these photos were taken, I was well past my prime. As I told people at the time, “I put the beef in beefcake”.

My photos and my sample video were posted on the firm’s website for anyone who wanted to hire me.  All I had to do is sit back and wait for the offers to pour in. I unexpectedly started to feel the part. I lost some weight for the photo shoot and bought some moisturizer recommended by my friend Jan, a Mary Kay rep. I know moisturizing is not a manly thing to admit, but I had to take care of the “moneymaker”, didn’t I?

But now I had to announce this new venture to my family and friends. I revealed the news to my wife and daughters at dinner. It was met with raucous laughter. When my oldest daughter stopped chuckling, she said, “Dad, all the male models I know of are either hot or gay. And you are not hot!” Likewise, I took quite a bit of ribbing from my friends at work. When I went with the guys to a baseball game, they made me sit in the middle. My friend Mike instructing, “Kevin, you sit on the end in case any women recognize him and try to get too close. I’ll catch any foul balls that come this way because we must protect the moneymaker at all costs.”

Although I told my friends at work about my new adventure, I didn’t make a big deal about it, and ironically this caused a “scandal”. One day, someone on the second floor at work stumbled upon the website and my photo. Suddenly, in true gopher-cubicle fashion, all productive work stopped as everyone was
fixated on my video. I was alerted to this occurrence by my friend Brent who ran downstairs with the news. Yes, my secret life had been revealed and was turning into a scandal.

My fear was that I would have to explain myself to the older, sexually-repressed, woman in HR.

HR Woman: I heard you are moonlighting as a male escort.

Me: No, not an escort. Just promo videos.

HR Woman: Did you do any nudes?

Me: No nudes!

HR:  Woman: I heard there was a moneyshot.


Fortunately, there were no repercussions. Although, I thought some of the woman in the office were trying to undress me with their eyes later that day.
Unfortunately, my life as a male model was unsuccessful. I did not get one gig. The main reason is that I was competing for jobs on the website with a bevy of super-smoking hot, young women who were actual models. I mean, who needs beefy-cake when there is there is some hot …. well you know.

It just would have been so fun to do one video and get paid for it. I don’t care what it was for, I know I could have delivered the key lines in a persuasive professional matter. For example:

For Barbara’s Pet Grooming Salon: “Let Barbara clip your cat, groom your dog, or trim your pussy”

For: Sam Spurgeon’s Septic Sucking Service: “We suck so hard, your septic tank calls to thank us the next morning”

But it was not to be. My career as a male model was boring and uneventful. And to my knowledge, all photos and videos of me in this venture have been removed from the Internet. I’m not sure about the dark web, however. But I am sure that if you would find anything there, I am not nude and THERE WAS NO MONEYSHOT!