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Co-op men weirdly helpless at home

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When it comes to getting things fixed around the apartment, men of all kinds--from single to married, straight to gay, young to old--can be just as needy as some women.

They come to the super, porter or doormen for help with the tiniest of jobs.

Plunging a toilet, tightening a doorknob, removing a dead mouse from an apartment (on a glue trap no less), loading a car.

Changing a 60-watt light bulb.

I mean, seriously.

Forgive me for being so blunt, but if this describes you and you are not ill or physically handicapped—and if you work as something other than a surgeon, concert pianist or a hand model—then it’s really time to assess what being a man is all about…and understand that if you’re in a relationship, a lightbulb is not just a lightbulb.

Like my wife says, it’s kind of sexy to see her man doing “manly” work around the house.

I’m no certified plumber, plasterer, roofer, or any kind of construction worker. But when things need fixing in my home, if there is any heavy lifting involved, whatever, you better believe I do it. All you need is a little knowhow and  some elbow grease.

(And no! Elbow grease is not a product that can be purchased in a hardware store, as one resident insisted to a handyman.)

In trying to be fair, perhaps the mentality of men who ask a building worker to perform a basic job in one’s apartment is simple enough: “That’s what we pay maintenance for."

Understandable.

But a turn-on, guys, it is not.

One night I went up to a resident’s apartment, where the Mrs. was complaining about her toilet, while her husband was still at work.

Upon hearing that the “ballcock” needed replacing, she replied “Tell me about it.” 

While I firmly believe that men should be somewhat adept at tackling odd jobs around the apartment, I have personally seen some women, single and married, take on much more difficult ones with ease.

For instance, I was impressed one night with a young woman who made her way to the lobby and requested to borrow a channel lock. Either she really knew her tools or had just finished watching some do-it-yourself program on cable.

It was kind of refreshing to hear "channel lock" coming from a female. Not like one gentleman, trying to take apart a small table, who asked a handyman to borrow “you know, they look like the shape of a stop sign. I think it has some guy’s name.” He was referring to a set of Allen keys.

In the end, the handyman did it.

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