Eugene, OR —

Area Man Evan Marshall is not like other guys. When other men talk, he listens. “Can you believe there are still men out there who don’t even let women finish their sentences?” he laments. “I can’t imagine being that way. When a woman tells me that mansplaining exists, I make a special effort to hear her out, let her express herself fully, before slowly explaining to her how she’s wrong. To be any other way is just the height of arrogance.”

In an in-depth and illuminating interview, Marshall begins to express some early signs of introspection about all this. “Women open up to me because of my progressive views about, for example, their body issues. Because they know that I listen, with all the manufactured patience and sympathy I can muster. Then I respond thoughtfully about how my own workout routine doesn’t cause me any problems and how they should probably be focusing more on high-intensity, whole-body exercise if they really want results. You can see the gratitude in their eyes when I tell them this, because they see a leader in me, a role model who will be attentive to their words while also helping them snap out of their petty issues.”

Despite being steadfast in his conviction, Marshall struggles to understand why he doesn’t receive more credit for this selfless act. “I actually don’t have a lot of success with women. I have no idea why, because they admit I’m a catch – I sometimes remind them that I’m a lot more understanding than most guys, and they always end up sighing and agreeing with me. Just yesterday, I was on a date and the girl was trying to get philosophical and political with me. Anyone who went to college with me knows that I’m very philosophical and open-minded, so that was great. So, she’s talking about how material conditions for women throughout history have denied them the chance to pursue accomplishments anywhere near to the extent wealthy men could. I was a perfect gentleman throughout this conversation. It wasn’t until I made eye contact, gave her my undivided sympathy, and let her feel heard, that I even began to point out how there are no female Shakespeares or Tolstoys. Even though she seemed somewhat grateful for my monumental level of understanding, I remain hopelessly unfellated. I guess it’s true what they say,” Marshall sighs. “Nice guys finish last.”

By William Boffa