Dear Tell All: One of my coworkers invited me to a Man Cave party. I'm not exactly sure what it is, but on some primal level, I'm sure I don't want to go there. How do I get out of it?
Stan the Man
Dear Stan the Man: Dude, you're doomed. A Man Cave party is basically a Tupperware party for men. It's pyramid-based marketing, like Tupperware and Mary Kay, except they sell guy stuff: grilling tools, premium meats, poker products and home bar accessories - everything a guy needs to outfit his personal cave.
To quote the Man Cave website: "Man Cave empowers the everyday guy to be all that is man." Apparently that means "hanging out with the guys, eating meat, drinking beer and talking BS."
To make that perfectly clear, they call their parties "MEATings," which typically offer free meat, beer and demonstrations of Man Cave products, including their line of rubs and marinades.
I do have to admit that they have some entertaining "man laws": first and foremost: "No man shall ever turn down free beer...for any reason. Never. Ever. Seriously, never." And: "A man should never be denied the right to adjust himself or place his hands down his pants under any circumstances."
I want to be open-minded and say that there's no reason men can't enjoy giggling together over shiny man-toys, but I just can't imagine real men doing this. Call me sexist, but Man Cave started it by pushing the stereotype that all men are gluttonous MEATheads who think that grilling is a fine art. True male bonding is an organic and mysterious thing. Knowing when to give someone a man-hug, a butt-slap or a wet towel-snap is part of a delicate dance that can't be choreographed. To have a company try to package and market this as part of a business transaction seems far too contrived.
Now I could be completely wrong. Maybe these parties truly are crotch-grabbing fun. So if any of you have been to a Man Cave party and enjoyed it, I'd love to hear from you.
My advice to you, Stan, is to go to the party…as a spy. Eat and drink as much free stuff as possible. Buy absolutely nothing. Be all that is man and then report back to me.