Mansplaining? Let me tell you what it means.

Yesterday, I learned a new term.


I was merely trying to help wifey with some keyboard shortcuts. I hadn’t seen it coming, I swear on my Cryptography book that stands glorious and upright in my book-rack, never opened, forever beckoning.

She was working on a photo-editing application, and in my opinion, her overuse of the mouse was slowing her down. So I did what a caring husband would do. I pulled a chair next to hers, and I tried to help her.

“Use command+shift+option+s,” I told her. She stiffened for a moment, then complied.
After a few seconds, when she had to do the same operation again, she reached out for the mouse. I stopped her.
“No. Use command+shift+option+s,” I said, a little sternly this time. She was wasting precious seconds, navigating to the menu to select the tools, and I could help her save that time. If only she’d listen.
She stiffened again, did what I had suggested, and grumbled a little – whatever she said was inaudible to me, so I ignored it. She’ll thank me for it later, I told myself.
After a few minutes, I realized that there was another operation that she was doing quite frequently, again with the mouse. She’s fairly quick with the mouse and she’s been working on the application for about ten years now, I grant her all that, but she doesn’t realize that keyboard shortcuts are faster. You see, I had to help her.
“Use command+B,” I told her, “you are wasting so much time navigating to the menu then picking the tool you need when it’s right at your fingertips.”
Suddenly everything went silent and very, very still.
“What? Use command+B,” I repeated, unaware of the storm that was brewing inside wifey’s chest. I should’ve noticed her flared nostrils…but it all happened so suddenly.
She threw back her chair, and stood up.
“STOP MANSPLAINING!” she shouted.
Honestly, I was stumped.
I had no idea what I had done to raise her hackles.
And I was totally blank about…
“What’s mansplaining?” I asked meekly.
She stared at me for two precious minutes, the minutes that she had saved by using the keyboard shortcuts I had suggested, then she typed in the term in Google.

Google Explains Mansplaining

I read the definition and blinked.
“But when was I condescending or patronizing?” I asked.
“All the time,” she replied, now in a calm voice, then proceeded to switch her computer off.

I’m still not sure what happened.

27 thoughts on “Mansplaining? Let me tell you what it means.

  1. Oh dear me! Yiu did npt just do that. Tsk… tsk… Again, I find myself taking her side. What’s wrong with using the mouse anyway 😛 I find this a relatively new term and one which is unnecessarily hyped. And I strongly protest to the bias against women in this term. We need a term called womenagging! I shall initiate a petition regarding this.

    1. You make a valid point, dear wandering soul. Wifey nags me often enough…we could’ve called it womenagging – but we didn’t…we just left it at nagging, but women decide to call the simple, loving, and kind act of a man explaining something to the woman he cares about – mansplaining? When you initiate that petition, I’ll be among the first to sign it. But hey! Wait! You meant something else, didn’t you?

    1. You spoke my mind, Sunita. Yes, that’s the solution. No shortcuts for her now on – she can spend all her years fiddling with the ears of that mouse…

    1. I asked, Bun. I never shy away from feedback. All I got from her was that Google search that she threw in my face, and an hour long spread of silence.

      1. Oh dear, very mysterious. Well, I’m sure you’ll find out the reason someday. In the meantime, perhaps you could improve the atmosphere by giving her a few more great tips about useful keyboard shortcuts.

        1. With friends like you to guide me, I am sure I’ll soon be replacing Anandhotep in his tomb. I’m maintaining a safe distance from her computer…in all other things, I anyway don’t meddle.

  2. Did you hear about the guy who (man) explained to his wife that she took 23 minutes (taking redundant steps around the kitchen) to make breakfast while it could be easily done in11 min? He made a whole map to show her how to cut down the steps and multitask. She accepted his suggestion and now HE makes breakfast in 11 min…

    1. Now why would an intelligent lady reject a plan that could save her 12 minutes, is beyond me. Trust me, wifey womansplains things to me more often than I mansplain them to her…(not that I can figure out how I can “not” mansplain if I explain something.) I think I am going to go bald before time…some of these things are beyond my comprehension.

        1. Oh right! But let us reason a little more. Most likely after her husband’s dinner-dash, she was left with a kitchen that looked like a battlefield…now whose job would it be to clean that? Draw chits.

    1. I still think I am innocent of any malice. I just wanted to help her. She tries to help me too – she can’t drive, but watch her telling me how to, all the time. I don’t understand why she couldn’t take it in the right spirit. You too think that I did something wrong?

  3. SMH! I don’t know how long you’ve been married, but obviously not long enough to know better than to tell wife how to do something without her asking. Or will you claim you were possessed by that musty pile of rags called Anandhotep?

    1. I learn something new everyday. SMH? Oh…what’s Google for. Barb, shouldn’t you be shaking your head at how wifey misconstrued my caring gesture and flung that terrible term in my face? That desiccated old mummy had nothing to do with this, I hope. The way wifey follows him around all day makes me wonder sometimes. He’s not here, but we are expecting him to arrive any day now – the next issue of QSM is due in a month.

      1. Sorry, bub. I’m on wifey’s side this time. IF you ever want to do some “mansplaining” again, may I suggest you ask first if she wants you to show her a better way? I really would not want to hear of your death at her hands.

    1. When am I not in trouble. I’m in trouble with wifey, with Mom, with Dad, with the neighbors…the list is long. I must change my name to Anand T., where T is for trouble.

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