Amanda Hooton agrees. In a recent Age article (In search of the new male order 26/08/06) she writes:
the Snag was terribly sensitive, terribly right-on, and terribly prone to wearing a ponytail ... He vanished precisely at the moment men realised nobody wanted to have sex with a Snag. Interestingly, his passing was unmourned by women, who'd realised the same thing. The Metrosexual was always on a hiding to nothing, because no woman wants a man whose skin-care routine is better than hers.
So what does Amanda Hooton like in a man? One thing she appreciates is when men are physically protective toward her. She praises her father for showing concern when she catches a taxi alone at night:
Show me a man ... who can say to me at 9pm when I'm leaving the house: "I'm worried about you catching a taxi. I don't like it. Please call me if you feel worried."
She also thanks the taxi driver who,
waits, engine idling, until I get my key into my door in my dodgy neighbourhood and step safely inside.
Which brings me to something else I found in last Saturday's Age. It's a quote from Boris Pasternak:
Everything in the world must excel itself to be itself.
I don't know the original context of this line. However, it expresses something I believe to be true and the real reason for a man to try to live an ever more masculine life. When we do so we are more likely to have that very rewarding sense of living through what we really are. There is no longer a sense of a failure to engage or connect. But it doesn't happen in halves, or in a misguided attempt to find a feminine side; it requires that breaking through to something less ordinary in ourselves which, perhaps, Pasternak is alluding to in the quote above.