Why I am terrified of buck’s nights…

I guess the binge-drinking is comparatively enjoyable, but even that inevitably ends with some jerk suggesting a visit ...

I guess the binge-drinking is comparatively enjoyable, but even that inevitably ends with some jerk suggesting a visit to some seedy establishment with a name like “Eros” or “The Gentleman’s Club”.

Along with gymnastics and, uh, you know, slavery, buck’s nights rank highly on my list of the worst things the Greeks ever invented. Originally celebrated by the ancient Spartans with a simple dinner to honour a newly-coupled soldier, the occasion has since devolved into one of the creepiest and uncivilised of male rituals.

There is nothing fun about buck’s nights. The debauched male fraternising is hard enough to endure, but when coupled with insanely tedious activities like poker and golf and camping (the usual buck’s party schedule), it becomes intolerable. I guess the binge-drinking is comparatively enjoyable, but even that inevitably ends with some jerk suggesting a visit to some seedy establishment with a name like “Eros” or “The Gentleman’s Club”.

Thankfully, most of my friends are similarly averse to outdoor activities and objectifying women. Over beers recently, a newly-engaged friend discussed his probable buck’s night scenario, jokingly saying that we’ll most likely just end up sitting around playing NBA Jam on Xbox. “With strippers,” someone chimed in, hilariously satirising lame dudes everywhere. The fact is that strippers are what’s commonly expected of guys on a buck’s night, although in reality having a naked lady dance all over you while your friends are around is almost as uncomfortable as, say, watching Girls with your parents.

My first experience at a strip club put me off such establishments for life. I was just a shy high-school kid; somehow, one of my more “troubled” classmates discovered a club manned by a lackadaisical bouncer who never checked IDs and only charged $6 entry. Peer pressure (well, mainly crushing teen loneliness) got the better of me and I went along. Between not wanting to come across as a homo-prude around my pals and fearing I’d be spotted there by an uncle or family friend (in my paranoia, I imagined they were all club regulars), it was the most uncomfortable night of my young life. In an effort to be respectful to the working women, I spent the entire night either sheepishly looking down at my shoes or solemnly staring dead-locked into the strippers’ eyes (which weren’t nearly as sad as my own). That’s the strip club experience in a nutshell. I mean, it’s not as bad as going to the dentist but it’s also never as fun as “Rack City” (NSFW) and other rap videos make it seem.

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If buck’s nights are the bane of my existence, then hen’s nights are the paradise forever out of reach. Man, they seem incredibly awesome. They’re always held somewhere classy like tea parlours or vineyards where guests get to eat good food like Stilton cheese and scones, taste fine wines and drink expensive teas, and then probably even do an hour or two of karaoke later in the night. (Not that this is every woman’s experience, obviously: I have, on occasion, seen gangs of scary ladies stumbling down the street wrapped in glittery boas while absent-mindedly clutching handfuls of penis-shaped lollipops. Needless to say, this isn’t my kinda scene).

Like a child listening to a gripping bedtime story, I’m always amazed when my girlfriend comes home from a hen’s night and tells me wonderful tales of eating delicious profiteroles and cinnamon buns and little sandwiches with the crusts cut off.

“You didn’t even have to play golf afterwards?” I’ll ask, dumbfounded.

“No,” she’ll reply. “We just had some nice cocktails and then we went and danced to R&B songs for a few hours.”

It’s so cruel. Girls don’t know how good they have it.

I’ll never have a buck’s night. Or, if I do, it’ll involve a handful of people, some wanky microbrews and the TV set to whatever the heck’s on. And if some obnoxious tag-along yells, “Rob! Where’s the naked chicks?”, I’ll calmly say something cool like, “I don’t know, in the privacy of their own homes, I guess…”, and then if that obnoxious dude asks, ”Why?”, I’ll add, “Well, because f**k your gender stereotypes! That’s why.” And that’s how you kill a dumb, out-dated ritual. End scene.