The Art of Manliness Weekly Roundup: Men’s Grill Edition

by Brett & Kate McKay on June 28, 2008 · 18 comments

in Blog

In the New York Times yesterday, there was a story about a golf club in Phoenix that has a men’s grill- a grill where only men are allowed. No ladies. It was a place the men could go to get a beer, a nice juicy steak, and talk manly talk with other men. The women were relegated to the ladies grill where old women would play bridge and shush any young whippersnappers that were too loud. Well, the women folk in Phoenix were none too happy about this, so they’ve filed a complaint with the civil rights division of the Arizona attorney general’s office claiming the facilities at the women’s grill of the golf club are inadequate compared to the men’s grill.

Well the men are up in arms about this, and what are some of them doing to counter these angry women? Well, according to the article they’re driving in golf carts up to the homes of women who are involved in the suit and peeing on their trees. Childish, not manly.

But regardless of their immature reaction, what do you think? Should men have their own places to hang out sans women?

Now for some links:

25 Tips to Stay Married (@ the standard times [via the art of intimacy]) Great advice on marriage. Marriage isn’t something that just happens. It takes work. The number one tip? “Put her first.” If you can do that, you’re well on your way to having a successful marriage.

The Nonconformist’s Guide to Personal Finance (@ get rich slowly) A different take on personal advice. I wish I could have followed #3: no student loans. I’m up to my ears in student loans. I would love to get rid of the debt as quickly as possible.

The Fedora Lounge This is one of my favorite discussion boards. When you go there, you’ll see why. It’s all about classic style- the era when men dressed like men. Check it out and sign up.

Not Being a Real Person (@ the growing life) An interesting look on not doing the “normal person” route. Sometimes being a man means marching to the beat of your own drummer.

From the archives

Spark Up Your Marriage: 4 Ways to Date Your Wife All Over Again Part of keeping your marriage alive is continually courting your wife. In this post, we take a look at four ways a man can do that.

At the forums

What did you do today? Awesome thread where people share what they did for a workout each day. Great place to get ideas for new routines and motivate each other. I’m impressed with our readers’ workouts. They’re animals.

How are you coping with high gas prices? People sharing what they’re doing to adjust to the high gas prices.

{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Kevin (ReturnToManliness) June 28, 2008 at 10:18 am

On the men’s only club, I like the idea, but in today’s society where everyone is really on the edge about this sort of thing…it’s tough. The men peeing on the tees…couldn’t say it better…”childish”…

The Fedora Lounge is awesome. What a fantastic forum. Thanks for the heads up on this board!!!

Great link for the 25 tips and your own, Spark Up Your Marriage. Both of these are really good.

I have a manliness trait that fits well with the 25 tips and dating your wife all over again. The trait is Try To Be Interesting, But ALWAYS Be Interested. I think it works in all kinds of situations.

2 Nicholai June 28, 2008 at 10:54 am

Of course there should be men-only hangouts, just like there should be women-only hangouts, as long as equal regard is given (unfortunately it sounds like the facilities are unequal in this case). Some things are not meant to be discussed in mixed company, and I don’t see sipping a gin and tonic and debating who makes the best badger hair shaving brush as something that would interest many women.

3 sarai. June 28, 2008 at 12:05 pm

I’m fine with men- or women-only hangouts, in principle… but in practice, separate often entails unequal. The NYT article mentioned that the ladies’ grill had not much beyond a hot plate and a few card tables. For a country club? Something’s lacking.

4 lou June 28, 2008 at 5:28 pm

damn women just want to get their claws into everything these days.

5 Steve June 28, 2008 at 6:26 pm

This is ridiculous. Why don’t we argue about whether there should be whites-only or straights-only facilities? Prejudice is prejudice and inequality is inequality; you can have a manly conversation with your friends if women are sitting across the room or at the next table. First, the idea that women would be scandalized by mantalk is true… if the women walked into the club from their home in the 1920s. Secondly, if you’re so loud that your voice carries very far, you’re drunk and you should have stayed home.

6 Greg June 28, 2008 at 7:29 pm

I wish to state loud and clear that there are, all over the place in my area, women only gyms and weight lose programs and other such organizations that no one ever feels the need to protest or complain about. I can’t find anyplace, except my own garage, to work out without having to share the facility with over weight, spandex clad women. (And I would be laughed out of the place if I ever tried to join a women only gym…not that I would.)
What’s wrong with men having their own place. if these women want to complain about something let them go to the country club. Get their own facility upgraded to an acceptable level. Unless they just want to shut down their “menfolk” out of jealousy or plain old spite. This is good thing. Men need a place to get away from women and vice-versa.
However, peeing on peoples’ yards is stupid and, as you said, childish.

7 Ella June 28, 2008 at 8:25 pm

I generally love this blog. I read it because I respect men and like that you’re talking about traditional masculinity in such a positive way. But I wish you hadn’t posted this.

Why? Because as soon as I saw this, I thought “Oh great, now we’re going to get a bunch of bitter people snarling about how women are taking things away from them”, and lo and behold-!

It’s sad to me to see the standard-issue ungentlemanly responses in these comments that I can get anywhere else on the internet. Men and women are not at war with each other, and I really thought that The Art of Manliness was the one place on the internet where I could – respectfully, understanding that it’s not my house – read male discourse without having to see people say things about “having to share the facility with over weight spandex clad women” (wow, how dare anyone in less than perfect shape dare join a gym?), and those damn women trying to get their claws into everything these days.

8 Greg June 28, 2008 at 11:01 pm

I just meant that I would like to have a place to work out, like women have, without the opposite sex around.
I apologize about the snide remarks. Sorry if I offended.

9 SonofShiba June 29, 2008 at 12:52 pm

I think some of you may have missed the point here. While the segregation of men and women — unequally no less — is certainly an immature and backwards policy for a country club of such apparently high regard, it’s important to remember that it nonetheless is a private facility and can enact whatever policies regarding the sexes it wants (remember: freedom implies the freedom to be prejudice). I don’t buy the Sitterts’s argument — or the attorney general’s for that matter — that just because the club holds events and tournaments it somehow is subject to public antidiscrimination laws. It just doesn’t hold water for me. No one’s tax money is being used to pay for the club, and people are free to join or leave the club at their own discretion (which is exactly what Mr. Sitterts and his wife should have done). Perhaps Brett can fill the legal holes in for me, but it just smacks of an attempt to grab voter attention by the Phoenix city government.

Yes, it was EXTREMELY childish the way the male members of the club acted as result of this situation, but is was equally childish that some people need to get the hand of government to interfere just because they don’t like the way private individuals enact policies on their property. Instead of taking the more sensible route and simply leaving the club to join a new one with a more gender-equal policy, they decided to get attention-seeking bureaucrats involved, and the precedent it sets can’t be good for anyone, male or female.

But I guess all’s well that ends well, seeing how the club is renovating to accommodate better equality standards for women. They should have done this ages ago, but it’s a shame that the threat of legal action — as opposed to free choice and the power of the purse — had to be the catalyst for change.

Just so I’m clear, being fair and equal with both sexes is manly, and very much so I might add, but trying to shove equality down people’s throats for insignificant reasons like this, isn’t. A real man shows how to be a man; he doesn’t force others to be a man for him.

10 DocDavis June 29, 2008 at 1:51 pm

You are absolutely right. No one has the nerve to stand up and call Curves- A women only gym -on discrimination. Yet there it is, plain as day, NO MEN ALLOWED. Why are men not accorded the same privilege? I think the main reason is that we, as men, are too quiet. We need to apply for membership and sue on the grounds of discrimination when it is rejected to bring the matter to light. Don’t get me wrong, personally I have no problem with gender only clubs but whenever two men get together to talk some civil liberty do-gooder starts screaming “Unfair Unfair” and it is unfair. It’s unfair to US.

11 Reid June 29, 2008 at 5:51 pm

Ella has a point. Some men get pretty wound up about this issue, and have a tendency to act in some pretty ungentlemanly ways. The issue described is tough…a private club can indeed do as it sees fit. I can also understand why they would deem it prudent to have upgraded to equal facilities. Back to Ella’s point though. We aren’t at war with each other. There are times when I want to be in the company of men. Having had five sisters, frankly, there are times I would rather be in the company of women, but I wouldn’t want to sue the Girl Scouts to do it. That being said, if I was going to open a club, ANY kind of club, and allow both sexes admission, I would deem it prudent to make sure there were equal facilities.

12 Jaye June 29, 2008 at 7:26 pm

Monogendered places are usually sought out by both genders. Men don’t usually go off and demand access to Women only spaces, though it seems to happen occasionally in reverse. This place didn’t do things right, they tried but failed. There are already examples of spaces which women have their own spaces and men do not venture, and you know what, THAT’S COOL. But its unfortunate that there is a ‘shame factor’ involved in having a men’s only space, and there is the occasional situation where women demand to be in such spaces, despite the desire to be in a monogendered space.

13 Dan June 30, 2008 at 4:16 am

Single gender places in our society are a good thing. Women need places to go where they can speak their minds and enjoy each other’s company without being judged, or “sized-up”, by men. I guess Curves is one of these places. It was established to provide a place for women to work out without men checking them out. Let’s face it guys, it is still very much a man’s world out there. Women are still very much objectified and if they need a place to go where they aren’t, isn’t that a good thing?

That being said, men need places like this too. There has been too much of a tendency over the past few years to change men to be more “acceptable” to mixed company. I’m not talking about the base crotch-scratching and peeing on trees. That’s just childish. But I am referring to men having a place to go where they can hang out and just be men without having to worry about women watching them and sizing them up too. This does happen. Don’t deny it! Men act differently when women are around and need a place to relax. A PRIVATE facility is perfectly acceptable for this. If people don’t like it, as others have said, don’t join! Create a better, co-ed facility to compete with the single-sex one and let the best club win. Women don’t need to encroach into men’s spaces and men don’t need to invade women’s spaces. Everyone just needs to respect each other. That sounds so simple, doesn’t it?

14 Jack June 30, 2008 at 9:56 am

I second everything Dan just said.

15 Max July 6, 2008 at 1:23 pm

It’s not discrimination as long as no one prevents women from having women-only clubs.

16 James September 23, 2008 at 12:25 pm

My previous girlfriend’s family belonged to a country club with a similar situation. Many times after a round of golf her father and i would have a scotch in the men only grill while the ladies waited in one of the other restaurants. This tradition was set in the ’20′s and the club is hard pressed to ever change it. The club made an effort to calm the squabble by dedicating one of the restaurants strictly to women. However, the Men’s Grill is where all the best amenities are located (i.e. locker rooms, sauna, ect.) . In all my time spent there only during family events such as 4th of July fireworks were there women allowed in (after a hefty tip of course). In my opinion i think that the Men’s Grill idea is one of greatness. True, men have the ball park, cigar bar, and such places that are typically not associated with women but they are also public. Personally i enjoyed those moments after a round of golf drinking scotch, having a smoke, and watching a game with the other men, With all the pressures we face at work, providing for a family, school, what have you it is a great feeling to just leave everything at the door…..much like your proverbial tree house with the “no girls allowed” sign. Juvenile, it may seem but the satisfaction remains.

17 Rick S. May 7, 2010 at 1:51 pm

Ooops, PC forgotten.

Yes, women need places of their own to hang out together with no men allowed. Men don’t want to talk about on quite a few of the issues women want to discuss and women don’t want to talk about certain issues or topics with men around. So why can’t they have their own ‘Women only’ clubs? Call it ‘The Women’s Lounge’ or ‘The Women’s Retreat’. Decorate it appropriately and tastefully to ensure comfort and relaxed atmosphere for women.

There are places where I wouldn’t expect to see a woman. A men’s room, men’s locker room, and a men only club. Men need to get away from their spouses and significant others just as much as women so what is the big deal about having a Men’s Grill? As long as the opposite sex has a similar retreat there shouldn’t be an issue. Just as women won’t discuss important (to them) issues around men, men won’t discuss important (to them) issues around women. So having a uni-sex (one sex) retreat is important to both sexes.

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