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Blowing It 

How men can make menopause easier to swallow

So -- we can't take estrogen anymore. Who needs it? Pills made of pee from pregnant horses? Who thought this was a good idea? Estrogen makes you bloated, weepy, sore-breasted and eager to eat everything in sight. It makes you feel like you're pregnant. It gives you cancer. Is this what we really want in the bloom of our maturity?

Guys like to put women on estrogen 'cause it makes us docile and placid. No mood swings, no bitching, no flashes of truth -- all those things they think of as "symptoms." But it's not the estrogens we miss in the 'pause. It's the androgens. It's a scientific fact that young ovaries produce lots and lots of androgens. That's the feel-good stuff.

That's what makes you strong, brave, aggressive and eager to stay up all night doing the wild thing. It's the decline in androgens that makes you blue and weepy, like you don't care if you ever go shopping or have another orgasm again.

That's bad. That's a problem.

But there is a cure. Don't bother your doctor, don't start injectables; they'll cost a lot of money and give you zits. The formula we need is free, natural and readily available; in fact, there's presently an oversupply in this country.

You know what I'm talking about: that little twig-and-berries arrangement down in the undies of the guy who's snoring away in your bed. Some people call 'em Big Dogs, but, like a lot of marketing, that can be misleading. If you are a lesbian, it's not a problem. Surely you have friends who would help out the way they did when you wanted a kid.

Eeew, you say. You have spent your entire life avoiding the dreaded blow job. What kind of attitude is that?

Look at the positives. With most guys it takes about two minutes. A couple of beers beforehand can make it even quicker. Of course, Viagra may throw that off somewhat. And, yes, you do have to swallow. But twice a week, two minutes, is nothing when you begin to understand the benefits.

Your mental focus improves. Your skin becomes stronger and more elastic -- especially those little lines around your mouth. How do you think those old gay guys get those killer complexions?

Any iron-pumping gym rat will tell you it's androgens that beef up your muscle tone, strength and coordination. See Jane pop that pickle jar open, blast through the mud in the driveway, and drag that Lawn Boy out of the ditch with her bare hands!

There are additional benefits that you may notice right away. The house is vacuumed, the oil is changed in your car, the recyclables are out the door on time, and you are not lifting a finger. In medicine we call this "the donor effect."

He's starting to arrange "quality time" for the two of you. Private moments. Sexy little dates. Go figure.

In my case, he brings a tea tray into the bedroom in the morning and gets the kids off to school early, saying, "I'll be right back! WAIT THERE!" Plus, I have a new bookshelf in the study. My tires are rotated. The bathroom floor is buffed to a deep gloss... You see where I'm going here.

This could change the world. And don't worry about age; this form of "activism" can go on indefinitely. It's probably even better once you lose a few teeth.

And, you've heard about male menopause -- andropause. That's the new disease the medical establishment thought up to create a midlife-crisis hormone market for men. Guys who are worried about this now have a whole new option to consider.

That would really change the world.

Of course if I start swilling tallboys, subscribing to the hockey channel and peeing all over the bathroom floor, I'll have to cut back my dose.

Katharine Hikel, MD, is an independent physician in Hinesburg who is currently out of town.

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