Waffles & Spaghetti | Delightful Differences

Hey there and welcome to my review of  Men Are Like Waffles–Women Are Like Spaghetti: Understanding and Delighting in Your Differences – Bill and Pam Farrel.  A little context on this book, how I ended up with it in my possession and why I read it:

Having recently had a deep discussion on the home front, Meg had sent me a humorous excerpt from this book, I am looking for the link and intend to update with the exact excerpt, suffice to say, that after I read the excerpt I went right to Amazon and one-click bought it.  I decided that here I am constantly working on the *me* aspects some time could definitely be spent working on *us*, often ties it is so easy to fall into your daily motion and be super focused on what *you* need to do today to be more successful in business, work as a father, you can easily forget that you are part of a greater tea and of course think to yourself that the other part of your team should know you well enough to be able to read your mind and know exactly what you are thinking.  After all, this is the same face you make when you are irritated, happy or pondering the problems of the world, when you have an itch on the lower left side of your back.  I get it!

At any rate in tan ongoing effort to enhance our lives, designing a life worth living and not simply working for a living.. something like that I picked this book up without reading any reviews, had recommended prior to reading any reviews (the first chapter had me chuckling quite a few times so I recommended it to others).  This matters,  a little bit!

This book was written by a couple, Bill and Pam Farrel who are the cofounders and codirectors of Masterful Living, an organization that provides practical insights for personal relationships.  The Farrels are also regular relationship columnists.  The couple at the time of the printing (2001) had been married for 25 years.  I simply highlight this as at some point it will relate to the views given within this book.

How so?  Fifteen years have passed since this book has been written and some of the views found in this book are slightly dated, by my own measure that is.  While the couple is mostly symbiotic throughout most of the book, I found the portrayal of the wife and her role to be more submissive than that of a partner on the level.

Another area in this book that would generally not be a turn on for most is that it had a heavy religious overtone, and spoke often to God, which in all fairness is not a concern, as you can easily replace the word with “higher power” or “supernatural external forces” should you so desire.  You should find that most of the scripture in here will easily be transferrable and applicable to modern day relationships & feelings.  All of that being said there are some great take aways from this book!

If we focus on the main title:

Men are Like Waffles.  What does this mean?  Men are fluffy light and delicious for breakfast, lunch or dinner?  With chicken & gravy!?  No.  According to this book, it says that men process life in boxes.  That the boxes are separate, walled-up rooms, and make convenient holding spot.  Stating that throughout a mans life they will process only one box at a time… This makes some sense, looking back I was never a fan of the Rubric’s Cube, too many boxes to contemplate at the same time, my solution had been to simply peel the stickers off and rearrange appropriately.  Again according the book men only focus on one thing at a time, compartmentalizing them.

The book further states that men are problem solvers by nature.  They enter in a box, size up the problem and formulate a solution.  Fair enough, I can say with certainty that I am always attempting to offer a solution to anything that sounds like it is in need of one.

The book sums man up by saying that they will spend tie doing what they are best at, while they attempt to ignore the thing which causes them to feel deficient.  Not sure about you, but isn’t that anyone?  And once you recognize that, don’t you work on repairing your deficiencies in an attempt to at least become resilient?  You may be able to see that this line of thinking didn’t sit too well with me.

Women are like Spaghetti:

According to the book, they state in contrast to the mens compartmental approach, women process life more like a plate of spaghetti.  Should you be looking at a plate of spaghetti, you will notice a lot of individual noodles that are all touching each other.  If you try to follow one noodle you would interest a lot of other noodles.  You may even switch to another noodle seamlessly.  Every thought and issue is connected to every other thought and issue in some way.  Life is more of a process for women than it is for men.  According to this book.  They further this by stating, that this is why women are typically better at multitasking than men.  They state that most women are in pursuit of connecting life together, that they solve problems but from a much different perspective than men.  For women to quickly solve a problem when the issues involved in the discussion are disconnected from each other is an act of denial.  And so women constantly sense the need to talk things through.  In conversating, she can link together the logical, emotional, relational and spiritual aspect of the issue.  The links come to her naturally, so the conversation is effortless to her.  If she is able to connect all the issues together, the answer to the question at hand bubbles to the surface nd is readily acceptable.  According to the authors.

What happens if she can’t!?  The book does not address that!

You will find all of this in the first chapter of the book and it ramps up from there.

There is plenty of helpful information in this book, provided you are looking for it and if you are able to get past the perceived sexism & religious overtones.  One of those is the idea of making a list of 10 free things that the one you love can do for you and make you feel more loved.

Another is to make a list of dream dates if money were no object.  What ten dates would each of you like to go on this year?

In addition, I found that the section where they discussed parenthood to be enlightening, primarily as it gave a thought process as to how a father may view things vs how a mother may view them.  It showed how a father may make some simple acceptance of a child’s feelings and reactions whereas a mother may spend a little more time to seek  a deeper meaning behind those reactions.  It also reminded me a little bit of:

E + P = O

We can’t control the events (E) in our life. We can’t control the economic conditions. We can’t control the job market. We can’t control the actions of others. But we can control our positive energy and our positive actions (P) to these events and challenges and in turn this will determine the outcome (O).

I would state that the P should stand for perceptions.  And this is in relation to The Energy Bus | Stimulating Review.

Having completed this book allowed me the time to let my mind wander more over my current relationship with my bride and allowed somewhat more understanding of her thinking.  Of course, there were some sections of this book that if Meg had been reading it believe she would stop and put the book down in dismay (being gentle here, she would probably recommend that it be burnt).

Again, I believe that are if you are willing to dig through the book and look for gems you will find them.  This book will not bite you!  You may not agree with all of the views and perspectives, but I believe it could assist you with forging a stronger relationship with your significant other.  Don’t be scared!

What type of rating should this book receive?

Ona one to many scale, I would say that many would benefit from it, some more than others.  I would also state that prior to recommending this book I would certainly ask a bit about a person’s particular religious stance as well as attempt to determine a little more about a persons general nature.  There were times that I almost did not finish this book, however, I am glad that I did!

Thank you for reading this!  I would love to hear some of your reactions to the above!  Women, are you spaghetti?  Is that an accurate portrayal?  Men?  Have you read this book?  Are you inspired to do so?  Have questions?  Let me know!

Waffle out.


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