“Hey there mister put a fence around your sister it’s the Boys’ Night Out…”
Pretty tone-deaf by today’s standards, “Boys’ Night Out” was written in 1962, with lyrics by Sammy Cahn and music by Jimmy Van Heusen.
It was the Rat Pack heyday—think Mad Men, season 1—and things were a bit… um… different back then.
As we look back on 2017, one of the main stories that has shaped our society is the #MeToo movement—a much-needed social uprising against sexual bullying and aggressive or manipulative personal relationships.
To some, this movement signals the end of the “Boys’ Night Out” mentality, as “boys will be boys” style “locker room talk” is no longer a viable excuse for boorish behavior. Frankly, it never was.
Others might even feel that, moving forward, the rules are now far too complicated—whereas in fact, they’re pretty simple.
-Take no for an answer.
-Don’t be an @$$hole.
That’s an admittedly glib overview of the contemporary dating scene, but it’s a good place to start.
The #MeToo movement shouldn’t signal an end to personal interaction, but rather a new beginning. Because lyricist Sammy Cahn may have been right about one thing, “What the boys are out after, the girls are out after, too.”
Attraction, affection, love—these emotions will exist in the human animal no matter what we try to do to suppress them. The overarching objective here is to channel those emotions into positive behavior, rather than petulant and shameful sexual belligerence.
Romance isn’t dead. Boys’ night out isn’t dead.
They just need a reboot.