Usually any conflict-resolution undertaking conducted by men follows a predictable script. There will be a five-day meeting with 63 speakers and 467 resolutions on how the conflict at hand has to be addressed.
There would obviously be more sub-conflicts amongst the delegates themselves and it’s not uncommon to find a sub-committee hastily arranged to deal with a conflict that resulted from trying to deal with the initial conflict.
Then there are the resolutions. A truckload of them! Men and resolutions are like Siamese twins. Ringing out resolutions is just second nature to men and I suspect it is something they learnt at Mars which according to historians is actually the planet from which they come.
Then they somehow landed on mother Earth and the only thing they brought with them was a bag of resolutions. More like an uncle who had gone to work in the mines in South Africa for 30 years and comes back with his belongings in a Tastic plastic bag and a strange language which half the village will admire for a week. It is always a Tastic bag.
No matter how long they stay in South Africa digging the gold.
The reason there are so many resolutions in a conflict resolution meeting, of course, is that men are extremely complex beings with a bloated sense of worth, plus they want you to fall asleep before you get to the really hilarious resolutions. If you are bored enough to read up to page 623 it would have some resolutions like
Get all warring factions to a table
Ensure the table is round
Whether anyone gets to read or implement these resolutions is anyone’s guess.
Women don’t usually follow this script. It is too rigid and lacks the customary class and pomp that women are known for.
Basically everyone would feel despondent that there is a conflict at all and exchange bouquets and cards explaining how sorry they were that it had to come to a shower.
Women, prone to applauding wildly at the slightest provocation will have a field day acknowledging misdemeanours and forgiving everyone in the vicinity including those that have no business being there who are not part of the conflict.
I imagine during such a shower there would also be a discussion on how European swimsuits can’t contain an African woman’s assets. This is unfair as buying a swimsuit almost always results in an extra cost of a sarong. A powerful delegation will be hastily constituted to go and meet swimsuit designers but it never usually gets to that point.
In the afternoon after tears, hugs and kisses and exchanging of cards there would be a high tea which to the uninitiated is a grand occasion where women dressed in high heels and very exotic outfits sit together and give speeches on the proper way to eat salad with chopsticks or whatever tickles their fancy at that point.
Showers don’t usually have thick books of resolutions with garrulous terms and legal jargon. They always turn out to be blissful atmospheres where everyone comes out happy and sufficiently empowered to rule the world or at least eat salad properly with chopsticks.
At least that is what we hear as these are exclusively for the womenfolk and men – proper men - are not allowed and so we have only the rumour mill as the most credible source of information.
One hopes that men would take a leaf out of the Ladies Conflict Resolution Manual. But then again that is not how life works. At least in this part of the world. Alas!