Now that sufficient time has passed and all my wounds and bones have healed, it is once again time that I foray into the unknown in my quest to understand women. This article is for men only.

If you want to live to enjoy "those golden years of retirement," you must master the knowledge of what a look from your mate really means. This is no easy task because, just as all women may have the same parts, each woman is assembled differently so that they are just like snowflakes _ no two are alike _ similar perhaps but never identical. Each one must be understood on their own merits.

These differences are what make the subject matter so difficult to report. Having recently passed my 74th birthday (and after this article a slim to none chance for 75) it should make me somewhat of an expert on the meaning of what "a look" from your mate or wife can mean.

First, I am fully aware that women are reading this because no woman alive can resist the warning "for men only."

Secondly, I know that women are wriggling in their seats, rubbing their hands with glee, in anticipation of my fate when my wife, Diane, reads this, because she edits everything.

"I regret that I have but one life to give to my Daily Star editor…."

Men, listen up! In order to understand the look(s) a woman might give you, we must delve into the nether world of what makes a woman "tick."

A "look" from a woman has several degrees of intensity. Just like a stove, the "look" can go from "warm" to "raging inferno" in a matter of seconds. There are those men who claim that there is a higher level called "volcanic," which is when she blows her top and it is time to take cover. (Make sure that all parts are covered else you might lose them.)

Men, let me give you a second word of caution. A woman does not marry you for what and who you are. She is only interested in what, with a little help from her, she can mold you into. You represent a lump of clay. She will knead you, push you, press you, squeeze you like a tube of toothpaste, work and manipulate you until you take the form of her preconceived perfect mate. (When Diane gets to this point in her editing job, I am not beyond shame to get down on my knees and beg for mercy.)

Let's examine the meaning of a lukewarm look. This look means that she has just heard something that might be of passing interest to her. It can take the form of a slight narrowing of the eyelids to a wide-eyed look of slight astonishment. This look is just a cursory look which may die for lack of interest or start to smolder indicating that Mount Etna is starting to "boil."

What might trigger such a look? Your wife or mate is standing well apart from you when she overhears that you were seen having lunch with a former girlfriend, "Bambi." She's the one who was the swimsuit model for Victoria's Secret. (The bikini ALMOST covered her and it was quite embarrassing that she "fell" out of it several times as she came down the runway.)

The "look" has been generated because in all innocence it was just a "chance meeting," luncheon and nothing else, but unfortunately you forgot to tell her about it.

As you receive this look and recognize its potential it will behoove you to go to her side as fast as you can and be VERY attentive. Use words like "You look ravishing tonight," to "Gee honey, you have the figure of a 20-year-old." (Under NO circumstances say anything about a sack full of potatoes, even if it might be justified.)

The next level is the "simmer look." This will manifest itself by a definite narrowing of the eyes but not yet going into the full-squint stage. You will have the same sensation that a girl gets when she is examined by Superman and his X-ray eyes. (Hey stop that, you're burning me.)

What prompts this look from your wife or mate is the overheard remark you were seen giving Bambi a "smooch." Now the "smooch," is still in the "I'm innocent stage" and the smooch was a response to Bambi's announcement that she has married and is expecting a child in three months.

The smooch was akin to a sigh of relief that temptation was being taken off the menu of life. It's your way of saying, "Thank Heavens!"

If you get a "simmering" look it calls for immediate action on your part. If the "look" is followed by a continued narrowing of the eye-slits and a draining of blood from the cheeks of your beloved, perhaps it is best at this point to "come clean." Confess the off-chance meeting with Bambi and that you gave her a smooch as a way of saying "goodbye."

If you ever get a "burning look" you will definitely know it because her eyes will be in a total squint, the blood will have drained from her head giving her a cadaver/wax-like look, and her lip line will completely disappear.

She will probably grab your arm and dig into your skin like she just grew talons. Blood-letting is a distinct possibility. You have only minutes to live so you had better start dancing like "Bojangles."

The reason for "the burn look" (oft time known as the "you may rot in hell look"), is she overheard that you picked up a key at the front desk and were seen heading "upstairs" with Bambi.

You are completely innocent and were only going to get Bambi's bags in deference to her delicate condition. You wanted to prove that chivalry is not dead. Unfortunately you are! Go into grovel mode immediately and beg for mercy.

At this point I have no other defense or advice for you except "Now that you've made your bed lie in it."

My daughter, Katie, claims I am like the Scarecrow in the Wizard of Oz _ NO BRAIN. After reading this article I am inclined to agree with her.

Henry Geerken is a three-time NYSUT award-winner writing humorous articles addressing retiree and senior citizen concerns. Geerken also writes for Sail-World, World Cruising Newsletter, regarding his many humorous sailing episodes through the years. He can be reached by e-mail at 'Senior Scene' columns can be found at

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