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By Rory L. Aronsky | August 9, 2005

Robert Dubac is probably one of three or four hundred million men to wonder what women want. He puzzles over what else they want from us that we haven’t done for them already. That universe-shattering question zooms to the front of his brain after he relates the news that his girlfriend, Julie, wants time alone since he vehemently refused to sleep with the cat. She believed that if he didn’t want to sleep with the cat, then he obviously didn’t want to sleep with her either. “But I liked her butt in my face,” protests Dubac.

Yes, this is one of those relationship stage shows. Someone comes out and performs, telling you everything you already know, but were never able to think about in this way. That’s why Dubac’s on stage doing this instead of you. The audience understands that intricately, laughing uproariously. This is their territory he has ventured into. He is one of them. He is….a pod person. Seriously though, it’s not only the failing relationship that worries him, it’s how he’s supposed to know about what women want. The stage is split into his feminine side, which contains a chalkboard and a pink curtain, and his masculine side, littered with socks, a TV showing static, and cases of beer stacked up.

Dubac is a funny man in that regard. Gives him that little advantage. He’s not nasty toward what happened, he’s downright befuddled! He examines the self-help books, finding them all useless, no help at all, including “5,000 Years of Foreplay”. He wanders about across the stage, considering how he should have treated his situation, soon flipping the chalkboard to the other side, revealing what’s contained inside him. It’s a bigger mess than the other side of the board, which contains merely what women want from men: Honesty, communication, a sense of humor, sensitivity. Such simple requests, but he knows men aren’t ready to give just like that. Most of us men aren’t like that. Some are perpetually single, which one of his characters, Ronnie Cabrezzi, poo-poos. What’s wrong with that then? Each day, you gotta take what can be gotten. Dubac even goes so far to shamelessly censor himself in a joking manner. Every time he gets to a complaint toward women that offends them, he claps a hand over his mouth. It’s hard to navigate through a relationship. There’s strategies, and tactics that sometimes have to be used. But he misses a good opportunity to focus on actually being honest with someone in a relationship. It goes beyond a woman asking her boyfriend or husband whether she looks fat in a dress. Or did Dubac think that would have been too soapboxy?

He’s good-natured, though. Through his different characters, like the fisherman, Old Mr. Linger, he approaches what he perceives to be parts of the male psyche of whatever male they’re attached to. There’s a good save in the middle of the show when he uses Fast Eddie, the leather-jacket wearing tough-talking testosterone-energized sport. At first, Eddie sounds like Jack Nicholson. The ultimate in cool detachment for Dubac apparently, not knowing completely what Nicholson’s roles back then were usually about. But then, he does a complete switch-around and finally puts himself into it, ejecting most of Nicholson’s voice and letting this character speak. And speak. And then speak some more.

Dubac, in full, has a show that fits right into the number of shows, television and stage, that have been created about this subject. We may never know what women want. Hell, even Dubac jokes that that’s what caused Albert Einstein to switch from study of the female psyche to quantum physics. Good to know that still more laughs come out of the attempt. The mystery is funnier than the elusive solution.

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