Q. I’ve been with my girlfriend for two years but her increasingly erratic mood swings are putting a strain on our relationship. What should I do?
Reuben says: During the Cold War, I worked in a programme training chimpanzees to fly fighter jets.
The chimps would remain calm enough during the early stages of the flight simulator – take-off, refuelling, even some of the initial dog-fighting. But if we inserted a random, unexpected element – increased bogeys or blizzard conditions – some of the chimps would freak out and require sedation.
That was how we separated the so-called Top Guns from the rest and, quite frankly, your girlfriend sounds like one of the unworthy chimps that would have been donated to cosmetics research.
I guess you have to ask yourself what kind of risks you’re willing to take. Whether you’re arguing about doing the dishes or flying recon over the black hills of the Caucasus, do you want to rely on a primate of suspect temperament?
Ruby says: Do you think you can do better? If so, you should drop her like the clap. But that’s true of any relationship.
If not, you’re stuck with her, so you should try to develop a strategy for dealing with her mood swings. I suggest you introduce a Bag of Calmness – a cardboard bag with a smiley face painted on it. Whenever she is short-tempered or depressed, offer her positive reinforcement by having her wear the Bag of Calmness over her head.
However, the fact you’re asking my advice suggests you’re already emasculated and are now resigned to living out your days in servitude to your girlfriend, because she scares you.
That’s OK – male fear can be a real aphrodisiac. There’s really nothing like the sound of a man whimpering into his pillow to get me going.