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Does the male ego exist in U.S.?

We all hear talk every so often about "the male ego" as if it were a proven fact that there is any such thing. What we always seek in this column is the truth, so today we will examine some of the evidence relating to the male ego on both sides of the case.

There is one disturbing report of what is called "vanity sizing." In one study a magazine ordered a batch of pants from different manufacturers all marked with having a 36-inch waist. When the pants arrived, H & M (a worldwide brand but I've never heard of it), the waist was actually 37 inches; Calvin Klein, 38 1/2 inches; Gap, 39 inches; Dockers, 39 1/2 inches; and Old Navy, 41 inches. It could be that the different sizes received were not really vanity sizing but a mistake in ordering or shipping. The actual sizes are not conclusive evidence, but they are evidence.

Next witness please. The next witness is New York Congressman Christopher Lee, married, age 46. Mr. Lee, responding to a Craigslist listing under "women seeking men" sent a photo of himself without his shirt to a woman in Maryland indicating that he was not a congressman but a lobbyist, age 39 and "I promise not to disappoint." When this monkey business was discovered, Lee resigned his office the next day. Just because the photo showed a good physique doesn't mean that Mr. Lee had a male ego does it? -- Does it?

Next witness. We call another New York Congressman, Anthony Weiner, married, to the stand. Weiner is even more infamous than Congressman Lee. Weiner was accused of sending lewd photos of himself in his underwear by Twitter and Facebook to six women in May. At first he denied that he was the person on the photos or that he had sent them. Later he admitted he was the guy in the underwear and had sent the pictures. But there is still a lingering doubt that Weiner may have been framed by political enemies.

Now Brett Favre is on the witness stand. Favre played quarterback for two years with the Vikings (one great year, one terrible). The year before that he played for the New York Jets and was accused of sending lewd photos of himself to a female sports writer. Somehow his passes were dropped by the intended receiver and intercepted by the league. The NFL decided to investigate and questioned the quarterback but Favre clammed up -- never admitted or denied anything. So the league fined him $50,000 for not cooperating and dropped the whole thing. Since nothing was proved, there is no evidence of the male ego in the Favre case.

You probably haven't heard about a less well known case. This was the case of a 41-year-old New Hampshire school teacher who sent nude photos of herself to a 15-year-old student. No underwear in this case. The teacher incident raises these questions: Did the photos have an educational purpose? Do woman have egos? If they do, is it fair to speak of "the male ego" as though it were unique? This teacher has stripped away the illusion that the ego is all male.

Eartha is quick to notice a man's eyebrows that have been "shaped" or are in need of shaping. Is male eyebrow shaping evidence of the male ego? The average male has no idea there is such a thing. When it happens, it's probably the result of sweetheart urging.

Probably the best evidence of the male ego is the "running with the bulls" annual tradition in Spain. Every year from July 7th through July 14th, six bulls and six steers are run down a half mile alley from the bullpens to the slaughterhouse. They've been doing it since 1910. Men over 18 are allowed to run ahead of the bulls to show how brave they are. The alley is lined with walls that have escape openings along the way -- wide enough for a man to slip out, but too narrow for a bull to follow. But can you prove your bravery if you bail out? Some prove their bravery by getting hurt. One of the very "bravest" was a Spaniard by the name of Daniel Jimeno Romero who was gored to death in 2009. But it should be pointed out that there is no running with the bulls in the United States to speak of, although Cave Creek Arizona, almost initiated such an event but couldn't get sanctioned by the city because the promoter was unable to pay the high insurance premium.

So here's the three part verdict: Yes indeed there is such a thing as ego -- both sexes have it; There is definitely such a thing as the male ego in Spain; but, there is insufficient evidence that the male ego exists in the United States. Case dismissed.