The Ironman is a man's man. His friends trust and respect him. They know he is a man of his word. They know they can trust him. And so an Ironman is absolutely resolute about not hitting up on his friends' wives or girlfriends. Again, even if it's difficult, even if an extremely sensuous, beautiful woman is throwing herself at him, the Ironman has a line that he will not cross. Remember, being an Ironman is not merely about dominating women. It is also about self-sacrifice, about living by a strict code.

Being an Ironman is zen really. It means living by a code because you believe in it as a better way of life. If good things happen to you because of it, so be it. They are a by-product of living as an Ironman, of living by your code.

And that code says the women of an Ironman's friends are off-limits. This is not to say an Ironman has to be stiff as a board around them, cool and aloof. A sense of flirtatiousness and play is totally acceptable. The Ironman is not a prig. He is not a bore. He can be as much fun as the next guy. The difference is an Ironman will never betray a friend. Women sense that about him. In fact it is why they are so drawn to him. Women often are drawn to what they cannot have.

I don't mean to imply, however, that an Ironman will not take another man's girlfriend. If he doesn't know or like the guy, the woman is fair game. He owes the other man nothing. I don't agree that all is fair in love and war. But, certainly, if a woman who is involved with another guy becomes attracted to you, or you to her, there is nothing wrong with pursuing it. Just make sure he's not a psychotic with an uzi in his closet. Make damn sure of it.


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