Most people use it in a bad context. Not this family.
A few years ago, my mom read Men=Mars, Women=Venus. For those of you too self-involved to read self-help books (like myself), I'll sum up the things she told me about it. I'll tell you in my words, not hers, and I'll try to keep it concise. While I love my mother, I don't blog like she would, if she had a blog. You're welcome.
There's this cave, see? It's where martians go, when they're feeling overwhelmed with the world. For my dad, it's the garage, or the back room in the basement. For Augie, it's his doghouse. I think I've come across a few of them on blogger. Hell, I think this is a cave. Of sorts. A venutian cave. I like that.
They don't go there to punish us (usually!), they go there to escape. The torments of the world, and their minds, are too much, and they need a safe haven. They need to be by themselves, and do whatever those martians do, to get everything else off their minds. I don't think it always involves masturbation. Sometimes it involves napping.
Augie got a haircut and a shower last night. He doesn't like haircuts, and he certainly doesn't like taking a shower. He looks better, and I know he felt better last night. He didn't scratch all night long, for example. That doesn't mean he's not feeling a little cranky and distrusting of the family unit, though.
He was in his cave this morning. He went in there at 5:13, and didn't come out again until 6:45. It took much coaxing. Even the trickiest of tricks weren't enough to fool him, this morning. Rest assured, we tried them all. Neither food, nor "someone knocking on a door inside, pretending to be a visitor" was enough to get him out. It's cold in Wisconsin this morning. Cold + Haircut = Really Damn Cold. I was worried for him.
I went outside with his leash. While interested, he wasn't about to be fooled. I reached in his house (not something that anyone else in my family would do, and I don't recommend it), and attached the leash. Still no reaction, save the raising of an eyebrow, "You think I'm fallin' for that, sistah, you got another think a'comin'."
I walked in a direction away from the house, and he followed, tail wagging. Took him on a walk around the block. He was satisfied, he got to do something fun, and smell some smells he doesn't get to smell all the time. He's inside now, laying on the (warmer) floor, and wagging his tail at us, when we look at him. He's a good boy.
[Shit.. I think I had intended to go somewhere with this story.. OH!]
Moral of the story: Venutians - When you need your martians out of their caves, you've got to offer them something better than solitude. Smells they don't normally get to smell is just one option. Sex works sometimes, too. One key thing to remember - don't offer anything you're not willing to give. Martians, like dogs, have long memories, and they won't fall for the same trick twice. Especially if they're offered sex, and don't get any.