At a recent dinner party, I let slip a conversation I'd had about women with a few college guys over beer and pizza. It was a remarkably stupid thing to mention: Some of the people at the party were, and I should have realized this sooner, women.

Naturally, they wanted to know what the men thought.

Naturally, I came to regret ever opening my mouth.

I can't explain why I did. I simply forgot that there exists a universal principle essential to the proper functioning of civilization. It goes: What is said in the bar, stays in the bar.

Known as The Code, it has three rules.

One: Say nothing.

Two: If you must say something, say only what you want the other sex to believe.

Three: If all else fails, apologize.

Having breached The Code's number-one rule, the women at the party circled the sofa where I sat like vultures. Fortunately, my 14-year-old son was also at the dinner party, which kept the women's talons from fully extending.

"Did they talk about, uh …" one woman began and paused to find the right word.

"Anatomical matters?" I offered.

"Yes," she responded. "Anatomical matters."

"Um, no, anatomical matters didn't come up," I answered.

It seemed like a logical question and I was relieved to be able to answer honestly. It struck me, in retrospect, that a discussion of component parts hadn't come up. Perhaps it didn't because I was old enough to be the guys' father and no guy talks biology with his dad. Or maybe it was because this was a group of particularly enlightened guys. (Guys. Enlightened. Excuse me a second - har, har, har, hee, ha, whoo, oooooh, guys, enlightened, that's funny - okay, I'm back.)

"Then what did they say?" asked another woman.