It’s Pride month, and I’m so happy when people within and outside a community support each other… but good heavens. When you say that you accept someone “as they are,” it sounds like you’re buying as-is merchandise at a department store. One’s sexual/gender identity (regardless of what it is and/or its difference from your own!) is not a flaw. It’s not something that you have to either accept or not accept as a part of a whole person. That’s like saying that you accept a person despite the fact that they regularly donate to charity. Can you imagine? ‘Oh, you have eleemosynary leanings? I guess I can accept you as you are… you as-is, display model blender on the shelf at Macy’s.’ Whatever. Accept someone based on how long their fingernails are. It’s exactly as arbitrary.
If you have to be single, don’t ever be alone. Not even for a second. When you’re lonely, your standards for a mate start to fall, and that’s how you find yourself in a terrible long-term relationship with someone who’s not worthy of you. Here is an outline of your descent:
- You just got out of a relationship. Your standards: must be sexy, over 6’2″, have a degree, make decent money, clean-cut…
- It’s been a couple weeks since you’ve been out on a date. Your standards: must be objectively attractive, must be taller than me, must have a job, must be polite and considerate…
- Can’t really remember last date. Your standards: height doesn’t matter, has to be at least looking for a job (really, you’re letting most things slide–just as long as he’s not a bearded ginger…)
- So alone and lonely. Your standards no longer exist. Bearded gingers, home-brewers, voluntary baldies, first-floor apartment dwellers, and guys on probation are now on your radar.
Grab a friend and go to a movie. Go to that mixer you are pretty sure you’re going to hate. Get brunch at that trendy spot. Don’t allow your loneliness to push your standards down to “a breathing human who pays attention to me sometimes.”
If you have to talk about how you got “friendzoned” by a girl, realize that you’re speaking about something that doesn’t exist–and it makes you sound like a desperate, sad whiner who has probably never been with a girl anyway.
Gents, I hate to break it to you, but girls have made the irrevocable decision of whether or not they would EVER EVEN CONSIDER sleeping with you within approximately 32 seconds of meeting you for the first time. Literally. Introduce yourself, wait a minute, and then ask her if she’d ever even possibly think about sleeping with you.* She’ll either say “hell no” or she’ll blush. There’s your answer. You’re welcome.
If you claim there’s such a thing as the “friendzone,” then you’re assuming that thing is an aberration from the norm… namely, you are assuming that most girls want to sleep with you.
Allow me to offer the dissenting and most likely uncomfortable opinion: almost no girls want you. If you happen to find one who does, THAT’S the aberration. When this rare occurrence happens, say you’ve been “bangzoned.” Makes a lot more sense, and I bet you’ll find more people will want to celebrate with you about that compared with the low attendance you’ll find at your little friendzone pity party.
* Omg, please let me know if you try this. I want to know every detail about what happens, including how much you cried when she kicked you in the balls.
If you have to be in a relationship with a woman, gents, know that she will never be 100% pleased with you and there’s no magic formula to making her happy.
Women are fickle, mercurial, and will tergiversate without a moment’s notice. They’re whiny, emotional, and petty–and they are easily annoyed by you, other women, the world, that blade of grass over there, and perceived injustice.
If you want a woman, and I mean really want a woman, you’ve got to be willing to fight… for her, for yourself, and for your relationship. Women need champions.
However, because all women are snowflakes, there’s no one way to keep any or all of them happy. Naturally, however, I’ve got a list of some general guidelines for you that will help keep you in your woman’s good graces:
- Remember that whole chivalry thing? Don’t let it die, whether it’s you’re first date or you’ve been together since before AOL. Open doors for her, offer your hand or your arm when you cross the street together, carry her heavy-ass suitcase for her, and let her order her dinner–or her supper (that’s a whole other blog post)–first.
- Be [semi-]predictable. It throws women when you do something out of character. Do that very often, and she’ll become very wary of you. Wary women get jealous. Jealous women get suspicious. Suspicious women get paranoid. And paranoid women murder you in your sleep. You probably don’t want that.
- Have a skill. A hobby. Be good at something. It doesn’t matter if it’s playing basketball, creating beautiful spreadsheets, or making the perfect cheese dip–just do something exceptionally well. She’ll respect you for it.
- Don’t look at other women when they walk by. As sly as you think you’re being when you leer at other women, we always see it. And we hate it. And we hate you a little bit for doing it. So fucking stop it. Don’t say it’s instinctual. Nut up and fight your natural urges, caveman boy.
- Tell her you love her. She needs to hear it. Yes, you just told her yesterday, but she needs to hear it again. And again. But just telling her isn’t enough…
- SHOW her you love her. You have to be a little bit thoughtful. Chivalry shows her. Making a pot of coffee and pouring her some when she walks in the room shows her. Tucking her hair behind her ear so that you can see both of her eyes while she’s talking will floor her and score you like a bajillion points.
- Tell her things. I don’t mean that she needs to know how much you paid for gas this morning or anything about gas in general. Give her a 30 second recap of your day. Tell her what you had for lunch. An informed woman is a trusting woman, and you don’t want her to get wary. See #2. Don’t wake up dead.
- Be respectful. Hang up your towel instead of throwing it on the floor, put your dishes in the sink, keep the temperature a little warmer in the car so she doesn’t freeze after having gone through the trouble of wearing something revealing for you, and slow your pace a tiny bit when you’re walking together. And when it’s her time of the month, just do your best to not be an asshole.
- Though it flies in the face of what I believe in regular social interaction (and of course it’s not actually true, but you are allowed to lie here), tell her she’s beautiful. Listen up. This is important. Your woman lives in a world where she’s expected to look perfect all the time. She’s constantly comparing herself to other women, always trying to fall on the correct side of the attractive/getting-the-wrong-kind-of-attention line, and she keeps getting those creepy, leering looks from men (see #4) who haven’t read this list. Tell her she’s beautiful. She needs to hear it.
- This one’s a little out there, but it’s ridiculously effective. Pay attention when she’s talking. I don’t mean you have to listen to everything (because women talk all the damn time), but make an effort to remember just one thing she said. Bring it up later in conversation. (“Oh yeah, I meant to ask earlier… When you and your dad picked lilacs in Illinois, was it in a garden or out in the wild?“) Boom. The conversation turns from mind-numbing drivel into how sweet you are for asking a thoughtful question. Win-win.
If you have to be the +1 at a work event for your partner, follow the damn rules. They are enumerated below for your convenience.
- Be charming. (Google that and use the second definition: polite, friendly, and likable.) Convincingly feign interest in the boring shit you’ll be listening to all day. Alcohol helps with this.
- Don’t drink too much as you’re trying to accomplish list item #1.
- Just as important as #1: step down and let the person you’re accompanying be the one who shines. Be the stunning arm candy who contributes only a tiny amount to conversation. Defer to your mate. This doesn’t make you look weak; it makes you look like an excellent complement, and it makes your partner as well as your bond with him/her appear strong (though we all know you’re the one who wears the pants).
- Everyone understands checking your phone occasionally, but don’t be that wad who just sits there and plays Candy Crush and/or whatever the fuck it is that you Facebook people do all day on your phones.
- Overdress. Seriously. You’re there to make your significant other look good. You should look appropriate together, but it should be your goal to make sure that office gossips Kayla and Ann have something to talk about at the office on Monday. (And they will, because you’re damn sexy.)
- When your significant other tells you at the last minute that you don’t have to go and that he’ll just go by himself, don’t worry. He probably didn’t just find out that his girlfriend will be there.
- Don’t be offended when your mate doesn’t introduce you to anyone. He’s probably embarrassed by you and/or he doesn’t want you to meet his girlfriend (see #6).
- When someone at the event does something abhorrent like sitting on the table right next to you, with their ass only inches away from your arm and clearly in your personal space, do nothing. Pretend that it’s not the most disgusting thing that’s happened to you all day. Smile and nod.
- Remember that any sense of humor you might have won’t be appreciated here. Making jokes will just make everyone uncomfortable. You’ll find it best to continue to smile and nod, just like when that ass was on your arm.
If you have to be around that one couple who truly has no business being together, consider that one or both of them might not know any better.
Do you have one of those friends who’s always with the wrong guy? You joke and say that Yolanda “really knows how to pick ’em” and wonder how she doesn’t see that her husband Jeff and her ex Mike are, like, totally the same person. How does she not realize it’s all going to end up the same way it did when she and Tom broke up? It’ll all be for the same reasons.
Learned helplessness is when a subject has stopped trying to escape an an adverse condition or stimulus because it has been forced to deal with it for so long.
Yolanda doesn’t want to be miserable in her relationships. She’s not seeking out guys who all have the same problem. That’s just all she knows. In her current relationship, she married her husband because she stopped trying to find something different. She thinks all guys are the same. It’s like she has found 309 different ways to cook an egg, but she won’t (or can’t) acknowledge that she could do something else entirely with the egg–like dye it, or bake a cake, or (even better) throw it at Jeff’s stupid, fat face.
It’s gonna be an interesting day when Yolanda figures out something else to do with her eggs.
This story was inspired by all the awkward couples I saw (and the omelet I ate) at breakfast this morning.