Friday, February 26, 2010

Girl Friends: A Follow Up

Yesterday, one of our readers wrote in in response to yesterday's post.

I think your characterization of girl (space) friends of guy friends is not only wrong but plays into reinforcing societal misconceptions about integrating sex into male/female relationships and gives women in general, a bad name. I think that while yes, that can be true for some girls, it’s unfair to say even that most girls are that way. I have a lot of guy friends that I have zero sexual tension/chemistry with, that I would happily play wingwoman for and help set them up with interested girls. All of my female friends are the same way. A lot of us are like brother and sister and have our friends’ best interests at heart - and so if the girl is awesome, we'll hook it up. Just wanted to let you know that women are not all scheming, conniving and territorial.

We totally agree. While we think you have to watch out for girls who are a little territorial, this reader is right. Not all girls are going to sabotage your relationship with their guy friends (just as not all girls are going to be as eager to hook you up).

But we also think this reader pointed out something that we should have emphasized more yesterday. “If the girl is awesome,” she says, “we’ll hook it up.”

The problem is, it’s hard to look awesome if you seem like you’re obsessed with a girl’s friend.

We were on the receiving end of this a lot in college. We had a close guy friend who had a penchant for convincing girls that they were in love with him, and these girls would try to get in with us by saying, “Hey, nice to meet you, I’m in love with Zack.”

If you legitimately treat these girls as friends and show them how cool you are, you can eventually broach the subject of their guy friend’s love life. But if you don’t even pretend to be remotely interested in their friendship, why would these girls want to help you out?

If you pretend to befriend these girls and drop the crush bomb too quickly, it doesn’t reflect well on you. And think of it this way: if a (seemingly) crazy girl came up to you and demanded that you hook her up with one of your friends, how would you feel?

No one wants to feel like she's being used. So if you want to get to know that cute guy’s girl friends and then ask for their help, you’ll have a higher rate of success.

But the other issue is, it’s hard to tell which girls are going to help you out and which ones aren’t. And while our reader certainly has the right attitude, the girls who don’t are sometimes really good at disguising their true motives.

If there’s no other way to get in with this guy, appealing to his girl (space) friends might be worth a shot. But we’ve all had at least one girl promise to hook us up with her friend, and two weeks later she’s dating the guy in question.

So there aren’t any hard and fast rules when it comes to using a friend as an in. But the more genuine you can be in pursuing these girl’s friendships, the further it’ll get you in the long run.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Survey the District: Don’t Want to Miss a Connection

dear date the district,

after college, a bunch of my friends and i moved to dc. most of us have been hanging out together on the weekends. recently, i've become really interested in this one guy from my college-- we were more like acquaintances in college, probably having a handful of conversations over a couple of years. i don't have his number or anything and i've only seen him one time really briefly since we both moved to the city. i think he's been hanging out with more of work friends than college friends. from my minor facebook stalkage it appears that he is still single. i'm debating talking to one of my friends who is a better friend of his about my infatuation, but not sure if that's the best thing to do. i think anything related to facebook or umm buzzing him on google is also a terrible idea? i am usually a fan of playing hard to get but i first need to find this guy before i can start the whole game playing process. any advice?

Hopefully yesterday’s post shed some light on how you could go about seeing him.

The most important thing is not letting him know that you’re interested, it’s spending more time with him.

In fact, the worst thing you could do is have your friend (or Google Buzz—speaking of, is anyone still using that?) spill the beans about your crush.

Mutual friends often seem like a good way to get in with a guy. Like we talked aboutbefore, a guy’s girl (space) friends almost never have your best interest at heart.

Even if this mutual girl friend swears she’s not interested at all, and even if she has a boyfriend, she still has feelings for this guy. They might not be romantic, but they’re almost certainly territorial—after all, we all know what it feels like to have a guy friend drop off the face of the earth thanks to a new girl(no space)friend.

And if this mutual friend is a guy, do you really want him as your advocate? Think about how guys talk to each other. When you say, “Just tell him that I think he’s cute,” there’s a good chance that the message he relays to your crush will be more on the lines of, “Julie’s, like, in love with you. I think she wants to bone you.”

Even if you’re just asking the mutual friend for advice or confirmation of his marital status, he/she’s gonna get the message. No girl asks if Johnny’s single because she wants to set him up with her friend.

Play it cool, and realize that you’re not going to get the chance to hit it off with every guy you like.

Sometimes the timing just doesn’t work out, and as much as it sucks, there’s not much we can do about it.

The more you force it, the more you hurt your chances of actually getting the guy. It’s hard to play hard to get when he knows you’ve been stalking him for the past few months.

The best thing you can do in this situation is stop obsessing about him.

We all do it. We all imagine that the quiet guy in our senior history seminar didn’t talk because he was harboring such intense, profound feelings. We start picturing ourselves on dates with him. We mentally plan our wedding day. Our first child is born in our minds and—surprise—the quiet brooder is still madly in love with us, pregnancy belly and all.

But these fantasies do way more harm than good. Because you know so little about this guy, you’re free to imagine him as being totally perfect for you. But if you did get to know him, you’d probably realize that he talks too much about sports or never washes his socks or has a thousand little quirks that would irritate you to no end.

The more we obsess about these ideal crushes, the more we close ourselves off to reality. And if you’re sitting around waiting for the chance to run into this guy, you might miss out on some real-life guys.

That doesn’t mean you can’t have a crush on this guy. And that doesn’t mean you can’t “happen to show up” at events you know he’ll be at.

But don’t waste too much time thinking about something that, logistically, might not work out.

Keep your feelings to yourself. And who knows? You might hit it off at homecoming weekend.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

How to Make Plans with a Cute Guy

You know that really cute guy, the one you always seem to hit it off with when you bump into him, and you think there could be something there, but you NEVER see each other?

It’s really frustrating to feel like you’ve finally found someone with when it seems like there’s nothing you can do about it.

But it helps if you treat this guy, not as a potential love interest, but as a girl that you’re dying to be friends with.

When your friend introduces you to her cool roommate form college who also secretly buys Chuck Klosterman’s latest book the day it comes out and then lies about it to all of her friends, you don’t try to make out with her.

You try to solicit her friendship, but you’re not desperate about it.

You need to do the same thing with this guy.

We’re not talking about the guy you make eyes with at the gym, or the guy that you see on the Metro in the morning but have no way of casually approaching.

But you have an in with the guy in your office who always makes you laugh or the friend of a friend that you sometimes see at bars.

To take things to the next level, you need to start seeing him more frequently. And for that, you need good plans and (in honor of vaginas finally being allowed on submarines) a Navigator.

First, you need to come up with legitimately fun plans. A new (and inexpensive) twist on drinking (think brewery tour) always attracts guys. Shows with bands you can dance to and still have fun even if you don’t know the music (e.g., Girl Talk, other mashup/electro groups that Baltimore discovered three years ago and now shun for being too mainstream) can be fun. If he seems more artsy/hipster, browse the City Paper for an uber underground film screening (cough The Room cough), or ask the nearest person wearing Converse and/or an ironic T-shirt for some recommendations.

Happy hours and bar hopping do not count as “cool” plans (unless the bars are totally new and underground and/or The Black Cat) and should be used as a last resort only. Museums, movies, and restaurants should be avoided at all costs (too date-ish, too awkward).

Then you need to find someone who can invite this guy for you—the Navigator. Ideally, the Navigator should have a boyfriend/be a guy/be otherwise unavailable so she can unabashedly invite this guy places and not look like she’s coming on to him. (Coworkers/friends who tangentially know this guy are ideal.)

The Navigator should make the plans and invite the guy along. He shows up, you’re there, fireworks ensue.

If you don’t have a Navigator, don’t worry. You can still invite this guy, but make it seem like you’re approaching him as a friend.

Invite him (and a group of girls AND guys) via Facebook message or e-mail so it doesn’t seem like you’re trying to make one-on-one plans.

Bring it up with him the next time you run into him. But stress the group element. Maybe throw in something about just moving to this city.

Above all, make sure you don’t come off as too eager/aggressive. As with everything in dating, you want to play hard to get.

But the guy’s so removed from your daily life that you don’t have the option of showing him your best game, sometimes you have to make the first move.

Just make sure it’s not obvious that you are, in fact, asking him out.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Survey the District: He Just Said No to Sex

Dear Date the District,

I've been hanging out with this guy for about a month now, and we've gone out together a bunch of times and have had a lot of fun together. We've seen each other every weekend, and always end up spending at least one night together having a sleepover. Most of the time we see each other/hook up, it’s sober. So I told him in the beginning that I just wanted to take things slow, and not have sex right away, which he was really cool with, although we have been doing the naked makeout. So last night, I figured I was ready to have sex with him. We went to a mutual friend's birthday at a bar last night and had a great time. So we came back to my place, and I was like "Sooo...I think it's been a long time we've been hanging out, and I wanna have sex with you tonight." Obviously I was a bit drunk if I was that blunt. But anyway, then he's like, "Actually...I've been meaning to talk to you about that. I dated a woman (she was 32! and he's 25!) for 2.5 years, and we broke up a few months ago. So I don't wanna just jump into having sex with you right away. I really like hanging out with you, and want to continue to get to know you before we have sex. I don't want to bring sex into it now and complicate things in case they don't work out. I don't want to have sex with you right now and have you get attached and hurt you if things don't work out."

What do you think about all that? Should I take offense, like is he pretty much saying he isn't sure whether he likes me enough, and isn't sure if things will work out between us so he just wants to keep it casual? Or does he like me, and just wants to still test the waters with me for a bit before having sex?


A single, 20-something guy turning down sex?

We’re confused too.

Does he like you? If he’s been pursuing the hook ups, there’s a good chance that he’s attracted to you. And if he goes out of his way to hang out with you, we highly doubt that your personality is the problem.

Because we don’t know this guy, and because everything else about your relationship sounds pretty par for the course (in 20-something dating land, that is), the only thing we have to go on is what he said to you that night.

Is it the whole truth? Probably not.

But there’s a good chance that the I’m-still-getting-over-my-serious-relationship thing isn’t far from where he’s coming from.

Meaning: It’s not about you. It’s about him.

We kind of doubt he’s trying to keep things casual. In guyworld, “keeping things casual” usually means hooking up with as little commitment/attachment as humanly possible. So if he were trying to keep things casual, he’d probably want to have sex with you before he decided whether or not he liked you.

If this guy is used to dating older women, he might have a different perspective on sex. Maybe his last girlfriend made him wait, and he thinks it always works like that.

Or he could be nervous. Maybe he’s worried that he doesn’t have enough experience (and it definitely sounds like he hasn’t slept with anyone new in at least 2.5 years).

The unfortunate fact is, he's the only one who knows why he said what he said. And no amount of attempted mind reading will change that.

All you can do is try to decide whether or not you want to be with him. Yes, this is definitely unexpected behavior, but if everything else is going well, this guy’s temporary chastity might not be a deal breaker.

But if this guy says no to sex, he’s not entitled toa naked makeout.Whatever his deal is, the naked makeout will probably only make it worse. If he’s still trying to decide whether or not he likes you enough to sleep with you, why does he get a blowjob in the interim?

We’d advise you to take things even slower. Cut back on the sleepovers (or eliminate them all together) until both of you are ready to do the deed. Try getting to know him (and letting him get to know you) before you make a decision about what to do.

Monday, February 22, 2010

The Art of Meeting Men

Ah, the 80s.

The decade where picking up men was as easy as channeling a 300 pound linebacker in a neon paisley sports jacket (that was a joke about shoulder pads, feel free to laugh).

A reader sent us a Youtube video taken from an 80s self-help movie by a dating coach in a floor-length dress that leaves everything to the imagination.

The outfits might be dated, but the advice withstands the test of time.

For example, if you have trouble meeting men, our data guru suggests carrying around, “a book with an unusual title, a small stuff animal [because nothing turns men on more than women who’ve regressed back to age 4], interesting pieces of jewelry [here she touches her own bland costume pearls], a pet, a sports jersey, a sports magazine, or a t-shirt with a slogan [unclear if you’re supposed to wear the t-shirt or just carry it around].”

A female sidekick with a lesbian vibe comes on to stress the importance of letting a man know that you’re interested. In the opening clip, woman A sits on a bench under a sign pointing people to a Subway (she’s in the city—get it??) with her legs crossed. An overweight man in an argyle sweater approaches the woman and thinks to himself, “Mm! Attractive woman. Just my type.” But then he sees her crossed legs and changes his mind. His interior monologue continues, “She sure looks like a b---” but then he stops himself because Reagan is watching!! “I don’t need that,” he concludes before storming away.

But after hearing the butch guru’s advice, woman A gets a second chance to make things right. She rubs her thighs and thinks, “What do I have to loose at this point? A rerun of Dallas [haha! Because Dallas was still on the air then!] and a pint of ice cream?”

She sits down next to the man (in a new outfit!) with a newspaper and asks, “Is there any good news today?” He tells her that there isn’t, and both sides throw down their newspapers and fall in love/plan to go into business together to start a newspaper that only tells good news (love and an entrepreneurial spirit—aww!!).

Other highlights include our blonde (and possibly Muslim) guru suggesting that you intentionally spill a drink on a man and get his number so that you can pay for his dry cleaning later. “But avoid spilling red wine!” she cautions. “You don’t want him to remember you for the wrong reasons.”

And an angry male guru clad in plaid explaining that men can be very shy. “Research show that 40 percent of men suffer from shyness,” he explains. “And 80 percent of men have been shy at one point in their lives.”

We’ve basically spoiled everything, but it’s still worth watching (and it’s only 3 minutes long).

Friday, February 19, 2010

Friday News Roundup: The OkCupid Blog

Apparently, OkCupid, the free dating site whose (lack of) price tag somehow makes it seem sketchy, has a blog.

And it’s actually pretty good. Unfortunately, most of their posts have to do with maximizing results on online dating, and they spend a lot of time building charts and graphs (which seems like the perfect job for a hopelessly romantic statistician) whose value and relevance we have to question.

But it does make for an interesting read.

Today, we want to highlight two posts in particular.

The first is a dissertation on the role your profile picture plays in your success (or lack thereof) in online dating.

A quasistatistical study of OkCupid users reveals that everything Match.com ever told us is wrong!

Showing your face in your profile picture? Don’t do it!

Posting a “MySpace” shot (i.e., a picture you took by holding a crappy Webcam over your head and pouting up at the camera)? You’ll get more messages!

Guys—have a six pack that rivals The Situation’s? Show it off!

While all of these profile picture faux pas might attract more attention, the lovestruck statisticians don’t really have a way of measuring which types of people who contact these brooding meatheads.

And so the only really useable information this post provides is their take on girls showing cleavage. The economists who dropped out of grad school to fall in love found that women who show cleavage get more messages that lead to extended correspondence (i.e., not just one message that says, “Nice tits”) than women who don’t.

But you have to take the rest of the data with a grain of salt.

Yes, the MySpace girls might get more messages than the English majors who use more “normal” headshots, but the guys who contact the MySpacers might be equally emo, unemployed 17-year-olds—not the type of guys the English majors would necessarily want to meet.

Then again, the girls who post MySpace pictures are probably pretty compatible with the guys who post shirtless pictures. So maybe the lesson is, it’s just easier to find dates if you’re the kind of girl who makes a kissy face in her profile picture.

The other finding worth noting is that people who post pictures of themselves doing something interesting tend to get more messages than the people who post a neck-up version of the best photo ever taken of them.

When we look at someone’s profile picture, we expect the photo to be at least 10 percent more attractive than the person is in real life. After all, inordinately hot photos attract the most attention, right?

But after a guy’s first month on an online dating sight, he’s going to know that if she looks too good to be true, she probably is.

And you don’t want to start competing for guys on looks alone. So post a photo of yourself doing something you love. Or post a quirky photo. It’ll probably take you farther than that bikini shot from the summer you had Mono.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

How to Get Your Partner in the Mood

Our last two posts on directed erotic visualization brought up some obvious questions: if guys and girls require different erotic stimulation, how can you get your partner in the mood?

We had a conversation with one of our readers that provided a few insights.

If a girl wants to ramp up a guy’s sexual energy/desire, she has to stimulate him physically, but moderation is key.

OK, guys are almost always up for sex, and they’re better at making sure they achieve orgasm, so most of the work is done for you.

But if you are looking to up the ante (or perhaps convince a drowsy lover to forgo sleep for other activities), subtlety might actually be the key.

If you grab his dick and start attacking, he’ll have a pretty good idea of where things are going. And guys can be rough and aggressive when they’re stimulating themselves, so you’re just providing a new twist on an old game.

But if you gently kiss his neck or lick his nipples, you’ll have the element of surprise, and while he’ll probably still be able to see the future, you’ll catch him off guard and awaken his sensual side.

And, like we said yesterday, complimenting his penis size probably won’t hurt.

If a guy wants to get a girl in the mood, the key is relaxation.

One of our lesbian friends tells us that she always tells girls to relax before she starts going down on them.

You need to make her feel like it’s all about her, and make sure she’s totally comfortable.

Remember that scene in Cruel Intentions where Ryan Phillippe goes down on a virginal Selma Blair?

He’s debonair and sophisticated. There’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that he knows what he’s doing (even if he is, in fact, hopelessly lost). He takes control of the situation and makes Cecile’s pleasure his number one priority.

Guys could learn a thing or two from the incestuous young Sebastian (and we’re not talking the lesson in sequels being universally awful).

First, take control of the situation. Even if you’re so nervous that you want to vomit, don’t let on. Pretend like you know exactly what you’re doing (don’t go so far as to say that you’ve done this a million times, but you get the picture). If you make a mistake (like, say, your shirt gets stuck on your neck when you’re taking it off), brush it off and pretend that it was intentional (i.e., don’t apologize or awkwardly laugh).

Then get right to business. Make it all about her. Start kissing her all over her body. Take things slowly—very slowly. Don’t jump to her vagina until you’ve spend a few solid minutes warming up the rest of her body. Remember, because female orgasm is less tied to vaginal stimulation, you don’t need to make it the center of attention.

If you don’t, in fact, know what you’re doing, phrase it in a different way. Instead of admitting that you’re lost, say something like, “Does that feel good?” or “Do you like that?” or “Tell me what feels great,” and follow her lead.

Finally, keep telling her to relax. Spend a lot of time on foreplay so her imagination can run wild before penetration.

You can’t get inside her mind, but you can help her get to the mental state that makes orgasm possible.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Comparing Male and Female Directed Erotic Visualization

Yesterday, we talked about Literotica’s Directed Erotic Visualization exercise .

We poked around a little more and found the male version of DEV , and comparing the male and female versions provided some interesting insights.

Both versions started with the same intense relaxation exercises. But when it came time to get sensual, each took it in a different direction.

The female DEV focused on recalling and recreating the physical sensations caused by sexual pleasure and orgasm (i.e., the tingly feeling between your legs, the building tension in your pelvis), whereas the male version focused on the physical sensations that cause sexual pleasure and orgasm (a female voice narrates a blowjob and tells the listener to imagine feeling her lips on his dick, etc.).

The male version also spent an awful lot time stroking the listener’s ego, telling him over and over again how big and hard his cock was.

For us, this highlighted the differences between male and female orgasm.

Male orgasms are a lot more corporeal. The physical sensation of a hand or a mouth or a vagina on a penis allows a man to reach climax. (And you get bonus points for telling him he’s really big.)

But a female orgasm is much more cerebral. A woman has to be in the right mental state to achieve orgasm, and it’s less about the physical things being done to her (i.e., penetration, oral sex), and much more about her brain’s ability to create certain abstract (and perhaps purely mental) sensations inside her body.

You can’t touch the area that goes crazy right before a woman comes. And while the clitoris and g-spot can help conjure up those feelings, the mind plays an even bigger role.

That’s not to say that guys only feel orgasms in their penises. They have a similar can’t-quite-put-my-finger-on-the-exact-spot-that-feels-good-but-it’s-kinda-all-over sensation at the point of orgasm.

But the penis is a much more direct route to climax. It doesn’t work every time, but it’s a lot more reliable (and may create more intense physical sensations) than female sex organs.

So the next time you find yourself unable to climax, try to put your brain in the mood. Clear your mind and relax as much as possible, and focus on visualizing something that turns you on, rather than trying to get turned on by physical sensation.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Directed Erotic Visualization

As part of our series on helping girls orgasm, today we’re bringing you a visualizing exercise sent in by one of our loyal (and anonymous) readers.

We’re not really sure how to introduce this, except to say that it’s an audio file that seems to be hosted literotica.com:

Directed Erotic Visualization

Click on the link above and scroll all the way down to the audio file at the bottom. (Lock yourself in your bedroom before you actually listen to it—it goes without saying this is definitely NSFW.)

The “visualization” essentially consists of a British man performing a hypnotic series of relaxation exercises followed by erotic mental stimulation. There’s a lot of counting backwards and breathing exercise you’ve seen school-assembly hypnotists perform, but the narrator also tries to help you climax by having you mentally recreate the pleasurable sensations that come from orgasm.

That’s right—the stimulation is all mental, not physical.

The audio only comes out of the right speaker for most of the 10-minute file, which kind of spoiled the moment for us because we spent so long trying to fix the sound.

The man’s voice might be a little off-putting for some as well. It’s actually quite pleasant and pretty much benign, but he used the word “pussy” a few times, which made us cringe.

If you decide to try this exercise, we recommend the following.

1) Shutting yourself off in a room where no one will disturb you.

2) Relaxing as much as possible before you start the file—most people will probably experience some mental blocks, and the sooner you start addressing and negating them, the better.

3) Not worrying about the audio imbalance/quality. Or really any other technical (or unrelated) distraction. To get this right, you need complete concentration.

The hardest part, for most people, will probably be moving past any aversions. Many people are skeptical of hypnosis, and some people might be put off by the man’s voice.

Try not to let your mind linger on these distractions. It’s easier if you can just accept the exercise and move on. No matter what’s bothering you, the person on the other end of the speakers can’t hear you, and would it help if we told you he’s a trained sex therapist? (We’re totally making that last part up, but who knows.)

Climax probably won’t happen for girls who’ve never reached it before, because the exercise requires visualizing a recent orgasm—something that might be difficult for women who aren’t familiar with this sensation.

But it could be very helpful for people who have trouble getting off from manual stimulation.

The later in life girls start experimenting with masturbation, the harder it can be to achieve orgasm. After all, if you started masturbating at 20, there are probably a few social and cultural stigmas that made you abstain when your hormones were at the peak of their rage.

And that’s where this exercise could help anyone who’s experiencing mental blocks around orgasms. It encourages you to equate climax with relaxation—something that’s a lot more counterintuitive than it seems.

When you put too much pressure on yourself to come, it’s harder to actually get there. It’s easier to reach climax when you feel safe, relaxed, and comfortable.

If the audio file doesn’t work for you, try integrating some of the deep breathing and visualization into your masturbation routine. The more comfortable you feel, the easier it’ll be to orgasm—no matter who's doing the talking.

Friday, February 12, 2010

NYTimes Gets Ultra Romantic

Because nothing's more romantic than a tragic accident, The New York Times is celebrating Valentine's Day by posting a photo of an Olympic hopeful DYING IN A LUGING CRASH as the feature photo on its home page.

Another Gawker Story... So You Don't Have to Page Through All the Boring Ones Yourself

Picture it ... Valentine's Day 1991. I'm a sophomore in college and have been dating the hot guy who lives across the parking lot in my apartment complex - we'll call him G. We've been making out for a while and casually dating ... and then decide we'll move it into more serious territory, just in time for Valentine's Day.

He wakes up early to put a rose on my car before I have to leave for my first class. Awww. We have a makeout session at his place that afternoon, where we express our feelings and remark how special we are to each other. It's touching. I've only had one boyfriend for Valentine's Day before, and he turned out to be an abusive stalker. This is my first healthy relationship in almost two years, and I'm over the moon. I decide to cook him an awesome spaghetti dinner ... and then we'll finally consummate our relationship.

I decide to make the meatballs from the freezer that my roommate had purchased. I make a fantastic dinner for two, complete with candles and a nice peach sorbet for dessert. We head upstairs to begin our wonderful night together. I'm so nervous, because it's our first time together and I haven't been with anyone new in years.

After making out for a while, he excuses himself to use my bathroom which was attached to the bedroom. He proceeds to have what appears to be EXPLOSIVE diarrhea from what I can hear from my half-naked position on the bed near the bathroom door. There's grunting, swearing, panting, and soon cries to God are pouring out of him as freely as the dinner he's ingested less than an hour before. I'm not sure what to do ... do I call attention to his pain by asking him if he's OK, or just let him wait it out? He's got to be embarrassed, because I'm completely mortified.

After what seems to be an eternity (and was probably about 45 minutes), he emerges from the bathroom completely pale and very sweaty. He's a trouper, though. We proceed to have not-so-energetic sex and he hobbles across the parking lot back to his house. Within twenty minutes, I am the one in the bathroom, cursing my ancestors, the shower curtain, the sorbet, and bargaining quite ineffectively with God.

Two days later, my roommate returns home from her trip and I tell her about my disastrous evening. I tell her I've used her ground chuck to make the meatballs, and she exclaims, "OMG... I bought that when we moved in!"

Which was the previous June.

G and I continued to see each other, for some months afterward, but it didn't work out. I never cooked for him again. Luckily.

That Dinner at 1789 Isn't Gonna Pay for Itself!

A post on Dealbreaker wonders if men only care about money, success, and, apparently, literacy because it helps them get girlz.

We don't think it does. The stereotypical power-hungry capitalist pig likes to buy toys to one-up the other men in his life, and he likes to fuck women, not marry them.

Maybe the nicer guys always keep one eye on the altar, but they don't tend to be as ruthless in the pursuit of money and/or prestige.

The question is: what drives women to succeed?

My Bloody Valentine

Taken from Gawker's Valentine's Day horror stories, though we kind of doubt the fact-checkers are working round the clock on these ones.

I was 25, recently out of law school and a relationship I was sure would end in marriage, and I was working in a firm that I absolutely despised. I was heartbroken, disenchanted, and, at a fundamental level, bored with life. So I signed up for an online dating service.

After a number of forgettable dates with various mid-level managers, radiologists, IT guys, technical writers, and random other guys lost in the same sort of personal and professional morass of their 20s, seeking some sort of connection, I met a guy who was totally not my type. He’d recently quit his corporate job to start his own business, was about a decade older than me, and couldn’t properly conjugate the verb to take, leading my best friend to call him Captain Tooken.

The Captain and I saw each other irregularly at first. I was still drinking at the time, and in retrospect he was a second or third generation alcoholic, so our dates generally consisted of hanging out, drinking a lot, and not much else. Eventually a pattern emerged- we’d go out, see a movie or a show, have dinner, maybe hang out at his place, and at the end of the night he’d put me in my car and say goodnight, without even a kiss. (Drinking and driving is bad, children). After the fourth or fifth time this happened, it started to intrigue me that the Captain hadn’t made any sort of physical move, and this intrigue kept me in the quasi-relationship. As I mentioned above, I was feeling pretty jaded and numb, so anything out of the ordinary was enough to catch my attention. I had a blog at the time and would detail these dates, and had a crowd of internet strangers weighing in on why the Captain hadn’t tried anything physical yet. Some thought gay, others thought he was recovering from a bad relationship, I didn’t really care because suddenly I had something vaguely novel going on in my life.

Fast forward six months (yes, really). Captain Tooken still has not so much as kissed me, and is still walking me to my car after every date- now once a week or more- and hugging me goodnight. Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, and I wonder if this is going to change anything in our chaste goodnight dance. The blogosphere is getting restless, and encouraging me to take him down in the street like a wildebeest, all tongue and sexual frustration, the next time he walks me to my car.

The Captain tells me a few days before the big day that he will be away with his dad, so can’t do anything, but would like to make it up to me by taking me out a few nights before. We go to a notorious dive bar in our city for blues and PBR tall boys. It was an inauspicious time of the month for me, but I didn’t think anything of it given the nature of our relationship. His brother, sister-in-law, and mother all come to the bar that night, and pretty soon I am absolutely wasted (as is the rest of the family) and basking in the drunken warm feeling of being introduced to his family and everyone liking me, and all of us ordering next round after next round.

I wake up in the cold light of earliest morning in a room I don’t recognize, no clothes, my head banging with pain, with that absolutely certain feeling that I have done something I will regret. I turn my head an inch, despite the screaming hangover, and there is the Captain in bed next to me. The situation hits me in a rush. I lift up the sheets and see blood, everywhere. It looks like someone has slaughtered a pig on the bed. I slip out of the sheets and sneak off to bathroom to clean myself up, passing our clothes in the hallway, on the stairs. I realize I can’t even sneak out to my car and drive home because we’ve left my car at the bar on the other side of town. I do my best in the half bath and then slip back into the bed, careful not to wake up the Captain.

I feign sleep until he wakes up, looks around, gasps, and heads for the shower. I commence to stripping the bed (the mattress is in the condition you would expect), stuffing the sheets in the washer, finding his linen closet for fresh sheets, realizing the only other set of sheets he owns are twin size and won’t fit the bed, and eventually just throw the comforter over the worst of the scene and get dressed. It doesn’t dawn on me to flip the mattress until he has already turned off the shower and I don’t have enough time. By the time he comes out of the bathroom I’m downstairs on the couch, fully dressed, ready to get the hell out of dodge. We make small talk and he repeatedly asks me if I’d like to take a shower, and eventually we go to breakfast, all because I am trying so hard to not acknowledge the abattoir conditions I woke up to that I can’t manage much else, and at long last I am free and go home and fixate on what the hell.

We end up dating for another year, and neither one of us ever mentions our Valentine’s Day massacre. I never have the nerve to ask if he bought a new mattress or not.

Missed Connection of the Day: Charlie, aka Birdobot, Funktron1, Tim Finnegan, The Funk - w4m - 33 (Fairfax County)

Apparently, Craigslist attracts the crazies (who knew?).

Hi Charlie! I know where you live, and I have your number, but your wife won't let you talk to anyone. All I can say about that is "Charlie? Pre-nup, okay Charlie? Pre-nup."

I just wanted to let you know that you're a really awesome, totally special dude, and a lot of people miss you and your special sense of humor and friendship and enjoyment of life (as the French say, "joie de vivre.") We miss you Funk!

The next time you're feeling down, please sing this to the tune of "You Are Not Alone"

"YOU ARE NOT ALONE, ALIENS ARE HERE WITH YOU, Charlie"


I also am writing this to let you know that nobody can WHIP IT, WHIP IT GOOD! ("it" meaning a door and by "whip" I mean strike with a belt) like you. Did you finally find the belt of a lifetime?

Come over and see my baby! She plays hide and seek and growls in a beast voice! Ok, ok, I am good guy. I hope your woman doesn't send me hatemail.

Valentine's Day Smorgasboard

The blogs are ablaze with stories of just how much Valentine’s Day sucks.

Because we’re not feeling particularly Grinchy today, we thought we’d let everyone else do the dirty work for us. So we’re going to post highlights throughout the day: some for the lovestruck, and others for the embittered.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

To Pregame or Not to Pregame a Date

A lot of us do it, and most of us aren’t ashamed to admit it.

We’re not talking about masturbating or anal sex, but something that seems harmless, but somehow ends up feeling more contentious.

We’re, of course, talking about pregaming dates.

Pregaming is a habit most of us pick up in college and carry with us into our twenties. (And maybe even our thirties? We don’t judge.) It’s grounded in reasonable principles: if you’re headed out to an overpriced bar, you don’t want to spend $60 on rum and diets when you can get the same buzz from downing a bottle of two-buck-Chuck at home.

But pregaming can sometimes turn into something else. When you take a shot before a date, you’re not doing it to save money, you’re doing it to calm your nerves before. And that’s also reasonable. The danger, as with anything else, lies in taking things overboard.

If you have a glass of wine before he picks you up, it might make you feel better and he probably won’t notice anything. If you have two glasses of wine and you’re already nervous, you might start doing that drunk-girl thing where you talk too quickly and laugh too frequently.

You’ll make a better impression as a sober nervous wreck than you will as a relaxed drunk.

That doesn’t mean you have to lay off the good stuff all together. But if you have a beer beforehand, go easy at dinner. Don’t order mixed drinks, and keep up with your date.

If he orders a bottle of wine and no one’s driving, by all means, indulge. But you don’t want to be stumbling out of the restaurant if he’s stone-cold sober. Remember that scene in Superbad where Michael Cera’s character isn’t interested in sex because the girl’s too drunk?

No one ever plans to get wasted on a first date, but it’s surprisingly easy to let it happen. Pace yourself, and if the room starts spinning, order more food.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Favors

Yesterday, we talked about the complexities of exchanging gifts with a newly acquired BF.

But lavish presents aren’t the only pitfalls when you’re stuck in that gray area between dating and committed relationship.

There are plenty of other nonsexual favors that might seem like better ideas than they really are.

When you start dating a new guy, it’s natural to want to prove your worth. You want your guy to know that you can cook and clean, and if you keep bringing small presents over to his apartment, he’ll want to keep you around to keep the treats coming. Right?

Maybe not.

Favors are like anything else. If a guy’s not really working for them, he’s going to wonder why he’s getting them. And he’s probably going to conclude that you’re so desperate to date him, you’ll do anything to be with him.

But these things sometimes appear to be fairly innocuous.

Take, for example, our friend Julie.

Julie dated her boyfriend all through college. They broke up after graduation, but they now live in the same city. After a period of not talking, they became “friends,” and now Julie thinks they’re heading back towards rekindling their relationship.

But Julie’s also worried that there might be other girls in the picture. She’s particularly concerned about one Facebook wall-to-wall with a younger girl.

Julie wanted to send her ex a Valentine’s Day card, because she thought if she didn’t send him one and the other girl did, she’d have no chance of getting back together with him.

But if she sends him a Valentine’s Day card, she might as well make her Facebook status, “Robbie, will you take me back?”

If there’s one thing you never want to be, it’s a sure thing. And when you offer to clean his apartment and make him dinner, you might not think that’s the message you’re sending.

But think about it from a guy’s perspective. Guys, more than anyone, know how much cooking and cleaning sucks. While they might think it’s awesome that they’re getting a cook, maid, and sex slave for nothing, they’re not going to want to go out of their way to date you. If they’re getting all they want and you’re not even in a “real” relationship, why should they bother taking you out for Valentine’s Day?

And when you send your ex a Valentine’s Day card, you might think you’re sending a message you can’t afford for him to miss. After all, if his Facebook friend sends him a card and you don’t, he might think that she’s interested and you’re not. And he might ask her out instead of you.

Except he won’t. Guys aren’t looking to date girls who seem like sure things. They want to date the ones who seem out of their league, the ones who they’re not sure they can get. Yes, we’re starting to sound like a broken record, but it’s worth repeating.

If you go out of your way to do things for him and show him how much you care too soon, he might think “Hm, this is convenient,” but he’s not going to think, “Wow, I don’t know what I’d do without the fresh cookies and handmade cards and cleaning service—I better keep this one around.”

Guys don’t need an impeccably clean house. When they’re in college, the puke on the frat-house walls isn’t enough to make them move out, and when they settle into the 20-something routine, they rarely invest in vacuum cleaners.

If you want to impress him, act like you’re so cool and desirable that you don’t need to put on a housekeeper’s uniform to attract a boyfriend.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Survey the District: A Valentine's Dilemma

Dear Date the District,

My boyfriend and I became official very recently (as in, a few days ago). Shortly after, he said how he was going to have to do something really really nice for me for Valentine's Day because I'm his girlfriend, at which point I said that we should just do something fun together. He then
said he still had to get me something, at which point I said maybe something very very little.

That is cute of him BUT I obviously have to reciprocate to some degree but don't even know where to start...


Is there anyone out there who actually enjoys Valentine’s Day?

All the single ladies spend the night eating their feelings, and all the couples feel so much pressure to make the night “really special.”

It’s sweet that your boyfriend wants to do something nice for you. But it sounds like you’re not ready to exchange gifts (and if you’ve only been official for a few days, we don’t blame you).

It’s hard to pick out a present for a boyfriend, and it’s even harder when you’re still trying to get to know each other.

Why not suggest going out instead? Say something like, “Look, I know we were talking about Valentine’s Day last week, and I think it’d be fun if we went out to dinner, but I don’t want anything.”

If he wants to get you flowers, it’s a nice gesture that definitely doesn’t require reciprocation. Every guy knows to get a girl roses for Valentine’s Day, but they don’t expect to receive anything in return.

If you’re really uncomfortable with the idea of receiving a gift without giving one, make him some baked goods ahead of time and wrap them in a nice box. Tell him to pick you up at your place on Valentine’s Day. If he shows up with roses, give him the cookies. If he’s empty-handed, save them for your roommate.

If he pulls out a gift after dinner, wait to open it and see what it is. If it’s big enough that you feel like you have to give him something in return, say, “I was going to wait to tell you this, but I found you the perfect gift online, and it’s not here yet.” Guys can be pretty oblivious when it comes to stuff like this, and even if he does see through it, he probably won’t remember and/or care.

If you do end up having to rush home and splurge on overnight delivery, don’t worry about making sure the price tag matches what he gave you.

Exchanging gifts with an S.O. comes with a certain amount of expectations, one of which is that the guy will probably end up making the bigger dent in his wallet.

Try to find something that fits his personality, but keep it pretty neutral/impersonal. Think Brookstone, Borders, etc. If you’re really stuck, pick up a copy of GQ—they always have great gift and gadget guides, though their suggestions are rarely budget-friendly.

But try not to worry too much. Guys know that Valentine’s Day is about girls, not guys. And as much as you might love a box of expensive chocolates, he probably can’t tell the difference between Pierre Hermé and Hershey.

Monday, February 8, 2010

News Roundup: The New Math on Campus

The New York Times recently published an article on the gender imbalance in many of the nation’s prestigious colleges and universities.

The article explores the ramifications of a widely noted trend in undergraduate admissions: female applicants tend to have higher SAT scores, better GPAs, and more extracurricular activities than their male counterparts.

So what happens when girls get to campus and find themselves outnumbering the boys? The article argues that the boys have all the power when it comes to dating, and the girls have to play by their rules. According to the author, college guys are more interested in sex than relationships, and the girls who want “something more” have to settle for casual sex because the guys are calling the shots.

While the gender ratio may contribute to this dynamic, it’s not the root cause of the problem.

The author chronicles the mating rituals these coeds employ to find “the one.” Here are the highlights:

Thanks to simple laws of supply and demand, it is often the women who must assert themselves romantically or be left alone on Valentine’s Day, staring down a George Clooney movie over a half-empty pizza box.

‘I was talking to a friend at a bar, and this girl just came up out of nowhere, grabbed him by the wrist, spun him around and took him out to the dance floor and started grinding,’ said Kelly Lynch, a junior at North Carolina, recalling a recent experience.

‘A lot of my friends will meet someone and go home for the night and just hope for the best the next morning,’ Ms. Lynch said. ‘They’ll text them and say: “I had a great time. Want to hang out next week?” And they don’t respond’

Even worse, ‘Girls feel pressured to do more than they’re comfortable with, to lock it down,’ Ms. Lynch said.

As for a man’s cheating, ‘that’s a thing that girls let slide, because you have to,’ said Emily Kennard, a junior at North Carolina. ‘If you don’t let it slide, you don’t have a boyfriend.’

“Women do not want to get left out in the cold, so they are competing for men on men’s terms,” [Kathleen A. Bogle, a sociologist at La Salle University in Philadelphia] wrote. “This results in more casual hook-up encounters that do not end up leading to more serious romantic relationships. Since college women say they generally want ‘something more’ than just a casual hook-up, women end up losing out.”

‘A lot of guys know that they can go out and put minimal effort into their appearance and not treat girls to drinks or flatter them, and girls will still flirt with them,’ said Felicite Fallon, a senior at Florida State University, which is 56 percent female.

So, basically, these girls aren’t making the guys put in any work whatsoever. This sentiment is oh-so-eloquently by one of the (few) men interviewed for this article:

‘You don’t have to work that hard,’ said Matt Garofalo, a senior at North Carolina. ‘You meet a girl at a late-night restaurant, she’s texting you the next day.’

The issue, it seems, is not the gender imbalance, but rather the way these girls are behaving.

When you make things too easy for guys, they’re going to lose interest. After all, if you seem so desperate to date the nerdy guy who monitors the computer lab, he’s going to wonder what’s driving the desperation. And he’s probably going to conclude that you think he’s too good for you. And if you think that, why shouldn’t he?

When girls are borderline-raping guys on the dance floor and taking them home for a one-night stand, the guys are going to assume they can do better. Not because the odds are in their favor, but because the girls seem really available.

And because we all want what we can’t have (especially when it comes to sex), these guys are going to look for the girls who aren’t giving it up as easily.

And if you read between the lines, that’s what the guys are saying.

‘Guys tend to overshoot themselves and find a really beautiful girlfriend they couldn’t date otherwise, but can, thanks to the ratio,’ [a male North Carolina alum] said.

What this guy’s saying is, the guys want to date girls that seem out of their league. But how can you tell who’s out of your league?

Yes, some people fall at extreme ends of the attractiveness spectrum. But most of us are somewhere in the middle. And, at that point, a lot of it comes down to personal preference. Some guys go crazy for redheads. Others are turned on by blonde hair, regardless of the face underneath it.

It’s the same for girls. Some girls want the lacrosse-player shaggy hair, while others like guys who look like they just got out of basic training.

So when a guy’s trying to figure out if a girl’s out of his league, he’s going to take a lot of clues from her behaviors/action.

If she’s texting him the day after a one-night stand to say, “I had a great time last night. Let’s get lunch this week.”, he’s probably going to assume she’s at least at (if not below) his level. Because if she were out of his league, she wouldn’t be giving him the time of day.

But if she’s not even going home with him in the first place, he might start to wonder if he’s good enough for her. And that’s going to pique his interest, not “[doing] more than [you’re] comfortable with to lock it down,” as the girls in the article suggest.

The guys agree.

‘Even though there’s this huge imbalance between the sexes, it still doesn’t change the fact of guys sitting around, bemoaning their single status,’ said Patrick Hooper, a Georgia senior. ‘It’s the same as high school, but the women are even more enchanting and beautiful.’

Presumably, the “enchanting and beautiful” women these guys are pining over aren’t putting out after the late-night diner.

All the guys are quick to point out how easy it is to get sex. But they all also bemoan the fact that they don’t have girlfriends.

The problem seems to be that the girls who put out don’t seem like girlfriend material. And the girls who don’t suddenly become these “enchanting” beauties that the guys actually want to date.

The girls who do put out aren’t ugly. The article goes into irrelevant detail about the outfits they wear and the time they put into their hair and makeup. So the girls who hold out probably aren’t more beautiful in an objective sense, but they seem more attractive because they seem less attainable.

These women aren’t single because they outnumber the guys. They’re single because they don’t know how to behave in a way that encourages men to date them.

And in cities like DC, where smart, motivated, and attractive women seem to outnumber men with the same characteristics, we could all learn a thing or two from these coeds’ mistakes.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Sex Tips for a Snowy Weekend

Well, DC readers, it looks like we’re all going to be snowed in this weekend. (And we’d like to take this opportunity to push our own picks for the snowstorm name: Snowbamanation and Snowfair—as in, it’s snowfair that it only snows on the weekend in DC.)

To make the boredom a little more bearable, we thought we’d give you some sex tips to help pass the time.

To get you off:

We’ve talked about this before, but clitoral stimulation is the most effective way to get off through intercourse.

But this is easier said than done, especially in the more vanilla sex positions (e.g., missionary, girl on top).

We already mentioned one position that stimulates your clit through penetration.

But if you’re more into guy-on-top, here’s another position you can try.

Let your guy get on top and get inside of you, then close your legs tightly. Have the guy move sideways so that his head’s to the left of yours and his feet are to the right of yours (or vice-versa). Your bodies should look like an X to a fly on the ceiling.

Then have the guy move forwards and backwards slowly, instead of the more traditional in-and-out motion. The key is to stimulate your clit, not to get as deep inside of you as he can. This one can take some time to adjust, but once you get it right, there’s a lot of clitoral contact.

To get him off:

Variety adds spice to any sex life, and the more unexpected and original you can make it, the better.

Getting naked and jumping in to bed is great, but it’s pretty standard, as far as sex goes.

To drive him wild, try imitating action in an unexpected locale—the living room, the kitchen, the basement. Don’t say, “I have a surprise for you waiting downstairs.” Instead, take him downstairs, and ask him to help you carry out the trash. Wait until you’re in the middle of something, and then grab him like you couldn’t control yourself. Don’t take off your clothes—instead, move them to the side, and only remove what’s absolutely necessary.

Another thing that seems to really get guys off: answering your phone during sex. It sounds weird, but try this:

The next time your phone rings, get on all fours and tell him you have to take it. But let him do you from behind while you’re talking. Don’t let the conversation go on for two long, but the naughty, subversive nature of your behavior will definitely turn him on.

Let us know how it goes at datethedistrict@gmail.com.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Gender Equality (Or Lack Thereof) in the Dating World

We spent most of last night in a heated debate about gender equality in the dating world.

In our opinion, it doesn’t exist. And here’s why:

From about the age of 0, girls start hearing the same message. They watch Disney movies, and later sit coms and chick flicks, they read “young adult” books, and later romance novels, and they all say the same thing: a woman’s goal in life should be to find the most handsome, charming, and desirable man she can, and the best way to snag him is to “fall in love” with him.

But it doesn’t work like that. If a guy thinks you’re in love with him before you’ve even gone on a first date, it’s going to scare him off.

Furthermore, these messages encourage women to base a lot of their own self-worth on their marital status and/or partner. Single? There must be something wrong with you! Do other girls think your boyfriend is kind of awkward and not that cute? They must think the same thing about you too!

Your love life (or lack thereof) becomes your primary focus. That’s not to say you can’t hold down a job or keep up some semblance of a personal life. But, when push comes to shove, this idea of “love” is the ultimate pursuit. Worth leaving your job for, worth transferring to a different city, worth putting everything on the line.

The truth is, life probably is easier and more enjoyable when you have a partner to share it with. But “love” does not a successful relationship make. Things like trust, mutual interests, and shared values will take you a lot further than lust that feels like something more.

And so our society sets women up to want a partner more than anything else, but doesn’t give them the tools to find one.

Guys, for whatever reason, seem to instinctively understand how to play games. They don’t return calls, they keep you guessing, and they seem less interested in couplehood to begin with.

Girls, on the other hand, watch a women on TV turn down Stanford to follow her crush to NYU and end up getting the guy after she confesses all this to him.

In the real world, this would be a major turnoff. But no one ever explains this to us.

So women are set up to want a partner more than (almost) anything else. But they’re also conditioned to behave in ways that would send most potential matches running in the opposite direction.

This doesn’t mean that women are doomed, but it does mean we have to work harder to overcome the urge to call him when he’s not responding.

And above all, it means women need to be more savvy about the dos and don’ts of dating. And it means we sometimes need to show each other the way—for example, by not encouraging our friends to drunk-text guys they want to date.

It’s not enough to tell yourself that things never work the way they do on TV and in the movies. You have to understand why they don’t work that way, and what does work in “real” life.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Heart Pounding? Stomach Fluttering? It's Not a Sign That You're Meant to Be...

You know those fluttery-stomach, heart-pounding sensations you get when the cute guy from your office smiles at you?

We dismiss those feelings as silly and insignificant, but we spend an awful lot of time chasing them, sometimes without realizing it.

Ever go out on a date with a guy who seems great on paper (cute, smart, funny), but then stop returning his calls because you didn’t feel a “spark?” Did you ever stop to think about what that spark feels like?

Some people call it chemistry, others call it lust, but it always feels the same: the giddy, light-headed, can’t-stop-giggling mood boost that lasts long after the date ends.

As good as it feels, we have some bad news: that “feeling” isn’t real.

And so many girls will end relationships with perfectly awesome guys because they don’t feel “a connection.”

But let’s think about the guys who make you feel tingly all over: the guy from work who might have a girlfriend. The guy from your gym who always smiles at you. The guy who took you out on one date and now only calls you after 2 a.m.

What do all these guys have in common? None are a sure thing.

Most of them probably don’t want to date you. If they did, they probably wouldn’t seem so unavailable.

In short: you feel that “spark” when a guy plays hard to get. That might mean playing games (e.g., not returning texts) or legitimately trying to let you down easy (because he really does have a girlfriend).

But when a guy does return your calls, and when he does ask you out on real dates, your heart doesn’t pound. You feel like it’s a sure thing, and you lose the excitement and anticipation.

That’s not to say that some guys won’t be legitimately boring. And you’ll probably go on more than a few dates with guys you have nothing in common with.

But the spark isn’t a sign that you’re meant to be with someone. It’s just a sign that he’s coming off as unavailable.

If you understand that, you’ll be able to make more informed decisions.

That means if you’re going out with a guy who’s cute and nice and smart, give him a chance before you decide he’s not the one.

If he’s being nice to you, you won’t get that fluttery feeling. But you might get something even better: a stable, meaningful relationship.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

The Stripper Question

Recently, one of our friend’s moms got drunk and spilled some secrets about her wild and crazy youth in Canada.

We would be remiss if we didn’t share one of them with you, loyal readers.

Back in the day, this mom (we’ll call her Abby) was friends with a guy whose parents owned a bunch of strip clubs in Ontario. She’d never been to a strip club before (she was, we think, the only person in Canada at the time with this distinction), so her friend convinced her to visit one of his parent’s “business establishments” one night.

Abby noticed that 9 out of 10 girls were smokin’ hot. But the other 10 percent, were, well, cute, but not knockouts.

She asked her friend about this, and explained that those are the most important girls. Guys like to see hot women dance around buck naked, but they always see those women as completely unattainable.

The meh girls, however, seem more attainable, and, as a result, they’re a more attainable fantasy. Guys can fantasize about the girls who don’t seem like a perfect 10 because it’s easier for them to believe that these girls would actually want to have sex with them. They’ll throw much more money at these girls because the fantasy becomes so real to them, and they forget that strippers don’t go home with you at the end of the night.

We’re not saying you should all go out and get part-time jobs at The House.

But we do think “normal” women tend to be very intimidated by the few supermodels who walk among us. And while those girls probably do get the most attention, the guys who go after them are like the kids who apply to Harvard with a 1200 on their SATs. It’s worth a shot in the dark for such a big payoff, but you go into knowing it’s probably not going to happen.

Most guys are also beyond intimidated by the idea of sleeping with one of these Sports Illustrated pinups. One of our friends actually broke up with a girl because, “I felt like I was having sex with a porn star.” And while that may sound sexy at first, it quickly leads to performance anxiety and feelings of self-doubt.

You want to be an attainable fantasy. That doesn’t mean you should go out in sweatpants, but it does mean you shouldn’t wear a baggy t-shirt to happy hour because you’re worried people will notice that you lost your 3 p.m. battle with the vending machine.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Missed Connection of the Day: Dear cute asian woman I followed home from the metro - m4w - 28 (Silver Spring)

Dear cute asian woman I followed home from the metro,

I am sorry that I followed you all the way from the metro to (what I can only assume is) your apartment building. I am sorry if my presence put you on edge for the length of that long dark stretch of lonely road. At 6'4" and 270 pounds, I can understand why I might appear intimidating. Add in the fact that it was already night, and that I have a beard and a septum ring. Then count in that I was wearing my hood up, which covered most of my face, and really it does make sense to me that you checked over your shoulder no less than 4 times in the three blocks to see if I was still behind you, each time giving a clear look of "oh fuck!" and then trying to walk-run as fast as your heeled boots could carry you over the slushy sidewalk. I know, it was super creepy. Trust me. If I had been in your position, I would have been scared too.

I want you to know that I consider myself harmless. Milquetoast even! Please, let me explain!

That whole walk was so awkward... there I was, walking home from the grocery store with two bags of comfort food, quietly ruminating on Valentines Day ideas that aren't hackneyed or trite, tired after a long day of reading and writing in cafes all over town and suddenly, there was this very small woman in front of me. I tried to pass you but my shoes have literally NO grip. None. So that refreezing slush was difficult to navigate at all, let alone trying to walk fast enough to pass you, up and down each of those hills, with my backpack on and two bags of groceries in my hands. And my hood was up because it was so cold my ears were throbbing with pain! If I had known that you were going to literally the exact same building that was my destination, I would have done anything to avoid the palpable tension of you trying to run away from me and me trying to not fall or die. Oh, and the reason that I didn't have a key, and waited outside of the building while you got on the elevator, checking one last time to see if I was STILL behind you? That was because I don't live in that building.

My boyfriend does.

He went to visit his father today, and I spent time working on my honors thesis in philosophy of language. I had to wait outside for his room mate to let me in, but really, by that point, there was nothing I could do that wasn't absurdly terrifying and awkward (and frankly kinda funny). So yeah, I'm sorry that I, a gay philosopher who's never thrown a punch in his life, absentmindedly toddling through ice while trying to be creatively romantic for the first Valentines Day of my relationship, scared you by the sheer coincidence of genetics and location. Honestly.