Monday, September 5, 2011

Unsolicited Dating Advice

Recently, well not so recently anymore, I broke up.  And like every human mammal, when faced with a taxing situation I rely on previous experience and learned insights to deal with it.   And while experience has taught me to laugh at myself, listen to my mom, and always pack extra undies--it has not taught me how to be attractive to the opposite sex.

In middle school I think I was at the pinnacle of my attractiveness (that sentence just made Chris Hanson want to sit me down in the kitchen set of "To Catch a Predator).  But I'm serious.  By eighth grade I had mastered the art of blue, sparkly eye shadow, laughing at unfunny things boys said just to boost their already inflated egos, and the ability to pretend to be whomever I thought the boy in question would enjoy.  He liked sports?   Toss me a football!   He liked dumb girls?   Holding a pencil is hard!   He liked conservative girls?   Abortion is murder!

Sadly, this period of unstoppable appeal didn't last very long.  Sometime around sophomore year of high-school I began questioning this tried and true method of man-snatching.  I was exhausted and bad at being desirable anyway.  The spark-plug shaped, stocky, loud, little rabble rouser in me just would not be contained under a cloud of giggles and Bath and Body Works perfume.  I stopped worrying about intimidating my male classmates and more about being educated, and worst of all, I started becoming confident in voicing my own opinions.   Can you say boner shrinker? And this trend has continued.  While I am not beyond rocking a push-up bra or a short skirt or even a stiletto heel, these tricks can only camouflage the ball-busting bitch underneath for so long.   Anecdote time.   A man on a date once told me "football is a metaphor for his life.  It's about being mentally tough"   I told him a) his life must be preeeeetty homoerotic, what with all the men in tight pants and ass-slapping b) that's the stupidest thing I've ever heard and c) I could tell we had nothing in common, so thanks, but no thanks.   Wrong!   Middle school Annie would have known better.   She would have tried (probably unsuccessfully--but mature Annie didn't even try) to smile and nod and tell him how fascinating she thought he was.

So I'm stuck with this.   I have this problem.   And worse I keep forgetting it is, in fact, a problem. I think I'm kinda cool.  Kinda too cool to put up with bullshit.   So dating in today's world is a minefield.   I will talk religion and politics on a first date--and I will straight-up tell my first date I disagree with his views on either.    Also, I do this Jurassic Park spitting dinosaur impression which usually involves me sending flecks of spit airborne across the table onto my dinner partner's face...   Yeah, Emily Post would bust a spleen in anger if she saw me whip out that little gem.

So while some girls are calling their significant other "my handsome" or making him cookies, I'm arguing about gentrification and chewing with my mouth (slightly!) open.  My advice?   Be like those girls, be like Middle School fembot me, but definitely don't be like the "true me" I am now.   Then again, in my own coy little way I can tell you sometimes your mom was right--being yourself works.   ::Wink:: (again with my mouth open)

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