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Yesterday in typical morning fashion, my best friend Gchatted me to catch me up on what had I had missed being out the day before. She had finally met a new “distraction” on Tuesday night. After the requisite flirting, he finally said to her, “Well, if you ever want to hang out, you know…find me through the avenues.” WHAT? No, what does that even mean? Not only does is it not make any literal sense, but it’s also the worst mixed message ever (Yes, Berger; there ARE mixed messages). It’s so vague and passive that it could have just been a nice gesture, trying to get out of looking like a first class A-Hole.
Being a veteran, my friend wasn’t going to let this ambiguous crap fly. She told him whatever sentence he had just strung together made no sense. He responded, “Well, I’ll give you MY number and you can text me yours if you want. I would never ask for yours, because you’re a lady.”
Ok, this still makes no real sense, but it least it was clear that he was interested, but being a weirdo about it. So, she texted him. They volleyed until she fell asleep. Game, set, match. Your move dude…MAN UP AND PLAN A DATE.
Cut to this morning, and Brandy is telling me a similar incident occurred last night with a friend. They were out at a bar and her friend was flirting with a dude for a while. Eventually, without any inquiry for her digits, she rightfully abandoned ship. She was obviously not going to go back and ask for HIS number, so her two friends went back to ask for her. Once confronted, he was super weird about it, “What, is this high school? Why didn’t she come herself?”
“Because you should have asked her in the first place!!” The girls cried. He eventually gave up gis number, but the conclusion was that this guy was a dick.
There appears to be an epidemic of passivity amongst modern day men. While chivalry isn’t completely dead, it’s definitely on life support. I think we can speculate why.
1. Feminism is confusing men.
Yes, we want equal pay. Yes we don’t want to have choose between motherhood and a career. Yes, we want to be able to be the breadwinner without resentment. Yes, we want equal rights. But, for the love of God…WE STILL WANT TO BE ASKED OUT ON A PROPER DATE. Just because we want to be treated like men in the eyes of law and even at work, it doesn’t mean we don’t still like being taken care of, or hold high standards of “Notting Hill” romantic ideals. We’re just girls standing in front of boys, asking them to love us!!
I think a lot of guys are genuinely confused about whether they should let the girl make the first move. Sometimes girls are super hard to read, and they want to respect boundaries. Boys were also raised by the same bra-burning mothers who taught us all to speak our minds and that we could be whatever we wanted. The same mothers who taught their daughters to respect themselves, also taught their sons to respect girls. They just never got a very clear instruction manual because gender roles had already been bent by the time we came into the world.
2. Women have become more aggressive.
I went to a fratty college where there was a whole street lined with Greek mansions; it was obnoxiously called, “The Row.” The sororities were Hampton’s style estates, while the frat houses were hovering just above condemnable. For this reason, among some other rather obvious issues, parties were held at frats. On Thursday nights, girls would put on their best Seven bootcut jeans, a going out top, some awful strappy sandal heels, and traipse down the street, popping into their favorite frat houses. This always struck me as a creating a very strange dynamic where all these gorgeous, smart, funny, athletic girls were on display, competing for these gross dudes’ attention. We were on their turf, and in the popular houses, there were usually more girls than guys. Even the shyest girl had to step up to the plate if she wanted a drunken make-out. But what was the point? The good ones had girlfriends and the hot ones only wanted the blondes.
This is the jungle we were thrown into during our very impressionable adult dating lives. While I realize that most people didn’t have this exact same experience, it sounds like most people’s collegiate dating years weren’t totally dissimilar. This is the dynamic we took with us into the real world.
3. Boys fear rejection too.
I know this is the most benign reason, which leads to skepticism, but it IS true. I remember being in P.E. during Freshman year of high school, when my silly friend Miles asked me on a date. I laughed, and said, “Yeah, right.” I sincerely thought he was joking at the time. He was not. (Don’t worry guys, Facebook tells me he lives with a very pretty girlfriend now.) Nice guys probably have just as many dating battle scars from jerky girls like me, and yeah, they’re probably afraid to put themselves out there a little.
4. He’s just not that into you.
Yeah, that’s a thing. (Sorry, I have to give Berger this one.) The blow-off is a thing; we all do it, girls and boys alike. It’s always disappointing, but it’s better to spot early on.
5. Boys are intimidated by strong women.
This is so lame, but many times true. Most of the time it’s because a guy is insecure with himself. If this is the case, he needs to crawl underground until he can handle himself a real lady. Take his inaction as a compliment. You’re too awesome to take on.
6. The stereotype of the marriage crazed women.
Don’t get me wrong, I would watch wedding shows all day long if I could. But what deranged message are they sending? Romantic comedies depict love-starved women who have it all except love, and they’ll do ANYTHING to get it. Man, if this was the shit being pumped into my head, I’d stay the hell away from me too. Dudes! Not all women want to get married and make babies after the first date. Don’t be scuuuured.
Thank you Telegraph for the nostalgic photo!
Heather is a contributing editor at the-dah. She is a Los Angeles based writer, improviser, snacker, social media mistress, and aspiring adult. Read more of her food-stained stories about growing up weird at Terrible-Twenties.com, or follow her digital alter ego @MissHezah on Twitter.
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