It's time for me to be that chick you hate. That chick that tells it like it is like she knows it all. The chick that says what you don't want to hear. Because you've been that guy. You've been that girl. And so have I.
Now I do a lot of people-watching, and people-listening, and I see and hear quite a bit of this little flirty singles dance that's out there. A lot of "He texted me this" and "I told him that" and "Can you believe he/she said/did THAT?" And just for the record, I'm middle-aged. This isn't my first rodeo - and if you're reading this, it probably isn't yours, either.
So here's the deal. I'm going to go all Patty Stanger on you (she's that in-your-face madwoman from Millionaire Matchmaker, who, to me, makes perfect sense nearly every time she speaks) and give you some no-brainer, no-shit dating tips that you should already know, but either you're too wrapped up in yourself to realize it or you're just bat crazy.
First, for the guys. You're all morons. You have no idea what you're doing, and if you think you do, you're full of yourself. If you're looking to get some drunk chick in the sack for a night, keep doing what you're doing and that's probably what you'll get. I guarantee she'll get uglier as the day gets lighter and you'll probably never see her again. Wait, you will, and it will be uncomfortable at best.
If you are looking for a relationship, swap the sexual innuendos for something a little more practical - like being sweet instead of sexy, intelligent instead of ignorant, and perspicacious instead of a prick. If you do by some act of God get her phone number, the texts should be kept to a minimum - a quick "Hi, it was great meeting you last night" or "Can you break for lunch?" or "Call you later!" will suffice. If you want this little bud of a romance to go anywhere, pick up the damn phone and call her. Texting that much is for losers. And it's exhausting to boot.
And if you're the guy on the other end of the spectrum - the sweet, quiet, shy guy who can't even make eye contact? WE DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU'RE THINKING. We can't read your mind, but your face looks like a deer caught in headlights. Man up, because, well, you're the man. And if WE have to be the ones to man up, then there's a problem.
Now if a FWB (Friend with Benefits) is what you're looking for, try having that conversation with your lady friend about it instead of just "assuming" that's what it is, or just riding that train for as long as you can before someone (she) notices. Try this icebreaker: "Hey, I really like you and all, but not really enough to admit to anyone that I'm in a relationship with you. Plus I really want to keep my options open in case someone really out of my league decides that I rock their world. BUT, you're the only action I really get right now, so if we could just keep it on the downlow, that would be great. Here, let me pick up the check." What? You don't think that will go over well with your female buddy? Huh.
Girls, now it's your turn. Quit being such needy pansies. I'm not much for "self-help" books (obviously), but I once read a book that I'm embarrassed to admit to reading, but I've taken the author's advice to this day. Greg Behrendt wrote He's Not That Into You in 2004 (you probably remember the movie back in 2009). Anyway, the book was freakin' genius.
Now while most of his insights had to do with getting over someone who had broken up with you, they can be tweaked for dating purposes. Like, "If he wants to call, he'll call." There is no, "He must have lost my number." or "Maybe he's in the hospital." or "Maybe I didn't indicate to him enough that I wanted him to call." If he wants to call, HE WILL CALL. So go on about your day and chill. Now, when he DOES call, we are NOT going to analyze every single thing that came out of his mouth. WHY? Because he didn't mean it ANY DIFFERENT OR ANY DEEPER than it sounded. Unless he is one of those incredibly rare, emotionally-available males who are deeply in touch with their feminine side, what you hear is what you get. THERE IS NO MORE. So go on about your day and chill.
And there's more, dear ladies. You may think that letting him know what other men have done to you is going to somehow endear you to him. IT'S NOT. You may think that if you don't go home with him he'll think you're a prude and never ask you out again. THAT COULD HAPPEN. And I hope it does. And as titillating as phone sex or sexting may seem at 2 am, it's really, really awkward at 10 in the morning. So, like, don't do it. Same for sending raunchy pictures that more than likely will end up on his Facebook page.
If you do make that love connection and start down that relationship road, make sure it's a reciprocal one. If you're surprising him with dinner, putting little notes on his car, or dropping off cookies at his workplace and there's nothing coming back your way, STOP DOING IT. YOU'RE BEING CREEPY GIRLFRIEND STALKER. If on the other hand YOU are getting cookies at work and little notes on your car and not doing the same thing, RUN DON'T WALK, and consider changing your phone number.
I'm sure some of this advice sounds jaded, and perhaps it is. But I can't keep my mouth shut when I see this happening all around me - on both sides. Men and women - doing this dorky dance like a couple of mating flamingos trying to figure out if they're pink enough for each other. Here's a novel idea. Talk for awhile. Get to know each other. Go out a couple of times on some fun dates. Go a couple of days in between without talking to each other (OK - a short text is permissible). You'll know if you're on the same page. If you even question it, you're not. If you have to have talk after talk after talk about it, you're not. MOVE ON. Like marriages, relationships do take some work. However, if they take THAT much work, you're better off cutting loose before you tie that knot.
Any other advice for men and women daters out there? Want to tell me I'm a freak? Go ahead. I may seem that way, but in the spirit of Patty Stanger, I know what I'm talking about.