It's like Sex and the Suburbs and 30 Rock all rolled into one…
OH Jezebel, thank you for posting this article that implores men to stop hitting on women. It’s a terribly written piece of crap, and I really just wish that you’d have reposted this instead. Here’s the thing: I understand what the first author is trying to say, it’s just that she actually doesn’t say it well, or really even convey her message at all. It’s the second blog post, the one about context and situations, that really gets it right. And thank goodness! My dating life would be non-existent if all men listened to the first author. I like to date, I like to talk to people. I’m a friendly sort of person.
I get it, women are far more likely to have to deal with situations in which they might be assaulted, raped or murdered. And I understand having to deal with the pushy guy who seems like he could be a rapist. At Larkfest last year four guys approached me while I was waiting for my ride and asked if they could buy me a drink. When I said no, and indicated that my ride would be coming around the bend shortly, two of them actually grabbed my arms while the other two stood close behind me and in front of me. They were brazen – it was about 6pm and in the midst of a large crowd. I had to actually throw a punch and scurry off. I’ve walked the streets of Albany at night and this was the first time I’d ever felt unsafe in the 518. But here’s the thing: these four Jersey Shore wanna-be douches absolutely do not make up any significant percentage of the wonderful people I’ve met in the almost five years I’ve lived here.
And I wouldn’t have met people if they didn’t approach me and talk to me. Actually, some of my friends today are guys that when they met me, they flirted. At a picnic in which I only knew the person who invited me (and her rather large dog), a guy who would be a great friend to be awkwardly hit on me. At the time I had a boyfriend, but he certainly didn’t know that, and I felt flattered and thought his come ons were highly amusing. Because guess what? They were. And when they were turned down, conversation turned towards common interests and a great friend was made. Another eligible bachelor, one that has flat out asked me home, became a good friend, good enough to nudge a young man he thought would enjoy my company my way. And he was right and it was really really great. Even though it didn’t work out, the guy is still on my top ten list of good friends.
And I never would have met him if he hadn’t engaged me in conversation. There were no cheesy pick-up lines, but interesting topics and most importantly, questions asked. And not just trivial ones, but really meaty topics in which we could discuss our viewpoints. It was only after we had decided to essentially ignore half our party that he offered to buy me a drink. And then only after I had decided to stay out past the rest of my group did he event attempt to hold my hand. He was subtle, polite, and most importantly, took clues from me. I’m pretty confident had I mentioned a boyfriend, or declined the drink, he would have been a perfect gentleman. Because that’s what he is.
So gentlemen, it’s okay. You can approach me and talk to me. Just do it the right way. Don’t be a creeper, which is what I believe the Jezebel post is really about.