Archive for August, 2009

Not for nothing, never happen, I be forever macking

Not for nothing, never happen, I be forever macking

So in this continuation of the Manlaw series, I want to talk to folks about actually meeting women. A simple activity which has become tremendously overcomplicated by both men and women. I was talking to a friend of mine and she’s been bugging me about writing something regarding the proper etiquette in meeting a woman because of her experience at the Park last week, a Negro hangout spot in DC, wherein she claims she was grabbed about like a rag doll the entire time. I wasn’t there but seems plausible. See, the whole grabbing thing is bad macking. There’s a ton of things actually which are bad macking, and we know they’re bad macking. We do them anyway, either because we’re lazy, or because it’s just what’s done. Now, a caveat. I’m not Mystery from the Pick-Up artist. I’m not a professional mack. I’m probably not even a particularly good one. But I have been fortunate enough to have dated what I think are some of the most quality women in this country. Really great women who I’m glad to have shared time with. And as a fairly newly single person, re-entering a new(ish) city, this is a good exercise for me as well. That said, summer’s about to be over. Folks ain’t trying to be out in these streets like that in the Cold November Rain. The time for action is now, my friends (John McCain voice). So here are some brief tips:

1. Choose your stage: The boy Jozen wrote an excellent piece a few days ago on places where the fine women are. I know “the club” is the default place to meet and mack women, but go back carefully and look at your dating history. How many women that you’ve actually had sustainable successful relationships did you actually meet “in the club?”  As a rule, the club was not created for people to meet each other and form romantic relationships. The club was designed for people with menial careers to go somewhere and live out their high school fantasies of being popular and important. The club is merely the adult version of a grade school playground, with the same social hierarchies, jockeying for position, and attempts at making oneself seem more important. And real talk, it’s not that easy to form a lasting bond or impression when you’re five Tequilas down, she’s three Long Islands up, and Gucci Mane and Jeezy are yelling for you to be ignorant at ear-shattering volumes. Beyond that, many of OUR people (elitism) shun the club because we realy don’t need or want to spend a whole lot of time wading through people who won’t get us in the hope that someone else of our stature has similarly lowered themselves to come here.

The truth of the matter is, the whole world is a proverbial ho stroll. You just have to figure out where the women you want are at and end up there. The key being to not waste a whole lot of time and effort going to places where your constituency doesn’t exist. A few of good places:

1. The hardware store: Women here tend to own homes, or at least keep their apartments nice

2. Midday downtown: These broads have jobs and go to lunch. Like shooting fish in a barrel

3. Whole Foods: Women here care about their health and well-being

4. Book Stores/Coffee Shops: They can read

These places also work well, because there’s a built in conversation. What are you reading? Oh, I love Barilla Pasta. Are you painting your bedroom that color? Boom, easy.

Many Men to meet, Much fat to chew

Many Men to meet, Much fat to chew

2. Presentation You never get a second chance to make a first impression is the old saying. And when people think game, they think mouthpiece. Enh. Wrong. Game begins the moment you walk in somewhere. 70% or something of communication is non-verbal. The play doesn’t start at the point you’ve mustered up the liquor courage to go deliver that brilliant opening line of yours. How you look, your posture, your body language determine where you start on the field. Now you can come through with one of those Devin Hester returns for the TD, in which case all you have to do when you open your mouth is kick the extra point….

orrrrrr you can get a whole lot of penalty flags and try to dig your way out from your own goal line. Which would you prefer? Right. I’m a fan of simplicity myself. The Affliction tattoo t-shirts and the big skull belt buckles and all that, it may work some places, but I find a nice watch, some good quality shoes, and a white or black button up does the job every time with the crowd I’m going for. Me being me, I also enjoy a tacky but very well cut blazer in some material or color not found in nature. That’s just what works for me. I was actually at an event this weekend, and in the middle of our conversation, the young lady looked directly down at my shoes. Like unapologetically. She approved. Personal style is a personal deal, so whatever you feel comfortable in, do that. If you feel comfortable, you’ll act comfortable. And no woman can’t dig that. Dressing well doesn’t have to be expensive. It’s a recession, there’s always a sale on somewhere. Also, wearing a three piece suit in a lounge on Saturday with Versace shades typically makes women think you’re pretentious, not business-like. At least loosen the tie.

YOU could be part of this stable. Choose, bi**h!

YOU could be part of this stable. Choose, bi**h!

3. Bring Sand to the Beach The best way to get a good deal on a Ferrari is to drive up to the dealership in a Lamborghini. Half the reticence women have about talking to guys (is he lame, crazy, dangerous, broke, etc.) go out the window if you’re with one or more attractive women. You’re pre-approved if you show up with cute chicks.If it’s a velvet rope door situation, again, matching up with some chicks in line makes your night a lot smoother.

4. Pull your balls up Quit whining about how these women act and go interact. Not every conversation has to be a pick up. nd frankly, the most productive conversations are just two people (or more) talking about a subject of mutual interest. If some women are having a conversation, go find out what they hollering about. If you see a girl alone by the bar, smile and say hi. I wave at women all the time. They almost always wave back. And that opens the door to conversation later. But standing on the wall sucking down your drink or waiting for women to pass by to grab them like an Octopus doesn’t really work too well.

5. Be your best self Not what you think she wants to see. You might want to play Mr. Sensitive and she really wants a dude who will “punch her in the throat and tell her it’s time to fuck” (yes, a woman actually did say this was what she wanted in a man. Seriously). Don’t try to get on her level, talk about the things that you’re interested in that she may share. If there’s no commonality, no need to force it or pretend you’re into water polo. Dating is ruthlessly inefficient, and very few of the people we meet are going to be potential long run partners. If you and a woman have some things in common and will get along, it’ll be evident fairly early. You being you will help you click with this person, not hurt it. Showing you’re human and not some self-aggrandizing caricature will do much more to create a bond than just showing off your assets or trying to sell a dream. Feel free to cut your losses with a nice handshake and a “nice to meet you” if it ain’t going nowhere.

Not gonna happen, LeRoy

Not gonna happen, LeRoy

6. Don’t make a buffoon out of yourself if she’s not responsive. You have no idea why a woman may have rejected you. She may have a dude, an STD she’s embarrassed about, a bad day, or a bad attitude. Or she just may not be into you. Trying to one up her by then getting mad at her or downplaying her is just immature. We’re men, we roll with punches. Stop being all sensitive. You don’t see the Lion badmouthing the gazelle that got away: “You wasn’t that delicious anyway, bitch! With your short ass horns!” Yeah, Mufasa doesn’t really do all that. He just moves on. And it saves him the embarrassment of looking whiny and spiteful, unmannish qualities both.

7. Social macking Realistically, one of the best ways to get to know people is through the people you already know. A lot of women make this something of a precondition, whether they tell you that or not. And since most valuable women don’t have a lot of time, they’re spending it with their existing friends, not aimlessly wandering Adams Morgan or Lenox mall. That said, your reputation becomes exceedingly important in a close knit circle. If you’re trifling, it’ll get around. If you’re fun and caring, it’ll get around too. DC people with your small ass communities, I’m talking to you.

8. No drink buying. This may run counter to a lot of what you may have heard or seen, but don’t buy them girls drinks off the break. Make them earn it. Seriously, if someone needs you to put $12 up to have a conversation with them, the conversation isn’t going to be that good. If things are going well, and you want to do something nice once you’ve established a bond, that’s cool, but I’ve been in situations a million times where you’ll see a guy working hard at the bar plying a chick with drinks, and when he pulls out his phoen to put the number in, he gets that “sorry, I have a boyfriend” routine. Women may say they see drink buying as chivalry, but a lot of them also see it as weakness. If you’re willing to buy them something without any indication of what type of person they are, you’re probably a trick.

Feel free to add your own. This is a learning process for me too.

And so it was spaketh

And so it was spaketh

Dear middle class black brethren:

And by that, let me add upper class and working class aspiring to break into the middle. We need you, guys. By we, I mean the race. You are the key to figuring this thing out. Listen, we go hard at the women all day for their failings, their insecurities, their attitudes, etc. But let’s be clear, they’re actually doing alright. Statistically, they’re getting it in much harder than we are. Academically, professionally, financially. And that’s an embarrassment.

Ladies, if you’re reading, some of this may come off as mysogynistic and maybe a tad sexist. Log off now if you get easily offended or want to wave your woman flag. You’re welcome to get in this conversation, because you’re an important part of it, but it’s not really directed at you.

Without you succeeding and thriving, black guy, this whole wagon train doesn’t go anywhere. Kids don’t get raised as right as they should be, families can’t put together wealth like they should, and the yung’uns don’t have the big homies to look up to like they ought to. So in this series, we’re going to discuss a couple things I’ve been seeing and hearing out in the world, and we’re going to get back on track here. For a lot of you that read this, you’re already there, and this is remedial for you. Congratulations. Make sure you pull some other brother’s coat that needs some help.

This first issue is going to be really broad brush stuff, but I think it’s important. As the leaves begin to change color, and Saturdays are the province of college football, I think it’s a great time for renewal and re-dedication. With that said, here is manlaw for Fall 2009

See the ring. Its the ring of focus. Now kiss it.

See the ring. It's the ring of focus. Now kiss it.

1. Focus, dude. A lot of us spend a lot of time and money on very low-value activities. I’m as guilty as anyone. I ran some numbers the other day, and had I been more disciplined in how I managed my life, I would have had enough money to buy a used but well kept Ferrari cash. That’s a lot of dicked off money. And worse, we dick off a lot of time. Because we’re unfocused. We’re unsure of what we want and need a lot of the time so we default to the easy or the right in front of us or the socially accepted. What we all really need to do is take a little time figuring things out before we act. Look at the scenarios, run the sensitivity analysis, figure the variables. This can relate to anything. A lot of people I know have side hustles. Very few successful people I know have side hustles. What’s Mark Zuckerberg’s side hustle. Oh, wait, he was too busy turning Facebook into a media conglomerate to have one. You think Tim Tebow plays minor league baseball on the side? Fuck no. He’s focused. On winning that third championship. Meanwhile, you have a square job which you half-ass at, a non-profit you haven’t put any work into in two years, and you try to throw parties every now an again. Focus, man. Figure out what you can be great at or at least enjoy, and go balls to the wall on that. Once you have that straight, then you can start expanding. But splitting time just equals half-assing two things the majority of the time.

The same can be said of relationships. If you want to be in a relationship, focus on it. Make sure you have the right person, and if you’re meeting people, throw the wrong ones out. Dating is expensive, and if there’s no future to be had or you’re lukewar about it, let it go. Be ok with being the bad guy early, so you’re not Hitler later on. If you want to be pimping, pimp hard. don’t have a bunch of girls sucking up your time, money, and emotional energy up because they want to be in “relationettes” (blog coming soon).

This ni**a GETS chivalry

This ni**a GETS chivalry

2. Do Chivalry. There’s a lot of hemming and hawing on the blogs and around the bars about women not appreciating chivalry or wanting to be all independent and open their own door and shit. Or even mouthing off when chivalry is offered. Shut that shit down. Stop being all sensitive about whether you’re gonna get a thank you card or a smile. Chivalry is not about reciprocity, it’s about you as a man doing the things that are right. If she doesn’t appreciate it, that’s fine. Another one will. I walked my ex from a bar to a club a few blocks down the other week. Interrupted my delicious  beer and my conversation because it was the right thing to do. I didn’t want her getting preyed on or whatever by drunken perverts. She’s my ex, so I wasn’t going to get any sex out of it (or was I?) but I would have felt like a douche if I just sat there and let her wander off into the night by herself.And trust me, when I came back, other women at the table noticed. And they approved.

Open the door for a woman and if she gives you some lip about “I can do that myself”, let her know that she’s the woman in this relationship and that you wear the pants. You’re gonna open the door because that’s what you’re gonna do. When a woman challenges your chivalry, she’s disrespecting you, and as a man its your job to put her ass in check. you’re doing the both of you a favor here by letting her know that it’s alright to accept kindness.

I run the show, woman.

I run the show, woman.

3. Stop letting these women run the show. A lot has been made about a woman “letting a man be a man.” Let’s end this all here. A man is a man or he ain’t. A woman can respect and appreciate him doing a man’s job or she can choose not to. But she doesn’t let him do shit. If you want to change your woman’s oil, change it. Don’t wait for her to start that yap about how she can go to Jiffy Lube herself. Take your dirty wifebeater and an oil pan and drive down to Jiffy Lube yourself and pretend that you did it.

(Everybody thinks changing oil is this cool manly thing to do yourself, but frankly, it’s really not. Unless you have an SUV sitting high, you’ll need a lift to get the car up, and then you’ll need to take the used motor oil, properly contained, to a service station or garage that can dispose of it without killing baby seals. It’s really not worth the hassle unless you already have the equipment.)

The same thing goes with other behavior. Men worry way too much about how women are going to perceive or react to something and thus change their behavior. Quit. Men lead, and women will choose. If you’re being or doing something that’s not your bag so a woman will choose you, she’s not really choosing you, she’s choosing your representative. that gets expensive in divorce court.

4. Remove basic bitches from your life. Seriously. Unfollow them on twitter, stop worrying about their whereabouts, and quit complaining about their basicness. They’re not your constituency until you make them such. A lot of basic bitches look really good. That’s why they’re so fucking basic, because you all keep allowing them to be by paying attention to them. if you stopped, they’d have to throw their basic ass tendencies away and focus on being a full, well-rounded responsible adult. But as long as you’re trying to pretend they’re not basic or overlooking their basicness, they’ll continue on being what they are.

This goes for the whole gold-diggery thing too. Listen, women like money. Stop crying about it. It’s a good thing. You can make more money. It’s not like looks or height, or talent, which you have or don’t have. Frankly, if women didn’t like money, you wouldn’t bother getting it. I mean, think about it, if you worked 70 hour dog ass weeks for years, got a penthouse and a Maserati, and could only pull the same women that Tyreefus from South Dakota Avenue could get, wouldn’t you be pissed? Thanks. If you’re on a budget, just quit taking HOES to expensive ass places. And don’t get mad if they choose a richer or trickier dude. Just charge it to the game and move on. and stop being a sponsor if you don’t want to be. If you’re trying to decide where to take a chick, imagine that the scenario ends up being that you guys decide you don’t want to go out anymore. Would you be upset about how much you spent? If yes, go somewhere cheaper.

5. Lose the extraness. Some of you ni**as done started acting like bitches. You dress like bitches, talk about bitch things, and are generally womanly in your handling of life. It’s called douchery. An intrinsic part of being a man means being comfortable with who you are, not trying to put on a masquerade for the world. That’s women’s business, because they’re judged so much by their appearance and other silly things. As a man, you WILL after all is said and done, be judged by your accomplishments. Have no doubt about this. People will not remember what club you bought out the bar at or what outfit you wore to the picnic. These may play some small part in a larger narrative, but in and of themselves, no one’s going to remember. So stop making a fucking spectacle of yourself. It’s unbecoming.

I want to be the black version of this guy

I want to be the black version of this guy

Look, you’re an educated, successful black male. You don’t have to do a lot to beat the curve as it is. So all the attention-whoring and self-aggrandizement just comes across as what it is: raging insecurity. The bow-ties, the ascots, the mohawks, yada ya, please, let them go. (If you’re a homosexual, this does not apply to you. You guys have a different set of standards, and since I don’t really know what’s appropriate for you guys, I’m not going to try and tel you what to do. Go gay marriage!) If you’re just naturally a creative or artsy person, that’s cool. The reason Prince gets away with looking like he does, is because that’s who he is. In his core. If tht’s you, do you. But when you’re doign all this to try to get people’s attention, it just comes off wack

6. Go to they gym. Not just to look buffer for women, but because you feel better. I’ve picked up about 10 lbs. of Muscle in grad school, and I physically feel great. It’s awesome. And it helps when you have to do manly things, like put up drywall or give tall girls piggyback rides. It’s awesome.

More later. Discuss

Hanh? Bitch, what?

Hanh? Bitch, what?

So I was gonna write a post on big women but SBM just covered that and frankly, I think it’s a little incendiary for the moment. I’ll get back to it when I can think of a way to discuss it out with pissing off a whole bunch of people. Also, saw the “Run this Town” video. What the fuck was that? I mean I could have directed that. Drunk. Given all the buildup, I thought that shit was gonna be the second coming of “Big Poppa mixed with some “Cherchez La Ghost”, not some Road Warrior/Escape from New York knockoff. Also, Yeezy’s verse on a Jay-Z song was the equivalent of Lebron getting dunked on at his own Summer Camp. But I digress

So I went out to McCormick and Schmick’s today and noticed a prime cut of the meat I call mixed messages. It’s a sour and rancid meat, fatty yet tough, and with no bacon-like deliciousness. I walk in, and three black professional twenty-something girls are at the bar. The first one makes googly eyes at me, and then makes some motion to her friends, because first one, then the other turns around to take a look at me. I’m flattered and all, so I wave to the first one, who I think was a little embarrassed that she’d been so obvious. I take a stroll looking for my friend, who hadn’t arrived yet, and not finding her, headed to the bar. The first girl was on the phone, so I ordered a beer and said hi to the other two. They acted like I was some wild interloper from the jungles of Africa. The one looks at me kinda snidely and then continues her convo with her friend nd the other twists her head around and then ignores me. Both were beneath my minimum standards lookwise, so I wasn’t particularly concerned, but I thought it was a little weird. As I saw my friend walking in the door, I gave it no real thought. Apparently they did, though, as they deaded their whole conversation to check her out and undoubtedly do what Belle talked about in her last blog.

So what was the point of all this? I mean clearly, when I walked in there was interest. Then there was standoffishness. And then as soon as competition came in, there was interest. This is what we call a mixed message. Now, had I been younger or had the girls been prettier, I might have been interested in what the true message was. As neither was the case, I’m not in this particular instance. But I think it’s a small illustration of one of the larger communication issues men and women have.

We say one thing, then we do another. Or we do one thing, then do something completely contradictory. I hear women say this a lot too. A guy acts like a boyfriend, but says he doesn’t want a relationship. He says he’s not still pining over his ex, but she’s all over his call log.

And women, no get out of jail card for you either. You say you don’t like a guy “like that” but you cockblock whenever another woman shows him some attention. You smile and act all coy and demure as he buys you a whole bunch of drinks and then call him a stalker when he follows you around the club.

So what’s the story here? Are we ignorant to the signals we’re giving off here? Or are we genuinely confused? Torn even? Or maybe hedging our bets. Not wanting to lay our cards on the table, do we instead resort to doublespeak and contradiction as a way to shield us from rejection? What’s the deal, folks? Are you a mixed messenger? Or a victim of mixed messagery?

You so lucky to have me

You so lucky to have me

So on the blogosphere, here’s how it typiclly works: Jackass blogger who’s as qualified to write about relationships as Osama Bin Ladin is to teach a tolerance seminar spouts off ad infinetum about what the other gender is doing wrong. Blogger throws out incindiary insults in order to get mad comments and eventually be nominated for a Black Weblogs award. Commentors respond with vitriol and anger and get into fights amongst themselves. Usually, their comments begin as such:

“Wait just a second. I’m a good black woman and….”

“This is the realest post I ever read. As one of the few good black men….”

But let’s reel this thing in for a second. What exactly do you mean by a “good black person?” And isn’t the underlying tone that the rest of the blacks are “bad.” What is it that separates you from your lazy, heathenish brethren and makes you such a catch? I specifically ask this because I often wonder, if you’re so “good”, why is it that you’re so single and yet members of your gender who you view as your inferior are booed up?

“I want to express my anger and frustration as a man with the women I feel are miseducated, misinformed, and ill-prepared about their responsibilities in getting and maintaining a relationship with a man of quality,”

says Dante Moore, author of the book, “The Re-Education of the Female.”

You can tell Im a good man from the soft lighting and my unbuttoned shirt

You can tell I'm a good man from the soft lighting and my unbuttoned shirt

“James,” is tired of women taking him for his money.  He claims he can’t find a good woman to save his life.  He b*tches and moans about how the women he dates are worthless and laments about how he could never wife any of the women ends up stumbling over.  However, James is frequently heard saying the following statements:  “I am a young and powerful professional,  I have a house, like 2 cars, I went to an Ivy League school, I have two degrees, I make like 6 figures……etc etc etc.  James is frequently heard spewing all of his resume stats somewhere during his first time meeting a new woman.  To me, it sounds like the teacher and Peppermint Patty….wooowaaawaawaaa.   James acts like he is Prince Hakim and the royal rose petal throwers from Zamunda are supposed to monitor his every move and also keep stacks of his resumes on hand to staple to his forehead  and to slap random women with his wallet upon his entrance into a room.

From our friends at P.O.S.H.

“I KNOW I am a good woman and a great catch, if I do say so myself.  No, I don’t go around qoting my stats or throwing my good woman weight around, but I know my parents raised me right and I am an asset.  Most of my friends share my qualities because you surround yourself with people you aspire to be like or who have like goals and ambitions.

I am a Christian woman, a well educated attorney, and I am  on my ish daily handling my business.  I can throw down in the kitchen, organize a dinner party in minutes, attend a Sorority or Links function, and swing a mean hammer around the house.  I listen well, communicate my issues, and try to not let my take charge personality strip a man of his hunt and gather mentality.  I understand the principle of a man running a household, which makes me a little old fashioned in my beliefs.   Which is why I said asset ladies.  ( I know I will get a few hate comments off that one).  So why are so many good women like myself single?  Because men are too caught up in their own issues and miss out.”

Men Run and Choose Lesser Candidates Because Its Easy – no matter how you swing it, only strong men are not intimimdated by a good woman who has her shit together.  If I had a dollar for everytime some man told me he felt like he couldn’t match my hustle, I could help with the bailout myself.  Men say they want a woman who cooks, is a mini mogul herself blah blah blah…but when it comes down to it, the Girl at the Gap and the one who can’t cook are easily disposed of.  Its so much harder to throw away a quality candidate…so instead men run from the qualified and languish in the land of easy and free cheeks.”

Also from P.O.S.H.

See the view? That means Im gooder than them ground floor hoes you deal with.

See the view? That means I'm gooder than them ground floor hoes you deal with.

So we’re all these great people, so much better than the riff-raff and filth who run around in relationships. So what gives? Are we having trouble communicating our hotness to other folks. Is our sales and PR staff just out to lunch? I mean why else wouldn’t people be lining up to court and sleep with us if we’re as much the shit as we say we are? Or is this just a case of Grade Inflation, like I talked about a couple weeks ago? Are the things we claim make us such a great catch really not that hot? Are we selling seatwarmers to Saudi Arabians? You tell me.


Damn.

Damn.

So in our continuing chronicles of the communication gap between the genders and trying to close such gap, I have made the magnamonious step of asking two of my esteemed female colleagues to give their take on a pressing issue, and boy did they ever deliver! Enjoy and comment!

Today’s Rat Race: Competing with More Than Just the Boss’ Son
D. M. Hill & C. A. Peyton

When you’re as social as we are, you hear things.  One of the arguments we hear the most is that us women are making it hard for men out on the dating scene.  We want you to know, that while we may not agree with that particular assertion, we do understand.  We get it, fellas.  You’re trying to get your career on track. You’ve busted your tail to get some fancy degree to help you get that shiny gig that’s sure to bring all the girls to the yard.  But what you don’t talk about a lot, is that you can’t shake the feeling that while you’ve been working so hard to establish a foundation to attract the woman you’d like to call wife and mother to your children, your effort and achievement don’t match up.  You’ve invested a lot into a formula that is not paying the expected dividends in a timely fashion.  You have the degrees, now where’s the $120k+ gig?  Worse, your female counterparts are surviving and (in many cases) winning the race up the corporate ladder (granted, she’ll likely hit the glass ceiling soon, and you’ll be in pole position again).

Running the rat race is perfectly normal and to be expected, but running it against your potential significant other is a ball game that our parents didn’t have to play.  It may not be that literally you are competing against your future Miss (though maybe you are), but rather that Monday through Friday you are competing against the same women you’re trying to love up on in the club on Saturday (not that you’ll meet your wife while grinding from behind in the club, but if you do, hey…no judgment here).  A little healthy competition never hurt anyone, but it becomes problematic when the tension of the rat race, or the feeling of losing it, more specifically, spills over into men’s friendships and relationships with women.

Men work hard much of their adult life just to have the opportunity to get a look from a young woman they’d be interested in courting, and yet without the achievements he wants that will provide the stability she desires (which are one in the same: career and money), he doesn’t stand a chance in the dating race, either!  *Cue the resentment and anger.*  It seems reasonable that a young man may resent a young woman who has such archaic gender roles in mind for the living room while enjoying a very modern life in the boardroom.  It’s the whole idea that the very ladies men are busting it for are beating them at their own game while still demanding pseudo-traditional courting standards.  Talk about making the cake and eating it too!

I mean damn, if I’m clockin’ 60+ hours a week to keep up with her, and she’s makin’ that shit look easy, I’d be pissed too if on top of all of that, she expected me to pay for her steak and lobster, will settle for no less than 2 carats, and wants the option on keeping her last name.  But keep in mind that with guys scoffing at traditional courting while still desiring domestic gender roles, yet not committing to their lady, women have decided to go forth and build their kingdom solo.  Our pride in being self-reliant is directly related to not having a willing partner to build with (before anyone starts hollering about a man shortage, let’s save it for later – mainly because we’re of the belief that it just doesn’t exist).  Women have adapted and learned not to ‘rely’ on men as providers, but what we make-up for in mortgages, cars, and Tiffany’s crap we miss in emotional support – and that cuts both ways across the gender line.

We realize the knee jerk reaction to reading this may be to point the finger across the way to the nearest male or female but neither would be the wiser.  Instead, we’re imploring you to take a moment and let this blog entry marinate, to respond thoughtfully, and to let go of your handy gender scripts of “she should pay if she makes the same amount” or “women always want to cherry-pick which parts of traditionalism they adhere to” or “men lack empathy” or “men, never listen” or well…you get the idea.

Instead, of continuing to do what hasn’t worked, relying on your gender scripts, let’s all unplug and be still periodically.  Logoff Twitter, shut down the iPhone and Blackberry Messenger and men, think about why you may be resentful and angry with women and the unintended backlash that accompanies it.  The snide remarks about gold diggers, independent women and a whole host of other passive aggressive behavior aimed at taking women down a notch is part of the backlash we experience.  And while we try to act tough, as though your words don’t hurt us, the quiet reality is — they do.  They hurt us a lot, but expressing the hurt makes us “emotional” and “irrational” so instead, we just try to hurt you back.  The common denominator for us single folks is that we’re all on the same team here; searching for our better half.  Even friendly fire still leaves a wound, so watch where you point that gun.  Better yet, talk to someone – your boy, your homegirl, or your therapist (intentional plug).  In the end, introspection and understanding may be the only things that disarm both genders and allow us to heal each other.

Glad I didnt take no for an answer

Glad I didn't take no for an answer

So I’ve decided a new series is in order. And it centers around what it hink is the most fundamental issue affecting not just black relationships, but relationships period: Communication. Let’s face it, men and women communicate in different ways. Now, I haven’t read the 5 Love Languages, but I think I will. Because I, like pretty much everyone else in the world, sometimes gets confused by what the opposite sex is trying to tell me. They’re trying to tell me something, I’m trying to listen, and yet the intended message gets lost in the mix. And sometimes I try to say something, she tries to listen, but still, we come to no conclusion. So let’s talk about it.

One of the things I hear over and over again from upper and middle class black women is that their male peers aren’t approaching them. They’re not “putting in any work.” Says the homette, Pass Me a Shovel,

So what’s up with these college-educated dudes, anyway? The ones who got them a lil piece of paper, and want to act like their shit is the freshest thing since Wild Honeysuckle and Butterfly Flower hit the shelves at Bath N Body Works. You’ve seen them around. You can usually find them standing along the wall, or in VIP at the clubs with their supastunna shades on, their button-downs, or the relic-style fitted tees with jeans and shiny sharp shoes, trying their damnest to emulate the “coolest muthafucka on the planet!”

Dancing? Oh no, they don’t dance. Didn’t you get the memo? They’re too good for that. And buy you a drink? Are you KIDDING them? It’s the 00’s (that sounds lame – we gotta come up with another description for our generation, btw) – YOU buy THEM a drink. “A Long Island, please”… Do you want a little umbrella straw and a lemon to go with that, you siddity BASTARD!

But about 65% of the time I’ve gone out in the Midwest, I’ve faced the same problem: dudes with a stick (or maybe a dick) up their asses. These are dudes that I would call high maintenance. They’re educated and rather accomplished, well groomed, with a bit of swag, and they even look decent. But they all seem to have a problem with approaching women….or maybe they don’t want to?…. While the women are all out on the dance floor, these dudes are just posted up on the sidelines, drinks in hand, observing. And if you happen to catch their eye, they will stare you down, and never approach you.

Damn these conceited bastards. Who do they think they are not approaching their beautiful black queens. Simple enough, no? But wait. From Absolut Brooke

“please observe obvious signs that the woman is not interested. there is NOTHING worse than a man who is a fucking pest, and following you around the parking lot. you look desperate and lame.”

Um, I mean, that’s fair. OK. Maybe I’ll try out this lounge here. From Josie in the City

“It’s not that I don’t want to spend time with my girlfriend’s, because I absolutely do but at times, when we go out to a nice lounge, I don’t want to watch any of my girlfriend’s lose her sense of self when an “Alpha male” walks through the door. My mood takes a turn for the uncomfortable if there is any outlandish behavior being exhibited by one of the ladies. There is nothing that puts me off quicker than seeing one of the chica’s trolling for men….

All I am saying is that I would love to have some girlfriend time without some lounge lizard thinking he is going to get lucky that night with some hoo hoo action. Not with these ladies you’re not. So beat it. Scram. Move along lounge lizard. These seats are taken and no, we don’t care if you think you “know us from somewhere.” Puleeease.”

Oh. Well, sorry, I was just trying to meet some new people.  Sorry for bothering you.Let’s see what Daydreamer had to say

I’m sorry that I refuse to settle, and meeting my potential husband at a bar, club or party is unacceptable (and settling.)

Call me paranoid but the club scene is not like a bar at Cheers where everybody knows your name. If I am out with the gals for the night, it’s just me and them. Mixing and mingling may get flirty and fun but the buck has to stop somewhere. I have seen too many 11 o’clock news flashes about some bridge & tunnel chick going missing from a local club and her body is found floating in the Hudson. Extreme, maybe. But am I alive? Yes.

In my opinion, meeting my mate in a respectable place kills a lot of speculation and pre-judgment. Recently my homegirls and I entertained the idea of exotic dancing to keep a man happy. We wanted to get a few lessons and take notes on how to this, so what better place than where it’s done live and in living color? We headed to the strip club and I learned first hand that the strip club has become much less about the women swinging on the poles, but more of a social event for the opposite sexes. I was shocked. So sure I meet nice guy A there but WHERE did I meet him? Strip Club. Right. A ton of questions fill my head: What sort of connotation does this place have? Is this where we spends his ‘spare’ time? Did he come here to mack to women? Hmmmm.

There are a couple exceptions to my rule. If I’m attending a club or bar for an event like a private birthday party and I meet a nice guy, I’ll take him seriously. I am also very comfortable with exchanging info at house parties, too — as long as I know the host. The same can be said for professional networking events or group dinners/outings. I always like to have a POR (point of reference).

This POR must be someone I trust and how I can call a) if the guy cuts the fool; or b) to ask a few key background questions. Just as my Mama taught me not to talk to strangers, I don’t exchange info with strange men. Yes, that is what a random man at a bar is— strange.

Well damn. You’ll excuse us if after reading through some of those comments, we feel like women would rather be waterboarded and then sodomized with a plunger than have a man approach them. A lot is made of the dichotomy between how more shall we say “hood” types are willing to approach any woman any time. This is usually said with an odd mixture of both disdain and quiet respect. So here’s why I imagine there’s some hesitance on the part of the upper crusty black dude to put himself out here like that too much:

1. It’s a small world If you’re a bouge, and he’s a bouge, guess what. You either know each other or know some of the same people. So unless he’s fairly certain you’re interested, the consequences of a holler gone wrong can be pretty far reaching. One, you’re going to embarass him at the time and place. Two, you’re going to tell your friends, which will embarass him further. And Three, when your cute friend who actually may be interested in him asks about him, you’ll reply with the “girl, please. He tried to holler at me at Kwabuki’s event.” And since y’all have that rule about dating people who’ve tried to holler at your friends, denied. We’re pragmatic people, women.

2. Professional Haters Not a lot of you, but some of you all take an inodinate amount of joy in shutting dudes down who try to talk to you. It’s probably more of a young thing, and to some degree, a lower class thing, but it exists. This is the chick that’s rude to you for no reason when you say hi, or who has a smart ass response to anything you might have to say. Everyone has to get their self-esteem from somewhere, this just ain’t really a productive way to go about it.

3. Fear of bug-a-booness There are a lot of really great girls out there. And a lot of great guys that are interested in them. But every single day, I see someone getting summerjam screened on twitter or FB of Gchat for “calling too much,” “not getting the hint”, or some other similar phrase for “fuck off.” Maybe it’s the fault of social media, but there’s no glory anymore in wooing ,courting, and winning a woman’s love. Only embarassment and scoffing at the attempt to do so.

I mean, I would love to hear a Barack/Michelle story from our generation, but I just don’t see a lot of it. And in this age where so many people think they are their public persona (quietly, no one really cares. You was who you was fore you got here), there’s added disincentive to go out on a limb.

So, on this one, I’m going to encourage the fellas to give a  little more brass tacks. The Michelles might be a little harder to crack than the thirsty chick who you know is going to give you some play, but maybe she’s worth it. A little light stalking never killed anyone. Heavy stalking, a slightly different story, perhaps. Ladies, you have to carry your game however you feel. I can’t make this decision for you. But I will say this, put yourself on too high of a pedestal, and no one’s going to break out the trampoline to make a leap at it. Happy Hunting.

Stay Thirsty my friends. Thirsty for manwhoring

Stay Thirsty my friends. Thirsty for manwhoring

So I asked a question on Twitter the other day and I was really surprised by the answers I got.  And I think it’s a question many men my age (Late 20’s, early 30’s) are asking themselves right about now. It’s simple: Two or three more years of hardcore manwhoring or start looking for a wife. I mean, according to the good people at P.O.S.H, I’m fast approaching my expiration date.

Talented Black Man syndrome is affecting men all over America.  Many of you all believe you have all the time in the world to find the one and women are the only one with clocks .  Sorry playas, you have an expiration date too.  After awhile, your man weight starts to catch up to you and you begin to lose a little of that shiny attractive wrapper that had women throwing their panties at you harder than that Hail Mary pass during the last 10 seconds of the Superbowl.  Guess what, while counting your money and polishing the awards on your desk, you just turned into the old dude at the club.  New booty runs away from you and only gives you pity dances.

Soon apparently, my belly will have dunlapped over the dress belt on my dad jeans, my hairline will start receding, and I’ll be the old guy in the club with the leather vest doing the two step and hitting on young girls. Fortunately, that day is two to three years away (I hope). So in the meantime, what do we do? Seek out the solace, love, and comfort of finding the one? Or rip into the women of this city like Lindsay Lohan at an all you can snort buffet at a Columbian wedding?

Surprisingly, than answer I got from women: Coke buffet. Get it outta your system, they say. Much like Prince Hakeem, it seems that sowing one’s royal oats is considered a perfectly acceptable pastime in principle. But in reality, while I think it’s easy to say that they support it, for a lot of women, I think the reality isn’t as cut and dried as they think. As I’ve seen on the blogs lately, there’s a lot of frustration about the lack of available marriage-able men, and the list is always as follows:  “either gay, in jail, or a manwhore.” So to some degree I don’t know that manwhoring wouldn’t be a slight slap in the face to these lovely women who dream of bridezilla like weddings and blinding their jealous friends with their emerald cut engagement ring.

And yet, no one wants to go into a lifelong commitment feeling like they missed out. And the truth of the matter is, if I were to get married tomorrow, I would be giving up the excitement, variety, and thrill of dating multiple people. Obviously, for the right woman, it’s a fair compromise. But I doubt any woman would really want to go into a marriage with me if she thought in the back of her mind, “he really would rather be hanging from the rafters in Vegas, with no shirt on in the club, spraying the crowd with overpriced champagne.”

I’ve said often part of the reason men my age face this question as opposed to women is just the developmental cyce. Because women peak earlier, they get through the attention whore phase (hopefully) earlier. When they’re 22 and 23, the world’s their oyster and everyone wants them. The old heads are buying you tables at the club, taking you shopping in Miami, and generally letting you live the good life. With us, it ain’t until we’re in our late 20’s that we’re really desired and admired. Once we’ve hit terminal education and have some dough and some accomplishments, that’s when we’ve officially “arrived.” So I think some of the frustration women have with the cycle is just a timing mismatch. Women wonder why we’re enjoying a lifestyle they burned through two years ago. Well, simple, we haven’t gotten our chance yet for the most part.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Now doesn’t that look like fun? I mean, think about it, I’m pretty sure Beyonce is glad that Jay went through that period so he could put it behind him. And now after enjoying himself with disposable video models of all stripe, dot, and feather, he’s settled down with the one he truly wants (or who offers the best power couple dynamics, whatever). Of course, there’s a flip side to the manwhoring argument. Obviously, people succeed at what they focus on. So while focusing on manwhoring, it might be very possible to walk right past “the right one” because the “one right now” has no panties on and a come-hither glance. Worse, while racking up the numbers, the right one may decide that you’re an eternal manwhore and shut the door to future settling down. Or you may fuck her cousin, and that’s always awkward.

So what to do, people, what to do. Choose carefully, as your answer may determine the fate of all men.

Me likey the beach wedding

Me likey the beach wedding