Links to the Zeitgeist

1. Preparing to bid Girls farewell.

Just one more episode left, I’m so bereft. I offer thanks to brilliant illustrator Kyle Hilton for designing four pages of paper dolls suitable for framing!

From Vulture at New York Magazine:

As the first season of Girls nears it conclusion, we the public are forced to imagine a world without a constant source of television controversy and information about “the stuff that gets up around the side of condoms.” What will we argue about now? To tide you over until season two, Vulture’s Kyle Hilton created a series of Girls paper dolls — complete with party dresses, pixellated dick pics, and an accidental crack pipe — to help keep the debate alive at home.

Hit the link for printables for all four of your faves. Now if only Kyle Hilton would do the guys!


2. You Are Not Special

David McCullough, Jr. a high school teacher in Wellesley, MA, recently peppered his commencement address with declarations that none of the graduates is special. His “downer” speech has garnered national attention. An excerpt:

You are not special. You are not exceptional.

Contrary to what your soccer trophy suggests, your glowing seventh grade report card, despite every assurance of a certain corpulent purple dinosaur, that nice Mister Rogers and your batty Aunt Sylvia, no matter how often your maternal caped crusader has swooped in to save you… you’re nothing special.

Yes, you’ve been pampered, cosseted, doted upon, helmeted, bubble-wrapped. Yes, capable adults with other things to do have held you, kissed you, fed you, wiped your mouth, wiped your bottom, trained you, taught you, tutored you, coached you, listened to you, counseled you, encouraged you, consoled you and encouraged you again. You’ve been nudged, cajoled, wheedled and implored. You’ve been feted and fawned over and called sweetie pie. Yes, you have.

do not get the idea you’re anything special. Because you’re not.

As someone who has often spoken out against the Self-Esteem Movement that took hold in the 90s and insured a Participant trophy for every boy and girl, it’s a shame he couched his speech in these terms – rather harsh for a celebration of real achievement, at least in some cases. Towards the close of his speech, he delivers his message in a more palatable format, but that part has been mostly lost in the media cacaphony:

You see, if everyone is special, then no one is. If everyone gets a trophy, trophies become meaningless. In our unspoken but not so subtle Darwinian competition with one another — which springs, I think, from our fear of our own insignificance, a subset of our dread of mortality — we have of late, we Americans, to our detriment, come to love accolades more than genuine achievement. We have come to see them as the point — and we’re happy to compromise standards, or ignore reality, if we suspect that’s the quickest way, or only way, to have something to put on the mantelpiece, something to pose with, crow about, something with which to leverage ourselves into a better spot on the social totem pole. No longer is it how you play the game, no longer is it even whether you win or lose, or learn or grow, or enjoy yourself doing it… Now it’s “So what does this get me?”

The thing is, I’m sure that Wellesley High School did graduate some extraordinarily high achieving kids, special kids who will probably go on to do some very interesting things. What we really need to do is distinguish and reward those kids whose self-esteem is built on real achievement, while witholding positive reinforcement for just showing up.


3.  You Might Be Hawking Products in Facebook Ads Without Your Knowledge

Last Valentine’s Day, Nick Bergus found a product on Amazon that made him laugh out loud. It was a 55 gallon drum of personal lubricant. He hit the Facebook Like button and quipped: 

 For Valentine’s Day. And every day. For the rest of your life.

Before long, Facebook had turned it into an ad, paid for by Amazon. Nick found his profile shot and “endorsement” appearing all over Facebook, and many of his personal friends and acquaintances noticed as well. Awkward.

Apparently, in the fine print of the terms of service around “Like” – ing something on Facebook, you’re consenting to hawk any product you like if Facebook deems it profitable.

This is yet another way you can compromise your reputation to a potential employer or institution. And it’s yet another reason to hate Facebook.


Had by a Cad

Spoiler alert: Girls, Episode 5, Hard Being Easy 


As a studious observer of the human heart, trusted keeper of stories and secrets, maker of lessons, experienced practitioner of temptation and seduction, and eager student of maleness in all its forms, I’m ashamed to admit I’ve been utterly duped, deceived, swindled, fooled, hookwinked, bamboozled, deluded and beguiled by a cad. I’m 55, and I’m still making rookie mistakes.

I really thought Adam was starting to feel something for Hannah. I didn’t listen to the guys here. They called it easily: Adam is stringing Hannah along, he doesn’t give a shit.

“But no!” I thought. Actions speak louder than words! Hannah told him she really cares about him, she told him she wanted to stop seeing him because it feels so shitty that he doesn’t care, and he pulled her in for a passionate kiss. Surely not even a guy as self-indulgent as Adam would look at those tear-filled eyes and see one more opportunity to get laid!  I wish.

The day after their most recent hookup, Hannah shares her good news with Jessa:

Hannah: I have a boyfriend.

Jessa: Who?

Hannah: Adam. I told him everything, how he was torturing me, how sad I was, and he responded in such a lovely way…he like kissed me and kissed me and kissed me and he said, “Be who you are” and he touched my face and like we’re basically together now.

Later that same day, Hannah drops by Adam’s apartment unannounced, as usual. (A necessity when your “boyfriend” doesn’t answer your texts or calls, I suppose.) Also as usual, Adam is shirtless, displaying his pale squishy torso, ew. I don’t believe we’ve ever seen this guy in a shirt. Hannah comes up from behind and rubs against him.

Adam: What are you doing? 

Hannah: What does it look like I’m doing?

Adam:  You shouldn’t do that.

Hannah: Why?

Adam: Because we like said we wouldn’t or whatever.

Hannah: We did?

Adam: Uh, yah! You did.

Hannah: When did I say that?

Adam: Yesterday. You told me everything you want out of a relationship and all the ways I was fucking you up. 

Hannah: Yeah, but then you kissed me.

Adam: You looked sad.

Hannah: Then we had sex.

Adam: Because we were kissing.

This is the part where women start screaming, “Dick! Douche! Asshole!” In hindsight, it’s clear that Hannah projected her own sense of empathy onto Adam. Big mistake. She also rationalized all of his previous behavior and chose to focus on what appeared to be a slight shift in the dynamic, a change for the better, a flipping of the player. In other words, Hannah was an idiot. But how could I be such an idiot?

My theory is that there is something hardwired in women. We want to nurture that which cries out for nurturing. We want to believe that when a man stares into our eyes, cups our face in his hands, and says something that sounds profound, he is having the same emotional experience that we are.

My thought process went something like this:

Adam is so disconnected, so heartless, such a dick! Hannah is such an idiot, I can’t stand watching her making a fool of herself all the time. He doesn’t even pretend to like her, why is she settling for that?

Oh look, Hannah is speaking her mind! She is telling Adam what she wants, and she is telling him how she feels. Oh wow, she just told him how much she cares about him, and how it’s causing her to feel so hurt by his indifference. She’s starting to cry. And she’s saying that she knows he won’t change. Adam is about to say, “OK, I get it” and close the door.

But wait! Adam is reaching out to Hannah. He pulls her to him, and he’s telling her that he has strong feelings about what she just said. He urges her (with passion!) to be herself. This time is different, I can feel it! He’s been taking advantage of Hannah because she allowed it, but now that she’s stood up for herself, he sees her in a new light. He respects her, and that’s sexy!

Plus, Adam might be a dick, but he can’t be that much of a dick. He can’t be that guy who sees a girl’s teary confessional as an opportunity to get it in. That would make him more than selfish, more than narcissistic even, that would make Adam a sociopath. And there really aren’t that many sociopaths around, right? Except on blogs?

It used to be that actions speak louder than words, but all bets are off. Actions and words can both be lies, lies, lies. If Lena Dunham is right, and sex is a battleground, you should arm yourself well and trust only one thing: the white flag of surrender. Trust, but verify. Until he calls you his girlfriend, no sex. Witnesses would be ideal. Because apparently even I can’t properly judge a cad anymore. There are just too many of them around.

My other favorite moments from this week’s episode:

Dunham disses the feminist doctrine of Male = Violence

It was subtle – maybe you missed it.

After getting really pissed at Hannah and Marnie re Hannah’s diary entry, Charlie sputters, “You know what? I wouldn’t even want to stay here if I wanted to.” He then upends the coffee table he made Marnie. As gentle Charlie finally shows some anger, Hannah shouts, “That’s the kind of thing you do right before you hit us. Don’t hit us! Don’t hit us!”  With a “Fuck you!” he storms out of the apartment.

Charlie as the male who still prefers relationship sex

Charlie: You’re not in love with me.

Marnie: Are you in love with me?

Charlie: I don’t care!

Marnie: How can you not care?

Charlie: I decided on you, OK? Don’t you get it? I don’t wanna go fucking other girls then walk around feeling thrilled and then sad or empty or whatever. I like the smell of your hair and I like the sound of your voice and I fucking decided on you!

If only Charlie hadn’t followed up by begging Marnie during sex: “Don’t abandon me, don’t abandon me!”


GIRLS Got Game

“When you’re in your twenties, sex is sort of the battleground on which a lot of different stuff gets played out.”

Lena Dunham, Writer and Creator of GIRLS


I am obsessed with the HBO show GIRLS. Obsessed. As in, I’ve seen four episodes, there are only ten total, so now my GIRLS fun is almost half over, and that’s starting to weigh on my mind. I’m already watching each episode at least twice, and plan to keep them on my DVR until Season 2 comes out, probably in another year and a half. I just don’t know how I’m going to last that long.

I love the show for the same reasons lots of other people do – the writing is brilliant, it’s funny and poignant and honest. The actors are actually normal looking, intelligent and talented, a rare thing on American TV. I’m happily surprised by the appeal of the show to a wide audience – my husband likes it, my son and his girlfriend never miss it, and the young women I know think it’s a hilarious and very accurate portrayal of life after college. Hannah in particular is winning. She is so affable and malleable that when her office mate criticizes her “patchy” eyebrows and offers to “fix” them, Hannah not only lets her, she rocks the look for the rest of the day (see above).

HBO describes the show as a comic look at the assorted humiliations and rare triumphs of a group of girls in their early 20s. Washington Times writer Emily Esfahani Smith has characterized it as depicting the sexual wasteland of promiscuity, the Millennials’ hookup culture.

In Hannah’s relationship, we see how the hook-up culture degrades girls. In Marnie’s, we see how it degrades guys.

That’s intentional. Dunham set out to make the anti-Sex and the City, which made casual sex seem fun and empowering.

I felt like I was cruelly duped by much of the television I saw.

As someone who writes very specifically about hookup culture, the show feels like a gift from the gods. It’s brutally honest about female sexuality in particular. In fact, the show is conclusive proof that Game has gone totally mainstream.


I. Arrogance FTW

In a recent episode, Marnie, the beautiful one, meets a pretentious artist named Booth Jonathan at the gallery where she works. (He’s small and twerpy, played by Jorma Taccone of Jizz in My Pants fame.)  Sick to death of her supplicating boyfriend Charlie, she goes for a stroll with him. He’s kind of a jerk, and when she flirts with him he makes it clear he has no use for her girlish games, and walks away. But first he says this:

“I want you to know, the first time I fuck you, I might scare you a little, because I’m a man, and I know how to do things.”

Marnie watches him go, then races to a bathroom to masturbate.

Sweet, loving, loyal Charlie can’t compete with this douche. Dunham, who wrote the whole first season alone, says that a guy really delivered that line to her once, confessing afterwards that he’d gotten it from a friend at Vice Magazine. Weak move, DLV’ing his DHV that way. 


II. Suicide by Supplication and Alpha Advice

Meanwhile, Chump Charlie is busy making Marnie a wooden coffee table almost as good as the one she likes from Restoration Hardware, when his friend Ray tells Charlie what he really thinks:

Your girlfriend is my own private nightmare, do you know that? Someone should just fuck her to teach her a lesson. Just fuckin chain her to a post and just fuckin fuck her hard, just whip her, just fuckin whip her until she fuckin…well, whatever.

Unfortunately, Charlie is a deer in the headlights in the face of this “wisdom.” For added insult, Charlie is also writing a pretty lame song about a girl in Keds, inviting unfavorable comparison to last year’s summer hit Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People.


III. Chicks Dig Jerks

This is the classic “chicks dig jerks they can turn into sweetie pies” fantasy. Hannah’s been having sex with Adam for a short while – she has to work hard for it, though, as he never answers her texts. Their couplings are devoid of eroticism. This week she was sort of thrilled to get a text pic of his dick with what looked like a squirrel tail wrapped around it until he sent a follow up text saying, “SRY that wasn’t meant for you.” 

Hannah finally gets up the nerve to go to Adam’s apartment and say what she needs to say, with unexpected results. Adam opens the door.

“What the fuck is up with your eyebrows?”

“I’m not saying. I didn’t come her to talk about that.”

“You look like a Mexican teenager. It rules.”

“I came here to say I don’t think we should see each other anymore. I don’t think we should see each other anymore, and it makes me feel stupid and pathetic when I get a picture of your dick that I know was meant for someone else and you don’t even bother to explain, because I made you think that you don’t have to explain. So.”

“What are you asking?”

“I’m not asking anything. I’m really not asking you for anything. I’ve never asked you for anything. I don’t even want anything, OK? I respect your right to..see, and …to do…whoever you want, and I don’t even want a boyfriend, so.”

“What do you want?”

“I just want someone who wants to hang out all the time, and thinks I’m the best person in the world and wants to have sex with only me. And it makes me feel very stupid to tell you this because it makes me sound like a girl, who wants to like, go to brunch, and I really don’t want to go to brunch. And I don’t want you to sit on the couch while I shop, or like even meet my friends. I don’t even want that.

But I also don’t want to share a sex partner with a girl who seems to have asked for a picture of your dick because I live very near you, so if you wanted me to look at your dick, I could just come over and look at your dick.

And I really don’t see you hearing me. And I don’t see you changing. So.

I just summed it up for you. And I’m sorry I didn’t figure it out sooner and you must think I”m even stupider than you thought I was already. But consider it a testament to your charms. Because you might not know this, but you’re very, very charming. And I really care about you. And I don’t want to anymore because it feels too shitty to me. So I’m gonna leave.”

At which point Adam grabs Hannah and they share the first moment of real passion they’ve ever had. Because she has finally revealed who she is and what she feels. Reader J pointed out in the comments that the show makes clear later in the episode that Hannah had an orgasm that time. I’d missed that, but it’s definitely a first in the relationship. It will be interesting to see where this goes.

By the way, Lena Dunham said this too was from her life – a breakup email she’d written and now performed on the show.


Shoshanna tries to lose her virginityIV. Players Avoid Virgins

In a ringing validation of everything SayWhaat has been saying here for two years about the plight of virgins today, Shoshanna decides to give it up to a boy she attended Camp Ramah with the first night he comes over to “watch a movie.”

“I’m like totally ready to have sex, I’ve just never had sex before so I thought I’d tell you that.”

Guy stops making out. “What?”


Guy rolls over and away. “Yeah, that’s just really not my thing.”

“What’s not your thing?”


“Oh. OK, but like except for the fact that I haven’t had sex, I’m like totally not even a virgin. I’m like the least virginny virgin ever.”

“Yeah, no offense, OK? I’ll totally have sex with you once you’ve already had sex. I just, you know, it’s like, virgins get attached. Or they bleed. You get attached when you bleed.”

“I so don’t get attached when I bleed! It’s like amazing, I’m totally not an attached bleeder.”

“Yeah, it’s not going to happen.”

So just start like, fuckin watching it already. This show, like, fuckin rocks.


HBO’s Girls Exposes Pretty Lies

Not being one of the media darlings who got advance copies of HBO’s new show Girls, I had to wait for Sunday’s premiere before weighing in. I enjoyed the first episode very much, which surprised me – I wasn’t a fan of Tiny Furniture, the film that put Lena Dunham on the map and brought her an offer to collaborate from Judd Apatow.  I found Girls well written and funny – a sort of bizarre, young singles’ Curb Your Enthusiasm, coupled with a sad poignancy. Creator, writer, director and star Lena Dunham is telling the world just how effed up life is for Gen Y, with its anemic job market and crappy sex.

The first episode gives us a look at two very different couples, neither of which seems long for this world. They represent very well the contemporary diametric in sex and relationships, with its masculinized women and feminized men.  Still, either or both of these couples could limp along for ages in a very meh sort of way. This is courtship by inertia.


Marnie is dating Charlie, a boy so head over heels in love that he needs a constant “fix,” touching, stroking, grinning at his beloved. At one point, the morning after Marnie has avoided him by “accidentally” falling asleep in another room while watching Mary Tyler Moore, she  hands him her dirty mouthguard. He happily takes it and then signals his intent to kiss her good morning. 

Comin’ atcha… Here it comes…MWAH..that was my kiss blowing up on you.

We cringe with her, and we’re not surprised when she discusses her growing repulsion with Hannah shortly afterwards.

Hannah:  You literally slept in my bed to avoid him.

Marnie: I know. Hannah, I’ve turned a corner. His touch just feels like a weird uncle putting his hand on my knee at Thanksgiving. 

Hannah: (Sigh.) What does it even feel like to be loved that much?

Marnie: It makes me feel like such a bitch because I can feel him being so nice to me – and yet it makes me so angry!

Hannah: I think you need to admit something to yourself, which is that you’re sick of eating him out. ‘Cause he has a vagina.

That night, Charlie tries to get kinky by proposing a little role play, and Marnie suggests it might work if he pretends to be a stranger. “Like, someone who acts completely different from you.” Ouch. 

In the other corner, we find Hannah and Adam, f*ckbuddies except for the buddy part. They can’t have been at this for long, because Adam appears to observe the tattoos on Hannah’s body for the first time. Nevertheless, he’s indifferent enough to make it clear he’s already tired of her. He never texts her back, and when she stops by one day because she was “in his neighborhood” her affable eagerness provides a discomfiting contrast to his bored contempt. 

Hannah: I like you so much, I don’t understand why you disappear.

Adam:  What are you talking about? I’m right here.

   …You modern career woman, I know what you like, you think you can just come in here and talk all that noise?

   …Lie flat on your stomach, now reach back and grab your feet. Now stay in that position but take all that shit off.

Frank Bruni, writing The Bleaker Sex in the New York Times, describes the unfolding sex scene as he takes her from behind, looking bored:

“So I can just stay like this for a little while?” she asks. “Do you need me to move more?”

He needs her to intrude less. “Let’s play the quiet game,” he answers.

From the PC vantage point of a gay male who has no dog in this fight, Bruni asks, “You watch these scenes and other examples of the zeitgeist-y, early-20s heroines of “Girls” engaging in, recoiling from, mulling and mourning sex, and you think: Gloria Steinem went to the barricades for this?”

Meanwhile, in an eerie recollection of my recent description of the Goldilocks dilemma - women trying to find men worthy of both lust and attachment in just the right mix – writer Annie James channels Goldilocks in a post at The Frisky, identifying with the nice guy vs. asshole quandary.

Judging from my social media streams and a litany of text messages from friends, most of us watching “Girls” were struck by the dilemma of dating the asshole versus dating the nice guy and how neither is a viable option.

About six months ago I started seeing a sharp-mouthed, emotionally-damaged gentleman with his own serious commitment issues. He didn’t return emails or calls or make plans with me.

“What do you like about me?” I asked him. “You’re brunette and you have a vagina,” he replied.

When I asked what he expected to get out of our relationship, he told me to stop acting like a turkey. Then he shrugged.

“I don’t date girls longer than a fiscal quarter … and I don’t trust women. I’m easily bored.”

I was a little in love.

The meaner he was, the harder I fell. He once called me a retarded slut right after we had sex. On second thought, he might have still been inside me at the time. I was angry and disgusted. I stormed out of his house. I texted him some nasty expletive along with: “I should come up there and smack you.” He evenly replied: “You don’t have the code to get back in. Stop being a turkey.”

Wow, that is some tight Game right there. James (who’s in her 30s, by the way) sounds like she may have dated a certain prominent Game blogger who shall remain nameless. Predictably:

For the exact length of a fiscal quarter, he built barriers, I tried to tear them down and my cravings reached a fever pitch. At the close of four months, as promised, he informed me that we should no longer date over the post-modern Post-It note: GChat.

“It’s not like I owe you anything,” he typed, not even having the courtesy to include a sad face emoticon.

James decides to try the nice guy next:

He would meet me anywhere that was convenient for me. He texted. He emailed. He told me I was smart and pretty and that he thought every little thing that I did was awesome. He wanted to meet my friends. He wanted to meet my dog…He kissed me on the street outside of the bar [one] night. “I don’t want to play games. I really like you,” he said.

I hated him. Like another character in “Girls,” Allison Williams’ Marnie, who can’t stand her too-adoring, too perfect-seeming boyfriend, I was disgusted by his niceness. Similarly, there wasn’t an ounce of my loins that could quiver for this man. I even tried the age-old libido lubricant beer goggles in an attempt to spark some physical passion.

Five shots of Jameson later I couldn’t even fathom a cuddle. He made my skin crawl.

In an effort to understand her many failed relationships, James consulted Helen Fisher, an expert on the brain and attraction, and got a real answer:

When a person feels rejected, brain regions linked with craving, addiction and obsession become active. You can’t stop thinking about the person. You become obsessed. Someone is camping in your head and you can’t get them out. Anytime there is a real barrier in the relationship and you are not sure if you can win the relationship, it heightens the craving. The less you think you can win the person, the hotter the craving.

Of course, Fisher is describing the dopamine reward system here. I’d b willing to bet James is a DRD4 mutant. Acknowledging that she is likely to pull her hair out and become a madwoman if she keeps going for guys who call her a retarded slut, James holds out hope that the perfect man, the one who is “just right” will show up. 


I’m looking forward to the rest of the Girls season, as Lena Dunham continues to expose the reality of the schizophrenic demands women are making of men.


Learning to Speak Hookup: Guys’ Edition

Frustrated CoupleAs I wrote in Learning to Speak Hookup: A Pocket Phrasebook, the vocabulary surrounding the navigation of sex and relationships has become nearly incomprehensible. In the Hookup language, there are many irregularities and exceptions to the rule. It’s also heavily dependent on context. With so much misunderstanding, young people spend a great deal of time at cross-purposes.

The first post highlighted 30 phrases often uttered by guys, analyzed for their real meaning. Today I bring you 30 phrases you may hear from girls. Here’s what she is really trying to tell you:

1. Oh, yeah, no, I agree! I’m not looking to be in a relationship either!

I am really into you, I think that you would make an awesome boyfriend. I’m willing to risk disappointment and humiliation later to keep this going now.

2. You are the sweetest, most precious boy I have ever met.

I would totally approve if you were to date one of my friends. Me? What? No, um, I don’t think of you that way.

3. I don’t think we should hook up, because our friendship is really important to me.

I do not want to see your penis.

4. I’m really attracted to you, but I worry about ruining our friendship.

I’m tempted, but I know that once that penis comes out to play, things will never be the same between us. You could reassure (and persuade) me by telling me how you feel about me, and that we owe it to ourselves to explore this.

5. Actually, we’re going over to __________’s to pregame, but maybe I’ll see you out later.

You are low priority. If you see me later, it will be purely coincidental.

6. I have to go to ____________’s first, but I’ll call you when we’re leaving there, and maybe we can meet up?

I can’t redirect my friends right away, but I will finagle it so that we’ll join up with you later because I really want to see you.

7. How close are you and _________ (guy)?

Your friend is acting super shady with me, he’s definitely trying to get in there.

8. You have nice hands. (or hair, or smile, or eyes, etc.)

I could really fall for you. I am definitely feeling it.

9. Um, no thanks, I’m going to sleep now.

I don’t do booty calls at 3am, Asshole. OR You got your signals crossed if you thought that you were the person I was hoping to hear from.

10. What’s up? You seem different.

It’s obvious that you’re losing interest. But you owe it to me to tell me straight out.

11. No drama, I promise.

Sucker. Women process emotions = DRAMA.

12. You don’t need to worry, __________ and I are just friends.

But if you sense a vibe, you’re probably not imagining it. Is he giving me something you’re not?

13. Let’s split the check.

The offer is sincere, and I’m happy to pay my share in a relationship, but I’ll hold it against you forever if it’s our first time out.

14. You’re funny.

You are charming the pants off me.

15. It’s complicated with my ex.

I can only be into one guy at a time, so if it’s complicated with my ex, I’m still into him to the point that I can’t be into you.

16. I really don’t want to be messed with.

I am so tired of being dicked around by guys. If you mess with me, I will go psycho on you.

17. Um, you can stop now, it’s fine.

I’m not going to come. Not with you, not tonight. What you’re doing is starting to hurt, plus I’m bored.

18. Don’t worry about it. I know it happens to every guy at some point.

OMG, you saw me naked and then you went limp!  You find me repulsive!

19. Who is that girl?

I have definitely picked up on something between you. She is an adversary, and I already sense that she’s winning. So fess up.

20. What are we doing? OR What do you want from me?

Roll up your sleeves, and get ready for  THE TALK. I want to be your girlfriend. And I’m hoping you want that too.

21. You smell good.

Tingling has begun. Let’s go.

22. I don’t have sex with someone I’m not dating.

No, this is not a ploy to get you into a relationship. I’m happy to keep it platonic. Just don’t try to guilt me or pressure me into having sex. I don’t owe you anything.

23. Nothing is wrong.

I don’t know why this is so hard, but it is frightening to tell you what is bothering me. I worry that if I am upset about something you will think that I’m high maintenance. Which I’m not!

24. That’s ridiculous, I am not trying to make you jealous.

Haha, you’re jealous. Just wanted to make sure I still had that power.

25. If you ever cheat on me, we’re done.

Cheating includes spooning platonically, spending the night in another girl’s bed for any reason, making out with someone else when we’re in a fight, or any of the other lame things you think you can pull. If I wouldn’t be happy to hear about it, it’s cheating. Don’t let your conscience be your guide.

26. I don’t usually do this.

I want you to think well of me. I really am not a big fan of casual sex, but you are irresistible right now. My reputation will either confirm or deny this.

27. I’ve got a cold, I don’t really feel like going out tonight.

If you want to be my guy, you will offer to come keep me company and watch a movie. If you offer to “take your chances” and make out with me, you will earn 1,000,000 bonus points.

28. You are such a player, no way am I getting mixed up with you!

I am such an idiot and a pushover that if you tell me this is different, I will readily believe you.

29. So what did you do all day?

Do not say nothing, not much, slept or played video games. Lazy guys, i.e. no ambition, are such a turnoff, so don’t let me even suspect if you’re a slacker.

30. Hey, got your text earlier today. What’s up?

I am not interested, but I am marginally polite.

I hope this is helpful in clueing you in to the way chicks think. Hey chicks: what did I leave out?

I think Decoybetty offered the best possible solution to all this cross-gender miscommunication. Don’t waste your time learning to speak Hookup. Try becoming more fluent at Relationship instead.