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bad guys

It’s come to my attention that my dating life, up until now, is being used as the example section of “how not to do it” in the conversations of my family and friends. I’ve become that girl. The girl that’s invited to tell the horror stories of her past relationships to make other women feel better. And I’m sitting here wondering when I let it get this bad? I mean, did my mother read me one too many fairy tales, instilling in me a deep desire to kiss a frog (or 100) and find a prince? Never disheartened, I’ve resolved to come up with a few guide lines for myself, and any other ladies, who can’t seem to take the psychotic glint in our potential partner’s eyes as reason enough to run.

1. If he uses his cell phone whilst you’re on a date – especially the first date – even if he apologises. Come on! He carries his phone around with him 24 hours a day and can’t take an hour or two off to meet your eye line and actually hold a conversation that isn’t punctuated with message alert tones? What, must you learn to mimic the sound his cell phone makes in order to come top of the charts? How about no. Next please.

2. If he uses any one of the following to describe himself: asshole, commitment phobe, serial monogamist, jerk, free spirit, lone wolf, etc. Come on ladies, I know this guy. I’ve been there. A man who’ll tell you that he’s one of these, but adds that “perhaps things will be different with you,” had said this line before. And guess what? It won’t be different. It’s never different. Take him at face value. He’s giving you a warning, so dodge the bullet honey. Let’s not run face first into this brick wall again expecting a different result.

3. If he’s flaky. Are you constantly waiting to hear from him so you can arrange to see him? And when you do make plans, does he cancel them last minute or just never get back to you because he was super busy? Well, maybe he’s busy, but I’ve yet to meet someone who can’t send a text that takes all of thirty seconds to type to ensure you don’t sit around feeling worthless. If you have time to pee for Heaven’s sake, then you have time to send a text! And ladies, this guy, the one for whom you’ll make excuses to yourself and your friends, he’s actually sort of magical. Want to know his most effective trick? The moment you stop making excuses for him; stop texting him; and stop waiting around for him, he will disappear from your life for good. Kinda neat, huh?

4. If he never compliments you. Now, I know what it’s like to wish a guy would like you. You’d be wiling to do anything – ANYTHING – and yet, you can never quite NOT get upset when he tells you how beautiful he thinks another woman is. She may be in a film, a magazine or walking passed you on the street. Either way, when you’re trying to be the best you can be, and that STILL isn’t deemed worthy of a compliment from this cheap and insensitive waste of time you’re seeing, I have one word for you: run. You’re incredible. You’re beautiful. You’re sensitive, and your capacity to love – as a woman – knows no bounds. So dammit lady, give yourself the compliments he won’t, and move on.

5. If he won’t hold your hand, give you a hug, or kiss you unless it’s the prelude to sexual intercourse. Enough said, it’s that simple.

Relationships are tricky as hell, and Lord knows I remain in square one when it comes to them. But if we’re the ones in control of our lives and those we let into them, I think we ought to resolve to be a little bit smarter about these decisions, don’t you? I’m done chasing, and I’m done giving everything for nothing in return. I’m going old school. Chivalry is not dead, and it’s the least I demand. I am woman, hear me roar. No more grey area, no more murky, no more “it’s better than nothing.” I do well by myself, and I will not be tamed. It’s never too late to not settle for anything less than you deserve.

Being a young and single woman in the world is quickly becoming a dangerous pastime. Not only are our numbers dwindling (more because of marriage than bear traps and poison), but the world is somehow leading us all to believe that if we’re single, there’s something very wrong with us. Well, I for one, know that there’s nothing wrong with me – nothing completely unbearable, at least. I mean, I know I am rather childish, and hyper active, and would rather go out all night partying than sit at home and cuddle. And I know I like to have my shoes touching their partners and cupboards closed before I fall asleep at night, and yes, the rubbing of my feet in bed irritates some, but really it’s because I’m comfortable!! Anyway, that’s all besides the point. For now, I shall focus on My Survival Plan.

This week I’ve been left to house sit whilst my folks are away, and let me tell you, it can be a daunting task for a young lady with no knight in shining armour to call on. But I have been thinking, and there are things I can do to up my survival chances. Firstly, I’ll go to bed really late every night. I mean super late. Like, no point going to bed because it’s so late late. This way, any ‘bad guys’ seeking to pounce on my unsuspectingly whilst I sleep, will be left waiting. Think of it as survival of the sleepiest, and thanks to my years of training as a party animal/Honours graduate/insomniac, those baddies will have quite the match on their hands!

Scary movies shall be my staple for the week. I reckon if I watch enough, I’ll a) be immune to fear, and b) know every single possible eventuality. I’ve already begun my training in this area and have gleamed a decidedly brilliant survival plan should my house ever be under attack from aliens/zombies/pre-pubescent possessed kids/all of the above. My grand plan? To sit in the corner of a room, with all of its lights on, with a very large knife. Sheer brilliance, I hear you say. I know. Thank you. If you think of it, you’ll only ever have to focus on what’s coming towards you, begin covered on 66% of the scope by the two walls between which you’ve wedged yourself. Were I to end up in my very own real life horror film, it shall be short lived and severely lacking in action. But I’ll end up alive, dammit!

One side effect to having watched so very many horror films, is that when it does come time (usually somewhere around 4 in the morning) to retire to my bedroom, the journey from the TV room to mine at the opposite side of the house and up a staircase consisting of exactly 21 stairs, well… It can be daunting. Especially in the dark. Making my way passed the doorways to other rooms, and up stairs to which there’s very little protection from the grabbing, evil hands of bad guys, my heart beat does tend to quicken. The solution to this, however, is simple – although Eskom may not be so impressed with me by the end of the week. Simply put, I shall put every single light in the house on. Ta-da! I know it may end up rather expensive in the end, but in the event that despite my other strategies a bad guy does come into the house, I’ll spot him long before he spots me, AND when I call the police from my parents bedroom (in the corner), I can direct them to “the house with all the lights on.”

Really, I can’t understand why all of this survival stuff is considered only for the “fittest.” I have it all worked out. Who needs a man? Not me. I have minimal sleep, a corner and light to protect me. And hell, if all else fails there’s always a tried and tested method that we’ve all resorted to since we were born… I’ll just grab my teddy and bury myself deep under the covers of my bed, with my eyes firmly shut. It’s a truth that’s acknowledge worldwide –  under the covers, nothing bad can get me.