Grab Bag


LoveFAQ is a weekly advice column for geeks, by geeks about love, life and maxing out your romance meter. Got questions for LoveFAQs? Send them to [email protected].

Dear Love FAQ,

Over the years I’ve made tons of friends, some of whom happen to be women. In past relationships, though, I’ve always been told that no one can truly be friends with the opposite sex.

My new girlfriend, however, is fine with me going out with female friends. Of course, my other friends say, “No way could she actually be okay with that”, but I’m pretty sure she is. I know she trusts me.

What do you think? Is it possible?

No Girls Allowed

Dear No Girls Allowed,

When Harry Met Sally is the worst thing to happen to gender relations since entailment. Kids, if you learned it in a Meg Ryan movie, unlearn it. Fast.

Of course you can be friends with the opposite sex. It’s insulting to both genders to assume that all humans (but let’s be fair here; the finger usually points at men) are so consumed with their genitals that they’re incapable of thought beyond which warm and wriggly thing to jam up against next. Fourteen-year-olds, maybe. But not the rest of us.

Yes, opposite-gender friendships require a certain level of maturity, not to mention a successful escape from the hormonal prison of your pubescence. And some people will never feel comfortable making the leap. But that’s an individual thing; some people feel likewise incapable of making same-sex friends.

If your girlfriend trusts you, and you trust her, then what does it matter what anyone else thinks? Go hang out with your girls. She’ll chill with the boys. Everyone else can stuff it.

Dear Love FAQ,

I’m a busy guy. I work full time and go to law school. If I toss in some gym time, then I’m out of the house from 8 am until 11 at night. I have been on a few first dates, but with my nifty schedule, no repeat business. I can’t fault girls for not wanting to play third fiddle.

So any advice on how to make time for more commitment?

No Time For Love, Dr. Jones

Dear Dr. Jones,

You think it’s hard to find time now? Imagine if you had a girlfriend. Women aren’t like Chia Pets, you know. You can’t just water them every couple of days and expect them to sprout.

So hold off on dating for now. Get your shit done first, then worry about love. And don’t feel guilty about it. You’re working on making you better, and in the grand scheme of things, that’s actually higher priority than finding the perfect girl. (Indeed, the former tends to lead to the latter.)

If it’s just sex you want, well, there’s a myriad of ways to score no-strings nookie, from bar-hopping to Craigslist Casual Encounters. Just use protection, and remember: five-fingered Rosie will always wait up for you, no matter how late you come home.

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Dear Love FAQ,

When I was a kid, everybody usually ignored me: Boys didn’t want to hang out with me, and girls thought I was weird. Now that I’m in college, though, I’ve realized several guys are crushing on me (including my ex, who refuses to keep his hands off). Being an introvert, I’m really not used to this, and it makes me a tad bit uncomfortable. I want them to be my friends, but I’m not looking for a relationship.

Please help!
Happily Single

Dear Happily Single,

By not being honest with these guys in the hopes they’ll stick around, you’re leading them on. So tell them to back off, politely and firmly – especially your ex. (Why are you still hanging around him anyway? He’s an ex for a reason.)

If you don’t know what to say, “Thanks. I’m flattered, but not interested,” is usually a good start.

It won’t be easy, of course, but think of it as culling the herd. The men only interested in sex will buzz off – and hey, you didn’t want to be friends with them anyway, because they would’ve always had ulterior motives. The ones interested in you for you, though, they’ll stick around. And they’ll appreciate your honesty. Really.

Dear Love FAQ,

Lately I met the perfect geek girl. She’s beautiful, has impressive taste in games, and so on. On our first date, we had five hours of great conversation – complete with adoring looks — and ended the night at a game store. I’m a bit smitten.

The catch? She’s got acne. Bad. The type on her face and neck can only be described as nasty.
We’re both in our thirties, but my vain side wonders if I’m being judged when I take her out. And based on her body and personality, I’m looking forward to the more physical side to our relationship, but I’m scared I might have an “eww” moment over her acne and have performance issues.

So what should I do? Should I get over my vanity and enjoy being with her? Should I try to diplomatically recommend a dermatologist? Should I go for the “just friends” angle and continue my search elsewhere? I don’t want to just give up, though; she’s way too awesome to bail on.

Got Paper Bags?

Dear Paper Bags,

Be honest with yourself. Are you attracted to her or not? If you are: Great. Stop caring so much what other people think, and just sleep with her already.

But if you’re not attracted to her, then no amount of willing it otherwise will make it so. It doesn’t make you a bad person, either. Some guys find big (or small) boobs gross; others get skeeved by bad teeth, or tiny hands. Whatever. It is what it is. So if you’re not digging her, break it off now, before you both get more attached. Just don’t be a dick about it.

One last thing: I guarantee you she already knows she has bad acne. She doesn’t need or want your dermatologist recommendations, unless she explicitly asks for them first.

Dear Love FAQ,

Throughout my life, I’ve only been attracted to crazy women. I’ve just never been interested in the sane ones. I’ve tried dating some, but the spark isn’t there, no matter how compatible we are in other areas. Sanity always seems so boring.

I’m not worried about my safety; I’m just concerned this may be unhealthy. Any advice?

Sticking It In the Crazy

Dear Sticking It,

Always wear a condom. Preferably one you’ve bought.

Disclaimer: LoveFAQ is written by Lara Crigger, who is by no means a trained psychiatrist or therapist or even a middle school guidance counselor – just a smart gal who wants to help out her fellow geek. LoveFAQ is meant for entertainment purposes only, so don’t take it as a substitute for professional advice. If you have real problems, consult your physician.

Got a burning question (or a question about burning) for LoveFAQ? Send your emails to [email protected]. All submissions are confidential and anonymous.

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