Sunday, July 7, 2013

Tits on a Stick: Romance Novels Are Bullsh*t

All of my adult life I have struggled with figuring out what men want. I had convinced myself at an early age that Harlequin had the best look inside the male psyche. I tend to be very perceptive when it comes to patterns. This is probably why I am doing so well at Candy Crush Saga (or there's the addiction thing). I don't need Lumosity to train my brain to spot things. I'm just that good. This is why I was really disappointed in myself when I realized, much too late, that the majority of the romance novel authors are women. 

I wondered how many of these women were married. If many of them are married, how weird is it that as married women they spent their lives writing about being in relationships with emotionally unavailable and moody men? As I pondered these questions I had an epiphany. I am that woman. Harlequin was my teacher, my mentor, my go-to source of romance. As a teen it became my guidebook of all that is a relationship. 

The majority of my relationships have been with men that, in one way or another, fell into the Harlequin mold.
1. Immature and non-committal.
2. Overly passionate in all the wrong ways.
3. Distant and wounded. 
4. All of the above.

I would work and work and work to understand these men, all the while waiting for the magical chapter to start. With each passing day, week, month, and year I would think, "Am I doing this right? I've tried this and that and he's still not responding according to the manual! He's supposed to realize that I'm "the one" and then he's supposed to not be a dick! Dammit, I think this one is broken." After a few years I'd just give up and walk away. At some point I'd spot some other brooding douche bag and say, "Ah yeah. There he is. This is the one." Relate. Rinse. Repeat. 

That was then. This is now. I used to take my advice from romance novels and well intending friends that said things like, "Men like smart women. Men like curves. Men like women who are independent." I have now found evidence to support what I've begun to suspect about men in my dating range is true. “Being married to a smart, opinionated woman is work! Now I just want tits on a stick, a blonde wig and someone to tell me I’m great when I get home.”
The article said nothing about hands or feet or genitals. 
When I read the article I was at once disgusted and delighted. Perhaps I should have been more disgusted, but the more I thought about it the more I realized the author is dead on. It's not because he devalued women, nor that he made men sound like egotistical jackasses. He was right on the mark with compromise. 

Sure, there will be a time when you can still wait it out. The perfect one will come along someday. For many newly divorced people looking to get themselves solidly placed in a new marriage the wait doesn't seem like it will take that long. Thirteen years later, I will tell you that it's a tough row to hoe. My once mile long list of must haves is now 3 columns; Must have, Would like, Won't tolerate. 

Somewhere out there is a poor deluded soul who thinks I am his ideal woman. I'm not a stick with a blonde wig, but I do have tits and I'm very complimentary when in a relationship. Plus, I'm keeping a running tab with advice from my guy friends. So far in addition to the compromise portion the list looks like this: 

1. Men like blow jobs. 
2. Give him a blow job each day. 
3. Warm up foreplay oral sex does not count as a blow job. 
4. If he's angry he probably either wants a steak or a blow job. 
5. Have you tried just giving him a blow job and letting him sleep? 

So if all else fails I guess there's that. I wonder if that list will work on the typical narcissistic, brooding, emotionally detached Harlequin guy? 


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