Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Communication Really Is An Art

I thought I'd take a few seconds to give a little friendly advice to all the guys out there. First I should point out, that I am by no means a relationship expert. In fact, I am far from that. I have NEVER had a successful relationship. I wish I could say that every failure wasn't my fault, but I'm contractually obligated not to cast blame on any of my ex-girlfriends. However, I do consider myself a pretty reasonable man, who has an amazing success rates at first and second dates. First impressions? I got that. First date? I can succeed at what should be a first date killer (the movies). I'm not saying that I'm a master by any means, I'm just proficient. Here's an interesting link. In it a man sends a 1600+ word letter to a woman who doesn't respond to his voicemails and texts after their first date. My personal favorite part of this entire letter is the request for an apology for because she sent him "mixed signals". His definition of mixed signals? She said yes to a date with him, during which she "played with her hair".

I can't sit idly by while this happens. I can't. I now understand how Batman feels when he witnesses a crime. Because a crime has definitely been committed. Where should I start? Let's start with what I'll call the Hitch paradox. In the movie Hitch, Will Smith states that once a girl accepts a date, it's the guy's responsibility to not mess that up. This is somewhat of a fallacy. A first date is a lot like a job interview. We've all heard that, right? Well, there's some truth to this statement. We all go on job interviews. How many of us have gone on job interviews even though we didn't want the job? I think most of us have our hands raised right? "Oh wait...I get what he's saying." Exactly. So maybe she's on the date because she's actually into charity. Maybe she's trying to prove to herself she's not as shallow as she thinks she is. Who really knows? Well, other than her. And we can't figure out what she thinks for sure. Even if you ask her, there's a good chance that you're not going to make it. I say all of this to make this point: with communication, nothing is universal. Maybe she accepted the date because you looked really good, or you were funny, or you intrigued her. Who knows? But she did accept the date, and didn't tell you no, which coincidentally, was the entire point that was being made on Hitch. I think the fact that so many men missed that point serves to further illustrate my point.

As far as mixed signals go, I think it's safe to say that I've made my point, but let me continue to beat a dead horse. What does it mean when a girl "plays with her hair"? Well, what does it mean when a girl plays with her hair in the mirror? Should we assume she's flirting with her reflection? Of course not. See how that works? Depending on what's going on, the meaning behind her actions changes. I know what you're thinking, "but this was on a date". And I agree with you on that. It was on a date. But the context and the action together are not an equation to a specific meaning. Which brings me to the overarching point of this entire blog piece/article/what-have-you. Communication is NOT a science. It's an art. And like an art, it is open to interpretation. More importantly, no matter how WE individually interpret it, there's no way we can be 100% sure that the meaning we interpreted was the correct one.

Finally, to this guy, who apparently is frustrated with the way his date went, I say this: everyone isn't going to like you. It's just the way of the world. Babe Ruth struck out. Michael Jordan lost games. Even the most philandering of men probably got rejected. And you know what? It's okay. I know it seems like NO woman wants you (especially after this letter went viral) but no worries. Eventually, there'll be a woman out there who'll twirl her hair on a date with you and actually be flirting with him. Until that happens, chin up.

Oh and side note: I'm not for "changing" for someone. Trying to figure out what you "did wrong" isn't a good idea. Just be yourself. Someone is bound to like you for you. And isn't that what you want?

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