1. Breaking Brenna
Matt is sitting on the couch with a tablet and headphones as I enjoy my blog reading in peace. He removes his headphones and looks at me with sorrowful eyes.
Brenna, say I was a high school chemistry teacher. And say I got cancer and the prognosis wasn’t so good. And say that we didn’t have the money for treatment. And say that I didn’t want to take money from the wealthy friends that offered, because it’s a complicated relationship. And say instead that I got into making drugs (say meth, for example) and working with one of my students to sell it on the street. And say I lied to you about it for years. But I didn’t expect to lie for so long because I thought I wouldn’t live very long anyways. And then say I decided to come clean to you and tell you everything and then never lie about it again. Then would you leave me?
I looked at him. Blinked.
Yes. I would. Don’t do that.
2. Sweater Snipe
Matt and I watched this funny and vulnerable video of Lindy West telling the story of internet trolls finding out she is fat, and then making her cry every day. Some of trolls Lindy was dealing with came from the PUA community. Pick Up Artists. As in guys who spend time on internet forums figuring out strategies to pick up women. As you can imagine, this is a really emotionally healthy bunch of fellows.
You know what I had to do next. I had to read PUA forums for the next few hours, and recount to Matt scripts that will guarantee he goes home with a woman’s number. Don’t worry, I stuck to the classy PUA forums, and only the most tame comment threads. Some of the strategies were actually pretty good. Like how to start a conversation with a woman who has headphones on. Ask her what she’s listening to and then when she inevitably says some cheesy pop song say, “then it’s a good thing I interrupted you.” Sure, it’s lame, but it’s harmless and I can see it leading to a conversation.
Of course, most of the threads had a clear undertone–or overtone–of misogyny and aggression. Like all the women described with number ratings. Or the liberal use of “feminazi” referring to women who refused to pass out their number to men who sounded like creeps. Or just the whole concept that women can be easily tricked into sleeping with men they would not otherwise be interested in through subtle manipulation.
And then there is the concept of “negging,” a tactic used to knock confident, beautiful women down a peg in order to make them insecure and eager to boost their self-esteem by gaining your approval. Now, negging should only be used on women who are 9′s or 10′s. Although you may also need to use it on a girl who is especially self-confident, or is in an area where because of the context she might be the prettiest girl around. The headphone example above was actually gentle negging, knocking the girl’s taste in music. You could also do the “oh, you’ve got something right here” move, indicating the woman has something stuck in her teeth. Or, “You have really big ears. Don’t worry, I think it’s cute!”
This is all a super long intro to Matt and I manning the visitor table at church Sunday morning. Service had started, so we were waiting for stragglers before heading inside.
M: I’m going to try to “neg” you.
B: Okay, go for it.
M: That’s a nice sweater you have on, is it wool or synthetic?
Ouch! How dare you you damage my self-esteem by questioning my…clothing fibers.
3. Feeling Lucky
Matt scratches my forehead.
B: What are you doing?
M: You’re a lotto scratcher…I WON!