“Where are all the normal guys?”
Sound familiar? It’s an expression I hear often among both male and females in their late 20s. They believe that by the time you reach 30, all the good ones are taken. All that’s left are those jaded from previous heartbreak, those engaged in a “playa” lifestyle, or those wrapped up in some drama. Then, there are the ones you avoid like the swine flu, due to their ongoing baby mama/baby daddy “situation.” Or, more annoyingly, there are those who have already dated your entire social circle. Reflection on this topic got me to thinking…
The Bay is overly populated, yet sometimes it feels like a small *ss world. How many of you have met a person of the opposite sex, connected, and talked, only for you to Facebook friend them and see that you share 100 mutual friends? FAIL.
Of course, that being said, there are always other options just waiting for you around the corner. Most likely, they will be one of these guys:
1. The Thug
Let’s keep it real. Whether you live in the Bay Area, or another metropolitan, we’ve all been tempted by the bad boy. Here in the Bay, these type of guys seem to outnumber the normal ones. Hanging out Downtown SF, Hunter’s Point, the TL’s (the tenderloin), Oakland, (anywhere), North Richmond, North Vallejo or East Palo Alto, these smooth talking law-breakers get us every time ladies. Captain save em……The truth, you can’t save someone who doesn’t want to be saved. Let me guess; he has no real permanent residence (unless he moves in with you), he doesn’t carry an ID, he hasn’t had L’s (driver’s license) since ‘Pac died (seriously), he has at least 1 baby mama, he keeps changing his number, he has no real job yet has enough income to take you out, and sometimes he goes on those “special” vacations (jail).
No matter how cute, how sweet he is to you, how promising his potential, this is a mistake to learn in your youth if you must, and then move on. For good!
No upside unless you’re a thug too. Or aspiring to be one.
2. The College Grad
He’s educated, attractive, can form a sentence AND has a career. Score! This is considered a “catch” if you will, especially after you’ve recovered from the heartbreak caused by your last boyfriend (thug). Being a college graduate in our communities (brown and black peeps) is a huge feat, and unfortunately, something of a rarity. It’s getting better, but we all don’t make it to college, and that’s fine. Those who do, become the cream of the crop.
However, this is the one to watch out for. Maybe he went to Cal, or attended an HBCU. Or, like me, he attended college locally and left, only to return to his roots. Either way, he’s a catch, and EVERY girl/woman/ratchetista knows so. This is where the problem presents itself. This doesn’t speak for any or every college grad, but read on and tell me if this sounds familiar.
This man knows he has lots to offer, and will weigh his choices evenly, sometimes for years, before becoming serious about matching his professional potential with his marriage potential. Better said, he’ll play every last female until he finds one who is WORTH it. In actuality, they are ALL worth it, but he sees the imaginary pedestal society puts him on, and milks it for all its worth. Heed my warnings.
Now, not ALL college graduate men get this label. I hate to be blunt, but you have to be very attractive, confident, and somewhat successful. That being said, a woman’s more likely to work it out with an unemployed college grad rather than stand by an illegally employed thug. #TRUTH
The upside: When you do find a good one, you’ve officially begun a path to middle class. No seriously, a good guy is a great find, and an educated good guy is icing on the cake. Congrats!
Sidenote: Double all of the above if he’s in a fraternity and under the age of 25 years.
3. The Choir Boy
I’m not going to go too far into this, for fear of God himself striking me down, but the title is self explanatory. As a strong believer, I surround myself with (mostly) like-minded people. Some are better than others at getting to Sunday service (working on that..) and people always suggest looking up and down those same aisles for a potential husband. Those who pray together stay together! At least that’s what people say.
A lot of people tend to harp on the hypocrisy, drama, and adultery that plague church communities, but I say it’s no different than out here on the streets. We are all human, of flesh. Praying and having faith makes you stronger, sure, but it doesn’t always prevent you from making the same mistakes as the rest. Most of the time, some of the most broken people are in church, just trying to make it. So while this may seem like the poster boy of marriages, I personally know that to NOT always be the case. Sadly, sometimes being inside a church community can make women revert to docile, powerless roles, which I strongly dislike. So again, be careful. Don’t throw all your eggs in one basket on the first date just because you met him at church. Either way, I know MANY people who’ve met someone at church and turned that relationship into marriage. Since I don’t have any experience with this, all I can say is to each his/her own. On a more adult note, from what I do know, just because he sings in the choir, don’t sleep on his ability to……I’ll leave that one right there.
The upside: Do pray together to stay together, though.
4. The Performer
The Bay Area is full of so many talented people. There’s something for everyone in the name of art. We are home to some of the greatest music festivals and venues (Fillmore Jazz Fest, Treasure Island Music Fest, Yoshi’s, the Mezzanine, Fox Theater, etc.). If visual art is more your thing, Oakland’s Art Walk alone will fill your eclectic soul. We are a multicultural hip-hop mecca (underrated, but never duplicated), and Concord Pavilion & Shoreline Amphitheatre pack in the biggest superstars annually. So it’s no surprise that our smaller stages are full of budding artists: musicians, singers, rappers….the list is endless. I’m all for supporting local music and art, and have people close to me who aspire to work in both. But dating one, now that’s a whole other conversation.
A rapper, singer, lyricist. One word: groupies. Even if you get him to settle down and put you before his craft (never going to happen), you’ll have to fight your way through the throes of ratchetistas to support your man. Let’s say he’s a good guy, which many are. It’s still a stressful situation. He’s traveling, has shows at all times of the night, and you’re holding down a 9-5 so that y’all can go on a date here and there. Tough. Everything is magnified. After a fight, like all couples will have, he might put you on blast in a song. Or worse, vent during a studio session to an ever-present groupie who’s waiting for one weak moment to swoop in. It gets ruthless, I kid you not. And this is BEFORE the record deal. Yikes. Hats off to any woman up for that challenge, you deserve an award.
The upside: If you catch a good one, all his songs/poems/paintings will be about you. Vain, much?
5. The Deep-Thinker
A neo-soul artist, poet, community organizer, conspiracy theorist, painter, cannibus club owner or Occupy leader. Yes, these men have put serious thought into their entire existence. The world is but theories realized. Everything can be debated, theorized, and explored. Nothing is tangible evidence. Neo-soul is the only music he’ll consider, and it has to be underground (no one with a major record deal). This man is intellectual, eloquent and concerned. People in the community applaud him and he’s well versed in the plight of the brown/black people. You gotta love the awareness, and you’re attracted by his involvement. Although his education may not be traditional in a sense, he has all the answers and can name at least 5 conspiracies involving brown/black people. He’s smooth as a thug, but in a more conscientious way. His approach is to stimulate your mind, remind you of your history, and affect your aura.
Unless you have some depth and intelligence to counter his, you may get left in the dust, or become as subservient as the church mouse. This man may be enlightened, but he’s also all about his control. Don’t think these types don’t have groupies. Their groupies are also educated, hold more degrees than you, and I’m pretty sure they’re frowning at your 18 inch weave while they happily rock their natural twist outs (I joke).
The upside: He’ll stimulate your mind and body, and encourage you to tap into your inner being.
6. The Athlete
This one here is tricky. On one hand, there are professional athletes who attend local clubs and parties, thus overshadowing all other types of guys in their groupie following. I’ve seen a couple Warriors and Raiders players among the club circuit, but haven’t sighted any REAL stars. I’m sure there are tons of females here in the Bay who will say otherwise; I simply don’t run in those circles. Regardless, the professional athlete stereotype is so widespread that I feel no need to repeat the challenges here.
The former athlete, that I’m more familiar with. This is the former hooper, wide receiver, or second baseman who was a star in high school or college, but failed to make it all the way. Sometimes, these are athletes who’ve left the Bay and had a real shot at the big leagues, only to return as a wounded soldier. They’re still living the dream, only their reality isn’t so fancy. Sure, they may settle into less glamorous jobs (CHP, SFPD, Basketball Coach, Security Guard) but with a chip on their shoulder, knowing the admiration and shine is long gone, tucked away with their old jerseys and trophies.
An easy way to spot this guy: Check his Facebook or Instagram. Are there pictures of his athletic career, from years ago, plastered on his timeline? Are his throwback thursday tags of him dunking in ‘06, or worse, hitting home runs in ‘99. Let him go, or live in sports purgatory forever. Your choice.
The upside: You’ll be his biggest fan!
7. The ”Square”
I put square in parentheses, because I DESPISE this label that all good guys get squashed with. Although as an adult it has a very positive connotation, growing up, no one wanted to be called a square. Square’s are rigid, boxed in and have no cool appeal. Plus I hate math, and squares remind me of geometry equations (*shudder*). However, the label exists, with or without my approval. Squares are grown up nerds. Maybe not nerdy like the characters on the show, Big Bang Theory, more like characters on the Cosbys.
They are pleasant, respectful, frugal and consistent. They’ve finished most of what they’ve started, drive an economical if not standard car and invest online. These men see the big picture, and for lack of being popular in high school they more than make up for in adulthood success. A woman loves a man with a pension! And these guys have it. Sure, they don’t drink or party (much), and they’ll probably need their family’s approval before settling down, but they’re stable, dreadfully nice guys. Gotta love a dependable man. For those women who thrive on excitement and drama, this isn’t your stop. But if you are looking for stability and comfort, this is the man for you.
The upside: This is likely the only “type” that will allow you to be employed full-time as a housewife. Maybe.
8. The In-Between
Not the in-between you’re thinking about (in-between jobs and girlfriends, see thug). In-between, meaning attractive, drama-free, responsible, kinda mature but still working on it: normal-ish. This guy is not ghetto like a thug, but he didn’t finish college either. Maybe he made some mistakes in his past, but he’s moved forward and never looked back. He’s a working man; maybe not the Executive Director, but he’s moving his way up through diligence and determination. He loves the simple things in life and will settle down for a good woman, when he’s ready. He’ll have player-ways, like most men, but they’re fleeting and unimportant to him. He’s not innocent, he’s broken some hearts in his day. This guy won’t be hanging out on anyone’s block, but he’s not afraid to walk past that corner either. He might have some kids, he might even have an ex wife, but he’s no damaged goods, just more “experienced” as I like to put it.
This guy walks a balance between where he’s been and where he’s headed. Sometimes, though, he can get pulled either which way, and that can be tricky to control. He’ll have some friends who have settled down and ditched their doggish ways, but he’ll also have some “boys” who will be just that: boys. Bad influences who might never disappear. Sigh.
The upside: The in-between is perfect for the female counterpart. Me, I’m a chronic in-betweener. Although I’ve dated the thug (ahh, the joys of youth), the college educated (as am I), the athlete (hah), I prefer the in-between. I like someone with enough past to learn from, but enough future to succeed. We’re all works in-progress.
Did any of these guys ring a bell? Is this your current boo? Or for guys, do you fit in one of these?