1. “Calm down about [insert flawless male celebrity here].”
Look. I know that, for many men, opening up a tab and hopping over to RedTube for a few minutes of extreme close-up thrusting is all one requires to fulfill the “imaginary love life I have with strangers” quota for the day. Unfortunately for many women, just the act itself is not going to make our day end on a high note. If I could just look at a picture of a penis and be like, “Okay, that’s it, I’m good for the day,” do you think I wouldn’t do just that?!?! Of course I would! Do you think watching hours of interviews with Benedict Cumberbatch, Ryan Gosling, Robert Sheehan, or Anderson Cooper and creating entire imaginary relationships based on what we think this person is like in real life is our first choice? No. But if we love a male celebrity, and I mean really love him to the point just under “5-year restraining order,” just looking at an out-of-context picture of the man’s crotch outline is not going to cut it. We need to learn all about him, and find every last picture, video clip, and GIF that Tumblr has to offer to satisfy that need. Why? Because if God didn’t intend for us to do this, he would not have made David Tennant look like a golden unicorn.
2. “Why are you worried about summer? You look fine.”
I know that the intent behind this one is good. I know, I know. I believe that you love us and are quite happy with our bodies just the way they are, and don’t need us to conform to some incredibly tough standard of beauty set out by a media determined to keep us constantly feeling less-than. I get that. But we’re not looking to turn into Kate Moss by the time June rolls around, we’d just like to maybe feel a touch healthier and less like a roly-poly you’ve just poked with a stick before we go lay on the beach. Essentially, we’ve been hibernating the entire winter, watching Netflix and drinking hot chocolate. Let’s be honest, we probably ordered a few pizzas here and there. But damn, it was cold, and workouts are just no fun. So, long story short, we’re probably not super pumped about our waistlines right now and know that, in T-minus a month or so, are going to be expected to parade it around like it’s on liquidation sale. And there’s always this feeling when you get to the beach, and are surrounded by people — male and female — who look like they just burst out of a gym and did back handsprings onto the boardwalk, like you’re the only person who didn’t get the memo and are still carrying around about two tubes of cookie dough on your hips. If your girlfriend is trying to get in a little shape for summer, don’t make her feel stupid for doing it. Sh-t is stressful already. Support her, and maybe get her a pair of cute yoga pants.
3. “Are you listening to the A-Teens? What the hell is wrong with you?”
The day I have to stop listening to terrible, late-nineties to early-2000s pop where everyone dressed in matching cut-off shirts with rhinestones on their belly buttons and bleached, spiked hair is the day I don’t want to live on this planet anymore. My iPod will have every manner of obscure, complex, thoughtful music you could possibly imagine, from every genre you’ve ever heard of and ones you haven’t yet, but there will always be room for S Club 7. And when I am driving down the street, bopping back and forth to one of my vintage Now! CDs with a couple of girlfriends, I can say I know what true happiness is. Don’t be jealous because you’ll never get that pure joy. Jealousy is ugly.
4. “I don’t know. Whichever.”
Let me save everyone in the world a little bit of trouble here and say that when you are out shopping with a girl, or getting ready for an event with her, or in a position where she wants your preference between the dusty mauve knee-length cocktail dress and the light maroon a-line day dress, just pick one. Yeah, for all intents and purposes, they look exactly the same, and truth be told she probably already knows which one she prefers herself, but just the idea of choice is all it really takes here. We just want the illusion of a preference, if anything. And of course, if there is an actual difference between the two and one looks markedly better, please tell. But in the absence of a logical choice, just give it your best guess. On that note, I was recently in a store browsing with a male friend, picking out a dress for an event that evening. I was choosing between two dresses that, even by my discerning eye, were pretty much the exact same thing. After a quick turnaround in both of them, he said, “The second, definitely. It fits better in the waist, looks tailored.” I could have kissed him. Just…how little effort that took, but how very appreciated it was. I’m not asking you to turn into a Bravo reality show and start redecorating street lamps as you walk to the bus stop, but a little aesthetic preference every now and again goes a long way.
5. “Will you shut up about Nutella already? It’s just chocolate-flavored peanut butter.”
Lol, get out of my house.
6. “Why do you spend so much money on beauty products?”
First of all, I am a big girl and can spend my money on whatever I choose. If it happens to be a facial cream that smells like happiness and makes me retain moisture on even the most humidity-deprived day, that is my prerogative. I don’t judge you for your purchases, don’t judge me for mine. That being said, all of those glorious women you see in those ads, those magazines, those TV shows, that high-budget porn? Aside from about three Intro To Graphic Design courses’ worth of Photoshop, they’re all wearing makeup. Subtle makeup, nicely applied makeup, but makeup nonetheless. What do you think women look like if they just wash their face with a bar of soap and let it air dry, nary a drop of lotion or wisp of concealer? They look like a bridge troll hobbling out to ask you his questions three before you can walk across. Soft skin, shiny hair, upward-flipping eyleashes, supple lips, rosy cheeks, and well-shaped eyebrows do not just magically appear on one’s face. It is something that every woman must cultivate, and maintain, based on her own complexion, oil levels, and desired effect. You may not like that the one serum that works well to maintain our hairstyle costs 30 dollars a bottle, but you would probably not appreciate it if we walked around looking like we stuck a fork in an electrical socket ten minutes before walking out the door. Let us do our thing in peace.
7. “Who needs so many pictures of themselves?”
Let me explain to you how the internet works, as you are clearly uninitiated. So-called “friends and family” are able to, at will, put up pictures of you on any and all social media platforms, in which you are likely to be mid-chew, ugly laughing, or leaning back and unintentionally giving yourself four new chins. Because we all secretly hate each other, we are liable to put these photos out for the world to see, tagged in their full glory with your name. Now, we can’t have people thinking we look like Quasimodo all the time. We need some awesome pictures to balance that out, and if we have to take 72 self-portraits while holding a cat in Photobooth to get that perfect angle, so be it. Our profile pictures can be this deceptively photogenic person whose room is clean, shirt is ironed, and life is generally in order. It’ll brace the viewer for their eventual spelunking through album after album of us looking as bogus and disheveled as possible. It’s only fair. Taking pictures of oneself is awesome, and in an age where we’re expected to reveal all to any stranger that wants to click on our name, it’s rude to expect that we wouldn’t want to put our best digital foot forward. This isn’t Myspace. Get it together.
Anyone who, under any circumstances, interjects that word — that abomination of a spelling — into civil discourse, should be met with no less than the death penalty. If you tell a woman she should “cum over later,” you are doing the linguistic equivalent of licking the side of her face during a good night kiss. In fact, just seeing it written down makes me feel like I’m covered in a thin film of grime. If you’ll excuse me, I have to go take a bath.