As a normal, average Single Straight Guy, you probably often catch yourself thinking: ‘Sex with girls is such a drag and a waste of time! I wish they would just leave me alone so I could use all that extra energy to flesh out the characters in my screenplay and finally get around to teaching myself HTML and maybe even cultivating an appreciation for Dirty Projectors.’
As a more or less normal (IMHO, or whatever) Single Straight Girl, I try to remind myself to be sympathetic. There are more women than men in New York City, after all, and this can create an unfair imbalance for guys. “Can I live, skanks?” you yourself have probably shouted, probably on more than one occasion, brushing them off like blowsy flies in heat. I am fully aware of how shamelessly girls will just pile on the slutty hair flips and the coy wide-eyed sidelong glances, especially when you have cigarettes and they don’t.
Believe me, girls know very well that this kind of ostensibly innocuous behavior can progress quickly down that suggestively slippery slope into a Problematic Fore-Foreplay Situation (PFFS) if left unchecked, especially if one or both parties have had one or more adult beverages, and then somebody starts whining about doing a round of tequila shots! (Why do girls always do that!? As a card-carrying girl, I can’t even explain it. Except that, well, girls are manipulative succubi who know that tequila makes you helpless as a baby seal on an Ambien binge).
Those first few dates can be an innuendo-ridden, anxiety-inducing road, guys; I know it, and I feel you. Don’t live your life in fear of the sudden onset of an unwanted PFFS. That’s why I’m going to lay out some ground rules here, just to help you navigate the sexual tensions of the single experience, 100% sex-free.
1. DO NOT pay for a single drink that you don’t plan on consuming yourself
…under ANY circumstances.
2. DO emphasize that you think she’s out of your league
One particularly ingenious tactician, after the second drink on our first date turned to me suddenly and, producing a small white pill from his pocket, snapped it in two. Popping one half into his mouth, he fixed me with an oddly meek, sultry gaze and whispered, “Would you like a Klonopin? On Klonopin, you might even begin to find me slightly attractive.”
I’ve spent many a spare moment mulling over the complex brilliance of this move: Not only did he subtly indicate his unsexy drug habit (I mean, Klonopin? Come on.), he also deftly but delicately made it clear that, as far as he was concerned, our relative attractiveness levels were such that I would need to be pharmaceutically sedated in order to even consider entering into a PFFS with him. ‘He’s right!’ I thought, grateful for the sensitivity he showed by not rejecting me directly.
Almost reflexively, I signaled to him that I had taken his hint, by assuming my most mercifully brusque, arms-crossed posture, and by trying to indicate that the stressful and annoying possibility of sex was completely off the table. This is an advanced girl-repellent move that I don’t recommend to beginners, but that is, if you feel you might be able to pull it off, almost infallible.
3. DO NOT allow the conversation to veer from the most important topic: You
The best way to do this is to talk about yourself in a loud and uninterruptible stream, which is admittedly daunting if you don’t have much to say. Practicing in front of a mirror helps, as does cultivating obscure interests that nobody else will have in common with you or be able to comment on, such as the CBS sitcom Two and a Half Men.
The girl should not be given the opportunity to speak at all, unless it is to say flattering things like, “Wow, is that actually true about the bear?” or “I don’t really listen to much Aerosmith.” Girls do not have personalities or particularly good storytelling skills, and it makes them uncomfortable and frowny to be reminded of this.
4. DO NOT laugh at her jokes
Everyone knows girls aren’t funny—she’s only testing you.
5. DO, when deciding which anecdotes to lead with, choose ones that highlight your embarrassing medical history and make you seem wimpy or precious
Stories where you injure yourself lifting heavy things and/or get the shit kicked out of you are safe. Guys who know how to use the pity card are the sleeper geniuses of the counter-PFFS world and you would do well to study their lack of game carefully.
Try to steer clear of stories, however, that involve you crying or caring about animals; they might have an emasculating effect, but this could backfire by making you appear endearing and sensitive. Once a girl starts picturing you helping your mutual kids with their Social Studies homework, you’ve already lost the battle against PFFS. Also, stories about extreme-sports-related injuries can be totally badass, so you’re treading a delicate line. This is a tricky one.
6. DO tell her she reminds you of your grandmother
…but that you think that’s hot. I don’t have anything to add except that this has happened to me.
And now, boys of the Internet, it’s time to return the favor. How’s a girl to properly scare a man away in this oversexed day and age? (And don’t say writing sex advice articles! It’s not a good joke, and I already got that one covered, obvs).