PRAISE, PRAISE and more PRAISE...
My girlfriend of two months thinks I should see other women. Is this normal?
Scott in Jonestown
Dear Thick Skull:
Gal pal is trying to give you a clue without solving the whole crime. She’s not into you even if you’ve been into her. Two months was enough for her to channel the ugly vibe and decide you weren’t the man she’s been fantasizing over during long hot bubble baths.
Sorry, I don’t think that means you’re a bad call. You just phoned in the wrong number. Try again. Remember to enter the area code first!
The crabby critic
I don’t know what to do about my fourteen year old son. Yesterday I found a Playboy in his tote bag. When I asked him where he got it he told me that he borrowed it from a friend who stole it from his father’s desk. Naturally, he was embarrassed. I made sure he returned the magazine to this friend and I told my son to refuse other ‘materials’ if they’re offered. What else can I do?
Melissa in Ridgetown
Let him grow up!
I’ll admit that at fourteen your son shouldn’t be…um…reading adult entertainment magazines. But you can’t slip him into a prophylactic marked ‘do not puncture until eighteen.’
The world is full of ugly details; soldiers dying on the battlefield, woman being raped, children being abused, mass genocides, nuclear bombs, etc., etc. etc.…but I have to level with you.
The so-called ‘exploitation’ of women in nudie mags isn’t one of these ugly details.
Pornography may be an insensitive showcase for illustrating base biological/physical reactions between adult human bodies, but the gals who spread for the centerfold aren’t doing so with a Hesbula court-martial dangling precariously over their heads.
They sign up for the exposure.
Some become ‘stars’ and go on to better things. Most just go on. Either way – it’s their choice.
If I were you I wouldn’t make any more of an issue about your son’s curiosity. You set the record straight. Leave it alone. If the situation arises again, you may want to take the opportunity to have a loose chat about most women not being ‘sex objects’…but again, the one’s he’s been peeking at are just that…objects, on display for the gratification of male pleasure.
Relax, your son’s not a deviant or a pervert. He’s just a normal boy with a burgeoning sexual appetite. But please, do us both a favor – don’t become the sort of possessive matriarch who’s listening through keyholes and carting him off to the free clinic every six months to get tested.
Your boy’s not bad.
He’s just budding.
The gardener’s rule of thumb on the subject is quite simple
– no pruning!
The crabby Critic
My boyfriend needs to grow up! He’s out all night, sleeps all day, does whatever the hell he pleases and really doesn’t listen to a damn thing I say. Yesterday I told him to pick up his socks and toss them in the hamper and he told me to shut up! I need your help. Advise!
Jolene in Tallahassee
Maybe the issue isn’t so much that your boyfriend needs to grow up. Maybe it’s that you just need to be more assertive about what it is you expect from a mate - and I don’t mean a heart-to-heart with young’s love kiss either!
I mean it’s time to get real…with yourself!
I don’t know too many self-respecting ladies who would tolerate a wild party hog who doesn’t mind telling them to shut up, but then expects them ready and waiting to get him a beer. Sounds to me like you set a standard the first time he crawled between the sheets – wasted and slovenly and discovered that you were waiting there with a bromide and cold compress for his hangover in the morning.
Again, you set the standard and it’s a low one!
He’s not your boyfriend. He’s a grunt with a gal who doesn’t mind mothering him and taking his slack. Talk is cheap. The time for placing an ad for a fixer upper is over and you lost.
I’m perennially intrigued by women like you who find these sorts of men attractive and decide to stick it out with the same old abuse day in and out, in the hopes that one morning they’ll roll over in bed and discover that the frog has miraculously turned into their prince. Fairytales are for kids, honey. Roll over in bed on a frog and I can tell you what you’ll have – a dead frog!
Princes aren’t made.
Yours needs to go back to the pond.
The crabby critic
I don’t know if I should marry my fiancée. The wedding’s planned for June. She’s great and I was excited about it at first. Only now I’m having doubts and don’t know how to tell her. She thinks everything’s fine. What should I say or do?
Todd in Levi
Without concrete logic to back up your apprehensions, the best I can offer is that you’re going through some pre-nup’ purgatory and wondering if the girl you’ve chosen is the right one for you. Why you are asking that question now…only you can say for certain.
If she were
cheating on you,
was an alcoholic or drug abuser,
turning tricks and starring in home-made porn on the net,
molesting small boys and farm animals with equal aplomb,
doing drive-by and bank jobs with a Ginsu
…all these, I’d say, are fairly good reasons to throw up a red flag – and hire personal security. But you haven’t given me anything to pin my assessment.
Take a deep breath, Todd...a deep one!
If your woman is a fine upstanding citizen with no grave flaws that are illegal and/or immortal, then I say you’ve got your Calvins in a ball over nothing. You’ve been pretty good at keeping up your false front. Most women can spot a chicken ready to bolt through the farm gate at twenty paces. Maybe yours is just too wrapped up in the euphoria of fittings and picking out place cards.
Personally, I think you’re overreacting.
The old cliché – ‘good to bed/good to wed’ fits.
If I were you, I’d share your fears. If she’s any kind of woman, she’ll embrace the opportunity to lay your concerns to rest. If she just comes out with something like “Listen up, Mr. Man. I’ve got thirty pounds of crab meat defrosting and a halo of jet fighters getting ready to spell out our names in pink exhaust!” then perhaps she really doesn’t care about you and your concerns are completely justified.
Bottom line: you need to find out what sort of ‘Bride-zilla’ you’re marrying. Just cut her some slack.
Nothing so unhinges the female mind as the thought of ending up in a long white overly expensive gown that she’ll never wear again, and with rice stuck in her teeth and hair while some DJ strikes up, ‘Wind Beneath My Wings’…go figure?!?
The Crabby Critic
A: You are a woman,
B: you are gay, or
C: you are the best thing that has ever put on a straight pair of pants and I am in love with you.
Yeah! You, Nick.
Wow, I only discovered you today, and the insights you share into the thought processes of men and women are absolutely astonishing, only rivaling that of what’s his face…Greg Berent.
…besides, your writing abilities are kind’a hot.
Dear MIA with an attitude:
Where to start?
I’m flattered that you’ve found something to sink your head into besides a pillow or plastic bag. Like most back-handed compliments, yours comes with a bite. Let’s rub a little salt on that wound, shall we?
One – last time I checked, being introspective and sensitive to the human condition wasn’t an attribute exclusively ascribed to gay men. Having said that, my sexual preference isn’t something I discuss with total strangers and certainly NOT on the internet.
Two: as per ‘being a woman?!?
Three – as per being ‘the best thing in straight pants’…I’ve never been one to toot my own horn. Reputation is best left to others to assess.
Finally, about my ‘hot writing abilities’ that have you professing undying love to a total stranger on the net...
The crabby critic