Lloyd Christmas Syndrome or No, I will not go out with you

Why can’t men take hints? I know some women are flattered when a man hits on them or asks them out, even if they are not interested. Not me. I hate it. It makes me uncomfortable 99% of the time. The other 1% of the time, the guy is actually someone I might consider dating. The other 99% is full of creeps and weirdos, men old enough to be my dad, and boys young enough to need me to buy them beer. I am constantly baffled by the fact that they think they have a shot with me. (Not that I think I am hot shit or anything, but, really, Mr. Members Only Jacket?) I have come up with a theory for this. These men suffer from a condition I have coined “Lloyd Christmas Syndrome.”

Image from quickmeme.com

The women are the real victims here. The men who suffer from LCS are incapable of holding up their part of social contracts with the opposite gender.  What does this mean? Most social interactions are governed by a code of conduct, which includes etiquette, body language, and verbal clues. Men with LCS cannot comprehend these subtleties. They bombard innocent women with pick up lines, unwanted drinks, and sometimes unwelcome touching. LCS is categorized as a psychological disorder, because the actions of these men–doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results–mirrors types of insanity.

Although most of the time women do not welcome LCS attacks, they are not without blame when it comes to prevention.Women have been trying for centuries to reject men without hurting their feelings. Someone, somewhere, came up with the phrase “hard to get,” men everywhere heard about women playing hard to get, and LCS spread like wildfire. She won’t look me in the eye? She’s playing hard to get. She has her arms crossed, one eyebrow raised, and the look on her face screams, “You’ve got to be kidding?” She is playing hard to get. She isn’t listening to a word I’m saying, and is that her hand down that other guy’s pants? She must be playing hard to get. I know! I should try harder! I’ll just keep trying  and keep trying and keep on trying, and maybe one day I will wear down her resolve! She will be too weak to say no! I’ll make her want me, I will, I will, I will!

See what I mean about insanity?

LCS is a terrible affliction. It is rampant in settings where women provide customer service. A man with LCS cannot distinguish between when a woman is being nice because it is her job and when she is nice because she wants to bone him. Here’s an easy way to tell. Have you boned her yet? No? Ok, have you talked to her anywhere else besides her work? No? Well, do you know her last name? And it doesn’t count if it’s on her nametag or business card. No? Sorry to break it to you, guys, but she’s just not that into you. The sad thing is, this statement will not faze a man with fully blown Lloyd Christmas Syndrome. He hears this statement, but in his head there is one word added at the end:  She just not that into me yet.

Unfortunately, there is no quick fix to LCS. Even if women stop playing hard to get or start being blatantly honest in their rejections instead of trying to let men down easily, there are still going to be men who just don’t get it. Ladies, the next time one of these men asks you out, remember that you aren’t doing them any favors by being nice. Stand your ground, and say no as many times as you have to. If that doesn’t work, involve the authorities. Even men with LCS understand a restraining order.

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Real Women

In my last post, I spoke of a meme I saw on facebook that bugged me. The time has come to reveal said meme:

photo from memegenerator.net

I will admit that it is sort of funny.  I am not the least bit offended by the implication that women should stick to making sandwiches instead of doing all that silly learning. What bugs me about this meme is the first two words: Real Women.

I see quotes and ecards abound that begin with “Real women” or “Real men” all the time. However, I am not a man. Since they seem perfectly capable of defending themselves, let’s just stick with real women for now.

Among the things that I’ve seen that are supposed to make a real woman, besides sandwich artistry (are there any single Subway workers? Could you put down your husband as a reference on their application?), are tattoos, watching football, drinking beer, and of course curves.

So what about those who hate tattoos, sports, and beer, and the girls who possess anthills instead of mountaintops? Are they not real? Do they simply not exist, or have they just not properly met the conditions for official membership in the gender?  Here is what Dwight Schrute has to say on the matter:

photo from memegenerator.net

Why don’t we see any quotes that actually qualify all women as women? Like, “Real women have ovaries,” or, not to leave out those who’ve had a hysterectomy, “Real women have two X chromosomes.” Now, that’s nearly all-inclusive, but it still leaves out those women who were unfortunate enough to be born as men. The phrase “real women” implies that there are women who do not deserve the title.

The gender lines have definitely blurred in the last few decades, but do we really live in a society where a claim to one’s gender is not an innate, inalienable right? Is it a title that can be taken away from us, something we have to prove? Why is it, that when a woman fails at a gender-specific part of her life, like being a mother or wife, she is automatically labelled as “not a good woman?” A man’s masculinity isn’t contingent upon his ability (or willingness) to be a father, so why should women feel pressure to succeed as “real women?”

A woman’s worth should not be defined by how she measures up to anyone else’s standards. I may not be able to make a decent sandwich, but I am still a Real Woman, whether Dwight can see me or not.