The Silent Brush-off: Kind or Cowardly?

The silent brush-off, a occurrance while not being something that happens to EVERYONE, is at least something we’re familiar with however directly or indirectly the situation may have been, is something of a touchy issue with dating and relationships. You may find yourself in the situation of he/she is just not into you anymore and wonder: “what happened?”. The problem is, that person just may not be available to give you the answer to that question. There are some instances in which that person may have been in a situation in which they had to just cut all communication with no warning; however, the more common case is just that that person was just not man or woman enough to just tell what the situation is and walk rather than adding unnecessary questions for the sake of less drama. What is really the case is that the “duck and run” method to ending things isn’t taking away the drama; it’s just transferring the drama and giving a double burden to the one left with countless questions. So in closing, I have just this advice: if you feel the need to end a relationship with someone, just be straight with them, in person if possible, because if that person has to be brave enough to face rejection, then you should be brave enough to address things face to face and deal with the fall-out. While no one likes rejection, no one respects a coward.

My Life is Watching a Lifetime Movie

Staff writer LeeAnn Yops gives us a comical post about Lifetime and the lovely bond of hormones and crappy(but entertaining) tv.

 

I’ll admit it. I’m a 31 year old, single woman who watches Lifetime, regularly and sometimes not even ironically. Admitting it is the first step. For years, Lifetime provided entertainment for a hangover. I would watch Tori Spelling as a call girl and snicker through an ibuprofen and dehydrated daze. Then something changed. I started to seek out Lifetime movies on my own and then I started watching more than one per day. It turned out that I wasn’t the only one. A friend was once late for brunch because she got caught up in a Lifetime movie. Then I said “cheerleader movie” to another friend and without missing a beat she replied, “I DVR’d ‘Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal’ too.” It’s a common ground amongst women, kind of like menstrual synchrony. If you release enough pheromones, you won’t only bleed together; you’ll also watch crappy TV together. For the guys who are reading, congrats for making it this long and sorry for the period talk. I don’t Always do that, I’m just Play(tex)ing around.

 

Back to Lifetime, I blame my mom and sister. They didn’t watch Lifetime per se, but they used to watch the made for TV movies about babies switched at birth and cheating husbands with beds on fire. I needed to see what happened. Then when I was in high school there were made for TV movies I would watch about sorority sisters circling each other’s cellulite and sorority sisters sabotaging one another to be the lead singer of the band while wearing floral dresses with combat boots. These were really important issues. I needed to see what happened.

 

Now my Lifetime viewing goes in spurts. The beauty of On Demand is that it allows me to choose my Lifetime on my time. While watching a show about real life stories that became Lifetime movies, reruns of Dance Moms, and that show about Jennifer Love Hewitt’s boobs, I see previews for new movies with Jessie Spano and Rob Lowe (with or without a mustache). My friends and I will talk about the movies and set dates to watch them together while eating as many carbs as possible within a 2-hour timeframe. I’ll even set online dates with a friend back home where we drink wine and Facebook chat about how dumb the Lifetime movie is. Not sure if it’s the sheer absurdity that keeps us coming back or the camaraderie, either way I’ll keep watching. After all, I need to learn how to seduce a student once I become a hot teacher that was formerly involved in prostitution ring that started out as a pregnancy pact.

 

 

How To Have A One-Night Stand

This week’s post by staff writer Rigby Rat discusses the rules of a one-night stand.

 

 

Used to be, a one-night stand was what it was: a one-time sexual encounter with no strings or emotions attached.  It still is.

 

One-night stands start with two people and their uncontrollable sexual tension/attraction to one another.  The sex act takes place, then each participant goes on his/her merry way, never to talk or meet again.  Think you can do that?

 

If you can’t go on your merry way, and the other person can and does, you’re setting yourself up for heartache.  Case in point:  a friend of mine dragged me to a club to hear music by some obscure rock group.  She was obsessed with the bass player.  During the band’s intermission, my friend and he spoke briefly.  Long story short, after the concert, at 3:30 am, I drove her down to the East Village and waited with her until Mr. Bass player showed up.  Before she got out of the car, I said, “Are you sure you want to do this?”  Then I watched the pair enter an apartment above a storefront, and went home.

 

Between you and me – I didn’t sense any sexual tension between these two.

 

The next day, my friend calls me.  She’s unglued.  Then, she bursts into tears.  She tells me she phoned the bass player several times, but he wouldn’t answer.  I said to her, “What did you expect?”  You know what she expected: the bass player to magically put his lifestyle on hold and have a relationship with her.  That wasn’t going to happen!

 

The next thing my friend did was track down the rehearsal studio his band rented.  She shows up, and the band members prevent her from entering the studio.  Can you imagine how she felt?   That night, I spent at least an hour using the imaginary bicycle pump to bring her deflated ego back to size.  I also impressed upon her that when you have a one-night stand, you gotta play by the rules, or you’re going to get hurt and make a fool of  yourself.

 

It’s exciting when you meet a stranger and the sexual tension between you causes the mice behind the Xerox machine to come out and bask in the heat.  However, oft-times the blaze and the fantasy are more rewarding than the afterglow.  Especially if you’re not emotionally ready/mature, and are not well-versed in the rules.

 

 

Our Happily Ever After

 

 

This week’s post by staff writer Rachel Brownjohn is about an analysis of the concept of “happily ever after”. 

 

 

 

I watched a movie this weekend (Which I SHANT spoil for you with the title) about the disillusion of a relationship. The main characters were a committed couple on the (not so fast) track down the aisle, but their story was not destined for success.  As I watched the couple’s struggles unfold I knew that there would be no wedding bells, no happy ending. I prepared myself for that tragic moment when everything would fall apart. I could feel tears building in anticipation, there would be no escaping this theatre without Maybelline Great Lash stains all down my cheeks.

 

 

 

In Shakespeare’s comedies you can bet your bottom dollar that there will be a wedding. They serve as the solidifying event that even after the most twisted of plots, everything works out. “I Do,” equates with Happily Ever After.  In romantic comedies the couple makes it, things work out, they realize they are meant for each other after all. These are the happy endings to which I’ve grown accustomed, “You may kiss the bride,” – cue resolution.

 

 

 

 

But this movie was different. When the unhappy couple finally faced the fact that their relationship had run its course, that it was time to say goodbye; I felt… relieved, hopeful, happy. In the end, these two people had loved each other enough to realize that Ever After wasn’t in the cards for them. In that moment, breaking up was the most loving thing these two could have done for each other. Instead of remaining in an unhappy union, they let each other go. And it was a decision made distinctly with love. Breaking up WAS the happy ending.

 

 

 

I’ve always thought that the end of a relationship was a sort of anti-love story. That if the promises you made each other didn’t pan out, it wasn’t the love that you’d once thought. But maybe I’ve had it all wrong. Maybe, if ending things is best, that is the love story.

So My Fingers Have A Vendetta Against My Better Judgment…Awkward…

Okay, I’ll admit it. I’m guilty of the angry break-up text, angry post break-up phone call, AND the angry post break-up emails. In my defense, I thought they were good ideas at the time. Okay fine, not so great ideas; but at risk of being seen as that “crazy B” after break-ups, I do feel a couple of those past instances were absolutely necessary. The post break-up communications are usually horrible ideas fueled by rage and the righteous indignation of “how dare you?!” that makes the recipients angry and the “scorned” a raving crazed lunatic.

I know that sometimes it’s hard to just quietly or rather separately process our anger over a break-up, but let’s think of it this way: Do you want to be scorned now and over it sooner by sucking it up moving forward or would you rather spread your rage all over the dumper not to resolve anything but to give them a real reason to have dumped you? That “who’s the bitch now?” doesn’t have quite the great comeback bit it did in our heads now does it…

Women and Our Obsession With Being “The Exception”

We all want to feel special, unique even. We might not always want to stand out from the crowd. but when it comes to someone we’re interested in romantically and especially a significant other, we WANT to stand out in their mind and blot out anyone who has come before. Staff writer Stephany Salinas goes more in-depth with this subject in this week’s blog post. Send us your comments and let us know what you think!

Exception: A thing or action that is not part of ordinary standards or operations.

As a woman, you aim to be anything but ordinary. Whether it’s being a fashionista, excelling at school, or anything else to prove to society that hey, I’m not your average girl. I’m above ordinary. I’m extraordinary.

That NEED to be “different” makes us all the same. With that, we become a stereotype. The awful, dreaded, stereotype.

“Girls are taught a lot of stuff growing up. If a guy punches you he likes you. Never try to trim your own bangs and someday you will meet a wonderful guy and get your very own happy ending. Every movie we see, every story we’re told implores us to wait for it, the third act twist, the unexpected declaration of love, the exception to the rule”. – Greg Behrendt

Hollywood has brainwashed girls into thinking that “the bad boy” is actually in search of the love of his life, and you could be the one to save him. I can tell you right now, that [[most]] women dream of one day being the exception. Being the girl who did what no other girl in his life managed to do; whether that means fixing his broken heart, sticking around through tough times, or whatever else you stuck around for. We become drawn to guys who seem broken or “need” us. You get this idea in your head that he’s treating you like crap because he’s interested, or because he’s just a broken soul. Then you start making excuses and try to justify his actions and twist them into something that was never even there, all because you assume he needs you.

Is it something in our genes that make us go crazy (the good kind) when a guy tells us he “needs” us? Must be.

This I know from personal experience.  I dated someone who told me that I could be the one to “save” him. Keep in mind, this was a close friend who I was never attracted to. But from the minute he uttered those words, I was blind. Suddenly, I felt like I HAD to be there for him. He was depending on me, and I felt like I owed it to him to be there. I ignored every awful characteristic he had, because he “needed” me. How could I give up on that? No other girl could make him feel the way I did, and no other girl was willing to try. I initially fell hard, because I felt needed. I sat through all his lies, scumbag habits, and put up with being treated like garbage. Why? He loved me, when he supposedly couldn’t love anybody else. He was constantly telling me that I was different, unlike every other girl out there. For once, I was the exception.

Wrong. In reality, it’s because he was a grade A jerk, and no other girl had the patience to “fix” him. Had I been the exception, I wouldn’t have been treated the way I did. “If a guy is treating you like he doesn’t give a s–t, he genuinely doesn’t give a s–t”. I can see that now, because the part of me that wanted so badly to be the exception, is gone.

Old habits die hard, and trying not to get sucked back into that mentality can get exhausting. I’m a romantic, and somewhat of a dreamer. I always have been, so the whole epic love story mentality is something that is hard to get away from. Have I lost it completely? Absolutely not. I would never completely lose faith in anything, especially that. But when it comes to the real world of dating, I no longer have expectations, and have stopped reading “the signs”. As a girl, this is extremely difficult, considering this is all we’ve done and seen our whole lives. With practice, however, it’s quite possible, and I highly recommend it. When and if a guy tells me that I’m “different from the rest”, I simply say thank you and move on from that topic. It’s hard not to fall into the Hollywood love story mindset and get caught up in words, but with experience you learn that when you fall, it’s most likely going to hurt. I learned the hard way, but I learned. I got hurt, but I got back up, and now I know better. Words only get you so far, so in order for me to genuinely feel like I’m the exception, I’m going to need a guy to prove to me that he’s my exception, too.

Keep in mind, I don’t want to discourage any woman from thinking that they’re a special kind of gal. Will you be the exception one day? Maybe. It’s entirely possible. But don’t go through every relationship thinking that you’re different. Don’t go around saying, “I’m not like other girls”, because you sound just like every other girl. If you have to explain to people that you’re different, unique, or an exception, I have news for you sweetheart, you’re not. So the next time a man tells you that “you’re the exception”, don’t be so quick to believe it. It’s one of the most common and effective lies someone will ever use on you. It’s a successful form of control. Don’t let it blind you, because that will weaken you. And remember, there’s a difference between compromise and weakness.

And if one day you are indeed “the exception”, he won’t have to tell you. He’ll show it in his actions. If you’re different from all the other girls, he’ll treat you differently.

If you’re the exception, you’ll know. 

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When A Woman’s Got A Husband

This week staff writer Frank Friedlander starts a series by showing us love through musical theatre. Enjoy!

To take my contribution to this in a different direction, I will be dedicating my next few entries to analyzing the views of love, courtship, and romance from the points of view of old timey musical theatre. Broadway musicals of the 1940s-1960s seem to offer up different points of view on love. More specifically, each character seems to have his or her own perspective. The first such show that I will get into is the 1957 classic The Music Man.

The show itself revolves around Harold Hill, a traveling con man, who poses as a salesman and promises to assemble boys’ bands for small town. When he comes to the town of River City, Iowa, he soon bumps into the town’s librarian, Marian, and instantly has eyes for her. That’s old timey talk for “he wants to hit that.”

Anyway, today I would like to discuss the character of Marian herself. I guess one would refer to Marian as a career girl. More specifically, a librarian as previously stated. I don’t believe that her actual age is revealed in any of the Broadway productions or the 1962 motion picture. She can’t be older than her late 20s, mid 30s tops. Due to her career, she has never been married, or even had a recent relationship. This does not sit well with the townspeople, especially her mother who makes it very clear that she needs a man, as they’d say in today’s terminology.  Basically, she’s viewed as an old maid at this point. When she tells mom the story of the new guy in town, Harold Hill who meets her, and wastes no time attempting to court her, her mother immediately explain to her, in less than delicate form that she should give him the time of day, and that he my be her last chance at love.

They have a back and forth on the topic, and do so in the form of a song entitled “Piano Lesson.” It is given said title because they are having the discussion while a young boy is getting piano lessons, and his play provides the background music. Anyway, the song gives us the gist of Marian’s love life, or lack their of. Marian expresses to her mother that just because she has not found the one, she has no intention of settling. She has standards, which she finds reasonable. Her mother does not find them so reasonable. Her point of view is that Marian’s standards are sky-high, and no man could possibly hope to measure up to them. Marian, who reads the “dirty books” of Geoffrey Chaucer, Francois Rabelais, and Honore de Balzac, explains that the women of the town are not interested in culture. Her mother’s response is that Marian’s not married and they are, so they won’t take advice from her, nor should they. Interesting sign of the times. Mind you that while the show was written in the 1950s, it takes place closer to the turn of the century, but when it comes to such matters, there wasn’t a huge world of difference.

In a later musical number, “Pick a Little, Talk a Little,” Hill inquires to a group of the town’s gossipy women about Marian. He picks their brains to learn as much as he can about her, in his attempt to woo her. All that he gets in response is gossip, and their view that she is a pariah, but not simply because she is not married. First of all, they don’t appreciate her trying to force her dirty books on them and the town itself. Secondly, they go into detail about the late benefactor of the town’s library, and how she was very close to him. While they don’t come out and say it, they certainly hint that she may have been more than his protégé, if you take my meaning. What else would a rich, older man want with a pretty young girl like her, amiright?

To cut to the chase, Marian and Hill fall in love. No longer is she an old maid. I don’t recall if the situation with her career is ever resolved, but who cares, she found a man and that’s all that matters. True love conquers all. More importantly, the reason that Marian was so abrasive in general was because she was single and career minded, so now she can be happy. Hooray for the 1950s. It’s a good thing that nobody thinks that way anymore.

Frank Friedlander

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A Stage for Life

New staff writer author David Grzan discusses how life is very much like a stage play beginning at birth and ending with death. How is your stage play written?


In the words of William Shakespeare, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and their entrances…” It is no small wonder that we are privileged to have the opportunity to appear “live” on the stage of life with our fellow actors, and perform our many parts before a candid audience that is everything else, save us.  Ask yourself if you are even aware of the audience; or who and/or what are its constituents; take for example the Universe itself, God for that matter, Nature if you will, your ancestors―no doubt, your progeny―of course, etc. and so on?  Perhaps you are too wrapped up in and absorbed by your own “part” to break-away for such abstract considerations.  Is it possible that you are consumed by a foul conceit, or distracted by an egoic aspiration, or preoccupied with a pervading melancholy?  Likewise you may find yourself at odds with your fellow actors; which can have the effect of filling your passions with envy, or corrupting your thoughts with malice; or infatuating your desire for an illicit-romance.  Nevertheless, in most cases you are invariably consigned to the inauspicious condition of remaining unaware that we players are acting in the vacuum of our particular circumstances, not cognizant that our very souls stand in stark relief to our corporality; making game for the audience.


The prevailing notion of understanding, as it were, is that your entrance upon the “stage” was marked by your birth and that your exit is a euphemism for your death.  If that is the case, then we are apt to ask ourselves, where was I before my entrance?  Where will I be following my exit?  In both cases you will be in attendance with the rest of the audience; unanimated yet in awe of the animated actors elected to the stage, irrespective of the parts to be played; because any part, however characterized, dramatized, or epitomized―is a gift.  A gift; albeit brief in time, but a glorious gift stamped on the memory of eternity, nonetheless.  Imagine having the opportunity to play before an adoring audience, as well as your fellow actors, which requires little more than a free imagination, because the play that you are starring in continues to unfold.


How well have you been playing your part, or has the part been playing you?  How shall the audience remember you when you leave the stage and return to the audience after the final curtain-close respecting your life?  Will you leave the stage rued with regrets and remorse, or be reviled for your rants and ridicules; or rather, retire to reminisce and rejoice?  Keep that precious thought in-mind, whether alone or when you are amongst your fellow actors; as in the case relating to your spouse, your children, your parents, your friends, your co-workers, etc., with everything that ever was or is is watching in some way.  How will you conduct yourself as an actor, playing your sundry parts, in the drama called life?  We are all empowered to improvise our parts, as far as we may throw ourselves into our roles, or not; and in the storied production of our life, it is our craft that we aim to perfect, if we chose, but to what end―is it for material pursuits grafted together with a modicum of altruistic conduct for the sake of appearances?  You may also want to consider (just a suggestion) entertaining yourself to the prospect of becoming aware of your beingness, and everyone else’s for that matter, with an especial recognition of the privilege that is your gift, and how it may be employed for communal advancement.


Allow me to expound on this interplay between the audience and the actors within the context of “awareness” and “consciousness”.  Assume for example that the universe commenced with the proverbial “Big-Bang” some 13.7 billion years ago; and through the eons of evolutions relating to galactic systems and celestial configurations of immense and unfathomable proportions, has, during that time spread throughout the universe as we observe it today.  If you like, you can insinuate a God-principle, a spirituality, a natural innateness, a random-probability component, or whatever suits your fancy; however, one highly conspicuous phenomenon is clearly salient; namely, that we humans, as far as we can tell, are an elemental consequence or amalgamated recombination of star-dust.  In that rarefied condition we have been established, over time, as sentient, but more importantly as conscious beings that have the singular ability to question the universe, as exampled by the following questions.  What is the universe? Where did we come from and where are we going? What is the meaning of our existence; or moreover, the meaning of life itself?  Notwithstanding the myriad suppositions that argue for a prime-mover, which have been productive of both evolutionary theories and creation-mythologies, the inescapable truth is that the universe has come to question itself through us―its conscious medium.


We are nevertheless assemblages derived from generations of star-dust; and by our unique configuration, howsoever small in comparison we are to the vastness of the universe, we are in-fact part-and-parcel of the universe.  We are the awakened part of the universe that has developed the incomparable ability to consciously think about itself [universe] in rational, as well as in abstract, terms.  In other words the universe thinks about the universe, or said another way the universe thinks about itself by means of us, and has become increasingly more conscious by virtue of our salutatory manifestation.  Is our Promethean ability a consequence of an unconscious universe pursuing its manifest destiny of willfully raising itself from an unconscious state into a conscious state of existence?  And by this tell-tale advancement is our consciousness merely a by-product or surrogate for the universes’ own consciousness, or are we an extension of the universe that permits the universe to consciously think for itself?  Where do we choose to go from here?


The universe is possessed by conscious thought and is aware of its own existence, and we the players are the ambassadors of that universal consciousness; albeit inchoate for now, but ever-expanding throughout the space-scape of space-time.  With awareness comes the opportunity to bring about, on an accelerating trajectory, more and more of the unconscious parts of the universe into the dimension of consciousness in order that, by a conscious undertaking, the entire universe may one day become totally conscious.  In time, concomitant with our collective intervention, we can facilitate and accomplish universal consciousness, such that everything will be aware of everything else that ever was, or inasmuch that ever happened―is that when heaven becomes realized?  How special is that, and what a gift to behold; imagine for a moment that from an infinite collection of mass and energy contained in the universe (stars, planets, black holes, dark energy, etc.); we who are infinitesimally minute creatures, barely able to cast a shadow on reality, were however, in spite of ourselves, chosen as the vanguard of universal consciousness―an honor reserved to our title, human beings.  More to the point; we are the consciousness of the universe that is in the process of awakening to itself―we realize that we are aware that the universe is aware of itself, and by extension ourselves or visa versa―and as such, we are that part of the universe that is consciously aware of its awareness, the rest has yet to awaken.


Under that scenario, ask yourself if you dare to put aside your solipsistic predilections, or at least put the like into a more congenial perspective, respecting your troubling woebegone angst by taking solace in your gift.  What gift you say: the opportunity to act on the stage of life, and demonstrate, center-stage, the profundity of the revelation that the gift is you, having been endowed with the gift of life, and having been gifted with the capacity for conscious awareness; and that gift, you, overshadows all iterations of the material kind.  So when you enter upon the next scene of your life, how will you interact with your fellow actors, your fellow giftee’s?  One suggestion, tell the one you love that s/he is a living miracle that you profoundly appreciate; and how much you are aware of just how special s/he is―(but be careful of potential side-effects, there may be an elevation in the happiness quotient stemming from the consequence).


We actors are the living hope for every soul sequestered in the audience, past and future, and as much for ourselves; we, the players, if you will.  Regardless of the parts you play, the audience, in-tandem with the actors; shall, by the inevitability of conscious direction, steer our destiny by adhering to the script enciphered in the collective unconsciousness in order to transcend into one collective state of awareness.  This conscious quest for the pursuit of universal awareness will lead us to the promised land of paradise; viz.: heaven, where we will all be reunited with our loved ones, on one grand stage of harmonious happiness.  Enjoy performing―there a standing ovation in the offing for all of us!


“I know who I am and who I may be, if I choose.” Miguel de Cervantes, The Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote de la Mancha, Vol. 1.


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