Category Archives: Love

Today’s Word is… BEG

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I’m gon swallow my pride, say I’m sorry.  Stop pointing fingers; the blame is on me. I want a new life, and I want it with you.  If you feel the same, don’t ever let it go…

That’s that good ol fashioned begging R&B.  That I can’t eat, I can’t sleep shit.  Wanya made up a whole spirit to get his queen back.  We don’t even know what he did. But he sorry.  (probably a break baby…then again Boys II Men are too lame to cheat, he probably just ignored her call and overreacted).  Gen Xers lament that music don’t have this same level of vulnerability, today’s R&B is too passive aggressive, too prideful.  Because well, millennials are passive aggressive and prideful.  It’s not baby please take me back, it’s more like damn, I wanted to marry you one day. Welp.  The vulnerability starts and ends at acknowledgement that they might not be good at this love shit.  They aren’t going to DO anything about it, but at least they know now.  I could include myself in that same vulner-ish category (I mean, well, it’s been well documented here).  While millennials are flighty, we’re also lazy so that leads to a large number of couples breaking up, getting back together, breaking up again, getting a Tinder, remembering dating is trash, getting back together, moving in together, seeing their friends from college get married, wonder why they aren’t at that point yet, getting a puppy, one person really wants to get married, they getting another puppy instead, they break up and even though there’s two dogs, someone gets both.  Perhaps this generation doesn’t beg because there’s too many options (or at least the appearance of such).

Personally, I’m admittedly too proud to beg, at least at this point in my life.  I’d fight for my wife, I’d fight for my family, a girlfriend? Girlfriiiiiiiiend *Soulja Boy voice*  It gets a little more dicey.  Frankly, I just don’t believe it works.  Even when it does, you never get the same person back, never get the same relationship back.  Begging is easy when it’s a surface issue, like infidelity.  You fucked up, you know exactly what you did wrong and how to fix it.  Apologize and behave from this day forward. Problem. Solution. Now, it’s just an “up and down” in your relationship story.  (and no one loves telling that story more than a man who cheated and got forgiven.  He”s gonna bring it up in every birthday post, every anniversary, if you die first it’s going in the eulogy). Never mind whatever issues led up to the infidelity or even acknowledgment of the fact that you might not even be ready for this relationship you just lost because it’s now simply about the cheating.

When it get’s more difficult is when the issue isn’t something surface, but foundational.  I’m not happy, I just can’t do this right now, how do you beg to be with someone who just feels like the timing isn’t right?  (Spoiler: You don’t, they just don’t want you).  It’s one thing to be left when you clearly violated the relationship, it’s another when they just don’t want the relationship anymore.  Damn trying to get them back you’re still taken aback by the fact that they decided they didn’t want YOU anymore.  It’s a different blow to the ego than I got caught cheating.   Sure, you can just swallow your pride and accept all blame like Wanya, and now you’re in the same position as the cheater, fighting tirelessly to fix a relationship while the other person holds the leverage.  And you didn’t even do anything wrong, you just don’t want to lose this person.  Maybe they’re worth it.

I’ve had relationships end and deep down, I knew if I just called, begged, made a gesture, forgave things would work themselves out…Hell, there were times I did.  It worked for a few more months, but over time I was still me, she still her and our issues still our issues.  Or I found myself being the only one truly invested in keeping the relationship togehter.  Then there was times where I just…let it go.  You leave and the door locks behind you.  Breaking up, making up and begging only prolongs the inevitable.  Sometimes things have just run their course, or you want different things, or no matter how hard you try there’s too much baggage and the slate will never be clean.  And that’s ok.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… HEADASS

April 23, 2016. I, like many fellow members of society had turned it to HBO because Beyonce was doing a thing. No one knew what the thing was, but she was doing a thing. That thing would be Lemonade, a visual album of emotional, personal…yeah yeah, Hov did WHAT?!? was largely the takeaway. In the time since, he done told his side of the story (4:44), and they done wrapped it all up in a neat but not great bow (Everything is Love) but publicly, at least for Hov, it was different. Now, for better or worse any and everything he does is linked to that moment everyone watched Lemonade. From the new hairstyle (which I personally believe he’s only doing because her MCM, LeBron cannot. Also, his hair is waaaay too dark for someone who is damn near 50 and we just don’t talk about it), to the awkward looking photographs, to getting washed on APESHIT, Jay Z who has always carried himself as cooler than thou has been humbled (except when he’s talking to and about anything other than his wife. This nigga told us to “enjoy our chains” like, last week). It falls into all the cliches of happy wife happy life, ball and chain, etc. where a man simply loses himself to a woman. To quote Young(er) Hov, me give my heart to a woman? Not for nothing never happen, I’ll be forever macking.

Big Pimpin’ was nearly 20 years ago (feel old). It’s what you say and think when you’re damn near 30. (Granted, I’m not at a Big Pimpin phase in MY life , but rappers and athletes typically act about 6 years younger than they are anyway). Holding Jay Z to that standard is ridiculous. We grow, we change, and contrary to popular belief it’s not because a woman is forcing us to. It’s time we disabused ourselves of this common myth that men are being forced out the game like that one dude at the Y who swears he was going to play ball overseas before his MCL sprain. Jay Z was in bed holding ankles long before he got caught cheating and exposed on premium cable. I’ve definitely canceled plans with friends to go lay up and watch a bad movie. All men have, no matter how too cool they want to come off.

And so, it got me thinking of other “couple” things that men need to stop lying about enjoying. It’s not just sex, blunts and Power, my guy. Nothing wrong with being a little headass with the one you love. Let that toxic masculinity go. Let’s be saps together…

Headass things couples do that men love more than they care to admit:

Watching terrible reality TV

Watching terrible Christmas movies

Carpool Karaoke

Gossip

Shopping

Dressing alike*

Let her steal your clothes

Share Shade Room posts

Take pictures

Post aforementioned pictures

Let her pop that pimple

Drink wine

Have company over

Actually celebrate Valentine’s Day

Paint Nite

Let her dress you

Bring her to the barbershop**

Go apple picking

Go ice skating

Lunch break phone calls

Double dates**

Sit in the same side of the booth

Plan out but never follow up on a podcast/YouTube channel

PDA

Celebrate month anniversaries even though anni- clearly implies a year

Go to IKEA

Meet family members

Give Pet Names

Use Bitmojis

Miss the game

Let her leave stuff at your place

*I will say that I will always be too cool to dress alike and judge couples who do. I don’t even like matching by accident. Someone gotta change. We can complement; red/black, blue/yellow. Even same color different shades is too close. Someone gotta change.

**It’s only cute the first time.

To quote Hov again, you’re too old to be frontin when you’re feeling Denzel
and acting like she ain’t appealing. That was 15 years ago (feel old again), 4 years after Big Pimpin, 1 year into the relationship because being too cool is lonely. You gotta lie to kick it. Love is fun, silly and kinda headass. Embrace and enjoy it for what it is.

Just don’t dress alike, that’s still corny.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… BENEFITS

So I was making my way downtown, faces pass and I’m home bound when I had happened upon this meme

getting tens of thousands of retweets and I was flummoxed. First, because since when was abuse a word to be used so flippantly (also is she wearing a wedding ring?). Furthermore, what is a relationship benefit exactly? And he can expect a lot of things what exactly happens if she doesn’t indulge, is he just gonna continue to not be with her? If he says he’s not ready for a relationship and you continue to act like that’s acceptable to you, who is really lying? What responsibility is it of the uninterested party to keep reminding them of that fact? (I’ve been that guy…when you do they hate it, “they know” they said, “we’re adults” they said). In reality, I’m not that damn serious, no one is that damn serious, and maybe just maybe “relationship benefits” is just something you wanted to do.

Relationships are nothing more than mutual agreements of responsibilities and expectations of one another. There’s no benefits package. You do things for (and to) people you like. Sometimes that happens to be your girlfriend, or maybe it’s just the girl you’re sleeping with, or have a crush on or a friend. You had sex with them because you wanted to. You were their date at the holiday party because you wanted to. You paid for dinner because you wanted to. You built that TV stand because you wanted to. You cooked for them because you wanted to. (I don’t know when cooking became a grander gesture than sex…or maybe we just too grown to be earning sex so I gotta love you before you have my short ribs). Entering relationships for said benefits is not how they should work and if you are doing that, expect to be solely disappointed. A committed, healthy relationship should never be something you leverage.

There’s a difference between leveraging and courting. A difference between men sold on the idea that if I pay for the date I expect sex and men who go on dates because they are genuinely trying to what she’s about. People who have casual sex because they just want to and those who are just acquiescing in the hopes it turns into something else. The way men lament about paying for dates on Twitter you would think they aren’t at the restaurant they probably chose themselves eating too. You aren’t “free food”, that’s another one of her followers who orders her UberEATS even though they’ve never met. If she agreed and went out with you, then you aren’t being used. (Unless it’s like date 3 or 4, she’s never asked to see you first nor has offered to pay. #knowyourworthKing). Going back to the meme, if he says he wasn’t looking for a relationship, you know that you are but continue to entertain him hoping to change his mind. You aren’t being manipulated; you’re manipulating. It’s just not working. Again, you aren’t doing things of your own free will, you’re leveraging. In both cases, rather than ask explicitly what you’re doing here, or state plainly what you’re looking for and get finality…but its easier to hide behind casual sex, fake friendship and cocktails and play a victim because your plan isn’t working. But they’re the misleading one. K.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… ROMANTIC

So I had stumbled upon this article (don’t leave NOW, go back to it later…RUDE.) the other day about the idea of a “romantic booty call”. The writer, fresh off a breakup, is where we’ve all been. Not really looking to get back out there but not quite used to going extended periods without sex. So you venture out into the dating world which might as well be the Upside Down from Stranger Things. The writer has an “epiphany” of sorts, that when she tells men that she’s a romantic, they simply don’t know how to process it so they assume she’s looking for love and they default to the tried and true method of lowering her expectations. Jokes on them, she’s just in this for the sex. She could just say that but it’s easier to make them squirm. (#DontDateWriters). As she puts it, “women live such multidimensional lives with a huge range of interests, ambitions, and opportunities at our fingertips — casual lovers included.” Basically, you ain’t got to lie to kick it.

Last year (damn time flies), I touched on casual sex and my struggles with it. Ironically, it was the same thing that she’s lamenting, (it’s almost like men aren’t just horny cavemen who are confused by nuance) the struggle of being a romantic but not wanting a relationship can be real tho. We can sleep together, have a great time with each other, kiss and say we love each other but the reality is, the reason we ain’t actually together is because at least one of us doesn’t want to be. But saying you’re just good enough to sleep with is cruel to say out loud and so we play verbal gymnastics. Speaking personally, I’m someone who takes my relationships very seriously; and so, if I don’t see a long term future I adjust accordingly. However, that reality of “I want you but I don’t WANT you” is a tough pill for one to swallow.

With that the idea of a “romantic booty call” sounds ideal, all of the relationship perks with none of the baggage, that’s the dream right? There’s a lot of middle ground between “dick appointment” and “boyfriend”. Hooking up with random people gets old by 23…you want familiarity and consistency (and worry free annual physicals). So does having a new bae every 3 months because you enjoy each other’s company and that’s just what you’re supposed to do.

Can the romantic booty call work? Yes…but only temporarily. No one is going to just be around forever. No one wants to just be around forever. “I’m not looking for a relationship” guy is going to find someone else eventually, your FWB is going to take that job out of town because who is staying around for a “friend”, his wife is eventually going to find out. All good things come to an end, B. At least the way I see it, perhaps there’s a society of people who simply don’t believe in relationships, but are down to do romantic things platonically I’m simply not privy to. Or an even more novel idea, just stop treating sexual partners like shit as a means to establish boundaries and there’d be no need to romanticize the fwb who actually let’s you spend the night in the first place.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… CUFFIN’

The cuffing season phenomenon is interesting to see in real time. After spending the whole summer pretending to be savages, it’s now time to settle down for a few months. Human beings don’t actually have mating seasons, so it’s somewhat of a placebo affect… Colder weather, more time indoors, desire to spend that time with someone. The end of the year has you in a more reflective state, you have that “epiphany” and do a light contact purge because the days are literally shorter and you have to reclaim as much of them as possible. Personally, I always preferred to date in spring/summer because I’m a dater; when the weather is nice I like going out doing things and knowing who my +1 is going to be. I can Netflix and chill by my damn self. (Stop asking me if I’m still watching you know damn well I am). I much rather be single at Thanksgiving than at a wedding. Don’t worry about who I’m seeing, worry about that soggy ass stuffing no one is eating.

But no one listens to me. So they fall for the cuffing season traps; they panic and spend $63 on e harmony only to find out all the men there look like preachers, they book that flight to homecoming to see the same ex they haven’t wanted in a decade, join that beard group on Facebook. Granted, I’ve fallen for it too. I think this time last year I found myself on a date with a white woman who was entirely too into her improv troupe. Then there was the one who lied about her age. And the vegan. Then the “celibate” one. Then I shot my shot at a friend. (it missed, badly) Then the one who said I wasn’t her type but was willing to try this out anyway. and it was obvious that the “cuffing season” got me. (and with the last one it clearly got her too). All in the name of I don’t want to be single anymore. Just trying to be the “good guy” who is about more than wyd and come thru texts. I could’ve just saved time and money just finding other ways to occupy my time. Like working out and watching Westworld.

Love is dope, as are relationships… When they happen organically for the right reasons. You may already find yourself mid cuff and have to ask the hard questions like, do you really like this person or just hate dating? Do they even like you or just hate dating? Do they like pineapple on their pizza? Is there a future here? Or are you just killing time until peak cuffing season after New Years. (studies* show that after new year’s day, suddenly the list goes from 6’+ to “taller than me”, the distance radius goes from 25 mi to I think I prefer long distance relationships, and all pictures get rotated out to snapchat filtered ones)

*There are no studies

Ultimately, the problem with the idea of cuffing season is not dissimilar to moving back home for a bit or taking a job just to be working again. You look up and it’s been 2 years and you’re no closer to moving out because all your money is going to the food and cable. They shop at Whole Foods now. I’ve said before that no one is “ready” for relationships; just as someone who tells you they aren’t ready to date just don’t want your ass, someone who is all about cuffing season wants comfort…not necessarily you. When they want you it won’t matter if it’s Columbus Day, the first day of summer (or mid divorce). So my advice this cuffing season is to ride out the lonely because dead end relationships are never what’s up. Keep your heart, 3 Stacks. They probably snore and hog covers anyway.

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… SAVAGE

What came first, the chicken or the egg.  (Obviously the chicken, it’d be like Adam and Eve being babies).  It’s a causality dilemma nonetheless, you can’t have one without the other.  Much like the savage and the fuckboy.  Behind either one, is some hurt they never sorted out fully and instead became the person who hurted them.  Because feelings suck.  Feeling betrayed by those feelings suck and now you want to make sure you never feel that way again.  And so, you become a savage.  You do what you want to who you want and don’t worry about consequences; they’ll be iight, you lived so will they.  Or they just take that hurt turn into savages themselves and suddenly it’s like Walking Dead, living amongst the savages who ain’t got shit to offer but hurt feelings and wyd texts while you still trying to find something real and avoid becoming a savage your damn self. I mean I’ve done some things whilst hurting (that was a crazy summer).  You find yourself reaching out to people you ain’t seen in ages like “where the wave at”, hitting up old flames knowing good and well they are not the come thru and chill type, meeting and deleting people with the same turnover rate as the White House.  You know you living foul but accountability is a little too close to feelings and you don’t do those anymore, you’re a savage.  

It’s an addicting feeling, feels almost like control.  Can’t get hurt if you don’t care.  And to be fair, why should you?  Why even stress over someone who wasn’t going to be your forever anyway?  There were times when I wasn’t even trying to be a “savage”, I literally ran out of fucks to give.   There were times I got that text and it’s like, I probably could fix this, but I won’t. She was a loud snorer.  I don’t want another smoker.  She was an awful kisser.  I like my Sundays. This is like our 15th breakup.  I don’t even like white women like that anyway.  She cut her hair.  She’s finna move away.   She watches Gilmore Girls.  Everything isn’t worth your time and energy, and sometimes people need to be reminded of that fact. If that’s, as the kids say, savage AF,  so be it.   

*cue Rihanna*

Except… You’re not Rihanna.  Rihanna was coming from a place where she is tired of having to explain every guy she’s seen with on TMZ, you are just pretending you don’t have feelings which literally counteracts science. I can get being exhausted by hurt, lies, and disappointment… But that’s just life.  This newfound era of “savagery” is just low expectations and hypocrisy.  Fairly transparent, at that.  There’s sexual liberation and there’s just being a trash person.  A lesson even I learned the hard way; that eventually every one gets over your shit.   That aforementioned summer ended as the others did, a whole lot of fuck yous only for me to leave off with a petty parting quip.  In the moment, it was savage but in hindsight it was hurt.  Hurt that again I was in this position, hurt in the realization that all of them couldn’t be tripping.  That brushing it off and on to the next one wasn’t fixing nothing, I had to really self evaluate.  As for them, maybe they found someone who wouldn’t waste their time, or maybe they are just savages now.  I truly root for the former, if it’s the latter… Well, sorry.  

So being a savage, creates a savage that may create a savage.  How do we stop the epidemic of misdirected retaliation?   Self evaluation,  for starters.  It can’t just be “men” or “women here”, “Mercury is in Retro Js”, “this generation”… Something is actually wrong.   Lowering expectations and just being a savage is scotch tape on a broken window.  We’re wired for companionship, we desire, we care, we feel… And there’s nothing wrong with that, pretending you don’t for convenience sake doesn’t do anything but infect others.  The irony is, what would be savage is loving freely and openly without fear. Not empty situationships and convincing yourself it’s on your terms.  As Auntie Maya says “Have enough courage to trust love one more time and shit.” (Not a direct quote).  

-Stan-

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Today’s Word is… SIMPLE

Men are simple.  It’s an adage as old as time itself; basically it’s Morgan Freeman.  It’s partially correct in the sense that men aren’t as complicated as made out to be; just about every “why doesn’t he…” question can be answered with a “because he doesn’t want to.”  Trying to find deeper meaning in direct ass words and actions is simply searching for an answer you like better or trying to make a Nicki Minaj verse profound.    He isn’t being complicated, he’s literally rhyming race with race and China with China.  He doesn’t want you, my dear.  That level of simplicity then gets applied to men in general; Be hot.  Have sex.  Feed him. Don’t nag. Your caveman will love you until he dies… Well except for the fact that he broods mostly at home but you see pictures of him on his line brothers page and he’s never been more ecstatic.  He comes home and says work is fine but the entire ride home he sulked thinking about the promotion he got passed over on.  He loves your family like his own but you barely know his and he never really speaks about that.  Turns out, he isn’t simple. Because no one is simple.  We all have our layers, needs, wants, desires.  

“Men are simple”  is a cop out, albeit self afflicted because we struggle with exploring our layers, expressing our true wants and intentions, and holding ourselves accountable to them.   It’s the logic upon which Steve Harvey has built an empire, psssh men are easy clearly it’s you.  Men themselves own it, but if all we need is sex, food and silence then why aren’t we satisfied?  Not too long ago I wrote about the “its cool girl” (#wellactually, it was well over a year ago… Time flying like a bitch ain’t it?).  The it’s cool girl is low maintenance, available, convenient because she is just trying to get chose. Then one day she looks up and realizes she isn’t happy because she lost herself in her relationship.  “Sex, food, silence” guy is the other side of that coin, he doesn’t feel, doesn’t care, doesn’t express what he wants because that’s woman shit.  It’s cool girl and it’s cool guy then find themselves in a unsatisfying relationship until one or both of them cheats or leaves. (Lawrence and Issa).  It’s cool guy might even be worse because he approached, courted and chose her and never really asked himself, is this what I really want?  

I’ve been it’s cool guy. I’m a pleaser, but sometimes I would get so caught up in trying to be any and everything for her that I lost myself.  Because she was fine. Because she passed the checklist.  Because she was my best friend.   I was getting the food, sex, silence but still not satisfied, still not whole.  I would get frustrated with myself; maybe I was being too picky, maybe I was just a fuckboy or maybe I didn’t know what I was doing.  (I still don’t know what I’m doing).  The answer was, I was being simple and simplicity bores me.  I need to be me, fully and understood as such.  Maybe if I knew then what I know now I would’ve been able to express what I needed and received it.  Now I do know what I want and still trying to find a way to articulate it. I’m layered but not unsolvable. Learn me. (okay…clearly still work shopping the articulation part) 

We all want the simple things but it’s time to stop being naive as if that’s all we want. Netflix is not a date.  Stop tweeting generalizations and call her.   Yes it’s still a fuckboy move if you’re really good to her whilst stringing her along. Basically, we all need to stop lying.  We aren’t simple.  Playing it cool helps no one. Just maybe if everyone kept it 100 about what they want, dating could be a wee bit less trash.  Instead, everyone paying the minimum wondering why they still in debt. Sad! 

-Stan-

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