For most of America by April 28, 2019 at 10:30pm, they will have either watched Avengers: Endgame or Game of Thrones or both. If you hadn’t you will have logged on social media and been spoiled by memes and reactions from either. Or you been under a rock. It’s hard to avoid spoilers when we carry around “the water cooler” in our pockets every day. I’m in the middle when it comes to spoilers; I hate being spoiled and try not to spoil things for others but there’s also a sense of entitlement in “don’t talk about this huge pop culture thing because I plan on getting around to it eventually, and I can’t just log off for an extended period of time.” I’d make an exception for movies or if someone explicitly asks not to spoil it, or they’re literally in the middle of indulging. When it comes to live TV it’s different; it’d be like not discussing the Super Bowl until Tuesday so everyone can have a chance to watch. But we live in a self important social media age and so everyone likes to believe the world revolves around their schedule. (Okay, maybe I’m not so in the middle).
Narratively speaking, good storytelling is about the journey not the destination. If the only thing that’s interesting about the story IS the twist then that is just poor writing (Yes Sixth Sense, I’m looking at you.) If you only read a book or watched a movie to just know what happened, you’d read the last chapter, watch the last 10 minutes, and never revisit anything. I watched Game of Thrones a little late, I know there was a jaw dropping Red Wedding episode and people really was excited when Joffrey died. I knew they was coming, I didn’t know when and when they did I was just as surprised as I would’ve been otherwise. Oh, spoiler alert. (Also, I feel like announcing the spoiler alert is almost daring the person to be spoiled, anyway). While I can appreciate suspense and surpises, it’s not wholly necessary for my enjoyment. I actually had Endgame spoiled for me, I didn’t realize I was spoiled until it actually happened in the movie at which point I made a note to block that person. On principle. But it didn’t take away from my enjoyment of the film.
But that’s just me. For the masses, I would say most people don’t want to be spoiled (even if studies show that being spoiled has no affect on the overall experience but hey) and so there’s the spoiler commandments:
- Always lead with “did you see/watch _________” before just blurting a reaction or posting a meme in the groupchat.
- The theater bathroom is not the place to discuss the movie; piss, wash your hands and go
- It’s only a spoiler if you believe it.
- No one cares, California. Just log off. Eastern Standard Time, ho
- If they tell you where they are, or you’re rewatching with someone who hasn’t seen it yet, don’t “oooh oooh this part coming up tho”, shut up
- Talking about what happened in the source material is still spoiling
- Use hashtags and spell them correctly for people who want to mute
- It’s not a spoiler if you’re like a season behind
- Reality shows and biopics don’t count
- If it’s a leak…don’t you fucking dare.
- Don’t be a dick about it.
Now, we all know the “pick me” girl aka “This generation” girl aka “Y’all females” aka “not me, tho” aka the princess of the patriarchy. Pick me’s place all their stock in being better than the alternative, instead of what they actually want. Pick me’s tend to boast about cooking, sex, and being low maintenance because that’s what they think men want, without much regard for their own identity. By and large, pick mes are typically harmless, their sirens are met with groans and eyerolls as the men they are bending over backwards to impress are a) usually dudes no one was even competing with you for. Or b) pick hes.
Now, we all at least know of the “pick he” dude aka “These girls want thugs” aka “employed, no BMs, no arrests” aka “Favorite artists are Drake and Bryson Tiller” aka “I live just outside of DC” aka “I learned rape culture in the last 2 years so I’m basically a feminist” aka “I make 75K and have a car how dare you swipe left on me, Ma”. Pick He’s are productive, functional members of society, but that’s not good enough… They are also entitled to a baddie. They lament being undervalued and unappreciated for simply not being that terrible.
So if pick mes have low expectations and pick hes have low output, why don’t these two people simply find each other and leave everyone else alone. But that’d be like Drake and Nicki Minaj finally getting together because they really are just vapid facsimiles of each other. The answer is because the pick he doesn’t want to pick, the pick he just wants to be wanted. Men being the traditional pursuers, the pick he can easily go get that good nerdy low maintenance girl he claims he wants. He could just stop seeing where things goes with the girl he’s been kinda dating for years. Maybe stop being the 145th “hey” in the same IG models inbox and maybe be the 5th in someone else’s. Pick me’s are sitting by the dock at the bay, hoping and wishing to be picked; pick he’s are just circling around being indecisive about something they swear they want.
I’ve had pick he moments. I think it’s natural to make a few shots and feel like you’ll never miss again. I’ve had what I said I wanted right in front of me only to be like…am I sure sure, I’ve been hurt before, I just need more time, you know all the Drakeisms. Instead of actually picking, you long for someone who just ain’t checking for you like that. No matter how much of a good man™ you are. So while pick hes think they’re being indecisive, ironically enough they are just waiting to be picked too.
For what it’s worth I don’t think there’s anything wrong with actually wanting to be picked, even if I roll my eyes and judge them. I just be judging and shit. However, the common thread between pick mes and pick hes is entitlement and entitled people can be insatiable. Pick mes get picked and now they need you to know that they have the best marriage, they are the happiest family and now they are just as annoying as their thirstier days because all they truly wanted was validation.
I always abhorred the idea of “men are dogs”. Men are trash… Well, we’ll get to that one another day. The idea of a man being a dog though, I always found to be simplistic. It’s the logic of the Steve Harveyisms of the world, a man don’t know no better he must be taught like a dog, good deed for treat. Give him too many treats and he becomes spoiled and now doesn’t know how to act. Don’t give him treats at all, he’ll leave. Either way whatever this grown ass adult does will be your fault. Plenty of men also accepted this logic as fact and so they are raised that the only incentive to court, listen or even just respect women is for a “treat”. Primary incentive to being successful, is for a “treat”. It’s why President H.W. Bush is well into his 90s and doesn’t see why groping women and calling himself David Cop-a-feel is wrong. It’s why President Dotard thinks it’s okay to grab them by the pussy. It’s why President Underwood feels empowered to sexually assault staff on set. (and teenage boys) It’s why President Clinton… (let’s be real here you KNOW a story is coming). They aren’t able to process being told no because they’ve excelled at their craft, received power and influence and therefore are entitled to treats. Woof.
What I find most baffling is like, I know better. I always knew better. And I’m not special. I didn’t need to take a feminism course in college, have a daughter or get dragged by the internet 18 times in my 30s to know better. I just know right and wrong and respect people. Sadly, that’s not as common as I thought it was. Even if I hit for a lick I can’t see how I would ever be so comfortable just whipping it out and masterbating in front of strangers or groping my Twitter followers at a day party.
It’s a new day, now. Even as society (slowly) progresses and proceeds to get all of these creepy dudes up out the paint (except the Dolt45 apparently)…I find myself wondering aloud:
Men don’t know how to process a “reward” from a woman that isn’t sexual.
It’s why so many struggle with the idea of a platonic female friend. They lament the idea of a friend zone because it flies in the face of the logic they were raised on. I’m… Nice to you and you don’t…want to see my dick?404 Error. It’s why so many men struggle with holding a conversation with a woman without flirting. (okay I do this but really it’s because there don’t be shit else to talk about) “What do you bring to the table besides sex” is a common quip but most won’t even notice the new plate setting. The women in their life nurture or fuck them or a mix of them both.
It also speaks to modern dating and being unwilling to put forth any effort to anything that isn’t going to be worth while. It’s something I found myself struggling with at one point…I show interest by courting, she showed interest by affection. After a few dates if there wasn’t any of the sort, I took the curve and went home. Then over time, I met the girl who just wanted sex and company, the girl who “wouldn’t be here if she didn’t like me”, the girl who loved me but didn’t want to be with me. Like…. None of this was in the manual. I was told by apple care that sex was the closer. But it isn’t. For some it might be, others you just caught her on a good night. It would be like if women were individuals who you should treat as such and not just assume they all kick it the same way. Otherwise, you go decades thinking your David Cop-a-feel joke still kills because it worked one time 30 years ago. But maybe, that’s too much like right.
So you not taking that pay cut?
So because its summer and my Red Sox are flat out depressing to watch, I been investing all my energy into keeping up with NBA Free Agency. What I find fascinating about it all, well besides the numbers, tax implications, evaluating contracts (after all I did go to school for sports management) is the all the guilt tripping the media, teams and fans are trying to do. Its easy for a fan to want their favorite player to stay on their favorite team even if that team has no chance in winning; or for a GM to come out publicly and try to shame a star for getting the most money they can, or ESPN to have a roundtable discussion about legacies and loyalty. Its all exploitative. Free agents should be able to do whatever they wish without having to feel bad about how much they got paid or the fans they leave behind, that’s the point of being free. These pros ain’t loyal, and they shouldn’t be. LeBron James is as obligated to take a pay cut as a single person is to be faithful to someone they aren’t with.
Whether its the one they broke up with 3 weeks ago, an e bae, workspouse, parent of their child, someone they just smashing, there’s always someone who assumes loyalty without doing the one thing that assumes loyalty which is enter a monogamous relationship. Instead again they guilt their way out of it “if he/she was serious they wouldn’t be still dating”, “don’t ask ‘what are we'”, and of course calling them a heaux for doing what all single people do. Hell, even people in a relationship have complete freedom to walk away from a bad situation but usually they don’t, even when they have a plethora of reasons to. These “pros” ain’t loyal. Loyalty has became more of a weakness than the strength its implicates. We don’t choose self as often as we ought to.
That’s not to say loyalty isn’t appreciated at all, I just don’t see it as a pre-requisite to a relationship. I wouldnt want a woman to be all about me while I’m still single. She’s “building trust and loyalty” that I’m not sure she’ll cash in on, so its like taking home tickets from the arcade that’s closing in a week. (Sidebar you notice how you never have enough tickets for anything you actually want except a slinky….conspiracy I say) I think when we’re content that “loyalty” comes anyway, but to flat out expect it, once again shows a lack of accountability. I could never ask someone I’m talking to, or just entertaining to amnesty everyone else for me without actually asking for a relationship. Of course, no one wants someone they care about basking in the affections of another but that’s the way it should be, claim or forfeit. But things never are that simple, no matter how much I try to make it be. This prose ain’t loyal.