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If he is in great physical shape then start asking questions. 

By no means do I advocate going for a guy who is completely overweight and out of shape. Those are obvious signs that your guy does not take good care of himself. There may very well be legitimate reasons if he is bigger: a recurring injury, genetics, a busy schedule that doesn’t permit for physical activity or poor eating habits. It may also just be laziness or slothfulness and you don’t want that in your life. 

On the other hand, do you really want a guy who is a complete adonis with rock hard muscles and six pack abs? Maybe that is your dream. But consider this: do you have any idea how much time a guy has to spend in the gym and how much of his life must be dedicated to improving his body for him to achieve those results? The answer is alot. Chances are if you know a guy like this he has spent more on protein shakes in the last year than you have on shoes — and that’s no good. (Those shakes also taste terrible. I dare you to try a Green Apple flavored protein shake. You have to be truly obssessed with your body to drink that swill.)

Not only does this type of guy pour all of his money into developing and maintaining his body, he spends all of his time at the gym. If he were forsaking spending time with you to go to dance clubs, would you be suspicious then? Yeah, I thought so. What about if he didn’t want to hang out with you because he was at the bar with his buddies — you have a problem with that? Again, I think I know the answer. Well, for guys like this the gym is their dance club or bar. They can hang out with their buddies under the pretense of lifting. They can flex and preen in the mirrors and show off for each other. They can go and see girls in tight clothes working out and being active. Oh, it’s bad allright.

There are certain good aspects to picking a guy in great physical shape. He won’t drink and he won’t smoke. But who knows what he is injecting himself with at the gym to enhance his muscles? Who knows how many cycles of steroids he will do or how much creatine he’ll injest. It may not matter to you now, but the chickens will come home to roost when he starts going bald early, loses a testicle to cancer or has a ‘roid rage that leaves you shaken, not stirred.

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If he is going bald ungracefully, you may have to re-evaluate things.

This is a difficult subject for anyone to talk about and especially difficult for bald men. Baldness is one of those difficult subjects that we are taught as children never to bring up in polite company. But address it we must. If you are interested in a guy then you have at least a 20% chance that he is going bald — that’s 1 in 5 guys. Do you know 5 guys? Then you probably know at least one struggling with his impending baldness. Maybe the changes to his hairline are happening so slowly that you can’t notice. But if you were to close your eyes now and open them in 5 years time, poof! You’d see the change then.

Given the fact that men do go bald, and as they get older a higher percentage of them are bald, it is important to examine how men deal with this. In the 1980s the toupe became an unfortunate cliche for bald men. How many movies or sitcoms have you seen showing men wearing terrible hair-pieces to hide the embarrassment of what they were losing underneath. This embarrassment and fear is understandable. It’s the answer that guys have to women’s concerns with their weight and a lack of confidence is at the heart of the matter.

So, we know this problem is common and that men have great difficulty dealing with it. How does this impact you? Well, for one, good luck finding the toilet in his washroom amidst the lotions, potions and pills he uses to keep his remaining hair in place. For another, if he doesn’t feel confidentand comfortable about himself how will his lack of confidence be manifest elsewhere in your relationship? I think you know what I mean…

If your guy is going bald ungracefully all is not lost and there is hope. Going bald is a process — it doesn’t all fall out at once. If he is just starting to lose it then obviously this is a new and difficult issue for him to confront and there is hope that he will learn how to cope with his new state. Although he may have a lack of confidence now and clings to the few remaining hairs on his head, he may learn in the future to proudly show off his dome.

On the other hand, if he has been losing his hair for some time and continues to hide it with a comb-over, sweep-over or some other way, then be careful. These guys have had time to deal with their new condition but have averted their eyes from it and have not gained the confidence to celebrate their new status. What do you think they are going to do when more serious changes happen later in life? I think you already know the answer — avert their eyes and ignore it. Are you interested in that? Or are you interested in a guy who will address his issues straight on. I thought so.

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If he doesn’t travel, proceed slowly.

Back in the days of cavemen it made sense to not travel. Who knew what was around the bend? Saber-toothed tigers? A hostile tribe? It would have been understandable if Thag didn’t want to travel far from his cave and instead prefered to retreat to its mossy comforts.

Even a century ago it was difficult and taxing to travel just about anywhere. Want to go to Europe from North America? Sure. It was possible. Just sit on a boat for a month and there you are — Europe. Didn’t you enjoy that month of your life being knocked back and forth on a cramped vessel amid the high seas of the North Atlantic.  Once you got there few people would have spoken English beyond England; you wouldn’t have known European languages and it would have all been very difficult unless you had considerable means to fund your time abroad. I won’t even bother mentioning how difficult it would have been to travel to Asia or Africa. 

Things are different now. You can travel from New York to England in about the same time and with the same ease as it takes to get to California. They even speak the same language there! If he hasn’t bothered to travel at all he probably has a limited understanding about the world and about other people. Are you interested in that? Maybe you are. If you are, then enjoy spending the next 30 years of your life visiting the same places as you did up until this point. If you have a sense of adventure and you would like to explore the world, do not go for a guy like this.

What about exploring the world through the internet or tv or magazines, you say? Can’t me and my non-traveling guy explore the world together from the comfort of our couch? You can read Conde Nast Traveller, watch the travel channel and browse all the best internet sites. Well, you certainly could do all those things but that seems like a poor substitute for walking down ancient, winding roads in a city which was built 1,000 years ago where no one speaks English and the aromas are intriguing and unfamiliar.

The point is, if you meet a guy who doesn’t travel, you aren’t going to change him. If he has never left his town and shows no interest in doing so, he probably never will. Again, if you aren’t interested in going anywhere either, then by all means, go ahead. But if you are itching with wanderlust, find a more suitable mate.

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When you were twelve or fourteen or sixteen years old, chances are the guys you knew loved to play video games. This was fine and this was expected. But, just as flowers lose their blooms so too are guys supposed to stop playing video games as they reach a certain age. I’m no expert about at what point this change is supposed to happen, but if you are interested in a guy and he cancels getting together with you because he has to meet up with his buddhies to play World of Warcraft (WoW), then you have a guy who plays video games too much. I truly hope that you never learn about WoW, for it is a death knell for a relationship (just as Dungeons and Dragons was for an earlier generation).

WoW is clearly in its own class as far as video games go. You can do your research on this or you can trust me. I recommend just taking my word for it because life is best enjoyed with as little knowledge of WoW as possible. If you come across a guy who plays WoW don’t bother going any further with the relationship. Your only chance is if you play as well. In that case you, as a level 10 Mage can make sweet computer-mediated love with your level 10 Paladin boyfriend.

Beyond WoW players, it is a little less clear at which point you have reason to be concerned. If he plays solitaire or some other trite, easy-to-pick-up game while he is at work or at home to kill time, then you are probably fine. Chances are he has perspective on where video games fit in his life. If he has an old Sony Playstation 2 or X-Box sitting in the corner gathering dust, then you are probably fine. Just be sure to check the amount of dust… (Note: if he has an original, well-preserved Nintendo, then watch out — those machines were designed to break in 1998 so he must be doing something unnatural to keep it working.) However, if he bought a brand-new Playstation 3 when it first came out, along with games and the extra controller for over $800, then beware.

The bottom line is, if you are looking for a boy who loves his toys then by all means go ahead and try your luck. But if you are looking for a guy who will treasure you and keep his hands off his controllers then back away slowly. Don’t let him sense your fear. Remember, video game players are finely-tuned killing machines, at least against pixelated threats.

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If you are interested in a guy who thinks he is an expert on everything, be careful.

There are guys who think they know everything (which admittedly is most guys) and there are guys who think they are experts on everything. This is the difference between a guy who will be interested in engaging you in conversation on a bunch of different subjects and a guy who will tell you how you are wrong even if he doesn’t really know what he is talking about. The first type of guy can be charming in his own way, the latter is utterly annoying and a waste of your time.

Let me illustrate. If you are out at a museum with a guy who thinks he knows everything, he’ll feel free to venture his opinion about the art you see. “I love Picasso’s early works,” he might say, or “Don’t you think Seurat’s drawings are under-appreciated?” His thoughts might be grounded in actual fact or they might be based on what he heard another couple talking about while you were in the washroom. Regardless, it shows he’s interested in what you are doing together. It may also allow you an opportunity to give him your opinion. If you’re lucky he’ll even be interested in hearing it!

The guy who thinks he’s on expert on everything, on the other hand, will say something like, “You know what’s great about this painting?” as he gestures towards van Gogh’s self-portrait in which he cut off his ear. You might be tempted to say, “The colors are so relevant for the time,” or What an interesting approach to a self portrait” or “van Gogh was insane at the time.” But he’ll say something like, “No. Not that. You know that van Gogh’s ear when he cut it off weighed only 2 ounces, right? I bet you didn’t know that! In fact, most human ears weigh at least 4 ounces.” Now, what are you supposed to do with this? It is a fact that only a doctor could possibly know and he is no doctor. But here he is, telling you this as an expert. This effectively puts him in the place of authority as the teacher and you in a subservient position as his pupil. Lucky you.

If you do encounter this guy, don’t question his expertise. There’s no point. Whether he is with you or someone else, he will remain the expert. Whether you are talking about the weather, art, tv, gender issues or any other topic, he will say things in such a way that makes it impossible for you to question or engage with him on an equal level. My advice: don’t waste your time.

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If you meet a guy and everything he says is a joke, proceed with caution. 

Many guys think they are funny. Few actually are. If you meet a guy who likes to joke around, that is ok and by itself is not cause for alarm. That just means he fits neatly into the majority of guys who think they are funny. But if he is incapable of having a serious conversation with you, alarm bells should be going off in your head just like the red light bursting in a stand-up comedian’s eyes before he is mercifully dragged off the stage at the end of an unfortunate performance.

We all use humor to mask our real feelings and guys are no different. No one wants to be with a guy who is emotionally available all the time. Sure, you may want to know that your guy has cried before. But you don’t want an emotional basket-case who breaks down in a fit of tears at the slightest provocation or at the latest made-for-tv-movie on the Hallmark channel. On the other hand, can you imagine being with Jim Carrey (seemingly the epitome of a guy who is emotionally shut off from others)? If being with a guy who is emotionally close to being a twelve-year-old boy interests you, this post is for you. Guys like that do not change — are incapable of change — and you would do well to avoid them. 

Jokes are of course a good way to diffuse tension and gain the attention and affection of others. In moderation these are acceptable reasons for guys to make jokes. At the right moment, jokes are entirely necessary. We all remember the time when you got caught in class doing something bad (you tell me! I know you have a story) and the class-clown made the perfectly timed joke to take attention away from you. You loved the guy then! But if you are interested in a relationship with a perpetual jokester and you think you can change their behavior and teach them limits, know that you cannot. If on your first date he is more interested in making you laugh than finding out about you and your interests, you must know that he is going to act the same way in the future. Imagine coming home tired from work in ten years time wanting to confide in him your annoyances of the day and he greets you at the door with his lame imitation of the latest Hollywood comedic offerings. Get out now while you can.

I should note that guys who are professional comedians are exempt from this warning but deserve their own special warning. In my experience, professional comedians are rarely if ever funny in real life. They save their best material for the stage, making them hollow shells of their comedic selves in their daily interactions with others. For this reason it is probably best to avoid comedians as well. Can you imagine being with a dour guy who lives to please others for the rest of your life?