Thursday, May 19, 2011

How Dudeman Von Randominternetguy Dares to Talk to You Like That

Not long ago, I received a FB request to be friends with someone I had never met before, never heard of, and had no discernible connection with. To preserve said new friend’s anonymity, I’ll call him Dudeman Von Randominternetguy. And since that’s difficult to type, spell, pronounce and remember, from here on we’ll just refer to him as Steve.

I accepted Steve’s friend request because there was no real reason not to. It’s a social network, and I’m there to be social. I also understand it’s my job to establish and maintain my boundaries on said social network, not Steve’s job to establish them for me or read my mind to figure out what they are. So, when Steve got a bit fresh and forward, I gently but firmly let him know that I’m only that kind of girl for one person and he isn’t it.

(Note to Interns: “Fresh & Forward” as name for progressive combo Burlesque/Farmer’s Market traveling seasonal roadside attraction. Make it happen, please.)

Steve retreated, and it was a non-issue from that point on. All he needed to hear was that his approach from that direction was not welcome.

Now, even when I receive friend requests from people that I’m pretty sure are only sending them because I’m naked on the internet, I still like to at least skim their profiles and see whatever is to be seen, and such was the case with Steve. I skimmed, found a few things that looked intriguing (assuming they’re true), and didn’t see any cause to immediately delete him from my friend list and block him for all eternity. I did, however, see something that I felt needed to be addressed, so this is me, addressing it.

A young woman, who we shall call Blondie McMiniskirt, had posted a rant on Steve’s wall, calling him out for having the audacity to send her a friend request when it was clear that all he wanted to do was chat with random women on the internet, that he just made her sick, how dare he be such a stain on the otherwise unbesmirched landscape that is online social networking, how could he sleep at night when he was single-handedly ruining a better tomorrow for all the children of all the lands with his unmitigated scumbaggery, etc.

Please note that Blondie McMiniskirt’s profile picture showed her as a heavily made-up blonde sprawled open-legged on a barstool, pretty obviously inebriated, posed to show a rather large amount of cleavage, and said miniskirt had barely made its way to crotch level before refusing to budge an inch further. And she was deeply offended by the idea that a guy on a social networking site might want to network her up a bit.

So, to Blondie McMiniskirt and the many women like her, I have a few things to say.

First, when you put yourself in a public forum, you actually don’t get to choose who with internet access and properly developed corneas finds you attractive. Beauty is, as they say, in the eye of the beholder. If you don’t like that idea, consider not posting a picture of yourself where other people can see it.

Second, when a man does let it be known that he finds you attractive, you do not immediately have to morph into Ultra Mega Icy Venomous Rage of Death Laser Bitch Ray to deter his advances. Sometimes, yes, but not always and certainly not first. Consider trying a gentle but firm “no, thank you” next time.

Third, look at your profile photo and ask yourself this question: “Is this the way I dress/pose/act, at bars/at clubs/on Spring Break, when I’m trying to get laid?” If the answer is yes, you’ve pretty much forfeited the right to be surprised when random internet guys hit on you. Which is not to say you’re obligated to have anything to do with the aforementioned guys, just that you can’t realistically be surprised when they try.

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