Theophanes is a New-England-based blogger, traveler, writer, photographer, sculptor, and lover of cats.
I just don't get it...
Although watching the world's dating rituals has brought me endless hours of entertainment I can't say I get it. It seems like too much work to me, with too little chance of success. Then again I might just be lazy...
I was in one of my insomniatic trances one night when I decided to flick on the TV to see what could lull me to sleep. Unfortunately my only choices were infomercials, my ceiling, or Biography. I chose Biography. It was on Sylvia Plath, someone I knew scant little about. I was never big on poetry or female hysterics so you can see why there was no familiarity there. In any event there was one anecdote that startled me from my half-sleep.
Apparently Sylvia Plath met her husband while she was in college at a party. She knew who he was (another poet - how surprising) and spent some time talking to him. At some point he stops talking to her and gives her a big kiss. I can see why most women would be offended at this and can even see some of them opting for a good hard slap. Dearest little Sylivia on the other hand opted for a good hard bite, on the cheek, which was actually said to have drawn blood. You'd think that would be the end of this psychotic story but it's not. Apparently intrigued by this her husband-to-be started a whirlwind courtship with her, ending in marriage. What could have possibly been going through either of their minds!? "Awe, I think I fancy the rabid chick in the corner playing hard to get." "Damn him! I shall bite you again if you come closer but please do..." We all know how the marriage ended, as so many would end if it were only socially more acceptable, in suicide.
Perhaps that story has got even the avid dater going, "What the...?" but really, I just used an extreme anecdote to illustrate how unnatural and unhealthy I think most dating is...
Outsider Looking In
Most dating begins at home in preparation for the big night. This is where the psychosis starts like a tiny seed and starts to grow out of hand. I can understand the desire to look good, I mean only a lazy nutball would want to market themselves as damaged goods before they even say a word. We're a visual species, it makes sense. What doesn't make sense is the rest of it.
There's a woman casing her entire apartment throwing every dress she owns (never anything that's not uber-feminine) on her bed like she's robbing the place. She's trying to decide what to wear. She holds up the conservative picks and throws them back into the closet usually in favor of some tiny piece of fabric which will highlight "the girls" like a flashing neon light. How tasteful. When she's down to a handful of picks she tries to rope her friends into giving their opinion which one looks best. These suggestions of course are just her friends playing lip service. They know she's not going to take their advice.
During the next hour the woman runs around picking up Nylons, the perfect shoes (whatever that means) and fidgeting with her hair. Finally she locks herself in the bathroom and empties her make-up case onto her face. "Why?" I ask. "To make it look natural! It must be just right!" Of course, there's nothing more natural then lathering brightly colored fish scales and beetle shells on your lips (as this is generally what lipstick and red dye are made from.) "It makes me look alive!" Oh, how was I supposed to know your normal face looks dead...
Meanwhile, on the other side of town a guy is getting ready, a whole 20 minutes before if he's one of the dressy types. If he is a dressy type he's probably been on three dates this week and is practicing going over those really bad pick up lines in his head. If he's a less social type actually looking for a steady girlfriend he's probably trying to convince himself to go at all. Low self esteem is a kicker.
Finally the two meet at some predetermined destination for a good meal, or something like that. The chick orders something light, maybe a salad and croutons, to make it look like she has one of those healthy aversions to food that are so common these days. The guy orders something and a coke. Unless it's a really fancy restaurant, in which case the woman's trying all the harder and the man is buying some sort of hard to spell antiquated liquor.
During the entire time both are trying to impress each other by any means possible, including pretending to give a fuck about shit they couldn't care less about. "Oh you're a financial planner? How fascinating!" There's no better way then to snag the perfect mate then to pretend to be someone you hate. That's in the dating rule book. At the end of the evening several things could happen.
If it's a tasteful date the two will part their ways, maybe giving a modest little kiss to each other and saying goodnight. Or perhaps if the guy's a real smooth talker they'll hook up and the woman will come home the next day to bitch at her friends, "I can't believe it! He never called back! I never do this sort of thing!" Of course none of her friends believe her but they still pat her on the back and try to console her during the bitchfest.
Then there's the possibility one or both of them hate each other in which case they'll go their separate ways and I won't get the fun of picking on them any longer.
And the Bitch-Fest Begins...
I'm really tired listening to women badmouth men because they were doing something stupid. They have at least one whole television channel dedicated to men bashing (yay Lifetime!) and yet they still feel the need to pull out the ice cream, gather all their friends and cry, "Men are pigs!" When did our society decree women are blameless, flawless, perfect little creatures? Playing the victim card is just copping out if you ask me.
It's not even the low self-esteem, the blaming of others, or the constant whining that bothers me the most. It's the roller coaster that changes from day to day that makes these same bitching women go out and try again! I don't know, if I do something that I find unpleasing or harmful to myself I don't tend to go out and try to slam my head on the wall again... that's just common sense. Just put up or shut up!
There's a devout older Baptist woman I know whose been married two or three times and has a bunch of adult children. Imagine my surprise when she told me, without stumbling over a single word, "You should marry a sugar daddy. It's the best kind of marriage, just get one who has one foot in the grave and the other foot on a banana peel." Wow, how... righteous. Does God look well upon scammers? Because I'm pretty sure that's a scam...
This same woman has a deadbeat son, her youngest, who is married with a daughter. When his gal got pregnant he had 5 other girlfriends (and was still trying to ask me out.) His mother convinced him to get married... for the sake of the child. It's been about four years, I believe. He never stopped having extracurricular "girlfriends" and recently the two split up because his wife refused to be chummy with these extra gals. His mother's input to her daughter-in-law? "All men cheat. You should have expected this. Just look the other way and work it out."
All men cheat... wow, and I thought I was pessimistic! Isn't one of the commandments "Thou shalt not screwest thy neighbor's wife?" I don't even believe in monogamy myself (I think it's setting one's self up for failure on both sides of the sex wars) but this stunned me. If you're a devout Baptist family where in the Bible does it say, "Women must be chaste to all but their husbands.... but their husbands may screw anything with XX chromosomes?" I would really like to know!
At the end of the day I'm not allowed to say anything because I don't have "experience." If I do try to say anything they just get snarky at me. They're jealous, I know, of the fact I can see things for what they are and keep myself out of these situations. I live my life with the motto, "Low expectations are a good thing." I also don't fill my head with fanciful ideas, like snagging the "perfect man" or trying to create one.
My Baptist friend has been trying to ask me out wince I was literally twelve years old. I knew, at twelve, that he'd prove only to be an aggravation and a disappointment so I repeatidly turned him down. Call it feminine intuition, or keen observations and sharp insight, I don't care but the little voice in my head has served me well. When I told a female friend of mine he had a baby and was going to get married in a shotgun wedding she turned to me and said, "You should have went out with him. I know you wouldn't be pregnant. You could change him." No, sorry, I don't try to change people. People are who they are. Changing them is impossibility and I know that. Besides that it's sleazy to date someone just to make them what you think is a better person!
This is not to say men are blameless. Neither sex is blameless in the insane head games we like to play with each other. In most instances blame should rest on both parties. Still, it's somewhat refreshing to sit back and listen to my guy friends talk about their gals. "My girlfriend went berserk last night for no apparent reason..." It's really quite entertaining. Self-destruction is such an amazing thing...
You'll Die Sad and Alone...
Awe, you're just saying that to cheer me up. I used to be surprised at how catty women can be, to their own friends no less! I've actually been told this very phrase many times. Now I just smile in that dotty way of mine. It's just as deceiving.
My male friends are a bit better, but not by much. Though I'm not exactly open about my opinions they still instinctively know. "Want to have sex?" "Nah, that's alright, but thanks for the compliment. You know how to make a girl feel good.." and I smile...
My current situation isn't exactly fertile grounds for a romance anyway. If it changes and I decide I want to be with someone then good for me! I'll do it! I'll go out looking for someone else with a nearly non-existent sex drive who also likes to sit around watching people just to make snide social commentary. It'll be a match made in... well Heaven wouldn't be the right place would it?
A Note on the Images in this Article
All photos, doodlings, and comics seen in this article were created by the one and only me. The blue creature is Glen the Hookah-Smoking Caterpillar who has been making my friends shoot milk out of their noses for years now. If enough people clap (or comment) favorably on him I'll be forced to make him his very own webpage. Thank you for reading this brief public announcement.
If you enjoyed this article you may also like my other asexual railings:
More from this Author:
Catching Marbles - A New England based travel blog
Tales from the Birdello - For all homesteading and farming matters
Deranged Thoughts from a Cluttered Mind - For funny personal anecdotes
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on August 31, 2014:
Heh, thank you Jennifer Cupp for that. I am afraid I beat you to that one though. Somehow I managed to find myself another misanthrope without entering the dating scene. Imagine that! :)
Jennifer Cupp on August 31, 2014:
Actually, the misanthropist female is smart enough to know which outfit looks best, so she throws that on, then cries a little because she's going to have to spend the next few hours out in public. Marrying a fellow misanthrope makes staying in on weekends fun and witty! Definitely give it a try
SweetbeariesArt from California on July 12, 2012:
I grew to the conclusion a lot of people need a relationship status to make themselves feel fulfilled in life, sort of like a house or car. A lot of people complain about their marriages, and seemed to have cared more about having a big wedding. I will have to say yes men can act pretty bad in the dating game too, and they often do so by stone walling and not addressing things that upset their girlfriends or wives. Women can also be to blame because quite frankly they spend too much time thinking about what the guys want. I say stop fussing about the nylons for the date because no one I know in California wears those anymore anyway. High maintenance women might think they are dressing up for the man on the date, but it is really just for themselves and their friends. If people want to meet people in a more natural setting, they could join a class or hiking club. Not that I am big on advocating dating, honestly I just do not see the point anymore. There are other ways to be happy in life.
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on April 16, 2012:
sgm: Yes, I have been deeply in love and currently find myself with a boyfriend. I know, it's as surprising to me as it is to everyone else. And no, being in a relationship has not changed my view on dating one iota. He was a friend of mine that grew closer and closer to me like I think normal functioning healthy relationships tend to form. We never dated.
Tyrion6: I think finding a decent girl might be slightly easier than finding a decent guy, because I think more women are open to dealing with asexuals when they aren't one themselves. It's in a lot of women's nature to be self-sacrificing and giving in this way. I am not saying this is a good or a bad thing, indeed this very quality has gotten a lot of women in a very bad circumstance but it's true. I have spent my whole life trying to find other individuals who are what I call brilliant - intelligent, tolerant, accepting, loving, empathetic people who can stand their own. They do exist, and with some luck you can find them.
phen on June 09, 2011:
Very much enjoyed this. I'm a demisexual misanthrope, and I avoid the dating world like the plague for...well, pretty much every reason you touched on. The transactional nature of the whole thing is so patently obvious to me, and I never cease to be amazed by how easily people fall for this shit. Thanks for sharing this - people who hate people, come together!
Tyrion6 on December 06, 2010:
Theophanes, I have to say, I loved this article. Like you I'm also misanthropic and maybe asexual (Gray A at least)
I'm in my early twenties and in college. From what I see, there are many very nice, altruistic people. But the majority seem inconsiderate and self important to varying degrees.
I'm glad you touched on the idea that women are flawed too. In your opinion, do you think a decent girl is as hard to find as a decent guy? Harder? Easier? You sound more social than me, so you probably know better.
I can't wait till genetic engineering when people can be programmed to do the right thing. For now, natural selection just ain't cuttting it.
Xero on November 22, 2010:
I definitely know what you mean...x.O
I'm asexual/anti-sexual and also apparently a recently discovered misanthrope. Its weird that all my heroes and favorite musicians are either asexual or victims of rape.
For some reason I can't give up on love. Maybe its my obsession with fantasy movies/books. That's just who I am, though. I hate the weird need for LOVE...because apparently love can't exist without lust. I hate the way everything supposedly works...because 99% of the world make it seem like that's the ONLY way it can be...
sgm on September 08, 2010:
Your articles are very fuuny, honest and interesting! However, I was just wondering whether you had ever been in love or had a really good relationship with someone that had ended? I admire how realistic you are yet somehow I cannot quite imagine how someone can put such strong views on things that they don't seem to have experienced themsleves? Perhaps you have, although in 30 years time will you still be as confident? Will you still favour your own views of life and relationships, or will you feel like you have missed a lot? Will you feel alone?
I am not meaning to be horrible or anything but I'm trying to be as honest as you are.
Despite all this you are a very very bright woman and I wish you the best in life! :)
Green man on March 21, 2010:
I loved your article, I laughed all the way through.
I am a recently self-discovered asexual and watching other people get themselves into messes has always baffled me quite a lot. Can definitely relate to your observations!
I'm definitely not a misanthrope though... I tend to see people as victims of bad conditioning from a degenerate capitalist, dog-eat-dog system - each person is born with amazing potential to be creative, intelligent, etc etc, and that potential is snuffed out of us by a crappy education system that rewards people who mindlessly regurgetate the crap they've been taught on exams without questioning it, and then a lazy media that feeds our addictions and politicians that are just puppet fronts for psychopathic corporations... you see, I'm also cynical but probably about slightly different things.
And I love myself! I don't care who calls me egocentric - on the contrary, I have had chronic low-self-esteem all my life but I'm getting over it. Yet, I love myself. Oh, shock, horror: we aren't supposed to say that. We're supposed to keep putting ourselves down, often in order to elicit complements, and then when the complements come, to contradict them - enough of that false modesty crap!
Misanthropist on November 24, 2009:
You sound a lot like someone I know, oh wait, that's me!
I liked the article, so true. One thing though. Men are assholes but not all men. You seem like a smart girl, being a misanthrope and believing love is a set of conditionals, I can tell you that you just gotta find a guy who hates people, life and awkward social conventions as much as you do. It also helps if he has half a brain too. I also have to agree with you that traditional relationships are bullshit, I like to turn up with a quater of jack daniels and another quater of mary jane at 12am and get off my face with a nice girl and we can talk about life and all the crap in between over shots and the occasional bob marley. Traditional relationships leave you A) unhappy and B) feeling trapped. You were saying about having trouble getting with platonic friendships, I find keeping life, work and friends separate from potential love interests a sure winner. I'm gonna keep reading this one, I like your content. You might like Misanthropy today. I started misanthropy tonight but readership is slim and I don't give a damn if it doesn't get read. One last thing, you know if you are a real misanthrope.... because you hate yourself as much as you hate everybody else meaning you have no shame, humility or anything even close to modesty.
I'll be back
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on September 14, 2009:
Naw, that wasn't intentional! I do love my kitties but I started as a fancy rat breeder. The cats came into my life through a run-in with an animal collector (who was faaaar from asexual and at one point black mailed me into taking care of 65 cats, 25 house bunnies, 12 ferrets, and 3 small illegal animals - all hers! At the same time. My house was pretty much destroyed and my relationships with friends and family went down the shitter.) Things have calmed down considerably. Sanity has returned to my life and I have nooowhere near that many animals now. In fact the handful of cats I have left will probably be finding homes soon as I move on into a new chapter of my life... Funny enough, through meeting a BUNCH of crazy animal collectors and a flurry of breeders both superb and condemnable, I have actually come to realize that cat people have several stereotypes. Breeders tends to be gay men or unusually promiscuous women (I don't know why) and rescuers tend to be like the stereotype you mentioned. I'm not going to venture why these are trends... I just find it funny. All and all my head is left spinning. If that was the sort of trouble I got into having a platonic friendship with someone then I sure as hell don't want to know what having a more traditional "relationship" is about. In my world asexuality is a bit of a blessing! Thanks for commenting! Have a lovely day!
zadrobi from Carbondale, IL on September 14, 2009:
Are the profile picture of your cat and the article on asexuality conjoining to portray any certain stereoypes? Single Susie gave up on men and has 20 cats named Steve? ;) Thoroughly enjoyed the article and linked it to my very first hub. Thanks, Theophanes.
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on June 26, 2009:
Awe, now where's the fun in that? :) This isn't me getting worked up... well parts of it are (do you have any idea how annoying it is to be constantly speculated upon when you don't want any attention at all? Don't say these aren't relavent issues, they are in some twisted way.) In any event this was me lightly poking fun at how weird people can be. It was supposed to be funny. I am sorry if satire is not your thing, it's apparently an aquired taste. I'm not going to delete you. Thanks for stopping by!
Delete Me on June 26, 2009:
Since you're not bogged down by sex, maybe you should try rising above other people's shortcomings. There are more important things to do in life than work yourself up about how foolish people can be.
Pupa from World on April 13, 2009:
quite a lot of writing and reading, but interesting. I have to do some checking up on misanthropic and asexuzl though.....????
Sugar Daddy Dating Sites on December 23, 2008:
Good lens and interesting reading..
kldickson on March 10, 2008:
I'm not asexual, but I am a misanthrope.
The reason women and men are so obsessive about looking just right is partially because they want to fit their own idea of what's sexy and because they want to put their best appearance forward. While I think saying you're something you're not is a load of shit and that too many people do it, there is a sense that you want to make sure the person knows your positives before they know your negatives.
You're missing a vital point here: Most people are stupid and have no self-esteem. Many are also either unrealistically optimistic or unrealistically pessimistic. Both most men and most women are culprits of the sexism that goes on in most dating.
I'm thinking of filching a stack of Cosmo magazines and burning them for the world to see such sexist shit succumb to the fate that it should.
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on February 04, 2008:
Thanks, it's nice to find someone who appreciates a cynical opinion now and then.. Heh, ninja smilies, that's the sort of random humor that I think makes life worth living. Still waiting to see how busy I'll be in the coming months, if I turn out not to be then Glen will find his way onto the "world wide web" (I imagine a dangerous place for a caterpillar?)
Patty Inglish MS from USA and Asgardia, the First Space Nation on February 04, 2008:
More hilarity and much truth. I am waiting for the time that UFOs may turn out to be real and offer us another pool of pals.
Love Glen. Reminds us a bit of our own Smi-lee, the ninja smilie we created a few years back.
Theophanes Avery (author) from New England on February 04, 2008:
Uh, if you want me to understand a word of what you're saying please leave comments in English (or atleast let me know what language it is you're speaking in so I can paste it into a translator...)
draganaa on February 04, 2008:
koja je budala ovo crtala???
bas ima bujnu mastu...i ludak ne bi znao ovo da nacrta!!!
ljudi zar nemate pametnija posla...
Roberta Kyle from Central New Jersey on January 12, 2008:
ahhhh Theo--you are a hopeless romantic ;-)
Isabella Snow on January 08, 2008:
LOL. I love it!