I’m a southerner. I hug. I hug my family members, my friends, distant acquaintances, and dogs.
It wasn’t until I was in my teens that I realized some people consider a full frontal hug not as a friendly greeting or farewell but as …. [cringe] a sensual* pressing/rubbing together of bodies.
And in a sad effort to avoid the possibility of sensuality, the ever-polular but lamé side hug was awkwardly birthed. Ayiyiyiyi. From my #gallopov, a side hug is a gesture that should be saved for probable rapists and TK-haters, not your platonic friends of the opposite sex. The best outcome you can hope for with this pathetic hug sub is a mutual lat rub.**
But let’s turn back on the Main St of this post — good ol’ fashioned frontal hugs.
I don’t want to be naïve. I’m sure there are menz (and womenz?!) who legit get, ehh, “excited” by hugs. BUT, even if some do, does that mean all peeps should let those over-sexualized-get-their-thrills-however-they-can-folkz ruin this warm, platonic gesture for everyone?!
Cuz y’all… Pervos roam the Earth without restraint, mmkay? If we let them take our hugs away, soon handshakes will be fetishized. Then we’ll have to shift to tapping elbows as a greeting. (But of course that will need to be monitored closely, as the funny bone area can give some people intriguing sensations.) Where does it end??
At some point, we need to draw a line in the sand and stop letting the most pansexual of us drive our greeting norms. Let’s plant our feet, face each other squarely, and hug like decent humanz!
END THE WAR ON HUGS!!!
— EDITORIAL NOTES —
*I can’t say that word normally. Even in my head, I always pronounce it “senthual” with a nervous lisp.
There seems to be a social contagion with romance and attraction, and I have a strong suspicion that males have special sensors that alert them to females who just recently went on a date. Many of my friends and I have been through seasons of life in which we were tortured with an invasion of men who are great in some ways, but have preexisting conditions that make them unsuitable for the long haul. Lo, they’re suddenly all around you, like a heavily cologned swarm of brosquitos.
Initially this is all It’s raining men, Hallelujah! But quickly it becomes Poor poor pitiful me | Oh these boys won’t let me be | Lord have mercy on me | Woe woe is me!* What is a girl to do? Should you casually date one, some, or all Jo-Jo(s) indefinitely until Prince Perfecto** comes riding in? Is someone better than no one?
Pfft. Only if you want to ruin your life, bring shame to your family and community, and contribute to global warming! Please consider the following –
– Opportunity Cost, yo If you’re out with Jo-Jo, Prince Perfecto may not pursue you because he’ll see that you’re taken. And he might even judge you a little for having a taste for Jo-Jo. And honestly.. can you blame him? Or, you’ll be so distracted that you won’t even notice or be emotionally available when he does put out “feelers” for your interest.
– Remember the ghosts of Jo-Jos past I have a good amount of respect for most of the men I’ve dated, but there are some man-children who I’m … remorseful … to have ever dated. So if you’re asking, “What do I have to lose by going on a few dates with this guy?” Galloswag sez, “Your dignity, woman!
– Have a heart Even if you’re a rough and tough woman who can easily date without getting attached, that “fill-in” you’re dating may not share your vision for having no vision of a future with him. It’s pretty ru-ru and selfish to waste someone’s time. #JoJoFeelsMatter
– Learn to live all by yourself If you are intensely miserable by yourself, anyone will seem like an upgrade. But if you craft a full life of friends, adventure, and purpose, you’ll be much less tempted to accept someone’s attentions just because you need a distraction from your lamé life. YOLO, so make your solo L count.
– Get an accountabuddy! Have a friend – I find older, married women especially helpful for this – whom you feel comfortable sharing your dating life with. Tell them what’s up, even when your dating life is a horror show. A few times, a major motivator for me to prevent a Jo-Jo-continuation was knowing that I would have to explain myself later to a woman I had deep respect for.
– Get out of the Jo-Jo pond Sometimes we tally our catches, rank them, and then choose whoever is at the top. But don’t get tunnel vision and feel pressured into choosing between your currently available options. Sometimes “none of the above” is the right answer.
Not wasting time with Jo-Jos may not automatically cue the entrance of Prince Perfecto (who has apparently been in a deep coma from the moment you came of age), but I do promise it will help prevent your soul from being pummeled with upsettedness and futility in the meantime. Stay strong, my shimmering stars of singleness!
— EDITORIAL NOTES —
*The Weather Girls and Linda Ronstadt, respectively.
**I actually mean Mr. Ideal, but Prince Perfecto is both an alliteration and rhymes with Jo-Jo and I couldn’t resist. #artisticlicense
When I’m interviewed by the press, a question that comes up often is the ancient and revolutionary technique of FIDOing. As most of you all know,* learning how to FIDO has drastically changed my life. But as my interviewers and fans often ask pleadingly, how exactly does one FIDO? Well luckily for humanity, here’s one solid tater tot of an example for you to tuck away into your mind’s jean pocket.
Just say No-No to the Jo-Jos in your life. Who are Jo-Jos? In my particular case, Jo-Jos are guys who I dated for very small amounts of time, and then valiantly attempted to remain friends with afterward. As much as it pains me deep in the psoas to admit this, it didn’t work. Usually one of the following happened: 1) we tried to be friends and one of us realized we hated the other (or the disgust was mutual) 2) we didn’t really try to be friends but their very social media presence spiked my blood pressure** 3) now they’re engaged/married and I just feel like a creepy stalker seeing the intimate details of their precious budding ‘ship.
Btdubs, I’m not saying these guys are intentionally trying to be Jo-Jos, but in any case interacting with them tends/ tended to almost always give me bad feels. And life is too short to subject yourself to bad feels just to prove a point to society that you can be friendly-like after being romantical. I will let someone else die on that hill, while I roll around happily in the field of friendship flowers with the sunshine of sincerity beaming down on me.
.. Anyway. So how did I say No-No to these Jo-Jos? First, I went on a social media purge. Unfriended on fb. Blocked on Instagram. Unfollowed on Spotify. Second, I plan to not engage in rando texting with flirty undertones with these Jo-Jos. I’m 2-frickin’-7 years old. Ain’t nobody got time for that. (“Poo or get off the pot,” as they say.) Third, I will not find other creepy ways to stalk them to make sure their post-Galloswag life is appropriately pathetic. No friending their sister so I can cackle over their holiday weight gain when she posts fam pics. No googling to see if they were arrested for excessive public displays of douchery. Heck naw, Jude Law.
Some of you may not be able to relate to this specific example, but everyone has Jo-Jos. If you’re a young stallion of a man, maybe you need to consider saying No-No to some Ho-Hos. If you’re happily married, maybe you need to say No-No to the Psycho you met once at that thing and now wants to tell you how to be a parent. Idk, it is up to you to identify Jo-Jos and initiate operation No-No. Each No-No operation will need to be tailored to your specific needs. The most important thing is that everything rhymes with “O.”
Now Go-Go and be free from Jo-Jos!
— EDITORIAL NOTES —
*A brief initiation for the unlearned: “The sophisticated practice of FIDO is the key to not obsessing and making yourself miserable over circumstances and people you cannot control.” – Galloswag, Ph.D.
One of the most profound books I’ve read in my adult life, which was later turned into a feature film, is “He’s not that into you.” It sounds depressing, but it was actually pretty liberating. The main point of the book/movie is that men go after what they want. So if he’s not texting, calling, asking you out, ladies, it means that he’s not that into you. Or at least not into you enough. So FIDO.
This post isn’t another ramble about relationships. But the idea that “people do what they want” is a super important point that has helped me through life.
People love telling themselves they can’t. And surely, there are things you truly can’t do. Teleport, for example.* But most of the negs we proclaim about ourselves are within the realms of human possibility. Such as “I can’t do one push-up,” “I could never get an advanced degree,” “There’s no way I could put up with that person,” “I can’t get up that early,” blah blah blah, etc etc etc.
But let’s get for serious**, here. 94.6% of the time you say “I can’t,” what you’re actually saying is “I don’t wanna.” The truth is “I don’t want to spend the time training my body so I can do push-ups,” “I don’t want to spend the time, money, and mental discipline it takes to get an advanced degree,” “I don’t want to inconvenience myself to interact with that person,” “I don’t want to be disciplined in going to bed at a decent hour so that I would feel okay waking up at a certain hour,” blah blah blah etc etc etc.
It doesn’t sound as nice to put it in those terms, because then the responsibility falls back on yourself. You may feel a little guilty, lazy even. GOOD. Feel that discomfort. Maybe when you start distinguishing between your actual human limitations and the limitations you’ve placed around yourself out of laziness and lack of creativity, you’ll begin to focus on wanting good things for yourself instead of avoiding discomfort at all costs.
You do what you want. If you’re not doing it, you don’t want it enough. And that’s okay… sometimes. But just be real. You are not a helpless, passive victim of life circumstances. Your 100% may be someone else’s 24%. Your best may be someone else’s baseline. But if you want it enough, you’ll get it. Now how to have the right wants… Holy Spirit, change our hearts.
— EDITORIAL NOTES —
*If you just snorted “speak for yourself!” you need to lay off the video games for a while. Just sayin’.
FIDO – Forget* It and Drive On was introduced to me by my dear sister.. Danetté.. when I was in the throes of despair over some past event. I can’t remember the exact details, but I was upset about some interpersonal drama. Something like… “Why would he do that?” Or “Do you think she hates me now?” Or “Arrrggg I shouldn’t have said that.” After listening to me with the patience of a serene gazelle, she told me flatly : “Clarice, let me introduce you to the concept of FIDO.”
Danetté then proceeded to explain a concept so shocking and revolutionary, it shook me to the #gallocore. And that is this – when something happens that’s negative, and there’s no clear action to take.. or you’ve already taken the action and it didn’t have the intended effect – instead of agonizing about it for days, weeks, months to come, Forget It and Drive On.
It’s so simple, but the simplicity is what makes it beautiful. Someone hurt your feels? FIDO. Worried that Bob overheard you telling Jim you don’t like Brenda? FIDO. Wished you hadn’t gone to grad school but went to acting school instead? FIDO.
I urge you all, in whatever walk of life with whatever anxieties you have (that you really can’t do anything about – I’m not talking about FIDOing your job tomorrow or FIDOing a friendship in which you need to ask forgiveness) to implement FIDO with the liberalism of a double Oreo fried in chocolate sauce.
You’re welcome, world. But actually, thank Danetté. Or actually, thank whoever told Danetté. Or actually, I’m almost certain she heard it from someone in the military, SO THANK AMERICA!
— editorial note —
*I changed the actual acronym for the sake of propriety, but the core of the idea was maintained.