Monday, July 20, 2009

Highway To The Danger Zone

OK Ya’ll,
So I recently read an article on the msn celebrity gossip site about Jennifer Aniston getting put in the “friend zone” by a co-star she was allegedly dating. That got me thinking about a couple of things—A. how in the world a hottie like Jen Aniston gets put in the “friend zone” is waaaay beyond me, and B. how guys/girls who have plenty to offer get put in the “friend zone.” I came up with a few reasons why one may get relegated to the dreaded “we’re just friends” section of the dating buffet, so I thought I would share.
1.You’re not that cute. I know it sounds harsh, but come on. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again—you can only date someone for their personality for so long before things take a big, fat nosedive into “let’s still be friends” territory if there’s no attraction. There has to be some sort of spark to create a connection. Not everybody’s spark plugs are gonna fire up on the first go round. Sometimes it takes a while for the personality to make the looks more of a minor than a major. But sometimes no matter how hard you try, you cannot get past the fact that you’re dating the physical equivalent of Kryptonite. And that’s when you’re just better off “being friends.” And that’s unfortunate, because you and I both know that 9 times out of 10, you don’t end up being friends. You end up being “this guy/girl I used to date.”
2.You’re already friends and dating is going to ruin it. It’s been said that men and women can’t be friends because one person always wants to sleep with the other. There’s a whole monologue delivered by Billy Crystal in “When Harry Met Sally” about that very thing that I highly recommend not only for comedic value, but also for the veracity of the claim. Big E has a few guy friends on the roster, dudes that she became friends with not through their girlfriend or through a dating situation, but guys who I met through my circle of friends or through work, school, etc. And sure, I think they’re attractive, and I may have, at first meeting, attempted to date one or two of them. I may have even done a little more than go on a date with them (*ahem*). I’ve lived to regret it a few times, because it was generally either a move made out of loneliness or curiosity. And when it didn’t work out, I was left more lonely because I had lost not only a free meal, but a friend as well. There are those times you can put someone in the “friends with benefits” category and live with it, as long as you can compartmentalize and not romanticize something that is purely platonic emotionally and down and dirty physically. Those times are rare, and usually end up hurting one party or the other if there are feelings that aren’t being addressed. To that end, I say go for it but know what you’re getting into. It can be crazy fun. As it stands now, the guys that are still in my group are friends and only friends because I like them. And I know that if we ever really and truly dated, we would end up not liking each other at all, either because he was a douche or because I drove him nuts. It’s easier for me to keep them in the “friend zone” and have the benefit of their company without the awkward past relationship in the way. It’s more fun to give somebody a hard time when you know they aren’t going to get all uppity about it.
3.They just aren’t your type. Let’s face it—you may really like someone, you may think they are funny, cute, smart, whatever—but if you don’t see eye to eye on your deal breakers as friends, you will never work out as lov-ahs. I’ve mentioned the “Big E Deal Breakers” in past posts, and though those things are personal ideologies I adhere to, I don’t expect everyone to be like me. But I also don’t date them. I know plenty of great guys who are funny, cute, smart, whatever that I will never date because I know it’s going to end in a giant, fiery disaster like a Die Hard movie. For me, it all depends on which way their moral compass points, and for some of them, it’s South when it oughta be North, know what I’m saying? And that’s ok, because I like them in spite of their tendencies, and they like me in spite of mine. We might even have a healthy debate about these tendencies from time to time. But the line in the sand remains, and it’s there for a reason. And no matter how hard I might want it to move, it just doesn’t. So I keep the friend label firmly affixed and continue my quest for the Guy Who Points North.
4.You aren’t their type. This might sound like repetition, but it’s not. I’ve had the whole problem of dating someone who was just dating me because he didn’t know any better. I know myself pretty well, and I like to think I get to know someone else pretty well before I bequeath “good friend” status upon them. And since I know what I’m like, I don’t want to have another person get themselves into something they shouldn’t. I’ve not always been so good at this, however. A time or two I’ve gone out with someone I knew I was not right for. And what happened? We became friends, started hanging out, started dating, and suddenly I found myself waking up next to someone that I knew was trying his best to make something out of nothing. It wasn’t that he wasn’t a great guy, or that he didn’t have lots of great qualities, but I knew what he needed in a girl wasn’t me. And I let it happen, thinking maybe I was wrong. Hoping maybe he was aware of it and had come to terms with it. But in the end, we both decided it just wasn’t working and it really wasn’t anybody’s fault. We should have just stayed friends. I’m a great friend for a lot of people, but a good girlfriend for very few.
That's it for this week! Give me your thoughts, rants, raves, and comments!

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