Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Communication... or lack thereof

On the heels of my ranting about Big Red and his three strikes, this post comes to us courtesy of Girl, Esq. (you may remember her name from this post a few weeks back).

And after reading this post, I think we need to go out for a drink, girl!! We're dating twins!

(Not that that's anything to brag about. ha ha!)


I'm having a men-are-bad-communicators moment. And while I hate to paint all men with the same brush, there are times when a problem is so rampant and widespread that it's hard not to assume that all men suffer from this affliction. So, in order to be helpful to mankind (or at least to vent), my rules for communicating:

1. You are the man. It is your job to make the first move. I'm sorry, I know this is antiquated. But that's just how it is.

2. Texting, Blackberry Messenger, and Facebook are not really communicating. It's acceptable to use these methods occasionally, for quick check-ins or the like. But you also have to pick up the phone and ask a girl out. E-mail is acceptable, but only if you do not have the phone number of the person in question or you have established an e-mail rapport.

3. If you say you're going to call, call. If you're not interested, that's fine. Then don't say you're going to call. Just be a grown-up and don't lie/equivocate.

4. Be responsive. If I call, text, messenger, e-mail, or Facebook you, it behooves you to respond within a reasonable amount of time. I know you and your Blackberry have a close relationship (you wear it on your belt, but that's not breaking communication rules so much as fashion rules). So, I don't buy it when it takes you 3 days to return an "instant" (haha) message.

5. I get it. You are not a planner. No calendar will tie you down. You like to go wherever life may take you. But if you ever want me to go with you, you have to communicate that to me. More than 5 minutes before you expect me to be there.

6. Salient details, such as, "I invited you to happy hour, but really it's a going away party for my co-worker and my entire office will be there" are important to include in the communication.

7. Occasionally, life gets in the way of being the perfect communicator. At these times, it is important to somehow get the message across (this is an exception to Rule #2, wherein less communicative means are acceptable) that (1) you are genuinely busy, (2) you will resume proper communication soon, and (3) you are still alive, interested, and aware that you are breaking the other rules.


So what do you think? Anything missing?


Lincoln said...

The same can be said for women...

1. If you're interested, make the first move. If guy makes first move and you aren't interested--at least close the loop. (Falling off the fact of the earth or vauge responses do not qualify as "closing the loop")

2. If you give me your phone number sua sponte, it is not required but appreciated if you give me some idea of when you'd prefer [not] to be called. Are you a morning person? Evening person? At yoga 6-8 Monday-Friday?

3. I hate texting, I really truly do, but if you say to "text me sometime" don't get pissed when I do; I'd prefer to call but I take "text me" as an expression of your preference.

4. Isn't this the same gender that views a too-fast response as an indication that one is desperate? What is an acceptable interval?

5. If I invite you more than 5 minutes ahead of time and you choose not to attend, the courtesy of a response is appreciated.

6. No objection.

7. No objection, though defendant requests the same courtesies, even if the interest is no longer there.

Sigh. Wouldn't be nice if both sides spoke the same language?

Respectfully Yours said...

On behalf of my daughter...


K said...

You got it all! lol. From way across the pacific, I'm in a similar spot - seemingly bridesmaid forever and I recently met mr. communicate, communicate, communicate (but i cant do it back).

CLEgal said...

Lincoln, I agree with you! Women have to be good communicators, too. But I only see the one side of the problem and I try not to break my own rules.

MG said...

I agree with both Girl Esq and Lincoln, these are good rules for non-sucky people who are trying to engage in "good faith" social interactions, not just what men or women need to do, because we can all suck sometimes. It goes both ways and we're only complaining about the other gender because we're more sensitive to how they act. I'm sure a true-blue bi-sexual would say both genders are nuts.

Now i know a lot of the readers here hate me and fail to realize i'm just pointing out a different perspective, but if we're going to bash men's ways of doing things, It’s worth saying in my experience, women, especially attractive women, seem to do whatever the hell they want with no rules whatsoever as to how they should behave cuz they know they 1. "can" 2. if you dont like it, some other guy will deal (at least for a while) cuz she's hot , and 3. you'll STFU as soon as they show you some positive attention back after blowing you off (well, sometimes).

Furthermore, what i find most difficult is the notion that the more you break these rules here (which are fair and logical rules) the more attractive you become to those younger women (or maybe really any, i dunno).

Everytime i try to be a nice guy and "do the right thing" I get treated like the chumpy/do-gooder boy next door but if i am difficult to get along with and a bit of a jerk, it all works in my favour…so what’s a guy to do?

This is the kind of game-playing I personally would prefer NOT have to play (though it can be fun at moments), and sometimes don't, and sometimes lose out cuz I don't, but it seems like as women are the choosers, I do sometimes just cuz I it seems I have to. Be careful what you positively reinforce, "douchebags" dont exist becuase they exist, they exist because they are loved.

But back to these rules, we sometimes follow em and we sometimes break em depending on whom we’re dealing with. Somewhere in Cleveland right now a woman is going “Wtf MG, you’re never available, you never call, you’re a dick, etc” and at that same moment, I’m kinda hurt that a young lady I’ve found myself liking and have been perfectly nice to ala the rules above, didn’t even respond to my message last evening about following through on the tentative plans we had after my dinner-meeting that SHE suggested the night before…
And I’m wondering….if she thought I was this bad-ass when we first met and after our 2nd date I started following the rules of this post and it’s gone south, did I lose points for doing so? Was Big Red working a strategy with AAB and just took it too far where I didn’t take it far enough? who the hell knows, the world's mad.

p.s. everyone should read/watch “brief interviews with hideous men” by david foster Wallace. The film version was directed and features the actor who plays “Jim” on the Office. Good stuff related to this topic.

Fizzgig said...

I really like it!

I am old fashioned that way too...i like a guy to make the first move.

but im trying out this whole new way of life, where I actually do what I want and dont follow "rules" while its terrifying, it served me well the past few years.