I have never been a big fan of being described as “nice.” Nice, to me, is a consolation-prize adjective; it’s a lazy descriptor you use for a person who isn’t interesting enough to rate a more colourful narrative. Nice is for taupe walls, accent pillows, for neutral weather patterns and cuts of red meat. Even the slightly more enthusiastic, stoner-drawl version of the word, Niiiiiiice! and its cousin, Sweeeeet! are usually reserved for kicking curves and surfable waves… or… you know… marijuana.
People, who have just met me, tend to label me as nice or adorable, and I suppose, in some alternate universe, I am. I believe in random acts of kindness and in paying it forward. I want to adopt every single dog from that darn WSPA commercial that breaks my heart… What of it?
So when, on our first date Dick (name has been changed), a guy who I’d met at a club, said I was a “nice girl,” it wasn’t immediately a #dealbreaker. Nice is a cross I’ve borne for a long time, and if I ruled out every guy who called me it, I would be restricted to a dating pool comprised only of amoebas, alcoholics and pond scum. “I’ve never met a nice girl at that club before”, Dick states confidently, grinning his best Cheshire Cat grin. “Most of the chicks there are total skanks, but I could tell you were a good girl.”
Ugh. Red Flag #1. Chicks. Skanks. Nice girl. Good girl. His accolade had quickly devolved to dog praise. And it wasn’t just the fact that good girl was the sort of cringe-worthy praise best used on someone wearing a flea collar; it was the rational behind it.
What was it about me that was so incredibly good, exactly? Had I stood on a corner in sub-zero temperatures ringing a bell in a bad Santa hat, collecting money for those less fortunate? Travelled to Darfur and vaccinated an entire village of orphaned and starving children? Donated a portion of my pay cheque to a not-for-profit organization that was trying it’s best to make the world a happier, safer, cleaner place? Nope. I was good, it seemed, because based on some mysterious, first impression-based algorithm, Dick had deduced that I probably said “no” to random, spontaneous sex more often than I said “yes.” As far as I can tell, this conclusion was based entirely on how I was dressed and my lack of cartoonish lascivious behavior on the night he met me. Basically, I wasn’t wearing a britney peek-a-boo dress or rubbing up on people/inanimate objects like a cat in heat. Based on this, I was determined to be “good.”
The guy was making some huge assumptions here. (My mom always said, “When you assume, you make an ass out of u and me.” I know that’s convenient, wordplay-wise, but in real life, when you make assumptions about me, that’s all on “u,” assume-hole). I could have been the most sexually devious, miscreant woman (or as he put it, “skank”) in the world. Just because a woman doesn’t feel the need to wear her heart (or her sideboob) on her sleeve means nothing. Perhaps noting that my expression had darkened at his top-notch compliment, Dick began backpedaling. “I mean, I’ve had my fun with the easy girls. I’m no boy scout. But now, I’m looking for something serious. I’m looking for someone to bring home to mom.”
Red Flag #2: Reference to his mother. Whenever talk of sex and mention of a guy’s mommy are not separated by at least three minutes’ worth of other words, I default to a diagnosis of Madonna/Whore Complex. This is a guy for whom the world is divided into “skanks” and “nice girls. The “nice girl” is placed on a pedestal, where nothing but the most boring, standard; missionary-position sex can ever taint her. As opposed to the “skank” who is hated for being a hot, hot, dirty slut, who is only good for mind-blowing, commitment free or extramarital sex.
I’ve deliberately avoided talking about which of this guy’s two stereotypes I would actually fall into because I think his standards are bullshit, and also, because my mom might read this. The point is, I don’t see a woman who withholds sex as necessarily being any more altruistic than one who’s a little more generous with it. Being sexually conservative is often the more self-protective choice, the safer choice, and probably for the most part the smarter choice… But what does that have to do with nice?
Dick had committed a #dealbreaker. Dick was a slut-shamer and an assume-hole. Perhaps I jumped to the “dump him” conclusion too quickly, but as he walked me to my car, he stared straight ahead and stonewalled a homeless man who asked him if he could spare some change. He then looked horrified as I gave the guy a five-dollar bill. I’m easy like that. Some would even call it nice.
Dating #dealbreakers can be upsetting, but they are definitely necessary in today’s dating world. They are a way of our mind and heart (if we have one) of throwing up the proverbial “red flag”, and letting us know in early days, hours, minutes that perhaps things just aren’t going to work out. It is disappointing because you’ve either invested time with the guy or you have envisioned yourself investing time with the guy and most of the time, you don’t even see it coming… like raising a child who turns out to be a crack head… or Ann Hathaway.
Every #Puma has her own unique set of #dealbreakers, depending on the amount of shit we are willing to put up with, and/or the threshold of her nausea/gag reflex. I have a very keen sense of my likes, dislikes and what I am willing to tolerate. My list of #dealbreakers is fairly shallow and superficial and quite frankly, I am okay with that. I have been to the amusement park and ridden the rides, and this is no longer my first rodeo.
You Must Be At Least This Tall To Ride This Ride
There is a definite height requirement. The cut off is usually around 5’10, which seems tall to my petite 5’1 frame, but no matter. If you could audition and successfully be cast as a Munchkin, Oompa Loompa or a Nelwyn, this is a #dealbreaker. If I can never wear heels because we would be eye-to-eye, or worse yet I would tower over you…. See ya! What can I say, I like my men tall, it makes me feel lady-like, and safe…. Or maybe I just like a really good climb…
Body Hair/ Surprise Acne
Excessive Body Hair Yes, I am aware putting this in writing will open the door for criticism by the masses, and make me seem like a terrible human being, I don’t care. I cannot, and will never, get past it. Excessive body hair, makes me think you have poor hygiene, which makes my gag reflex kick in, and in the end, I am never going to get near anything I have to go searching for.
Body Hair in Weird Places If you are in your thirties, early forties and you already have hair growing in odd places… your ears, nose, shoulder blades, palms… forget it. I appreciate grooming, but if you are going to need LANDSCAPING, I am no gardener… I am out. It is a true aversion, and one not likely to change. I like my men clean-shaven, or perhaps with a five o’clock shadow. You can attempt to convince me that it “tickles” it does not. If I end up with carpet burn on my face after a grade eight make-out or on my Britney later on…. #dealbreaker. It is painful, and takes forever to heal, requires too many explanations and in the end is just gross. Carpet burn from beardo’s is right up there with hickey’s as being NOT Puma appropriate.
Surprise Acne/Backne No one has perfect skin. I definitely do not. Facial acne, I can live with to an extent. The #dealbreaker, is the acne that I have no hint of. Clear face, tanned arms… and then I take your shirt off and you are riddled in white heads. Gross. Backne is the worst. Body acne leads me to believe you have a rampant steroid addiction or again poor cleanliness. Regardless… Once detected… I am going to stop undressing you, get a sudden headache and bolt for the door.
The Bad Kisser
There is nothing in this universe more awesome or more dreamt about… perhaps even more glorified… then the perfect kiss. Of course it is a rarity to achieve such a monumental right of passage on a first date, but there is usually a glimpse of perfection potential if you are fortunate enough to find a great kisser. While as a Puma I have strict guidelines in place as to how I handle PDA (public displays of affection), what goes on behind closed doors is pretty much open game. I am always down for a high school make-out session. You know, fully clothed, on the couch, heavy over the sweater petting… the kind that could be a prelude to something more, but even if it is not, it leaves you feeling tingly and hosting a case of the warm fuzzies, and deeply enamored (or horny). As someone who places a lot of emphasis on the kiss, there are very few things in this world more disappointing then someone who is just a BAD KISSER. You know what I am talking about. Both women and men are guilty of such a horrendous grievance. Some of the worst offenders include:
The Reptile – Here is another thing NOT to do with your tongue. Dart it quickly in and out of your partner’s mouth. This is how a snake smells… It is NOT how you kiss.
The Vampire – Biting can be great, when done in modification and only if you have mastered the art of NOT marking your partner. Too much biting is a #dealbreaker, especially if you leave marks or draw blood. People shouldn’t want to question or blush knowingly because they can clearly see your canine punctures on my lips or neck three days after our first date. And you want to know one of the most vulgar things you can see on an adult that will make you wish you were temporarily visually impaired? A hickey. We are not dogs. You do not need to “mark your territory”.
Kissing is really all about common sense and good timing. If we are on a date, I can guarantee you that I have already showered and therefore do not need a tongue bath…. Eck! Bad Kissing = #dealbreaker.
Crooked Penis Gonzo is a muppet… I should never look at your penis and see a similarity. I am all about non-traditional beauty and uniqueness, unfortunately, this does not carry down to geographic nether regions. I want it pink, straight and perfect.
Erectile Dysfunction As a Puma, I am in what the medical books call my “sexual prime”. I understand that trauma, emotional or physical, might be the cause of your inability to function. Maybe it is some illness or malady that has caused the issue. Maybe you are actually closet gay. Unless you can convince me 100% that it is a very, very temporary issue, this is a #dealbreaker. Yes, this makes me a huge bitch…. I don’t care. I like sex, I want to be able to have sex, and I don’t want to have to pep talk your penis or watch you pop pills like Hugh Hefner in order to be able to get it up.
Premature Ejaculation. I am going to admit to wavering on this one. I recently had a friend explain that it is possible to redeem oneself after this particular grievance, and I had to agree. It is possible. I can understand if it has been awhile… or perhaps your enthusiasm and eagerness just got away from you… both being acceptable performance flaws, and an apology might redeem you. However, the expression of regret on your face better be sincere and the penance for said grievance better come immediately following the mishap… and be worthy of clemency or at least distract me from what I was needing for forgive in the first place. Let’s face it, if I wanted to finish myself off, I would have just put new batteries in the Rabbit and stayed home in my pajamas and watched Smallville (this is my porn). Sorry gentlemen, just as you have huge expectations in the area of performance… so do we.
Must Smell Great
And I don’t mean artificially. One whiff of Axe Body Spray, and you will see a cartoon cloud the shape of my body because I will be running away THAT fast. I like my boys, clean… clean… clean. If I go out for dinner and catch a waft of soap and a signature scent, I’ll just hand you over my heart and you can keep it in your pocket. If you are consistently smelling like a mixture of sweat and jock strap, then we are never, ever going to get to the naked stage… ever…. Because frankly I don’t want to see… what is the cause of your smell. #dealbreaker
Hater = #dealbreaker If you are a racist, a bigot, or a homophobic ignorant knuckle dragging redneck… #dealbreaker. I have massive love and devotion for the gay community and for the people within that community that I am lucky enough to call friends. They have taught me about unconditional love and acceptance and are a huge part of who I have become today. Do not treat my mos, speak to my mos or even hint that my mos are anything but the wonderful humans they are, or not only am I going to break it off, I might draw blood in the process.
Superiority Complex = #dealbreaker. I have worked in the service industry for years, and it says a LOT about a person in the way that they treat their waitress/waiter. If you are an ignorant asshole, and cheap when it comes to the tip. #dealbreaker. If you feel the need to speak down to the usher at the movies, the lady at the drive through window or the guy who pumps your gas…. #dealbreaker. If you stonewall seniors or homeless people…. #dealbreaker.
Bad Table Manners = #dealbreaker. If you chew with your mouth open, breathe through your mouth while eating so that crumbs fly out of your mouth… leaving a disgusting mess all over the table and causing me to lose my appetite… #dealbreaker. If you don’t know how to use a set of utensils… not even fancy salad forks, just a regular fork or knife… #dealberaker. If you hold those utensils like a barbarian… #dealbreaker… not to mention your parental influences should be ashamed.
Fashion Fiasco = #dealbreaker. If you dress like you just rolled out of bed, and have in fact been out of bed for hours #dealbreaker. Don’t know how to use an iron? #dealbreaker. Appear dirty even when you are clean…. And I don’t mean dirty in a good way…. #dealbreaker. If the only shirt you own is a football jersey and you think this is appropriate attire for every occasion #dealbreaker. Make an effort. You don’t have to look like you stepped out of a GQ magazine, but you need to at least look like you have your shit together sir.
We have all been there ladies. You met a guy a few weeks ago and he has called/texted and invited you out for date number three. Everything has been going pretty well. At dinner you affectionately stare into each other’s eyes and you are wondering how this guy can be so perfect, when the waiter places the check on the table. You reach into your purse and pull out your credit card in a half assed, empty gesture and somehow your card makes it way to the top of the bill… things just got fucking weird. In some bizarre and unforeseen crazy twist of events, this loser didn’t immediately swat your card away and laugh off your generous, yet clearly fake attempt at paying. Wait did you just enter the feminist’s ideal date? This guy is actually allowing you to pay for both your meals? For a lot of women, this would be love at first pay. They would think that he understands the very basics of equality and that he will be allowing them to wear the pants at least part of the time. In my shallow universe this translates into one thing… he is cheap. I would be out of that restaurant in a flash, while simultaneously texting my mo’s and girls the details and the atrocities of the night and changing his name in my phone to Kevin Federline. Don’t get me wrong. I am a modern girl. I have enjoy the opportunity to treat my man to a nice dinner, but if he does the inviting, picks the spot, and then allows/expects you to pay… #dealbreaker.
He Does Not Accept My Male Friends
I am a tomboy. I have been a tomboy my entire life. I love sports, video games, loud rock music and heavy rap. I also have limited tolerance for female bullshit which makes my ability to bond with other women not one of my stronger suits. My best friend, the person I tell everything to, is a guy. This is never going to change. This person is absolutely, always going to be in the picture. We are just friends. Not friends with benefits, not “buddies”, just friends. So get over it. Do not be skeptical, jealous or throw out unwarranted accusations because you will find yourself dismissed quickly and without reason. If I feel like I can’t bring you out with “the boys”, or have to lie to hang around with my male friends… I just won’t. #dealbreaker.
He Disappears Without Telling You
Unless you are dating Clark Kent, or one of the other members of the Justice League, where disappearing acts are not only acceptable but expected… vanishing without a trace is a solid #dealbreaker. Of course it is relevant to the amount of time you have been dating. If you have been dating for a month and he disappears for a week, without telling you what is going on, that is a #dealbreaker. Likewise, if you have been dating for eight months and he disappears for three weeks without proper explanation, you’ve got yourself a solid #dealbreaker. He owes you an explanation. If he is going away on vacation or visiting a sick relative he should tell you. You don’t have to like it, you better never bitch about it, but the fact that he didn’t mention to you what is going on AND remains incommunicado while he is away is ridiculously disrespectful, and totally shady. #dealbreaker
He Neglects You In Public
Distractions… They happen. A hot piece of ass… a work friend… a university buddy… an old girlfriend. If you are out and about with him, you are bound to run into one if not all of the above and when you do, you can’t expect him to be his most charming, gentlemanly self and introduce you off the hop. As a Puma, I would hope that you have come to the conclusion that you don’t reasonably have to be the paramount priority in his life, but you do expect to warrant enough regard not to be ignored when this sort of thing occurs. It is demeaning to watch your mister carry on a conversation with this person, while you nervously nod along smiling silently because he forgets to introduce you. Failed public recognition of being his someone is a #dealbreaker. You should NEVER be this low on the priority list.
So how do we get out when it is a #dealbreaker?
Rule #2 A Simple and Effective Escape Plan
The Lemon Law: As discussed in Rule #1 it is completely fair to invoke the Lemon Law if you are within the first five minutes of a date.
The Lemon Law may be invoked if, at any point during the initial five minutes of a first date, either party deems the union hopeless and elects to abort said date in the interest of time and/or self respect. Receipt of the “Lemon Law Clause: hereby absolves the giver from any “hard feelings” or “questions” from the Lemon Lawyee relevant to the discontinuance of the date, which may be terminated for any reason including, but not limited to….
After the first five minutes, we officially have time-invested time and it becomes a bit more difficult.
The Phase Out – A Puma with an eighth of a soul will choose this method. It involves being “busy” when asked for a follow-up date and then a gradual non-return of texts, in hopes that he will get the hint.
The Dead Out – His #dealbreaker was so obviously offensive that he doesn’t even merit a fuck you. You treat this guy as if he is dead and you wouldn’t waste a black skirt going to the funeral for him. Whenever someone brings him up, you sigh and state he is DTM – Dead To Me.
The Truth – Awkward! But as Puma’s, we are brave. This is a last ditch effort to get this guy to stop harassing you. He has left you various creepy voicemails with a nervous laugh asking you why you haven’t returned his calls, and tells you to “call or not…” In this scenario, you are now sure you’ve definitely dodged a bullet but want to make sure this psycho doesn’t burn your house down. So send him a text describing his offense and letting him down easily. “I think you are great”, just not for me”, should be deployed as it might just work to get this Stage 5 clinger off your ass.
The Moral of the Story for Rule #2: How a person acts in the beginning of a relationship sets the tone for how they will conduct themselves throughout for the rest of it. So if he is a cheap backne ridden bastard by the end of month one, chances are he will be a McDonalds taking, Proactiv using, knuckle dragging douchebag after three. Don’t be afraid to trust those instincts… they red flag for a reason.
Cheers Loverfaces! I look forward to hearing some of my readers #dealbreakers 🙂