Tinderp Tale #11: Cynicism Is A Boner Shrinker

Why am I so cynical?

Well, a thorough investigation of this question would exceed the limits of this blog post and require the long term intensive support of a licensed therapist, but I would say that my pessimism around humankind began in childhood, a somewhat unpleasant time in which I painfully learned that people who allegedly cared about me would inevitably disappoint me. Why set my expectations high, when people would fail to meet them? Why believe the best in people, when more often than not they would show me their worst? Optimism was exhausting and burdensome. It was better to be wary and mistrustful.

This attitude has easily translated over to my views on dating cishet men, a demographic I haven’t had much experience with until recently. At this point, I had already gone on about 30 first dates with different guys, with little to no results. It didn’t matter how optimistic I was going into a date; I would usually come out of it feeling disappointed and frustrated. Either I didn’t like him, or he didn’t like me, or we didn’t like each other. Or, even worse: We liked each other until something inevitably got in the way.

I knew I wasn’t supposed to be negative about my dating prospects (self-fulfilling prophecy and blah blah blah), but I couldn’t pretend that having to start over with another guy for the umpteenth time was all that exciting anymore. Instead, I settled for a middle ground of resignation that a first date with a guy probably wouldn’t end well, but at the very least, its failure wouldn’t be for a lack of trying on my end.

This pragmatic albeit slightly pessimistic mindset was what forced me to message a guy whom I will henceforth refer to as Michael. Michael had “Super Liked” me in October of 2016, and after some brief consideration (which basically consisted of “eh, he doesn’t look very hot but my options are pretty limited so what do I have to lose”), I decided to “like” him back. We matched, and then absolutely nothing happened for several days, at which point I decided to take the initiative because of my aforementioned mindset.

Michael Super Liked You on 10/4/16


It’s been a week so I thought I’d say hi to counter the prolonged awkward silence

To my surprise, Michael quickly responded with a wall of text.


Agh! Sorry, it’s been a crazy month for me. I’ve been juggling personal projects and forgot about this. I totally love your profile pics

And I like Cyndi Lauper [referring to my chosen Tinder “anthem” at the time, “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun”], but I’ll have to admit my favorite from her is “Goonies R Good Enough”

Mostly because I’ve finally read the lyrics to it, and I still don’t understand what that song’s about

What’s the nerdiest thing you’re into, and how do you feel about small talk?

This was a rather overwhelming message to get, because it warranted a detailed reply that was thoughtful and interesting, which I actually hadn’t expected. Of course, I decided honesty was my best bet, and replied accordingly:


Lol no worries. And thanks!

Never heard of that song <.<

The nerdiest thing I’m into…um I guess as a lifelong thing it would be Harry Potter. But recently I did a planning session for Dungeons and Dragons and I’m excited to play as my newly made character!

Small talk…it’s an obligatory and awkward social mechanism to get to know people but it’s not as bad if I feel comfortable with the person lol

We went on to discuss nonsexual roleplaying, gaming in general, and our Halloween plans until he finally asked me out on a date, to which I said yes, then inquired if he had anything in mind for what we could do.


Nothing in mind yet, whereabouts are you? I live in Berkeley but work in SF so I could do dinner around either


Ok. I live and work in Oakland and would rather not go to SF lol [do I need to explain this? SF is touristy and gentrified]


Haha sounds great! Let’s get something to eat early next week!

My phone number’s xxx-xxx-xxxx I text faster if you want to chat! ;p


tinderp 11.1

We talked more about our hobbies and interests through text messaging. We both loved the TV show Community, had backgrounds in writing, and had written screenplays. Michael also mentioned having performed standup comedy for a few years. I thought it was cool, connecting with a fellow creative who had so many different passions.

Michael suggested a few Berkeley restaurants for dinner next Tuesday. Out of the options he provided, I decided on Eureka, a semi-fancy white people food place. The night before we were set to meet, he reached out to confirm that the date was still happening. In typical millennial fashion, this led to us sending each other Pokemon emojis, which then led Michael to send me selfies of him melodramatically posing with Pokemon plushies on his shoulders.

I was slightly taken aback by these selfies. They were bad selfies, and by “bad,” I just mean he looked very unattractive in all 3 of them. Did he actually think he looked okay in these photos, or did he just not give a fuck? I marveled at his ability to instantly take a picture and send it to his date without worrying about how cute he looked in it. It definitely wasn’t something I would ever think of doing. Taking a selfie, in my experience, typically involved a long, tedious, and frustrating process requiring a series of cringe-inducing takes in which my self-esteem took multiple critical hits before bouncing back with a thin facade of self-love upon finally taking the one shot I deemed acceptable enough for me to filter and upload to social media. I was also kind of turned off by Michael’s lack of fucks, and fervently hoped that he would look better in person.

He did not look better in person. It hit me when I laid eyes on him, a messy-haired, stocky and lone figure waiting for me outside the restaurant. I swallowed this observation and braced myself for the possibility of a tiring night spent convincing myself that leaving my room had been worth it. We greeted each other with a brief hug, went inside, and were seated at a small table by a waiter.

I remember being somewhat put off by Michael’s demeanor. He seemed distracted, not quite present. He looked off into the distance with a perplexed expression often, and gave long pauses between sentences. This was all exacerbated by his long and spiky hair, which resembled a disheveled hedgehog with the way it stuck up.

Once our food was ordered, he immediately went in for the hard questions. “So what are you looking for?” he asked.

I gave what was probably a long and rambling answer that could have easily been condensed to “I’m desperate and open to anything, really.”

He then went on to ask me what my dealbreakers were. I squirmed a little. Damn. This conversation was getting a little too real. At one point in time I would have found this refreshing, but for better or for worse, I had gotten used to playing the game, even though I was bad at it. I skirted around the harsher truths: I don’t want to date or fuck a guy I don’t find physically attractive. I don’t want to date or fuck a guy who doesn’t have his shit together even though I definitely and hypocritically don’t have my shit together either. I don’t want to date or fuck guys at all, actually, but unfortunately I just happen to be a heteronormative feminist who is paradoxically disgusted by and attracted to men and masculinity. I think I mentioned flakiness as a turn-off. A safe bet.

I asked Michael the question in return. He provided answers that demonstrated much more thoughtfulness and deliberation on his part. One of his dealbreakers was cynicism. “I can’t stand cynical people,” he said. “Why would you spend so much energy on having such a negative outlook of the world? It’s a disservice to yourself and everyone else. Being cynical doesn’t do anything or anyone good. It’s not going to change things for the better.”

As he ranted on, my smile became very fixed, as if to guard against its collapse into an outright grimace. He was speaking generally, but it felt like an personal attack on my cynical ass. Well, I’m not cynical in the way that he’s describing, I reassured myself. Obviously I hold on to some kind of hope for humanity or else I wouldn’t care about social justice. Right?

I told him I “used to be” very cynical, but that my outlook has gotten more optimistic over time. It felt like a half-assed lie, but I didn’t want to be transparent about my dark and complicated worldview. Although I still wasn’t attracted to Michael and in all honesty, wasn’t particularly thrilled about being on this date with him, I was still a somewhat hopeful motherfucker, goddamnit, and that meant I was going to try my hardest to see this through.

After Michael paid for dinner, he asked me if I still wanted to hang out. I said yes, and suggested we get a drink somewhere. He asked me what I liked to drink. I replied that I was in the mood for wine. He led me inside a small wine bar nearby that was mostly empty. “You can pick whatever you want, I’m not going to get anything,” he said.

I stood there for a moment, feeling awkward and indecisive. I was hoping we could both sit down together and drink enough wine to fully buy into the fantasy of each other’s romantic and sexual potential. Instead, I felt like a sulky teenager being told by her dad to hurry up and pick the thing she wanted so he could get out of here and do things that were actually worth his time and money.

“Never mind, let’s go somewhere else,” I said hastily, fleeing the bar with Michael in tow.

We ended up at a boba tea shop just a block away from Eureka. As I was sitting across from him and drinking my boba milk tea, I realized there was no salvaging this date, no matter how much I loved boba or how many interests we initially seemed to have in common or how hard I stared at his face and attempted to will a spark into existence. I didn’t want to kiss him. His jokes were unfunny and made me wonder how many times he had been booed off the stage while attempting standup. He kept asking questions that revealed our differences: he was an optimist, and I was a cynic; he was the kind of nerd who went to anime and comic conventions to cosplay, and I was the kind of nerd who stayed holed up in her room to read and dissect sociopolitical thinkpieces for fun.

tinderp 11.2

I wondered what was his impression of me. Did he find me attractive? Was he turned off because I wasn’t stereotypically nerdy? Why would he continue keeping me company if he wasn’t interested in me?

Then again…why was I continuing to keep him company given I wasn’t all that interested in him?

He noticed my growing reticence and made lighthearted comments about me not liking him. I smiled politely, uncomfortably, and told him we should head out.

We walked back to Eureka to say our goodbyes there. Along the way, he kept a running commentary on tonight’s possible outcomes: “So, are we going to see each other again? You going to try to hold my hand to show your affection? Maybe a goodnight kiss? Or maybe you’re too shy in the face of my devilish handsomeness. Or maybe you despise me and plan on ghosting me once we go our separate ways.”

“I enjoyed meeting you,” was all I could say.

He didn’t look convinced, but grinned and let me go.

I went home, feeling guilty about not telling the complete truth. I had to some extent enjoyed his company, but I should have been forthright and told him I didn’t think we were a good match. Rejection was a hard conversation I didn’t know how to have. Feelings potentially got hurt and I didn’t want any part of it. At the same time, I knew that if I really wanted to grow as a person and not be a hypocrite, then I needed to be transparent with my dates, and that meant having open, honest, and vulnerable communication.

The next day, I resolved to make things crystal clear through text.

10/26/16 1:30 PM
Me: Hey, I know you’re probably thinking, “Man that bitch lied” but I did actually enjoy meeting you. But based on the things you said, I don’t think we’re compatible. Just want to be honest. (Or is ghosting a better strategy? lol)

Michael: Haha thanks for taking the time to do this! For future reference, what did I say that was the breaker for you?

Me: When you said you couldn’t be in the company of cynics lol. I’m not the most cynical person out there but I can’t pretend that I’m a total optimist either. I also get the sense you’d be happier with someone with nerdier inclinations

Michael: Haha good call on both of those, thank you for your candor and best of luck out there!

Me: No problem. Same to you! 🙂

I felt relieved and pleasantly surprised after this exchange. I hadn’t expected it to go so well. If only all my encounters with dudes ended this smoothly and painlessly, I thought.

It was a trivial moment in the grand scheme of things, but I was proud of myself for initiating the conversation, and for balancing honesty with consideration. Hopefully I could continue mustering the courage to have these kinds of dialogues with other dates down the road. Maybe I would even work my way up to having them in person. The future would have many, many more disappointing and mediocre guys in store for me, but I had faith in my ability to tackle the onslaught of failures to come.

See? I’m an optimistic cynic.

tl;dr Learkana hates people but remains horny and hopeful! Learkana meets a guy who is well-adjusted and doesn’t hate people! Learkana acts like an adult and politely rejects the guy!

Now it’s time for…

Venue: Eureka
Rating: ****
Review: The inside is cute and has a nice atmosphere. Lots of small tables that are awkward to maneuver around though especially when it’s crowded and you’re just trying to get to the bathroom.

Venue: Purple Kow
Rating: *****
Review: Okay, I’m like 90% positive that this was the boba place we went to. I definitely remember going to a two-story shop and this is the only one in the downtown Berkeley area that I found in my Google/Yelp searches. I should definitely reclaim my time and go there again, but with friends whose company I unequivocally enjoy!


Textual Chemistry

This one is for the boys who will remain unnamed
all the boys who thought they’d say hello
exchange a flirtation or two
punctuated by an emoji or three
get my heart high
send my brain into overdrive
parsing for desire from the limits of your characters
a thrill for every l-o-l and haha texted or typed back to me
I’m daydreaming about an idea
derived from a compilation of messages
I’m wondering if you’ve jacked off
to a collage of my words and pictures
imprinted on your mind like some manic pixie dream
until the image shatters with a sentence written too harsh
or a detail pressed for too hard
I bristle at the subtext
you shrug off the accusatory tone
we go back to square one,
only to realize we never left
you’re just another number, another email
I’ve been meaning to delete from my contacts
just another convo, another chat log
already half gone from my memory
we fade and we forget
you move on and I regret
I never saw your face
but your words will always be better.


Let’s talk about, um, awkwardness. Or whatever.

So, like, yeah.


What’s up with that?

I would estimate that about 90% of my family and friends would agree that I’m awkward.

One friend, Chelsia, would argue that I’m not “that” awkward, but that’s only because she is way more fucking awkward. (Love you, Chelsia.)

Taking into consideration my self-professed self-awareness, neurosis, and useless talent of seemingly intellectualizing trivial things, I have decided to pretend to be an awkwardness expert and present to you a rambling report on all things awkward. Questions such as

  • What does it mean to be awkward?
  • Is it more to do with the situation or the individuals/parties involved?
  • What impact does self-awareness have on being awkward?
  • Do you have to feel awkward for the situation to be awkward?
  • What makes a situation awkward?
  • Are some things universally awkward?

will probably not be answered in any satisfactory way or at all, sorry. I said I’m going to pretend to be an awkwardness expert, gosh. You actually expect me to do any real work?

So, okay. Let’s try and define awkwardness.

From dictionary.com:

“lacking social graces or manners: a simple, awkward frontiersman. Synonyms: gauche, unpolished,unrefined; blundering, oafish; ill-mannered, unmannerly, ill-bred. Antonyms: gracious; polite, well-mannered, well-bred; smooth, polished, refined.”

Okay, the synonyms and antonyms are totally untrue. I know plenty of awkward polite people!

From Merriam-Webster:

5. a :  lacking social grace and assurance <an awkwardnewcomer>

:  causing embarrassment <an awkward moment>

Okay, now we’re getting somewhere.

From Oxford Dictionaries:

  • causing or feeling embarrassment or inconvenience: he had put her in a very awkward situation
  • not smooth or graceful; ungainly:
    Luther’s awkward movements impeded his progress
    she was long-legged and rather awkward

Okay, embarrassment, social ineptitude, we get it.

From my housemate:

“When you feel weird.”

Pretty vague, but somehow it hits the spot. “Weird” I would interpret as being “uncomfortable” in the case of awkwardness, which can be best described by thoughts such as, “Uh…,” “I don’t know what to do or say,” “This is wrong.”  Embarrassment I would argue is different, in that it is more extreme and shame-inducing, comparable to thoughts along the lines of, “Oh my God, why is this happening,” “What the hell,” and “I’m going to crawl under a rock and die now, kbye.”

An Awkward Situation that is just “weird”

Jessica*, an acquaintance whom I will admit to having a girl-crush on, invites me to her kickback. I attend mostly out of obligation. We are circles apart. She is one of those people you feel is likable enough, but you never exactly click with for some reason–the kind of person you’d be down to hang out with if she made the effort, but no one you’d want to spend all night telling deep dark secrets to. I make small talk with her, run out of things to say, and start feeling weird and wondering if I should grab another beer just to have something to do with my hands. I leave the party early, but not before telling her goodbye. I reach for a hug–she hugs me back, but also kisses my cheek. ACK WHAT. Her perfect lips on my gross, oily cheek WHAT HAS SHE DONE!! NOOO SHE HAS BESMIRCHED HER MOUTH WITH THE FOULNESS OF MY CHEEK OH GOD NO. I freeze for a split second, wondering if I should kiss her back, but instantly recoil at the idea of planting my contaminated lips on her flawless face. Also I am not a touchy-feely person. Also slight homoerotic feelings aside, she is merely an Acquaintance. So I simply stick with the hug and get the hell out of there.

*Name has been changed to protect the awkward

An Awkward Situation that is “embarrassing”

Walking around with a period stain on my ass and not realizing until later ACKKK WTF FML FML OMFG WHY DIDN’T ANYONE TELL ME?! Okay, so I probably wouldn’t go up to a stranger and tell them either. But there should be some policy around these things! “Be it a period stain on one’s posterior, a something in one’s teeth, a prominent booger in one’s nose, or anything remotely to do with the disruption of one’s personal appearance, it is your forthright duty as a sympathetic and decent fellow human being to discreetly and kindly inform the victim of their unfortunate happenstance, thereby allowing them to take the necessary measures to eliminate or at the very least minimize the impropriety to which they have befallen.” Or yenno, something like that.

So as I suspected, awkwardness is comprised of two factors, which can be overlapping or isolated:

  1. personal feelings of embarrassment, “weirdness,” and social dysfunction (inside your head)
  2. causing others to feel embarrassment, “weirdness,” and social dysfunction (outside your head)

These factors are important in determining whether an individual or situation is awkward.

Sometimes, it’s all just in your head.

An Awkward situation that is just in my head

Um, I’m drawing a blank here, sorry. Everything I think is awkward is just plain awkward to me, okay. How can you really ever get confirmation that something you feel was awkward, is in fact not awkward at all?

But rest assured, sometimes what you feel isn’t necessarily what others are feeling, which lessens the awkwardness. I mean, it’s not really possible that everything agonizing and uncomfortable for you, would also be equally agonizing and uncomfortable for everyone else involved. Right?

Well, at least that’s what I tell myself. I mean, it doesn’t hurt to abide by this rule, if only as a means of self-preservation. If you just freak out on the inside about some stupid thing you just said or did, it doesn’t have to be a big deal. Just act calm and unfazed, and no one will really pick up on it, and you know…people have really shitty memories for that sort of thing, in my experience.

There have been times when I have done things that other people find awkward, but I personally don’t find awkward at all, although I have acknowledged the awkwardness of my actions in retrospect. It’s just that, I don’t give a rat’s ass. Which I guess makes me less an awkward individual and more of an asshole.

Awkward Situations that are outside of my head

  • Suddenly lying down to take a nap in the midst of boring company
  • Laughing out loud because some funny thought just struck me and not sharing with others why I am laughing
  • Saying “Uh…” for a really long time when someone asks me a question that I don’t have an answer to just yet because for some reason I think it’s okay to not-think out loud
  • Talking about sex in a very flippant manner
  • Randomly bursting into song (almost always a pop song)
  • Pointing out odd quirks that people would rather I not have taken the time to observe and vocally express directly to them about them
  • Asking people if I’m being awkward, which (who knew?) makes things more awkward


Whatever, people are weird.

I’m not sure if being aware that I’m awkward has made me more or less awkward than I would be had I not been aware of it. In a way, I might be the worse off for it because then my awkwardness becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy: “I’m awkward! So I’m just going to keep being awkward, because that’s who I am! Yay, humiliation! Faux pas for the win!”

Then again, I would rather not be obliviously awkward. I know of one particular individual who is awkward and in the complete dark about it. She makes dumb, insensitive remarks all the time and has no idea of how uncomfortable people become when they are around her. To this day, she still thinks we are friends to some degree when no, we’re not and I’m not sure how to tell her without sounding like a total bitch. (The “Sorry, I’m busy” line doesn’t have an expiration date does it?)

There are a couple of people I know who self-identify as not-awkward. I would agree that for the most part they are indeed not awkward. They adhere to social scripts just fine, adjust as the occasion warrants it, and respond fairly well to anything deviant thrown at them. One such person would be Dino Head, the humanoid robot I mentioned in previous blog posts.

An Awkward Situation Made Less Awkward by a Non-Awkward Person

Girl Spoonerism (1:18:10 AM):   hey, i have to tell you…something

Girl Spoonerism (1:18:15 AM):   lol

Macfinder25 (1:18:18 AM):         sure, what’s up?

Girl Spoonerism (1:18:44 AM):   i have to be melodramatic again

Girl Spoonerism (1:18:48 AM):   i can’t talk to you anymore

Girl Spoonerism (1:19:05 AM):   so..um..goodbye?

Macfinder25 (1:19:06 AM):         ok, why’s that?

Macfinder25 (1:19:12 AM):         if it’s okay to tell me

Girl Spoonerism (1:20:00 AM):   because i’ve been kind of obsessed with you and that’s really creepy sad and pathetic and i need to stop

Girl Spoonerism (1:20:06 AM):   but thanks for all the advice

Girl Spoonerism (1:20:08 AM):   lol

Macfinder25 (1:20:18 AM):         Ah, alright. You’re welcome.

Macfinder25 (1:20:26 AM):         Best of luck with your future endeavors.

Girl Spoonerism (1:20:50 AM):   you too.

Girl Spoonerism (1:21:16 AM):   jeez, you still have to be all formal at the end?

Macfinder25 (1:21:25 AM):         I thought it would help?

Girl Spoonerism (1:24:29 AM):   nope.

Girl Spoonerism (1:24:32 AM):   am i creeping you out?

Macfinder25 (1:24:43 AM):         No, we’ve only chatted over IM, really.

Girl Spoonerism (1:29:02 AM):   …this is stupid.

Macfinder25 (1:29:12 AM):         ?

Girl Spoonerism (1:30:20 AM):   i bid thee farewell, good sir

Macfinder25 (1:30:29 AM):         Goodbye 🙂

Who was awkward in that situation? Me. (Duh.) Who was not? Him.


Okay whatever I’m over it, it’s been 3 years goddamnit.

(And I know I know I know. I said I wouldn’t talk about Dino Head but my–ermm–experience with him is ripe with awkward fodder that is perfect for exemplification in this totes awkward blog post!)

Anyway, that’s not to say that non-awkward persons cannot cause awkwardness. They are just better at handling awkwardness, whereas awkward individuals like me tend to freak out and make things even worse.

An Awkward Situation Made Even More Awkward by a Supposedly Non-Awkward Person, Surprisingly Enough

After two years of silence, I reached out to Dino Head again. And started obsessing over him again. Ugh. But finally I found the courage to meet him in person. In previous correspondence with him, I learned that he enjoyed dancing and was purportedly good at it. I asked to see a Youtube video of his alleged talent, not caring about the creeper implications of my request. He said he would show me in person, once he was back in the Bay. So of course, I held him to his word when we met up at a dive bar on Piedmont. He was somewhat perplexed by my insistence on seeing his dance moves, but was happy to oblige. “Not here, though,” he said, glancing over at the somber-faced men playing pool. “This isn’t really a place to dance.”

“Just dance out on the street!” I urged.

“Let’s just find a club,” he said.

We left the bar and drove downtown in his fancy ass car. The nightclub he had in mind had some standup thing happening that night, so that was a no-go. We headed back to his car.

He paused at the curb and put in his earphones. “Well, I’m starting to feel a little weird about this, but here goes nothing.”

I stopped and stared. “Uh…” He was dancing to music only he could hear, and I’m not even trying to romanticize this shit, like literally he was dancing to what was probably some obscure electronic shit on his smartphone that I couldn’t hear like at all because he had his earphones plugged in, so all I saw was a scrawny white dude kicking his legs up in silence while I was just standing there with him on the street not knowing what to do or say or how to respond and it was just so, so incredibly awkward.

“Shouldn’t I be listening to the music too?” I said.

He kept dancing.


He stopped. “How would that work?”

“I don’t know…blast your car speakers, or something.”

He ended up doing just that, and it was slightly less awkward. The whole damn thing was awkward, but at least it wasn’t awkward specifically because of him. It was awkward in general because of me, but that just meant things were normal.

I think I’ve tackled quite a range of awkward scenarios. But what about a situation made awkward by the sheer fact that two awkward people were interacting with each other rather awkwardly, as not witnessed by a third party non-awkward non-observer? (This will make sense, I promise.)

A Situation Made Awkward by the Sheer Fact that Two Awkward People Were Interacting With Each Other Rather Awkwardly, As Not Witnessed by a Third Party Non-Awkward Non-Observer

The other day, my good friend Darcy and I were walking down Piedmont, drinking boba and window shopping. I ran into someone I had a class with back at Mills. I think our eyes lit up in recognition at the same time. “Oh! Hi!” I said.

“Hi!” she said. She had a clipboard in hand. Apparently she had some sort of job canvassing.

We stood there looking at each other for a second. Uh, should I hug her? Okay I’m just gonna do it. I hugged her. She responded in what seemed to be surprise or reluctance. Or both. Ugh.

Damnit, now I had to introduce the two. “This is my friend Eve. This is my friend Darcy.” Several cars whooshed by.

“Sorry, I didn’t catch your name. What is it?” Darcy asked.

“Eva.” Oh shit thank you random cars.

We made some small talk but there were a lot of weird pauses thrown in. Spaces unfilled. Our fixed smiles, unsure of what else to say. Trailing off topics, disconnecting, echoes of each other’s words that left us with nothing to go on. Empty-handed tongues.

She was still at Mills. Hadn’t been able to do much writing. You? Oh, I’m working on a screenplay. Oh, okay. We should totally do a writing group! Yeah! Yeah! …So what’s this petition about? Oh, it’s protesting the dangers of fracking. Oh, I know about fracking! Cool! I won’t ask you for money! Awesome! Great! …

God, the awkwardness! Ackkk. I just wanted the conversation to end already. Even as I was talking to her, I was madly trying to assess the situation and figure out why the hell it was so goddamn awkward. Is this all in my head? I wondered. No, no, it doesn’t feel like it. It can’t just be me either. It really did seem like she was part of the problem too. She was mirroring my every awkward move. But who started it? Did it matter?

Darcy, being the friendly and sociable person she can be, steered the conversation towards our shitty shit economy, thereby sustaining the conversation longer than was absolutely necessary. Damn you, Darcy! I waited for it to die down again into a kind of lull. The job market sucks no matter what field you’re in? Yup. Yup. Yup. … Alas! An opportune moment to disengage, perhaps? I lunged for it. “Well, we should probably let you get back to your job!” I said brightly. “It was nice seeing you!”

I hesitated again. Should I try hugging her again? Okay fuck it whatever it would take to get this thing over with. I went in for another hug. Look at me, Miss Smooth-Talking-Friendly-Gesture-Person! Not. It was one of the worst hugs I had given in a while. Our arms were misaligned and she was just so surprised by it, like bitch why are you so surprised people hug in situations like this all the time I swear I am acting normal goddamnit! Yeah, it was just…all bad. The most superficial and contrived thing I had the displeasure and misfortune of initiating this week. “See you!” I said. I couldn’t stop talking in exclamation points.

“See you! Say no to fracking!” she called after us, accompanied by goofy finger guns.

I fake-laughed and walked off with Darcy, internally cringing at the entire exchange.

“Wasn’t that awkward?” I exclaimed when we were a good two blocks away.

“Huh? No, it didn’t seem awkward to me.” She shrugged.


“I was mostly focused on how much taller I am in these shoes than both of you.”



What to conclude from all of this?

  • Awkwardness: feelings of embarrassment or discomfort caused by a deviation from or mishandling of social protocol
  • I’m awkward
  • I should stop talking to random dudes from the Internet (emphasis on “should”)
  • I’m awkward

And most importantly,

  • I’m awkward

tl;dr I am an awkward asshole who rambles a lot. And should really seriously stop talking to random dudes from the Internet