How to NOT Lose a Guy

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The following is: A) an exact transcript of an actual conversation; B) a fairly faithful approximation of an actual conversation, with edits by yours truly for clarification and factual accuracy; or C) a complete fabrication by a male for you to discredit and discount. Please select only one answer. Use a No. 2 pencil. Completely fill the circle without drawing outside the line.

**************

Witness one Cindy Patronis, age 28, of Morrison, Colorado, working as a receptionist in the law offices of Carry Chase Mercer and Wiskowicz in Boston, Massachusetts. Cindy is a graduate of Clark College, where she received her degree in pre-law. She eats lunch with Mandy Carollini, age 30, of Worcester, Massachusetts. Mandy sells new and used compact discs at Tookie’s Music Shack. The two met at a party for Cindy’s law firm. Mandy attended as the date of Chaz Mercer, senior partner for the firm. After Chaz dumped Mandy for a law clerk in the office (Susan O’Grady, age 21, of Quinsigamund Community College), Mandy decided she still enjoyed Cindy’s company and invited her to the Cape for a weekend. That was one year ago.

Cindy orders a burger with fries. Mandy orders a club salad with the fruit bowl.

**************

“You gotta watch your figure,” Mandy says.

“Yeah, right. You, maybe.”

“Oh boy, here it comes.”

“What?”

“Any conversation that starts with ‘yeah right’ is headed for disaster.”

“Conversations with me are a disaster?”

Mandy traces a finger around the lip of her water glass. “Cindy,” she says, “let’s have a little chat.”

Cindy, a sensitive soul, is wary. “About what?”

“About whatever the hell is going on with you.”

“What’s that supposed – “

“Stop right there. We’re friends, right?”

Cindy nods, avoiding Mandy’s eyes.

“We’re close friends, right?”

“Yeah.”

“So let’s get close. You know me now. You know I hate bullshit. Whatever this… dark cloud thing… hanging over your head is, it’s shit between us. I wanna know why you’re always so down on yourself, and I wanna know why you’ve been closing me off for the last month.”

“I haven’t been closing you off. We’ve eaten together once a week for the last four weeks.”

“We used to talk EVERY night. You’d tell me about some guy you liked, and I’d tell you about some guy I’d fucked, and we bonded.”

Cindy seems to withdraw once more.

“Okay, what?” Mandy barks.

“Sorry. It’s hard. This is hard.”

Mandy sighs. “It’s about boys, right?”

Cindy shrugs.

Mandy rolls her eyes. “It’s always about boys.”

“You don’t get it,” Cindy says, snapping harder than she means to. “It’s easy for you.”

Mandy laughs. “Oh. It’s easy for me.”

“You know exactly what I mean.”

“Sure I do. But explain it to me anyway.”

“You always go out with gorgeous men, and they sleep with you…”

“Is that what this is about? Sex.”

Cindy shrugs again. “I guess.”

As the waiter walks past, Mandy grabs him by the apron string. “Hey stud, got a minute?”

The waiter reacts exactly as predicted. “Yes I do,” he says with a charming grin.

“My friend here ordered fries and a burger. That was a mistake. Bring her a salad with grilled chicken. And no more refills on her Diet Coke. Bring out some water with lemon. Chop chop.”

The waiter knows what’s good for him. “You bet,” he says and walks away. Cindy is mortified. She holds her hand over her eyes, slumping in her chair. Whatever words she might have in mind die in the black hole she has made of herself.

“Look at me,” Mandy says. Cindy has no choice, compelled as she is by Mandy’s tone. “Today,” says Mandy, “you belong to me. No secrets, no pulled punches. We’re gonna have a little chat, and at the end, you’re gonna feel like a Firebird with an overhaul. That means I pop your hood, wash out all your tubes, rip out your guts and replace them with newer and better guts. You hearing me?”

A tear appears in Cindy’s eye. “Why are you being so mean?”

Mandy leans back, trying to lessen her intensity. “I’m mean? No, Cindy, whatever man did this to you was mean. I’m here to help the healing begin.”

Now the tears fall in earnest. Cindy dabs her eyes with the cloth napkin. Mandy knows this is part of the process, and she waits patiently. “He was so cold afterward,” Cindy begins. “He made fun of me.”

“Made fun how?”

“He told me I was hypersensitive.”

“You are.”

“I know that! But he said it to hurt me.”

“Start at the start.”

“He’s a friend of a friend. We met at a bar, my friend and this group of his. They invited me to join them at the next bar. And he was really good-looking, and I… I guess… I seduced him.”

Mandy’s eyes go wide. “Shut. Up.”

“I flirted with him all night. He thought I’d had more to drink than I really did. Because, you know, I pretended to.”

“Sly.”

“Anyway, he invited me back to his apartment, and after he closed the door, we just went at it.” Cindy looks at Mandy. “You want the details?”

“Later,” Mandy says, raising bareback studios porno an eyebrow. “But you’re leaving out an important part.”

Cindy is confused. “I am?”

“Yes, sweetie. Why the hell did YOU want to seduce HIM?”

“What?”

“You know what. That’s not like you.”

“I know.”

“So something had to have triggered the change. Something you thought. Or something you heard. Was it me? Did I say something during one of our talks?”

The tears start to dry. Cindy waves a hand in the air, searching for the words. “It’s embarrassing.”

Mandy fiddles with her cuticles. “I told you, I’m not your friend today. I’m your therapist. Everything we discuss is strictly confidential. No judgments, no accusations. Now spill.”

Cindy leans on one hand, elbow on the table. “There’s this site,” she begins. “A website. Literotica.”

“I know. I’m the one who told you about it.”

“Oh yeah.” Cindy shakes her head. “I didn’t forget. Anyway… I read an article there. About how to get sex when you’re a…” She hiccups a laugh. “When you’re a nerd.”

Mandy smiles. “Go on.”

“Because I’m a nerd.”

“Debatable. Go on.”

“I dunno. It’s just so much, you know? Being alone, being out of college. I used to be thin and cute.”

“Debatable,” Mandy says more sternly.

“I did!”

“I mean the ‘used to’ bit. Go on, girl.”

“What more do you want? I read about how to seduce someone, and it worked.”

“What did it say to do?”

Cindy makes a face and nods. “It was right on, actually. All you have to do is… bathe. Do your hair. Wear something pretty.”

“It said to wear something pretty?”

“Actually, it was only a guide for male nerds. But I figured, it would work for girls, too. And I was right.”

“So you think you got into this guy’s pants because you seduced him.”

“Sure. I know I did.”

Mandy takes a deep breath, looks at the ceiling, breathes some more. Then she turns her attention back to Cindy. “Let me explain some things. That’s why we’re here today. Are you prepared to hear me?”

Cindy swallows hard, then tries to appear nonchalant. “Shoot.”

“First and foremost: Girls do not seduce guys. Girls stand in one place, and guys come to them.”

“Easy for you to say.”

“Quiet,” Mandy snaps. She continues before Cindy can be offended. “Girls do NOT seduce guys. Guys seduce girls. Guys sit around jerking off all day because they are desperate for sex. Girls are not desperate for sex. We come harder, we come more often, we come cleaner, we come prettier.”

“Easy for you,” Cindy insists.

“You don’t understand what I’m saying. It’s not a matter of convincing a boy to sleep with you. Look, that article was about nerds, right?”

“Yes.”

“Think about what a nerd is. Really think about it. Self-absorbed, attention-deficit. That’s why they don’t shower. They just forget. But when it’s time to get serious about sex, they clean up real nice. And do you know what kind of girl they go after? Any kind they think they can get. Start with your average science-fiction loser – somewhere between 20 and 30, bad haircut, wears t-shirts all day, spends all his money on snack food and electronics. Let’s say he’s 250 pounds.”

“Whoa.”

“But if you subject him to ten minutes of electro-shock, stick him in an Armani suit, stuff a thousand dollars in his pocket and send him staggering through Copley Square, he will attract no less than five women. Why? Because women want three things in life – money, sex, and love. If a guy has the first, and the girl can wrangle him out of the second, then all she has to work toward is the third.”

“I’m not following any of this,” Cindy says, drinking her water with lemon.

“There’s nothing to follow. You’re a chick. I’m telling you what you already know. Women want security. We want to feel safe. We will go to any length or depth to be protected in life. And that’s why there are no girl nerds. A boy nerd is just another kind of male, and males live under the delusion that they are protected and secure, on their own. Why else would a boy spend all his money on video games instead of pouring equity into a new home? Because he doesn’t believe he has anything to fear. He has no concept of the future, of pending doom. He’s an idiot. Now, you take a girl who’s interested in video games and junk food. That doesn’t mean she’s given up on dreaming about getting married and having kids and being taken care of.”

“I think you’re the one who’s delusional, Mandy. I mean, look at us! You certainly aren’t settling down. And I’m not desperate for a man to love me. I’ve got a job, a car, a savings account. I’ve even got a mortgage!”

“Then what went wrong with this guy last month?”

Cindy fidgets. “I don’t see the connection.”

“I know. Give me a minute to put the pieces together. First off, I want you to acknowledge the truth of what I’m saying. Men must beg for sex. Women never need to beg for sex.”

“I already disagreed with you on that.”

“But your scope is limited. czech amatör porno Don’t just think about the guys you fantasize about when you play with yourself. Think about ALL the guys and ALL girls in the world. Big, short, thin, fat, perfect skin, oily skin, rich and poor, sick and in health, for better and for worse. Take one loser from each category and sit them next to each other at the bar. Pretend that the woman comes on to the man. The man is one-hundred percent guaranteed to say yes to sex. Now turn it around. The guy is hitting on the woman. She’s as big a loser as he is, but she – and this is important – she is looking for something more than sex. She is looking for security. All girls do. The loser girl KNOWS, really knows, deep down in her smelly stockings, that she can get laid any time she wants. At this very moment there’s an 84-year-old grandma living in a nursing home, 300 pounds with dentures and a busted hip, putting out the ‘bang me’ vibe for the poor elderly bastards in the home, and one of them is going to say yes to her invitation, because men are pigs who only want sex.”

Mandy allows her declarations to hang in the air. The waiter brings the food. Cindy looks at her salad. “This is depressing,” she says.

“It’s good for you,” Mandy answers.

“I don’t mean the salad.”

“I know you don’t.”

“How can this be good for me? You’re telling me… you’re telling me there’s no hope.”

“So you agree with my observations.”

“No!”

“Then I’ll ask again. What went wrong with the guy last month?”

Cindy, rather than responding, sticks her fork in the salad and eats a mouthful.

“Cindy,” Mandy says, “you read some article about how nerds seduce women, and you thought it would work for you. But men and women are fundamentally different. Men will fuck anything, and women will not.”

“I’ve known some women who will.”

“Are you implying something?”

“No!” Cindy shouts with a start. “No,” she says more quietly. “I’ve never thought that about you.”

“But it’s true, somewhat.” Mandy takes a bite of food, chews, swallows. “We’re both being very frank today, even though I’m doing all the talking.”

“You haven’t let me say anything yet.”

“I know, but you’ll get your chance. Listen, just listen for a minute. I want to explain something about myself. I’m the same as other girls. I want to feel safe. I want to be protected. But I also want to have fun. Thing is, you can’t have it both ways, at least not at the same time.”

“So for right now,” Cindy clarifies, “you’re just having fun.”

“That’s exactly right.”

“But that’s all I wanted. I was just looking to get laid.”

“No. Uh-uh. No way. Not you, not Cindy. You want chocolate and silk and flowers. You want The Bachelor. I know you. Casual sex is not for you. If it were, you’d just go out and get it.”

At last the pieces fall into place for Cindy. All men want sex, but women must choose sex or security. The realization left Cindy in an even deeper pit of despair than where she began. The salad, unappetizing to begin with, lost its appeal altogether. She even felt a little sick.

“Tell me what you’re thinking,” Mandy said.

“I’m trying not to.”

“You don’t look well.”

“It’s just that… you can’t be right. I know LOTS of men who need women to help them feel secure. That’s what a relationship is all about. Two people communicate, they share everything, they’re stronger together than apart.”

Mandy smiles. “Where’d you learn that?”

“My parents, for one. They’ve been together a very long time.”

Mandy smiles even wider. “It all comes back to daddy.”

“Don’t give me that shit.”

“There’s nothing wrong with it.”

“Because it’s not true.”

“Yes it is. Look, my dad left us when I was seven. It made me realize that men are pigs who want what they want, when they want it.”

“You keep calling men pigs. But my dad was no pig.”

“And that’s why you want a man who isn’t a pig. And THAT’S why this guy at the bar was a mistake.”

“Maybe.” Cindy lifts her glass, does not drink, sets the drink back down.

“Cindy, all I want you to do is be honest with yourself about what you want. Women can afford to do that. We are in control. We can get sex anytime we want. It’s relationships that are hard to get our hands around. Wicked hard. But it’s not impossible.”

“So far it has been.”

The two girls finish their meals, such as they are, and get into Mandy’s car. They drive to Filine’s Basement and buy some clothes. The conversation is on hold until they leave the mall, in the direction of a yogurt shop Mandy knows about. They eat yogurt and resume the discussion.

Mandy make a yummy sound. She says, “This is good. And good for you.”

“But you drink all the time.”

“Yeah. It’s self-destructive. But that’s just social drinking. Men like a girl who can hold her liquor.”

“Seems a bit contradictory to me.”

“Women are contradictory, just like men.”

“Funny, I was just gonna say that.”

“Say what?”

“All czech bitch porno this shit about boys, how they’re pigs who only want what they want. But you make it sound like there’s hope for relationships. It’s contradictory.”

“But your dad wasn’t a pig.”

“No he wasn’t. Isn’t.”

“Right. Believe that.”

“Don’t even think about starting in on my dad. He’s a good man.”

“Today he is. That’s because he knows the same thing I know – you can either have fun, or you can have security, but you can’t have both.”

“You’re saying men need security, too.”

“Hell yes. They just don’t know it. I’m talking at the foundational level. The majority of them think they can protect themselves, and physically speaking, that’s mostly true. But emotionally, they are FAR more raw and defenseless than girls. That’s the key. If you want a relationship to last, you must trick the man into thinking he needs you.”

“So he doesn’t really?”

“Yes, he really does. But you can’t just say, ‘You’re insecure and you need me.’ You have to trick him.”

“And how do you do that? Assuming this line of reasoning is even ethical.”

“By convincing him YOU need HIM.”

“But I do need him.”

“No you don’t. You only THINK you do. You’re a woman. Women don’t need men. They need us.”

“Oh come on, Mandy. Bullshit. We need each other.”

“Do we? Think about it. When a man’s biological clock goes off, he starts overeating, buys a sports car, takes up golf and divorces his wife. When a woman’s clock goes off, she has kids, goes on a diet, gets a part-time job and changes her hair. Men are self-destructive. Women are life-givers. We face truths men aren’t willing to face.”

Cindy licks her yogurt and chuckles. “I think you’re pulling all this out of your ass.”

“Oh no. I got it from a very reliable source.”

“Oh yeah? What’s that?”

“‘Fight Club.'”

“‘Fight Club.'”

“That’s right.”

“The movie about the guys who beat each other up.”

“That’s right. Did you see it?”

“Hell no. If I wanna see a fist fight, I’ll go back to Daniel.”

“Daniel’s parents were divorced, right?”

“Yes. You’ve got a good memory.”

“Tyler Durden, the character from ‘Fight Club,’ says men are impotent emotionally because they’re a generation raised by women. When the parents divorced, not only was the mother forced to act as both emotional provider and financial protector, but the role of the father was diminished. It’s a father’s job to teach the boy that sexual proclivity and emotional stability are tied together in one messy bundle. If you chase tail without regard for emotion, you end up diseased and broken.”

“It sounds like you’re talking about a girl.”

“That’s the way in which we’re the same. If you want a relationship to work, you have to realize that men are fragile and need to be coddled.”

“Huh. That actually makes sense.”

“I know! We watch TV and movies all day and we’re supposed to think it’s the other way around. But men control the media, and they perpetuate the myth that men are the stronger gender. Nothing could be further from the truth. I’m not talking about some flimsy feminist mystique designed to transform stay-at-home moms into chief executive officers. I’m talking about a truth that’s obvious to anyone with eyeballs.” Mandy puts her spoon down and places a hand on Cindy’s hand. “That’s why you had no business following that silly article about how to seduce a man. I’m telling you, EVERY guy in the world is just jumping at the chance to sleep with a woman, any woman. It has nothing to do with how beautiful women are and everything to do with how horny men are. They can’t find someone who’ll protect them like their mothers did, so they settle for sex.”

Cindy is not convinced Mandy is correct, or not fully correct, but enough of what she says strikes a chord that Cindy is drawn to learn more. “Okay, I get it. I never wanted casual sex. I want a relationship.”

“That’s right.”

“I get it.”

“Finally. Like I said, just be honest about what you want.”

“But you make it sound like all men are broken.”

“And aren’t women? You’re the one bar-hopping. The good news is, there’s hope.”

“If you know so much, Mandy, why aren’t you in a relationship? When I met you, you were banging a law partner twice your age.”

“That’s because the right guy hasn’t come along yet. When he does, I’ll know, and I’ll change my strategy. Instead of chasing after sex, I’ll cook meals and ask him how his day was and shit.”

“I can’t help pointing out how cynical all this sounds.”

“What can I say. I’m a cynic.”

Mandy and Cindy walk out to the car. They drive around with sunglasses on and continue the conversation. “But you can’t decide to change just like that,” Cindy says.

“Why should I change? I told you, I haven’t found a man worth snagging yet.”

“So what’s THAT look like?”

“He’ll have his shit together, that’s what. I don’t care if he’s got a good job and lots of money. He’s got to have potential. He’s got to have a clue. When I ask him what he wants to do with his life, he knows. He wants to contribute something to the world, not just see how much he can get from it. He wants to be faithful to one woman, he wants to stick around for his kids’ birthdays and plays and graduations.” Mandy’s knuckles are white as she grips the wheel too hard.

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