The word “flirt” has always sounded like a gross bodily function to me. Like something you don’t talk about in polite company and certainly not something you do in front of people you have a crush on. If you find yourself flirting often and without shame, you should seek medical attention.
Nice people don’t flirt.
Only nice people do flirt, and some of them do it for fun. And even though I felt totally disgusting, I said the word “flirt” approximately 7,463 times in the newest episode of Life & Steph so we could talk about the weird, weird weirdness of the whole business.
That video is 14 minutes long. It’s got a cameo appearance by Tommy Lee Jones and a subplot involving an old-timey radio show. It’s pretty in-depth, is what I’m saying. But there’s one super-important, super-confusing element of flirting that I didn’t get into in the video.
There have been a couple occasions when I’ve found myself talking to a real cutie-patootie but I’m not sure if it’s the time or the place to whip out that classic Stephanie charm (which mostly involves choking on my own spit and covering my forehead vein with various strategically placed objects — large handbags, small animals, you get the idea.) So I made this little quiz!
Should You Flirt with This Person?
1. How old are they?
a. My age, probably? The lights are dim
b. Very, very old
c. Distressingly young
2. Where are you?
a. A fun party!
b. My therapist’s office!
c. A funeral!
3. What’s the mood?
a. Fun and fearless. Like two-thirds of Cosmo
b. There isn’t really a mood, but there is a weird smell and for a second I thought it was coming from me. It’s not, though. For the record
4. Is this person working and maybe only being receptive to you because of that?
c. They assure me they’ve never held a job
5. Are they in a situation where they might feel uncomfortable if you flirt with them?
a. They are conveniently alone. But not so alone that me walking over to them would be threatening or anything
b. Their parents and grandparents are present
c. Their priest is here
6. Is this person married or in a committed relationship?
a. Everyone likes it, but no one’s put a ring on it
b. I attended their wedding yesterday, but a lot can change in 24 hours. Just ask Kiefer Sutherland.
c. I’m not sure, but they have a giant tattoo of someone’s face and I’m pretty sure I see the same face across the room glaring at me.
If you answered mostly a’s, you can flirt with this person! I’m not sure how. Try choking on your spit.
If you answered mostly b’s, you probably shouldn’t flirt with this person. It’s just not the right time. Give it a decade or four.
If you answered mostly c’s, I’m very sorry for your loss. Also, please step away from the tattooed child.
Sometimes I wake up in the middle of the night smiling because I’ve just had a beautiful dream about puppies and bubbles. These are wonderful moments, and if I could record the expression of joy on my face without some kind of creepy, Paranormal Activities camera set-up, I would. Then I would send it to each of you when you’re feeling down, partially to cheer you up and partially to satisfy an overpowering sense of schadenfreude.
Unfortunately, there are times when I wake up in the middle of the night thoroughly convinced that I’m actually a cancerous mass which will destroy everything it touches and die completely and rightfully alone. Someone is going to find my preserved body six years after my death, sitting in front of a computer, surrounded by Snickers wrappers and stuffed cats, empty eye-sockets pointed towards a Google search explaining how to perform the Heimlich maneuver on yourself.
For the sake of practicality and my future neighbors’ noses, I think I should find someone who will at least notice that I’ve choked on a candy bar and expired. I’ve been working on a strategy, and I think it’s finally ready to share with the world.
A Guide to Picking Attractive Strangers Up
1) Establish a firm grip.
2) Lift using your legs, not your back.
3) Ignore their protests and squirms.
Ok, seriously this time.
So You Wanna Pick Up An Attractive Stranger
– Charm them with your rapier wit. Say something cool and casual.
A personal favorite of mine is, “I…of your…do you… I love pens. I mostly use them to write but also sometimes I stab things with them. Not people! I don’t stab people! Except once I hit my brother with a shovel! But I meant, like… packages and stuff. To open them? Ha?”
– Joke with them! Did you know ugly cavemen used a sense of humor to attract cavewomen? My favorite joke demonstrates both my ability to read and memorize Laffy Taffy wrappers, and my inhuman Laffy Taffy-consumption. Yes, I really am a wonder.
There’s something I need to acknowledge. It’s taken me a long time to accept it about myself, but it’s time for me to come out and admit it. I… am a hot damn mess.
Gross May Be An Understatement
– My morning breath is awful.
– If I didn’t shave my legs, there’s a distinct possibility I’d be mistaken for a chimpanzee.
– I Hulk out when I forget to eat. Not in a cute, green-tinged, cutoff-pants kind of way, but in an incoherent, zero-to-psycho in 3 seconds flat kind of way.
– I once listened to the same Ke$ha song 23 times in a row. (She’s catchy. I hate her.)
– I made three people cry with sarcastic comments… last month.
What he said: “The dentist said he couldn’t believe I was still single with teeth like this.”
What I said: “Now you just need to find a lady friend with equally excellent teeth and have babies with teeth that make orthodontists weep.”
What he did: Ran away.
What I should have said:
5. Well, you know what they say about men with good teeth. Good… chewing.
4. You should make plaster casts now so you can have perfect dentures in case you ever lose your teeth in a terrible accident.
3. Did you know that herbivorous dinosaurs had peg-like teeth, the better to strip leaves off plants?
2. Did you see last night’s game?
1. Literally anything else.