As everyone knows, there are only four types of women in the world: The Carrie, The Charlotte, The Samanth –oh my god, just kidding! We are all beautiful snowflakes. Men, on the other hand… well, they are actually much easier to classify. This is not to say that on an individual level guys aren’t as unique and varied as we are, but when it comes to dating, they typically fall into three categories: The Bartender, The Banker and The Music Maker.
My advice to all my girlfriends is to try each of these flavors, seriously. I mean seriously try them, and take trying them seriously. I know that lots of us think we already know what we want in a man and a relationship (or maybe we don’t want one at all), but I am of the opinion that you really can’t be sure unless you taste the proverbial rainbow. You don’t have to move in with these dudes, or even date them for more than three weeks, but I do think its important to try them all for your own edification. Also, dating is fun!
As a sort of, um, expert, I’ve put together a cheat sheet so you know what to expect before you accept a date with one of these men. These are massive generalizations, but hey, sometimes a crazy/adventurous life needs a little simplification.
No doubt, this guy is going to be the most fun. But realness: you best be a night owl as well if you’re going to make it work. Sorry in advance for all the Sex and The City references, but remember how annoyed Miranda was with Steve for always working late? Yeah, you don’t want that. Bartenders are great boyfriends for social butterflies, other bartenders, artists and women who work in PR. They are usually hip to current style, are relatively laid back and obviously know how to make a good drink.
However! Bartenders may stir up (see what I did there?) a little trouble for a girl with trust issues. You must be comfortable with him spending the night hanging out with other women. Drunk women. Drunk women in tube tops. Dating a bartender is a really good way to figure out what kind of relationship you are looking for. Do you want someone to have dinner with every night? Someone who can take you out on Saturday and has enough energy to go the Farmer’s Market with you on Sunday morning? If so, a bartender might not be right for you.
That said – they are generally excellent kissers. Trust.
Your parents must be so happy – you’re finally dating a guy with a “real” job! Maybe your banker boyfriend wears little suits and ties every day. He probably knows all sorts of stuff about taxes, reads the newspaper, and packs his own lunch. He is responsible and thinks about the future and knows “how the world works”.
Bankers are great to date right after you break up with the Bartender because they really put things into perspective. Men! They’re all so different! Once you sleep in a real bed, with a real bed frame, as opposed to a mattress on the floor, you will never want to go back. Dating someone with a life plan forces you to think about your own – and that is the best gift The Banker will ever give you. Also maybe jewelry.
That said, when I was dating a Banker-type, I definitely had a Punky Brewster complex. I felt like he had adopted me – a little graduate student street rat – and was trying to “normalize me” and turn me into his version of an adult. In many ways, I was his Bartender – a project that he always felt the need to work on. Like when Mr. Big told Carrie he didn’t want her to eat oranges in bed anymore – or their entire relationship in general. And the whole thing made me feel kind of bad about myself. Life lesson: you should never date anyone who makes you feel less legitimate, or less “real”. A guy with a “real” job is a real nothing if he makes you feel like crap. To be fair, some Banker-types are really genuinely nice guys. Of course, there is only one way to find out – by experiencing them first hand. Like Pokémon, you must catch (date) them all.
The Music Maker
Here is a statistic I totally made up – 95% of women will date a musician at some point in their lives. The draw to these guys is pretty obvious: they’re creative, usually more sensitive than other dudes, and they have a talent that has been proven sexy again, and again and again. The old stereotype is that a lot of boys learn to play the guitar or the drums just to get with girls. This whole post is about stereotypes, so for argument’s sake, I will say that it’s true. Every guy who owns a guitar is a total horn dog.
Kidding! All guys are horn dogs! Also kidding. Jeeze, Dan Savage is going to kill me! Anyways, you must date a musician. It’s a rite of passage no woman should miss out on. A musician will make you DIY presents and write songs about you. He will introduce you to new music and give you little solo shows in his down time. He’s going to have a serious grasp on romance, and likely make you feel like a teenage dream. To be frank, it does feel kind of awesome to be dating someone in the band. I don’t care how cliché that is.
Whichever guy is more your type (or maybe you are more into scientists, chefs, or therapists), just make sure you are enjoying yourself. As I said before, dating should be fun and educational, so don’t waste your time being with a dude whose life plan involves making things difficult. The spoiler is you’re probably going to end up with someone who is the perfect combination of all of the above, and whose biggest job as a boyfriend is supporting you. That’s the kind of guy you want to date – but you’re going to have to do a lot of research before you find him. Good luck!