Tatti Ribeiro
January 23, 2014 2:00 pm
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I wrote this intro (see below re: narcissism) last week – and decided to leave it in this week because this column (saying “column” feels pretentious) isn’t a regular thing yet, and I don’t expect any of you to have read last week’s post or know anything about what I’m writing. So here’s what I’m doing:

Twitter makes me feel like a narcissist. I’m going to try and feel less like a narcissist by breaking down what my tweets mean on some level, so that they might actually serve as help or entertainment or whatever to someone, and not just as a way for me to passively talk about everyone I know. Is this a narcissistic thing to do?

I wrote that in a Whole Foods parking lot on a Wednesday at 10:27am. “I’d break up with you for reversing into a parking spot.” That thought didn’t occur to me because I was dating someone who did this. I wasn’t dating anyone. By the way – still not dating anyone. I am single! And before you feel bad for me, don’t! Because it’s totally great. I feel free and independent, and I can do whatever I want, whenever I want. I’m mean, hello, I’m single by choice. That’s the vibe a confident single person would put out, right?

I tweeted that after a man bumped into me reversing his truck into a parking spot. He tapped me with his TRUCK and then waved me off, as if it were my fault. I got mad, he didn’t react, I got even more upset, he thought I was “overreacting”, whatever. If those guys with clipboards standing behind me asking everyone “Do you care about children?” weren’t in the middle of something really important, like saving children, they’d have backed me up.

I walked around shopping and thought about how awful that guy was. I thought about how I would never date someone who reversed into a parking spot. I tweeted my tweet and I laughed, because it was true.

I wouldn’t date that guy, and I wouldn’t date someone who had rims, tinted windows or a white convertible. I thought about how I would never date someone who was rude to women. I thought about how I would never date someone who didn’t know when to apologize. I thought about a whole list of things I would avoid:

  • Men named Dale
  • Men in flip-flops
  • Men in jorts
  • Men who give hickeys
  • Men who wear puka shell chokers.
  • Men who disguise anti-feminism as chivalry*

*This is my least favorite type of man. Do you know those men? The ones who talk about their wives or girlfriends like they’re prisoners but disguise it as them being chivalrous? Like, “I LOVE my wife, that’s why I don’t let her work. Why would I let someone I love leave the house, a place where she’s comfortable and well taken care of?”

My list is real, but also crazy.

I’m quick to judge. For example, the first thing I thought when I found the photo for this article was, “I would never date him because he has a dreamcatcher hanging from his mirror”. That’s what I saw: the dreamcatcher, not the guy. I looked right past his face and saw the out of focus dreamcatcher dangling in the background. Because you can’t fool me, honey!

Kay Cannon wrote this episode of 30 Rock that taught me/everyone the term “dealbreaker”. I get that 30 Rock is a comedy and this was obviously a joke… but, was it, really?

  • If your man is over thirty and still wears a name tag to work… that’s a dealbreaker, ladies!
  • If your man practices Jedi moves in a park… that’s a dealbreaker, ladies!
  • If your man has to sneak you inside his house to avoid his mother… that’s a dealbreaker, ladies!
  • Your man appears on “To Catch a Predator” on Dateline… that’s a dealbreaker, ladies!
  • Your man wears a cape… that’s a dealbreaker, ladies!

Does everyone do this? Do we all have too many dealbreakers? If we were smarter and kinder, would we avoid having any dealbreakers at all? Is keeping a list of things I hate keeping me from meeting someone dope? I don’t know.

I’m constantly told to be to be less harsh and arbitrary in my excuses for not going out with someone. Uh, I wouldn’t call careful subjective decision making an excuse, but maybe it is. Maybe that’s exactly what I’m doing. Sometimes I wonder who I’m waiting for. I’m not sure.

I think I (WE) should start by letting go of all the shallow s**t, the surface level dealbreakers have got to go. Think about the people you love the most. Now think of some things they do that you hate, things that would be definite dealbreakers if you didn’t already love them. Do you see what I did there? I just showed you that everyone has some deterring quality about them. I would give some funny personal examples right here, but my friends and family are like, my primary audience right now, and I want them to talk to me after they read this. So think of your own!

Everyone is a weirdo, and everyone, even you (maybe me… but probably not), has something about them that could be considered a dealbreaker. Humans are flawed and imperfect. That’s what makes us unique and compassionate, and funny.

Inexperienced/perfect people are really well-adjusted and have zero funny stories to tell. Do you know anyone perfect? Have you ever talked to them on purpose? No, you haven’t. Because perfection is soooo, eh.

(Remember when Beyoncé made this face at perfection and it killed everyone?!)

Don’t date everyone, but also don’t hate everyone. Don’t be scared of everyone. Don’t write everyone off. Maybe give 17% of people a chance instead of 1%. That’s so many more people. That’s so many more chances for a great date that turns into a friend or a boyfriend or HUSBAND HONEY. Or maybe you’ll get super lucky and have a horrible date that becomes a really REALLY funny Tweet.