Greetings, Council Members!
Like many of the (actual) young(ish) humans of Earth, I, L the Alien, constantly swing back and forth between a state of total faith in my own awesomeness and a total lack of faith in my own awesomeness.
Becoming an adult human is a frustrating dance of highs and lows; a strange collage of blind confidence and crippling insecurity. It’s pretty confusing, honestly. One day you’re like, “Hells yea I got this responsibility thing on lock down,” the next day you suddenly remember you forgot to pay a bill while mopping up your own vomit.
The point, Council, is that humans make lots of mistakes. It’s hard not to screw things up unintentionally once in a while, because as we say almost daily here on Earth, shit happens. But what about the mistakes that we consciously make?
Most specifically I’m talking about the stuff we clearly know is not getting us any closer to becoming That-Person-We-Want-to-Be, but that we keep doing anyway, sometimes for many decades of Earth years, without ever really knowing why, and without ever really trying to change.
Logic tells us that we can become That Person whenever we want, by getting our priorities in order and then giving each of them the exact amount of attention they need to yield results while simultaneously stopping behaviors we know are risky or destructive to our goals. Obviously the real process is more gradual and complicated, but if we really wanted to get our act together once and for all, we could just do it, right?
So why don’t we? How come we hold ourselves back from next-level changes that could make a big difference in our lives? Why is it always so hard to take the first step?
Shacking up, playing house, moving in together. It’s a topic that seems to have a very specific calculation as to when the time is right. Like an old family recipe that has to be baked at the exact right temperature, for not a second longer than the recipe calls for or it will burn up and ruin Thanksgiving dinner. But our choices are our own and don’t fit under one specific recipe. So, how do we know when to start the timer?
I recently have found myself accidentally living at my boyfriend’s house. It’s closer to my job, his fridge always has food in it, and I happen to have fallen in love with his cat. But mostly, it’s because he’s there. I have yet to commit a toothbrush to his house and my clothes still come back and forth with me in an overnight bag, but yeah, I kind of live there.
Cadillacs. Elvis. Meatloaf. Could you live like it was the 1950s? What if it was to save your marriage?
That’s what one couple is doing. Gary and Mandy Jones from Tamworth, Staffordshire, claim that living like a 1950s husband and housewife is the key to a happy marriage. Mandy told the Daily Mail, “It may seem strange and we get the odd nasty comment, but this way of life works for us and has saved our marriage. We love everything about the 1950s, from the clothes to the way of life. Since we started living like this I’ve been a better wife and Gary and I are closer than ever. We should all take advice from our grandparents and start living the Fifties way.”
“You won’t believe what’s going to happen,” teases the narrator ominously, as we watch recaps of recaps of recaps before the episode begins.
You wouldn’t believe the things I can believe, The Bachelorette Voice-Over Artist. The only thing that will shock me is if she doesn’t choose Josh, a man who is essentially the prototype of everything she’s always been into (for reference: my prototype is Willem Dafoe in The Last Temptation of Christ, since I like men who are my dad’s age, grew up Catholic, and thought I should be a nun for about ten seconds). Josh is Andi’s Jesus-portraying Willem Dafoe. There’s no way she’s not picking him.
One hot tip from Chris Harrison before we begin this hot mess: The man who she refuses has done some restraining order-type behaviors in trying to speak with her (sounds like Nick), including trying to speak with her while she is on vacation in Mexico and trying to speak with her at the “Men Tell All” taping.
Those are my pre-taping predictions. On with the recap.
First dates can be nerve-wracking. First of all, you’re concerned about doing everything right on your end of things—wearing something flattering yet comfortable, keeping an open mind, following the hundreds of dating-etiquette rules that have been established over the course of human history, etc. But you also want to pay attention to the person across the table (that’s part of being on a date, right?), not only to make sure they’re having a good time, but also to gauge their level of interest in you.*
How do you interpret that interest? By the way he talks. He’s definitely attracted to you if there’s a sing-song quality to his voice.
You should also notice the kind of eye contact he makes. Whether he spends more time looking at your face or your body determines how he’s attracted to you.
Also make note of body language. And conversation topics. And how he’s dressed.
I shouldn’t have continued dating Jason once I found out he sold weed. I probably should have just called it quits when he angrily threw a small McDonald’s French fry at me because I didn’t read his mind and buy a burger. And, I definitely shouldn’t have loaned him $1,000 over the course of the few months we dated.
At 21 years old, deciding to date a prop master/weed dealer seven years my senior—whom I met while doing background work on the set of a Dick Van Dyke Lifetime movie—was not a good idea. But, I’m not going to tell you about this sad unhealthy mistake I made in my early twenties. It’s a trite story that’s not very interesting. However, how I got back the money I loaned him definitely is.
Lana Del Rey isn’t shy about her sex life, and I can’t help but wonder if this makes her a role model. I like brave women who are truthful about their experiences, and Del Rey proved to be one when she admitted in an interview with Complex magazine that, “I have slept with a lot of guys in the industry, but none of them helped me get my record deals. Which is annoying.”
I find her comment both funny and real, but I could easily see how some people might think this is a damaging thing to say. I personally like how frank she is. A lot of people think Lana Del Rey is “fake”. After all, her nails are fake, her makeup is heavy and exaggerated, and her name isn’t even Lana Del Rey (it’s Lizzie Grant). But you know what? Elton John’s real name isn’t Elton John. Mick Jagger used to wear heaps of makeup. And David Bowie, as much as I adore him, lives as entire different personas every time he makes an album. But no one gets on their case of being “fake.”
“Why, yes, that’s correct: my magic number is like 1022, I think. I lost track a while ago,” Kirsten Knisely–outspoken 26 ¾ -year-old single white feminist, and author of her very own blog Love and ADD–said from the soapbox of her small apartment in the early hours of July 16. “I’m like a modern-day Carrie Bradshaw.”
This statement shocked the women of the Internet when it came in direct response and contradiction to sex expert Tracey Cox’s article, “No matter how many people you’ve slept with, it will always be too many’; Sex expert Tracey Cox on why women should NEVER reveal how many lovers they’ve had.”
It was a resplendent day in the outback when my friends and I set out to experience the famous Bell Gorge, known for its daunting cliffs and deadly challenges. To get there, we had to drive off-road for an hour, wade through unpleasantly croc-infested water and hike for miles. If you were brave enough to attempt ‘The Jump’, though, you had to climb even higher on the extremely rocky terrain that stretched over the gorge. The men in my group were anxious to race each other to the top and be the first to conquer the mammoth cliff.
The girls and I laid down our towels and waved goodbye as the guys set off in search of bigger thrills. (I don’t see what could be a bigger thrill than achieving the ultimate cinnamon glow, but whatever.) Before we knew it, the guys were at the top of the cliff, a little more than fifteen meters above us. Expecting the men to jump right away, we all had our cameras ready and waiting. And waiting. And waiting … What was the hold-up?
Have you played The Numbers Game? That’s when your significant other (SO) asks you how many people you’ve slept with. It is a dangerous game.
But even more dangerous than the game itself is the advice sex expert Tracey Cox offers women on the subject:
Keep your mouth zipped even if nothing else has been: by putting a number on your sexual history you’re removing the emotion and the circumstances.
And don’t kid yourself: if you do blurt out a figure to your boyfriend, you will be judged – and not necessarily by the same rules he judges himself on.
Even if he’s slept with 300, your three will be two too many.
I think it’s dangerous advice for two main reasons: 1. it wanders into slut-shaming territory and 2. it promotes lying to your partner. Let’s take a look at the first point.
Yay for padding! Tonight, Unhelpful Therapist™ Chris Harrison becomes Useless-at-Follow-Up-Questions Journalist™ Chris Harrison. Before we get to the main event, former bachelorette Ashley and her husband (from the show) JP show up, and Ashley is about seven months pregnant. Chris Harrison’s introduction: “When I told you guys to say your ‘I do’s’ it turns out you took it pretty seriously.”
In other news, Ashley and JP moved to Miami. “To be closer to Juan Pablo,” Chris Harrison cracks.
We’re all looking for something. Some of us are looking for a job, a love life, and maybe even just a couple of better parents. Thank goodness there’s online matchmaking sites for all your needs.
The-Gaggle.com is a website that explores modern romance in the Millennial era – which, let’s be honest, looks nothing like we were taught to expect. We feature essays, advice and social commentary with humor, compassion and brains, and we vow never, ever to publish a piece called “The 10 Best Ways to Satisfy Your Man in Bed”. Do click here to submit your work to us. We love you.