Hard as it might be for sistahs to believe, everything that goes wrong in the pursuit of life, liberty and a relationship that works out is not necessarily the man’s fault. Much as the ladies like to believe the only mistake they ever make is picking the wrong guy, they can rethink that one, too.
It’s not hard to understand Black women who feel they can do no wrong. For one, they are among the sexiest, most profoundly alluring creatures on the face of the earth. Two, women of all colors — most of ‘em, anyway — dodge personal responsibility like a cat avoiding a sprinkler. Like Jack Nicholson, playing the best-selling novelist in As Good As It Gets, said when asked how he was able to so successfully create female characters, “I [leave out] reason and accountability.”
You put the two characteristics together and you have someone who’s thoroughly convinced that when they go out of a first date, this guy should be so grateful she gave him her phone number — much less actually let him take her out — he’s supposed to put up with anything and everything she says or does.
Well, hate to break it to you, but after a man has been around a few blocks, especially if he’s an actual grown-up, not some fool who still thinks like a horny teenager, he may very well be grateful you came out, until you become — no matter how good you look — increasingly unattractive.
Fact is, to a sensibly discerning male, the sexiest thing about a woman is her personality. Old Chinese proverb? No, but it should be. That said, let us proceed. No matter how hot you are, you can run the risk of cooling him off.
Take the attitude that he’s a footman or flunky and leave it at home in the dresser drawer. When you don’t bother to say, ”Thank you” once when he holds the door for you, takes your wrap at the restaurant, or pulls out your chair, you ignored his courtesy three times before the night even got started good.
And, let me guess, you didn’t thank him for picking up the tab for dinner. You feel, “Well, he’s supposed to do that — what he need a thank you for?” You also likely have several flavors of ice cream in the fridge along with a special bowl and spoon.
That kind of taking the little things for granted will alert him that if he’s looking for a relationship, one with you is apt to entail you expecting your behind to be kissed. On a regular basis.
Don’t constantly contradict, even if you really do know everything. There’s a difference between you and him disagreeing on something and you always having to be right, whether you are or not. No self-respecting Black man is going to deal himself in for that kind of consistent headache.
Which doesn’t mean, sistah girl, you can’t find somebody to put up with it. Just don’t plan on the man being a brotha.
Leave your phone alone. If your career is so important you have to be on call in the middle of this man’s time, so much to the extent you can’t let your voicemail get it and have yourself a second conversation, you should’ve stayed home and been on call there instead of being rude.
Numero uno. If you really are out to sabotage things before they even start, talk about your ex. It is amazing how many women will sit and do that and then have a funny look on their face when the guy calls the date to an early end.
These are just a handful of reasons why he never called you again. For the full countdown, use a little common sense. Give him the same respect you expect. And don’t be so sure your pretty face and hot body constitute license to act any way your ego tells you to.
The plain truth: If being beautiful was what it’s all about, you would not be sitting home, reading this with a carton of Häagen-Dazs thawing on the kitchen counter.
Dwight Hobbes welcomes reader responses to P.O. Box 50357, Mpls., 55403.