THE BALLAD OF TANK: A CAUTIONARY TALE
Take heed, my friends. The following story will strike a chord with each and every one of you. Some of the words may be too painful for you to bear. But you must read on. You must learn from the tale I am about to tell, lest you continue in obsolescence.
There once was a young man named
Hank we’ll call him Tank. The first time I met Tank was at a Superbowl party. I had never met him before but he came with a friend of mine so I figured he must be alright. He was obviously into her. He didn’t really talk to anyone else the whole night and every time she moved her seat, he’d move right next to her.
He was a boy, she was a girl. Can I make it anymore obvious? – Avril Lavigne
A few weeks later, Tank finally made a move. He went to my friend’s apartment and asked her on a date. She was so surprised that she said no and closed the door in his face! They haven’t talked since. Tank got hardcore friendzoned, possibly even given the boot altogether.
Here’s a rundown of what he did wrong:
-He obviously waited too long to make his feelings known
-He was too clingy
-He made it awkward
-He went for a movie ending without hashing out the beginning and middle
-He probably missed some hints
The easiest way to win the game is not to play, but that’s not an option here. You don’t want to spend your life on the sidelines. You’re too good a player to be sitting the bench. At least that’s what I tell myself. If you’ll follow this handy guide to avoiding the friendzone, you can avoid going down the same dark path that our dear friend, Tank, went down.
1. GIVE HER SOME SPACE
Nobody likes being around someone that’s clingy but girls especially don’t like a clingy guy. They don’t want you responding to their texts in half a second and they don’t need you constantly checking up on them. It makes you seem obsessive and uninteresting. What kind of interesting things could be going on in your life if you have time to answer her at the drop of a hat?
If you’re at an event or gathering or something together, you don’t have to be attached at the hip. Walk around and talk to people or hang out in different groups. It’s kind of weird if you never leave her side. Give her some room to breathe. She may be all you think about, but you might not be the same for her. Actually, you’re probably not, especially if you’re being annoying. Plus, you’ll seem like you don’t have any friends aside from her and she might feel sorry for you which is not a good sign. If you’re worried about her talking to people that are more interesting than you, maybe you need to be more interesting or less insecure.
Show her that y’all can be apart without you having a panic attack.
2. BE CONFIDENT
Nothing turns a girl off more than a guy that’s insecure. More often than not, guys will try to hide those insecurities only for them to manifest themselves in unhealthy ways later on. They might cause you to lash out at the girl you’re pursuing and that is extremely counterproductive. Work on your problems or your mindset before you even think about getting into a relationship. You don’t want to bring a bunch of baggage in with you and you don’t want to risk hurting someone you care about.
If it’s your appearance you’re insecure about, there are ways to change it without going overboard. Try a new haircut or facial hair style. If you’re smaller, go to the gym and bulk up some. If you think she might leave you for somebody else, that’s something you’ll have to worry about if you get into a relationship with her.
Working on those things that bother you will not only improve them, they’ll allow you to feel in control of your situation and that will boost your confidence. It will also prepare you for those inevitable times in a relationship when you’ll need to work through some hard stuff. You’ll be more likely to endure to the end.
3. BE ABLE TO PICK UP ON HINTS
This is a big one. You’ve got to be able to pick up on hints. If you can’t do this, you’re pretty much destined to fail. Girls don’t like to straight up say how they feel. They want guys to pick up on their hints (or more accurately, read their minds). They’ll drop subtle hints if they’re interested in you but they’ll drop atomic bombs for hints to let you know they’re not interested. The bad thing about being a guy is that we normally can’t tell these two apart.
I’ll cover some of the signs in another blog post but for now I’ll talk about some of the more obvious ones you’ll come across. One of the signs that she’s at least a little interested is physical contact like playful hitting. She might slap your arm or backhand your chest or something like that. Unless she’s straight up decking you in the face, this is usually a good sign. An obvious sign she’s not interested in you is that she comes to you for guy advice or treats you like her gay best friend. She’ll confide in you and tell you her secrets and you’ll think that means you’re getting closer. ABORT! Or you’ll be placed firmly in the friendzone with little to no escape options.
4. MAKE YOUR FEELINGS KNOW ASAP
You’ve gotta let her know how you feel about her as soon as possible. It doesn’t how awkward you think it’s going to be. You have to. Sometimes guys think doing that might “mess up their chances” but nothing will mess up your chances like not having any in the first place. Next thing you know, you’ve been spending months trying to win over a girl who’s been hooking up with some other guy every time she finishes hanging out with you and telling you about all of her problems. The sooner you get this out of the way, the sooner you know whether or not to keep going after her or to just move on.
Having to move on will suck but it will be a lot better in the long run than the alternative. Just think about it. Would you want to know you’ve got no shot early on so you can move on to some other girl that would possibly work out or would you rather waste months of your life just to end up heartbroken anyway?
5. REMEMBER THAT LIFE IS NOT A MOVIE
You’ve got to remember that no matter what advice you learned or romantic scenes you’ve seen in movies, life is rarely like that. A girl is not going to slowly but surely develop feelings for you as you slave away for her and answer her every beckon call. Her feelings aren’t going to culminate until they overwhelm her one rainy night when you show up on her doorstep to confess your love. She’ll just think you’re a wet fool. And she might close her door in your face after rejecting you. You have to be realistic. You can’t just drop a love bomb on her and expect her to fall head over heels for you. You can’t use cheesy one-liners you saw on a romcom on her. She probably won’t even be listening. She’ll be thinking “WTF IS GOING ON?” so just be chill.
It’s not a perfect list or even that comprehensive, but you’ll be better off if you follow these basic rules. Maybe I’ll expand on some of the points some time in the future.
If none of that works out, Rob Thomas will ease your pain.