High Tolerance
Tuesday, August 3, 2010 at 3:00PM
blue in Everyday Observations

There are quite a few things that I believe that I can handle better than most men: Alcohol (I don’t drink much these days, but my liver is still a wonderland); stomach aches (thanks to 4 years of intense training at the hands of the chefs at my alma mater's cafeteria) and heartbreak (I’ve become adept at scooping up the broken pieces of my heart in one fell swoop). All of these things have happened with such frequency that I’ve developed strong coping mechanisms. But the other thing that I’m almost sure that I can handle better than most men is a compliment given by a member of the opposite sex…and by “better” I mean that I (mostly) don’t ever feel compelled to act on such advances by attempting to shtup them. Moreover, never have such compliments resulted in the instantaneous engorgement of my otherwise flaccid ego.

Not so long ago someone asked me if I get hit on every day. Well, every day would be a bit of an exaggeration—but not by much. For instance, just this morning I was propositioned by a brother on his way to work. (He has a corner office on the Block). Later, by someone who was visiting my workplace (this young man happened to be winking at me...while in handcuffs). Oh-and then there was that gorgeous so-and-so at Starbucks who interrupted me mid-sip to share that he thought that I was beautiful (at which point I noticed his bejeweled left index-finger). Yes: I get hit on, and hit on often—but not by men who I would consider as either beddable or dateable (and, of course, the former wouldn’t come without the latter).

To be clear, even if these men were beddable, dateable AND wed-able, I have no delusions whatsoever about whether these come-ons are an affirmation of my fineness: Not all men-but some men-will hit on anyone who just might have a [insert term for a sexualized vagina here]. And not all men-but many more men- will holla at any woman who is EITHER (a) fairly attractive; OR (b) has a fat ass. I know this, therefore I am humble. This is not to say that I don’t ever get approached by a Good Black Man (whatever that means)-but being complimented by a visually unflawed man occurs so infrequently that when it does happen I kind of already assume that his unfuckability is a latent defect.

It seems, though, that men swoon at compliments thrown their way-even if the complimenter is only kinda/sorta/maybeinthedarkifnoonewaslooking attractive. Unlike women who casually shake off lustful glances and false cloaks of grandeur, men wear even perceived praises as crowns… and may actually try and act on them. (n.1) Can you imagine if men were complimented even half as much the average woman? (But then again maybe if women did hand out casual affirmations with greater frequency they, too, would become immune).


n.1  At least that's what many women fear. Have you ever given an innocent compliment to man who is married/taken on Facebook?! I once complimented an ex's newspaper article and his wife TRIPPED. But then again, he followed up with flirty chats and emails...so.... 


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