Nice Guys, Confused GirlsbyAmerican_Knowbody©
It was Monday night and the phone rang just as I was settling in for an evening of Kung Pao chicken, satellite TV, and a cold beer with which I intended to have a short but meaningful relationship. I looked at the caller ID and against my better judgment answered it.
"Hey, Patricia called me back!" the voice on the other end announced.
The voice belonged to my buddy, Mark, a brilliant engineer, hapless romantic, and unfortunately nice guy. The 'she' he was referring to was Patricia, an upwardly mobile professional, emotional work in progress, and the latest mistake for whom Mark had fallen head over heals.
"That's great, Mark. But didn't you leave her a message, like, three days ago?"
To be honest, I surprised myself by remembering even that much. It seemed like every other day he was calling me to give the latest account of his 'relationship' with Patricia. After a while I had begun to just tune it out.
"Yeah, but it's okay. Patricia said she's been busy at work and hasn't been feeling well. Plus her favorite TV shows have been airing new episodes."
"Uh-huh. Well, as long as she had a good excuse," I said, trying to strike a tone that balanced supportive friendship with bitch slap sarcasm.
"That's exactly what I said," he said, the bitch slap having apparently missed the mark. "I played it cool, though, and just told her, 'Don't worry about it. I'm just glad you're all right and we're getting a chance to talk now.' And, man, did we talk! Can you believe we were on the phone for over two hours?"
He paused waiting for my reaction.
Shit. There it was. The cue for me to ask. I really didn't want to but sooner or later he'd find a way to get into it. So, deciding to get it over with and not prolong the inevitable, I opened my mouth and forced the words out before I could close it again.
"What did you guys talk about?"
I braced myself with a swig of beer, picked up the remote and began flipping my way through all 427 digital channels, even CSPAN-HD where you're able to watch politicians lie in high definition.
"Well," he began. "You know that guy she's been seeing, that Major League Soccer player? He's a total jerk! Listen to this ..."
I didn't listen. I didn't have to as I already knew what was coming. Yeah, okay, the details were different but the theme remained the same. A guy who's too nice for his own good meets a girl who's too confused to realize that she is. They talk. Confused girl says that all she's looking for is a nice guy. Tragically, if somewhat predictably, nice guy believes her. Insanely, if somewhat humorously, confused girl even believes herself.
A few dates and endless phone calls later, confused girl decides she really likes nice guy but not in "that way". Nice guy, having fallen head over heels for confused girl and being, well, dumb, believes that if he hangs around long enough and continues to show just how nice he can be she'll change her mind and fall madly in love with him.
Meanwhile confused girl begins dating sexy and exciting but self centered and emotionally stunted musician/athlete/heart surgeon/gangster. Nice guy, being a nice guy, remains very understanding about the whole situation, somehow still believing if he just continues to be her girlfriend with testicles that someday, someway she'll fall madly in love with him.
Eventually, despite all the sexy and exciting times with her sexy and exciting boyfriend, confused girl finds herself emotionally unsatisfied by the self centered and emotionally stunted part of him that isn't 8 inches long. She wishes with deep earnestness that he were more sensitive and understanding, that she could talk with him in deep and meaningful ways about love, life and cats.
In other words, she wishes that he were more of a nice guy.
Confused girl, seeking to touch and caress her neglected emotional g-spot, turns to nice guy who is all too eager to play the part of surrogate boyfriend. For confused girl it's the best of both worlds: hot sweaty sex with real boyfriend and deep emotional stroking courtesy of nice guy.
For nice guy it means more wasted nights masturbating to Internet porn. For nice guy's friend it means less quality beer time.
"Are you there?"
Mark's question snapped me out of the hypnotic hold put on me by this strange, yet oddly compelling Japanese game show where contestants all too gleefully take on perverse and vaguely masochistic challenges for apparently nothing more than the sake of 15 minutes of fame.
"Sorry. The phone cut out for a second. What did you say, again?"
"I said, what do you think of this whole thing with Patricia?"
I set the empty beer bottle down and headed towards the fridge for another one.
"Mark, have you ever heard the term 'emotional dildo'?"