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phd can’t get married and joel gets a little wistful


In case you don’t want to watch the video I can summarize for you.  A woman with a PhD in history stands on a stage and unwittingly humiliates herself in front of a large audience while she laments her pitiful romantic life.

I truly feel bad for this girl.  I feel bad for all women who have been sucked in by our modern world and found themselves unhappy and alone with their best dating and childbearing years behind them.  I blame feminism but that’s another rant for another time.

To help the rest of us, I’m going to point out the problem with her underlying attitude.

She is full of ideas about what she wants but never considers what the hypothetical he wants.  She thinks she is considering the man’s desires, but what she is really doing in the first few minutes of the video is listing the things she is most pleased with about herself and projecting them onto her potential mates’ wants.

“I’m smart, I’m funny, I’m pretty, I’m accomplished, yadda yadda yadda.”

She does this to validate her life choices.  Considering that it is her fault she is single and that what she has spent the last few years of her life doing may not have been in her best interests does not come into the picture.  For that would require potentially painful self-reflection and a willingness to change–two things most people don’t want to do.

I’m just going to say it: if instead of sitting indoors getting a useless history PhD she had lost weight, stopped patting herself on the back for how wonderful she is, and looked for a realistic man rather than the one she wrote about in her diary when she was 14, she would have been married years ago.  And she would have children.  And she would be happy.

Even a well-composed appearance on stage cannot hide the truth: she is miserable, she is lonely, and she doesn’t have much hope.

Don’t misinterpret what I wrote above as another, “he thinks all women need to do is be pretty.”  That’s not the case–at least not entirely.  I certainly expect more than looks in the women I date.  The truth is simply that looks get you dates and a personality gets you a relationship.  Since dates usually precede relationships, anything you can do to get more dates is going to improve your chances of a relationship.  It’s not complicated.

The world will catch on.  It currently is catching on, actually.  I sense a change in the winds.  However, the shame of it is that so many women like this one above will be left behind.

breakthrough: trying to find love while also being obsessed with physical looks will always be a disaster

According to this rather insightful article, LDS singles  (and I’ll extend it to non-Mormons, too) are too caught up into whether or not their partners are physically attractive. They think that they won’t have as enjoyable of sex or that they will be always looking for the better option and thus will not have a successful relationship.

The Myth of Attraction

While the author–who has a fair bit of experience with this kind of thing (17 years as a dating coach, nbd)–seems to focus on relationship advice, I’m going to use my extensive experience with being single to adapt this to the early stages of relationships, especially dating. I believe my advice below will set the proper tone for the relationship at its inception and therefore will prevent the problems Ms. Goodwin identifies in her article.

This whole notion of young people ruining relationships because they are too unwittingly obsessed with physical beauty lends credence to my belief that singles wards should be abolished. So should online dating. So should social media. It’s quite simple; if you’re not successful on the dating market, then there are two solutions: 1) lower your standards or 2) raise your own value. Social media, online dating, and singles wards prevent both those solutions for most people.

People don’t lower their standards because they are faced with too many high-quality options. When you see beautiful people in such high quantity, you naively believe you can date above your pay-grade. You can’t. And you shouldn’t. You’ll be happier if you stay in your lane. Sure, social media / dating apps have made it easier for you to come in contact with a higher number of eligible partners, but it’s done the same for a million other people, too. Supply went up but guess what? Demand is more than ready to match it.

This 3-headed-monster of social media, online dating, and singles wards also discourages people from raising their own value. When you have so many pretty people to look at, at some level you think, “Surely I’ll be able to find one date-able person in this group without changing myself.” All it takes is one, right? Just the one person and then you’ll be happy? We’ve all seen the love stories that contribute to the “there’s someone out there for everyone” sappy story.

Sorry, kids, but that’s loser talk. That’s how people who play the lottery think and that’s why they never win and that’s why they suck. You find a partner the same way you find a job–by doing everything you can to boost your resume and then getting out there and hitting the bricks, pursuing every opportunity.

“There’s someone out there for everyone?” No, there’s not. You’ve been sold a pack of lies and deluded yourself into thinking this is true because one time you saw a goofy guy find a nice girl or an overwhelmed-with-her-job girl get swept off her feet by some dude with a romantic job like teacher or wildlife photographer.  And again, you are susceptible to this belief because it doesn’t require you to change.  The truth is, there’s someone out there for everyone who tries hard and doesn’t think their shit doesn’t smell (i.e., that they’re too good for some people). There’s no one out there for people with unrealistically high standards who also don’t improve themselves.

How’s that for a pep talk? Now get over here and I’ll slap you on the ass as you run out the door. Beyond it lies your future!

CNN fight: toby keith v. beyonce

CNN is so on-point these days.  Does defending Toby Keith count as “fake news?”  You decide!

If you’re like me, you never watch CNN so, first of all, you might be thinking, “Who’s this Kayleigh Mcenany?”  You might also be thinking, “Sup, girl.”  Well I first noticed her a few years ago when I used to watch Red Eye on Fox News.  I kind of got turned off by the show when they quit having weird and/or controversial guests and everyone started arriving on set sober.  Kayleigh was among the first of those guests who started boring me.  Try as she might, she just couldn’t keep up with the banter of the rest of the panel and ended up reciting her prepared points when it was her turn to talk, thus bringing down the overall energy (much like my writing).  Buuut, she looked great in the “leg chair” and was a continuing guest.

Something about passionate conservative chicks does it for me (probably a combination of physical looks, an oft-fiery attitude, and a prudish-on-the-outside-freak-on-the-inside vibe) so I did Google her at the time.  Back in the day, she ran a site called which featured a few of her own articles as well as columns from seemingly any random person who emailed her as long as the writing was of the libertarianesque-conservative-free market-religious variety.  Mostly, these guest posts were from Republican guys who thought if they just wrote the perfect column, Kayleigh would sleep with them (spoiler alert: this will never work). Shockingly, the site didn’t get much traffic.  Internet archives for it are lacking so you’ll have to take my word for it.  However, even if your website fails, I have to admire the gumption required for such an undertaking.

Skip to today and it looks as if Kayleigh has parlayed that same enthusiasm, mid-level intellect, and fantastic good looks into a gig on CNN.

You know what?  Good for her.

As far as the content of the video, we can debate the artistic merits of Toby Keith versus Beyonce all day but I’m not sure that can be easily settled.  Which is a higher art form, strumming a guitar while singing about dive bars and the military blowing shit up or popping your ass on stage and singing about your kickass blowjobs?  Oh how can I choose?!

My main takeaway from this video was Marc Lamont Hill quickly realizing he was participating in a potentially viral internet moment and adjusting accordingly.

Starts with genuine-surprise face:




ends with “I really, really hope this goes viral and I become a meme” face:


Hahaha nice job, Marc, you clown.

googling my opinions in quotes, raymond carver edition

Sometimes to see how many people agree with me, I Google my opinions in quotes and see what shows up.  Today, it was “Raymond Carver sucks.”  This search yielded a wonderful exchange on some website.


dueserpenti: “Someday I will convince the world that Raymond Carver sucks.”

crote: “What we talk about when we talk about punching you in the dick.”

dueserpenti: “Whassat? I couldn’t hear you over the sound of a story about a man giving a lady exact change for the bus in a way that teachers her that all life is connected.”

crote: “If you don’t like reading about world weary alcoholics who are tired of life I’m not sure why you post here.”

Just another example of why the internet is awesome. dueserpenti’s first response is fantastic for anyone that’s read a little Raymond Carver and found him a little annoying.


P.S. Under the original post heading, dueserpenti posted a longer tirade that I found funny as well.  Colorful opinions about short-story writers.  Emphasis my own.

In college I wrote a polemic called “Raymond Carver Must Die” that became my senior thesis. Which is not to say that there aren’t writers in Carver’s genre that I enjoy; Tobias Wolff is my fucking jam, for a time at least my favorite short story writer, and I was lucky enough to get to do a workshop with him when I was at the height of my Wolffmania. But in the main, my heart belongs to more fantastical writers. Not fantasy, not ever. Fantasy is for dickbrains. I will pimp for John Kessel any day of the week; he’s a science fiction writer with the soul of a magical realist and a great sense of humor. Julio Cortazar is one of my favorite writers who ever lived. Theodore Sturgeon still doesn’t get enough love because no amount of love will ever be enough. For the ladies, Carol Emshwiller, Mary Reikert, and Kelly Link. Gosh, I don’t know; I’ve read so many short stories that I’m like an overloaded autistic. If you want to know my thoughts on short stories it’s better to pick a specific one and present your questions in bright primary colors. Better yet, find a copy of Alberto Manguel’s Black Water anthology, worship that shit (this is seriously the only thing I own that I would save in a fire), and we can talk at length about any story in there.

i promise this is my last ‘rogue one’ complaint… hahaha prolly not

One of the worst parts of the original Star Wars trilogy is how we never got to see any female pilots.  That, my friends, is some bullshit.


While I love the original trilogy, this glaring omission always troubled me. As the world progressed and our society brought the original Star Wars movies into future with us, the films’ treatment of women stood out like tar on a freshly snow-covered field, something made all the more embarrassing given the modern advancement of women’s rights.

Well no longer!

Rogue One’s best cameo is female pilots, after 33 years on the cutting room floor

Some sexists out there may point out how when the original trilogy was made, no country in the world allowed women to become fighter pilots (with a few wartime exceptions) and so it would make perfect sense to not include them.

Other sexists may point how correcting this ugliness doesn’t really square with the apparent goals of the people casting the movie, who weren’t really talking about making the share of women in the movie more realistic.  If they had, based on the stats alluded to above and the number of women involved in most rebellions, we probably would see fewer women on screen than we do in Rogue One.

But I’m not sexist so I won’t entertain such talk.

Thank God we’ve reached the modern age.  Sure, women worldwide still have actual problems, but at least we can cross “women who make up 0.01% of fighter pilots are not in movies” off the list.

We still have a long way to go, though:

Why Hasn’t ‘Star Wars’ Hired a Female Director?