How can I get my guy outside for some summer activities? The best season of the year is winding down, and he just keeps playing video games or wanting to go out at night. But I’m a social butterfly, and I can’t fly around that much inside his grungy apartment or at a sweaty Dinkytown bar. How can I get him out with me for walks around Calhoun, picnics at the park and other Minnesota fun?
—Trapped In A Cocoon Of Love
Here are five strategies to try:
1. Make a trail of beer cans and TV remotes leading out to the lake.
2. Tell him you won’t have sex with him unless he goes kayaking with you.
3. Ask him if anything horrible has ever happened to him while he’s been out in the lovely sunshine. Maybe this is a trauma case. Tread carefully.
4. Blindfold him, drag him outside and shout, “Look! Here we are! Isn’t this fun?”
5. Find other people to Calhoun it up with. I know that Goldy loves the sunshine — maybe you’d have more luck with our beloved mascot.
Or, you know, you could casually mention that you love the summer and being at the Library Bar a lot is straight-up eating away at your soul. He should start tying up his shoelaces with vigor after that. But if your guy is kind of a couch potato, and you love the great outdoors, maybe you aren’t as compatible as you think.
In the spirit of #YOLO and life being short, I say you should dump him and get hitched to a park ranger. You only live once, baby!
I’m a little chubby (I wouldn’t say overweight, and neither would my doctor). But there is a little flub to lose. While it took a while to get there, I have learned to love my body the way it is — I am still a healthy, active person. Just not model-thin. Now, a guy I started dating is telling me I should try to lose weight. He isn’t being mean about it, but he’s unintentionally making me really self-conscious about my body — something that took a while for me to get over. How should I respond?
—Happy As I Am
First, let me just say that this note warmed my cold heart right up. Kudos to you for being happy with your bod. I’m sure it’s smokin’, and hey, there’s nothing wrong with a little more to love, especially if you’re healthy and happy. You hear me, Dan Savage?
You should respond with candor and confidence by dumping his sorry ass. Just kidding! He doesn’t realize what he’s doing, so I don’t think you should dump him. (Also, I need to stop telling everyone to dump their significant others. Working through problems together is a beautiful thing. Pardon me.)
Your man making you feel bad isn’t the result of him being a bad person. It’s the result of years and years of cultural conditioning.
From your note, I can’t tell exactly how he’s making you feel bad. But whenever he does the thing he does that makes you feel bad, show him that you feel bad. Say, “Ouch.” Say, “That hurt my feelings.” Say, “Damn, I never thought a guy would say something like that.” Say, “I feel bad.” He’ll probably buy you flowers or maybe some nice scotch!
There’s almost nothing harder than talking about body insecurities with your partner, but be secure in the fact that he’s already with you, and he’s with you for a reason — he thinks you’re a beautiful and wonderful person. Which you are.
A while back, I fooled around with this guy I worked with at a coffee shop. It seemed promising, but there was always something in the way of us shackin’ up for good, makin’ it official, et cetera. I saw him again a few weeks ago, and it reminded me just how good we could be together. But still, there’s an obstacle: I am moving away at the end of the summer. I know “love conquers all,” but is this a battle worth fighting, or should I just let it go?
—Wondering If It’s Worth It
Java Jive ‘N’ Dive,
Give it up. He may have had the beans to get you goin’ once or twice, but if there has always been something in the way, there always will be. Your move is probably way more substantial than the other road blocks you’ve faced as a potential couple.
Maybe he has a cute co-worker.
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