Sadly, No!’s Guide to Romance

I’ve never been very good at dating, probably because I have a very low tolerance for bullshit (which is what 90% of dating consists of), and because I’m really cheap. Even so, I’m far more qualified to give dating advice than the columnists at MSN Dating and Personals, who, as Amanda of Pandagon has noted, know less about dating than the political roundtable at Scarborough Country (few remember that Pat Buchanan got his start writing at right-wing teeny-bop ‘zines with articles like “Traditional or Trampy? A Girl’s Guide to Dressing Morally” and “He Invited You to a Prayer Luncheon? Girl, He’s Totally Into You!”).

MSN’s latest dating quiz is called “Are you too nice?”, and like all MSN dating quizzes, it asks readers to respond to situations that only occur in Meg Ryan movies. And of course, the quiz limits you to two options, one of which sucks, the other of which blows. I decided to spice things up by adding in my own answers to give people a real choice. Enjoy!

1. It’s your first meeting and your date mentions s/he wants to read the new David Sedaris book. You:

a) Offer to lend out your copy when you’re done with it

b) On date #2, present him/her with an autographed copy you bought on eBay

c) Are tired of pretentious jack-asses/jill-asses who try to impress you by talking about writers they heard about on NPR. You’re better off ditching him/her and hooking up with that hot meathead/bimbo working at the bar.

2. Your special someone got a nasty cold that’s going around. You decide to:

a) Offer to stop by after work with the funniest picks from your DVD collection

b) Ditch work to spend the day with him/her, whipping up a batch of your mom’s chicken soup while you’re at it

c) Call up that other guy/girl you’ve had your eye on- you’ll never get a better chance (and if it doesn’t work out, you can always go back to the other loser/loserette once they’re healthy)

3. Your date cancels on you at the last minute with a weak excuse and no apology. You:

a) Say you’re disappointed and upset not to have more of a heads-up

b) Tell him/her “no problem” and never mention it again

c) Tell him/her that you were going to invite him/her to a wild sex romp with some goth chick and her stuffed bunny rabbit, but now you’ll have to go by yourself

4. It’s time to make weekend plans, and your guy/gal invites you to see what looks like a dreadful movie on Saturday. Your response?

a) Explain that you’re not a fan of the movie’s star, then offer up a good “compromise” flick

b) Accept, then grin and bear it

c) Make him/her watch The Turkish Star Wars or Cannibal Holocaust in retaliation, since the best relationships are built by enacting petty passive-aggressive revenge

5. You offer to treat your sweetie to dinner, but s/he chooses a hot new spot that’s way out of your price range. You:

a) Say you’ve heard the place is super-swanky and hard to get into?does s/he have a second choice?

b) Make reservations- who are you to disappoint?

c) Make the asshole/bitch pay for your dinner. If s/he refuses, sneak a bag of Taco Bell guarditas with you into the restaurant and eat them at the table

6. Your date emails you Monday at lunchtime to thank you for a great Saturday night out. You respond:

a) Later that night

b) Immediately

c) Never- replying to e-mail wastes time that you could be using to download porn

7. Your squeeze of a couple of months is celebrating his/her birthday soon. You’ll find the perfect present at:

a) A card store and CD shop

b) Tiffany & Co.

c) (because Spur-M is fun for the whole family)


Comments: 19


It’s official. If Jessica Brown gets paid to write shite like that, my career as a freelance writer is set, baby.


Yeah, but only if you write shit like Jessica. If you wanna write something good, you’re up the creek.


Back a couple of years ago, when the FCC rolled out v-chip requirements, every single goddamn “humor” commentator, up to and including Art Buchwald and Dave Barry, did a column that was just a list: the A-chip, the B-chip, and so on.

It was dumb and repetitive.

It was dull and unimaginative.

And they got paid for it. And the columns got


published. That is what the columns got.


You’d be surprised at what I can turn out if there’s a paycheck involved.

Or even just a hint of a sexual favor.


We hint lots of times about sexual favors for Brad R. and it never gets us anywhere. Or sexual disfavors, depending on your point of view. We say “extra absorb-shun”, he says meh, we say “no absorb-shun” he says meh, we imply in front of G*d and all the angels both evil and good that Brad R. is currently seeing someone, a special someone that writes on the internets and is doing it to make us and other interested parties jealous! And it is! And we are nowheresville, population us!


Brad, I can tell from your quiz score that you’re not “too nice.” You must have taken the David D. “Double Your Dating” advice course, which teaches men how to be “cocky and funny” and reportedly helps them bag super models.

Anyway, I think it’s time for the Brad R. “Decimate Your Dating” advice course. I can help you write the fake testimonial letters about the effectiveness of your books, DVDs, live seminars, live-in program, etc.


Anyway, I think it’s time for the Brad R. “Decimate Your Dating” advice course.

Hey, you couldn’t do any worse with my advice than with the other options they presented!


Wow…I can only imagine dating someone who actually knows who David Sedaris is…


For shame! You really should have made that Turkish Star Wars link to seanbaby…


For 1, I need d) say you tried to read it and didn’t find it very funny, recommend earlier stuff instead.


Honey, I think the real answer to #1 should be e) you respond by saying, “You read for fun? What kind of fuckin’ nerd are you?”

That would be Cocky and Funny.


I think the answer to number 4 is D) Go to the Movie, but do the popcorn trick. Cocky and funny!


Brad, IYO, what does the other 10% of dating consist of? Inquiring minds want to know.


Brad, IYO, what does the other 10% of dating consist of?

Cheap sex.

I’ve often found that the purpose of “dating” someone is to “get to know them better.” But most of the time, even if there’s mutual attraction, you know, within the first five minutes of the date, whether or not you are going to hit it off with someone. And if you’re not into them (or they’re not into you), the rest of the night is spent BSing around, pretending to be interested in what the other person is saying (and vice-versa).


Holy crap, Brad! With all those commas, I’m worried you’ve been reading too much Kaye Grogan!


You’re “Right,” Yosef. It, seems I’ve been, “made” into her pasty.


Yosef, it might be, if I didn’t read for fun myself..


Well, yeah. But that’s not the point of this exercise.


(comments are closed)