Despair.

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There is so much wrong with this, just the thought of trying to unpack it makes me tired and depressed. Read at your own risk.

–Ann Bartow

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5 Responses to Despair.

  1. fourthwave says:

    I’m a little confused about your response to this post and would be really interested to hear your thoughts about it.

    While I agree the guy’s attitude towards women and bar culture (especially his comments towards the end about the “big girl”) are a little chauvinistic/smug, I don’t actually disagree with the essence of what he’s saying. I think it’s a stupid custom that men should feel they have to buy women drinks at bars as if it’s some sort of payment for talking to them. I also think it’s ridiculous that women should feel obliged to speak with, sleep with or make out with guys who buy them drinks. And I think it’s probably true (though being a woman who doesn’t spend much time at bars anymore, I can’t say with any certainty) that some women deliberately flirt just to get free drinks…just as I’m sure some men buy women drinks with the sincere hope that it’ll get them in her pants. It’s silly and disingenuous on both ends. If you buy someone a drink–man or woman–you should do it without expectation of something in return. I think this symptom of American society (particularly bar culture)–that there’s this underlying sexual economy around buying women drinks–is depressing, but I don’t actually take issue with the craiglist post itself…

  2. Ann Bartow says:

    A man can opt out of the whole drink buying paradigm without going to this much trouble to vilify and condescend to the described women. Looks like the post has now been removed; perhaps the author recognized how unappealing his sexist observations made him look to perfectly nice women who buy their own drinks.

  3. fourthwave says:

    Fair enough. I was just wondering what specifically you objected to, but that makes perfect sense.

  4. Wait–it’s gone. What did it say?

  5. Ann Bartow says:

    Ugh. Well, you asked for it, so here is what the link lead to:

    **********************************

    salt lake craigslist > personals > missed connections Here we go again. – m4w – 22 – (Downtown)

    So a couple of weeks ago a put up a post regarding the etiquette of intersexual drink-buying at bars. Lo and behold, this past weekend a friend of mine got burned at the tav by falling for the exact trap that my post warned against. Accordingly, I felt compelled to repost for the benefit of all the beautiful women in Salt Lake who don’t want to scroll all the way down to find the original post. This may be redundant, but I cannot in good conscience let this phenomenon go overlooked. So here it is again: Why I didn’t Buy You a Drink.

    You: Cute girl at the bar. Me: The guy you chatted with while waiting for our drinks. The Topic: Why I didn’t buy you a drink. The Audience: Women everywhere, please read this. I know it’s long, but I feel the length is expedient to truly illustrating and arguing my point.

    I was waiting to order right as things were getting crazy. It was obvious that it would be a long wait. What can I say? I can’t compete with all the douches yelling for jager bombs. It was then that you appeared. A cute, petite, slightly hipster-ish girl standing next to me, waiting to order as well. The conversation began in the typical manner, simply relating on how frustrating it is when you spend half a night out just waiting for a drink. It then evolved into a true conversation. I spent the next twenty minutes finding out you have great taste in music, movies and literature. You laughed at my jokes, and that’s a big deal to average-looking guys like me. Unfortunately, after we’d both finished our respective drinks, but were still immersed in discussion, you dropped a bomb that sent shrapnel into my heart.

    “So are you gonna buy me a drink or what?”

    I had been dreading this moment. I’ve learned from hard experience that any prolonged conversation with a girl at a club or a bar inevitably requires a fee of rum and coke, vodka tonic, or God forbid, a cosmo. As cute as you were, I felt obligated to retain my self-respect.

    “Sorry, I don’t buy girls drinks. Just kind of my policy.”

    You looked at me like I told you I was going to rape your dog Charlie (yes, I remember his name). Your face morphed from a beautiful smile into a twisted caricature of shock, revulsion, and utter disbelief.

    “Seriously, you’re not gonna buy me a drink? What’s your problem?”

    Well sweetheart, let me explain to you in detail my logic regarding this decision that you found so unbelievable:

    1. I’ve been going to bars for a couple of years now. I enjoy meeting people when I do. I enjoy meeting attractive girls like yourself. I have, however, learned that buying girls drinks is a sucker’s game. Yes, it has developed into sharing my bed for the night a couple times, but 90% of the time, all it does is give me a higher bar tab. Now you might say I’m a prick for expecting a girl to sleep with me just because I buy her a drink. I agree an $8 cocktail does not and should not equal a sexual encounter. However, I believe spending time and money on a girl when I could be having a good night out with my friends does entitle me at least one of the following things: You reciprocating by buying me a drink, you giving me your phone number and/or going out on a date with me, where once again I will be spending time and money on you. Notice that sex is not a requirement or expectation that is coupled with any of these options. Now, of course, if I had offered to buy you a drink, and you accepted, you are not obligated to any of these things. The big distinction here is that you asked me to buy you a drink, and were shocked that I wouldn’t do so. This brings me to my second point.
    2. You know exactly what you’re doing. You’re an attractive girl, and when you go out there is no shortage of guys offering to buy you drinks. You know that they are all doing so with the hope that it will lead to sex with you. You know that it’s not going to happen, but you will accept the free drinks anyway. I don’t hold this against you. If they’re dumb enough to think that buying you a drink is the key to your heart and that they are somehow different from the other Ed Hardy-wearing frat-bros then it’s their own damn fault. You’re using your god-given assets to get free alcohol, nothing wrong with that. But it is precisely because I know that you do this that I will not be another douche who thinks he can get into your pants with a mixed drink. It’s insulting to my dignity as a man and your honor as a woman. I noticed you when you first walked in. I saw you dancing with that hopeless collar-popper. I saw him go to the bar and bring a drink back to you on the dancefloor. I saw how the second the glass was in your hand, you gave him the”Thanks for the drink, it was really nice meeting you”treatment complete with the obligatory pat on the chest. I saw the pathetic, defeated look on his face as you walked away. He will enter the next round of bar hopping a little wiser I hope.
    3. You took my unwillingness to fall into such a trap as an insult. You accused me of being stuck-up. You then said that I had a chance at fucking you, but that I’d ruined it by being an asshole. What exactly are you trying to tell me? That the asinine idea that getting a girl a drink will get you in her pants is actually true? That your decision of whether or not to sleep with a guy is based on him liquoring you up? We had a good conversation, and maybe you were actually interested in me. But the fact that any rapport we built was destroyed when I wouldn’t buy you a gin and tonic means that I am no longer interested in you. Not all guys are desperate sperm donors. Some of us actually value a good conversation, and we value girls who have enough respect for themselves that they don’t view sex as a transaction.
    4. We established during our conversation that we are both broke-ass fine arts students. Why then would you expect that I, someone who shares your financial woes, would want to spend money on you, a girl I just met? I don’t believe that chivalry is dead. I’ll hold a door for you, I’ll pull out your chair or take your coat. I’ll help you change a flat tire, carry you over deep puddles, figure out the remote, reset your modem. I’ll even help you move when I know you a little better. Why? Because I’m a gentleman. I will not, however, buy you a drink under the pretense that it is what a gentleman does, because I simply cannot afford it. If you want a guy who can afford to buy you whatever you want, find a fifty year-old sugar daddy. There was no shortage of potentials at the bar the other night.

    I hope this illustrated my thought-process clearly enough. I hope you realize that you seemed amazing at first, and that declining to buy you a drink was in no way an insult. Your reaction, however, revealed the self-entitled, game-playing she-devil that was lurking underneath. I thank god for the out that he provided at that moment though. Just after you finished your little rant on what I dick I was for not boozing you up, a group of girls emerged at the bar right behind you. Two of these girls were thin and pretty. They immediately got the attention of some bros and had free drinks within minutes. The third girl was overweight and out of place. She had clearly spent a great deal of time and effort on her appearance, but alas, she was once again forsaken by her prettier friends and left to stand by herself, looking miserable. Luckily, I know when the universe has given me a profound gift. There were two incredible moments that filled me with an elation that could not be rivaled by the orgasm I would have had while fucking you. The first was the sincere, excited smile that the chubby girl gave me when I moved past you and asked what she wanted to drink. The second was turning back and seeing the look of horror on your face. You pathetic”have fun with the fatty”remark as you walked away was priceless. I may be broke, but I was willing to go into the red to make this girl’s night and to piss you off. I’m sure as soon as you left you got plenty of free drinks and plenty of idiots drooling over you. I just hope that I got under your skin enough to prevent any enjoyment of those things.

    I had a great night. I introduced the big girl to an open-minded friend, and as I write this they are across the hall having loud sex. Normally going to bed alone, subjected to the sounds of raucous lovemaking across the hall would be a serious downer. But tonight, as I crawl into my lonely bed, I will go to sleep comforted by the fact that I have retained my self-respect. Having encountered more than a few spoiled bimbos, I infer that sex with you would have consisted of you lying on your back expecting me to be so grateful that I’m seeing your”hot”naked bod makes up for the fact that you are putting absolutely no effort into this sexual experience. This may just be me trying to justify going to bed alone tonight, but hey, what can you do?

    The moral: Ladies, accept drinks if they are offered. Do not expect them. And if you’re feeling particularly wild on a given night, offer to buy the guy a drink. He will be instantly smitten.

    * Location: Downtown
    * it’s NOT ok to contact this poster with services or other commercial interests

    PostingID: 1549320166

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