Monday, March 25, 2013

On Guys, Straight or Otherwise

Most girls have a list of things they are looking for in a husband. I am no exception to this rule. Some things on the list are negotiable (green eyes, rich, house in England). Some things are not negotiable (eight inches taller than me, unable to beat me in Scrabble, and must not bore me). At the top of the non-negotiable list is that Mr. Right must not use emoticons.

This began to bother me when I was scrolling through Facebook a few years ago and noticed a guy from my hometown using :) in every single statement made on his Facebook. Now I understand as well as anyone the power of a well-placed emoticon in a text message. I even have my own signature emoticon to use when I want to convey that I am laughing or joking or just being cute. I appreciate it when guys try to use emoticons to communicate with me or other girls. However, if you are male and freely use emoticons when in conversation with other men, I will begin to doubt your vocabulary, your intelligence, and your sexual orientation.

These happy little faces serve a function. They exist to add a personal touch in brief texts that could otherwise come across as Spartan without that convenient little :). Text messages are meant to be short and to the point and often need that touch of goodwill. But if you're not texting, you have no reason to use them. The entire English language is at your fingertips and you choose to end your message with :)? What does that even mean? In girl language it can mean anything from "I'm smiling at you so you know I love you" to something along the lines of "I'm smiling at you so you won't suspect that I am actually being bitchy." For a guy to use that, well, that calls certain qualities into question.

Emoticons are the crutch of the female population. I freely admit that, and I am just as guilty of overusing them as the next girl. Since women generally over think and obsess over every little nuance of conversation, emoticons prove to be our way of reassuring ourselves that the other person won't take it how we meant it. But men plainly don't need that crutch, or at least from what I can judge since this particular one would routinely clog my Facebook feed with pictures shared from the NRA. I am assuming that he is not afraid to say what he means because he has faith in his precious weapon. So the fact that he ends all of his comments on Facebook with :) causes me concern. In fact, it makes me wonder if he really should be allowed to own all those guns, since he has a great deal in common with the average 14 year old girl who does nothing but watch the Kardashians all day long. :)

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