This is a tribute to the nice guys. The nice guys that finish last, that never become more than friends, that endure hours of whining and bitching about what assholes guys are, while disproving the very point. This is dedicated to those guys who always provide a shoulder to lean on but restrain themselves to tentative hugs, those guys who hold open doors and give reassuring pats on the back and sit patiently outside the changing room at department stores. This is in honor of the guys that obligingly reiterate how cute/beautiful/smart/funny/sexy their female friends are at the appropriate moment, because they know most girls need that litany of support. This is in honor of the guys with open minds, with laid-back attitudes, with honest concern. This is in honor of the guys who respect a girl’s every facet, from her privacy to her theology to her clothing style.
This is for the guys who escort their drunk, bewildered female friends back from parties and never take advantage once they’re at her door, for the guys who accompany girls to bars as buffers against the rest of the creepy male population, for the guys who know a girl is fishing for compliments but give them out anyway, for the guys who always play by the rules in a game where the rules favor cheaters, for the guys who are accredited as boyfriend material but somehow don’t end up being boyfriends, for all the nice guys who are overlooked, underestimated, and unappreciated, for all the nice guys who are manipulated, misled, and unjustly abandoned, this is for you.
This is for that time she left 40 urgent messages on your cell phone, and when you called her back, she spent three hours painstakingly dissecting two sentences her boyfriend said to her over dinner. And even though you thought her boyfriend was a chump and a jerk, you assured her that it was all ok and she shouldn’t worry about it. This is for that time she interrupted the best killing spree you’d ever orchestrated in GTA3 to rant about a rumor that romantically linked her and the guy she thinks is the most repulsive person in the world. And even though you thought it was immature and you had nothing against the guy, you paused the game for two hours and helped her concoct a counter-rumor to spread around the floor. This is also for that time she didn’t have a date, so after numerous vows that there was nothing “serious” between the two of you, she dragged you to a party where you knew nobody, the beer was awful, and she flirted shamelessly with you, justifying each fit of reckless teasing by announcing to everyone: “oh, but we’re just friends!” And even though you were invited purely as a symbolic warm body for her ego, you went anyways. Because you’re nice like that.
The nice guys don’t often get credit where credit is due. And perhaps more disturbing, the nice guys don’t seem to get laid as often as they should. And I wish I could logically explain this trend, but I can’t. From what I have observed on campus and what I have learned from talking to friends at other schools and in the workplace, the only conclusion I can form is that many girls are just illogical, manipulative bitches. Many of them claim they just want to date a nice guy, but when presented with such a specimen, they say irrational, confusing things such as “oh, he’s too nice to date” or “he would be a good boyfriend but he’s not for me” or “he already puts up with so much from me, I couldn’t possibly ask him out!” or the most frustrating of all: “no, it would ruin our friendship.” Yet, they continue to lament the lack of datable men in the world, and they expect their too-nice-to-date male friends to sympathize and apologize for the men that are jerks. Sorry, guys, girls like that are beyond my ability to fathom. I can’t figure out why the connection breaks down between what they say (I want a nice guy!) and what they do (I’m going to sleep with this complete ass now!). But one thing I can do, is say that the nice-guy-finishes-last phenomenon doesn’t last forever. There are definitely many girls who grow out of that train of thought and realize they should be dating the nice guys, not taking them for granted. The tricky part is finding those girls, and even trickier, finding the ones that are single.
So, until those girls are found, I propose a toast to all the nice guys. You know who you are, and I know you’re sick of hearing yourself described as ubiquitously nice. But the truth of the matter is, the world needs your patience in the department store, your holding open of doors, your party escorting services, your propensity to be a sucker for a pretty smile. For all the crazy, inane, absurd things you tolerate, for all the situations where you are the faceless, nameless hero, my accolades, my acknowledgment, and my gratitude go out to you. You do have credibility in this society, and your well deserved vindication is coming.
Fu-zu Jen, SEAS/WH, 2003
The ones who waited all night for him to call, only to check your cell phone the next morning and be disappointed. The ones who made it through that bitter break up, dried your own tears, and moved on with your life, only to have him walk back in it months later like nothing ever happened. Those of you who cried on the first day you talked again because you knew exactly where this phone call was going. The ones who listened to him say, “I only want to be your friend”, one day, then listened to him say that he loves and misses you, and the next when he doesn’t want to be anything at all.
Here’s to the ones that took him back, hoping that maybe this time, he was different, hoping that maybe people really do change. We listened to our friends tell us that we were stupid for even thinking about giving him another chance, got crap from our parents, and even sneak around to see him even for a while. We went through the great stage with no fights all over again. We started this thinking it would be just friends, and ended up falling in love with him again.
We wanted nothing more in the world than to hear him tell us he loved us too, that even though things were bad in the past, they would be different this time. And when we finally heard it, it was like we were dreaming. This is for us.
Here’s to the ones who believed what he said, sat around all over again waiting for a phone call that might come in a few hours, or a few days. Here’s for the tears cried and dried all over again. We wanted so desperately to believe that he was really busy, he couldn’t possibly call us at that moment, or even that he fell asleep early. We trained ourselves to believe the lies because we wanted to believe we had found the one for us. We learned to SETTLE for someone who didn’t treat us the way we should be treated.
Here’s for the ones who did their hair and make up and put on their prettiest everything, only to hear him say that he couldn’t see us today. The ones who never believed it when people told us there might be someone else. We just couldn’t believe that he could do this to us again. This is for those great girls, who loved him more than words can say, and took him back no matter what. happened last time because they couldn’t bear to look back on their lives one day and wonder “what if”. This is for the girls that stayed up all night long listening to him whine about an ex girlfriend who cheated on him, and cried during the entire conversation. The ones who hoped he would realize that he deserved better, that he deserved us. When he said that he loved you, but he was in love with her, he didn’t mean it.
This is for the ones that held on to something that was never there to begin with. This is for us girls, who somehow managed to get him to forget about her, and get him to tell us that he was in love with us again, only to have him tell us three weeks later that “things were going too fast, I’m just not ready.” or maybe, “You’re just not the one for me.” (Then maybe later on find out he has a damn girlfriend already.)Here’s to the girls who couldn’t cry to their friends because of how stupid they felt. The ones who held it all in when things came crumbling to pieces again. This is for the ones who couldn’t bear to even tell their mom what was going on, for fear of an “I told you so.” The ones that could just TELL that they had made a mistake ever allowing him into their hearts, their beds, and their dreams again.
We knew that we deserved better the entire time that we deserved a guy who would call when he said he was going to, one that would come see us when ever he got the chance, one that would really care about us. We just wanted the one that we loved like that.
Here’s for the ones that FINALLY realized that he never gave one thought about them. Here’s for the time that he took to waste, breaking your heart … again. This is for those days spent trying to hold back the tears, and the tears that turned into anger, then disappointment. Here are for us girls who finally realized that we deserve better. This is for those confusing days, when you miss him, and want nothing more than to hear his voice, or feel his arms around your waist.
Stay strong, and remember that relationships are like broken glass, sometimes it’s better to leave it alone rather than try to put the pieces back together and get hurt all over again.
Remember the times you cried, and how long it took you to even be able to look at another guy like that. When your song comes on the radio, turn the station. When the day comes that he realizes what a mistake he made and tries calling, turn your phone off. Think of all the broken promises, and the lies, the manipulation and the tears, the wasted moments and staying up all night wondering where the HELL he was. Think of how your heart used to jump when your phone would vibrate in the middle of the night, and how it fell to your stomach when you saw it wasn’t him, and realized that once again, he hadn’t called when he said he was going to.
One day, you’ll find a guy who’s worth all the tears, but he won’t make you cry. You may think that you’ll never care about someone like you did to that guy that you always ran back to, but you will. It’s gonna hurt like hell, and it’s going to need time to heal, but the point is, IT WILL HEAL.
I’ve gone so far. I’m so proud of myself.
P.S. There’s no turning back now!