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Last Saturday, in between binges of World Cup soccer, I went to the park with my dog in an effort to get some Vitamin D. So I laid down in a little patch of grass next to some shade for my dog, and I saw — because my head is on a swivel for these things — an adorable puppy. I was about to move in to pet it when I noticed that the owners were two gay men just starting to fight.

“Ooh! A fight!” I thought. “How fun!” I settled in for some eavesdropping.

“How could you not let me know where you were!” said the first one, with hushed intensity. 

“I told you, I had to go to the bathroom,” said the second.

“YOU WERE GONE FOR HALF AN HOUR!”

Apparently, the pissed-off lover had expected his boyfriend to use the port-a-john a two-minute walk away. He had instead opted for the brick-and-mortar option a 10-minute walk away.

“Why did you go all the way over THERE?” the angry guy hissed.

In the smallest voice possible: “I had to take a shit.”

If the pooper had hoped for some sympathy here, he was out of luck. His boyfriend merely selected another slight: “And how can you just saunter back here and not even apologize for being gone so long?”

It continued on this way for minutes: the hysterical man upset that his boyfriend had been out of sight for 30 minutes, and the poor guy who had made the mistake of thinking his partner was sane. I had listened in on something I wanted to be salacious, and instead found it depressing. Like, this guy could have just texted, “Hey, where are you?” after a few minutes and gotten an immediate explanation. Instead, he chose to sit and stew and be pissed off so that he could spend a beautiful sunny day at the park arguing with his boyfriend.

All couples fight. But most people have the ability, when in public, to simmer quietly until they get home to have it out. The inability to do this comes from a near-pathological insecurity and distrust of the person they supposedly love. Please, take it from someone who spent all five hours of a transcontinental flight trying to reason with an insane person: DO NOT DATE PEOPLE WHO START FIGHTS IN PUBLIC.

Okay. On to your mail.

KSK,
Fantasy football: What’s your take on drafting multiple guys from the same team? Somebody won my league last year by drafting or picking up every significant Bronco (plus Jamaal Charles in the first round) and getting double TD’s pretty much every time they scored. He basically forfeited his bye week, but it won him the championship. I doubt my league will let this happen again and the Denver offense will be distributed across the league like any other, but what are your thoughts on, for instance, drafting Brandon Marshall, Alshon and Cutler or Julio, Roddy and Matt Ryan (or something like this with another team)?

The “accidental bye week” can be a worthwhile move in that it gives you a full-strength roster the rest of the season. And if that’s a result of you having a bunch of players on the same team, I’m all for it — as long as it’s the right team. Broncos and Bears? Sure. The Bucs next season? Possibly. The Jets or Raiders? No. Let common sense be your guide.

Sex: My girlfriend of 5 years who I love very much and plan to propose to just found out her mom has breast cancer. Aside from the standard “just be there for her” stuff, how the hell do I handle this? I’m fortunate enough to have not dealt with very much loss in my life thus far and have no idea what to do. Her family lives a couple thousand miles away and she’s a very busy grad student, so she doesn’t really have the opportunity to go home for any significant amount of time.
Signed,
Fuck Cancer.

There isn’t much to do besides “just be there for her,” unfortunately. My only recommendation is that you stress to your girlfriend that “mom with cancer” is more important than grad school. Not that she needs to drop out of school to be there for every chemo treatment, but she needs to log time with her mom if things take a turn for the worse. She’ll never regret waiting a year to finish her master’s; she’ll always wish she had more time with her mother. If that means taking out another line of credit to fly your girlfriend out there, so be it. It’ll be worth it. 

**********

Dear Matthew,
I do not have a fantasy football question, because it is June 15th, but it also happens to be Father’s Day, so perhaps a Father’s Day question in lieu of a fantasy football question would suffice.

Sure. Let’s live a little.

I have several friends/family members who happen to be fathers and it’s not uncommon for someone to ask if I wished them a happy Father’s Day. My general response is, “Why would I? He’s not my father.” This has started a debate amongst my friends about whether Father’s/Mother’s Day is about ALL fathers and mothers or simply your own. While not an important matter either way, it has always been my contention that I owe no well wishes to any father or mother except my own. Other friends disagree and it happens to be about a 50/50 split on the matter. Care to weigh in on the matter?

You’re right: you don’t owe a “Happy Father’s Day!” to anyone but your own dad. But if you happen to see one of your friends with kids, it’s certainly a nice gesture. “Hey, happy Father’s Day, man” isn’t putting you out, you know? It’s hardly worth a debate; just be kind to your friends.

Sex: I went on a date earlier this week that progressed well enough that she decided to stay the night. Everything throughout the evening was very positive, up until about 6am when I woke up and discovered my boxers were very wet. I went into the bathroom and determined the moisture was urine. However, given the placement of the urine on my boxers, I could also say with certainty that it was not MY URINE. My date had pissed my bed. (While not relevant to your response, for the sake of the readers, it’s is worth noting that this is a first date.)

Awwww: first date, drunk-to-the-point-of-bedwetting sex. I see this relationship going places.

Anyway, I could not return to my open side of the bed because it had been soiled, but I also wanted to save her the embarrassment of pointing it out and save me the awkwardness of that confrontation. I was able to find a dry spot on the bed directly behind her, where I slept for another hour before heading off to work. I allowed her to continue sleeping and let herself out so that I wouldn’t be there when she discovered what she had done.

She later texted me saying that she had let herself out and that she put my sheets in the wash because she had “gotten a lot of makeup on them,” which is actually a pretty good cover given that she has no idea whether or not the incident occurred before or after I had already gotten out of bed.

“I, um, wear full-body makeup.”

My question is, did I handle this correctly? Is it best to just let her keep some dignity and act like it never happened? Should that be an automatic dealbreaker even if the rest of the date went well? Is there a standard protocol on what to do or how to react if a new partner pisses your bed? Various friends have wondered whether the culprit should be asked to purchase new sheets/mattress. While that seems a bit extreme to me, what say you?

I hope this never happens again, but I would like to be more prepared if I’m not so lucky.
Stay Trill,
Matt

Of course you handled it correctly. I’ve never drunkenly peed in my bed  — much less a sexual partner’s — but I can easily imagine the shame and embarrassment one would feel in such a scenario, particularly after a first date.

Don’t ask her to buy you a new mattress and sheets; that would make you a dick (“Thanks for being awesome enough to sleep with me; that’ll be $500″). Your sheets will be fine, just wash them. You can clean your mattress with a mixture of hydrogen peroxide, dish soap, and baking soda — use the ratio here

As for whether or not this is a dealbreaker, that’s really up to you. This is the sort broadly comic farce that’s just as good as a dating mishap story as it is a late-night roast during your wedding weekend (“She pissed my bed on our first date!”). Who hasn’t done something regrettable while drunk? If you like her — if you had fun on the date and you liked the sex — why not see her again? If it goes well, you can eventually let her know that you know about her dirty secret. 

**********

Dear KSK,

I am a 26 year old deadbeat with a useless bachelor’s degree who has made innumerable stupid decisions in my lifetime. Several years ago (and I mean SEVERAL), I dated someone who was without question the perfect woman for me. I fucked it all up by way of said stupid decisions, and she bailed. I don’t blame her for this at all, but I’ve never gotten over it. Due to some royal fuckery, I now have no way whatsoever of contacting her, nor would I if I did because she made her wishes very clear.

I’ve got a problem with your wording up there: “the perfect woman for me.” There are billions of people on the planet, and none of them are truly “perfect” for you. There are, however, countless ones that you can have a happy and fulfilling life with.

I haven’t dated anyone since, and the sex that I have managed to have was horribly unfulfilling and not at all worth it. I’ve since decided to remove myself from the dating pool as I have nothing to offer anyone.

Well, with that kind of confidence, I’m not surprised you weren’t a hotter ticket in the dating pool.

I’ve accepted that I’m just too fucked in the head to put another woman through my periodic insanity. I went through a period where I went from a chubby fellow, to a 140 pound 6’3″ skeleton, and then gained over double my weight in the next 2 years. I’ve since gotten myself on track more or less, I quit using illegal drugs over a year and a half ago, started dieting and working out.

Good! That’s a really hard thing to do for a lot of people.

My solvable problem is employment. I’ve been without a job for over 2 years, and while I’ve sent out hundreds of resumes, I’ve only gotten one interview which I nailed (still chose the more qualified applicant, as would I). So I’ve gone from wanting an entry level career, to needing any job that I can possibly get.

I’ve lost any semblance of confidence over the years, and while I fake it nicely for an interview, doing so in daily life is not working. I’ve talked to my closest friends about it (read: all two of them) and their responses have been “man up, and kill yourself like you want in 6 months if you haven’t made any progress”

rdj-eye-widen

 

and “keep plugging away, someone will give you a shot.”

A friend has also suggested I play guitar in shitty bars (I play simple shit and sing, both very moderately), however I have this once repressed experience combined with my lack of confidence that prevents that in my mind. To make a long story short (too late!), I was an absurdly shy child who was forced to play for the class in a music class by the teacher for speaking during instruction (which I didn’t even do, her hearing was fucked and she blamed me). It was extremely humiliating, and as I’ve grown as a musician, I’ve shrunk away from any performance in front of others.

Buddy, I want to help, but is there an abridged version I can read?

I have a place to stay thanks to a pair of parents who love me far more than they should, but I’m running out of ways to disappoint them and myself. I suppose my meandering bullshit has led to the very general questions of “am I fucked in the head for chopping off any chance of a relationship in the future?”, and “can I do anything I’m not to get a goddamn job beyond lying on a resume?” Therapy isn’t an option since I obviously have no insurance.

www.healthcare.gov

I suppose I’m just looking for input from someone who isn’t worried about being harsh. Sure, the first friend I mentioned was, but he still thinks I can be motivated by anger, and I’m just not an angry person anymore. I know this is absurdly long and boorish, and I apologize, but what the hell.

- let the motherfucker burn

Okay, so the standard “I am not a licensed anything” disclaimer applies here, but I feel pretty confident that you suffer from depression. And not just “You need some exercise and a job” depression, but actual “your brain chemistry is off and you need a prescription” depression. Your parents LOVE you. Tell them that you need help.

The road to mental health isn’t short or easy, and you’ve got some additional obstacles that will further test your resolve. But overcoming obstacles is EVERY human’s story line (unless you’re an heiress, but they’re not really human). Life can be whittled down to two kinds of events: (1) surviving shit you don’t like in order to (2) do things you love. Everything else is noise.

So start dividing life into two categories: shit you need to get through, and shit you want to do. If a problem seems too big, break it into smaller problems that are more manageable. 

You want to make music? Play the guitar in front of a webcam and put it on YouTube (NOTE: turn comments off). Share it with your friends. Do things you like. Make things. Take a shitty job you know you’ll hate and work hard at it. Keep trying, and keep trying, and then work harder. Life is absolutely worth it, and it’s too short to do anything else. Please: get help, and fight on.