By Michael Gushue & CL Bledsoe
The heart is a capricious son of a muffin eater. You swear you?re done with love, until Idris Elba likes one of your posts on Twitter, and you?re off to plan a wedding before you realize it was actually Midriff Elba, a parody account that posts midriff pics of people who visit Elba, the island Napoleon was exiled on. Sure, relationships are difficult and take a lot of work, but even getting them started can seem even harder. How can you even tell if someone is interested in dying slowly ? we mean having a relationship ? with you? It seems impossible. Luckily, we have some tips that might help.
One of the most confusing/disturbing things a person can do is touch another person. Does it mean there?s something on your face or they want to marry you? Is there a certain amount of physical contact that means they like you? Like, if the person repeatedly touches your face or stomach vigorously, is that flirting or mugging? What if you just had sex ? does that mean they were just bored or that they can maybe stand you?
A good rule of thumb is that, if another person doesn?t recoil in horror from touching you, there might be hope. The question is was this a one-time touch or will it lead to more touching, possibly hand-holding and then whatever freaky stuff you?re into, like binge-watching classic episodes of Home Movies? What you want to do is encourage more touching. Now that they know you aren?t poisonous, the sky is the limit. Consider covering yourself in bunnies ? humanely, of course. If the person you?re interested in has allergies, substitute cheese dip. Keep a bag of chips or carrots handy for dipping. This will keep the person interested in you, as long as you continue supplying cheese and chips. You can ask them on a date, or just lead them toward the door and let the magic happen. Pretty soon, you?ll be on your way to being politely but firmly asked to leave a restaurant/movie theater/museum/private residence.
In addition to touching, there are subtle physical things a person might do that communicate how they feel about you. If you?re talking to someone, and they keep putting their hand to their mouth, for example, maybe they?re shy, which might mean they like you. Or maybe they?re gassy, which is a sign, in some cultures, that they enjoyed their meal. That seems positive. Of course, it could also mean they are stifling vomit, which may lessen the possibility of you making out with them later. Unless that?s your mutual thing, which, we?re not judging. Out loud.
Another thing someone might do if they like you is to mimic your body language. If you lean in, they lean in. Note: if they do it so quickly that they head butt you, you may be in the middle of a bar fight. Ask yourself whether the person is just clumsy or is actively kicking your ass right now. Again, context will help you determine whether this is flirting or a potential felony. Or both.
But mimicking body language doesn?t have to stop at just leaning. It can include swaying, sitting, standing, or even leaning the other way. All of this may also indicate an inner-ear infection, though. If a person really likes you, they will not only copy the way you orient yourself, they may start copying your physical attributes, fashion sense, and allergies. If you notice that they suddenly are swelling up after ordering the shellfish ? which you didn?t order because of your deadly allergy ? there might be something special happening between you two. That something might be anaphylactic shock. Hopefully, you have an epipen handy. Similarly, if you look deeply into the other person?s eyes and realize they are no longer blue but have changed to the same gray as yours, you?re either about to be eaten by a shapeshifter, or a witch is in love with you. Either way, it?s a pretty special moment. Note: if a witch is in love you, be sure not to betray or disappoint them. It?s just a crappy thing to do.
An age old tradition is to simply write on a piece of paper, ?Do you like me? Check Yes or No.? This does open you up to potential ?Nos? but hey, no papercuts, no gain. Of course, if the note comes back slightly damp because, instead of selecting a choice, the recipient spit onto the paper repeatedly, it can be difficult to figure out what that means. Perhaps they didn?t have a pen handy. Or, maybe they?re into BDSM.
Or maybe they don?t return the note at all. This can mean a couple of things.
- Maybe you shouldn?t have put it into the church offering plate. Also, Reverend Hemlock won?t stop winking at you, which could be a positive, honestly. The man knows how to accessorize with black.
- They can?t read. We?re not going to make any moral judgements, here. Out loud.
- They think you?re gross af. Probably best to learn that now.
Ask a Friend
Not a friend of yours. They?re all idiots. No, we mean a friend of the person you?re interested in.
But what if they don?t have any friends or their friends won?t talk to you? In that case, you?re going to have to do something extreme: you?re going to have to hire someone to befriend them and then ask that person. This is probably going to take a while. You have to take out an ad, audition prospective talent, negotiate the contract, etc. But you have to ask yourself: is love worth it? Answer: eh. Probably not.
Make Leading Comments on Social Media
Probably everyone?s favorite thing for people to do on social media is to make some leading post or comment meant to get an emotional reaction. People just love that.
You might post something about being lonely and see if anyone doesn?t laugh. Or, use reverse psychology, and post about things getting serious with your Canadian significant other, and see if anyone responds with a ?sad? emoji reaction. (Of course, they might just think you?re generally sad.)
This can, of course, backfire horribly. Let?s say you get a response from someone who doesn?t fit in whatever box of airbrushed plastic you?ve been conditioned to think people are supposed to be. Sure, they?re a kind and good person who shares your interests and is capable of a meaningful relationship, but they also actually exist in the real world, with all that entails, which is a major red flag. In this situation, the smart thing to do is to continue pining for the person who isn?t and will never be into you and probably is actually a Russian bot. You don?t want to go ruining that decent person?s life.
Write a Vague Article On a Parody Self-Help Blog
This is, honestly, probably the least effective method of finding out if someone is in to you. It smacks of desperation and manipulation. Also, the persona you put forth on a parody self-help blog is one of perfection and deep wisdom, whereas you have spent the last half-hour wondering if that cheese doodle you dropped in your belly-button will eventually be absorbed into your belly or whether you should just dig it out and eat it. (Answer: neither, for God?s sake! Let it sprout and become a magical cheese doodle tree!) But when you need to provide content, sometimes you run out of good ideas.
On a serious note, though, the relationship between a self-help blog parodist and their audience is a sacred and beautiful one that should not be tarnished by something as cheap and illusionary as romance. Check out our merch page!
Also, let?s be honest, no one is reading this. Not even us.
The truth is, probably no one likes you. But hey, we all die alone and will no doubt be forgotten (except for that time you pooped your pants at that baseball game and were on the Jumbotron while all the people around you held their noses and tried to wave away the smell. That will be remembered forever.). But that doesn?t mean you can?t humiliate yourself plenty before then. So, buck up! Valentine?s Day is a made-up holiday just like Arbor Day (as if trees were real! Nice try, Nature.). Instead of being depressed by the fact that no one will ever love you, that you don?t even seem to have the qualities that inspire love or know what they even are, think about how awesome it is that we, as a society, come together once a year (twice if you count New Year?s) to remind you of that fact. It?s kind of a miracle, if you think about it. We may not agree on much, but we agree that you?re a loser. Doesn?t it make your heart swell with pride? That?s kind of the whole point. On Valentine?s Day, everyone is a loser. It?s what all the flowers, chocolate, and dead fish in your mailbox are for. And the color red, which is symbolic of your inevitable demise. These things are there to remind us that there is no love more sincere than the love of chocolate. Chocolate wants us to be happy. Once chocolate is all warm and snug in your tummy, it releases something called endolphins (we?re pretty sure that?s what they?re called). These little fish of happiness swim up to your brain where they flip all the switches to Extra-Cheerful. All chocolate asks in return is to be eaten and smeared on our hands and faces. And sometimes to melt in our pockets. So this Valentine?s Day, remember: they mark down all the candy the day after, so there?s that.