There are plenty of things I love about men. Broad shoulders, nice arms, beautiful eyes, a great laugh, an incredible sense of humor. I love smart men, tall men, funny men. I love a man who makes me feel safe, who takes care of me, who treats me like I'm the most amazing woman to ever walk the face of the earth. I love a man who smells good, kisses great and takes control. I love a nice smile, a strong jaw, a good dresser. But in the past few days, I have become keenly aware of certain things that, without fail, will turn me off completely.
One: A man who cannot drive manual transmission. I drive stick shift. My mom drives stick shift. If she and I, two extremely prissy women, can manage the shifting of gears, a man should be able to as well. Not to mention that driving stick shift is probably one of the sexiest things a man can do. He's in control, he's powerful and he's managing to be aware of the pedals, the gear shift, the wheel, the road and hopefully you all at the same time.
Two: A man who cries often and gratuitously. Don't get me wrong, I love a sensitive man just as much as the next woman. Nothing is more touching than to see a tough man shed a tear out of great love or great pain. But the tears should be sparse and silent. Nothing is more disgusting than to see a man blubber without reason. Leave the cryin' to the ladies, gentlemen. Because trust me, I can cry enough for the both of us. I don't need help.
Three: A man who wears his cellular phone affixed to his belt. I just don't get it. Do you really need everyone to think you're that important? Is it really that much more convenient there? Would it be that difficult to reach the extra four inches and retrieve a ringing cell phone from your pocket instead of your belt? Look, everybody has a cell phone these days - There's no need to show yours off. Really, you're not impressing anyone.
Four: A man who treats a waiter horribly. It's been said so many times that it's almost embarrassing that I believe it. Everyone deserves to be treated with respect, and waiters and valets and sales girls are included.
Five: A man who expects the girl to pay. Regardless of whether he expects her to pay for half of the dinner or the whole thing, the very fact that he expects it at all is just plain gross. Not that I think a woman should never pay, but don't tell me when it's my turn. First of all, I just don't like to be told that I have to pay for someone. Secondly, if you're keeping track of who has paid for what, does that mean that you're keeping a scorecard on our relationship and we have to be even at all times?
Six: A man who will not stand up to me or anyone else. Confidence is about as sexy as it gets. And control is right up there with it. Maybe I'm old fashioned, but in some arenas, the man is just supposed to be in control. And I love it when he is. A sub-category of #6 is The man who always says "I don't know, what do you want to do?" Pick the restaurant, choose a seat at the movies, tell me when you'll pick me up. The control is yours. Take it. Or somebody else will.
Seven: A man who refuses to befriend a gay man, or says anything like "I don't want to hang around gay men; I feel like they're always checking me out." Newsflash: Just because you have a penis does not - I repeat, does not - mean that a gay man will be attracted to you. To disqualify a potentially amazing person as friendship material based on sexuality alone is ignorant, small-minded and boorish. And, according to some great thinkers, a hatred of homosexuals is only a fear that somewhere deep down, you're gay too.