Are you a human? Are you also a girl? If so, congratulations! If you happen to fit these two qualifications–being a human and a girl, which, in most cases, depends more on your luck of the draw than anything else–it’s very likely that, at some point in your life, you’ve been approached by a guy who seems to think that whatever you’re doing means you want (no, need) to flirt with him. You know, like reading a book. Or sitting by yourself in a coffee shop. Or going for a run.
Basically, it’s something that means you definitely don’t want to talk to another person, let alone a person who wants to flirt with you.
Why does this happen? I can’t say for sure, though I’m certain that there are a bunch of scholarly journal articles that throw around terms like “patriarchy” and “male privilege” and “the male gaze” that manage to reach a pretty good theory.
Of course, not all guys approach girls when they’re giving off signals that definitively say do NOT approach me (not to get all #notallmen here). In fact, the majority of guys probably don’t–but enough do it so that it’s a totally relatable occurrence for most girls. So, check out the top things that, for whatever reason, guys seem to think mean you’re flirting with them. Now, of course, this doesn’t mean you’re doing something wrong – it means they are, because they have to assume everything is all about them.
1. Reading a book.
“Hey, what’s that you’re reading? Is it good? You know, I think girls look so much more attractive when they read.”
2. Wearing headphones.
“What are you listening to? Oh, do you really like Future or do you just know, like, his hits? Name five Future songs. Right now.”
3. Riding public transportation.
“Hey there. Saw you sitting here on the bus and I figured your public transit experience might be made infinitely better if I were to squeeze in right next to you, make you take out your headphones, and tell you why the Nerdist podcast is #actually so much better than This American Life.”
4. Sitting alone in a coffee shop.
“What’s that you’re doing? Studying for a final? Great, I won’t bother you–just let me tell you everything about my day so far, and expect you to do the same, and also ask you for your Instagram handle.”
5. Wearing a dress.
“I wasn’t going to approach you, but I saw you in that sundress and I just had to…”
“You’re my waitress? Perfect. I will ask you out before I get the bill, so you feel obligated to say ‘yes’ if you want a tip.”
7. Sitting on an airplane.
“Don’t nap. Instead, I will regale you with stories of every time I’ve heard about a plane crashing, which will severely trigger your own flight anxiety.”
8. Waiting in line.
“So, what brings you to the prescription line in this CVS pharmacy?”
9. Going to the gym.
“Oh, you like to lift? Nice. Let me show you how much more I can lift, in an effort to assert my dominance over you.”
10. Running outside.
“How about you run over to my house?”
11. Walking outside.
“How about you walk over to my house?”
12. Being outside.
You can’t win, basically.
Have you ever been approached in any of these situations? Did I forget any particularly aggravating ones? Let us know in the comments!