You don’t know me well yet, so let me explain. I’m not a crush girl. Mostly, this is because I have standards. Mile-high, you-best-get-your-spaceship-ready standards. It’s not enough that a guy be cute and possess a working reproductive system. In order for me to get interested, that hardcore fantasizing-about-matching-Volvos interested, he usually has to: use big words, love to travel, wear sweaters occasionally, make me laugh, have a beard, and – ideally – be able to quote Hemingway on a whim. I really go for that tall, dark, kills at Scrabble type. They’re a bit thin on the ground.
Then, I met this guy. Let’s call him Bjorn. He looks like a Norse god and is one of the smartest people I’ve ever met. He also: infuriates the hell out of me, can be a bit of a know-it-all (Hello, pot! My name is kettle!), is impossible to read, and treats me like his younger sister. Readers, we once got into a fight about unicorns. Yes, the mythological virgin-loving creatures with horns. It was the most ridiculous 10 minutes of my life. (Though, you’ll be glad to note: I won.) And yet, to quote our dear Mae…I rather dig his chili.
Luckily, a game night was recently planned, hosted by Bjorn and his roommate, Captain Thoughtful. We were to eat, drink, and play Scattergories. The perfect chance to set myself apart! Nothing says Take me now! like bonding over your brilliant triple-score answer to Things People Gossip About (Who Slept With Whom…please hold your applause).
Yet, what if my mad board game skills weren’t enough? Cue conundrum. How exactly does one win the regard of such an odd, but dreamy, creature? Tradition, that darling institution, presented me with some guidelines:
- Wear a revealing outfit. Men, we are often reminded, can’t keep their eyes off a woman’s curvier bits. Donning a low-cut shirt, flaunting Watson & Crick like a pair of gravity-defying cantaloupes would surely work.
- Smell like Little Debbie. Anyone who has ever read Cosmo has heard the research. Men, it seems, love it when a woman smells like vanilla, sugar, or anything edible. I obviously needed a bottle of Hermes’ new scent, Eau de Macaroni-et-Fromage.
- Laugh. At everything. Men love to believe themselves funny. A giggling, simpering audience is mancrack. Sure, that conversation about the finer points of Orthodox Judaism may seem like a serious discussion, but a girl must soldier on. Bat those eyelashes and laugh whenever he says “Talmudic,” if you must.
- Unleash your inner Betty Crocker. The way to a man’s heart? Oh, not his brain, my dear naive butterlump. His stomach! Everyone knows that. Just because you’ve worked a ninety-hour week at the hospital, saving lives, doesn’t mean you can shirk your womanly duty. Bake something! Anything! Just make it from scratch. He’ll know otherwise.
Unfotunately, I have an embarrassing aversion to: dressing like a Kardashian, luring cannibals with my perfume (pre-seasoned blonde medical student! score!), and giggling in general. Baking, however, is something I can handle. So, I made my famous brownies. You know, the ones my aunt requests every time she’s in town, have been known to cure the flu, and are made in a special edge-only pan? It was on!
I slaved over the brownie batter for ten whole minutes, baked them to the perfect squishyness, and arranged them in an artful tower on one of my fancy Spode Christmas plates. When we arrived at the game night, I placed them in a spot of honor between the Heineken and the cheese cubes. All night, people gasped out their amazement. “These brownies are incredible!” was uttered over and over again. Even, I’m pleased to tell you, by Bjorn. It worked! I won his heart with baked goods!
We are getting married next week.
Psych! He still thinks of me as a younger sister. The only change? I’m down one Spode plate, after swearing that I wouldn’t take the leftovers home with me. Thanks for nothing, colloquialisms. On the bright side, I totally owned at both Scattergories and Taboo. Board game domination is just as good as a steamy Viking make-out, right?