Let’s begin with a simple, helpful little translation guide:
|What You Say||What I Hear|
|“I like smart girls”||You think I’m an idiot who can be manipulated by flattery|
Now, this is usually the point at which someone will protest that he does in fact actually like smart girls (or women, which is the preferred term for adult female-identified homo sapiens), and that it seems entirely unreasonable for me to be all picky and mean about his saying so.
I get that, bro. I feel you. Let me clarify.
I have no problem with being chatted up by interesting people. I can usually tell by the content of our conversation when we’ve got a healthy mutual respect for each other’s intelligence. I have never been truly disappointed in a conversation like this, where it’s really obvious that the person I’m talking to is digging how smart the conversation is and appreciates that we can go to those smart places together. The dudes who really appreciate smart women are usually pretty obvious to me, because enjoying a clever conversation is a team effort, and it’s fun for everyone.
In my experience, however, the (usually really drunk) dudes who are telling me how smart I am inevitably follow up the compliment with manipulative bullshit aimed at getting me to do something they want, pushing at my boundaries and testing the limits of consent. Often, they jump to negging from there (usually with a jab at my appearance, attempting to appeal to certain insecurities presumed to be normal for the smart-but-not-that-hawt set).
To put it in sporting terms some sportier dudebros might understand: Your backswing is ok, bro, but your follow-through leaves a lot to be desired. This is why you swing and miss. This is why you don’t get it on the green. This is why you live in the hazards. Insert slightly naughty putter joke here, followed by fairly raunchy birdie pun.
Actually, the [compliment] followed by [manipulative consent-testing bullshit] pattern crosses a lot different compliments and contexts. Word to the wise: Ditch this bad habit and correct your swing, friends. If you really do love the brainy ladies, then engage their brains directly and skip the nonsense.
Next time: No, I will not kiss you just because you keep asking, and you’re not getting a cheaper pitcher, either.