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Advice Goddess: Save the wails….
Wednesday, 02 April 2014 11:55

Are guys scared of politically active women? My boyfriend of two months just broke up with me over my support for animal rights, and I’ve generally had difficulty keeping boyfriends because of this. This boyfriend was bothered by two incidents. In the first, I got into an argument about zoos with one of his friends at a party. Another time, we were driving alongside a car with a pro-hunting bumper sticker, and I rolled down my window and shouted something to the driver. I’m trying to do good— protect creatures without a voice. Does that mean I don’t deserve a boyfriend? 

—  Yes, I Stand For Something

Men tend to like it when a woman screams passionately, but it’s less sexy if what she’s screaming is “McDonald’s is murder!”

But, wait — you’re trying to do some good; don’t you “deserve” a boyfriend?

You, like the rest of us, deserve not to be run over by a truck. The Declaration of Independence also spells out that “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” stuff we’re all supposed to get.

That’s right; you have a right to chase happiness. It doesn’t get delivered to your door. (“Sign here, please.”)

And the reality is, every requirement you have for a boyfriend and every, well, nonstandard practice you have (like Wicca, being a serious Civil War re-enactor, or a hobby of throwing fake blood on people in fur) narrows your options.

The size of a person’s dating pool is determined by their level of hotitude factored with how hard they are to be around. (An annoying 9 might still have many romantic opportunities, though with limited staying power.)

And just a guess, but for at least some of these guys who dumped you, maybe the problem wasn’t so much your support of animal rights as it was your lack of boundaries in expressing it.

Even a guy who’s with you in principle on sticking up for Bambi and the lab rats might not be comfortable with your transforming every social gathering into an animal rights protest rally.

Also, consider that there’s a difference between speaking your mind and yelling it out the window at someone who has announced in writing on their vehicle that they are likely armed.

In other words, you can refuse to ever bend your principles, or you can have a man in your life.This isn’t to say you have to start wearing snow leopard legwarmers and eating baby seal McNuggets; you probably just need to divide the world into political and social forums.

Social forums would be reserved for pleasant cocktail party conversation — even if a guy is gnawing meat off a skewer and you long more than anything to stick him in the eye with it and say, “See how you like it!” 

When you start dating somebody new, ask him what his comfort zone is regarding your activism, and either respect the boundaries he needs or be honest if you can’t or won’t.

If you come to see a relationship as a party of two, each of whose needs matter, there’s a good chance you’ll find a guy who’ll at least be there to bail you out of jail — maybe for years to come — until you two finally retire to the country to run a lentil rescue. (Some say they scream when you drop ‘em in boiling water.)

Dial another day

Is it really that inappropriate to give a girl your number instead of asking for hers? I met a cool girl at the gym. We really seemed to hit it off, and I asked whether we could get a drink sometime. She said yes, and I said, “Here, I’ll give you my number.” She said, “Um, don’t you want my number?” Well, I just offered her mine because she had her phone with her and mine was in the locker room, but apparently she was offended. Really? Who cares?
— Hung Up On An Issue

Giving this woman your number and expecting her to call you is like the lion saying to the gazelle, “Would you mind coming over here and killing yourself, and then I’ll eat you?”

For millions of years, there’s been a natural order of things and it involves men chasing women, and it hasn’t heard of Gloria Steinem and doesn’t care that your phone is in the locker room.

Sure, women these days may sometimes pursue men, but when you want a woman, do you really want to walk away without her phone number and hope she’ll call — which most women won’t do?

Also, chances are, expecting a woman to call you comes off a little insulting — telling her you’re interested in her, just not interested enough to lift a finger and touch it to phone buttons 10 times.

In other words, the thing to do was to toddle off and get a writing implement and a scrap of paper so you could take down this woman’s number and call her, not try to rewrite male and female psychology and dating practices for your convenience: “Great meeting you! I’ll just be sitting home painting my toenails and waiting for the phone to ring.”
(c.) 2014, Amy Alkon, all rights reserved. Got a problem? Write Amy Alkon, 171 Pier Ave, #280, Santa Monica, CA  90405, or e-mail

Fueled by Zeppelin, Caleb Johnson survives another round on TV’s ‘Idol’
Wednesday, 02 April 2014 11:36

Fueled by his stellar March 26 performance of a truncated version of Led Zeppelin’s epic rocker “Dazed and Confused,” Asheville’s Caleb Johnson made it for yet another week on television’s “American Idol.”

Johnson has yet to rank among the bottom three contestants after the weekly national vote tally.

Voted off on the night of March 27 was North Carolina’s only other contestant, Majesty Rose, who had been in the bottom three ranking the previous two weeks. She sang Florence & The Machine’s “Shake It Out” on March 26, oddly contradicting the theme of “I’m With the Band.” Rose is a preschool teacher from Greensboro.

The other remaining contestants are from Florida, New Hampshire, Michigan (two finalists) and Alabama (three finalists).

By all accounts, Johnson was a big hit on “American Idol” on March 26, terming the Zeppelin song “Dazed and Confused” as “one of my favorite songs of all time.” The performance showcased Johnson’s interaction with Rickey Minor and the “Idol” backup band. 

“This is what I want to do,” Caleb said before singing, meaning fronting a rock band.

While some other contestants chose songs that did not conform with the theme “I’m With the Band,” Johnson reportedly hit that requirement to a “T.” He and the band turned up the volume for “Dazed and Confused,” a song by 1960s jingle composer Jake Holmes that Led Zeppelin used to stretch beyond 20 minutes in concerts.

Johnson’s performance included flashing colored lights, roaring guitars and a ghostly backup vocal mimicking the original recording. All of the judges to compliment the band’s performance after Johnson finished.

The judges also showered Johnson with praise.

“That was very sexy,” judge Jennifer Lopez said. “That takes us to another level.”

“I just don’t know how you could have sung that song any better,” said judge Harry Connick Jr., although he was confused by Johnson’s ending. Still, “it’s tough to follow that,” he added.

 “Your whole performance came at me like an airbag in slow motion,” said judge Keith Urban, which, according to USA Today, he apparently meant as flattery.



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