Mr. Nice Guy Is a Douchebag

Tan suits were awesome. Hell, they're still awesome. Shut up!!

“I wish I could find a nice guy like you.”

If you’re a nice guy, you’ve undoubtedly heard this maddening piece of bullshit at least once in your life. Probably more. In high school it was all I heard.

I went to a very small suburban high school in Massachusetts. There were 125 people in our graduating class, and I spent 12 years with the majority of my classmates throughout elementary, middle and high school. In a school that small, once you’re pigeonholed into a certain reputation it’s pretty much impossible to shake. And I was the Nice Guy.

I had no game whatsoever. If I liked a girl I’d write her a poem and fawn over her like she was Helen of Troy. I was a dork. Which means I had absolutely no value to women because I was completely non-threatening and wasn’t a challenge at all. Not only did they know they could get me, they knew they didn’t even have to try. All of this to say I landed in the “Friend Zone” more often than not, at which point I pathetically listened to them talk about the guys they did want to get with and gave them advice.

Truly sickening.

At the end of my junior year I wised up and started looking for a girlfriend at another high school where no one knew me. And I found “Christine” (name changed), who was attractive, athletic and (most importantly) said yes to going out with me. Unfortunately, the only thing worse than a Mr. Nice Guy who isn’t getting any is a Mr. Nice Guy who is.

I was whipped. Actually that severely understates it. I was broken in like a Grand Canyon pack mule. And although I eventually grew out of this in college when I learned that being an aloof, dismissive and disinterested dick was the best way to attract female attention, the proof of my whippedness (I’m making it a word!) recently surfaced.

MJ was cleaning out my old bedroom at my parent’s house. The first sign of my pathetic high school existence is on the ceiling, because Christine gave me those glow-in-the-dark stars and I promptly spelled her name out above my bed. The stars are long gone but the adhesive I used is still visible in the form of her name.

Nothing says "I love you" like Bart Simpson.

But all of that is nothing compared to The Shoebox.

My relationship with Christine lasted from the end of my junior year to the week I went away for college. In that time, I pledged my eternal love to her and then some. Even though I was only 17 years old, I promised her a yellow colonial house. With three children. I’m sure we had the names picked out but I can’t remember them. And in the 18 months we dated I bestowed upon her countless gifts, poems, cards, flowers, notes and other trinkets of cheesy affection.

Take my homemade card to the right, for example. First of all, who celebrates a six-month anniversary? Second, using the term “Darling Pumpkin” is never acceptable. But lastly, I wish I knew why I ever thought using a crudely animated kids cartoon character to express my sweet nothings was a good idea. Because nothing says romance like Bart Simpson, right?

I have the overwhelming urge to jump in Doc Brown’s Delorean, go back in time 15 years and kick the shit out of my pussy self.

But that’s not even the worst of it. If you’re looking for mind-numbingly terrible, that would be the poetry I wrote. It all rhymes, and it’s all bad. Just really, really bad. For instance:

Today marks the day of St. Valentine
And I’m ever so thankful you are mine
Everyone’s supposed to feel romantic today
But about you I feel this way everyday
You’re so good to me, you’re an awesome girlfriend
I know that our love knows no end
So I leave you with this my sweet little tart
On this Valentine’s Day you’ve captured my heart

 Yeah. Told you. And there are about 50 more examples just like that one unfortunately.

The only thing that saved me from a lifetime of douchery was college. Even though I pledged my eternal love for Christine and earnestly vowed our love would survive against all odds, it didn’t quite work out that way. It took me five days to break up with her after heading off to college and realizing my four years of college were the opportunity of a lifetime. And immediately after that realization came an even more important one.

Women like assholes.

Protest all you want, but it’s true. In college I transformed myself into a dick. I became a well-known philanderer, dating several women at once even when I had a girlfriend. The only times I wrote poems or bought flowers were when I was in the dog house. I acted disinterested, aloof and I was thoroughly inconsiderate of women. It was all a marked departure from my Mr. Nice Guy former self.

And guess which personality got more girls?

Women like bad boy assholes. Even MJ, when we first started dating, admits she was attracted to me partially because I had a reputation. And when I fell in love with her and committed to her long-term, she told me she was excited because she “tamed me” and did something that—in her mind—no other woman could manage. And she’s not alone, I know a lot of women who think the same way.

Don’t get me wrong, eventually women do want a nice guy. After they’ve been run over by a few bad boys they finally want a little more stability. But not too much, or they’ll be bored and unhappy.

Condoms & Blowpops. Oy vey.

All this is to say I’m going to use my stint as Mr. Nice Guy to teach Will a lesson when he’s old enough to ask about girls. I’m going to teach him to be a gentleman, but I’m also going to tell him he can’t be a doormat. Writing poetry and being overly nice to girls gets you nowhere fast. Unfortunately, you ladies have made it so guys need to be dicks from puberty to your late 20s to get your attention (among other things).

While you constantly say you want a nice guy, you don’t really mean it. Because I was a nice guy and it sucked. My life was exponentially better as an asshole. Sure I came full circle when it was time to settle down, but my son will not be the pathetic pushover I was growing up. He’s not going to be the kind of jackass who saves his first condom receipt (picture at left) because he fancies it a romantic gesture. There will be no shoebox of humiliation for him.

If I sound a little angry you’re right. I hated high school with a passion and even thinking about the person I used to be makes me physically ill. While it’s unfortunate that I need to teach my son to be kind of an asshole with women, it’s also very necessary. I’m not going to tell him to be abusive or flat-out disrespectful to women, but I am going to tell him to hold back total affection and adoration until he’s absolutely sure he’s in love. Because women like a challenge, and if you make it clear you’ll do anything for them you’ll be screwed.

Because nice guys truly do finish last. Now excuse me while I burn this shoebox.

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16 thoughts on “Mr. Nice Guy Is a Douchebag

  1. Trojans AND 2 blowpops? Here’s a good lesson for Will: don’t use them at the same time.

    Seriously, that Bart Simpson made me die.

    I hope MJ laughed as hard at you as I would at my (former Mr. Nice Guy) husband. I’m forwarding this to him.

  2. I also died a little over the two blowpops on the receipt… also, you didn’t give yourself full credit on the nickname – the card says “DUMPLING Pumpkin” not DARLING… although frankly, I love them both. 🙂

  3. I LOVE this. I always tell my daughter to go for the guy who makes you laugh. I never went for the “bad boy” -well except for that drummer in college ;)and I think it’s funny how the too-cool quarterback from high school now mows my lawn. 🙂
    The blow pops made me laugh. You needed something to do afterwards, right? At least it wasn’t cigarettes. 😉
    I’m sure MJ knows what a keeper she has- 🙂

  4. Kris, I love that the QB is now your lawn boy! Hilarious.
    I remember my mom always saying “Be nice to the dorks, they will be rich one day!” and while that isn’t exactly true, they at least have good jobs and are upstanding members of society, unlike my HS QB (and ex, blech) who is a barber and looks like a Jersey Shore reject. In Tennessee.
    Christi recently posted..Person most wantedMy Profile

  5. LOL! from 1996!! i love your blogs! and intresting topic have a good night! =-D

  6. i’m calling bullshit on you being the one to break up w/ the girl when you went off to college. admit it, aaron. she dropped you like yesterday’s mail. with Homer Simpson doodles on it.

    and though women may like assholes, there’s also a reason why the divorce rate in America is as high as it is. that’s why my catchphrase was always this: women like assholes, but not the kinda women this asshole wants. (catchy, no?)
    john cave osborne recently posted..Picture of the Weekend, Aiming Low and One of the GirlsMy Profile

  7. I thought that you couldn’t get any more exposed than the post of you with your legs in the air getting rash cream applied to your valley of shame but I was wrong. “Dumpling Pumpkin” what the hell does that even mean. I’m not one to throw stones though since I never made it out of the friend zone in high school.
    Portland Dad recently posted..Parenting: Teaching two sides of conflictMy Profile

  8. LOL! I remember finding notes like those from boys… & no girl really wants to “settle down” with the asshole – some of us just like a challenge =)

  9. Much as I enjoyed your post (the CVS receipt is classic… kind of like me saving condom wrappers I used with a certain guy), I gotta direct you to this famous school of thought on the “nice guy” debate. Namely, that most of these self-professed “nice guys” are no different than the “assholes” in terms of what they want and how they view women. They just have a different approach. Of course, there are plenty of actual nice guys, but they usually don’t go on and on about how nice they are.

    However, I’m NOT putting you in that “nice guy who’s actually a jerk” category. It can’t apply to anyone who used the term “dumpling pumpkin”.

  10. Being nice gave me jack-poop. Not only i was in the freaking “i love you like a brother” zone (no thanks i want to have sex!!!!) but i wasn’t respected as much as the arse holes girls where complaining to ME about!

    It is against logic so it took a while to understand…and apply. Really – being an as-hole works almost always !
    Luke recently posted..Get a degree fastMy Profile

  11. I wish we were closer friends in college so you could have mentored me in your ways. I’m always the “nice guy” or “best friend.” Hell, I’ve even had one girl call me her “non-gay, gay friend.” WTF is that?

    Where were you when I needed you most?

    Seriously, this one really hits home.

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