Fun-Sized Advice

On fun-sized advice

What is an asshole, even.
Might I recommend one of my favorite little books, Assholes: A Theory by Aaron James. It covers the topic brilliantly.

What does it mean when a guy sends you flowers and signs the card, “Always”?
It means he went out of his way to not use the word “Love.”

Art should demand something of its audience. Agree or disagree?
Art is the demand.

this is crazy. im a girl who likes anal sex. i’m scared to break up with my boyfriend in part because i worry about finding another guy who is into that, and into it respectfully. is this irrational??
Okay, it’s this “in part” thing that matters here. What are the other reasons you’re scared to break up with your boyfriend? For real, are you ready for the relationship to end? You have to be honest with yourself. If you’re done, you’re done. Worrying about who’s gonna respectfully fuck you in the ass just seems like an expression of denial over your inevitable break-up.

Is this really all there is to life? Work, eat healthily, exercise, make friends, lose friends, date, etc? I thought the future would be cooler. Then again, I thought I would be an Astronaut or a Pop Star or an Actor so maybe my expectations needed to lower at some point.
Why did you capitalize those professions? Such an odd thing to do. As for your expectations, even astronauts, pop stars, and actors have to do all that shit you listed, so I don’t quite know what you’re bitching about. This is a pretty awesome time to be alive. If you’re bored, it’s your own damn fault.

Do you ever sell your old books? It would be cool to receive a book from the library of the Coquette.
I don’t sell them, but I’m constantly giving them away, especially the ones that I love. It tends to leave my bookshelves filled with good-but-not-great books, which is fine I suppose, because anybody who makes it back to my place ain’t judging me for my book collection.

Why does Amal Clooney even matter to you?
Better question: Why does Amal Clooney mattering to me even matter to you?

Why have you chosen not to take drugs anymore?
I didn’t say I’ve chosen not to take drugs anymore. I said I’ve deliberately chosen not to find drug connects in my new town. (Just because you don’t want the number to the local Domino’s doesn’t mean you’ve stopped eating pizza.)

You haven’t moved to fucking Tulsa have you?
I would move to a mental hospital before I would move to Tulsa.


14 thoughts on “On fun-sized advice

  1. NNN says:

    The person who asked about whether this is “really all there is to life” might be interested in a band called YACHT. (You, Coquette, might be too!) No music has ever ‘saved my life’, but theirs has come closest and they even put out a pretty sweet record last year called “I Thought the Future Would Be Cooler”.

    For reference:

    Edited to add: And, for a while, I was convinced that you (Coquette) were the lead singer Claire. The similarities are striking, although your recent move put that theory to rest.

      • nenya bee says:

        I capitalised those professions as in Jr. School (ages 7 – 12 in the UK) I had a teacher who insisted on capitalising professions in any context. I think they assumed it made the persons role seem more important. I’m not sure. When asked, they never gave an actual answer except to say “that’s how I want you to write it.” It’s a habit I’ve never really grown out of. They also insisted on never starting another sentence with ‘and’, though I’ve read a few books recently that do. In fact, it might have been in one of your recommendations. Either the language is constantly evolving or they were wrong about a few things. I was bitching because even though I do all those activities that I listed, and it’s supposed to make me happy, I never seem to actually be happy or even content most of the time. So, I know it’s my own fault for feeling shitty but I’m not sure how to change my way of thinking – the way I perceive situations/other people, meditate more, etc.

        To NNN: Thanks for the music recommendation! I was actually thinking of that song from their last record when I wrote my question, although I’m yet to actually listen to the full album.

        • The Coquette says:

          Just FYI, you capitalize a job title if it’s in reference to a specific person, but you do not capitalize a job title if it only references itself. For instance, one would write President Barack Obama, or the President gave a speech today, but you would also write, I want to be president when I grow up. See the difference? You capitalize job titles when they act as proper nouns. If they’re just acting as regular nouns, there’s no need to capitalize. (And thus ends the super nerdy grammar lesson for the day.)

        • NNN says:

          If you haven’t delved deeper into YACHT, I’d say the songs that made the biggest impact on me are:

          “The Magic Beat”
          “Utopia/You Can Live Anywhere You Want”
          “Don’t Fight the Darkness”
          “Paradise Engineering”
          “Plastic Soul”
          “Don’t Be Rude”

          In fact, I’d call that a mini-playlist that might help address exactly what you were asking about in your question. (Be careful with “Plastic Soul”, though. It’s easy to hear it as extremely depressing if you aren’t listening for the almost Camus-like absurdity.)

        • Strangely Rational says:

          WARNING: Long and slightly rambling post ahead.

          “I was bitching because even though I do all those activities that I listed, and it’s supposed to make me happy, I never seem to actually be happy or even content most of the time. ”

          Who said it was supposed to make you happy? Someone who was very mistaken, apparently.

          First, I think you need to explore contentment. It’s not easy to feel content if you’re shooting for “happy” as defined by society. So you really have to redefine your terms. “Happy” is something that is felt in bursts. Contentment is the sort of peace you feel in between that and emotions on the other extreme, like anger, grief, and frustration.

          I don’t know if this applies to you, but I’m an emotion junkie. I prefer it strong, and anything in the middle feels somehow empty. So if I can’t feel happy, I tend to bring myself down into despair. In a dysfunctional way, it feels “better” than being neutral.

          So here I’ve been searching fruitlessly for contentment while rejecting the very thing that it turns out it actually is!

          Once I accepted that, I came to realize that my definition for happiness was wrong too. It doesn’t mean blissful (that’s what the word “blissful” is for). It’s not a constant state of being. That’s not possible, because happiness is only meaningful in contrast with the lack of it.

          So what I’m going for is peace and contentment. It’s not easy when you’re a mentally-ill, 42-year-old mom below poverty level. But it’s not impossible. For me, it’s meant therapy, most recently – and most helpfully by far – a DBT group.

          Oh, and please don’t blame yourself for your feelings! It sounds like you might just need some guidance in what to do with them. I’ve spent so much of my life knowing what I needed to change but not how! That’s where practical therapy has helped me, by giving me actual tools to use.

  2. Nina says:

    Amal Clooney is fucking BADASS. Her field is international law/human rights law, which is nearly impossible to get into and can be extremely dangerous. One of her predecessors was murdered.

    She’s also a polyglot, an Oxford graduate, guest teacher at several top universities, and co-wrote three law books plus a number of articles. Can you tell how much I admire this woman?

  3. Onion says:

    Assholes would have been a much better book if James had gotten a better writer to write from his notes. Do yourself a favor and read the first couple chapters, then toss it, because by then you’ve got the point.

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