Scrolling through my Facebook timeline the other day, I ran across a very interesting meme. Very straight-forward but quite piercing. Next to a pretty dapper African-American gentleman dressed as a seemingly cultured and mature member of society, read the following words: "A man who views the world at 40, the same way he did at 20, has just wasted 20 years of his life." I nonchalantly agreed, hit the 'share' button, and thought nothing more of it.
Then my notifications blew up with a crap load of "yassssssss.." "girl you better Say that" and the infamous praising hands emoji, and I got intrigued. Women were really up in arms over this message. These thirty words or less brought to life what seems to be the main irritatingly provocation plaguing single women today. Are our men really half-assing it, and sadly, do they even realize or care enough to do anything about it? I don't think they all fall into this category; but to that paltry, intolerable, and tired ten percent that do...I have a Word for you. No self-respecting, half mentally-stable woman of substance and dignity with a future is going to take any of the following any longer (at least they shouldn't).
- You Still Stay at Home with Your Momma - I'm not even going to play with this list, so we might as well just start off with fire. Unless you moved in to tend to an ailing parent, assist with expenses, or are Temporarily there while you get back on your feet, grown men don't need to be living at home with their Mommies past the age of 30. No woman wants to get off of work, exhausted and in need, and have to come tip toe around your Momma's living room fully dressed because she has to respect her house. No woman feels comfortable completley engaging in sexual activity with your Mom 10-feet away watching General Hospital reruns. It's just trifling! Men need to be Men, and a huge part of that is having their own space. Get to apartment hunting!
- You Don't Have a Bank Account - To heck with all of the conspiracy theories about how you don't trust nobody to hold on to your money, and how you don't like banks. What does that mean Sir?? This isn't even about the amount of money you have in the bank, but more so the idea of responsibility towards your finances. Part of becoming an adult is embracing adult concepts. Oh, and that Rush card doesn't count either! I need your money insured by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC), and not kept in a purple Crown Royal bag in your sock drawer.
- Not Being Knowledgable of Appropriate Formal Wear - Another non-negotiable. Some women like to step out. I mean real stepping out; evenings at the Opera, Alvin Ailey's latest production, The Joffrey Ballet, just to name a few. You cannot wear your flyest Trues and new J's to any of these events. I will punch you. I also need you to know your neck size, inseam, and how to calculate your sleeve length. These figures are all numerical. Not S-XXL. GQ magazine has really awesome How-To articles and Brooks Brothers has amazing sales on the holidays. Thanks!
- You Have No Concept of a Fine Restaurant - You never know when you need to make an eloquent impression via dinner date (business meeting or girlfriend). Nope, Red Lobster, Grand Lux Cafe, and Cheesecake Factory don't make the list. I'm talking about establishments with seven course meals, cellared vintage wine, and market-rate seafood lists. Topolobampo and Spiaggia are two divine ones to start with if you're in Chicago! ;)
- You Don't Know How to Order or Pick Out Good Wine - This goes hand-in-hand with my last point. If you know anything about me, you know how near and dear this particular notion is to my heart. I am a self-professed wine connoisseur in my head and I believe that the average grown up should at minimum be well-versed in wine selection. I'm not saying that I'm looking for a sommelier, but I do need you to know the difference in the reds and whites and not to Ever insult me with preposterous beverages such as pink moscato.
- You Don't Know How to Actually 'Court' a Woman - Contrary to the most recent popularity of the term, women don't actually consider 'Netflix & Chill' a credibly acceptable first date. Seriously. The idea is cute months down the line after we've established what your last name is, but we need you to do a bit better in the beginning. Think old school and don't fall for the misconception that women don't like 'nice guys.' Be thoughtful. Be inventive. Be a pleasant mystery. Be consistent. Be respectable. Making random overly-thirsty comments under her Facebook pictures, or utilizing SnapChat as your sole means of getting to know her as a person is obnoxious and distasteful. While I do not subscribe to the idea of "rules" while dating and could care less when women give their cookies away, I also don't subscribe to flat-out nonsense. Learn the particulars of constructive, engaging conversation and interaction and use them!
- You're Still Using the Excuse That You Don't Know How to Commit - Bull! How about you don't want to. I am a firm believer that a woman cannot change a man, and that a man changes when he wants to. That being said, it may be time to grow-up. You can't be claiming to want happily ever after with Lisa when you won't leave Tracy, Keisha, and Tammy alone. This has to be an effort made first on your behalf. Just think about which of the above ladies might not be willing to hang around and wait!
- You Have NO Ambition, Life Plan, or Structured Work-Ethic - Notice here that I did not say job. You can have a job and still no real goals. There are entrepreneurs who do not consider themselves anybody employee, but have a 10-year career plan that would impress Steve Jobs. My point here fellas is to be ambitious and realistic! Also be consistent and productive. We just want you to have a damn plan for your life! Where are you trying to go? How do you think you can get there, and most importantly, How can We help? Couples have to build each other up, but there has to be a foundation. We hear it all the time and there's no difference here: We are the company that we keep. That includes your man! If he ain't keep-able then why are you still being kept...
The original version of this article can be found on the DJnDevin blog...