Social media has ruined dating

“Oh my god, I can’t believe he has another girl in his Snapchat best friends!”

This one sentence is a prime example of how social media has ruined 21st century dating.

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Back in the day, couples were more focused on what to wear to their first date or what movie to watch or even what is the surname of their potential date. Now with social media – coupled with the fact that “social media stalking” can give you a ton of information on your date before you have even met him/her – people are more focused on how many girls he’s following on Instagram and why this one guy keeps liking all of her bikini pictures on Facebook.

"OMG he's seen my Snap but hasn't replied. He's SO cheating on me!"

“OMG he’s seen my Snap but hasn’t replied. He’s SO cheating on me!”

A couple of my girlfriends have expressed their concerns with their significant other because:
1) He has a picture with his ex on Facebook that he has neglected to delete or
2) He has other girls in his Snapchat best friends.

Girl bye, why is this even a problem? Even without social media, your fella/lady will still have other friends of the opposite sex. You just weren’t privy to this information beforehand because you couldn’t see what they were doing 24/7.

That’s where the major problem in social media/dating lies: at the touch of a button, you can see who someone is with, what movie they’re watching, what book they’re reading and where they are. All of that information in about 10 seconds tops. In a way, social media has made it “okay” to stalk someone to the point of knowing everything about them, even before they’ve met you. Sometimes you’ll find things that you wish you didn’t see and you will overthink the situation to the point where you have planned out an entire altercation with your loved one before it has even happened.

It’s important to remember that people will always have lives outside of you, so who cares if your boyfriend is following other girls on Instagram or if your boy Snapchats girls that aren’t you? Are you going to shut her out because he has a life? Are you going to withold sex from him because he talks to girls that aren’t you?

Sometimes ignorance really is bliss. Maybe it is better for everyone to settle their sweet horses down, hop in the river, and just go with the flow. Oh, and stop being a stalker.

That’s rich coming from me as I like to use my “investigative journalistic” skills on people sometimes, but at least I admit I’m a social creep.

I’m sure your relationship will be more enjoyable if you stay out of each other’s social lives.

– by Noah La’ulu

The Problem with Double Standards

First thing’s first, I’m an equalist.

I have given up on the term “feminist“. I’ve now decided that I will label myself as an “equalist” because that is exactly what I want; total equality in all human beings.

Sure, women have it hard in the world where they aren’t afforded the same opportunities as men in some circumstances because of their gender – which is total bullshit – but, as liberal as a human being as I am, men have it hard as well in a different way than women do.

This is where the double standards issue comes in.

Does anyone else want fairy floss after looking at this picture? (Screenshot from "All About That Bass" music video)

Does anyone else want fairy floss after looking at this picture? (Screenshot from “All About That Bass” music video)

Take this picture I saw floating on Facebook recently; in the top half is a cartoon of a regular bloke talking to a heavyset woman, and the man says “Sorry, I prefer to date thinner women,” and there are a bunch of girls in the background saying “BOOO! Typical man!” and “Every woman is beautiful, no matter the shape” and other such things.

In the bottom half, however, is a shorter guy talking to a taller woman, and the woman says “Sorry, I prefer to date taller men”, and the same bunch of girls in the background are saying “Yeah! You tell him girl!” and “I prefer dating taller men as well!”

What makes it okay for a woman to dictate how she would like her man but all of a sudden it’s wrong for a man to do so? Fair enough, most women would not want to be called fat. But most men wouldn’t want to be called short. Men can’t help their height as much as women can’t help their weight (most of the time).

It’s not even just genders that suffer from this.

Take Meghan Trainor’s All About That Bass song (pictured above), where she’s basically singing about how large she is and she’s happy with it. Good on her. But the issue I have is when she says “I’m bringing booty back, go ahead and tell them skinny bitches that.” How is that meant to be empowering to women? What if those “skinny bitches” were actually very lovely women and the men that they have loved them for their great personality and/or gentle soul instead of being “skinny”?

And to put it doubly into perspective, swap the roles around: if a thinner woman, Selena Gomez for example, were to sing a song saying “I love being so thin, tell those fat bitches to back off my man”, shit would be thrown at her something chronic for criticising bigger women. Yet, it’s totally okay to criticise thinner women.

If you want a male example of double standards, then I have one for you.

Gay men and straight men. A gay man says that he doesn’t like a straight man for whatever reason, and I’m assuming most people would be like “Yeah, he doesn’t know what he’s missing out on” and “Good on you! Stand up for yourself!” A straight man says that he doesn’t like a gay man for whatever reason, people would be absolutely slamming him, calling him “homophobic” among other things. If that were true, that would also make the gay man “heterophobic”, wouldn’t it? Why isn’t the gay man criticised as much as the straight man?

The same could be said about black people and white people. Black people make a joke about white people, it’s generally okay. White people make a joke about black people, and you are automatically racist.

Now, I get it. I truly get it. The “minority” groups in these situations have it hard and have had it hard for a very long time and that shouldn’t be the case anymore. I get it. But if we’re striving for equality – and I mean truly striving for equality – then criticising the “majority” groups should not be okay. It isn’t okay.

All humans are born different, raised different, and grow up different. But they all deserve to be treated the same.

Get on the real side of this fight. Not the feminist side, or the misogynist side (if that’s the male form of feminism), or anything like that.

Be an equalist.

– by Noah La’ulu

Life with Vertigo, Anxiety and an irrational fear of Odd Numbers

Being normal is so overrated anyway, right?

Among other things, I have several “problems” that contribute to my “intricate personality”, some of which include:

vertigonoun; a sensation of whirling and loss of balance, associated particularly with looking down from a great height, or caused by disease affecting the inner ear or the vestibular nerve; giddiness.

anxietynoun; a feeling of worry, nervousness, or unease about something with an uncertain outcome.

disparnumerophobia; noun; the fear of odd numbers.

Vertigo, probably made most famous by the Alfred Hitchcock film Vertigo, is more common than one would think; however, with people like me, it happens a whole lot easier than to someone who will only experience the feeling of vertigo when looking down from a great height. That one strong feeling of dizziness and nausea someone may experience when sitting in a ferris wheel is exactly how I feel when looking down a set of steps or when sitting on a children’s rollercoaster.

Anxiety is also more common than one would imagine. My anxiety stems from a lack of control which has thus made me become a major control freak. If I can’t predict the outcome of a situation or I don’t know what’s going to happen, I’m set off. I was even reduced to a panic attack watching game two of State of Origin this year because I was unsure of the outcome. If I once had control over a situation and had that control taken away from me, you can bet your bottom dollar I will be reduced to a panic attack.

Finally, disparnumerophobia, or the fear of odd numbers, is also more common. It’s become a “thing” on Facebook to not have TV volumes on odd numbers, but my fear stretches even further than that; if I press the button at the lights, I’ll have to press it an even amount of times otherwise I fear lightning will strike me. Even when I’m eating, I count how many times I chew and how many times I swallow in case of the odd-numbered-lightning strike. Someone who doesn’t have disparnumerophobia may think it is a funny concept, but it actually takes control of my life more than you’d think.

Singularly, having each of these is a slight problem, but put them all together and you’ve got yourself a very different life.

So... high... but I want to pay attention!

So… high… but I want to pay attention!

Let me paint a picture for you. I was lucky enough to receive tickets to attend the Super Rugby grand final this year at ANZ Stadium. Waratahs v Crusaders, the latter of which being my second team in Super Rugby. Plus, these tickets were free. Sounds like fun, right? Well, little did I know that these tickets were very, very, very high up. I didn’t have a problem with the seats being far back, it was just the height that got to me.

Walking up the stairs to get to the seats was probably the most harrowing experience I’ve had in recent years. I struggled to do a simple exercise like walking up stairs. I had to grip onto the rail for dear life and take the steps one at a time for fear that I might tumble down the stairs and roll off into a pit of death, and screaming Waratahs fans.

I look down at my ticket… it’s an odd numbered seat. Suddenly, my anxiety kicks in and I’m thinking about all the bad things that’ll happen in the world because I have to sit on an odd numbered seat.

I can’t do this. I can’t do this. I literally can’t do this.

Luckily, there was pretty much no one at the back and I got to sit wherever, which included sitting down on an even numbered seat. Life was all good.

Until I looked down at the field and my vertigo returned after a short break. I begun to think about all the ways I could tumble down the rows in front of me and eventually roll onto the field in a bloody heap. So much so that I could barely pay attention to the Super Rugby final being played in front of me.

Having these “problems” for lack of a better word have made my life a bit less cruisey than a life without them, but I think they make me what I am. I am a strong-willed spitfire pot of sass because I’ve had to deal with my crippling fear of heights and odd numbers and the fact that I overthink everything.

In a sense, I don’t regret having these minor issues or resent having them. In fact, I think I’m embracing them and am learning to deal with it better than most. Because I’m a strong independent men who only needs chocolate in the world.

– by Noah La’ulu

(If you or someone you know is dealing with anxiety and it is becoming uncontrollable, please seek support immediately. Check Beyond Blue for addition details)

My Very Specific View on Marriage

Marriage isn’t for everyone. If anything has been made clear in the 21st century, it is that.

In today’s society, it is rare and almost a huge a shock if a celebrity couple get married and stay married. Divorce isn’t a weird concept anymore and rough figures suggest that almost half of marriages end in divorce.

In my sweet and humble opinion (IMSAHO, for future reference), I attribute this to one simple thing (or two if you really think about it). One thing that nearly every couple does. One thing that has been customary so no one really thinks too much of it. One thing that, when you really think about it, is not necessary to marriage at all.

This one thing is weddings (and honeymoons).

What problem could I have with these two lovebirds? Read on and find out. (SOURCE:  Andrew Morrell's Flickr photostream)

What problem could I have with these two lovebirds? Read on and find out. (SOURCE: Andrew Morrell’s Flickr photostream)

Watching wedding shows like Don’t Tell the Bride and Say Yes to the Dress have me draw my own conclusion: people are way more focused on the materialistic things of the wedding that they are forgetting the most important of any wedding… getting married to the person that you love.

In these shows – and from my other observations – it’s evident that couples care way too much about what other people think about them; therefore, they spend all this money on having the best venues and the best food and the best gowns and tuxedos that they forget that they are eternally binding themselves to one person for the rest of their lives because they are in love. Forking out thousands upon thousands of dollars for a 2+ hour ceremony celebrating two people is, to me, ridiculous and unnecessary.

Sure, there may be other problems in the marriage that may cause a couple to divorce: adultery, a different view on the future, or my personal favourite, “irreconcilable differences”, but I think that if two people are getting married for the right reasons – binding yourself to the love of your life because you want to spend the rest of your lives together – then they will last longer than the couple who are looking forward to their honeymoon more than their future of growing old together and rocking on wooden chairs holding hands.

Think about all the money that goes to weddings and honeymoons that could go to better use somewhere. A car? A house? Savings? These TV programmes that show women forking out up to $250,000 for a wedding and honeymoon are, excuse my French, fucked up.

If I were to ever get married, should I choose to, there will be no wedding. No honeymoon. No reception. No food. None of that crap. We will go to a small chapel with only the priest and a witness (if necessary), elope, and then go home and sleep in our bed as if nothing special happened. Then, and only then, will we tell our family and friends the next day that we got married.

I get that your loved ones want to celebrate your marriage and your love and that’s fine. They can just do it in their own time.

As for me, if it were to be my dream scenario? I would get eloped in a onesie. With ug boots on.

And I would be the happiest man alive.

– by Noah La’ulu