I cracked a tasty Avery bottle of beer and opened up my web browser. There, like a gift from whatever downtrodden half-wit god with the same sense of humor as me, was an article on MSN.com called “Five Signs She/He is Into You.”
I thought, there’s no way this can be real. Surely, no one would write something this dumb.
Unfortunately, it was realer and dumber than I thought. This list of telltale signs included such helpful tidbits as: “2. He speaks softly,” and “4. He talks slowwwly,” and “5. He can’t take his eyes off you (in a good way).”
Whatever lucky girl finds a guy who speaks slowly and stares blankly shouldn’t be worried about whether or not he is “into” her. She should be wondering how permanent the brain damage is.
The good news is that I’m not above this brand of trite, vapid writing—in fact, I’ve made a career out of it. So, let’s get into the Five Sure Signs Your Climbing Partner is Into You. And then, because it’s me writing this: Five Signs He/She Isn’t.
5 Signs Your Partner Is Into You:
He Buys Your Ticket To Europe: This is basically the baseline measure of whether or not your partner cares about you. Don’t climb with anyone who offers anything less.
He Lets You Use His Rope & He Doesn’t Cut It: Ropes are like gas: expensive and you really burn through them over the course of one climbing trip. Use his rope, and feel confident that he cares. And if he doesn’t pull a Simon Yates and cut the cord on you, leaving you to endure a marathon crawl home through talus on broken legs, BONUS!
He Encourages You in a Different Language: Men, of course, instinctively shy away from encouraging others because it makes them feel vulnerable. Fortunately, we can side-step that vulnerability by speaking another language—i.e., use words we don’t actually understand. But your partner doesn’t need to know that. All they need to know is that when they hear you speaking to him or her in French or Spanish or any other language, it’s a HUGE fucking turn-on!
Allez! Allez! Venga! Venga Tia! Venga Bitxo! Gamba!
Have you ever been cheered on the redpoint of your life to the sweet sounds of post-alveolar Xhosa clicking noises? Well, I have, and it’s AMAZE-BALLS.
He Can’t Take His Eyes Off You (In A Good Way): Yeah, it’s called “Good Belaying” … What a concept!
He Never Dies: Not dying really shows that your partner is both thoughtful and considerate. Hang onto this catch!
5 Signs Your Partner Isn’t Into You:
He Takes You To The Black Canyon: Nothing says I want to trundle rocks on your stupid fucking face more than taking someone climbing in the Black Canyon of the Gunnison. If, each weekend, you find yourself climbing more and more in the Black Canyon—groan, again?!?—then it’s no longer on. In fact, it’s definitely off.
He Lets You Rappel First: Don’t you love it when your partner offers you the first rappel, as if this were simply a polite, casual gesture on par with opening the door to Taco Bell? It’s so obvious what he’s really doing! He just wants to make sure that the anchor actually is solid enough to hold body weight, not to mention let you be the one to untangle the kitten-yarn caught up on the pricker bush. And guess what, you’re it!
You Never Lead Anything: Play time is over, kiddo. Why don’t you go back to the kiddie pool with all your other gumby friends. It’s time for adult swim.
He Never Really Takes Up Slack: “Take!” you say. “Take, take!” You feel a mild tug at your harness and sit back—only to drop five feet down, thereby losing all those precious hard-fought inches. As you sit, forlorn, at the end of the rope you will realize that he is so NOT into you, he’s now actually out of you.
He Onsights Your Project: Gawd! That’s … just … so … annoying! Isn’t it?