Q Dear Miss Abigail:
I like this guy in my class and I’m not sure if he likes me or not. Should I ask him out?
A Dear Samapalooza:
You might consider tracking down Ellen Peck’s How to Get a Teen-Age Boy and What To Do With Him When You Get Him, a book chock-full of valuable information for every teen-age girl. Peck advises, in her chapter entitled “Boys and School,” that you should make your interest in a particular boy known through tactics such as flirting and being smart, but not too smart, in class.
This excerpt should at least get you started thinking about conversing with, which might lead to asking out, the boy of your dreams.
1969: Boys and School
Most schools are boy-girl. Thus, boys and the learning process are inextricably mixed together. As far as you’re concerned, the classroom is a social place as well as a learning place. So, it shouldn’t be too shocking to say that you have to be constantly aware of boys. You have to be aware of how you look to them and sound to them. You have to be aware of them, right along with the geography lesson. (Though not to the point where you forget the geography lesson.)
But the point is, school situations are social ~ not just academic. Schools are, in fact, lab situations in Living with Others. It is absolutely just as important for you to be aware of your classmates as it is for you to be aware of the teacher’s lecture. Your future life may not be any happier if you know all about mean annual temperatures, but it can be happier if you know something about Greg, who sits three rows over.
In short, your “Guy-Q” is as important as your “I.Q.”. . .
Boys and books call for one identical skill: thinking. With both, you learn to think fast. To think ahead. (Predicting outcomes in a novel you’re reading, for example; and predicting the direction of your conversation with Greg.) To think as you talk. To think on your feet. To think of responses. But above all, to just plain T-H-I-N-K. . . .
No matter where you’re sitting [in class], relative to Greg, talk to him after class, OK? You should always have something to say to him when that last bell rings. But what? “Hi, there” might come off a bit silly, given the circumstances. And it’s not always the smoothest thing in the world to come out cold with a question about boating or a remark about last night’s TV special. If you think about it a minute, you’ll see why.
Imagine the following: Greg getting up from his seat. You getting up and falling into step with him. You breaking the silence by saying, “I saw the greatest TV show last night.”
It’s a bit jarring, isn’t it? Because it’s not a natural, spontaneous comment. Start, as usual, with a comment about something that’s just happened (history class). Then, make a connecting statement to bridge the gap between that comment and the TV comment.
The result will be a lot smoother!
Source: Peck, Ellen. How to Get a Teen-Age Boy and What To Do With Him When You Get Him. New York: Bernard Geis Associates, 1969.
~ pp. 115-16, 126-27 ~