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Guest Letter: Asking Male Friends for Their Phone Numbers

“Ummm… hey dude, could I get your digits?”
“My ‘digits’? Dude, what are you going to do next, invite me to the Rain Forest Café and burn me a Good Charlotte CD? We’re no longer friends.”
Ever since the creation of the telephone, human males across the world have struggled to exchange their numbers in a way that didn’t make them embarrassed to be alive. Along with listening to Lady Gaga and “plumbing” checkups at yearly physicals, this seemingly simple task is one of men’s least favorite activities. The act of acquiring another guy’s phone number walks the fine line between overly casual and extremely awkward. The figurative tightrope walk to those ten ‘digits’ is an art form, and must be treated as such, unless you want to end up at the Rain Forest Café.
First off, there are several ways of asking that never succeed. Inquiring for a number while standing at adjacent urinals is historically fatal for friendships. If you’re going to try passing a note during a lecture, you might as well read a Twilight book, enjoy it, and admit it to significant others. Explaining that you had the number, but that you lost your phone, is for chumps. If your friends fall for that, they’re not friends worth having.
Males have figurative walls of masculinity that cannot be broken down for petty reasons such as acquiring a friend’s phone number. Therefore, a smart tactic is to piggyback the request along with some other, extra-manly stipulation.
Asking for a number in order to talk about fantasy football or men’s deodorant are just a few effective methods. In addition, getting the number from a mutual friend and asking for a favor works quite well. However, make sure the favor is appropriately masculine; requesting to borrow power tools or a DVD of The Departed are both wonderful ideas.
The key is being subtle, (this is not the same as inviting somebody to Homecoming) but at the same time being firm and to-the-point. With care, men across the world can safely exchange numbers without their masculinity being questioned. With that problem out of the way, guys can start focusing on the much more daunting task: how to successfully get girls’ numbers. And that, my friends, is a question whose answer I have yet to come up with.
-Insecure Teen

December 13, 2009

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