If you’ve been on the internet lately (or ever) you may be getting warnings that the person you’re dating might not be sufficiently real. Apparently, these highly qualified online ontologists have determined that Real Men and their (often secondarily mentioned) counterpart Real Women do in in fact exist, but must have their existence verified using seemingly random sets of ten to twenty criteria.
To help with the difficult task of distinguishing the real from the non-real, I have put together my own list of ten signs you’re dating a real man/woman.
- Other people can also can see him, not just you: Real Men are not figments of the imagination.
- When you see her, you can pinch yourself repeatedly without waking up: Real Women don’t exist exclusively in dreams.
- He doesn’t disappear when you touch him: Real Men are made of corporeal matter
- She doesn’t claim to be half lion, bird, or fish: Real Women are human beings, not mythological characters.
- You did not meet him inside a Young Adult romance novel: Real Men are not fictional.
- She doesn’t work on a faraway flaming gaseous planet in an alternate universe: Real Women need earth-like conditions to survive on a daily basis.
- He eats organic materials which are typically digestible by human beings: Real Men require input for the process of cellular respiration in order to function.
- Her reflection is visible in mirrors: Real Women are not soulless horror movie monsters.
- He doesn’t cry tears that have the power to bring people back from the dead: Real Men don’t have fairy tale superpowers which don’t exist in real life.
- She occupies some amount of physical space: Real Women have curves, lines, planes, surface area, volume, and/or other geometric descriptors.
But is this enough? Is there any way to be truly certain that anything really exists? Can the limited, subjective nature of our consciouses really tell us anything about the objective reality outside of them? Is there a such thing as objective reality beyond individual experience? What does it mean to be?
Blehhh. I give up. I’m still pretty sure that Real Men wear pink, though. Or something?