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Advice for talking to women wearing headphones ignores why women wear headphones.

An article struck a nerve with some, sparking an important conversation.

There's an article making the rounds on social media called, "How to Talk to a Woman Who is Wearing Headphones."

It's written by self-described dating and relationship expert Dan Bacon, and it's equal parts funny, sad, and scary. The truth is that if a woman is wearing headphones, she probably (OK, pretty much definitely) doesn't want to be interrupted for a chat with a stranger.

Leaving someone wearing headphones alone is just one of those unwritten rules of polite society. Headphones are basically a universal sign meaning "Leave me the eff alone."


Twitter users came out in force to respond, letting the author know exactly what they thought of his advice:

Now, reader, if you're wondering to yourself: "Sure, but if I can't (or shouldn't) try to strike up conversation with strangers, how am I supposed to meet new people? What about the future of courtship?" it's worth examining where that concern comes from.

Lindsey M., a board member at Stop Street Harassment, offered some helpful answers to common questions about why this type of interaction isn't welcome.

"This concern presumes, as a default, that it is acceptable to gamble a woman's discomfort or sense of safety against the odds that there's a shot of success," Lindsey wrote in a Twitter direct message. "That willingness to gamble is male privilege: It centers the desire to pick up a woman over the possibility that she wants to be left alone."

Photo by iStock.

Why don't disinterested women just politely say no? For one, in trying to ignore you, she already has said no. Additionally, it's not nearly that simple, as saying "no" has been known to lead to even more aggressive harassment and even physical violence.

"There are plenty of consensual ways to meet and connect with women, and intentionally choosing cold approaches of women whose only act of participation was walking in your line of sight is the ultimate expression of male entitlement," Lindsey added.

Studies have shown that street harassment has a very real, very negative effect on various aspects of its victims' lives.

"The threat of harassment leads women to adjust their schedule, how and when they commute, where they choose to live, what they wear, what social or work functions they attend, how or where they work out, etc.," Lindsey wrote.

It's also important to remember that it's not any single interaction that leads to this feeling, but rather the fact that women are bombarded with unwanted male attention from an early age. It all adds up over time.

GIF from "Watchmen."

There's also the scourge of "pick-up culture," which spawns many of these "how-to" guides to dating that encourage men to use tactics of emotional manipulation and physical intimidation to trick women into engaging with them.

"Street harassment and 'pick up culture' perpetuate the objectification and gamification of women, which carries its own set of costs on women and girls' mental health, self esteem, and social standing," Lindsey explained.

Approaching strangers wearing headphones is different from most other public interactions because, for many, avoiding social interaction is exactly why the headphones are there in the first place.

Martha Mills breaks it down at The Guardian:

"The very reason I and many other women wear headphones isn’t as a trivial obstacle to some throbbing hormone mountain, nor as a challenge for those blessed with an abundance of ego. It’s a defence. ... We fill our ear holes to stop you from getting in."

Earbuds in? Stay away. Photo by iStock.

True story. She continues:

"If you’re in a bar or party, her flirtatious smile may be the come-on you’re looking for, but be prepared to accept that you read it wrong, politely wish her a good evening and toddle back off. ... If you’re looking for a horde of single, eligible women all looking for friendship-maybe-more in one convenient place, try a dating site."

The point isn't that you can never spark up a conversation with a stranger. Rather, it's that men need to respect social cues — not find ways around them.

To review: Remember that you're not entitled to anybody else's time, attention, or space. If someone is wearing headphones, they're probably not up for conversation, and you should respect that.

As artist and author Kate Leth illustrates:

And if you feel like you absolutely must be able to chat up women in headphones, try this first:

Pop Culture

She bought the perfect wedding dress that went viral on TikTok. It was only $3.75.

Lynch is part of a growing crowd of newlyweds going against the regular wedding tradition of spending loads of money.

Making a priceless memory.

At first glance, one might think that Jillian Lynch wore a traditional (read: expensive) dress to her wedding. After all, it did look glamorous on her. But this 32-year-old bride has a secret superpower: thrifting.

Lynch posted her bargain hunt on TikTok, sharing that she had been perusing thrift shops in Ohio for four days in a row, with the actual ceremony being only a month away. Lynch then displays an elegant ivory-colored Camila Coelho dress. Fitting perfectly, still brand new and with the tags on it, no less.

You can find that exact same dress on Revolve for $220. Lynch bought it for only $3.75.
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Images provided by Pacifico

Making waves in the best way

True

At last, summer is here. And for many people, that means it's time for heading to the beach and maybe even catching some waves. Surfing is a quintessential summertime activity for those who live in coastal communities—it’s not only really fun and challenging, it’s also a great way to celebrate Mother Nature’s beauty. Even after a wipeout, the cool water mixed with warm sunshine offers a certain kind of euphoria. Or, you know, just hanging back on the sand is plenty fun too. Simply being outdoors near the ocean is its own reward.

pacifico quiksilver beach cleanupLet’s protect the places where outdoor adventure happensAll photos provided by Pacifico

However, it's well known that our beautiful beaches are suffering the consequences of overcrowding, pollution and littering. What was once a way of playing in nature is now slowly destroying it. And of course, this affects beachgoers everywhere. The sad truth is—without taking action to preserve all the natural joys the earth provides, we will eventually lose them.

But there is hope. Two popular brands that both have roots in surf culture have teamed up to help make trips to the beach a more sustainable pastime. The best part? You don’t have to know how to hang ten in order to participate.

Pacifico®, a pilsner-style lager originally brought to the U.S. by surfers, and Quiksilver, an iconic apparel company loved by both surfers and beach goers alike, have created a brand-new range of clothing and accessories with sustainability in mind.

Take a look below. These threads are great for all kinds of fun in the sun, without compromising the environment.

pacifico quicksilver beach cleanupsReady to make some waves

The collection launches on July 5 and includes tees and woven shirts, boardshorts, hats, flip-flops and a special beach towel and tote bag. The unique collaboration features the vibrant, colorful designs that are the hallmark of Quiksilver combined with Pacifico elements, created to make a positive impact.

Each item has been thoughtfully curated to minimize an environmental footprint and protect the outdoors. The hats, for example, are made from NetPlus® by Bureo®, a raw material created from South American recycled fishing nets. Additionally, the board shorts are made from recycled plastic bottles, and tees are made with 100% organic cotton. Pretty rad stuff, to put it in surfer lingo.

The prices on these pieces are equally rad, ranging from $28 flip-flops to $60 boardshorts.

In keeping with the sustainable ethos and protecting the places we play, Pacifico and Quiksilver will celebrate the products’ launch by hosting two beach cleanups. The first is on July 5 at Sunset Point in Malibu, California, from 4-5:30pm, and the second is on July 9th at Deerfield Beach in Florida from 8:30 – 10:30am.

pacifico quicksilver clothing lineCleaning up and looking good while doing it

Theses beach cleanups are open to anyone over the age of 21 who’s ready to have some fun while taking care of nature’s playground.

Those who can’t make it to the beach (bummer, dude) don’t have to miss out on all the fun. The new collection will be available on July 5th at www.quiksilver.com/mens-collab-pacifico. And even if you don’t surf, never plan to surf, have no desire to even be near a surfboard, rest assured, the apparel is still cool. Plus sustainable choices are always good fashion.

Our planet provides us with an endless supply of beauty and adventure. But without more mindful actions from humanity, its natural wonders will eventually diminish. Fortunately Pacifico and Quiksilver are making it easier than ever for people to enjoy the great outdoors without jeopardizing it. That’s a wave worth riding.

This article originally appeared on 09.06.17


Being married is like being half of a two-headed monster. It's impossible to avoid regular disagreements when you're bound to another person for the rest of your life. Even the perfect marriage (if there was such a thing) would have its daily frustrations. Funnily enough, most fights aren't caused by big decisions but the simple, day-to-day questions, such as "What do you want for dinner?"; "Are we free Friday night?"; and "What movie do you want to see?"

Here are some hilarious tweets that just about every married couple will understand.

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