There are so many things in life that I will never understand. Curbside check-in at the airport, people who don’t drink Starbucks and most contact sports are just a few of them.

But one thing that has been bothering me recently is trying to decipher men’s sexual orientation on campus. Sure he has a “gay boy” body, but he is also surrounded by fraternity brothers. Or what if he is wearing short shorts, but also has a girlfriend? Or maybe he is in skinny jeans, but I see him going to a youth ministry. What does it all mean?

Cinderella dreamed of Prince Charming. Most girls and gay men dream of the same thing, but the modern day equivalent would be an athletic man who has the perfect amount of muscles and intelligence to allow for meaningful conversations and a decent amount of eye-candy.

Most of my secret lovers are not (confirmed) gay, but last weekend I finally got closer to a conclusion with one of them.

There I was, knee-deep in my own self-loathing after finishing a dozen donuts with Collette when Ryan sent me a snapchat.

Ryan is a few years older than me and we met when I was a freshman. We are “friends,” but I got that certain vibe from him. I was attracted to him, but always assumed he was straight.

To my surprise the snapchat included a picture of him rubbing his shirtless chest accompanying the words “Oh Joshy,” written on the picture.

So of course my first reaction was to take a screenshot and yell, “Hold up, homegirl!”

This means Ryan is gay, right? Why else would he send me a sexting snapchat? Or was this just a joke? Straight guys do that with each other, don’t they?

This was not the first time Ryan has hinted at his homosexual curiosity. In the past there had been some questionable touching at parties, but I wasn’t quite sure what he meant by it.

I decided to solve this mystery by sending him back a snapchat, but then he stopped responding. So what the hell does this mean?

“It means that Ryan is so gay,” Maggie said the following morning. “I always called it.”

Our generation likes to understand people, especially their sexual orientation. But that isn’t the only thing about guys that can be confusing.

Dating is essentially one giant mystery that we have to solve. Are they interested in me? Are they only using me for sex? Are they lying about their past relationships?

Aurora has been trying to solve the same mystery as me, but with her secret lover at Starbucks.

“Every time I get coffee he always compliments me, but I can’t decide if he is gay, or into me,” Aurora said. “He remembers the dresses that I wear, but now he has a girlfriend. So I guess he is straight and in a relationship. Typical.”

Maggie has recently been trying to figure out if a boy she is seeing thinks she’s funny.

“Well Jake came over for popcorn and movies last night,” Maggie said. “And my first reaction around guys is to make jokes and puns, but I couldn’t tell if he actually thought I was funny, or if he just wanted to get into my pants.”

Similarly, Ashley has simply been trying to decide what her new boy wants from her.

“So this guy will text me ask to hang out all the time,” Ashley said. “But then at parties he will talk to other girls. He will come over to me, so I think he is interested, but I don’t think he wants a relationship.”

“Then what are you going to do with him?” I asked.

“Honestly, I don’t know,” Ashley said. “He is super hot, but I don’t really like spending time with him because of his personality. If we could just go out in public together so it looks like we are dating, and he will let me touch his abs, I think that would be the ideal situation.”

When you start dating a new guy, every thing you do with them is a clue to solving the ultimate mystery, which is: will you still like him once you know everything about him?

Even though Alice has been dating Bill for more than a year, she still worries about the secrets she has yet to uncover about him.

“Men’s sex life will always be a mystery,” Alice said. “I worry about it all the time and try to figure it out because there is so much that I don’t know.”

Collette disagrees with the rest of us. She believes that men will tell her the important things and the rest just isn’t worth worrying about.

“Everyone has secrets, and people should be allowed a few,” she said. “I believe in second chances because people mess up and it’s their past and not my business to know about.”

The biggest mystery of all to solve, however, is just finding out if a guy is interested in you.

A few days ago my friend Britney and I went to Satellite for some evening coffee, which immediately turned into man-stalking after I saw one of my secret lovers. And this one was a confirmed homosexual!

“That’s him!” I whispered while Britney was at the register. “That’s Derek!”

Once Derek and I made eye contact it was time to increase my laughter a few decibels and attract as much attention as possible — a skill I was naturally born with.

Derek talked to his friend while I talked to Britney, but we each would occasionally look around to see if the other was looking.

“When he walks by, should I drop my keys or spill coffee on him or something?” Britney asked. “Just to break the ice.”

Before she had the chance Derek walked out of Satellite, but not without making both Britney and I wonder if he had been having the same conversation with his friend about me.

Why does our attraction to other people have to be such a mysterious game? Why can’t I just go up to Derek and say, “Hey, I think you’re really hot. Want to hang out and potentially have sex sometime soon?”

We can spend a lifetime trying to solve the mysteries of men, but we will never have an answer. They are a simple species, but every single one of them is different. Some are generous, honest, intelligent and truthful, and some are lying assholes. Some will make excellent husbands and fathers, and some will hurt you.

In order to know more about men, we have to date them and put clues together to solve the mystery about who they are. Do all men purposely make this puzzle harder to solve, or are we just looking too far into this? And what if they solve the mystery about us before we can learn enough about them? Will dating always be a mystery? Or is it possible that we all can just fall in love with someone and #GetAClue?

Current Relationship Statuses:
Josh: Maybe Ryan is gay, but I like Derek more
Ashley: Newly single, looking to make-out this weekend
Alice: Seeing Bill again for the first time in 2 months
Collette: Midterms
Aurora: Spoke to her other secret lover at Whole Foods
Maggie: Inviting Jake over for a movie again

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