I Got Called a Dumbass

We millennials get called a lot of names — lazy, arrogant, whiny, stupid, violent, poor, narcissists and the likes. However, dumbass was a first for me. Especially more so, since it came from a fellow millennial in the middle of what was supposed to be a semi-romantic conversation, and not from a fist shaking geriatric.

Wait, let me set the context. It was a routine conversation about relationships. I gave routine, guarded responses with the appropriate number of maybes and yeah, buts. Pretty normal up till now, right?

But no, he refused to conform to the normal & routine and instead handed me a sternly non-routine, “You’re a dumbass!”

Honestly, not an answer I was prepared for!

Especially after I had adequately scoured all list-icles about ‘Ten Things To Do Before Falling For Him’ , ‘The Struggles of Dating In 2016’ and even the precautionary, if somewhat paranoid, ‘Dating a Sociopath’ , this was a brick in my face. But isn’t that essentially what any self-respecting, and more importantly self-preserving, millennial is supposed to do?

Guys, he basically called all of us a Dumbass. Collectively.

I was a ‘prepared twenty year-old something’. I had done all my research and suppressed all my feelings. I was prepared to ghost and be ghosted. I knew the pickup lines one might use, and I knew the best snarky replies to them. I had already made plans we could potentially schedule over the weekend, only to cancel a day before citing ‘stuff that came up’. I believed that love in the time of swipes and sexts has to be dictated by an all-consuming need to label ourselves merely as ‘we don’t know what we are, but its nice’.

I thought that’s how the cool kids dated in 2016.

I certainly was not prepared for honest, heart-to-heart talks that stretched over hours. I mean weren’t we supposed to make fun of couples who chatted till morning and turned up red-eyed and with goofy smiles to the office.

Neither did I expect that anyone would call my bluff on the time-tested, ‘Let’s take this slow and see where we’re at in a month’s time’ , and instead tell me to jump right in, to take the plunge! It was madness, and I think the last time anyone displayed such lunacy he was actually chucked into a well by the Spartans!

There are so many new dating rules we learn everyday from every quarter; we are advised to train our tongues to utter words off of Google and not from our hearts; to let our fingers intertwine and yet have no strings attached; and to hold each other and not catch ‘em feelings; and to remain chill- always- even when she’s baking you chocolate cakes and he’s writing serenades for you- be cool!

It’s what keeps us safe, we say; it’s what keeps us strong.

Baffling-ly, I’ve been educated that those rules do not exist outside of click bait content and social media rants.

That people still feel real emotions like they always have. (I joked, “Hey, 2016 BC called, they want their emotions back”. I got a death glare in return.)

And people will get hurt like they always have. But giving up any chance of being happy due to the possibility of being sad later on, is just, well, dumb!

Yes, I didn’t believe it either. Honestly, my personal belief is that this person is a time traveller from another era and has absolutely no chill! But being an engineer by education, it is my duty to dear old Archimedes to test out the theory by practical applications and determine the validity of the title bestowed upon me (and all of us, by extension).

Wish me luck!

Author’s Note: This is still an experiment in progress and the results would take another few months to prove or disprove the original hypothesis.

P.S. — Of course, this is a work of fiction! No one could call me a dumbass and live to tell the tale.

Except him.


If you liked this, you would love the romantic’s take on a multiverse theory too. Read it here.

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