Are you dating a scrub?

Ashton Smotherton photo

are you
dating a scrub?

words: Ashton Smotherton
images: Tiffany Tso

We’ve all done it at some point, you know, dated that cute guy who's just a complete train wreck. It’s fun when you’re super young, driving his ass around with parent-paid-for gas, hanging out at that apartment that’s about three exits south of your comfort level, spending time with people who don’t think about anything outside of the immediate future. I don’t know about you, but I’m too fucking old to date guys like that anymore. At times it can be hard to see through the charm and pretty face. I'll make it simple for you with a little quiz.

1. Beds are important. They say quite a bit about where you are in life. When loverboy rests his head at night, what is he sleeping on?

a. He has an actual bed.
b. He has an actual bed. The sheets are so nasty that I'd rather couch it, but it's there.
c. Futon/Inflatable mattress…at least I won't drown if there's some sort of freak, flash flood.

2. You know what else is important, not being a total retard. John Waters once said, "If you go home with somebody and they don't have any books, don't fuck them!" How literate is this guy?

a. He reads. He always defaults to Palahniuk or Bukowski, but that's something.
b. Sometimes I have to explain the "big words" I use.
c. Baby's got back (paper and hard).

3. When I first started college, I was really into grimy dudes. There was just something about guys who had no sense of personal hygiene that my suburban raised self was fascinated by. On a scale of one to ten, how offensive is the odor?

a. One, he's a dude, but he's a dude who showers on a regular basis.
b. Six, he wears Tom's deodorant that makes him smell like chamomile for an hour and b.o. until his next biweekly shower.
c. Ten, maybe even a Spinal Tap style eleven in the summer.

4. Did you meet him while he was hangin' out the passenger side of his best friend's ride tryin' to holler at you?

a. No, it was his bike.
b. No, he has a car of his own.
c. How did you know?!

5. Let's say this guy has pets (just imagine it if that's not the case). How well are they cared for?

a. His apartment smells like a litter box.
b. His apartment is the litter box.
c. I'd need one of those bloodhounds from the Fresh Step commercials to find the litter box.

6. We live in Austin, Brooklyn, Portland, Seattle, etc. This was going to come up at some point, is he in a band?

a. No, he's pretty alright on the guitar though.
b. Yes, and they're going to be huge one day!
c. Yes, and he has a job to pay for all this shit his band won't cover.

7. How are the manners on this guy?

a. He opens doors and pays for dinner when he takes me out.
b. They could use some improvement but my mom likes him.
c. I've seen him burp and fart more times than I can count.

8. Partying is awesome. I love going out. That said, being able to hold your shit together while you're out is a mark of an adult. How's the party going?

a. It's ten o'clock and he has already pissed himself.
b. He's definitely drunk, and it's definitely awesome.
c. He's too stoned to move from the couch.

9. How your friends feel about your guy says a lot about him. What do they think?

a. They wouldn't know since they haven't seen you in a month.
b. They won't outright say anything worse than, "He's not good enough for you."
c. They've got bigger crushes on him than you do.

10. Last but not least, gut feelings, no one is ever going to know your response to this anyway. What do you think of him?

a. He's figuring out his future, and I'm okay with that for now.
b. He has got his shit together.
c. It's ten o'clock, and he has already pissed himself.

Add it up and know the truth.

Answer Key:

1. a. 1 b. 2 c. 3
2. a. 2 b. 3 c. 1
3. a. 1 b. 2 c. 3
4. a. 2 b. 1 c. 3
5. a. 2 b.3 c. 1
6. a. 1 b. 3 c. 2
7. a. 1 b. 2 c. 3
8. a. 3 b. 1 c. 2
9. a. 2 b. 3 c. 1
10. a. 2 b. 1 c. 3

10-14 Points: The Adult

This is the ideal if you're looking for a stable relationship. He's well read, motivated and put together. Levels of boredom vary from guy to guy that fall into this category, but if you find one that isn't dull as dirt hang on to him.

15-23 Points: The Graduate

No, he doesn't completely have his shit together. Yes, he's still in that band whose name is so stupid you don't want to invite your friends to shows. He's also nice, capable of reading better books, and on his way to something more.

24-30 Points: The Scrub

In the words of my favorite Atlanta housewife Kandi Burruss, "No, I don't want no scrub. A scrub is a guy that can't get no love from me." (I know, I know, TLC sang the song, but Kandi wrote it. Google that shit.) This is not the guy to hang out with if you aren't into wasting your time, gas or febreze.

Ashton Smotherton photo