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Auntie SparkNotes: Catching the L Train

Auntie SparkNotes: Catching the L Train

Hey, Auntie!

I've recently started college and it's been pretty awesome! I've met some really cool people, and this one really cool girl in specific. I've gone through your flirt-guides and they're all incredibly helpful. Unfortunately, they're all for a girl liking a boy or a boy liking a girl. There are a few about already established gay couples or gay kids that have crushes on straight kids. My problem? I don't know if the girl I like is batting for my team, you know? We have a class every Tuesday together. It's 2 1/2 hours long and we get a 15 minute break. We spend it outside together every time. We had a test last week and finished at the same time, so we got out early. We talked for a few hours that day, and we talked for about a half hour today cause she had something to do. I wouldn't know flirting if it danced naked in front of me wearing Dobby's tea cozy, so these talks have me all confused. AND SHE GAVE ME HER NUMBER. Which could be a sign of friendship or more.

I just don't know what to doooooo. I don't know how she would react if I was just like, "Okay, so, are you gay or something? Because I like your face," but I'm really just at a loss. I mean, for the most part, a girl can be pretty certain that the boy she likes has the capability of returning her affections, so most of your advice is based on that assumption. But when you add the factor of unknown sexual preference and a very awkward person (being me), it culminates into an equation that probably looks something like this: [image: $ \displaystyle{ \int (2x+2) e^{ x^2+2x+3 } \,dx } = \displaystyle{\int e^{ x^2+2x+3 } (2x+2) \,dx }$]s... scary, right?

So, my very simple question: what do I do?

I love this letter so much.

And what do you do? Two things.

1. Get your butt back to the flirting guides, lady, because guess what? Flirting is flirting is flirting. And it doesn't matter which team you're batting for; the rules of the game are still essentially the same. (Also, for the record, the only reason the flirting guides were sex-specific in the first place was to accommodate the sad-but-true fact that, even in our enlightened times, most heterosexuals still expect the dudes to aggress and the girls to acquiesce. But hey, you don't have to worry about that! Because two ladies! WINNING!) So if you want to flirt with your new friend, the guide still applies.

HOWEVER. Before you do that, can we just talk about the part where...

2. You're chatting on the regular! You exchanged digits! As in, you're already more than friendly enough to initiate the totally normal new-friend conversation about your respective dating lives... and then let it drop, casually, that your preferred human flavor is LADY.

Note: If you're not sure how to do that, here's a tip: just start a sentence with the words, "I dated a girl last year," and the rest will take care of itself. For instance, "Oh, The Cold War Kids? I dated a girl last year who was crazy about them." See? Easy! Just rehearse until you can say it oh-so-casually, and then let fly. (Oh, and since the only point here is to insinuate the L-word, it doesn't even have to be true.)

Does putting yourself out there like this require no small amount of nerve and a brass set of lady-balls? Well, yes. But it's also the most pain-free and non-headache-inducing way to get the info you want—since once you've dropped a casual, unembarrassed reference to your own orientation, it's the most natural thing in the world to then say, "So, what about you? Boyfriend? Girlfriend? Hamsterfriend?," and see what she says.

And it sure beats the heck out of the alternatives, which basically amount to either a) wearing your Indigo Girls shirt every single day for a month in the hope that she'll put two and two together, or b) telling her that you much prefer cave-diving to mountain-climbing, if she knows what you mean, and... yeah, no, she has no idea what you mean and gee-dee it all because you don't even like spelunking.

Okay? Okay! Now yank up the confidence pants, broach the subject, and lots of luck landing a lovely lady. La, la, la.

Got any flirting tips for our college girl? Leave 'em in the comments! And to get advice from Auntie, email her at

Related post: Dating Through the Ages

Topics: Life, College Advisor
Tags: auntie sparknotes, college, flirting, crushes, advice, being gay

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About the Author

Kat Rosenfield is a writer, illustrator, advice columnist, YA author, and enthusiastic licker of that plastic liner that comes inside a box of Cheez-Its. She loves zombies and cats. She hates zombie cats. Follow her on Twitter or Tumblr @katrosenfield.

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