Advice for awkward people

Dear Patrick,

Spring break’s coming up, and I’m going on a road trip with some friends. I’m a little concerned about it, though. How can I make sure our road trip goes well?

Hoping Imminent Trip Triumphs, Helplessly En Route On Arduous Diversions


Lucky for you, I’m a connoisseur of road trip films. I’ve seen ’em all. I know all the tricks. First things first: The point of road trips is to engage in multistate shenanigans predicated upon simple misunderstandings, like pretending to be in a historically black fraternity or holding an amusement park hostage with a BB gun.

While your shenanigans may not be as great as those, you should still engage in as many as you can. That means doing things like pulling over for every “World’s Largest ______” you pass, going to biker bars while cross-dressing for convoluted reasons, and reassembling your car with duct tape. Sure, it won’t be the same as traveling with Kristen Stewart in On The Road, but at least you’ll be able to make eye contact with your friend afterwards.

Just be glad you’re not traveling with David Spade,
Patrick Hoskins

Dear Patrick,

How can I explain to someone that I don’t want to be in a relationship right now? Everyone assumes that since I’m a girl, that’s what I want, but I really just want to hang out with my friends and maybe hook up with a cute dude.*

Jonesing After Useful “Necking” Tonight, Yet Joes Escape Zealous Enticing, Believe Eager for Love


Have you tried just telling him you don’t want a relationship? I think he’ll still understand. If he still thinks you want a relationship, then there’s not much you can say to explain it to him. The best way to convince him you don’t want to date him is to just not date him.

At this point, the question becomes “How do I end my casual hookup?” You could go with the tried-and-true method of ignoring his texts and avoiding him until he gets the idea (of course, that makes you look like a jerk). Or just maintain polite conversation but come up with excuses for avoiding him (and be slightly less of a jerk). Or have an actual adult conversation — crazy, right?

Or just don’t give him your number,
Patrick Hoskins