Clueless Ghosting.

It can happen whether we realize it or not. That’s why it’s called clueless ghosting, dummy.

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Courtesy of Dreamstime

“I ghosted the guy who peed on me during a handjob” peregr1ne

Is it called “ghosting” if you ghost somebody, but it’s possible they’re already ghosting you? I say “it’s possible” because I’m not sure. I can’t very well call and ask, can I? Technically, it wouldn’t be ghosting anymore. Even if she wasn’t ghosting me, she could say she was, and I wouldn’t have a clue. That’s even worse than ghosting, it’s “clueless ghosting.”

Have I created a new term here, like the person on Reddit who called slowing down your messages and texts “trickle ghosting”? Frankly, that’s nothing compared to “clueless ghosting,” or maybe it’s worse since clueless ghosting suggests you’re not even sure of, well, anything.

The woman who ghosted the guy for urinating on her was completely justified, and not just because he did something completely unwarranted. He simply wasn’t housetrained. You can do a lot to improve a guy’s manners — even his hygiene — but “handy pissing” isn’t one of them. It’s just wrong.

She isn’t any less spineless now, she just ran out of guys to ghost, so she did some work on herself and realized she’s mean.

Here’s the thing, though. What if he was ghosting her, too, because he felt bad, and figured it was only a matter of time before she realized he had no sense of what constitutes a washroom? While I stand in complete solidarity with this woman, there may be some “clueless ghosting” going on as well.

Someone on Reddit admitted “I’ve ghosted so many men so many times. I’m not proud of it. I just used to be spineless.” Psychologists would call this “displaced aggression predicated on self hate,” or, more simply, “clueless spinelessness.” She isn’t any less spineless now, she just ran out of guys to ghost, so she did some work on herself and realized she’s mean.

Frequent online dating is said to blur the lines between acceptable and unacceptable behaviour. We don’t intend to be spineless or thoughtless — or peeing on someone. It happens because we’re no longer acting in what we consider a safe environment.

Growing up, we dated a neighbour or a cheerleader (I wish), or at least someone who didn’t go around urinating on people. Online dating changed all that, forcing us to search out strangers. With little in the way of guidance, outside of people telling their worst horror stories, we’re more suspicious than accepting.

Nobody ghosts a cheerleader, not unless you want a whole football team kicking your ass. You sort things out, you talk, you hold your footballs.

If things don’t go the way we expect — or want — we don’t feel the same need to explain ourselves as we would with, say, a cheerleader. We learned back in high school that cheerleaders don’t take being ignored. They can be very vocal, attacking you with pom-poms, high kicks and bad names.

Nobody ghosts a cheerleader, not unless you want a whole football team kicking your ass. You sort things out, you talk, you hold your footballs.

Online dating introduces us to individuals who were probably never cheerleaders or football players. They’re just people like you and me, looking for companionship — or at least a meal. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with them, other than they could turn ugly if you voice your concerns.

Why take the chance of getting hit with a Starbucks coffee cup, or having to move to a safer locale like New Zealand? Ghosting is simple, it’s convenient, and unless you both live in a town of hundred people, there’s little chance you’ll meet again outside of a few nasty texts.

Millennials, since they’ve grown up with texting, have turned the whole avoidance issue into high art. They don’t just “ghost,” they “cloak,” meaning you block someone you don’t want to see on any app.

This can also be “clueless cloaking,” since sometimes apps go all funny, erasing everyone whether you intended to or not. You could end up cloaking your parents and not even know it, until they stop sending you birthday presents.

If your parents aren’t sending you Christmas presents either, they might be scrooging you.

This can lead to “scrooging,” where you dump someone just before the holidays to avoid buying them a gift. If your parents aren’t sending you Christmas presents either, they might be scrooging you.

They could also be “phubbing” you, which is snubbing you by phone, which one in ten people admitted to doing, including your parents who only learned the term last week. They’re just trying it out.

Many other terms exist in the lexicon of online dating, like “Gatsbying,” where you display a lavish, but completely fake lifestyle, or “stashing,” where you hide your significant other.

Both Gatsbying and stashing can be clueless, since you don’t know if your partner is doing the same thing, or just reading about Jay Gatsby now, saying, “What a creep he was.”

Well, he ended up getting shot, something “internet sweepers and creepers” want to avoid. In fact, we’re all capable of ghosting, cloaking and phubbing if the situation warrants. Nobody needs some crazy putting dead bunnies on the doorstep, or letting your wife know you’re fooling around.

Now, according to a recent Pew Study, over half of Americans know somebody who met or married through online dating.

It just goes to show how bizarre online dating has become. Imagine a phenomenon that wasn’t even taken seriously fifteen years ago. Now, according to a recent Pew Study, over half of Americans know somebody who met or married through online dating.

Think of seniors, people you figured gave up on sex. They didn’t so much give it up as “cloaked” you for even being interested. Seniors (people 55 to 64) were also surveyed by Pew. Back in 2013, only six percent used a dating app. Today it’s more than double that.

How did they get apps in the first place? Well, they saved a lot of money scrooging their kids. Now they’re searching out people their own age, possibly even ghosting someone right now. Creeps come in all age brackets, the worst being sixty-five and over. Once you start wearing Pampers again, you don’t care what people think. Ghost them, cloak them, phubb them, it doesn’t matter. They didn’t feel like missing Jeopardy, anyway.

Considering the odds of meeting someone who can handle your incontinence, “clueless ghosting” probably exceeds driver’s license renewals.

In this age group, you can bet there’s a lot of “clueless ghosting” going on. Consider the odds of meeting someone who can handle your incontinence. You meet, you wet yourself, your date figures they’re better off with a guy suffering from gout or a mild arrhythmia.

Sure, they’ll ghost or phubb, or decide online dating isn’t for them. Not everybody is on board with online dating, anyway. According to the Pew Survey, 23 percent still consider it a “subpar way of meeting people,” and 88 percent claim they met their partner the old-fashioned way.

What constitutes “old fashioned dating”? With seniors, it could be anything from meeting at a church group to being hit by someone’s car. Romance can happen lying on the sidewalk, complaining of a broken hip. It might even lead to sympathy sex which, for a senior, can end up occurring every day. Some seniors break their hips just to get sympathy sex.

I was talking about that poor woman who ghosted the guy for peeing during a handjob. That’s what I would call “ghosting with cause.”

All of which is a far cry from where I started. I digress. I was talking about that poor woman who ghosted the guy for peeing during a handjob. That’s what I would call “ghosting with cause.”

Get into your senior years, though, and believe me, peeing during a handjob can happen. Any kind of sex or foreplay can result in peeing, not to mention the occasional tinkle during the Daily Double on Jeopardy.

Again, I digress. This is about “clueless ghosting,” an act that can happen at any age. It’s a real thing, and if you’re going to date online, be prepared. Things could get confusing or outright embarrassing.

Not as much as tinkling during Jeopardy. But, again, it happens.

Robert Cormack is a novelist, humorist and blogger. His first novel “You Can Lead a Horse to Water (But You Can’t Make It Scuba Dive)” is available online and at most major bookstores. Check out Skyhorse Press or Simon & Schuster for more details.

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I did a poor imitation of Don Draper for 40 years before writing my first novel. I'm currently in the final stages of a children's book. Lucky me.

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