September [Take a man on a date month] was an utter fail – Afua’s Version

Read Amma’s experience HERE.

I didn’t even want to recount the failures of the last month, but they were so triumphant and true that I couldn’t let y’all miss out on the goodies.

. . .

Am: ‘We have to do it.’

Af: ‘Do what?’

Am: ‘September, take a man on a date month.’

Af: ‘Is that a thing? …Like movember when men don’t shave their faces?’

Am: ‘I dunno. But we have to do it. It’ll be a fun challenge, and we have a ton of events this month so there will be plenty of opportunities to meet people. And then we can blog about it. Write about what it feels like to be on the other side- the anxieties/ fears of doing the asking.’

Af: ‘Ok… Do it for the blog fun challenge.’

. . .

Alrighty so context is set. And by the title you already know how things ended. So let’s get into the meat- the deets.

Welllllll, Amma didn’t do anything. And by anything, I mean not one ask and I don’t believe even one attempt at finding someone to ask, but please Amma chime in if I dey lie bad. Ahem.

For me, I dunno whether to laugh or cry. I did go on a …thing. I dunno what to call it, because it occurred in the strangest of circumstances. I was asked by a friend to take him on a date. However, the date ended with him inquiring who and who would be a good fit for me, and why I wasn’t dating them. #confused? Ya, so was I. But I don’t want to discuss the colossal fail that was that date thing. What I’m here to discuss is the utter fail that was every other attempt to go on a date in September.

I met 4 new guys over the last month who I got along with upon first meet. See definition of got along with: good/interesting conversation with just the right amount of flirtation. You’d think four is a hefty number, and you would be right. It can be is already difficult to find people interesting in these parts, so 4 in a month is a HEFTY number. But watch the bait and switch played on me: EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM WAS MARRIED! Whether they mentioned wifey or not in the conversation (3 did), whether wifey lived in Ghana or not (2 did not), whether they wore a ring or not (2 did not), whether they were overtly availing themselves to an affair or just having an overly friendly conversation which I just couldn’t pick up on (2 definitely definitely were the former), it didn’t matter because at the end of the day THEY WERE ALL MARRIED. And for the simple fact that being married is a non starter for me, we can confidently say that September was indeed a fail.

Aside from the fact that I’m more about trying to be the right person versus actively looking for the right person these days, this was still kind of a useful exercise. At the very least, it taught me I need to work on my married man-(ra)dar lol… And more importantly, it taught me that if you don’t go out, you won’t meet people. And that’s some biblical Rhema right there, huh? But seriously, in the last month I’ve gone out to more house parties, weddings, birthday parties and other get togethers than I have in a while, and I”ve realized ‘hey, guess what? I don’t know every newly landed or been-here-for-a-minute Ghanaian in Accra’.

If you’re just in your house expecting to meet new people, that’s not a winning strategy, my dears. I mean I do believe oldladyin miracles, but if the Spirit hasn’t led you to stay at home and knit scarfs, welt then it’s time to get off the couch and get out more. And I’m not talking about clubbing… I’m talking about events where you can actually speak with people in a chill (sober) manner. So I guess not all was lost for this experiment, y’all can take this small piece of advice from the failures of last month.

So cheers to the freakn’ month of September!

September [Take a Man on a Date Month] Was an Utter Fail- Amma’s Version

For Afua’s version, click here!


September is a month, chock full of commemorations : Alopecia Awareness Month (USA), National Guide Dog Month (USA), National Honey Month, and National Life Insurance Awareness Month (USA) to name just a few (no really, google it, you’ll be surprised!). As important as these causes are, Afua and I chose to commemorate September with the lesser known internationally- acclaimed and UN approved: Take a Man on a Date Month.

Let me just say, I have never (purposely) asked a man out on a date.

It is one of those burdens of gender inequality that I am an active proponent of just very content with.

So September was ‘Take-a-man-on-a-date’ month (stop asking questions about whether this is an official, internationally recognized designation and focus! Yes— I stole this from instagram. Leave me!)…and I was forced to try. I was forced to consider what it would take to get a total stranger to agree to spend money on me (cuz yeah I’ll ask but I aint payin bruh… *all the side eyes*). At first, this seemed like a great idea. In my mind, September would unfold like this:

A whirlwind of chance events—weddings, get- together’s, day parties— would create the

perfect opportunities to lock eyes with the only

tall, dark, Ashanti, Christian, masters level educated man with impressive hip hop knowledge

that I had not already met in the

very teenie tiny Accra social circles that I was used to

This was clearly going to be this great story to tell on the Wedding day

About how I never expected it at all

But then somehow

I waltzed into love, one random Saturday afternoon in September

(I love love… remember?)

That, my friend, is not how it went at all.

I mean.

Not. Even. A. Little. Bit.

First of all, the rules were that:

  1. We could not ask someone with whom we already had a situationshippy thing happening
  2. We had to be explicit about asking them on a date, and not try to make a chance meeting seem like something we planned
  3. We had to do it by 30th of September

Secondly, I failed.

Not only did I not find anyone that I wanted to ask out on a date, but I also frightened myself in the process. I started getting really nervous about how exactly I would be able to ask in a way that didn’t make me seem like the greatest thirst bucket of life. And between not meeting anyone (initially) and being scared of the idea of meeting someone, I gained a completely new respect for men.

I am leaving this with a completely new appreciation for men having to do a lot of the asking. First off, you need to think about how you make the encounter seem smooth and non- creepsicle. If you see a girl somewhere in the room, how do you make your way over to her and speak to her without it clearly just being about the fact that you find her attractive. Does that even matter? Maybe the fact of the matter is, you just should walk over to her and let her know you find her attractive, and while you know nothing about her, you hope that this initial observation will open the door to reveal further details about her that is attractive. And then there are a number of very real, very petrifying logistical issues that must be hashed out as well:

But what if she is standing with friends?

What if she is in a mixed crowd?

What if she is the center of attention in this crowd and taking that initial step will draw attention to the fact that you are trying to get in her pants hit and quit have a meaningful relationship that could lead to marriage?

And the last bit of the final question is also, ultimately, what made it difficult for me to ask someone. I definitely placed a lot of emphasis on making a meaningful connection, and I just didn’t feel like I met someone with whom that could be possible. This seems absurd (in retrospect), because really what were the metrics I was using to make this decision? Looks. Not just attractiveness but also perceived personality traits, ie ‘OMG he uses Siri. Who uses Siri on purpose?! He is clearly a serial killer that logs his kills in some audio recorded format and then turns them into subliminal messages that get laced into popular rap songs. Ew.’ You can clearly see how the weight of the ask and the factors that go into deciding on the ask are clearly misaligned. This also contributed to my big, fat zero asks.

To be fair…  I did not meet anyone for most of September but in the last week, I attended an event that required a lot of dressing up and showing out. I met a number of people and there was someone that I considered asking out. Then I chickened out… because the person was TOO embedded in my social networks for me to be all adventurous. Basically, I was not trying to put pride aside to look dumb in front of all my friends.

So to sum it up: I didn’t meet anyone until the final days of the challenge and I was too image conscious to ask someone I may have been interested in because— sisters over misters social networks pride.

Image result for asking a guy out

My aspirational self… of course!

Even though I failed, there is still hope for others. I recently went on an outing with a number of women, a few of whom were single. Over the course of the conversation this challenge came up, and I explained my experience. After the usual barrage of ‘is this a real holiday’, ‘where’s the federal license for this holiday’, ‘you celebrate instagram holidays?!’ (YES!)… the women seemed to take interest in joining in and have since accepted the challenge. Hopefully we will hear some juicy stories from them. *crosses fingers*. Maybe they will be bosses at asking guys out, and I will look on with utter jealousy as they walk into their happily ever after. Maybe not. Time will tell.

All I know is, September was a fail… but November— who can tell?

So tell me, have you ever asked a guy out? What was the experience? Would you do it again? 

Afua had quite an interesting experience— I would say more of a failure on the part of married men not wearing wedding rings. But you can read more here.

***This blog post will also be featured on the website, a life-style e-zine for the fashion forward, go-getter woman of African and her diaspora. Check out the website and get connected. Stay up-to-date on everything African- inspired!

Now You’re Just Somebody That I Used To Know

I did it. I was one of those who deleted everything. It took a while, and he was over us much earlier than I was, but when I made the decision to move on, I took heed to a friend’s words: ‘Afua, you do whatever you need to do to get over him’, and I deleted everything.

every email.

chat conversation.

social media contact.



Until recently when I stumbled over something that somehow slipped through the gmail clean out.





So… I read it. *shrug* I concede that I was thoroughly amused at my younger self… not being able to resist smiling (and shrugging at my stupidity naïveté) while reading the conversation, thinking to myself ‘…wow… I really did love this guy.’ Interestingly, there was no sadness, no regret or even anger anymore. Those ships have long sailed. I was just somehow thankful that I’d been able to go through an experience like that.

Now coming out on the other side, and even coming to terms with the fact that he never felt the same for me and was never the person I thought he was… I. don’t. feel. anymore. It’s funny cause someone slipped into my ear that he’s getting married soon, and I think it was probably the most liberating feeling to feel absolutely nothing about the information…


…because, now he’s just somebody that I used to know.

– – –

RR, is there a ‘someone I used to know’ in your life? Are you ever amazed at how you were ‘so’ in love with someone one minute and so… … not, the next?

Someone Will Always Be Collateral Damage

I have to admit, I was one of the skeptics when Afua said she wanted to publish that article. In my mind I was thinking, I just don’t even understand why men have to be solely implicated in the issues of toying with emotions and hurting people. It was not an attempt to play devils advocate or to even the tone of the conversation, but it was to say that no one gender has complete ownership over ‘collateral damage’. I will concede, in Ghana, men are given the pass way more than women. Especially with issues of infidelity. But Afua’s point was bigger than just this idea that people cheat, her point was that people use people, and it’s unfair that it’s largely women who suffer in the end. I think that the issue is really that hurt people, hurt people. And that there is a bigger conversation beyond just telling men to stop being emotional abusers. I think the conversation is about mothers and fathers and social leaders investing time and energy into developing the social intelligence of the generation to follow. I happen to think that this issue is about social accountability.

I will take myself as an example.

I have been in the situation where I have recently stopped seeing someone. In my haste to ‘move on’, I sort of rushed into something new. In my mind, I may have entered with good intentions. I may have thought, maybe that old adage is true… that the best way to get over someone is to get under beside someone else. So here we are having fun, laughing, getting to know each other— building. Suddenly it dawns on me that a) I am not really even over my ex and b) I’ve been faking it up until this moment and it’s gotten extremely tiring.Here the person is, constantly talking about a future life together… about how much they love you and how they will marry you. How perfect you are and how wonderful it is to meet someone as lovely as you (duh and duh!). And in my mind, all I can think about are deciding on the most sensitive and considerate ways to slowly break away from the relationship. In the time of my thinking about these things, I start to detach and get easily annoyed. It becomes clear that I am just not interested.  I clearly needed to address some personal issues with regard to my past relationship. I also needed to be real with myself about what I wanted. And I feel this is fundamentally, the real issue. I don’t think people are out here purposely trying to hurt people. Even though I am of the mind that people are inherently evil and self seeking, I think that they are also preservationist— that is they want, as much as possible, to save face and at least put good into the world so they can also benefit from that good energy. I don’t think Ghanaian men, or African men in general, are hard wired to want to be deceitful. I just think our societies don’t foster the type of self- reflection necessary to enter into healthy relationships. I agree with Afua: “Sometimes the journey towards ‘…happily ever after’ or ‘…and the rest is just history’ does not leave you unscathed.” But this is true for everyone, male and female. Unfortunately, in Ghana, women carry the burden of emotional intelligence. There are conferences and books and preachings and seminars and speaker series and conventions and anointing oils— dedicated to ensuring women get to the status of Proverbs 31— not so for men. While Full Gospel Christian Business Mens groups exist en masse to encourage entrepreneurship and honest business practice, the same does not exist to spur on men to be honorable men, worthy of lifetime commitment. And yet, with all the Proverbs 31 messaging being thrown at women— neither men nor women are taught how to be emotionally intelligent. Preparing yourself to be a a wifable woman and developing your emotional intelligence have somehow been separated. So while yes, there are men— nay, people— who trample on the hearts of well meaning, good natured, loving partners en route to their happily ever after… it is not an epidemic that is wholly owned by men. It is the epidemic of not offering enough training, support and mentorship in growing our overall emotional intelligence (as evidenced by the messy, shady, crazy things women are also doing here in order to bait, keep or trick a man). As children of immigrants, we know too well the high standard of academic excellence placed on us, however the same is not necessarily the case for emotional intelligence. And while women are definitely exposed on how to develop themselves into ‘wifey material’… there is a general shortage of ‘how to deal effectively with your emotions such that you are not making your partner a causality in your sordid love affair” development opportunities. All in all, I will repeat hurt. people. hurt people. And the only real solution for all of us, is to get our emotional intelligence game up by seeking resources to help us grow… after all proper preparation prevents poor      partner   performance— eh?

What say you? Do you think it’s all one big male ploy to trample the hearts of unsuspecting woman of valor, or society overall has failed our generation in adequately preparing us to be good partners in relationships? #SoundOff 

Collateral Damage; Men and Women are not Equal.


So… I was torn posting this, but I figured in the end I could post it and preface it *shrug*. I didn’t want to post this initially in fear of being labeled a bitter black women. However, many of the relationship things referenced in this post have been witnessed more-so than experienced (remember we have a new simple modus operandi of late). Thus, this post is channeling a lot of things I’ve seen- which is still incredibly frustrating– so that’s probably the tone you’re picking up on.

And after sending this out as a feeler to a couple guy friends, I do recognize that the struggle is real on both sides of the spectrum… Because no one, guy or girl, should feel like they’re being used or their time is being wasted. 

Would love to hear your thoughts.


– – – 

Twitter just be giving us so much life recently… AND content for the blog!

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Girls abr3**.

You remember that phrase? I used it first when discussing the Art of Hedging, or when men in long term relationships be faking and using you for one last test run/ joy ride before clamping down on the inevitable.

Well this tweet in a way circles back around what I wrote, and it appears to be a view shared by many- judging from the number of re-tweets. I’ve always known that men and women aren’t equal in a number of aspects, but when it comes to relationship behavior, these differences couldn’t be more pronounced as I get older. AND I am not saying women don’t do their own playing, I’m just speaking from what I’ve seen and experienced.

For me, I’ve come to the realization that I don’t want to be part of your sinful past on the way to redemption. I don’t want to be part of your try everything on for size stage or be a part of the starting five line up on your hedging team, before you say ‘I do’. Again… I know I’m generalizing on men here, but I can only speak youcutefrom my perspective…

Folks just be tired of wasted time.

…which, hear me out people, is different from when we really like each other, date with direction and somehow it doesn’t work out.

Although I’m still quite weary of this type of behavior, I now honestly understand when some women want to know where things are headed shortly a man starts talking to them. Like I get it now. I get when some women want to (partially) give up and bury themselves in just work, family and friends. Sometimes the journey towards “…happily ever after” or “…and the rest is just history” does not leave you unscathed.

It’s funny cause a few guys I know (of) have recently gotten engaged or married and you look at their behavior prior to marriage like, ‘I hope you come to Jesus real soon, cause it’s only His blood that can wipe your past clean.’ #ikid #butonlyjustalittlebit lol
But on the real, dudes have run circles around Accra, Lagos, London, Johannesburg, Nairobi, NY, DC, [and add in any other big city where there is a mass of Africans]… they’ve been dating, sleeping around with, breaking hearts, cheating on their gfs right, left and center. And now they are walking down the aisle like all is forgiven. And according to society, all IS forgiven. Society tells us that, “he’s a man being a man, he was sowing his wild oats, having fun before having to commit to one person”; in essence, the slate gets wiped squeaky clean once he puts a ring on any (half decent) girl. The behavior gets chalked up to a typical young bachelor lifestyle, which he has now matured from [we thank God oh]. However, while folks outchea having amnesia about a guy’s past and while he’s moved on to dutiful wife and kid, the former women have to deal with the consequences of the situations they put themselves in. And I do put blame on women for putting themselves in these situations too- if you remember *THIS BLOG*.

It’s one of those hard truths that we need to stop pretending doesn’t exist, because we are the ones suffering for it… Things aren’t equal and one has to make sure you don’t end up being a casualty of a man’s ‘growing pains’, however that manifests itself (ie. Pregnancy… Your reputation jeopardized (cause his won’t be)… Or you’re just plainly heart broken).

Sometimes you have to just honestly protect yourself… and sleep soundly.

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**Girls are tired (of relationship wahala)

Why Did you Let me Date Him?


.    .    . 

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I love this meme. It epitomizes the phase of life my contemporaries find themselves in now, and me too. It’s not like the days of old our yester-years (ok maybe like 5yrs ago… or hell, like 2yrs ago) where being with someone or NOT being with someone had less no dire consequences… Ok maybe not dire, but the opportunity cost wasn’t as high. Now, the opportunity cost of being with someone or not being with someone seems colossal. Let’s listen in on my conversation with a close friend earlier this month, it helps illustrate the point:

Friend: “It doesn’t seem like it’s working out [with Billy**].”

Friend: (A description of inconsequential and consequential traits and characteristics not fully appreciated in the beginning of dating bliss… Of which I shall skip, because they frankly have no bearing to the premise of this post).

Af: (Interjection of empathetic “Oh, really’s”, “Oh. I’m sorry,” “Yea?” “Uh hmm”)

Friend: “Why’d you let me date him, Afua?”

Af: “Excuse me, come again…?”

Friend: “You’re supposed to be my friend, you should have said something. Now I’m turning 30 and I have wasted the last 2 years.”

Af: [Thought: well that escalated real quick… But I’ll indulge in your slightly irrational line of thinking]

“Welt, let’s see… You said you liked him and he was a good fit. You also gave an extensive list as to why the aforementioned was true. You said you did background checks (with friends and people who knew him). How was I supposed to know he was going to do bait and switch on you? I don’t know him from Adam nor do I hang out with you and him together, so what exactly was I supposed to do? Where was I supposed to get this epiphany from, especially when your behavior hasn’t changed negatively.”

Friend: (A bunch of other highly whiny-like statements and accusations of my blame in the situation… For the most part I tune out)


Le sigh


BUT…It did get me thinking, what should be one’s participation in your friends relationship(s)?

meme2Because I do this blog, folks like to talk to me (and I like to use their lives as content lol ;) ). However, I’ve become less than enthused about shelling out ‘advice’ for a number of reasons… one.) you never really know both sides; two.) life is already too complicated for me to be rendering out advice on a situation that is not mine; three.) me, myself, I’m not even dating, remember?…so what am I going to say? I mean in instances of extreme behavior, like domestic violence, extreme unhappiness, sure I’ll say something directly… But other than that, it’s meh… keep your thoughts to yourself. With cheating situations, if you’re not my good friend, ya I’ll look at you and feel sorry for you, but I will keep it moving.

We are the sum of our decisions… And just like I told my friend at the end of the conversation, life is about the decisions we make and the consequences that result from them; for the things that happen to us that we cannot control, we control how we react and respond to them. Irrespective of what our friends say or don’t say, there’s personal responsibility for the lives we lead…

Is that mean? What do you do with your friends? Do you find yourself meddling more or less as you grow older?

**Names obviously changed.

Leading Lady vs. Best Friend: The Art of Not Dating, and Still Coming up on Top.

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“This is not a hard one to figure out. Iris, in the movies we have leading ladies and we have the best friend. You, I can tell, are a leading lady, but for some reason you are behaving like the best friend.”**

Great quote from one of my favorite movies, The Holiday. Not too much explanation is needed, but in essence the girl likes a friend of hers and is running around doing ‘best friend- like’ duties in hopes that he will see how amazing she is, but she never gets the leading lady status.

So Amma wrote a piece some time ago, which essentially discussed kissing dating goodbye and becoming friends with people (in the hopes that one of the friendships develops further). It was an eye opening piece, and something I’ve naturally kind of taken up. Truth be told, the traditional ‘American’ style of dating here has been a. exhausting and b. not fruitful. Not to mention it inadvertently makes people Ghanaians think you’re a whore. Not my words, but many, many, many other people’s. So naturally I’ve just pretty much migrated to not dating. At first it was something kind of strange to admit, however outside of a couple random first “dates” here and there, not dating has now become a comfortable norm for me. It makes life actually quite simpler, and if you recall, the simple life was all I was looking for this year. In general, not dating boils down to being friends with people and not having pressure (to be or do something after X number of rendezvouses). Although I’m not at the next stage yet, the belief is that in time someone will think that within our friendship ‘I’d make a good life partner for them’. It’s been a personal choice to go down this route, and I’m not saying it’s for everyone. But I told you about the jungle, right? You got folks out here denying your relation- situation-ship with them, faking the relevance you are to them, trivializing your feelings for them and their feelings for you, hedging against wifey with you, cheating on their girlfriends with you, and all other sorts of cowardice behavior, so it would seem that friendship is the safest only route to go in the beginning of getting to know someone.


The whole point is that we all have a spectrum of behavior, and in some regard character is revealed in friendship- when y’all are not officially together- in ways that can be hard to see when one is trying to ‘impress’ the other within X amount of dates. Spending time with someone in a group or exclusively, in a platonic nature, helps you better sift out whether the guy is one of the players or even worse, one of the bad ones masquerading as a good guy… and these latter seem to exist far more than one would think. The whole process involves your own deductive reasoning and also questioning other people about the guy’s past, which can help in establishing patterns of behavior. However that being said, just like any plan of action, no strategy is fool proof. People can still get duped, there can be a lot of miscommunication, and time can still be wasted when you’re “non-dating”. So there are still strategies one should must adopt when one is a ‘non’ dater (particularly if you start preferring one friend’s company over others). In my brief time as a non-dater, there are a few things I’ve picked up on (through experience, but also through the mouths of men themselves). I think these are good food for thought if you’re still trying to come up on top as a non-dater:

  • Just like in dating, for non-dating to materialize into something long term, the guy must actually still want you and believe you’re the cat’s meow; the guy must still pursue you (after you’ve established you’d be open to being pursued). If this doesn’t occur, what will happen is y’all will just be acting like best buds only. You will be running around doing bestie-type duties and one day he’ll show up with his leading lady. Don’t play, it happens, so you need to strategize. I understand that it’s a buyers market in Ghana globally, and it probably will continue to be for the foreseeable future the entire life of my potential child-bearing age. But just like in dating, in non-dating you don’t want to chase a man down into being with you.
  • I know your initial relationship is that of frienship, and nothing more. BUT you need to still make him treat you like a lady- still allow him to pay when y’all hang out (it doesn’t have to be every time); don’t talk about other guys with them as if he’s one of your girlfriends… just don’t; don’t emasculate, belittle, or treat him with disrespect… one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned in my adult years is how fragile a man’s egos is… respect. is. everything. Also, don’t hang out with him and his buddies all the time – men rarely wife ‘one of the homies’. In essence, what you want to do as a friend is to still have a healthy distance, so he can see you as a woman that he could date/ wife/ whatever.
  • In regards to making your feelings known, this can be tricky. Some folks say flirting is ample, and if he doesn’t pick up on it, then it’s not on his mind. However, some folks say you can actually say something. It’s funny, 40-days-datingbecause the majority of the former advice comes from women, and the latter comes from men. I think one needs to gauge your individual relationship and situation here. However of late, I am of the latter camp: I don’t think there is anything wrong with notifying the person of your openness to something further. This, at the very least, removes any miscommunication and the other person can’t ever claim that ‘they didn’t know’. After that, the ball is in his court to move. A lot of men just can’t pick up on non-verbal cues… especially if yall have been just friends. Notifying him of your feelings should be done strategically though, and you have to ready for any outcome: whether he’s interested, not, or needs time. Make sure you figure out how you will behave given any of the outcomes, because the last thing you want is a ruined friendship because you’ve gone and made things awkward.

So what do y’all think? Is non-dating actually better or worse? Are there strategies you can suggest to not get trapped in the best friend bucket?

Random Bonus: I saw this clip of two friends who tried to date for 40days. I don’t know where I was last year, but apparently it was all the craze. SPOILER ALERT: It didn’t work out for them, however it was fascinating reading their daily blog HERE. The thing is a great friendship doesn’t automatically equate to a good romantic relationship… for various reasons. The two of you may not want the same things in life… one of you might not be ready for the work it takes (to love) – which was the case here… or just plainly, one of you may not have romantic feelings for the other. However, it never hurts to try, right?…

** It’s completely cliche, it’s a chick flick, and… welt, it’s got jude law… but, it’s a great movie. Check out the scene (start at 1:05):