KSK Mailbag: Helpful guidelines for couch-surfing

04.10.14 3 years ago 97 Comments


My wife and I have a fairly large one-bedroom apartment by New York City standards. Which is to say: we have what realtors claim is a two-bedroom apartment with a freakishly small kitchen, no dishwasher, and no laundry in the building. We will occasionally host another couple for a meal, and for sporting events we can seat six, maybe seven people (including ourselves).

We rarely have overnight guests crash on our couch, and when we do, that person — always person, singular — stays for only one night. Anything more is madness. Small apartments already make co-habitation tough; there’s no need to add to the degree of difficulty, as you’ll see in the first letter in this week’s mailbag. (If you have a question for next week’s ‘bag, hit us up here.)

Let’s dive in!

Dear KSK,
I love my girlfriend, I really do, but living with her makes me insane. Before signing the lease we had agreed that weeknights are sacred and, barring a drunk friend needing a non-jail bed to sleep in that our small, 1 bedroom apartment was fine for us but not a great place to have people come visit. Weekends are one thing but there is no way to be there on a week night without changing my routine and being in the way – and I love her friends so I’m not just a jerk trying to get out of seeing them.

Cut to last month when I find out her friend is coming to town for a job interview. She’s being flown in by the company but “has to” stay with us Sunday – Tuesday even though I had one of the biggest meetings of my career that Wednesday. I was annoyed but whatever, things happen and I want her to be happy. Now, I find out another good friend is coming here to start a business but is still couching it with us from EASTER SUNDAY through that Thursday even though, IMO if she has the money for a business then she should be able to afford a hotel.

IMO you’ve never started a business. Don’t get me wrong: four days of a couch-surfer in your tiny space is too long, but let’s go easy on the judgment. Maybe save that ire for the girlfriend who’s ignoring the agreement you made.

I know this seems selfish but I need my space and routine on work nights which I don’t feel like I can do in our 1 bedroom apartment. I’m already annoyed about this and now I find out that her Mom is coming to stay with us in a few months and will be staying on the couch.

“Oh, your mom’s staying on the couch during her visit? Cool, I’m looking forward to not having sex with you during her entire stay.”

I’m 30 and don’t want to be a baby here but I feel like my apartment is becoming a hotel. We don’t have room to accommodate people staying here without it affecting me. Is this unreasonable? Am I a jerk for asking for a little extra rent money ($50 at most) from her those months that I can’t even be comfortable in my own home when this was a conversation we had and established we’d do the exact opposite before ever signing a lease?

If you’re 30 and don’t want to be a baby, then start talking to your girlfriend like an adult. This whole thing wouldn’t have happened if YOU had just put on your big-boy pants and given your girlfriend a polite but firm “no” to either of the first two houseguests.

There’s two things at work here. One is that you’re completely in the right. The other is that you’re being an asshole. Fifty dollars from your girlfriend for a houseguest? How is THAT the first solution that pops into your head instead of, say, REMINDING YOUR GIRLFRIEND ABOUT THE AGREEMENT?

As I’ve stated many times before in the mailbag, probably the  important aspect of living with the person you’re dating — and likely the most difficult, as well — is open communication (and patience during the subsequent dispute resolution). So I’d suggest sitting down with your lady and saying, “Hey, remember when we said we wouldn’t have houseguests during the week?” From there, you can discuss how it disrupts your work week by making you feel uncomfortable in your own home, and — if your girlfriend doesn’t see the problem — you can explain how this hurts your feelings because she’s ignoring something that bothers you in order to prioritize her friends. (COHABITATION PRO TIP FOR MEN: talk calmly about your feelings. They don’t have to be rational — they’re feelings, not doctorate theses. Bonus: women tend to operate on those wavelengths.)

Anyway, give that a shot before demanding more rent money, ass.

Fantasy: I’m not sure what to do about Tom Brady. Obviously last year was a really down year fantasy-wise while you could argue he did more with what he had than anyone else in the league. Getting to the AFC title game with that roster is insane to me. Having said that, I think he could be a huge sleeper next year and be had in the round 5-7 range. Do you think last year was a blip on the radar as he was adjusting to new people and playing without Gronk or do you think his days as a high-end fantasy QB are over?
-Overlook Hotel Front Desk

According to FFToday, Brady was the 14th-best fantasy quarterback in 2013 (4300 yards, 25/11 TD to INT ratio, essentially worthless rushing the ball). Much of this, of course, was a result of Brady losing all of his best receiving targets, and the Pats offense certainly clicked better when Gronkowski played. Whatever Brady’s real-world football accomplishments were in 2013, he was definitely a fantasy disappointment.

So, what does that augur for 2014? As in 2013, it will depend on his receivers. Frankly, I think that Gronkowski’s injury history is extensive enough that at this point I no longer expect him to play more 10 games, and I’d extend that ballpark estimate for Danny Amendola. Julian Edelman has been re-signed, and the Pats added Brandon LaFell in free agency, which is hardly something to get excited about given the swaths of disappointment he laid in Carolina. That leaves the receiver-deep draft; if Belichick uses the Pats’ top pick on a much-needed threat at WR (or even tight end — Eric Ebron will be gone by the time the Pats pick at 29, but Austin Sefarian-Jenkins in the second round would be a nice windfall), then I’d feel a little better about Brady’s fantasy prospects.

As it is, I’d only target him as a backup quarterback (if at all), and not before the 7th round.


O Captain–
My fantasy question first: After several years in a league with high-school friends, I’m considering dropping out this year. I find it negatively impacts my enjoyment of games I’d rather just watch as a neutral party, and I’d free up a little more leisure time too. Reasonable enough, perhaps, but I also think about losing touch with my friends, and I wonder if I should just curb my competitive nature and get over myself. Which side of me is right?

Let’s pretend you all your friends got together every Saturday to smoke a shitload of weed. Just a full day of bongs rips and ordering pizza and listening to the Flaming Lips and having, like, deep conversations about the universe. Like, have you seen COSMOS, man? That shit will BLOW. YOUR. MIND. Nobody’s a burnout and it doesn’t affect anyone’s job; it’s just one day a week where everyone’s getting high. You and your friends have done this since college, and you used to enjoy it. But lately you’ve found growing more paranoid than relaxed. You catch yourself looking at the sunlight leaking through the drawn curtains and wishing you were outside, DOING something.

So do you keep wasting your Saturdays getting high and not enjoying it so you can maintain your friendships? Or do you go outside, live your life, and try to find other venues to hang out with your friends?

Fantasy football isn’t the only way to stay in touch with other human beings. Drop out of the league and enjoy the NFL the way you want to. You may not get certain inside jokes, and it’ll take effort to maintain friendships via email and texts instead of intraleague trash talk, but it can be done.

As for sex… about six months ago, I ended a multi-year relationship; it was one of those cases of not wanting to let go of it too soon and letting it go way too late as a result. Call it naivete; it was the first serious relationship for both of us. The sex was pretty vanilla, as communication wasn’t our strong suit, and prior to that, sex was always very infrequent for me. Thus, my breadth of sexual experience is really not high for a guy pushing 30.

It took a while, but lately I’ve finally been getting better at enjoying life more and saying yes to more things. A few weeks ago, I was introduced to a very sexy woman who was also coming off a long relationship, and we both knew that we weren’t seeking anything serious. Our first night together, I had a bout of ED, which seems to happen to me after a long drought. Though neither of us got off, we still enjoyed ourselves and it seemed like things would be all right next time.

Since then, we’ve spent two more nights together, and both times, all that’s happened sexually is that I’ve attempted oral on her, and both times she eventually had me stop because she wasn’t getting there. 

No reciprocation? Bad form on her part. (Or was it due to your bad form? Hmmm.)

On the most recent occasion, I was quite down on myself afterwards,

I mean, someone had to do it, right?


and we talked a little bit. I think she likes me generally, and she says we can keep trying, but she also noted that some people just don’t work together. I get the impression that she’s skeptical and losing patience with me. I’m very willing to listen and learn how to get her off, and I told her that, but I can’t shake the question of why, given what she’s looking for right now, she would bother with me when she can just find a guy who knows what he’s doing.

You’re in a tough spot — sexual satisfaction is a two-way street, and right now she’s the only one with a car. And she’s driving down the center of the street, taking up both lanes, and not using her turn signal at intersections. This metaphor is getting out of hand.

Anyway, I have no way of knowing what’s going on. Like, sure, MAYBE you suck at cunnilingus. Maybe the way you learned is great but doesn’t work for her. Maybe she doesn’t get off with people until she feels more of a connection. Maybe she doesn’t want to give instructions because other guys she’s dated haven’t needed them. Maybe she kind of sucks for not reciprocating. Maybe SHE’S the one who’s bad at sex (“very sexy” people often are).

And yeah, in case you haven’t figured it out, I’ve always struggled with low confidence and self-esteem, particularly with women. I’m working on it, including in therapy, and it’s gotten a little better, but it’s a pretty big hole and I’m far from out of it at this point. Fumbling this situation certainly wouldn’t help things, to say nothing of the sexual frustration.

So do I redouble my efforts to improve my prowess and to communicate with her and hope she’s receptive? Or do I stop embarrassing myself, cut my losses, accept that maybe I’m not the type of guy who does well in this sort of situation, and focus on the more traditional dating route with new women?
With sincere thanks,
Eqqsquizitine Buble-Schwinslow

If you like her and she wants to keep trying to make it work, why not? Take a deep breath, relax, and look at the bigger picture: you’re wringing your hands over someone who’s willing to get naked with you. You’re a good dude, and she can tell — that’s why she’s sticking with it despite the lack of fireworks. I’d say the problem is 90% in your head. Stop feeling pressured to get her off, and start enjoying the beautiful expanse of a woman’s naked body. Take your time with things. Relax.

And if nothing comes of it (please savor the accidental play on words there), then who cares? So you went on some dates and things didn’t work out. Welcome to THE MOST COMMON DATING EXPERIENCE POSSIBLE. At the end of the day, she went from “complete stranger” to “naked body in front of you” in the course of one night. That’s reason for confidence, and you should have more of it.


Hey Matt,
Who are your top 5 RB’s for next year, and where would Chris Johnson make the best fantasy impact?

Good question! I pushed hard for Jamaal Charles and LeSean McCoy before the season last year, which suggests I know what I’m talking about in this regard. There’s still a lot to determine in the draft — not just in terms of rookie running backs you might draft, but in how offenses can be built up. Example: you may love Knowshon Moreno from last year, but I’d want to see the Dolphins improve their O-line before I recommend him as a fantasy option. With the caveat that I’ll change this list after the draft and then again during training camp/preseason, here are my top 5:

  1. LeSean McCoy
  2. Matt Forte
  3. Jamaal Charles
  4. Eddie Lacy
  5. Adrian Peterson

I think Marshawn Lynch’s workload will be lessened to maintain his health, and I could see huge steps up in production from Gio Bernard and Zac Stacy.

There’s been a debate going on between my friends and I since we discovered a girl two years behind us started doing porn. I can’t provide proof that I know her, but this is her. She goes by the stage name [REDACTED].


Sorry, but given the blowback on the recent outing of the Duke student who does porn, I’ve redacted her name and pixelated her face.

So, as to the debate: some of my friends feel squeamish about blowing their load to a girl they knew once. I disagree. It actually kind of makes it hotter to me. I was hoping for your thoughts. Also, you’re unapologetic opinion of what she looks like.
Cooter Shooter

Hypothetically, if you masturbated to a classmate from high school or college, and then that classmate participated in a video specifically made to help you masturbate, that’s an extraordinarily convenient aide for your sexual gratification. And even if you DIDN’T previously fantasize about her, what’s the hang-up? “Sorry, I can’t get off to Sasha Grey. She was in my history class.”

Anyway, your maybe-acquaintance from school isn’t what I’d select from a porn database, but that doesn’t mean she’s unattractive. Sorry, I prefer not to bad-mouth the looks of naked women. Unless it’s Lena Dunham. Ugh, I can’t stand her.

Around The Web