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Ask The Vatican Assassin (Role-Playing Romantic)

Got a problem? Well, your worries are over: We here at Shaking Through World Headquarters have an expert in the field of "problem-solving." When he’s not busy carrying on the noble tradition of the Knights Templar (“God’s Green Berets”)--snuffing out world leaders, dispatching demons and generally saving the world like a long-haired, street-smart James Bond--Vatican Assassin spends his free time indulging his every hedonistic whim, which gets him into lots of trouble. Who better to dole out helpful advice to the lovelorn, conflicted and confused?

Posted: November 02, 2001

Dear Vatican Assassin,

I am a junior in High School and I think you're the greatest. I'm hoping you can help me out with a problem. There's this girl (we'll call her "Ursula") in my third period Advanced Placement Trigonometry class who doesn't know I exist. That's not really all that unusual, most people don't. I have oily skin, wear thick glasses and am more comfortable moving in social circles involving "Star Trek" and live-action role-playing games. Ursula is a tall, willowy blonde, captain of the cheerleading squad, class treasurer and President of the 4-H club.

As you may have guessed, I am hopelessly in love with Ursula. So far, I have chosen to suffer this in silence, not daring to risk the wrath of her boyfriend or cadre of cackling she-devils. But then earlier this week, she actually came up to me after Trig class and asked how I was doing. She even knew my name! After making small talk about one of the problems we'd just encountered in class, she asked if I was familiar with Shakespeare. Seeing an opening, I began quoting whole lines from "Titus Andronicus," but she cut me off. She said she'd been assigned to write a Shakespearian sonnet in her Creative Writing class, and asked if I might help her out. Well, I ended up writing the whole thing for her, and she got an A. She was so grateful, she actually bought me a card with a sweet note inside thanking me for my help.

Vatican Assassin, what would you do in this situation? Now that she knows I'm a sweet, creative and romantic sort, I'm sure she's warming to me. How can I use this opening to declare my love for her and get her to go out with me? You're my hero, V.A. Tell me how to be like you.

Signed,

Role-Playing Romantic

Dear RPR,

What would I do in your situation? Nothing, because I would never BE in your situation. Your glasses must not be thick enough, because you're certainly not seeing the full picture clearly. What are you doing wrong? Allow me to explain, and try to keep up because I'll be using few geek analogies.

Problem One: You're worried about acting in a way that's unlike you, just to impress this girl and get her to like you. WRONG, McFly. You need to be YOU, and if that isn't good enough for her, then you wouldn't be happy with her anyway. Be yourself, and you'll attract someone who shares your interests. Keep in mind, it will take some work on your part--it's not just going to be handed to you.

Problem Two: DON'T let your own insecurities and desires to be accepted become a path for you to set yourself up to be taken advantage of. DON'T do her work for her. DON'T read anything more into a card or gesture other than what it is. Are you sure your eye prescription is up to date?

On the other hand, DO declare your love for her. DO expect to be shot down. Sometimes you have to take the big gamble in order to get the big prize. However, in taking that risk you've sometimes gotta take the kick to the stomach. But at least you've set everything on the table.

Lastly, and above all, KNOW YOUR PLACE. It's simple Darwinism. You don't see gorillas mixing with the lions or giraffes hanging with the hippos, no matter what Disney would have you believe. You're into things that she isn't. It's why you're not with her to begin with. Don't try to mix the two species. Even Dr. Moreau learned that horror.

And just what in the Hell does a high school kid know about love anyway? Man, you've got bigger things to worry about. Your years of fun are FAST running out. You'd better enjoy being able to sleep late on a Saturday while you can, and not worry about some girl.

Sooner or later, you'll either have to pop up from around your Dungeon Master's screen and walk out into real life, or resign yourself to the fact that your future mate may be found at a science fiction convention, and the pickings there are tres slim. Trust me. But hey, if that's what makes you happy, then who am I to judge? I only answer other people's questions and give them the answers they don't want to hear.

(One last piece of advice: Don't try to be like me. The world doesn't need another me. They're still appealing the one they've got.)

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