A Guide To Acceptable (and Less Than Acceptable) Objects of Your Affection.

WARNING: Making a move on this bunch may be flirting with disaster.

Genus: The Retail/Fitness Crush

Species: Hot Starbucks Barista, Surprisingly-Not-Gay Urban Outfitters Employee, Sweaty But Fine Spin Instructor, Yoga Instructor With Wandering Hands

How To Spot: Upside-down (if you’re in downward dog), from the back of the line (if you’re at your favorite coffee place).

How To Score: The best part? You HAVE to interact with them or you won’t get your latte/workout/new shoes. The worst? That means everyone else is interacting with them too. Still, make yourself a regular, chat them up…and get some free scones/flexibility out of it, too.

Crushability: High…and so is your yoga instructor, probably.

Genus: The Celebrity Crush

Species: Robert Pattinson, Rachel McAdams, Ryan Gosling, Ryan Reynolds, Angelina Jolie, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, the Ghost of Heath Ledger, Megan Fox (pre-pregnancy), and the like.

How To Spot: On your TV. On your Tivo. In your favorite movie theater. On every billboard/magazine/celebrity gossip site ever.

How To Score: Look, celebrities are real people who eat and fart and buy lattes, just like the rest of us. So yes, there is a small (calm down, Twihards, I said SMALL) chance you may one day run into these elusive, gold-underwear-owning creatures. What to do? Ignore. You are only setting yourself up for Insane Fan Syndrome, meaning they all assume we are mentally-deranged fanatics who will eagerly clutch their discarded napkins before immediately selling it on eBay. Okay, I may be blowing this out of proportion a bit…no one buys that shit on eBay.

Crushability: Low…except for Rachel McAdams. I mean come ON. She’s adorable.

Genus: The Roommate Crush

Species: Creature snoring in the bedroom next to you.

How To Spot: See above

How To Score: Very, very carefully. There is no tried and true outcome for this Crush Type, the whole “We’re roommates/lovers/haters” scenario. I know people who have made the leap and it has worked. And then there’s everybody else. Tread carefully.

Crushability: It’s complicated. Which your living situation will be soon as well.

Genus: The Relative Crush

Species: Your Cousin, Your Second Cousin, Any Cousins By Marriage, Your Stepbrother, Your Sister’s Brother-in-Law, etc

How To Spot: At Christmas, Thanksgiving, your cousin Jackie’s Bat Mitzvah, etc

How To Score: Please don’t. Not only is this frowned upon by modern society, it can make for some VERY awkward weddings, funerals, and baby showers.

Crushability: Low/Illegal

Genus: The Work/School Crush

Species: Your Super Supportive Boss, That Hot Philosophy TA, Your Chatty Client, Gavin From Accounting, Gavin From The Dorms

How To Spot: A Desk/Cubicle/Podium/Company Cocktail Party Near You.

How To Score: You’re at work/school every day. Which means every day (sans Saturday/Sunday) is a glorious opportunity to display your sparkly self. Cute person in your Econ class? Hello, Study Group. New Guy at the office is definitely flirting with you? Hello, Movie Date. The world is your oyster…unless your oyster could fire/flunk you. Then watch out.

Crushability: Low to High. Low being dude, it’s your boss. Crush + Angry Wife of Boss = Fired. High being Gavin From Accounting who is charming, witty, and doesn’t spend more time on his hair than you. Bonus: your company does NOT have a “No Dating Your Coworkers” maxim. Unless they do. Then Gavin goes to straight to a Low. Sorry, stapler monkey.


Genus: The Nightlife Crush

Species: Smoldering (and Heavy-Handed) Bartender, Chatty/Cute Bouncer, Fedora-Wearing DJ

How To Spot: At your favorite dive bar/dance club/wine bar/Mexican restaurant’s Karaoke Night

How To Score: Order a drink. It’s that simple. Okay, I jest…sorta. But these Potential Crushes are made for flirtation. Their biggest problem is not being able to turn if OFF. Which is cool when you’re the flirtee…but try dating one and wondering why he keeps “losing his phone” on Friday nights.

Crushability: Almost TOO high. Make sure he double bags it.

Genus: The Friend of a Friend Crush

Species: That Guy from College/Dodgeball/Poker, Your Roommate’s Friend, Your Friend’s Roommate, etc.

How To Spot: At a BBQ, pool party, birthday soiree, etc. Anywhere people you know are gathering with other people they know. Aka LIFE.

How To Score: Say YES. Friends having a pickup soccer game in the park? YES. Jenny wants you to come see this new band with her and a group of friends? YES. Liz and a group of her college friends are heading to Vegas? BIG BUCKS, NO WHAMMIES. Translation: YES. You know why? If they’re friends with YOUR friends, they’re probably pretty cool (and have MUCH less of a chance of being an ax murderer).

Crushability: VERY, VERY HIGH. Huzzah!

Originally Printed in Ladygunn Magazine’s CRUSH ISSUE, Issue #3. Reprinted with permission.