Tatiana Talks

Keep Philadelphia Beautiful, Guys


So, now that it is finally warming up on the East Coast, I think it is time to address something that has long bothered me when I am running on Kelly Drive.

No, not the crazies, or the horn honkers, or the high school rowers who walk six across on the path. I’m talking about something I can actually do something about. 

Guys. Running. Without shirts on.

I understand running is a sweaty activity, and when the mercury climbs you want to be wearing as little as possible. So, if the PECO building is flashing a temperature above 90, I will give you guys a pass. I'm even a little jealous.

Eighty-nine degrees and below, fellas, and I'm telling you, cover it up.

And this isn’t just for me. It's for you, too.


I mean, why are we running on Kelly Drive in the first place? To get healthy. Right. Okay, so what’s our second reason? To look good. Maybe even to attract a potential mate?

No? That's not why you are out there (insert eye-roll). Fine. You get a pass, too. 

But, if you happen to think, as you are coordinating your running shorts with your wristbands, how nice it would be to run into a cute girl who can keep your pace, keep reading.

While I recognize I don't represent women everywhere, I did conduct a quick survey and found that unless you look like Ryan Gosling in Crazy Stupid Love, we will not be impressed when your sweaty self comes lumbering towards us. Instead, we may be repulsed.

However, if I see a perfectly normally shaped man headed towards me, even if he is a little round in the belly, I can find him very attractive and start wondering about all the other sweaty things we can do together.

But, when I see a guy naked from the waist up, nine times out of ten I'm thinking only one thing: Where the eff is your shirt?

Take, for example, Peyton Manning.

I have loved Peyton Manning for most of my adult life. However, I had never seen him shirtless. Not until he was on SNL a few years back. He did this sketch (I warn you, it isn’t funny), and if I didn't already love him I wouldn't be capable of getting past his frozen chicken breast like chest (really, he’s a professional athlete?). No amount of pass completions or clever MasterCard commercials could have erased that image from my retinas.

Need something closer to home. You got it.

I was recently out on Kelly Drive (in capri pants and a tank top even though the Runner’s World app suggested I wear the shortest shorts I could find and a sports bra) when I passed an acquaintance running sans shirt. Now, because I’m single for life, I wasn’t attracted to this guy before this run-in. Still, I knew he was single and had considered his potential for any one of my wonderful friends. And, if it came down to describing him, I would’ve said: tall with a pretty decent body. After all, he was always talking about all the races and working out he did; I figured it was fair to assume his body was nice.

Oh, would I have been wrong. His skin was so pale it was practically translucent. It was like that scene in the first X-men movie when the senator is walking out of the ocean all jellyfish-like. I didn’t know if I should avert my eyes or find him sunscreen. Either way, he quickly moved from potential hottie for one of my friends to how do I tell her about his six chest hairs. 

And while you might not think being on my hot list is an honor, being hooked up with one of my friends certainly is. Reason number 7 you should always wear a shirt -- the first six being skin cancer.

Oh, and lest you think I'm being sexist, I don't want to see you Ryan Gosling look-a-likes without your shirts either. But that is mostly because I find it distracting. And when I'm distracted I fall.

Or run into light posts.

A Little Self Reflection During My Last Full Week at 33

So this past week has been an interesting one for self-discovery – nothing all that unusual as I typically do a lot of reflecting on my life and what it all means in the weeks leading up to my birthday.

Around this time every year I start to get the itch to move to Chicago or San Francisco. I think about changing careers, or going to school or doing something so that I have a better plan than my current back-up plan (to retire as a nun) if I don’t make it as a writer. I also spend a lot of time wondering about exes – what they are up to but mostly what would be different about my life if they weren’t an ex.

It was in this mindset that I clicked on the Atlantic’s article “Is Facebook Making Us Lonely.”

I was most intrigued by this article because I have often thought that things like Facebook and Twitter actually make it easier for me to be alone. On Friday nights, when I’m not in the mood to go out (or my friends are all out on dates) I will sit home and watch TV, enjoy some wine, and check in on Facebook and Twitter obsessively. If I am watching the Phillies play (or this past week, the Olympics) reading my Twitter feed suddenly feels like I am watching the game with a dozen or so of my closest friends – even though I have never met most of these people.


What I took away from the Atlantic article wasn’t that social media was making me lonelier, but that I might be a narcissist. I’m still wondering about this. I thought about asking Bridie her opinion the other night at dinner, but I refrained. Probably because I think too highly of myself to hear what she thinks of me.

On a more interesting note, the article also gave me a possible title for the collection of essays I will one day publish – Porcupine Problems.

While worrying that I’m a narcissist, I clicked on a link promising dating tips for short men. Now. I am obviously neither short nor a man, but still, I was interested in reading what advice was being doled out to these guys.

I can’t find the link, and I don’t remember most of the advice, but I do recall clearly the first piece of advice: If a girl won’t date you because you are shorter than her: forget her, because she is a terrible person.

Huh. Terrible person.

The author isn’t wrong. If I met a guy that told me he didn’t date a woman over a certain weight or with breasts that were smaller than a c-cup, I would think he was an ass.

But, if we look at the psychology (or whatever) of why one person finds someone attractive, it’s purely biological. Men aren’t attracted to women with big breasts because society tells them to or because they want to put their face between them. But because subconsciously big breasts indicate that the woman will be able to provide a lot of milk for their babies. At least I think I read that somewhere. So my attraction to men that are taller than me isn’t because society tells me it is more masculine but because deep down in the caveman part of my brain, I want to procreate with only taller men so that the babies I don’t actually want will never have to read advice on dating tips for short men.

That's just science.

Does that make me the female version of a douche-bag – maybe. But that sort of makes sense because yesterday I learned I’m attracted to douche bags.

I mean ... photo from Women’s Health.



Just like everyone else in America, I have been suffering through NBC’s coverage of the Summer Olympics. In part because I love the back stories and the tears and seeing people that have worked so hard achieve success, but also because I think the swimmers are hot. One swimmer in particular – Ryan Lochte.

All the evidence was there. I didn’t need his mom telling me about his habit of one night stands or this hysterical Jezebel article to tell me Lochte is just the sort of ass I rolled my eyes at all through college and my 20s. But still, even knowing this, (mom and dad skip to the next paragraph) I still wanna sit on his face.

Worse than that, I think it is his cockiness and stupid grill and ridiculous style that makes me want him all the more. On the plus side, Cricket and I think we may be able to turn this into an opportunity for me to finally get some. No, I am not so deluded to think I actually have a shot at Ryan Lochte. However, d-bags are a population I’ve never really considered. But with zero chance of actually developing feelings for one, they might make for a good no-strings-attached arrangement.

Now, this is a lot for one girl to think about. Fortunately, next week I will be on a beach in Hawaii, giving me plenty of opportunity to sort this all out before I turn another year older.