Life + Outdoors » Hey McGuinty!

The Cad, the Roommate and the Great Boss



Hey McGuinty!

How can I tell a great boss and organization that I have been offered an amazing job and will be moving to the state Capitol?

— Moving On Up

Moving On Up!

Congrats on being offered a job while still having one! I don't often suggest playing the lottery, but damn, you might try that too because clearly Everything's Comin' Up You right now. Have you seen the job market out there?! I'm sure your unemployed friends are like "Tell me more about your 'problems,' jerk-face."

Put it in a letter. Tell your kick-ass boss how much you've enjoyed working there and how difficult the decision was to move on. (Even if it wasn't. White lies like this won't land you a spot in hell.) Offer to help train your replacement and then — this is key — make good on that promise. Leave some detailed notes for the next person in your chair. You'll guarantee yourself not only a better-than-Costco cake at your going away party (heeeyyy, Ramone's), but the good vibes that come from not screwing over good people. That's better than cake any day.

Hey McGuinty!

What are some good ways to find a roommate? Online, word of mouth, etc? What characteristics should I ask about?

— Seeking Peaceful Co-Existence

Seeking Peaceful Co-Existence!

As college freshmen, my roommate and I were besties. For the first month. Six weeks in, we were crying in the RA's office begging for room changes because we couldn't stand each other anymore. In my early 20s, I lived with a girl who I had to physically restrain while I waited for the ambulance to take her to the psychiatric ward. I vowed then, as I held her and begged "just let me hug you," that I'd never have a non-romantic partner roommate again. So yeah, you need to do your due diligence.

I can't tell you what characteristics to ask about, because I don't know you. Do you want someone who'll hang out and watch movies with you every night, or does that sound stifling? Do you want someone who keeps to himself in his room, or does that sound lonely? You see where I'm going with this? First determine what you want in a home life, and then you can write your ad or begin putting the word out to friends.

When it comes to online vs. word of mouth, I'd say approach it like dating. If it feels weird to be "shopping" among a bunch of strangers online, stick to word of mouth. If you think being "set up" by your friends could end in disaster, then online is the way to go. Know yourself and your own comfort zone. And there, my friend, is where the dating analogy ends. Do. Not. Date. Your. Roommate, m'kay? In fact, only bunk up with a person you could never ever possibly be attracted to romantically. Otherwise, you could become my most frequent letter writer.

Hey McGuinty!

I am madly in love with someone and I don't think he feels the same. He sees me any time he wants to, not on my terms. But any day he wants to see me is always a happy day for me. Even though I want more of him, I've learned to be content with the way things are because I don't want to lose him. My heart breaks every time I think about him. If he doesn't call, I can't sleep. I wonder what he's up to, if he's with another girl. Please, I need you to help me.

— Taisho


You say you've "learned to be content" with the way things are with this guy, but that your heart breaks because you can't really have him. In my experience, when my heart is breaking, I'm not happy. I hate to tell you this, but you're not, in fact, content. Actually, you sound pretty miserable. Why are you so hell-bent on "not losing" a guy you don't really have in the first place?

I believe you that you love him. At its best, love makes you feel like blowing kisses at the jerk who cuts you off in traffic. At its worst, it makes you feel, well, like you feel now. Terrible.

This guy is getting way more of your mental energy than he deserves. I'm not going to assume he's an asshole because he might not be, if you haven't had any discussions about where you stand, if you're exclusive, etc.

So have that conversation. Now. Explain that you really like him, but if you're going to continue seeing each other, you need to know what's up. Does he just want to fool around sometimes, or does he see a possibility of a real relationship? If he just wants to keep going the way you've been, you say, "Well, that's not working for me, so this is where I say thank you and farewell." And then you stick to that. As long as this guy is taking up space in your heart but not meeting your needs, there's no room in there for the other guy who will reciprocate your feelings. The one who makes you want to blow kisses at the jerk who cuts you off in traffic. Make room in your heart for that guy, Taisho.

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