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Flirtexting: An almost fair and balanced review

Recently, a friend of mine lent me a copy of Flirtexting to review.

Ug.

I'm probably not the best person ever to review a book that is devoted entirely to the "art of flirtexting." My current beau doesn't even own a real cell phone. My flirtexting fingers have been out of commission for more than two years now. I have promised, however, to do my very best at giving a fair and balanced opinion of Flirtexting...no matter how hard that may be.

So what exactly is flirtexting? Yes, I realize that it may be pretty obvious based on the word itself, but I find it prudent to provide the exact definition given in the book. It's just easier when setting the tone for exactly what Flirtexting is all about.

A flirtext is any text message sent between you and a boy you would like to date or are currently dating (i.e., someone you would like to make out with or are currently making out with). These texts are normally comprised of the flirty, witty banter that you throw back and forth with each other that typically leads to a date and, if you're lucky, then some. You love this type of flirting over text because it's a noncommittal way for you to let him know you are digging him (pg 14).

And already it sounds like a couple of valley girl air hea.....oh yes, that's right. I'm trying to be fair and balanced.

Don't get me wrong...I'm well aware of the fact that texting has become a quick and easy way to communicate and thus flirt with others. I'm also well aware of the fact that it is a completely valid way of doing both of those things. As such, there is a lot of good advice in Flirtexting. For instance, the authors tell their female readership that they should use abbreviations sparingly, be wary of late night texts, and that texting while drunk can lead to horrible, horrible things. Most of which should be common sense.

At the same time, the book offers more than just several new and old acronyms and abbreviations one can use while texting. Supposedly they are "hip new terms" the authors use in their every day lives. This list includes:

  • Besos - Spanish for kisses and to be used in place of xoxo
  • Boyf - Boyfriend
  • Brill - Brilliant
  • Clutch - to be used for something that is convenient (example from the book: "My bf loves watching Gossip Girl too! How clutch?!" pg 176)
  • FBF - Favorite boyfriend
  • First Class - Great (I'm just curious...aren't these things supposed to be shorter?)
  • LMK - Let me know
  • LOML - Love of my life
  • Mental - Better than amazing

And the list continues with many things that annoy me and grate on my nerves. The abbreviations were not limited strictly to the "handy" list in the back of the book either. The authors constantly referred to "BPT's", "TUI's", and "PBF's" (Best Possible Text, Texting Under the Influence, and Potential Boyfriend for those of you who were curious). I felt like I had to learn a whole new language just to read the book.

Let me just mention now, I've never been good at retaining other languages. Having studied both Spanish and Latin, I can say with all the confidence in the world that I will NEVER be able to shove a whole other way of speaking into my brain. Does this make me old and out dated? I suppose it could. I prefer to think that I enjoy reading English better than some weird text speak that doesn't involve vowels.

The authors of Flirtexting are all about leaving your options open as well. They're pretty good at telling you how to play mind games over text. I should have realized that when they clearly stated on page 34 that they are Rules Girls. As you will recall from my previous article, I am no fan of The Rules. Essentially, what Goldstein and Baniuszewicz have written here is a patch to The Rules in order to bring it away from the age of pagers and into the world of immediate satisfaction.

At least Flirtexting does not promise marriage or even push its readers to get the ring. The feel of the book was much more high school and much less aging desperate women.

I'm not condemning Flirtexting. There is sound advice in the book. It does give you ideas for how to spice up an existing relationship with some saucy sexting ideas. It tells you not to get too emotional over texts since miscommunication can be highly likely depending on certain situations. It flat out states that if you don't want a date, you should abbreviate to excess and often. And then some.

If you have absolutely no idea how to flirt or simply cannot translate your amazing ability to flash your pearly whites and bat your eyes just right into digits and virtual smiley faces, then buy the book. Flirtexting can probably help you out there.

The book's website states that you can purchase it at Barnes & Noble, but I have never been able to find it any time I visit Lexington's store in Hamburg Pavilion. The copy I had the pleasure of reading came from Joseph Beth located in Lexington Green off of Nicholasville Road. You can also purchase a copy from Amazon.

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