Janice Edman

            Anyone who has ever watched five minutes of “E!” or read a copy of Us Weekly (as my friends and I do on these dreary, rainy days) knows that the Hollywood dating scene is about as similar to ours as margarine is to butter.  Sure, the basic concept is the same, but one will leave you happy and satiated, while the other will barely fill you, and probably give you loose stools.  Tori Spelling (who probably eats tubs of margarine to keep the pounds off) recently said, “I got divorced, and now I’m getting married . . . please, it’s Hollywood.”  So here are my tips to you for how to avoid the terrible mess that is relationships in Tinsel Town.

            1. Don’t fall prey to the “on set” chemistry romance.  Although we don’t have high-tech movie sets in remote locations, we do have 10-week quarters and GE classes filled with a melting pot of Cal Poly students: the cute girls wearing letters, the seawater-soaked surfers, the lacrosse team . . .  you get the point.  Just because you’re both struggling through lectures on art history every Tuesday and Thursday for two hours is no reason to believe the fling can last beyond finals.  Make sure there’s something more sound in the pairing besides a dislike for ancient cave paintings.

            2.  Don’t gush to everyone you know (your mom, lab partner, cashier at the Avenue-) about your new relationship.  The more time you spend boring others with a detailed account of his oh-so-sweet behavior or her potential for being “The One,” the higher the odds are that the relationship will crash and burn, leaving everyone to nod and whisper “I told you so.”  (Jessica and Nick, anyone?)

            3.  Referring to that ill-fated couple, don’t make out with a different girl every night at the bars, only to coo about a just-friends status later.  We have a very small collection of watering holes in this town, and dancing seductively with a Cuesta girl five feet away from your ex at The Library will only make you look pathetic for trying to rub it in her face.  Take that down to Santa Barbara for the weekend.

            4.  Don’t believe that just because your latest crush cheated in his or her last four relationships that things will be different for you.  K Fed left Shar Jackson for Britney Spears when she was pregnant with baby No. 2, and I’m guessing it’s only a matter of time before pot-smoking Papa Zao finds a cash cow elsewhere (I use the term “cow” loosely).  I recommend visiting www.dontdatehimgirl.com before getting serious with anyone, anywhere.  And if you’ve been the victim of a nasty cheater, post it there for other girls to spread the gospel.  Fellas, I expect a version for you guys (possible title: www.ihatethisskank.com?) any day now.

            5.  Remember that in college, just like occasionally in Hollywood, love can withstand the pressures of outside forces and make it last.  If you’re serious about love and commitment, it shouldn’t matter how many hotties there are in your major or how tempting a wild romp at a party may be.  And if you are burned, don’t hate the game ” hate the player. (Yourself, basically.)

            It’s a wild world out there in SLO town, but everyone loves a lover.  Just follow these simple rules and maybe the editors will turn down my suggestion for a gossip column for lack of material.  Maybe.

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