DTSFT Men’s Column #21 – Romantic Getaway



Well, well, well, if it hasn’t been two years since we last spoke.

There’s been a sort of DTSFT hiatus, an extended one at that, while we all get the hell on with our lives and work and stuff – well, some of us. Me? I’m back to sitting on my albeit super-sweet behind and doing fuck all, all day. I mean, that’s not strictly true; I’ve been busy sifting through the thousands of emails, letters and texts (I don’t know how you got my mobile number, but it’s too late to do anything about it now, isn’t it?) sent to DTSFT HQ from men in need. In the two years that have passed since my last DTSFT Men’s Column, so much has happened, and not all good stuff. An anti-feminist party stood for parliament in 2015; a creepy, bum-fluff bearded man-child tried to organise a li’l rape rally; and Anthony Mackie starved to death.  It’s no coincidence that this all happened in my absence, and I’d like to take this opportunity to apologise to women all over the world for my lack of attention, for not keeping men in check, for not responding to the mountains of correspondence from desperate men, just looking for a light in the darkness of their ignorance. It was my job, MY JOB, to make sure men knew how to respect women, and I was asleep at my desk. I apologise.  With that said, I’d like to crack on with my latest advice column. It seems apt that this column should return almost two years to the day since the last post, so I picked a letter that addressed the same topic as last time.  From Peter in Gravesend:


“Hi Helen,

I want to take my girlfriend on a romantic getaway for Valentine’s Day, but I’ve got no idea what to do.  Recently, she and I have been really getting into Breaking Bad, and I was thinking of taking her to a swanky hotel for some Netflix and chill, if you know what I mean… Do you have any advice or ideas other than this?”


Hi Peter.  Well, first of all, kudos to you for asking for my advice; people don’t realise how stupid and ignorant they really are until they hear my opinion. Some people are so embarrassed by their own stupidity that they disappear off the face of the earth and I never hear from them again, which is a shame.  Secondly, it’s a good thing you mentioned Breaking Bad, because as it happens ‘Netflix and chill’ is so 2015 – this year it’s all about ‘Hulu and arguing’, and I don’t want to see you and your girlfriend arguing, Peter, I just don’t, I can’t bear the thought of you two being unhappy, it just fucking tears me apart, man. Don’t let Hulu do this to you.

What both of you need to do, what everybody needs to do, is to just calm down. And what better way to calm down than with some delicious meth? This Valentine’s Day, you don’t need to go to some expensive, swanky hotel; just get her some of that crystal she’ll never lose interest in, and you’ll never have to worry about what to get her ever again.



No need to thank me, Peter, I’m just doing my job.






DTSFT Men’s Column #20 – Valentine’s Day


It’s that time of year again where people won’t shut the hell up about Valentine’s Day. Supermarkets get decked out in red and pink, adverts are all geared towards THAT SPECIAL DAY, and the internet explodes with updates, ‘listicles’ and blogs about whether we should care about Valentine’s Day or not. It’s easy for me, because I don’t care about anything, so when I see you and your beloved other halves flaunting your happiness all over social media, it doesn’t have any effect on me here in my emotional vacuum.  But that hasn’t stopped me from helping those of you who reach out to me in your time of need, and this week’s cry for help comes from Finn in Newcastle.

“Hi Helen,

I need help, I’ve been going out with this girl for two months and she’s lovely and all, but she’s been dropping mad hints on Facebook since the start of the month. She’s been liking certain pages and pictures of jewellery, retweeting stupid tweets from those ‘Just Girl Things’ twitter accounts, and pointing out flowers and chocolates in shop windows. I can’t handle it. I want to do something nice for Valentine’s Day just so she doesn’t stress out at me, but it has to be something small and not too serious. Any ideas?”

Finn, I’ll be honest with you.  A lot of ladies would see your attitude towards Valentine’s Day as a reflection of your attitude towards your girlfriend – too laid back, non-committal, lazy. To me, the fact that you feel like you need to do something for Valentine’s Day just to placate her says a lot. What about what YOU want, Finn? Are you going to just drop everything and organise your Friday night around going for some expensive meal just because your SELFISH girlfriend expects it? I think Valentine’s Day should be renamed ‘Meaningless-Occasion-Where-Men-Fork-Out-Stupid-Amounts-of-Cash-For-Stupid-Shit-That-Their-Girlfriends-Don’t-Need-But-Want-Because-They’re-Shiny-And-Society-Dictates-That-This-Must-Be-Done-Because-Of-The-Date Day’. I don’t know what’s going to be next, Finn, but I would bet that it involves you giving up everything you have, everything you LOVE, everything you’ve worked hard for all your life, just so that your girl can have her throw pillows and scented candles and stickers and weird floral head-dresses.


Did you know, Finnikins, that at 9pm on Friday 14th, E4 are showing Beverly Hills Cop, ITV4 are showing Police Academy, and BBC Three are showing Enemy of the State? That’s enough of a dilemma in itself. I mean, which one are you going to choose?  You don’t need the extra stress of paying for an expensive meal and flowers when you’re already faced with a quandary such as this.  And two months is nothing, Finny. I’ve had longer relationships with ear-wax, but my sexual preference is not the subject here – the bottom line is this: you need a compromise. My suggestion is getting a takeaway and watching something on the TV, and then going out on a romantic midnight arson rampage. It’s the only logical thing to do.

DTSFT Men’s Column #19 – Cellulite


I’ve been on a secret government mission for the last few months, which is why I haven’t done quite as many DTSFT Men’s Column updates as I should have. Anyway, we managed to subdue the aliens and I’m back home now, ready to advise all of you poor, helpless chaps who’ve been desperate for my guidance.  I sorted through the thousands of emails and letters you’ve sent in – which is weird because I don’t know how you got my home address – and I found one that seems like a good place to start, it comes from Paul in Hemel Hempstead.

“hey helben, hows it? good? yeah. anyway my m8s and i signed up for the gym in january so we could get fit and that, and i met this girl and we hit it off but then like 4 weeks later she’s kind of stopped going to the gym but at the same time she’s complaining about her cellulite and i’m like come gym then and she’s like you did not just and i’m like what do you want me to say boo?  so what i need help with is what does she want me to say?”

A lot to take in there, Paul. Firstly, it’s HELEN not Helben, honestly, sometimes I wonder why I bother. Secondly, well done you for sticking with the gym for more than 4 weeks; I was thinking about joining a gym but I couldn’t even stick with that train of thought for more than 4 seconds, and that happens to me a lot. Hahaha have you seen the one where Pops makes Benson stop yelling at Mordecai and Rigby and he almost explodes? Thirdly, the issue at hand.  This requires a three-step approach, which I will now outline as part of my soon-to-be published guide, “How To Be A Wuman”.

So Your Girlfriend Wants Your Opinion – “The Hint Trap”

Often when your girlfriend makes a comment, she is simultaneously asking you a question and also expecting you to give an answer so perfect that it literally doesn’t exist. Some examples of this well-disguised trap:

“I wish I had a body like Beyonce” – TELL ME MY BODY IS SEXY

“Ugh, I hate my laugh” – TELL ME MY LAUGH IS SEXY

“My hands always smell of egg” – TELL ME MY HANDS ARE EGGY

The reason for this is simple; women, like most people, are human beings, and human beings are invariably selfish and terrible.  I mean, who asks a question when they don’t really want to hear what you have to say? Don’t answer that. My point is, you have to tread carefully.  So she said she hated her cellulite, and you replied that she should come to the gym. Dude, you’re totally right, but what you said actually wasn’t right. But what else could you have said?

“I love your cellulite, babes”

WRONG.  If you say this, you’re confirming to her that not only does she have cellulite, but that you’ve noticed it, so you’re just going to get a whole load more “you did not just”  responses out of her, probably as she screams and throws dumbbells at you. Oh no wait, she doesn’t go to the gym. She’ll probably just throw jars of jam at you.

There is one, just ONE, fool-proof answer that can be used in this kind of situation, and if you use it correctly you will be guaranteed a safe landing. Follow these steps:

1. Stare her down.

2. Start a slow hand-clap.

3. Keep clapping as you back away slowly.

4. Avoid that person for the rest of your life.

Stay safe, Paul, and keep your pimp hand strong.


DTSFT Men’s Column #18 – Trick or Treat

I’ve been trapped down a well for several weeks and have been unable to respond to your Men’s Column queries.  But never fear! I managed to climb out and fight a bear on my way home, so it’s time to dive in to the many, many letters and emails that you have been sending in.  This week’s lucky chap is Llewellyn from Cardiff, who asks:


My crush has asked me to come to this awesome Halloween party, but my little sister wants me to take her trick-or-treating. What should I do? I don’t want to blow my chances with this girl, but I don’t want to let my little sister down. I mean, if things go well with this new lady, I’m hoping for a little trick-or-treat action myself, if you catch my drift.

Oooh, that’s a toughie, Llew.  Firstly, stop saying ‘my crush’ – you’re not a 13 year old girl and this isn’t Sugar magazine god dammit, have some self respect.  Secondly, yes I ‘catch your drift’ and ewww, ewwwww to yewwwww, Llewwwwww.  Thirdly, you have to think about the long term repercussions of your actions; if you don’t take you sister trick-or-treating, for example, will she end up going alone?  Is that safe for her to do?  You don’t want to put her in harm’s way, I mean this isn’t a hotel in Portugal, you can’t just leave young children on their own.


How about this party, then?  How do you know that this ‘crush’ of yours isn’t setting you up for a fall?  Girls are terrible, Llewellyn. I’d bet money that your crush has invited you along just to make you jealous, or worse still give you the Carrie treatment.  But let’s not be too harsh, let’s not jump to conclusions here – it could be completely innocent, and she might really like you, bro.  So here’s what you do: take your little sister to do some trick-or-treating, then drop her off home and head to the party – I mean, how late can you stay out with a kid trick-or-treating, right?  Just drop her home and hit up PartyTown.  Better still, invite this chick out with you and your sister!  Ladies love a family man, Llewellyn, she’ll be good to go, man.  And most importantly, you MUST enter an abandoned/haunted house.  Open any and all old leather-bound books, and recite out loud any texts in latin.  It’s important to empty smoking potions into one another and then drink them, and if you see a black cat then it’s almost definitely a cursed boy from the 17th Century.  This could be the adventure of a lifetime, Llewellyn, and you’re going to pass this opportunity up just to get some sweeties and treaties? Uh-uh.  Naughty boy.


DTSFT Men’s Column #17 – Catfish

 This week’s heartfelt letter comes from Donald in Rochester, and in this day and age I think that his situation is one that many people can relate to.  He raises an important issue that is certainly very timely, and so we all owe Donald a round of applause.  Donald in Rochester, we salute you.


I have been emailing and Facebooking with a girl for about 12 weeks now, and even though she apparently lives only a few miles away, she doesn’t want to meet up and won’t send me pictures, apart from the ‘modelling’ shots that are on her Facebook page.  What should I do?  Do you think she’s a catfish?

Also, I’d like to ask that you could grant me anonimity if you ever post my question on your blog.  It is really vital that I remain anonymous, just in case things get… you know… out of hand.




Er, well that anonymous letter there from Donald an anonymous reader raises a good point.  Let’s start by addressing your fears, friend.  If you’ve been contacting your lady friend on Facebook, I doubt she’s a catfish. I mean it’s a basic scientific fact that fishes do not have access to the internet and their fins deny them the dexterity to use devices such as smartphones and keyboards, so there’s no way they could possibly sign up for Facebook.  Similarly, if you’ve been looking at this girl’s photos, surely you’d notice that instead of a normal back she has a dorsal fin, and the pouty suckermouth would also be a giveaway – although given that most females these days favour the duck-face in photos, you could be forgiven for letting that one slip past you.


Your letter actually reminds me of a TV show I watched the other day that was called ‘Catfish’, and it was totally misleading; it wasn’t even about catfishes, they just lied and used that as the title when in fact the show was about people lying on the internet and tricking people into thinking they were something they’re not.  Pretty ironic, don’t you think?


DTSFT Men’s Column #16 – Perfect Gift

I certainly hope you all got your coats sorted out from last week’s post.  I know that I misunderstood the question and only realised it too late, but you can’t say my advice wasn’t sound.  Anyhoo, it’s time for this week’s question, which comes from Henry C in Hollywood (hey, I happen to be in love with a certain Henry C from Hollywood, how strange is that?), who writes:

“I want to confess my feelings to the woman I love.  We have never met, and yet I know she is perfect for me, and so I want to give her a gift that would show her how wonderful and special she is.  What gift do you suggest for a London-based aspiring writer who is so brilliant and smart and funny and beautiful and amazing and perfect?”


It’s a very valid question, Henry C, and I’m glad that you asked me for help in finding a gift for this anonymous yet familiar-sounding woman. You could go for some book vouchers, because if she’s as wonderful and smart as you say she is, then she’d surely appreciate some of those.  Or chocolate – I mean, chocolate can never be a bad thing. What about some lovely jewellery? I reckon she likes big clunky cartoonish stuff, like the items you get in Galibardy.  Don’t ask how I know th-

Oh Henry, who are we kidding?  I know you mean me, and I accept your undying love and return it.


You are the only gift I need.  Together, we’ll be unstoppable.


DTSFT Men’s Column #15 – Transition


Good day to you, DTSFT readers, on this fine, grey English afternoon.  It seems like only a couple of weeks ago that we had the beautiful summer weather, but the seasons are turning once more in that ever spinning circle of life, and autumn is upon us.  Damn, that was some poetic shit, man.  This week’s question comes from Barry in Belgravia, who writes:

“Hi DTSFT, I need your advice.”

That’s what I’m here for, Barry, ask away.

“Every summer, I see everyone walking around in their skimpy summer clothes, basking in the hot weather with their flesh on show, and each year I can’t help thinking of how much I want a female body. I mean, I really want a female body, if you catch my drift.  Now that the weather is changing and the leaves are shedding their trees, I think it is time for me to embrace the season of change and accept what I really want deep down, to find myself, and hopefully by spring, people will see me in a new light as the woman I was supposed to be.  So do you have any tips for getting through this transition?”

Barry, say no more.  What you’re looking for is a good quality transitional coat that will get you through those awkward periods between summer and autumn, and autumn and winter.  Firstly, I’d recommend checking out ‘FashionBeans.com’ and their article on the subject.  I mean, there are loads of styles you could try for your transitional coat, and if you really want to (as you put it) ‘find yourself’, you can’t go with something like this:


But there are options for the more sporty gent, you could try something like this:


Thanks for your question this week, Barry. I’m not really DTSFT’s resident style expert, but I feel satisfied with the answer I’ve given you, and I’m so excited that someone actually wanted my advice on a style-related query.  Hopefully people will start seeing you as the woman you were meant to be!


I have just realised that the ‘transition’ you were referring to isn’t the seasonal kind.