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The real rules

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“Hellllloo? Sam, baby — is that you? What’s that you say? You’re slurring, I can’t … You’re at the corner bar? You’re breaking up with me?! You listen here, Mr. Sloppy Sam — according to the American Dating Association, this termination of our MAD (Mutually Agreed state of Dating) is invalid!”

Throw that one at him. You’ll be backed by the United States’ official governing body of courtship. Since 1976, the American Dating Association has been regulating the chaotic contemporary dating scene, and now West Coast writer Jeff Wise has compiled and systemized the association’s love rules in a horny-green, pocket-sized book entitled Universal Dating Regulations and Bylaws. The handbook is comprised of eight sections that set extremely detailed standards of acceptable romantic behavior for the following stages of intimacy: Meeting, First Date, Early Courtship, Advanced Courtship, Sex, Moving In, Living Together and Termination.

In the scenario above, the jilted girlfriend was correct: Section IX c.i. states that unless physically prevented from achieving physical presence, a “breaker” must inform the “breakee” of the relationship’s dissolution in person and face-to-face. If you’ve ever needed righteous validation for a broken heart, look no further. The book costs $9.95 at www.americandating.org.

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