How to Properly Identify The Syracuse Softboy

Photo by Erica Mack We all know our favorite creature of the night, the fuckboy. But have you met his cousin, the softboy?

A softboy is a fuckboy in disguise, but his edges are a bit... softer. He loves talking about how much he adores a good whiskey. He read the Lolita Sparknotes and won’t shut up about how beautiful the language of that classic literature is. Most importantly, he definitely has a shitty record player that he bought from Urban Outfitters. ‘Cuse has no shortage of softboys, but they can be difficult to spot.

Here's how to spot a softboy on campus.

  1. He asks you out but only to remote locations. He’ll suggest Recess Coffee way over on Wescott because Starbucks is “too corporate” and he loves “buying local.” Don’t be fooled, we all know that it is because he doesn’t want people seeing the two of you together. That attitude is anything but farm fresh, buddy.
  1. He’s all about the sly diss. He will never be completely upfront when insulting you. “I personally just think Taylor Swift isn’t doing enough, and sure her songs are catchy but what are they really saying? But yeah, I mean if you want to listen to her, whatever, most people do.” This is basically code for “your music taste is stupid and I am better than you in every possible way.”
  1. No labels ever. Relationships don’t always need a label, but the way he explains why he doesn’t want one definitely makes him a softboy. “I just feel like what we have is special and I don’t want to put any added pressure on by defining us. I think society is so wrapped up in defining things and I don’t want to play into that. Honestly, I blame the media.” Well, I blame you for being a mega-douche. I've seen Justin Bobby on The Hills.
  1. He is a giant cliché. He’ll go on and on about how he “hates small talk” and just wants to actually get to know people. What the fuck is up with that? As much as we'd like to pretend otherwise, small talk is how normal people function. Unless you're Olivia from The Bachelor - "Deep, intellectual things are just my jam." *eye roll* You can’t just jump into exploring how someone coped with their dog's death when you first meet them. Small talk makes the world go round, okay?
  1. He hates things for the dumbest reasons. He’ll go on and on about how sports are just controlled by “the man” (literally who is this man and can I meet him?) and refuses to attend certain parties because he had a bad experience with someone who “will probably be there." What. Do. You. Mean.
  1. He sees nothing wrong with calls after 2 a.m.. He declares that it was not a booty call and that he couldn't sleep because “he was genuinely thinking about you.” If you don't pick up, it's even easier for him to pretend he "just wanted to talk." You’ll make plans to get coffee the next day (at effing Recess). Then he’ll stand you up because “something came up.”

At times, you may feel inclined to feel bad for the softboy. He will convince you that he truly cares, but just has a lot on his plate—sorting vinyl and learning how to french press his coffee are at the top of his list. Look past this charade. Even though he is not as much of a blatant dick as the fuckboy, this is not the boy you want.