You know how it is. We’ve all been there. You’re a baby dyke, just starting to dip your toe into the feminine dating pool. You don’t know how to flirt with other women, or how to flirt with them obviously enough that they know you’re super gay and trying to score. There’s a total babe by the bar, but your social anxiety is rising and your friend egging you on isn’t, realistically, all that helpful. Here are 9 thoughts a novice queer lady has when trying to pick up girls (that may or may not be based upon my own anti-climactic experience at a gay karaoke night).

  1. Is she here alone?

Seriously? Her? This goddess, come to walk amongst us on the mortal plane? She must have a boyfriend, or a girlfriend, or at least a crowd of goddess friends hovering somewhere just out of sight. She’s probably surrounded by people who are ready to swoop in and laugh if you stand next to her and try and make small talk.

  1. She smiled!

This is not a drill. Repeat, this is not a drill. You went and stood next to her to order and she totally looked your way and smiled at you. I mean, she looked away again right afterward. It was probably just politeness. Girls are socialized to be polite, remember? You are a girl. You always smile at people. Calm down. You’re getting overexcited.

  1. Wait, are you being creepy?

Are you replicating the male gaze? Are you weirding her out? She doesn’t seem threatened, but… Are you leering? Pervert. Stop hounding innocent girls with your indecent stare and look away! Good. Okay, good. Now just stand here and wait for your drink and try to do it without violating her with your lusty lesbian eyes.

  1. Oh sweet, she’s friendly.

She’s talking to you. Totally unprompted! This means it’s okay to look at her. I mean, it’d be kind of weird if you didn’t at this point. Just try and be normal or something.

  1. Is she queer?

She can’t be. That would just be far too convenient. Girls aren’t just cute and willing to talk to you and queer! But this is a gay bar, right? You are literally at a gay bar. If she’s straight, she’s hella lost. Oh my God. Is this happening?

  1. No, but really, is she queer?

Not everyone here is gay, right? Sometimes people bring their straight friends to these things. This is far too good to be true. Quick, slip in some leading questions about… I don’t know, Natalie Dormer? No wait, everyone thinks Natalie Dormer is the babe to end all babes. That doesn’t prove anything. Damn it.

  1. Is she flirting with me or is she just being friendly?

Seriously though. Like, this is the second time she’s told me she likes my necklace. That definitely means she’s been looking at my chest, right? But what if she’s just being complimentary? Why isn’t there some kind of code for ‘I’m definitely queer and want to jump your bones’? That would make things so much easier.

  1. Wait… does she think I’m just being friendly?

I mean, I keep telling her I like her lipstick. Like, I really like it. That shade really suits her, but also I want to like… taste it, please. Am I making that clear enough, or does she just think I’m being nice? Ugh, I really need that queer code now.

  1. Ah, screw it.

This is way too much stress and my drink is here. Time to retreat back to the booth in shame and endure my obligatory ball-busting. Sigh.