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Between Boyfriends Book: A Collection of Cautiously Hopeful Essays

Between Boyfriends Book: A Collection of Cautiously Hopeful Essays

4.6 12
by Cindy Chupack

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Cindy Chupack takes a hilarious look at love, dating-and not dating-in this witty, truthful and utterly charming book. Tackling topics such as "sexual sorbet" (the first man you sleep with after a breakup), "the VISA defense" (the claim, usually invoked by men, that 'I paid, therefore I am innocent') and "eggsistential crisis" (a panic attack, common among women in


Cindy Chupack takes a hilarious look at love, dating-and not dating-in this witty, truthful and utterly charming book. Tackling topics such as "sexual sorbet" (the first man you sleep with after a breakup), "the VISA defense" (the claim, usually invoked by men, that 'I paid, therefore I am innocent') and "eggsistential crisis" (a panic attack, common among women in their late thirties), The Between Boyfriends Book is as reassuring as that late-night post-date phone call to a best friend. It says: you may be single, but you are not alone.

"Oh, how I love this book! I laughed out loud again and again. It hits such an intimate and true chord, it's painful actually, how insightful Cindy Chupack is. Every woman who's been through the dating miasma must read it."
- Julia Sweeney

"Cindy Chupack is funny about single. Very funny. And smart. And sympathetic. And empathetic. And helpful. And the stories in this book are really horrible in a great way."
- Delia Ephron

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Self-deprecating and smart, Chupack's essays read like mini monologues from the hilarious friend you wish you had.” —People

“Cindy truly knows how to capture the horror and humor of single womanhood. This book demonstrates her gift for spinning heartbreak into gold.” —Sarah Jessica Parker

“Cindy Chupack has the credentials to comment on the single life: she's an Emmy-winning writer for Sex and the City. Like that show, her witty first book...captures the sometimes angst-ridden world of single women. Chupack has created a smart vocabulary that describes the indignities of dating.” —Time

“I laughed out loud and recognized myself and a million people I know...honest, unself-pitying, and hilariously rich with detail. Cindy Chupack makes you laugh about the things that most of us keep to ourselves: bad boyfriends, disappearing boyfriends, retro-boyfriends, no boyfriends.” —Besty Carter, author of Nothing to Fall Back On: The Life and Times of a Perpetual Optimist

“With stiletto wit, the author...has crafted slim volume of dating-themed essays that goes down like a zingy cosmo.” —People

“Chupack writes with the candor and gallows humor of a woman who's seen it all, but with just enough poignancy to make it clear she believes in true love. You will laugh out loud and you won't lose hope.” —Amy Sohn, author of Run Catch Kiss

“...her book is more than funny: it's brave and touching and deeply wise.” —Joyce Maynard, author of The Usual Rules

“A look at today's scary dating scene from the perspective of someone whose humor and insight gave single women everywhere a hero in Carrie (Bradshaw).” —Library Journal

“Whatever the state of your love life, The Between Boyfriends Book offers keen insight into the relationships we've endured and been entertained by.” —Grace Magazine

The Between Boyfriends Book is that rarest of 'chick books'-written by a chick who actually likes men and can tell you something useful about women.” —Gary Belsky, coauthor of Why Smart People Make Big Money Mistakes and How to Correct Them

Publishers Weekly
Emmy Award-winning writer and producer Chupack (Sex and the City; Everybody Loves Raymond) gathers columns that appeared in Glamour and other magazines in this funny and occasionally poignant first book. Reading Chupack's meditations on such modern mysteries as dating, therapy and male behavior, fans of Sex and the City may hear echoes of Carrie Bradshaw's wry voice. Standout chapters include "The Breakup," in which men dump their girlfriends through a proxy ("a doorman informed me that my date was not coming down. Ever") or simple desertion ("They'll say they're going to the rest room and never return. Then they'll meet friends for drinks and say,..."What do I have to do, spell it out for her?" ). In "Seventeen Dates," Chupack endures that many terrible dates ("Date #13 was a plastic surgeon ...[who] asked if I was 'swimsuit ready'), positing that she must go through that many stinkers after a break-up before she meets an eligible guy. She learns a painful lesson: "there are no shortcuts, because it's not only time and distance you need after you lose a love, it's reflection." The book is padded with magazine-style pieces that stray far afield of the single women and relationships theme: there's a chapter on adjusting to L.A. after growing up in Oklahoma and one on father/daughter communication. Enough of Chupack's material, though, is clever and original enough to make this a good beach book, and the cover reminds readers that "if you read it in public, men will know you're available." (Aug.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
In this collection of essays, Chupack, a television writer, executive producer (Sex and the City), and single girl extraordinaire, gives the gals without guys advice from the front lines of the dating scene. She has been known to write for Sex character Carrie Bradshaw, the columnist, fashionista, and swinging single city girl played by Sarah Jessica Parker, and here she echoes Carrie's voice. With chapters running no longer than three pages, Chupack keeps her message short and funny-single women are not sad but sexy. Stories from the dating history of Chupack and her friends are highlighted by terms such as holloweenies, "people who break up around Halloween because it's the last stop before family filled...high pressure holidays," and cupidity, "the faulty logic that leads a well-meaning but clueless third party to believe that two random singles are perfect for each other." Not an intellectual discourse on male/female mating rituals, this is instead a look at today's scary dating scene from the perspective of someone whose humor and insight gave single women everywhere a hero in Carrie; now they have a cohort in Chupack herself. For larger libraries or where there is demand.-Rachel Collins, "Library Journal" Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Emmy Award-winner Chupack (Everybody Loves Raymond, Sex and the City) conducts a wry, upbeat tour of the dating scene for women currently considering reentry. The author herself is in her 30s and between boyfriends-a condition that isn't all bad, Chupack asserts: there is much to celebrate in that daunting territory where relationships are formed or broken over a cup of coffee. She shares her opinions and experiences in 36 essays based on years of "research" (read: dating) and divided into thematic sections. One piece in "The Breakup" observes that men, congenitally unable to break up with a woman, think it humane to disappear like the Lone Ranger, offering no explanations. Another offers a "relationship equivalency exam," which would allow women to earn credit for past dating experiences when they begin a new relationship. "The Year Ahead" includes a gloomy astrology chart to moderate expectations, a rant about Valentine's day (it makes more people unhappy than happy), and an explanation of why people breakup at Halloween ("It's the last stop before the gift-mandated, high-pressure holidays"). The section on therapy addresses the awkward question of how to deal with the actual number of sexual partners-"not to be confused with the number you give when asked," when men exaggerate and women minimize. In other sections Chupack discusses the pros and cons of acquiring a male harem, the number of bad dates to be endured before a good one, and the old "Visa-defense" ("I paid for everything") used by men to excuse bad behavior. She deals with men who take women on sports dates, examines the late-30s panic attacks that lead to pressured dating, and warns readers never to revive a deadrelationship. The last section, "Your New Boyfriend," wittily addresses the problems of finally having a new man in your life. A positive spin on a state usually considered a downer. Author tour. Agent: Dan Strone/Trident Media Group

Product Details

St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
Edition description:
First Edition
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Product dimensions:
5.17(w) x 8.55(h) x 0.49(d)

Read an Excerpt




To have had a relationship end in a mysterious and annoying way—with no good-bye, no answers, just the vague feeling that you have no idea who that man was.

Men are good at a lot of things. Breaking up is not one of them. When a woman wants to break up with a man, she invites him over for dinner, cooks his favorite dish, and tells him she's seeing his best friend. It's all very straightforward and diplomatic. But men have this weird aversion to endings. They prefer to take the passive mode, allowing the relationship to end itself. Men can't be bothered with dramatic farewells, the questioning of motives, discussions. They are bored. They want out. Good-bye.

I remember the first time a boy broke up with me. We were in the seventh grade. He invited me over after school, said he just wanted to be friends, then had his mother drive me home. It was all downhill from there. In more recent years, a doorman informed me that my date was not coming down. Ever. A friend called her boyfriend and found out he had moved to a new city. A coworker happened upon a personal ad placed by the man she was dating.

Every woman, with the possible exception of Cindy Crawford, has a story like this. She may have dated the man a few weeks or a few years. They may have shared a cab or an apartment. It doesn't matter. For some reason, the man thinks that the decision to break up is none of her business. (Of course, some women do the same thing. But then again, some women mud wrestle.)

Often a woman senses a breakup brewing and tries to get the man to sit down and fess up. This is futile. The average male gets this beam-me-up-Scotty look on his face as soon as you mention the word &'grave;discussion.'' He avoids subsequent contact as if you were trying to serve him a subpoena. Then, when you finally work up the nerve to ask him what the heck is going on, he pretends you're imagining the whole thing. It's all part of the game, and evidently the winner is the one who can quit the game without ever talking about it.

Some men admit they avoid confrontation because they're afraid we'll cry. Of course we'll cry; we cry at Hallmark commercials. What they don't understand is that we're not crying because of them, we're crying because now we have to get naked in front of someone else. It's enough already.

It's a rare and brave man who breaks up in person. Most likely he has sisters and does volunteer work. He'll say things you've heard before: &'grave;I'm unable to make a commitment. I don't have time to be the kind of boyfriend you deserve.'' Then he'll add, &'grave;I hope we can eventually be friends. I'd really miss your company.'' It doesn't matter if he's lying, telling the truth, or quoting something he read in a woman's magazine. At least he's trying.

Most men, however, think that even making a phone call to end a relationship is excessive. &'grave;What's the point?'' they want to know. The humane thing, they've decided, is not to call, but instead to disappear like the Lone Ranger. These men believe in &'grave;Close your eyes and make it go away.'' They believe in the Fifth Amendment. They believe in absentee ballots. They may ski black diamonds, walk barefoot on hot asphalt, skydive for fun, but measured on their fear of confrontation, these guys are wimps.

They'll say they're going to the rest room and never return. Then they'll meet friends for drinks and say, &'grave;She just doesn't get it,'' or &'grave;What do I have to do, spell it out for her?'' It's not that we don't get it. After about three weeks of shampooing with the water offjust in case he callswe get the picture. But we'd like to feel like more than simply a notch in somebody's bedpost. Stranded without an explanation, we sound like the neighbors of a murderer. &'grave;He seemed nice. Kind of kept to himself. This came as a complete surprise.'' Underneath, of course, we know.

You can spot a woman whose relationship is disintegrating because her answering machine gives hourly updates of her whereabouts. &'grave;I'm at work now, but I'll be home by seven.'' &'grave;I'm at aerobics.'' &'grave;I'm in the shower.'' Meanwhile, his machine has the same message as always: &'grave;I'm not home. Later.''

So what happens is this: you refuse to bow out gracefully, and he refuses to confront. His only option is to make you so miserable that you break up with him. We're talking emotional terrorism. It's fun, easy, and gets results.

During this period he won't laugh at your jokes. He'll ask you out, then act like you're imposing. He'll shred what's left of your confidence by saying, &'grave;You're wearing that?'' He may even tell you he'd like to end the relationship, but continue sleeping with you. Then he'll act surprised when you bash in his headlights, stuff his favorite tie down the disposal, and ignite his baseball card collection.

So what's the right way for a man to break up? I suggest the following steps:

Step One: Choose a reason. Inevitably your girlfriend will ask why you're leaving, and you should be prepared to explain. If you know that your reason is petty and immature (I know a woman who broke up with a man because his nose looked like a penis), make up a nicer reason.

Step Two: Select a date that doesn't conflict with birthdays or major holidays. &'grave;I didn't plan to break up with her on Valentine's Day,'' a male friend once explained. &'grave;It just happened to coincide.''

Step Three: Talk to her. You're both adults. It might go surprisingly smoothly.

Step Four: Hide your baseball cards.

Copyright 2003 by Cindy Chupack

Meet the Author

Cindy Chupack is an award-winning writer who was most recently a writer/executive producer of HBO's Sex and the City. Chupack has written for a number of television shows, including Everybody Loves Raymond, and for several magazines, including Glamour, where she had her own column. She lives in New York City and Los Angeles.

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Between Boyfriends Book 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is filled with delightful wit and just downright real-life humor! I received this book from my sister for Christmas (2004) and I read the entire book, cover-to-cover all on Christmas Day. I couldn't put it down. I was also having troubles of the male nature and this clever collection cheered me up 100%. It is hilarious!! A definite must-read for any girl, single or attached. Thank you, Cindy Chupack!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a must read for every woman, single or not. There is a lot of comedy, and some good advice for anyone who is single.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really loved He's Just Not That Into You & Sex In The City. I wanted another book along those lines which brought me to this. I enjoyed it; it was a funny quick read
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
... and that's saying alot. As soon as I finished reading this book from the library, I went online and bought a copy for 6 of my friends and of course myself. I've read it twice and still laugh out loud when reading it. Even now between my friends (boyfriend-less or attached) we use phrases like 'Taffeta Envy', 'Your Number', 'Seventeen Dates', etc. If you love Sex and the City, you'll love this book even more. Definately worth buying several copies.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I couldn't put it down! It so nice to read a book that you could relate to :)
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a quick read that would be perfect for anyone who has enjoyed the show Sex and the City. Or if you are single, looking, and often frustrated yet afflicted with hope. Chupack's insight and constant humor buoy this easy-to-like and hard to put down book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Could it get any better although a short book I read it on a Saturday evening laugh out loud it made my no-date for the night better than having what would have been a bad one I have thrown it at all my single gal-pals and they say the same thing 'its nice to know were not alone.' CINDY CHUPACK ROCKS
Guest More than 1 year ago
every chapter is like an episode of sex and the city. ms. chupack is witty, intelligent, hopelessly hopeful and her writing is as absolutely hilarious as it is insightful.
Guest More than 1 year ago
A very fun, sometimes insightful, often witty and always entertaining read. I loved it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was so funny. I could relate to almost everything the author was saying. Cindy's style of writing & use of words made the book what it is a absolutly histerical reality of single women everywhere. I highly recommend this book to everyone....and pass it along to your friends.!!!