FileTitle: Prose233.html
Category: Humor
Type: Prose
Description: Consumer Reports on Girlfriends (Satire)
Well it's been almost 20 years since Consumer's Reports reviewed 
girlfriends (CR, Aug 1972).  Since then, styles have changed, new 
features have been introduced, and the market for girlfriends has 
changed substantially.  So we here at CU decided another report was 
needed.
     
As in a car or a computer, you should ask yourself what you need a 
girlfriend for before obtaining one.  This will, in large part, 
dictate the final product which you should consider.  Do you want an 
intellectual companion?  A baby factory?  A hiking partner?  Or just 
lots of good, old-fashioned sex?  Identifying your needs is the 
first, and most important, step in selecting a girl - friend.
     
The second question which needs to be addressed is, of course, how 
much you are able to spend.  This is largely determined by your 
physical and personal characteristics -- if you are good looking, 
have a commanding personality and a good sense of humor, you will 
have the resources to obtain a fancy, high-end model.  On the other 
hand, if you are ugly, smell bad, and wear polyester clothes, your 
choices are more limited.  Keep your purchasing power in mind when 
considering your selection.  Although the salesman will tell you that 
a girlfriend can be financed, CU does not recommend this practice; 
due to inflating expectations, the required monetary outlay will 
actually *increase* with time.
     
Used vs. New?
 -------------
A question many girlfriend seekers have to address is whether to 
get a new or a used girlfriend.  The answer to this question will, 
roughly speaking, be determined by your age, as shown in the 
following table:
     
 Your Age      Used or New
 -----------    -----------
 1-12 years    (See note A)
13-16 years    New
17-21 years    Used, but not used up 
22-35 years    Used heavily
35-60 years    New (See note B)
60+            (Ssee note A)
     
Notes:
A: Seek psychiatric help.
B: Only "new" if income > $100,000/year.  Otherwise, "divorced".
     
New girlfriends have the advantage that they have no previous bad 
experiences to project on you, but the disadvantage that they will 
rarely be old enough to open their own checking account.  Used 
girlfriends, on the other hand, may be steady, reliable performers, 
with the initial problems worked out, but CU advises that you avoid 
models which have much more than average mileage (2.1 SO's/yr). Much 
greater than the average may be an indication that the girlfriend 
was a professional.
     
Accessories
 -----------
Often the potential girlfriends you see on the lot or in a tavern 
will be loaded with accessories, as the dealer gets a high markup on 
such items as large bosom, long legs, green eyes, etc.  Other 
accessories will only appeal to fringe markets, such as models which 
come pre-equipped with children, or the ability run 10 miles while 
chanting sanskrit.  In such cases you should make a list of 
accessories desired, tolerated, and disliked.  Note that some 
accessories (such as children) can be added later, while others (such 
as a large bosom) must be factory installed.
     
The Test Ride
 -------------
When evaluating a girlfriend, a test ride is essential.  The test 
ride ritual begins with the so-called "pickup line", which can range 
from the simple if dull ("Can I buy you a drink?") to the 
aggressively hip ("dance with me or I'll kill you") to the arcane 
("You're my Camus comrade, and I want to leap you, Faith!").  CU 
rates as Not Acceptable "Smile, you'll look better."  Once on the 
test bed, evaluate handling, stability, and acceleration.  The two 
questions you want to answer are: how fast, and how far?  Examine the 
detailing.  Does the bosom sag?  Does the heater warm adequately, or 
does she remain cool?
     
Ordering vs. On-The-Lot
 -----------------------
Finding the right girlfriend can be a frustrating experience, and 
many potential customers find it hard to get the exact model and 
accessories wanted.  In such cases ordering from the factory is an 
option.  Delivery time, however, is from 14 to 16 years (depending on 
the state you live in), and CU questions the usefulness of such a 
practice: if you have access to the baby factory, you should 
reconsider your need for a girlfriend anyway.
     
Methodology
 -----------
Girlfriends were evaluated by a dedicated group of 10 test engineers, 
selected to typify the average seeking population.  All tests were 
performed at CU's specially constructed test facility, which included 
a bedroom, kitchen, and living room, and at a number of bars and 
taverns surrounding the facility.  A series of seven tests were run, 
evaluating each product according to the following criterion: 
intelligence, wit, humor, empathy, initiative, looks, and 
performance.
     
Results
 -------
Girlfriends are grouped together in categories by similarity.  Within 
each category, variation is not statistically significant.
     
Goddess
This is the woman of your dreams.  She comes equipped with all the 
options you want and none of the ones you don't.  She can argue 
subtle points of philosophy, give you a stiff game of racquetball, 
understand what you mean even if you don't say it, and break a bed. 
No mental or physical hang-ups.  The drawback is that this model is 
not actually available.
     
Goddess-In-Law
This model is similar to the goddess, but comes with contractual 
retainers, such as a psychotic ex-husband, a spiteful mother, an 
alcoholic father, and a bratty kid.  This model tends to generate 
grey hairs.
     
Ms. Right
The best all-around choice for most girlfriend situations.  Has most 
of the characteristics of the Goddess except possibly in the wrong 
size or hair color.  Other than that, an excellent long-term 
investment.  Availability is extremely limited but can occasionally 
be found with luck.
     
Babe
This is the flashy, fully-loaded variety with all the options. 
Unfortunately this model lacks cognitive powers and empathy.  Showy 
and suitable for a parade or for impressing your friends, but not for 
your long-term girlfriend needs.
     
Friend
The model with the most empathy.  Caring and kind but you wouldn't 
be caught dead in it.  Availability is poor to fair, depending on 
quality.
     
Yeah, Her
The Ford Escort of girlfriends.  Widely available, but useful as a 
girlfriend only in a pinch, if no others are available.  Tends to be 
spiteful or unreliable, or have a dull finish.
     
Until you find her, we at CU wish you Happy Hunting!