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Ask Ashley: Advice on dating, food, more

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In The Cougar’s weekly anonymous advice column, I talk about ways to ask out your crush, food hacks and local food hotspots. To submit your questions for future issues, click the “Ask Ashley” button on our home page.

Howdy Ashley! Hope you’re doing well after the fr*g situation lol. Anyways, there’s this guy I think is cute, but I barely know them. I want to ask them out but I don’t know if I should or even how to do that. My past experiences with relationships have made me cautious about getting back out there. What would you recommend?

Howdy anon, and thank you for the well wishes. I’m doing okay considering I have been asked not to answer any questions about fr*gs. I believe the last “Ask Ashley” has haunted The Cougar staff so much I now have to censor the word. But I’m talking too much about me and not so much about you.

Congrats! Romance is in the air and that’s really cool dude. I think it’s okay that you’re feeling a bit cautious getting back out there. You can only move at the pace you can. However, don’t let it hinder you from pursuing something you really want, you know? If you see the opportunity there, definitely take it. 

In your case, maybe consider taking it slow. Maybe you don’t have to ask them out right away. How about you start with getting to know them? I think this can help scope the vibes and evaluate whether they are worth your time.

If the vibes are immaculate, you can ask them out. Consider sending them a snowflake emoji in the DMs and tell them “you’re so icy imma glacier boy/girl/nonbinary.” Quavo bagged Saweetie, so I’m pretty sure this method is 100 percent foolproof. And if the person doesn’t appreciate the time it took to steal and recreate this very humorous pickup line from Quavo, then I think they are kind of goofy. Besides, it’s not that big of a loss. I’d rather have you drink the ocean or braid grass than be with a lame, anon. Hope this helps.

Ashley, do you have any food hacks you’d want to share?

Anon, I am a Taurus moon and rising. Food hacks are all I know.

I think my favorite food hack puts a twist on peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. The key is to replace the jelly with Nutella. I first get two slices of my favorite bread and toast it. Now you don’t want to burn the bread, that would be sick of you. It just needs to be lightly toasted to give it some color. Slather peanut butter on one side and Nutella on the other. Slap the bread together. Now, here’s the important part: warm your sandwich for 30 seconds. Take it out, and enjoy.

The toasted bread adds texture and crunch to the sandwich. This probably isn’t even revolutionary, so I feel kind of lame. But if it’s your first time trying it, give me credit! Unless you hate it, then I don’t want that kind of smoke. 

Oh! I have a second food hack. Get some rotisserie chicken, season it (that may be a trigger word for some of y’all) and bake it again so it won’t be so moist. You want it dry, but not completely dry. Get your favorite salad kit, put it in a bowl and add in the rejuvenated chicken. Add in any other toppings you desire and finish it off with Virginia Brand Vidalia Onion Vinegarette. You can find it in Sam’s Club, and it goes so well with chicken. I promise salad won’t taste bland ever again #NotSponsored.

Ashley, where are some good places to get food in Houston (any kind)?

Omg, purr! Is the moon in Taurus? I love this question. I’m sure there is someone better qualified to answer this question, but I’m glad you asked me. Most of the food places I know have been acquired through the help of my friends.

If you’re looking for something midtown, consider JINYA Ramen Bar or Miyako slightly near by. JINYA primarily serves ramen, and I think it’s a must try because it is so good. There’s a location as well in Sugar Land if you live around there. Miyako also serves ramen, but there are more items on the menu, such as sushi and rice bowls. My favorite food item to get there is the spicy shrimp yaki ramen. It’s served with the broth practically bubbling in the bowl. Just a quick disclaimer: be sure to wait for it to cool down some, or else you’ll burn your throat as I did once. I highly doubt you’ll do that, but you never know.

If you’re into Thai food, Street Food Thai Market is the bomb. Perhaps you’re into Colombian cuisine? I don’t know many but try Pollo Riko. The chicken there is super good and to die for. In the mood for Mexican? Taqueria Del Sol. In the mood for something cheap and filling with the side of adrenaline? Frank’s Pizza at 1 a.m. on a Saturday.

These are just a few suggestions but definitely hit me up if you’re looking for more. And if you want to invite me, I’m not going to turn down a good time. Hope this helps.

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