So, we've discussed things of high import (same-sex marriage, heartbreak) and things that seemed to infuriate some of you (my apparently unwelcome apologies). Now the time is nigh to discuss a global epidemic, a scourge as unnatural as the acting in an Olive Garden commercial or the ending to "Shutter Island."

I'm talking about cockblockers.

I suppose, by dint of being female, that it's a bit easier for most of you to drum up action than it is for me -- but by God, I know you have your own legion of clamjammers.

So, without further ado, I've compiled a compendium of these male and female villains, with helpful countermeasures to beat them at their own game. Just think of me as Wikipedia, with lower ethical standards.

The Basic Blocker: Forever angling to keep you in your pants, Basic Blockers are not necessarily malicious, but are often driven by a complete and total lack of self-awareness. (Their war cry? "Why, I had no idea!") Their methods are myriad, from diminishing your sex appeal with embarrassing stories (Remember when you cried during "I Am Sam"? The Blocker does.), or simply poisoning the atmosphere by being mopey, bitchy or generally poor wingmen in their boner-eclipsing obliviousness.

Countermeasure: Deal with them directly -- call Blockers on their behavior. You may risk looking a little obvious, but if you have to do the tandem bathroom trip, so be it.

The Jealous Married: Basically, these Blockers have a schtick, and that is They're Married and You're Not. Single-people things that they either once did or never got the chance to do irritate the hell out of them. Sometimes, they'll simply act single and get in the mug of your potential hook, hiding their rings or falsely hinting that they might be up for a little casual adultery. Other times, they'll react to normal Single People Behavior as if we're all a bunch of perverted lepers and spend their hours with us fuming and judging.

Countermeasure: Look, some married people simply lose the ability to empathize with their single friends. They can typically be made to understand how their behavior is affecting you, especially if you try something sycophantic like, "You can't blame me for chasing after the dream you're already living!" If they're recalcitrant, relegate them to Only Brunch status.

The Mope/Andy Rooney: These Blockers! They don't like the bar, the music's too loud, whomever you're talking to is apparently The Worst, etc. The Moper will infect all the other women present with melancholy until no one's having a good time. ("Oh, you're a Scorpio? My dog has leukemia. Want to see pictures?") The Andy Rooney enjoys talking about all the unsexy stuff that's wrong with the world, whether they can't believe "the attitude on that bartender" or the fact that they spent forty-five minutes on the phone with the cable company this morning! Don't get them started on subprime mortgages or the ubiquitous voice-over career of Morgan Freeman.

Countermeasure: Best handled with a heavy prescription of alcohol or simply ignored. These blockers can only help you get laid by making you look vibrant and youthful in comparison.

The Uninterested Beckinsale/Clooney: They have zero interest in who you're trying to hook up with, but they're much better-looking than you, and they'll casually reel in your potential hook just to throw them off your scent. They don't want to actually get naked with anybody in the vicinity, but they figure they're so goddamn attractive, if they're not having sex, no one should be.

Countermeasure: These people are selfish ass-murderers / genetic-lottery winners with zero shame, so they may not respond to conventional talking-tos. Luckily for us, God rarely gives with both hands -- the super-attractive often have the conversational skills of a John McCain roused mid-nap. Play up your charisma and hope they look as boring as they probably f**king are.

The Control Freak/The General: These friends are typically leaders of their respective groups, and their authoritarian natures are good for organizing nights out, picking bars or invading Cambodia -- but not for helping you meet somebody. God forbid you talk to a nice stranger and threaten the cohesiveness of The Unit! What, we aren't fun enough for you?

Countermeasure: This brand of bonerstomper or vagina warden will do everything in their power to keep newcomers out and you from defecting. You won't be able to convince them, so it's best to simply go AWOL when their guard is down.

Flowers in the Attic: For reasons no one really wants to explore, sometimes it's your own flesh and blood who comes swooping in to destroy your chances. Either they'll make embarrassing small talk about your middle-school jam band phase (the goddamn Spin Doctors!), or they'll pull you aside to claim you've once again chosen unwisely in your potential hookup. Sometimes, they simply can't handle the fact that their siblings get laid.

Countermeasure: There is almost nothing that can be done save for disowning them. My advice is if you have a sibling who routinely blocks or jams you, don't take him/her anywhere you might potentially meet someone.

Your Dog: Guess what? Having to rush home to feed or walk your dog may just kill your chances for that hot happy hour sesh. So will talking endlessly about your dog, or showing pictures of your dog on your iPhone, or treating other, random dogs who come in to the bar with their random owners as long-lost friends. Also, kill your "dog voice." You're not Dr. Doolittle, so there's no need to talk to animals when you could be talking someone's pants off.

Countermeasure: Consider a cat instead -- they're incredibly self-sufficient. There are also house plants that require very little maintenance, but are super-adorable and will clearly communicate to potential mates your capacity to bring something home without killing it.

[Redacted] Guy is the resident Single Guy writer for Lemondrop. He's never cockblocked anyone in his life, unless you consider bringing a harmonica to bars and sporting a "Little Mermaid" tattoo that's visible through bicycle shorts a cockblock. In which case, maybe.

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