Does anybody read these?

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Dance

There's a little dance folks do in online dating. It's one of the things I hate most about online dating.

As we've already established, a lot of people who do online dating are single (if, in fact, they are single) because they have issues with boundaries. So the dance starts a little like this. Stranger boy sends stranger girl ONE email, in which he proclaims his, um, let's be polite and call it "great interest" in stranger girl. Also, he would like her number so they can text. Or they can IM on Yahoo if that's better. Basically, he has issues with others' boundaries so he thinks it's time to kick it up a notch.

Sometimes this first step in the dance can actually happen before Stranger Boy even looks at Stranger Girl's profile. That's when you know you've caught a real gem, ladies.

Stranger girl sees this message and, as you'd imagine, is more frightened than flattered. (At least this girl is, some -- whom I suspect have boundary issues of their own -- probably eat this shit up with a spoon.) And since the first rule of texting is: Never text with a creeper, stranger girl makes politely tells stranger boy "I am not the type to move so fast. If you want to get to know me, we can correspond here until we get to a point where we both feel comfortable exchanging numbers."

Usually this is where stranger boy, who clearly does not understand boundaries and feels that stranger girl is impeding his ONE TRUE LOVE, moves on.

Stranger girl breathes sigh of relief and sends same email to about a half dozen other chaps in her inbox.

Where the dancing comes into play is when stranger boy returns. You see, after being "rejected" by stranger girl, he goes on and tries the same thing with -- I'm guessing based on my inbox traffic -- probably at least a half dozen other girls. And, as previously mentioned, the low self-esteem girls are on this like white on rice. At least until even they start to get creeped out. I'm guessing since they've given their number out they just change it or throw their phone in a river or something. Or at least I would.

So freshly rejected and, I'm suspecting not 100 percent sure whom he has and has not contacted, stranger boy sends another message to the original girl who established boundaries that hurt his feelings. At least for a little while he may try to play by her rules, but really a) the original creepiness and lack of boundaries is burned into her mind like a brand on a steer's ass and b) they have no boundaries so eventually the dance ends up right back where it started.

For example, there was a chap the other day who contacted me. He was not from the greater Nashville metropolitan area, so right away my guard was up. Anyone who gets the brilliant idea to contact a far-away stranger to pursue a relationship is desperate with a capital D. But, I'm polite so I don't automatically discount anyone based on location. It does give you a disadvantage, but it doesn't really matter, because in about 14 seconds you'll prove you have no boundaries and are not my kind of guy anyhow.

So, this chap contacts me. I had said maybe five words via email (on the site, I don't give out my real email. Come on.) in my entire life. Of course, that makes this the perfect time to tell me that you want to marry me and have my babies, right?

Wrong. Oh so, very wrong.

Well, on this particular evening I was in a mood and sick of dealing with men's bullshit, so I decided instead of just being polite and deleting his email, I would reply and offer him so practical advice for dating, and reality, while we're at it since his grasp was a little fuzzy.

I asked him: "Do you really think it's appropriate to tell someone you've never met that you want to spend the rest of your life with them. Let's not put the cart before the horse, buddy."

And, miraculously he agreed with me. His next two emails were polite and platonic.

However, in the third one he actually said: "I want to make you my princess."

Aggh. I didn't even reply. It wasn't even worth the 30 seconds it would've taken to tell him to go blow himself.

It's really sad watching the online dating people. There's probably three ounces of self-esteem between all of them. They are all desperate and grasping at whatever. It's really sad.

I am not 36 and single because I am a fan of settling. I did actually go on a date with someone last week and he asked me what I was looking for.

I told him this: I am looking for someone to be my friend first. We can go on dates if we want and see if something develops. If one day I wake up and realize I can't live without that person, then I might consider getting married and settling down. But I'm not getting married just because I don't want to be lonely. I haven't settled yet, and whoever comes along is going to have to blow my socks off.

I don't mean I am looking for bells and whistles. I know you don't always get fireworks and stringed orchestras. I also know that you shouldn't ever lower your standards and pledge your undying love to a fixer-upper hoping that it will work out, because it won't. And IF I get married, I am only doing it once.

After all, my house -- which I bought all by myself, I might add -- was a repo and it's got enough issues. I sure as hell am not going to bring a man who's a special project into the mix.

So, I keep trucking on. The guy I went on the date with is sweet and he has a job, so we are already ahead of the crowd here. We will see what happens.

I think mostly right now I am afraid of putting myself back out there, because I started to fall for someone and it went all wrong. Maybe if I keep my distance my heart can come out on the other side relatively unscathed.

Although the more that I think about it, to have that attitude means you're assuming from the start that it won't work out. Once bitten, twice shy, I guess.

And so, we keep dancing. I'm glad I wore comfortable shoes.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Question of the day

What would possess someone to pledge their "undying love" to someone they haven't met yet?

I will jump into this topic extensively at a later date. Feel free to add your commentary in the comments (fuel the fire, so to speak). I am busy, but I just had another man I don't know speak to me in a lovingly (and inappropriate) manner via text, and it made me think of it.

Do men think it's sexy? If "sexy" is code for "creepy," then they are all sexy beasts.

Except sexy and creepy are two different things. More to follow. Stay cool out there!

Friday, June 15, 2012

The waiting game

The worst part about dating, I think, or maybe life in general, actually, is trusting others to do the right thing. Yep, that pretty much sums up life, especially when you tend to be on the control-freak side of life.

One of my favorite books, which I’m sure I’ve mentioned here at least one gazillion times is “He’s Just Not That Into You.” (Of course, I also sing the praises of its follow up, “It’s Called a Break Up Because it’s Broken,” as well. I may have used that line once or twice in my life. Maybe last week to The Chef, actually.)

Anyhow, we learn in “He’s Just Not That Into You,” that if a guy really likes you, he will contact you. And if he’s not that into you, but you contact him, he will go with it to not hurt your feelings. And, in my 36 years on earth, I’ve learned this is probably 99.9 percent accurate. In the days of smart phones and instant, global communication, there is no reason for a guy not to be in touch if he thinks you are the cat’s meow.

Which is why, today, I wait.

I had been talking to a relatively normal boy in the world of online dating (next week: I talk to a pink unicorn – even rarer than a normal boy!), and things seemed to be going well. He seemed to really be into me, and we’d planned to meet up this weekend. But as Friday turned into Saturday and “I can’t wait to see you” turned into “OK, cool, whatever,” I realized he’s either totally getting cold feet, someone walked by with a bright shiny object OR he’s decided he’s really not that into me after all.

Being me, and knowing that men really are pretty simple creatures, I have chosen the last option. And, luckily having read the two books that should be required reading for anyone with breasts and a vagina, I know that there is a very simple test to see if I am correct.

No texting. All day.

The true first commandment of dating should be: Ye shall not text until ye hath been texted to.

So I wait.

And, if I were a betting woman, I’m going to be guessing that I’ll still be waiting around 7 p.m. tomorrow night when my date was supposed to happen.

If a guy really likes you, he’ll realize he hasn’t heard from you and hunt you down. We don’t do ourselves any favors by not making men miss us and want us a little.

Needy is NEVER sexy, folks. Not in women or men. THAT should be the second commandment of dating.

But to actually be wanted and pursued? That’s a whole different story.

The waiting sucks. But I’d rather take a day here or there now than to end up with someone who doesn’t want to be there. Because that would really suck.

And honestly, being alone doesn’t completely suck. Contrary to what the needy people tell you.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Blame it on PMS

Never before in my life have I wished that I never met a person. Never. With all the assholes and liars I've met along the way, I have never, ever before wished that someone's path had not crossed mine, or, in this case, that they'd never actually graced the earth with their presence. I've always just assumed that these people were in my life for some reason, to teach me some lesson.

I'm at this place right now, and it's not particularly a place that I like. I'm sad, and I'm hurt. I wish I could go back in time with a magic eraser and just make it all go away. I should not be this upset over something that wasn't that great in the first place and only lasted a couple months of my life. In fact, if I don't get over it soon enough, I will have been upset about it more than I was un-upset about it, and that's stupid.

Maybe that's why I'm so pissed. I feel stupid. I feel disposable. I feel like a chump. I don't like feeling like that.

I shouldn't be so upset. I shouldn't be upset at all. And, if I truly, honestly care, then why would I begrudge someone I care about happiness?

Maybe that's why I'm mad. I never begrudge anyone else happiness, even when it means I'm the one who's not happy.

He knows that. That's why he feels guilty. And that's supposed to be enough, to make me feel better.

Kicking him in the nuts would make me feel better. I just might look into that.

After all, I feel like I'm owed at least that.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Men with boobs, Santa Claus and other naked people

Today my online dating site told me I had a secret admirer. When someone is interested in you, they tell you this and then give you about a dozen choices to pick from and see if you match the person who liked you.
On the not-so-rare occasions that all your choices are either foreign guys looking for green card brides and/or creepers straight from an episode of Law & order SVU, you can hit skip, and it's game over.

I skipped today. All of the guys were from Tennessee (progress!), but about one-fourth of them looked like Santa Claus. And one of the Kris Kringles appeared to be naked. Unfortunately I did not wake up having visions of casual sex with someone's grandpa, so I took a pass.

But naked Santa reminded me about an important online dating issue: inappropriate profile pics. I already told you about redneck Cee-lo, and while he has been the worst, I wish he was alone.

Oh no. Far from it.

I cannot tell you how many sets of man boobs I have seen, although the pics that have other women or use a pimped out house trailer as a backdrop are equally frightening. And if you try to be friendly you might get unsolicited photos of Vienna sausages and button mushrooms.

Seriously, why do the single girls get to have all the fun?!

And some of the single girls are having way more fun than I am. I know this because their profile pics make Julia Roberts in Pretty Woman look like Mother Teresa. Silly me, I wore clothes.

The other day there was a gal on the dating site complaining guys only wanted casual sex. At first I felt her pain and then I looked more closely at her profile picture. She is wearing a tank top with one side pulled down and a boob hanging out. Since she didn't appear to have gone to Tara Reid's plastic surgeon, I am guessing she knew her breast was flopping in the wind.

Basically, all the men replied and said "Why don't you try a new profile picture if you're not here for sex, because yours kind of says that you are." Men are simple creatures. They are not like onions with many layers. If you appeal to their most basic senses, they are going to notice. And besides, there's a reason that Kroger's puts the corn on the cob near the front door on Memorial Day weekend. It's all about suggestive selling, baby.

She still didn't understand that if her goods are on display, people will want to take them for a spin around the block. In fact, other women took to her defense as well. "She can wear whatever she wants;" "It's no worse than the beach." I, on the other hand, was mortified, and I'm pretty sure if a uterus can cry, mine cried a little that day. But, tank tops remain very popular with the ladies. Chicken cutlets on display everywhere.

All these food references might make you hungry if they didn't want to make you want to barf.

People say online dating is better than meeting people in bars. I am not so sure. It might be better than that one bar that every town has. You know which one. The place where a trip to the dance floor requires a morning after pill, and a ladies room visit calls for penicillin.

Yeah totally better than that place. Not that I ever "dated" anyone there anyhow.

Logging on and checking out

I am beginning to think that I should just attempt to date in order to amuse all of you. Taking one for the proverbial team, you know…

Because I am not finding true love. In fact, it will be a miracle if I make it out alive without patches of hair ripped out of my scalp. By me, not some kinky thing or something.

As I may or may not have mentioned, I decided to put myself out there on an undisclosed dating site. It’s bad enough that I’ve lost so much personal dignity by creating an online profile, please don’t ask me where it resides. All you need to know is that every single dating site, regardless of their reputation and guidelines, are electronic meat markets overpopulated by married men looking for strange and men who live in their mother’s basements with an Xbox and a cat. It is possible they live in the basements because umbilical cords are only so long, but that’s a whole ‘nother therapy session.

Right before I met the man who will now have the clever code name The Chef (aka the last douchebag who left me for his ex-wife), I went on another online dating site to browse and see if I wanted to join. I did not join because when I plugged in my info for what I was looking for, one of my matches scared the bejeebus out of me.

Because I did not save his profile photo and am never, ever going back there, you will have to trust me with the description and visualize. Basically for his profile photo – on a website where he was hoping to find his one true love – was a photo of him wearing what can best be described as “nothing but a blanket” (yes, he was buck naked wrapped in a blanket), holding a big, furry cat.

Cee-Lo Green is pretty cool and he barely pulls off holding a big, furry cat clothed. And, let me tell you, this guy was no Cee-Lo Green. I briefly thought perhaps the holding of the cat was symbolic, but unless the symbolism he was going for was “Hey look, I’m a big, giant pussy holding a big, giant pussy,” he failed horribly.

Regardless of the intent, I had lifetime trauma.
Luckily I met The Chef and that distracted me from the dating world for a while. In fact, as I look back it may be some sort of Christmas miracle that he was any type of normal.

But wait – didn’t he get lonely and leave me for his ex-wife while I was at Disney World for a week?!

Scratch what I said about normal. But he was The Chef and he did cook with me and we watched our TV shows together and did romantic things and normal things. Until his ex-wife almost got foreclosed on and needed some extra house payment money. Oh wait, I meant to say “realized he was her one true love and couldn’t live without him.” Semantics.

Revenge might be a dish best served cold, but that last bite tasted a little bitter. Oopsie.

So, after a few months with The Chef and buoyed by his whole “You’re a great person; I just have to do this for my daughter” speech (that speech is pure bullshit EVERY time, by the way), I decide to sign up for an online dating site. And I’m sure as long as I keep logging on there I will have tales for you, but I wanted to share a few observations so far.

First of all, do you know how hard it is to be someone of above-average intelligence who knows how to spell on a dating site? I feel like brain cells are actually dripping out of my ear whenever I log on.

So far I have had some interesting offers: several married guys looking to knock a piece off on the way home from work, young kids with a Mrs. Robinson fantasy, and guys from foreign lands like Arkansas and Colorado who obviously just want to be pen pals. I am also popular with long-haul truckers who’d like to make a “special delivery” in the Music City, and I did get a nice offer from a “Saudi Arabian prince,” who is preparing for my arrival to his harem if I could just fax him my bank info and a copy of my passport to set it all up.

Lovely. I just want to grab a beer and watch sports, maybe go bowling. And, I find that it’s completely and totally impossible to know someone’s your one true love only by seeing a photograph of them. Actually, where I come from, that’s called desperate.

I also had a guy who read that I was a writer in my profile and wants to text me his poems. I haven’t told him that I detest most poetry (and if he’s writing it on his cell phone it’s probably not quality anyhow). In fact, I just ignored his message. He’ll go away eventually, right?

There are more stories, but I can’t tell them all today. Nor can I tell them all while I’m sober. I guess you’ll just have to keep reading to see what happens next.

But those little boys who use the word “cum” instead of “come” in a sentence (like “Maybe I can cum over after work.”)? I get what you’re meaning there, but I’m so not going to pick up what you’re putting down. Mostly because I think it might be chlamydia.

And people wonder why 99 percent of the time I am perfectly content with being single…

Song of the day: "F*$% You" by Cee-Lo Green ("Forget You" if you listen to the radio version)

Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Random thought of the day

So, the Associated Press just issued some new Stylebook entries on fashion. One of the entries was "Bloomingdale's."

And do you know what I thought when I heard the word "Bloomingdale's"?

The same thing I've thought for about 20 years now.

In high school there was a girl who apparently liked Bloomingdale's and apparently had a variety of underwear that said "Bloomie's" on the ass. I was not fashionable enough then, nor am I now, to know how culturally significant such underpants were. I recognized the type face as being from Bloomingdale's. I'm a journalist, we recognize typefaces. So I deduced that is where she purchased these underwear.

As for how I knew she had them? I wish I could report that I saw them changing after gym class, but that would be a lie.

Truth is, she always wore them with khaki pants, so that if one followed her khaki pants day, you could read her undies.

To this day, I always wear plain white underwear with khaki pants. And, also to this day, that's the only thing I remember about this certain person from high school.

I've never actually made it to Bloomingdale's. I am not sure I could go in there without cracking up. (And/or checking my ass in a mirror to make sure no one can read my underpants.)