This Month in Skeevy E-Mails: The Word “Lover,” Nic Cage Appreciators and Lantern Jaws!

July 26, 2010

Let me preface this by saying that I’m seeing someone. I actually like him.

However, because we only had two dates before he left for Sweden for a month (he’s a Nordic gentleman by birth, minus the fur pelts and turkey-leg-gnawing thing — which I’m not even sure are Swedish traits by nature, but they’re funny, in my head), in my estimation, we’re not “official.”

No, I’m not sure how he feels about that. I suspect he’s skipping away down the commitment path without a backward glance to see if I’m bringing up the rear … but, we can talk about that when he gets back in a few weeks. For the time being, I feel confident that I can slip by on a technicality — that technicality being that we haven’t had The Talk yet.

I explain all this because, given the grayish hue of this guy’s and my dating “area,” I have two active online dating profiles floating out there in the Ether of Weirdness. The good news is this: Men remain just as odd and skeevy as they were the last time I updated this blog.

Here are a few excerpts from my favorite e-mails of June/July 2010:

From a 6’10” “tall teddy bear” of a man with abhorrent grammatical skills:

Your exactly like me in a lot of ways, and I have been searching for someone just like you’ who I could treat like a complete princess and faboulous lover and best friend…

  • It’s “You’re,” not “Your.”I don’t feel that I should have to point this out to a 45-year-old human.
  • We are nothing alike. Not one little bit. You’re a “professessional” truck driver, and I’m a “pro-fess-ess-shonal” avoider of truck drivers.
  • Did you just say “lover”? What is with that word? Moms: Could you pull your sons aside NOW and explain that that word will only ever incite revulsion among the non-shut-in female set? OK, thanks.
  • Given his use of the word “lover,” I suspect it wouldn’t be long before Teddy Rape-Spin here would let me out of the trunk — finally — and want to “make love on me,” and then I’d have no choice but to kick him in the ‘nads and limp to the nearest Flying J. Best just to cut our losses now, Theodore.
  • I have a similar gonad-punching reaction to the word “princess.” Anyone who ACTUALLY READS MY PROFILE knows this; I profess my hatred of that word/mentality loud and proud. But, I suppose if you blindly cast your sappy, poorly written “net” enough times into the pool of Internet women, someone, somewhere, will eventually believe you singled her out all special-like. Oh, but Ted: I just hope you have enough room for her nine cats and her Precious Moments collection when that day comes.

From a single dad who, right off the bat in his profile, emphatically and defensively insists his two children aren’t “baggage”:

Ghostwriter was a good show.

  • Um, wait: Do you mean “Ghost Rider”? As in, the Nic Cage movie? If so, I have two immediate thoughts:
    • Anyone under the age of 68 shouldn’t refer to a movie as a “show.” That something my parents do, and I always want to explain how old-timey and lame it sounds … except that they ARE old. It’s just what they do.
    • Again, did you not read my profile? I openly declare an allergic reaction to Nic Cage. Thus, if you aggressively appreciate any part of that retard — as an individual, as an actor, or simply as a viable partaker of our precious oxygen — I not only want you to go away, I WANT YOU OFF MY PLANET.

The very first line, from the very first e-mail, sent to me by an otherwise-normal-seeming, literate guy:

It’s right about now that I need to confess to and apologize for a bad case of social-anxiety (probably the reason I’ve reached the ripe old age of 40 and have never been married).

  • Is it really “right about now” that that affliction should come up?
  • Really?
  • OK, then, fire the therapist who gave you that advice.

From a misguided 5’8” spitfire of a guy blessed with a self-described “large, Jay Leno-like jaw”:

Just thought I’d let you know … I’d totally kick your ass at volleyball. Actually, while I am a decent server, I’m not a skilled player. But I can fling my fist at a ball coming my way with the best of them.

  • First and foremost: Thatswhatshesaid.
  • Second: What’s that you say, Shorty McMidgetson?
  • With me, it’s best not to even broach the subject of volleyball unless you’re (a) truly capable of delivering a beat-down, or (b) honest about the fact that everything you on the court sucks and, most likely, is illegal. I guarantee this guy thinks he’s a “decent server” because his lame-ass underhand serves don’t consistently wind up in the net – only, like half the time. Hey, Lucky Charms? Your 4th grade P.E. class called. It wants its skills back.
  • Men: If you feel compelled to rouse a woman’s interest by talking smack right out of the gate, do it in relation to something you’re actually proficient at – like, say, grinding up Corn Nuts WITH YOUR MASSIVE JAW.

Maybe next month I’ll have a whole new crop of winners to write about! *crosses fingers* Yay, Internet dating!

… Or, maybe I’ll just settle the eff down with the cute, nice, tall, smart Swede whom I actually enjoy talking to and spending time with.  Who knows? Anything could happen.

Fun-Sucker McGee & His Invisible Sister

April 2, 2010

A few Saturday nights ago, I attended a good friend’s wedding. As those in my circle of close friends are wont to do, the reception featured an open bar. (Actually, the open-versus-cash-bar-at-the-wedding scenario is part of my pre-screening questionnaire.)

For anyone keeping score at home, this wedding happened the night before a 34-year-old man who, one week before, claimed to be in love with me,  subsequently ended our relationship by changing his Facebook status.

Given the context, I overindulged a little. A few enabling factors:

  • I wasn’t driving; my best friend, Molinda, was. She knew the deal, and I’d do it for her if the tables were turned.
  • One of my exes — whom I broke up with twice, who always seems like an excellent option when I’m single, and who’s now desperately in love with a Russian girl with fake boobs — was riding with us.
  • It was a wedding.
  • I was the only person in my immediate circle without a date.

I doubt The Gods of Wine and Beer could have designed a more lethal environment for a heartbroken (and soon-to-be even more heartbroken) girl that night.

So.

After the wedding, we decided to go to a bar near Molinda’s house. A dude started talking to me. The only thing I remember talking about was my hatred of Nickelback and my failed attempts at writing the maid-of-honor toast for Molinda’s upcoming wedding.

All I remembered about him, in particular, was that he was antagonistic, had nice hands, was named Steve, and was flirting with me pretty hard. When we left, he got my number. I thought, Why not?  

The next morning, I noticed he’d already left a voicemail criticizing my favorite band (which, apparently, I’d also divulged) and asking if he could introduce me to some “good music” sometime soon. A few days later, fresh off the biggest disappointment of my dating career thus far, I mustered up the stamina to call him back. I figured that even if I wasn’t looking to date right away, I wasn’t going to pass up an opportunity if it fell into my lap.

Steve works nights, so our schedules didn’t mesh well. We spent a few weeks talking on the phone every few days. It was OK, not spectacular. He, on the other hand, said he was amazed at how much we seemed to have in common.

One week after we met, he called at 11:15 p.m. to say he was at that same bar with his buddy “if I wanted to stop by.” The odds of that happening were, oh, … zero? I was halfway across town, grubby from four hours of volleyball, and frankly, a little insulted.

I decided that I wouldn’t call him back, or even consider seeing him again, unless he planned an actual date. I wasn’t holding my breath, but he called a few days later to apologize for what might be construed as a booty call, and to officially ask me out.

On Monday night, we went out on our first (and last) date.

He was taller than I remembered, which was a bonus. I couldn’t remember his face, but he’d told me on the phone that people say he looks like Andy Bernard. He does — but, I could tell he wasn’t going to be a sparkling conversationalist.

We had dinner at Applebee’s, where he (A psychology minor in college! What a treat!) ran me through some rigamarole, choose your own adventure-type scenario involving a theoretical shipwreck, a desert trek, an oasis and a castle that subconsciously, he said, revealed my true feelings about work, the ideal husband and my preferred number of premarital lovers. (Yes, lovers. As Liz Lemon says, that word really bums me out unless it’s between “meat” and “pizza.”)

Then came the surprise element of our date: We went to a casino by his house, where he plopped $200 on the blackjack table and said, “Here’s the deal: You get to keep whatever we win.”

Now, I’m no blackjack-er. As far as I’m concerned, if it involves numbers, I don’t want to play. But, I was a good sport — and a fast learner, it turns out, because we were up $65 an hour later.

On our way out, he said to the cashier, “Why don’t you just throw an extra hundred in there? We’ll meet in the back and divvy it up! Heh heh.” HE WORKS IN LAW ENFORCEMENT. The poor woman scowled so hard that I cringed. She huffed and asked him, “Sir, are you aware that what you’re asking me to do is a federal offense?” He laughed awkwardly and said, “Ah, that’s OK, I’m good.” (No shit you’re “good.” Thanks for that, jerkwad. Now I’m on the Pima Indian Reservation’s watch list, too.)

He tried to give me the $65, but I refused. In retrospect, I should’ve taken it because I’d earn at least that much in the next 30 minutes.

When he dropped me off at my car, he busted out with this: “I just have to tell you, you remind me so much of my sister. It’s really bizarre.”

Apparently, I look just like her, and my mannerisms — the way I say, “Right?” — are similar. And, we both like scarves. I know. Eery. (Pssssh)

Now, this might have been construed as a compliment in any other situation, but he’d talked about his this particular sister before.  He doesn’t respect her much. He says she’s overly opinionated, drinks too much, and he suspects she’s bisexual. I don’t know what all went on between them, but I suspect he’d have left her in a basket on someone’s porch back a long time ago if it had been his call. (I, on the other hand, thought — but didn’t say — that she sounds way more fun to hang out with than him.)

The bottom line is, he seemed genuinely horrified and rattled by our similarities. It bordered on revulsion. That kind of sucks, because, well, … what can I do about THAT? The answer is, nothing. I don’t care.

When he called me the next night from work to apologize, he said he didn’t know why he hadn’t noticed the similarities the night he met me. But (and this is the best part), he “thinks he can get past it.” I almost laughed when he said that, but I was saved by the bell when he got called away by his boss.

I have no idea if he plans to ask me out again, but I don’t need Fun-Sucker McGee to do me any favors. Unless it’s to give me my $65.

So, I’ve come to a conclusion: Sometimes the couch, Moose Tracks ice cream, wine, my favorite pajamas and new-to-me episodes of “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” — and/or hitting the bejeezus out of a volleyball, depending on the day — are a lot more therapeutic than rebound dating in the aftermath of an emotional fucking tornado.

I’ve always skipped the all-men-are-jerks-until-proven-otherwise phase of break-ups, but I think it’s necessary. And now, I’m in smack-dab in the middle of it. And how.

Because I’ve been seeing a counselor for the past few months, I’ve learned that, more often than not, I skip the whole “disorganization” phase on the wheel o’ grief (characterized by confusion, apathy, aimlessness and loneliness — whee!) and move right on to “reorganization,” which, among other joys, involves dating again. That always seemed like a good idea at the time.

But, getting back on the horse just sucks sometimes. I’m not ready to turn the old nag into glue, but I’m definitely leaving her out to pasture for awhile. 

Going on random dates can boost your ego, but it can also eat your soul. At the very least, it reminds you how many painfully awkward frogs you’ve got to kiss before … well, I don’t know. Before you decide frogs aren’t the most kissable things in the world, anyway.

A 5-Mile-an-Hour Train

March 12, 2010

So, I thought I found my lobstah. He’s not. He’s not even imitation crab meat.

We met on Match. Had our first date January 11. Closed down Starbucks. I loved his face. I felt chemistry (a rare thing, for me). We both loved cars, our nieces and the look of each other. He was 34, Catholic and cute — but not so cute as to be out of my league. I knew I wouldn’t have to talk myself into this one. I knew instantly that he might be Someone.

He shows up for our first date, rose in hand. Opens the door. Picks up the tab. Holds my hand. Walks me to the door. Kisses me. It’s as magical as a first date can be. We kiss by the front door for half an hour. He says: “This feels like a movie. I can’t believe how natural we are.”

Over the next few weeks, he tells me lots of things.

  • “I’ve never felt like this about anyone before.”
  • “I’ve been waiting 12 years to find you.”
  • “We’re so lucky.”

and…

  • “I love you.”

The thing is, I love him in that moment, too. I think, Holy shit! This kind of stuff really happens! I think, Well, they say you just ‘know’ when you ‘know.’ I felt like I’d won the romance lottery. I felt like someone had finally seen all the cool and awesome things I believe myself to be and really valued them. I felt like I was home.

But, I’m a rational girl. The week before Valentine’s Day, my brain catches up with me. My head sits me down and says, “This is moving at lightspeed. Are you sure? Is he sure?” Granted, the timing of this exchange with said head was pretty unfortunate, because I’d just started birth control. (Translation: My girl-feelers were ALL outta whack. I’m sure some of you can relate.) I might’ve just let the thought go otherwise, but…

He’d just met my family that weekend (um, huge!), and I was feeling a little distance from his end. I worried. I called him up. I told him it felt like we were having an ‘off’ day and asked if he was cool with everything, since it happened so fast. He assured me it was and said, “Don’t panic.” That’s a phrase I’ll hate until the day I die. It’s so condescending. Plus, I had every reason to panic. Looking back, I was feeding off of him, every time.

But, we worked it out … or so I thought. Ever since, we’ve been on a 50/50 roller coaster. One week, he’s texting me that he loves me and can’t wait to see me. Then, after he does see me, he withdraws. Again.

So, I back off. I give him all the space a man can handle without being alone or in a relationship with a blow-up doll. I really get a handle on the fact this is — whatever else is said between us — a two-month relationship. I dial back my expectations to fit that level of commitment, even though he’s dropping the L-bomb like a madman. I put the kabosh on any indications of insecurity and strap some tape over my mouth when I notice he’s backing away. I zip it when I really want to say things like, “Hey, is everything OK?” I put on a smile instead and let him roam free.

I do all this because I know — since he’s shown me — that I can’t talk to him about anything involving us without him slinking away to his cave. I give him acres and acres of space. I keep it light, breezy and easy. I dial my intuition back so much that I wonder if I can bend so far I’ll eventually break.  I spend damn near all my energy trying not to scare the boy away.

But the thing is, I’m not an irrational girl. I don’t yell. I don’t cry. I don’t hunt men down. I don’t “get even,” and I’m not vindictive. I don’t demand a lot of your time. And all of that, if I’m honest, is why he fell in love with me.

But, I’m also human. In one night, he could (a) tell me he loved me, and (b) make me feel like it was too much to ask to try and nail down whether we’d see each other Friday or Saturday night. (Not both. Definitely not both.)

Here’s a hint, men: When you tell a girl you love her, her expectations of you and the relationship increase — not unrealistically so, but they do. They just do.  It’s probably better to wait until you can honsetly say you love HER, not just what you know of her so far.  

Fast-forward to Valentine’s Day, when he forwards me to voicemail when I call — as planned — to figure out what we’re doing. My heart sinks, and I know something is really, really wrong. Two hours later, I get a text message that says, “I need time to think.”

I’m devastated. I bawl. I freak the eff out, but I do it in my privacy of my own home. I don’t respond. He gets all the space he needs, and I decide to move on. I’ve had enough. HE BLEW ME OFF ON VALENTINE’S DAY. In any girl’s book, that’s a dealbreaker.

Two days later, he calls me. We meet for coffee. He apologizes and admits what he did was a “dick move” and “cowardly.” He explains that he got scared. He freaked himself out. He realizes, looking back, that the pressure he was feeling was self-inflicted. He wants back on the rollercoaster. “I love you,” he says. “I really do.”

I wasn’t expecting that at all. His overnight bag was in my front seat, and I was ready to hand it over. I opened my heart, though. I calmly explained that I was in the process of walking away — that that’s what I do when you hurt me. I promised him that if he ever pulled something like that again, I’d disappear without warning. But, everyone makes mistakes. And I loved him. So, I decided he was worth trying for.

For a week, it’s sunshine and smiles. He’s gung-ho again. Then, last weekend, he booked a last-minute flight home for three days for a family reunion of sorts. It was the first I’d heard of it, but he said he got a really good deal on air fare. I got to see him for a few hours before his flight left (my idea). But, of course I wondered — since he’d been distant again for the previous few days — if he needed space, but was afraid to ask for it. So, I asked him. I asked kindly. He said, “No, this isn’t about us. I just want to see my family. I’m not running away from anything, babe.”

I said OK. He didn’t accept it.

He claimed he could “see the wheels turning,” and me trying to figure out what he was doing. And you know what? In that moment, they weren’t. I was just enjoying being with him for the few hours I had. I really wanted to believe him when he told me it wasn’t about us, so I forced myself to. I wanted him to go home and have a good time with his family. I smiled and said, “I’m surprised you’re going, but I’m not upset. Go. Have fun. I’ll look forward to seeing you when you get back. If you’re saying this isn’t about space, all I can do is take your word for it, and I do.” He thanked me for that.

As of today, it’s been a week since I heard from him. I texted him on Monday, and he texted back. I reached out. Now I’m done.

If he wanted this, he could come find me. I know in my heart that he’s freaked himself out again. But, I also couldn’t dial it back any farther than I did and still have a pulse. He still ran. I simply can’t count on him.

It’s a lonely feeling. I miss him. But, him running away from me is like high-tailing it off the tracks when he sees a train coming at 5 miles per hour. Sure, it’s a big thing — but it wasn’t going to run him over.

Plate-Glass Window, Revisited

September 3, 2009

Today, my funny friend L sent me this e-mail:

So, I’m cleaning out my inbox and I came across this gem from the Boney’s guy. I know you talked about him on your blog, but did you happen to paste this copy into there? It’s really so funny. I love it. And it scares me, at the same time. He’s still out there, ladies.

But…where is the smoker?! And this Tom fellow?

We may never know for sure. And…that’s OK.

— L

Obviously, this requires some background. So, here’s the post that gives the entire backstory. And here’s the most recent e-mail from Plate-Glass Window that L so enjoyed:  

*************************************************

From: Robert
Sent: Thursday, May 14, 2009 4:11 PM
To: R
Subject: HELLO AGAIN

Hello R —

It’s been awhile…

If you remember me, we met at Boney’s between trivia and Karaoke ♪♫♪♪♫♪♫♪, and had lunch one day at Fibber Magee’s.
I have not actually heard back from you since last August.

I hope that everything has been going wonderful for you. I am sure with the way things have gotten that you must be buried at work.

Despite, or because of, our companies reduction of staff I am usually at work 7 days a week, though only partial days on the weekends. Most of my customers are ordering like light bulbs were just invented, many for the first time in over a year.

I am on day 23 without a drink since my doctor put me on a pill that does not act kindly with alcohol. It may be another 2 months before I get off of it. However, I am realizing that I may continue to not drink as long as the migraines don’t come back. I have a lot more energy now. I am also a lot more bored without having my Friday escape to the bar after a bad week at work.

I have not done Karaoke in 4 weeks despite going to the bar and having a diet Coke while it is going on.

Boney’s almost went out of business and was subsequently sold to a couple of younger guys who enjoyed drinking there. None of Tom’s family work there anymore but he did manage to take the smoker when he left.

Hope everything is going great.

If you get really bored, or lose what’s left of your mind, please feel free to get in touch.

— Robert

480-###-####
Yes, this is my real cell number.

*************************************************

Now that I think I’ve shaken this dolt once and for all, here’s a few afterthoughts:

  • Who’s he giving his fake cell number to?
  • I wonder if typing the sentence, “I have not actually heard back from you since last August” gave him pause — any pause at all.
  • I can’t believe he actually sells light bulbs. I couldn’t even MAKE THAT UP.
  • When I got this e-mail from him in May, I remember thinking, Surely the worst of my dating horrors are over! That’s gotta be the bottom of the barrel…right? And then, I was proven wrong. Again and again and again

Love for Sale! Appetizing, Yummy Love for Saaaaaaale…

September 2, 2009

Christie Brinkley in a Ferarri he’s not, but the bachelor/bachelorette auction did turn up this little beauty:

It Puts the Lotion On Its Skin

Special thanks to my friend K, who somehow got her hands on this photo without losing a limb in the bargain

I’ll give you a minute to ruminate on that.

It’s OK, I’ll wait.

Yeah.

So, not only did Methadone Jesus (a.k.a., Paul from my last post) show up that night, but he put himself on the block. Some poor cougar actually shelled out two $20 bills for that steaming pile of schizophrenia in denim shorts.

Observe! The woman in the background gnawing on her nails and looking generally horror-stricken.

Observe! The other woman in the background, taking a photo and laughing hysterically.

Observe! (If you dare!) His womanly-yet-hairy thighs and LiveScary bracelet.

Now that you’ve seen him “in action,” surely you’re wondering, OK, but did she interface with Methadone Jesus? The answer is YES. Yes, I did. I “took one” for this “team” in the Name of Blogging.

Actually, he was quite the salesman — he worked the room for 40 minutes before the auction trying to drum up feminine interest in his skeevy wares. My friend K and I were on his hit list. I don’t remember much of what he said to us, other than introducing himself, because I was so awe-struck. It was kind of like meeting a celebrity, but not the good kind, the icky kind — like running into Paul Reuben at the video store or something.

Although I blocked out most of it, I do recall telling him that if I bid at all, I’d be doing it as a tag-team sort of thing with K. (I throw her under the bus every chance I get.)

What I didn’t block out was his intentional-forearm-graze on the way to the restroom. Methadone Jesus actually touched me, and I couldn’t get the scent of burning hair out of my nostrils. I think he drive-by-back-rubbed K on the way, too, but I could be remembering that wrong. It would make sense since she and I were a package deal that night; then again, I could also subconsciously be making her my PSD buddy.

Since the auction, Paul has updated his profile with a few more insights into his many personalities:

  • “I’m kind of a reverse cat lady.” One who eats their dirty litter.
  • “I’ve [sic] very shy, but once I get to know people they find I’m friendly & (mostly) harmless.” Until I lunge at your face with a butter knife, anyway.
  • “Hometown: Fort Knox or Phoenix, depending” Depending on …? Eh, you know what? Nevermind. I’m good.

I’ve also found a photos that makes me laugh and back slowly away at the same time:

Way-too-effing-many burning candles? Check. Altar of sacrifice (read: fireplace)? Check. Sacrificial cat? Check. Bare feet? Check and check. Gag reflex? Check, big-time.

Way-too-effing-many burning candles? Check. Altar of sacrifice (read: fireplace)? Check. Sacrificial cat? Check. Bare feet? Check and check. Gag reflex? Check, big-time.

So, is he everything you thought he’d be? More? I, for one, was not disappointed.

P.S. — The only other dude from my last post to show up at the auction was Barry, who I can’t, in good conscience, make fun of anymore. Though I didn’t talk to him directly, he seemed like a very sweet, harmless little dude in his interactions with others.

So, I guess it’s a good thing I don’t have an actual conscience because K and I have decided he has a lisp. He MUST have a lisp. I mean, look at him!

Where Is Weirdo?

August 26, 2009

When I became really-truly-single again (read: broke up with someone I actually gave a crap about) a few years ago, I joined a social group to meet other single friends since all my existing ones at the time were coupled up. And now they’re all getting married, but that’s another pathetic blog for another pathetic day.

Anyway.

When I joined this social group, I had no intention of meeting men. As anyone who’s ever gone through a horrible, gut-wrenching, suck-your-soul-out kind of breakup can attest, men were the least of my interests, actually. I was, however, lucky enough to meet my good friend The Jew (who I dated before he moved to Florida — both of which I still consider bad ideas) early on.

In the past few years, The Jew has assembled a small cast of what he’s affectionately dubbed “the interesting people.” By definition, they’re the rare souls among the legions of slack-jawed yokels who join these social groups who are, as he puts it, one or two standard deviations away from the norm — thus, interesting. They’re smart, good, cynical people with very finely tuned bullshit radar. Together, we’re The Short List.

Although we spend most of our free time with each other, we do attend the occasional get-together for the social group where we met. The next big event is a charity bachelor/bachelorette auction tomorrow night, during which three of The Short Listers will be sold off like cattle to the highest bidders. Naturally, I’ve got to see that.

So, I was curious who’d be showing up to this thing besides us. As it turns out, there’s a ton of “Yes” RSVPs — upwards of 100 or so — and some of them look (and read, based on the profiles they’ve filled out) like they shouldn’t be bidding on Garfield collectibles on eBay, let alone another human.

Noting this, my snarky friend K and I developed a game called Where Is Weirdo? wherein we try to predict which “Yes” man will turn out to be the creepiest in person. In other words, if any of these dudes tries to bid on one of our lady friends — none of whom deserve to be found in a dumpster by police dogs — we’ve agreed to whip out our credit cards and save her from certain doom.

To be fair, we’ve never actually met any of these guys. Even so, their photos gave us reason for concern. Here are our top four contenders for biggest weirdo, plus our made-up impressions of each one. Please to enjoy.    

Paul

paulPer his profile, Basement-Dwelling Paul here is an “east valley kind of guy.” I’m guessing this is because there’s a warrant out for his arrest in the north, south and west quadrants of Phoenix.

Born on June 20, (1948?), Paul is “as Gemini as the sign gets.” He was also, as it turns out, born in the Year of the Rabbit and — to his admitted “chagrin” — the Year of the Cat. (I get it, Paul: With a little Dijon mustard, dogs totally taste better.)  

To my eyes, Paul has “kidnapping suspect” written all over him.

 

Estevan

estevanEstevan was born on January 14, 1985, which makes him a Capricorn/Ox/liar-face. He says he joined the group because he likes to have fun with new “ppl.” And by “having fun,” he means he likes to dice them into cubes, whip them into a gelatin and pour them into festive Jell-o molds for the holidays.

 

Rob

RobNightly, Rob “Norman” Bates dons a crusty gray wig and dress, rocking all night to old Ethel Merman 45 rpm records. None of his co-workers at Best Buy have a clue what goes on inside his home, though. Sure, they’re a little skeeved out by his forehead-waxing regimen in the break room at lunchtime, but he finally stopped peeing in the fake ficus plants by the bathrooms. So, for the most part, they keep quiet.

 

Barry

BarryBarry, a member of the Having Fun in AZ social group, is “having fun in AZ” indeed … at least, he is now. It was pretty rough going after Barry’s wife ran away to Nicaragua with their Merry Maid, Conchita, last year. But now? Well, now Barry’s reaching new heights … with massage! Every day, he inches just a little further up one flacid divorcee’s thigh after another. Pretty soon, he’ll hit paydirt. Just you watch.

Until then, he’ll be at your bachelorette auctions. Watching. Always watching.

Gee, I wonder who’ll “win”! *cringeshuddercringe*

Dating On Novocain (i.e., Annoying Analogies Are Afoot — Also, Alliteration)

August 20, 2009

On a Dairy Queen run with a few co-workers the other day, my funny friend L (who’s blissfully single) said that dating, the way I tell it, seems a lot like a trip to the dentist. She’s right.

For one thing, I typically dread the date for a few days beforehand. I get a sick little feeling in my stomach — usually because I’m afraid they won’t like me. (I’m certainly not an ogre, but you just never know.) Then, if the guy ends up being into me, I realize — often for the first time — that I’ve spent a buttload of time and energy determined to win over someone I’m not very interested in keeping after all.

Then, there’s the drilling of information. This kind of data is usually delivered over pints of beer in sentences that start with, “I’m the kind of guy who…” Aside from “At the end of the day…” and “At the same time…”, I dislike few phrases as much as “I’m the kind of guy who…”.

Rarely have I actually asked for these details. When it’s given, it’s like a door-to-door salesman showing up on my porch and volunteering a bunch of data I know would be crucial if I was seriously considering buying said product.

But, as it stands, by the time the guy has gotten around to telling me a whole bunch of crap about himself that’s intended to warm the cockles (I do so love that word) of my heart, I’m trying to figure out how I can discretely flag down the bartender, cash out and get home to my DVR’ed episode of “Megan Wants a Millionaire.”

Then, of course, there’s the whole extraction process. This is when I try to slip off the dude’s radar without him feeling it too much. As evidenced by this blog, I’m not very good at it. More often than not, the guy notices and gets piiiissssed.

Anyway.

Although I think I’ve been pretty true to my last entry’s promise that I’d prioritize quality over quantity, I’m once again rather busy in Ye Olde Dating Department™. Behold! The latest lineup:

A Big, Giant “Meh” (Literally)

August 20, 2009

Be careful what you wish for because sometimes you get it. In this case, “it” is a 6’8” guy who owns his own business and looks great on paper. Knowing my predilection for tall men, this seemed like a very good “haul” indeed.

We met at a friend’s birthday party three weekends ago, but I’d seen him around before. I also knew he’d checked out my Match.com profile months ago. I read his profile, too. He didn’t wink at me at the time … which, of course, ramped up my determination to bag this big ole’ fish the next time I saw him out and about.

So, when he singled me out at the party, I was pretty excited. We hit it off that first night — it turns out we’re both from giant Catholic families with six brothers and sisters, we watch the same retarded TV shows, and we’re pretty attracted to each other. By all accounts, a decent start.

HOWEVER, a few alarms went off right away. For one thing, he kept asking me to sit on his lap. Lap-sitting and karaoke are two things I just don’t do in polite company.

Second, a parade of chicks kept coming up and talking to him. When I tried to excuse myself after the third girl “happened by,” he got really agitated and insisted he wasn’t flirting with any of them — he was just being friendly. I hadn’t asked for an explanation; I just wanted to be on my way.

In spite of his kneejerk defensive demeanor, we get along OK. I don’t completely hate it when he calls, which is a step above what I’ve been experiencing, more often than not, lately.

Last week, he said there’s another girl he’s interested in getting to know right now, which is pretty OK with me. In fact, when he said that, I suggested it might be best if he and I were just friends. That way, he could feel free to explore that other option. It sounded like a fine idea to me, but he wasn’t having it. He said, “I’m so stupid! I never should’ve said anything! Don’t you get that I’m fighting for you right now?” I laughed at that, which I knew wasn’t the reaction he was looking for.

That night, he drove over to my house and took me to dinner. We kissed a lot , and then I tried to get him out of my condo for a good 40 minutes. I was not subtle; I walked him to the door and said, more than once, “Alright … so … yeah! Thanks again! Gotta get up early!” But still he lingered. I’m sure he thinks it’s going to escalate from there, physically, but I was just bored, and I remain bored. Since I’m not kissing anyone else right now, I figure I might as well be kissing him.

But he really is dense, socially.

So, that just about sums up my feelings where Meh is concerned. We’re supposed to go out tomorrow night, but honestly? Volleyball or board games with my friends both have equal allure at the moment.

I also like kissing, though. Hmm.

Lightspeed McQueen

August 20, 2009

When I was 12, the biggest crush of my childhood career, Justin B., put his arm around me in the steer barn at the county fair. He was beautiful — see-through blue eyes, blond hair and bronze-y skin from working outside on his dad’s ranch all summer. He had a Southern-type drawl despite growing up in southeast Washington State and wore Wranglers and cowboy boots to school every day. I thought he was fantastic.

But instead of being elated when he finally put the moves on me, I got real quiet and make an excuse about why I had to leave. Now.

I found my mom in the concessions trailer where she was volunteering. I was totally distraught. “Mom, he’s just moving so fast!” I told her, nearly in tears. I thought she’d sympathize, but she laughed. And when your own mother laughs at you for being a big prude, you know something is amiss.

To his credit, Justin didn’t give up on me. A few weeks later, his best friend, Theresa, tracked me down on the patio of my 4th grade classroom. I was working on a science project involving gravel (don’t ask) when she handed me his note. I thought about it all night and checked “yes.”

The next day, we went steady for 3.5 hours. By lunch time, he’d sent Theresa to break up with me because (a) I wouldn’t talk to him, and (b) I wouldn’t sit next to him in the cafeteria. By the end of the day, he was going steady with Janelle M. — a girl who not only talked to him and ate lunch with him, but met him in the fort every day during recess to make out.

I was heartsick, but 20-plus years later, things haven’t changed that much. Emotionally, when a guy comes at me with all his commitment-guns blazing, I find the Kevlar. Yet, despite this fact, I have a baffling gift for attracting nouveau-needy men.

By this, I’m referring to the new breed of men who want to slap a Wild Kingdom-like tracking device on me the moment we meet. They’re the guys who text-message throughout the day and call with amazing regularity — two qualities you’d cherish in a boyfriend, but not some dude  you haven’t even met in person and wouldn’t know if you passed on the street.

Lightspeed McQueen was this type of guy.

Originally, he sent me a very friendly e-mail on Match.com. I liked the looks of him — 6’4”, shaved head and tattooed, but professionally driven, a drummer in a band for years, a dad, and, in his own words, “a hell of a nice guy.” We had our first date last Friday night. It went well — better than I expected, considering the way he’d blown up my phone up to that point.

Let me preface this by explaining something: I hate talking on the phone. I told him this right away, but we agreed that some phone time is necessary if you want to get to know someone. I get it. Compromise. So, we chatted it up on the phone — more than I’d have liked, but less than he’d have preferred. Even so, he displayed distinctly passive-aggressive reactions to me not being available to yak it up with him 24/7.

Example 1: On the Saturday night before we met in person, I let him know that I was busy with friends and couldn’t call him as planned. (We’d talked on the phone the previous three nights, which was PLENTY.) His response: “Are you sure you have time to get to know me?”

I seethed, but diplomatically told him that I’d make time once we got to know each other better. He seemed OK, if not thrilled, with that.

Example 2: After our first date, I hadn’t walked through my front door before he wanted to know if he could make dinner for me at his house Tuesday night. I told him that kind of date would be great down the road, but it felt too soon. I got radio silence but didn’t give in. Eventually, he said that we could go to dinner instead. I felt like I won that round.

Example 3: By Sunday morning, he’d sent multiple text messages telling me that he couldn’t wait to kiss me again, how much he loved looking into my eyes the other night, etc. He even called me “sweetie” — and not in that non-threatening, waitress kind of way. I didn’t respond. I was getting serious stage-5 clinger vibes by that point.

Example 4: The night before our second date, he text-messaged me to see if I wanted to talk on the phone. I replied, “Sure, but after 9.” He wrote back: “OK, but only if you want to.”

I considered that for a minute. Actually, it was really encouraging. It indicated sensitivity to my aversion to the phone, which was just what I needed right then.

So, feeling all “trust tree,” I explained that I was headed to the gym, but was working from home the next day, so could we talk then? Oh, no. He wrote back: “Can’t we talk tonight?”

At that point, I was THISCLOSE to throwing my phone across the room. I decided that unless he completely blew my doors off the next night (highly unlikely, but I’d already agreed to a second date), I was getting the hell outta Dodge.

At noon on Tuesday, he sent me a text message saying, “I don’t want to do this. Sorry.” My immediate reaction was relief, and I made plans right away to go to the happy hour I’d passed up before. After that, though, curiosity (and, yes, a little panic) set in. Was I ugly? Ohmigodpleasedontlethimsayimugly.

“Fair enough,” I wrote back. “Any particular reason?”

After assuring me he that he found me “gorgeous and sexy,” he said he thinks I just want a “part-time boyfriend.” (<– I love that term. In fact, I want to start a band and call it that.) “I really like you, but that part bothers me,” he said.

I admit I freaked out a little that day. Was there something wrong with me? Was I a commitment-phobe myself? What if he was the ideal guy for me and I drove him away by being emotionally unavailable?

But, it didn’t take long to figure out that his pace (lightning-speed and borderline insane) and mine (far more measured and cautious) just didn’t match up. I’m sure there’s a girl out there who wants nothing more than a man made of Velcro, but that’s not me. I am busy, and I do have a life, and I don’t want to feel guilty about that. My next boyfriend won’t be my everything; I learned that lesson the hard way. And I think the right guy will understand exactly what I mean.

Adam 3.0?

August 20, 2009

I’ve dumped Adam twice … so far.

We dated four years ago, for five months, and three years ago, for four months. The first time we dated, I was getting over a three-year relationship with a walking-cliché: a rockabilly musician who was manipulative to a supernatural degree. The second time, I was getting over an emotionally excruciating “gray period” with that same ex, who insisted that just because he was effing everything with two legs and a skirt, it was only a means of coping with our breakup.

So, I think it’s fair to say Adam didn’t get a fair shake and that our timing wasn’t great. Well … my timing wasn’t, anyway.

Then again, even in hindsight, that’s simplifying the situation. For whatever reason, he just annoyed me. He was too much — too affectionate, too loud, and too insistent that we Be Something Already. He was always referring to people as “kid.” He was always yelling “Get ‘r done!” which, even if it’s done ironically (and it was), is just as bad as the real thing. He was always touching me and kissing me and generally doting on me.

On the other hand, it was kind of nice to know someone would put forth that kind of effort. Plus, we liked the same stuff. He could quote Vacation, SuperTroopers and Say Anything as often and accurately as me. He watched The Office and Ghosthunters religiously. He loved Homestarrunner.com the same way I did. We even had the same favorite band.

But, despite all that, the annoyance won out. I was just not having it. So, I broke it off twice.

However, because my best friend met her fiancé through Adam the second time we dated, I’ve seen a lot of him in the past few years. In that time, he’s met a handful of my boyfriends/semi-boyfriends, and I’ve met a handful of his lady friends. Right now, though, we’re both single.

In the past few months, we’ve gotten along better than we ever did while we were dating. These days, I openly flip him shit, and he throws it back. I tell him when he’s being annoying, and he makes fun of my 1985-looking leggings.

I can tell there’s still affection there, though. Recently, he told me I’m one of the “top three” women he’s ever dated. His current crush — who has a similar gray-area-with-the-ex situation and has told him, point blank, that she just wants to be friends with him regardless — is in the #1 spot. I’m at #2 … which is actually pretty amazing, considering what a dick I was to him both times we dated.

Then, a few weekends ago, having achieved a level of platonic friendship that would allow such a thing without issue (or so I thought), we shared the guest room at my best friend’s house and cuddled all night. We didn’t kiss, but only because I didn’t turn around. I kept my back to him, unsure how we’d navigate our way out of that situation if we decided later that it was a mistake.

I haven’t seen him since, and we haven’t talked about it at all, but I’ve been thinking about the situation more than I expected to.

  • It’s possible that I just want to usurp that #1 spot, being of a freakishly competitive nature.
  • It’s possible that I’m bored with my other dating options right now.
  • It’s possible that I’m just thinking of how convenient it would be for us to date again. (As the maid of honor and best man, my wedding date would be built-in. Sweeeeet.)
  • It’s possible I could wind up ending things a third time.

Then again, it’s also possible that we could really be something. I honestly don’t know.

When I talked to my best friend about it, she agreed with all of the above. We decided that when Adam and I see each other, I should simply pretend that we’re already dating. Then, if I still find him annoying in that context, better to skip it. If not, it’s probably something to think about.

So, I guess that’s what I’m going to do. I figure it will work itself out one way or another.