Tek-Nically Romantic – The Logarithm of “Love”

Woke up this morning with the age old dilemma – what does a girl wear to a singles mixer at a computer store? Since it was freezing, dresses were ixnayed. Instead I opted for casual chic. Skinny jeans, boots, blazer and sheer-type white shirt. Hello fellas, you get a peek but not the whole goose. Oh and the hair – recently learned how to maneuver my hair to be one of my girlish charms…long with a voluminous wave. Yah. It was a great hair day.

Anyways. My work mates (aka the conspirators who hooked me into this thing) were beyond excited and honestly, it was very endearing. My enthusiasm was not up to those standards. Been to too many of these shenanigans and while I’m game, hope is also not high on the list.

By the time it rolled around to go downtown, I truly had no idea what to expect. And yes, I prepared ahead of time with said co-workers by imbibing a few shots of brown liquor before I ran into the lion’s den. What’s the name of this blog? I try to stay true to my moniker.

I’m not sure how to exactly quantify my attitude. Not quite cynical. Fairly realistic. Hopeful in some dimension cuz you always gotta be hopeful but more curious and just open to the experience, whatever it may be.

When I arrive, the place is buzzing. I’m greeted by a gent who asks me if I’m here for the event. Maybe it’s due to the warmth I’m feeling from the yummy bourbon but I feel a bit like Cinderella being announced at the ball. And soon enough I meet my evil step-sister. More on that later.

I get checked in and get my coupon/computer store credit. Alas, it has to be used THAT night so I figure at the very worst, I get to shop while drunk. Win/Win people. Win. Win.

First stop – need to tinkle. Off I go to the naturally unisex bathrooms. There are weird little holograms on the bathroom doors. I whip my head over and around trying to see what each of the holograms do. The lady hologram reflects the typical lady in a dress but from another angle, it’s a compact and lipstick. Hmmm…sexist? Maybe. The guy’s hologram is just a shiny version of the bathroom guy symbol. That’s it? Lame. Little did I know it was a signifier of things to come!

Naturally the bathroom is occupied at the moment (hence my time was wasted gazing at holograms). Outside, I see a gaggle of ladies. Actually, there are a lot of ladies. But I digress. The gaggle I was near was chatting about other single events one of them went to. Me (being drunken me) barged in on their chat and started gabbing away. Why waste precious moments when you can annoy your fellow singletons I say! There were three ladies and two seemed amused by my musings. The third all but turned and gave me the hand. She seemed utterly uncharmed by my boldness and joie de vivre. Suck it! She should be the guy hologram – no surprises.

Whatever. Bathroom opened up and in I went. Once I finished my lovely lady business, I went straight to the bar. As anyone in their right mind should. Since I had started with brown liquor I wanted to continue the streak. Alas, it was a wine and beer type event so I opted for white wine. Guzzle guzzle and perusing I shall go.

Oh did I forget to mention? There is an itinerary. And on the agenda were drinks, flirting and two lectures about online dating profiles and the avoiding the horrors of online dating. I plead the fifth.

At the front of the store, a bunch of chairs were set up and most of them were filled at this point. There was about 10 minutes before the lecture began. I grabbed the closest one near me, which was naturally closest to the door. My coat stayed on. Damn winter weather.

I’m sitting next to a fairly quiet fellow. Nice looking but let’s face it, I’m more interested in my drink. There’s an empty seat in front of me and soon enough, that is filled by my newly deemed mortal enemy (the girl who wouldn’t laugh at my jokes). I decide I’m bored and need to win her over. In my boozy haze, we start to chat and now instead of my mortal enemy I am renaming her my fre-nemy. During our chat, she somehow wrangles the fellow next to me into the chat. Apparently fre-nemy has many an idea about online dating profiles and what men should and should not put on there. The extent of my criticism – men, please stop taking bathroom selfies. Just. Stop. It’s not cute. It’s not flattering. Stop.

But she has many words beyond that. Wear a suit. Take a pic with an animal. Do not take a pic with other girls or babies. And on and on.

When I listen to that, I bitchily think…I am fairly certain I know why you are single. But then I look at myself in the mirror and smell the booze on my breath and realize the same thing. Except, I know I’m having a good time. Natch!

Anyways, the quiet fellow starts to chat a bit more, admitting to his more subdued nature. He knows one of the lecturers and is interested to see what will conspire. He even shows us his profile pictures to which we give our honest opinions. Fun times. Fre-nemy takes it upon herself to ask quiet fellow what his mate preferences are – male or female. Bold move! Also, can’t blame her. He seemed like he could go either way. Quiet fellow is apparently one that never says no to anything and likes both genders. OOOOOOOHHHHHH is what my head secretly said. But calm and cool my face did remain.

Fre-nemy was most definitely on the prowl whereas I was still happily in my stupor. She examined the room and made the astute observation that all the men were on their phones and as such, were unable to make eye contact. Whoa! Didn’t even think about that. (Gawd, I’m such a shitty flirt! But booze is sooooo good!) Hmmm…still, looking around…didn’t really care if my eyes ever met any of theirs. Win. Win.

What I found hysterical about fre-nemy was how willing she seemed to make herself available but only within the boundaries she felt secure in. Here’s some context. Fre-nemy, while outside the bathroom in my earlier encounter with her, noticed someone when she walked in but she wasn’t willing to make any gesture since he might just be a “customer” and not someone who was part of the event. After all, they’re not in a bar. This is her logic. My take – WHO FUCKING CARES?!? If you like him, talk to him. WHAT. FUCKING. EVER. This is how I got greeted with side eye. Oh fre-nemy – how you make my blood boil!

And now, the lecture begins. I put my phone away and try to be a dutiful event person. I fail. Why? Cuz her lecture blows. Why does it blow? Cuz it’s boring and the advice is for those who are absolutely hopeless and completely new to any sort of male/female interaction. To be fair, she based it on the fact she went on 72 first dates in the span of 6 months. In her geekdom, I believe she compiled various spreadsheets of analysis to come to her common sense principles. Am I being harsh? Let’s see – her first slide essentially said if you do not love yourself you will not be loved. Or something like that. I tried keep my eyes from rolling back. Not sure I succeeded.

More slides ensued and out came my phone. Texting my pals about fre-nemy and all my quirky observations that keep my mind occupied. Oh and I was still sipping my wine. A refill needed to happen soon but I played the cool customer for the time being.

Oh, lecture lady did give us one interesting fact – there were double the amount of women at the event than men. Shocker! And sigh.

Looking around the room, the clientele can be summed up as geeky chic. THe men weren’t as hopeless looking as usual but some definitely fell into the category of well-dressed creepers. The ladies, on the whole, were really attractive geek girls. Some had higher fashion sensibility but honestly, they all had that approachable nerdy NYC vibe to them. Prickly, picky and cute. You would think I would fit in.

Alas, these were not my people. Why, do you ask? Simple. As lecture lady started, fre-nemy and hipster pixie girl in my row whipped out NOTEBOOKS. TO TAKE NOTES IN. I guzzled more wine cuz I was in disbelief. NOTES!!! And the lecture was nothing worth noting!!! Do I really need to write down that I need to be myself and enjoy and be open to dating a lot of people?!?!? NO, I DON”T! Cuz it’s just dating. It’s just supposed to be fun! It’s also common sense!!!

Ugh. Who was lecture lady? Well, based upon her expertise (see above re: her 72 dates), she created some online dating blog. She said to always have an arsenal of questions to keep a conversation going. Lady, sometimes, chats don’t go anywhere, not due to lack of questions, but lack of interest. She has some other tip too for keeping interest up but I was too busy texting.

Oh and why should we listen to her? She has a boyfriend. Right there, while I am happy for her, I wanted to gag. Fuck off and fuck you. 72 dates did not enable you to get a boyfriend. Not even your techniques and massive analysis. It’s called timing. But whatever. I greatly dislike this type of logic. I also dislike people who insist on stats to create a theory in which they’re comfortable to operate in.

While waiting, I heard some girls exclaiming how they’re “all about logarithms” which was basically what the next lecture was about. My interest was at a low point so I needed to refresh my drink. Fre-nemy told me to leave something on my seat to save my place but I’m fairly sure I gave a derisive grin, shrugged and stumbled back to the bar.

Something in my life I must’ve done something good cuz bartender lady gave me a HEAVY pour “by accident” and I was ready to roll for the next 30 min. By heavy pour I mean my glass was filled to the brim! Holla! This time I opted not to sit in the immediate audience and started to shop around. I figure – booze and shopping…what can go wrong? So many gadgets and so many pretty objects.

The funniest bit though, I think I ended up mindlessly flirting with the employees. They were nice enough and I was cheery enough but I also wasn’t interested enough to give them my name and so on. Also, by this time, I had a massive hankering for burger and fries so my mind was quite occupied. I did express this desire to my cashier and he gave me the idea of getting a cheeseburger. My eyes got bigger and I nodded in agreement. Brilliant you are. I also told him there needed to be flash drives in the shape of the TARDIS. Oh yes. I have some nerd cred. If only these were my type of nerds.

Regardless, I made my purchase and off I went into the night. The second lecture was still going on but I had no interest in stats and logarithms. Oh, and friendly cashier boy wished me luck on my search. For burgers or for men, I’m not quite sure but I like to believe he meant both.

Sigh. Thing is, I mock the entire scene but in truth, I understand. These men and women are merely looking for a theory, an algorithm in which love would make sense. A formula in which they can input something and boom, the intended result will occur. The thing I’ve learned is that there is no such formula. As much as a person can enjoy control, finding a person is a game not made up of logical equations but of chance and timing.

For so long, I thought that A must surely lead to B. But it doesn’t. A can lead to C and D and maybe sometimes B or never B at all. It might lead you astray to Z. It’s all unknowable. Lending yourself to that truth is what frees you up to enjoy the process and enjoy the rest of what life has to offer, mate or no mate.

I laugh at the girls who whipped out their note pads but I feel for them. We all want answers to all of life’s mysteries. We think if we go on enough dates (72) or meet enough people or go to enough activities, we will magically find the one. We are all people willing to put in the work but we want to know the work will result in what we want so we keep trying to figure out how to properly do the work. That’s simply not how life works. Some people go from one person to another with seemingly no break in between. Some never meet anyone. Some go out with the first person they ever meet and they’re together 50 years later. Some go out with one person and end up going out with 50 more.

I sympathize with all the single-tons trying to make their way in this dating landscape but my mindset is finding a brand new frontier as of late. I’m willing. I’m able. I’m open to new experiences. But I have my limits. Although tonight was a surprise in some ways, it wasn’t so very different than other single events I’ve experienced either. If anything, it’s realizing that the only factor that has changed is me.

I needed tonight and needed to physically go out there with some measure of intention again. Before heading out, I’ll admit to a little nervousness. I wasn’t going to bail but there was a sense of the great unknown. That butterfly inducing unknown. I won’t say the past year has been one of excuses but it was a year I needed to recover from recent experiences. Some people take longer than others. I’m a longer type of gal.

I’m grateful to my work buddies for encouraging me to go and wishing me so well too. That meant more than the actual event itself. It’s nice to know people are cheering for you selflessly and without agenda. To know they want you to be happy just because they want you to be happy. There’s a beauty to that.

There’s also a beauty to knowing that I feel a lot stronger and more up for being available again. There is always that period after your heart has been broken where it’s hard to imagine feeling those feelings again. And every time you go out or you meet a nice fellow, you cannot help but compare him to the person who was there right before. It’s a terrible mind fuck and one I felt I could never get past.

But time is my friend and without even realizing it, those comparison games stopped. And the men just became the men in front of me. My past will always be my past but it seems I’m also one step closer to letting my past stay in my past and not fuck up my future.

What will the future bring? Will speed dating make a comeback? Will online dating finally have some eligible bachelors who believe in monogamy and aren’t just interested in “new friends?” Will I learn to flirt properly? Does it even fucking matter if I learn to flirt properly? Who knows?! All I do know is this – I got all the time in world to find out.


Falling Down But Never Falling Short – Inside the Mind Fucks of a Single Gal

Been having a trying day mentally and then I stumbled up on this article and well, while I’m not up to feeling fabulous, I feel a bit more vindicated and appreciated for my particular spot in this world. The article is so damn spot on in hitting all the beautiful and sore spots of current lady single-dom that I found myself nodding to every sentence. Major identification? I think so.

The worst part of being single is feeling the constant derision of your status. Married folks can do all the same things you do (or less as the case often is) but they get a pass on everything while singles are accountable for all their actions. Once you achieve the ultimate couple status, you are allowed to be the lazy ass you were born to be. Whereas my single ass isn’t doing “enough” to get out there. It’s not just terrible to ever feel I am not living up to some vision of what a single person is supposed to be but to feel that my person is not “enough” just as I am.

Do I realize that people don’t think I’m less than a person because I’m not attached? Duh. Of course not. My friends are nothing but supportive. The battle, though, has never been me vs. my loved ones but me vs. my brain’s absorption of societal norms.

Everywhere you turn, it’s about rewarding people who are part of a pair. You get tax breaks. You’re allowed to dress terribly because who else are you going to impress now? You’re allowed to sit at home and watch TV cuz there is no longer the need to go to bars to meet strangers who might be the one. If I do these things, I don’t get a “pass.” Instead get rewarded with guilt that I’m passing up a party where I could meet a potential mate.

How do you know when a couple is a couple? They end up spending the night watching Netflix instead of going out. NOW, they’re serious. But because they are with someone, it’s more of a justifiable activity than if I did watched a flick on my own. It’s a wicked mind fuck of a game. I wonder where it is we get these antiquated ideas but it’s not hard to see when the media and the culture surrounding us basically wishes the same for all of us – find the one you love!

I resent the fact I have to assure myself that my life is fine as it is. It’s more than just room for improvement (as I believe everyone should always strive for), it’s the inherent belief that has been drilled into my psyche – my life isn’t full unless I am with someone. That’s the inner struggle that I can never shake. That’s the guilt and glory of this life. To be happy where you’re at but wondering if it might be better if you share it with someone.

I don’t mean to hate on the couples either. Clearly, that’s a status I would gladly like to be in someday but someday is not today. It’s not the relationships itself I’m resentful of but the expectations attached to either status.

Know what I’ll also admit? When you do find someone to spend time with, whether it’s temporary or not, there is this weird sense of relief I get. The relief that I can stop trying so hard for just a little while. But that anxiety is quickly replaced with another as being in a relationship isn’t exactly a walk in the park. Still, I hate that I do have “relief” in being with someone. I shouldn’t beat myself up about it and I doubt it’s uncommon but thinking about all of this in the context of societal expectations…it fucking blows.

I’m smart enough to know I shouldn’t play into these games but I’ll be damned if you don’t find someone out there who has never succumbed to these feelings of falling short or just simple loneliness. What I most appreciate about the article is that while it recognizes how hard relationships can be, it gives its due to how difficult it can be to be single. And not just in the typical manner – she recognizes how responsibility for our lives is not a shared entity but sits squarely on our shoulders. It’s like being Ginger Rogers. I have to do all the same dance moves except backwards and in heels (and alone) and still, Fred gets most of the credit. When do we ever get the credit?

The single life is different than the life shared with a partner, yes. But it is no less of a life. It is not solitary by way of a single TV dinner as you watch episodes of “The Bachelor” but even if it was, so be it. Life isn’t always a party or even a roller coaster. Sometimes, it’s just a really long stretch of highway with no roadside attractions.

So much of the past few years has been about self-validation for my single-ness. There is a certain extent where I do feel as if I’m competing or trying to fill the hours the best I can because I cannot attain the one thing I supposedly lack – a mate. There was always the mental battle that my life is good the way it is. I am enough. When I would look at other friends in the same situation, I never thought less of their life and yet when I would look at my own…I always felt lacking. What’s sad is I never had these thoughts when I would look at my paired off friends. It’s how mind warped I had become. Gradually though, the demystification of relationships has been making ways into my brain. After playing a patient therapist to those in less than stellar relationships, I’ve become increasingly grateful for my own life. It’s not about schadenfreude either. I wish no ill will to those companion’d off. It’s just I think I’ve finally started to REALLY be appreciative about where I am in my own life and how it’s going. This doesn’t mean I’m always happy but it means I understand my path cannot be the one everyone else travels down. And how all of that is more than OK.

Still, the truth is our own truth and our life is what we decide to make of it. I can’t really over think and study every moment that led me to where I am now (oh wait! Already did that!) but here I am, still unsure of what awaits. Really, that isn’t much different than anyone else out there, whether or not they’re single or married.

Meh. Today is just a gloomy day and one I prefer staying in bed for. Alas, I’m forced to do this thing called work.

My life is a good one but today is more of struggle to trust in that than usual. That said, I also know this feeling will pass and optimism will prevail another day. It is what it is and my life is what it is because I’ve made it so. And maybe it’s not always the best life ALL of the time but it’s the only one I got so I’m making it count the best way I know how. And that should be enough. At least for the moment.


The Saddle Beckons Once Again and I Succumb To Her Siren Call

Hiatus. Slump. Call it what you will but my love life has been at a standstill for a good long time. The time has not necessarily been wasted as hearts need to heal and mine is pretty much on the mend and beyond. Still, getting out there is a mind boggling thing. I remain an online presence but my social calendar has been a bit pre-empted by the polar vortex. So whatever else is a girl to do?

Well, call me a guinea pig and bring on the abuse!

Which brings me to my work buddy VD (the name will change if subsequent events turn out for the better aka unlikely). VD has been a great confidant of mine for my life woes (romantic and otherwise) and my only friend in real life who is actually a fairly devoted reader of this blog. He finds me amusing and my take on the single life as mostly entertaining. As such, every now and again, he likes to update me to various singles goings on around town. In fact, he actually likes to read about events in publications called “The Village Voice” and “The New York Times.” He’s old school. ;)

So the other day we were chatting and he excitedly tells me he saw an ad in “The Voice.” Commence eye roll. He then presents me with a page torn out from said publication which advertised flirting and fun at a local computer store downtown. Yep. A computer store, albeit a well-known techie joint in the city.

The first noticeable thing about the ad – there is a very happy girl holding up a sign. A single girl. More specifically, a single Asian girl. Duh. Asian girls and computer nerds go together like tofu and soy sauce. Naturally, these techie fiends would go for the cute Asian next door look. Yay for me! (I guess?!?!) :P

Next step, VD and I look up the website and as I suspected, you must pay to attend the event. Meh. Actually, let me be more specific. You would pay $20 for the event but you end up with $20 credit for the store. Feeling cheap and unmotivated, I complain loudly that I am not paying but even if I did, what the hell would I do with $20 credit to a computer store I NEVER GO TO.

At this moment, I’m fairly sure a light bulb went off in VD’s head. If someone else were in the room, I’m positive it happened. Full of schadenfreude-fueled adrenaline, he volunteers to pay for my dating adventure. Basically, not only will he get store credit, he’ll also get a highly entertaining story of me attempting to non-flirt my way through the event. Yippee!

I still did not agree and remained on the fence but word quickly spread through our little office and sure enough other peeps were volunteering to chip in a few bucks. Fairly soon, I buckled to the peer pressure of dating (mis)adventures and so it begins. Again.

Only after I agree to this do I actually start to think about the demographic that would be at this event. My friends, being the assholes they are, have now inputted into my brain that I’ll be stuck in a room with D&D playing sociopaths or basically the cast of “The Big Bang Theory.” At this moment, I am throwing my hands up and then covering my face while groaning – “why dear God why?!?!?”

Also did I mention the tag line? Make love happen. Excuse me while I gag on my bourbon. Agh!

Fuck it. I’m a grown up and this ain’t my first rodeo. Proof I’m a grown up – I’m renovating my home (whole other type of hell). Proof it ain’t my first rodeo – rewind this blog. Trust me – it ain’t.

So what are my pre-game feelings? I’m amused. The event is Thursday and I’m glad it’s soon. Rip the damn bandaid. Why wait? Truth is, I have been so out of the loop that this might actually be the kick in the ass to get me out there again. Or, at the very least, remind myself that dating can and should just be fun and what will be will be. Being back in the game isn’t always a physical thing. It’s about being mentally ready to go fight that fight. To enjoy what the fight can bring and not to be disheartened by what it will not. It’s a mind prep…which is frankly better than the mind fuck I’ve been enduring for far too long.

My inactivity hasn’t necessarily been a guilty making thing as it has been in the past. I’ve been happily hibernating during the polar vortex. But as it’s been warming and the holiday residuals have finally passed, the guilt of being an inactive single girl has been peeking out now and again. Maybe this unexpected “treat” has come at a good time. It wasn’t something I asked for and it isn’t something I’m dying to do. My expectations are low and at the very worst, I’ll have a fun story to tell. The bottom line – why not?

Plus, the funny little support system I had going at work in addition to my non-work pals…well, it’s always nice to know people are rooting for you, whether you win or not.

So predictions for the Thursday Night Event? If things go as they have in the past, there will be imbibing of alcohol. I will be chatting awkwardly with a few males but end up chatting happily and befriending a female. I’ll laugh at how socially awkward all the men folk were and be happy I gave it shot regardless of outcome. Based on past history, that’s my gut forecast.

Still…

Perhaps it’s my renewed energy from this fairly new year but hope does spring eternal. History has taught me to keep expectations low but optimism always seems to manifest itself somewhere. I’m still the same girl but maybe time has made me a little more savvy, a little more wise and a lot less intimidated by such silly social situations. How is it I always seem to find myself in these funny predicaments? The answer is simple – because I said yes.

Wish me luck. :P


PTSD of the Heart

Been rolling some ideas around in my head that I wanted to get down…but sometimes writing things out can exacerbate emotions. If I’m feeling rotten, it can send me some relief. If I’m feeling good, it can spiral me into grief. Maybe I just like drama. ;)

Truth is, been a bit content and therefore hesitant to rock the boat of my emotional well-being. But who are we kidding? I’m always on the brink of “something”…I just don’t know what that “something” is.

Still passively logging online and mindlessly trolling for beaus but my heart simply isn’t in it. Wouldn’t life be grand if I could be handed a well-adjusted male on a platter. Alas, in this life, we must always put in the work in order to get some semblance of a reward. I am willing. But nowadays I’m also willing to take my time.

Since my last romantic entanglement, I’ve been gun shy, to say the least. Part of me always feels slightly stupid for being so caught up with a man who had so little regard for me. But hey, we can’t always choose who we care about, can we? If so, I chose…oddly.

Learning to wear the scars without bitterness has been a struggle. If I feel a boost in confidence, it’s quickly derailed by some other unraveling of my psyche. Suddenly, the entire male gender looks like my enemy and they’re all just so fucking disappointing. After scrolling absentmindedly through the online app, this is an inevitable state of affairs.

I never wanted to be that sad, bitter girl in the corner with a brown drink in her hand bitching about how men have ruined my life. The brown drink – yes – but none of the rest. Instead, I have found myself perilously close to this caricature and it scares me. It makes me sad to think I couldn’t maintain the optimism I once had and I hate feeling beat down by such crap. It helps to know I’m not alone but I’ll also admit to thinking at times that I’m too “smart” to feel so down about this lousy ritual called dating.

More truth – I fear being cynical will make me unappealing to the opposite sex. No matter how I roll it, I am hemming myself in with all these ludicrous standards. My goddamn heart broke. I’m sad. I’m pissed off. And yet I still find the energy to be scared that men will feel my “shitty aura” and want nothing to do with me, therefore spiraling me into a lifelong spinsterhood. What a mindfuck! And so wrong on so many levels. This endless circle of shit…why do I do this?!

Has my pessimism died down a bit? Yah…it’s been balancing out. I needed to vent my man hate for a bit. I needed to work out my emotions. Can ya tell?

Know what a good analogy is for this? Trying to control my emotions to maintain the desirable image is like what the media tries to do with magazine covers. They take an already good image and wash it of all flaws and the rest of us idiots try to live up to this barometer when even the cover model cannot. It’s setting up unreal expectations we cannot live up to. And then we cry even though we know this. Even though we cannot control our image that closely. Cuz we want to dismiss our flaws that badly. And who’s to say those flaws should be forgotten? But embracing them takes a lot of time. And this is where I am. Attempting to do the impossible – self acceptance of everything about myself.

At my most dramatic, I feel fucking damaged. I’m scared shitless of what crap might be ahead and I’m pissed about the crap I put up with. I don’t feel like I trust in the same way I used to (good/bad – jury is out). I am scared I cannot feel the way I once felt. I’m sad to have lost some measure of innocence (good/bad – jury is also out). Terrified of everything and pissed off at anything. Lovely place to be. But I’m working my way up from that feisty dungeon of doom.

The bottom line on this bullshit is simple – feel what you gotta feel and if that draws or repels those around you, so be it. At least you’re being true to who you are at this particular moment in time. Hiding it behind some brainless, cheery facade to seem more attractive is not only stupid but something I’m incapable of doing. Lying isn’t the hardest thing in the world but it’s something I don’t really care to partake in. Especially when it involves my heart.

Listen, I still struggle with this trauma now and again. When I’m alone too much, my mind wanders to unpleasant places. But, I’m in a good enough place now to know my choices are my own and for the most part (particularly during the non-PMS times of the month), I’m good with the ones I made. Even though they hurt like a motherfucker. Thank you time and your healing powers.

Still, it’s been years (WTF!!!) and I’m still not as active as I’d like to be. Let me correct that…I’m not as active as I think I should be. This is also not helped by the constant advice that I should be out there doing more. What is this more I ask? Should I parade around naked at the local bar? Should I say yes to every doofus who messages me online? Should I bat my eyes at every man who is within my sight lines? When is enough enough? When is any of this helpful? When is my doing enough going to stop making me feel less than and make you shut the fuck up?!? When is having standards such a sin? Some call it picky. I call it knowing what I want and much more obviously, what I do not EVER want.

I digress…

Was catching up with an old high school friend who, after asking me about my love life, said we’re just not of the norm. The little nerdy wallflowers that bloomed late. We give it a go but our hearts don’t mend quickly. My heart is only capable of letting one person in at a time and well, letting him in is a hell of a lot easier than kicking him out.

But I wonder…am I really so out of the ordinary? Seems to me, broken hearts are broken hearts. How we mend them isn’t even all that different. Some distract themselves with alcohol. Some with sex. Some in other less healthy ways. But we all do it. We all numb ourselves while feeling too much. And we all take our time doing it. When a relationship ends (especially if it meant anything to you), it’s not so easy to move on to the next. Many times, moving onto the next isn’t really the objective. Forgetting the present is.

I’m accepting that part of me more and more. The same high school buddy brought me a stack of letters I wrote to her back when we were splitting off to our respective colleges. It was so bizarre. I took a few of them and skimmed. It was so damn sweet. My loopy cursive – so open…so clear…so full of hope, optimism and not quite having lived through some of the more unexpected parts of life yet. Sigh.

Even then, though, I wasn’t really great at getting over someone. I pine. I whine. I feel things. We all do. I just tend to be more vocal. ;)

This random acquaintance I met..she seems like a relatively “normal” socially active gal. She dates on the regular or somewhat regular. Has a good job and is very vibrant and attractive – typical NYC gal. Well, this week, due to lame circumstances, she has to spend a work retreat with her ex for a number of days. The breakup wasn’t awesome and the anxiety of seeing him, hearing him, feeling his presence terrifies her. It’s been a few years and while better, she’s still licking her wounds.

So I think about what my friend said and I look around me and I wonder – am I really that abnormal?

At this moment, I feel calm about my status. I feel prime for hibernation and I’m ok with that. I’m putting myself in the hands of the universe. I’m open to her charms but unsure of how to maintain the faith. All I have is my history and how bleak that can sometimes look. BUT…I feel less…desperate.

I hate saying the word even – desperate. The longing. The depression. The desire. It feels so fucking weak. But there it is.

For so long, I’ve felt this crazy competition with my ex-beaus – as if I had to race to my next conquest. And the truth is, I can never win that game. I’m not in the mood to fill my dance cart. And being a later bloomer, this girl tends to take her time to get to where she’s going. I’ve had a hard time accepting that cuz I’m always chasing some media-inspired normalcy. I don’t even know what normal is. And when I get a picture of it, I never think I fit the bill.

The most interesting thing about getting older – there is no real sense of normalcy. And those who impose it are basing it on what they also believe they need rather than what they actually want.

Right here, right now, I am gonna let it ride. My “desperation” (nicely illustrated in posts past) was fueled by a deadline in my head. That need to get rid of the pressure – for me to be married by a certain age and possibly start a family. To have someone in my life so I wouldn’t be lonely. Pressure came from my family (the older generation always wants to see you nicely paired off as if that will solve your life problems) but mostly it was from myself. Images of what I believed to be love and the lure of the boyfriend/girlfriend status blinded me and I couldn’t see much else. Somewhere along the way, the veil lifted a bit. It’s not that I don’t have a desire to fall in love. It’s just knowing that the picture in my head is not what reality will bring.

I don’t need a man. I really don’t. I can take care of myself – self-sufficient in nearly every way. But a lifetime companion…it’s something I want. But never, ever…what I need.

What I seek now is companionship – passionate yes…loving yes…but someone to trust and care for. To have reciprocation. To actually propel me to want to compromise. But these are all characteristics I’m listing in a vacuum. The scarier truth is I feel so very uncertain of what will happen when confronted with a viable suitor. What will I do?

On most days, I choose to believe I can be the adult and just tally ho. Other days, I want to crawl into a hole and hope it can work out with minimal help from me or basically require nothing of me. I’m not particularly eager to watch my emotions roller coaster once again. To hit those high highs only to be followed by the low lows. Yes, faith is hard to maintain.

Alas, over thinking can only help so much. When such circumstances arrive (should I be so lucky), I’ll have to take it day by day. Hopefully, I won’t doom it with thoughts of my history and I’ll greet the gent with optimism of what we will be, not what I once had.

Honestly, I do not know. I recognize some of my tendencies and I fear them. Do I appear clingy or am I just adorably quirky? Who can control what the male mind will think of his lady friend? I can’t. But I can listen to myself and speak my particular truth. When you do that, it’s not as much of a fail, is it? It’s one thing to think it…another thing to put it into action. Does practice make it easier? Minimally. Still hard as shit cuz people are fucking weird and unpredictable. Why can’t they just do what I want them to?!?!?! Ugh!

Relationships are hard. Short or long. Casual or formal. It’s all just fucking hard. At this point, I’m going to trust my gut. Take it a day at a time and try not to berate myself for not living up to what I think a “normal” single gal should be. I’m trying really fucking hard to not replay all the scenes and wish I tried a different tactic (cooler, more aloof, more fun loving…ugh, am I Gidget??!?). I’m learning to forgive myself for not living up to these societal imposed norms of what I think I’m supposed to be and to what other idiots think too. Because if you think there is a normal way a single person should be, YOU ARE A FUCKING IDIOT. I’m forgiving myself for BEING ME.

It’s a goddamn struggle – the internal battle we like to wage within ourselves. Always being uncertain of making the wrong/right moves. And that’s part of the human condition. We are not constantly self-assured. We are not constantly certain. We beat ourselves up because we aren’t those things.

Know what? I choose to accept these innate flaws as part of my makeup. That some nights I will cry about my single status and some days I will rejoice in it. That some days I will miss the men I should not but most days I won’t. That my heart will sometimes ache when I see couples hand in hand but also appreciating when I can run at my own speed. All of this…is OK. It’s all fucking OK. And that, in itself, can be so fucking hard to be OK with all the time. So you guessed it – that’s OK too.

It’s like my friend says (and it used to piss me off until I started to get it) – it’s alright cuz it’s how you were feeling at the time. It would tick me off before cuz it seemed like a cop out. And people can use it as that. People love excuses. But I’m not hiding behind that. I remain accountable for all my actions. It’s just accepting that I cannot be 100% awesome all the time. That sometimes my actions aren’t kind and sometimes they’re not fair. But I am living true to that moment and I do give a damn about my actions and the consequences of them. I do think about what I do and what I’ve done. I try because believe it all matters. Kindness matters.

I am who I am and I’ll like who I like (however rare a phenomenon that may be). And while my heart still feels battered and unsure, at least I’m well aware of how I got here and the fun I had along the way. Where I’ll go from here, I don’t know. From the outside, it has seemed quite dormant (and can feel that way too). But from where I stand now, it seems a lot more clear with a much more assured driver at the wheel. High five bitches! And tally ho indeed!


The Bronx Representing…

Decided to be more passively active online. By this, I mean I now log into my online dating app every other day or more. As such, my inbox has been getting a few more hits. While none are particularly…appealing, they are, as always, WILDLY ENTERTAINING.

The two current faves are boys that reside in the Bronx.

On Friday, I was asked if I have ever taken a man’s virginity before. Not sure if this was an offer or just a conversation starter. I do wish he made it more clear. Alas, I was unable to type at the time as I was doubled over in laughter.

And just a few minutes ago, I was told my pictures were nice…and this fellow (from the Bronx like J. Lo) has a submissive “friend” who he will “make pay” (his words) for my pedicure. It wasn’t the most clearly written or well thought out email so I had to re-read twice. I mean, there wasn’t even a lead up to the submissive bit. It was just hi, nice pix and my submissive will…

Sigh. What happened to a little seduction first, people?

Sadly, also was unable to reply as his picture was most UNAPPEALING. That said, I think I could use a new color for my toes.

Happy fucking new year indeed!


Should Old Acquaintance Be Forgot…Or Something Like That…

Depending on when I publish this, it’ll be either my last entry of the year or the first entry of the new year.

The way I write and edit, I’m guessing the latter.

The nitty gritty of it – 2013 was an excellent year. Emotionally and physically. My heart remembered its capability and also discovered how boundaries are not only good but necessary. And bodily, in better shape than I have been in ages…or possibly ever. Hah!

As I am outed as blogging on NYE, let me just say I’ve done my fair share of hair-raising and mind erasing good fun and also since Xmas gifted me with a cold, sitting this one out was a no brainer.

To be honest, I haven’t really been doing the whole year end’s epiphany thinking. But as much as I might not subscribe to resolutions, I also chose today to clean out all my excess…well excess. Three bags to the donation center later, I feel happily lighter. Hopefully, I don’t fill up the spaces with new purchases. Dare to dream.

But…since it is the last moment of this year and one is forced to reflect, I dare say I found a bit more contentment and peace. Not so much that my demons have been laid to rest but understanding I will always battle those little devils (they don’t exactly go away) and that’s ok. It’s all ok. I’ll forgive myself a little more for all my over thinking…as time goes by.

Other reflection – time is a great gift. It’s constantly reminding me how far I’ve come and how far I have to go. It’s the only thing that will actually allow the heart to heal. Have I gained a greater insight on how to be a super single person? Not really. But I’m always becoming a better version of me. Bruises everywhere but I’m still ready to fight. Mostly. After a good rest. ;)

Still, what does 2014 hold for me? One word. Renovation. Of my kitchen. And maybe there will be other renovations too. But I’m gonna let those find me. Opting to still try (always try) but not try too hard.

Will I finally hit the dating scene again? Will my schedule finally slow down? So far, 2014 is full of possibilities as we hit the end of holiday doldrums and the middle of the crappy winter weather.

Well, one minute to go and looks like I was wrong. Last entry of the year. And ya know, being wrong doesn’t seem as bad as it once did. Happy New Year y’all! :)


Lady Vengeance Finds Some Faith

What comes around goes around. I love that saying. So many notable quotables are either overwhelmingly optimistic or way too cynical. This one just asks for balance in the world. And this is the one, as more time goes by, proves to always be true.

Naturally, there is a not-so-hidden wickedness in this idea. An eye for an eye and so on. I realize putting out such bad energy is not good for the soul, blah, blah, blah. That passes. But it never passes completely. It just lessens over time. It lessens cuz you no longer think or wish it but if the subject comes up, the pang is still there.

In this world of immediate gratification and scorned folks, paybacks are always on the menu but we never quite know when it will be served. Life is sneaky that way. And while it is a universally held belief that what goes up must come down, I had my doubts. Justice isn’t always served while on your watch. Sometimes, it happens when your off duty. So off duty you don’t even give a fuck anymore. But trust me, it happens, even if it’s not the way you pictured it.

What spurred this revelation you ask? Oddly enough, it came from some sideline viewing of a breakup. I have no real tie to the story and know one of the parties through work. The gist is this – his long time on-again, off-again who he never deemed good enough to marry found someone who does and now he’s re-thinking his whole philosophy. More context, yes? Well not two weeks ago, the same fellow was dating like a fiend in order to get away from on-again, off-again in order to find someone (in a more methodical fashion) who he deemed more worthy of his lifelong affection. I mostly tuned this out cuz said gent has always spoken of this particular lady in an offhand manner, which due to my current male hate state of mind, was I needed to avoid. No thanks. But suffice to say, his story, at the time, did not extinguish my fire. Blah blah blah. Fast forward and oh, the mighty have fallen.

Do I sound glib or heartless? I don’t mean to be. It’s sad to see someone be so devastated but it’s also something that is of his own doing. My sympathy might be higher if the circumstances did not hold a certain repugnancy for me but in truth, they do. They most passionately do.

It’s always upset me when relationships are so very lopsided. Not that it’s not common but as per usual in my world, the ladies are the ones overcompensating for these meandering fucks aka men. Oh, did I mention, it’s usually the guys I’m friends with? Yah…not great.

Maybe cuz I’m a lady or maybe I just root for the underdog but I’ve always found it so upsetting when one refers to their partner in such disrespectful ways behind her back. It’s not the usual couple bitching either. It’s the kind of offhand manner in which they speak of their partners. As if they don’t matter (cuz they don’t). But they’re all hugs and kisses when they are with them. It’s not that they don’t have affection for their “loved” ones, it’s that they love themselves more. It makes me wonder if he’s actually invested in her or just lonely enough to “settle” for the current edition. Watching that dynamic always makes me a little sick and a lot angry. There is no kindness. I’ve found that whenever this happens, especially if they speak ill of their partner from the start, they’ve already marked the end. At the most cynical, these people are simply placeholders until the person they really want arrives. At its most truthful, it’s that these are people are afraid to be alone and need companionship to fill their void. Fuck ‘em.

As I said, man hate was at a particular high.

So, color me surprised, that such a “sad” event has actually had a weirdly profound effect on me. While my man hate was actually waning on its own, this has helped squelch it a little bit more. Perhaps it was watching a man in agony over a lady he’s pushed aside so many times. Or maybe it was just seeing the universe in action. I honestly do not wish this man pain but seeing the world mete out its own brand of justice filled me with…hope. Odd right? Life is so funny that way. I cry and then I laugh.

My friend sent me a story about a male newlywed who realized marriage wasn’t for him. This was super misleading as it was more about the affirmation of love and marriage than what the title would suggest. Basically, on the brink of his wedding, the guy was concerned if he was ready for marriage/if he wanted to spend the rest of his life with this girl, etc. In seeking some sort of answer, he went to his dad, who schooled him as such – marriage isn’t for you but for your partner. It’s about lack of selfishness. It’s about giving. It’s about wanting to love someone more than yourself. About making them happy for the rest of their lives (not you, well, not ALL about you) and they, hopefully, in turn for you.

At first I was puzzled cuz it seemed to go against all logic. Make the person happy with no thought to yourself? Huh? What? And then it started to make more sense. It’s not that our selfishness will not find us. But it’s the desire to redirect that. To think of someone other than me, me me. The best example of pure and unconditional love is between a parent and child. The kid comes first. Period. And when my mind followed that road, the rest of the article’s logic kicked in.

When I think of the couples that do work, I realize they do share the quality the newlywed’s dad spoke of – they think of the other person first. Not always. But a lot. I’ve seen my friends do acts of kindness big and small (that can easily be taken for granted) for their significant others and it’s purely for their sake. To be their support system. To put whatever their needs are at the moment above their own. To always think of themselves as a unit. Time will tell whether they last the lifetime but their relationships do seem healthy. They just make sense. Bottom line, they don’t make me roll my eyes.

These other ones…the ones filled with poor decisions made in easy moments by weak fucks. Those just make me mad. The focus of love is no longer on the whole but on the part so why should it ever be a surprise when it falls apart?

My friend once told me I love hard, real fucking hard. I understand that better everyday. I’m fiercely loyal and true. And when you break my heart, I still find justifications for the actions. Understanding actions where no consideration has been dealt to me. How I would put them above me. Thinking about all of this within the context of that article put my head on a bit straighter too. All this time, I felt so foolish for caring above my load. But now, I see it isn’t so much that I was pathetic. It’s just the focus of my affections was off, not the actual affection itself.

Isn’t it funny…when something ends, the hardest part is always re-learning to put yourself first again. To let everyone else be second place. To make sure what he wants and who he is no longer has any weight in my life. I never fully realized how beautiful that actually can be. To have been able to put aside my notions for that moment in time. To love and want to love even if you aren’t loved equally in return. Unrequited can suck but knowing I have the capacity for that type of affection is also a reward. It just doesn’t feel that way at the time.

Also revelatory is being thankful for the guys that didn’t work out after all. In the moment, you want nothing more than to win their affections forever and ever! But when that moment passes, you realize – oh wait, you were never worthy to begin with. You could never give me what I needed. Seeing that darkness turn to light…that all those horrible turns these men did unto me were actually gifts. Ha! It’s not the first time I’ve thought about it in this context but it’s been long enough where it warrants epiphany status. Thanks assholes for breaking my heart. Not so much for the breaking but for teaching me lessons I couldn’t have learned any other way.

So now I acknowledge. I know how to love and I know how I want to be loved and how I deserved to be love. There is some wiggle room in there but not a ton. What distresses me, in all these terrible man circumstances, is how being with someone who has no idea what they want can be so incredibly detrimental. Perhaps it’s not just lopsidedness of affection of a lack of focus and direction. One side has it. The other doesn’t know what the fuck they’re doing. Fun times!

My friend recently told me it’s great that I know what I want cuz so few do. I can’t say I have my life mapped out in any particular way but I have fairly strong (not set, note the difference) ideas of what I want and deserve in my life. I don’t have some weird rom com checklist of man characteristics I need fulfilled. I know that even if I had a list, I’d throw it away the minute I met someone I liked. It’s how it goes.

I’m aware of compromise and I’m aware of my shortcomings too. But hearing my dear friend say that gave me such reassurance. So many times, I’ve been chided for my definitive nature. For my passionate beliefs one way or the other. For my morals that might border on self-righteousness. That perhaps I should lower my standards or give people more chances, even though I already know the answer. I’ve doubted myself so much cuz I let myself be susceptible to everyone else’s doubts. As such, I am constantly reevaluating my morals, my belief system, my way of being.

Well, I’m a bit more tired and more weary from this well-worn road. I will always wonder if my road is the best one I could have traveled. What I will carry with me NOW is that the road I chose WAS the best road because it was the road I needed to go down AT THE TIME. I will own this.

Choices always seem easier in hindsight, don’t they? Being plagued by misgivings is a part of life but it doesn’t mean I have to always fall under its pressures.

My friend was right. I do know what I want. What I lacked was the confidence to stand by my convictions. I’m not an easily swayed person but I am a curious one. If odd paths look enticing, I will try them out but if they’re not for me, they’re not for me. I can say that now. But maybe not always back then.

Life can be paved with regret and I think every life should have a few. If only to say, I made some mistakes and yet here I stand. When things don’t go my way, my mind always hits all the details. As if wearing my hair down versus up one day would suddenly turn the tide. Why is it so human of us to always think ONE thing affects the entirety? The butterfly effect is not always true to life.

I still struggle with my “way” as I ramble down my current path. I will always second guess certain actions and not fully trust in the adage that things will work out for the best. Too neurotic and human to trust in faith so easily. But on days like today, maybe I can.

So my resurgence of faith has come out of something sad for my acquaintance. To find faith in someone’s tragedy is oddly sweet. Granted it’s not my sadness for once but even if it were, I think it would be alright if another saw a silver lining on my dark cloud. It’s befitting of the balance. It would be more acceptable to say I met a wonderful couple and they made me believe in love again. But alas, in my twisted manner, it is the undoing of an incongruent pair that has made me believe life can and will always find its equilibrium.

That, and karma is a motherfucking bitch (and one I hope will be devastatingly kind to me…and maybe not so kind to others). I’m a good person (really!) but I’m still a human! Always human.


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