Friday, August 14, 2009

Date Number Seven: The Ex-Boyfriend Non-Date

Long before I broke up with my ex-boyfriend, I tried to write a list of fifty things I knew about him but only came up with thirty, which should illustrate that I learned very little about him during the course of a year-long relationship. I must have been feeling as if something was missing between us, so I added a point for all of the things I liked about him and subtracted a point for all of the things I disliked, in order to gain some understanding. I noticed that the dislikes outweighed the likes but I thought that in time, we would grow together and that I liked him enough to overlook his flaws.

That list stayed in my journal, forgotten, until I pulled it out once more, to work through my feelings, after I broke things off with my ex. (Minus five points to him for being too cowardly to initiate the break-up himself). We had agreed to remain friends after the break up and he invited me over one Thursday night to watch Hell's Kitchen and eat Thai food, as a love of good food was one of the few things we did have in common. When I got there - we had not seen each other in weeks, mind you - my ex was overjoyed to see me. He was kind, attentive, and very touchy-feely in a way that made me really, really confused. He initiated a lot of hugging, kissing, and kept saying that he loved me and that he missed me, yet, we were still broken up. What was he thinking? Did he want to get back together or try to work things out? I could not help but become a little bit more than hopeful because, despite the fact that I had broken things off months ago, I still loved him.

We were being cute and cuddly when I noticed something on his neck, coming up out of the collar of his shirt. It was a big hickey. I asked him about it and he tried to play it off as if it was nothing but the jig was up. I couldn't blame him for moving on with his life, but I could certainly blame him for being a classless, tacky bastard who plays around with the heart of his ex-girlfriend while full-well knowing that he had been with another girl the previous night. Which is what he told me had happened. (Minus fifty points, you dumb-ass jerk!) Couldn't he have waited to ask me to hang out after the hickey disappeared?

I couldn't stay any longer. I grabbed my bag and wished him well but said it was probably best if we didn't try to be friends. He walked me to the bus stop and said he would wait with me, that he wanted to wait with me, even though I told him he could go. All I wanted to do was break down and bawl my eyes out but I couldn't become a wreck in front of him, so I tried to brave it out. He held me, kissed me, and wiped away the occasional tear on my chin as we stood under the bus stop awning. The bus came and I got on. He waved to me from outside the bus and blew me a kiss one more time and that was the last I saw of him.

For the next few days, I was a complete mess, confused, depressed, distracted at work, and crying my eyes out every moment that I was alone. What I couldn't figure out was - why? Why was I so upset and hurt when I knew in my heart of hearts that we were not right for each other?

The revelation came to me two weeks later, after many journal entries and a late night chat with a Facebook friend (not "Jim" the therapist, that would've been funny). During the course of that conversation, I said something that resonated within me. I was offering some pithy words of wisdom and said "when you love someone, you accept them for who they are, despite their flaws". (Plus a point to me for knowing the word pithy. I rock.)

I had accepted my ex's flaws but he could not, or would not, accept my flaws and this lack of acceptance is what eventually broke my heart. I was not upset about losing him. I was upset because I had lost something I believed in. I believe that someday someone will love me despite my flaws, that someone will love me because of my flaws. My ex had taken that hope, that belief, away from me, he made me feel like I was unworthy, unwanted - unloved. Oh, there's no denying that my ex still loved me, but not enough. Not enough.

When I listened to my own advice, I realized that those feelings of being lesser would well up inside me every time I saw my ex. I did not want to feel like less, I wanted to feel like more, so I cut off all avenues of communication. My ex called me again and I tried to impress upon him the fact that he had hurt me and that he was being selfish by trying to remain friends. I don't think he quite understood what I meant, but he may, in due time. He does understand that I don't want him to call anymore, that I won't answer his calls, e-mails, or texts.

Someday when I'm with the right person, I may feel magnanimous enough to try and be friends again. But then again, when that does happen I might be feeling so loved and fulfilled that the thought of my ex may not even cross my mind.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

30 Second Pause

I heard back from a guy who asked me out weeks ago at a karaoke bar. He sent me a message saying he had met someone else, which is why we couldn't go out on our first date.

Huh? What?

Dude, I am not crying in my cornflakes over a date that never happened. I appreciated the follow-up and he was a nice guy for giving me the 4-1-1 but this is New York. Sometimes people don't call back. Hike your pants up, and calm the hell down.

However, I couldn't get over the nagging feeling that perhaps he had seen my blog through a mutual friend. He mentioned the word "multi-tasking", ie. dating more than one person at a time, and suggested that I might not be too hurt about the non-date as I might be too busy. (I'm not hurt. Duh. We never went out, duh!) If he had seen my blog and decided not to go on a date for that reason alone, that's fine. No skin off my back.

I also got a text from the "Big Fat Liar", who asked what went wrong. I didn't have the heart to hurt his feelings and tell him that he was a weirdo, so I told him I wasn't looking for a relationship. He was nice and polite and that was the end of that.

After these past few weeks of dating, my biggest let-down was that I hadn't heard back from "Pete". We had two good dates, had texted a few times more, but couldn't meet up because of work or other commitments, and silence. No more phone calls, no more e-mails, no more texts. I couldn't call him, otherwise I'd risk looking like a chump, (I am adverse to anything that makes me look like a chump) and well, if he wasn't calling me back then perhaps he wasn't good enough to make the cut anyway. He certainly had enough time to give me another call.

It's back to square one all over again.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Date Number Six: Therapy, anyone?

I'm way behind on writing, mostly because I've been busy dating, living, working, but also because I've been going through various emotional states. I've been depressed, then happy, then depressed again on this ka-razy roller coaster ride that is called dating in the big apple.

There's a whole barrelful of monkeys that I could say about "Jim" the therapist, but in the interest of keeping things short I'll say that he was a jerk and a half at the end, and I'm oh so glad our short spate of dating ended without too many hard feelings on either side. Still, I've been known to hold a grudge.

I met "Jim" online, again via Craigslist (damn, don't I ever learn?!?), after he responded to my original ad looking for some lovin', ie. a date. "Jim" and I talked, e-mailed, chatted, and became Facebook friends before we even met for the first time. He was nice, funny, and reliable (plus a point for calling when you say you're going to call). He was cute enough I suppose, though we had only seen photos of each other. We finally had a chance to meet one night and "Jim" wanted to grab some food so we met for dinner at Coppola's, an Italian restaurant in the Gramercy Park/Kips Bay area. We hit it off over dinner and afterward we crossed the street and went to Rodeo Bar for drinks. There was some band from Texas playing hoe-down music and I wanted to shake my thang, southern-style. "Jim" said he was a horrible dancer but a little coaxing finally got him off his rump and boogie-ing with me until I was laughing hysterically, because he was right. He was a horrible dancer. I am ethnic, after all, so I was forced to deduct two points for his godawful white-boy rhythm (but add three points for him being cool about it).

Suffice it to say that Jim and I seemed to like each other enough, and during the week he texted me more than I was used to and kept in contact often. It got a bit annoying when he would, say, text at midnight on a work day, but I appreciated his efforts at keeping in touch. (Minus half a point for giving off the creepy stalker vibe.) Still, he didn't seem like a psycho-killer or like a foot-licker (ewww... foot fetishes are gross) so when he invited me over to his place to watch Family Guy and order take-out, I happily agreed.

I got there and pawed through his pad, through his stuff looking for signs of an ex-girlfriend, or serial killer-rapist objects like ropes or knives, and told him I was doing so, which he laughed at. When I figured out that "Jim" was just a normal dude, I settled down some and so, we watched TV, flirted, ate take-out, and just chilled. Things got a bit hot and heavy there for a bit, it was all good in the hood as we kept it PG-13, and when I walked to the train, I thought things over. "Jim" was nice but I wasn't quite convinced that he was for me. He had a Masters degree, but he could be a bit spacey. He was a former drug user (shudder) but didn't do any drugs now. He was once married and was now divorced. He was a Christian but not a zealot. I felt that while he wasn't perfect, there were some good vibes going on, and it seemed like neither of us was ready to jump into a relationship. All in all, things were looking up.

Then the miscommunication happened that ruined everything, but saved me from dating a guy who would have been all wrong for me in the long run.

"Jim" and I were supposed to meet on Saturday to hang out but I was busy at home, cleaning, doing errands, and trying to get my life back together, since it felt like I was coming apart at the seams. When we spoke earlier in the day, I left things tenuous, meaning I would call him if I was free that night and we would chill. I thought I had conveyed that to "Jim" but he seemed to think that we had concrete plans, which we didn't. We hadn't set up a time, place, or activity, so I thought that it was understood that if we both felt like going out, that we would do so. That is to say, going out that night was not a "given". I decided not to go out with him that night and when he didn't call me back to follow-up, I figured he didn't want to meet up after all.

In my Saturday night loneliness and boredom, I posted another anonymous ad on Craigslist, thinking that I hadn't really met the kind of guy I was looking for the first time around. I was filtering through my replies, when lo and behold, there was an e-mail from "Jim". He had replied to my second ad, not knowing that I had posted again or that the ad could have possibly been written by the same person! WTF??? Seriously, dude, I have to minus like ten points for that kind of tomfoolery.

I was shocked and surprised that he was still trolling around on Craigslist looking for chicks. Um... granted that's exactly what I was doing (minus the chick part), but geez-louise, come on now. I am conducting an imperfect experiment in dating and love, which may or may not require a vigorous search for a date on Craigslist. He...well, he was just being a player. This was a really odd coincidence. How could he have responded to another ad of mine? I couldn't shut off the thoughts that started running through my head. Maybe he dated a lot of girls at once. Maybe he was always looking for girls on Craigslist and responded to all of the ads. Maybe he was looking for another girl because I wouldn't give him some nookie. Maybe I wasn't the kind of girl he was looking for either.

I felt like I couldn't be a hypocrite and judge him for continuing to "check out the market" but then he became a little psycho-scary and the whole thing exploded right there and then. When "Jim" texted me and asked me what happened to our date, I texted him back saying that I didn't think we had concrete plans. I had tried to contact him via Facebook to let him know I didn't want to go out. I did tell him that I was sorry (I'm not a jerk, after all) and that it was due to a lack of communication on my part, but he wouldn't let it go. He kept harping on it and harping on it, and making me feel like an ass. Granted, I deserved some flack, but not a boatload of it. When "Jim" started being really abusive, that's when I stopped answering his texts. No reply. Delete.

The next day we talked for a bit and tried to go over what happened. Neither of us wanted to be cruel (we had swapped spit after all), so I apologized profusely for being a flake and he apologized profusely for being mean. He did admit that he had been drinking a lot, by himself that night, which is why he was such a jerk. (Minus a point.) Nobody likes a mean drunk. We talked about possibly getting together again in a non-committal way, but really both of us were just looking for an out. He mentioned his religion and how he really wanted to focus on that and didn't want to get involved with anyone. I told him I had a vile, incurable disease that made it difficult for me to have a relationship with anyone ever. We both agreed to let things go and we're still Facebook friends but we don't talk anymore. Scratch that - I'm defriending him. No reply. Delete.

I think I've learned my lesson. Next time, I'll call a person to let him or her know I won't show up, even if it's a tenuous meet-up. Oh, and I'm also going to stop trolling for dates on Craigslist.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Date Number Five: Holden Caulfield

I finally got a somewhat decent reply from a guy via my ad on Craigslist and we spontaneously met up at a sushi bar one night after work. Fortunately, I had dressed up for work that day so I was looking cute enough to go on a random date on a 'school night'.

Yet from the minute I walked into the restaurant, I was already writing this date off as a wash. First of all, "Holden" looked a lot like an ex-boyfriend of mine, which means he was fairly cute and very hip-hop, California stylin' and all that jazz. (Minus a point? Plus a point? I can't decide.) He was a Spanish, Italian, German mix but he looked like a Southeastern European, almost Serbian, I would say. He was wearing loose fitting pants, a Hawaiian print shirt, a black cadet cap, and listening to his iPod while drinking a beer. He definitely had the chill graphic artist/skater vibe to him and I somehow had the feeling that we wouldn't relate very well.

The date got off to a rocky start, partially because I was already on the defense, and partially because we weren't really sure what to say to one another or how to relate, even after all of those e-mail exchanges. He talked about his rough childhood in the Deep South, a life of poverty and abuse, and how he worked his way up in the world. I 'uh-huhed' in the appropriate places and I talked about, well, I talked about nothing. I felt like a huge square compared to him and for once, I had nothing to say, so I shut my yap, except to pour the occasional shot of sake down my throat. He told me about his apartment, his job, the boss he wanted to punch in the face, his mom, his sister, everything. He was a self-proclaimed lush and I love drinking, so in the hopes of having a better time, I drank. Lots.

We finished eating dinner and I offered to split the bill since we had spent so much (Minus a point to him for letting me split - girls should never have to go dutch on the first date) and we went off to find another bar. I couldn't say what on earth convinced me to hang out with him some more except the fact that "Holden" didn't seem to want to jump my bones immediately, and that was refreshing. And somewhat upsetting. Was there a goober in one of my nostrils? Did the cover-up on that nasty zit rub off? Hmm. I'd have to check a mirror - fast.

We went to Blue and Gold, a dive in the East Village and I drank some more, while he talked about how much he hated yuppies and all of the privileged kids, the trust fund babies that had gentrified areas like Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Park Slope. I wondered if he was suggesting that I was one of them. I understood his bitterness, it was something I had experienced once before, but I couldn't relate to that anymore. I had decided long ago to stop being bitter and to make it a point to make my life better, to make it what I wanted it to be, rather than to envy and hate others for having the things I wanted. I felt at that moment that "Holden" and I came from different worlds, had different perspectives on life, and that we would never see eye to eye.

As we left the bar, "Holden" kept trying to poke me and I was drunk enough to threaten to put him in a headlock if he did it again. He dared me to do it and so I did. (Plus a point for being cute.) I put him in a headlock and gave him a noogie like nobody's business. Little did I know that his revenge would take the form of something out of a scene from Catcher in the Rye. "Holden" went into a bodega bought a bottle of water and when he came out he asked me if I wanted some. I said yes, but instead of handing me the bottle, he took a big swig and like a human fountain, pursed his lips and squirted water out all over me.

Not to be outdone, I grabbed the water, took a huge swig, and sprayed water all over him. Soon we were jumping around, all over the street, dodging scared pedestrians, and squirting water all over each other like the boy and girl that Holden Caulfield watches from the window of his hotel in the book. It was crazy. It was nuts. It was the most fun I'd had with a guy in a really long time.

"Holden" walked me to the train station (plus a point for being a gentleman and walking me to my train) and it was getting late, so we said goodnight. We both seemed to like each other after that little escapade, despite our differences. Maybe I don't need a deep and meaningful connection right now. Maybe I just need to go with the flow and have a good time, backwash and all.

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

Date Number Four: The Younger Guy

After a bit of a dry spell (is two days of no dating a dry spell?), I decided to stir up trouble for myself and went online to see what kind of guys I could meet via online dating services. My first stop was with Craigslist, because it's free and weird, and I'm weird so perhaps I could meet a good guy through it after all.

I posted an ad and then waded through a ton of bad e-mail responses. Half of the guys didn't send a picture, couldn't write or spell, and the ones who did were in their 40's and out of my date-able age-range. I even got a few replies asking "Are you real? If you are, send me a pic and I'll send one back." Not likely, jerkwad. I posted the ad, so you send a pic and write a few coherent sentences. Dem's da rules. Otherwise, no deal. My ad specifically said that I do not do drugs and would not date someone who does and my favorite response was, "I'm 420 friendly. Is that cool?"

So after sifting through bad responses, I decided to take the initiative into my own hands and started browing through the Men looking for Women section. I only answered one ad since it was not:

A. a guy looking for a one night stand
B. a guy looking to date with the possibility of a one-night stand
C. a guy talking about the size of his package or posting pictures of his package - ew!

"Greg" and I exchanged quite a few e-mails (and we seemed to click somewhat before we decided to meet up at a bar in Hell's Kitchen. He was as cute as his pictures suggested and he even had a bit of a bad boy aura to him, with his tattoos and motorcyle-riding ways (plus a point for Fonzie like coolness). BUT, he was younger than me, oh so much younger (minus a point for being a younger guy), which he conveniently never mentioned in his ad. I mentally kicked myself for forgetting to ask his age in our e-mails. He was 23 years-old in fact, the exact same age as my ex. After having two long-term relationships with younger men fail horribly (the stuff of FAIL - ha!), I was over dating younger guys but the allure still lingered. Youthful, charming, funny, and generous, younger men were, and still are, fantastic dates and boyfriends. On the other hand they're focused on their careers, unable to commit, unsure of who they are and their place in the world. I was not ready to get involved with a younger guy again.

I put aside my apprehensions and decided to just go with the flow and have a fun night out. If things worked out, great, if not then, oh well. "Greg" turned out to be very mature and cool and bought our drinks all night. We talked about his amazing childhood as an army brat in Korea (plus a point for having lived an awesome life) and I countered back with my bookishness and my unhealthy obsession with from the Black Eyed Peas. Having lived most of my life in New York, I couldn't really compare my adventures to his but he didn't seem to mind. All in all, we got along really well and after many, many drinks, we wandered up to the Taco Box near Columbus Circle for tacos and burritos.

I, however, failed to consider the negative side effects that hot salsa could have on my gastrointestinal tract because I kept tasting tacos long into the wee hours of the morning. Thank god I wasn't burpin' or tootin' away, that would have been embarrassing, but the taste of freakin' tacos stayed with me when we ventured into the park. All I could think of was that one episode of South Park where Cartman pretends that his hand is a singer named Jennifer Lopez. This fake "Jennifer Lopez" meets Ben Affleck and, while they're kissing, Ben Affleck says, "Oh Jenny, your kisses taste like tacos!"

When we kissed, I kept hearing Cartman's falsetto singing "taco-flavored kisses". Dude, totally not how I wanted to be remembered. I would forever be the "taco-girl" in my mind, and perhaps his if he could taste it on my breath. "Greg" was sweet and nice and there was nothing slobbery or gross about his kisses but there was also no spark. Zip, zilch, nothing whatsoever. Whatever is necessary to fan the flames or arouse my interest was entirely missing. To me, it seemed like just two mouths meeting out of loneliness. Plus the taste of tacos.

So you can meet a normal, nice guy through Craigslist. Maybe I'm just old and jaded, sad and lonely, but after my date with "Greg" I started wondering where everything was headed. Why am I dating? What's the point of meeting guy after guy if I never experience the ever elusive 'spark'? I started wondering whether I even wanted to date, whether it's better to date or to slowly suffocate myself with Haagen Daaz and red velvet cupcakes, until I'm fat and old and at least happy being alone, rolls and chub surrounding me like a blanket. I know some fat and old people who are perfectly happy in their relationships. How come they get to find love and I don't?

I was starting to wonder if there is any magic left in the world at all.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

30 Second Pause

"Pete" called again and we went out on a second date that was even better than the first. I am still wowed by how amazing making out all night can be and that I am just as happy not going the distance. Note to self, add 'no-hanky-panky' to the rules. Doing the horizontal mambo might complicate my life. I am like a nun in a sex-shop, the possibilities are there but I just can't take them.

Whew, after all this dating, I need a break for a few days. I also need to figure out where that odd smell in my kitchen is coming from. Peee-ewww. Funkadelic.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Date Number Three: The Russian Yogi

I meet a guy and I think I know him enough about him, but I don't really know him until a situation arises that shows his true colors. I need something to test his mettle, or my own in this case. My Russian yoga partner and I met in a free yoga class in Riverside Park and continued to run into each other at other yoga classes, so it was inevitable that we began to talk for a while after class. We hadn't gone on a official date per se, at least not until now.

He was a raw foodie, meaning he doesn't eat anything cooked - ever! Everything has to be organic and unprocessed, things such as raw vegetables, raw fruit, steak tartar, nuts, and raw grains instead of pasta or bread. It's an unusual lifestyle choice and "Yogi" wanted to introduce me to some "raw food" so I was about to find out the length and breadth of how unusual his lifestyle was.

He picked me up near my job (plus half a point for the car since it's a "smart car") and we drove down to Bonobo's by Madison Square Park for some raw food. I am amazed that a place like that exists and makes enough money to survive. We ordered raw pineapple and coconut pies, the crust of which was made out of chopped nuts and dates, and some raw coconut water. He wanted to sit in the park to eat and chill. The pie was cold and good and crunchy, and the coconut chai juice was somewhat drinkable if not tasteless (plus a point for twigs-n-berries food not entirely sucking).

I decided not to hold his lifestyle against him, and we were talking about his childhood in Russia and his interest in wrestling, when he started going on about the gay men in wrestling. Then he mentioned his "theories" on why some men are gay. Some crazy quack scientist said that being gay is the result of imbalances with the pituitary gland and "Yogi" believed this guy. Er, what? Oh my. So I told him my sister is a lesbian and he said, "Oh, well most women are gay because of some horrible experience with a man." I am seething inside but I must be polite, "No, that wasn't her experience," I tell him. "Well, something else must be wrong with her," he says.

Oh no. You didn't.

Minus, minus, minus points ad infinitum for even suggesting such a thing you underdeveloped primate. I am gay-friendly, obviously, and fairly livid. I think he senses my annoyance and quickly changes the subject, so I let the conversation continue and we get up and stroll around the park until I'm calmer. We sit down again and he has his arm on the bench behind me and, after talking for a while, he wraps his forearm around my neck and is forcefully pulling me towards him for a kiss. I squirming to avoid this dude's puckered lips, trying to manuever myself out of a chokehold that this neanderthal has put me in. "Dude!" I yell at him in the middle of the park, once I wrench myself away. "You can't do that! I'm a fucking girl! That shit hurts." Fortunately, I'm not in pain, but if Stone Cold Steve Austin was there at that moment, I'd make sure that he'd deliver the stunner to this yahoo.

I am also secretly wondering if "Yogi" is gay (plus a point if he actually is).

No really, it all makes sense. The homophobia, the 'wrestling' moves, the smart car. I pointedly look at my phone and tell him that I have to get home to get some work done, but he wants to have a drink. And now I know I am a fool, and too good of a sport, and too good for him. So we head over to the bar Live Bait, which is what I am feeling like at the moment, and we have a drink. He orders white wine because he can't drink beer (it's processed) and now I'm sure he must be hiding in the closet.

The icing on the cake, so to speak, were his final words of parting. I gave him a hug goodnight (He is - now past tense - was my yoga partner so I had to be kind and polite) and he said, "You have a birthday coming up, right? I hope you're not expecting anything because I don't do birthdays."

The fact that I was going home alone was enough of a present. So now I have to find a new yoga partner. I think I'll pick a girl this time. Does that make me a lesbian? I'm telling you, this is dating in New York. I could not make this stuff up.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Date Number Two: The Nice Jewish Boy

I met "Pete" at a party for volunteers, as I regularly do volunteer work through many different programs. This assured me that he was at least a decent, sane, and caring guy although he could possibly be doing volunteer work as a sleazy way to pick up decent, sane chicks. However, I didn't get that impression.

When I first met him he seemed a bit quirky and he said he played a lot of golf, which was a bit of a turn-off. Not so interested. Dads play golf. Bankers play golf. Lawyers, and movie stars, and high rollers play golf. I hadn't written him off yet but I didn't think we had a whole lot in common.

He seemed interested in me and we kept talking, and he said he was a lawyer and Jewish, which is fine, but made him a double no-no in my book. Not only did he have an intense, time-consuming career, he was bound to have a Jewish mother who would make it point to see it that her nice, Jewish boy got married to, or at least considered marrying, a nice Jewish girl. I've already been there and done that, and had my heart broken by "the nice, Jewish boy" so I was reluctant to go any further. I started talking to the other volunteers at the party and got a bit tipsy and overexcited when a director of marketing at Scholastic said she could send me a copy of an upcoming YA novel "Lips Touch". I was bubbly and ecstatic and when I gave my contact info to the marketing director, "Pete" asked for my e-mail too. I gave it to him, thinking that he wouldn't e-mail me (we're too different, after all) but after a few weeks of e-mail exchanges he asked to meet up.

It turned out that we both wanted to see the new Highline Park (Plus one point for cool idea), and since they just opened up a large section of it, we decided to meet there. I was discouraged when he said "we'll see what happens after that" because he left things open as to whether we would be having a drink or not and I knew that he was being a chicken and leaving himself a bailout plan. (Minus three points for assuming that I'm not fun to hang out with.)

We meet at 23rd and 8th and as I'm walking towards him, I am smiling. (A) Because he's cuter than I remembered (plus a point), (B) because I forgot that he has gorgeous eyes (plus another point) and (c) because he obviously went home and got changed after work, making an effort to look nice. It's kinda sad that my standards for a good date have sunk so low that looking nice and showing up are pretty much all I expect these days. I also forgot that he was about my height and, as I was wearing heels, he ended up having to lean up a bit to kiss me on the cheek. We walked in Highline Park as he asked a lot of typical first date questions and he was attentive, funny, and perhaps a touch cautious and wary, something I totally expected. Still, I guess things must have been going well because he proposed getting some food and drink, which I took as a good sign. We stopped off and checked out a few places in the meatpacking district, but as I'm not a trendy, upscale bar kinda girl, I didn't really want to hang out there.

He was really cool about it and took my preference into consideration (plus five points) and thought of a divey bar nearby called The Rusty Knot. To the owner of the Rusty Knot, I hope you hear the sexual undertones in the name of your bar, as in "Yar, a drunken pirate just violated me rusty knot!" The bar was nautical themed, making me feel like a drunken pirate myself, and we had a fun time goofing off and putting plastic mermaids on the model battleship in the center of the bar. I made "Pete" order and take a huge bite of a chicken liver/bacon sandwich, which he then dared me to try, and for the record, chicken liver is absolutely disgusting, if you ever get the urge to eat it.

After we left, he walked me back to Christopher Street because it was getting late and we both had work in the morning. I know they say don't kiss and tell, but we kissed and I'm telling, but that's all that happened although I'd be happy to see him again if he calls. Part of me worries about this, because I don't know if I could take a Jewish guy seriously again. I think I'd always be afraid of never being fully accepted. I am the exact opposite of what a nice Jewish mother wants: dark, ethnic, catholic, unusual, not to mention I'm from an underprivileged background.

If "Pete" doesn't call, well then, I promised I wouldn't take things too seriously and think of it this way, at least I don't ever have to play golf.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Date Number One: The Big Fat Liar

"The Big Fat Liar" and I met through a mutual acquaintance who thought we would be perfect for each other. We started e-mailing and he was able to put two words together in a cohesive sentence without hinting at the thickness of his billfold or alluding to the size of his 'package', plus his photo wasn't bad. He wasn't my type but he was pleasant enough via e-mail and I figured, what the heck?

We were going to meet at South Street Seaport but he asked me to meet him at his apartment in the village instead, so we could drive down there. Oh, you have a car you say? Cha-ching: He instantly got a point. I walked to his apartment from the train and waited downstairs but when he came to the door, I was not pleasantly surprised. Quite the contrary, he was at least five years older than the photo he sent and he had gained a bit of weight. Actually, a lot of weight. Um, hello? Whatever happened to properly representing yourself? He was a liar! A liar! Everyone who knows me, knows I can't stand liars. Minus one point for misrepresentation.

So he was playing with his iPhone for a few minutes while I stood there, when he said "Oh yeah, my friend is coming with us? Is that ok?" I was shocked but I couldn't say no since he had already invited a friend, so I just went along with it. Then he told me, "Yeah, she's my ex. We're over with, don't worry. We're just good friends. She's high, so she's running late."

Stop right here. This should have been a red flag to get out, go home, and read a good book. But I'm dumb and easy-going (not easy, thank you very much) and I set the rules stating that I wouldn't end a date too early. So I just chalked it up to him not wanting to be alone with a girl he barely knew (um, me). Once his stoned-ass friend arrived, we got into his jalopy (minus one point for the jalopy) and start driving down to the seaport when out of the blue, a cop pulled us over. Guess what? My unusual date wasn’t wearing his seat belt. He argued with the cop and managed to earn two tickets instead of one. One ticket for not wearing his seat belt and the other for not carrying his insurance on him. Minus two points for arguing with the cop. My parents are correction officers. My Jersey friends are cops. Don't argue, be polite, acknowledge that you messed up and get on with your life.

We hit the seaport and listened to some indie music bands and I've mellowed enough to enjoy myself and ignore my date's obvious faux pas. We chill, we listen, we chat. I've talked to my date's friend more than I've talked to him and suddenly she and I are best buds. I tell her about my imminent move to Astoria and we're getting along so well, she asks if I want to be roommates. She's nice, but stoned, so I politely decline.

After the music at Seaport ends, all of his friends split, and my date and I head to a bar for some beer. We drive back to the East Village and he knows the bartender (plus one point) and he pays for the beers (sadly enough, plus one point). We sit down at a table to talk, and talk we do. He's an interesting, successful guy, an assistant producer on some blockbuster films, despite his lack of other qualities. We're chilling for a while, but it's not long before he starts texting. Constantly. I don't know whom and I don't care, but this is a HUGE pet peeve of mine. You don't text everyone on your phone list when you're out on a date or with friends. A few texts, ok, maybe even a brief phone call, but this was just rude. So I start texting MY friends. I was ready to ask my friend Jillian to call me and claim she was throwing-up-drunk/lost/dead-in-a-ditch-somewhere, anything just to get me out of this awful, awful date, but I don't. Minus one point to myself. I stick around and we're sort of having an interesting conversation again, when BAM! I notice him checking out a girl. Then we're talking for a while and BAM! He does it again. And again. Um, hello Mr. Wandering-eye? I'm in front of you, not down the front of Asian Barbie's dress.

I'm done at this point. I say I'm ready to leave and he gets up too. I wonder if he thinks he's going to get some, because he's never, not ever, going to get any from me. He offers to drive me home and I am firm in the face of his persistence. I tell him that I'm starving and I need to get dinner. He offers to come have dinner with me and I tell him that I'm fine, just going to grab a quick bite and go home. I'm icked out when he tries to lean in for a kiss so I feign an evil sore throat (which I actually do have) but I play it up more than usual, saying it might be strep. I don't want to be mean, although he might deserve it, so I give him a brief hug goodbye and head off to devour sushi alone. The sushi was deliciously fishy after all that beer and when I got the bill, I was grateful that I didn't have to thank some scummy guy for buying my dinner.

Wednesday, July 01, 2009

The Reason Behind It All

Ever since I was 18 years old, I've been romantically involved in relationships of some sort. It has been eleven years of getting my heart stomped on (and doing some stomping myself, I might add) and it seems as if I am destined for the state of singledom - forever. Despite what you may think, I'm not sad or lonely or upset. I am actually reveling in this new state that I haven't truly experienced since high school.

I am single and loving it.

I can do what I want, travel where I want, come home at 5 am, leave my woolly mammoth legs unshaven, eat Haagen Daaz for dinner, and essentially be myself and be happy, which is all I've ever really wanted. Still, it's hard to be alone by myself on a Friday night when my friends are with their boyfriends, or on dates themselves. It's tough when you get that wedding invitation and have to find a 'plus one'. It's tough when you're on the john and you need someone to toss you a toilet paper roll from the hallway closet because the roll, right in front of you, is empty.

So I am begrudgingly throwing myself back into the dating pool, with a few rules:

* I will have no expectations.
* I will date without any commitment.
* I will go on as many dates as I can in the Summer of 2009.
* I won't say no to a date, unless he's completely unattractive.
* I will not end a date early, unless he's a complete boor, which is not to be confused with bore.
* Most of all, I won't put any pressure on myself. I'm not going to worry about any missteps or concern myself if I don't get a call back. I won't even feel bad about not letting the guy know why I am not calling him back. I am just going to be uninhibited, unfiltered, all natural me.

And now you, my good friend, are getting to hear of my wonderful experiences this past summer. Some good, some bad, but in the end, I'm having fun and I'm still very glad to be single. Here goes nothing...