Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Good Riddance 2008!!

The wind is howling today. Sustained at 30-40 miles per hour. Gusts up to 60.

I'm taking it as a good sign. This wind will blow all the bad 2008 vibes far, far away. I can start fresh tomorrow.

But will I? Doubt it. I already have a Friday night/Saturday morning lined up with BB. How's that for a fresh start?!

As for my exciting New Year's Eve plans? Yeah. Not so much. I have spent the last couple weeks desperately trying to figure out what I wanted to do and where I wanted to be to ring in the New Year. It seems almost silly, putting this much thought into what my social calendar is going to look like on a Wednesday night. I've felt so scattered that traveling to more exciting locales to visit and drink with friends didn't really seem like an option (but I still love you, my far away friends). But staying local has proven to be difficult too.

I have large circle of great friends. All of whom are doing something different; most with their significant other (and children). All of whom have invited me along. Its great to have that many choices. But (you knew a BUT was coming, didn't you), all my options involved me being the third wheel. I hate that.

I finally choose what seemed like the least third-wheely option and was looking forward to my night. It involved two pregnant friends, their husbands and 4 little girls between the ages of 13 and 16 months. Then a family dropped out. Now its me, preggers, hubbie and their three girls. I love them dearly and am looking forward to spending some time with them, but the whole clan is going to be asleep by 10:30. Garaunteed.

It might be for the best. With this wind, and my newfound unreasonable fear of being hit by a drunk driver (if it can happen in my driveway, it can certainly happen on the road on New Year's Eve) I won't mind being back in my neighborhood when the ball drops. Hoping to hook up with some neighbors for a night cap or two. And be in bed at a reasonable hour.

When did I get this lame? Its almost embarrassing.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

New Year Prep

I promised myself that this weekend, I would reserve time to update my Match.com profile and re-join.  I've re-upped with Match at least once, sometimes twice, a year, and I started internet dating in 2003.  This could potentially be something like the 10th time I have forked over my credit card number in a vain attempt to find someone that can deal with me, and keep up with me.  It amazes me that I keep doing it.  Match.com is making tons of money off me.  

Its probably by design.  Internet dating companies have plenty of incentive to keep you single.  I think they must intentionally weed out all the good ones, so that I never find them, so that I keep coming back, hoping that this time, he will be there.  Here's my sixty dollars!!  Keep my hope alive!!

But, instead of updating my profile, I am playing Guitar Hero.  "But Susan, the only video game you own is Colecovision!"  Au contraire, my friend.  For the next week, BB's new PS2 is mine.  The only game he has is Guitar Hero; but that was before I found used PS2 games for two dollars each at a store down the street.  Yee-ha!  So the games are 6 years old.  Big deal.  You should see what the 25 year old Donkey Kong looks like on the Coleco...  I'm usually several years behind in technology (you should see my cell phone.  Its ancient!) so this is working just fine for me.

Interesting that playing with BB's game is preventing me from putting the time in on my profile.  I wonder if that was by design?

Whatever.  I had 167 note streak, and 96% correct notes on my last go around.  I am a rock goddess!  And being a rock goddess is much more fun right now than shopping for boys.  Besides, being good at Guitar Hero might be a useful dating skill someday.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Bad Santa

I survived Christmas.  You knew that I would.

Unfortunately, my neighbors cars didn't.


wreck

Santa brought us a three car hit and run somewhere between midnight and 4am on Christmas night.  Christmas!  Isn't that supposed to be the time of year when people are extra good and extra considerate?

I woke up and looked out the window to see what the weather looked like on Friday morning and noticed that the neighbor had parked funny.  I looked at it for a while trying to figure out why he would have parked at a 45 degree angle.  "Neighbor must have been drinking..."  I looked out five minutes later and saw three cop cars.  "Uh-oh."  Neighbor wasn't the one drinking.

But someone else was.  A lot.  He hit three cars - mine included, then proceeded to park down the street at his house.  I hear through the grapevine that he doesn't remember anything.  Great.  Drunk driver started with my car.  Lucky me.  But he merely grazed me - I have a couple scrapes and bruises on the bumper.  He saved the real gift for my neighbors.  Tore the bumper off a pontiac, and hit an SUV hard enough to push it 45 degrees from where it had been parked.  They were not happy.  Imagine coming outside to get in your car to go to work, only to discover that it was lying in pieces in your driveway.  A Christmas miracle!  

Right now, the police can't charge anyone, since no one saw it happen and the person that was most likely driving claims to have no memory of the incident.  This means that to get cars fixed, we all have to pay deductibles.  I won't get mine fixed, because the scrapes aren't worth the deductible.  But the scrapes will bug the crap out of me forever.  The gift that keeps on giving.

In other Christmas news, I spent 3 awkward hours with my father and brother pretending that we liked each other and actual have relationships with each other.  God, I was glad to get out of there.  Got to spend some time with grandma, which was the best part of the day.  Did I mention that my entire day was alcohol free until I got home?  Yup.  Alcohol in the afternoon makes me tired.  I needed to be on my game all day in order to survive.  

My mental state is significantly improved now that Christmas is behind me for another year.  Now, if only I could figure out what I'm doing for New Year's Eve...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Attitude Adjustment

I need a serious attitude readjustment.  This may not be news to you.

I thought briefly about going for a run this morning, but come on, that's totally unrealistic.  I spent some time stretching and relaxing though, then I made holiday coffee (I added cinnamon and cloves to the coffee.  It smells good, but didn't really affect the flavor of my organic ethiopian roast).  I bought A Christmas Story for 10 bucks at Target earlier in the week and popped that in the DVD player.  Yes, I despise Christmas, but I really, really like that movie.  And since I've turned off my cable, my Christmas ritual of watching 24 Hours of A Christmas Story on TBS was out of the question.  So, I watched it (enjoyed it even) and wrapped the few presents I had picked up.

I've convinced my brother to have lunch at his house, so in a few, I'm going to go pick up my dad and drive over there to spend a little time (round trip with pick-up and drop-off: 2.5 hours).  There will also be a grandma visit (another hour in the car), then dinner with mom's boyfriend's family.  It will be fine, but it will be a long day and I will be glad to be back home. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmas Whine

This afternoon, a well-meaning (and bored) co-worker popped her head in my office with a big smile on her face and said "So, what are your Christmas plans?!"  I sighed, looked up from the fascinating technical paper I was reading, and said "I honestly don't know, but it will involve alcohol."

"You don't know what you are doing for Christmas?"  she asked, like she didn't believe me.

"Not really."  By the time I had sort of explained, the poor girl had tears in her eyes.  Actual tears.  I am not kidding.  I made someone cry because of how crappy my Christmas is.  

Imagine how I feel.  

Christmas is the loneliest time of the year for me.  Its hard watching my friends and colleagues enjoy their families, look forward to presents, children, holiday meals... My family is disjointed and dysfunctional.  Even when my parents were still together, most holidays were pretty low key.  Easter was non-existent.  To this day, I remember writing (in purple ink) in my little diary about how sad and angry I was one year when we didn't do an Easter dinner with the grandparents and aunts and uncles (clearly, this was before I stopped eating ham).  Since my parents got divorced and since my father has gotten so sick, finding ways to celebrate holidays has gotten more and more difficult, and planning what my brother and father are doing has rested largely on my shoulders for more years than I care to count.

Dad is legally blind and on dialysis.  I don't know if I've mentioned that before.  I can't just say "come on down to my house.  I'll cook."  He can't drive, and he can't eat anything that I could cook (the few vegetarian things that he wouldn't turn his nose up at aren't on the dialysis diet). Regardless, its still up to me to determine what is happening on Christmas for me, my brother and my father.  I haven't yet figured it out, and I wish I could just flee.  We will end up at dad's house for a little while.  Dad still lives in the house we grew up in, but its only him.  The house is collapsing on itself and its really a depressing place to be on a normal day, let alone Christmas.

Once Dad is taken care of, I will likely head to a dinner with my mom's boyfriend's family.  They are great people, and always very welcoming.  And very Christian.  Not overtly, but I have to watch my mouth and be polite, which puts me on edge.  Despite how welcome they make me feel, I am an outsider in their family circle.  As much as I appreciate them including me, they aren't my people.  But if I want to see my mother on Christmas, I have to show up there.  

And I haven't even launched into being responsible for figuring out what it is that my brother wants, and taking dad shopping to get it.

Two more days and it will be over for another year.

I hope that you, dear reader, are having more fun with your holidays than I am.



Saturday, December 20, 2008

Holiday Party #2

I survived Holiday Party #2.  The party that could have resulted in me meeting cute boys.

Did I ever really think that was a possibility?  Really?  God, I must have overdosed on Allegra.

I did a good job of introducing myself to people.  I was totally, 100% flying solo at this party.  Yes, there would be a couple kayaking people there that I know, but I don't know them well enough to expect them to watch out for me, introduce me to people, and get me cheese and cookies.  There was one cute guy there in my age range who was not wearing a ring.  Did I talk to him? Nope!  Never got near him - he stuck with his little triathlete group, which was inpenetrable.  

However, the absolute nerdiest guy there found me (not a fluid dynamicist though, so it could have been worse).  He stuck around me for a long, long time.  He was short, overweight and wearing glasses that were really dirty and smudged.  He kept talking and I could barely hear him.  "what?"  "what?"  "where?"  Turns out, he recognizes me from work.  Great.  He is a consultant that works with us on occasion.  I don't remember ever seeing this guy ever.  The worst part?  I was such a snob to him, and now I feel bad about it.  I never asked what his name was (because I didn't care, but in retrospect, it was probably rude).  On the other hand, he never introduced himself to me.  So, I guess its not my fault.  

So, I gave it a try.  I went to the party.  I talked to people I didn't know, and won't ever see again.  I put on makeup and a cute outfit (I swear).  But, no new man prospect.  Like you are surprised.

Holiday Party #1

I was more than halfway through a piece of delicious cake that was made of "a stick of butter and four cups of sugar..." when I heard the story of how the sugar that the cake was made from had been in the house "forever."  Forever in this instance was defined as five years, but could have been much, much longer.  Its a boy house, and he's lived there for 12 years or so, so that damn sugar conceivably could have been purchased when I was still in college.

I put the cake down.  

And slowly backed away from it, trapping myself in a room where I didn't know anybody.

Parties where you don't know many people are much more fun when you are drinking.  Parties where you don't know many people, and most of those people are "aerospace engineers" (rocket scientists to us mortals) are much more fun when you are drinking mass quantities.  Unfortunately, due to the number of cops on the road this weekend, I'm not playing games.  I kept my drinking to the absolute minimum (large cup of cranberry juice.  Tiny little bit of vodka).  No beer pong for me.  But plenty of awkward conversation with a PhD Fluid Dynamicist (I am not making this up.  Couldn't, even if I tried).

Tonight is holiday party #2.  The one where I am hopeful that I will meet some interesting and cute single men.  Cross your fingers for me.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Holiday Cynicism

I don't usually just bitch and whine (unless its about BB) but I'm making an exception today.

I spent a nice quiet morning actually thinking though a project, making notes on what needed to be done when, who needed to be involved, what data we needed to collect...  Had lunch with one of my fake boyfriends, who is grumpier than I am, and came back to the office.  At exactly 4 p.m. while I was harassing other staff, my computer shut down.  And lost my unsaved document.

Why did the computer shut down?  Because the IT morons schedule computer updates for 4 p.m. on Fridays.  I'm sure they did it that way because they assume that noone is really working on Friday afternoon, but guess what dude, I am!  I spent a half an hour on the phone with the help desk trying to recover my unsaved, unnamed document (and cursing them).  No go.  A whole morning's work wiped out.

So, I went to the gym to spin.  Figured a little physical activity would help my mood.  And normally, it would have.  Except that the teacher had put together a special Christmas mix for us all.  YAY!  Now I get to hate Christmas while exercising, as well as while shopping!  What a treat.  It was too late to bail by the time the first jingle bells happened.

Now, I'm off to my first holiday party.  Remember my previous enthusiasm and good attitude about holiday parties?  Consider it reversed.  180 degrees baby.  And a happy bah humbug to you!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

The Upper Hand

I have hand, baby!  Hand!!

Its been quite a while since I've felt in control of the BB situation, but last night, I saw it.  I felt it. It felt good.  I'm sure it won't last, but, whatever.  I can be proud of myself for a day or two, right?

I worked in the city Tuesday and Wednesday.  Normally, I work 50 miles from the city, but BB works there every day.  I'm always tempted to see him when I'm there - I mean, its so convenient. The thought crossed my mind that I could actually stay at his place and save myself some time.  Night meeting Tuesday night, early morning meetings Wednesday...  My house is 30 miles away.  His?  Three.  But, I resisted the urge.  I had to remind myself that his apartment is not a hotel (although, sometimes I get a warm towel handed to me for my shower, there's often continental breakfast and the wake up calls are quite pleasant).   I broke down Tuesday night during the meeting and texted him - "want a dinner partner?"  It didn't work out - my meeting ran too late.  I chatted with him on the phone as I drove home, but that was the extent of it.  I figured it would be a while before I saw him again.

Wednesday I was done work at noon, then headed to the mall.  To Christmas shop.  For myself. (I wanted fancy pants for my upcoming parties.  No fancy pants, but I did get a pair of denim trousers and new pair of comfy Clarks).  Then off to Jo-Ann Fabrics.  For what, you ask?  Embroidery thread for your friendship bracelets (true story)!  

Just as I was about to jump on the highway and head home, a text came in from BB asking if I was in town.  I was pleased, of course.  So, we met for dinner.   Got a nice table right next to the fireplace at his favorite tavern.  He was late - got held up at the hospital.  So I amused myself by drinking and reading the menu, in detail.  Three times.  When he finally arrived, I think for the first time in a while, I saw him as others might see him.  Haggard.  Tired.  Overweight.  A bit sloppy.  Honestly, if I didn't know he was a doctor, I would think he was coming off a brutal shift at Circuit City.

Electronics salesman outfit or not, I still beamed at him when he walked in.  And repeated to myself "you are going home tonite, you are going home tonite..."  We had a lovely dinner, and went to his house for desert (cannoli and chocolate covered pretzels.  Not what you were thinking was it?  Get your mind out of the gutter!)  "You are going home tonite.  You are going home tonite."  We watched some videos, traded backrubs and I tucked him in and kissed him goodnight.

And locked the door as I left.

Then I realized that I left my glasses.  Had to knock on the door, rustle him out of bed and retrieve them.  As I left again, he says "are you sure you're not staying?  Really?  Are you sure?"  Yup.  I was sure.

Hand, baby!  Hand!  

Monday, December 15, 2008

Tying Knots

BB helped me tie the knot on Saturday morning.  Then I was able to tie my own knot.  Then we tied knots together.  The irony was not lost on me (I giggled and immediately decided it would make a good blog post.  I hope it doesn't disappoint).

I've become rather pathetic when it comes to BB recently (I'm sure that's such a shock to you!) - his schedule has been lighter than normal and he has been up for anything I've proposed.  Its not going to last much longer though.  This week, I promised to help him put plastic film on his windows to keep the drafts out.  He asked for me help weeks ago, "since I am the global warming/eco-crunchy expert."

(P.S. I am also the global warming/eco-crunchy expert who will have sex with him, giving me an unfair advantage over all the other eco-crunchy types who are clamoring to help him winter-proof his apartment).

Of course he could have done it himself, but it gave us an excuse to get together, which we did mid-week, but by the time he had bought me dinner and we had a couple beers, it was time to go to bed - not time to initiate home repair.  So, our mid-week procrastination gave me yet another opportunity to rearrange my life to spend time with him. 

And it only made sense that I would spend the night on Friday too. I mean, if I was going to help him "do his windows," it would make sense to get an early start, and the best way to do that is to wake up there.  The boy wakes up early.  Pre-dawn early.  An early start is gauranteed.   And, the boy likes to eat, so breakfast is a sure thing too (just like me!).  

For some reason, at 7am, we were lying in bed talking about friendship bracelets.  Apparently, his time at summer camp made him an expert in bracelet skills (which apparently translates well into stitching people up.  Who knew?!)  I never went to camp, and my mom wouldn't know a scrapbook if it hit her in the face, so my crafting skills are non-existent.  Sometime in middle school, someone tried to teach me to make friendship bracelets, but I never caught on.  (I'm not really the most coordinated, or focused, person you'll ever meet.)

It didn't take long before we decided that we were getting up, getting breakfast (I-Hop!), going to the fabric store, and making bracelets.  He was motivated by wanting to make one for his friend whose birthday party was that night (what 30 year old wouldn't cherish getting a friendship bracelet for their birthday?).  I was motivated by wanting to try it again, and by wanting to procrastinate homework for as long as possible.  Oh, and by the pathetic need to spend time with him.

But whatever.  It was a fantastic morning.  I ate pancakes.  Bought embroidery floss (33 cents!). Sat on the couch.  Watched a movie.  Tied knots.  Listened to music.  Tied knots.  Listened to more music.  Took a nap (you are allowed to nap at noon when you woke up before daybreak). Got tired of tying knots.  Hairdryed plastic to window frames.  It was so relaxing.  So easy.  Its what Saturday mornings should be like.  I need to remember that in the future.


bracelet

Surprisingly, my first effort wasn't bad.  I don't know about my choice of colors, and my knots weren't real tight, but it definitely looks like a bracelet.  

Now you all know what Santa is bringing you for Christmas. 

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Lassoing the Moon

Christmas movies are such crap, but Christmas movies from the 40's are the worst.  NBC is currently treating me to the holiday classic, Its a Wonderful Life.  You remember it: George Bailey stays home to run the family business, forgoes traveling around the world, hooks up with a barely legal woman (albeit, in the 40's if you were 18 and not married, you were almost a spinster), gets married and almost gets run out of town when the Building and Loan goes bust, then tries to fling himself off a bridge.  Pretty uplifting, huh?  

Before things really get rolling, George "meets" Mary, although he has known her his entire life.  Apparently, she was only worth talking to when she was "all grown up" (e.g. "now she has boobies!").  So, they do the charleston, fall in a pool and he walks her home, all wet and naked under her clothes.  He barley knows her, hasn't even kissed her, but offers her anything she wants.  He will lasso the moon for her, if she just says the word.  She falls for it, they get married, she cross stitches a pillow then pops out a gazillion little kids with ringlet curls.

If I had a nickel for every time a boy offered to lasso me the moon on a first date...  Here, I'll give you a second, count up yours...

Ready?  Start counting...

How many?

Oh, zero?  Really?  How surprising!

I doubt highly that actual guys in the 40's really used lines like that, but you never know.  What if someone said something that ridiculous to me on a first date?  I would never, ever, ever talk to them ever again.  I might actually flee from them, and I'm not even sure what a good flee looks like.  They would become the butt of all jokes for years to come.  Trust me, its happened to other guys who have made the mistake of being sweet and sensitive anywhere near me or my friends.  Lasso the moon?  Shit, just pay for dinner dude, and drive me home.

 

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Evil Elf

So, has it occurred to anybody else that Christmas is now two weeks away?  A mere fourteen days?  Rudolph and Blitzen are warming up for the big night, and I just realized that its mid-December.  Oops.

We don't do much these days for Christmas.  I have no boyfriend, there aren't any small kids in my immediate or extended family, and most of the grandparents are dead.  I'll pick my dad up some stuff that he needs and that I would buy for him anyway, but mom, brother and I long ago stopped trading gifts.  I'm pretty much off the hook (although, I have to find diabetic socks and I have no idea where to go.  Don't ask).  Usually I send Christmas cards, but I'm not inspired to do it this year.  I'm not putting up the tree, but I may put lights up out front.  But given that they would only be out for two weeks, it might not even be worth the effort. 

The morale of this story, if it wasn't for a couple Christmas parties, this holiday would pass by without even being a speed bump in my life.  A couple days ago, I was miffed that I only had invitations to one holiday party (not counting our excruciating work party), but people are starting to get off their asses and send out the invites.  I'm particularly excited about one of them - a guy from the kayak club is also a member of a local triathlon club and is inviting us all over.  Here is an opportunity to actually meet new people.  And in-shape ones!  Maybe you all will get your wish and I'll meet someone new and start engaging in risky sexual behavior.  That I will blog about for your amusement...

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Numbers Game

I have a friend.  This friend and I are pretty competitive people - so competitive that several years ago, for some reason (boredom) we started a competition of sorts.  I've been ahead for several years, but she has finally caught up, owing to the fact that I've stayed on the same number for way too long.  I can't let her get ahead.  I'm going to have to add a number.  Fairly soon.  

What the hell am I talking about?  Our number!  You know.... (ahem) number of partners!

My number (and hers) is pretty low in the grand scheme of things.  On average, its less than one a year since I started having sex.  I was ecstatic when I hit double digits.  Ecstatic!  I felt like I had finally reached womanhood.  I was no longer embarrassed of my number, like I was when I was 27 years old and the number was 3 (yikes!).  It blew me away when I pulled ahead in the numbers game though, because I'm not the one known for making out in the corner of bars with perfect strangers (although, I'm not saying its never happened, its just not routine). I guess I got pretty good at whoring myself out on the internet though; good enough to make up for a little lost time and pull ahead.  

(By the way, we are talking purely about quantity - not quality.  Friend would be way ahead of me if we were assigning quality points to our encounters.  Way ahead.  Way.)

And here's how you know that your friends truly love you: when a factor in her decision to add a number (albeit a very, very, very, very small part of the factor) is to challenge you to get you off your ass and add a number; which would mean moving on...

Friday, December 5, 2008

Excuse me, what?!

I had a distinctly stressful day yesterday dealing with family issues.  I hate being a big girl and having to take care of people that should be able to take care of themselves.  But this is a story for a different day...

I lined up an evening with BB to reward myself for having to deal with all that crap and/or as a shoulder to cry on should I need it.  Luckily, I didn't need shoulder to cry on so we went to dinner at a renown hole in the wall Italian restaurant.  Wood paneling, tables and chairs that came straight out of a highway diner, crusty old Italians everywhere... Oh, and the worst background music I have heard in a really, really long time.  Adult easy listening, circa 1993.  Yuck!  But, the food was homemade and reasonably priced (not that it mattered because I made him pay). 

BB and I have now been doing the "not-dating" gig for almost four months - way longer than we did the actual dating thing.  I wonder if this has occurred to him?  It may have, because we talked about stuff a little bit last night.  Why does he always feel the need to talk when I least feel like talking?  Dude, hit me on a day that I didn't spend dealing with my dad and you might get more out of me.  We talked about the same bull we always do... He's leaving, he's worried that I'm losing out on dating other people and putting my life on hold, yadda, yadda, yadda.  All very good worries and nothing we hadn't talked about before.  

But what I've never heard him say before is "I don't want to be in a long-distance relationship." But he said it last night.  Yeah, no duh.  I don't really want to be in a long-distance relationship either. We've never ever talked about it being an option.  Ever.  We're not even in a close-distance relationship, why would a long-distance one even be an option?

But, you know how someone says something and it doesn't really sink in until later?  Well, this is one of those times.  The fact that he said anything about it makes me think he's given thought to it.  Which surprises the crap out of me.  He's contemplated it as an option.  A bad one, but an option nonetheless.  I mean, I fully expect that when he moves, we will remain friends and keep in touch.  And that we may see each other occasionally on our travels, but I can't imagine it being anything else.  But maybe he is imagining something else...

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Friendsgiving Year 2

Girls with boyfriends, husbands, kids and families don't get to spend Thanksgiving gallivanting all over New York City.  Lucky for me, Kiwi hosted her second annual vegetarian feast for people orphaned this year (KT) and people who have wished for years that their family would orphan them (ME!).  Its really special to be able to spend the holiday with people you choose to love, rather than people you are obligated to love.

A second benefit of not spending Thanksgiving with your family (other than not having to explain for the millionth time that indeed, turkey has a face, and therefore you don't eat it) is that you get to go to the Macy's Parade!!  

And no parade can be attended by 30 year old lushes without a little something, something: 

Pre-Parade Festivities

The line in Starbucks was out the door at 7am, and I got yelled at for ordering wrong (I asked for medium drinks in large cups and thoroughly confused/pissed off the stressed out guy behind the counter).  Kiwi and I choose to add Peppermint Schnapps.  I think KT went with the Kahlua.

We got to the parade too late to get a good spot along the street (stupid Starbucks line!), but we found a nice fence to cling to.  I could only see the tops of marching band heads, but we had a great view of all the balloons.

Kermit

Frog Legs

Seeing giant frog legs floating down the street when you are 15 ounces into your 24 ounces of latte and schnapps is quite amusing.   The headache I had after adding champagne to it was not.

Really Expensive

After downing the champagne, opening up several bottles of red wine and punching into the box (yes, box) of Pino Grigo, the headache was much, much worse.  (Note to self: when you've already had a headache for three days, don't feed it with caffeine and liquor.)  I may not have been much fun to be around - but the stabbing pains in my head got me out of clean up duty! Sorry guys, I wanted to help, I swear.

If only I could miss Christmas with the family too.  Its lurking and mocking me...

Monday, December 1, 2008

The Hallway Run-in

It was bound to happen, but so soon?  

I went on a truly unspectacular lunch date the weekend before last (http://www.lovecynicism.com/2008/11/another-day-another-date.html) with a guy who is in my grad school program, and has a class at the same time I do, in the room next to mine.  Normally, if you go on an unspectacular date, you can just go about your life and move on.  But not when you are bound to run into the guy every week at school.  I dodged the bullet last week because my class got canceled (I used the extra time to attempt to rid myself of my headache by having sex.  It didn't work, by the way).  

I thought I dodged the bullet again this week because we got out of class ridiculously early, but I made the mistake of hanging out in the hallway and chatting.  Oops.  Damn my unstoppable mouth and limitless ability to make small talk!  He walked by as I was sharing with her my internet dating history (interesting timing!).  I waved and he stopped.  I introduced them.  He looked pretty uncomfortable (I don't think he was aware that just seconds before we had been talking about internet dating).  We made small talk for a minute then the professor called everyone from his class back into the classroom.  Phew.  

Once he was safely in the classroom, I whispered to my class friend "Case in point.  I met that one on Match.com.  We had a lunch date last week.  We should have met each other in the hallway, but met each other on the internet.  That's what it takes to get a date these days!"

And its true.  People don't just spontaneously meet anymore.  I wouldn't have had a clue what to do if we had met in the hallway and he had actually said "we should get together sometime!" I probably would have stuttered and given him the wrong phone number.  

After the run-in, I'm quite totally sure that I have no romantic interest in this guy.  Still no sparkle.  I'd like to tell him (in an email of course) that we should be friends but don't even know that its necessary.  I'm not really putting out a dating or romantic vibe.  Would it be presumptuous of me to tell him, after one lunch date?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Retirement Party

You know, Thanksgiving torture doesn't have to end when the last piece of white meat is gone (or, for us vegetarians, when KT eats the last piece of Quorn) --  if you are a sucker like me, you spend your Thanksgiving weekend Saturday at a retirement party.

That's right.  A retirement party.  

(P.S. - the story of thanksgiving is coming, but it involves pictures that I have been too lazy to download)

I have a friend; we've been friends since first grade.  We hated each other for a year or so in middle school, and again in high school, but have remained friends through college, our twenties, and now our thirties.  She's married and has a 2 year old.  And lives really far away.  She's not a phone talker, or an emailer, so honestly, we don't really keep in touch, unless she is here or I am there.  So, maybe once, twice a year.  Sometimes not even that.  Oh, and we have virtually nothing in common except our bad perms in 1987.

Despite that, I feel like part of the family - at least during the holidays.  So, when they threw a retirement party for the parents, of course I had to go.  And be tortured.

The thing is, you can't really hang out with the people you want to hang out with at an event like this - it was in the banquet room at a restaurant and they had invited 30 of their closest friends.  I was stuck most of the night talking to my mom and the parents of a kid I went to high school with.  Parent, whose son is now a dentist, thought I was absolutely delightful (which I am, by the way) and said several times something about how cute I was.  Good for my ego, for sure, but being that delightful with someone you don't know takes considerable effort.  Particularly when your mom is sitting next to you telling stories about your Brownie years (1981-1984, in case you were interested).

Had some awkward conversation with friend too, while we both tried to entertain the toddler and keep her from playing with knives (I was encouraging her to play with forks though, which may have been too pointy for most people to let kids play with.  Not me though!)  I love her, and she will always be my friend, but man, she just is far removed from everything that is happening in my life.  How do I answer the question "So how are you??"  "Uh, I'm sleeping with my ex-boyfriend who I have no future with; my dad is a handful, wants to stop dialysis and I'm not real sure how to have end of life discussions with him; work is stressful....yadda, yadda, yadda..."  I told her some stuff, but not much.  Maybe just enough to let her know that stuff is happening and its not all good, despite the happy face I had on.  

After two glasses of cheap red wine, some fruit, cheese and small talk, I was ready to GO.  I felt guilty about not heading back to their house with them to hang out a bit (invited by the parents, not by friend, for what that's worth) but another hour of chitchat wasn't going to catch anyone up on anybody.  So I declined and headed home, relieved.

FYI - number of single guys at the retirement party: Zero.  Not that you are surprised by this, but add retirement party to the long list of places that aren't good for meeting men.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Rolling with my homies

I wrote a new song today (sung to the famous pre-school song, Row Your Boat):

Roll, roll, roll your boat
Early at the Y
Jittery, jittery, jittery
Hope that I don't die...

I got out of bed at a ridiculous hour for a Sunday (and woke up alone, and in my own bed.  Also ridiculous!), and lashed my kayak to my car in the pre-dawn hours and sub-zero temps so I could join the rest of the kayaking gang at the Y for a rolling session.  

Even though we were going to be in a warm pool, and I was going to be surrounded by certified kayaking instructors, I was still quite nervous.  I had some technical issues with some new equipment that I bought too, which didn't help.  I procrastinated getting into the water for quite a while, and ended up getting in without a boat so I could "help" others.  My "helping" really was more like getting in the way and bothering people though.  I was eventually forced into my boat.

It was slow going.  Since I haven't paddled a whitewater boat in over two months, everything seemed strange again.  We started with baby steps, slowly working me toward actually being upside down in the boat.  It wasn't great.  I got frustrated, but did a couple good attempts (with help) and quit.  Good enough for my first time out, I thought.

Until I was paddling around the pool watching everybody else.  Upside down!  Right-side up!  Upside down!  Right Side Up!  Look ma, no paddle!  Grrr.  So, I got ambitious and tried it on my own.

And I did it!  Twice in a row.  With no screw ups, no assistance; nothing but me, my awesome abdominal muscles (ha!) and my paddle.  I stopped after two - there's no reason to get greedy.  And now I'm happy and proud of myself.  Almost makes up for the fact that the only hairy thing in my bed this morning was Leroy the Cat.


Saturday, November 22, 2008

Another day, Another date...

Well, I've been holding out on you all, just a wee bit.

Even though I was bitterly and horribly disappointed by my last go round with Match.com, I did end up returning an email to one guy.  It took me a couple weeks before I responded to his initial email.  He seemed cute enough in his pictures, and is in school for non-profit management (right up my liberal ideal alley), seemed to like the outdoors... So why didn't I email back?  Under "Drink?" He listed "I don't drink alcohol."

I don't want to make a fuss or anything, but as long as you aren't new here, you know that my life pretty much revolves around alcoholic beverages.  And bitching about boys.  Wine and Whining, as it were.  If I give you directions, its by liquor store (turn left at Wine and Beer Superstore); if I come to your house, I never come over empty handed; and if I go to dinner, I like to choose a place with a good beer menu.  Its how I roll... Yo.

I have plenty of friends who don't drink, because they don't like it, because they don't want the calories, because they got themselves knocked up (ahem!  You know who you are!)... But some people don't drink because they are recovering alcoholics.  Given the gaps in this guy's resume, I assume that to be the case.  I guess it shouldn't really matter, but along with not being able to share one of my favorite pastimes, alcoholics can exhibit pretty specific behavior patterns that can be pretty unhealthy in a relationship.  My relationships don't typically need more unhealthy behaviors than I bring to them!

Eventually, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt - so I wrote back.  We emailed several times, then I discovered that he is in the same program I am in, only full-time.  Then I discovered that we had class at the same time on Monday night; in classrooms directly next to each other.  At that point, meeting is inevitable.  We could meet for coffee or something and hang out, or we could meet in the hallway and share an extremely awkward moment.  I took charge and asked if he wanted to meet for lunch.

So we did.  I suggested a restaurant that I love at a time that worked into my studying schedule so it would work for me, even if he was dull.  Under normal circumstances, I would have ordered a beer.  But I didn't.  I wanted to ask him about why he didn't drink, but I didn't.  It was apparent that he was not totally comfortable and was having a difficult time trying to express himself.  Its possible that I was his first internet date and I didn't want to scare him off girls entirely by prodding too deeply.

He didn't really come to life until we started talking about...you guessed it!  Cars!  Perhaps he felt that we were on more common ground there, but, its not a good sign.  I can only talk about the awesome engine my Dodge Omni had so many times before I want to throw in the towel.

Towards the end he asked me "So, what's going on around here?"  I didn't really understand the question, but I think he wanted to "do something, sometime."  I said "yeah, absolutely" meaning that we could hang out as school buddies, but I really don't see myself getting hot and bothered about this one.  He just didn't sparkle.  I like sparkly.

But regardless, I will likely bump into him in the hallway on Monday night.  Wonder how that will go? 

Thursday, November 20, 2008

My List

Apples, apples, apples

BB, Blogs, and Bluegrass

Connie

Dave, Dave and Driving

Elena, Eleanor and Emergency Rooms

Forests, Fresh Air and Freedom

Guitars and Gertrude

Herman and Hairy Men

Ipod, iTunes, and someday, iPhone...

John

Kiwi, Katy, Katie, Kristi, Kim and Kayaking

Love

Mike, Mike, Mike and Meredith

Never really growing up

Ocean

Pizza

Quiet

Red Wine

Stacey and Sunshine

Tricia, Theresa, Todd and Tequila

Under the covers...

Vacations and Vineyards

Water

Xenobiotics

You all

Zucchini

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Grateful List

So, three women take a road trip to a conference.  One is 25, one is 33, and one is 52.

25 is having some trouble adjusting to living in a new (and fairly unexciting) town and 52 and 33 try to help.  52 says "Have you ever made a Grateful List?  You start with the letter A and list something that you are grateful for, all the way to Z."

33 (that's me, by the way) giggles and says...

Appletini
Bacardi
Cerveza
Dogfish Head (that's a beer, for those of you who aren't beer snobs)
Everclear...

I got stuck at F, but in my defense, I was driving and trying not to kill us.

I mean, now, who really has the problem?  25?  Doubt it.  But maybe 33 should probably stop thinking that portraying herself as a lush is funny.

But, since I've been a bit down in the dumps lately, I think I may put some thought to this list and see what I can come up with.  Stay tuned for a non-alcoholic based list, but don't be surprised if some of my favorites still wind up there.  

Sunday, November 16, 2008

100!!

This is my 100th post!  Who knew I would possibly keep this up for so long!?  I posted my first blog entry on May 1, over six months ago.  Since then, this silly little blog has actually been a pretty big part of my life.  Thanks for letting me share my neurosis, joys and disappointments with you.

Now, its only appropriate that I provide you with an update.  This morning, I was having a conversation with BB about fountain pens as we ate our bagel sandwiches (yes, I realize that this is a really, really, really dorky conversation to have, but you should see what people pay for those things!).  In early May, you may remember that I was obsessing over a certain boy's borrowed fountain pen (http://www.lovecynicism.com/2008/05/dorky-fountain-pen-sends-me-into-fit.html) Then obsessed about whether to return it or not.  I shouldn't have bothered.  

He sold it.

I grinned on the inside when he told me that, as I thought, "wow! That's so going in the blog!"  I think I nearly choked on my egg and cheese.  I absolutely obsessed about whether to return it or not, and he gets it back and sells it on eBay.  So much for being sentimental...

Now back to the part that you are likely most interested in.  Yes, I was at BB's house early on Sunday morning.  For two weekends in a row.  Honestly, its been really nice.  Last weekend, we had lunch, sex, dinner, then a concert.  This weekend, movie, dinner and sex.  Its probably getting too easy.  We are seeing each other weekly.  The text messages (innocent ones) are getting more frequent and it seemed almost expected to both of us that I was hanging out for most of the day, then spending the night.

On another topic, I played more silly little girl games this weekend, which he actually passed.  We saw the new Bond movie (I swear, a person was killed or injured for every line of dialogue...).  We got pretzel bites for a snack.  They were rather disgusting and I only ate a couple, but as he was getting towards the bottom I thought "he's going to eat them all and not even check to see if I wanted any more!"  Wrong.  He offered me the last one.  I giggled and said no.  I mean, was he reading my mind?  About a quarter of the way through the movie, he leaned over and whispered "are you cold yet?"  The damn movie theater started out steaming, then they slowly lowered the temperature to freezing, so yes, I was.  He handed over his jacket.

Then, later on, that jerk offered me the last piece of chocolate.  He even had the balls to remember that I had never seen Superman (the original) and went to find it while I tried to figure out if I still had an account at Blockbuster (four of them, it turns out).  How am I supposed to say mean nasty things about him when his mother obviously did such a good job pounding good manners into his head, and he remembers conversations we had that I don't even remember having?  Jeez.

Hopefully he will do something stupid to piss me off soon so I can stop deluding myself into thinking that this thing we have going on is actually acceptable.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A picture is worth 100 clicks

About three weeks ago now, I joined Match.com again because a very cute, very liberal, seemingly ourdoorsy caught my eye (why, i don't know, since he wasn't fat, and didn't appear to be hairy).  I emailed him, with high hopes that he could be the one to get me over the BB situation.  Well, that didn't work out so well.  He never emailed me.  A couple of other guys did but noone who really inspired me to write back.  

My strategy on Match tends to be to sit back and wait.  I don't really like to make the first move, and when I do, I am usually disappointed.  Particularly this time - I wasn't really committed to meeting someone new and really didn't want to go out of my way to complicate my life.  And, at this point, a guy has to got to blow my socks off to separate me from the BB situation, and that's hard to do over the internet. 

Even though I was sitting back and not real interested in the outcome, I was a bit miffed that I wasn't getting many emails.  Or even any page views.  On Match, you can see who has viewed your profile and can count the number of times its viewed.  My number of views was painfully low, a couple hundred over a three week period.  That's not a lot - its been much more than that in the past within the same general time period. 

So, I did a little experiment and uploaded a new picture.  Its a pretty nice picture, taken at the wedding I went to recently (well before Donny Osmond shoved sand down my dress).  I'm posing in front of the dune, so it looks all staged, but whatever.  

Within 8 hours of my new main profile picture going live,  I had 2 new winks, and 2 new emails. Within 48 hours, I've had 100 profile views.  

I'm not sure exactly what the lesson is here.  For sure, having an attractive picture on your internet profile is absolutely essential.  But its also possible that profiles that have recently been updated get pushed up the list and boys see it more frequently.  

But also, I more likely, I  think its because boys are dogs.  Keep this in mind if and when you feel like attracting one.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Boomerang Week

There IS something going on, because I'm not the only one who is being stalked and cornered by people from their past.  Is it because its dark out at 4:30 and people are bored?  Sad?  Contemplative?  Or is it because Facebook has come out with the "people you may know" function?

This week, as you know, two ex-boyfriend types contacted me.  But also an old friend who reads the blog and emails occasionally actually picked up the phone and called!  Of course, we didn't actually talk, but it added to the boomerang week.  Also, my friend in Boston ran into her most recent ex on the subway and had to make nicey nicey chat - she hadn't seen him since the breakup (and it was a bad one).  Kiwi's old friend from college randomly got in touch with her this weekend.  And a litany of people from high school that I really don't care about keep wanting to be my facebook friend.

Its just weird that this seems to be happening to other people too.  So please, dear internet friends, check the caller id before you pick up the phone.  The person on the other side is likely to be someone you don't want to talk to!  I wonder when it will be safe to live normally again?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Go away, part 2

AARRUUGH!

Its a damn good thing that I created the douchebag label for my posts last week - who knew I would have so many good reasons to use it in such a short period of time?!  (for those of you who picked up on it, I must admit to you that it wasn't original.  Fellow blogger Cheese came up with it before me and I stole it because really, its so appropriate.  Thanks Cheese!  Sorry there are so many douchebags in your life too).

Just a couple days ago, Egg came out of the woodwork just to say hi.  Today, Flake came out of the woodwork just to say hi.  How many ex-boyfriend people are going to make contact with me in one week?  Anyone want to start the betting pool?

I dated Flake briefly last fall, and its been a year since I last spoke to him, almost to the day.  I met him through Match, and ignored all the warning signs because he was sorta fun to hang out with.  The dude was an artist who taught at the local university and lived at home with his parents.  I cut him some slack since he was having trouble finding full-time employment (Duh! A master's degree in Fine Art doesn't really get you very far in life.  Especially in this red-neck part of the woods).

The living at home part should have spooked me off, but I try really hard not to judge people (well, people that I am trying to date anyway).  The part that should have really spooked me off was how he spent a lot of money on prescription pills, and how he would not be real good about calling me back and how he would make plans with me and not show up.  He "overslept" a lot.  In retrospect, I think he was heavily medicated for either depression or ADD or a combination of both.  He may have been self medicating with a little too much weed as well.

 We had a couple fun dates, and a nice little camping trip, but that was about the extent of it.  The last time we had contact, he had called and left a message that said something like "hey.  Its Flake.  I'd like to talk to you.  Gimme a call back."  It sounded like a phone call that was going to end with him telling me that he had been acting like a big flake because he had met someone else, but I called him back anyway because I really wanted to know what the hell was going on.  He didn't pick up the phone when I called back.  I left a message, and never, ever heard anything else from him.  Until today.

His email, sent through the Match system even though he has my real email address AND phone number, said "hey.  What's up?  Your hair looks nice short.  Hope you're well."  He signed it "scary" which I vaguely recall was some inside joke between us that I never, ever would have remembered.  Still kinda don't.  

What's the incentive?  What's the point?  I don't think that boys think about this stuff.  I would never randomly email somebody without a reason.  A real reason.  Telling me that my hair looks nice short is not a real reason.   

P.S.  His hair did not look nice!  Maybe I should write back and tell him that...

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Hope and Optimism

A strange feeling came over me on Wednesday...

It could be described as hope, perhaps.  Or optimism.  I hadn't felt that way in a long time.  

The results of the election on Tuesday made me very, very happy.  To be at the Democratic returns party when CNN called the election for Obama/Biden was unreal.  Balloons were dropping.  People were crying and shouting and cheering and pumping their fists in the air. And cramming cheese in their faces.

(Oh wait, that last one was just me.  I was friggin' hungry.  Whatever, a black guy was going to get to be president someday anyway.  The pepper jack cheese wasn't waiting!)

But I guess I didn't know that the stress of not knowing was actually having an effect on me.  Its no secret that I've been feeling down recently and things aren't really all that great still, but Wednesday morning, I actually felt good.  Optimistic.  Hopeful.  Cheerful even.  

We won at the national level, but also won big on the local level.  I feel like now, I can actually start doing stuff, both at work and at home, that will really make a difference.  Because there are people taking office that want me to make a difference.   It feels good.  I hope I can keep up these hopeful feeling - at least until it starts getting light again and I can start photosynthesizing hope and optimism.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Dirty Old Men

Mars must be in retrograde; all the planets must be lined up and Pluto must have gotten a new moon because, otherwise, I have no explanation for why suddenly, old men are finding me attractive and desirable.  And letting me know about it.  And making me want to hurl.

I told you all about the email from the older guy from the neighborhood (which I never responded to despite my best intentions), but I didn't tell you about my creepy bbq stalker who sent me a letter that started out "Susan, you look GREAT in these pictures..."  The letter contained pictures of me, stalker guy and our governor.  I don't know why, but the fact that the pictures were taken with one of those disposable plastic cameras makes it all the creepier (like, if he owned a real camera it could be used as evidence against him?).  Some 65 year old in a truck also honked and winked at me today while I was walking downtown. 

But these things I wouldn't have thought that much about really, until Tuesday, when I was propositioned.  By an elderly Jewish man.  E.L.D.E.R.L.Y.

Because I clearly have nothing better to do than blog and work on political campaigns (because I sure as hell don't seem to be dating anymore!), I was a "greeter" at my local polling place for the big election.  I got there at 7am and handed out democratic propaganda all day.  "Hi!  Thanks for coming out today !  Would you like a copy of the democratic ballot card?  I can answer any questions you have!  Just let me know!  !"   

I worked from 7 until about 1, then took a break.  Somewhere at the end, an elderly gentleman who used to come to Town Council meetings, came to vote with his wife.  "Hi! Mr. Siverstein!  Would you like a ballot card?!?"  We chatted briefly about how much we hate the Mayor and he went inside to vote.  He came out of the polling place and we chatted more about Town politics and my recent unsuccessful battle with those bastards.  He was sympathetic and he told me the best way to organize a coup, then the conversation took a turn.  A wrong turn.  A very wrong turn.  He very nicely, in what I thought was a concerned Jewish grandfather kind of tone, asked me how my personal life was.  Well, we all know the answer to that and I think I told him  that boys can't keep up with me and I'm so smart and pretty I scare them off.  That's my typical response to that kind of question anyway.  He tells me that I need an older man.  I told him that I agreed, that maybe 30 year olds weren't mature enough for me.

Then he says something about us getting together or coming to a meeting or something, and I wasn't paying that much attention until he said "Would you dress like a school girl for me?"  And followed it up with something like, "my wife wouldn't need to know."

I was dumbfounded.  Seriously.  I'm going to cut this guy a break - he's elderly and in poor health.  He could have dementia, he could be on some sort of drugs that make you say things that you should only be thinking (but he shouldn't even be thinking that!) - but even so, how do you respond to something like that.  A simple "uh, no.  That's out of the question" doesn't even do it justice, but I think that's what I said.

Eeewww.  I'm not really sure what the heebie-jeebies are, but I think he gave them to me.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Go Away!

I have dated a fair number of people in my life, starting at the tender age of 14 when I had my first kiss with a guy I still talk to on occasion (turns out, we randomly like the same band that nobody else in the world has ever heard of. Who knew?!)

At 15, I "dated" a boy called Egg. He was on the football team, but I think he sat on the bench an awful lot. He had a football jacket though. I coveted that football jacket. I wanted it. Wanted it bad. I think we went to a dance together. We definitely made out in the hallway together (gross!). I vividly remember how cool I thought it was to hold his hand - mine were white, his were black. I probably thought I was rebelling against some societal ills.

I almost became a societal ill in the process.

One night, Egg came over to my house with my friend and her boyfriend and I snuck out of the house to go hang out in some apartment somebody somewhere (there were no adults present, obviously). It was bad news. There was a bed in a large walk-in closet. We went in there and made out. My friend and her boyfriend were in the bedroom on the real bed, making out. I thought she was having sex. She thought I was having sex. Egg wanted to have sex. Egg did not get to have sex, but if my self esteem had been a notch lower, I would have lost my virginity at age 15, instead of age 21. Things happened in that closet that I was not real comfortable with, but god, at least I didn't have sex with him.

You know why it was particularly good that I didn't have sex with him, besides all that STD, pregnancy crap?

Because on Monday morning when I showed up at school, he was making out with an oily-faced, bad dye-jobbed jv cheerleader. A girl whose self esteem was clearly lower than mine was... A while later, I found out that he had actually picked me up after spending the evening with that slutty cheerleader. Gross. Gross. Gross.

Of all the consternation and hurt and problems boys have brought into my life over the years, I think that particular incident still ranks as number one. I almost let him put his penis in me, and on Monday he is jamming his tongue down another girl's throat?!? Lord knows what she let him shove down her throat... Of all the guys I've dated in my entire life, he is the ONLY one I would want to spit at if I walked down the street.

Randomly, about 7 years ago, I got an email from him. How he got my email address, I will never know. I didn't respond. Spit doesn't transmit well through email. So guess what now? He just asked to be my facebook friend!! Holy mother of god. Why won't this fucker go away?! Seriously, should I have to be reminded of this little situation that happened almost 20 years ago? No! It still makes me mad!

Boys like that should disappear into a black hole. But at the very least, they should recognize that girls they f'ed over in 1991 might not want to have pleasant chit-chat with them.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Girl Game

So, its kinda hard to have a blog about dating and relationships when you aren't dating anyone, and everyone you know (and people you don't know) are pretty tired of hearing about "not-dating" BB.  But, here goes.  Its either this, or you hear details about how I cleaned my house and organized my closet this week.  Yup.  That's what I thought.

This "not-dating" gig is starting to wear on me.  I know you are shocked.  It seems that when we need something from each other, we see each other a lot.  Two, maybe three, times a week.  Case in point - when he needed me to help him with his motorcycle.  Saw him three times that week; but there was a purpose.  And bonus sex.  I needed him last week when the family crises hit.  I needed to not be alone, needed someone to comfort me (and only a fat hairy guy will do in those situations).  There was no sex, because that's not what I needed.  

I get happy and elated when I see him a lot (except when there is a family crises, but that doesn't count).  Then, I get confused and sad when I don't see him.  

It occurred to me that recently, I felt like I had been making all the plans.  I was calling.  I was suggesting hanging out.  He was agreeable (especially when I was crying), but didn't reciprocate.  So, in typical girl playing games fashion, I stopped calling him as of last Sunday morning when I left his house.

You know when I heard from him?  Friday afternoon,   when I got a text message that said he got to leave work early and was going for a motorcycle ride.  I was stuck at work, drowning under paperwork.  He thought it was amusing and wanted to rub it in.  Fine, ok.  But, hey, guess what dude?  I'm having like, serious life issues here.  Maybe you coulda called like mid-week just to make sure I hadn't flung myself off my deck (ok, well, its only one story off the ground, but I could have seriously hurt myself had I decided to!).  Most of my other friends did.  Some twice.  Some even more than that, but I suspect that those were the really bored ones...

We made no plans - girl game would not allow me to.  So, I didn't see him this weekend at all, despite the fact that he wasn't working and I had no plans.  Didn't talk to him even.  Until Sunday night, when he called.  It was kinda late, so it surprised me.  He talked about his little dilemma (Go to a funeral?  Not go to a funeral?) then finally got around to asking about me.  And we talked about me for a little while, but only for a little while because honestly, I'm tired of talking about me (can you believe it?).  He did ask if I wanted to hang out next weekend, and of course, I said yes.  Like a big dummy.

As a side note, like a big dummy, I also said yes when I was asked by the local democratic party to be a "greeter" at the polls tomorrow.  For 8 hours.  Maybe a single, cute 34 year old will ask me a question about a candidate and I can slip him my digits...

Right.


Sunday, November 2, 2008

Falling Back

Goodbye Daylight Savings Time.  Hello giant bottle of red wine!

We "fell back" last night, and I will admit that it was nice waking up at 8am (really, 7 am) to actual daylight outside.  And while its going to be easier to get out of bed now, I am going to be one grumpy girl for the next two months in the evenings.  The darkness is only going to add further to my general malaise, which, quite frankly, seems to be at an all time high.  Its been a long time since I have felt low enough to think that a therapist and a major life change are called for.  In the past, I can directly chalk up feeling depressed to actual events that were short term in nature.  I knew that if I could push through for a month or two, or even three, that things would be back to normal and I could resume my happy life.  The recent family situation is different - I've been feeling unsatisfied with life for a while, then the family situation gets piled on, and I realize that even when things go back to normal (if they ever do), I'm not sure that "normal" is ok anymore.

Its scary when you realize that you may have outgrown the life that you have built for yourself.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Getting better

I just wanted to send out a quick thank you to all of you for your concern, support and kind words - even though I have yet to go into details about what is happening.  Noone is dying (but that doesn't mean I don't want to kill someone); everyone is healthy (but my head needs a shrink.  But seriously, what's new about that?!); and we are working through the situation.

What I am trying to do right now is to get to the point at which I can separate the actions of others from my own life.  I have no control over the choices other people make, and I have to decide for myself whether I am going to make it my problem.  Too bad for me that it seems I have already made the decision to make it my problem.

I do want to tell the story, but it is a long one, and it is extremely embarrassing to me.  I hope that when I tell it, you can listen with an open mind and that maybe it will let you see the other side of tragic stories you see on the news almost every day.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Turn for the worse

Last Wednesday, I was looking forward to eating bad take-out food, drinking bad red wine and laying on the couch, watching whatever bad television show I could find (not usually that difficult, particularly on Wednesday).  It didn't happen.  Instead, I wound up curled in a ball, sobbing, and wondering why this was happening again.  And what I've done to deserve it.

I'm not ready to talk about it with most people yet.  I'm not sure I will ever be able to blog about it.  Let's suffice it to say that you can't pick your family, and sometimes they make your life hell.  I light of this, all my cutesy little stories about boys, and dating, and not-dating seem silly and pointless.  

So, if you were wondering where I've been and have been missing my neurotic posts, I apologize.  I even had stuff to blog about, like a brand new creepy stalker man, but I just can't right now.  I don't have it in me.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Match.Con

"Join eHarmony or Match just like every other lonely person out there."  -Susan, Yesterday

So I did.

I couldn't stand it anymore.  Today, I got another notice that "someone" had emailed me.  That crap absolutely drives me crazy.  I know they need to make money and all, but can't they come up with a better method to sucker you into paying money and joining?  Its almost cruel.  

Out of 90 people that have viewed my profile, I have now received three emails and a "wink."  None of them from the guy that I saw and crushed on immediately.  One, disappointingly enough, was a guy I had been emailing with on eHarmony.  His email basically said "hey!  We emailed on eHarmony a couple months ago.  I enjoyed it.  Want to continue?"  Of course he enjoyed our email swaps.  I'm freaking funny.  He on the other hand, more of a computer nerd who had very little to say.  I'm holding off on emailing him back.

Because really, who are we kidding?  I really don't want to go out on dates.  Not with people I don't 100,000% love.  Even when the dinner and beers are free, its SO much damn effort.  

There is a slight chance that I will try to cancel within three days, which I think they allow you to do.  So, I emailed crush boy.  First emails are always so totally awkward.  "Hi internet boy.  You are cute.  You should date me.  Email me back or I will cry.  And then run off to make myself feel better by having sex with my ex-boyfriend person."   Instead of that sentiment, I told him that I was impressed by his profile; in particular how open he was about his religious views (which are just as abnormal as my own).  God.  I'm not even sure that I'm in a place where I could clear my head long enough to deal if he emails me back.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Out of the Blue Proposition

Wow. I just totally, out of the blue, randomly, got asked out over email by a guy I've met like twice and who I haven't seen in well over a year and a half. No, scratch "guy" - and replace with "man." Cuz this dude is old. O. L. D.

I recently found out that there are plans afoot for a big, nasty gas station right in front of my neighborhood. So, I frantically sent out an email to my old civic association members begging them to take a stand and actually do something other than complain. This is what I got back from Old Guy:


I am responding to your mail for personal reasons because I found you to be a very interesting and intriguing woman, in addition to a beautiful one. I am assuming you are single and I apologize if I am incorrect. In case you don’t remember me, I am a larger than average guy with a beard. I have been in a relationship since before I purchased my home in the neighborhood. That relationship no longer exists and I would like to invite you to have dinner with me so that we might get to know each other better. Any chance you might be interested? I look forward to hearing from you.

Oh my god. For real? Luckily for me, in the blah blah background part, he said he had actually moved out of the neighborhood.

Besides the totally creepy part, seriously, he was totally right when he noticed that I am a very interesting and intriguing woman (and beautiful to boot) - so why then would he assume that I'm single!?!? Holy crap! If I'm beautiful, intriguing and interesting, wouldn't that lead you to assume that someone has already locked me down? Why would you think otherwise? Perhaps he thinks that if I had a man in my life I wouldn't be so damn mouthy all the time? What total balls for him to send that email.

I do remember this guy from meetings, and he is larger than average, and probably hairy, so physically, just my type. But he's 45, maybe 50. Way too old for me. He always was extremely friendly to me, and smiley. Now I know why. He had secret dreams of getting in my pants.

So, how do I handle the situation? Is there anyone out there in the interweb who thinks I should go out with him? Am I missing out on a good thing by not taking a chance on grandpa? I mean, I read all these memoirs where the perpetually single girl finally finds love with a guy 20 years her senior, why not me? But, what I would prefer to do is thank him for the kind email and gently tell him that I am in a relationship (whatever, its not a total lie. I am having sex with my not-boyfriend person) and wish him luck. I'm sure he is lonely, but really, that's not my problem. Join eHarmony or Match just like every other lonely person out there.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Friday Night Lame

For the second Friday night in a row, I watched Wife Swap.

And liked it.

Its definitely a new low.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

48 hours on Match.com

I revenge date.  Or at least, I revenge put my profile online.  This is what happened on Tuesday and now I just feel silly.  And I remember all the many reasons that I hate internet dating. Match is just as bad as eHarmony.

I made my profile visible, but I didn't pay for a subscription.  Paying for a subscription seems pretty final to me.  I'm cheap - if I pay for something, I'd damn well going to use it.  If I pay for Match, I'm going to talk to new boys, and go on dates with new boys and the thought of that exhausts me and I'm not ready and I just don't want to.  So why the hell I made my profile visible is totally beyond me. 

Match gets you to pay by slowly pulling you in...  As a non-subscriber, you can view all the profiles your little heart desires and you can "wink" at boys.  You can see who has "winked" at you, but if someone likes you enough to actually send an email you get a notification that "someone sent you an email!"  To see the email, you have to pay.  To see who has clicked on your profile, you have to pay.  And once you get an email, you want to know who sent it.  What if it was that perfect guy?!  When in reality, its probably that guy that likes to hunt and go "4-whillin."  But you still want to know, because, what if it really was the cute, smart guy?

After 48 hours of my profile being visible, 40 guys have viewed me.  This could be one guy looking at my profile 40 times, or 40 different guys.  I have no way of knowing.  Of those, one has emailed me (but I don't know who!!) and one "winked" at me.  The winky guy seems ok - kinda dorky, probably a milk-toast boy-scout type.  But not special enough to pay 40 bucks for. The whole thing is such crap.  And I'm so not ready for it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Visible

I just made my match.com profile visible and I feel sick.

Today, I realized that I may not have this whole BB situation truly under control.  (I know that this is totally shocking to you.) I've been playing it calm and cool and had myself convinced that I was in charge, but I spent a lot of time with him over the past week and he is like my crack.  The more I get, the more I want.  I went to bed thinking about him, I woke up thinking about him, I thought about him a lot during the day.  I did not call him to "just say hi" today though, so I give myself a little bit of credit there.

So, like I do when I get a bit depressed about it, I shop for boys on-line and depress myself further.  The first guy that came up in my search?  The VERY FIRST guy?  Larry.  A soft spoken Asian guy who works in the IT field.   

Larry rides on my vanpool.

This confirms the fact that there are no dateable men anywhere near me.  But then, I clicked on a cute guy.  Who does not ride my vanpool.  Who goes to the gym (or so he says), and mountain bikes (or so he says), and has a graduate degree (or so he says) and isn't religious, and might not want kids... And I think "if I don't sign up right now and email this guy, my soulmate could slip away."  And then I panic.

WTF.  Why do I do this to myself?  (Trust me.  I swear, it is not so that I can have crazy blog rants).

My decision?  I made my profile visible.  Its been hidden for over a year at this point, but is still fairly representative of who I am, and the pictures aren't terribly outdated.  So, I made it visible, then clicked on his profile.  If he is a savvy match.com user, he will see that I viewed him.  He will look at my profile, then he will either think I am a nut job, or he will email me.  And then, I will make a decision about what to do next.

The decision probably should be to find myself a therapist.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Vroom Vroom

I envisioned myself as a motorcycle goddess - sexily slithering off the bike, pulling the helmet off my head and shaking out my perfectly fluffy blonde hair... But I caught a glimpse of myself while wearing the helmet: my librarian glasses and slightly round face looking back at me from underneath a helmet twice as big as a bowling ball didn't quite match the sexy goddess image.

Regardless, I had a freaking blast.

Last week, I graciously offered to help BB take his motorcycle back and forth to the repair shop.  Considering that said repair shop is two hours from my house, this was a pretty big favor for someone I am "not-dating."  It was a pain in the ass, but I drove his car (automatic, with a nicer stereo system than mine), it was gorgeous out, and the drive is actually kinda fun.  He's been talking about getting his bike fixed for the ten months I've known him, so I was glad to finally be able to help.  Plus, him having his bike back means that we have lots of new excuses to see each other and "not-date."

Yesterday, after spending no less than 6 hours shuttling back and forth last week, I actually got to ride the damn thing.  I was excited, and terrified.  Last time I rode on the back of a motorcycle was 1992.  I think I've lost some balance and flexibility since then.  And I have certainly gained an appreciation for injury and death (see black eye saga).  Luckily for me, his bike is of the old-man type, not quite one of those Winnebago-like motorcycles, but pretty damn close.  It has a stereo and a cigarette lighter, if that gives you any indication of the danger I was in (none).  

I planned our route (kinda) because I know the local roads way better than he does (and, being a guy, has no sense of direction but refuses to ever look at a map unless its on his iPhone).  Amusingly to me, we drove past Momom's house, Popop's cemetery, and Nana's cemetery.  It was the scenic tour of Susan's dead and dying relatives.  Cheery!  We rode for almost two hours and it passed like a flash.  I thought I would get bored, but not even close.  It was weird giving up all control to him - couldn't talk, couldn't warn him of danger (not that I could see past him)...  I could signal to him which way to go by gently punching him on one side or the other, but that was about it.  

The best thing about this (and please, have your vomit bags ready), was how excited and happy he was to be able to ride.  You could see it in his face, and in the way his eyes kinda sparkled when he took his helmet off.  Makes me melt.  That look, and the Old Spice combined?  Forget it.  

BB now thinks that I should get my motorcycle license so we can ride together - I pointed out that we could already ride together, and that I needed another dangerous hobby like I need another rock to the eye, but high gas prices already had me considering it.  Who knows, maybe I will.  But until then, I'm going to play motorcycle goddess as often as possible.  


Friday, October 10, 2008

One of my many problems

A couple days ago, I attended a meeting of a community coalition to speak about one of the projects I have been working on for several years.  The meeting was held in a church (no, I was not struck by lightning) and started, and ended, with a prayer.  I was thrilled.

What also thrilled me was that, even though I was invited to speak, I was on the agenda late into the meeting, but still had to get there when it started to get my audio-visual extravaganza set up.  The point is, I got bored while waiting my turn to talk and inspire others.  So my mind wandered. And it wandered to boys.

The tables and chairs were set up in a square, so we were all staring blankly at each other.  But it gave me a good view of the entire room.  I decided to play "who would you sleep with?" and learned that I am one picky, picky girl.

There were somewhere between 20 and 30 people in the room and roughly half were guys.  Discounting the mostly blind preacher and his assistant (whose first name was the same as his last.  Something like "Jack Jackson".  Who would do that?!?), there were about 10 men in the room.  There were two lawyers - one too young and hipster-y, one way too Jewish.  There were about three guys from local industries around the table - one too old, one too corrupt, and one who clearly had very little going on upstairs.  There was an old PhD from the local hospital with a british accent and a late-20 something buff black guy in a very expensive and well tailored suit who represented the local minor league team.  Then there were a couple just old guys from local agencies who had nothing of note to report except grey hair and bad wire rimmed glasses.

It cracks me up, but I had trouble deciding between the buff minor league guy and the old british doctor guy.  I thought that if I slept with the old british doctor guy, we could do Sunday puzzles in the morning and perhaps he would buy me flowers (perhaps I don't understand the rules of this game).  Minor league guy is the obvious choice.  Extremely attractive.  Well-dressed.  Nice glasses.  But he was soooo... plastic?  Even though he was well put together, he didn't quite pull it off.  He looked slightly uncomfortable.  

But I thought I might have seen him sneaking glances at me.

So, the morale of this story is, try as I may, I couldn't really identify one guy in that room that I would, or even wanted to, sleep with.  My standards are so high that I can't even have a pretend one night stand.  Maybe next time, I'll just sniff them and see if that changes the outcome.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Time for a New Spice

Old Spice.  The deodorant.

It comes in a red package that features a sailboat.  Its not out of the question that my father used it, or, maybe it was my grandfather.  It may have come in a soap on a rope product in the 80's. There is nothing cool or suave about Old Spice (or any variety of soap on a rope).  Nothing.  Nada.

Why does it matter?  Why am I wasting your time with my thoughts on men's toiletries?

Because I want to wrap myself up in a stick of it and stay there forever.  I want to swim in a pool of it.  I want to roll my kayak in it.  It makes me melt.  It makes me want to do things like bake brownies, from scratch, and iron shirts.  In my bare-feet.  Maybe pregnant.

(believe it or not, I haven't even been drinking.)

Old Spice is the scent of BB.  That, and that dryer sheets with the teddy (Snuggle?).  Its a powerful combination.  During those months that I was holding on to his stuff, I would occasionally walk by his bag and get a whiff of it.  Then be drawn in, and do pathetic things like deeply inhale his shirt.  Pathetic.  But I wonder, which came first?  My fascination with BB, or my fascination with old-man deodorant?  Did his Old Spice smell help draw me in?  Or do I now love that smell because I associate it with him, and not necessarily because I like it.  Please let it not be that I'm just a sucker for Old Spice.  What if I am?  I could wind up with a total (bigger) jackass, just because he uses cheap old-man deodorant.  Damn you, Proctor and Gamble!!!  Damn you!!!

Monday, October 6, 2008

Lazy Susan

I love fall - I love that the humidity drops, the sky is bright blue, the leaves start turning and that I can wear my new fun corduroy coat from Target.

But I can't friggin stay awake! Its dark at 7pm and its making me want to revert to the bedtime I had when I was six years old.

Three times in the past week, I have gone out, had two beers (TWO!), come home and passed out on the couch. Two beers should not cause a seasoned drinker to pass out at 8pm. Seriously. Wednesday we did happy hour/dinner, I got home, sat on the couch, flipped the tv on and woke up at 10pm wondering what the hell happened. Friday night (FRIDAY!) we kayaked, I sucked back a couple beers in between paddle strokes, put the boat away, came in, sat on the couch and fell asleep! Ditto last night, after dinner and two beers with BB.

This can't keep up. I have a life, people! I had homework to do! Phone calls to return! Emails to send! Blogs to write! (ok, maybe not much of a life, but a life all the same)

I am either going to have to stop drinking beer, or get myself one of those happy lamps for people with Seasonal Affective Disorder, and wouldn't that add to my attractiveness to the opposite sex?!?

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Drill Baby Drill!

Oh.  My.  God.

I just watched probably the most entertaining 90 minutes of tv I have watched in a long time. And as a bonus, it was commercial free!  Which made refilling my wine glass and grabbing chocolate out of the fridge kinda difficult...

Listen, this is not a political blog by any means.  And it strikes me odd that I follow my story of last Saturday's debauchery with my thoughts on the vice-presidential debate, but so be it.  I'm a well-rounded girl.  Political.  And slutty.  What a winning combination.  (Why am I still single?)

I am a liberal democrat.  I am strongly supporting Obama/Obiden (as Palin called him) - in fact, I got so pissed off that by 45 minutes in, I was sitting here with my laptop contributing money to the Obama campaign.  I am also a feminist.  Militant perhaps.  I firmly believe that if women were in charge of the world, things would be hunky-dory.  There would be no more war, kids would be happy and well educated, air would be clean, water would be clean, fish would be happy....  But, only if women like me were in charge of the world.  Palin scares the shit out of me - she is uneducated on the issues, insular, an idealogue.  To sum up: a right wing whack job.
I'd love to see a woman in the vice-presidency.  I would have loved to see a woman in the presidency.  But not this wolf shooting, police-chief firing, fertile, vicious, beauty queen grandma.

What really pisses me off is that there are now 4 female republican governors in the U.S.  The Republicans could have picked any of them if they wanted to get a girl on the ticket.  You know why they picked this one?  Cuz she is hot.  Way hotter than any of the others.  This isn't progress, people.  Its still discriminatory.  And certainly not feminism.

So, Palin was nervous.  And should have been.  Biden has been yakking it up in the Senate for 35 years.  And can locate both Sudan and Delaware on a map.  Palin held up well given the circumstances, but was still well outclassed.  After 23 minutes, she finally removed a piece of hair from her eyeball, which made it much easier for me to look at her.  She only said "soccer mom" once, but said "maverick" at least four times.  Twice she referenced her "diverse" family.  What makes it so diverse?  There are boys and girls?  Brunettes and blondes?  Babies and fetuses?

My favorite part was when she gave a shout out to a third grade class.  In a debate!  Seriously?  A shout-out?!  Her folksy "darn-rights" and "doggoneits" made me want to barf.  My favorite though, was when she said "drill baby drill!"  Love it.  What a moron.  She also winked at some point, possibly after she declared her everlasting love for Israel.  WINKED at the camera!  Holy crap!  I thought that wink might be the secret code for someone to drop a bomb on North Dakota.

To be fair, Biden did some things that cracked me up too.  He said that he loved John McCain at least twice.  Seriously.  For a second, I wondered if he was supporting same sex couple benefits for a reason.  He referred to himself as "Joe Biden" at least four times.  Its possible he is getting botox since he had wrinkles on the side of his forehead, but not in the middle.  And, he teared up once when he was talking about his son, who is going off to Iraq tomorrow.  Touching.

It was totally worth missing Grey's Anatomy.

(p.s.  If you are still undecided, please check out Obama's website and really look at the differences between the parties.  Or just do what I tell you to do and vote for Obama!  If you are an Obama supporter and haven't yet contributed to the campaign, please do, even if its just a couple bucks.  It all makes a difference.  I really don't want to have to move to Canada.  I said I was going to do it four years ago, but I'm serious this time.)