What Type Of Mr. Right?

lunchI was out with a friend the other day for lunch.  She was sharing pictures of the home she and her husband just purchased and are fixing up.  As she showed me the pictures on her iPhone, I was impressed with the before and after scenes and how much work they’ve done in such a short time.  When I questioned her about how she and her husband accomplished it all, I received a wonderful loving description of her husband and all the things he did seemingly effortlessly on this home.  She concluded her praise of him with the words, “He totally puts Husband For Hire to shame!”  I thought this was especially touching since these two are past the honeymoon stage, have been together over 7 years, and are very much still “in love”. 

 Her words got me thinking.

First, the relationship she has with her husband is a rare thing.  In many ways, what she and her husband model for me (generally, not necessarily specifically) what I hope to have.  The key thing they share is a deep, abiding, mutual admiration and respect and love for each other.  They also both have their independent lives. 

Further, as a single mom who has no skills in home repair and who has no money to hire it done, I know how valuable a man with home repair skills is.  I also realize that there are many valuable ways people can contribute to a significant relationship. I was originally going to title this post “Two Kinds of Men” because I was thinking of the handyman and the guy who is not handy, but the more I considered the topic the more I realized there are more than just two kinds of men and far more than two ways to contribute to a relationship.  For fun, I came up with a few categories using broad brush strokes, I admit, that men can fall into.  You may be able to think of more.  In fact, I hope you do.  Leave your ideas in a comment or write your own post and link to me. That would be great fun!   Don’t worry, peeps.  I am working on a post about different types of women too,  but since men interest me more than women do, it was easier to start here.  ;)Enjoy!

therepairman 1.  The Handy Man.  This guy can fix, build or renovate anything.  You’ll never need to hire a repairman because even if you did The Handy Man could do it better and for less.  He has all the tools and knows how to use them.  If you find a guy like this, you’ll be able to have the home improvement jobs completed to your specifications every time.  You might have to get used to some unfinished projects around the house as the norm rather than the exception. This kind of guy is amazing and if you find yourself with someone like this, spoil him immensely.  He will build you a mansion of love from his own bare hands.

The Manager 2.  The Manager.  This guy isn’t handy, but he isn’t okay with things being in disrepair either.  He’s a conscientious sort who is willing to part with some money on occasion to make sure everything is looking great and in perfect working condition.  He makes enough money to be able to pay to put in that slider out the master bedroom onto that redwood deck with a pergola and a hot tub which he also paid to have done. He is too busy making money so he can keep his love and his family in the manner in which he is proud to keep them.  While he won’t hang the Christmas tree lights, he won’t leave it to his wife to do it.  He’ll hire the Christmas Tree Light Hanger Person to come and make sure that every little light is perfectly spaced and straight and lit. If you find yourself with a guy like this, you are just as fortunate as if you were with The Handy Man.  Guy Who Can Hire It Done is so responsible that he won’t let you down.  He’s so detail oriented that he won’t let whoever he hires get by with doing a sloppy job.  If you are with him, spoil him.  He is proud of what he can give and do for you and the family.  Appreciate it all and it will come back to you in spades or probably diamonds.

Wayne's World 3.  The Non Man.  The Non Man cannot do home repairs, he doesn’t make enough to make sure that the repairs are kept up around the house by a repairman and he doesn’t care. He’s a fun person, lives for the moment and could care less about responsibility. He’s great in bed, keeps his body in shape and looks and acts eternally 35 even though he may have left his 50’s behind long ago. If he has a job, it’s his 15th one in the last three years. He leaves all the heavy serious stuff of finances, home repair, cooking, laundry and yard work to his significant other or his mother to deal with, stress about and lose her health over. After all, he has to play World of Warcraft. If  you meet this man, move on quickly.  The sex will be great, but the rest of the time you’ll just be babysitting.

personal_chef 4.  The Chef.  Highly sought after by career women these days, this guy is just a bit overrated. This kind of guy probably gets invited to a lot of potlucks and has a lot of friends due to his culinary skills, however, cooking a great meal every night is not as useful a skill as being good at the home repairs.  After all, and I do speak from experience here, screwing up a really good meal is far easier to recover from financially than replacing that wall that was supposed to be a weight bearing wall and should never have been removed in the first place.  So, if all he brings to the table are his culinary skills, maybe you should look further.

The Partner5.  The Partner.  This man is golden.  He’s also a rare find. He is intelligent, capable, resourceful, has good table manners and uses good grammar when speaking and writing.  He’s smart enough to know not to belch at the dinner table, knows which fork to use in a nice restaurant and leaves the seat down for The Other Partner.  He’s a fully vested partner in the firm called Relationship. He doesn’t shirk responsibility, he has people skills, knows how to negotiate the differences in order to reach conclusions that work in the best interests of the other Partner and stakeholders in The Firm.  If he can’t fix it himself, he knows just the right person for the job and will make sure it gets done. He does what he says he will do and doesn’t make commitments he can’t keep.  He’s confident, not needy, won’t play games but will tell you exactly where he stands. When in corporate meetings he doesn’t seek to force his views or goals on others, but instead seeks to influence or persuade while fully allowing the other parties to make their own choices even though he might be very passionate about his own perspectives. He provides information and options instead of coercing. The Partner, while, intelligent, confident and capable, realizes that The Firm he is vested in is a collaborative team venture and not a top down organization where all the decisions run through the senior partner without consideration of the other entities involved.  He works hard and is fully committed to his own success as well as the success of The Firm and others he partners with.  He’s not a workaholic but recognizes that in order to be the best Partner he can be, he must take care of himself too. If you are fortunate enough to find yourself as a Partner in a Firm with a man like this stay with the Firm and work collaboratively with this man and you’ll be golden too!

Texts From The Morning After—The Saturday Morning Live Edition

Text conversation this morning from a friend who recently got stillettoed by the latest love of his life and spent last night drinking to get her off his mind:

Him:  Drinking Stillettos off my mind worked last night. I went 0-4 picking up on women.  Seems everyone has a b/f or two.  But the headache is great.  Did you find $20 in your underwear this morning?  I did.

Me: Really?  Wow!  You must have been firefighting last night.  Whose fire I wonder?

Him:  I don’t know. And no strangers in my bed this morning.  Can’t find my keys.  Can’t find my work badge.

Me:  Geez!  Do you still have your truck and hoses?

Him:  Let me check.

Him:  Dammit.  The truck is gone!

Me:  Holy Shit!  There is a great big massive RED truck parked out front of my house.  You should see the hoses on this thing!

Him:  That truck gets around.

Me:  Yeah, it looks pretty broke in.

Him:  Hey!  The truck gets polished up. 😉

Me:  Polished, yeah, but these hoses are in sad shape! Ooops!  The horn works.

Him: Those hoses will get the job done.  Don’t you worry girl.

Me:  Hmmm, no firemen on board, so it’s not looking good.

Him:  They don’t know where the truck is either.

Me:  That’s too bad.  I’m such a morning person too.  Dammit!

Hmmm, seems someone has a fire truck fixation going.  Ah, well, might be better than that chicken issue a while back.

Reasons Why I Never Responded To You On That Online Dating Site

computergivesflowersThese are some of the most common reasons I don’t respond to men on an online dating site.  I can’t speak for other women, and I’ll willingly and gladly admit that I’m one-of-a-kind and not like other women so it wouldn’t matter anyway. These are my thoughts and mine alone.

1.  You only winked at me.  Seriously?  If that’s all the more effort you can expend even after my profile specifically stated that I dont’ respond to winks, you just told me you didn’t read my profile and all I have to say to that is “Next!”

2.  You emailed me and this is what you said, “Hey, liked your profile.  I was wondering if you’d like to chat.”   Hell, no!  I am not on this site to “chat”.  I am not on this site to waste my time. I am not on this site to respond to any cut and pasted messages that you sent to a thousand other women.  I am on this site to increase the odds that I will meet a man who actually has the same ideas about life and relationship that I do so that I can date him and become seriously involved with him with the hopes of building a fulfilling life and future together.  After all, this is hopefully going to be the man that breaks my heart when I have to bury him because we loved each other so deeply (or whose heart is broken because he has to bury me).  Chatting is beneath my dignity…and beneath the dignity of anyone  who seriously merits my attention.  (Now some ribald, tawdry fun on occasion is not out of the question, but you have to be amazing to make that work in the very first email, if you are and you do, you’re golden!)

3.  You told me you loved my picture but said nothing more.  Really, now.  What am I supposed to do with that?  Ask you out?  Sorry, big guy.  That’s your job. About all you’ll get from me on that one is, “Thanks for the kind words.  Good luck on your search.”  And, yes, I cut and pasted it for you and about 50 other guys tonight.

4.  You told me your whole life story in the first email.  So, what’s there to discover now? Next!

5.  You disclosed to me that you beat your last wife, or that you beat your ex’s boyfriend up and did 5 months in jail for that little expression of emotion.  I’m looking to eliminate unnecessary drama from my life, not invite it in.

6.  You had no picture on your profile.  While I’m such a Beauty and the Beast kind of girl, I am also savvy enough about digital realities to know that you can say anythng you want without a picture.  I also know that with a picture you can still be lying.  I don’t deal without a picture and I have my ways of discerning if you are lying to me with that picture or not.  A huge part of relationship is chemistry whether you want to admit it or not and, yes, you have to look good to me.  You expect that I will look good to you or you wouldn’t have contacted me. After all, I did post an accurate and recent picture of myself.  If you can’t do,at least that, I’m not wasting my time with you.

7.  Your username was stupid.  Really.  How smart is it to put up a user like “sexyfun1foru” when you are 5’2 and 300 pounds?  Remember, you are contacting a woman who is 5’6″ in bare feet.  Add the stillettos and I’m an easy 5’9″.  Are you really going to be able to be someone I can look up to?  Seriously…there are many lovely women in the 5′ range.  Hunt them. I just can’t do someone who is shorter than my own son. Also,  I’m sure you are a dynamo in bed but I would have downplayed those sexual strengths and focused on the inner person with your username.  Kinda makes me think you’re just out for a one night romp.

8.  You asked, “So, how’s the online scene working for you?”  That’s an instant dealbreaker.  It’s working WAY better for me than most, but that’s none of your freaking business so don’t ask.

9.  Your first email and your profile for that matter was all about you.  You didn’t ask any questions about me nor did you give me anything I could respond to beyond, “Oh that’s interesting.”  I’m really not that into becoming someone’s groupie.  I want a “relationship”, a partnership, a collaborative effort involving more than just one person. There are many out there who are willing to sign on as your fan club groupie, just because you look nice, have a job and have all the necessary body parts.  Go have fun with them.  I want something more.

10.  You gave me your number and expected me to call you.  Dude, let’s project that out ten years from now and we’re married.  Translation: if I do it all now to get the relationship started…I’m going to be the only one doing anything to keep it together.  Dealbreaker.  No time to waste going down that lonely road.  I want better than that.  Next!

11.  You emailed me but didn’t close the deal.  I really find it so interesting that really successful competent men can work overtime getting to know a company inside and out. They learn everything about the organization so that when they do get that one shot to sell themselves to the company of their dreams they can impress those interviewing them and they can negotiate the best deal for them and the company they are interviewing with.  They actually present themselves to their future employer by detailing how their strengths and experiences can benefit the company.  Then they go a step further and ask for the job.  They follow up the interview with thank-you notes of appreciation and they continue to relentlessly but diplomatically follow up until they know they’ve got the job or they’ve been eliminated.  Men, do not operate this way with women.  With women and online dating, it seems that men more often fill out the application (put up a profile)  and apply for the job( make an intial contact or two), but then they expect the employer (the woman) to go chasing them down to offer them a job (he leaves his number but she has to do all the work to get the thing rolling) .  Or, he contacts her and makes small talk but never gets around to asking her out or making arrangements to meet her.  What is up with that?

And that’s just the first 11 reasons!

The Stupidest Email I’ve Ever Received…Recently Anyway

Okay, I’ve recieved stupider and funnier ones than this one.  Like the convict who dared accuse me of stalking him just because of a stupid Facebook comment I made where I repeated verbatim something he told me.  Yeah, I’ll have to tell you about that sometime.  Tonight’s email was so much more benign…almost boring…but ridiculous in the unfounded assumptions the author made about me and my interest level toward him.  I mean, since I never really responded to his digital advances, I guess I couldn’t exactly be labled “interested” let alone a stalker.  I just don’t get it sometimes.  I just don’t get how guys think sometimes.

Online dating is such a freaking joke.

I’ve dabbled in this venue on and off for the last year, mostly off with a month or two on when I get bored and have nothing better to do…which…seriously…is not often.  This equates to me being on an online dating site, maybe, three times for a month each, in the last year and a half.

About a six months ago a fairly attractive man contacted me and we began communicating.  Okay he emailed me, I responded, we got to the first phone call, after that he went silent. 

BFD.  His loss I figured.  I was spinning about 10 online plates at the time so what did I care.  He easily slipped from my mind.

About a month and a half ago after being “offline” for about 5 months (yes, one month online can easily net me the next six months in dates, get over it!) I went back online again. 

The same go silent BFD dude contacted me again.

Hesitantly, meaning I waited about a week before responding, I responded.

He emailed me once.

I waited, he emailed me back.

I emailed him and you guessed it…he went silent again.  Never to hear from him again until tonight.  (Seriously, I missed no sleep over this.  I’ve really so changed my perspective on the go silent thing.  It is now actually a favor.  He goes silent.  I know all I need to know, I move on.  Over and out.  Next!)

That was nearly two months ago.  I haven’t contacted him.  I haven’t spent any time thinking about him.  Seriously?  I’ve been having way too much fun in my little corner of the world to wonder why the heck he doesn’t have the good sense to follow up on a good thing when he stumbles across it and…stumble he has.  His loss.  My response?  Next!  (Well, not even that…he didn’t even make it to the plate!)

Tonight, after two months of silence and no follow up from me I get the following email:

“Cat, just wanted you to know I met some one and am off the radar.”

Hahahahahaha!  The freaking arrogance of it all. 

*she rolls eyes and clicks delete while thinking, “Dodged an arrogant self-absorbed bullet there!”

Off the radar?!?  Dude, you never even created a blip on the radar, so yeah, I guess you’re right,  you are off the radar! 

I mean, really, I have to laugh, if I was stalking him, I’d understand, but this is a guy who initiated contact with me every time, spoke on the  phone with me once, and I never really made any big effort to respond or encourage him.  I mean, I just don’t get it.

Ah, well, chalk it up to comic relief.  I was, at least, able to squeeze a lame blog post out of it.

On The Line Again!!!! What Is Up With These People?

Here are some of the messages I’ve received lately at that online dating site that I’m on.

MrBigFinger: WOW…Your a very very pretty lady…And SoooooooooooooSEXY!!!!!! 

Okay, now there is just something wrong with the MrBigFinger username and he can’t spell and he’s objectifying me.  Okay, so I don’t really mind that he’s objectifying me but he needs to learn to spell and the big finger thing scares me…of course…if he were MrSmallFinger, I’d laugh.

Stilltrying says he has “a few extra pounds” (and judging from his pictures he certainly does) but he’s looking for “small petite women with brains” or “tall athletic women with brains”  but remember, he’s got a few extra pounds so he can’t accept in her what he’s ready to settle for in himself.  He also goes on to say he “despises stupidity” but most of the words in his profile are misspelled and the punctuation and capitalization are wrong too. 

Then, of course, there is one in every bunch…the guy who totally looks too good to be true.  Fun looking, great pic, all the “right” interests and seems to be able to write a complete sentence…but he just sends a flirt.  Lame ass.  Is that what I can expect in the relationship too?  I gotta do all the work?  I gotta set everything up?  Next!

Then, and I’ve received this more times than I can count, there is the email message, “Hey!”  Nothing else, just, “Hey!”.  It’s one step up from a flirt but still gets the same “lame ass” rating as a flirt.

Then there’s the guy who after one initial “Hey thanks for contacting me” response to his email tells me he told the kids about me, showed them my pics, and then proceeds to bleed his whole life story out sans puctuation and conventional spelling. 

My thoughts?  “Uh, next!”

I could go on.  It just makes me tired.  In fact, it makes me so tired, I’m going to bed…alone…and that is just dandy with me if those are the options!

His Heart Rate Was Dangerously High

800px-howler_monkeyI suppose it is about time to tell the story of Monkey Sex Man.  I met him the very evening my divorce decree was signed by the judge a year and a half ago.  I’d just signed up on one of those online dating sites that I was investigating out of curiosity.  He contacted me initially and I checked out his profile.  He listed his ideal first date as, “wild rampant monkey sex then we order out for Chinese and get to know each other”.  I thought this was humorous so I agreed to meet him for drinks at a local little pub.  What I didn’t know was that he wasn’t kidding about his ideal first date.  I quickly learned this was a relationship best kept at a very safe distance. We ended up talking over the phone a few times, but each time we did, he made these broad generalizations about people and types of people as he saw them.  These sweeping generalizations were seemingly based on very limited data.  For example, he dated one woman from the same town I live in and now his opinion about women from my town is that they are all shallow, stupid, inconsiderate and materialistic. That’s just one of many such examples of the way Monkey Sex Man approached and categorized life.  After about three or four phone conversations, with the last one ending last year about Valentine’s Day with him being so upset with the fact that I just wasn’t going to go out with him when he called me up with very little notice, he hung up on me and then blocked me from contacting him.  I didn’t hear from him for a year. 

About a month ago or so, I put up my profile at an online dating site.  I added some of my more recent pictures.  Two days later, I was contacted by Monkey Sex Man.  He commented positively on my pictures saying I looked soft, feminine and sexy.  I kept waiting for the caustic insult that usually followed statements like this (sarcastic humor he called it).  There was nothing negative.  I thanked him and that was it.  He responded with some conversation.  I responded back but not in an encouraging way.  Somehow, we ended up meeting at a fairly popular place on a weeknight for cocktails. Well, it really wasn’t somehow.  I was going to be over in his area anyway.  I had 45 minutes to burn between appointments (do not read dates!) and I didn’t feel like going into a pub by myself.  Besides, I was curious and needed a blog post. We talked, I stayed an hour and left. 

He called me the following Sunday as he was barbecuing and invited me to come over for barbecue.  My how some people just don’t change.  He knows I’m driving the Titanic here with my single motherdom of  dependent children and everyone knows the Titanic just doesn’t turn on a dime.  Besides, knowing what he was about, I wasn’t going anywhere near his house.  I politely declined and I thought that’d be the end of it.

He called me again last Saturday.  There was a big parade in my town and he was in town for it.  So, he stops in at a bar, uses their phone, calls me up to tell me he’s in town and was wondering if I was out at the parade.  I wasn’t.  He called later from the grocery store said he was sorry he missed me.  Later that evening he called me up again an that time we ended up talking. 

He told me how the stress of the parade, and how stupidly designed the on and off ramps in the community were. Everything about that experience was awful and he tried to go into it with an open mind. Then he told me that while he was at the parade he stopped at one of the free blood pressure check stations they had and the nurse told him his blood pressure was “dangerously high”.  Ya think?!!!!  He was seriously orbiting out of the galaxy just telling me about it. 

Somehow, we got onto the topic of game playing and whether women should call men.  He asked me if I was one of those who always expected the guy to make the first move.  Loaded question and I was so not going to go into my whole “When A Man Is Really Into A Woman” philosophy.  I answered his question with a “that depends upon the context” sort of answer.  This sent his heart rate and his emotional state right around the twist.

“I can’t believe this,” he fumed. (Seriously, why should he be fuming?  I mean, that’s even more drama than I could muster on a good day.) “I’ve got to go.  My heart rate is dangerously high!”  And he hung up. 

And that’s pretty much all there is to the Monkey Sex Man story.

The Junkie In Me Returns…Sort Of?

internet20dating1In the past I likened myself to an online dating junkie.  While this was certainly true in the days immediately preceeding the final divorce judgement and for about 6 to 9 months after, I must say my tendency to “need” to be online and meeting up with people has definitely waned.  In fact, early last summer, I took my profiles down only to put them up again right before school started.  (WTF is up with that????)

I’ve mentioned before what an impulsive mistake that was.  I’m actually still corresponding with people from that little episode that, believe it or not, I have yet to meet.  I may never meet them.  I don’t really care…if I did, I would have met them by now.

But then last night I did a really silly, stupid, actually, thing.  I signed up and even paid money (that’s the stupidest part) for a one month membership on a site I have not been on before.  Now, granted, it wasn’t much money at all.  It really only equated to about two bottles of cheap wine, probably the amount I could finagle out of  just meeting half the people who have already crammed my inbox full of emails insisting they are crazy about me and can’t get me out of their minds after seeing my few lame, poorly lit, and face shot only photos. Well, that is, if I was at all the finagling type. Yeah, sure.  We’ll go with that.

So, this bizarre behavior on my part certainly deserves some closer attention.  Now, it isn’t bizarre to want to sign up on an online site, especially, if you, like me, don’t encounter a single dateable soul in your day to day interactions.  Unfortunately, day to day stretches into week to week and then month to month until one wakes up and realizes they’ve spent a great deal more Friday and Saturday nights home alone than they really ever intended or wanted to spend in solitary confinement.online_dating

[So, I must digress and define dateable.  Dateable for me in a nutshell is a.) male, b.) intelligent enough to hold his own in a conversation and c.) emotionally, financially and legally available.  Okay, a bit about the financially available part.  Financially available in my mind doesn’t mean “without obligations”, but if the guy is still part owner in some very big real estate deals that could end him up being taken by the short hairs by an ex, then I’m not really into that drama much. Enough about dateable and available.]

So, going online in and of itself, is not bizarre, though it is incredibly crazy making and painful.  I don’t understand why people do it.  I do not understand why I just recently did this. Especially since I have so much else I want and need to do besides date a bunch of people one time only to find out that they, like my last year and a half of dating episodes are somehow just not that into me or are completely unavailable somehow.  I’d rather have electric shock treatments than endure any more of that.

And yet….

it’s the “and yet” that always gets ya…

And yet, there are a couple of things here at war within me.  First, I do believe Winston Churchill’s statement.  I posted it last December, I’m posting it again:

“Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm.”

 

~~ Sir Winston Churchill

 

There have been a number of failures in the last couple of years.  Now, failure, of course, is a relative term and I don’t want to get into the fact that there have been many positive outcomes to those failures.  Like, I am  no longer and still not in a disastrous marriage or a relationship where the guy really just isn’t that into me. This is definitely positive and I have no regrets.  But if I define failure as the lack of a quality relationship with a significant other then, I have to say there have been some failures to move toward this goal  in the recent past.  False starts is probably a more accurate term but we’ll go with Winston’s failure…just for fun. Anyway, Churchill’s statement is sound for work, school and romance.  One’s enthusiasm must never wane if one is to ultimately be successful.  I get that.  So, that’s one element:  remaining positive and keeping one’s enthusiasm when it seems that with each passing day the odds get lower and lower that there will be any viable candidate to date. (And, if you lived where I live, you’d consider my attitude one of complete optimism rather than borderline disgust and despair.)   After all, as I’ve said before, I’d like to spend some life with the dude, I don’t exactly want to meet him in the retirement center.  (Okay, all you literalists, take that last statement with a grain of salt and chill.  It was a slight exaggeration to make a point.)

 

This idea that it is important to “keep myself open” to whatever might occur…is at war with the part of me that really doesn’t want to take the risks.  (Okay, yes, I’m being a tad bit vulnerable and honest there so chill about that too.  It DOES NOT MEAN I am needy or insecure.  It simply means I am trying (albeit feebly, I think) to be emotionally honest. 

 

online dating the impossible dilemmaSo, my dilemma:  intellectually I know I should remain social, keep doing things I like and enjoy and keep active and meeting people.  The reality is, the things I enjoy right now, are completely centered around my home, my children, and improving me, my financial situation, my fitness, my living situation.  It’s a bit self focused I think. I’m wondering if it might be a bit of a defense mechanism and a retreatist approach.   I’m trying to figure out if it is an unhealthy self focus or a taking care of me right now focus.  Here’s the even stranger part to all this, anyone, and I do mean anyone who meets me receives me as a warm and fun person.  You would think me the introvert to look at me…though…introvert…I do tend to be…especially lately.

 

 

So about signing up for the online thing…it again happened out of curiosity, I think.  But feel free to share your thoughts.  After all, it was a site I hadn’t ever participated in (and I’ve explored a few).  I think it is also the concern I have that if I don’t make opportunities to connect with others and stay social, I will completely retreat from the world and like Rapunzel in her tall tower become completely isolated.  Truly, I could do this.  I can be alone for endless amounts of time and not even have it bother me.  I’m not sure that this tendency, if allowed to go unchecked is entirely healthy either.  That introvert thing again.  But then, I’m really not that into it at all so why do I even bother?  Is really curiosity.  What do you think?  Take a whack at it all you who know just enough about the workings of the human psyche to be dangerous. 

Sigh. I better wrap this up and go count up my statistics and find out how many men out there are really brave enough to actually make a contact with a message rather than the canned, “I liked your profile!” flirt message.  *rolls eyes and heads for bed instead*

 

 

 

 

 

Romance Is A Game Best Played On A Level Playing Field-Lessons Learned

Curtains rise, lights up full center stage spotlight on The Wild Mind who is dressed in tight  jeans, flattering trendy top, pumps with stilletto heels, hair perfectly coifed and make up on.  Cue happy music playing softly in the background.  The Wild Mind addresses the audience.

I am really grateful that now there is complete closure not just with The Beau, but the I.J. (Yes, we had a “conversation” also in the last two weeks.  I haven’t written about it because it was a little sad and I’ve been too busy writing and doing other things). 

beerhandsmallDating is a different world now in Post-40 World than it was in Post-20 World.  Okay, if it is still the same world it was back then, then I’ve been dealt a new hand and the cards suck in this one.  Furthermore, when I was younger, I had more time to regroup the losses both emotionally and financially, I am not so young and not so cavalier about the consequences of poor choices.

I now know that one’s choice of a marital or romantic partner can affect your life forever, even long after they leave the scene. datinggumswap

It’s a high stakes game and I’m betting all or nothing on the best possibility for relationship, not just something that’s good enough or nice enough because I’m tired of being alone.

I am emotionally free from wondering if , maybe, when, how, what if anything will happen with The Beau or anyone else that is not knocking down my door or heating up my phone to connect with me.  I just know it won’t happen for me with someone who is merely lukewarm.

Even if it doesn’t work out with the Old Flame and The Beau, what’s he going to do? Come back and knock on my door and say, “Hey, you’re the lucky first runner up. Old Flame couldn’t fullfil her pageant responsibilities. Want to give it a go?”

Thanks, but that’s not exactly how I see my fairy tale playing out. I don’t know how exactly how I do see it playing out, but I’m fairly certain that scenario is not on the list.

So, to take The Beau’s and many of my readers’ and friends’ advice and especially my sister’s (she’ll so love this!)  I’m going to use this last episode with The Beau as  more than just an experience to do some creative writing.  I’m going to use it as an experience to reflect and further clarify for myself where I’m at and how I’m doing.  Let’s see if I can do it in 10 points or less.  Here we go.

The Points (not in any particular order):

  1. One’s choice of marital or romantic partner can affect the quality of the rest of your life.  This is true on a minor scale with those you date.  Choose wisely.
  2. The Wild Mind’s Love Philosophy still holds:  When a man is into a woman there is no doubt: he knows, she knows and there is no obstacle too great to overcome in order to make it happen.  He’ll find any way he can to get into her life, heart and, yes, pants.  This includes picking up the phone and calling her or driving distances to see her.  He won’t mind.  He’ll actually want to do it.
  3. Some people out there in Dating World are completely unavailable but they masquerade as completely available.  Do not believe this until proven. 
  4. Emotional availability is proven by scaling tall obstacles or great distances unasked and without hesitation or groaning.  It is also demonstrated a million other very creative ways all of which, every man knows capably how to execute, but won’t, unless you are the one he wants to be available for. If he’s not willing to prove availability in these ways, he’s just not that into you.
  5. Pay attention and trust your gut.  Read point Number 2 and if you experience doubts then he’s just not that into being into you. 😀 Move on now.  Don’t waste any more time.
  6. Men play just as many games as women.  Don’t deny it.  Some of these games are: “I Want Sex, But I’m Not Available For Any Serious Relationship, I’d Just Like To Make You Think I Am”, “I’m Bored With Nothing Better To Do, Come (yes, pun intended) Entertain Me”, “I’ll Play With You Till Something Better Comes Along” “I’m Completely Unavailable But Can’t Admit It”,and the final version, “Let’s Pretend” where he wants to pretend he’s really available so he can get sex or he’ll pretend he’s really into you even convincing himself he might be in hopes you will give him sex. The “Let’s Pretend” game is also played by those men who are hoping to get their mind off their own pain/loss/whatever for a while or by men who are married and won’t leave but can’t stay either.
  7. Women, do not go near these games!  If you do, you do so at your own peril.  Do not play the If…Maybe…What If?…Game. If you find out you are involved somehow in one of these games, get out yesterday. Don’t look back.  You deserve better.  You will also feel better.  Take charge of your health, get out now!pirates_of_the_caribbean_015 
  8. Being alone is still better than being in a relationship that is just okay or where you wonder all the time if he’s really all that into you.  Stop the wonder.  He’s not.  Move on. (I so need to remember this one myself!)
  9. My Prince Charming (or Adventurous Pirate) is out there and some day, if and when we meet, I will be ready and willing for the raping/pillaging and plundering to ensue.  (Okay…or for him to sweep me up on his magnificent steed time and time again until we are exhausted, then we’ll ride happily into the future together.) 😀
  10. Painting ceilings without a sprayer sucks.  Don’t ever do it. Next time, I’m buying beer and pizza and putting an ad on Craigslist that reads, “Free beer and pizza in exchange for painting help!” It’ll be a lot more fun.

Lights out. Curtain falls.

The End, Yes, Finally, The End!!!!

Romance Is A Game Best Played On A Level Playing Field–Act 3

Curtains rise on The Wild Mind staring pensively off in stage left direction.  Lights up. The Wild Mind wakes herself from her reverie, takes a sip from the mug, put it down absent mindedly and resumes typing at her computer.

ghost-picWho can even fight fair against a ghost? I had no chance to start with.

This brings up another key point that I wish I’d known all along:

The Beau started up contact with the Old Flame at the same time or shortly before he invited me to Christmas Eve dinner. I had no chance from the beginning, because as long as she was even a remote figment in his imagination, I could have been perfect and it wouldn’t have mattered. The living cannot compete against ghosts who still live and carry even the smallest hope of reincarnating themselves.

In a word, The Beau, was not emotionally available. Not really.

I suspected it but I did not know this.  He liked me a lot.  Had she not even been a possibility, I dare say we may have had a chance at a really, really good thing. But it could not ever be, because ghosts are powerful and will not be denied. 

It just was not meant to be between The Beau and I. I’m okay with this. I told him so.  I know there is someone out there for me somewhere.  (I’m skeptical, at this point, about my ever finding him, but that’s okay too.)

The Beau wants to remain “friends”. He said he’d hoped he could be that friend that I call first to tell him I’ve finally met Mr. Right.  While I don’t want to burn bridges unnecessarily, but I never wanted The Beau to play that role in my life. (Sorry, but that will probably be Semi-Professional Photographer Friend and not you, Beau. I already have friends like that in my life. That was not what I was looking for or what I needed when I started dating you. If it had been, you’d have been contacting me on Facebook the first time not on an online dating site.)

I told him that while I’m usually able to do be friends with people I date, I don’t think I can do that here. At least, not right away. He understands this to mean that I am sad, hurt and heartbroken that he’s choosing her over me. It really isn’t so much that at all. It was that this relationship, more than any other to date, for me, had all the signs of being completely viable and lasting…except that he just wasn’t that into me…in the most important way.

And, I so don’t want to be with someone who is into me,kinda, but just not enough.  I want him to be crazy about me or it’s not going to go very far even if I’m crazy about him. 

I also don’t want to be competing against unburied ghosts from the past.  It is not how I’m going to roll.

My disappointment comes from knowing I was right early on and not trusting myself earlier and just moving ahead with my heart. Instead, I kind of dabbled and played the “Well…Maybe….What if?….” game.

My sadness (if there really is any) comes from thus far in my entire life, not having one man who would really go to the wall for me in spite of me going to the wall repeatedly for them. thinkingTwo marriages which existed mostly because I made excuses for the men and held the marriages together at my own personal health and financial peril are enough. The dating scene has been no better. I’ve mostly met men who should not even be dating because they are a.) married and lying about it (read, The I. J.), b.) separated and working on it (read, still not available emotionally or legally no matter what he thinks or says) or c.) still in love with a past relationship that didn’t, won’t, or can’t work out (read The Beau and several current prospective suitors who are making bids for my time and attention but who haven’t quite thrown the dirt over the grave of their past loves).  The graveyard of past loves is not a safe place to go exploring for Mr. Right. 

This is all very confusing, because there is no way you know this going in to a relationship except by being very careful and paying very close attention (something I’m getting much better at doing), and there is no way you can possibly compete with the past or connect fully with the unavailable heart, while you’re there.  When you get out, you regret the whole bloody thing because the playing field was never level from the get go and it was just a big waste of time, except to confirm to you what you already knew about love, life and dating anyway. Who needs to experience all that just to find out you were right all along? I’d rather paint ceilings with rollers.

While I am disappointed (not distraught) on one one level that ” it “didn’t work out with The Beau and I, I really enjoyed our times together and I learned a lot.  It’s always nice to be in a relationship or to be thinking you might be heading that way.  On another level, I can do so much better than to spend my time wondering where I stand all the time.  I go back to my very opening point in these series of posts: When a man is into a woman, no one has any doubts about it, least of all the woman or man involved.  Am I making myself clear here.  I hope I remember that point.

The Beau, was courageous in talking to me about where he stood. I admire that. I gave him an out. He could have taken the chicken’s way out and responded to my text with, “Yeah, I’m not going to be able to make it. I’m wiped out.” Given the FB communiques it would have delivered the same message. He chose not to do that and instead delivered the message the tough way: face to face. I just wish it wasn’t in my living room, but okay. Live and learn. Next time, when I anticipate that news, I will suggest we go out, better yet, I’ll try to force a phone conversation.

Cue happy musical score as curtains fall.  The Wild Mind leans back in her chair and smiles.

To be concluded in the next post…

Romance Is A Game Best Played On A Level Playing Field, Act 2

Continued from previous post….sfcablecar1

Sure enough, The Beau met Old Flame on Thursday night in San Francisco (liar, his phone was not off, duh!)

The Beau then took about 25 minutes to tell me something that really only required 5 minutes discussion and which I already knew anyway.  I kept wanting to interrupt and say, “Cut to the chase, please” but I refrained due to the remote possibility that I could be wrong and he could be telling me that he finally once and for all put it on the shelf with the Old Flame and wanted to move forward with me. 

I now understand the very definite advantage to going silent.  If someone is going to give me that kind of news, I’m not sure I ever want to sit through half an hour of hearing about how much fun they have with someone who is not me in what happens to be my favorite city in the whole world.  That was the most painful part.  Da** him!  Now I have to pick another favorite city. 😀

Apparently, The Beau and Old Flame (who is, get this, almost 21 years younger than he..I so knew my being only 11 years younger was an issue for him) picked up where they left off, but since she’s living with a fiance of 5 years that she’s supposedly leaving, and because she lives in Texas, there are complications.  Even so, before leaving her on Friday, he told her “If you’re leaving him, I’m interested in pursuing us.”

This, from a man, who couldn’t make a 90 minute twice a month commute work out with someone who has no five year live in fiance still in the picture.  

Yeah.  Like I said: When a man is into a woman….he knows, she knows and there is no obstacle too great.

5blarge5d5banimepaper5dwallpapers_range-murata_dioma1_6__thisres__70420Okay, so none of this came as any surprise to me, though it was painful because it was so disappointing on so many levels. I really liked The Beau. He travelled easily and by this I mean, he fit seamlessly (from our perspective) into our family. I absolutely know, and I speak with confidence from experience not from arrogance or wishful thinking, that we could have blended our families so easily. There was just a high level of mutuality, compatibility, communication and willingness to negotiate without giving ourselves completely up. And we agreed on expectations for behavior from the kids. He also had a wonderful way of calling the kids out respectfully, humanely and without overstepping his bounds, something that is such a must have for me. I think that is important in a relationship but especially when kids are involved.

But for all that The Beau really liked about me and he did “like” me, I was, for him, what the I.J. was for me. Everything, EVERYTHING about me for him stacked up in the “works for me” category for him, except one very important thing: chemistry (while we had it in spades, or so it appeared, it just wasn’t what he had with the Old Flame) .

In addition, The Beau simply was not emotionally available because he had a ghost from his past that just wouldn’t die. He has to follow his heart. I get it. I do wish him all the best.

I did tell The Beau this, “Remember way back when I told you my When A Man Is Into A Woman Philosophy and you disagreed with me?”

He nodded. hes-just1

I continued, “You just proved my point. You think nothing of trying to pursue something in Texas, when 90 minutes killed you with me. When a man is really into a woman….” I let my voice drift off. 

What could he say?

I told him, he needed to follow his heart ( like he needed or cared about getting my permission) and that I totally understood. (I really do understand and I wouldn’t want him hanging anywhere near me if any part of his heart is still somewhere else.)  I told him that I am disappointed but only because the way he feels about the Old Flame, is how I someday hope someone will feel about me and vice versa.  I am unwilling to settle on that score.  I reminded him that this is what I was trying to tell him a month ago, when the status of our “whatever we had” changed. I also told him, that I predicted he’d be married to her by the end of the year. We shook on it.

I also told him I was removing him and her from my Facebook. Not because I’m angry, but because I don’t need daily reminders that I came in second. Not that love and romance is a competition. It isn’t.  I don’t view it that way.  But I do not need reminders daily that I spent the last three months entertaining the idea there might eventually be something, when in fact, there never was the remotest possibility.  Ghosts who are not dead are fully capable of reincarnating themselves.  The real and vibrant living have absolutely no hope against the imagination especially when it centers around ghosts from the past and thoughts of what could have been.  In dating situations like this the the playing field is just.not.level.

Cue sad, romantic music.  Lights gradually dim as The Wild Mind sitting pensively at computer (stage right), picks up coffee mug, leans back in her chair and stares thoughtfully into space (somewhere stage left).   Curtain drops on Act 2 as music fades.

To be continued…