Guest Post Wednesday: Tinder Trainwreck by Olivia Hoffing

Ice-Cream-by-Emily-Anne-Epstein03I love Tinder. I love shopping for boys–the constant ability to have instant attention at the ease of a swipe and the excitement when you sign in to see a little red dot in your message section. It was perfect for me as a true sufferer of commitment phobia. I convinced myself and my friends that I was interested in casual dating for fun but open to something more serious if it was the right person. I hadn’t been in a relationship in years and honestly out of the dating scene for quite some time. I was a Tinder sceptic, but after a few good experiences I had faith in the system.

I realized quickly that there is a method to how guys Tinder…

*Step 1: Ask a girl to drinks on a week night to see if she passes the crazy test and if she is as hot in person as her 3 individual/1 group pictures reveal.

*Step 2: Ask her to drinks part 2 on a week night and determine if this girl is a good hookup by inviting her back to your place which is conveniently close to where drinks are.

*Step 3: Maybe meet up for 2-4 additional hookups/hangouts then decide that it was “getting too serious too quickly” and find a new girl to repeat the cycle with.

As a true Type A person, I wanted to make sure that I was going to be beat guys at their own game and always be one step ahead of them in the process. I did my homework and made sure that the gents I selected to meet in person were truly worth my time. I dated hard in the spring/summer and ended up having positive Tinder experiences. I broke my own rules and ended up falling for one of the bastards in late July. I even deleted the app. Sadly, as summer ended and the Calvin Harris song was officially driving everyone nuts, my Tinder love also faded. Now I sat at the start of fall with a bruised ego and no guys on the horizon.

After a lonely and boring hungover Sunday, I decided to download Tinder for the SECOND time. I gave my profile a facelift and added new, much more attractive pictures from that month showing that I actually stuck to my summer diet. I felt so invigorated to be getting all these matches and starting the process from scratch. It was on hour 2 of Tindering that I matched with what seemed to be the adorable Kevin. Kevin seemed to be a great catch and with my stellar eye for classy men on that vulnerable Sunday, I realized it was his pictures that had me at “hey, what’s up?”

Let’s review the classic photos that every desperate Tinder girl gives into….

  • Photo holding a baby (check)
  • Photo where he looks extremely attractive compared to his friends/other people in the picture (check)
  • Photo in Europe looking very classy and cultured (check)
  • Individual photo in a suit probably from standing up in a wedding, showing that he cleans up well (check)

Sooo Kevin initiated conversation early and stated that he was in the business field and studying to get his MBA. We talked aimlessly about other insignificant details and after only 4-5 lines of conversation, Kevin asked me out. Normally I would attempt to learn more before meeting up with him to ensure that the date would be a success…however I was desperate and feeling super sorry for myself on that Sunday. So I exchanged numbers and agreed to meet up with him later in the week. I remember thinking, “Take that Summer Tinder Love, I have hot Kevin now and it only took me 2 hours to find him.”

Until this point I thought I was a genius and maybe even the Tinder whisperer…and then the Tinder gods struck me down from that pedestal quickly by giving me truly a horrific date with Kevin. The first warning sign was that Kevin asked me out to ice cream on a Tuesday at 7:30. I thought, “Awww how original. I have never been on an ice cream date in Chicago and maybe this will be special.” WRONG–the reason I have never been on an ice cream date in Chicago is because I am over the age of 12 and any dates after 5 P.M. should include alcohol NOT ice cream.

Anywho, I arrived for my ice cream date with Kevin and, to put it kindly, he was NOT cute. (Strike) He must have picked the best 4 pictures of his life, but I decided to let it go and see if he had a redeeming personality. He DID NOT. (Strike). So rather than replay every word of that 45-minute ice cream date, I will give you the highlights of why you should never swipe right to Kevin.

  • Upon arrival he mentioned that he was going to the gym immediately after ice cream because he knew this date wouldn’t last long.
  • He hates his job and is annoyed that I don’t hate mine.
  • He told me that I was too positive.
  • He explained that he used to have a girlfriend who he lived with last spring but she dumped him and now he is just lonely.
  • He hated Europe when he visited. (Who the fuck hates when they went to Europe?!?)
  • He has a predisposed genetic muscular disease that may put him in a wheelchair eventually, but don’t worry, it shouldn’t be for a while.
  • And Kevin informed me that the fact that I drink Diet Coke will kill me.

Much to your surprise I’m sure, Kevin and I did NOT work out. At the end of the date, we hugged it out with looks of mutual disgust on both of our faces.

So my word of advice…Keep Calm and Tinder ON because it only takes one swipe to find Mr. Right Now.

And never agree to go on an ice cream date. Unless you’re 12. Then it’s adorable.

[Editor's Note: My favorite part of this is when Olivia feels justice has been served to her former Tinder flame by finding Tinder Kevin in record time. It's just like a Jane Austen novel.] 


Bullet Point Tuesday: Singles Awareness Month

kraft-singlesSo last week I was walking down Halsted on my way to one of my fave bars–Marquee–and right at the Halsted and Armitage intersection, I saw this guy on his bike totally get nailed by a car.

Naturally, I did what anyone in my situation would do. I checked his left hand for a wedding band.

He didn’t have one, so it was game on.

So I get this guy and his bike out of the street–you know, like a lady–and we’re sitting on the curb and it’s totally first date conversation. I’m like, “How many how fingers am I holding up?…Do you know where you are?….What’s the last thing you remember?”

It. Was. Magical.

Aaaaaaand then his girlfriend showed up. Who was non-too-pleased to find me soothingly rubbing her boyfriend’s back as she came upon the scene. But as soon I realized what was going on, I put an appropriate amount of distance between her man and me, even putting my arms up like I was being arrested as if to say, “I’m sorry, girl. I didn’t know. He didn’t have a band.” (Which is something sister friend might want to work on….)

It’s so weird–the wedding band thing. Because I’ve realized that when I’m out in the real world, I’ll look at a guy’s left hand before I even look at his face.

I wasn’t always this way, though–hunting for bare left ring fingers with the type of dedication reserved for Nordstrom Rack deals and bars that have Brooklyn Brown Ale on tap. I noticed that this behavior only recently picked up in the last month or so, and I couldn’t quite pin point why.

Then I read author and co-host of SoChi, Jillian Conley’s, blog post from last week, in which she described this as a time when men and women instinctively look for a partner. It’s something Jillian refers to as the “rutting period.”

Ooohhhhhhhhhhhh. So THAT’S why I restarted my OkCupid profile and put on make up to go to Trader Joe’s. I, apparently, am also on the fall hunt.

See, being single during the holidays is never something that’s bothered me. There’s so much joy and fun and alcohol from Thanksgiving to New Year’s that I don’t take note of not having a plus one while mowing down on Aunt Chele’s homemade chicken wings. The same goes for January through March, since I don’t leave the house or put on make up. And we all know that spring and summer in Chicago is one, long bender season. Who has time to be locked down?

It’s this interim time, when summer sets and fall begins, that I think we feel our soloness hit.

The other day I grabbed coffee with a girlfriend I hadn’t seen in over a month. Her first question for me was, “So–anything new on the dating front?”

This question annoyed me for two reasons: 1. I’m pretty sure my blog serves as a weekly newsletter on this exact subject. 2. It’s the one time of the year that this question feels like a sucker punch.

So since this is a critical time for your local singles, I’ve made a list of DOs and DON’Ts (and things you can request if you’re one such single) in honor of Singles Awareness Month:

Singles Awareness Month DOs and DON’Ts

  • DO NOT SEND THEM FLOWERS. Your local single will think it’s from a romantic connection, only to read the card and learn that yay, my friends pity me, and drown him or herself in Chips Ahoy and a bottle of wine. Hypothetically speaking, of course.
  • DO send them take out food. There’s nothing we love more than food in…especially when we don’t have to pay for it. [Note: This single in particular loves Pequods pizza, thin crust, extra sauce, Canadian bacon, and basil.]
  • DON’T ask them to go to one of those places where you paint pottery/canvas and drink wine. Just. Don’t.
  • DO ask them to go to places and just drink.
  • DON’T flag down a cute guy or girl at a bar, and say, “Oops, I have to go now. Ok, you two talk.”
  • DON’T send inspirational quotes found on Pinterest about love. Unless you want to be ruthlessly made fun of by singles everywhere. Behind your back, of course. We have manners.
  • DON’T let them walk out of the house pulling something like this: (And expect a completely irrational fight about it.)

1086522_1343487968634_full

  • DO support them in whatever odd endeavor he or she has recently picked up. (i.e. knitting, beer brewing, blogging,* Ancestry.com, leaf collecting, bowling league, taxidermy, or Sims).

If you don’t have the time to dedicate, singles will also accept donations. Most in the form of ChasePay.

*Yes, I see the coincidence in that this blog was born and then reborn from my singledom. You’re welcome. 


Monday Jams: “We Trying to Stay Alive” by Wyclef

320x240First of all, this song has been a family favorite for quite some time. I remember my older bother blasting it from his room with his door closed. And, after reviewing the video again, now I know why. He was practicing his synchronized dance moves for the upcoming high school social. No. Doubt.

I received a call from my younger brother a few years ago, after he’d seen The Other Guys: “‘We Trying to Stay Alive’ is the OPENING song.” Sure enough, when I went to see the movie in theaters,* I sat there like a grinning fool as this jam played while Samuel L. Jackson and The Rock created the best high-speed chase scene of all time.**

Take the four minutes and sixteen seconds from your workday to at least watch this video. And $5 to anyone who can track down Mr. Blue Satin at 3:12. I want his number.

*I know, I don’t see movies often, but when I do I make it count.

**Here’s said high-speed chase below. You’re welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Bullet Point Tuesday: I Survived Ebola, So Cut Me Some Slack

286e02bb93d7c46e7bc41770abad7370My apologies. But I had ebola and was afraid to leave my bed. Fever, runny nose, unquenchable thirst, chipped manicure. It was totally ebola. And I totally beat it by myself. Can’t get more bad ass than that. Thank you.

After careful examination of my recent history and WebMD, I’ve determined that I ascertained said deadly virus in one of two places: Bar Deville or Taco Bell.

First of all, let me preface this with the only reason we went to Bar Deville on a Friday night was because Siri failed us miserably. When I asked her: “What are good bars to meet men at?” she unhelpfully replied with this:

photo-2

So I turned to Twitter and, when asked what bar to check out in West Town (where I hear cute guys run around like Disney characters), I was given Bar Deville from not one or two, but THREE different trusted Twitter users. And given that three is the magic number in the drunk world and that I was getting drunk just from playing this game, Lex, Lily, and I decided to go on an adventure.

  • How I Could’ve Gotten Ebola Part I: Bar Deville

Remember those Westerns when a cowboy walks in the saloon and the music stops and everyone turns around and stares? Yeah. It was like that. Except instead of gun holsters, we had on dresses from Express and Old Navy and wore pink lipstick. (In the land of hipsters, your dresses must be from thrift shops or boutiques and lipsticks shades of the red variety.)

We tried to order a beer, but didn’t recognize any of the names of the beers on tap because we are not, in fact, cool. When Lexi asked for a Miller Lite the bartender smirked at her. She ordered PBRs (in hopes to slightly redeem ourselves), which I’m quite confident he spit in. Bam. Ebola.

Lily has terrible short-term memory, which is why she has the need to document us at every bar via iPhone photography to make sure it happened. It’s not her fault. She has a problem.* When she asked the young woman sitting next to us at the bar to take our picture, the woman rolled her eyes and while taking the picture said, “I. Hate. You. All.”

She gave the phone back with a satisfied, smug grin and asked mockingly, “Is it ok? Do you want me to take another?”

I leaned over and told her that I loved her tattoo: “A peace sign? On your wrist? You. Are. So. Original.”

So I’m pretty sure she could’ve given me ebola, too. I know she wanted to, anyway.

We left shortly after, but not before having a completely necessary photo session in the bar’s photo booth.

  • How I Could’ve Gotten Ebola Part II: Taco Bell

Because what else are you supposed to do if you’re single on a Sunday except treat yourself to some delicious fast food?

As I waited for my order to be ready (I was generously picking up some TB for my girlfriends–I know. I’m a giver.), this homeboy next to me was clearly trying to put out the vibe. I looked up from my phone and he opened with the very innocuous, yet underrated, line of: “Hi.”

We chatted for a few minutes and then homeboy asked, “So what do you do?” When I told him that I’m a writer and comedian, he looked a little surprised and hesitated. I told him not to worry; I’m not like….all the scary writers you hear about. (Fuck, I’m awkward.)

“No, that’s not it,” he said. “I just would’ve guessed you were a high school gym teacher.”

Because Taco Bell has merciful gods, my order number was called just then. I grabbed my bag, to which homeboy said, “Wow, that’s a lot of food!” and I walked out.

I don’t think it was the Taco Bell that gave me ebola, but maybe the pint of ice cream I had afterwards.

*Pretty sure it’s also called Insta/FB Addiction-Fatigue Syndrome. Look it up. It’s REAL.


Guest Post Wednesday: What Happens Out of Town, Stays Out of Town. Unless Your Friends Are Assholes. by Dating Olivia

Canada_flag_halifax_9_-04A lot has changed in the past two years. 2012 was a different time. A simpler time really. In October 2012,  I was stuck between my hot and heavy summer with the FWB, who I was slowly falling for by the way, and the winter where he would eventually break my heart. I was in an awful dry spell (for those who don’t know me very well, I am in fact referencing the state of my vagina when speaking about dryness). And I still lived in Riverview, but I was starting to entertain the idea of moving to Lakeview, two hours away, to be “closer to my family” which was what I told myself so that I could live in denial and not believe that I was actually moving to Lakeview to be closer to FWB. 
Mind you, some things have not changed. Being that it’s October, the leaves are all orange and on the ground now, and the air has turned crisp and cool. I just recently pulled my Roughrider mittens and scarf out of the closet, and if you don’t know who the Roughriders are, then Google it, because I just can’t even with you right now. And speaking of the Riders, just like in 2012, there is uncertainty of our making the playoffs, and a run for the cup. And of course, being that I live in Canada (if you comment something with an Eh! joke or something about aboot, I will punch you square in the nuts) it’s getting cold enough that the potential for snow is making everybody cling to thoughts of summer, when they were sitting on a sun-filled beach, and actively planning trips for this coming winter. But it also has me looking back. Back to the simpler days of 2012, back to my trip to the Dominican in February of that year. I actually wrote this post in October of 2012, but I’ve reworked it for today. To read the original, check out www.datingolivia.wordpress.com
In February 2012, two of my best friends married one another, and I was in the wedding party.  The wedding was a destination wedding, which took a group of about 30 of us to the Dominican Republic. Those of you who haven’t been – go. It’s beautiful. It was my very first trip outside of Canada and the U.S., and all the saving and working two jobs I did to get there was worth every single penny.
I wasn’t expecting to meet anyone on the trip.  Sure, I’d always thought it would be a cool story, and staying at an all-inclusive resort in the Caribbean meant that there were more than enough beautiful men to go around for all of us single ladies. But I never thought it would ever actually happen. Not to me anyways.
There are three things Canadians should know when traveling to this part of the world. Now, I know that most of you reading aren’t Canadian, so I’m not sure if this information will be useful internationally, but now is as good a time as any (minus the impending doom of winter) to think about moving. Just a suggestion. 
The first thing you need to know about going to the Dominican as a Canadian is that the people there seem to think we Canadians are rich and therefore cheap as fuck when we barter, because we obviously should want to pay $60 Canadian for a trinket that we could buy at the dollar store here for $1.25. Now, I get this misconception because compared to them, we do make a fortune. But still. I had to work two jobs for well over a year, and pinch every penny to get there. 
The second thing being that our reputations as a nice nation precede us, because before we even left the airport, we had people singing our praises just for being Canadian. We were affectionately known around the resort as Punta Canadians, and there was even a Canadian flag (and only a Canadian flag) behind the bar in the main lobby. 
The third is mostly for the ladies. And I’m guessing this goes for ladies all around the world. It seems as though the combination of being rich (or looking like it), and also having a vagina makes you instantly popular with the locals. The men were big fans of ours. Our group of girls got approached more than once by local men trying to pick us up. (Granted, most of the time they were also trying to sell us shit, but still.)
The one day, I decided to fly solo.  Some of my friends were off on an excursion that day and the bride and groom were busy with wedding prep.  So I decided to take my iPod (it was 2012, I didn’t have my iPhone yet), and a book, and go chill by the beach for several hours to get my tan and afternoon all-inclusive drunk on. Even on an island far from home, I loved my solo time.  Being single as much as I had been in my adult life meant that I had become a great companion to myself.  I could hold my own. I was fine till I decided to go to the main lobby for something and bumped into a guy who my friends and I had met the day before while he was trying to sell us something.  Except this time, I was alone, and the only thing he was trying to sell me was himself.  I can’t remember his name, but he walked with me across the resort from the lobby to the beach, and then sat there on the beach with me for a half hour trying to convince me to move to the Dominican to be his girlfriend. Now don’t get me wrong. He was cute, he seemed really nice, and the idea of living in a beautiful tropical locale like that was not at all unappealing. Call me old fashioned, but I wouldn’t have been able to set up roots in a different country thousands of miles from home after only meeting this guy for a half hour.
Then, there was Jose. I think it was our first or second day there, and we had discovered that the best place for drinks was the main lobby bar. Mostly because the staff was super nice to us because they knew we were Canadians, but also because they had some really cute bartenders back there.  Jose was one of them. He was hot. So hot in fact, that if we were back at home, a guy as hot as Jose would have never even looked in my direction. And I am not an ugly girl. I think that I am an attractive woman. But back in North America, he’d be one of those “way out of my league” kind of guys.
But we weren’t in North America, we were in the Dominican. The land of my infinite beauty. So anyways, Jose made it perfectly clear that he was into me.  We’d go to the bar and order drinks and he’d stare (not creepily, just like, pay attention to me), lick his lips at me (also not as creepy as it sounds), wink, wave to me across the lobby, and tell me I was beautiful when I ordered a drink from him. I ate that shit up.
*I should note here that this trip happened two weeks after I broke up with Dave #4, the guy I lost my virginity to at 26 years old, and my first serious boyfriend. I was vulnerable and hurt and considering how often Dave ever complimented me (0 times) the whole time we were dating, I was in desperate need of male attention.  Just throwing some perspective out there, because this all makes me sound pathetic as hell once I actually type this story out.*
Jose and I flirted, and I made sure to go see him anytime I was dressed up, as well as anytime I was in my bathing suit ready to hit the beach. (See, I sound just as creepy!) I even went to go see him when I was in my bridesmaid dress, but he wasn’t working then.  That time was actually not for nothing though; we all got tons of compliments walking through the resort in our dresses, because well, of course we all looked stunning.
Then, the last night we were there, we decided to go to the disco.  With the help of one of my friends, I went and told Jose about it, and told him he should meet us there after he was done work. He said he would, and I felt giddy.  So I went back to the hotel room, got all dolled up, and then hit the bar for some liquid courage before Jose was done work.  We were hanging out in the lobby when Jose was done work, and when he came to tell me he’d see me at the disco shortly, he also took it upon himself to give the kiss I had been dying for all week.
We went to the disco, and Jose went home to change, and came back to find me.  This is where the trouble with holiday hook-ups dawned on me. We danced, and made out on the dance floor.  Cause I am a classy lady. The unfortunate thing was that he wasn’t a great kisser.  That was disappointing.  He was the hottest guy I’ve ever made out with, and he had these pillowy soft lips that look so yummy, but the kisses were not good.  It was a big letdown.  His dancing also leaved a lot to be desired.  Now, yes, I was a bit tipsy, but I was not even close to being drunk enough to find him jack-rabbit thrusting his package into my crotch on the dance floor (and not even to the beat of the music) appealing at all.
Then, in his broken English (oh yeah, forgot to mention, that he spoke very small amounts of English – I know.  Awesome right?!) he asked me to go back to his place with him.  Now, some of my more…uh…we’ll say “liberal” friends, wondered (out loud) why I didn’t go with him.  Hmm, I wonder guys? Maybe it’s because he can’t even kiss, so what if he can’t fuck?  Maybe it’s because I just met the guy less than a week ago. Maybe it’s because I had just ended the first adult relationship I was in, and I was not ready for a rebound like that. Maybe it’s because I liked someone else.  Or maybe it has something to do with the fact that we were in a different country, and he lives in a village somewhere that I don’t know, god knows how far from the resort, and oh yeah THAT’S HOW PEOPLE GET ON THE NEWS BACK HOME WHILE THEY ARE ON VACATION!!  Yeah, maybe, just maybe that last one is the best reason ever NOT to hook up while on vacation.
Oy vey. Yes, Jose was a great vacation story. I will remember him and the trip fondly for many years. But the last thing I needed was to wind up pregnant or get an STD from a man I will never see again, who barely speaks English, who probably hooks up with oodles and oodles of girls just like me who are wanting to let loose a bit while on vacation.
Making out with Jose while I was on my first tropical vacation, after ending my first serious relationship was just perfect enough.  Why make it more than that?
So the moral of the story is, if you hook-up on vacation, be safe.  And you better listen to me or I’ll tell your mom.
Clase despedido.
Adios amigos!
[Editor's Note: Is it weird that none of this sounds creepy at all to me?]

Monday Jams: “Locked Inside” by Janelle Monáe

Reborn2-476x360If you’re feeling some Monday blues and want a little jam that will pick you up, but not throw sunshine and ponies in your face, then this tune is for you. Marie, who’s getting married next year, met DJ Reborn on Friday, immediately fell hard into a girl crush, asked her to DJ her wedding, and then passed along her info to me. At which point I also  fell hard for this Chicago native, who’s now tearing up New York with her turn tables* and bad ass mentoring of NYC youth with Urban Word.

Yeah, she’s my hero.

*That’s what DJs use, right? 

 


Bullet Point Tuesday: Online Dating (Again)…Because I’m Not a Quitter

-BridesmaidsSo this Sunday I decided to fire up the old OkCupid profile. You know, to do something nice for myself.

And enough time had passed in my online dating stints that I forgot. I forgot how depressing online dating is. Especially on Sunday.

Because…even though it’s online, it’s pretty transparent. I mean, you can see who’s viewed your profile, who’s seen a message you sent and never responded, and if you look really closely, you can see your standards–and dignity–fading fast.

I’m not sure about other sites–I’m too cheap to try them and OkCupid is free–but it just serves as a reminder of what’s really out there for you.

Exhibit A: Nicely Bearded Man, 31

After clicking on his profile, here’s what I found:

  • Works at Ace Hardware
  • Fired from Ace Hardware (so the above should be in past tense)
  • Tried nursing school, but it was “too boring”
  • Lives with his parents
  • Currently looking for roommates (maybe he got this site confused with Craigslist)
  • Looking for a trendy, good-looking woman with a “career”

But you know what–I have to give this homeboy credit for putting it out there. How many times, ladies, have we been out with a guy and it’s just this snowball of horrible information: I don’t have a job–BOOM–I’m completely unambitious with my life’s goals–BOOM–I’m going to pretend I forgot my wallet and make you pay for my negronis–BOOM–

Exhibit B: Blondie, 32

For those of you who haven’t been on OkCupid (or hit rock bottom), the service provides a space for you to fill out a self-summary. It’s super awkward because no one really knows how to talk about him/herself without sounding incredibly lame. But we all fill it out in the name of finding true, OkCupid love. Here’s how this homeboy’s went:

  • My Self-Summary: blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah blah, blah

I know. WHERE is that second-to-last comma?? Is he so lazy he can’t even correctly punctuate his “ironic” self-description? I. Can’t. Even.

Exhibit C: Too-Good-To-Be-True, 36

This guy was just a little too good-looking–like did you airbrush your photos or just step off a Ralph Lauren photo shoot?

I thought about messaging him anyway until I saw this:

  • Optimal dating age bracket: 20-31

Hold up, dude. You’re ok with dating someone who still has to bring a fake ID to the bar and you’re 36? Yeah….I’m out.

Exhibit D: the Creative Message Guy

I received the following message from this homeboy:

  • “Do you think sneakers, sandals, or flip flops look better on a guy with shorts and a T-shirt?”

First of all, unless she’s a store clerk, do not ask a woman you don’t know for fashion advice. Second of all, none of that footwear is appropriate for a grown ass man. Neither are shorts, which I imagine are of the cargo-nature. Don’t even get me started on guys who think it’s acceptable to wear concert shirts to any place other than the gym.

Just imagine if the situation was reverse. If I sent that message to a guy: “So, do you think I should wear my TOMs or clogs or Crocs with my oversized sweatpants from high school?”

Dude was from Indiana, though, so I guess I have to cut him some slack.

 

*This is just an obligatory * after the plethora of my ***** were called out last week. See, dear reader, I listen.**

**Kinda. I just had no real after-thoughts on this one.***

***See what I did there? Ok, I’ll stop.  

 


Monday Jams: “Uncertainty” by Jagwar Ma

Jagwar-Ma-0072-658x350So this is a band that my younger brother told me to check out in hopes to make me cooler and perhaps find something other than the Frozen soundtrack to jam out to. I took his recommendation…which meant that I would just randomly drop the band’s name in conversation to make myself appear cooler to interested gentlemen folk. The only problem with that was, since I never bothered to actually look up the band, I pronounced it “Jaguar Ma,” once again proving that I am not, in fact, cool.

Turns out that when I actually listened to Jagwar Ma, I realized they’re a band I can totally get into. Especially since the lead singer is rockin’ a Devon Sawa haircut. You’re welcome.

 


Guest Post Wednesday: Online Dating vs. IRL by Hanna Wilcox

phonesThere is still a certain stigma around meeting someone online,* but I don’t get it.  It’s 2014, era of Facebook replacing class reunions, LinkedIn profiles replacing resumes, and me constantly accidentally liking my ex-boyfriend’s new girlfriend’s photos on Instagram.  Tinder, OkCupid, Hinge, etc. make perfect sense. In real life (or IRL), the first thing we notice about a person is usually their face, and so many of us (even if we try not to) check whatever social media we are into with alarming frequency.  Your friends faces are probably usually illuminated with the glow of a smart phone when the couch, at the movies, at a bar or a restaurant, or a street fest.  Hell, I even watched some people on their phones while on the dance floor at a wedding last weekend.  Face + phone = great idea.

It’s the phrase “online dating” that sends me through the roof.

Dating suggests going out socially–getting to know someone in person to see if you are interested in making out with only them or bringing them to your friend’s birthday dinner or your nephew’s first communion after party. Online dating should be called online meeting or, better yet, online arranging to meet.  To say that staring at 5-7 flattering photos of people (totally filtered, and usually ranging from the years of 2008-2012) and the best one-or-two-liners someone can come up with is as equivalent to dating as ridiculous as the following conversation:

“I just re-watched [insert movie here].”

“Oh, I loooove that movie!”

“Me, too!  What’s your favorite part?”

“Well I haven’t actually seen it, but some of my friends like it and I read the Wikipedia.  It seems like something I would love.”

I’m sure that I seem like someone plenty of people would be into. There have been plenty of times that I come across a profile for someone that seems like someone I’d really like.  Maybe we have some mutual friends and interests or maybe he just appears handsome. It is the presumption that there will be (or already is**) a real life connection or chemistry that irritates me.

Let me elaborate. Pictures of Fiji look great. I would of course go to Fiji, the same as I’d of course go out on a date with an internet guy.  That said, I have never actually been to Fiji.  Maybe I’ll love it, or maybe I’ll get food poisoning and never see the beach or have a weird regional allergic reaction after a few days. Moral of the Fiji analogy: NEVER ASSUME!

Will the presumptuous potential beaus of the world wide web keep me away? Of course not. But for anyone reading this that might run into me on the net, please don’t be offended if I don’t take too much stock in whatever happens before a real-life meet up.

 

*If you’ve ever dabbled in “online dating” you’ve seen a version of the classic “We’ll tell out friends and family we met at [blank]!” at the start of an “About Me” section

**I legit had a guy introduce me as his girlfriend on our first (and last) date

[Editor's Note: I did not realize until this moment that Wikipedia isn't a credible answer for having seen a movie. Mind. Blown. And thank you for confirming exactly why I haven't gone to Fiji.]


Bullet Point Tuesday: Steve Harvey, Hopping Fences, and the Music Man

Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 10.43.09 AMSo after the airing of the my appearance on the Steve Harvey Show, it left people with one burning question. The answer: both dresses are from Bloomingdale’s. (On sale, obvi.)

And since I wasn’t able to discuss the show until after the airing, I can also now dish on the very dapper date my friends and fam chose for me. Affectionately called by so many: The Guy on the Right.

The first date went great–national television and all. Guy on the Right seems to be a person with solid values, a good sense of humor, strong sense of self, and–as noted by my mom’s friends–quite good looking. Guy on the Right and I laughed a lot and, despite the fact that cameras were on us and tourists were taking pictures of us, we had a great time and decided to do it again. But, as it happens with celebrity couples, the paparazzi was too much for us to bear. So the date never happened. Still, Guy on the Right is an incredibly stand up gentleman, and I’m very happy to have met him.*

Though Steve Harvey didn’t find me love, the experience already changed my dating life. And it’s because of the fence that Steve talked about. Not everyone was on board with the fence metaphor. I fucking loved it.** To paraphrase, Steve said that a woman needs to build a really high fence with barbed wire on top, trying to make the point that a man needs to earn a woman’s time and attention.

I like the idea of a guy having to work for my time and attention, climbing over barbed wire, knife in mouth, fending off rabid dogs just to have a shot at my heart. The problem is that the fence idea walks a fine line with “playing hard to get,” which often gets confused with playing games. Though different concepts, having high standards and playing games get grayed together in the dating world.

And this is where I’ve run into trouble with dating. I don’t play games.*** So much so that–as my family so kindly pointed out on national television–I’m often an open book. And because I don’t play them, I don’t understand them anymore. And kinda forget they exist. Just like all my ex-boyfriends.

Screen Shot 2014-09-23 at 10.29.03 AMSteve was very adamant about a the guy paying for a woman as a part of building this fence. (The picture to the right is me breaking a sweat when Steve stared me down, pointed, and said, “Don’t buy another man NUTHIN’.”) But having a high fence involves more than the good gesture of buying drinks or meals. See, when I’m in a relationship (yes, I promised it’s happened, dear reader) I’m alllllllll in. Just as some examples: I’ve worn a Nigerian headdress to a Nigerian**** wedding, I’ve spent long weekends in Indiana, and I’ve even dressed up for Halloween–so they’re not donate-your-kidney gestures, but they were big enough to mean a lot to the person I was dating and completely take me out of my comfort zone. (I fucking hate Halloween.)

I’ve always believed that you shouldn’t expect people to treat you the way you treat them. It’s my choice if I want to go the extra mile for another person and there should be zero expectation for reciprocation because that was my decision. But I’m beginning to understand that concept doesn’t–and shouldn’t–apply to intimate relationships. I’m certainly not saying that I want a quid pro quo relationship where we’re keeping score. (i.e. “I went to your cousin’s Bat Miztvah, now you’re going to go buy me tampons at CostCo.” Which actually seems like a fair trade.) But I have every right to expect a man to treat me the way I treat him. Which is like fucking golden-dipped tater tots. (I dunno, I just love tater tots and was trying to make them more valuable by dipping them in gold. Which kinda takes away the appeal. Another. Successful. Metaphor.)

So now I have a fence. And the way for a guy to get over it is through kind gestures, considerate actions, generosity of spirit, and–God help me–someone who laughs at my jokes and has a job. I just want to be held in the same priority status that I hold my partner. Without having to fight my way to be there.

Enter Music Man. You know these guys. They’re super into music–they attend all the fests, know the latest bands, blah blah blah. That’s great. Everyone needs a passion. Just don’t judge me if we don’t share the same fucking passion. There’s nothing worse than a music guy who looks at me all crookedly because I fucking love Taylor Swift’s new jam.*****

We decided on a Friday happy hour. The day came and at 1:00 I hadn’t heard from him, still didn’t know where we were going or what time we were meeting, and I was beginning to wonder if this would happen at all. At 1:42 I received a text from Music Man asking if we were still on. We volleyed text messages back and forth, and I realized that he was trying to get to a music fest that night and our date was sandwiched in between. He invited me to come with as an alternative option.

I didn’t feel like this was fence climbing.

I told Music Man not to worry about it. That he should go enjoy the fest with his friends and we’d do it another time. He was hesitant, but I insisted. We could reschedule for a time that worked better for both of us.

We never contacted each other again.

I wasn’t playing games; this wasn’t a test. But I certainly didn’t feel like this guy made our date a priority. He hadn’t planned ahead and he was trying to have me meet him at a convenient time and place so he could get to his real plans later–all signs that he wasn’t really into it. Does that make him a bad person? Yes. Just kidding. It just means that neither of us felt that strong of a connection. And I’d much rather open a bottle wine and read Jenny Lawsen than go on another mediocre date.

And that, my friends, is how to climb a fence.******

 

*That’s all true, but I’m also afraid of getting sued for saying anything else.

**My affection for the fence metaphor could also be directly correlated to my love for hopping fences. Not metaphorically. I literally love to climb them just to see if I can do it. My one pair of jeans can attest to it.

***If you want to read an amazing post about guys and girls dishing honestly on playing games, check out Fran’s post here.

****No, I don’t have a picture, and yes, it kills me that I don’t.

*****How could you not? Do you have no soul??

******I realize that ending doesn’t make a ton sense, but it’s so strong and confident that I had to keep it. But now I guess this is the real ending to this post. If you’ve made it this far, then I admire your tenacity. Let’s go fence hopping together sometime. Not metaphorically. The real kind. (Refer to ** to know what I’m talking about.)