Category Archives: Bullet Point Tuesday

The Last Bullet Point Tuesday: Chloe’s Coming Out

Over the past seven weeks or so, I’ve received several inquiries about my status on the interweb. So first of all, thank you for your love and concern. And a big shout out to @StPattysChicago for continuing to show me unwavering and slightly creepy faith in my return. You are one, weird, anonymous Twitter personality, and I love you for it.

The truth is that I lost someone very close to me. He was my cousin, but first he was my friend. His death was sudden, unexpected to us, and thus has been quite painful for those who loved him. Which seems to be just about anyone that knew him. I, like apparently hundreds of others, was lucky enough to count him among one of my closest friends.

Strange things happen when we endure grief. There are short-term and long-term effects when it comes to mourning, and I’ve been witness and been a part of both. For the first ten days following my cousin’s death, I couldn’t make it to 1 P.M. without a drink or go to sleep at night without Advil PM. Slowly, I can now make it until 5:00 to have an adult beverage. Still need the Advil PM, though.

But perhaps more notable are the long-term effects. Since my cousin’s passing, I’ve seen those close to him do the following: quit a job, move to a new city, create music, spend more time with family, pursue their dreams, quit a job, lessen the workload in a day, take up painting, write poetry, read more, and–the favorite–quit a job.

I guess when something like this happens, it causes you to put things in perspective. Even your moderately successful dating blog.

Which brings me here, dear reader. To part with Chloe Cline.

  • The Back Story

Chloe Cline is my pen name. Well, now former pen name. I started this blog when I was high school teacher and the last thing I wanted was for my students to find it and walk into class the next day saying, “Heeeeeyyyy….read about your date last night.” So I made up a name. It worked until some students started following me on Twitter to mess with me. Which also worked.

  • Why I Kept Chloe

Post-teacher life, I wanted to keep Chloe Cline as my pen name because, well, it seemed easier than switching everything over. And I could kinda pretend Chloe was an extension of myself. My Hannah Montana, so to speak. It also made it easier for me to write about a guy without him finding it. Until that didn’t work, either.

  • The Big Reveals

So who the hell am I? Well, you’ll have to check out my new blog to see. That’s right. Shameless plug. Here’s a breakdown of who everyone else was on the blog, though:

  • Lexi: Amanda Bynes
  • Lily: Taylor Swift
  • Daisy: Beyonce
  • Elliott: David Spade
  • May: Anne Hathaway
  • Fran: Fran
Processed with Rookie

It’s all making sense now, right?

 

So. Thank you for partaking on this rather strange, yet hopefully entertaining, journey of dating with me. Chloe Cline certainly served a purpose for the time. Just like all my ex-boyfriends. I hope you come along with me in the next part of the odd and uncertain future. (For the five of you who are still on board, here’s the link to my new blog.)


Bullet Point Tuesday: The Private Investigator, Tinder, and Kramer

kramer-seinfeldSo last week, amidst the holiday craziness, I went out again with PI. If you don’t recall, or don’t read my blog regularly, or just don’t feel like scrolling back to figure out who the hell PI is, he’s the guy who I allegedly tried to catfish, only for him to use his former private investigator skills on me to, well, kinda catfish me back. I dunno. It was the oddest turn on of my life, that’s for sure. I guess I just like someone being as much of an asshole as me. And you don’t meet many of those.

So PI went on our first real date. You know, one where we weren’t pretending to be other people–I think–and relayed as much information as you’re willing to give someone on a first date without completely freaking them out. Until you hypothetically have one too many glasses of wine, say fuck it, and talk about brain tumors anyway.

So that’s going well. Which isn’t interesting. Which is why it’s a relief that Lily had one of the most tragic dates of her life so I have something to report back on.

Lily is the perfect example of what is wrong with men today. She’s the nicest person I’ve ever met (right, I don’t know why she hangs out with me, either), yet is still hilarious. I feel like nice and funny is such a unique and special combination. So many people are nice and boring. Or funny and kinda act like dicks. And then you just let them be kinda, sorta a dick because, well they make you laugh, and that’s pretty sweet. I bet that’s how Hitler rose to power. Just some solid stand up. Think about it.

Back to Lily. So she’s super sweet and really funny and has a solid, stable career and her Master’s degree. Oh, and she’s drop dead gorgeous. It’s annoying standing next to her in a pictures. We’re not allowed to have her in group photos on our Tinder or OkCupid profiles because the guys will be all like, “Um, who’s your friend?”

And this goes back to my point of what’s wrong with men today. The fact that some guy hasn’t had the cojones to snag her up is completely beyond me. How do you meet her and not want to immediately put a ring on it, dudes? [Note to Lily’s parents, who are most likely reading this and I made some questionable comments to over the summer: I realize this isn’t helping my cause about my heterosexuality. I do love your daughter. But I don’t love your daughter.]

It’s not that Lily doesn’t try, either. The effort she puts into meeting an equally nice, caring, intelligent, and funny person is quite admirable. And makes my catfishing stunt all the more shameful.

In such efforts, Lily has turned to Tinder, a warm and fuzzy friend for singles who’ve hit rock bottom everywhere. 

Upon arriving, Lily was happy to see that her date appeared like his pics: handsome, tall, and a little lanky. His dark hair set off his bright blue eyes, which shone when she walked into the Lincoln Park bar. But that was the only thing she was happy to see.

Because, when homeboy turned around, he had the ever-so-charismatic Kramer quality of jolting up to meet Lily, then turning abruptly around when he apparently heard some noise, only to turn whip back around to face Lily and greet her with a look that said, “Yo diggity dog.”

As you can imagine, dear reader, Lily’s date with Kramer went something like this:

  • In response to “So what do you do for a living?”, Kramer said: “Well, I took a nap one day. And in the dream I made urinal cakes. I woke up, and then it came true.” [long pause] “So I make urinal cakes.”
  • Seven times. Seven times Kramer went to the bathroom in 60 minutes.
  • In response to “Do you want another drink?” (which was, by the way, his own question), Kramer said, “I have a really fast metabolism, so I can drink a lot.” [Lily took a shot.]
  • “Let’s go one more bar–it’s right around the corner and everyone knows me so we won’t have to pay for anything.” I can’t decide if it was sheer boredom or curiosity, but Lily went. Into a bar that she described as the size of a closet and the median age was 76.
  • But he was right. Everyone knew him. Including the guy who came over and said this, “Hey, dude, remember the time we were in the back alley and then walked into that sex shop?”
  • Of course, this story couldn’t go untold and Kramer did a Kramer turn to Lily and continued, “Yeah, it’s seriously the best sex shop in the world. We got something there so amazing and tried it in that alley. It’s like when you’re in a shower and there’s hot water on your back. It’s like an orgasm on your face.”
  • In response to his question if he could walk Lily home: “No.”

So I’ll be going out with PI again and Lily will be back in the Tinder pool. Tune in next week to see who bombs.


Bullet Point Tuesday: How Not to Catfish

a99103_092514-cc-fat-suit-1If you’ve read my latest blog posts, then you know that I have recently outsourced my dating life to Lexi and Daisy. They created my online profile, messaged potential guys for me, and set up dates.

So you know, catfishing.

But I didn’t think of it so much as catfishing and more of an extremely efficient way to date. After all, my friends were pretending to be me with my permission. The whole plan seemed genius.

Until your friends set you up with a former private investigator. Who, on our date, so aptly explained why the three of us are fucking morons.

Private Investigator and I met for happy hour at a bar downtown last Friday. He asked to meet at 4:30 because he had to make dinner plans. That was perfect. One of my hard and fast first date rules is to have fictional plans in order to give you an out for the date. I had just talked about this on Her Monthly radio show that week. And since homeboy already had somewhere to be, I was golden and didn’t have to produce “plans” of my own.

Before I walked into the bar, I realized I didn’t even know this guy’s name. Lexi had sent me a few screen shots of his profile, so I had that vague idea of a person you can only garner from an online dating profile. You know: favorite books, an occupation, and the six things he could never live without. But a name? Nope.

I shot Lexi a quick text while standing outside the bar, “Um, what’s his name?”

  • Lexi: idk
  • me: Shit.

But right as I was walking in, Lexi had a moment of clarity and texted me my date’s name. Which was good because he was now ten feet away from me. I was super pleased to see that PI was tall, handsome, and immediately came across as self assured. “Renee?” he asked.

Shit. Lexi had given him a fake name. This was going to be fun.

“Yup, that’s me,” I said, as I flagged down the bartender, who took an agonizing twenty minutes to take our beer order. I knew I had to come clean with this guy, but was certainly not going to do it sober.

Once our beers were in front of us, I began my awkward confession. “So, you know how you said you’re a bit apprehensive about online dating? Well….um, I suppose I am, too. And so, um, Rene isn’t really my name. It’s Chloe.”

He stared at me. “I know.”

My eyes widened.

He continued. “Yeah, and your friends Lexi and Daisy are doing a real shit job of running your online dating.”

I felt the color leave my face. And then return in a very bright, red manner.

PI then continued to tell me how it was clear from the beginning that he was being catfished. [Note: It was not until this moment that I realized I had catfished someone. I truly just thought it was just well orchestrated dating.] He also explained how before becoming an attorney, he worked as a private investigator and is “really good at finding people when they don’t want to be found.”

Well that’s comforting.

“But, there were so many red flags,” he said, smiling and clearly pleased with himself, “that I had to see how this played out.”

As my friend Marie put it when I relayed the story to her, “You were Chloe-ed.”

Yup.

Where to go from here with PI was tricky. Because now he knew that he’d been lured under false pretenses, and I was aware that he knew everything about me. It was like two war generals meeting on common ground, sizing each other up, trying to decide how to proceed.

But proceed we did. Somehow into a truly wonderful first encounter. We had great conversation, laughed a lot, lost track of time. When I realized what time it was, I looked at him and said, “You don’t really have dinner plans do you?”

“Nope. Those were fictional. I hear you’re a big fan of them.”

You had to give the man credit for his research.

Four beers and four hours later, we bid our adieu, both agreeing we wanted to see each other again. 

Though it was a little unnerving to realize that my date knew more about me than any advanced Google search I’ve ever seen, I was surprised at the relief I felt. I mean, going into the date, this guy knew I write a dating blog, that I don’t take dating too seriously, I have a real and deep affinity for pizza, I think it’s unacceptable to split the bill on the first date, and that I use the f-bomb like M&Ms. All that stuff that’s awkward for me to articulate–BAM. Already out there.

Furthermore, it was refreshing to meet someone who’s company I enjoy. Not just tolerate, but enjoy. Bad dates are annoying, but mediocre dates are soul crushing. You can’t even glean a good story from a guy who was kinda nice but kinda boring. And I truly felt I was at a breaking point if I had to go on one more routine date.

And there is nothing routine about having a guy recite your dating history back to you.

So PI and I are set to go out again this week. On our first real date. Allegedly. 


Bullet Point Tuesday: When in Rome…Or BoysTown…

www-sidetrackchicago-com

You know how after you’ve been immersed in a culture for awhile, you start to pick up the habits of that culture? Well, I’m especially prone to this. After a weekend in Nashville, I developed a drawl and an affinity for barbed wire bicep tattoos. After a week in London, I started putting an upward inflection at the end of my sentences and drinking beer out of larger glasses. And, after just two days in Barcelona, I was wandering around beaches topless and shouting “Olay!” (They fucking loved me there.)

I can only assume it’s my assimilation to culture that has caused the recent confusion with my sexuality as of late. Before I get in trouble with everyone, let me explain. Or just let me explain.

  • Friday

It was Elliot’s birthday, and as he is my gay husband, he is the only man I will leave my apartment past 11:00 P.M. for. Marie and I met him and his friends in BoysTown, a part of Chicago I haven’t frequented on a Friday or Saturday in quite some time. And now I remember why. Because, while BoysTown is a great time for the dancing and confetti (yes they have fucking confetti and it’s amazing), it’s a complete aquarium. Gorgeous man after gorgeous man walking in the bar and all I could do was press my face against the glass and drop fish food into the tank. Which was just more confetti. And not well received.

As you may recall, it was the start of the winter chill on Friday night, so I dressed accordingly. Accordingly to me meant leggings (re: #thisisthirty), a black sweater, boots, and black, puffy vest within sequins on the front. My sister Fran is currently shaking her head.

Our group danced in a semi-circle to the strobe light [Note: Yes! They still exist!] and a guy passed by, making conversation with one of the girls, Dionna, from our group. “Honey. You. Are. Beautiful,” he gushed.

Dionna smiled, said thanks, but homeboy went on and on about how gorgeous she is while I stood there, now feeling incredibly feminine in my vest. 

When he was done with his love fest, he turned to me. “She’s a keeper. Nice job.”

 I stared back blankly, then threw my arm around her and said, “Thanks.” 

  •  Saturday

We had a Friendsgiving, which I’ve never been to before and now I know why. Not only do I not know how to cook, but I don’t even know how to cook easy stuff. I tried to make one of the easiest appetizers of all time, but showed up with something that looked like congealed cheese and leftover tarter sauce. Thank God I know how to purchase alcohol well. 

Daisy wanted to play this game called Utter Nonsense. It’s a new game out and you have to say super weird and funny phrases using various accents. Accents range anything from British to Mime to Orgasm. So less like accents and more like ways of life.

I felt a lot of pressure to do well at this game because, well, I’m a comedian, so I should be able to be funny. Not only was I not funny, but the group determined that no matter how many accents I tried, I always came off sounding like an angry lesbian.

And I wasn’t even wearing my vest.

  • Sunday

As mentioned on last week’s blog, I’ve outsourced my dating life to Lexi and Daisy. But more to Lexi because Daisy keeps asking me if it’s ok to set me up with guys who look like serial killers.

Lexi set up a date with a guy for Sunday at 6:00. She sent me his pic, number, and the brief conversations they’d had. All I had to do was show up. Brilliant, people. 

I tried not to be too quick to judge when he first spoke and his voice was on the feminine side. But, having dated a gay guy before, I’m always a little wary. The following did not help this dude’s case:

  • “Yes, I live in BoysTown.”
  • “I was out in BoysTown on Friday, too! And Saturday.”
  • “When I lived in Cincinnati, I lived in the gay part of town then, too.”
  • “My favorite movie is Pitch Perfect. And Love Actually. But Pitch Perfect is pretty much the greatest movie of all time.”
  • “I can’t wait to get my first paycheck.”

That last comment has nothing to do with the gay factor. Just not helping any person’s cause when on a date.

 

So back to the dating pool I go. Or rather Lexi goes. She told me I’m not allowed to go near vests or accents. Fair enough. 


Bullet Point Tuesday: Not Another Datervention

meangirlsSo a few days ago, I was over at Lexi and Daisy’s apartment. Just hanging out with some pizza and beer. Then they glanced at each other and gave an understanding nod.

Almost in unison, my two friends set down their beers and gave me look that said either “You’re puppy just died” or “You’re about to be roofied.” (It’s hard to tell with them. They’re sneaky. And since I don’t have a puppy, I was quite on edge.)

Lexi started. “So, have you gone on any dates recently?” Her tone was weird and soft. Almost like a high school counselor that you couldn’t tell was high or not.

I looked back at the two of them. They knew the answer to this question. And then it hit me. This is was an intervention. But I stopped drinking my beer just in case I was wrong and they had actually roofied me.

“So why haven’t you been on any dates?” Daisy asked gently.

“Um, I don’t have time,” I said and took a swig of my beer.

They looked at me with the same pity you’d give to a squirrel that had just been hit by a semi. “You need to make time,” Lexi said.

Aaaaand just like that I was in hell. Because, as a single, 30-year-old gal, I expect the dating questions at family parties or from my tax guy. (Apparently there are some tax breaks for married folk? That’s the best incentive I’ve ever heard!) But when you’re friends lure you to their house, under the guise of pizza and beer, only to kindly encourage you to “get out there”…that, dear reader, is rock bottom. (Well, if the pizza had been plain cheese it would’ve been rock bottom. It was pepperoni, so I was still winning on some accounts.)

Luckily for me, I have a mom that seems to be one of the only people who understands why I’m single. Unlike most moms, who take the ever-so-self-esteem-boosting role of encouraging their daughters to land a man, Mama Cline gets me. So much so that she had me watch a clip of an Andy Cohen interview, in which he outlined several reasons why he didn’t have a boyfriend:

“So why don’t I have a boyfriend? Pick one or two:

  • I’m shut off.
  • I’m happy as I am.
  • I’m selfish and set in my ways.
  • I put my job first.
  • I meet people that I’m more attracted physically than mentally.
  • I use my friends and job to replace a relationship.”

(Um, Mr. Cohen, can I pick more than two?)

Time is such a precious commodity in anyone’s life. (I’ve heard that money is, too. Still waiting on that one…) And the time it takes to seek out a man is just time I’m not willing to give up right now. Another friend asked if she could set me up with someone, and I was totally onboard. If getting ready is the only effort I have to put into the first date, then I’m game.

But weeding through guys on Tinder or OkCupid, only for them to say, “Wanna cum over and hang out with my D?”* I’m tired. I’m thirty. And there’s a bottle of wine and Marina Franklin** stand up calling my name.

I presented Lexi and Daisy with my case, and of course they had a solution. They are now in charge of all my online dating accounts. Finally. Personal assistants. Although I think we can all pretty much agree I’ll only be going on these dates for material. Which goes right back to Andy’s point of putting my job first. You’re welcome.

*With his dog? I can only assume that’s what he meant.

**Check out her performance on Women Who Kill on Netflix. She’s fucking hysterical.

To see Andy Cohen’s full interview, click here. It’s great. 


Bullet Point Tuesday: Bad Ass Nana, Part II

nana & me

So this past weekend, my mom, Nana, and I went to Florida. We had some business to take care of that I’m not sure I’m legally allowed to disclose, but we took care of said business on Day 1 and spent the remainder of the trip lounging, reading, and eating potato chips. I know, I’d hate me a little, too, had I spent Halloween in horizontal sleet.

I’ve always considered Nana a bad ass because, after being widowed at 47, she moved Up North by herself, reestablished an entirely new life for herself, which has involved becoming a critically acclaimed artist and living in the woods. Alone. Kinda puts every 20-something to shame who thought moving to the “Big City” was a big deal. Oh, you thought the el was scary at first? Try bears. Literal bears. In. Your. Backyard.

But this trip, I realized Nana’s badassness is multi-faceted. Because not only is she the ultimate Annie Oakley, but she’s also the ultimate lady. Every morning in Florida, Nana would come to breakfast fully dressed in a pressed cotton top, nice slacks, and a silk scarf to accent the outfit. [Note: “pressed” and “slacks” are definitely Nana words. I’m clearly not sophisticated enough for those.] I thought I was doing everyone a favor by coming to breakfast in a cami that had a built-in bra. You’re welcome.

In recent years, there’s a lot of chatter about the modern-day woman “having it all”–the career, the family, the bod. And while I don’t think Nana’s goal has ever been to “have it all,” she certainly emulates a woman of “being it all.” I’ve had so many people take me aside and tell me how elegant and graceful my Nana is. And I’ve had equal amounts of people approach me and say, “That woman has balls.”

Examples of Bad Ass Nana Being Her Bad Ass Self

  • On reading material…

me: Nana, would you like a magazine?

Nana: No, thank you. I brought the Wall Street Journal.

  • On squirrels in her shed…

Nana: I need to buy a bigger gun.

  • On my future…

Nana: Were you singing in the shower?

me: [smiling broadly] I was.

Nana: I remember when you used to do that as a kid. And I’d turn to your mom and say, “Well, she’s not going to make it in the opera.”

  • On animal cruelty…

Nana: See, the thing to do with geckos is when you see one running by, just stamp down on his tail with your foot. Not too hard, though. You don’t want to crush him–just catch him. Then just pick him up and take him outside.

  • On weather preferences…

Nana: Oh, yes, well the best is in the winter when you can turn off the heat at night and crack a window. [Note: Nana lives in Up North, close to Canada, in the woods, with wild turkeys as neighbors. That’s not a metaphor. Literally. Wild turkeys.]

[pause.]

Nana: But once it hits zero or below, I shut the window. I mean, that’s just crazy.

  • On our relationship statuses…

Nana: The three single ladies! [She would just proclaim this randomly–while we were sitting by the pool, out to dinner, at the grocery store, watching the news. It. Never. Got. Old.]

Aforementioned single ladies.

Aforementioned single ladies.

*To read Bad Ass Nana, Part I, in which she helps me weed through Tinder, click here: http://chloecline.com/bullet-point-tuesday-tindering-with-nana/


Bullet Point Tuesday: Act Like a Lady

sabrina-carpenter-video-cant-blame-a-girl-for-trying-march-21-2014

Maybe it was because I grew up wearing Umbros and playing in the woods every day. Or because my older brother was my best friend and idol growing up, so I spent my developmental years watching Jim Carrey movies and playing whatever Mario was the game of the moment.

I found out that my mom was pretty concerned about me because, come 8th grade, I still didn’t brush my hair or give a shit about what I wore. “Do you think she’ll ever care?” she’d ask her friends with daughters, many of whom were my friends, and liked me in spite of the fact that I thought Looney Tunes high tops were acceptable.

Whatever the reason, I somehow missed the very pink, girly, and put-together boat that so many women seem to understand so effortlessly.

And it was never so clear as it was this past weekend.

My Attempts at Acting Like a Lady

  • The Chanel Make Up Counter

Until last Friday, the closest I’ve ever come to Chanel was a former student of mine, who shared the name and was so incredibly adorable that I just wanted to pinch her cheeks all the time. But she was 14, and I imagined that would embarrass her horribly, so I didn’t. Also, it’s kinda frowned upon for teachers to touch students at all, even if it’s to say, “Ohmigawd you are cuter than the golden lab puppies I saw some chick selling on Milwaukee Ave. from her backpack.” [Note: Nothing makes you want to buy a puppy more than some hippie pawning them from her North Face. Because those pups are clearly off some puppy black market. And I like my puppies like I like my maple syrup: sweet and exclusive.]

So when I heard that Chanel was offering champagne and makeovers (the brand Chanel, not my former student–that would be weird), I made appointments for Lily and me. The woman doing my make up was this super bad ass lady who likes to ski and told me one day I’d mind the creases around my eyes. She asked me what brands I use for facial moisturizer and wash. When I told her Trader Joe’s, I could see her try to hide an endearing smile. I suppose my bougie is adorable.

After my make up was applied and I’d had a few glasses of some champagne I assumed was nicer than Andre, my make up gal walked me through the list of products currently on my face. As she went down the list, I was like…Oh wait, they want me to buy something… Which I aways thought was a Mary Kay thing. See, this is why I like Walgreens. There’s no pressure.

When I asked homegirl to list off the prices with the products, I almost fell off my Chanel chair. $225 for an eye cream; $150 for moisturizer. We were not in Trader Joe’s anymore.

I settled for lipstick, because I’m a sucker and can’t just take the damn free champagne and make up and be on my merry way. It was $38.50. Which is more than I spent on groceries last week.

I’ve since returned said lipstick and spent said $38.50 on beer and pizza.* Because I’m a lady.

  • Spanx

This is by far the best invention since the women’s right to vote. But what this product has in freedom, it lacks in sexiness in any sort of way. It’s a good thing that I know that no man is going to be taking off my dress, because what he’d find underneath would require whiskey and roofies for anyone to find attractive. And a pair of pliers to remove. After which, I’m too exhausted to do anything but watch the next episode of The Black List and eat Teddy Grahams in bed.

  • Hair

I’m terrified.

I had to get headshots done on Sunday, which is a much more glamorous statement than the reality of it. But I realized that the only thing I have close to a headshot is a picture of me from two years ago, slightly tipsy, standing in front of a door with a creepy reindeer ornament hanging on the knob.

So I was a little nervous about, you know, looking like a girl because I’m completely inept when it comes to looking polished. I thought curlers sounded like a solid option to class it up a bit. Except I’ve never tried curlers. And if there’s one thing I could learn from 7th grade picture day, it’s do not try pigtails for the first time, no matter how cute Jewel looks in them.

  • Being Sexy

During the photo shoot, I was asked at some points not to smile, I think to try and be sexy, but they came out with me looking like I was about to murder someone. Probably myself.

  • Flirting

A cute guy approached me at the bar on Saturday. He said he liked my hair. I made fun of his Burberry shirt.

I went home and ordered a large pizza. It. Was. Delicious.

 

*I have not returned it. Yet. But I have plans to do so tomorrow. Which will reimburse me for said beer and pizza.

 


Bullet Point Tuesday: The Friend Zone…The Only Zone

82952823It was my understanding that OKCupid was the easy make-a-date for any single. The one platform where, you might not find true love, but you will find a true self-esteem boost because if you write in complete sentences and have all of your teeth, then you’re ahead of the curve.

Apparently this set of pearly whites is not enough for the gentlemen of OKC. Or maybe it’s the slew of creepy messages these poor dudes receive from me.

In the past week, here are the messages I’ve sent to guys on OKCupid that have–shockingly–gone ignored:

  • “You can make French toast, huh? That’s quite a talent! Especially coupled with bacon! How’s your week starting off?” [Note: Nothing says low standards like being impressed by French toast and bacon. WITH exclamation points.]
  • “Is the ‘bagpipes’ thing like the ‘porcupine trainer’ bit? Just seeing who will buy it?”
  • “Two questions: 1. What’s your Bloody Mary mix of choice? 2. How do you feel about the Oxford Comma?” [Note: Do not mix alcohol and grammar. Ever.]
  • “Sooooo I do ride a bike, but I’m still terrified every time I ride in the city. And I love honey mustard. If those aren’t dealbreakers, feel free to answer the following question: How was your weekend?” [Note: The fact that I would consider talking to a guy whose dealbreakers involve bike and/or condiments is a real low point. Even for me.]
  • “That’s quite an array of photos–from flashing gang signs to flashing hearts to just damn near flashing. Nice. Work. How’s your week going?”

Apparently guys don’t want to talk about their weeks. Or weekends. Or grammar technicalities. Go. Figure.

I was talking to my friend Ron about my tragic attempts to make conversation via a free internet dating platform: “I just keep sending really weird messages,” I said.

He laughed. “Why?”

“It’s not on purpose. I’m. Just. A. Moron.”

But Ron’s innocuous question got me thinking. Why am I sending these awkward messages? There’s no hint of flirtation or real interest in my words to these guys. So, um,  what’s that about?

It was funny this epiphany came when I was hanging with Ron, a recent friend I’d made to add to the list of platonic male companions I have. This past weekend, he and I went to dinner, saw a show, grabbed beers, and talked dating strategies. I’ve become this type of confidant for a few guys, and I love discussing the complicated and strategic matrix of dating with my male counterparts. It’s like crossing enemy lines to get top secret information. Except we’re all after the same goal. So less like enemy lines and more like crossing the 7th grade dance floor.

As someone who used to believe that men and women could never truly be solely platonic friends, I now have several close guy friends who’d rather see me do my 47-second keg stand than model anything from Victoria’s Secret.

“Is there anything there with [insert male friend’s name]?” one of my girlfriends will ask. And I’ll give back a look like I just ate prune and meatloaf baby food with a swig of moscato. Because, though I love and cherish my guy friends, the idea of hooking up with them is reminiscent of some sort of Geoffrey love child.

It worries me that after dating a slew of guys that think politics or animal sacrifices are acceptable first-date conversation topics, when I meet men who are kind, intelligent, compassionate, and also have all their teeth, all I can muster up is a, “Yeah buddy,” and a slug on the shoulder.

I was explaining to another girlfriend of mine how involved I am in furthering my career and how–given my experience in past relationships–I had no true desire to jump into another.

“Don’t close yourself off,” she said kindly.

Um. Oops.

Is that why I’m sending creepy messages to OKCupid guys? Is it a form self-sabotage? Or just not truly caring enough about finding someone to put in any effort, like constructing a message that illicits a response back? 

I have a feeling that it’s somewhere in between. Kinda like half-cooked pizza rolls. And no one wants those.

So, once again, I deleted my OKCupid account. Because I like my dating life like I like my pizza rolls. Fully cooked and full of cheesy goodness.  


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.)

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  • 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. 


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.