Category Archives: Guest Post Wednesday

Guest Post Wednesday: A Date With Chloe Cline by The Private Investigator

Private-InvestigatorOnline dating can often feel like you’re forced to waddle through a swampy cesspool full of leaches, crocodiles, and the occasional crazy, gun-toting “Duck Dynasty” wannabe. If you’ve been doing it long enough, you know to be cautious, and you know that feeling when a few red flags turns into too many.

Yes, there are dangerous catfish lurking in these waters.

This is technically my third go-around with online dating in approximately seven years. I’ve been on plenty of awful dates, a few good ones, and mostly have simply occupied my time and given myself the best excuse whenever I was the only groomsman at the wedding without a girlfriend/wife/life partner.[1]

My vast experience (not something I’m proud of) with online dating does mean I know when I might be getting catfished.

As readers of this blog know, Ms. Cline has quaintly outsourced her dating life to her friends. On the surface, I have to admire the brilliance of it. It is effortless dating, provided you trust your friends.[2]

Ms. Cline detailed it last week; about a week and a half ago, she met me for a date interview.[3]

But before Chloe Cline ever walked into that bar, I knew she wasn’t who her friends had made her out to be.

The red flags began appearing almost immediately. I messaged “Chloe” first after she “liked” me. Throughout our online conversations, her messages were abrupt and chock full of high-school texting language. Although this wasn’t, on its own, terribly off-putting, it was the first red flag. Either this 30-year-old woman has a teenage-like grasp of the English language, or she isn’t quite who she says she is.

Further, “Chloe’s” profile was sparsely filled out. It smirked of laziness, as if someone else was just filling out the questions in a way they thought would be enough to get people to write back. Red flag no. 2.

Yet, what really set off the klaxons in my head was how quickly “Chloe” propositioned me to get a drink. In less than a day and only a few messages, I was being asked out. This is strange for two reasons: First, it’s exceedingly rare for the girl to ask the guy to meet. Second, it’s nearly unforeseen that she would do so after only sending a few short messages.

Now I knew there was something suspicious here; there were many questions. I had no idea how spectacular the answers would be.

Prior to my current career, I was a newspaper reporter and a private investigator. I was often tasked with hunting down people who didn’t want to be found. Thankfully, Chloe wasn’t that challenging.

I didn’t time myself, but I’d estimate it took fewer than 5 minutes from the time I began my hunt to the time I stumbled upon this blog (and with it, her twitter feed). After a half an hour of reading this, I realized I was being catfished – sort of.

This was still on Sunday, the first day we had exchanged messages.

I read more of the blog – the Steve Harvey appearance, the failed dates, Lexi and Daisy – and I quickly realized I HAD to go on a date with this woman. There was no way I could resist.

The best trap is the one you know you’re walking into.

But now I had an important decision to make. I could approach this date one of three ways:

Option 1: Immediately upon meeting her, confront her with what I knew and see what happened.

Option 2: Assume a character and go overboard in such a way that I was assured to be terrifying/revolting but not quite over the top. This would have been challenging, but possible.[4] Then, at the end, perhaps drop the act, confess I was faking just to make the blog, and see what happened.

Option 3: Be myself and don’t tip my hand. At a certain point during the evening, maybe drop a backhanded comment about the blog and see what chaos ensued.

I went with Option 3.

Chloe, to her benefit, came clean almost immediately (as she detailed last week).

I was crushed. She confessed within minutes of our meeting.[5]

When I told her I knew everything and began to walk her through her own dating history (we had shaken hands only moment ago, mind you), I admit that had the biggest shit-eating grin on my face. But could you blame me? I had just turned my catfish’s face as red as her lovely nail polish.[6] For the next little while, Ms. Cline, online dating extraordinaire, laughed, giggled, blushed and occasionally stood aghast. I had successfully turned the trap on her.

Yet after all that, Chloe and I had one of the best date interviews I’ve ever had in those years of hopeless and agonizingly awkward online dating. We had a real date last week, and I intend to take her out again, now that we can honestly get to know each other.

So all’s well that ends well, or some bullshit like that.

But seriously, folks, don’t trust your friends with your online dating profile.

[1] This has happened now 9 times. Always the groomsman, never the groom.

[2] I do not trust any of my friends to do this. I tried it once; I quickly learned my friends know next-to-nothing about me.

[3] I dub the “meet-and-greet” portion of online dating – you know, the part where you first meet the person and realize all their photos were taken 4 years and 50 pounds ago – as a “date interview.” You get to see if you get a real first date or not.

[4] I actually had figured out how to begin the conversation. It involved me showing up late, a recent morgue visit, and graphic descriptions of various bodily injuries and how much they excited me. Also, this is what all my friends wanted me to do. Chloe is lucky I did not do this.

[5] I chalk this up to repressed Catholic guilt.

[6] Which can probably best be described here as “crack whore red.”

[Editor’s Note: In regards to footnote 5, there’s nothing repressed about it. It’s very out in the open. And with footnote 6, I’m not sure another date will be happening.]


Guest Post Wednesday: My Dream Man by JoEllen

John-Krasinski-Office-GIFsThe other day, a friend that I will keep anonymous, told me her ideal guy would “love to work out, dress well, and absolutely has to love to shop.”

When I was done gagging, I started eating again. Then I bitched her out for being superficial. She asked me what I looked for in a guy and it got me thinking. I know about things I DON’T like in a guy, but what DO I look for in a guy? So I made a damn list.

AWWWW HAILLLLLL NAAAA

No Actors or Models. This doesn’t mean I think I can easily swing an actor/model, but hear me out. I live in Los Angeles. More than half of the guys I meet are “actors” which really means they are bartenders and they were in a web series once that got 257 views. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for people going for their dreams–but why can’t more men in LA dream of being a dog owner who loves blonde 23-year-olds who are poor who love pizza and Taylor Swift? I guess I’d just prefer to be hit on by an actor who actually makes a living off acting (Hellllooooo, Liam Hemsworth) not an actor who was just cast as the fat, creepy, ginger in a commercial for hemorrhoid cream (Too specific? Sorry, Paul).

No Meatheads. I recently had a guy come up to me at the gym and ask me if he could use me as a bench press. His shirt read: “Turn Down for What?”

Also, no Methheads. 

No Clingers. There is only one thing I hate more than waiting for food to microwave–someone following me around when I go out.

Don’t Be Too Cool. I like cool people. But if you are too cool to admit you like Beyonce or if you refuse to see anything but Wes Anderson movies, you can start packing everything you own in a box to the left.

AWWW HAILLL YASSS 

Be Funny. And fun. And Funky. And Fungry when necessary.

Be Nice. It’s actually sad how far being nice can get a guy if the girl is just desperate enough. Oh, what’s that you said? You like my necklace? That’s so sweet why don’t you come over and I can show you my other jewels….

Have Friends. Please introduce me, I need more friends.

Have a Job. I’m sick and tired of falling for homeless men just because they are funny and like my necklace and have a group of friends! [Editor’s Note: Real happy at this point that I’m not the only gal out there who falls for a homeless man or two.]

Shower. Once a day. It’s not that hard and it’s not too much to ask. I’m not even going to ask you to manscape. I’ll let that be a personal decision.

Cook. This may be the most important way to a girl’s heart. This doesn’t mean making elaborate meals every night; I enjoy a good pancake from time to time. 

The more I ponder what I want in a man, the more I realize want I want is simple. I want someone who will be there for me through think and thin. I want someone who brings me warmth and joy and excitement. I want a guy who makes me giddy when I see his name pop up on my phone. I want someone who answers–no matter how late I call, no matter how drunk I am, I know he will pick up the phone.  I want a man I can trust.

My dream man is the Dominos delivery boy.

JoEllen is a hilarious writer living in LA. Read more of her blog at www.joheaven.com. Do it. Like right now. 

[Final Editor’s Note: When I made this list at 23-years-old, it read “must like cheeseburgers.” Girl, you’ll find your non-hemorrhoid cream commercial, pancake-making, Liam Hemsworth lookalike one day SOON. But before that, can we please grab drinks and shop for men together? K, thanks.]


Guest Post Wednesday: Terrible First Date Ideas by Hot Mess Stiles

 

Danielle Stiles is the hysterical vlogger of Hot Mess Stiles, wearer of adorable glasses, and girl crush of many. Subscribe to her YouTube channel now. Like right now. Here ya go: Hot Mess Stiles.

[Editor’s Note: It’s just adorable how she thinks I’m an expert, huh?]


Guest Post Wednesday: 10 Things Alpha Men Find Attractive in Women by Karleton Thomas

suitMost men can agree on the obvious: long legs, intelligence, sense of humor, etc. These are a given when discussing the finer points of being attracted to the opposite sex, but what about the not so obvious? The characteristics, behaviors, and mannerisms that did not make any top 10 lists? Below we have compiled a few of the not-so-obvious. Not all men will find the below attractive, but the right one might.

1. Trash Talker/Competitive – She thinks she can win and has the mouth to make it sound believable. Even when she loses, there is always next time. Gotta love her.

2. Touch of Crazy – Yeah, Yeah, Yeah…I know what my male counterparts have been saying, but it’s not totally true. Since most of us cannot discern the extreme from the justified, we’ve adopted a blanket policy. Truth be told, we love a little nuttiness. It makes life that more interesting.  Just so long as it leads to great sex and can be laughed at over wine.

3. Game for Whatever – She likes a nice dinner and special occasions, but that one bar over there by that one place, she’s cool with that, too. Fun can be had anywhere.

4. Ball-Buster – She pokes fun at you, though never in a mean way. Knows embarrassing things about you and readily queues up the zingers when in private. Best thing about it all, she keeps you laughing, which was the point in the first place.

5. Beer Drinker – We don’t think we care what brand you drink; Blue Moon to breweries– it’s attractive.

6. She Can Eat – Gets excited at the thought of going to try a new spot. Possibly overeats when it is really that good. I even had an ex who was protective of her favorite foods, like a lioness after the kill. That woman was serious.

7. Fuzzy, Warm Adjectives – Passionate, caring, affectionate, sweet, humble, etc. You get the drift. At first, they seem obvious, which they are, but alpha males appreciate them even more. It’s the contrast. Most alpha males operate in a cold world; the aforementioned are warm. It makes for a soft place to land after a long day with the vultures.

8. Know It All – So she doesn’t really know it all, but she knows enough. And when she knows she’s right, she makes for a formidable debater. Big plus if she nags about the “little things,” like seeing a doctor regularly and taking a break from work.

9. Solid – Not her body, but as a partner and problem-solver. Very few things are as attractive as a woman who can handle herself. When it hits the fan, the wheels in her head start turning. There is no need to talk her down from ledge; she’s sitting next to you working the problem.

10. Contrast – I mentioned it above. It takes on different forms, such as the naughty librarian fantasy.  A prim and proper woman on the outside with a mountain of sensual energy bubbling to get out. This is the modern day equivalent of the hard-working career wife or super mom forgoing undergarments at this year’s big social event. More importantly, it’s number 7. None of the above works without 7. That contrast, behind closed doors, is glue.

Disclaimer: Of course, this does not pertain to all alpha men. Definitely does not pertain to douchebags, idiots, narcissistic or misogynist men.  I’m willing to bet on the rest.

Karleton Thomas is the co-founder and COO of LocalLux, an online marketplace to discover unique, local fashion. He’s also a big fan of scotch and bacon anything and apparently women who are fans of both as well. 

[Editor’s Note: If a homeboy can get down with my pizza guzzling, then I think it’s a match.]


Guest Post Wednesday: That Fat Girl and the Online Dating World by Dana R. Griffin

tumblr_lj3b4qh5H71qhqgp8o1_400_largeAfter a divorce and then a long-term relationship that ended because: a) I got my life together; b) he was  jealous of that; and c) he had no idea who Nelson Mandela was…I unleashed myself onto the online dating world.

My point of entry was OKCupid. My life is crazy busy, and online seemed to be the best option for me. My best friend was also on “the Cupid”  and seemed to have success there, so I thought what the heck. The first person I contacted who contacted me back was great guy who just happened to have finalized his divorce one month before he met me.

After about two years of trying to feel out if this man was ever going to be ready (honestly if they want to be with you, they will and you don’t have to figure it out; men are pretty basic that way).  Needless to say, he was not ready for what I was looking for–an eventual life partner. So I went back to “the Cupid” to see who else was out there…or more accurately, I decided to passively online date. I wasn’t going to look for anyone; if someone wanted to contact me, I would go from there. But I really didn’t have time to waste looking through countless profiles, because, well, I’m busy!

One day a nice guy contacted me and he seemed OK. [Editor’s Note/Question: Pun intended?] He had two kids from a previous marriage. Had been divorced for my minimum amount of time. (About four years seems, in my experience, is an optimal time to heal…and sleep with enough people to get it out of their system so that they’re ready for an actual relationship.) [Editor’s Note: Good. To. Know. Thank you.]

We texted and talked for a couple of weeks before we actually met. We met somewhere close to my house for breakfast because he worked nights, and I had to work that day, and it was the only way to fit it into both our schedules. Unconventional perhaps, but if you can’t be adaptable in dating, you can’t be adaptable with a life partner so why even bother.

Several things were red flags to me when we met.  He felt the need to kiss me as a hello. I’m NOT a PDA girl with someone I don’t know. I am barely PDA with men I do know (at least at that point in my life…but that’s another story). Throughout the breakfast, he was trying to hold my hand before our food arrived. I told him that PDA just wasn’t me and he really needed to stop. Once that ended, I noticed something else. Something I just couldn’t believe.

He had no teeth.

When I say he had no teeth I mean NO teeth–not a ONE.

I couldn’t believe it. I almost couldn’t handle it. My parents spent thousands of dollars on making sure that, not only did I have teeth, but that they were perfectly straight. This man. This 35-year-old man had not one tooth in his head. It’s not like he was a professional hockey player or a boxer or something where he might have gotten them knocked out and then replaced with fake teeth. I could handle fake teeth, but gums? Just gums? Oh hell no.

After the date ended, he tried to kiss me some more. I just couldn’t get the image of his gums out of my head.

I called my best friend and shared my story with him. His reply was not what I expected: “I hope someone could love old, fat, bald me, but if this isn’t something you can get past, then you should put this guy out of his misery.” My response to him was, “Well at least you have teeth.”

That weekend I was headed to St. Louis for a wedding and to visit with my family who I hadn’t seen in years, and I told Mr. Gums I was going to be busy.

The weekend was filled with texts and calls that were above and beyond normal dating etiquette. So not only was this guy toothless, but he was obsessive and, well, annoying. I was going to let him down easy, but changed my mind and went for blunt and to the point. I texted him: This isn’t going work, sorry. I hope you find what you are looking for. 

A little over a month later, I met the man I am with now. In our early conversations, I said to him, “You seem perfect, but I have to know…do you have all of your teeth?” He laughed and said, “Yes. Why?” I told him, and we’ve lived happily ever after.

Now I actually enjoy PDA.

Dana is a 43-year-old, white, single mom of a biracial 13-year-old daughter. She started a new career three years ago in video production and she’s also an online radio co-host. Her background includes music, musical theater, and improv. She studied at The Second City and took a graduate class with Adam McKay at Piven Theater workshop. Name dropper? Maybe a little. For more on That Fat Girl Media, click here

[Final Editor’s Note: I pretty much fell into a deep girl crush upon meeting Dana. Can we just talk about how she called men basic? #basicboy Happened here first, folks. And in lieu of pumpkin spice lattes, Basic Boys carry Lifetime Fitness cards.]


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.] 


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?]

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.]


Guest Post Wednesday: 5 Stages of Online Dating by Dating Olivia

neil-wax-five-stages-of-griefWhen Chloe asked me to write a guest post for her, my first thought was, “Holy shit, someone reads my blog!” My second thought was, “Holy shit, someone likes my blog enough that they want me to write something for their blog!” And my third thought was, “Holy shit. What the hell am I going to write about?”

Lately, I’ve been hit with a rather large case of writer’s block. I had created two years’ worth of posts on my dating blog (datingolivia.wordpress.com for those of you looking for some shameless self-promotion) that was based on the fact that I was painfully single, and dating pretty much everyone in my town. My online dating life was particularly eventful, and led way to so many stories that I haven’t really begun to tell them all. But as luck would have it, after years of dating many a douchebag, I finally found my boyfriend (who I call Boyfriend on my blog because I’m very clever and original). So while it’s good for me, it’s bad for my writing.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t miss dating. I may have gotten used to being single and going out with many different men over the years, but I am happier than a kid at Disneyland to be in a loving relationship. And even more than just plain old dating, I really very much do not miss online dating. I mean, after all, I am old enough to remember a day back before cell phones existed, when guys actually had to call your one and only landline and risk talking to your dad first in order to get ahold of you. I started dating in a time before MSN Messenger and MySpace were around, when to ask someone out without calling them you needed to pass a note to their best friend in math class with a “check yes or no” option at the bottom. Ah, those were the days. Online dating may be the way that our world is finding love these days, but it’s definitely not the most ideal, or the most romantic. Call me old fashioned, but I miss the days before dick pics were the norm in the dating world. And the more that I think about it, online dating can be so bleak that the stages of finding love on the internet bears an uncanny resemblance to the 5 stages of loss and grief.

5 Stages of Online Dating

1. Denial

You sign up for a dating site “just to check out what all the fuss is about,” but not to seriously date. You log on fairly steadily though and talk to lots of people you would consider dating, but you still don’t think of yourself as an “online dater.” When people ask if you are seeing anyone, you always say no, because you aren’t really seeing anyone, you just happen to be meeting a lot of different people for coffee, and well, anyone would agree that that isn’t really dating. Besides, if you did tell them you were seeing someone (which you aren’t) you’d have to answer a bunch of questions about who this person is, and what they do for a living, and the worst question, where did you meet. And as we all know, the first rule of Online Dating Club is that you don’t talk about Online Dating Club.

2. Anger

At a certain point you will be very angry with online dating. “Tittysprinkles? Really?! I have to sit here and look through messages from guys with screen names like motherfucking Tittysprinkles? Oh, yeah, I am soooo sure that you have a nine inch penis, that doesn’t sound like a lie at all. It’s nice to see that you are unemployed though, and living in your mom’s basement rent free, having money these days is so overrated and really, who wouldn’t want to live off a diet of mac and cheese and Ramen noodles? Oh, that’s nice, I see that you have a bunch of kids all by different women; this means there is a good chance that you have met Maury. Oh, but I guess that’s all ok, seeing as though you don’t want a relationship anyways, you just want to have lots of random sex, and HOW IN THE FUCK AM I EVER GOING TO FIND A DECENT PERSON IN THIS RIDICULOUS EXCUSE FOR A DATING MECHANISM?????” *Turns into the Hulk, starts incoherently screaming, flips a table, and punches a baby* Anger is a very important step to online dating and will also lead to no less than five instances of looking at the computer monitor or your phone screen and going, “Fuck this shit, I’m done!” while looking for the “Delete Account” option.

3. Bargaining

“I will just meet this one last guy and see what happens. If it’s bad, then I will give this whole online dating thing up forever, I swear to God.” Or another popular thought here is: “Please God, just let me meet one great guy online, let this seemingly awesome guy I’ve been talking to for a few weeks now be an actual awesome guy, and let us live happily ever after. If you do this for me, I promise that I will be nicer to people. I will give up my seat on the bus to all the old ladies and pregnant chicks, I swear. And I will call my mom more often. And give all the dollah billz to homeless people. And I will stop laughing at Kim Kardashian when she cries. Actually, I will just stop watching Kim and all the other Kardashians altogether. I will just radiate sunshine and shit rainbows, just please, for the love of you, let this guy be amazing enough to be the last guy I meet online.” Incidentally, for those of you who were wondering, this step is the step that directly led to me meeting my boyfriend.

4. Depression

Before I met Boyfriend, I spent close to seven years logging on and off the dating site, and spent countless hours meeting many, many non-contenders. During these seven years, I spent a great amount of time hating myself. And hating everyone else. I felt like there was something wrong with me. There had to be. Why hadn’t I found anyone worth dating yet, and why had the few guys I actually had liked when I met them turned into nothing? Why was it so hard for me to find love, when everywhere I looked around me, people were in love. How could a person not be depressed after a certain point? How could you go on that many awful dates with awful people and still walk away feeling good about yourself, and your life? This is the worst stage of online dating by far. Because unlike in real life, where yes, you see countless men everyday walk right by you, you don’t get to actively see just how many of these men would openly reject you or see just how many aren’t right for you in any conceivable way. The knowledge you get online is not the greatest self-esteem tool at your disposal, trust me.

5. Acceptance

At a certain point, all that anger, and depression and denial will fade away, and you will accept online dating as the reality you are in. Yes, it’s definitely not ideal, and it for sure can lack the excitement and magic of the old fashioned way of dating, but online dating has its perks too. For the most part, you can find out a lot of information about a person before you even talk to them. This gives you one big advantage over in person dating. You can weed out some of the guys who you want nothing to do with, without having to actually meet them first. You can tell if a guy wants a relationship or not, if he wants kids or not, or if he’s smart enough to know the difference between there, their, and they’re. You know, the important things. Sure, people can lie online, but people do that in person, too. If anything, being relatively anonymous behind a computer screen usually gives people the balls to be more honest with others, and say things that they might not be able to say out loud. (Which, if you read my blog, you would know that this is what it is entirely based on.)

And hell, after a certain point, you may even find online dating fun. I know it sounds crazy, but it’s true. After a while you may find your groove online, and start enjoying it. I know I sure did. There was a good year not long ago where I enjoyed getting messages on the dating site. I even enjoyed getting these messages from the weirdos. Once I learned not to take things so seriously, I got entertainment out of it, and had it not been for all those idiots who once messaged me, I wouldn’t have any material whatsoever for my blog. I felt the same way about the dates. For every bad date I went on, I got a great story out of it. And every once in a while, I’d meet a new guy who gave me butterflies, or go on a first date that would give me hope that someone decent was still out there, and worth looking for. I’m not the kind of person to believe that things last forever, but had it not been for online dating, I probably would have never met my boyfriend, and I consider him to be the absolute cream of the online dating crop. Every once in a while, you never know, you might accidentally hit the jackpot.

So there you have it. The stages of grief/stages of online dating. I’m glad that for now I don’t have to deal with all that, and that I can now sit back and listen to everybody else’s online dating horror stories. What I enjoy even more than that is discussing which guys to stay away from with a friend of mine who has recently rejoined the online dating world, and is now looking to me to make sure she doesn’t date someone awful. The circle of life is complete.

I’m glad that my dating douchebags wasn’t in vain.

Olivia

[Editor’s Note: I find that I am in a constant flux between Anger and Depression. Both lend themselves to mass quantities of tater tots and alcohol. Which is not, as luck would have it, helping me in my search.]

[Editor’s Note II: I fucking love Olivia.]


Guest Post Wednesday: Is This Real Life? Alex Ripley

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This is long overdue. So long that I’ve gotten used to the weekly emails from Chloe begging for a love life update, but I’m finally coming through on my promise to deliver. Admittedly, I’ve been nearly 100% AWOL from tweeting … Continue reading