Thursday, August 28, 2008
Savvy: I've gone out with a couple of guys from Meetup. Bass, Tall, Astro...Bass really broke my heart, we're both really into music.
Kerri: Wait. Bass? Is he in a band called the f... something?
Savvy: Yeah. but there's more than one guy with his name.
Kerri: I went out with a Bass through Meetup. He sent me some little email saying how I had a cute purple top or something like that.
Savvy: Really? Did you go out with him?
Kerri: He showed up in a minivan and I told him they always say that if a man shows up in a minivan that he's probably married. But he wasn't.
Savvy: Yep, that's him. It's for his standup bass. How lame, huh?
Kerri: Well, I wasn't impressed with him.
Savvy: I really was because we both have shoulder injuries.
Kerri: Yes, he told me all about that, he's a swimmer or something.
Savvy: Haha, yeah. At the gym he is. And we both have master's degrees in music, and we sang together when we went out. he was gonna help me start a band and he was all serious. I wanna spend all summer with you, all of spring break.
Kerri: Did he tell you about how his house is worth $600,000 and his parents helped him with the downpayment after he sold his house in Vegas?
Savvy: He says all the same things! He said all a girl wants is for a guy to have his shit together--own a house and have a stable income..
Kerri: He's hardly worth it. But you guys had so much in common that it's easy to see why you fell for him.
Savvy: Plus he was talking so seriously. I haven't fixed up my place because I figure the woman I marry will want to do that...
Kerri: Weird. Honestly, though, you shouldn't let a guy get to you. I only care if a guy has been around for three months and then I care a little bit--just a little.
Savvy: So did he actually talk on the date?
Kerri: Yeah, he didn't seem to have any real trouble with that.
Savvy: What did you guys do?
Kerri: We went to the zoo--my idea. Then he took me to dinner.
Savvy: That's kind of sweet to go to the zoo for a date.
Kerri: Guys can tell if you like them or not, and he could probably tell I just didn't like him.
Savvy: I did.
Kerri: I didn't think he was that good looking.
Savvy: I can see why you would think that. I liked some things about him alot, but some things I didn't. I was divided. And he was asking me if i liked him when I saw him. But for me it's also about having things in common.
Kerri: he didn't ask me any of that. He just knew.
Savvy: I had a great time with him and he took me to a jazz festival. We were laughing the whole time and then he showed up with some other girl from Canada who he met at his most recent gig.
Kerri: Oh, a groupie. Listen, he's having a good time going out. I can tell.
Savvy: He was always telling me how lonely he was.
Kerri: Sure, sure. They always say that.
Savvy: I'm so naive. I went with him in his car to the jazz festival and then on the way back he said he wanted to park in his garage, so I had to go back trough his house. He wanted me to stay and watch his big screen TV. So I stayed and next thing I knew, he turned it off and was kissing me, do you want music, do you want me to turn down the lights? You still have your jacket on. And I said yes, because I have to go. And he was so desperate. Please stay, we don't have to do anything. I'll sleep on the couch. I get so lonely. I'm shy and I don't have any friends.
Kerri: Of course he's lonely. He's having fun being in a band. I'm sure it impresses the girls.
Savvy: yeah, only because he was saying he wanted to help me start a band because I have such a great voice. I thought I was going to be his muse and that this was going to be something really special. I still want to kick his ass.
Kerri: Trust me, he's just not worth it. Just move on.
Really, I'm doing better about it all. Trust me. I don't cry about it. Now that I've met other people he's been interested in and hear what it sounds like to hear him say all the same things, it becomes even easier to move on. It becomes easier to stop reacting by dating people just to help me get over him. I can hold my head up high. When someone asks me in the bathroom, Whatever happened to you and that guy who was in a band? I can hold my head up high, he's a manipulative jerk. He ran out of things to say so he had to end it. I was naive and trusting, but now I'm moving on. Plus it's easy to avoid him by checking his band's website so I know when he's out of town. I still imagine brushing past him and "accidentally" pushing him into the pool with him fully clothed, but I won't. I'm happy with myself that I resisted the temptation to say yes to Bass when that would have been really dumb. I applaud myself for fleeing from temptation. I would have been devastated. I'm glad God gave me some gift of discernment. I couldn't put my finger on anything specific, but it seemed like he was being deceptive. I'm glad I listened.
Friday, August 22, 2008
I attended the event. Was that a church or a club? I would have appreciated a warning about their superloud worship "music" which incidentally made me long to listen to The Doors or The Who. If I'm going to be screamed at, please make it angsty. We had a SHOW complete with flashing lights, smoke machines and fans blowing the hanging fabric behind the stage. It made me want to order a martini--something I have no objection to, but I have never felt that way at a church. Quite a few people left because they most likely took objection to the same things. I went to my car to get my earplugs--something else that reminded me of going to clubs--until the "music" subsided. The message was OK, but I would have appreciated getting a nice email with the idea that God is like a mosaic artist who takes the broken pieces and makes a beautiful painting. Or that Michaelangelo could not see the whole of his work on the Sistine Chapel until he was done. I drove quite far and was both disappointed and annoyed.
On the plus side, I met an older gentleman (outside my age range) who may come and see me sing at a jazz club--because if I'm going to feel like I'm at a club, I'd like it to be a jazz club where I actually CAN order a martini or a Corona and really enjoy real music. He works in the entertainment industry and we were in complete agreement about the show.
They want to reach singles, but I can assure you, this didn't reach me. It's unfortunate because I am really longing for Christian friendships to replace the party crowd I have fallen in with.
I suppose it's hard to know what it's going to be all about when you get an email to pass on. You wouldn't happen to have any guys in their 30s--Christians who are slightly cynical, into jazz who maybe wear black turtlenecks with glasses and a goatee or a soulpatch? We're pretty snobbish about our music. No? Well, I was hoping.
Subject: It's all about you...
Of course, that's what I tell people. But it's really all about *me*.
I was about to ask if you were going to make it to my show, but then I realized you work nights. You suck. ;) I'd like to think you would be there otherwise. :)
See you Saturday! Thanks again for throwing a party for me. You're the best!
He is divorced, Persian from India, older than me by alot, and has two adult children. Personally I didn't see the harm in talking to him a bit since I've seen him around and will most likely run into him again. It's not like a pickup.
I was headed to the mall for a last minute venture to buy something I'd had my eye on--in the name of charity. Not only were they giving me a discount, but a percentage of the proceeds were going to a music therapy program. However, the best music therapy would be for me to be teaching music--but I digress.
Finally in touch with each other, he invited me to come hang out with the meetup group he was with. That sounded tame, but I was "proceeding" to the mall.
Savvy: I'm going to the mall, will you still be there in an hour?
Older: Oh you're going to the mall, which one?
Savvy: The Westfield, why don't you come shopping with me and buy me things? I'm kidding!!
Older: I'll meet you there, shopping with you sounds fun.
Savvy: What's the plan after that?
Older: Whatever you want to do.
Savvy: I guess we could get a drink or something.
Older: I'll call you when I get to the mall.
After the purchase, we went to an upscale bar that was actually quite swank. We chatted about wine and various aspects of Meetup over mini Kobe burgers, ice wine and a mojito. He took a call and referred to me as a friend. Honestly, I sat there thinking how rude it was to accept a call while hanging out with someone else.
As we left, I went to the ladies and he went outside to have a smoke. As I exited the restaurant, the server came up to me with her hand extended:
Serve: You forgot these keys.
Sav: Oh, those aren't mine. Oh, they belong to him. I know what I'll do.
I tucked them in my bag. As we walked to our cars I asked:
Savvy: Do you have everything you need?
Older: Yes I think so.
Older: Oh wait, I seem to have left my keys somewhere.
Savvy: Really? Where do you think you left them?
Older: I think they're back in the restaurant.
Savvy: Do they look like this?
Older: You devil!
He began tickling me. That hasn't happened on a date since college. As he tried to get closer to my lips I kept trying to turn away. He smokes. Finally he kissed me.
Then the talking continued.
Savvy: So, I'm just curious, when did you develop this thing for me?
Older: Ever since we met.
Savvy: Ah, really? What made you like me?
Older: I like your smile. You're alot of fun. I thought we would have fun together. It seemed mutual.
Savvy: Maybe... Fun?
Older: I'm not looking to get serious or make any kind of commitments. There's no harm as long as you're upfront about these things.
Savvy: I don't think we're looking for the same things.
Older: Well, no one wants to get married, at least not in California.
Savvy: You're killing me. I think I'm going to go home and cry. This is my home state.
Older: Don't do that.
Savvy: It's just that you've already been married. I haven't had the chance to do that. Why would I get involved with someone who isn't able to offer what I'm looking for?
Older: We can just have fun. I won't make you do anything you don't want to do.
Savvy: I've heard that before.
Older: It's getting late and I'm tired. I have work tomorrow. You're more than welcome to stay at my place--it's just 2 minutes from here which is why it was so perfect to meet you here instead of having you go all the way to the bowling alley. Believe me, I'm just going to sleep. I'll even stay on the couch and let you have my bed. I just worry about how far of a drive you have.
Savvy: I'll be alright... It's not fair. I'm not bitter--I've never been divorced (I had just heard some divorce doozies that night.) and you're done with it. I want to experience it for myself. After all, even yours was good for the first part. I deserve to be with someone who can make a commitment to me.
He knew I was right.
Savvy: I was trying to keep things just friends between us because I already knew that might be a possibility.
Older: Please call me to let me know that you got home OK.
I did call, but that's the end of it. There are alot of guys who want to waste a woman's time without truly offering anything. The Non-Dating Dude is no better than the Out For Fun Guy on many levels. Both are using you for your time and attention without a commitment. One uses your body, the other uses your soul. Nobody gets what they want.
In saying no to him, I know I have his respect. I'm actually still on speaking terms with Tall, who respects me a great deal now. They both know I'm not the Just For Fun Girl. And so much for Indian guys being more traditional. I need to find a different group. A Christian group.
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
What my blog description used to be:
Welcome to my class! I'm Miss D!!! I love music and can't imagine teaching anything else. I love and hate my job. It is sometimes rewarding, often painful, extremely stressful and sometimes gives you great joy.
What it is now:
I was a Choir Teacher last year with the most horrible job anyone could imagine. I started this blog to help me deal with it. This year I'm back at substitute teaching since I couldn't find another choir job. My COBRA insurance ran out. Heaven help me.
I think that about says it all. If you want to, your free to read all about it. I wrote it all down so that if people were REALLY interested, they could look it up.
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Sav: Hey, what's this music? I like it.
KC: It's baby music.
Sav: Really? Gosh, I hope you don't mind that I'm totally singing along.
Lil: Nope not at all.
Sav: It's just so catchy! Pussycat, pussycat where have you been?
We sang along in parts on one of the songs. Lil was charmingly off key at times, but most of the time she did well. The baby was happy and tried to sing along. KC was very quiet.
Lil: I'll bet I know what your thinking, KC. Do you feel like a total chump?
Sav: Yeah, like, you used to be so sexy driving your car with the stereo cranked up with Metallica or whatever,
Lil: And now you drive a hand-me-down car, listening to baby music, feeling like a chump.
Sav: And your wife used to be totally hot.
Lil: Hey!! I have my pre-baby body mostly back.
KC: My wife is still sexy. In fact, she's sexier.
Lil: Thank you, honey.
Sav: Yeah, it's true. And you're my favorite cousin. (I tell whichever cousin is most sensitive that she's the favorite. It covers a variety of social faux pas! But, Lil, I swear, you are my favorite now since you are reading the blog!)
KC: Actually, I wasn't thinking very much. I was thinking how tired I was and how much I wanted some coffee. The only time I feel like a chump is when I'm sitting in traffic.
Lil: Oh, yeah, traffic sucks.
Sav: Yeah, traffic sucks... Do you think the baby would like Metallica better than this baby CD?
KC: I think she really might.
We all laughed. I imagine singing baby-style versions of heavy metal classics. It's almost as good as singing opera versions of inane disco hits. So, he doesn't feel like a chump. That's good.
PS Some of my posts are not showing on the front page, but are INDEED there. Please look at my archive on the sidebar. :)
Friday, August 15, 2008
Blow number one came when I realized that I was making a dent in my savings with every large Ice Blended Mocha I bought. $4.70 each for a large--I always get a large. If I get 2 a week for 50 weeks out of the year, I've spent a whopping $470 on coffee alone. That's crazy! I have nothing to show for that money, but Coffee Bean does! You can bet they took that money, invested it wisely and increased their profits and portfolio. It's disgusting--not for them, but for me!
What if I took that coffee money and gave it to a charity? How many meals, medicines and books could it buy? How many lives could it change?
What if I tithed it to my church? How long can a missionary live on that? What could that money do to help?
I thought about resisting the caffeine beast, but all I can think about is that I haven't had my morning coffee. I'm giving in--but I'm making it myself.
Our coffee obsession has trickled down to youger and younger ages. High school students used to go out for malteds, now they go out for coffee. I've never seen high school kids walking around with Starbucks cups or declaring they really need coffee to get going in the morning. I don't remember ever needing anything like that in high school, but then I didn't have a computer or a television in my room. I wasn't allowed. Some of these kids are staying up late to watch TV and IM or text into the wee hours. When I was in high school, my parents would have heard me talking on the phone.
If I start adding all the money I've spent to buy diet coke on top of that, it's enough to make me mourn the fact that I might have been able to pay off my student loans with that.
What's the real cost of our purchases? It's time I introduced you to My Money Blog. It's a blog about wise investing and spending. This True Cost calculator is something else. Have fun seeing how much you morning java is really worth.
Thursday, August 14, 2008
When I took them off, they were brown and sticky. And bamboo vinegar stinks when it's like that. Yuck!! Maybe it stinks because I'm toxic. I washed my feet off in the pool, but the smell is really in there. It's as bad as stinky feet.
I was ready for it to be really stinky and gross, but much of the pad was white today. I'm not sure it had full contact with my feet the whole night. I feel better today. My headache is mostly gone--but that could also be because I had Salonpas pads on my neck. Hmm. We'll see what it looks like tomorrow. Bamboo vinegar in small doses still stinks.
Sometimes I can smell the stuff when I am walking around with the pads on my feet. It's gross. I intended to take them off outside and dip my feet in the pool right away, but didn't have a chance to. The cat is sick and she had to be taken to the vet. I had to wait to wash my stinky bamboo vinegared feet. *BLECH* However, I woke up feeling really good. This could be coincidental. My neck has been feeling better in general and I also used the Salonpas patches on my neck. I really don't want to do this tomorrow. I might gag that stuff smells so bad.
I got smart and took these off right before going in the shower. But really, after 4 days of these, the stench was not so easily removed. Gross!! In my humble opinion, they hook you because this means you must be toxic if the pad is sticky and gross, and it will always be sticky and gross. You must be really toxic!!
I've gone into Chinese medicinal stores in Chinatown and never buy anything because it seems to me that the more pungently stinky the herbs is, the better it must work. Thanks, but I'll stay toxic. At least that way I keep the hope alive that if I smell good, the opposite sex may find me attractive. I'm glad I ran out because I can't take another day of them and don't plan on buying any more. I feel better, but I think that's because my neck isn't giving me migraines. Don't waste your money.
Maybe. And Maybe not. There are some amazing feats of athleticism. Some things truly are more advanced; routines are more daring. The tumbling is incredible. But for me something is missing. The flair of yesteryear is long gone. The grace, beauty and sure-footedness of the USSR's Olga Korbut and Romania's Nadia Comaneci have disappeared with rare exception--Nastia Liuken is my top favorite today.
Without saying much more, YouTube is a wonderful tool. Everything is on YouTube. Everything including historic gymnastics performances. Go ahead and watch. It's incredible to see what they were doing back then. Things that still stand out today.
Olga Korbut 1972 uneven bars
Olga Korbut floor
Olga Korbut beam
Nadia's 1976 perfect beam
Nadia's 1976 perfect uneven bars
Nadia's 1977 floor excercise
Other Amazing gymnasts:
Svetlana Khorchina 2000(3 time Olympian, 2 golds on bars)
Mary Lou Retton 1984 gold all around
Cathy Rigby 1968
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Bringing Tiny Back. It's not that those Chinese girls are little, it's just that they're so little. Having taught middle school, those girls would fit right in. Some of them even seem like 5th graders. That's a far cry from 16. Mary Lou Retton looked older at 14 than they do at alleged 16.
It's possible, but barely. Shawn Johnson is a very tiny 16, but it's easy to prove that she's actually 16. There are school enrollment records with photgraphic evidence to back that up as well. Perhaps that's what all should be required to provide from their first gymnastics competitions. A definition of possible is that it may or may not be true.
Not even plausible. The technical definition is that it seems true, but isn't. Does it even seem true that these some of these Chinese girls are 16?
Back to age testing: Since we are assuming dishonesty in terms of substances, it would be safe to assume that some are fabricating their ages. Some. Athletes blood samples stay on file for 8 years in the even that a test or drug is discovered later. It makes sense. Asians do have a tenancy to look younger. I had two Korean friends in college who looked like they were still in high school.
Sour grapes? Is it wrong to question athletic accomplishments? Other athletes have been accused of using banned substances in their training and stripped of medals. If it were discovered that ages had been falsified, the Chinese gymnastics team would be stripped of the team medal--unfortunate for those who actually ARE 16. Individual medals would be stripped only from those who were proven to be underage. It would be one of the biggest medal strippings in Olympic history.
Possiblity, plausibility and tiny women from totalitarian regimes that hire cute actresses to lipsync to incredible singing in Olympic opening ceremonies. Hmmm. Alot to think about until they come up with an age test.
Here are some pics from Getty:
Chinese -- Gold
Being gracious to each other. There are no sore losers.
And one more thing NBC's coverage kinda sucks. They're so worried about setting up "awesome" camera angles, showing underwater shots in slow motion, excessive talking, lame interviews and sideline reactions that they forgot to cover the Romanians at all. Now I love swimming, but what's up with that? This is supposed to be sports not TMZ. Sports is being paparazzized.
Can't seem to get their ages straight in the press. They pulled a story that listed He Kexin as 13. Hmmm...Read all about it!
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
I talked with Pretzel this evening. He's been trying to call me and I've been avoiding him. But I felt like I had to say something, that maybe it would make a difference to him, maybe it would help him.
Savvy: I hate to talk about this on the phone, but when I think about our date, I have to say that I've never had anyone show up an hour late, been drinking in the car on the way there and then had a horribly messy car like that. It makes me wonder if you're really ready for a healthy relationship, of if you do these things to subconsciously let people know you aren't.
Pretzel: I'm sorry. Why don't we go out another time and I promise I won't drink. I'll even be early. I can't make any promises, but I'll try.
Savvy: I've just never seen anyone I've ever dated have a drink in the car on the way to our date. were you nervous or something?
Pretzel: Yes, I was very nervous. And when we met, too.
Savvy: It's just that being reliable in a relationship is important. I need to know that someone is going to be there when I need them to be. I've been 15 minutes late before, I could deal with that. But an hour?
Pretzel: I'll really try.
Savvy: An hour is really disrespectful The only time I was a half an hour late, I did it on purpose. (Remember Astro? I was retaliating.)
Pretzel: Well, these are valid complaints. I can see why you would be upset.
Savvy: The whole point is to catch it when it's an observation. This is what actually happened. It becomes complaining, then nagging and whining when you say yes to a commitment and these things are an obvious problem before you even start.
Pretzel: Yes, that actually makes sense. But I still want to give it another shot.
Savvy: Well, there's one more thing.
Pretzel: What's that?
Savvy: It was fun making out with you in some ways, but honestly, I feel really bad about that. I don't usually move that fast and it scared me into wondering what was next and how fast things would go. I was raised to wait until I got married, and even though I could forgive myself and God could forgive me for going farther sooner, it's not what I want to be doing. It's just something you should think about. Most guys when they figure out I'm not playing around, they move on because they don't get what they want. As if I don't have better things to do than pretend I'm a super good girl who's only been with one guy. Life is too short. If I really wanted to do it, why would I play around.
Pretzel: When I was younger it seemed like men and women were farther apart on that, but now they are more similar.
Savvy: Well, that all depends on who you ask. Not everyone feels that way. I don't. And like I said, I feel bad about what we did and I don't want to repeat it.
Pretzel: Can we talk about it some more when you come back from your trip.
Savvy: You have alot of things to consider, though, and if those things can't change, I could only accept you as a friend because those things don't affect me in the same way. And I don't do friends with benefits.
Pretzel: I feel bad now.
Savvy: I know that you are a good person in your heart. Maybe you are just going through some things that you need to resolve.
And there are some things I need to resolve. Different things. I need to find a job, I need to find a church. I almost feel like I can't decide where to go until I know where my job is. I'm tired of dating. And honestly, a date is to get to know someone. It's a risky business. MOST people aren't going to cook you and store your carcass in their refrigerator, but still... not everyone is very aware of their bad manners.
I mentioned to Becky how one of my really bad dates told me I should go back to church and find myself a nice guy. If only he knew how complicated that is!!!
Becky Sue warned me. There's just one problem with church people. They're so hypocritical. You're so naive sometimes. I worry about you, that's all.
As if there aren't hypocrites everywhere.
Monday, August 11, 2008
GUY'S EYE VIEW/What Would Savvy Say?
Sure, you always try to make a great impression. But you may unwittingly be making these common moves that send a guy the wrong signal—and even scare him off.
Don't do this on a first date! By Steve Friedman
She had the most alluring New Zealand accent. She had the most shapely calves. She had a Ph.D. in art history, a vice presidential title at a global publishing house, twinkly brown eyes, and half a martini in front of her. It was our first date, and speaking for all men, I can testify that what she had is what guys like a date to have. Savvy says cool. Guys like smart, sexy girls!!
We chatted, as men and women tend to do on first dates. We shared some innocuous details about our lives, number of siblings, reading tastes, that sort of thing. I told her I thought she was very pretty, a cunning gambit practiced by my kind for eons, a gambit that in this case happened to be true. She put her hand on my knee. Hmmm, this was unexpected. Nice, but unexpected. She leaned closer to me, blinked her lovely brown eyes, which were now brimming with tears. "If I give you my heart," she said, "would you take care of it?"
Savvy would say: Aww! Thanks! You're sooo sweet! And she would think very quietly to herself that time would tell if he was just trying to get in my pants.
"And that," my pal Jack told me when I recounted my date with the Kiwi the next morning, "is when you should have been sprinting down the block as fast as you could."
Jack was speaking for most men when he urged rapid retreat in the face of such honest vulnerability revealed so early on. But, you might say, emotional nakedness is a good thing—you want a man who will accept and respect the real you. Fair enough. But in the interest of cunning gambits, it's probably best to delay some of the "real you" stuff until later in the relationship. After all, it's just a first date. And so, in the interests of improving both men's and women's odds of hitting it off and making it to date number two, here's my list of well-intentioned—but usually disastrous—moves women might be tempted to make on a first date but should avoid like the plague:
1. Angling for a five-star meal--Savvy doesn't. Though I have been guilty of upgrading--Denny's instead of El Pollo Loco. Restaurant instead of diner. Out for brunch instead of eating at his place when he just has cereal so I don't end up saying I'm lactose intolerant.
I know women who won't go out with a guy unless he offers to drop a week's paycheck on a multi-course meal. "That way I know that he thinks I'm worth it," the gold-digging harridans...I mean, the gals, say. News flash: If you put a price tag on your company, you're going to end up with guys who put a price tag on your company. That's illegal in most states, unseemly in all. Aren't we all interested in getting to know each other?
2. Dressing down—or up—too much. Savvy likes to dress nice, but not outrageously so. I shop wisely and want to show the fruits of my labor!
Show up in your sweat clothes for sushi, and you're saying you don't care what your date thinks about how you look. Wear a cocktail dress when you meet him at the corner burger joint and you're saying you're confused or mildly unbalanced. Ask where you're going to meet, and if you're uncertain about the ambience, ask how dressy the place is. If you don't like asking questions, make it a statement. As in, "I'm going to be pretty casual, if that's all right." Ain't communication wonderful?
3. The third-degree Savvy says she's looking for a man to be honest about who he is, not find everything about what he believes. That comes out naturally. Just say no to guys who declare that they are butt models or won't answer when you ask what they do.
You wonder how much he makes. You wonder how he feels about children. You wonder if he'd ever consider converting. You wonder if he'd like to attend your cousin's wedding in Phoenix. Wonder away. But keep quiet about it on the first date.
4. Complaining about debt This is something Savvy would never do and certainly not on the first date. Heard of boudaries? Savvy says debt is certainly something to work toward not having. Learn how to make a budget and it won't seem like you're looking for a sugar daddy to bail you out. Of course I always see it as a bad sign when a man starts complaining about how much he spent on you. Toward credit-card companies, parents, loan sharks or anyone else. When you tell a guy you're having money trouble, what the guy hears is, "She's looking for someone to bail her out." This isn't fair on the part of the guy, it might not be realistic, but it's what a guy hears. So keep any worrisome financial situations to yourself for now.
5. Mentioning medication and disease Savvy says this is a great rapid exit pass if you don't want to sleep with someone. Use it wisely. And I have been shocked at some of the stuff that people revealed on a first date. One guy recounted an entire list of medications he had been on--and his ex-wife too! I don't even want to tell a guy that I'm lactose intolerant. This one's easy. No talking about anti-depressants or other prescriptions meds. (Many women seem to feel they need to be "upfront" about this kind of thing. You don't.) And while we're on the subject, best to leave out sleeping pills, anti-fungals and the stuff you take for acid reflux. If the relationship progresses, there will be plenty of time to share that stuff. Later. Much later.
6. Revealing the gory details of your family history Savvy says you should deal with these issues with a qualified therapist, not a date. I have been the person who found myself uncomfortably listening to a guy unload about how his dad had been abusive and they were all better off when he left.You mom was mean to you? Your dad is an emotional cripple? And you're feeling frightened that even ten more years of therapy won't lift the crushing malaise heaped on your shoulders? Speaking for all men, I feel for you. Honestly. But we don't need to know all this, this soon. It's a first date. Can't we talk about the Yankees? This is the West Coast--Dodgers? Indy Car?
7. Analyzing the ex Savvy says you should never dwell on an ex, if you do, you aren't ready to date. I have been shocked at names men called their exes and how much was revealed about prior relationships. Do they really think that impresses me into thinking they are over it? Nay, friends, nay! It makes me wonder when he will have choice words about me!
This one is difficult to avoid, as it's a common question posed by your date. The preferred posture here is one of mild regret, hard-earned wisdom and cool disinterest. "We were headed in different directions" works, as does "I think I'm a different person now, interested in different things." Are those vague and murky? A little, but I promise you that they beat some of the more common responses. These include: "He was a cold, cruel man, and I will never allow myself to be treated like that again," and/or, "He didn't know what he had, and he will spend the rest of his life mourning my loss." When you bad-mouth your exes without taking any blame yourself for the failure of the relationship, men think you're a woman who doesn't take responsibility. And that's not so attractive.
8. Sex talk Savvy says she's shocked yet again! And glad that she read that someone else agrees that this is a bad idea!! And it's a guy!! YIPPEE!
Here are things I have heard on first dates:
"I have no gag reflex."(This was the same woman who asked if I'd take care of her heart. Which is probably one reason I stuck around.)
"I don't understand when women put out on the first date and never hear from the guy again. Every guy who's ever done me has liked me more afterwards."
These are not things that make us men run in the opposite direction. On the contrary, these are statements that make us even more interested. The trouble is, they make us interested in the statements and the sexual bliss they seem to promise. And when we're paying attention to the promise of sexual bliss, we have a difficult time focusing on your dreams and hopes and ambitions and the real you. So you might want to hold the sex stuff until later.
9. Sharing your desire for marriage and children Savvy says the first date is about seeing how you feel with someone. The guys who talked about this or pressured me to reveal my own desires in this area to be unbalanced and made me feel funny. Maybe this is easy for me because I don't even know what I want anymore. But that other people are getting married is a fact of life and you shouldn't have to hide the fact that you are singing at your cousin's wedding. I have also heard of people talking about this right away because they were both truly ready to and it worked out for them. Many a guy had offhandedly shared his desires in this area. After some of my recent experiences with men, I often question both their maturity and sincerity when they do this.
You yearn for a deep connection, enduring love and a partner with whom you can stroll under oaks together as the years roll by? You long to hear the delighted howls of toddlers, to feel the ineffable joy of parenthood? That's sweet. That's really, really sweet. The problem is, if you talk about it on a first date, chances are you're going to frighten the guy away. That might be because the guy will feel objectified, that he'll feel like you see him less as a human being with hopes and dreams of his own and more as a breeding machine. Or it might be because he's genetically programmed to spread his seed and to unconsciously avoid any kind of life-long partnership and can only be tricked into such an arrangement over time. Who knows the inner working of the minds of my kind? It's a mystery. The point is, this topic is best reserved for later. If they ask Savvy says, I have no idea. Because she really has no idea if she wants that with him!
But isn't it self-defeating and dishonest to withhold information from a man in whom you're interested? If you can't share the most intimate and genuine parts of yourself, aren't you setting yourself up for an inauthentic relationship? Won't you be doomed to always be pretending you're something that you're not?
Well, yeah, if neither one of you ever opens up. If you find yourself in a relationship like that, where you can't express your most genuine self—your hopes and dreams and fears and weakness—then you might consider getting out. But it takes time to get into such a relationship. So take your time. Go slow. No comments about gag reflexes or tender, twice-bruised hearts till later.
Savvy says she couldn't agree more. I usually bail if I feel pressured either for a relationship or for sex. I have detailed those events with those "gentlemen" on my blog.
Steve Friedman is the author of The Gentleman's Guide to Life.
SavvyD is the author of an awesome blog, Savvy Single Christian.
One for the dudes...
Thursday, August 7, 2008
1) Dating leads to intimacy, but not necessarily to commitment.
Dating doesn't always lead to intimacy either. The "intimacy" could be just a peck on the lips at the end of the evening, holding hands or putting an arm around each other at the movies. Is that wrong? It's up to you to decide--somewhat depending on your cultural background. Affection is a normal desire and can stay pure. In fact, I would suggest that not touching each other at all sexualizes even the smallest touch. Some people have vastly different affection needs and can hide this behind the rule of not touching at all. This may lead to great unhappiness.
2) Dating tends to skip the 'friendship' stage of a relationship.
A Christian couple I knew "skipped" the friendship stage and went right into dating and commitment. He gave her a ride home from a Christian camp and shared a peach together--this resulted in some kissing. They had four children together, ministered at church together and would still be married today had he not been killed in a tragic car accident.
3) Dating often mistakes a physical relationship for love.
Not necessarily. But some physical attraction and affection important to a successful marriage. This is what sets apart a good marriage--I don't mean sex, I mean other kinds of physical intimacy.
4) Dating often isolates a couple from other vital relationships.
Not necessarily. Isolating oneself from others is a sign of an unhealthy relationship, one that is important to watch out for. But there is a need for couples to find out how they interact with no one else around or marriage will be a complete and total shock.
5) Dating distracts young adults from their primary responsibility of preparing for the future.
Dating can be a part of preparing for the future by developing the social skills to communicate with the opposite sex. Though it's possible to develop some social skills in other ways, the skill set needed for communication with a spouse is a slightly different skill set--at least for a successful partnership.
6) Dating can cause discontentment with God's gift of singleness.
The statement holds the assumption that the person has the gift of singleness, that it is an actual gift and that wanting relationships with the opposite sex is not healthy. The idea of the gift of singleness for so many singles is a modern concept. For Christians to say to a single woman "the Lord is sufficient and you have the gift of singleness" sounds like a spiritual version of Gloria Steinam's quote "A woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle."
7) Dating creates an artificial environment for evaluating someone's character.
Meeting one-on-one for ice cream, going out to dinner, seeing movies, talking on the phone, going to church together, going on walks together--these are artificial environments?? Since when? They work for our friendships, why wouldn't they work for someone we are dating or even courting? If anything, college and high school are artificial environments because you are surrounded by peers who are close in age. The working world is drastically different. A spouse is someone with whom we will have hours upon hours of one-on-one time. How will we handle it if we have no experience with being with that person? Dating couples can do practical things together like running errands. It's not all artificial.
Unless a man is prepared to ask a woman to be his wife, what right has he to claim her exclusive attention? Unless she has been asked to marry him, why would a sensible woman promise any man her exclusive attention? This is the only part I actually agree with. However, many times exclusive commitment may be a prelude to engagement without a formal betrothal.
Is it just me or was church once about actually going to church and worshipping the Lord as opposed to everyone keeping increasingly bizarre rules? I've come to the conclusion that at once time society was more moral and therefor these rules did not fall to the church alone to dictate.
In fact, there are some really wonderful books about doing dating right. One of my favorites is Are You the One for Me by barbara DeAngelis--Psychologist and New York Times Bestseller. It covers as wide variety of topics that are blank or not dealt with in the Christian dating liturature I have read. Yes, it is essential that we pray and seek the Lord, but beyond that, there are some important practical relationship considerations. And though the author is not Christian, you will find yourself agreeing with her 100% as she declares being of different religious backgrounds to be a compatibility time bomb. She says it's not just about love, it's about commitment and compatibility. That's important to all of us.
It was just a minor hookup. I'm guilty. It never goes all the way--not even close, but it has been so long since I've had a boyfriends and regular attention from a man that sometimes I let things go a little farther than I should, kiss for just a bit too long, let someone touch places I shouldn't because it's just been so long.
Heaven help me. My conservative parents even told me they would understand. Things have changed. If you end up living with someone or staying over with your boyfriend, we understand. You might need to do that before a guy will ask you to marry him.
Going all the way. Becky Sue hasn't been the type to hop in the sack with just anyone. She's not a Christian, so finally she went for it with that guy from the beach party--BigBob. What a mistake. So what if a guy wants to have sex right away because that's the only way they can hear you? So what if everyone has needs? It becomes indecent when people are just going around scratching an itch--one that can lead to illnesses you really don't want to have.
I'm disappointed in Becky Sue. I understand on a small scale, but on a large scale she still considers us to be in the same category. Not quite. I've had people tell me that I'm never going to have a boyfriend--even a Christian boyfriend-- if I don't put out. Plenty of women have put out and still don't have boyfriends.
Promises, promises. BigBob didn't exactly call her midweek, though he promised to. He probably thought it would be fun to get together again--he told her that at the dance. Seriously, he probably began to wonder how many guys she had done that with if she had been so quick to sleep with him. Isn't that how it usually goes? Damned if you do, damned if you don't. So I don't.
Not the One. I had lunch with a male friend who was depressed over a recent breakup. She didn't think he was the One for being the father of her children, though he was willing to do it all again for her. He told me, Savvy, men are after one thing and one thing only. He then told me how he was craving sympathy sex to help him get over the girl. No way, and he knew I wouldn't. He wasn't asking me. But said he knew friends of friends might be willing. My problem is that I didn't get enough variety when I was married. They had been in separate bedrooms since the children were born, but she married him only because she wanted to have children. The wounds are deep. Why should he care if he made me cry?
Value. I've always believed that someone would value me and want to be with me because of who I am. I sincerely believe that if a man really wants to be with you, nothing can keep him away--especially a Christian man who is supposed to want to make sure you keep up with your relationship with the Lord.
Hunger. But are we so hungry for love and affection that we easily lose our way when we finally meet someone? Does knowing that it won't work out make us consider doing things we wouldn't normally do just because it's been so long? And who knows when the opportunity will present itself again? It's a struggle.
We aren't meant for prolonged singleness. For non-Christians without a relationship, they consider casual sex under circumstances that they wouldn't normally. So, I consider kissing people I wouldn't normally kiss, and letting their hands wander a bit rather than slapping them away. It's been too long. And there is no promise of marriage.
Affection and sexuality are basic human needs. If they don't have healthy expression, it may result in unhealthy expression. I'm not condoning it or supporting it. I've just seen what happens with others and in my own life. Truthfully, not enough Christian writers and speakers address our concerns adequately, seriously and realistically.
Forgiveness. How much is too much? How many partners can you forgive? In the absence of early marriage, how many is too many? How many failed marriages? What if we are away from the Lord and come back? I don't have the answers. It just begets more questions. I wrote two posts months ago as I struggled with accepting my then boyfriends number and his pressure to get me to sleep with him. With the pressure my parents and society place on me to go ahead and do it, the lack of honest dialogue about it, I was left struggling with my own answers. My not being ready cost me the relationship. I had good reasons to hesitate--my beliefs, where the relationship actually was, my lack of experience, not really being in love or committed enough. I have always wanted to wait until marriage, though I might be able to forgive myself if I were engaged. Most people would forgive anyone who was that much in love. But when will that happen?
Love and sex both elude and confuse me as does my place as a Christian. My family and friends find me prudish and yet Christians find me wild. Both sides deride me. I feel pressed to decide which way to go and both sides are pushing and pulling. I've been on both sides. It's a struggle. And I find the Bible sometimes lacking in practicality as a guide in relationships--as I wrote in my anti-courtship humor piece Biblical Ways of Knowing She's the One.
What's Your Number?
What's Your Real Number?
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Soon we were all doing our thing and dancing. I went to talk to a friend who was waiting in line to get a drink. I wasn't sure where our table was--and the posse was scattered.
Wouldn't you know it? I met a man. He was standing right behind her in line and offered me a bite of his pretzel.
Pretzel: What do you think?
Savvy: It's a little spicy. Like jalapeno and cheese or something.
Pretzel: That's what I was thinking.
He seemed to be in his late 40s and very attractive. This turned into a conversation, an offer of a sip of his scotch (a double), and a long discussion. He walked out to the car with me from the hotel so I could get my parking validated. We finally hit the dance floor and my friends gave me the thumbs up because I found someone. In between songs he suddenly kissed me. I was surprised because that was a true stolen kiss. I was neither flirting or anticipating. He told me later that he had been thinking about kissing me as we were talking.
The thing is, even though I kissed him and might go out with him again--after all--what's dinner or a cup of coffee or whatever; I was comparing how he kissed me to my experience with Swing who was so sweet to me and gave me just a little peck on the lips but has left me hanging.
And now Pretzel was kissing me like a vacuum cleaner. I haven't kissed like that since high school. He even licked my face accidentally, I giggled. It reminded me of that episode of Sex and the City where Charlotte tries really hard to make it work with a guy who is a really bad kisser. He wasn't that bad, but there might need to be a few adjustments. He was an inspiration for further writing, though. (It's in His Kiss)
There were things about him that concerned me. He's divorced and has four children, but I thought he might be nice to me.
The date with Pretzel:
He kept talking about coupons to take me to dinner. It was weirding me out. Could he be serious? Yes. I left a message for Becky Sue: Oh no, I think he might be really weird he keeps talking about coupons and said he was going to get an entertainment coupon book so we could go out together. I'm going to order the most expensive thing on the menu. Yikes. Help!
He was an hour late. I've been late before, but never that late for a date. The dinner part was OK. I picked a Japanese steakhouse because they make the food in front of you--an ideal setup for a first date in case the conversation lags. The chef does very entertaining things, makes everyone laugh and if your date goes south, you have other people at the table.
I thought I smelled alcohol on his breath. Did I? That's never happened to me on a date before. He had just driven an hour to see me. Was is possible he drank before he left home? He had talked about drinking with friends a few nights before.
He owns property and fixes everything himself, so his car was loaded with stuff. That much I was OK with, but then we went to a park to hang out after and talk. Pretzel got out of his car. I was shocked. I tried to stay pleasant, I'm not sure if he could tell my deception as I closed my body to him.
Pretz: My friend said I should clean out my car, but I told him you'd understand.
Savvy: Ummm, wow!
Pretz: I can explain everything in here. It's my work car.
Savvy: Um, except for that beer can.
Pretz: Oh, that. Hehe, well, that's just an open container.
Savvy: You mean you drank it on the way over here while you were driving?
Pretz: Yeah, I probably shouldn't have. It wasn't always against the law.
Savvy: So, I understand about the work stuff, but there's alot that's unexplained...like a styrofoam cup at your feet, the stack of coupons you're sitting on, the newspapers on the floor at your feet, all that and more on the other seat, the empty McDonald's cup...ummm, wow.
Pretz: So you think my friend was right?
Savvy: I sure don't want a ride in that thing.
Pretz: My tenants have a joke that I fill my cars up with trash and then I have to buy a new one. But I have to buy a new one only because they break down. And then I have to fix them but I don't have time.
Savvy: I can explain my car--I cleaned my classroom out and I'm still organizing. Wow, it's getting late.
Pretz: So you have to get up early?
Savvy: Yes, well, I'm recording music this summer, I have a concert coming up and I have alot to memorize. I'm going to be substitute teaching so that I have the energy to work on my singing career. (I didn't dare ask what his condo looked like. I dream of singing a duet with Josh Groban on TV. We just became friends on MySpace. Haha, he doesn't even run the site, it's his people.)
Savvy: Wow, they turned off the lights. Oh my god, I just saw a mouse.
Pretz: It's nice to be in nature.
Savvy: Something just flew in my hair! I keep thinking the cops are going to drive by and tell us to go home like teenagers.
Pretz: That would be funny.
Savvy: Yes, kind of, wow, I just saw a shooting star.
Pretz: Make a wish.
Savvy: I did, I just can't tell you what I wished for because then it won't come true. (I wished to go home asap.)
Pretz: You were actually parked right next to my car when we met.
Pretz: But I didn't tell you because I was worried about what you might think.
Savvy: I wish you had been worried enough to clean it out.
Pretz: Is it OK if I tell my friend you were OK with it though? Otherwise he's going to give me a bad time.
Pretz: I have a story that can top that. My friend had cockroaches in his car. He cleaned his car out, but he asked me for poison so he could kill them. The cockroaches in the car aren't my fault as a landlord, but he's my friend, so I gave them to him.
Savvy: Are you serious?
Pretz: Yeah, well, he set off the bombs in his car and when he was on the date with this girl a cockroach crawled across the dashboard.
Savvy: Please stop, I'm going to be sick.
Pretz: I'm sorry. Then he tried to say he didn't know how that happened, maybe his daughter left food in the car. Then she said she saw another one on his seat.
Savvy: Really, I'm going to be sick. I started laughing. The schadenfreude!! I couldn't bear it.
Pretz: I'm sorry. Everyone tells me I should see this movie where the guy made friends with all the cockroaches in his apartment--Joe's Place.
Savvy: I used to live in New York, that's not possible, he must have been smoking crack.
He changed the subject to the ladies who gave their testimony at church the night before. For the fourth time, he told me:
Pretz: I've heard everything the guys have said before, and that doesn't shock me. But this little church mouse was telling us all about how she had all these sex toys and that she would go on mission trips and have sex with the natives.
Savvy: Wow, seriously, it's getting late. I have to go to the bathroom. I lied.
Pretz: If you really have to go, you can always use the bushes.
Savvy: No thanks. Home isn't that far.
Like I really need public urination and indecent exposure on my record as a teacher. Just waiting for the cops to come by at just the wrong time.
We headed back to the cars. Oh, my word! Even though I was grossed out, I still made out with him. Amazingly, his kissing has improved. He's really good-looking and he smelled good, too. I was worried he might be angry with me if I told him what I really thought. I had already said enough.
Pretz: So, I'll give you a call tomorrow.
Savvy: OK... Just so you know, most guys don't want to date me because I want to take things slow and I really want to know a person before I do anything. So I end up having to get rid of them because they get too pushy. In fact, I was raised on waiting until marriage, so I'm really confused. I feel bad about making out with you. You're going to end up with me having to give a testimony over all the bad things I've done and making out with you in the parking lot is one of the things I will have to testify about.
Pretz: We were all raised believing that, but then it got hard. Even that church mouse said that. And she was a really mousy looking!
Savvy: OK, well, goodnight. Remember, take a right turn to get to the freeway.
Yeah, I really want to hear from a freaking alcoholic slob. Oh yes, that's the ticket for the best show in town. A freaking alcoholic slob with four kids--whose own FOUR kids tease for the condition of the interior of his car. Yes, yes, call me.
I saw another shooting star.
My wish: Please don't call!!
Etymology: German, from Schaden--damage/harm + Freude--joy
: enjoyment obtained from the troubles of others
How about enjoyment obtained from my own troubles!???
Sunday, August 3, 2008
if he loves you so,
it's in his kiss!!
That's where it is!
There are so many variations of kisses!! Peaches, prunes, plums and alfalfa.
You need a mirror for this.
Peaches. That's a nice little peck--sweet, chaste and mostly innocent. This is great for a first kiss--either on the lips or on the cheek. It's a very versatile kiss often used for foreheads, European style cheek kisses, and relative kisses. Say peaches and that's the shape of your mouth.
Prunes. Slightly open mouth kissing with lots of lip action. This can be sweet or slightly naughty. Trombone, tuba and other brass players excel at this kind of kissing because they use their lips so much for playing their instrument. The one trombone player that I kissed was truly unforgettable.
Plums. You need just a little tongue to say l, and just a little tongue for a plum kiss. Again, yeah for the brass players!!
Alfalfa. Really say those ls in alfalfa and you get the idea. Also known as French kissing. But there are even different kinds of alfalfa. There's the vacuum cleaner alfalfa--sometimes so powerful you think your tongue might be Hoovered out of your mouth. I dated a guy who had played clarinet--any instumental player who has done any tonguing will be sure to be quite an interesting kisser since that person has to use their tongue so much to play.. Sometimes the alfalfa kiss is gentle, sweet and searching yet powerful in its effect on you--especially if someone has teased you with all the other kinds of kisses.
The most talented kisser will employ many different kinds of kisses. So far it is rare to find someone who does that, but I haven't forgotten the one who did--yes, that trombone player. Most others have gone straight for the alfalfa kiss. Not bad, but there's so much in between to savor.
And for those of you naysayers and those who say it isn't Christian to be kissing so much, please know that my view is supported by a Christian author who says:
A kiss is not a weapon, it's a gift. A kiss at the right time makes a woman feel special. In fact if you don't kiss her, she might become confused and discouraged. She'll think you don't like her!...Look at it as an act of commitment. Yes, you can tell her, but, but there's something about a kiss that's powerful. What Women Wish You Knew About Daitng--A Single Guy's Guide to Romantic Relationships. Stephen W.
Simpson, PhD (Fuller Theological Semindary)
I went line dancing with some people from meetup.com. I knew one or two and then met new friends. Suddenly, I was struck by a little jolt. I know that guy from somewhere and I just can't place him...oh, I went out with him once... I started laughing. I know I'm over this one...he told me I was too fat...what's his name...I can't remember. (Return of the One Date Wonder) Chris as in Christoher!
The girls started telling me that he's very exacting and tells them every step they are doing wrong as they dance the Texas two-step. He's short. And he's not as good of a dancer as he thinks he is, they complained. What a jerk. Then we reviewed parts of his story...it was hard for him to hang onto a relationship because he kept moving around when he was in the Coast Guard. Ummm, really? It couldn't be that he was a little jerkish, could it? They also revealed that he was always talking about how Christian he was, but what he said to me didn't sound very Christian to them. He did put it a little more delicately than that, but the gist was the same. They felt relieved it wasn't just them who had misgivings about this guy.
I didn't say anything to him.
He didn't say anything to me.
But I know he saw me because I two-stepped at the same time as he did.
He only asks the prettiest and thinnest girls to dance.
He only dances with partners--no lines.
I went outside to get some air and, wouldn't you know it? I met a man. He came outside for a smole and I don't, but just started talking with him. I don't think I flirted really--not over the top. I'm just friendly and ask leading questions. I listen intently. Guys like that.
I can see myself having coffee with him, but not a serious relationship since he said he's filing for divorce on Monday. He's attractive in a big bear cuddly kind of way that makes me want to sit on his lap. What's the big deal? Coffee. A nice time and a chance to get to know someone. We've texted a little, but that's it. I'm just having fun. It's easy when I'm not very attached.
Where's the guilt?
Chris is guilty for being a jerk.
I'm guilty of... flirting?
Funny, I don't feel very guilty.
Friday, August 1, 2008
I was exchanging emails with a very good looking guy in Hotlanta (Atlanta). I think Indians settle there alot because it's so hot and humid that it's practically like Calcutta. In fact, even summer storms drench you like a petite monsoon.
I used to live in the South--Southern US that is--South Carolina to be exact. Having been raised in California presented quite a culture clash. You see, down there they still call our Civil War The War of Northern Aggression and celebrate little-known holidays such as Confederate Memorial Day. It was a rough fit at best, depression causing at its worst.
Plus, my new Indian paramore revealed his whole family has come out and is living with him. Ummm, so, where does a bride fit in to all of that? Especially an American one? With strange customs two and three times over, I think I'll pass on this one, though he's Bollywood good-looking. Looks aren't enough.
Indian women enjoying monsoonal rains. Not me. I'm ducking for cover.