Who needs a man?

All right.

Let’s suppose for just an instance that I have taken myself off Tinder and am no longer meeting single guys (or married guys who PRETEND they are single).

What’s a woman to do with all her free time if she’s not chatting up men?

Good question. . .

I have absolutely nothing going on this weekend except for dinner plans with a friend.

I had the FORESIGHT to know I’d need some downtime after several weeks of mini road trips.

Especially since next weekend I’m heading to a housewarming party in Monterey followed by a trip to the Renaissance Faire at Casa de Fruita.

I really should throw myself into my activities, the way I did when I was driving race cars, running with the bulls, and kayaking with whales.

Nadine has suggested that I find some meet ups to go to.

She’ll even go with me.

But that’s just more of me trying to meet someone and I really feel like I need a break from all of the noise it’s brought into my life.

I’ve done quite a bit of activities in the Bay Area in the past – from taking beer making classes to whale watching with Barbara and some adult content activities like attending a burlesque show with Yvonne.

So I might have to repeat some of the oldies but goodies.

A few things I haven’t tried yet are:

  • Bocce Ball
  • Cooking School
  • Trivia Night
  • Food Tour of SF (various cuisines)
  • Scavenger Hunt
  • Adventure Course
  • Sushi School
  • Wine School
  • Geocaching
  • Hiking Trails
  • Laser Light Show
  • Brewery Tour
  • Fused Glass Class
  • Wine Blending
  • Improv Class
  • Golf Lessons
  • Horseback Riding
  • Mixology Class
  • Photography Class

It’s also been a few years since I did a boudoir shoot, so it may be time to revisit THAT adventure.

Honestly, I’m tempted the most by photography, glass and horseback riding.

Who needs a man when you have hobbies?

I’m reminded of a well-known social psychologist who gave me the following advice when I told him I was getting divorced 14 years ago:

Get some hobbies.  Volunteer.

From his lips to God’s ears.

If someone who makes $15,000 speaking to the NFL on self-efficacy is going to give me life advice, I’m gonna take it.

This dating thing isn’t going so well

The dating thing isn’t going so well for me and I think a break is in order.

I’ve gone on dates with:

  • Virtually mute introverts
  • Men who spend $1000 on a date
  • Severe Selsen Blue flakes
  • Perverts, and not the good kind
  • Offensively racist men
  • Men who rejected me because of this blog
  • Newly divorced and bitter men
  • Divorced for a long time and still bitter men
  • Not divorced at all men (Surprise!)
  • 47 year old re-virgins

It’s all been very entertaining but also a little disheartening.  I confess I’m really fed up with online dating and am ready to try blind dates and set ups.

Or nothing at all.

Yes, this eternal optimist is more than a little disappointed and frustrated right now.  So frustrated I actually called a matchmaker and looked into getting set up  by a matchmaker.  But that little venture would cost $1900.  Um…. no thanks.

But today my 18 year kid provided me with a ray of sunlight in my dim dating life.

“It’s better to be single anyway.  That way you don’t have to buy anyone Valentine’s gifts on Valentine’s Day…”

Wisdom from a the mouths of babes.

Old Lady

I have an interesting hobby for a 45 year old woman.

I quilt.

I’ve been quilting for 20 years and because of this, my Instagram feed show a lot of work in progress quilts and finished quilts.

My Instagram is linked to my Tinder account so all the men I match with can see my handiwork.

Some of my quilts turned out quite beautiful, like this one I made for Barbara over Christmas break last year and one I made for family friends who lost their son with a pattern called
Storm at Sea:

If you were to ask me what kind of art do I make, I’d tell you I’m into textile arts.

I LOVE my quilts and every single one I’ve made has been donated to friends or family, with a lot of love.

It takes time and patience and a little bit of serendipity to turn fabric by the yard into a pieced quilt.

I proud of the work I do.

So you can imagine my surprise when someone on Tinder MADE FUN of my quilting.

“Wouldn’t know you’re 45 except for the quilting,” he texted me.

I defended myself, saying that I make modern quilts, not grandma quilts.

He replied by saying, “All quilts are grandma quilts.”

So, I present to you my impression of a grandma quilt and my impression of a modern quilt and you tell me if you can’t tell the difference:

Needless to say, homeboy didn’t get too far in seducing me.

Women don’t take kindly to being aged beyond their years and just because I make quilts DOES NOT make me a grandma.

Hmph!

Really bad dating advice

664677f7e1ffc2716141760a51990e59Play hard to get.  Normally I’d agree with anything that starts with the word “play” because I believe in spontaneity.  But play hard to get just sounds harsh.  What will you accomplish through playing hard to get?  Some sort of delayed gratification/suffering while you go against your desires?  No thank you.  I’m spontaneous.

Wait 3 days to call her.  Oh god, I HATE this rule.  In fact, I deliberately write off a man who waits 3 days to call.  If he’s so lacking in passion/interest for me that he’ll wait 3 days, then I’ll be long gone.

Be a bit of a jerk.  Girls like bad boys.  No one likes a jerk.  And if she does, you can be sure she’s got some self-esteem problems or daddy issues and will be a handful in the future.  Do yourself a favor and behave appropriately.  You’ll thank me for it.

Attraction takes time.  No it doesn’t.  Sometimes it can build but the initial attraction is very important.  I’ve always known within 30 seconds of meeting a guy whether I’d go to bed with him or not.  I trust my instincts.  You should trust yours.

You’re trying too hard.  Making an effort is good.  If he/she can’t handle it, too bad.  Next!

You aren’t ready.  Of course you’re ready.  You’re ready whenever you start trying to meet someone.  Don’t listen to people who tell you to wait.  If you feel ready, go for it.  Get back up on that horse and win the race.

You can always change him.  No. You. Can’t.  Love him the way he is or move on.

Stay a mystery.  Mysteries make great novels and lousy people.  If you want to connect with someone, you need to be known to them.  Share. Talk.  Eff the mystery.

Let him make the first move.  This drives me crazy.  Why must the man always make the first move.  I’ve been known to stand up during dinner and kiss a man across the table because the urge struck me.  Believe me, no one EVER complained.

Always make him wait.  If you’re making him wait for you to show up for your date or for something else, you’re imposing an artificial set of rules on the relationship that might not have good results.  Best to just go with the flow and do what comes naturally.  No one likes to wait.

 

No smirks allowed

I went on a date.

He took me to The Bywater in Los Gatos for a genuine Sazerac.

One of the best in the Bay.

And apart from him spilling his entire gin gimlet on me during an animated discussion, we had a good time.

People always ask how I can meet people I don’t know off the internet.

What criteria do I look for?

That’s a complicated answer.

For this guy, I noticed one of his photos was of him at Holi – an Indian celebration of spring.

It reminded me of when I used to go to Holi with my friends:

Before, and after:

But what I really look for is a genuine, warm and caring smile.

No smirks allowed.

Writer’s block

It’s THE WORST!

It’s not like I have nothing to write about, it’s that I don’t FEEL like writing about what’s on my mind.

Thus my struggle.

Instead of writing about my thoughts and feelings, I’m going to write a post about internet dating.

Namely things I’ve noticed in people’s profiles that send up a red flag and make me swipe left.

To begin with, anyone who attended THE SCHOOL OF HARD KNOCKS.

Got news for you pal, EVERYONE has gone to that school.

Oh sure, maybe a sparklepony somewhere is living a charmed life, but overall, NO ONE GETS OUT UNSCATHED.

It makes me worry a bit when you tell me that’s your alma mater.

Pass.

Second thing:  Men who post every photo of themselves in sunglasses.

Call me crazy but I like to see a person’s eyes.

It’s the only way to tell the difference between smiling and smirking.

And I’m not one for the latter.

I like genuine smiles.

Third:  Single. No kids. Never been married.

Why, you may wonder?

Because in my experience those are the people who have been so picky in the past that no one makes them happy and you’re certainly not going to break that streak for them.

I trust the person who has tried and failed and knows the stresses and strains of having a family.

And another:  Anyone with my ex-husband’s first name.

It’s not that I dislike him, it’s that I don’t like to be REMINDED of him.

I know, totally unfair but do you want to date someone with the same name as your ex?

FINALLY:  Uses a celebrity’s photo as their profile pic.

I really don’t understand this.

If you’re not the person in the photo, don’t use the photo.

People who hide their photos are hiding something else too and I’m not down with that.

Le duh.

Dating Pet Peeves

1

Bad tipping.  Maybe it’s because I worked in food service in high school and as a barista in college, but bad tippers are my pet peeve.  I once went on a date to a fancy cocktail lounge where the bartender takes 3 – 4 minutes to mix and muddle the perfect $14 cocktail.  On a $30 bill, my date left a measly $2 tip.  I hastily dropped a few more bills on the tab when my date wasn’t looking.

2

Being late.  I waited in a wine bar for my date to show up for almost an hour once.  I ordered my first glass of wine and the waitstaff felt so bad for me they gave me a HUGE pour.  When my date arrived, he received a SMALL pour.  Ha ha.  Divine justice, if you ask me.  There was no second date.

3

Bad kissers.  You’d think by the time we reach 20 we’d know how to kiss but no, there are people out there that still suck face like amateurs.  I have little patience for someone who is a bad kisser.  If you can’t figure out it’s a game of mutuality instead of tonsil hockey, I’m done with you.

4

Bad breath.  Oh god, you know what I mean.  I once went on a date where I could smell his breath from across the table.  I always carry a discreet packet of mints with me and I wanted to discreetly suggest that he eat them all.

5

Being negative.  You know who I’m talking about.  That person who will list of 10 things that are wrong before they list one thing that’s right.  Mr. or Mrs. Downer.  It’s exhausting and draining to be around them.  Next!

7

Being self-absorbed.  I went on one date with a fireman.  He was so into himself his head fairly floated above his body.  If at the end of the date he could’ve told me anything about myself, I would’ve been shocked.

8

The alcoholic.  This is the person who sits down across from you and then drinks nonstop throughout the meal, barely pausing to eat and breathe.  Or they talk incessantly about all the parties they throw/go to and how obliterated they’ve gotten.  Yawn.  We’re not 21 anymore.

9

Being rude.  There’s nothing worse than going to a restaurant with a date and watching them be rude to the waitstaff.  This drives me completely batty.  Again, I worked in foodservice so I know how hard it can be.  I do not trust a man who is nice to me and rude to other people.

10

The cell phone addict.  I once went on a date with an attorney that was so horrifically bad – involving two standard poodles and a 6 year old.  As if that wasn’t bad enough, he kept answering his phone.  We barely said 10 words to eachother.  I’m still traumatized from that date.

Cut Throat      

Ever since my renewed experience with ghosting, I’ve become a menace at swiping left on Tinder and closing dead-end connections.

I’ve developed a method for weeding out inappropriate men:

  1. Do I want to swipe right when I see their picture(s)?
  2. If yes, then I review where they are from.
  3. If they are 25 miles or less from me, I read their profile (if there is one).
  4. If they are married, polyamorous, ethically non-monogamous, in an “open” relationship, not looking for a LTR or looking for hookups, I swipe left.

I’ve been feeling like a cut throat dater lately because I’ve been REALLY GOOD at closing connections that are dead ends (see above list).

One guy called me a pet name RIGHT OFF THE BAT, which I hate!

I am ‘sweetheart’ to my friends and family but a stranger has to earn the right to call me that.

Forged intimacy is a no-no in my book.

I closed the connection with him.

Another man clearly lived WAY TO FAR AWAY (don’t know how he missed my filter), but I quickly closed our connection as well.

It pays to filter your connections post swiping too.

Sometimes you wind up with someone who is just visiting the area and looking for an easy hookup.

Their profile looks good but they’re not local.

I close those connections too.

It’s not as if I need MORE ENCOURAGEMENT getting involved in long-distance relationships, despite the fact that I’m really looking for someone local.

Everything is closer than Sweden, however.

Now, as soon as the first red flag goes up, I cut bait and run.

Pics with guns.

Donald Trump supporters.

Flaky texting.

Dick pics.

All these things set off my radar and I exit quickly once I’ve beentriggered.

I’m not being bitchy, I’m being efficient.

I’m a cut throat when it comes to internet dating.

Federally f*cked

In my haste to recover from my recent ghosting by the new guy, I met a Federal Agent.

On Tinder, no less.

He was tall, handsome, with a BIG chest, a thick beard and a completely bald head – just the way I like.

He was also in town investigating the Garlic Festival shooting.

What are the chances?

I can’t seem to escape from my connection to the shooting, FYI.

Fortunately, we discussed other topics.

Like how much we like our jobs, what hobbies we have, and our families.

We also flirted.

Heavily.

That’s what happens when you’re really attracted to someone (who sadly turned out to represent all my issues).

I sent titillating photos (nothing nude though because he’s a federal agent and I’m sure it’s illegal to send nudes to a Federal Agent).

He may have reciprocated.

Given my love of sexting, we MAY have had a phone call to talk dirty to one another.

It ended well.

The next day we were chatting when I realize I forgot to ask if he’s married.

Hint:  He is.

Totally unavailable.

The very DEFINITION of unavailable.

Also, the definition of a waste of my time.

He asked if I still liked him.

No, sorry.

I’m not here to judge but I don’t believe in getting to know someone romantically who is already attached.

It never ends well.

Ghost

The new guy is gone.

For those of you who were happy to see me with someone, who sent kind messages of support, thank you.

It’s been a nice two months.

But it has come to an end.

I wish I could give an explanation as to why.

Maybe we were not suitable for each other.

Perhaps someone else entered the picture.

I could hazard a guess but the bottom line is the same.

The new guy is gone.

The last I heard from him, he was struggling with the fallout from the Garlic Festival.

He is a Gilroy native, a former festival organizer, and an attendee, so I can understand his suffering.

And given that his near miss was also my near miss, I can relate to some of the survivor guilt I know he is feeling.

The good news, if there’s any to be gleaned from this, is that this has nothing to do with me.

For once in my life, I can look at a situation and recognize that it’s all about him or the shooting, or another woman, or something else.

But it’s not about me.

I’m not gonna lie.

Being ghosted hurts.

I am trying to remind myself, especially during these last few weeks when I’ve been struggling to keep my head above water with all the waves of loss rolling over me, that ghosting says more about the ghoster than the ghostee.

And if he’s comfortable with a legacy of indifference then so am I.