The following is a list of all entries from the dating category.
On love: If your feelings are euros and theirs are vouchers for buy one get one McFlurries, get out.
~Kelly Williams Brown
When I was in New Orleans…for Mardi Gras…by myself, I thought about getting my fortune told. On that Tuesday evening I elbowed my way through a bustling and beer soaked Bourbon Street to such a voodoo establishment that foretold fates. There was a couple in front of me arranging to have their futures peered into. When I overheard knowing their fate would cost $35, I thought about how I could use that money elsewhere, like in Atlanta for the second half of my weeklong vacation. And so I turned on my heel and made for the exit, voodoo doll eyes following me.
I already knew what that crystal ball would have revealed. You see, I’ve already been to a pyschic. About 7 years ago. She told me that I have a soulmate and not everyone has one, but it wouldn’t be anytime soon that he would make an appearance. (She also said that I would live a long and healthy life, which I took as my carte blanche to begin playing in traffic). She was right. I’m still waiting on that soulmate. In the meantime, I haven’t had a boyfriend in four years and have taken up with a bass player as his tour schedule permits, abusing my credit card in the process. (I think Laurie Nataro in her book I love everybody and other atrocious lies sums up my life: “I’m at the age when I meet girls I went to college with at the mall they’re pushing baby strollers while I’m pushing my credit card limit”.) I resist well-meaning friends’ attempts at set ups, thinking that these friends don’t know me as much as I thought they did. I refuse to throw $100 at Match.com for another 6 month subscription. I further refuse any freebie dating sites. And none of the missed connections on Charlotte’s Craiglist are about me. I check every day.
I have to go back to New Orleans. I have to ask for more information on my soulmate, like the when and where. And this time I’d be willing to spend a fortune learning my fortune.
After more years than I’m willing to admit, I got a cell phone plan all my own. No longer are my parents picking up the tab. I’m not such a novelty after all for allowing my parents to take care of my phone bills for so long. Wouldn’t you know it, days after signing away two years of my life, Wall Street Journal’s Personal Journal featured this article about parents continuing to pay for their childrens’ cell phone bills after they have emptied the nest. And in some cases, their spouses!
Every staff member at my place of employment is subjected to something called emotional intelligence training. I won’t bore you with the details but it’s basically sharing feelings, dissecting childhoods, self-reflections, you know, topics you should be paying a trained professional for in weekly therapy sessions, lying on a couch like the good Freud intended. Yesterday I had to share with two colleagues from different departments. One of them started two weeks ago. He’s a smart, good-looking 34 year old veteran who dresses well. Before I could finish daydreaming about us hooking up in the janitor’s closet, he shared that he was engaged and didn’t plan to get married so late in life. This good-looking guy met his future bride on the Internet. If this good-looking guy had to resort to match.com to meet the love of his life, what kind of hope does that leave me?! I’ve been there, done that and regretted spending so much time and money on that year of my life since there was not a return on my investment.
Every status update from the Facebook is a reminder of how severely single I am. My friend in New York recently got engaged with the help of a personalized fortune cookie. My friend from high school announced her pregnancy with the help of some Connecticut snow.
I’m doing yoga. I don’t know why I waited so long. Non hot yoga is amazing. So I’m reading a lot of yoga-centric blogs and through the magic of the Internet, I stumbled upon one blog post with a beautiful analogy of people as wells. We through down a bucket into one well, time and time again, only to have it come up empty. And how we should seek out only wells that fill us up.
In the spirit of Easter, I made Rice Krispies treats with Peeps instead of regular marshmallows. Oh, yes I did!
For the first time in a long time, I don’t have any plans for June 12th. Any 31st birthday plans after Las Vegas for 30 seems greatly underwhelming.
I’m at work on a rainy December afternoon, two days from Christmas vacation. I’m cleaning out my inbox. After having the same job since the spring of 2007, there are a few relics. I dusted off some email exchanges between me and Natalie and forwarded them to her since she likes to craft blog posts out of them.
There’s a folder called “the ex factor”. Its contents hold some email exchanges between me and my ex-boyfriend. The last one I received? Spring 2009. I don’t know exactly why I’m still holding onto these words that are now old enough to be toddlers. I probably keep them for the same reason that I keep old photographs of me and ex-boyfriends, because I am in them. Because those are my words from three years ago. My wit, my jokes, my seriousness, my desperation, my hopes for a lasting relationship. Why would I want to delete half of myself?
I haven’t seen much of “that one guy in New York” since last May. Someone found the blog post I wrote about him and alerted him to it. He thought it was cold and mean. I promised to remove it. After 6 months of silence, I’ve since reposted it. It’s my story to share. He doesn’t own June 16, 2010.
I for one hope that the world doesn’t end tomorrow. I didn’t get a chance to be loved.
I’m weird. It can’t be helped. I am the product of two very weird individuals. Growing up, my parents didn’t have typical 9-5 jobs so they were always home after school. I would have liked them to be home less so I could have been free to get into trouble and have some normalcy in my formative years. But no, my interests were far from normal. Being a socially awkward girl, I didn’t have a lot of friends. Having no athletic abilities, I didn’t play any sports. I thrived on the one thing that didn’t require a partner or upper body strength, reading. I read everything.
Twentysome years later, I’m still reading. And I’m still socially awkward. It’s hard to make friends being so weird. It was easy in college when everyone’s interests surrounded beer and fashioning hangover cures from the dining hall’s waffle maker. A little less easier these days as a single gal who can’t relate to her peers. My friends have husbands and babies and other age-appropriate accessories. Me, I’ve only had 2 relationships in my life and my last date was more than a year ago. Everyone says it will happen when I least except it. I wasn’t expecting it when spending an evening at Charlotte’s newest pretentious restaurant 5Church. In the company of seven gay guys, one of them being my gay boyfriend from work. His second job is as a personal trainer so he’s always reminding me to stand/sit up straight. I have bad posture, resulting from hunching over books instead of balancing them on top of my head. His efforts are in vain. He’s trying to correct decades of bad behavior in one night. Just like me finding my elusive soulmate, it simply cannot be done in the course of an evening.
Twelve years ago this month, I was moving my worldly posessions into the all girls’ dorm at Queens College, sharing space with a boy-crazy roommate. Trading one Queen City for another, my parents and brother drove me from Cincinnati, OH to Charlotte, NC after receiving a brochure in the mail my junior year to attend a private liberal arts college in North Carolina’s most populous city. After being swept up by the canopy of magnificent Oak trees and Carolina blue skies and ready smiles, I knew I was home.
A person can grow more in 4 years at college than in the 17-18 living at home. Queens College, now Queens University, was witness to such growth. It was here that I made some life-long friends. 1900 Selwyn Avenue served as homebase for my international travels as an International Studies major and French minor. I visited Guatemala, France and Italy all in one semester. I had my first beer at a dance club in Guatemala, sipped champagne in a cathedral in Nice, and sampled wine made by the gods in Florence.
Ever the late bloomer, I had my first kiss where typical amorous rites of passage take place, the school playground. Mine just so happened to be on the playground of the neighboring elementary school, Selwyn Elementary. I was 23.
I ran around my first apartment, #3 of 1142 Queens Road, calling all of my friends to announce that I had finally been kissed. Most of these calls were to friends who were married and starting families. They did their best trying to relate and call to mind what it was like a decade ago when they had their first kiss.
I paid $275 a month to share apartment #3 with another Queens grad. It was close enough for me to bike to my first post-college job at the childrens’ library where I made more life-long friends. The stackable W/D was in my bedroom closet and I had to sleep with earplugs because the walls were so thin I heard whispers from the apartment to the right.
The apartment to the left was exactly ten feet from mine. I wore out that path of concrete, caught up in a one-sided relationship with the teacher who lived there, Teacher Neighbor. Here at apartment #2, you will find my virginity and my first heartbreak. First dart, the deepest. I was 24.
A month after moving out, wishing to hell my lease and the teacher neighbor, I got drunk on $5 Yuengling pitchers at the Penguin and asked to make out with my co-worker’s roommate in the parking lot. Despite having nothing in common, we dated for nearly 6 months. He had to dump me when he got his new 20 year old girlfriend pregnant. Second heartbreak, second dart.
Oakland Avenue was site of my last apartment before homeownership in 2009. What it lacked in central A/C, a dishwasher, and on-site laundry facilities, it made up for in free cable & HBO, and one remarkable neighbor. I lived next door to my best friend Natalie and we stood on our respective balconies with phones in hand when cans and string simply wouldn’t hold the weight of our gossip.
I met a guy on a blind date at Dish. It was set up by a friend of a friend. He was a frequent guest at Oakland Ave (along with the cockroaches and mice). We dated for ten months when he confessed that he didn’t want to be in a relationship with me anymore. No “I love you”s were whispered at this address. Third heartbreak, third dart.
The crosswalk that ushers pedestrians from the back door of the Belk Theatre to Blue is where I met the bass player in June 201o. He was leaving soon to hop on Harry’s tour bus. In the meantime, we swapped spit and phone numbers on top of the Holiday Inn’s pooltop roof. Since the fall of 2011, I’ve visited him four times in New York City until my credit card would no longer fund such frivolity. Fourth dart, painless.
They say home is where the heart is. Despite my dartboard heart, Charlotte has it and I’m looking forward to her revealing to me the man of my dreams, with putty in tow, in the next twelve years.
While at work, I’m cleaning out 5 year old work emails. (My inbox is old enough for kindergarten). Why? We have a new retention policy and if I don’t clean up my inbox, IT will. There’s a folder with volleyed emails from my ex. I had a dream last night wherein he said to me that he sees me everyday. I haven’t seen him in years. I don’t know why I haven’t deleted it yet. It’s labeled “ex factor”. I wonder about keeping it as fodder for that book I’ll never write. I reread my journals and fiercely wish that it was fiction. Devastating heartbreak happened to some other girl. The woman that I was supposed to be has been married for a few years and takes care of a kid or two. She has a career too because she can have the best of both. Somewhere in the world, the real Jamie is having the most spectacular existence.
When you put a $20 bill with which to purchase a $3 round trip light rail ticket you get $17 in coins from the machine. The $1 coins spewing forth looked like I had won at a slot machine. I’m going to Las Vegas in 5 months so handling coins is good practice.
I used 11 of these coins this morning to get gas. Some random guy inside the the gas station asked if $11 was going to be enough. I just had to make it to work was my reply. He then asked where my husband was. I lied and said that my husband was already at work. He wandered off, mumbling something to himself. Was this guy really trying to pick me up at the gas station?
I’ve been hit on at a bookstore a couple times, the humor section of all places. And a bar. And while waiting for a subway in Washington DC, but never at a gas station.
To celebrate the Jim Bean bacon swiss burger, Red Robin is inviting anyone named Jim, James, Jimbo and yes, Jamie to their restaurant next week for a free burger. My parents have made some questionable choices over the years (dressing me up in my brother’s hand me downs to save some money in my formative years among them), but finally after 29 years their decision to name me Jamie has paid off.
And I didn’t have to dismiss my dignity in order to garner a free meal, unlike Jessica Sporty who signed up for match.com solely to supplement her income by going on 5 dates each week with guys she had no interest in. She was there to be lavished with dinner and $200 bottles of champagne and nothing more. Why? At 23, she found that she simply couldn’t afford to feed herself while living on only a $45,000 salary and $1500/month New York City apartment. I know these are some difficult financial times but geez, get a roommate! Clip some fucking coupons! Cut up your credit cards!
I wonder if the amount of hate mail she receives outweighs the messages of awe and inspiration. Is she heartless and trifling or is she savvy and resourceful? As someone who was a plaything for almost a year, I know firsthand what it’s like to be used so my vote would be for Team Heartless and Trifling. There are ways to save money and self-respect that don’t involve using people.
Jessica Sporty, this one is for you!
Before Penguingate happened, the dive on the corner of Commonwealth and Thomas Ave was prime real estate for my love life. And the $5 pitchers of Yuengling played matchmaker. It was on one such Monday night in the summer of 2006 that I drank too much and then, fueled with liquid courage, asked to make out with my co-worker’s roommate. Under the glow of the revolving Artic bird, in the middle of the parking lot, we did just that. We then managed to date for the next four months despite having nothing in common.
Fast forward to 2011, I’ve never been to Pinky’s Westside Grille after hours. I’m afraid of the trouble I’d find on the corner of Freedom and Morehead. I have been a great deal during lunchtime hours as it’s one of only a handful of eateries near my place of employment. I joined some colleagues Friday afternoon to lunch on the patio.
Every time I go, I promise myself that I’ll try something new, but I’m forever faithful to my White Trash (turkey) burger with fried pickles, fried onion straws and provolone with spicy sauce. Side of waffle fries.
Four well-dressed guys were seated at the next table, but I had to behave myself since I was in the company of co-workers. Besides, you can’t find a $5 pitcher of Yuengling anymore.