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What’s so ‘no’ about no?

13 Dec

See? ‘No’ is so easy to say that a group of middle-aged men got together and wrote a song about it and then had pretty teenaged black girls sing it. Source

I fear that when I return to my currently godforsaken place of employment in 14 hours and 22 minutes that I will have the living shit embarrassed out of me. Yes, more than usual. Here’s why:

Over the summer, a handsome man began to appear fairly regularly at the old jobby-job. In my line of work (and no, I’m not going to come out and tell you what it is) I deal with a lot of students so I just assumed he was one. All the women save for one sensible and fabulous young lady lost their minds whenever he came in. They went crazy for good reason. Picture Jason Statham’s younger, taller, balder, hotter, vaguely Puerto Rican looking brother and you’ve got this guy. I tried my best to keep my cool because I hate attractive people that KNOW they’re attractive and try to capitalize on said attractiveness and I judge attractive people with a harshness that sometimes frightens me. But not for long.

See, I figure if you look that good, something has got to be hella wrong with you. I won’t put the fault(s) I ultimately find on blast. Usually. They’re more for my own peace of mind. Since I didn’t find any right away in Jason 2.0, I figured he had to be stupid or a dick or a stupid dick and he’d show his true self eventually. Because most men and especially conventionally attractive men look past, beyond, and/or through me, Jason 2.0 didn’t phase me at first. The giggling, panting, trembling mess that I used to call my staff and coworkers wanted to know his name, so I said “Hey, what’s your name?” complete with the thug’s chin tilt and everything. They wanted to know what he did so I says to him, I says “And whattya do?” He told me while The Mess looked on like a bunch of baby deer. And that was that. Jason 2.0 was just another human male type person with a nice face. And body. Not that I was looking. Ahem.

Then his visits became more and more frequent. He was always smiling and so personable, even with me. He remembered my name. He was friendly. And I could feel my cold, dead heart start to thaw. Based on his line of work he couldn’t be THAT stupid. He had proven to be kind, even when I was a total bitch and wouldn’t give him the 20 binder clips he asked for, afraid that he was trying to pull one over on me with his handsomeness. I gave him 12 and made a big deal about it. He smiled and was polite through the whole thing.

Even though Jason 2.0 was shaving his head to disguise male pattern baldness and appeared to be wearing at least some obviously fake or heavily repaired teeth, he was still beautiful, relatively smart, and kind. I felt like a troll in his presence and made myself scarce when he came around, answering in one syllable grunts when forced into conversation with him. He had proven to be a damn near flawless attractive person which made me feel all the more ugly by comparison.

Eventually, the tide started to turn when I noticed an ever present goofiness about his personality. I’ve always been drawn to men who are basically floppy puppies in human form and he seemed to be a very eager Golden Retriever, with his big smile and enthusiasm and loud, excited talking. And maybe did I notice him looking at me, like he actually saw me as a woman and not some angry blob keeping him from the binder clips? I started to come out of my shell and actually smile at Jason 2.0 and stay in the room when he entered it. I started to think that maybe he was a safe person to like who might possibly like me back.

So I did what any girl would do to show interest in a potentially special person: I eavesdropped and I lied. While busy with other tasks I listened as he shared his Thanksgiving plans with a coworker, noting his ever present excitement over his favorite team playing on the holiday. I was unwilling to watch the actual game but made sure to find out if they won. They did, and the next time I saw him made a point of grunt-whispering (my specialty!) “Hey, your team won.”

The look on his face was so. . . bright, I guess, that you’d have thought I’d handed him season tickets. “You remembered!” he gasped. I turned red and farted out a “Yeah.” And you wonder why I’m single.

He then asked me sports-type questions and I felt my eyes start to glaze over. I initially told the truth, sort of, saying that I hadn’t watched the game as I didn’t like either team. He asked me who I did like and I lied and told him who my dad likes, as taste in sports teams seems to be genetically inherited and/or geographically based. He “reminded” me about an upcoming game between his team and “mine” and rattled off facts and figures I tried to listen to. I then shouted out names that I hoped had something to do with the sport and we had a friendly rivalry going. I had something to talk to Jason 2.0 about.

I felt particularly brave after all the fibbing I did about being a sports fan, so I sent him an email telling him how excited I was that my team was going to destroy his and thanked him for the chat. He wrote back the next day, writing that he’d be watching the game with friends who liked my team and like to “talk junk” and could see that junk-talking was right up my alley. He ended his message by stating it was always a pleasure chatting with me.

For a minute I thought that maybe I could become a sports fan. I looked up stats and read about the rivalry between the teams. It didn’t take, but I tried. His team beat “mine” by one point. I couldn’t wait for him to stop in so we could resume our good-natured teasing.

He didn’t and I was a bit disappointed, but it’s a busy time of year in our line of work so I thought I’d be brave and reply to his message. I told him I expected him to come in and brag about his team’s win, but figured he hadn’t since a one point win wasn’t anything to brag about. I then wrote the unthinkable: “Hey, would you like to get a coffee or a drink or something with me?”

And here’s where the title of this post comes in. He hasn’t written back. I haven’t seen him either. He came in looking for me on Monday, telling a coworker he had to talk to me about something and for a chunk of time much larger than I’d like to admit I was excited and hopeful. He was looking for me? He has to talk to me about something? I was ready to pick out flatware until it dawned on me: if his answer was yes, he would have written back something along the lines of “Sure. Where and when?” He’s looking for me to tell me no.

I don’t know what it is that makes ‘no’ such a no for men. Maybe it is for women too but I don’t care about them (In this context. There, is that better?). All of my unanswered messages sent on Match.com. The guy a friend tried to set me up with who wouldn’t write back to my message of “Hello! You sound great! Hope to meet ya?” The dork who took me on six dates and spent hours of valuable phone and email time that he could have spent masturbating to his Star Wars action figure collection. Why couldn’t ANY of them just say ‘no’?

Now this ding dong is gonna come all up in my job tomorrow to tell me how he’s flattered, but oh, he just couldn’t. Hey mastermind; you could have saved us both a heap of trouble and sent this to me in a got dang email three to six days ago. Did it never occur to this nincompoop that I might be getting my hopes along with my BMI up? Why would you wait to dash a bitch’s dreams of caressing your bald head? And why would you do it in person?

I guess I should be touched that he’s doing it at all considering my track record. But I’m not because up until about seven hours ago I was delusional enough to think that he was coming in tomorrow to tell me ‘yes’ until I realized how dumb that would be, waiting a week to deliver good news. There’s a reason motherfuckers never fire workers on Monday. Those sadistic bastards get their rocks off from the wait and the week’s worth of labor. The “nice” ones are simply trying to avoid the inevitable.

I am going to get fired by a handsome-ass man tomorrow. I don’t think he’s going to offer me a severance package.

“But Ambrosia, couldn’t you be wrong? What if he did want to wait and say yes and make plans in person?” you ask. Dear reader, don’t be ridiculous. What in my history would make you think that? Remember, my last surprise was some douchenozzle I called a friend decked out in blackface. Jason 2.0 showing up to my job slathered in shoe polish is more likely than him coming to say ‘yes’ to my coffee or whatever date.

**************************************************************************************************************************************************************************

It’s now the tomorrow I was so fearful of above. There’s an hour left till I go wait in line to see The Hobbit by myself  am finished with work and there has been no sign of Jason 2.0. Actually, I can’t say that with complete certainty as I made sure to busy myself in a remote area far from my desk during the time that he usually arrives. Yes, I am a chicken.

That still doesn’t change my frustration. I’ve mentioned before ’round these parts how hurtful being ignored is. To not even deem me worthy of a response is maybe the shittiest thing ever, second only to the explosive diarrhea caused by a BK Veggie Burger. Or so says a friend of mine.

The worst part is that based on his profession he is supposed to be at least a little bit skilled in the art of interpersonal interaction. Did I miss the study that found that people respond more favorably to being ignored and possibly avoided than to be simply told “No thanks. I’m not interested/dating someone/married/involved in a plot to castrate Justin Bieber and can’t really focus on dating anyone right now.”?

I don’t know. I don’t have anything else to say that I haven’t already said before. Dating while me SUCKS.

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Weird science.

12 Nov

What I wanted was a picture of a drag queen done up like a mad scientist, but I’ll settle for this. Source

I’m gonna conduct me some experiments.

Ain’t nothing going the way I want it to, so I’m gonna go ahead and change ALL the things around. To the best of my abilities. Before something else distracts me. Like another weekend marathon of Rupaul’s Drag Race Allstars. Ahem.

My first experiment involved my logging on to that godforsaken Match.com and once I did, shit got real. I put up pictures that I took, like, yesterday, that showcase my fat ass and Bruno Mars butch queen hair cut and took down the ones from thinner, longer haired days gone by. Went ahead and changed my body type descriptor to “Full-Figured” (I would have preferred to use “Heavy-Set”, but it just sounds so masculine.). I changed the essay portion of my profile to one that accurately showcases my sparkling personality. Now it’s time to sit back and wait. For what, I don’t know.

I’ve got three more months to comply with Match.com’s rigamarole surrounding their six-month guarantee before I can get my $100-and-something-dollars back. If I can show that I’ve done all the crap that they say will get me a date but don’t actually get a date after six months, they’ll refund my money. Okay, Match. We’re on. I’ve sent something like 25+ emails to men that caught my eye and received one reply. Well, two, if you count the guy that wrote back to tell me that I had reinforced his decision to never date black women. SUCCESS!

Since I am required to contact five men during each 30-day cycle as part of the six-month guarantee, I did a search to find the next recipient of one of my unanswered emails. I like to use Match.com’s “Reverse Match” option, which is described as “These matches are looking for someone like you based on what you told us about yourself in your profile.” No one is actually looking for a 30-35-year-old, never married, fat, black, average-to-ugly looking woman; it’s just a bunch of guys who have “No preference” listed under height, weight, ethnicity, etc. We simply end up with each other in the list of results when we go searching for someone to pin our hopes and dreams on.

Curious as to who has their sights not really set on a girl like Ambrosia? Here’s one of my favorite candidates:

I love to make aehc ather so happy most to time I lessons the others and I do going out for eating any restaurants and I do love going to en

I do love cooking outside mostly the times I go to park’s a lats and I do go fishing and I go to Parks for the feeds birds and the docs and I love to cooking outside very Mach

AND I LOVE GO TO BY THE BEACH

In case you were wondering, the first part is in bold because that incomprehensible phrase is what this 48-year-old gem used as his headline, you know, that first thing that I or some other lucky girl would see that would draw us into his web of seduction and romance and outside cooking.

I laughed so hard when I read his profile! I laughed and laughed and laughed until I burst into inconsolable tears when it dawned on me that even this man probably wouldn’t respond to an email that I sent to him. I wept bitterly at the thought that unless my super real profile experiment and/or the other I’ve got cooking works, I too will be 48-years-old and still on Match.com and I don’t like feeding birds or lessons the others so what will I write about in my profile?

Speaking of my other experiment: I want to utilize the dying art of the personal ad.

I’d clearly like to have the opportunity to feel like a normal, adult human being that other normal, adult human beings with wieners see as desirable and not as just a sexless lump of too much undigested cookie dough, but clearly the online, picture-prominent dating site isn’t working for me. Set-ups don’t work either, especially ones that are dependent on the introduction being made via picture exchange. I’m just not attractive enough for that sort of thing to work. I don’t have any redeeming physical qualities that a man under the age of 72 would be interested in. But I express myself sort of well through the written word. I mean, I hope I do. The five to nine daily visitors of this blog seem to think so!

The kind of guy that is checking personal ads, which are typically picture-less, is 1.) a serial killer, 2.) desperate, or 3.) that rare breed of man who is looking for someone that he first connects with intellectually and/or emotionally. He’ll worry about connecting with the writer’s vagina later. I need to attract the last two types of men. Though I have always wanted to turn in a serial killer to the authorities. It just stinks that you run the risk of being murdered, probably quite viciously and in a prolonged manner. Anyway.

I’d start my ad by highlighting my physical flaws in the hopes that once we exchange pictures, dudes are saying “Oh, she’s not that bad” after they’ve clicked on the emailed photo attachment. I’d get all the quirky, nerdy things about me out in the open. I could be specific in who I’m looking for, if I ever figure that out. I could be my best and worst self, all in a few hundred words. And I wouldn’t be dismissed right away because I’m too black or fat or old or not fat enough or ugly! They’d HAVE to get to know me first; they’d HAVE to take a gamble on me sight unseen! I NEED the personal ad in my life!

I answered one once and lived to tell the tale. Some Indian man was looking for a full-figured black woman to date. At the time, I was really into Indian men, I thought. To be perfectly honest, I like the idea of interracial dating for myself mostly because as someone who has been bombarded for the last 28 years or so with the message that nobody wants a black women, including/especially black men, it’s pretty dope to have some guy that doesn’t look like me think I’m hot and awesome, maybe even if it’s just because I’m black. Being fetishized does get old quick though. Catch-22, man.

Anyway, I answered that ad and gave the guy a chance for a bit. He turned out to be – or at least looked – far older and hairier than the picture he sent me indicated. He was a braggart and rather materialistic. And I had a sneaking suspicion that he was married. But I lived through the experience. He seemed to like me as much as an obnoxious, arrogant person can like another. It was a short lived confidence boost, too, even if I was the only woman dumb enough to answer his ad.

As the dreaded Holiday Season quickly approaches, I am even more compelled to test out my hypothesis that a not conventionally attractive person like myself may have better luck using personal ads without pictures. I can’t bear the thought of going to yet another holiday party solo. This is why I am thinking about expanding my personal ad experiment and creating one in search of a BFF along with one advertising my need for a lovah.

Now, if you’re reading this, it’s very likely that you’re a friend of mine in real life. You may be insulted by my proposing to advertise my need for a best friend. But here’s the thing: you’re great, probably. I most likely enjoy your company and chances are I think you’re a decent conversationalist. However, you have a spouse/partner/lover and/or children and/or pets and I can’t compete with those people and animals. I need a friend who is as “free” as I am. I need a friend with benefits.

Not those kind of benefits. I’m talking about the benefit of having a friend who has a “lifestyle”, if you can even call it that, similar to mine. I know I don’t rate very highly on anyone’s totem pole seeing as how I don’t give the people in my life sex or macaroni necklaces or poop on the rug.  I know that, apparently, pushing out babies and/or sharing a bed with someone you kind of like makes one much more likely to use the word “exhausted” pretty exclusively. I need someone who wants to go out on weekends and isn’t encumbered and drained by responsibilities to others. I need a plus one for weddings and parties so I can stop being the goddamn third or fifth wheel ALL of the time. I need a stylish fat girlfriend to go shopping with and a gay boyfriend to sit with at the movies.

I sort of have those things already, but there’s always a catch. My gay boyfriends live crazy far away. My stylish fat friends don’t have disposable income for shopping because their kids need stuff. If I’m going to be single, sexless, petless, and childless, then I need a partner in crime. I need someone to whom I am very important. And I’ll say again, I don’t want to compete with the uncompeteable for their loyalty and attention.

I think I’ve provided an excellent basis for my need to conduct these pseudo-scientific experiments. The biggest hitch in my diabolical plan is that damn Craig’s List. I dread and resent having to use that service, the only and creepiest game in town, in an attempt to make my dreams come true while orange-skinned, pushing-40, Chola-brow having HOES don’t have to do ANYTHING but cheat on their second husbands to get what they want (Weirdly specific example, I know, but it’s one that ABSOLUTELY ENRAGES me. Maybe someday I’ll tell the story behind it.).

Years ago, there was a pre-op transsexual advertising her services on Craig’s List to be the live-in companion to a “real” girl, as she put it. She wanted to provide maid services and in exchange, hoped her employer would allow her to do perfectly reasonable things like watch her sleep, paint her toenails, brush her hair, and give her back massages, all while she wore a classic french maid’s costume with fishnets and heels. Change the brush to a wide-tooth seamless comb, and how could I say no?

I still regret not answering her ad. Man, I could have killed ALL the birds with one stone if I had, even if she turned out to be the Bird with One Stone Killer.

On staying positive when everyone thinks you suck.

7 Sep

I dunno. I typed “online dating makes me want to die” in Google Images and this picture came up. Source

So, I got drunk and signed up for Match.com. Again.

I’ve only been on for a week and I’m already losing hope. I’ve read skimmed a number of self-help books on dating and they all said the same thing about online dating: RUN, BITCH, RUN!

No, all the books said that women will be inundated with emails and messages from potential suitors. However, if their inbox stays empty, it means that they are fat, or ugly, or fat and ugly (or possibly came across as boring, stupid, or crazy in their profile, but we all know that 99% of men aren’t actually reading a word in anyone’s profile). Guess what condition my inbox is in? If you guessed that my inbox is a lot like my other box, you guessed right. I’m pretty sure I just saw a tumbleweed fall out of my underwear. It’s probably on its way to meet up with its cousin from my email account at Match.com. They go there to hang out and laugh at me.

I’ve received exactly one email since joining. I’ve received four ‘winks’, which is a nonsensical method for indecisive weirdos to tell other weirdos that they’re “interested” without actually bothering to write something. Three of those winks were from men who looked to be about my father’s age, though they claimed to be younger. One of the men appeared to have some sort of tooth and gum disease. The fourth man was a lesbian.

Two men liked one of the nine pictures I posted to my profile. One of them didn’t post any pictures and hadn’t bothered to answer any of the questions, including the ones with preset responses, like height and body type. The other guy looked like a murderer. He also hadn’t answered any questions other than claiming to be 6’4 and 41 years old. He posted one shot of himself unsmiling in front of a wall of graffiti. He had on a jacket, tie, and blazer, a ball cap cocked to the side, humungous dark shades, baggy jeans and sneakers. The little I could see of his face was set in an ugly scowl and covered in mysterious scars. The next two pictures he posted were of him in the same outfit, wearing the same menacing expression, but this time dragging a similarly dressed toddler by the hand, seemingly against his will (his AND the toddler’s) down an abandoned street. How fun! An action shot!

I always write a quick but gracious note or send a polite ‘thanks, but no thanks!’ response generated by Match to all the serial killers in training that take the time to contact me. As my adult life has been utterly filled with rejection, I know that it certainly hurts, but that being ignored is far more infuriating. I mean really, how dare you? You can’t even bother to send an email that says “You’re too ugly for me to consider fucking, but good luck out there”? I’m so beneath your time and effort that even acknowledging that I found you and your profile interesting through a three-word email (“Thanks, but no.”) is too much of a strain for your delicate fingers? What, you’ve got women lined up around the block, stacked one on top of the other in your bedroom and you couldn’t get through the throng of admirers tearing off their bras to reach your laptop? Look, dickwad, we all spent a nonrefundable $100.00 because we aren’t getting laid in the real world. No one is checking for us. Unless you’re one of those utter assholes that is so busy and attractive and successful that you “don’t have time” to date and your only hope for screening meeting people is by letting a website do the work for you. If you are or think you are one of these gems of humanity, go fuck yourself, hard, often, and well.

I realize that I sound a tad angry. I am angry. And hurt. And embarrassed. And hopeless. And out one hundred bucks in this shit economy. I’m mostly so upset because those books never say what you’re supposed to do if you’re one of the fat, ugly, boring, stupid, crazy women that no one who wasn’t recently released from prison will write or respond to. They’ll spend a paragraph telling you to lose weight (REALLY?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?! I hadn’t thought of that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Thank you for pointing that out!!!!!! ERMAHGERD, it’s a good thing you put your wealth of knowledge on paper!!!!! How would humanity have CONTINUED if you hadn’t pointed out the obvious???????????????), pay to have your picture taken (But my local Glamour Shots is closed!), or have a friend look over your profile and “correct” it for you. Ha. My friends are a bunch of liars who tell me that I’m pretty and not fat in a bad way and smart and funny and that any guy would be lucky to have me. Those con artists have been blowing smoke up my ass for years; there’s no way in hell I’m getting any honest feedback from them. Except for the one who told me to read The Hunger Games. She’s BRUTAL, which is why I don’t ask her anything.

I’m just sad, man! I don’t want to die alone, man! All the chubby chaser websites are scary, man! My immediate solution is to search only for dudes who describe themselves as “heavyset”, Match.com’s kind descriptor for “My tits are bigger than yours”. I kid you not, out of all the non-smoking, social drinking, want-to-have-kids-someday people with penises that live 30 miles away from my zip code, only 16 of them were honest enough to describe themselves as heavyset. I had to add “stocky” and “a few extra pounds” to really get the fatties to come out and play. Hell, I’m on there telling half-truths myself by describing my body as “curvy”. I only picked that because they haven’t yet added “If I sit just so, I can feel my gunt (not a typo) resting ever so gently on my upper thighs, but you’d never know that if you saw me clothed” as an option.

I’m not particularly attracted to or repulsed by fat men. It all depends. No two fats are alike. I have no type. I see what I think I might like and then wait to see what kind of crap comes out of his mouth and then like him more or less if his teeth are nice and his brain seems to function properly. But I figure I might have better luck with the boys who are pre-diabetic, although we as a society lived through 10 years of “The King of Queens” and every romantic comedy starring Kevin James ever which makes your average Tub-O-Lard think he too deserves and can pull a hottie with a tight body who’ll be willing to resuscitate his ass once a fortnight.

Go to hell. Source

Hey, but it’s only been a week. Ariel insisted on writing the first draft of my profile and wrote “I’m cheerful and focused on the bright side of things”. I gave her major side eye and changed it to “I try to stay cheerful and focused on the bright side of things”. I initially thought it was an absurd statement to use to describe me. Cheerful? Bright side? The fact that I haven’t called Match headquarters and demanded a refund (Hey, I’ve done it. Ask eharmony.) and that I’m focusing on guys that “look like” me is proof that I do try. I created this place, this blog, as my sounding board, mostly because the co-pays for weekly therapy sessions really add up, but also because I want to make people laugh, even if it is at my expense. Look at that. Evidence of dormant cheerfulness and bright sided tendencies. Whodda thunk?

I just really want to be loved. And not 20 or 50-lbs. from now. Not when I’ve “learned to love myself”. I’m not dead or 300-lbs. I love myself, okay? I will even settle for a strong like coupled with some trips to the movies and light spanking. I just need some validation that I’m sort of okay looking and interesting and a living, breathing red-blooded woman from a man that won’t kill me or ruin my credit.

I will also settle for everything in the picture of Zach Galifianakis from “The Hangover 2”, but don’t let that get around. I don’t want people thinking I’m easy. Or that they can pay me in watermelon. Because that’s super racist.

Whatever it is, I’m against it.

16 Aug

“Nope!” Source

Oh, Dick.

He and I have been having quite the time lately. I sense some unspoken tension between us whenever we’re together, so of course I decided to address it in the most mature and healthy way I could think of: blogging about it. I’ll try not to spend this entire post on whatever problems, real or imagined, I’ve been having with my friend, but he has inadvertently inspired me to write. So that’s good, I guess.

Dick loves to call me a hater, a term which I, well, hate. He thinks that I show disdain for most everything, especially things pop culture related, while I would argue that I’m simply voicing an opinion. He’s even given me my own theme song, a silly tune from the Marx Brother’s 1932 film “Horse Feathers”, which is where I got the title for this post.

I unwittingly gave Dick additional evidence for his ever growing case against me by cheering for Bane, the masked villain from “The Dark Knight Rises”. It was my second time seeing the film, my first with Dick, and I was already a fan of Tom Hardy’s, but his portrayal of Bane was just so deliciously evil, I couldn’t help but enjoy everything about it. *SPOILER ALERT* (Seriously though, you haven’t seen it by now?) I wasn’t actually rooting for Bane’s destruction of Gotham City, but for his cocky attitude, kick-ass accent, and shirtlessness. Yes, I’m kind of hot for Bane, judge all you want. But to Dick, I was cheering for the annihilation of a group of people that had been deemed unworthy by a madman, not for how well Tom Hardy carries an extra eleventybillion pounds.

I’m puzzled as to why someone so relishes the belief that I think absolutely everything sucks. What makes the situation even more puzzling and quite ironic is the fact that Dick is a guy who, just to name a few examples, won’t subscribe to cable because it’s beneath him; has a general response to small talk with friends and acquaintances that can be summed up as “BORED!”; finds cheesecake to be disgusting; has said “I’m not doing that” to a great many suggestions; thinks that pretty much everyone I know is terrible; and hated “The Dark Knight Rises”. In fact, he declared the Batman’s swansong to be “99% bullshit.” I. . . I’m trying to forgive him.

Don’t get me wrong, there’s lots of stuff that grinds my gears. The idea of “gluten intolerance”, for example. Rihanna’s singing voice. Food made to look like other things. The recent disappearance of Britney Spears’ eyebrows. Lip piercings. People that always want to be outside all the time. But I think I balance my hates with lots of passion for a random variety of crap, a desire to be spontaneous, and a willingness to do stuff I probably ordinarily wouldn’t because it makes someone I care about super freakin’ happy. I’m not saying that Dick doesn’t do the same. He does! But seriously, I’m the hater because I’d like to rub Bane’s mask all over my lady parts? Get the funk outta here with that bull hooey! (I’m worried that my mom’s going to stumble across this blog and that was my effort at keeping it PG-13.)

I hold out hope that I will meet my very own misunderstood mercenary-for-hire through a friend, even though ever so conveniently, no one I know knows a single solitary unattached, heterosexual, adult male who isn’t totally gross that doesn’t find me totally gross who would be into taking me to P.F. Chang’s. It pains me to know that one of my best friends sees me as a gnarled hag shaking my yellow-nailed crone’s finger at young people I catch in the midst of enjoying things with a lump of coal where my heart ought to be. Who’d want to introduce some poor soul to that? So I can’t have opinions on stuff without being considered a hater? I can’t question the point of going to see “Katy Perry: Part of Me 3D” if one is over the age of 13/has intact hearing and sight? I’ve got to be against whatever it is you’ve got?

I think Dick’s crowning me the Queen of Hateration bugs me so much from the standpoint of a single girl struggling to understand why she’s so single. The few times I’ve had opportunities to date in recent years, I feel that I’ve tried really hard to see the best in rather icky situations. The last two men I “dated” probably deserved my initial hate, but instead I gave them chances. I didn’t stifle myself, but I did make an effort to keep things pleasant and positive, as well as honest. Being constantly called a hater isn’t just annoying and sooo 2003, it’s kind of hurtful. All this time, I thought I’ve been sharing my uncensored opinion on things in the midst of friendly discourse and it’s been going over about as well as a Lewis Black stand-up routine (I realize he has a following; I’m making a point. Or proving Dick’s. I can’t tell anymore.)

Trying to tell someone who thinks you’re a hater that you think is a hater that you’re not a hater goes over about as well as this sentence does. I suppose I ought to approach all of my interactions with the same kind of pleasantries and positivity I hope I bring to my dating experiences, but does that mean I can’t root for the villain and that I have to find something kind to say about Chris Brown? Where does one draw the line between being nice and being awesome?

I guess I should hope that what’s keeping me single is my mouth. If it’s simply a matter of my being “too opinionated”, i.e., a hatin’-ass hater, then I can work on that fairly easily. I wouldn’t have to go to the gym or give up white rice or straighten my hair. Then again, the right guy may like that I don’t like certain things as much as he does. In fact, our love could be in part based on the fact that we hate the same things!

*SPOILER ALERT* (But seriously? Get thee to a movie theater.) That didn’t work out so well in the end for Bane and Talia, but I think it’s ’cause she had some major daddy issues.

Same boat.

14 Aug

Yeah. . . I wouldn’t want to be in that boat either. Source

Dictionary.com, one of my favorite websites (seriously), defines the idiom “in the same boat” as “in the same circumstances; faced with the same problems: The new recruits were all in the same boat.”

It’s a common phrase that those of us with some mastery of the English language probably throw around a lot. I’ve used it countless times I’m sure, but lately I’ve found its use towards me to be disturbing rather than offering the comfort that I think was intended by the speaker. If I am in the same boat with certain people, somebody pass me a life preserver and I’ll take my chances out at sea.

The first time I had to stop myself from audibly screaming out “You ain’t trapping me in a sinking ship with you!” was several hours after a family gathering. A relative was sharing the news of another’s engagement as we drove her home, and as I do with so many things, I made the conversation about me. I was happy for my family member, but felt like I was being once again left in the dust when it came to the milestones indicating a normal, healthy adulthood. The relative who shared the news with me has never been married. When I expressed my bittersweet feelings on the subject, rather than offering me the usual empty encouragements that a very single girl over 30 is bound to hear, my relative said the following: “You want to get married? I never married. Do I regret it? Well, yes, I suppose, when it comes to things like having to carry heavy packages or eating meals alone, but we’re smart, educated women. You and I are in the same boat. It may never happen for you, but so what? You’ll be just fine.”

I think I gagged a little when she said that. I didn’t want to be in the same boat with her. Her boat was leaky and lonely. She only had one broke-down oar to paddle with. The sails wouldn’t. . . sail (If you haven’t noticed, I know nothing about boats, ships, and/or sailing.).  I wanted her to tell me that I was on a jet ski racing off to the Island of Eligible Bachelors, not that I’d be “just fine” when and if I ended up like her. I’m pretty sure I cried after receiving my relative’s declaration. Those tears must have tasted particularly bitter because so far, my life is most like hers than anyone else in the family. The possibility of my being over 60 and still alone is creeping near; my relative is holding out her hand to me while I stand unsure and scared on the dock, ready to help me sail off into a lonely sunset.

Most recently, an old friend repeatedly mentioned that she and I were in the same boat. My old friend does not date and makes no effort to. In fact, she is contemplating swearing off any attempts at or offers of romantic relationships for the foreseeable future. My old friend isn’t one to talk about s-e-x, but I assume that if she did, she’d mention that she’d be just fine with never having it again. Ever. With anyone. Ever again. Forever. Yikes.

When she told me that she and I were in the same boat, at first I chuckled. Yeah, poor us. So unlucky in love. She’s the only person I know that is my age and knows what it’s like to go more than a decade without knowing the gentle touch of a man. It’s been years since she’s even been on a date. I yukked it up with her. Hell yeah we’re in the same boat! But the more she said it, the less funny it became. Did I really want to be in the same boat with someone who has given up on love? My old friend has plenty of justifiable reasons for her decision to swear off the opposite sex, but still. To not even try? And wait a minute. I’ve been trying. I’ve done online dating, I’ve gone speed dating, I’ve tolerated mediocre dates with men I wish I could forget. I’ve embarrassed myself by asking for sex because TV and well-meaning friends tricked me into thinking I’d get a ‘yes’ if I did. I can’t show my face in my local YMCA because I’ve tried (It’s not what you think, I swear!) so hard!

It’s not fair to be shoved into a boat where the captain (Skipper? Admiral? I don’t know.) has given up. The boat hasn’t even capsized, it’s just aimlessly meandering around and around, like a bathtub toy circling the drain. I understand that my old friend doesn’t want to halfheartedly row her ass to nowhere by herself, but that’s like telling a kid who studied for a test and failed that he’s just like the kid that didn’t even crack open the book. “I don’t know that shit. And you did just as bad as me.”

Maybe to some people I deserve my place in that boat next to my friend. I found myself having yet another bitch fest about my loneliness and frustration with Dick and Jane over dinner and I couldn’t shake the feeling that Dick was annoyed or bored or disgusted with me and what he perceives as my lack of effort. When I told them that a dating guide I’d stumbled across online read that women ought not rule out the bar scene after all, Dick asked me when I was going bar hopping. I stumbled and stuttered as I told him that I was afraid to go alone; I’ve seen way too many episodes of “Law and Order: SVU” to be okay with that. He rolled his eyes and muttered something about my making excuses. He found my outrage at being an unwilling passenger on the SS Pusty Dussy humorous, maybe because to him it’s exactly where I belong.

I like the water, but I’ve always been wary of boat rides, probably because that first one ended so well. I don’t want this post to seem as though I am claiming to be better than my never-married relative or my old friend who has (Temporarily, please let it be temporarily!) given up on love. I’m not. I know that I’m not. But what I do know is that I want to keep trying to swim to shore on my own. I’m not resigned to either fate; neither boat can take me where it is I so badly want to go. I’m going to keep floating alongside lots of different boats, waving at the people on board while I try to keep my goggles from fogging up. Could I try to swim harder? Of course I can. And I probably will.

But be patient with me. Just by being in the water at all I’m bucking a stereotype.

A ICSHSS Public Service Announcement.

5 Aug

“I have confidence in me! I think.” Source

As much as I loathe him,  – and not just ’cause of his proclivity for peeing on preteens; I truly think the man is just yucky poo-poo in general; his talent questionable, and his songs sucktastic – I can’t get R.Kelly screeching “This is a radio message!” out of my head since I’ve decided to call this post a public service announcement. Whatever, you’re not in my head; it makes perfect sense to me.

I’m going to write a little something about the idea of confidence as it relates to dating. Or really, as it relates to other people’s perception when it comes to one’s dating success, or lack thereof. In my case, it’s lack thereof. Remember, I called this blog “I Can See Why She’s Single.” for a reason, ya’ll.

This post is going to be one of many that is super awkward, mostly because I will be writing about people that I like an awful lot and spend tons of time with, and I will be calling them on what I think is their total bullshit. I will also be going on and on about the undeniable beauty of another, which though complementary, is still crazy awkward for all involved. I mean, it is for me. And yes, people do go on and on about my supposed beauty, and it always makes me feel like a freak, and not because I am a walking sack of insecurities, which I may very well be – I’ll get to that – but because, dude, it’s weird. More on that probably later, but first, let’s get to the bullshit!

So, I whine to my friends about how no guys like me pretty often. You try not having sex for 13 years and see what kind of mood you’re in. Anyway, I whine a lot, and two of my friends whom I shall forever refer to on this blog as Dick and Jane because they are adorable and always together and would make great subjects for a hilarious series of children’s books, are often on the receiving end of my seemingly never-ending complaints about my banishment to The Barren Valley of Singledom. Dick and Jane try to always be SUPER encouraging about everything, which I attribute to their being raised in a religious cult that if it were to join forces with the Mormons would conquer us all. (They are gonna hate that. The attributing anything positive about them to the religious cult they escaped bit, not the conquering us all bit. When I pointed that out, Jane laughed. I don’t know where Dick was.)

Even though they are beacons of support in the dark, empty cavern that is my dating life, they also make an attempt to keep it real. Part of their attempt at imparting some realness into my sex love-starved brain involves the notion of confidence and self-esteem. Dick and Jane like to constantly remind me that I’d be luckier in lurve if I were confident. I constantly remind them that I am confident, in my own way, but I am also a realist. They disagree, we argue, and then they like to once again tell me the story of Ariel and Eric.

Ariel is our beautiful friend that I have decided to call Ariel because whenever I describe Ariel to people that haven’t met her yet I say “She looks like a mermaid!” She is petite and slim, yet curvy where a girl ought to be, and has raven hair that flows down her back, and porcelain skin sprinkled with freckles, and pouty pink lips, and these blue-green eyes the color of the sea on a glorious summer day. She is also kind, thoughtful, smart, talented, and funny, but nobody cares about that when you’re as stunning as she is. She is perfection.

Ariel met her boyfriend Eric (not his real name, but it is the name of the prince in Disney’s The Little Mermaid, so I thought it was fitting to call him that, and our Eric is handsome the way a prince should be, and also has luxurious hair like Prince Eric in the movie) and decided that she found him desirable and declared “You will be mine” to him in her head and he of course agreed that yes, he would be hers, and now they live happily ever after and will someday have adorable, vaguely Asian looking children with black hair and green eyes. Dick and Jane tell me this story over and over and over again. The real story that hasn’t been edited to protect their identity on a blog that nobody but them reads is really cute and I like hearing it and all, but I say the same thing in response every time:

“Yeah, but it’s Ariel. I mean, look at her.”

Dick and Jane tell me that story because they think the moral is “Confident women get boyfriends by being confident!” where I, being the realist, think the moral of the story is actually “Men like beautiful women.” If Ariel looked more like, say this (I’m sorry Rachel! I love you!), then I would agree that they have a valid argument. But because Ariel looks like this if you’re a heterosexual male with no imagination – ahem – or like this and this if you are an awesome nerd with kick-ass taste in books and movies and a disturbingly vivid fantasy life, of course she’s going to get the guy in the end! Attributing her good fortune in love to her “confidence” is absurd and kind of insulting to my intelligence, especially because when asked, Ariel would describe herself as looking like this, but covered in freckles and with worse hair.

Jane will argue that fact with me to the death, because she is kind and likes me despite my many faults. My personality, which she thinks is pretty rad, has deluded the poor girl into thinking that I am very pretty. She thinks that I am just as pretty as Ariel, but what gets in my way is my belief that I am not. I think Jane is wonderful, and I appreciate her opinion, but sister-girl needs to get her eyes checked.

Here’s the part where I’m going to try to convince you, dear reader, that I am not crippled by low self-esteem despite the fact that everything in this post, heck, everything in and about this blog, points to the contrary. I don’t always think I’m ugly and there are times when I think I look down-right beautiful. I will go out and be surprised that no guys tried to holla, or that only one or two did. I don’t let my plus-size body stop me from wearing short skirts or color or horizontal stripes or skinny jeans. I recently cut my hair short and think it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made all year. I have plans to buy a fatkini before summer is over. I had an in-depth conversation with a Frenchman who looked like a fashion model on a rooftop in Brooklyn. Would a girl who wasn’t confident do that? Does any of the preceding sound at all like what a girl who has low self-esteem would do?

The thing is, I know that I’m not anywhere near as pretty or as attractive to the opposite sex as Ariel. That’s me being a realist. If you were to ask the average man who’d they rather with the choices being Megan Fox or Jill Scott, the celebrity I am most often told that I resemble, I believe that nine out of 10 of them will choose Megan, including the black men. It’s like comparing chocolate chip cookie dough ice cream to avocado ice cream. Most people won’t even give avocado ice cream a try, but everybody likes chocolate chip cookie dough. That doesn’t make avocado ice cream awful or gross or stupid for existing. It just means that it’s an acquired taste. I am an acquired taste.

What bugs me the most about the whole thing is that when I remind Dick and Jane that Ariel is very hard on her physical appearance when they tout her confidence, they sort of wave away the idea. “But she carries herself confidently” they’ll say. And I don’t? “Well, we know what you really think of yourself” they’ll say. Yeah, but you’re two of my closest friends. Some guy in a bar won’t have a clue. I’ve put on three coats of mascara; there’s no way that I’m carrying myself in a way that isn’t confident. It bothers Jane that I know believe that I’m not as pretty as Ariel. We’re both her special girlfriends; in her sweet eyes, we’re equally gorgeous. Dick is more frank about the whole thing; he agrees with me in a way that is without tact, but that I still sort of appreciate, if only because it helps to prove my point. But yet he can’t let it go that my real problem is “confidence”.

I think it makes Dick and Jane uncomfortable to say “Yeah, Ariel is better looking than you are. She is more conventionally attractive, yet is also more beautiful than your average woman. Of course she got the guy in the end! We’ll stop telling you that story, because it simply doesn’t apply to you.” They already encourage me to do the things that only ugly women are encouraged to do: be friends first so he can see what a great personality you have, talk to him about the things you have in common with him, hang out with him in a group so he can see how much your friends love you. They did forget to tell me to put a paper bag over my head, though.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not angry at Dick and Jane or at Ariel’s beauty. I get that I’m an acquired taste. If I were still thin, and still wore my hair long and relaxed, I too could declare that someone I liked would be mine and it would be so. It was so during my glory days. What irks me is the notion that my (supposed) lack of confidence is a). a thing b). obvious and c). keeping me single. That the things that I think or share privately (or write about in a blog) about myself are obvious to everyone. They’re not. Unless I’m in big time denial, I know they’re not. My whole life has been about perfecting masks; ain’t no way that this one has slipped. I, with natural, short hair and fat body, (and maybe also with brown skin and black identity; we’ll talk about that some other time) am not going to have an easy time with this dating thing. I haven’t. I’m still the same neurotic jerk whether I’m fat or thin, kinky or straight. I’m just a lot easier to take when I’m wrapped in a prettier package.

So, for the public service announcement. It will need to be catchy and memorable, yet informative. I’m thinking of something like “It’s okay; you can tell me. I can take it.”, a reference to the fact that I get that lots of girls are prettier than me and will have an easier time attracting men. No need to sugar coat it in platitudes about how no one will love you if you don’t love yourself (if you’re a fat and/or average looking girl). I’m also throwing around “It’s alright if you think she’s prettier. I do too, but I’m still confident!” I think either would look great headlining brochures instructing folks on how to talk to their more unfortunate looking single female friends.

Oh, wait. I’ve realized that I’ve left something out. Something that is perhaps critical to the story. Dick and Jane use Ariel as an example because of her “confidence” AND because she approached Eric. I’m not into the whole approaching guys thing. I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable and/or embarrass myself. I mean, imagine how the counter girl at the ice cream shop must feel trying to get people to taste the avocado flavor. It would suck to hear “Ew, avocado??” all day long, am I right? HAHAHAHA! Right?

Shut up. Dick and Jane do not have a point.

Jungle Fever(ish).

12 Jul

Interracial dating makes me sad.

Not in the way you’re probably thinking. Other than a reflexive and obligatory eye roll, I couldn’t care less if black men want to date white women. Hell, if you like it, I love it. And I owe my very existence to The Swirl. Until rather recently I was pretty certain that the Honorable Mr. Ambrosia Jones was going to be a delectable piece of white chocolate. Now I’m not so certain that he won’t be imaginary.

Interracial dating makes me sad in the most literal sense: the times that I’ve liked white boys have been some of the most curled-up-in-a-ball-ugly-crying times I’ve experienced. It all started in the 4th grade. Sexy Kid Ambrosia was hidden under a pair of gigantic, red plastic frame, Coke-bottle thick glasses and a wardrobe primarily from Bradlees and Caldor. The social torment that would follow me well into adulthood had  begun. Then Todd waddled into my life. He was a year or so older because he’d stayed back a time or two. He was the only 4th grader who had boobs bigger than mine. The poor thing was also cursed with both a speech impediment and a voice so high-pitched that had I had any grasp of the concept of sexuality, I would have questioned mine for dating a boy with a magnificent pair of knockers and an impeccable falsetto.

Todd was kind to me. He held my hand on the playground and was as enthusiastic about planning our wedding as I was (weddings were regularly held on the kickball field for interested couples and usually officiated by the teachers who most craved our approval or some of the more bossy 4th grade girls). But my dreams of a Michael Jackson-themed reception by the swing set were shattered when he dumped me for London. Always beware of girls named after European cities. I have to give him credit; Todd was pretty direct about it, hysterically explaining to me that London had explained to him that he liked her better than me.

I didn’t learn my lesson and a year later found myself involved in a scandalous polygamous relationship with that bitch London and a piece of Euro-trash named Pierce. He had shoulder length brown curls and wore Ralph Lauren sweaters and trousers. We were the talk of the 5th grade up to and including our very messy and public break-up. It got so ugly that parents were called. Mine were less than amused. I still deny the baseless accusations brought against me. I was railroaded! I was only guilty of being a woman scorned! And maybe calling him the f-word.

Middle and high school were pretty uneventful, mostly because I was crippled by awkwardness until the 10th grade and absolutely determined to “prove” my “blackness”. I dated a biracial boy from Da Hood on and off from 8th grade until the middle of 9th grade and then focused my attentions on boys who had spent time in ESL and came to school smelling like Sazon. I don’t count those experiences as “interracial dating” mostly because a great deal of the time people assumed my exotic boyfriends were my brothers and/or cousins. That sure did wonders for my adolescent self-esteem. No, really! Being mistaken for Brazilian, Dominican, or Puerto Rican is the ULTIMATE compliment to pay to a teenage black girl suffering from an identity crises. It got a little prickly though when onlookers assumed my papi chulos were actually my hermanos, if that meant they were being mistaken for black. Yeah, those were some uncomfortable conversations. . .

My case of Jungle Fever returned freshman year of college. First there was Tommy, the Italian Stallion from Brooklyn. Then came Matt, the Golden Boy with the Southern drawl from Georgia. But it was Andrew who put them all to shame. He was my first real white boyfriend and The Great White Hope. Andrew looked like Jordan Catalano’s buffer, hotter, older brother. He played soccer and worked at The Gap. He was 21 and drove a sports car. I had managed to snag the white boy of white boys and was head over heels.

We dated for a tumultuous 7 months, breaking up no less than three times throughout. Being his girlfriend was like starring in some surreal Afterschool Special on race relations in America. He would say crazy things to me like “I always warned my mother I’d date a black girl someday” and affectionately referred to me as a/his bitch in front of everyone. He dragged me through his hometown introducing me to every member of his immediate and extended family so they could see “the hot black girl” he’d met at college. He was “secretly” half Syrian (it is a long, bizarre story that I simply can’t be bothered to tell) and would develop a very dark tan in the summertime. He thought it was “hilarious” to pick me up unexpectedly from my summer job at the mall wearing a Yankee fitted cap to the side, a wife beater, baggy gray sweat pants sagged to show his boxers, and Timberland boots. “Everybody probably thinks I’m a Puerto Rican!” he’d breathlessly whisper while attempting to pimp walk through the parking lot as I trailed behind him, not sure whether to be totally turned on or totally humiliated.

Our relationship ended for the last time when during an argument about something mundane like my wearing thong underwear (yes, this caused him great distress) or spending too much time with my friends that he found annoying, he declared that he had to start thinking about who he was going to marry as he was “older” and that he simply couldn’t see himself marrying someone like me. His actual words were “There’s a specific type of girl I want to marry and you just ain’t it.” I think he thought it’d be less of a blow if he broke the news to me in my first language: ebonics. Le sigh. He left a bag of his crap in my car or dorm room or something and I made a great show of returning it to him in front of his teammates. I included a print out of the lyrics to Natalie Imbruglia’s “Torn” amongst his things.  I had her haircut; I loved the song, but never really understood its meaning until Andrew took a dump on my heart, so it seemed like a very fitting way to bid him adieu. I was 18, it was the 90’s, and I was DEEP.

The next year found me without a serious boyfriend and doing a lot of kissing (all Latino boys again!) and then I met He Who Shall Not Be Named. HWSNBN was Puerto Rican, but looked like the love child of Chico DeBarge and R.Kelly and didn’t speak a lick of Spanish, so it was just like dating a horrible guy who hated that people assumed he was black who’s grandparents happened to be from Puerto Rico. As you can guess, it was AWESOME.

My mid-twenties found me pining over an Italian-Irish EMT from Staten Island that I’d known as a teenager who declared his “love” for me out at da club one night while his girlfriend wasn’t looking. Despite his declaration, he picked the girlfriend. I was in graduate school and living alone in a big city then and I’d drive around in my hoopdie crying to love songs on the radio. For some reason, Etta James’ “At Last” seemed to be on the radio station I listened to every morning and Luther Vandross’ “Think About You” was on every night, so I was getting it from both ends and not in the good way.

After graduating from grad school and moving back home, I reconnected with the boyfriend I’d had during senior year of high school. Paulo was a fair-skinned South American who had identified as Latino in high school but decided he was actually white as an adult (again, long and extremely stupid story) and I thought we were in love. I moved to a city without a proper Starbucks and 60% of its population living under the poverty line for him. I befriended his drunken, crazy mother; regularly babysat his poorly behaved niece and nephew FOR FREE, and slow danced with his sister (she was living as a man at the time so put your eyebrows back down) all in an effort to prove my undying love and devotion. His mother would say really terrific things to me in broken English like “I live with the black man when I come to America. He beat me all the time!” and “My son likes beautiful girls with the blonde hair and the good, good body, but I convince him to love you because you are so nice person to me!” Turns out, she was right. About the second part. I don’t know if the black man beat her all the time. I wasn’t there for that.

About three months after we’d reconnected and two months after I moved to the godforsaken place I am about to peace out from in 69 days (the seven weeks thing was a false alarm), Paulo told me that I had misunderstood him; he wasn’t interested in me romantically, mostly because he didn’t find me attractive. He was in Europe at the time, so he delivered this very important piece of information to me over the phone, after I’d signed a year lease on my apartment. Oh, and it was my birthday. Did I not mention that part? I spent a great deal of time after that alternating between hysterical crying and staring at the wall in my mostly unfurnished new home until a no-nonsense friend stormed in, dragged me to my feet, and made me go grocery shopping. Everything worked out in the end; Paulo found a (second) wife with the blonde hair and the good, good body, and I have this blog. Hooray.

So here we are in the present. The person that I used to know is of the Caucasian persuasion, so I was just a-quakin’ in my boots due to my unfortunate history. You may have noticed that I typed ‘was’. Yeah, turns out that home boy I was hoping to climb like a mighty sequoia once I redeemed myself of the epic fail that was our “reunion” after 15 some-odd years ain’t single after all. I became aware of that fact just a few hours ago and haven’t cried yet! But I’m still sad. So this post and my life have come full circle. That’s. . . something.

Don’t worry; I’m not gonna go all Anita from “West Side Story” on you. “Stick to your own kind” is mean and weird and hard to do when you don’t know any straight, chubby, black guys who like Jane Austen, Broadway musicals, and Doritos. But I have to admit that when I feel the JF coming on me now, I reach for the Tylenol and take a nap. That seems to be the safe thing to do. For now.

This is what happens when I’m supposed to be cleaning things.

6 Jul

So I was going to write this HI-LARIOUS post about being asked to be a bridesmaid five times, a flower girl once, and actually being in three weddings, with the grand finale being the epic retelling of The Worst Wedding in the History of Weddings, but I am thoroughly distressed because I have just learned that I have to move out of the apartment in which I have spent six mostly miserable years in less than seven weeks when I thought I had more like 14 (I DON’T WANT YOUR HELP OR YOUR PITY, SO DON’T YOU DARE OFFER EITHER!!!!!111!!1!1!), and I am surrounded by unwashed clothes, half-empty takeout containers, and the carcasses of my broken dreams, so instead of doing anything productive or sensible like gathering empty boxes and figuring out where that smell is coming from, I decided that I instead would write an incoherent post about things that boggle my mind about dating and friendship because I am a passive-aggressive procrastinator who can’t express herself outside of a semi-anonymous blog that only people she actually knows reads. But dammit, can I construct one hell of a run-on sentence or what?

I was having a terrible day (of mostly my own creation and imagination) and thought how lovely it would be to have a cold drink and a laugh and a hug and go see a movie with someone I like and/or care about. But I didn’t call anyone and tell them these things and invite them to do them with me. Instead, I made vague proclamations on that social networking site about how unhappy I am, and how stressed out I feel, and waited to see if anyone would come to my rescue. That has only worked for me once – thank you, My Knight in Pastel Armor – but I continue to express myself that way rather than in any way that would actually amount to anything that resembles a positive resolution. Why do I do that, you ask? Because I’ve learned that I hate being vulnerable; I despise the thought of others perceiving me as needy; I loathe having to ask people for help or tell them my needs, wants and desires; and I’d rather die alone surrounded by large print copies of Reader’s Digest and expired canned vegetables than face social rejection of any kind. So yeah, entering into any sort of relationship with me is a barrel of laughs and an absolute breeze.

I realize that my aversion to these things, along with a host of my other special qualities, makes dating a near impossibility. I mean, dating is an impossibility for me, hence the title and content of this blog. The last two men that I “successfully” dated – meaning, I managed to go on dates with these guys, nothing more – were men that I had no real interest in. I dated them both because I figured there was little reason for me not to; they had jobs and cars and places to live and seemingly normal brain function. I manufactured romantic feelings for one of them, primarily because we liked some of the same crap and after a makeover, he would have looked a lot like Drake. The potential Drake, after 5 or 6 dates, declared after my gentle prodding, that he just wasn’t interested in me “in that way” and I was devastated, even though he smelled bad and had the sex appeal of a slug, not because I truly liked him, but because he was supposed to like me. He was supposed to be a “sure thing”. Imagine if I ever had luck with a man who maybe didn’t look so good on paper, who was legitimately sexy and attractive (at least to me), who offered a little bit of “danger” and that “Oh my God, I am so going to get arrested or poop my pants” feeling (You know what feeling I mean, stop frontin’.) and it didn’t work out. My heart would liquify and leak out of my ass and that can’t be a good thing.

My general problems with processing normal human emotions also manage to seep into my friendships. I get into one-sided fights and hold secret grudges. I keep an invisible score card in my brain and people are constantly gaining and losing points and have no idea to what standard they’re being graded against. I am either unreachable or frighteningly clingy. There is very little middle ground. It is a wonder to me that I have any friends at all. And believe me, I will always wonder if I am really your friend. Man, this post is taking a dark turn. Let me try to lighten shit up a bit:

When my mind was being boggled about the differences and similarities between dating and friendship, it mostly had to do with what we deem acceptable in each of these relationships. For instance, it’s not uncommon for any platonic friend of mine to respond to my question of “Wanna hang out?” with something along the lines of “Sure! Come on over. But I haven’t showered in six days and the toilet’s broken so you’ll have to pee in a Ziploc bag. Oh, and when you get here, I’ll probably decide to shave my armpits while we watch a marathon of “Basketball Wives: L.A.” Hey, would you mind bringing over a pint of kumquat-flavored dairy-free frozen dessert? I’m on a special diet/preggers and craving/really high. And about an hour after you get here, I’m going to suddenly get super tired and probably fall asleep with my mouth open. Make sure to lock the door on your way out.” I’d be totally okay with this situation, filled with TMI and far too many bodily functions. In fact, I’d be honored. It’d mean that we’re close! Like siblings! It means you like me, you really like me! But if it’s the beginning of a dating relationship and anything like this mess comes out of a dude’s mouth that I was previously hoping to kiss (with tongues!), I will take serious pause. I will demand that The Council of Friends with Dating Experience convene via online messaging and hushed meetings in Starbucks. I will need to know what it means if a guy I like romantically is “too comfortable too soon”. I’m going over the whole thing like a forensic specialist at a crime scene and everyone I know is giving the poor guy major side-eye.

I have other platonic friends that are a bit more refined in the way they choose to socialize. I kid you not, just last week I found myself sitting on a quilt under a willow tree with a BFF as we read out loud to one another. AS WE READ OUT LOUD TO ONE ANOTHER. That’s a scene right out of a Regency England era porno. Can you imagine if I suddenly reported that I went on a date and my date wanted to read out loud to me (preferably all of Peeta’s really romantic parts from The Hunger Games saga or anything Mr. Darcy says in Pride and Prejudice) while we sat on a blanket under a motherf’ing tree?? WHAT?!? But if I’m going to be perfectly honest, if that happened, I’d assume that he was planning to murder me in the night. You see? If a friend I don’t want to hold hands with suggests that we read out loud to each other, I’m screaming out “Catching Fire or Mockingjay?!?” before they’ve completed the sentence. But if someone I want to bump uglies with asks me on a “Reading Rainbow” date, while he picks out the perfect shady spot in the park, I’m dialing 9-1-1 in my purse.

Operator: “Please state the nature of your emergency.”

Me: “I’m on a date and. . . and he wants us to. . . r-read out loud to each other. While sitting on a blanket. In the park!”

Operator: “Ma’am, stay calm. Is he carrying a picnic basket?”

Me: ‘I don’t know, I don’t know! Oh god! He brought Fifty Shades of Gray! Ohmygodohmygodohmygod! What do I do?!?”

Operator: “Ma’am, just take deep breaths and don’t make any sudden movements. Help is on the way. May God have mercy on your soul.”

My favorite dichotomy (Oh, just look it up.) between acceptable friend and date behavior has to be what happens in Da Club. To be perfectly honest, I haven’t been to da club with someone I felt romantical about in years, but I know what I’d put up with in the name of “luv”. There are friends I will not go out with to anything music or dancing related because of their totally inappropriate behavior. They refuse to dance. I mean, they won’t even bop their head to the beat, sing/mouth along to the music. Nothing. I had a friend check her email on her cell phone the entire time we were out at at a club in another state. She just wanted to get out of the house, she said. If you don’t dance, hey, sucks for you, but you’re not ruining my good time anymore. I won’t go out with these people unless I can guarantee at least three other individuals who will dance are in attendance with us. I’ve learned my lesson. Friends have lots of rules for one another regarding acceptable night life behavior. “We came together, we leave together! Use the buddy system when going to the bathroom! Pretend to be my lesbian lover/overbearing male relative if a weirdo tries to hit on me!” However, if I ever get to go on a club date, it’s fine if my date won’t dance. I think it’d be kind of sexy if he sat all night, drink in hand and glowered at me while I attempted to twerk it for him. Dancing with a potential love interest is tricky. If he dances poorly, it’s awful. If he dances too well, you might stop and wonder. There’s so much potential pressure, having a date that refuses to dance would almost be a relief.

I feel like this post is going nowhere and I don’t feel all that bad about it. I warned you it would. I really wanted to use this entry as a way to complain about things I don’t like that happen all too often in friendship, seeing as friendship is the only kind of relationship I’m even sort of good at having. I wanted to mention that some of the stuff that gets passed off as “friendship” would never fly if you wanted me to live with you forever and have your babies. I wanted to write profound and heart-wrenching things about how friendship is the only relationship where unconditional like, love, and acceptance is completely taken for granted; how platonic friends are the only people on Earth expected to be totally okay with being at the bottom of the freaking social totem pole. But, I didn’t. And I won’t.

Next time I’ll be funny and coherent, I promise?

Cockblocked by God.*

4 Jul

After my grandmother died, my dad went nuts and found religion. That’s probably not how he’d tell the story, but that’s basically my interpretation of it in a nutshell. My dad is far from crazy, but he did pick a religious denomination that is a favorite of crazy people. I blamed my parents for years for all of my various eccentricities (bat shit crazy behavior), neurosis (being looney tunes), and short comings (I suck). It very recently dawned on me that I’ve been raging against the wrong machine. My issue ain’t with ma and pa, it’s with three other equally terrifying people: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

I grew up in the Pentecostal church. I’d specifically name the large and powerful denomination that had a big part in shaping me into the standup individual that I am today, but a). I’m trying to stay as incognegro as possible and b). I’m pretty sure they have enough money to put out a hit on me. Let’s see; what’s the best way to describe growing up Pentecostal to people who had a normal different upbringing? I think listing the various things that were off-limits to Sexy Kid Ambrosia might give you the best glimpse of what I was dealing with:

  • I have never seen an episode of “The Smurfs” as my church called for a national boycott of the program for including “real magic spells” in the show. I just never got around to it as an adult because honestly, the show seems pretty freakin’ lame.
  • I was not allowed to have a unicorn My Little Pony action figure as unicorns are magical creatures and MAGIC IS REAL AND EVIL.
  • I was not allowed to listen to the radio or secular music in general until middle school, with a few notable exceptions.
  • I was groomed to wait until marriage to have sex, probably starting in third grade.
  • I was also groomed to expect the Second Coming of Christ, i.e., the Apocalypse, from about the same time as I was groomed to keep my legs closed. I found the idea of Jesus coming back absolutely terrifying and not comforting as I expect my parents and Sunday School teachers intended. I’d talk about it kind of a lot at school and couldn’t understand how my other friends hadn’t heard about this event that was coming to destroy. . . most of them.
  • I went Trick-or-Treating once at three-years-old (I was an angel, complete with a halo magically suspended above my head. Dad is a very talented guy.) and then again at 13 after begging and crying and explaining to my parents that they were ruining my life. What happened during those other 10 years you ask? Oh, didn’t you know? Halloween is EVIL. It is from THE DEVIL. It is DEVIL WORSHIP (Basically. It’s kind of a long story, actually.) So Halloween was off-limits for families that really loved Jesus. Instead, we dressed up as fruit or Bible characters and had “Harvest” parties in the church gym. I apologize to the few friends I was able to convince to come with me to these parties over the years. I owe you a pillow case filled with candy.
  • I never, ever believed in Santa Claus. EVER. I had to look up how to properly spell homey’s name, that’s how much I have never believed in him. Santa Claus was a pagan “secular” distraction from the True Meaning of Christmas: Jesus dying for our sins. Oh, you thought Christmas was about a sweet baby being born and Mary and angels and sheep and really mean motel owners? No, fool! EVERYTHING is about Jesus dying for our sins and don’t you forget it. Even if you are a little girl who takes things very literally, probably because you are highly intelligent, and the thought of Jesus dying makes you feel terrible and cry. (The Resurrection was of little comfort to me because it meant that yeah, Jesus was alive, but he still cryptically peaced out on everyone who ever loved him and was never seen or heard from again. . . if you’re not a good enough Christian, that is.)
  • This isn’t something that was banned or off-limits, but I feel like I ought to mention that probably ’till the age of 15ish, I was a staunch pro-life Republican. Thank God for giving me a liberal Democrat grandpa who steered me left. Get it? Oh, and my dad is totally a Democrat too, don’t let him fool you. My mom is a lamer; she’s registered as an Independent. Ugh.

So, getting back to my issue with God actively cockblocking me: it’s kind of hard to have a healthy attitude about sex when you’ve been trained to believe that having it before you convince some sucker to marry you makes the Holy Spirit cry-cringe-die a little on the inside. I wanted to be a good Christian, I truly did. Even though Sexy Kid Ambrosia had doubts, even as a sexy little kid. Even though Teenage Ambrosia burst into tears so hysterical that her mom had to pull the car over because she couldn’t understand how or why a loving God would send her BFF to hell for being gay. I tried, dammit. I tithed. I studied the Bible. I went to soul-crushing youth retreats and services. I dragged friends and boyfriends to church at every opportunity. I was very prepared to be a bride who really deserved to wear white. Until I met He Who Shall Not Be Named.

Laying out the gory details of my dealings of HWSNBN is for another post that I may never write as that junk is deeply personal, (Not like this stuff isn’t; it’s just mad different.) but here’s what you need to know: I met him when I was 19. I was going through some thangs. He is probably, in my professional opinion**, a sociopath. He was certainly an alcoholic and just abusive enough to pretty much destroy me, but not abusive enough that anybody thought anything was wrong with me dating him. He was a mastermind of f*ckery! And he convinced me to do it with him. I was 20 when he managed to break down my resolve. He was the first, last, and only man male human being I’ve had sex with. I haven’t been 20 for 12 1/2 years, so yeah.

After the smoke cleared from my “relationship” with HWSNBN, I was too damaged and fat and androgynously dressed for sex to be a factor for a long while. And then, eventually, I became somewhat less damaged (Or maybe just learned to stuff down the damage with delicious cheesecake. Have you tried the mango keylime cheesecake at The Cheesecake Factory? You can eat some feelings with that bad boy, I tell ya!) and slightly less fat and let my hair grow back and started caring about looking like a girl. I declared that I was ready to date again and would give the sex thing another go with a man who was kind to me and not mentally disturbed after making him wait for 90 days (I had that idea before you did, Steve Harvey!) and was met with crickets.

I believed that my complete fail at finding anyone to do sex with was really a problem with multiple causes, but the biggest one was that I was actively planning to SIN and God HEARD me planning IN MY BRAIN. I was already pretty convinced that my awesome time with HWSNBN was divine punishment for the sin of teh sex, and here I was, DARING to not only sin AGAIN, but planning out my sin IN ADVANCE! How dare I? I went running back to church with my tail between my legs and made a loud vow of chastity to anyone who’d listen and bought way too many books on the topic of not having sex and waited for God to bless me with a husband.

As you can tell by the title of this blog, God did not magically supernaturally deliver me a husband. I figured it was because I wasn’t a good enough Christian. So I tried harder. I prayed louder and longer. I cried more tears of repentance. I spent more and more time at church. I gave more money. I volunteered more of my time. I studied the Bible like I was gonna be quizzed on that shit. Until one day, during a church membership class, I said “Fuck it.” (Not out loud! I’m not that awful! YEESH!)

I was tired. I had given up. I’d had enough. I gave church and evangelical Christianity a few more tries until I just sort of shrugged my shoulders for the last time ’round early 2011. “So Ambrosia, you mean to tell me that you threw away your faith in an almighty, omnipotent god because you couldn’t find a date/get laid/get married??” Um, sort of? It was more complicated than that, believe me. But if I’m going to be honest, that was a huge piece of why I currently identify as a super doubtful person who had been indoctrinated into a Judeo-Christian worldview from birth/semi-agnostic. I can’t call myself a Christian. That’s a lie, at least at this point in my life. I can’t say I don’t believe in a god. Life is too. . . everything to have been accidental. There had to have been some magic involved. Yeah, I said magic.

I realize how ridiculous it is to shake my fist at a god who might not even be there because I’m bummed that I can’t get a date. But the thing is, I tried so hard to believe, to do what I thought and was taught and told that he wanted me to. I wanted to give my thanks to him with a marriage that would honor him, with children that would learn to love him and hopefully, not fear him the way that I did do. And that prayer, that desire of my heart, went more than unanswered. It went unheard. I felt like God wasn’t even acknowledging that I had asked, that he was throwing other people and situations in my face to mock my plea for love. And because once you’re trained up in the way you should go, it’s hard as hell to depart from it, I still believe that because I am determined to have a loving, intimate relationship with a man who I may not be married to, God hears that shit and is all like “Nuh-uh, bitch! How many times do I have to tell you, you are not getting any booty! Not up in here. NOT UP IN HERE!”

So, now you know. I think I’m being cockblocked by God. The worst part is, I can’t just give in and let him and go join a nunnery. Not because I’m filled with doubt and disbelief, but because I’m not a goddamn Catholic! Just my rotten luck that my dad had to turn on the station that aired Fred Price‘s sermons and not the Pope’s (The Pope has televised sermons, right? If he doesn’t, what is he waiting for?) when he was grief-stricken and couldn’t sleep and searching for An Answer.

Eh. It could have been a lot worse. We could have ended up as Jehovah’s Witnesses. Man, those guys are really messed up.

*According to urbandictionary.com, the proper term for preventing a lady from having sex is called ‘Box Blocking’ or ‘Clam Jamming’, but I didn’t like either of those and the word ‘cock’ is both funny and dirty.

**I am not a medical professional, but I know crazy when I see it. I’ve worked in public libraries.

Somebody That I Used To Know, the ICSWSS Remix.

30 Jun

Let’s say that there was a person you used to know – shout out to Gotye – and hadn’t seen in, oh, 15 years or so. You always found this person to be very attractive, and very tall, and very dangerous, and very interesting, but nothing exciting ever happened between you and this person for reasons that now seem so stupid, like you already having a boyfriend or being scared because you’d heard lots of sexy and wild things about this person or being very concerned about maintaining your reputation as a ‘good girl’. You certainly had your chance with this person, if your memory serves you correctly. (Sometimes you worry if it does, because things like the thing about to be described happened so long ago and don’t really happen anymore, unless you count marriage proposals from homeless and/or elderly men.) The way you remember things, this person expressed their desire for you from a payphone at the Long John Silver’s across the street from your dorm room after the two of you watched Master P’s “I’m Bout It”. This person offered to let you wear their leather jacket because you were chilly and said that you could hang on to it for as long as you liked. This person was hurt when you kindly (you hope) but firmly turned them down because you were loyal to your boyfriend, a boy who would grow up to be a confidence-shattering, lie-telling asshole that you will end up moving to a terrible place for.

After turning down the person that you used to know, you’d run into him every so often, usually when you were with some new and awful boyfriend. This person would make it clear that he still held a torch for you, but you’d just sigh and shake your head, thinking you’d always be thin and hot and have funky asymmetrical haircuts and wear brown matte lipstick. Then a time would come when you didn’t see this person anywhere. It was like this person had dropped off the face of the Earth. That was probably lucky for you, since in the 15 years after you last saw this very attractive, very tall, very dangerous, very interesting person, you managed to gain lots of weight and become super neurotic and discover lip gloss.

You recently became aware of this person’s existence again through social media, but were too embarrassed and proud to request his friendship. Based on the pictures you could see, this person was still very attractive, very tall, very dangerous, very interesting, and now, very married. You continue on your way, showing the world all the reasons why you’re single, until you discover that this person not only is very good friends with your very good friends, but has recently become single again. So, you take a deep breath and muster up your courage and send this person a friendly message. This person responds and sends you a friend request, while you panic about all the pictures that show that you are no longer the slim and trim girl with a sleek page-boy bob that he used to know. The friendly messages continue until they suddenly don’t, and you shrug and think “That was nice while it lasted.” You know that there’s a slim chance you might run into this person at some point since he’s very good friends with your very good friends, but you figure you’ll have plenty of time (and plenty of warning) to pull yourself together before that happens.

Your very good friends are very excited to learn that you know the person that you used to know. They think that this person is a wonderful person and that it’d be awfully cute if you and this person were reunited and a spark was still there. Even if the spark has been long extinguished, they think it’d be a very good idea for you and this person to become friends. You remind your very good friends that you don’t look anything like the girl who this person used to have a boo thang for and they tell you that same old lie that looks aren’t the only thing that matter and anyway, you’re still beautiful. Your very good friends want you to come to the beach where they have weekly family barbeques because who knows, maybe this person will be there! They want you to come this Friday, in fact. You ask repeatedly if this person is going to be there, and you’re repeatedly told that this person will probably not, as he has a child to care for and has never been to the beach barbecue before. They will warn you, say your very good friends, when this person will be making an appearance so you can buy a new dress and go to the gym that day and do something with your hair.

Friday rolls around and you wash your hair, but spend too much time playing “The Hunger Games Adventures” as it dries and it grows into an untamable ball of frizz. Eh, but this person won’t be there, so what’s it matter? You decide against the very pretty dress and high heels and opt for your own personal oxymoron: the baggy skinny jeans. You go to the beach with frizz-ball hair, pants that fit like and are about as flattering as a soggy diaper, and some random shirt you found on the floor because you don’t know how to be casual and this is your best attempt. But, you have not a care in the world, because this is a beach barbecue! You’re going to drink wine! You’re going to eat too much! You’re going to play with little children! You’re going to run right smack into the person that you used to know because he’s sitting on the deck!

Because spontaneous combustion is not an option, you spin around in an awkward circle and throw yourself down onto the nearest seat, somehow believing that if you can just stay there all night, you won’t have to face the person that you used to know while looking like an insulting parody of the awkward sixth grade version of yourself, only much, much larger. You come to your senses and eventually greet him with The World’s Stiffest Hug and proceed to ignore him for the rest of the night whilst simultaneously drawing attention to yourself with your loud squawking and generally bizarre behavior. Eventually, the person that you used to know leaves, giving you another hug on his way out, during which you’re certain you were able to hit him in the face with your shoulder. You spend the rest of the evening reliving the night’s humiliation, being teased by your very good friends, and receiving dating advice from adorable 18-year-olds who are far more experienced than you are.

You head home, listening to the classical music station because all of the songs with words in them manage to remind you of the person that you used to know and how you’re absolutely covered in lame sauce. You tell yourself you won’t log on to the social media site to see if maybe the person that you used to know finally responded to your last message by declaring that he still thinks you’re beautiful and would still let you wear his leather jacket for as long as you liked and wants to know why you were so shy but admits that he found the bits of your loud conversations that he did hear to be hilarious, but you do, and you have no new messages.

So you throw your poopie diaper jeans on the floor in anger, wishing you had bought them a size smaller, and hoping that you can shrink them in the dryer. You go to bed without doing anything with your frizzy hair and are proud of not crying one single tear about how socially inept you are, until you wake up the next day and relay the pitiful tale to a friend all the while salty discharge leaks from your eyeballs. After the crying subsides, you find the one bright spot in yet another murky tale from your life: you now have something to write about for your blog that has already significantly dropped in popularity since its inception only three days ago, which is sort of a good thing, as it practically guarantees that the person that you used to know will never read this entry.

Until you find out he does.