Saturday, December 29, 2007

Meeting Bachelor #1

Yesterday was my first "meeting"-date with Bachelor #1 and, as promised, a blog update is due. As I sit here trying to figure out what to write, I am faced with questions I often ask myself when blogging about dating....especially when I've invited a "date" to read said blog.

-- What's the line between honesty and tackiness in discussing what is going on in our personal lives? Do we really want to reveal exactly what we're thinking? Doesn't that take away some of the mystery? What is too private?

For these reasons, I think I will remain somewhat vague in my description of this first meeting, and even rethink blogging about dating at all. It was a fun motivator and did help me find some brave, playful souls that were willing to humor me, but I might put this game to rest....or at least find a more private way to do it! ;-)

But let's get back to Bachelor #1.

First of all, Bachelor #1 is a very rare find on I don't mean to imply is only full of rif-raf (after all, I am on there!), but there are quite a few people that border on the creepy side. Being the discriminating, picky person I am, I cut through that pretty quickly and narrow down to the cream of the crop.

B#1 has a couple of habits potential dates should be aware of. People that are around him, may have difficulty feeling anything. And I also hear he puts people to sleep. However, being an anesthesiologist, I'm sure he could also take away any pain. This really could be handy, especially in old age, so B#1 scores points!

Our first "meeting" was at Jason's Deli for lunch and we had no trouble recognizing each other. We both agreed that we look a lot like our photos. Every man that I've talked to about online dating has expressed disappointment that what you see in photos is often very different from what you get in person. Though most of the guys I've met have looked like their photos, I'll admit that some have had irritating voices (think "Piglet" from Winnie the Pooh), mannerisms (think "Jack" from Will and Grace), or are lacking in basic social graces (think "Peter" from Family Guy). I'm happy to report that B#1 scored well in all categories.

Normally, I restrict a "match meeting" to a weekday lunch in order to keep it short. Since I was still on vacation yesterday, with no demands on my time, B#1 and I ended up talking for 3 hours! As he has learned, I can talk about relationships and dating non-stop! We talked a lot about attitudes about life and love and it turns out, I think we are very similar in our philosophies.

Overall, I'd say B#1 is a great catch. He was aware (without my even telling him) that I prefer "meetings" to "dates", and that I probably have some baggage to deal with before getting into a relationship. We both agreed, it would be nice to have another "meeting" when I get back from my race in Phoenix next month. I'm not sure if a romance could rarely does with me...but I have no doubt that B#1 would be a good person to have as a friend. I'd rate this match experience a definite success!

Friday, December 21, 2007

Do Enough Pretend Boyfriends Add Up to a Real One?

The date is set. Bachelor #1 and I are going to have coffee or lunch after Christmas. I'm letting other people read my blog, but I need at least another month before I meet anyone else. I don't do the "multi-dating" thing well.

I'm getting a few potential players for the next round of the "Internet Dating Game". I think I've gotten 3 people that have kidded me about my own spelling errors so I am tempted now to go through all my blog entries and do a spell-check! But, I like someone that teases, so maybe I won't bother. Plus points for caring enough to read. Tease away!

I have pretty much wasted the last two days on Laptop Guy. Some of these guys are doing very well with creativity points and it's feeding right into my addictive email habits. Meanwhile, I haven't written a single Christmas Card, so I think I'm going to have to step away from the computer and focus on Christmas!

I've determined that one of the reasons I don't fall in love is not because there aren't enough good guys out's because there are too many. I already have about 5 "pretend" boyfriends. They go out with me and we commiserate and compare notes about the single life. We flirt and joke and advise each other on the idiosyncrasies of the opposite sex. Pretend boyfriends are great because

1) you can have as many as you want
2) you never worry about breaking up
3) they're a lot less complicated than "real" boyfriends

I'm thinking rather than finding love, it's more likely I'll add a few more "pretend boyfriends" to my dance card. Even with my very scientific point system, it's hard for me to choose just one person.




Thursday, December 20, 2007

Bachelor #1

Ah....vacation at last! My subscription, along with the accompanying email had become quite a distraction the last few days at work. I admit to a moment of embarrassment when a colleague came by only to find me purusing the site, checking out profiles. But I played it cool... pretended it was work related. just doing a little research... checking out the user-friendliness of the Website....

OK, about my online dating game. I was exited about it on the first day. It was the perfect opportunity to winnow out the 99% of the population that I didn't want to date anyway. I knowingly sent people to my blog because I knew they would be turned off. I mean first a guy takes the risk to email me, then I ask him to jump through hoops and play a dating game so that maybe he'll win a date in a month with someone that's obviously "love-challenged" and...the real will all get blogged about.... yeah, I don't think there's too much incentive going on there. Conveniently, this strategy would mean I rarely would have to write one of those uncomfortable, "I'm not interested" emails. I let them figure out that they're not interested.

But on the very first day I did get a guy that was spunky enough to want to play. Though I didn't really plan to reveal this, my thought was that ANYONE that had the confidence to be up for the game, despite my admissions that I'd be blogging about it, would score enough points with me that I'd put them first on my priority list.

Bachelor #1 scored big time in all the other categories, too, with the exception of distance.

* Age...exactly the same as me! Can't get better than that!

* Distance...Denver. Well, this one's a little iffy. A little far for a workday lunch, but not far enough to be out of the question.

* Creativity...Oh Yeah. Lots of points in this category. That's especially impressive for someone that doesn't know me. I've determined that "sense of humor" is on my "must have" list.

* Looks...He's got the requisite good-looking photos, especially the smile.

* Intelligence...I haven't notice a single misspelling in his communication (come to think of it, I'd better spell-check my own profile!) More than spelling, though, he has a style that shows he's up for some mental sparring.

* Good Father....Both his profile and his photos show that kids and family are important to him. I'm not looking for a father for my kids. But I want someone that has experienced that...that understands and feels that same unconditional love you can only get by being a parent.

So I sort of hit paydirt on the first day. I haven't been sending any other match people to my blog. If I already found someone with high points and he's willing to meet me, I should just go for it, right?

Well, as a matter of fact, Bachelor #1 did ask me for coffee, and I played my usual, "I'm too busy" card. The truth is I have been really, really busy. But I know it's also the I-don't-really-want-to-have-a-first-meeting-date procrastination. I just do not like being thrust into a "date". I know it's always the butterflies, no giddy infatuation, no chemistry. My chemicals seem to have all fizzled out and I end up feeling bad. Sometimes its easier to just stay behind the computer and fantasize that this might be "the one' than face a real person.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Let the Dating Games Begin

I have reached a high-point in my life. I'm serious! I'm even envious of me...great family, friends, health, job. I can't remember another time when I felt so worry-free. But it's goal setting time, and the one thing that is lacking in my life is romance. I just can't seem to fall in love. I've tried all the different avenues for meeting people from single's events to doing nothing (they say the less you look, the more likely you are to find love). Well, so far, whether I'm looking or not, I haven't found it. I have found a lot of fun, flirty, guy-friends, and that is fulfilling to a point, but I want the real deal....those illusive butterflies...that can't-wait-to-kiss-you-want-to-spend-every-minute-with-you madness. Am I destined to never have that again?

Here are some of the various excuses and rationalizations explaining why I never seem to fall in love:

1) I'm unrealistically picky. I even nix guys that are "too good-looking".
2) I've never gotten over my post-divorce rebound guy.
3) I don't have time.
4) I'm a Cybersexual (This is a word I use to explain my love for Laptop Guy).
5) I hate dating "chit-chat" (This time I'll reveal TMI before we even meet.)
6) I don't want to give up my flirty "pretend" boyfriends.
7) Guys my age are often discouragingly unappealing.
8) I do not like to deal with rejection...either giving it or getting it.
9) The guys I'm attracted to are those that are the most unavailable.
10) I hear about friends' boyfriends and realize being single's not so bad.

Some of the excuses are lame. Some are valid. But I need a challenge for 2008 so here it is. I am vowing here and now, with the internet world as my witness (which doesn't mean too much since not that many people read my blog) that I WILL fall in love in 2008. And when I make a goal, I become obsessive about it. I have lists, and little milestones, I read books and play games where I give myself "points" for doing things that move me closer to meeting my goals. A bit weird, but that's me. (Maybe I should add "I'm too weird" to my list of why I don't fall in love.)

So as part of my "Love Goal", yesterday I signed up for Match.Com's "6-month guarantee" program. This means I have to keep my profile public and respond or email at least 5 new guys a month. I'm also going to have a personal goal to meet at least 1 new guy for a "meeting/date" a month.

Now I really don't like online dating for a variety of reasons (I won't bore you with another list), but in order to make this fun, I've decided that each month I will have a little game to figure out who my date is going to be. Then I'll give the date a public evaluation via blog. I figure it will kind of be like "The Bachelor" but in blog-format. (Yes, I am the Bachelorette...please no snickers from my audience.) I'm going to be up-front with my potential dates and let them read my blog. I only want to go out with someone gutsy enough to risk getting a public "date evaluation".

I suspect that such a game will turn off a lot of potential dates. That doesn't bother me because, as we've established, I don't like dating anyway. This will help me find someone that's just crazy enough to humor me with my silly games. Such a man may not exist, but if he does, he'll at least score some points in my love game!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

My Beautiful Daughter

My beautiful daughter, a dream come true
A love so strong that only grew
Each tiny movement, each precious coo
My perfect baby, I so love you

A little girl, so quiet and smart
You know the way to melt my heart
Talent in all, both science and art
From others you are set apart

A stubborn teen, a will so strong
A mind of your own, the child gone
We need to teach you right from wrong
Just wishing we we would get along

Words of anger, words of fear
Not the words I longed to hear
Wishing it would all be clear
Wanting you to know I'm here

My lovely daughter, almost grown
You wanted to be all on your own
I didn't know you were so alone
What to say? I wish I'd known

I only know my love was true
Every moment that we went through
Prouder than you ever knew
My grown-up daughter, I so love you

50 Years - A Poem for my parents

A lavendar-clad beauty catches his glance
He meets her, they talk, she flirts, they dance

Youth, thrills, excitement and dreams
Commitment and love, all easy it seems

Years pass quickly for this husband and wife
Four children, three moves, so busy with life

Blessings are plenty, this family is rich
Children grow up, each finding his niche

Mid-life strikes fast and nothing's the same
Love's not so easy. Who blew out the flame?

Love isn't all good. It isn't all fun.
Grief strikes intensely, the loss of a son.

In good times or bad, their marriage vows read
Life's surprises unknown at the time they were wed

Pride, accomplishments, disappointments, or pain
Through each curvy bend, they always remain

Love's not about beauty. It's not about lust
It's about a lifetime of memories, a lifetime of trust

Real love must endure all kinds of tears
Real love is my parents the past fifty years

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Love Dust

It's New Year's morning and my daughter and her boyfriend stop by my house unexpectedly, a look of excitement on their faces. Megan holds out her hand and shows me her new diamond ring. They are giddy with love, wanting to tell me the details of the proposal and plans for the wedding that she's been imagining for the past 5 years.

I see their excitement and wish somehow I could capture their feelings... love dust stored in a bottle, to be sprinkled whenever times are hard. I want Megan to remember exactly how she feels as they look at each other with playful happiness. They are naive and young, blissfully ignorant of the challenges that marriage can bring.

"Love dust? We'll never need that! Our love will always be this strong!” Megan would think to herself.

Little does she know.

There will be the times when he'll repeat that same story to every new acquaintance. It was so entertaining when she'd first heard it and she'd encouraged him to tell the story again and again. But by year 10, the story will have become increasingly exaggerated and she'll roll her eyes, thinking, "When did he become so full of shit?" Time for a little love dust.

There will be an Anniversary when she's exhausted yet still finds time to make a surprise romantic dinner only to learn that he's gone out with the guys. He'll come home tipsy, thinking sex will make things all better, not realizing that the only thing that can make things better is to relive that day where instead he comes home and showers her with praise and attention, claiming he'd never tasted anything quite so delicious. She won't be able to go back in time, but she'd have the love dust and that would make it better.

There will be days she feels overwhelmed by responsibilities, convinced that she does 99% of the work, taking care of the kids, the house, her job, the pets, and he can't even bother to pick up his dirty shorts? And what is that smell? She thinks maybe she could have her own room and they could just use the bedroom for romantic encounters. It's not like they don't love each other, it's just that she needs her girly space! She could sprinkle a little love dust around the room on those occasions.

There will be a time she finds herself attracted to someone else, knowing she'd never, ever cheat, but enjoying his attention. She'd dress a little nicer and check the mirror more often and feel a thrill when he laughs at her jokes. Then she'll see her husband enjoying a similar relationship with another woman and be very tempted to claw that bitch’s eyes out. She'd need the love dust then, though she might be reluctant to use it, afraid that it might work on the wrong person!

There will be days she is angry and disenchanted, thinking life would be so much easier if she didn't have to constantly compromise. She'll remember her parents divorce, barely a harsh word spoken, not knowing the devastating heartache from which she was sheltered. She'll think, "Divorce is not so bad. It happens all the time, and everyone is just fine." Those are the days I'd want her to sprinkle on a heap of the love dust, realizing divorce is, in fact, “so bad”. Love dust is such a better remedy when there are problems.

On her 50th Anniversary, when she's dancing with her husband, she'll think of all the times over the years when she needed her dust. She may want to check her bottle, wondering if it’s almost empty. She'll be surprised to find that, in fact, the bottle is overflowing, for every time the dust was used, it came back ten-fold, unbeknownst to her.

As I sort through my memorabilia, three years post-divorce, I find a dried rose, given to me by Megan's father many years ago. I toy with the idea of grinding it and bottling it as her love dust, but I realize it wouldn't be her dust, but mine. I find that even my love dust has power...not to eliminate grief and sadness, but to remind me that my love was real. I struggle to decide whether or not to part with my love dust, not wanting to let go of the little I have. Then I look at my daughter and her brothers and I know I don't need the rose. I’ve been blessed with an infinite amount of precious love dust. I wish her the same.