Online Dating: A Nashville Woman’s Perspective

Women’s biggest fear in online dating is that they will be harmed in some way, that they aren’t safe. Men’s biggest fear in online dating is that their date will be fat.

~astute observation made by someone whose name I cannot recall

In the interest of fairness regarding Wednesday’s post, my last bout of online dating resulted in dates with five very nice gentlemen. It didn’t seem that any of them cared about my fat although one of them did dump me right after he asked for a second date.  It was my favorite way to get dumped, though!  He explained that he had a great time, that he wanted to do it again, and asked if he was tall enough for me.  I enthusiastically replied with all positive answers and then a few days later when I texted him, he wrote back, “Oh.  Hey, girl.”

If ever I find myself on the dumpee end of a budding one-date relationship, I’m using that! “Oh. Hey, dude”.  Effective, ain’t it?

Y’all, I don’t even know why I thought I wanted to date men right now. I feel like I’m an amazing person, not in an ego way, but in the way that I’ve worked hard to have a nice life, a good attitude, joy, and peace. That makes me pretty special, at least to me, because I’m as close to the person I want to be as I’ll ever get. Then something gets squirrely and I find myself hopeful with a dash of wild hair and hop online to peruse my selections, like in a grocery store aisle.  Most of what I see is a huge disappointment.  I mean, I’m always going to select Vlasic pickles over some generic wimpy-looking pickle, but at least in Kroger there are entire shelves devoted to the many variants of the Vlasic pickle and I can make my selections accordingly. In Nashville, the men selections are becoming increasingly the same, the wimpy-looking generic pickle, and those generic pickles are a pretty pathetic substitute for my really nice life full of joy and peace and contentment.

I’d like to paint a picture for those of you who have never online dated but are curious about it. I feel like doing some quick math here will demonstrate my point.

Conservatively speaking, I’ve swiped either yes or no on about 1,000 men. I’d say that 88.2% of those men’s profiles said one (not more) of the following:

  • *crickets*
  • I’m just me.
  • If you want to know anything, just ask.
  • I’m fluent in sarcasm.
  • I work hard and play hard.
  • I’m looking for my partner in crime.
  • Oh, and add five years to my age.
  • Facebook made my age younger than it really is and I can’t change it.
  • Looking for spontaneous and adventurous (note: this means hookup).

You are probably thinking, “I see nothing inherently wrong with any of those sentences.” I would agree except our reasonable math here will explain my dilemma.  88.2% of that 1,000 equals  882 men, which leaves 118 men who did not type out one of the above phrases.  Or non-phrases if we are being picky.  When you read the same phrases 882 times, you begin to see a pattern, and I’d venture to say it becomes tiresome after reading it the first 200 times.

Now, of those 1,000 men, roughly 60% of them are in Nashville to pursue some kind of career in music, or if not career, then at least fame. That means that they post country music rock star pictures of themselves on a mountain with their thumbs hooked in the pockets of their tight Buckle jeans and wearing hemp choker necklaces, usually with a hat of some sort pulled low over their eyes which are looking pensively off into the distance.  Actually, that’s picture one. Picture two involves the instrument or mic of their choice and also usually involves someone’s arm in the right-hand corner raised up with a lighter.  The amount of fame increases the amount of arms.  Note I said fame, not skill.  To continue our math, and to make it easy, let’s say that of those 118 men left who wrote more than one original complete sentence, 60% of them are pursuing some sort of music fame.  That is 71 men.

It is relevant to note here that I will never date a musician. I have a thousand reasons for that, not least of which is the significant other is so far down on the priority list, after fame and fans and instruments, and groupies, and roadies and so on, that there might as well not be a significant other.  So my pool of potentials now drops from 118 to 47.

Going back to our original numbers, I’d guess that 30% of the men online are either A) married (you can tell by the lack of photos or the lack of non-dog pictures) or B) in a polyamory relationship (most of them say their wives are okay with it, but call me skeptical.) I, for one, don’t share.  No thanks.  So using our math skillz, let’s say 30% of the remaining 47 men are not available for a single monogamous relationship.  That leaves us with 33 men.

Now we must factor out my dealbreakers:

  • If I can’t see your eyes, I swipe no
  • If your name is Fred, I swipe no
  • If you have used every available filter readily available to you so that all of your pictures have BEER THIRTY emblazoned on the bottom, I swipe no
  • If you are an atheist, I swipe no
  • If you say your children are your entire world, I swipe no because clearly there is no room for anyone else in your life
  • If you say that at 50 you are hopeful to still start a family, I swipe no

I forgot to add in the scammers, all of which claim to be military men who have been stationed in a foreign country, because everyone knows that all lonely, sad, single women are patriots who cannot wait to send their money to the Nicaraguan claiming to be Army in Lebanon. For the sake of easy math, let’s combine them in with all of the above and give that group a conservative percentage of 20.  That leaves me with 27 men from whom I can make my pickle selections, and 20 of them are terrified that their dates will be fat.  So I got seven, five of whom I had at least one date with.  And of those five, I am terribly afraid to report that not one of them is my person for one reason or another.  Every single one of them lovely, a Claussen at the very least, but not mine.  And typical for my experiences with online dating.

The funny part of me wants to say, “I’ll just move to Alaska where there are .2 women for every 100 men and I’ll be wildly popular!” But the real part of me wants to say, “You know what? I’m okay.  I’m happy.  I’ve worked hard to be this person and I like her. I like her friends.  I like her family, and mostly I like her life.  So thanks, generic pickle, but I’ll wait on my Vlasic because a squishy wimpy soggy pickle is no substitute for the real thing, and honestly, I’m pretty happy with this bowl of olives that is my current life right here in front of me that includes no pickle at all.”

I Don’t Know Why I Get So Hopeful

I used to work with a man who always had a really great tan. He had pretty teeth, too, and he was tall and he did a bunch of rodeo riding in his spare time.  The first time I met him he wore the Wranglers that only true cowboys can pull off, a belt buckle he’d won from one of his rodeo gigs and some boots, the good kind, the shit-kicker kind.  I nearly passed out when we first came face-to-face because although I had talked on the business phone with him for years, and although I’d heard he was pretty, I was unprepared for all of that beauty housed in one man.  Watching him walk across the room towards me made my ovaries whimper and I’m pretty sure another whimper flew out of my mouth, but I said “excuse me” like I had just burped and I’m pretty sure he didn’t know.

During that meeting he called me “baby” once. I think it was an accident but I still remember it like it just happened.

A few years later, when Boss and I changed companies, hot cowboy moved to Nashville to work with us in our new office and I got to see him every day. At first I walked around the office with my stomach sucked in all the time and I coiffed my hair into spectacular perfection every morning.  After a few months, though, I realized that hot cowboy was still hot but only until he opened his mouth to say something and then somehow the hotness piggybacked out on his words and left him.  He was still cute but I no longer religiously engaged my core, and some days I put my hair in a ponytail.  That’s the thing about getting to know people.  The insides don’t always match the outsides.  He was good in motion if the motions you got to see were the cattle roping and the bowlegged swagger across a room, but he was no Dammit Todd.  The motions stopped there.

That year we had a big old project out in the desert, and I was slated to pick him up from the airport after he had flown out to Utah for an airport inspection. He had a cocktail or two on the ride home so was pretty free with his words, and he told me that his girlfriend thought I was pretty, that he did, too, and that perhaps we should try this thing out called a “threesome.”  After I finished wheezing with mirth, I said, “no thanks” and dropped him off at his car.  Nothing was ever said again and I was relieved.  I chalked it up to the alcohol and then made it a point to really pook my stomach out whilst walking around the office, and I wadded my hair in an unflattering mini-donut bun often.

Eventually Cowboy and I left that company and moved on to other life adventures. I fielded a couple of calls from Cowboy when he needed something related to the work we used to do, which was unique.  He also let me know that he married a woman who owns a ranch and I was pleased for him as his work was always just a means to feed and keep show ponies.  This was quite a few years ago and there was never again a whisper of suggestive talk, so I never worried about it again.

That’ll learn me.

This is a transcript of our last phone conversation, sometime last year.

Cowboy: Hey, Jimmie.

Jimmie: Hey, Cowboy! What’s up?

Cowboy: I’m in New Orleans, by myself, and its lonely here.

Jimmie: <cluing in right away, because I have gone down this road before with at least more than one online dater> That’s too bad.  You should call your wife.

Cowboy: She’s boring.

Jimmie: Then don’t be boring when you talk to her. I’ll talk to you later.

Cowboy: Wait, I have a real question, an important one.

Jimmie: Yes?

Cowboy:  Why did we never have sex?

Jimmie: Cowboy, no.  I’m not talking about this with you.

Cowboy: But why didn’t we?  I always wanted to.

Jimmie: We worked together!  And now you are married, so later.

Cowboy: I’d still really like to see what you and I would be like.

Jimmie: *crickets*

Cowboy: It’s kind of hot to think about, right?

Jimmie: *crickets*

Cowboy: I’m kind of hot thinking about it right now, actually.  I’m going to take my pants-

Jimmie: <firmly presses end button on cell phone><blocks number>

Why is it that I forget these things? Why do I get hopeful that men will be different as time passes?  Why do I sign up for online dating, for crying out loud? It has never, not ever, been my best idea.

For you reading pleasure, below are some messages I received in my last go round of hopefulness.

Boy 1: Hey.

Jimmie: *crickets*

 

Boy 2: Hey.

Jimmie: *crickets*

 

Boy 3: Hey.

Jimmie: *crickets*

 

Boy 4: Hey, how r u?

Jimmie: <contemplates answering because thinking this is as good at its going to get but *crickets*>

 

Boy 5: wyd?

Jimmie: I don’t even rate a full sentence?

Boy 5: *crickets*

 

Boy 6: BBC?

Jimmie: What is BBC?

Boy 6: Big Black Co-

Jimmie: <firmly presses the delete key>

 

Boy 7: Have you ever made love all night long?

Jimmie: Did you read my profile?  Let’s level the playing field here.  I’m celibate until I get married.  Do you want to talk to me now?

Boy 7: *crickets*

 

Boy 8: Hey.

Jimmie: *crickets*

 

Boy 9: Hi. I like your profile.  How are you today?  Would you like to email?

Jimmie: Praise the Lord, yes!  I love full sentences!  This is so great!  Yes, how are you?!

Boy 9: blah, blah, blah, pretty, blah, blah, I like travel, poo-tee-weet, blargh

Jimmie: ditto

Boy 9: Before we go much further, I do have a question.  I don’t want to waste your time.  Do you like dominant men?

Jimmie: Dominant men?  Did you just step into the sex talk because I have to tell you, I’m celibate until I marry and if you can’t deal, we can stop this train right here.

Boy 9: No, this has nothing to do with sex. I’m just dominant in every way.

Jimmie: Like, for the Lord?  Like the head of the household thing?  I may not be getting this.

Boy 9: Well, I’ll give you an example.  If we are at a restaurant and you have to go to the bathroom, you’d ask my permission first.

Jimmie: <wheeze> Seriously?

Boy 9: Yes.

Jimmie: <wheeze> So if I needed shoes, I’d have to ask permission to buy them?

Boy 9: Yes.

Jimmie: <wheeze> <snort> <much eye rolling> I feel like you expect me to be flattered here because I seem “worthy,” but I think perhaps I’d be a little too spunky for you. I’ve lived alone a long time and I pretty much do what I want.  I don’t think I’d be able to never question a decision or live without having a voice or worry about my needs being met.

Boy 9: Those things can happen.

Jimmie: Successfully? Can your partner be successful in those things?

Boy 9: Not really.

Jimmie: Thanks, but no thanks. That is no life for me.

Boy 9:  I would be happy to train you.

Jimmie: <in the throes of apoplexy> <eye roll so hard it causes a sprain> No, thank you. I’m not interested.

Boy 9: If you change your mind, let me know.  It’s never to late to learn something new.

Y’all. To late.  TO late.  Oh, hell no.

Jimmie: Look, here’s how I see this going down.  You’d “instruct” me in something and you’d use improper grammar.  I can’t deal with that. I’d have no choice but correct you.  In turn I’m guessing you’d feel the need to “punish” me for speaking “without permission” and then I’m sorry, but I’d have no choice but to beat the shit out of you with a frying pan.  Those are my rules.  Do you think you can live with that?

This will shock you guys, truly, but this is what he said to me:

Boy 9: *crickets*

 

Somebody send me the link to this one when I sign up for some online dating thing next year. This one will work, too. Please and thank you.

Serves Me Right

A couple of weeks ago I was driving my senior citizens in our big fifteen-passenger bus (we have upgraded from van to bus, and it’s a hoss) to dinner, and when I stopped at a red light I got out my lipstick.

“You never know when you are going to meet the love of your life,” I said as I caked it on. Pink is a good color for me.

I didn’t think another thing about it because we were headed to Tenn16 over in East Nashville which everyone knows if full of hipsters wearing skinny jeans, and everyone knows I am not going to find myself in a relationship with a man who wears skinny jeans. Ever.  (God, hear me on this.)  During dinner I noticed that Jan, me in thirty years, was talking to a man at the bar.  Since I like to make new friends in bars and restaurants my own self, I thought nothing of that either.

Later, after food was consumed and plates were cleared, Jan got out her lipstick and caked it on. Mauve is a good color for her.  She motioned for me to do the same and once that chore was accomplished, she invited me down to her end of the table.

“Jimmie,” she said, “I have someone I want you to meet. That man behind me at the bar?  His name is Jerry.  I went to high school with him and while I’m furious with him for aging better than me, I want you to meet him.  Here’s what I think I’m going to say:  This is Jimmie. She’s looking for a hookup.  Are you interested in going out with her?”

Y’all. Y’all!  Jerry is 70 years old.* Open up that floor and swallow me whole.  I’ve got to keep my mouth shut around Jan.

In other related-but-not-really news, I recently lost my driver’s license in Key West. This story would be far more exciting if I were able to tell you that I lost it in the bar or on the beach, but alas, I believe I lost it in the grocery store buying something boring like cheese. Anyway, I had to go through TSA twice with no ID of any kind and unless you count a pat down so thorough I felt like I needed a cigarette after, it was not a pleasant experience.  Getting a new license was not a pleasant experience either but I was rewarded with a new license photo that makes me look like a melted piece of cheese (apropos, no?).  Also, it looks like every chin I ever had in my life showed up for that photo.  I suppose that is what I get for losing my license, although I feel good about replacing it so soon because I can speed again.  Was terrified to do that without one.

In final related news (not really), in our last blogging episode I threw my dear sister, Martie, under the bus. In retaliation, she threw me under the bus and in a display of her pipes and creativity, she wrote me a song.

Please enjoy her non-warbling-nor-screeching tune written rightfully at my expense. For the record, I feel about Willie Nelson much like I do about Patsy Cline.

In Which Martie Throws Me Under The Bus; Or, A Song By Martie

Ain’t we great? That is some sisterly love right there.

*I feel I should defend myself here – while I’m not opposed to an older man, I think maybe five years is my limit. Seven, tops. (God, hear me on this.) I’d like for our wrinkling pattern to be roughly the same.

You, Too, Can Look As Good As All This

Katniss and I were having lunch the other day and she said, “I went to lunch with a girl in my office last week and Jimmie, I missed you. We went to Blaze and we ordered our pizzas and she ate three pieces and claimed she was stuffed.  Just crammed to the gills.  Couldn’t eat another bite or she’d be sick.  I was on piece four, heading for piece five and I felt so guilty for eating it all that I quit.  Please don’t make me do that again.”

Katniss does not have to worry. I will eat a whole Blaze pizza* and not feel one bit bad about it.  Besides, Iman, you know her, she’s the gorgeous angular, exotic toothpick widow of David Bowie, said that older women should maintain an extra five or ten pounds to keep our faces looking young.  That extra bit of fat plumps out the wrinkles, see, and keeps us from drooping into our later years.  I feel like if five or ten pounds is enough for Iman with her gorgeous cheekbones, then I need to go a step further with my lesser cheekbones.  Maybe more like twenty-five or thirty pounds, yeah?  I’m just doing my part to look young, to inspire all these kids to embrace aging with relish.

*For the record, Blaze pizzas are created for single individuals and are as thin as a Kleenex. They are meant to be eaten in one sitting because they are small and taste terrible when they get cold.

Speaking of looking young and beauty routines, I thought I’d share some of my tips and secrets with you today. I turned 44 a month or so ago and when I tell people, they’ve often said, “Well, you barely look over 43 and a half, what’s your secret?”  I’ll tell you.

Firstly, I maintain a youthful exuberance with the wavy, loose curls I like to iron into my hair. Ideally you’ll use a 1.5 – 2 inch barrel Hot Tools curling iron because it can heat up to 400 degrees in a matter of moments. This really puts a good scald on your hair which is necessary for getting a good curl.  If you can smell the heat, it’s hot enough.  In reality, I used to use the ideal 1.5 – 2 inch barrel Hot Tools curling iron but it slipped off my hair one day and onto my shoulder.  The 400-degree barrel gave me a nice oblong blistered burn that looked like a bubbled up hickey, and that really ticked me off because not only am I celibate for what seems like FOREVER, but I got a hickey from a curling iron and not a hot man. In retaliation I whacked the 1.5 – 2 inch barrel over and over against the counter whilst cursing like Andrew Dice Clay and the end result was this:

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Now I use the 1-inch barrel Hot Tools curling iron that also heats up to 400 degrees that had been lounging in the bathroom cabinet for a year or two because the curls it makes are too tight for my liking. You can still reach the youthful exuberant look with this wand, though, as evidenced here:

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Once I get my coif fluffed to an appropriate fullness, I begin work on my eyes. The eyes really tell the story of your aging, so you want to take very good care of them.  Ideally you will have a regimen than includes delicately patting ludicrously expensive eye cream under your eyes morning and night, and you will use a gentle cleanser, equally ludicrously expensive, to remove any makeup you have caked on in an effort to make your eyelashes look like caterpillars. I’m on board with that except for the part where I cannot afford ludicrously expensive anything.  I can afford Avon makeup remover which is actually very good, so that is what I use until I run out and realize that I forgot to reorder and then I rummage in my cabinets until I find something else that will work.  Behold:

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And this is how well it works. Behold:

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Ain’t that awesome? I’m down to the bottom of the jar now so I have to stick my longest finger down in it and scrape some out which I then smear on my eyes, squishing it all around until the mascara finally releases its spidery death grip on my lashes and gets washed off with a very thin washcloth which has permanent mascara stains.  Works great! I think the fat from the coconut oil and the potential allergy issues I could have from the amount of cat fur in my house (behold below) keep my eyes nice and puffy which as we read earlier, keeps the wrinkles from wrinkling which makes me look youthful!

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Once I have performed all beauty ablutions, I head to the closet to pick my clothing for the day. I told you once that I like to wear wafty, gauzy, floaty things because they make me look like a calm and serene type person. This remains true. I also believe that they make me appear younger.  No “good looking” severely cut blazers for me. No skin tight pencil skirts with fitted shirts that emphasize my (not) tiny waist and (not) bubbly bum.  I like stuff that doesn’t really touch me.  Ideally.  In reality, it turns out that wafty, gauzy, floaty things make me look pregnant as proven by the eight-year-old girl who caught me talking to her eight-year-old boyfriend at church.

“Hi, Lee,” she said as she pulled his arm into hers. “Hi,” she said to me with a squinched up mouth.  “We need to go, Lee,” she said as she dragged him off, and as she sashayed away she flung over her shoulder, “That dress makes you look pregnant.”

Well, at least I look young enough to be pregnant.

Speaking of stuff I like and use, my go to brands are below. These are the things I will spend ludicrous amounts of money on, no matter how little money I actually have:

  • Lancome Eyelash Primer – Oh my crackers, this stuff is expensive but it WORKS!
  • Benefit Mascara, Black – Talk about tar but this mascara will give you the best spidery lashes in the world!
  • Clinique Chubby Stick, Mightiest Maraschino – I wore this lipstick the other day and a girl at work said, “Wow, you look edgy. Kind of bitchy. I wouldn’t mess with you at all!” Thank you, my work here is done.
  • A Hair in My Biscuit’s Hot/Cold Eye Mask – Martie makes these and I keep one in the freezer at all times. When you have slept in cat fur all night (Thank you, Murphy) or eaten too much salt (Thank you, anything more than one grain) or stayed up too late watching Downton Abbey (Thank you, Amazon Prime), you’ll want one.
  • Flax clothing – Generously sized so that when I purchase a medium and it floats around me, I feel dainty and small. This I love because the only other way I’d ever feel dainty and small was if I had lunch next to Shaquille O’Neal.

I think this whole list screams youthful, don’t you? I mean, isn’t that what youthful really means?  Very poor decisions regarding things that really do matter and very expensive decisions on things that do not? Don’t care.  I love my caterpillar eyelashes.

image2

Don’t look a minute over 43, do I? Puffy eyes and all.

 

Conversations With Joe

You guys remember Joe, right? Joe has been a long time member of my Supper Club at Fifty Forward and honestly, he provides me with most of the fun stories I have even though I almost never share them here. He is a lifelong bachelor and you wonder when you meet him if that is by choice or circumstance. What I mean by that is he’s sneaky. He will begin a conversation with you in a myriad of ways:

Jimmie, I watched a show on tv the other day and did you know that they inject corn with high fructose corn syrup? It’s true, they do. The guy said that the only time you should ever eat corn is if you grow it yourself.

Hey Jimmie, have you ever been to Canada? I have. We went to that part that is so rich you need to have green blood to afford a hotel there.

I’m giving up refined sugar. Unless it’s a sorbet. I will eat some sorbet but I won’t eat refined sugar. It’s bad for you.

Jimmie, what’s a starch? (This one is asked in the middle of dinner when he hasn’t spoken for twenty minutes because he’s intent on his hamburger and fries – his favorite meal. Once he asks and gets an answer he goes back to his burger and never brings it up again.)

It’s in Banff Springs! (When you ask him “What?” he replies, “That hotel in Canada? The one that is in the rich part? It’s in Banff Springs. We were there.)

You know what that guy said, he said that if you want to give someone cancer you should send them to chemo. (At this point I was no longer really tracking because it was the third time he mentioned it, but I suspect this was another tidbit from the guy on the tv show he recently watched.)

After a couple of hours of conversation with Joe, you find yourself wondering if he’s all there. He drives just fine and always has money to pay for dinner and it is clear that he held down a steady job for many years so that he could retire in relative comfort, but you wonder if maybe he has a benefactor of some sort or a guardian who stays in the shadows. It isn’t until he pops off with something like the below that you see how sneaky he really is:

Jimmie, I would never finance a car. You should never buy a car that has a payment larger than your rent. People who do that are just showing off and the amount they pay in interest could be invested into a 401(k) and they could increase their retirement income by 7.5%. That could mean a higher grocery budget every week and people later in life need to pay attention to these things.

And you look at him in utter astonishment because in the five years you’ve been doing this, you never suspected that underneath the wavy eye and the shuffling feet and the nearly incoherent Kroger rant he subjected you to two years ago for the sum total of three hours, Joe is a pretty smart guy. Not even pretty smart, but very smart as in he paid cash for his car AND his house and lives debt free today. Damn. Caught me off guard, that one.

I leave you with one final Joe conversation.

“Joe,” I asked, “did you ever have a girlfriend that got away?”

“Oh, yeah,” he said, “several of them. And some of them I had to kick away. Bad news.”

I LOVE THESE PEOPLE!

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Here’s The Truth Of It

Back last year Woney and I were having a conversation about taking a trip.  Like, last year in May as we were training for and completing a half marathon.

“We,” I wheezed, “are going,” <wheeze> “on a cruise,” <wheeze> “right?”

<Wheeze> “Yes, because,” <wheeze> “I hate being,” <wheeze> “cold,” wheezed Woney. 

“I want to go,” breezed Squash as she sped past us.

“Me,” <wheeze> “too,” wheezed Nurse Bananahammock. 

Wheeze.

Planning that trip pretty much got us through those 13 miles, and as we sipped celebratory cocktails that evening, we nailed down the details for a cruise nine months out.  That was where this picture was taken and the base line for the story I wanted to tell.  Wanted.  Not want. 

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Now that I’ve been wishy washy, I’m going to tell the original story I wanted to tell because everyone abhors a tease, but before any of you who will soon be perched at your desk with your mouth hanging open, kind of gaping at the words that pour forth from my fingers, fires off a salvo to me tell me how you’ll never read me again because you cannot believe I’d say something so pervy, I’ll remind you that there is more story coming.  Please get to the end before writing me off as a floozy.

While we were at the port stop in the Grand Caymans, Woney and I found ourselves on the sidewalk outside an ice bar, one of those places that advertises itself as five degrees below zero.  All seats are made from the ice, all walls and ceilings, and you have to wear puffy coats and Russian-style babushka hats with gloves so as not to lose your appendages to frostbite.  Now just nine months prior, Woney wheezed that she didn’t enjoy being cold and I wheezed my agreement so it was a bit of a surprise that we found ourselves so enamored of an ice bar.  But here’s how the story went.

“Oh, look,” Woney said, “there’s an ice bar.  I’ve always wanted to do that. It is nearly 100 degrees here in the sunny Grand Caymans.  Perhaps we would enjoy some below freezing temperatures?”

“Meh,” I responded. 

“Yeah.  Meh,” Woney agreed.

“You could watch the video,” the girl behind the counter said.  “Just see what it is like.  We provide the coats and gloves and these awesome t-shirts for purchase after you come out.”

“Meh,” we responded. 

“We offer Big Black Dick,” the girl said.

Suddenly I was intrigued.  “Big Black Dick?  Is that, like, a gummy?  Or, you know, a man?”  Woney listened with rapt attention, also, and we both dug around our respective purses looking for the twenties we could throw on the counter to gain entrance into the place that housed the Big Black Dick.

Turns out Big Black Dick is rum, and turns out it is delicious.  I wanted to tell you that this face I am making is due to the Big Black Dick and then I wanted to tell you that I scampered around the Grand Caymans hollering about Big Black Dick, and also tell you that I told everyone on the ship I had Big Black Dick and also called my mother, proud as a peacock, to say, “I had Big Black Dick in the Grand Caymans!”  For the record, my mother would respond in this manner:  “I am so proud!”

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I wanted to tell you as I wheezed with mirth that I was a woman of the world who picked up Big Black Dick on all her voyages.   I would wheeze with mirth until I realized that a missionary I love reads this blog.  My father reads this blog.  My old bosses and all my friends read this blog.  Some of them will be all, “Go, Jimmie, Big Black Dick, woo!”  The rest of them would purse their lips and make tsking noises and know that I was lying about what that Big Black Dick meant to me.   

Here’s the truth of my life, the story I want to tell now.  I did all those things and said all those things but I live a very different story than that.  Years ago, after I got my heart smashed into a pancake by a sledge hammer, I made some significant changes to the way I do things. These things don’t necessarily make sense to the world at large and I realize that I’m bucking a lot of trends here but I really cannot care about that.  For example, I read up on yoga and nixed that from my exercise repertoire because the spiritual implications of the poses and chanting made me uncomfortable. I stopped attending traditional churches that promoted their own programs and rules to a fault and instead just decided to love people.  I vowed that celibacy was for me until I was fortunate enough to remarry.  No matter what I say about Big Black Dick, hahahaha, and how I wheeze with mirth about it, hahahaha, I won’t experience it unless I marry it, no hahahaha at all.

All this makes me super fun at parties and on dates which is likely why I am no longer invited to any of those things anymore.

But here’s how I see it – pleasing Him is now more important than pleasing me. I’ll follow His rules because He says to do it, but by following those rules I’ve found a thousand other reasons that point to them being an excellent idea all on their own.   For example, loving people was always something I’ve done, sure, but once I became a die-hard, balls-to-the-wall, knocked-down, dragged-out, on-fire, hardcore follower of Jesus, (mind you not religious, not a Baptist, not anything other than following my Christ) it became sweeter. Love is just sweeter.

Likely I will catch a lot of flak for this, or likely I won’t.  We each get our own story to tell and I’ve never been one to tell you that your story is wrong.  I doubt anyone who loves me would repay me not in kind, but even if they do, I’m strong enough to stand on my own two feet about it.  No approval necessary.   

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My list of things that are fine:

Seamus: Despite his new-found love of eating my hair, Seamus seems healthy. I mean, he’s as fat as a bear but since he goes nuts every time I drop a ponytail holder on the floor, all jumping around and leaping off of walls and tossing it into the air, I can’t see how his fatness is hurting him in any way.  Is hairspray toxic to cats?  Is it delicious to cats?  I have no idea but I wake up every morning to him purring like a freight train in my ear and chewing on his selected wad of my hair.

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Pat: Pat, of my senior citizen dining companion group, got out of the van to enter our chosen restaurant last month and promptly fell off the curb.  She’s not a good listener, to her own inner safety voice or the outer loud voice of her driver telling her to wait before stepping onto the curb, but bless her heart, she put one foot on the curb and went down like a sack of potatoes.  I gasped and ran over to her side of the van to help her.  The whole group of us gasped and stood over her offering help.  A very handsome, very single man galloped out of the restaurant to offer his assistance.  He grasped her under the arms with his manly, very manly hands and tried to lever his wide shoulders into a lifting position but Pat said, “No, I’m fine.”

“Pat!” I hissed. “This man is marvelous, stunningly handsome and rugged, let him pick you up!”

“I’m okay,” she insisted from her position near the tire and around his bulbous, well-defined biceps. “I can do this myself.”

Jan, me in thirty years, said, “Pat, come on, he’s here already. He’s already got you.  Let him help.”

Pat said, “I’m fine, really.” So the man released his tender yet firm grip and went back inside the restaurant.  A few moments later Pat allowed a young hipster wearing skinny jeans and a fluffy beard to pick her up and put her back on her feet, both of them on the curb this time.  I guess everyone has a type.  Also, Pat is just fine.  No scratches or bruises of any kind.  No date from a rugged manly hottie with wide shoulders for either one of us, but fine.

 

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This is not Pat, but this is Joe. I’ve talked about him before.

The love lives of all those around me: ♥ Dammit Todd and Ashley broke up a while ago and we no longer love Ashley.  But Dammit Todd has found himself a new girlfriend, one who is lovely and one who we like a lot.  ♥ Luke also has himself a new girlfriend, also one who is lovely.  He explained to her our situation of trading food for internet service yet I still wondered if she harbored any unease over our close relationship.  However, the day he introduced the two of us, he didn’t warn me he was bringing her over and thus I answered the door in my favorite pajamas:  a college t-shirt that I purchased when I graduated (1994) and have washed approximately once a week since then so to say it is thin and full of holes would be accurate, and some floppy shorts that are at minimum one size too big and not even remotely in the color palette of the t-shirt.  Plus I had my hair up in a wad that had been Seamus-chewed.  I do believe any uneasiness she might have had vanished the moment she clapped her eyes on the vision that is me in my loungewear.  ♥ Pee-tah and his loved-up boyfriend broke up recently and I am sad for them.  I was so hopeful for them.  But I get my gay husband back so I guess this is a win for me.  ♥ Also, Daniel has found himself a new boyfriend and even though they don’t speak the same language, not a single word of the other’s dialect, they get along really well.  ♥ Martie and Coach celebrated 17 years of marriage the other day so I’d say they are fine, too.  Love is in the air!

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Tom Hardy: This needs no explanation.

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Stole this from the innernet. That mouth, tho . . .

Me: I had my follow-up visit with my new cookie doctor and despite the bad words and spectacles I hurled at the wall during my last visit (this is not written to be funny, but to be true – I really did those things), she was very friendly towards me. She withdrew from a drawer a large number of photos of cervixes, etc. and explained that I have some bad cells that are not resolving on their own, that have been there for ten years or so. She explained all of this whilst showing me pictures of what I’ve got going on and what could possibly happen if I don’t treat this.  So treat this I will.  One more visit wherein I don the fetching paper towel called a gown and then I get to be knocked out cold for the display of my lady parts on a paper-covered table in order to remove/burn off any offending cells.  I’m not sure if the induction to mild coma is more for my benefit or theirs but either way, I won’t care a whit who has what kind of headlamp and metal rake if I’m dreaming of hot ruggedly handsome men with wide shoulders picking me up off the sidewalk next to a van. And then I will be completely fine.  Thousands of women have this done all the time, so really, no need to worry.

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Me in an ice bar. Story coming soon . . .

 

Are you guys fine? Since I’ve gotten off Facebook I’m very out of touch.  I don’t regret the decision at all but I do want to note that in the first three months of my departure, I have forgotten three birthdays.  If I forget you, I’m truly sorry.  I’ll make up for it with a cupcake if you forgive me.  Deal?  Deal.

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