Beyond the Given


This sort of just popped into my head as I was trolling my twitter feed so I thought I’d jot down a few lines. The question was “what’s your type?”  and the question reminded me of those lists that old(er) women tell you to make, the ones with all the qualities you desire in the man for you. In my culture, we ‘pray’ over the list so that God knows who to bring for us. This, by the way, directly contradicts the idea that God already knows who we’re supposed to be with, so don’t worry about it, just be the right one he’s looking for. Double speak. Hate the stuff.

ANYWAY. As we get older, and I remember hearing a podcaster talk about this once, our lists either go away or they get shorter, more pointed and direct and we get pickier. When we’re young, the net is cast far and wide. Why, ANYONE could be our match! JUST ANYONE!  When you’re staring down the barrel of 40, that JUST ANYONE narrows to ANYONE over a certain age with a certain number of specific characteristics, like if said person has a job/home/car/children/crazy ex lover who would put on a diaper and drive across the country wielding a knife with which to stab you to death. Those kinds of things.

I believe that I heard Dr Phil once (yeah I’m gonna quote the good doc, every once in awhile he says something that makes sense) say that your list of wants should go beyond the given. No one wakes up and says, I hope I meet an unemployed loser who doesn’t want to get a job. I hope he has kids he doesn’t take care of and I also really want to meet someone embroiled in a bitter divorce or custody battle and who ALSO hasn’t grown emotionally since the 7th grade. I also hope he is shallow and materialistic and GOD PLEASE MAKE HIM A CHAUVINIST PIG!” I’m being facetious but you know what I mean? The things most people list are givens.

Most people say, well we have to have chemistry. DUH. If there is no chemistry there is no relationship unless it’s an arranged marriage or an ‘arrangement’ of marriage for money or some such thing (do those things still happen? I’m asking for a friend). He encouraged people to think deeper than those surface characteristics we always list. Beyond the physical  beyond the given, beyond what everyone else thinks to ask for.

Do you want him to know how to play chess (because it shows an analytical mind?) Do you want him to read the New York Times cover to cover (because it shows an interest in the world around him?) Do you want him to be comfortable around women and children (because it shows an underlying feeling of respect and a want to protect those he feels are in his charge?). Deep, deep considerations. Not just listing characteristics but asking WHY those are important.

So I’ve been thinking about this topic, getting down to the nitty gritty. What’s REALLY important to me… because we all know I am not going to date the loser I described above. There are millions of nice, accomplished men on the planet. What will differentiate the man I want from the rest of them? What will make him stand out from the crowd?

It’s an interesting question….  I’ll be pondering and attempting to form a list of substance



I haven’t updated here because NOTHING is happening. I’m getting a few messages here and there but mostly tire kicking… I am guessing to see if I am interesting enough. Or whatever. Clearly I’m not and I’m okay with that right now. 

I am still trying to aim high… I look at every profile before I even read the message. You can tell a lot about a person by the profile, and some people I just don’t even want to talk to, let alone meet. Profiles full of arrogance or anger; lonely, forlorn or morose tone; ALL CAPS MESSAGES THAT SEEM TO BE DIRECTED TOWARD A CERTAIN PERSON, SO WHY NOT JUST MESSAGE THEM? ; and the usual very picky and overly busy. Cull from that the ones that seem okay but not sure how they have two pennies to rub together, let alone can afford to meet me at Chops for lunch and the ones that want children and have failed to read the part of my profile where I explicitly stated that I do NOT. 

Outisde of that, there’s not much to offer. Every once in awhile a nice one slides through, but he’s been through so many women here that he’s shell shocked and can’t get up the nerve to move past messages on the site and quick phone calls. I don’t have much use for this guy either. If I have to make all of the moves, what are YOU doing? Nah. I’m sure you’re nice though, so call me when you grow a pair. 

So I am frustrated. I guess it will happen when it happens….or some other blase saying I hate to hear from other people. 

Practicing patience


I don’t know if I mentioned this before (or maybe I have, six or seven times) but patience is a struggle for me. If I am going to have it, I want it, I want it now, I want it the way I want it and if I can’t have it that way then I don’t want it. That’s not a very mature outlook on life, for the most part.

While my inability to take Later for an answer has brought me some great things, it smacks of a Veruca Salt a la Willy Wonka attitude and mentality that I don’t associate with myself. I have never (hardly ever) thrown a tantrum to get my way. If the true answer really is Later, then I have to accept that. I’ve not been able to use my feminine wiles to move things forward in a more rapid fashion, but if it’s something I want, guaran-damn-teed that I will work diligently to get it as soon as humanly possible.

Take my weight loss surgery for example. The time span from deciding to go with the surgery (knowing that I would be paying for it myself) to scheduling surgery was about a week. Seriously. One Thursday I was pushing the GO button and the next Thursday I had my surgery date. And by the following Monday I had been approved for the loan to pay for it. Years ago I decided to buy a car. In three days I had a new car.

I’m not one for waiting, especially when it doesn’t make sense to. You know you want to do it, so do it. Whatcha waitin’ for?

Today I am waiting. Because. Because I think it’s best for me to sit back and let this process play out right now. I can’t continue to be the one working and pushing and pulling while he sits back and ‘lets it happen to him’. Besides, if there is no effort from the other side, and I’m watching actions, he’s telling me everything I need to hear: he’s looking for something easy and for someone to do all the work, to prep the entire situation and for him to effortlessly step into it.

Honey, there is nothing effortless about being with me.

No More Jermaine’s


image ©


Remember when Janet Jackson was dating Jermaine Dupri and everyone was all, “what in the entire fuck???’ because Janet was this beautiful singer/actress/iconic member of the Jackson family and Jermaine Dupri, though successful in his own right, was…well I won’t be rude but let’s just say they didn’t ‘match’. And it didn’t make sense for her to be with him because they didn’t ‘match’. Not physically- if I remember right, she was taller. He was saggy jeans and boots, she was couture dresses and Louboutins.

While there is a bit of truth and allure to the thought of Opposites Attract, it’s a bit more than that to me. The relationship bugged me because it seemed like Jermaine was not enough for Janet, like she went for him for some arbitrary reason (because she could get him? because maybe he would work harder because he knew he wasn’t a good match for her?) and stayed with him for reasons only they know. Maybe they did manage to fall in love and build some semblance of a relationship, but I’m looking at Janet’s new husband and I’m thinking…..yeah. That’s her match.

That bit of rambling nonsense is how I am feeling about dating right now. I’ve always gone for the common and average man. I don’t mind a blue collar man at all, at least he’s working, he’s out there taking care of business. I’ve never minded a busy man because I know a man will make time for what’s important to him. And really, this is true. I was not important to the last three men I have tried to date and that was readily apparent.

Over the years I have honed and whittled my must have list down to ‘job, teeth and hair’ so it stands to reason that while I claim to be picky, I’m really just hitting the bottom layer of Acceptable. Not stellar, not outstanding, not ‘over the moon’ anything. Just acceptable. I’ve found myself with these average men (and I don’t mean average in a rude, bad way… just a general round the way guy) and I’m having average experiences and average relationships and average breakups.

I feel like I need to aim higher and this is what I am training myself on right now. It’s hard to be such a stickler when you’re staring down the barrel of 40 but hell… like I said, I already named my Old Lady Cats. Being alone doesn’t suck half as much as being stuck with the person that isn’t right for you. Yesterday, one of my friends told me ‘stay picky. And I’m dead serious about that’  and how odd that she should give that advice because as picky as I’ve told myself I was, I was still letting certain things slide through. Not anymore.

At this point in my life I am looking for something real and long lasting. I’m 39. I can’t date like I am 19 or 22. It doesn’t take me long to figure out if a person is someone I want to get to know more, and I need to trust my gut more and realize that I always know, right off. I need to act on that and not second guess myself and not feel like I might miss out on someone wonderful by being picky.

I’m really busy. Next. I’m not looking to squeeze someone into my schedule and I don’t want to be sandwiched between whatever obligations you’ve booked yourself into. These really really busy types rarely have wiggle room in the schedule and I know myself enough to know a relationship can’t subsist on scraps of time. Especially if I have to beg for them.

I work nights, weekends and Holidays.  Not an option. I’m only available nights and weekends. When did you think we might date? 3 am on Saturday? Nah.

I work 38 jobs, 12 of which are out of town. I also have a young child I raise on my own and I live with my sick aunt. WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO DATE???

Lonely, I’m so lonely, why won’t anyone date me? All you black women are the same! You all want a thug but when a nice guy comes along…... Dude. Yo. I mean…. come on.  First of all, step back and take a look at yourself. If I can tell that you’re lonely, you’re trying way too hard. You’re also pathetic. And I’m also talking to myself. I want being with me to be a choice because I seem right for you. I’m more than a warm body and we will fizzle quickly if you have no driving reason to want to get to know me. Also, all that negativity? Not attractive. Desperation? Not attractive. No one wants that.

So I said all that to say……I’m aiming high. I used to always go for the ‘average’ guys because I felt average or less than. I’ve worked on myself, I’ve made some changes and I’m trying not to feel like certain men are out of my league, not my match, wouldn’t be interested in me. That’s not to say that I want to date a CEO, but I’m done looking for the men that are most likely to be grateful to be with me. No more Jermaine’s. Let’s get us a mogul. Let’s find a match.

“We had a nice dinner and then we broke up…”

Which is essentially what happened.

Boyfriend turned 35 and I took him to dinner. Nevermind that when my birthday rolled around, nothing was done for me. I was sick that weekend and he brought me some chicken strips and hung out with me. I suppose the gift of his time was my present, considering that was one of the last times we truly hung out.

Anyhoo, we went to dinner, back to my house and had a nice time. And then as per usual, the weekend was creeping up and my time wasn’t being requested. He wasn’t being busy but making sure we could see each other at least once. He seemed perfectly cool with going the entire weekend not seeing each other. Mind you, we don’t see each other M-Thurs because of his classes and labs. By the time the weekend hits, why are you not pacing my front porch on Friday night waiting to see me?

I dunno. But I keep meeting this guy. And I don’t know if it’s them or me. But since it keeps happening the same way, I’m inclined to think it is me.

Maybe my standards are too high.

Maybe I require more time than a woman in her late 30’s looking for more than a roll in the hay and a ‘hey thanks girl’ should require.

Maybe I’m nuts and I drive them away.

I have no clue because I don’t get  debrief. ‘Here’s what you did that made me not want to hang out with you: A,B C; X,Y,Z.”  They just disappear. Fade away.

So the title is what I told my work friend. We went out to dinner. And then we broke up. There was, of course, more involved… a few long text convos. A request to call me so we could talk it out. A refusal to call.

And no call since.

So I am done. I’m happy I never slept with him. I don’t really miss him. How could I? We were hardly ever together.

I’ve gathered all my wit and charm and put an ad up at POF. Ya’ll know the place. I really hate EHarmony (I think it’s a scam and not any better at matching. Some of the men there don’t need to pay $60 a month to be matched by a 200 point questionnaire. They need THERAPY. GAH.) I am not a big fan of match and as Sarah recently found out, you can never ever delete your profile from match. Really? Wow that’s just fantastic. That’s how they can brag that they have 60million people on their site. you can check out but you can never leave.

So yeah, POF. I was immediately emailed by a guy I went out with once. He was unkempt, his breath reeked, and he spent all of dinner complaining about one thing or another. I refused to go out with him again and he’s been trying to get me to go out again ever since. Sir? Sir. No. Give it up.

Let us see what this round of Adventures in Online Dating brings. I’ve already sunk to the depths of shallow– I got a message, looked at the photo, read the profile, didn’t even read the message. No interest in what he had to say, I knew I would never meet him.

I’m totally being picky this time, I told my bestie. Don’t live anywhere near me? NOPE. Kids? NOPE. NegativeNed profile? NO! I’m looking for chemistry and a connection and I am tired of being understanding and gracious. I want what I want when I want it……..or I don’t want it at all.

Me and Bestie have already named our Old Lady Cats. We ain’t scared o’ nothin’.

Back on the market…

It’s like men don’t hear me when I tell them who I am what I want. Or maybe they hear me and try to be what they can’t be. I’m so tired of meeting this particular kind of man. The one that wants what he wants without having to do any work… the one that doesn’t know what he wants but pretends to want the same thing I want until he figures out that either he doesn’t want ‘that’ at all or he does want ‘that’ with me.

Either is cool…….just thanks for dragging me along for the ride, dude. Meanwhile I was trying to be open minded to something new with someone new and he turned out to be exactly the same as all the rest.

 So much BOOOO. 

I do not regret giving him a second chance. At least I know I gave it every effort. I never ask for more than I bring to the table. In the end, I expected more than he could give, which we both agreed was a reasonable amount of expectation. Unfortunately, even that reasonable amount is more than he can, or is willing, to bring to the table. 

What I’m currently being patient about…

I am old. Okay, 39. Boyfriend just turned 35.  I am the oldest of three. He is an only child.  He also hadn’t dated in a few years before he met me, so it’s been all about him for a very long time. Herein lies our problem.  He’s not used to thinking about anyone else. And it’s pissing me off.

I work in Corporate America where people who make 3x’s what I make ask me how to use the copier. My whole life is thinking about other people, managing other people’s schedules. And I suppose I thought, when you care about someone and declare those feelings and decide that you want to have a relationship with that person, that that person’s thoughts and needs sort of wrap into yours and become considered. Apparently 35 yrs of single-mindedness takes more than 2 months to work itself out.

I am working hard on being patient and letting him do the work. If I have to constantly push him to go where I want this to go, then it’s not US moving forward, it’s me pushing him. At least that’s how it seems in my mind. This is our second go-round. He asked for a second chance and said he would do the work, so I am trying to let that happen. Am I allowed to complain that the work isn’t getting done in MY timeline? No?

I found someone I like and I want to spend time with. Lots of time with. I met someone who has a lot of stuff going on. Full time work, two classes, his mother lives two hours away and she likes to see him often. There’s a lot of things pulling at his time and attention and I don’t want to be yet another nag. At the same time….. I am dating someone I feel deeply about, who says he feels deeply about me and yet I spend so much time at home. By myself. Yes, I have a life and I hang out with friends and do random things but when those things are all done and taken care of, I want to spend some time with my honey. What is the sense in dating someone but I spend prime dating time at home or trying to fill the time with friends? Fuck hobbies, I want to see my damn boyfriend.

So my newest nit is that I have to ask him about his plans for the weekend and when I am going to see him. He doesn’t request my time. He tells me when he can fit me in. I DO NOT LIKE THAT.

He said to me, well I need to fix my car this weekend. I was going to see you Saturday morning.

Dude……you can keep your leftovers. I’m supposed to get up early to see and spend time with you for a few hours? All weekend? Me no happy.

I don’t know. A lot of days I feel like we could last forever. But a LOT of days I wonder if I shouldn’t just jump back into the pool, find someone who has his shit together and some time for me.


But I can’t be the only one working.


But what if we’re moving at a snails pace toward nothing?