So that’s why I’m single

I started this blog to share my travails as a lazy introvert trying to date.

“I might be shy but I’m awesome!” I thought. “There’s got to be a reason I’m single and hilarious stories within that reason…It’s not me, it’s them!”

Last night I realized…it’s me.

As it so happens I live next to a house full of young men of varying handsomeness. It’s sort of a rotating cast of characters, many of whom are friendly and several of whom have been downright rude. I’ve awkwardly matched with 2 of them over the years on dating sites. Both times I didn’t recognize them and later they were like “um I think you live next door to me.” They each asked me out and when I was busy they then never asked me out again. And never mentioned it in person. I mean neither did I but I choose not to blame myself for anything. In fact one guy would chit chat with me and then message me on okc separately later. Or be walking down the street as I was going inside and not say anything and then message me later like “why are you avoiding me?” Yes, I’m avoiding you and not just trying to go in my house late at night rape-free.

Another part of this house is they’re all in a band. Or more accurately they all loudly play repeating beats on instruments. They have parties every few months increasing the amount of people there playing loud beats and speaking loudly outside. I am never invited to these parties. (That has no relevance to this story.)

Recently, a new guy has moved in who is much more outgoing than the others. He’s the first in 4 years to ask if the music bothers me (which it sort of does but I’m interested enough in seeming cool to not complain) and is always chatty with my dog.

Last night, after drowning my Inauguration sorrows, I had to take the dog out before bed. I bounced downstairs in my finest dog walking wear (XXL GAP sweatshirt from 6th grade, penguin pj pants, and pink heels I had left at the door) with raccoon eyes (since everyone knows it’s better to let your eye makeup rub off through the night than to purposefully remove it) singing the instrumental part of Careless Whisper at the top of my lungs.

The new guy  is out on the stoop with a friend, on the phone fighting with a girl. The dog goes and I walk back toward my door as he ends the call and says hi. “Rough night?” I ask, knowingly. He responds with a laugh and asks after my dog, who goes up for a head rub.

“Hey you wanna jam with us?”  he asks.

Here’s my chance! A casual meet-cute! I brushed my hair aside with the hand not holding a bag of dog poop and responded.

“Oh thanks but I have to work.”

Which wasn’t true.

“This is awkward.”

“It’s late.”

“I look awful.”

“He smokes.”

“His friend has a face tattoo.”

All those things were true, but all are excuses.

Basically I’m not willing to take a chance on feeling uncomfortable.

So why am I single? It’s not them, it’s me.

Sigh.

 

May I See You?

No! You may not see me!

Because no one asking to see me over the internet is a person who actually knows me. Anyone I want to see me doesn’t need to weirdly ask permission because I’ve already been sending them unlimited snapchat funny face screenshots.

This is a new phenomenon in the past 6 months. Maybe it’s our selfie world. But it’s not enough to just know what someone looks like, guys want to see you constantly.

Oh we exchanged numbers and are bantering…may I see you?

Obviously no because it’s Saturday at 3pm and I’m still in my pjs with a cheeto beard, but also you know what I look like!

Great, you sent me a picture of you laying on the couch. That does nothing for me and is not convincing.

Weirder still is the guys on snapchat who message me out of nowhere. (Yes I know my account should be private.)

jpeg-image-6a2414c6d94c-1

This guy came through yesterday. Thinks we met on okc/bumble/tinder.

We didn’t.

I tell him we don’t know each other, thanks for playing.

“May I see you?”

(It’s always phrased exactly that way too. The creepiest way.)

Ok, I get if you’re trying to get me to board the train to Dickpicville, and good for you if it works out sometimes.

But if I say no, why do you want to keep talking to me? If I tell you I don’t want to talk, why do you ignore me and keep making chit chat? Is this some weird kink I don’t know about?

On second thought, don’t tell me. I don’t want to know.

Same Year, Different Sh*t

I thought I’d take dating by the horns for the new year and take the messaging initiative. I always have to do that on Bumble, which has gotten me nowhere despite the multitudes of disturbingly handsome men, but on Tinder I usually swipe recklessly and wait for the messages. Not this time! I messaged every last person in my list–15–and now, 3 days later, I got 4 messages back.

Out of 15.

One of whom is promoting a website.

And the other 3 haven’t written back in the past 24 hours.

Why are you swiping if you’re not going to message me?!!

I get that sometimes you match and change your mind, or you’re not checking the site. But for 70%+ of the guys to not respond (and 100% to not take any initiative), what’s the point.

Meanwhile, over on OK Cupid, I’m still toddling around/failing being uninteresting apparently.

img_6392

Now I in no way pretend that I’m being the most exciting conversationalist here…but this guy’s profile said nothing, he lives 2 hours away, and he is presenting no meaningful leads. Plus he called me sweetie. Sorry to bore you dude, but talking is a two way street.

2017 is 3 days old and I’m already exhausted. Good thing my bullet journal doesn’t have a dating page.

Tis a Gift to Be Simple

This Christmas is panning out differently than some others. “Self care” has come to mind a few times in trying to justify my feelings

Expectation is the best part of Christmas. The sense of magic that just hangs in the air. Expectation is also the downfall of so many Christmases. You’re supposed to be so happy and having so much fun and it’s a let down when that is absent.

I haven’t done much or felt much enthusiasm for Christmas the past few years. I decorate my apartment and wear the Christmas socks and wait for summer. “There’s no kids in the family so it’s not that exciting” has been my excuse.

I realized this year–as I was giving myself permission to skip an event with and old friend and 8 other couples–that not having kids gives me the opportunity to experience Christmas the way I want. I’ve been slow in getting my decorations up but that’s ok. I’m not really going to any parties or seeing any lights. Yet I’ve noticed what I have done is give to charity after charity and pick up present requests every time I see one. I’ve thought about all the services out there that give me moments of pleasure and I supported them. I stood in line to get a little present for a friend who I never get presents for because I knew she’d love this gift. I’ve bought 5 XXL Christmas-tree-scented candles since sitting in the dark with Christmas lights and a candle is my absolute favorite thing to do.

I’ve also been able to revel in other people’s gift giving and celebrating, basking in those moments. Watching others participate in Secret Santa is especially fun. The excitement over receiving surprises is only surpassed by the joy of picking out gifts for others. Yes, it contributes to the commercialism but a price limit and a surprise speaks much more to the spirit of Christmas, of excitement over making someone else happy voluntarily.

48 degrees is the perfect December temperature. It’s just cold enough that I can hang outside drinking coffee and wear a pinterest-worthy fall outfit complete with leggings, boots, and blanket scarf. Basic bitch or not, this is peak adorable.

https://i0.wp.com/www.gliks.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/blanket.jpg

 

Just a few degrees away from cursing whoever or whatever dragged me outside.

Image result for freezing outfit angry

 

 

photo credit: http://www.gliks.com/blog/index.php/2015/07/08/its-back-the-essential-plaid-scarf/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2960781/Moment-reporter-sub-zero-temperature-makes-angry-rant-news-anchors-joke-not-cold-outside.html

 

Date night

I had a romantic rendezvous the other night. Date night is a misnomer; it was a rendezvous in the literal sense of the word. A meeting of two people. This is a person with whom I frequently rendezvous. Sometimes fraught with feelings, often not. The sometimes feelings is the problem, obvs. It’s awkward when there are feelings on my end because then I’m angry at the situation. It’s awkward when there are feelings on his end because what do I do about that. Oh that’s right, I just get super weird and reject any overtures of affection, so that later he says things like “well I was going to do X for you but you hate when I’m nice.” No I love when you’re nice I’m just incapable of intimacy!

We rendezvous’d out of town (I told you it was romantic). It was super hot, especially the opening convo.

All like “hey how’s it going?”

“Great, I just got these pants for $5.99 at TJ Maxx. How are you?”

“Good. So hey I think I’m gonna go see my friend for a little.”

“Nice, then I can watch the new Gilmore Girls! Have fun!”

.

.

.

.

4 hours later and halfway through “Summer”

“Hey! What’ve you been doing? I’m pretty tired–bedtime?”

And that was the most action I’ve gotten in 3 months, yet kind of exactly what I want. I don’t actually want someone interfering in my activities with their opinions and needs. I just want someone to share in my shopping bargains and say good night.

The Sun Comes Up and The World Still Spins

Like most if not all of my peers, I remain in complete disbelief about the election. I spent the day after in a fog, feeling physically ill. How did this happen? Less than 24 hours before I was literally dancing around my place of work over the thrill of the democratic process. The democratic process that a few hours later said fuck you to me and progress.

Seeing a woman on the brink of the presidency allowed me to realize all the ways in which, as a woman, I am not fully incorporated and fully equal in society. I teared up as I voted wearing my mother’s ring and my grandmother’s necklace and thinking about the unsung work they did to raise strong children despite side eye for things as crazy as having children in their 30s. And thinking about all my friends’ children who would grow up thinking it was totally normal for a black American or a woman or anyone to be president. And seeing a woman breaking these barriers made me believe in the possibility that soon they would not exist.  Now, I’m not only acutely aware of these barriers but I’m aware of how many people refuse to let them crumble. No, Hillary didn’t lose because she was a woman. But so many of the challenges to her campaign came because of latent sexism and the catch-22 that she couldn’t fight that sexism because she’d feed into those exact sexist beliefs. She couldn’t complain about being targeted because she’d be a whiny bitch. Yes, Benghazi was shady. But can you honestly argue that a male former general Secretary of State wouldn’t have garnered more confidence in that position?

As so many before me have said, the true stunner is not that the Democratic candidate lost or even that Hillary Clinton lost, but that a candidate with so little experience and so little to his name but vitriol could garner the support of half the country. Literally threatening the physical safety of so many minority communities and so many programs that help those communities, not to mention the attitude toward women. Half of the country can sleep at night knowing they cosigned that rhetoric with their vote. Women in this country can say they’re ok with “their man” joking about sexual assault. The hours I’ve spent in professional development learning how to explain to children that bullies don’t win is now discounted by the clear support of a bully by half our country.

But it will be ok. It always it. America is constructed to make it ok, and to make it so that all of these terrible things can’t overwhelm the good. It could all have been rhetoric, and an outsider might actually be able to make some forward-thinking changes.

Yet I’m still sad. I didn’t want a new president in the first place, and now to have such a sharp transition…So I decided I’m going to write President Obama a letter. I want to thank him for the sacrifices he and his family made to lead our country and bring so many people hope and excitement. I want to tell him how much I enjoyed listening to him speak and how funny he is. Regardless of what anyone thinks of his politics, he has be a beacon of class and decorum, and his family has modeled love and respect and diversity. Not to mention his delightful bromance with Joe.

https://i.ytimg.com/vi/uutea0omP1w/hqdefault.jpgcredit: youtube

I will miss them dearly and look forward to his post-presidential career.

So I’m starting this new era with a thank you note. Spreading kindness in the little ways I can as I hope the rest of our country can do.

 

I think there is nothing that says jerkface gentrifier more than the neighbors that have their Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s bags full of craft beer recycling out next to the perfectly good items in the trash that they’re too busy to take somewhere to donate.

drawing

Bumbling Through Hallowed Ground

A little tradition (or 2 years in a row) I’ve started is taking a fall weekend to hike with my dog. Last year we visited Cumberland Falls in Maryland and then stopped by Gettysburg. This year we headed back to Maryland to try the Annapolis Rock section of the Appalachian Trail.

By “hiking” I mean “meandering around trees.” But it’s good exercise and good mind clearing, right? Unfortunately the Appalachian part did not quite live up to expectations. Being on the AT is always cool, but I think this section required more of a hike than we were ready for to really get to the breathtaking vistas. Instead, we walked along a highway for some time, then kept walking up and up…and turned around. The dog and I were both sluggish, rains were coming….

fullsizerender-2

…and all the foliage was boring and yellow. So many elms and beeches! Basically we drove 3 hours to sit in a hotel for our normal Sunday activity of SVU in bed. Totally worth it.

The next day we headed to Antietam, my favorite Civil War battlefield. I decided to start at the end of the tour–Burnside Bridge. I usually run out of steam at that point, and it seemed like there’d be good photo ops with foliage background.

Aaand guess what part of the battlefield has been closed since 2015! Yup. I guess there’s a reason the park website has that alerts section with a big red exclamation point.

But I figured since we were there we might as well look around, leading me to a sign for a trail I’d always ignored before since I was tired. Snavely’s Ford trail winds along Antietam Creek, providing a super peaceful and wooded path that you might not typically expect from a historic site.

IMG_6097.JPG

At Snavely’s Ford, you can see a crossing spot for Union soldiers. Civil War Traveler provides fantastic podcasts that correspond to the NPS tour stops. Although this walk is not part of the tour specifically, I still enjoyed listening to the Burnside Bridge podcast, which had some details about the crossing in this area.

Once the path veers away from the creek, I came to a path post and decided to head up to the Final Attack Trail. NPS boasts this trail has some of the best vistas of the battlefield…I think I prefer the view from the Visitor Center or Sunken Road, but it was a panorama I hadn’t seen before.

IMG_6098.JPG

The portion of the Final Attack I started on was actually stop 7, and a right turn at took me right back to the parking lot at Burnside Bridge, totally about 2 miles total “hiking,” which was perfect for my purposes. I did drive through the start of the Final Attack loop for a view from the other direction. That total loop would have been 1.7 miles.

IMG_6099.JPG

Gettyburg is the showstopper battlefield, but I love Antietam for its simplicity and quiet significance. For any battlefield, I highly recommend the above mentioned podcasts and the apps from The Civil War Trust for battlefield info, videos, and tours.

 

I don’t even know what to say about this. This is legit “causes a mental break” internet bullying. And the 2nd time in as many months that someone I was talking to normally, for a not insignificant time, suddenly and without provocation flipped on me. Literally this exchange is

boy offers number

girl makes self-deprecating/self-critical comment

boy ridicules girl for being on same dating site as him and calls her fat and worthless

 

img_5812 img_5813img_5814