Thursday, June 23, 2005

Do I just stick my toe in -- or jump right in?

I signed up for Yahoo personals last weekend. They had a seven-day free trial, and I bit the bullet, pulled out my credit card and let them charge me (beginning yesterday) for $19.99 for one month. We'll see what transpires from this.

It could either be really good for my ego -- or really bad for the type of guy I think I'm worthy of. So far, the few who have reached out and sent me an "icebreaker" -- a predetermined cheesy pick-up, along the lines of "I like your profile. Tell me more." -- have not piqued my interest in any way, shape of form.

There were a couple that made me cry indignantly out loud. I chose as the age range for my potential suiter a reasonable 32 to 45. Seemed like nice round numbers. I have received ice breakers from a 24-year-old and a 55-year-old. (And while I was recently "with" someone 20 years my senior -- and that's a story for another day -- this 55-year-old looked 65.)

Does that make me shallow? For crying out loud, I clearly indicated that I want children. Do I really need to indicate that I would like children with someone who will be alive and/or coherent when they graduate from high school?

I have also sent two "icebreakers" myself. To two averagely attractive men, within my age range, and who seemed to have a good sampling of the same values. I have yet to hear from them.

Perhaps my describing myself as "a few extra pound" in body type is off-putting. Do I lie and say average, when clearly the pictures in my profile show that I have a very proportioned body -- what that translates to though is big boobs = some hips.

So far, week one of this experiement isn't a great success. I'm trying not to let it rule my life. I just hope I remember to cancel it before it automatically renews me for month two.

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

A Dress Fit for a Princess

I received the "save the date" in February. One of my dearest male friends is getting married in August. In the south. To a debutante. It's going to be a black tie wedding. In other words -- I need a cocktail dress.

I've been "training" for this -- since I got the mailing from Mike and his fiancee, I've been pretty serious about getting in shape, eating right and working out. I'm down 30 pounds and about 12 inches.

Last weekend I went shopping and found "thee" perfect dress. Strapless (yikes!), and black, and with a little tulle underneath the skirt. I wrote to my friend, the groom, and told him: "I know you don't care, but I found the perfect dress for your wedding. It's fabulous."

He wrote back: "You're right, I don't care. Kidding! I'm glad you're excited and that you're going to look fabulous."

I corrected him: "The dress is fabulous. I'm going to look hot!"

And you know what, I kind of believe I will.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

It's like finding a new job... says Oprah: looking for a man is like looking for a new job -- you've got to put your feelers out, let people know you're looking and ask if anyone knows of anyone with "an opening." feels a little desperate, but I'm willing to try. I guess that the people I have asked to be on the look-out don't have to know that I've asked more than just them. I haven't actually been set up yet, but my friend Kim at work has actually asked me lots of questions, sort of a pre-interview. What physical type do you like? Age? Height? Qualities?

The shallow questions are easy to answer, and I think most people would agree with me (what does that say about our society?). But honestly, you know if you're more attracted to blondes than brunettes. You know if you'd prefer your boyfriend to be taller than you. Let's face it -- it really is easier to answer the "book cover" questions. But qualities? How to answer that without sounding like a cliche-ridden listing on

I want someone who can make me laugh, who's compassionate and caring. Who thinks family is important. Who is loyal and respectful, trusting and giving.

Just once I'd like to see a listing that has phrases like: serial filanderer, bitch, likes to lie and cheat, gold-digging whore seeks married man, hate kids, etc.

So if we're all looking for basically the same kind of decent person on the inside, it really does come down to looks. (Yikes!)

Am I attracted to you physically? Do I think you're hot? Then, and only then will I get to know you and decide if I could stand looking at you over dinner.

Back to Kim...I answered her questions, actually with the above cliches that I just mocked. I saw her today -- and she mentioned that she's still looking for me. No one yet.

I guess I should be patient -- it did take me over a year to find a job in my most recent job search. And I did look on-line for that -- perhaps I should once again consider the power of the internet. And so, with some trepidation, I have posted a profile on Yahoo personals. Now begins my screening process, and I will truly learn just how shallow I am.

And we're off...

Monday, June 20, 2005


I noticed Casey staring at the stove before I went upstairs for bed last night. Normally, she doesn't lay on the floor -- she is a counter and table top kind of cat. But there she was, crouched in front of the stove, tail flicking. I knew what it could mean -- but didn't want to know. I went upstairs and fell alseep watching TV.

Two hours later, I hear her playing in the room. Playing so much that it wakes me up. The TV is still on and from that light I think I see what she's been playing with. I turn on the light and put on my glasses -- yup, a dead mouse. Ugh!!

So while I'm trying to talk myself out of hyperventilating, standing on top of my bed, Casey begins throwing this dead rodent in the air. I scream at her to stop. "But, mom," I can only imagine her saying, "look what I found."

I run to the bathroom and get the trash can, and put it next to the mouse. Then I will it to go in. No such luck. "Casey, throw the mouse in the can."

Apparently, in cat-speak that means "put the dead rodent back in your mouth and take it downstairs where there is more room to throw it around."

I grab the can, dig my feet into my slippers and run down the stairs, hitting every light switch along the way. I lay the can on its side next to the mouse and Casey sits in front of it, between me and this mess I have to deal with. "Good girl, stay between us." There was an empty lotion bottle in the trash, which I use to push the mouse with. Tie up the grocery bag and put the whole thing on the front stoop.

Oh yeah, I'm gonna sleep well tonight. *Sigh* I don't know if I could handle this again.

On the bright side, I was awake to watch the end of the basketball game.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Not that there's anything wrong with that....

Angie came to visit last night. A friend of hers from Syracuse was holding a poetry reading in some cafe in the Commons. OK, not exactly my thing, but it would be fun and interesting. I needed to keep an open mind.

We headed downtown early, and had dinner at Viva, out on the sidewalk. It was lovely, even if the sky was overcast. We got dessert -- I'm always a sucker for creme brulee -- at the fancy dessert place and wandered into the used bookstore.

As I was browsing the fiction section, I heard Angie say, "this is Jane." She was holding a flyer that had been tacked to a bulletin board. It was about the poetry reading we were soon headed to. I read the bio about the featured poet: "Jane so and so lives in Syracuse with her wife and their dog."

"Her wife? Ang, are you taking me to a lesbian thing?"

She laughed. "There might be lesbians there."

"They're going to think we're lesbians."


"So? So? So, I'm your aunt. And I'm not a lesbian." Not that there's anything wrong with that.

We went to the poetry reading, and some of her friends from her poetry group were there, including Jane and Jane's wife. And a boy that Angie liked. I studied him for any signs of interest in her. He had a big bottom lip, but he was a good listener whenever she spoke, and quite taken when she got up to read some of her poetry (and I was very impressed -- with her poetry, not that he was taken with her).

The poetry was actually good, and I enjoyed myself in spite of myself. Until they started "slamming." I still don't understand this concept, but there were angry people shouting, and I think they thought they were insightful and talented. I just thought they needed to stop.

It was about that time that I leaned over to Angie, and said, "Aunt Ellie needs a beer. And to go to that bar across the street where they have big TV's with all sorts of baseball games on them."

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Happy Anniversary, Ithaca!

One year ago today, I left Baltimore, Charm City, Bawlmer for "10 square miles surrounded by reality" -- Ithaca, NY. Who knew what I was in for, I just knew that I needed to leave. It was more about leaving Baltimore than coming to NY. Leaving a bad job. Leaving a bad relationship. No, I take that back. Not a bad relationship, a relationship that was bad for me.

BB was charming and sweet, with an ego to match his former professional football days. He was sexy as hell, and made me feel like a princess whenever we were together. Unfortunately, we were only ever together for the sex. Good sex -- okay, great sex! But he was Mr. Right Now, not Mr. Right. When I told him that I was thinking of moving back to NY, he was 100% supportive, as I totally expected him to be. But there was a little part of me hoping that he would ask me to stay, to tell me he couldn't live without me.

He was 52, with two marriages under his belt and kids in the mid-to-late 20s. He would never give me what I really wanted -- we both knew that -- but he was there, and he made me happy enough. We never even really said good-bye. We were supposed to meet for lunch the day before I left -- but he never returned my call that day.

As I was driving north on route 81, in Pennsylvania, my cell phone rang. BB cell. I remember looking at the phone, and can vividly remember where I was at that moment, and what I saw: the green trees, and the open road. I held the phone in my hand, wondering what I should do. I had already left Maryland, left that life behind. What could we possibly say to each other? I was hurt that he hadn't called me the day before. By not answering him, would that punish him? Probably not. But I knew that by answering, by prolonging my connection with him, by not letting the break be clean, I would be punishing myself.

I sent him a card when I got here and was settled. I told him that he meant more to me than he would ever know. It was the truth. I hadn't fallen in love with him, I had fallen in love with the idea of him.

A year later, I think about him sometimes, but always with fond thoughts. Our break was clean, not messy. And now I realize that not saying good-bye properly just means that there was no tearful good-bye, no moment of weakness for me to say something stupid, no moment for me to be disappointed that he didn't say something stupid.

Sometimes no good-bye is the best good-bye.