I gotta find me a bike…

A lady by the name of Irina Dunn said “a woman needs a man like a fish needs a bicycle.” I always thought it was funny and true, until today. I realized that I do want a bike, not desperately, but it sure would be nice to have one around.

 

 

My check engine light came on today. It was shocking since I have had my car for over fours years and no light has ever come on. I sighed. I peered at the glowing engine sign closely, adjusted my glasses and moved closer to the gauge to make sure it wasn’t the way the light was hitting my dashboard. I thought surely my eyes must be deceiving me and said “How can my check engine light be on?” My car has been the least needy individual in my life, and for that I love my car. Other than fill-ups, oil changes, car washes and scheduled mileage check-ups my car has thankfully not given me any problems.  I was about a mile from work so I decided to go on into the office. However, I was hesitant to proceed because visions of a fiery car on 75 south as the lead story on the six o’clock news popped into my head.

 

I am independent and self sufficient, but I wanted to call someone and have them check over my poor car. But Who? Who was I going to call? I really wanted someone that would assure me that everything was okay and would tell me that they would handle it.  I wanted this person to say something like “Dumpling, I’ll come take a look at it, don’t you worry your pretty little head, I got it.” Funny thing how there is no one in my life that would say that to me or anything remotely close to it. I would have been relieved if someone could just check it over, even if they didn’t know the least thing about how my engine works, but the knowledge that someone would take care of it is comforting. Not having someone who to do this made me realize that I want a man, and maybe just in this case need a man.

 

I wasn’t really concerned that anything was terribly wrong, but I wanted to check the liquids and make sure nothing was out. That I can do myself and I did. I got some paper towels and went to work pulling sticks out and examining them. Everything was fine, nothing was low and nothing needed to be topped off. I then went to auto zone, so that they could attach a little computer to my car and tell me what was wrong. According to the results from of the diagnostic an emission sensor was out.  Nothing terrible and something I could easily have fixed. Whew! My little red wagon is still in business.

 

I can take care of myself and life’s little unexpected surprises, but it would be nice to have someone who would take care of check engine lights, trash, boxes that need to be moved, items on the top shelf, grocery bags, gas fill-ups, the yard, bugs, check for things that go bump in the night, and strong arms to give me a great big hug. I’m a big girl so I know how to handle the check engine light, but I want him to do it. I don’t even care if he doesn’t do it himself, just as long as he handles it, he can write a check for all I care.  

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Back to the Future…

If you bring an old friend back from the past, no matter what you do, is history bound to repeat itself?

 

I live in a city that is big enough not to see everyone you know, but small enough to send past flames across your path on a regular basis.  There are those that you see and want to duck and hide from and then there are those that you actually want to bump into.

 

While running some errands after work, I ran into an old friend. I saw him first, smiled and said “Hi.”  I was in the middle of a conversation so I turned back and put him out of my mind. As I was leaving the store he stopped me, complimented me (it is oh so nice to look good when you run into someone), and asked for my number. I chuckled as I walked away because I didn’t think I would hear from him, but I was hoping that I would.

 

He called : ). We talked a few times and then we decided to have dinner. We basically caught up with each other and got a run down of what was going on since we left off. I think we both enjoyed each other’s company, I know I did. I thought he was taller (although he is still tall), but he was cuter than I remembered, and his voice is oh so very soothing. He is definitely a good guy and I can’t for the life of me remember exactly what happened. I met him about five years ago, so I was younger and who knows what stage I was in then, but I can only vaguely remember that it had something to do with us not knowing how to compromise with one another. I do think that was an issue, I don’t think either of us was willing to give in. However, I still can’t remember for sure.

 

I think it is good that I can’t remember what happened, because I would like to get to know him for who he is now. Since I know how I act, and I don’t want to look at him sideways suspect of everything that he says or does, this is a great thing. I just know it must not have been a big deal or anything tragic and unforgivable (or maybe I just blacked it out).  I unfortunately have brought back blasts from that past, that I shouldn’t have and it was just an exercise in confusion. Some history needs to remain that way and it is not necessary to see if you can change the ending to your story together. Even if it is only that we become friends, I would like to invest some time into getting to know him again. You can never have too many good guys in your corner, and I DO remember him being very nice.

 

Despite my feelings two of my coworkers felt that I was making a mistake by “reheating the leftovers” as they called it. Since whatever happened was enough to make me decide not to pursue him it was bound to happen again. And by entertaining him, I was sending the message that whatever he did in the past I was cool with. I disagreed I felt that he probably forgot about whatever happened too, aren’t women the ones who remember everything, not men? I also think being older and wiser might improve our interactions. Plus what if I was the culprit? I can’t say cause I don’t remember. If they are right and I am wrong maybe I will experience déjà vu right before and it will all come flooding back to me. It’s a risk I am willing to take.

Rain check please…

Like my 24 hour rule, wonder if guys have a rain check policy? Haha! I am so wrong for this, but oh well…

 

How many times is it acceptable for a person to request a rain check before it bounces?

 

So this happens to me ever so often. I meet someone interesting and for whatever reason we have a problem connecting. I don’t think that it is rude to postpone for unexpected events, but what if it’s just that you have received an invite from someone that you have actually gone out with before? That is rude and wrong, but still I have a dilemma. I need to know how many times is it acceptable to postpone a date?

 

With the new guy I have no real idea of what to expect. That in itself is very exciting, but if I have had a long day at work or some life challenge has been particularly brutal then the unknown might seem scary.  What if he regurgitates his resume, has an annoying laugh (although my laugh can be grating as well), is overly affectionate and or touchy, or is just plain boring? With a “date-tested” guy you have a good idea of what to expect. There is no real gamble going out with someone who has been previously screened and who seems to enjoy your company. With the new guy I have no idea how things will go and if we go out and I don’t enjoy myself I will be very irritated. This irritation may very well be taken out on him, since I will think about the fun I could have had if I had not been out with him. It is actually better if there are no alternatives that way if things don’t go well, I will only think geeze I could have reorganized my finger nail polish collection by color.

 

The first time I did it, I really didn’t feel any discomfort. The second time I did it I thought maybe I should call him tomorrow and ask him to lunch or something. The third time I thought what if I see him while I’m out with the other guy. I must admit I got paranoid, must have been my conscience. However, I like that he is persistent and calls to reschedule after each broken date. Also he isn’t a complete stranger. I met him at a friend’s roof top party. I discovered that he worked close to my job, and then started to bump into him all around the city. Funny how you can frequent the same places and at the same time, but never see someone. Then meet them and see them all the time. I know him, or we have been introduced and we have had conversations. I would call him an acquaintance, not quite an associate. Anyway, I exchanged my information with him for a reason. I have every intention of going to brunch or lunch, but every date so far has been interrupted by another, what I consider better invitation.

 

Yesterday, I postponed our date for a FOURTH time. He just said okay and hurried off the phone. I thought to myself he isn’t going to call me anymore I just know it. He is irritated with me. Technically I do believe that my actions are showing disinterest although that isn’t the case. Despite, my inability to keep a date he just sent me a text inviting me to have dinner with him this evening. Ah, he thinks he is slick not giving me a time in the future. I texted “Sure, you name the place and time.” He texted back “Excellent, maybe spontaneity is more your style, I will let you know after lunch what time, but I will make the place a surprise, but I know you will like it ; )…”

 

Now this is exciting I like surprises and I am definitely intrigued because I thought for sure he wasn’t going to contact me again.  I don’t think we will have a fifth rain check…

The 24 hour rule…

When I meet a guy and decide to exchange information with him, he has exactly 24 hours to contact me and file a claim of interest. If he doesn’t contact me within 24 hours I don’t take him seriously, and he doesn’t get to play a role on the stage that is my life. This rule works for me. I will say that generally one out of four men do not call me within 24 hours of meeting me, so I feel like these guys are definitely expendable.  

 

From my experiences, if someone is interested they do not wait around trying to decide what to say, trying to be aloof, not seem too pressed, too desperate or whatever other reason a man decides to postpone his initial approach. I do realize unforeseeable events can keep a person from calling, like maybe a death in the family, an unexpected work deadline, a house fire or leak, or anything that would completely make trying to establish a new acquaintance the last thing on the list. However, I do believe people make time for what they want, and if they want any chance of getting acquainted with me they need to move quickly. I could be the one, but you will never know it if you play around trying to be cool. I just don’t have time for people who don’t know what they want. I am very indecisive, there can’t be two indecisive people in a relationship. If you decided that I was attractive and witty enough for you attempt to get my number then why wait? What exactly are you waiting for? I like a take charge man who doesn’t waste time.

 

I was instant messaging a co-worker when my rule came up. He thought it was absurd that I had this rule and that I thought it meant someone wasn’t really interested if they didn’t establish contact within 24 hours. I consider him to be a good guy, but he said he always waited to call a girl. I was like but why, for what purpose? He said he just did. I believe there is no time like the present, there is no tomorrow, just today. He also said that people who contact me immediately are desperate or possibly a playa. I never thought of it like that. I just thought it was someone with confidence, who knows what they want, obviously liked what they saw and wants to pursue it.

 

I decided to take it to committee and I asked four more guys. Good guys that I respect and think are quality individuals. Now here is the interesting thing. Most guys said that if they were really impressed by a lady they would wait. What?!? They waited for various reasons, to build anticipation, to decide on the approach, oh and my favorite to get tickets and make a dinner reservation for a nice date. Now the latter response I thought was ridiculous because how would anyone know someone’s schedule, I mean she could be unavailable. He responded that nine out of ten times they always agree to go out on his preplanned date. Here is the kicker…they all felt that anyone who immediately contacted me or within 24 hours was desperate and should be watched with a careful eye. HaHA! They also warned me that I could be missing out on some really terrific guys with my little rule.

 

However, when I look back over my dating portfolio I have gone out with some really great men. There have been some duds in the mix, but for the most part I’ve been blessed. Plus part of the initial screening process generally weeds out the defective types. I typically have three to four conversations with someone before I agree to go somewhere and then of course there is texting. So I believe it’s hard to hide complete insanity that long. There are also those I just don’t click with and those get dropped. I think for the most part my system works. However, maybe I have missed a gem or two. Oh well. C’est la vie.

the brush…

I became disenchanted with love at a very early age. I saw failed marriages, hearts broken after years of dating and the strange behavior of women in love. I learned that love was cruel and it disappoints. The situation that disillusioned me the most, made me question why any self respecting woman would put herself through unnecessary pain and grief, happened at the age of 14.

 

It was the summer of 1994. I was visiting Courtney, a good friend of mine who was home from college for the summer. I grew up with her in my church. She was smart, pretty, a fantastic dresser (before being a fashionista was cool), could sing and dance, and she was sweet as pie. She always knew the right thing to say, always had a funny joke and never had anything negative to say. Everyone loved her, including me. She even smelled lovely, she wore this gardenia lotion from Victoria’s Secret. She gave me a bottle of it for my birthday, I thought she was Miss IT, the end all be all of what a girl should be.  I always wanted to be around her. I admired her. I think secretly I wanted to be her, or the remixed version of her that was me.

 

We were sitting in her room along with two other girls she went to high school with. Everyone was in college except for me. They were talking about jodeci, makeup and summer jobs when the subject of men came up. All the chatter stopped and everyone kind of paused and looked at her. She had gone to college with her high school sweetheart. They sang duets in the choir, always sat together, went to prom and decided they couldn’t be apart so they decided to go to college together. Of course they were the perfect little couple or so they seemed. Not understanding the silence I asked. “So how is Chris?”

I will never forget her response and the events that followed. She responded, “That lying little son of bitch is fine sweetie, but he won’t be for long.”

Well apparently they had all gone to a party the previous night where he was way to friendly with some girl that none of them liked. Then he disappeared for two hours. This was followed by my friend confronting him when he returned. He laughed and basically told her to be easy and chill out. Apparently this was not the first time something like this had happened because she then went to a drawer and pulled out a brush, a hair clip, a bracelet, and a pair of sunglasses. These items had all been taken from either Chris’ dorm room or his car. She laid them on the bed and proceeded to tell us to whom she believed the items belonged. When she got to the brush, she picked it up peered into it and then shoved it into our collective face.

“Do you see this? Do you see that hair? This is not my brush and that is definitely not my hair. I found this in his drawer. When I saw it I snatched it up, threw it at him and asked him who it belonged to. Do you know what he told me? He told me it was his study partner’s. I wanted to beat his ass.”

She put her head in her hand and just stared at the brush and for a moment I thought she was going to cry. I saw tears well up in her eyes. She looked away and said,

“Everyone knows that is my man, but why does he have to do things right in my face?”

Everyone agreed that he was trifling and that she should leave him. She looked at all of us and said “Every time I think I am going to leave he tells me he loves me and he doesn’t know what he would do with out me.”

 

The friend who sat closest to her and was almost assaulted with the brush responded, “You are crazy. You are the one snatching brushes out of drawers and I don’t know what he would do without you, but I know what he does with you. Girl, would you get a clue.” Both her friends started laughing. She just sucked her teeth and rolled her eyes. I was, hurt, angry, sad, dumbfounded and shocked all at the same time. Here was my teenage hero confused, distraught and on the verge of tears all over a silly little boy. I couldn’t believe she had collected these items, and kept them, traveled with them, and could pull them out for show and tell. She held the proof of deceit and cheating, but didn’t have the strength to leave him. Cheating happens, it doesn’t necessarily mean break up, but repeat offenders should not be trusted. In my mind each item was just another reason to leave him alone.

 

Plus at 14, I was like duh doesn’t everyone say whatever they need to say to get out of trouble. If you are caught doing something wrong, you will say whatever it takes to rectify the situation even lie. He told her he loved her and couldn’t bear being without her. I realized that she believed him and sacrificed her happiness and sanity on this truth. A selfish statement from a guilty man that might have been true, half the truth, or not true at all, but she believed it.

 

Today I was at the mall looking for some stuff for work, when someone tapped me on my shoulder. I turned around and it was Courtney. I screamed, she started laughing and I was all oh my gosh is it really you. She gave me a hug and held me at arms length so she could get a look at me. “Ursala, how have you been?” I gave her a quick run down of my accomplishments which I thought would pale in comparison to whatever fantastic life she had managed to put together. 

“I have someone I want you to meet” and she looked past me and said “Chris.”

I turned around and there was Chris with a little baby carrier and stroller. He walked over, and I must mention that he did not look particularly happy and even less impressed to see me. I said hello and gave him and the baby a hug. I cooed and gushed over her beautiful family. She then went on to tell me that they got married three years ago, they had just built a house, and where trying to have a third baby. She quickly whipped out her phone to show me more pictures of the family. The whole time Chris just stood there. He kind of smiled, and nodded along, but he didn’t talk, he was just there. She just went on and on, and he just stood there. We talked for about twenty minutes and then we said goodbye and promised to keep in touch.   

 

I couldn’t help but remember that brush in her hand. I hope she is happy, I hope she got what she wanted.

I think he miss you…

Everyone wants to be missed. The knowledge that someone I loved, liked or maybe even disliked missing me makes me feel good. It’s probably something wrong with the affect the latter has on me, but for our purposes here today we aren’t analyzing why this might be a problem. I have been minding my own business recently. I’m not on the scene like last summer. I go to pre-determined, pre-scheduled and organized events. Not spur of the moment outings at the request of text messages and last minute phone calls to meet up for drinks or dinner. Plus this whole one man thing drives me nuts sometimes, but it does free up a lot of time. I have more time to think and review my past behavior before making decisions. And sometimes I think of individuals, individuals that sincerely piqued my interests.

 

I was instant messaging a coworker when the subject of an old admirer came up, well actually a sincere individual of interest. My coworker mentioned that he asked about me. Not wanting to seem too interested I played it cool. So I typed “oh really what did he say?” To which my coworker replied, “He asked if I see you around, mentioned that he tried to call, just wanted to check on you.” According to my coworker I come up in conversation frequently, generally whenever they talk.  At this point, I am thinking all of this is very intriguing, but simply respond “interesting.” My coworker then says  “I think he miss you…I told him you a keeper.” Now the key to this, or at least its significant to me, is that my coworker is a guy, not a girl. If it were a girl that said this it would be meaningless, but coming from a guy I thought that it might be true. He might actually miss me.

 

I would never admit this, ever. I do sometimes wonder what we could have been if maybe the timing was better and we were both a little more focused on each other. I am not one for regrets, but sometimes I do think of certain people that I have gone out with. I wonder if with a little more attention and a little less impatience if things could have blossomed into something sweet, promising and maybe even indulgent.

 

My thoughts didn’t wax tenderly during the instant messaging. I was short and said something to the jest of yeah yeah yeah and back to what I was saying before. I must admit that my first instinct was this is some slick game. Sure, have his friend drop the idea that he is wondering about me, so that either I call or the next time he calls I actually answer. I was so WHATEVER.  I just thought this is strategic and why waste perfectly good key strokes on ridiculousness. However, am I so jaded that I can’t appreciate someone sincerely missing me and take it just for what it is? He might miss me.

 

And I miss him.

 

I thought about contacting him all weekend. I thought why not call or better yet text. I went back and forth on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. However, I didn’t want to feel some type of way if he didn’t respond in a manner that I deemed appropriate or appreciated. Late Sunday night on my way to sleep I got the urge, started texting, but then mid sentence, I closed my phone. The knowledge that there was a small chance that he thought of me sometimes was good enough. The end.