Category Archives: Dating

Grammar Police

I am a stickler for good grammar and spelling. Whether it’s on Facebook, in an email, a text, and especially on dating sites, if your grammar and spelling suck, I’m judging. Maybe that’s unfair, but 6 years as a teacher, 5 of which were teaching the basics of the English language, and 1.5 years as an editor have made me the grammar police. That being said, reading online profiles and messages from adults can be traumatizing to my inner English snob. To help the guys hoping to woo me over the Internet, here’s a list of some grammar must-haves.

5 ways to win over an editor and former third grade teacher:

1. I is always spelled with a capital letter when you’re referring to oneself or me. It is never i’m, ever.

2. Homophones are tricky words to spell; I taught third grade so, believe me, I know. But basic knowledge of your v. you’re and to, too, and two is a rite of passage…from elementary school. And for the love of god, some is never spelled sum unless you’re doing some addition.

3. Emails are not typically formal on dating sites, but it never hurts to add a salutation and/or closing. All the adults are doing it.

4. Complete sentences are a must. If your third grade teacher let you pass onto fourth grade, this is definitely a lesson you’ve encountered. Subject + predicate = complete sentence!

5. Periods, capitals, and grade school spelling are all a basic life lesson. Use them wisely and all the time.

I wrote this piece a few weeks ago when I was frustrated with the lack of elementary knowledge in the online messages I’d received. Having recently dug it up, I’m appalled that I needed to write this; I had the same expectations from nine-year-olds, so isn’t it ridiculous that I need to tell an adult to do the same things?

What?! Only Three??

When girls get together, we talk about boys; it’s inevitable, even only when we’ve just met one another. At a recent alumnae Kappa brunch (which, on a side note, I’m psyched about finding – new friends, new restaurants!), a girl mentioned a book she was reading about relationships. In the grand scheme of finding a partner, you can’t be too picky, it states. Instead, choose a top three that you just can’t live without.

This teensy list is hard to do because every time I meet a guy, another thing I “just can’t stand” gets added to my list. Chews with his mouth open? No-no. Fidgets like he’s missing his meth? Buh-bye. Wears sneakers on a first date? Don’t call me again! By now, my ever-growing list has become an eyesore and a brain-sore. Maybe the fidgeter who wore white socks and dress shoes was really funny and intelligent, but I just couldn’t get past the glaring white beneath the table.

If I continue to live this way, I’ll end up with a ridiculous amount of particulars and single. Lists don’t cuddle very well or buy me fancy dinners. That means no more hard-nosed judging, only open-mindedness. So what are the three things I just can’t live without? Hell, I don’t know! Who can only pick three things to like about a guy! So, here’s my list that I can whittle down at a later date:

1.    Attractive – I don’t care that I put it as #1, this shit is important! If I don’t want to suck your face at the end of the first date, then I certainly will not want to go any further every day for the rest of my life. I won’t get too particular here, though, because I don’t necessarily prefer blondes over brunettes, 7 foot tall or 5 foot 8, muscular vs. hipster skinny.

2.    Chemistry – Just because you can’t see it, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist. Sparks usually occur within the first 10 seconds of meeting someone, but if it’s true chemistry, the sparks will last through the entire first date, continuing through the first make-out sess, and into every date thereafter. That includes the thrill of hearing the ding of a text message and the anticipation before each date.

3.    Affable – It’s true, that if you aren’t nice to me, my dad, my brother, my 27 uncles, and my niece will all kick your ass. But, that’s not really what I mean here. True gentlemen open the door, pay for the first date, and offer to hold to your purse. All kidding aside since this isn’t Hong Kong, what I really mean is that guys I date need to be socially aware, nice to waiters, smile when others talk to them, etc.  Affable guys are happy and polite.

4.    Good sense of humor – I like to laugh (don’t we all??), so if you aren’t funny, then you aren’t getting any. I’m a pretty easy laugh, but I don’t do corny and I don’t do stupid. Sarcasm is gold in my book, so if you can use your wit, gold star for you!

5.    Cultured – I’ve traveled the world and I need a man who’s seen more than just the Midwest. Cornfields are great and all, but a passport is better. You don’t have to have been to 20 countries or even outside of the U.S…er…North America, okay, even if you’ve only left once…to another continent. It’s important to me that the guy I’m with is accepting of others that are different than him and understand that America may be the land of the beautiful, but that even more beautiful things lie outside of these boundaries. Part of being cultured is being intelligent and non-judgmental.

Now, these top 5 are purposely vague so as to be open to interpretation by my psyche when I meet a guy. This list isn’t that hard to accomplish, but when you add in the 100 other things I’m judging every guy on, then it’s no freakin’ wonder I’m single. Okay, I’m working on that! Top 5 – boom!

My Foray into Online Dating

Part One (it’s only been 2 weeks, and I’m sure there are more adventures to come after this posting)

Except for first dates (because those make me want to throw up), I in general like dating. Getting to know someone, talking a lot about yourself, and going to free dinners are all bonuses to dating. Since I’m new to Chicago, I decided that I needed to get myself out there in the dating world. I’m sick of meeting guys at the bar – I know, I know, I drink, too, so it’s not that strange to meet a “normal” guy at a bar, but every guy I’ve met at a bar has a commitment-phobia that I like to call “scared to sleep with only one person”.

So, in the spirit of trying new things, I recently went on a Grouper – it’s an online dating service where, based off of your Facebook profile, you’re set up on a date with someone. You bring friends, they bring friends, and it’s a group date (get it? grouper?). The average age of the guys was 23 and they still had peach fuzz on their chins; the average age of us girls was 30. You can guess where that ended up! Well, actually, you probably can’t… They paid for our drinks, then ditched us, not meeting us at the next bar that they asked us to go to. I’m sure they got a riotous laugh all the way to their mom and dad’s house.

A couple of girlfriends and I went to a singles’ mixer, and ended up meeting two cool girls who we spent the night eating dinner and laughing with over the quality of guys in attendance. Oh, and I also flirted it up with the bartender who was left my number on a coaster – and not by me. He texted, I didn’t meet up with him because I was nervous, ugh. I also considered speed dating, but freaked out and signed up too late, so instead ended up on a waiting list, got off said list, and didn’t try to get in. I was scared, what can I say?!

So…that leaves me with the very brave act of making myself a profile on OKCupid (and, no, you cannot find out my username). It’s actually been fun not responding to idiots who write things like:

*hello, you are such a beautiful woman….how come you are not taken? I spilled my cup of Coffee on my laptop just because I was taking a closer look on your pics…….well i got it dried anyway.. How are you doing??? In a relationship what matters most is a true and honest man who will treat you right. I seek my soul mate, i am ready to treat you as my queen and princess, be your knight in shinning amor…My name is Denis Maillet, I am a very God fearing man and needs a woman as such that is why I contacted you no matter the distance between us, God will bring our heart desire to past. I am man who has dedicated his life in helping people who are in need and doing charity.Hope to hear from you

*Hello. Cupid called. He says to tell you that he needs my heart back. You have beautiful eyes:)

Needless to say, these freaks did not get a message in return. I did, however, exchange numbers and have a couple of dates already:

Date #1: A nice, home-grown kinda guy. Lives 15 minutes from his parents and has only ever been to Mexico and beach resorts. He was polite and we had a good enough chat, but in the end, he was entirely too white bread for me. When I explained where Korea was, he said, “Oh yea, the Vietnam War!”

Date #2: A construction worker with a child. I’m not wholly opposed to dating guys with kids because I’m nearing 30, but if you’re not the whole package, it isn’t worth it to me. He fidgeted a lot and I’m guessing that’s because it was 5:30pm and he was drinking an extra tall coffee. Relax off the caffeine. I texted him afterward telling him that I wasn’t sure we were compatible. He apologized for being a douche.

Date #3: This guy texted me that afternoon and made a plan…2 hours before we were meant to meet up, he cancelled and asked for a rain check. Before almost every first date I have, I try to cancel and think of every excuse not to go on the date. I’m guessing he did the same, but I’m also assuming that I’ll never meet him in person to find out since he didn’t ask for another day.

Dates 4 and 5 are this week, so fingers crossed for no disasters and that I can actually meet a quality guy that I want to date. And, if he can be a traveler who’s smart and can spell that would be a plus.

Confession: I am a Dating Dumb-Dumb

I graduated in the top 10% of my high school graduating class, cum laude from undergrad, and with a 4.0 in my Masters. But this post isn’t one bragging about my accolades, it’s actually quite the opposite…I may be smart in school, but I am dumb when it comes to guys. I’ve dated cheaters, hillbillies, heartbreakers, and liars. I’ve also dated nice guys, of course, but no matter who they are, I suck at dating them. I get jealous, I worry that I’m not good enough, and I want attention that they’re not willing to give (and not in the attention whore kinda way). 

Hence one of my New Year’s resolutions: chill the f*ck out. My brain is running on constant mode, which means I analyze every situation with a guy. Will he call? Does he like me? Am I being too overbearing? Why hasn’t he drawn me a picture in Draw Something?? 

This is why my friends tell me to date multiple guys at a time. You can’t fret as much about multiple guys because you won’t have the time. My theory is a bit different: when I find the right guy, I won’t need to fret because he will call, he will show that he likes me, and he will draw me pictures. This guy doesn’t have to be Mr. Right but should be the right guy for right now. 

Now, the trick is finding this “right” guy. In the past, I’ve met guys at bars and through friends…I’m still single, so you can see where that got me. But because both of these methods are the “traditional” way people meet, I’m still willing to try. Online dating is also still going strong out there in the world, but that makes me nervous and I hate picking out profile pictures. Also, paying to find a date is against my moral code (for this month anyway). 

I want it to be easy. (While looking toward the sky)…please let someone fall in my lap who likes my quirky style, the fact that I’ll blog about him, and will wash dishes. 

I read an article once where a girl interviewed all of her exes to see why she wasn’t “marrying material.”  She was surprised to find out that all of the reasons why she thought they’d broken up were vastly different than the reasons the guys had thought. After reading that, I’ve always wondered what my exes would say. First, I have most of them on Facebook, so a simple message of “mind meeting up to tell me why I sucked?” would be in order. Then, the grueling question and answer sessions would follow. I’d cringe, probably cry, and hopefully learn a lesson or two. With said lessons, I’d be prepared for what I need to do differently next time, for the “right guy.” 

But, until I get the courage to email every ex I’ve ever had, I’ll stick to winking at bartenders over martinis, rubbing elbows with hotties on the train, and looking toward the sky praying a good one will fall down on me.

Karma Came and Got Me

A few days back I wrote a blog curious about why guys take phone number and don’t call them. Well, the universe read said blog and both guys I’d written about texted me within a couple of days. I decided to go on a date with one of them (the biker who randomly stopped me on the street) and let’s just say it didn’t go so well. On my way home, thanks to my handy phone transcriber, I made a list of the words that came to mind…

short * self-righteous * presumptuous * florist * biker * grabby * self-conscious * bodybuilder * veiny * full of himself * unsettling * awkward * strange * corny * silly * goofy * horny * confident * annoying * pompous * pretended to use carrot as a tongue * karma came to bite me on the ass * complimentary * kept calling himself cute * drunk * alcoholic * immature * said, “I will lead you to the Lord” * hypocrite * persistent

If you couldn’t tell from this very awesome list of words, I will not be seeing this guy again…

Taking a Girl’s Number

Hey, I just met you

And this is crazy

But here’s my number

So call me, maybe?

-Carly Rae Jepsen

“Why do guys bother to ask for a girl’s phone number when they have no intention of using it?” I asked.

Kira began, “Maybe there’s a secret—”

“Society of douches,” I interjected.

“Ha! No! Maybe there’s a secret game that guys all play trying to collect as many phone numbers as they can.”

Maybe Kira is right or maybe guys really are just douches, but what’s the point of asking a girl for her phone number if you aren’t going to follow through? Just because I’m leaving the bar, it doesn’t mean you need to pretend you’ll call me. Just because you ride past me on the street, it doesn’t mean you need my number.

Yesterday I was stopped while walking along the street by a rather attractive guy riding a bike. He stopped mid-ride to strike up a conversation, asked me to get drinks with him (which I politely declined because I was leaving town that night), continued asking me questions, and finally asked for my number so we could get my favorite food for dinner some night.

The idea put a smile on my face and I randomly giggled for the rest of the evening about how a cute boy had asked me out. But will this alleged phone call actually take place? If not, I don’t mind, I swear, there are plenty of attractive fish in the sea, but if the biker had no intentions of making contact why did he even ask in the first place? (Unless, of course, he’s going home to brag to his friends that he can add another tally to his ever-growing list of gal’s digits that he’ll never use.)

Now, I’m not making presumptions about said lad, but merely speaking from experience. For example, last weekend I was at a bachelorette party where a cute 20-something sporting a sweet smile and a yellow sweater began making conversation. We talked for about a half hour before my party train was going home, but before I left, Mr. Yellow asked for my number. There was no prompting by me, but an outright, “Can I get your number so we can hang out sometime?”

That was Saturday, today is Wednesday. No phone call, no text. Now, it’s fine that he didn’t make contact. My feelings aren’t hurt, but why ask in the first place?

This same scenario has happened to me more times than I can count (which is probably why I no longer hold my breath waiting at the phone). I am tired of reciting my digits for attractive men (must admit, never thought I’d say that!). If someone says they’re going to call, can’t they just…well, call?

I’m not planning on hearing from either of the aforementioned guys, but if I do, I’ll be sure to congratulate them on having some cojones to take the second step…that whole crazy following through thing. Don’t bother with step 1 if you’re never planning to do step 2. Please and thank you.