Dating Advice from the Dating Illiterate

Now, I've come a long way from Empanada Man and the Crystals of Evil, but I will admit, right here, in this first sentence, that I am dating illiterate. I need Hooked On Hookups, or something like that. Well, actually no, hookups are easy—it's romance that's hard to find.

Yet, everywhere around me, friends and family are finding Viagra-commercial-like love in minutes. You know, where the happy couple is running through a field holding hands, and maybe one jumps over a perfect outcropping of daisies while the other one laughs with giant, corn-fed teeth? Or, alternately, they're in matching, redwood hot tubs in some exotic location and he's got a never-ending erection, but he doesn't want to go to the ER even though it's been over 4 hours, because he's having too much fun? Yeah, that kind of love just continues to evade me, so I must be doing something wrong.

I often think I'm just too picky. But, I mean, shouldn't that be the point? That you're looking for someone that makes you feel really great? My problem is that I've experienced love at first sight a few times and, when it happened, each of those people ended up being critical parts of who I am today. The sensation of two people both knowing that something is right at the same time is pretty amazing.

And, when you know what it feels like, you really want to experience it again. But you have to be careful.  You have to remember it comes when it's ready. But, sometimes, I push it.

And it always ends up that when I try to force it, I go on dates where one of these two outcomes occurs: I immediately know you aren't right for me and walk away; or I sprinkle self-induced-denial-pixie-dust on all my rational thoughts until I am convinced it's Hallmark'll make a Christmas ornament out us one day, or we'll spend the rest of our days naked, painting by a riverside and taking ridiculous selfies.  So, I guess you should know, if you were to go on one of these dates with me, you're destined to become either a Facebook acquaintance or my husband.  Regardless, being naked by a riverside, taking ridiculous selfies in on the table.

But, most of the time, it's something in between. You're interesting enough to make me wonder. Good looks will help you, but don't think they'll be enough, because I have an asshole of my own and I can, and do, put lipstick on it when I want. Even worse, money. Just know that I care less about your new, expensive watch than the people forced to see it on your Instagram feed, so let's talk life instead, OK? Philosophize with me for 5 minutes and you're definitely moving up a notch. Or get a Frogger watch or something bizarre, like a sun-dial you carry around on a stick. I think I'll like that.

But this blog wasn't intended to be about my dating preferences. It was supposed to be about dating advice, passed from one moron to the morons who decided to read this after seeing the title.

So, let's begin. Don't fret - we'll get back to me in a moment.

If you were to take my friends' dating advice, it would be this: "Oh, it's easy. Just go online...fill out a simple questionnaire...and poof! Before I knew it Jared was lying on my lap by a campfire, on a cool Autumn night at our lake home—and little Jake was conceived."  But, that's not my experience are...


1) Prepare for crazy: This one is first, because it's the most important. And God, let's hope that you recognize crazy faster than me. Like maybe in 3 red flags, rather than the 487 I've historically allotted to boyfriends and potential suitors.

You have to prepare for crazy, because, in most cases, you're meeting this person online. And we've all seen how even our own family can surprise us with their "Let's slit ISIS's throats and drink their blood!" posts. A lot of people use social media to hide their genetic malformations, so when making a date, always consider the fact that the person you'll be grabbing a drink with may hate left-handed, midget, albino, eskimo lesbians...and you'll have no idea until their third beer, when a college student walks into the bar, wearing an Inuit parka as an ironic protest of the use of whale blubber in cosmetics. He won't even stop long enough to realize she's right-handed before he breaks his beer bottle on the table and goes at her. Trust me—I've been there.

And, don't let yourself get too loveswept right away—some of them are really good at hiding crazy for long periods of time. A good rule of thumb is, if you're crying more than once a week, and no one's died and you haven't lost your job or seen a Sarah McLachlan commercial about homeless've found crazy, God bless your soul.  Run. Knees to chest, bitch. Faster. Go.

2) Have fun with it: My best dates have resulted from conversation starters like this:

HIM: Sup?
ME: I was just considering the pros and cons of Communism.
HIM: Cool. Looking?


HIM: Sup?
ME: What do you think of these curtains? (sends pics)
HIM: Cool. Bottom? (sends dick pic)


ME: Hey handsome.
HIM: What do you think is preferable? A life without love but also without hardship, or the other way around?
ME: I've thought about that often. I think love and pain are parts of the human exprience. (sends naked torso shot to encourage more deep conversation)


HIM: What's your name?
ME: Prince Fernando de La Virgen de Guadalupe de Las Camisas Rojas en la Escuela Publica.  You?


HIM: What you into?
ME: I really love solving simple math problems on my abacus.


HIM: I'm really looking for true love.
ME: Don't get a cat.


ME: I'm so tired of playing all these games. I'm so bad at them. Why can't people just be real?
HIM: (sends dick pic)


ME: What do you do for a living?
HIM: I'm in management.
ME: Really? Where?
HIM: I'm a Deputy Assistant Manager at the last remaining Blockbuster in the United States.
ME: You're too good for me. 

or the ones I live for:

HIM: You're handsome.
ME: You too.
HIM: Something cute.
ME: Something funny.
HIM: That was funny.
ME: Yeah?
HIM: Yeah.
ME: Marry me.
HIM: OK, but I get to pick the China.
ME: Done. I claim the choice of wall colors—at the primary residence and Summer cottage.
HIM: Done.
ME: I do!

I could go on, but you get the point. It can be very discouraging, but the ones who respond to who you really are, are the ones worth going out with.

3) Learn to say "No!" and "Yes!": Every person who comes into our lives is intended to enlighten something within us. No exceptions. The key to it all is saying "Yes" to every interaction and then knowing when it's time to say "No".

Dating can be very frustrating, because it involves your heart. At least for those of us that consider "dating" to be the act of looking for someone special. Because a lot of people consider it simply a non-lonely meal and a possible blow job. Funny thing is that most of them would probably prefer a lonely meal and definite blow job but, then, that wouldn't be dating. We'll cover that in another blog, sponsored by Hooked on Hookups.

But here's the thing, and you get better at it as you practice it...eventually, you learn that maybe you don't know everything. Maybe, you're being presented with someone who looks all wrong and sounds all wrong and, likely, feels all wrong, but you let them stick around long enough to get to know them, and you end up getting some strange lesson from them. So, pay attention.

Or sometimes, you simply learn about your own expectations of politeness, thanks to your southern upbringing, as in this interaction:

HIM: I had such a fun time. Let's do it again.
ME: Me too, and yes please.
ME: (2 weeks later) Hey - how's it going?
HIM: (No response for 2 more weeks)
ME: Let me explain how this works. If you didn't have a good time, or aren't interested, you simply say 'Thank you. I enjoyed meeting you, but don't think we're a match.' If you think about it, that's a much kinder 'no, thank you' than simply ignoring someone, right? Apparently, you were born in a barn and raised by Wildlings. All the best to you."

You sound like a psycho!

ME: Well, at least I don't poop in the corner and eat my young.

4) And, lastly, the one I am just now learning Be Patient: I truly believe that we are drawn to others at exactly the right time, for reasons that we most likely won't understand until well into the future. When that moment happens, neither one of you will be able to deny it. It's just how it works. And you know that already anyway.

Being patient waiting for it is hard though. But if you hate dating enough, you'll wait until you find the perfect one so you never have to do it again.

But, until then, refer to rule #2.

HIM: Sup?
ME: Writing a blog about you....


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