Friday, December 21, 2012

Dating Checklist

A few nights ago, Twin and a friend of ours were discussing internet dating. Our friend's daughter is trying it, and both she and Twin are finding it...less than ideal. Both of them have tired of generic guys and their generic messages. Conversation turned to if being picky is a bad thing, and how picky is too picky.

I was reminded of the only episode of Millionaire Matchmaker I've ever seen. (She's just not enough of a trainwreck for me to watch regularly. Good for her.) A woman walked in with a huge list of her requirements in a man. It was out of control. Patti told her in no uncertain terms that her list was too long. Patti says you're allowed to have five deal-breakers, and that you should give a chance to anyone who passes that list. Surprisingly enough, I'm with her on that. (Unless, of course, your gut is telling you there's a problem. I'm all about gut feelings, remember? Anyway.) Five things that you won't bend on, and after that everything else is just a preference. 

Telling Twin about this, she said, "Have you heard about the girl with the list?" 

...No. I have no idea what that means. 

Guess what. The girl with the list is hilarious. And slightly concerning. I guess she's some woman on Bravo? Her show is Miss Advised. I haven't seen it, but Julia Price did a song about her. (If you're not familiar with Julia Price, check her out on youtube, and definitely listen to "Girlfriend".) 

The Checklist Song by Julia Price

THIS WOMAN HAS A CHECKLIST OF 88 THINGS SHE WANTS IN A MAN. I mean, she really has a list. It's not one of those "in your head" mental checklists that you consult when your date says he has a dog or whatever. It's a real list. And it's really specific and somewhat repetitive and straight up nuts. Check it out, right now. 

Be real. Is this reasonable? Am I in the minority? I can't be, come on. 88 THINGS?? Not to be all negative (...just kidding) but...I don't think that guy exists. Write a book about him and make millions. He sounds like a catch. 

Thursday, December 06, 2012

He could have at least handed me a drink, also.

Last weekend, when I was busy running into my stalker/stalkee , I noticed a disturbing new trend. I'm calling it a trend because it happened to me and another woman, with separate people, and as far as I'm concerned that's a pattern. 

Twice during our night out, while we were making the rounds at a local bar (I know that sounds really pretentious--I hear it. Let it go.) we were both victims of drive-by business carding

Like a charm. 

It's exactly what it sounds like, you guys. I was having a conversation with this guy, and another guy I've never seen before in my life walked by me, handed me a business card, and kept walking. HE KEPT WALKING. Initially, I had no idea what had happened because who does that? I said out loud, as he was still passing, "What is this?" (I'm so smooth, guys.) I took a look and it was his business card. Well, I assume it was his. It could be that he thought I needed to speak to the management at a rental car place. I have no idea, since that was the extent of our interaction! I continued my conversation with the first guy, not interested in pursuing Mr. Rental Car in the least. When I reunited with my friend shortly after that, she held up two business cards. (Neither were from my guy.) 

WHAT IS HAPPENING? I'm not excited about this turn of events. So I've come to you for help. Is this a thing now? I mean, is this something we're doing? Something we're comfortable with as a society? Has anyone else been through this? Dudes, would you ever/have you ever tried this tactic? I wonder what the success rate is on strolling past a woman and handing her something. Isn't that like handing out flyers? We all just recycle those, yes? SO MANY QUESTIONS. 

Help me out, friends. 

Sunday, December 02, 2012

Game on.

There is a very real possibility that I am stalking someone, that he is stalking me, or a bizarre combination of the two. 

It's not quite as weird as it sounds. 

Ok, it totally IS weird, but not creepy "news at 11" weird. 

About...15 months ago or so, I met this guy at a bar. I'll call him FL, because he probably reads my blog SINCE WE ARE EVERYWHERE IN EACH OTHER'S LIVES. I can't give you any more details than that, even though they make this story even better. It'll just make it more awkward at our next (inevitable) meeting. He's probably been waiting anxiously for me to blog about him. YOU WIN THIS ROUND, I GUESS. Anyway, we met at this bar and it was just like any other time I start conversations with randoms at a bar. I was there for a charity pub crawl, which I told him about and he told me about these charity things that he does. We chatted until it was time for me to crawl away. Several bars later, he located me and recognized me and remembered me! (This is not really a big deal, you might be thinking...but it will be important later. Trust me.) 

A month later, at a completely separate community charity event, which was not the one we talked about, I saw FL. When he looked at me, there was no recognition at all. I thought nothing of it, since we met at a bar and come on, it would not be surprising for one or both of us to forget about it. 

Saw him again a couple months later--yes, more community/charity stuff because guess what guys, I am actually a very active member of my community. And he didn't recognize me there either, naturally.

But that changed. Several months after that, I was out with friends celebrating St. Patrick's Day. And, of course, there was FL, since we not only like charity events, but the same local dive bar. We have many common interests. While I was ordering at the bar, near him, he said something to me about the volume of my voice while I ordered. (You're all shocked to learn that I have a loud voice. It's a BAR.) He invited me to have a shot with him and the friend standing there. We had a drink, joked around for a minute, and I walked away. He caught me again later (you guys, I have a very magnetic personality) and we spoke for a few minutes. He introduced himself, saying, "We've met before." And because I'm a high maintenance brat who won't give you the satisfaction, I said very casually, "Oh, have we?" He told me the location and circumstances surrounding our meeting. VERY CURIOUS, don't you think? 

I did my best to ensure that he'd remember me. (Stop that, I didn't do anything slutty.) I told him his novelty holiday tie was crooked and insisted on retying it myself. Here's a Bitter Amanda Fun Fact: sober, I can correctly tie a tie roughly 50% of the time. On St. Patrick's Day, that statistic drops to about...0%.  So that took me...a while. I may or may not have devoted upwards of 20 minutes on that project before ultimately giving up and handing it back to him, untied. It wasn't pretty, but that girl? You don't forget that girl. Confident, I walked away from FL and went home. FL saw my A game that night. 

Spring brought another event, and I went with a bunch of friends. Guess who was volunteering at this event? 

Of course he was. He sold me a drink. 

With the blank look reserved for total strangers. 

My friends laughed, because of course my efforts on St. Patrick's Day were fruitless. Until an hour later. He walked past me at a bar--not the same one we usually meet at, mind you--and caught my attention. He jumped in the picture we were taking, then introduced himself, saying, "We've met before." This time out of spite, I once again feigned confusion. "Oh, have we?" He reminded me that it was St. Patrick's Day at That Other Bar. I suddenly remembered him, and he flirted with me for a few minutes before sitting himself down on some woman's lap and introducing me to his girlfriend. 

AWESOME. That is just super. I actually laughed out loud and went back to my friends. Fool me twice, FL...

The twice I've seen him since then (once while I was volunteering and once at the bar...of course) I have actively avoided eye contact because I couldn't be bothered. Then just this weekend, I was at another pub crawl and of course he was at the bar. He ended up talking to some of my friends and volunteered to help us out in the future BECAUSE OF COURSE. Later that night, he got my attention and reminded me that he'd help us out, then shook my head and--can you guess? Can you just freaking guess what happened? OF COURSE YOU CAN. 

"We've met before." 

I held back a mighty eyeroll. "Oh, have we?" 

Friday, November 30, 2012

Book Club Review

I finished The Mane Attraction! It wasn't bad, actually. I'm a little embarrassed at how curious about the plot I was...but not embarrassed enough to hide it, you see. 

Considering who the main characters are--I'm not making a single main/mane pun here, so don't hold your breath--there is a pretty serious lack of Feelings Discussions. WHICH IS AWESOME. There is absolutely no weird lion/shifter sex, which I consider a huge bonus. There's the occasional mention of claws coming out, but I preferred to think it was more figurative, and that made me feel better and I could just kind of glide past it. 

Overall, I'd give this book a 4 on the Vomit Scale. (That's the new book club reviewing scale, which I just made up this second. It's on your standard scale of 10, with 10 being super vom-worthy cutesy shit. Like The Notebook. That'd get an 11 on the Vomit Scale, for the sake of comparison.) It would have been lower, except the ending crosses some lines. If you skim it, though, it's tolerable. 

I'm staring a new book next week, if you're curious! That one will be (as randomly selected from my mystery grab bag) Rules of Marriage by Wilma Counts. It was published in 2002. Wow. 

It's historical, guys. Get ready. 

Hey, bonus fun fact for the day: I just learned today, via tumblr (which I succumbed to) that 42% of college grads never read another book after college. Which is preposterous. GOOD THING I'M MAKING MY ALMA MATER PROUD HERE, HUH?

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

We can't really be friends...

...if you don't watch TLC. 

I'm not talking about Say Yes to the Dress and What Not to Wear and please please make it stop A Baby Story. No. I'm talking about Trainwreck TLC. The shows on TLC you can't turn away from but you wish you could because you can't unsee the things you see there. The shows that make your life seem pretty great.

Seriously, if you can't think of a totally random group of people, TLC will put them on TV. Guy in love with his car? Give him a show. Non-UK princes coming anonymously to the US looking for love? Yes. Amish kids looking to learn about life in New York City? That exists. Woman who eats nail polish? Tune in at 10. The Duggar family, with their dozens of offspring? We've all watched that, don't lie. Virgin Diaries was the single most uncomfortable thing I've ever seen in my life--and I've seen Shakespeare porn. I watched it 3 or 4 times. ** I was actually really upset that they only made one episode.

Basically what I'm saying is that I have no shame in watching and judging people who are willing to put themselves on TLC. They allowed a film crew to come and witness their makeout sessions and fights and hear their backstory and then put it on TV. 

This weekend was no exception. Three words: Extreme Cougar Wives. THAT HAPPENED. This show wasn't really about married women, but about three older women (in their 50s, 60s, and--yikes--70s, respectively) who date younger men. Men in their 20s. Most of them are younger than me. Two are in relationships--one got pretend hippie married!--and one dates anything with a penis who doesn't remember anything about the 1980s because he was in diapers.

It was worth watching for two reasons. One, the commentary with my good friend B (who should start blogging again), which you should all be jealous you didn't witness. (TLC, we're available. Let me know.) We have the same brain. Two, it's really great for your self esteem. I don't have to sneak out the bedroom window of my 21 year old boyfriend's parents' house. That's not a reality I'm facing. Feeling better about your life already, aren't you? Just don't think about that 900 year old woman having more sex than you. I bet you're having more quality sex with better people. Just don't focus on that part. B and I got stuck on that for a minute, but moved on quickly because that one guy isn't wearing a sweater, that's his hair. Pass, thanks. 

During my first year of college, my roommate and I would go through these fits of inadequacy, lamenting how long until Smith College realized our admission was a fluke. We'd come home and turn on MTV. That year, we watched a lot of Jessica Simpson's Newlyweds nightmare, Real World: Las Vegas, and Jackass. We'd watch those, then look at each other and think...nah, we got this. We're alright. Back to work! 

So tell me, guys...did you watch? Are you going to now? Can we still be friends? Also...TLC, hit me up. We have a lot of ideas. 

**That is to say, I watched Virgin Diaries 3 or 4 times. I only watched the Shakespeare porn once. But those images are forever burned into my brain, so once was plenty.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Book Club Update...Again


I am, of course, speaking about The Mane Attraction, and not my own life.

Chapter 13, if you're curious. And no, it's not weird animal/werewolf/whatever sex. Because I am NOT reading that book, no matter the cause. 

Happy Thanksgiving! 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Book Club Update!

Last week we talked about the new book I'm reading, The Mane Attraction by Shelly Laurenston. 

It's...going slowly. I mean, it's over 350 pages and also it's about a lion shifter. So I've been a little lost, but giving it a serious try! My initial impression was that I would be reading a Southern book about a werewolf lion. Four chapters in, here's what I've got. 

1. He's not the only pretend werewolf. It would seem that pretty much all the characters, except a sassy cop, are shifters. There are wolves and lions and dingoes and wild dogs and WHAT IS HAPPENING. And they keep talking about using their claws and shit and I can't figure out if they look like humans but with sort of canine/feline features? I mean, the cover of the book suggests that they're people, but it's just...weird, guys. 

2. The back of the book says they wake up in bed together. SPOILER ALERT: it's not because of sex. Twin works at a library, and her boss says that when you're dealing with this type of novel, it's a good book if there is sex by page 68. GUESS THIS ISN'T A GOOD BOOK. 

3. If you're going to tackle this book, try to stick out chapter one. I spent the first dozen or so pages wondering if I missed something. It felt like walking into five conversations at once--that feeling will pass! Push past it! 

4. Book starts off on Long Island, making you question why they all have these stereotypical Southern names and drop the g at the end of words and say "y'all" and call each other "darlin'". That will clear itself up soon. Promise. 

Moral so far? I'm sticking with it, for now. 

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

And then we locked Santa out.

My favorite dive bar has dollar beers on Mondays. This is a place where you know the regulars that also go when you're there. It's kind of the meeting place for my guys, and has developed a reputation for being totally random. You never know which friends will show up, who will have a big announcement, or who has the most ridiculous work story. Somehow the conversations always take strange turns and the people watching is great and deciding who played what weird song on the jukebox is a fantastic game for the whole family. Mondays are the best. 


Twin and I went to that bar last night, to touch base with them about a pub crawl we're organizing. We were there on business. It was a slow night, our favorite bartender was there, things were looking up for a quick conversation. We sat down at the bar, got a drink, and hung out for a bit. Two guys were playing pool, a couple guys were at the bar, and that was it. A group of guys came in slowly, starting at the bar and moving to a table as their group grew. There was companionable chatter as the bartender joked around with everyone. Good music on the jukebox. A very nice night. 

And then. You knew I was heading to a disaster, right? That's how I roll. This...old homeless hippie Santa walked in. Twin and I made eyes at each other. He pulled his bag in, sat down at the stool one away from me, and ordered a beer. Ok.
Something like this.

Then he handed me a CD and asked if I could peel the sticker off. ...Sure? I did my best, handed it back, he thanked me and ordered a round for us. Ok.

Never engage a hippie. Mistake. I immediately texted a friend and said he should come join us for a drink! You're done with work soon, right? COMEHAVEADRINK. He fortunately recognized the underlying SOS in my text, since it was a Tuesday night, and said he'd come up when he left work. He's a freaking knight in shining armor. 

Santa occasionally asked me if I knew who the Grateful Dead were, if I had selected the music on the jukebox, if I liked music, if I talked to old people, asked my name 47 times, and asked us how to operate the jukebox. Twin gave him a tutorial. Santa asked what I did. I told him I'm a writer. He asked what I write. "Anything." He asked the bartender for paper and a pen SO I COULD PROVE IT. (I mean, seriously?) He complained about smart phones and my texting and fist bumped me for who knows what reason. I used the ladies room and upon my return, noticed that Sir Helpsalot had arrived and our things were moved to a table. Excellent. I sat down and we chatted for a minute, until Santa came and sat at the next table! He sometimes mumbled something and I mostly ignored him. Twin and Sir were having a safe, close conversation so I said I would be right back and fled from the table. Up at the bar, I talked with J, our bartender, about her wedding and met two guys who own a salsa company. They commented about me having a new friend. Please note that I had never met them before, but they were able to successfully read the situation. I said, yes, I believe I have so I will be hiding here for a while. J said he was staring. AWESOME. Got some salsa samples (SCORE), made some new friends. STILL BEING STARED AT. The salsa guys left, I went back to my table for a minute. A hot minute. Santa was wandering near the jukebox. Twin said he was asking if they had cars (No, creepy Santa, we're not taking you anywhere because that's how people end up on the news.) The group of guys had moved to the bar, and there was one open seat, with no seat next to it. Excuse me, I'm off to make more friends before Santa comes back. I used my new greeting, "Hi, I'm hiding here for a minute." The guys replied in kind, "You have a new friend." (It's the cool new greeting, everybody use it.) Somehow everyone in the bar picked up on the fact that I was not previously acquainted with Santa. By the way, everyone in the bar was about 10 guys, Santa, J, Twin, and me. Just so you can get a nice mental picture. J and the guys I sat with said he was staring and did not look happy. Awesome. Super. I'll have another drink please. 

Three or four times, I noticed out of the corner of my eye that Santa was just standing next to me staring. The last time, he poked my hair. (This is an unforgivable in my book.) J told me to make sure my drink was in front of me. She told Santa that I was on a blind date with the guy next to me. The guys actually gave me a seat between them. I've never seen Twin sit so close to our knightly friend. 

Finally, Santa finished his beer and wandered out. Since the door he used isn't the one most people use, J told Sir Helpsalot to lock that door. We then commiserated over WHAT THE FUCK JUST HAPPENED. Twin and I hung out for a while just to be sure he was gone, having long ago made the decision that unless someone (and by someone I mean half the bar) walked us to the car, we would stay until he was out of sight. We all did some outdated dance moves to 'NSync, I apologized for "being too nice" to the guy, and I finally let out a breath I'd been holding all night. Different guys peeked out the windows to be sure he was gone, and finally Twin and I left. And by left I mean, peeked our heads out the door and around the corner, then ran to the car. And locked the doors. (Overly cautious? You guys, he touched my hair. I think we're all lucky  I didn't call the police and report "a sketchy hair-touching bad Santa with too many rings on his fingers" and request that a car come by.) 

I will say, despite it being a truly weird situation, it was almost heart-warming to see the whole bar rally to keep us safe from this guy. Also to hear that Bad Santa has never been in there before. Mostly because we're hoping he won't be back. We even made some new friends! 

Plus I got some salsa samples. I'm actually going to call the night a win. 

Friday, November 09, 2012

Book Club? What?

This post required visual aids, so you're going to have to deal with my face again. Don't get used to it, though.

If you can find this book, let's talk/laugh about it/secretly enjoy it/not that one of course. 

Get ready. Also, please enjoy a bonus random excerpt from A Bride by Christmas by Joan Elliot Pickart. 


Wednesday, November 07, 2012

An age-old question...

Can men and women actually be just friends?

The number of times I’ve been asked this question, asked it myself, seen movies about it…it’s staggering, really. We can figure out how to get a self-portrait taken by a robot on freaking Mars, but this issue stumps us? Mars=less confusing than inter-gender relationships. Great. 

There’s no clear answer, of course, since relationships are like snowflakes. (They’re all individual and special and all that garbage. Also they’re cold and fleeting and fill people with a false sense of nostalgia, until suddenly there are too many and the weight of them is crushing and oppressive.)

Wait, what were we talking about?

Right. Men and women. There are those who champion the sexless friendship, saying oh but of course men and women can be friends without attraction and relationships getting in the way! Those people…are na├»ve. Sorry. (Sorry you’ve been lying to yourself, that is.) There are also people who say absolutely not, men and women always want to bang no matter what the situation so you’re not just friends, you’re either people who used to screw or people who haven’t screwed yet. Those people are creepy and not really friends with anyone of the opposite gender. They also probably need to get laid. (Just saying. The truth hurts.) What I’ve always believed is that it takes all kinds. Sure, I have friends that I’m attracted to. (No…not you.) I have friends who are attracted to me, or have been in the past. (I know who you are.) But then there are some friendships that are and will always be platonic. And I’m not fooling myself. I’m 100% confident.

There’s no right answer here. But some researchers from The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire wanted some kind of answer, at least. They took 88 pairs of opposite sex friends from the undergraduate population and asked them some questions about their relationship. They asked if there was attraction. They asked if these kids wanted to bang. But they realized, hey, this is the kind of information that ruins friendships! This could be an unmitigated disaster! (See: My Ex Boyfriend.) So they asked them separately of each other, and kept it all anonymous. They also had the pairs verbally state, in front of each other, that they wouldn’t talk about it later. BECAUSE OF COURSE THEY WON’T BE TEMPTED TO DO THAT. At least the researchers are off the hook if things get awkward, though. “HEY, you pinky swore that you wouldn’t talk about it! We heard you! No take backs!”

Anyway, the researchers found out some pretty interesting information. It’s not really shocking, groundbreaking stuff, but it’s interesting all the same. Turns out, lots of the guys were attracted to their female friend and thought it was reciprocal, and lots of the women thought their male friend was “just a friend”…and weren’t attracted to them. Turns out…guys are delusional and women are in denial. Good job, straight people.

Here’s the saving grace for these friendships: we are blissfully unaware of this huge difference, it would seem. So, for my hetero friends out there…yes, he’s attracted to you and no, she doesn’t feel the same way. Let the awkward friendships live on! Please don’t get too drunk and destroy the delicate balance you’ve found.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Disorganized Ranting

Before I being today's rant, let me just tell you the source I'm working from here: Huffington Post. I don't get my news there, but they are quick to post cat pictures and the latest "Call Me Maybe" to go viral. (I know, I guys the "Call Me Maybe" thing is a serious problem for me but I can't and won't apologize. I love it too much. My itunes most played list reflects that. That's a story for another day.) Sometimes I flip through the Huff Post twitter feed.

Let's talk about a couple articles they posted recently. I found one that was about things men hate to see in women's homes. Ok, I thought, I'll bite. What things do men hate? Turns out, it was posted as a response to, naturally, things that turn women off about where men live.

For that list, female editors around Huffington Post were asked about the stuff they see in guy's places that grosses them out. A lot of it was pretty basic: dirty dishes in the sink, mousetraps, bugs, no toilet paper, no towel in the bathroom. I'll go with most of those things. Although I didn't think most of them were specific to ladies visiting a guy. I don't care where I am, if there isn't a place to dry my hands except a still-damp bath towel that I'm pretty someone used to dry their ass? I'm not feeling terribly welcome. Some of them were also silly and very specific, clearly a woman with one horrible experience who has been taking it out on guys ever since. (Seriously, these women cited lava lamps as turn offs.) Some items were more a reflection on the guy and what you're looking for in a relationship. For me, I'm not offended by cheap Ikea coffee tables. I'm still in a fairly transient part of my life. My friends move a lot. They move across the country a lot. We're in our 20s--Ikea was made for us. Another woman said she's turned off by a guy with no books around. AND I CAN GET BEHIND THAT. Does anyone else remember that episode of Cribs where Moby was sad that celebrities don't have books? So he showed off his collection? We have the same version of The Hobbit. Do any of you remember Cribs? Am I too old now? Do you want to talk more about my nerd books? Or would you prefer we focus on Reasons Amanda is Single? Your choice! 


I'm not saying this list was ok, but some of it was reasonable. 

So then I read the list where guys tell us what sucks in our houses, ladies. In this appropriately scientific study, the staff at Huff Post "asked around" and found out some stuff that turns guys off. They don't even cite which guys. Despite this shady foundation, I pressed ahead. 

So here, ladies of the internet, are some of the things we need to ditch ASAP if we hope to snag a man. Just like the other list, some of it made sense. Guys hate hair in the sink--interestingly, this also made the other list. Looks like we all need to clean our disgusting sinks. Photos of your ex seemed like a no-brainer to me, but apparently enough women are keeping these around that guys brought it up. Get rid of those. It's more healthy anyway. BUT THE REST OF THE LIST. Oh man. 

The rest of the list reads like an adolescent boy who is still afraid of girls. Cats. "Fancy" cups. Tampons. Stuffed animals. (Actually...this one depends on their location, prominence in the home, and quantity. Fair point dudes.) Blankets on your bed. TAMPONS. Guys, what the hell is a fancy cup? Like a teacup? Even if I have other, more masculine cups to offer you? I can't drink my tea out of something nice? Also, cats? Really? An animal? REALLY? Maybe if some lady is dressing it up and the cat has a vlog and she talks to it in a baby voice and it consumes her life. But telling women that cats turn you off not only sounds ridiculous but THE JOKES I AM HOLDING BACK ARE TOO MUCH TO TAKE. And tampons...I can't even start on this one. 

WOMEN OF THE WORLD: hide your tampons! None of us will find a man if we leave those lying around our own homes as if we live there or something! Just because we need them doesn't mean men have to know about them! Shield their delicate sensibilities! I hope you have a fainting couch ready if he spots them because oh my, will you have some explaining to do then! We have to find men to trick into marrying us! HE CAN'T KNOW ABOUT TAMPONS UNTIL YOU HAVE A RING ON YOUR FINGER. 

You guys, I need to stay off Huffington Post. Life lessons. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

This is my face.

Guys, I didn't feel like typing tonight--felt like a chat instead. Don't worry, I'll get back to typing next time. 

Let's talk about marriage. Oh my. 

Saturday, October 06, 2012

But not a spoonful of sugar.

In light of a frustrating trip to CVS last week, I cleaned out my purse today. Not my whole purse. Every little pocket. (And I love little pockets.) There was the usual: wallet, pen, keys, mints. However, in addition to the things you're generally supposed to have in a purse as large as mine, here's a partial list of what I found. 

  • a bird finger puppet
  • coins from Brazil, Norway, Bulgaria*, Canada, and a German euro**
  • a seashell
  • a Tinkerbell charm which I believe fell off a keychain some years ago
  • notes I wrote after seeing a psychic
  • three coffee sleeves (Starbucks, Tim Horton's, Biggby)
  • two separate bets made with friends..."Amanda, you keep this because you won't lose it" YOU ARE CORRECT
  • a stray ribbon
  • a playing card from when I lived in Ireland
  • a diamond ring party favor
  • an allen wrench
  • a temporary tattoo from the Peter Pan bus line
  • a fortune telling fish
  • a venn diagram that Twin drew for me at the bar one night ***(see below for reproduction)
  • a coupon for a free pretzel from the mall (!!)
  • a shocking number of hair pins and safety pins and paperclips and band-aids and one of those coffee cup stoppers
  • five (FIVE) different lip products
I'll let you decide what all THAT says about me as human being/future hoarder/Mary Poppins-Little Mermaid hybrid. Look at this stuff, isn't it neat? 
I removed the ribbon, which will likely end up being the only damn item on the list I'll wish I had. 

Except that CVS card. I'll definitely keep wanting that. Sigh. 

*Yeah, Bulgaria is working on adopting the I won't even be able to use it. 
**Also, I haven't even been to most of those countries.

***figure A

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Ye Olde Blogge Poste

Last week I went to the Renaissance Festival. That might sound really dorky if you don't happen to live in Michigan or have one near you. sounds really dorky even if you're familiar with the Ren Fest. But let me clarify: I attended the Ren Fest. I patronized it. I did not participate in the whole costume-accent-Medieval vernacular sense. Some friends and I hung out for the day.

I have a soft spot for the Renaissance Festival. I think it's fun and quirky and ohhh my the people watching. It's top notch people watching. You see things that you cannot unsee. I think one of the biggest reasons I sort of enjoy going is that in retrospect, I can trace my questionable decision making back to that grove of trees. Sometime during my high school years, I found myself wandering around there with a couple of my best friends. That day, in the hot August sun, I flirted with a strange boy for the first time ever. He was wearing a kilt, had a great smile, I didn't know his name, and I wrote my phone number on a dollar bill he pulled out of his...satchel. Pouch. Whatever you call the bags they wear on a kilt.** My friends shook their heads as we walked away. They sighed the couple times we crossed paths that day and he winked at me. (Seriously. A teenager in a kilt winked at me.) He didn't call, of course. He was never going to call, and I probably knew that. I don't know what I would have done if he DID call. But that very sketchy decision was fun and he was really cute. (A sentence I find myself saying pretty regularly, let's be honest.)

Interesting choices and douchebags aside, I think it's a great place. It's an outlet for people to be as weird as they want. (Weird being relative, I realize, but I'm talking mainstream society here.) I love the idea that there were so many people who loved making their own chainmail and carrying swords that they were like, "You know what? Let's go find some dusty wooded area to hang out in and eat some turkey legs. Ale, anybody?" It's fascinating. A secret little world where I was the weirdo, in jeans. There's a whole other set of social norms, and it's awesome. For heaven's sake, a guy in a cape tipped his hat at me and called me "m'lady." (I ignored him because even though it's kind of a boost to be blatantly checked out, I've been there and done that--no phone numbers on dollar bills this year, my friends.) judging or anything, ladies and gentlemen, but...just because you can wear a chainmail bikini top or a corset that squishes your boobs up to your neck...doesn't mean you necessarily should. Fun fact. 

**EDIT: A friend informs me that the kilt bag is called a sporran. She credits her Scottish heritage for that innate knowledge. 

Friday, September 14, 2012


Hey you. If you've seen a TV, read a newspaper, or looked at the internet recently, you know there is an election coming up. It's kind of a big deal. And it's in less than two months. 

I'm not here to tell you about my vote or why I'll be casting it a certain way. I'm here to tell you that you should be voting. I don't care who you vote for--but go vote. Decisions are made by the people who show be a responsible adult for once and go help make the decision. It will certainly be better than posting another status update about your boyfriend or ignoring the text messages from that girl you met. 

Not sure where to get started? Make sure you're registered--try here--and if you're not, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? 

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Adventures in Online Dating

You've heard me mention my twin, right? In case you're new to the party and are sitting there like, "Whoa, Bitter has a twin?? There are two of her? This gives me mixed emotions."...let me fill you in. First of all, you're probably smart to be concerned that there are two of me, but have no fear because Twin is a good foil for me in a lot of ways. Believe it or not, a lot of my bad ideas are the ones that made it past her filter. There are a lot of ideas that she stops at the gate. (You don't even want to know.) She's also the single most awesome person I know. 

You're caught up. 

Twin took herself out of the dating game for a long time, which we are all happy to blame on the Disgusting Troll Ex-Boyfriend of a few years ago. She decided to be brave recently, and also to get all of us off her back about it, and started online dating. She has quickly learned that many of the guys there are duds. Boring messages, overly philosophical messages, creepy messages. But one guy seemed cool! Nice! Friendly! Interesting! They chatted, they texted, they set up a date! We were proud of her! Good for you, getting back in the game! 

But I'm her twin. HER TWIN. I'm not about to let her end up on the evening news. "Local Artist Found in Area Man's Basement." Nope. Not happening. He may sound nice, but he's still a guy you met on the internet. Let's not go crazy. A friend and I went undercover and had dinner near the coffee shop where they met. We also tried to locate them from the roof of the parking garage. Everything checked out.

When Twin called me an hour into their date and was escaping, I was a little confused. An hour? That seemed a bit short. We met for ice cream and a debrief. As Twin and This Guy walked around, they passed a bondage store and he asked if she was into that. She said no, thinking that was a rather personal question for date one. "Ok," he said. "I am." 

Well alright then. This Guy is into bondage. That's a lot of information to get about someone you just met. Half an hour ago. Then he somehow works into the conversation that he used to date a stripper. (Attention guys: We don't really want to hear about your exes on the first date. ESPECIALLY THE STRIPPERS YOU DATED.) As if that wasn't enough information about his past, This Guy mentions that she also made porn. Oh, and HE WAS IN A PORN WITH HER ONCE. (It was at this point in her story that I choked on my ice cream. Did not see that coming.) The guy making these asked him because he's "big." 

Just to recap, in case your head is spinning from Overshare Syndrome, Twin met this guy for coffee, then before the cups were empty learned that he was into bondage, dated a stripper, and made a porn with her because he has a huge penis. 

WELL OK THEN. Twin was, let's say, a little surprised that he'd shared so much. When he invited her back to his place after an hour, she decided to make an exit. Guys, you have to leave ladies wanting more. Keep a little mystery in the relationship. Talking about sex on the first date is risky. This time, it didn't pay off for Porn Star. It's not quite like telling your date you're into chicken fajitas. 

My sister dated a porn star. It's actually a really fun sentence to say. 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

You may not have my phone number and here is the reason why.

I was gone for a long time. I know. I'm sorry. I can explain. (Despite what it sounds like, I did not cheat on you.) 

There are two big reasons. The first is the cool one, which is that I was in Finland for nearly a month. It's beautiful there and they have good beer AND good chocolate. Instead of the face-meltingly hot summer you all had here, it was basically in the mid-70s all the time in Finland. Except at 3am when it dropped to, I don't know, 12 degrees? That's fine, though, because the temperature doesn't matter so much on a 3am adventure. The moral here is that despite the fact that I cannot understand Finnish at all it was a fabulous trip. (That started with 24 hours of travel and a missing suitcase and ended with 24 hours of travel.) More on all that later. 

Let's talk about the second reason. The reason I've been laying low for a while. I have a story that I've been dying to tell you basically since the minute it happened. Unfortunately, I couldn't risk the subject of my story catching wind of my existence. I was playing dead, so to speak. But's been a while and also I no longer care if he finds out. It might do him good, actually. 

The Friday before my Finland adventure, I was at a pub crawl with a bunch of friends. We had an awesome time and I was determined not to make any bad choices. (Not...that I've done the past...) So when this cute guy made normal conversation with me, I figured it was acceptable. Let's call him Boy Band. He sought me out at the next two bars, which I also thought was a good sign. He was tall and cute, with a job and the ability to hold a conversation, and didn't spill his drink on me. These are pretty basic standards. I allowed myself to be a bit charmed by him, even though he asked me six times if I liked sushi--I never said the ability to retain information was on my list of standards! When, at the fourth bar, he asked if he could take me out sometime, I figured at the very least I'd have a good story for you guys. So I said yes. I immediately had to follow it with an explanation.
"This is bad timing and will sound like a blow off, but I am leaving the country in four days and will be gone until August. I'll be in Finland. That is not a line and is actually happening." Boy Band seemed to buy it (Probably because of my flawless delivery. Right?) and asked for my number. 

Time. Out. It's important that you know something about me, before I continue to outline my poor choices and the trainwreck that followed. I never give out my phone number. I. Never. Give. Out. My. Phone. Number. It's been approximately 3 years since I gave a man* my number, because they always misuse it! I tell guys they can find me on facebook--yes I am that girl and no, I do not care. Right, back to Boy Band and the Quest for Amanda's Phone Number. (I would probably read that book.)

Boy Band asked for my number, totally unaware of the minefield he was jumping into. I changed the subject a couple times, still debating the merits of this guy. Should I allow him the ability to call? Did I want this to continue? One more gin and tonic later, I decided that I was overdue for a story for my blog. This guy was 34 and I figured he was old enough to use the phone responsibly.** The third time he asked, I agreed. 


A short while after he and his friend left the bar, he called me asking if I got home alright. A nice gesture, even though I was still at the bar with my friends. He asked me if I could let him know when I did get home. I obliged, even though a nice flirty conversation ended with him asking me twice if I would come over. Hi, not so much. He also asked if he could see me that weekend. Sure. Fine. Whatever. 

Considering I hung up with him around 3am, you can imagine my surprise when he texted at NOON. I opened my bleary, eyeliner-smudged eyes to find out he wanted to get together. "Now??" I asked the universe. Not going to happen. I then told him my day was pretty busy--remember, readers, that I was leaving for a month in four days. I kind of had a lot to do, including seeing friends and other people who know my last name.--but that I would text him later when I finished some errands. 

He beat me to it! "Are you back yet?" Oh no. Boy Band, don't do this. Don't be that guy. When I did get back, I ran off to see some friends. I texted him back and instead of doing any kind of acceptable flirting, he spent the next couple hours trying to convince me to leave my friends and come see him. When I didn't reply right away because I was with my friends being social he texted me saying, "You're not interested. I get it." OH MY GOD really? I was feeling suffocated. When I replied, he answered, "I might cry if I don't get to see you. :(" 

Nope. Can't do it. Can't deal with a clingy 34 year old man using the sad face this casually. Can't. Deal. I stopped replying. But I guess Boy Band really was sad because he called me. At 2:30. In the morning. Which I ignored because who calls at 2:30am with good intentions? Nobody. But that's ok, because he called back at 2:34am! WHICH I ALSO IGNORED. 

Normal human beings would stop contacting me. But not this tenacious fellow! He texted me at noon on Sunday--a normal, appropriate hello text which would have been appreciated if he'd not contacted me at all on Saturday. It went ignored. But just in case I missed it, he texted again on Sunday evening to ask when I was leaving. 

THAT. That is why I never give out my phone number. (That is also, I'm certain, why Boy Band is still single.) 

*"A man" in this case means a man I was not already friends with or related to or some other non-romantic circumstance. Those guys are allowed--even though they often misuse the knowledge as well. 


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Sex Ed...Sort Of.

There's this new story going around the internet--I'm sure you've seen it. Some 7th grade teacher was encouraging her students to ask honest questions about sex and allowed them to do so anonymously. She put them on a blog and that's where we are now. Everyone's writing about how hilarious they are, these ignorant and ridiculous questions about sex. It's everywhere. 

And I wish it would stop. Sure, from our perspective these questions are funny. Because we're adults. And we've already learned it. We think it's funny to ask what are different kinds of sex because we know the answer. But take a minute and think back to 7th grade. When you didn't know about sex. (Even if you were having it already.) 

In a country where so many schools don't teach about sex (in my school, we learned what the reproductive systems looked like and watched a terrifying video of a woman giving birth...which, in retrospect, was excellent birth control) or teach students to wait to have sex (which of course always works...) and parents are often nervous to have the sex conversation and as a society we're pretty nervous about sex at's no wonder our kids have questions. And if the schools aren't answering them, and the parents aren't answering them, kids either rely on the internet for answers or they ask their friends, who by the way also have no clue. And we all know how reliable the internet's either the self-edited Wikipedia which may or may not have been edited by an equally clueless 7th grader, or WebMD, which is the place to go if you want to be convinced you have some kind of rare cancer or tumor or disease that no one has had in hundreds of years. 

So this teacher found a solution, which had kids asking honest questions. She framed it in a way that made them feel comfortable and she gave them a way to safely ask about stuff. Which is fantastic. Ignorance may be bliss, but it can also be teenage pregnancy or sexually transmitted infections, among other unpleasantries. I applaud her efforts. I wish more young adults had someone they trusted and could turn to when they wanted to know about sex. Or drinking, or anything else that comes up. (I personally had an older brother and sister who were more than willing to not only answer questions but volunteer information. I was lucky. And in the minority.) 

And what do we do? We laugh. We post their queries all over the internet and mock them for their stupidity. Just great. Perfect. What better way to gain their trust, am I right? 

Tuesday, July 03, 2012


Fun fact: contrary to popular belief, I do believe love exists. 

I know, I know. Who says that? But whatever, shut up. I do. 

My neighbors down the street, M and H, are absolutely the nicest couple in the world. Both retired, they have breakfast at a little family restaurant every day. They wander around garage sales and museums and quilt shows and whatever interests one of them. M lent me a book about making t-shirt quilts when I wondered if I could manage that. (It remains to be seen but ONE DAY.) H brought me his old, worn Ford Model A belt buckle when he learned that I was looking for a vintage buckle several years ago. They are the model neighbors and you'd want a whole neighborhood full of them. 

A few weeks ago, M suffered from a major heart attack and passed away. It was the kind of shocking news that leaves your head spinning because it just can't be true. H came over to tell us, early in the morning, and my heart broke. He was telling my parents what the doctors had said, but all I could focus on was his left hand. On his little finger, next to his wedding band, was her wedding ring. I left the room because the sight of that small gold band was overwhelming. It should be on her finger, as she sits next to him. 

They married young, in the 1950s. This week would have been their 54th wedding anniversary. The pictures from their wedding are fabulous, full of white tuxedo jackets and Buddy Holly glasses and full skirted dresses. 

Fifty four years. That's love. That's the love I believe in. As men throw out terrible lines and grab me in bars and think texting to say, "wanna hang out" is enough...I can only shake my head because that's not how you find yourself married for 54 years. I can't imagine any relationship founded on drunk dials is going to be as worthwhile as M and H' no, random guy, you can't have my number. I do not want to come home with you. I like being single. My life is actually pretty fantastic and not really missing anything if I do say so myself. If I'm going to make myself (and another person) miserable in a relationship, I might as well hold out for something better. 

Monday, June 25, 2012

Maturity. Finally.

I am the victim of constant matchmaking. I'm friends with lots of married women, who look at a single woman as a project. I go with it, as I find the results endlessly entertaining. (Despite not being particularly useful.) I found myself in such a situation on Friday, quite unexpectedly. 
Before my would-be suitor appeared on my radar, though, he had a bit of stiff competition. 

One man stared at me from his table of shot-consuming buddies before approaching us. He said he was pretty sure he knew me, which was not true to the best of my knowledge. However, he had a nice smile so I told him he might be correct. For the record, I find this approach totally acceptable--however, it does help if one gives some sort of clue about how he might know you. 
Later, a gentleman far too old for me walked by and stopped in his tracks. I had my chin in my hand and he mimicked my gesture and called me The Thinker. "Whatcha thinking about?" he smirked at me, a misguided attempt to flirt, I suppose. 
"Gin," was my flat answer before returning to my conversation. He spent the rest of the evening flitting around the bar, flirting with many blondes who were much, much too young for him. (And far more attractive.)
Returning from the restroom, a middle aged man in dress pants, nice shoes, and a baseball jersey (yup.) stopped me and said, "I'm sorry, what was your name again?" When I told him I hadn't given it to him once, he offered his hand and introduced himself. When I went for the handshake, he switched it up and kissed my hand instead. Thanks. I excused myself mid-compliment. But it's ok, because he was clearly drunk and surely wasn't that offended. Also I didn't care.

Fortunately, I had spotted a tall attractive guy near our table. As if by magic, he appeared at my table later. In this instance, magic is actually my fabulous friend T. She is an energetic force to be reckoned with. T knows him and pulled him over, calling my name. We were introduced and he was bossy enough to tell me I should get out of my seat...but he said it with a great smile on his face so I let that slide. T very subtly said, "This is M. M, this is Amanda. I have to pee," before disappearing. We chatted for a few, nothing of consequence. He told me he had noticed me and thought I was lovely but he had a girlfriend. And you know what? That was totally awesome. I mean it. It should have been a bummer but it was fantastic. He was HONEST ABOUT IT and I have had a string of men withholding this particular bit of information. I HATE THAT.
 So even though it was kind of sad that a cute, cool guy thinks I'm beautiful but already has a lady in his life...actually...that's really sad. Right, I was making a point! Even though he's unavailable, we had an interaction that didn't leave me feeling all slimy and gross. 


Wednesday, June 06, 2012

Reverse Stalking.

Get ready, readers, for an unpopular opinion. (Please hold your surprise that I might say something you aren't in love with.) 

Technology is messing a lot of things up.

I'm not even talking on the user level--that's a blog for another day. The pain in the ass I'm referring to is the impact technology has on the trash heap of our social lives. As we walk through life, there are people who stay--they're kept handy, within reaching distance. You don't even bother putting them away. There are people stored away on shelves, behind glass--preserved and shown off when the mood strikes. Some people we inherit from loved ones. We have a history with them and could never part with those people. There are people who come to us in the wrong form--great people, just not suited for you personally. We give them a try...and then recycle them, compost them. Send them off and hope they become something great--for someone else. 
And then. Then there are people who come into your life and just cannot stay. We throw them away and hope we never see them again. This is the toxic friend. The boyfriend you don't want any of your girls to date, and not out of weird jealousy. And then they are gone, hauled away. 

This is not the case anymore. Before I got a Facebook account, I never had to face my exes unless I sought them out. I could rest easy that anything I threw away stayed away. With the myriad social networks in our faces, you actually cannot stop running into people from your past. People you may know? Yeah, I might know that guy. I might have had Christmas dinner with his family. I might have had his tongue in my mouth before. Do I want to friend him? No, I do not. Thanks for asking. You can try telling Facebook you don't know him, but when you have 47 mutual friends even Facebook starts to think you're lying. TAKE A HINT, INTERNET. And now I can tell when these guys are going to a party with some of those 47 mutual friends or when one of them marries some poor unsuspecting girl and everyone tags a million pictures of them. I know way too much.

I'm not even ranting about privacy right now. (ANOTHER BLOG FOR ANOTHER DAY.) What I'm saying is I JUST WANT MY EXES TO STAY IN THE PAST, INTERNET. It's bad enough that I was half a second from hiding at work last week when I thought the sub next door was a guy I dated. Just because our email exchanges are somewhere in the recesses of my account, I do not want his address popping up when I import contacts to Skype. I don't want to follow him on Twitter, nor do I want him in my circles on Google+. WE BROKE UP, OK? My social media needs to catch up on that news. 

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

another goodbye.

On a sunny day in DC, I walked around the neighborhood catching up with E. Constantly distracted by buildings around me, I was looking up as usual. It was a lovely neighborhood, all painted houses closely knit amid trees and uneven brick sidewalks. We passed a church--a pretty old brick church tucked into the city. The grounds were bursting with flowers, their blooms filling all the available space in the gardens. I interrupted E (who fortunately puts up with this) to comment on it. She grew quiet before speaking. 

This lovely, quiet space, so out of place in a city of hundreds of thousands but perfect all the same, was the location of their final goodbye to Kirby. I learned that this tiny church was full well past capacity to accommodate everyone who loved her. 

The silent prayer in my head will never be enough to honor her memory, but it was all I had as I took in that tiny, beautiful space. 

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


You guys. 

YOU GUYS. You know I like to tell you about the men who pop in and out of my life. I pride myself on having interesting encounters--if the relationship isn't a success, might as well have a good story, yes? 

I have a good story. I have a really good story and I want to tell you all about it. BUT YOU GUYS. You also know I never come right out and say, "So I met this guy named Brad Pitt and he's an actor and here's what went down." I like to give these guys a tad more anonymity than that--whether or not they've earned it. So I keep some of it to myself and we're all good. 

But guys. The story I want to tell you is only really good because of those things. Without certain details, it's a rather generic story and you know what? I don't do generic. So you'll have to just trust me on this--I had a really, really good vacation. 

Someday, please remind me to tell you.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Feels like home.

My Smith friends make me feel the most like myself. It's like I'm the best version of myself when they're around. Maybe it's because my Smith years were the time when I figured a lot out. Maybe it's because they endured years of me in sweats and they love my anyway. Maybe it's because they know too many secrets. Who knows? 
Friends from other areas of my life raise the bar as well--don't get me wrong. I have to step up my game in different ways and I love that about my friends--all of them. I love having friends who challenge me. How boring it would be otherwise...
I'm currently in DC, visiting some of those fabulous ladies. I'm currently forcing myself to get done the work I put off earlier this week, while they are at work and I have time. When I arrived last night and sat with them, drinking wine and telling stories...I felt whole again. The piece of me that I never realize is missing was back. It happens, without fail, when I'm with Smithies. 
Maybe it's because I'm with them and feeling normal...but last night I was able to vocalize the stuff about work, about life, that's been rolling around in my brain, looking for words. I'm not ready to make a blog announcement or anything, but I'm ready for a change. I've been working in the same place for 5 years and for me that's a long time, for anything. I haven't challenged myself on a big scale in a long time. The scary stuff that makes my heart skip...I used to make myself do that. I was terrified when I got to college and didn't know a single person. I was nauseous when I got ready to travel abroad by myself for 9 months. But those were the best choices I've ever made. And I've let myself get really safe and comfortable. Those are great feelings...but at what point does comfortable become stagnant? Boring? 

Quite a question. But if anyone can help me figure it's Smithies. 

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

On family.

I have a lot of families. Not in a child of divorce kind of way, but in a "I surround myself with quality people" kind of way. I have a big biological family but I have a huge chosen family. No matter how different each family is, I stick by one rule for everyone: you don't talk shit about your family to outsiders. My twin and I can laugh about the aunts but don't you dare tell me those ladies are anything but wonderful. It's not a hypocritical thing, as far as I'm concerned. When I tease my family, or vent about them, or (yes, sometimes) straight up complain, it's coming from a place of love. A place where I know the good and the bad and the weird and the fabulous and I respect all of it. Knowing all that, I vent because I know there is so much more to them than this one facet I'm focused on. 
I consider my community another branch of my personal family tree. I'm from the Detroit area--Dearborn, Michigan. That's my hometown, and like it or not it will always be a part of me. If you've heard anything about Dearborn, it's very likely something about either Henry Ford or the large Muslim community. If it's the former, then you're older; probably old enough to retire. Most kids aren't full of Henry Ford fun facts unless they field tripped to his house and museum on multiple occasions. Of the two, it's more likely the latter. 
I love my childhood community. I never really considered that it was a diverse population--that's how kids are, though. They accept as normal whatever you present to them. So I'd alternate my Merry Christmases with Happy Eids without batting an eye.
Terry Jones can't stop thinking about how diverse Dearborn is. The pastor from Florida has been to visit our community several times recently, and hasn't exactly been received with enthusiasm. He came here with the goal of rallying against Islamic law and Islamic extremists. Surrounded by a few supporters, he spoke at City Hall while so many more gathered across the street, protesting his words of hate. Terry Jones doesn't know anything about us. He knows hate and ignorance. He obviously doesn't know any Muslims. Our community, our family, is just like any other. And now he is coming back again this weekend to attack my family. He is concerned that we are being taken over. Well, Pastor Jones, I am not. 
This weekend is a holiday weekend--it's Easter and Passover. I will be spending it with my family--my whole, extended family. And I wish Terry Jones would consider doing the same. 

Sunday, March 25, 2012


I spent Saturday in Royal Oak. It was a fabulous day and I always wonder why I don't venture out there more--it's not that far from me. If you're in the metro Detroit area, there are a couple places I highly recommend. 
First of all, go eat at what crepe. Everything we ordered was delicious. I was full all day. 
Then, go check out Lost and Found Vintage...because it is so much fun, you guys. I bought the cutest handkerchief in the world. Check it out. 
HOW AWESOME IS THAT? I laughed out loud, and that's a pretty good sign that something has to come home with me. (That's how it goes with boys sometimes, too, AM I RIGHT LADIES? Just kidding, gross.)

If I ever go on another date, I assure you this will be in my purse.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Brownie Points

You probably often wonder about my love life. (Don't pretend you don't, that's just sad.) 

Well, it's fabulous. Let me highlight some of the impressive things men around me have done recently. This post could be titled: Tips and Tricks for Winning Bitter Amanda's Heart. 

1. I haven't heard from you in months? Awesome, go ahead and call me at midnight on a Friday because you feel like hanging out! This works best if you've shamelessly flirted with me for months before revealing your girlfriend. 
2. Thanks for buying me drinks at the bar until I was taken home by my friends. Even though I kept ordering water. That's definitely a sign that I want you to stick your hand up the back of my shirt. And then, after I shut that down, please tell me about your wife and children. 
3. Cool. Cool cool cool, I'd love to hear about your new girlfriend and also can you fill me in on the details of doing romantic things for her? Because after all that flirting and dancing and texting we did, THAT is definitely what I want to hear. 
4. SWEET, I love getting shot down and then pointedly ignored. 
5. Really, ex? Another shot at my dating life? Thanks. I hadn't yet realized that it's pretty abysmal. 

LIVING THE DREAM, readers. Living the dream. 

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Fun Fact

Apparently I own a necklace that looks like a sex toy. 

This week, I wore a different necklace to work. Early in the day, my class was with another teacher so I stopped by to say hello to a friend, N. As we spoke, another woman walked in the room. N started laughing about something, then turned the other, said something in Arabic, and pointed at my necklace. They laughed as I looked confused. "I don't want to know." I said. 
They laughed more. She lowered her voice. "That looks like a sex toy." 
AND THEN I DIED. I teach 2nd grade! I do not own necklaces that look like sex toys! And if I did, I WOULD NOT WEAR THEM TO TEACH 2ND GRADE. 
"Can I borrow this?" she asked. I more or less shrieked a no at her. "You stick it--" she started to say, laughing at my embarrassment before I retreated to my classroom. 
However. Readers, I am stubborn. ("What? Not you!") I refused to take off my obscene necklace. I was...I don't know, proving a point? In retrospect I'm not really sure what I was trying to prove. That I can handle the inevitable mocking? At lunch, N was well behaved. Until the one man in the room got up to get something from the other room. She leaned in towards a couple others and started murmuring in Arabic, pointing towards me. (I work with a fair amount of bilingual people.) 
"STOP IT!" I shrieked, reddening. "SHUT UP STOP IT STOP IT I HATE YOU." 
"What's going on, Amanda?" asked the man from the other room, laughing at my spectacle.
"Nothing!" I answered too quickly. The women were laughing. 
"Why are you hiding?" 
"I'M NOT!" 

I thought I was in the clear. I had the rest of the afternoon without any breaks, so I could easily get away with hiding in my room with my class. Later, I was in the middle of reading a chapter out of Charlotte's Web to my class. N knocked on the door. I started to open it when I realized the man was with her. But I was going to be cool. 
"Um, I'm kinda busy here. You know, teaching?" I said, trying to be casual. I would not meet the man's eyes. 

OH RIGHT I FORGOT PART OF THE STORY. That man? He's the only single man in the building. And you know how it goes--two single, straight people in close proximity of both age and geography must be destined for each other. Which many people have tried telling me. (And maybe him, who knows?)

Back to our story. I'm standing in my door, holding up Charlotte's Web like a shield, protecting me from having this conversation. 
"Tell him the story about your necklace," N says with a smirk. 

Yes, she did get a door closed on her as my face burst into flames. 

Excuse me, I have a necklace to put on ebay.