Message Monday – Nonsensical Questions

Happy Monday everyone!! A few notes before we get to this week’s featured message.

  • I have to confess that I was horrified when I read L’s most recent post about transition lenses. But not for the reasons that she and our lovely readers who commented were. I was horrified because I have always wanted transition lenses. I have atrocious vision. I got glasses in the 2nd grade (tragically enormous glasses), and my eyes haven’t stopped getting worse since. I’ve never lived in a world where I can just walk outside and throw on sunglasses. I have to either have prescription sunglasses made, or I have to be wearing contacts already. When I first saw transition lenses, I immediately wanted them. They’re so effortless. I walk out into the sun, and I’ve got sunglasses on! I walk back inside, I’ve got regular glasses on! But sadly, transition lenses have never been in the cards for me. My prescription is a) already very expensive, and b) apparently doesn’t lend itself well to transition lenses. This now seems to be a blessing in disguise, seeing as what a date repellent they seem to be. But a dream of mine has now died. Thank you L for enlightening me and all the other poor souls out there who hoped to someday get transition lenses.
  • I wish I could attribute my absence lately to all the dates I’m going on. The truth is that I haven’t been on a date since I moved back to New York. So we’re still working on that front. The good news is that, now that I finally have a job that I like and I’m not miserable for 10 hours every day, I’m a much more agreeable person (as much as I can be at least – I still generally hate people). So I’m hoping that that positive is going to rub off on the rest of my life.
  • A new bar opened up in my town last weekend, and I went to the opening. It was more of a high school reunion that I expected, which was overwhelming. I need to figure out where to go to meet people who aren’t the guy I married (and subsequently divorced because he wanted kids and I didn’t) for a high school economics assignment senior year. That’s proving more difficult that I anticipated.

Moving on. This past week I received the below in my inbox:

nonsensical question

Can anyone tell me what the hell he’s talking about? Literally anyone? Because I have no idea. I took a screenshot and sent it to S and L with the caption “Another day, another nonsensical message from a guy.” I mean, setting aside the myriad grammatical errors, how did I find what out? I don’t even understand the question.

Also, why is this a thing that I’ve now been asked not once, but twice? Do I unknowingly possess secrets of the universe or something?

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And One Podunk Town…

S mentioned that one of us was moving to the ‘burbs. That would be me (which you probably already figured out from the color-coded comment “the ‘burbs is a generous description for where I’m headed.”) That comment was maybe a liiiiitle exaggerated. Poughkeepsie, NY isn’t really a little podunk town. Technically speaking, it’s actually a city, so our tagline can probably stay as is. But it feels a lot like a podunk town. I can say that, because it’s where I grew up.

That’s right folks. I moved home. Specifically, into my younger brother’s childhood bedroom (he took over my bedroom when I was off at college – teenage boys are disgusting, and also I’m too lazy to swap rooms). This move transpired really quickly, and very unexpectedly, so my parents are letting me stay at home for a a little bit to give me enough time to find a place I like, rather than just whatever was available in the couple weeks between accepting a job back home and moving back home. They’re the best. (It’s not lost on me that I once said that a guy who lives with his parents raises a red flag, and here I am, 30 and living with my parents (though just for 2-3 months, max) At least I’m employed, right?)

It feels really strange to be back here. I left for Boston when I was 18. That was 12 years ago. The only place I’ve ever lived as an adult is Boston. And even though I’ve come home plenty over the last 12 years, it’s so different to be living here again. I’ve only been home for 2 weeks, but in that time I’ve re-lived a lot of forgotten memories running errands and being down on Main Street for work. It’s really bizarre to live and work somewhere so familiar, but at the same time so in the past. This is going to be really fucking weird. Weird in general, and weird for dating. And that’s what you all come here to read about, now isn’t it?

I had 3 weeks between when I accepted this new job and gave my notice, and when I actually moved. Getting matches and viewing profiles of eligible bachelors in the greater Boston area, when I was packing to move over 3 hours away, got real old real fast. So I changed my location on OKC, Coffee Meets Bagel, and Hinge.

It took 24 hours before Hinge matched me with someone I went to high school with.

First of all, I knew that would be coming, but christ it happened fast. Is that some sort of sign? I didn’t have a horrible high school existence, but still. What a jarring start to my transition home. Secondly, there are actually a handful or so of guys that I went to high school with that I would happily date. Sadly, none of them were this match. At first I just knew that he looked familiar. And then, perusing his pictures, I saw someone else that I immediately recognized, and it hit me who the match was. A nice enough guy, but not someone I would ever date for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is the other person I recognized in the photos. The two have always been close. And as I explained to one of my closest friends from high school, I would rather die alone and be eaten by 408 cats than live a life that includes that asshole friend in any capacity.

I’ve since been matched with a few more guys from high school, none of whom I would date either (though I don’t hate any of their friends, so maybe…).

I also started messaging with a guy on OKC who seemed really cool and who I was actually excited about meeting. And then, the week we intended to plan a date, he informed me that he had just accepted a job down in Maryland and would be moving out of the state. Right as I was moving in. Oh universe… Lastly, on the online front, there was a guy who texted me to death, without making any attempt to actually meet me in person. I just wasn’t interested enough to ask him out, so that faded out.

There is a guy offline that I’ve been interested in for a long time. But since we lived 4 hours away from each other, I never did much about it. By never did much, I mean drunkenly texted him about my feelings once last spring at 1 am after having been out with him and a bunch of others all night. Can you say sloppy drunk?

Although nothing came of that text, I have a feeling that had more to do with distance than anything else. We’ll see if that feeling is right or not, now that I live a lot closer and will be seeing him a lot more. Cross your fingers, ’cause he’s definitely got a little Tim Riggins in him (the good parts, not the emotionally unstable parts).

So – I’m back in New York. This is going to be verrrrrrry interesting. Guys find race car border wallpaper sexy right?

2nd and 3rd dates with Italian M

Before I get to my post, I just want to point out a quick blogging fail. I missed our one year blogiversary! I feel like L, D, and you wonderful readers are just sitting at home, in your pretty new dresses, waiting to be acknowledged, while I frantically scroll through Yelp ‘best ofs’ to find a last minute place to take you for a nice dinner. Basically, I’m this guy:

Well I just want to say, I’m sorry, baby. I love you. Let me make it up to you.

(Was that creepy enough for your liking? It was? Good.)

Anyway, last week I dropped a major bomb on you Stucu readers. Thanks so much for your hilarious and enthusiastic reactions, btw. You guys make it so fun to write this blog. But today I’d like to rewind a bit and talk about another guy. TO THE BEST OF MY KNOWLEDGE, the gentleman in question never found the blog, but at this point, anything is possible.

Here’s a quick refresher on M, today’s victim..err, subject: 

  1. M is a tall high school teacher from Jersey
  2. I got drunk on our first date, which I wrote about here
  3. He has a family beach house in Italy which he visits every summer. I mean… Wayne's World schwing
  4. My biggest issue with M was that he talked my ear off and barely asked me about myself on our first date.
  5. We had a second date planned that was creepily booked for the day after my birthday, which based on past experience I was a bit dubious about.

So. What happened with Italian M? I’ll break it down by date:

Second Date: Creepy Faux Birthday Dinner

At a certain point I decided to stop being weird about the birthday thing and just go with it. M asked me if I had a favorite restaurant in the city that I’d like to go to, and I picked a place that was nice, delicious, but not super fancy or expensive. It also happened to be Indian, a cuisine that, at least to some people, doesn’t scream ‘sexy second date food’. Personally, I actually get a little turned on at the words ‘samosa’, ‘naan’, and ‘biryani’, but that’s just me.

M picked me up at my apartment and presented me with flowers, which was v. thoughtful and sweet. He even said, “I figured you couldn’t yell at me if I said they were just because and not for your birthday”. Haha. Cute. Also, true. 

We had a nice dinner. M aggressively ordered basically everything on the menu (man after my own heart) and we enjoyed some lovely cocktails. Although this time around, I wisely cut myself off at 2, lest he mistake me for an alcoholic and leave me a contact card for AA (SATC reference! See #47 on this epic list).

M did ask me about myself a bit more, but still dominated most of the conversation. We flirted a bit, as much as two people can flirt with a table full of curries between them. He wanted to get drinks afterwards, but I was uncomfortably full and just wanted to curl up in the fetal position in my apartment, so I declined. After ingesting approximately 90 tic tacs and a full pack of Orbit gum each to counteract the spicy breath situation, we made out a little and said goodnight. 

One thing I liked about M was his nerdy penchant for history. I liked that like he’d decided to model his Movember ‘stache after a different president every year, even though he showed up to our first date sporting a Chester Arthur:

chester-a-arthur-2

So, with that charming nerdiness (and let’s be honest, that Italian beach house) still fresh in my mind, I said yes to a third date. M mentioned something about cooking for me, which I was fully down with, even though that meant I’d have to go to his house in the ‘burbs which could end SUPER awkwardly. One thing I disliked about M was his excessive texting and calling habits. Homeboy was a little out of control with the extreme contact, and it was wearing on my nerves a bit. Which is probably why after we agreed on a date and time for dinner, I glossed over the rest of what he was telling me (something about lesson plans surrounding the Revolutionary War, and teaching the kids how people lived back in the 18th century, blablablawhocares.) Which leads me to…

Third Date: Colonial Cooking Lessons

Oh boy, do I wish I’d paid better attention to those inane texts. I arrived at M’s house ready to be cooked a delicious meal, only to be informed of the following:

  • The plan was actually for both of us to cook together (at this point, that sounded fine to me. I love to cook.)
  • Except we weren’t, in fact, cooking for ourselves, but for M’s history students.
  • And we weren’t just cooking a normal meal. We were cooking typical foods from the REVOLUTIONARY WAR ERA for the kids to try.
  • M had three dishes planned that had to be ready to go for an 8 am class the next day.

My face as I was being told this….oh man, my face. I’m sure it was comical. Basically, I had misunderstood. I read “come over for dinner”, and what M really meant was: “come over, we’ll order dinner, and then I’ll use you, my date, as free labor to help me complete my lesson plans FOR MY JOB.”

To be fair to M, I went back and read his texts, and he had told me about this. But you guys, the texts were INCESSANT and my patience was wearing thin, so my reading comprehension was at an all time low. As comical and bizarre as the proposed date activity was, I shrugged it off and thought, “WELP, I’m here. I’m going with it.” Honestly, I knew I’d at least get a great blog post out it of it, and I also think if the chemistry is right, two people cooking together can be super fun and sexy. Exhibit A:

So we grabbed Chinese and got to work on the (terrifying) historically accurate menu which included Brunswick Stew and something called (dead serious) chicken pudding. Chicken. Pudding.

What actually transpired couldn’t be further from the aforementioned croissant making foreplay with Meryl and Steve. First, M gave me the job of chopping four huge onions, which 1. made me weep uncontrollably, smearing my eye makeup in the process until I had basically transformed into George from the Wedding Singer:

george

And 2. made me REEK LIKE RAW ONIONS. Sexy, M. Really sexy.

I kept trying to turn this bizarre situation into something fun or at least funny, but to my dismay and honestly, annoyance, M was pretty humorless about the whole thing. (One of my least favorite personality characteristics EVER). I suggested he put some music on (we were literally chopping vegetables in silence) and he asked if Christmas music was okay. “Sure!” I said enthusiastically, thinking he’d be putting some fun and upbeat holiday tunes on. Instead, M proceeded to select a playlist that contained (exclusively) slow, serious, old fashioned, super religious, SOMBER Christmas hymns. So picture me, readers, in some dude’s kitchen in Jersey, dicing veggies, weeping, while Little Drummer Boy is blasting in the background. I mean. What is my life?

The other incredibly comical part of this “date” (at this point I’m using the word date VERY loosely) was that I quickly discovered M didn’t know the most basic things about cooking. He had gone on and on about learning to cook from his immigrant parents, spending every summer in Italy and cooking big meals for his friends, and watching hours upon hours of Food Network, yet he was incredibly slow and nearly clueless in the kitchen. He’d never heard of a roux (come. ON.) He tried to make the stew in a pot that was way too small. He read the directions 843029843274850 times. At this point, my patience was wearing thin and it was getting late, so I did what any bossy, type A 20-something gal would do in this situation: I took over. Yup. I cooked M’s students a colonial feast while M stood there, ostensibly being my sous chef but really just chillaxing with his dog.

Finally, FINALLY, we (I) finished the damn food and M proclaimed that we’d earned ourselves a nightcap. “Well actually, I’ve earned myself a nightcap,” I corrected. “I’m thinking you’ve earned about 1/3 of a glass.” I was teasing, but of course I was secretly dead serious. We sat down for a drink and I calculated the number of minutes before I could politely leave. Which is when, predictably, M tried to put the moves on me.

Look, I probably shouldn’t have done what I did next, given the fact that I was so totally over M at that point. But I was still attracted to him, and thinking about the fact that he was a good kisser. And I just…wanted to have a little fun after such a lame night. So we made out. M, bless his heart, tried his darnedest to continue along the baseline (yes, I’m aware this “base” talk makes me seem like I’m in 8th grade or I’m secretly Meatloaf) but I wasn’t having it.

After a few minutes of half-hearted smooching and blocking attempted passes at clothing removal, I was over it. I got up and said goodnight. M was leaving for Florida the next day to see some friends, so I was hoping this would create some distance before I needed to end it with him. EXCEPT, that conversation never happened, because M faded away. I never heard from him after that night. I was 85% thrilled at this development, because it saved me an awkward “I’m over this” conversation. But there was that other small part of me, you know, the part with the ego, that was annoyed. Like, excuse me, how dare you not be interested in me? You just bamboozled me into cooking for the 50+ kids that you teach, and I did it happily WITH A SMILE ON MY FACE, all the while being jokey, charming, and adorable, and you think you get to fade away from me? Nah. I don’t think so, bro. If I may borrow a wonderfully appropriate gif from D:

matumbo

Date # 2 rating: 5.5/10. The semi high score is really due to the flowers and excellent Indian cuisine.

Date #3 rating: 2.5/10. One of the most bizarre “dates” I’ve ever been on in my life. Two points for the blog material and .5 for the sheer absurdity. 

Lessons learned: READ EVERY TEXT before agreeing to a date.

first date with…oh, who cares? first date!

BREAKING STUCU NEWS:

I WENT ON A DATE!!!!!!!!!!

November goal: met. Curse: reversed. Dry spell: over. Dignity: regained (sort of). God, am I relieved. Mostly because I publicly set an (admittedly unnecessary) goal for myself and then panicked when I realized I might not actually achieve that goal. While the rest of you clowns were busy growing facial hair, I’ve been feverishly pimping myself out on the Okc. So I am thrilled to report that I made it with a week and a half to spare!

What’s that? You want to hear about my actual date and not just endure me taking victory laps for this entire post? You guys are adorable, but sure, I’ll indulge you.

My date was with D, a nice, nerdy guy who messaged me about a week ago. His first message to me was actually great, albeit a bit overly enthusiastic, but when I clicked on his profile I was met with some insane shit. First of all it was way way WAY too long. Mama has a life and a lot of prime time TV to get to, so she doesn’t have time to plow through a personal memoir while searching for a date. Second, he actually mentioned that his ex-girlfriend helped him write said profile (!!!!!!!) (boys, do I really need to tell you that mentioning an ex in your ONLINE DATING PROFILE is considered poor form? Also, D, your ex did not do you any favors, I assure you). And third, his pictures were comically outdated–I believe the oldest time stamp was from 2003. To put this in perspective, in 2003 I was obsessing over my upcoming high school senior trip to Disney World and listening to this on repeat:

Who am I kidding? I STILL listen to that on repeat. Fantastic jam. The point is, call me crazy, but it seems like a picture taken when I was probably still in high school and viewed when I was two weeks away from attending my 10 year reunion might be considered slightly outdated.

Anyway, the long, insane profile normally would have been a deterrent, as would the vintage photos from a bygone era, but beggars can’t be choosers and more importantly, D’s message was actually really nice and normal. So I replied, and we had a brief back and forth. Impatient to meet my deadline, I asked him out for a drink and we made plans for the only time we were both free, which was early evening on Sunday (SO creepy). D suggested we meet at a trendy speakeasy that I had been meaning to try but hadn’t gotten around to. The place was so trendy that I had difficulty locating it (here were his directions):

unnamed

If that’s not the start of an episode of SVU, I don’t know what is. When I found it, D was standing outside with a sheepish look on his face. The place was inexplicably closed. Honestly I was just so excited that D appeared to be all six feet one inches that he claimed on his profile, and was actually cuter in person than in his wildly outdated photos, that I didn’t care.

We headed down the street to another bar and it wasn’t until we sat down, ordered drinks, and had an ominous moment of awkward silence that I considered this fact: I might be REALLY rusty at this whole first date thing. I mean, It’s been five months. Maybe everything I’d learned up until then had faded and this was going to be a spectacularly awkward evening of social failure. Luckily, before I could think about this any more, D piped up to ask me a question and I didn’t have time to worry about my romantic shortcomings again.

It was a nice date. D was smart, interesting, did not take himself too seriously, talked a lot but also listened with interest about what I had to say. We had some drinks, ordered some snacks, and had a reasonably nice time. I told D about the blog which he loved and wanted to know more about (I did refrain from telling him that he was single handedly responsible for breaking my dry spell). There were a few over shares on his part, mostly about his terrible relationship with his dad (yikesaroo), which surprised me given the fact that I felt like I already knew his life story from his anthology of a profile. 

At one point in the date, D asked me how to pronounce my last name. Without thinking anything of it, I told him (this is not an uncommon question) and then excused myself to go to the restroom. Walking back, it hit me: I never told this dude my last name. This is an established first date policy of mine. What. the. fuck?? Did I have a stalker on my hands, or just your run of the mill serial killer? Is that why he wanted to meet me in front of an unmarked metal gate? Does he know my social security number and blood type, too? Should I sneak out the bathroom window like in the movies? But wait, if he knows my last name he could probably find me anyway. GAH.

I pulled it together in the ladies room and decided I needed to confront this potential killer. Here is what transpired:

S: So, I just realized… I never told you my last name.

D: I was waiting for you to say that.

S: Oh God, you’re not going to kill me, are you?

D: Huh?

S: How did you find out my last name?

D: I mean, I work with computers for a living. You told me enough about your job and industry that when I searched those facts plus your first name, your LinkedIn profile came right up. I’m sorry, is that totally creepy?

S: Sort of, yes. But I also kind of respect it. My friends and I are semi-pro stalkers and we can usually find out some pretty incredible stuff about our dates with minimal clues to go off of. Usually this terrifies men, though. The tables have kind of turned.

D: You’ve met your stalking match. So what did you find out about me?

S: Actually, I didn’t even Google you. (I didn’t tell D that this was because there was literally no time/I had a deadline to meet.)

Not much else to report on this date, honestly. It was perfectly nice, and D was perfectly nice. Do we actually have chemistry/a ton in common? That remains to be seen. But I certainly think it’s worth another look. I am trying really hard not to compare him to H, who I had off the charts chemistry with from our very first date, because one, that’s not fair and two, obviously that off the charts chemistry didn’t really lead to anything good anyway.

D drove me home (no kiss, no attempted murder) and we agreed we’d like to go out again, but I know I don’t need to remind you all to take that agreement with a GIGANTIC grain of salt. An iceberg of salt, if you will. The probability that D fades away is incredibly high so for now, I’ll just be congratulating myself for achieving my November goal without having to literally pay an escort service.

self-high-five-liz-lemon-gif

Date rating: 7/10. D was a nice, interesting, smart, TALL dude with great manners and a lot to say. Not sure if I feel anything for him beyond that, but it’s certainly worth revisiting to find out. The stalking was a little creepy, but I can’t really judge someone for doing something that is essentially a dating best practice here at StuCu.

 

Message Monday: Unsolved Mystery

Hey there, loyal readers. Just a heads up, LSD are busy ladies at the moment. Between moving, vacays, bridal showers and bdays, we may be a bit light on posts this week. Thanks for your patience 🙂 (L, I know how much you appreciated that emoticon).

Anyway, happy Message Monday! This one hits close to home for me–literally.

message monday ht

The part of the message that I blacked out? You guessed it: my high school.

Running into someone you know on okcupid is a very real fear of mine, much like being murdered by a date and becoming the subject of a Lifetime movie. You put your profile out there, and sure it’s “anonymous”, but your picture is still attached to it. And it’s the f-cking internet; nothing is really anonymous (except, we hope, this blog!). So yes, sometimes I worry that my boss could stumble upon my profile and read the sex questions I answered. Or a co-worker. Or a family member. Or a crush or hook up from back in the day. Basically anyone I’ve met, ever. Because of this fear, the number of questions about sex (there are hundreds) that I’ve actually answered basically amount to:

liz lemon treat

Also at the top of this list: former classmates. And don’t worry, this isn’t the first time this has happened to me, or even the second. TWICE before I’ve run into dudes I went to high school with, I guess hardly surprising given the fact that my hometown is less than 10 miles outside of Philly. L and I went to a pretty small high school, though; I believe our graduating class was 175-ish people. We literally know every single person in our class and in the classes 1-2 grades below and above. So I honestly wasn’t expecting to have to play the ‘who the eff is that?’ game until this fall at my (drumroll please) ten year reunion. (F-ck, I’m old). And I figured at least then I’d be with my friends, we’d be drunk, and possibly decide to perform an impromptu interpretive dance:

So when this dude messaged me and I didn’t recognize him at all, I figured I was just having a brain fart and that my friends would ID him immediately. I sent out the appropriate mass text with that screen cap, plus his full profile picture which it’s worth noting is a legitimate head shot/glamour shot (which you may recall is on my list of profile pic no no’s from back in the day). 

ht head shot

Can’t say it any better than my friend did:

dexter

Anyway, no one had ANY IDEA who this terrifying 29 year old bisexual claiming to be our classmate was. So I responded to him, curious now about this mystery:

ht convo

Ummm okay.

1. ‘We probably never crossed paths in school’–Creepy, slash you’re obviously right since I have NO IDEA who you are.

2, ‘You clearly appear to be the best looking’

donna excuse me

Hey, asshole. First of all, that’s not even true. My friends are mad cute. And since you claim to have such a stellar memory, they were also adorable in high school, even though we all had slightly more questionable fashion sense back then.

romymichele

Second, based on your picture I would bet that you’re probably on a registered sex offenders list somewhere, so I’m not really sure you’re in the position to judge anyone on their looks. Third, do you think that I’m actually pathetic enough to fall for this blatantly disingenuous, totally lame attempt at flattery? Oh gee, a creepy stranger on okcupid claiming to know me from 10 years ago insulted my friends, but he thinks I’m cute! BE STILL MY HEART.

Men.

I was officially grossed out by this mystery acquaintance, but now it was basically my mission in life to figure out who he was. I was this close to making my mom go into our attic, find one of my yearbooks and flip through the entire class of 2002 over the phone with me, but I figured I’d save her that trip if I could and check with some other friends from high school first (you’re welcome, mom).

I saw some of those friends on Saturday night, and the search continued. We named every kid we could think of with that first name, but nothing checked out. We texted another friend who lives in NYC and put her on the task force. She thought she had a guess, but then someone actually did consult a yearbook upon returning home and ruled it out:

Picture4

So as of Monday, July 29th at 12:30 pm, the case of the creepy classmate remains open. If anyone from my high school has any leads, they can leave an anonymous tip in the comments section. We’ll see you next time on…

unsolved-mysteries-logo