29 October 2006

Just Friends, Or How My Intimate Knowledge of Tigers Pitching Is Ruining My Dating Life

I met S. for drinks a couple of nights ago. Not too bad as far as first dates go, but I don't want it to go further as anything but friends. But as I was checking out the Tigers-Cards during a lull in the conversation, I wondered exactly how he would know I wasn't interested.

I don't really get nervous on dates, I get along well with guys anyway (and enjoy talking about sports), and given a reasonably warm date I'm friendly (though not flirty) from the beginning without the typical awkwardness period. On early dates, these all combine to make me act similarly whether I'm interested or not.

I was still thinking about it the next night when K. came over for dinner. The same general friendliness that might have given S. some false hope has caused a couple of guys I did like to tell me that they couldn't figure out if I was interested in them. I suspect it also caused K. to leave the first two dates with a kiss on the cheek. So how would I keep it friendly rather than cheesy, but let K. know I was interested?

Then I realized that, well, I could kiss him. So that's what I did.

24 October 2006

Who, Me?

Last week sometime, I put up an away message that said 'apparently, i have a social life now.' If I remember correctly, it was in response to a busy week in which I was glad to have a free night. My mom unintentionally called me on it, however, and I was forced to admit that well, I didn't. It was a rare busy week.

But this week, I honestly appear to have found one. Tonight, I had drinks with my Chicago mom (when your real mom moves away, you gotta find a way to cope) then found myself home in time to head up to the north side to hang out with my soccer team (more fun than the baseball team in that there are males and everyone is less...misguided). Both were an absolute blast, and I may even go to a Halloween party this weekend with the latter group.

I also seem to be dating two boys currently (feast or famine), which I actually like for its inherent lack of pressure, though hope not to repeat the disatrous double of March '05 in which I had the 'let's just be friends' talk with one only to have the other have it with me a few days later. I haven't talked to either one since last summer. Whoops. These two seem to have more promise though. I promised K. pasta if he finished the marathon (apparently I can't stay away from the runners), and he did, so I'm cooking him dinner on Friday. S. and I are meeting for dinner Thursday night, but I've only seen him once, and I'm having that mild panic that I'm not going to recognize him. I'm great with names, but not so amazing with faces.

I'm already missing my cat time though, so this social life of mine may have to be reigned in...

On the other hand, want to know how to be an absolute pariah? Have someone cut your hair slightly unevenly and then try to convince people to fix it for you. Everyone will back away with a deer-in-headlights look and mumble something that begins with "I don't think I" and ends with "disaster".

23 October 2006

Two Months 'Til Christmas

Today was the first legitimately cold morning, but I didn't really know it was winter until I was on my way home. I had planned to go to the grocery store tonight to remedy my lack-of-deli-meat problem. The closer I got to my front door, however, the less compelling my reasons for going became. Sure enough, within one minute of walking in the door, I was on the couch in my sweatpants with the cat sleeping in my lap, grocery store plans abandoned for 'later this week...sometime.'

22 October 2006

Pagans and Slutty Schoolgirls

Interesting article in the New York Times last week about the devolution of Halloween into some kind of porn movie. I enjoyed it because, as you may or may not know, this is one of my pet peeves. I assume that the "sexy" (ahem) costume phenomenon (slutty cop, slutty criminal, slutty devil--my absolute least favorite, slutty angel, slutty slut...you get the idea) only reflects the general trend of dressing "sexier", but it offends me. Though underdressing may be fun, blowing off steam, a chance to venture away from your comfort zone, whatever, its roots are irrevocably sexist. Just as I was annoyed a few weeks ago at the girls in tight dresses with guys in crumpled T-shirts, I'm offended by the girls in full porn costume with guys in jeans, t-shirts, and a Scream mask.

The message: I'm yours and I'm not worth any effort.

So have some pride and dress up for fun and for yourself. Be Led Zepplin, a zombie, Derrek Lee, a flapper, anything, just make sure it's a costume and not purely an excuse to be mostly naked in public. You may not be actually selling yourself in the slutty librarian costume, but you're toeing the line.

If you're curious, I recently dressed up as the 'Da Bears' fans of Saturday Night Live fame. Classic.

16 October 2006

A Religious Experience

Had dinner with the new boss and his wife tonight. They're a lot of fun, yuppies, but in kind of a good way. You know, they're smart, they know the city because they've lived here a long time, married a couple years, no kids, etc. I had a really good time (even if his wife did say "it's like talking to a guy" when I glanced at the TV screen to check on the Bears) and it made me even more excited to start the new job (as soon as I tell my coworkers...yeah).

I was reminded, though, of a conversation my mom and I once had. I was saying something about how one of my problems with guys, particularly white middle to upper-middle class guys, is that they're trying to fit a very narrow mold. They have to be or at least pretend to be reasonably athletic/into sports and motivated solely by sex and beer. Guys who are already outside the minority, whether that's because of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, whatever, seem to be less susceptible to this kind of pigeon-holing. (Yes, I know that's not a word, but I'm feeling lazy).

My mom pointed out that you could theoretically consider Jews a minority. Maybe not in certain places or high schools I may or may not have attended, but Jews have traditionally been outside the mainstream. Spending some time tonight with the new boss and wife, both of whom are Jewish, I can't help but notice that the vast majority of people to whom I've taken an instant liking, who have made me instantly comfortable, who seem to have a very similar sense of humor, have been Jews. Coincidence?

That's not to say that I haven't ended up great friends with...ahem...gentiles, I guess I just didn't see it coming.

Sorry to sound like a JDate ad, but it's a culture as well as a religion.

EDITORIAL NOTE: Holy shit, go bears!!!!! Better to be lucky than good!

12 October 2006

No More Bocce Disk In The Hallway

There won't be a hallway in the two-person office.

I gave my notice at work yesterday. Gave.My.Notice. It was weird, and even though the new job honestly might be *exactly* what I've been looking for, I really thought I might cry. (Thank god I didn't) Particularly when my boss handled it beautifully, told me she was happy for me, that the new job sounded great, was flexible about my last day, etc. None of that helped the crying situation though.

In the last two weeks, I've gotten three written thank you notes from coworkers, one accompanied by lunch, all for helping their trainings/teaching responsibilities run smoother. I know their spouses and children, their favorite foods, and their weekend routines. I'll miss the impromptu musical numbers (if you've never worked with art people, try to do it for a while), the almost endless birthday/going away/staff meeting day/baby shower parties, and the inquiries as to how the cat's adjusting to the move. Even if you're not enamored of your job, that's a hard place to leave.

So now my boss knows, but only one other person does, and I have no idea how to tell everyone else. Or if I'm supposed to. I suppose it's my news, but maybe there's a way this gets handled. Seeing as I've never changed jobs before, I guess I wouldn't know.

09 October 2006

Happy Columbus Day!

This isn't about Columbus Day, though I have started reading Devil In A White City (it's about the Columbian Exposition/1893 World's Fair in Chicago)--a little long-winded with eye-roll-inducing faux suspense, but the old-time Chicago references are a blast. Particularly imagining what the loop used to look like under that thick layer of coal smoke and slaughterhouse stench. Sometimes, it's good to be living in the 21st century. If you're from Chicago, pick it up.

I've been really busy lately. I grrrreatly underestimated how well, not exactly stressful but time-consuming, moving would be (Liz, take note). I feel like I've been unpacking for years, yet I'm still surrounded in boxes and every time I turn around, the cat is happily chewing on some piece of packing detritus that she really shouldn't have access to. Add that to busy data-entry time at work (and related interviewing for a new job), freelance writing and editing, baseball, soccer, taking full advantage of my shiny new DVR, and harassing my landlord for a mailbox key, and there's not a lot of time left. So I'm behind on the blogging, which is ironic, since it's quite possible that I've never had more to say. If I could just download thoughts, I'd be golden. I am learning to multi-task though. This afternoon, I discovered how much a phone interview gains when simultaneous snuggling with the cat is a possibility.

We've had some bites on the job front, the most notable of which wants to meet me for breakfast tomorrow morning to "discuss the job a little more". I'm trying to let my chickens hatch, but they may have already been counted. And between Michigan being good and the Bears being downright freakin' incredible, I'm mildly worried that I'm out of luck. Good thing it's all skill...

05 October 2006

Dates and Depth

An former coworker made a documentary about dating. Eight or so four-hour interviews cut and juxtaposed into a one-hour diatribe on subjects from ‘the first kiss’ to ‘the bar scene’ to ‘porn.’ Beautifully edited and a real look at what people are thinking when they meet you, marry you, sleep with you, kiss you, call you, and find you taking a crap with the bathroom door open (apparently at that point, “the honeymoon’s over.”)

Talking about the failures of past relationships, one woman said that she’d noticed a pattern with the men she’d met. Whereas she wanted to get to know them, to see how their minds worked, to determine where they were as a couple, she came up against a wall when they “didn’t want to dig too deep." They were happy at surface level.

That, ladies and gents, is my problem with an awful lot of the people (not just men) on this planet. I know that most of the people I saw today went about their business the same as everyday without even a single thought about what life has been like for their bus driver or whether there’s a better way they could do their job or why public education is only adequate in white school districts. Instead, there’s paychecks, beer, and clothes to take up your time. It’s one thing to simply lack intelligence, but it’s entirely another to have the ability to dig deeper, but not the will.

Another hilarious moment in the film: a woman implied, though perhaps accidentally, that she’d rather have a man cheat on her than tell her he was a vegetarian. Classic.