Category Archives: Dates

Date 27.4: So Am I a MILF or a Cougar?

The exclusive friends with benefits thing? Not real practical. Especially when your “friend” goes MIA for ten days. Maybe it was a cheap move, but I texted Date 31, asking when I was going to see him again because Date 27 (who’s 27) had renewed his texting campaign. Date 31 didn’t make any plans with me, so I got a little pissy and told Date 27 he could come over.

Super tall, super built, and blond (and only 27!), Date 27 is a tasty package. Sex-wise, he’s a little on the vanilla side, but what he lacks in creativity he makes up for in stamina and resilience, so there’s that. Also, Date 27 is a genuinely nice guy. Maybe it’s sex-driven, but he texts me regularly throughout the week, wishing me a good day and such. As you may or may not recall, he’s one of the only guys who remembered both my birthday and Mother’s Day without having to be reminded. Okay–maybe it’s a little creepy that he so handily remembered Mother’s Day, but whatever–the sentiment was appreciated.

Anyway, super horny, I invited Date 27 over to my place for a morning sex date that wound up lasting four hours. Later that day, at book club (have I mentioned the fact that I’m one of the only white girls in an all-black book club? If not, my preacher’s-daughter friend is the leader, for reference), I solicited my girlfriends’ opinions on the situation, since I was feeling a little guilty about “cheating” on Date 31. “Should I tell him?” I asked them outright.

“Hell, no!” came the unanimous response, along with a bevy of stories about how they had kept their guys waiting and wondering in order to keep them interested. Shockingly (to me, anyway), lying seemed to be an accepted practice when it came to the game of love. Now, call me old-fashioned or whatever, but while I get the point (and definitely the motivation), this still didn’t sit well with me. I’d rather be in a relationship with someone with whom I could be totally honest and not feel the need to hide or lie about anything. Yeah, I declared inwardly, I’m going to take the high road. There’s no need for dishonesty.

Approximately four seconds after that thought crossed my mind, my phone rang with a voice call (not a text!) from Date 31. I can’t remember exactly what he said, but I remember very well being mega-nervous as I spoke with him, and feeling mega-guilty. I told him I was still in the middle of book club (even though it was pretty much over and there were only three of us left at that point) so I couldn’t really talk. So much for honesty, because we all know that offering half-truths is just a kinder, gentler means of lying.

As I thought about it, though, I was like, you know what? I’m not going to feel guilty about this! Because here was a guy who was stringing me along, trying to monopolize my sex without really giving me anything in return. And maybe I’m not a supermodel, but I do have a few key things going for me. I like to exercise, so my body is reasonably decent, I’m aging better than most, so people tend to be shocked when I tell them I’m 43, I’m an excellent cook (and an even better baker), I’m a published author, and, last but certainly not least, I’ve come to the conclusion (based on comments by ALL the guys I’ve slept with since dumping my ex) that I have a sexual superpower: when I’m excited, I get unbelievably wet.

Yeah, that last bit was probably TMI, but it’s relevant, since it boosts my self-esteem and makes me think that someday, some guy is going to realize I’m a decent catch. He’ll put a ring on my finger, buy me a Range Rover, and we’ll live happily ever after in the Ranch. Until then, I’ll just keep doing my best trying not to get my heart broken.

One-Hit Wonders: Dates 33.1, 34.1, 36.1, & 40.1

As I think I’ve mentioned, because Date 31 and I knew we weren’t ideal for each other, we had an understanding that we’d date other people but only sleep with each other. As a result, I went on a succession of Internet dates. First dates tend to be so fleeting, I’ve come to think of them in terms of cocktail-party conversation. Namely, I keep it light, keep it moving, and try to learn something in the process. That said, here’s the lowdown on how I fared in January:

Date 33.1 – An intelligent, handsome (but short–he barely cleared my height) gentleman in his late 50s, Date 33 took me out to dinner for our first meeting. Our conversation was lively and interesting the whole date through, and I found myself fascinated with this guy. At the conclusion of our date, he asked if I’d like to go out with him again and I said yes, hopeful he’d ask me to go sailing with him on his 45-foot boat. He kept touching me throughout our date (casually and appropriately, but also very intentionally), so I’m pretty sure he was attracted to me, but then he never called for that second date. Honestly, I don’t think I did anything wrong, since all the trappings of a successful first date were in place, so I have to chalk this one up to being about him, not me. Anyway, onward!

Date 34.1 – I had my doubts about Date 34 when I agreed to meeting him, since he lived over an hour away, but he seemed really nice, so I figured I’d give him a shot since he was in my area for work one day and asked if I’d like to join him for lunch. But here’s the thing: my instincts were correct. I hate to say this, but the area he lived in is kind of remote, and the fact that this didn’t bother him meant we weren’t a match. Not to mention the fact that he showed up looking ten years older than his pictures (this may equal laziness, rather than dishonesty, but either way, it equals both, which goes down as a minus in the date-evaluation process). Also, he was wearing a gold chain under his polo shirt. I know I’ve mentioned it before, but I’ve got to say it again: Guys, tread lightly when it comes to man-jewelry; we chicks don’t dig it unless it’s an expensive watch or your wedding ring (and you’re married to us!). Date 34 was a sweet guy, but like I said–we weren’t a match, so I declined when he came asking for a second date.

Date 36.1 – Surprisingly, Date 36 was the first Asian guy I went out with (surprisingly, because some of the worst crushes I’ve ever had have been on Asian guys; in fact, I lost my virginity to an Asian guy I had it really bad for back in high school). Super handsome and mega-smart (like I’ve mentioned, I go for brainiacs), Date 36 did not disappoint when I met him in person for coffee on a Saturday afternoon. But here’s the thing: he was mega-Zen, like the type of guy who surfs every morning and nothing can rattle him because he’s so perpetually blissed out from spending so much time in the water. I, on the other hand, have always secretly wanted the T-shirt Booger sported in the movie Revenge of the Nerds that read HIGH ON STRESS, since it so accurately reflects my personality. Plus, Date 36 went to Berkeley, while I went to UCLA. Now, the fact that we both went to top UC schools might seem like an argument in favor of compatibility, and it is in some respects since they’re both esteemed California public universities with student populations of similar sizes, but here’s the thing: Bay Area people tend to have something against us SoCal-ers. They’re smarter, but we’ve got prettier people and better weather, and they can’t seem to forgive us for it. Don’t believe me? Check out the local news any weeknight on one of the San Francisco Bay Area’s television stations. Any stories about Los Angeles inevitably portray the city (which is actually full of way more courteous, wonderful, hard-working people than the douchebag bubblehead types who populate the tabloids) as seedy and inherently evil. Plus there’s this level of pretension even former Bay Area folk sometimes carry with them. An example of how this plays out in its natural habitat is found at the Barnes & Noble closest to Berkeley, where they have a section labeled Thesauri. I mean, really? Can’t just lump them in with Reference, now, can we? Some of my closest friends are from the Bay Area and aren’t at all like this, but they also don’t plan on moving back north. Others, well, they’re going to remain acquaintances rather than friends, because we Southern Californians may seem laid back and simple, but we know when we’re being looked down on, and the snobs aren’t invited to the next party. Anyway, I could tell Date 36 thought I was a ditz and wouldn’t be asking for a second date. Turned out I was right. See? We SoCal blondes aren’t so dumb after all!

Date 40.1 – This date actually happened just recently, in May, but it’s of the same ilk, so I’m adding it to this list. That said, on paper, Date 40 seemed to have all the boxes checked: tall, handsome, well-dressed, good job, responsible homeowner. Conversation between us was lively as well. But there was an edge to Date 40, like he might have been a little bit mean, and like what he was really after was getting laid, not going out to dinner. I might have mentioned this before, but I have kind of a good-girl schtick going for me. Some guys (cads!) can see right through it, but most of the guys I’ve dated traditionally (if you can call online dating traditional, but you know what I mean–as opposed to bar-pickup/hookup dates) see me as a squeaky-clean, bookish, church-going mom-type. And I am all that! But I also very well might be a sex addict, so it’s kind of funny to me when guys dismiss me as too straight-laced or whatever and move on without seeing where things might lead given a couple glasses of wine and a tasty dinner. Anyway, Date 40 was one of those. Because he’s so tall and has money, I’m sure he has a vast selection of women at his disposal. Chances are, I dodged a bullet by letting him think I’m all prim and proper.

Such is life, right?

 

Dates 31.3-31.5: The Sweet Spot

From the beginning, it was pretty clear that Date 31 and I had it bad for each other in terms of sex. Starting with Date 31.3, however, I realized it was more than that, which was a problem. Basically, Date 31 wants to have kids, while I don’t. He also wants someone ten years younger than him, but I’m two years older than he is. Add to these two dealbreakers the fact that I’ll never be as perfect as his dead 29-year-old former fiancee and that I have both an ex-husband and three kids from my prior marriage, while Date 31 wants a girl with a clean slate, and you can imagine how my being so taken with him is more of a liability than an asset.

ANYWAY, Date 31.3 was the first time I went over to Date 31’s place. Granted, his best friend from Long Island was about to arrive from the airport, so I’m sure Date 31 had worked hard to clean up, but here were the first things I noticed: (1) a shoe rack by the front door, meaning he cares about keeping his place tidy; (2) real (as opposed to particle-board) furniture, showing me he either appreciates living amongst comfort and beauty or his dead fiancee had great taste and he still has the same stuff; and (3) a mix of tasteful (again, dead GF’s picks?) and comics-oriented kitschy artwork (most likely his), showing me that he truly does have a golly-gee sense of humor that’s surprisingly squeaky clean, despite his mad sadistic streak and penchant for dirty talk in the bedroom.

The other thing I couldn’t help noticing was that his apartment was directly above the complex’s pool. It was an unseasonably warm afternoon (Santa Ana condition, making it in the 80s in January), and Date 31 lives in the same suburb as I do (which is known for its schools), so it sounded like there were about forty kids in the pool, all screaming and splashing and generally having a great time. I complimented Date 31 on his place as he showed me around, noting how nice the floor plan was and such. He thanked me, then said (in total seriousness), “Yeah, the other thing I love about this place is how quiet it is.”

I started laughing. “Really?” I asked.

“It’s like there’s never anyone around,” he said. “Always so quiet.”

I pointed toward the balcony overlooking the pool. “You don’t hear that?”

A chorus of shouting pre-pubescent voices wafted upward: “Marco!” “Polo!” “Mom! Jaden’s splashing me!” Etc.

He shrugged.

“Seems like there might be a lot of kids in this complex,” I said.

Date 31 laughed, conceding I had a point. “That’s funny,” he said. “I never really noticed.”

I could tell he was being honest–he truly hadn’t noticed. Basically, I chalked up his acceptance of kid noise to the fact that he wanted kids of his own so badly, which made me doubly nervous. Because what if I got super attached to him? What if he talked me into giving a shot, having one for the road. Even though I’ve had a hysterectomy, I have eggs. Lots of couples in their forties are using surrogates these days, so it wasn’t like it was beyond the realm of possibility–but it wasn’t a future I envisioned for myself when I left my ex-husband.

Before we headed to the bedroom, the last stop on my tour of his place was the kitchen, where there were five piles of goodies laid out on the counter, with a nice variety of all the junk-food groups represented: salty, sweet, gooey, greasy, and crunchy.

“I bought snacks for the game for each of my buddies,” he explained.

I know it may sound silly, but I was almost moved to tears. Because, what a sweet guy!!! From his thank-you texts, I had suspected he was a considerate man, but now I had proof.

[Side note: Have I mentioned The Five Love Languages, by Gary Chapman? If not, it’s a book that describes how each of us has a way we most often express love and enjoy having love expressed back to us. The five “languages” are Physical Touch, Gift Giving, Quality Time, Acts of Service, and Words of Affirmation. All these are great, but the one that really gets my heart racing is Acts of Service. Like, want to *really* impress me? Wash my car, or fix the little piece that fell off the valance to the living-room blinds. Load the dishwasher, or bring in the trash cans (without being asked!). Diamonds, flowers, and massages are awesome, but it’s these little day-to-day efforts that truly make me feel loved and cared for.]

All that said, I knew I had found an amazing guy. Was he perfect? No. Over the course of Dates 31.3, 31.4, and 31.5, I learned that he enjoys country music–the pop kind–because “it’s just so happy.” Also, the TV in Date 31’s bedroom is taller than I am (and I’m 5’6″). Yeah, I’m sure it’s cool to watch movies on, but he likes to leave it going (with the volume silenced) while we’re having sex. Not to rain on anyone’s parade, but the flashing lights from having a TV on are kind of distracting. Also, isn’t that kind of a waste of electricity? If the sex hadn’t been so consistently stellar, I’d suspect him of watching TV while we were going at it, but he wasn’t, so I was left wondering, Why???

No matter, though–I was hooked. I couldn’t get enough of Date 31, and he seemed to be pretty taken with me, as well. We texted each other on a daily basis, constantly on the lookout for opportunities to steal a few moments from our respective busy schedules to spend together. Our first five dates spanned eleven days, if that gives you an idea of how caught up in each other we were.

And the sex? Good Lord!!! Date 31 loved to do all the nasty things I fantasize about but am too shy to voice. He used his belt, I used my mouth, and the things he said to me? Makes me blush just to think about it! So incredible, I found myself thinking, Yeah, I’d have another kid (and enjoy raising him/her) if it meant making this guy happy!

Which was right about when I realized, Oh, shit. Right after I almost blurted the words I love you.

In a last-ditch attempt at self-preservation, I didn’t tell Date 31 about my near slip-up in person, but I did admit to it via text a couple days later. The result? We didn’t see each other again for a week and a half. Could have been longer, but I’ll get to that in a later post. At any rate, the damage was done: I was supposed to be playing it casually, but I liked Date 31 too much to lie to him about the nature of my feelings. For better or worse, I knew I had to tell him the truth–even if it wound up costing me.

 

Date 32.1: Hit & Run

Feeling satisfied that I had a steady supply of sex on the horizon, I proceeded to date a succession of new guys, the first of whom was Date 32. Now, online, Date 32 looked gorgeous. His photos showed a tall, lanky, blond surfer guy with a nice smile and a kind of earthy disposition. Plus, in his messages back and forth with me, he was very nice. We had a phone call, too, but I was distracted by the fact that Date 31 was on his way over to my place, so I wound up cutting things short (and yes, I realize how very wrong that was of me).

Anyway, here’s the thing: when I went to meet Date 32 in person, I knew right away that he wasn’t for me. “Earthy” actually meant “poor,” and the laid-back surfer I was imaging actually turned out to be more of a beach bum, complete with a skeezy mustache and crooked teeth. Not wanting to be superficial, however, I said hello and shared appetizers with Date 32, since you never know–could be, my instincts were wrong. But it turned out they weren’t.

The longer I sat there, making conversation, the more convinced I was that I had to get out of there and never see this guy again. The stories he told me about his kids had me siding with his ex-wives (note the plural), and the way he looked kind of reminded me of one of my uncles, which wasn’t a turn-on. Not caring if you’re going to impress or offend someone, though, is a powerful thing. It tends to lead to blatant honesty, for better or worse, so this guy got to hear all about my faith, my church, my ex, and my struggles with my kids.

Did I know those are forbidden date topics? You betcha! Maybe I’m wrong, but I think being overly honest in an attempt to scare someone away is better than flat-out saying “No,” and then walking away, or taking a covert look at a date and then bailing (both of which have happened to friends of mine!). Maybe the over-honesty is a scare tactic, sure, but it’s also a last-ditch effort to give the person a chance. Because what if you get to talking about all those touchy subjects and then learn that you actually have some rapport with the unlikely match? Could happen. In this case, though, it didn’t.

Date 32 never called, texted, or messaged me again. Guess neither one of us was feeling it.

Turning over a New Leaf (and Then Quickly Blowing It): Dates 31.1 & 31.2

Okay. Now I know why I’ve been avoiding writing about my dates. Looking at where I left off, a guy I (still) *really* like is first on the list. Also, to truly explain why I like this particular fellow so much, I’m going to have to get a little explicit. But whatever, right? It’s anonymous, and you’ve been warned.

So anyway, I was the one who initiated contact with Date 31. We were both on a certain (very large, quasi-expensive) dating website, and I saw that he had visited my profile. Something about him struck me as extremely familiar-looking, so I clicked on his photo to view his bio. Turned out, he lived in my area, so I messaged him, saying I knew he was too young for me but asking where I knew him from (my cousins? the grocery store? the gym?). He immediately wrote back and we struck up a conversation that transitioned to texting.

Now, Date 31 isn’t that much younger than me–only one year. Because he’s never been married or had kids, though, I kind of dismissed him as being someone I couldn’t take seriously. And as you might recall, I started off the year on a vegan-no sugar-no alcohol-no caffeine-no sex fast. Yeah, I was probably being a little too ambitious, but I was super determined to see it through. I had resolved not to have any more meaningless sex, wanting to save myself for a real relationship. And that first week of the year, I was very chaste!

By January 6, however, I agreed to meet Date 31 in person. He took me out to lunch at a nearby Thai restaurant. Going into the date, I told myself I was going to be good, that this guy was kind of a goofball, and no way, no how was I going to have sex with him. And then he showed up.

Not sure if I’ve mentioned it, but I seem to have a thing for Jewish boys from New York. It’s getting to the point where I suspect I can tell the difference between accents from Queens, Yonkers, the Bronx, Brooklyn, and Long Island. So when Date 31 walked in, reminding me (in a positive way) of the Beastie Boys? I could barely talk I was so nervous and taken with him. And he seemed to like me, as well, since at the end of the date, he asked if he could see me again.

Before I get to the juicy parts, however (i.e., Date 31.2 and beyond), which will tend to highlight how sexually compatible Date 31 and I are, here’s Problem Issue No. 1: Date 31, while never married, has been engaged. Two years ago, at age 39, his 29-year-old fiancee, a gorgeous, blonde fitness enthusiast (no joke–I’ve seen pictures), was killed in an auto accident. Now, I feel super bad for him, because that’s a horrible tragedy no one should have to endure, but as a potential girlfriend, I could see some difficulties inherent in the whole setup. As in, no one would ever be as perfect as this guy’s dead 29-year-old fiancee.

Since her death, he had settled into a friends-with-benefits relationship that lasted a year, but now he was ready (he said) to find a new relationship, anxious to get married, settle down, and have children. Perhaps I should have ended things right then and there with that admission, since I can’t have children (at least not without the help of a surrogate), but I figured it was too early to jump to any rash conclusions. And besides, he was so cute!

It’s been a few months, so I’m foggy on the details of how it happened, but Date 31 immediately started texting me after our lunch date, saying he wanted to see me again. Eventually, I said okay, come over, so he did.

Things started out vanilla enough, but there’s a certain energy that starts combusting when you match someone dominant with someone submissive in the bedroom. It didn’t take long for him to give my ass a playful slap and discover that the harder he did it, the wetter I got. Add to that the hair pulling, the firm grip he placed around my neck, and the bevy of dirty talk he laid on me, and I couldn’t get enough.

And we got along! Both before and after sex, conversation was lots of fun. Basically, the more I got to know Date 31, the more I knew he was a sincerely nice guy. So nice, in fact, that he said he understood if I wanted to still date other people, but that he’d like me to only have sex with him if we were going to see each other again. This puzzled me at first, but then I was like, Okay! Because if I was getting my sexual needs met, I wouldn’t be tempted to jump into the sack with guys I barely knew or knew there was no future with.

After Date 31 left that night, I looked in the mirror and discovered just how enthusiastic a spanker Date 31 was–my ass was covered in splotchy red and purplish bruises. Um, no problem staying away from other guys, I concluded, since I didn’t want anyone to see me that way!!! I knew he was strong (he’s played sports all his life), but I’d never had someone mark me up like that, and I’ve been with some pretty rough folk!

The next day, I got a series of texts from Date 31 that made me think he’s either been in extensive counseling or has an incredible mother who brought him up right. Yeah, it’s kind of dorky to get a text that says something like, Thank you for having sex with me last night. I really appreciated how wet you got for me and how hard you were able to take it. But after all the callous guys I had dated in the last year, Date 31’s little thank-you texts made me smile, my heart becoming increasingly tender toward him.

I knew we were both still dating other people, but I was anxious to see where things between me and Date 31 were going.

Dates 29.0, 29.1 & Beyond: Here’s to the Future

As the year and this blog come to a close, I’ve been making some resolutions. Not resolutions, really, more like decisions. In 2010, 2011, and 2012, I opened the year with a 21-day “Daniel fast” (eating primarily fruits and vegetables), during which I also refrained from masturbation. Given that my ex and I only had sex three times the last five years of our marriage, believe me–not playing with myself for three weeks was way more difficult than going vegan and avoiding sugar and white flour. But I did it, and I felt like God blessed me for the effort. [Side note: if you want to know more about the rationale behind faith-based fasting, there’s a pastor named Jentezen Franklin who’s written some great books on the subject.]

Last January (2013), I was in a really rough place. I had left my husband three months earlier and was clinically depressed, the result of which being that I wasn’t sleeping well and had dropped 30 pounds. Honestly, I was dreading the annual fast and a little worried about my health given the circumstances. And then the pastor at my church made an announcement: for the opening of 2013, he felt like God was leading him to skip the corporate fast, calling for feasting, instead.

Anyway, this year, the fast is on again, and I know this one’s going to be an important turning point for me. In short, here’s the deal: vegan diet, no sugar, no flour, no caffeine, no alcohol, no sex (since I’m not married), and no masturbation. And this time, I’m feeling called to do it for 40 days instead of 21. It’s not going to be easy, but I’m doing my best to set myself up for success–I canceled all my online dating subscriptions and I already stopped drinking coffee a week ago.

Of course, as I’ve been typing this, trying to resolve to be good, Date 14 (the 27-year-old with the tattoo on his back, the guy who probably has sleep apnea) texted me out of the blue. I know I should ignore him, but I wrote him back, carrying on a totally inappropriate conversation [secondary side note: Date 14 mentioned how much he liked it when I gave him head, which is tawdry enough as it is, but here’s the really bad thing–I don’t remember sucking his dick! I was so drunk both times I was with him, I was inwardly all like, Hunh??? when he texted me his compliments just now.]

Okay–seems like the texting has tapered off for the time being, so maybe I’m not going to slip up before I ever get started being chaste (although, I have to say, there is the temptation to say, Well, January hasn’t started yet…), but let’s talk about Date 29, the guy from my church, shall we? Here’s the deal with him: we’re from the same small group (a home-based Bible study group designed to enable people to connect on a more personal level, even though our church is super big), so it’s kind of awkward to be dating, but that didn’t stop him from asking me out. First, he just asked if I was going to attend one of the Christmas production performances, saying he’d be there the same night and that we should sit together (Date 29.0). When I showed up, he’d gotten a serious haircut (big improvement) and was all dressed up. We wound up talking for an hour after the show, leading to his asking me out on an actual date.

We went on that date this week (Date 29.1). I wish I could say he was the one, but he’s not, and now I’ve got to face him (and our mutual friends, who know we went out) in church and at small group. We connected on a friendship level, and there was some degree of attraction on my part, but there were a few dealbreakers I just couldn’t get past, the biggest of which was the casual mention of a homophobic attitude. As I might have mentioned before, I have gay friends and family, and I believe that, whether gay or straight, God made us the way we are, and it’s not our place to cast judgment on others. And lest anyone out there start quoting the Bible to me, I’ve read through Leviticus enough times, I happen to know that we’re all in trouble for piercing our ears, having tats, and wearing mixed-fabric clothing if you want to get legalistic about it.

Anyhow, I don’t want to point any fingers, since I still consider Date 29 a friend (though one I hope to influence to have a more loving attitude), but here’s some general advice to the guys of the world about some key first impression stuff women are taking a careful look at when we date:

1. Haircut. As in, has he had one recently? And if so, is it decent? Beyond that, is it professional? For example, one guy I dated kept his hair buzzed short. The length was good, but I could tell from the way his neckline followed his hairline, he buzzed it himself, rather than paying a stylist or barber to do it. Know what this says about a guy? CHEAP!!! And if the haircut is bad or nonexistent, the messages we gals read are LAZY, CLUELESS, and/or OBLIVIOUS. Don’t be that guy.

2. Shoes. Call me crazy, but shoes say a lot about a person. You style mavens out there already know this, but I think this is a point that the rest of us just sort of internalize. Ugly shoes again point to cluelessness. Alternately, unfortunate footwear can also be an indication of someone having a really bad sense of style (extrapolate this to their wardrobe and what their residence looks like, both inside and out, and you get the idea about how this isn’t just about shoes). Down the road in a relationship, you’ll have to make a decision: will you put up with his bad taste or try to change it by offering more stylish suggestions? If you choose the latter path, there’s a good chance that you’ll ultimately be accused of being controlling and/or micromanaging your significant other, an argument to which no one wants to be a party.

3. Car. Now, this is a really tricky one–having too nice of a car might say the guy is a spendthrift, or that he has self-image issues, but having an absolutely awful car says he doesn’t really care about looking good or being comfortable (again, this translates to other realms of the guy’s life). On top of what kind of car he drives is the issue of its condition. My ex, for example, drove an expensive sedan, but he kept so much trash in it, I used to say he should open the windows, then have a garbage truck come scoop it up and shake it clean periodically. Yeah, I can be a bitch, but you probably get my point–it was unconscionable how he treated that fine, luxury automobile (which truly was the ultimate driving machine!).

Looking forward, I know God has someone in mind for me. I don’t know who it’s going to be, but three times in a row now, He’s demonstrated His power in delivering guys literally to my doorstep. The first time was with Date 17, the guy from high school who emailed me out of nowhere. The second time was when Date 29 was late to pick me up the other night–while I was walking my dog, a tall, super good-looking, single, age-appropriate neighbor stopped his car in the middle of the road, cut off his cell phone conversation, and jumped out of the car to talk to me. I was like, Wow!!! Not that I think this guy and I have any sort of future potential, but I took it for a message from above, kind of like God was saying to me, This date who’s late? He’s not the one, but I’ve got someone better lined up for you, and he’ll be along shortly, when the time is right. Third, I got a text from a now-divorced mom friend of mine while at church today: she’s dating a wealthy, good-looking guy who has a wealthy, good-looking (and tall!) friend who wants to meet me.

Of course, and then there’s Date 14, as well, texting me out of nowhere. Not sure if he was sent by God or the devil, but I’ll leave you with one guess as to what might happen with him later this afternoon, given that it’s still December and my perfect guy has yet to come along.

Like I’ve said, we all need Jesus.

Dates 28.1 & 29.1: Giving Christian Dating a Go

Lest I be struck by lightening, I’ll not give too many details about Dates 28 and 29, since I met both on a Christian dating website, but I just wanted to give a quick recap on my experience thus far with men of faith, since it’s been both exactly what I expected and completely surprising.

First off, the expected: Date 29.1.

I’ve mentioned I go to a somewhat charismatic church, right? Well, Date 29 happened to attend my church, which was kind of convenient but also kind of a concern for two reasons: (1) if we didn’t wind up hitting it off, we’d probably want to avoid each other in the future, and (2) although my church is full of wonderful, spirit-filled people, it’s also a haven for the spiritually eccentric, who tend to be eccentric in general.

The other thing I see a lot of in my church is folks who are in recovery of one sort or another. So when I activated my Christian dating profile, I was more than aware there was a good chance I’d be in for some wine-less dinners, and perhaps some mention of “meetings” and bygone errant behavior. Because some of my best friends are in recovery and I love them dearly, I figured this wasn’t a dealbreaker. But you know what? In a romantic relationship, it’s kind of tough to deal with.

I hope this doesn’t make me sound like an awful person (even though I probably am in a lot of ways–we all need Jesus!), but I want to be open and honest here, and I just can’t help the way I feel. More than the inconvenience of not being able to enjoy a drink together or whatever is the lingering fear that I might somehow eventually derail my date’s sobriety by letting my vigilance regarding his recovery status slip. Like, what if we’re out to eat and I automatically start perusing the drink menu? What if we’re guests at a wedding, and without even thinking, I accept a glass of champagne for the toast?

Granted, I know these are issues people in recovery are accustomed to dealing with, which is why it’s so important to keep up with meeting attendance and such, but I think I’d still feel obligated to join my partner in sharing their sober lifestyle, which would kind of be a drag. Date 17 was gluten-free, and I felt the same type of reticence about getting serious with him, silly as it may sound. Same goes with how Dates 5 and 20 are allergic to cats. These are serious issues when considering someone as a potential eventual spouse. If there’s anything I’ve learned from the experience of being married to my ex-husband, it’s that issues like these (in his case, bad breath and a reluctance to leave the house) don’t go away–they only get bigger and more problematic. Basically, I know this is common sense, but what you see is what you get, and I’ve learned that I’m not in the business of changing people, so it’s better to call it before things really have a chance to get started.

Anyway, Date 29 was one of those recovery guys. Before he even dropped a word about his testimony, I could see it from the zeal in his eyes. I liked him as a friend, but that was it, and I told him so. Luckily, our church is large, so hopefully it won’t be awkward running into each other, but that’s life, and I’m not switching churches.

Now, for the unexpected:

Date 28 was a Christian woman’s dream come true. Handsome and fit, with a well-established career and a friendly but seemingly temperate disposition, I could tell he was a natural-born leader. Before we ate lunch together at a local restaurant, he even said grace! Conversation between us seemed to hum right along, so I thought I’d be hearing from him again, but here’s the thing: I didn’t.

My guess? This guy is cleaning up in the Christian dating arena–he has his pick of Christian women across the county, so someone with as messy an ex-husband and kid situation as mine goes straight to the bottom of his list. Bummer. Because I really liked Date 28, and even though all we did physically was hug, I was definitely attracted to him, suspecting the eventual sex could be stellar.

Looking on the bright side of meeting (and subsequently being rejected by) Date 28, I learned that guys like him actually exist. I was starting to think they were simply a rumor, a rare breed of guy seldom met with in the wilds of the dating world. So even though I wasn’t a match for him, going out with him gave me hope for the future.

Not to mention a nice lunch.