Sunday, February 24, 2013

How to get a girlfriend online

In my last significant entry on dating, back in 2010, I promised a description of some personas that men can try on when they really want to give the ladies a thrill. Well, after that, I got a little distracted by getting into a relationship, but now that I'm not in one, it's all coming back to me—the joys and delights of being on the market—and the wealth of charming fellows you meet while you're there!

For the benefit of those fellows, I have assembled the following guide to online dating. Gentlemen, I hope you're reading, because you're about to learn how to knock the socks off any lady who knows what's good for her! Just strap on one of these attractive personalities, time-tested by online love-seekers just like you, and you'll be on your way to the relationship of your dreams!

The Sad Stalker

Women like a good sob story—why else do you think we love The Notebook so much? So the next time you meet a woman, make it clear that you have no friends and that she is the best thing that has happened to you in your entire pitiful existence. Pitiful is key. If you present yourself to her like a lost puppy, her heart will overflow with maternal instincts and she will want to spend every moment of her life by your side, just so she can hear more endearing tales of how lonely you are.
      Call, text, and instant message her incessantly. She might not respond most of the time, but that's OK, because your diligence will just drive the message home that you have nothing valuable in your life except her. When you do reach her, here are a few conversational gambits you can try on for size:
      After the obligatory greetings are over, the lady might ask you what's up. This is a good time to respond with something like "Nothing. I hate Saturday evenings. I hate spending them alone :/" Upon hearing this, she will surely want to come running into your arms.
      Some days or weeks after your first and only meeting, it is also a wise idea to tell her how much you miss her. Because obviously that emotional bond you built over the shared viewing of an action movie is something that no amount of time and distance can sunder.

The Play Play Play Boy

For those of you to whom love is a 4-letter word and emotions make you angry, you might want to take a less attached approach. Try introducing yourself by way of an email message such as "SEX!!!!!!???" That should be fun.

Mr. Nice Guy

You know, there are a lot of jerks out there. Women should thank god you're not one of them. In fact, they should probably thank you, just for existing, because you would never lie to them, or screw them over, or hit them, or, for heaven's sake, be interesting. Not like all those other jerks. There used to be a whole blog dedicated to men like you, but unfortunately it seems to have closed down. That's OK. There's really only one thing you need to know about how to be a Nice Guy. Just compare yourself favorably to all the other jerks. Often.

The Great Conversationalist

One of the fundamentals of online dating is that you do a lot of online chatting. The nice thing about online chatting is when the conversation dries up, you don't have to apologize—you just move on with your day. Unless you are taking this persona for a spin. In that case, you will want to prove your conversational prowess by resuscitating the chat with one of your tried and true talking points. Such as a smiley face. Or maybe even the "stuck out tongue." If that doesn't work, try it again 10 minutes later. Surely your fascinating emoticons will eventually ignite some discourse. You might also try frequently starting chats with nothing to say but "hi how are u?" Girls love to see strings of this phrase, over and over and over again in their IM history, to remind them of how much they enjoy your conversations.

There. Four infallible roles you can play to ensure that girls will be crawling all over your online dating profile! You're welcome.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Giant macaroni and cheese

It is not often when I eat a macaroni and cheese that my first words are, "This is awful."

However, that's what sprang to my lips after my first few bites of Giant brand refrigerated macaroni and cheese dinner.

The cheese was too salty, too liquidy, and had that disturbing artificial taste that I associate unfavorably with Velveeta.

It did not caramelize nicely in the microwave as Stouffer's does, hence I was forced to eat what could best be described as "vaguely cheesy macaroni soup."

The only good thing about this macaroni was that the pittance I paid bought me an entire massive tray of meal, so I still have at least two servings left! Oh, wait, that's a bad thing.

One sad noodle for everything!
 1sad noodle

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Your cup of joy is running over into my personal space.

For the fourth annual Bitter Valentine Blog, I would like to address a major societal problem facing our communities: Happiness. Specifically, public display of happiness in a relationship, which I shall henceforth abbreviate as PDHR. Much like how public displays of affection (also known as PDA), manifested in grody kissing sprees and touch sessions at inappropriate times and places, generally serve to make the onlooking citizenry physically ill, PDHR, while not necessarily physical in nature, is just as off-putting. Turns out this sentimental excess tends to occur almost exclusively on Facebook, which tempts me to run off on a tangent about how social media changes our social interactions, but that wouldn't be bitter enough. However, I shall present a few examples of how some lucky lovebirds employ PDHR to truly nauseating effect.

They write self-congratulatory Facebook posts, such as: "My husband/boyfriend/sugar pie/honeybunch took out the trash for me. Not only is he soooooooo inhumanly talented, he's so sweet and he's mine!" Yeah, I get that part of them wants to pay their significant other a compliment, but the other part apparently wants to drive me away into a nearby toilet.

Then they get the whole family into the action, with mothers-in-law-adding their helpful 2 cents, as in: "I'm so blessed to have you as my daughter!" No, not even my "daughter in law." The best PDHRers get straight to the biological impossibilities and start making up familial relationships that don't even exist.

They also like their public-facing photos to be of such subject matter as themselves kissing their significant other. Now I won't begrudge them an affectionate peck when they say hello or goodbye, but the eternal liplocks that grace a profile picture for the entire world to witness every time one updates one's status are just going to have to stop.

You might recall that we are endowed by our creator with certain inalienable rights, among which are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The operative word there is "pursuit." We're supposed to pursue happiness, not actually have it! So all you people in happy relationships, what's wrong with you!? Why are you displaying your unnatural bliss for all the world to see? Go ahead and be sullen and caustic like the rest of us for once.

On the plus side, PDHRers probably accomplish one thing no one else can do: They gross me out so much that I actually feel lucky to be single, because I'd be so ashamed if I ended up in a relationship that made me act like that!

If you enjoyed this pleasant diatribe, you will no doubt be delighted to partake in any number of my other Bitter Valentine Blogs, which are all listed here for your perusal. Happy V-Day!

2012: Valentinezilla
2011: Bad Romance
2010: What becomes of the broken hearts?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

When it's over

It's February, the month of romance! And what better time than now to share the news that my boyfriend and I have broken up?

Sorry. I know a lot of you liked him. I liked him. I still like him. He still likes me. Do we have irreconcilable differences? Perhaps. Will we give it another try? Maybe later. But right now we're respectively and officially single, which has given me a lot of time to mope in the darkness and think deep thoughts. I was going to save them for my annual Bitter Valentine's Blog, but I just couldn't keep silent any longer. Besides, I'm sure that I'll have come up with something magnificently bitter by the time the 14th rolls around.

So, here are some thoughts that have been floating around my tortured head lately, including some musings on my current situation as well as some more general aphorisms that deserve a place on anyone's quote wall.

For example, Isn't it funny how when your heart breaks, it's your eyes that hurt?

Hahaha, good one. In case you haven't guessed, I've been crying a lot. There was a point a week ago (fortunately I think I'm over that period) when I was so grief-stricken that I was haunted by sadness even when I wasn't thinking about it. I would wonder things like why my favorite foods didn't taste good, or why I was having so much trouble swallowing, and then I would remember. "Oh, my heart is broken."

When I'm not outright mourning, I'm overthinking things in bizarrely mathematical terms. A friend told me by instant message that I shouldn't be taking it so hard because "you > Rico." I appreciate that sentiment, but I think it still stands that "me < me + Rico." Unless Rico were a negative quantity, which is not the case. So I'm feeling somewhat...fractional.

I'm also wondering how you can quantify love. How good does a relationship have to be before it's "good enough?" On a scale of 1-10, I would rate my relationship with Rico about a 7—lacking in 3 sort of major ways. When I told my friends about some of the things I was unhappy about, they pretty much unanimously told me I needed to get out! But is it reasonable to ever expect a perfect 10? Looking at it arithmetically, there were 7 major good points going for us. Were those really not enough? I think I would have preferred to try to address the three problems we did have and maybe work our way up to a solid 8.5, rather than starting at 0 again and looking for someone new. Rico didn't seem to see it that way.

The hardest part about this situation may be that we are trying to stay friends. This means we keep seeing each other and I keep being reminded of how many things I like about him. When you see someone at a casual gathering, you only see the good things about them, not the things that drove you apart when you were alone. The other thing about it that's hard is that, in my experience, usually being "just friends"is the first step to not being friends at all. Part of me wishes that we could have just had a rabid, screaming fight, and left never to see each other again, simply to avoid the protracted, painful death of our relationship as we slowly grow apart. But the other part of me clings to the hope that we will succeed. It's happened before.

On the plus side, being suddenly single has done more for my social life than I ever imagined possible. I decided that I should make an effort to meet people in the real world this time around (as opposed to the online venues that are my usual date-getters), and consequently I've been going out and doing things and generally acting like a normal person! I might even be getting over my fear of parties! ...Well, let's not be too optimistic.