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Pardon me for waxing mushy for a post…

When I met MKL (through eHarmony, yes), I had no idea he would become my husband. When we had been matched (on my birthday), I had shown his picture to Kelsea and asked what she thought. She approved, so we did the little email-y, question-asky thing that eHarmony has you do, and it went well. And then I didn’t hear from him. And I didn’t hear from him. And one day, while we were at Topsail, and I was suffering from some stomach juju, I said to Kelsea, “Remember that nice guy that I was emailing with? He hasn’t responded to me. Do you think I should nudge him (because that’s what you can do on eHarmony) or should I just let it go?” “You liked him, right? Nudge him,” she said. So I did. He answered. When Kelsea and I got back, MKL and I had our first phone conversation. I was sitting in a camp chair on my front porch with a glass of red wine. We talked for an hour, and agreed to have lunch. He walked me back to my office after that lunch and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back inside, everyone said I was glowing. I never stopped glowing.

MKL knew that I was someone he had been looking for and hoping for. It took me a bit longer to figure that out , and I am so glad that I caught up with him. I cannot imagine my life and my future without him. He holds my heart and understands me as no one has. We are not identical, and we have our own opinions, but our spirits are shared and that makes me richer than anything else ever could. What a blessing, my MKL.

Rings! 0428
(Photo credit: Issy Kilbride)

Quote of the day: “There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment.”  — Sarah Dessen

Daily gratitudes:
Spoonerisms
The shaking bowl today
A warm Mr. Man in my lap
Physical therapy
Kelsea’s and my agreed-upon text code

Remember a little while back when I wrote about my three strikes of dating?  Well, the pattern continues.  Another potential suitor is all washed up.  This time we had two failed dates and one actual date (which could make it two balls and one strike, but that sounds really wrong.)  And we’d seen each other at his place of employment quite a few times, so it could safely be said that we’d known each other about 5 months.  I was optimistic about this guy.  And he is a nice guy.  But.  Nope.  Sigh.  No chemistry.  And although I had an almost impossible time passing it in high school, chemistry is very important to me.

Not that I’m pining.  When the time is right, everything will fall into place.  Over the last two weeks, I’ve been pretty happy with my alone status.

I just noticed that being with the wrong person makes you more lonely sometimes than being alone – especially if you know what being with the right person feels like, and how happy that makes you feel.

Made me feel.

But if he’s not here anymore, then he’s not the right person.  Right?

Sigh…

Yes, it sometimes feels like my life is a B-movie.  Not horribly bad.   But just as bizarre as, well, a B-movie. 

My feeble attempts at dating have yielded some interesting experiences.  I seem to be following a “three strikes” rule – meaning no one has gotten beyond date number three.  At this point, I’m okay with that.  I’m not in a place in my heart yet to even give a single strand of it to anyone else.  I suppose if the right person came along, I would do so.  Knowing myself as I do, I couldn’t help it.  But, the right person is an illusive concept these days. 

And so, I date.  And debate becoming a nun, because honestly, I might as well.  But that’s another post. 

My first out of the inning was a very nice guy who, while a little proper, and a little controlling, I discovered after three dates, was really just a little old lady in disguise.  I’m not sure quite how I found this out.  Maybe it was the pride in which he spoke about his matching Tupperware.  Or his inability to drive more than 10 miles under the speed limit.  Still, he was a nice guy.  Just not the guy for me, as I decided on the third date.

My second out of the inning, was undoubtedly the strangest first date I’ve ever had.  We had a very nice time.  We talked about everything.   He was properly impressed with my weird knowledge of history and off-beat things.  We met for drinks at the Brown Palace, talked about music and family and cocktails and abstract art and his business doing something with petroleum and…just everything.  Then we moved onto dinner at Marlowe’s (which was absolutely yummy, and I highly recommend the salmon) at a table outside by the 16th Street Mall, where we discussed horse-drawn carriages and remodeling old houses and various sundry things and how things in Denver had changed over the years.  Then we got to talking about what to do after dinner.  And he had an idea.  And the next thing I know, we’re at BJ’s Carousel, home of Denver’s friendliest drag queen show.

Now, you guys know me.  I’m pretty much up for anything, especially if it makes a good story for the theoretical grandkids, or at least a good story to tell any stray parrots I happen to round up.  What’s my motto?  All together now.  That’s right. “She who dies with the most stories, wins.”  It’s a hefty responsiblity and not one I take lightly.  So, since this was something I’d never done, we went.

I’ll tell you, for a first date with a professed Christian, this one took the urinal cake.  I was the only woman (??) in the place, and I do have to say, that everybody there was very friendly.  I’m serious.  They were all incredibly nice.  But I suppose that being the only woman there, and sitting at a ringside table, I was bound to attract the attention of the performers.  And so it was, that Fantasia, during her (his?) first number, shone the spotlight on us, introduced her(him?) self, drank my vodka and soda, and sang a Lady Gaga song to me.  How nice.  Really.  It was.  Someday, I want to try to wear eyelashes that long. 

A few other performers came and went.  And I know that even I, with my puny fashion sense, could make a little money on the side by being a fashion consultant for this population.  Again, seriously.  I don’t even know where to start.  Each seemed to have their own little following, and several patrons lined up to place dollars in the star-of-the-moment’s curious cleavage.

And then, Fantasia was back, still enamored of me and my date.  She approached the table.  She paused in her song.  She grabbed my face between her two hands, and I thought she was going to kiss me.  But no.  She buried my head between her fake boobs and tried to suffocate me for about three seconds.  A very long three seconds.  Then she proceeded to give my date one of said fake boobs.  At that point, it was time for me to get some air.  So we went. 

I was not uncomfortable or unhappy with this date.  I was just bemused and baffled.  And Kelsea said I was extremely jumpy the next day.  I decided he was pleasantly eccentric and I’d see what happened next.  I like eccentric people.

Our second date was drinks and dinner.  Pretty normal, although he drank more than I was expecting.  And our third date was drinks (do we see a pattern here?  yes, and we’re not sure we like it), a Rockies game, and dinner.  I wasn’t in the drinking mood, which he didn’t seem to care for too much, and over dinner, he called me a flaming liberal and started bashing gay marriage (yes, the same guy who took me to a drag club) and told me I was an idiot for believing in health care reform, Obama, or anything any semi-rational human being believes in.  Well, buddy, let me stick a fork in you, because you’re done.

Ah, the irony of having my second third strike be a baseball game date.  And I did feel a small pill of pride about “breaking up” with somebody over health care reform.

I’m wondering if this is a trend.  I don’t really know if I’m ready for dating.  Right now, I don’t know if I’m ever going to be ready to date.  When you’ve had magic, it feels impossible to go back to ordinary.  But I will continue to give it the old college try when I have time.  At least until I’ve gone through a full nine innings.

Just in case, if anyone has the number for a good nunnery, let me know.

I am lonely in a strange way tonight. 

I had a long, hard day.  I’ve had about 9 hours of sleep in the last 72 hours and I’m pooped.  But I accomplished what I set out to accomplish at work today – well, not quite, but I did the absolute best that I could, having only been there 7 days. 

I had cocktails with a nice guy, the same guy I went dancing with last Friday.  It was pleasant.  I was happy and sleepy when I took the late bus home.  I’m really sleepy now, watching some old Lana Turner/Ricardo Montalban movie on the Bonnet Channel.  Who can NOT watch Ricardo Montalban?  I’ve eaten, called Kelsea (like 5 times because I kept remembering things I meant to tell her).  I have some cautiously good news that I’ll share later, just to keep you reading and in suspense.

I was lonely though, when I got home. It’s interesting. Sometimes, when I’m slightly smugly happy, I feel REALLY alone.  I want to share that slice of joy I feel with someone else, and strangers just won’t do.  That’s why I sent an “I miss you” message tonight.  And why I came home and checked my incredibly bizarre E-Harmony matches.  I’m not ready to be in a relationship.  In fact, I am totally dedicated to being on my own and manless (and, yes, womanless, not that I had considered that as a viable option).   This is the time for me to learn, to ache, to grow, to gather my own power, so perhaps later I can be invaluablely precious to myself and to someone else.

And so now, it’s 10:00.  Kelsea and I have a really “cool” day planned tomorrow (with her really cool friend Will) but it’s one more thing I’ll leave you in suspense about (gasp – did I really end that sentence with a preposition?)  Suffice it to say, after last weekend’s auctions and alpacas, this coming weekend will be another thrill!

Sleep well – or if it’s already Saturday – have a lovely day, my friends.

The Bonnet Channel (aka Turner Classic Movies) is focusing on the work of director Hal Roach this week.  Among many other movies, Hal Roach did a series of short films featuring a goofy taxi driver in various mishaps with friends, reminiscent of Laurel and Hardy.

The taxi driver theme reminded me of the worst first date ever, one I had when I was 19, back in Boston.  I worked in Harvard Square at a little clothing shop called Serendipity, and would take my dinner breaks at the old Mug n’ Muffin.  I loved the Mug n’ Muffin.  It had ancient waitresses who had been there forever, wooden chairs and tables with no tablecloths, and a big open space.  It sounded mariner’s bells every fifteen minutes so you knew what time it was (which is how I learned what the mariner’s bells were.)  And it had wonderful coffee.  It was a local hangout, and people who frequented it had a nodding acquaintance with one another.

I had a nodding acquaintance with a handsome young man with beautiful blue eyes.  We were quite shy around one another, but finally, we actually started talking.  He was a taxi driver.  After a couple of days of chatting over coffee, he asked me out.  I was so excited.  He picked me up a few days later at my house.  The plan was to go to the movies and then go out to dinner.  We were both so nervous – I think we really liked each other, and we both wanted to make a good impression.

I’d let him pick the movie – if it was produced after 1950, I knew very little about movies, even then, and I thought this would give me a good idea of his taste in such things.  We parked at the theatre and waited in a long line to get tickets, encouraged that the film would be good because there was such a crowd.  I thought in passing that the crowd was a little different, but didn’t really pay attention.  It was a foreign film, but it had the word ‘Taxi’ in the title, which he took as a sign that it would be entertaining, since he knew that driving a cab was a world of entertainment in itself.  Truly, he had some amazingly funny stories about his fares.

We got our tickets and settled into two seats in the center of an aisle in a packed theater.  I noticed that I was about the only woman there, which I thought odd, but at the time, I just thought how many taxi drivers there were in Boston.  (Can anyone see where this is going yet?) 

The lights went down, the curtains opened (it was an old movie theater) and the film came on.  The first frame was a full-body shot of a naked man sitting on a toilet taking a dump.  Seriously.  We were both a bit taken aback, but hey, it was an artsy foreign film, so let’s just stick with it.  The man in the film gets up  from the toilet, goes to the bedroom and proceeds to have sex with his male lover.  And you saw everything.  EVERYTHING. From every angle.  Going into every orifice.  Oh. My. Goodness.

We both just sat there, horrified, not looking at each other, not saying a word, mesmerized like two people watching a train wreck.  After that endlessly long scene, the film progressed to a semblance of normalcy with German subtitles for about 5 minutes.  Then we dived into graphic Glory Holes in department stores, Turkish Baths, and public park toilets.  My date started whispering, “I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. I really thought it was about taxis.  Do you want to go?  We can go.”  Remember, I was 19.  I wanted to be sophisticated.  I didn’t really know if this guy was joking, testing me, being sincere, or just being a creeper.  I still wanted to impress him, so I whispered back, “No, it’s okay, we can stay if you want to.  Maybe it has some artistic merit.”  Artistic merit my ass.  Or the asses of everyone on the screen. 

We continued to whisper these lines to each other through the entire highly intimate movie, all the way to the end.  He could have just said, “Let’s go,” and I’d have said, “Right behind you.”  OK, given the context, I wouldn’t have said “Right behind you,” but I would have agreed immediately.  I spent the entire film aghast and trying to figure out if I should be offended, interested, aroused, shocked, suspcious…on and on and on.  I had no idea what the right reaction should be.  Maybe I should have said “Let’s go.”  Maybe he thought I was into it.  Who knows?  As it was, we spent an endlessly uncomfortable two hours, and when we got out into the fading sunlight, we had no idea what to say to each other, except that we continued to apologize.  I was pretty ready to laugh it off, but he remained positively mortified.

I suggested we put it behind us (or something like that) and go to dinner, and he readily agreed.  We got to the cab, and it was dead. Dead.  Dead like, I realized at this point, our freshly planted relationship.  He tried and tried and tried to get it to start, with no success, until he finally had to call for a tow.  This failure, even though it was no big deal, just added to his embarrassment.  He couldn’t even look at me with his pretty blue eyes.  In fact, he never met my gaze once after we left the theater. 

So, he went off in the tow truck.  I lived close by, so I walked home.  He never called me again.  He never came into the Mug n’ Muffin again.  I saw him once, pulling out of an alley in his cab the following spring, and when our eyes met, the same look of terrified mortification rushed into them, and he pulled away quickly.

I suppose my reaction to the film wasn’t the right one.  I should have insisted we leave immediately.  Who knows what he thought of me that I sat through it.  At any rate, it was a relationship that clearly was not meant to be.  (And though this was both a first and a last date, it was not my “worst last date”, but that’s a story for another day.)

The film was called “Taxi Zum Klo” for those of you who wish to see it or who wish to be sure to avoid it.  It was actually a groundbreaking, award-winning film about gay male life.  With a title like that, his thinking that it was about taxis was understandable, but a little extra research might have been helpful.  Poor guy.  I hope he, to this day, thinks of it as his “worst first date ever” story as well.  And I hope that now he can laugh about it.

When you first start dating someone, you’re always on your best behavior.  You want to make sure you’re properly shaven or otherwise groomed (in other words, you don’t go a month without shaving your legs), that the house is tidy (tidier than you would normally keep it), that you’re dressed to intrigue and impress, and that you don’t do anything that would make the object of your affection think, “Ew, that’s DISGUSTING!  What am I doing with HER/HIM?”

Then, after a while, it’s bound to happen.  One of you is the first to pass wind in front of the other.  And the passer is mortified, while the passee, assuming he/she is still enamored, does everything possible to reassure the passer that “Oh, it’s okay, it’s a natural bodily function, please don’t be embarrassed, etc., etc.”  After all, truly, everybody does it.

Now, when the inital passer is the woman, MOST women will still make best efforts to ensure that, in the future, those normal physical emissions (farting, nose blowing, coughing up sputum, you name it) are done in the privacy of the boudoir or salle de bains.  (And if the inital passer is the woman, most men are absolutely delighted.)

But if the initial passer is the man, MOST men will take that reassurance of “It’s okay, it’s just a normal bodily function,” as carte blanche to suddenly start sharing ALL of their normal bodily functions with total and complete impunity.

Suddenly, the dynamic shifts from a discreet honk in a hankie to a farmer’s blow out the window of a car doing 75 on the interstate.  Passing wind is no longer accompanied by a blush, but now by leg-lifting, ass-thrusting, arm gestures and whoops of delight.

Peeing is not restricted to a bathroom, but to anyplace outside that is screened from the public eye by a door frame, rock, car door or tall weed (maybe).  The belches cease to be stifled – they become melodic (at least to the ears of the belcher), resonant, and occasionally involve portions of the alphabet.  And often, the emitter looks to his loved one for approval, like a dog that proudly brings a half-rotted, half-eaten deer leg to the back door.

I’m not against these sorts of things – I’m a natural kind of girl.  I don’t wear make-up or have my hair done, or get mani/pedis.  I’m happier in jeans, happiest in a sarong, and have no need of designer clothes.

So believe me, I’m not bashing men or judging harshly.  All I know is that, even when I’ve been the one who opens the gas gates, I remain discreet whenever possible.  I don’t quite understand why the opposite sex doesn’t feel the need to do the same.  In fact, they even encourage us women to join in the tooting revels, which also puzzles me.  As if it is something of a turn-on, which I can’t quite understand.

I am a genuine person.  And I think people want to be with genuine people.  But I also have a certain amount of natural decorum, probably from my GRITS upbringing.

Don’t men want women to be somewhat dignified and ladylike?  I mean they don’t want to date another man – if they did, they’d be gay.  Do they want us to engage in extreme cheese-cutting in order to make themselves feel better about their own actions?  I know there’s a certain desire for “a lady in the street and a freak in the bed,” but where does the whole ass-trumpet thing fit in?  Is it better or worse if I wear white gloves while serving air biscuits?

I don’t have the answers (though if you have more questions about barking spiders, visit here,) but I felt it necessary to raise the subject for contemplation, as it’s been on my mind for years.  In every relationship, I’ve opened the floodgates with my reassurance that it’s okay, and then spent the next umpteen years wondering why I did so, and how to close them, even slightly.  But like the “Walter the Farting Dog” series of books, the whole thing has its own unstoppable momentum.

I suspect it’s a lost cause, one of those delightful things that differentiate the sexes.  As a dear friend once told me, you look for the things to love in the people you love.  That’s easy to do – just keep the nose-clothespins handy.

And if anyone ever tells you that a dutch oven is a sign of true love, don’t you believe him.

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