Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Match.com Week One: A Retrospective

It's been a week now since I joined Match.com. I might be the only person in the world who cried the entire time while filling out the profile. It turns out there are many nice people or profiles out there. It's been fun window shopping for sure! There are also some things I've seen that make me question the age, wisdom, sanity, and amount of friends some of these people have.

I had a couple of friends review my profile for me. It's good to get a little perspective. For instance, I was encouraged not to write, "My uterus is no longer renting space to fetuses." Apparently it's only funny to me and checking "no" on the box that asks if you want more kids is sufficient. I was also discouraged from discussing my passion for hats and black shoes. It comes across as a tendency toward hoarding or being materialistic. Point taken.

Is your profile not getting the attention you think it deserves? Maybe you could have a friend help you round out the sharp edges! If you don't have a friend  (sad face), here are some things to consider:

1. Unless you were born in 1969 stop using 69 in your user name. It's not funny. It's not sexy. You're not 15. "1269u2day"? Are you kidding me? Also, pointing out how clever your user name is by saying, "Just read my name, doll." makes me want to throw up. Maybe on you.

2. I am sure that facial hair took forever to grow in. That fluff you're calling mutton chops and that unkempt face full of fur are your calling cards. I get it. Just a tip though, women are visual too. If we can't picture what you look like under that pelt you're cultivating on your face we are far more likely to skip right by. If you must keep the facial hair make sure it's trimmed up nicely.

3. If you are even remotely scary looking it is not wise to put a low light picture on your profile. It makes you look like a crazy basement dwelling axe murderer.

4. Spell check. Spell check. Spell check. Also is a single word. It is not 'all so'.

5. I understand. You took a marketing class. You're supposed to create a buzz, some demand, and a sense of urgency. You are not a fire sale. Sending out a message with your phone number in it warning me that you're subscription is about to expire and I'll lose my chance to talk to you is not going to further your cause.

6. Nothing says, "I'll lock you down and be a controlling prick." like an email sent minutes after your last email accusing me of being bored and then telling me that you've "figured out what my problem is." It officially bores me. Wait... maybe you're right!

7. You have a computer or a smart phone. It's obvious by the fact that it's almost 2013 and you have an online dating profile. Somewhere out there is a photo of you. Use it. Yes, there is more to life than appearances, but chemistry is a huge deal. If you honestly do not have a photo, have someone take one of you. It won't hurt. You can take more than one.

That's all I've got for today, but I'll be back later in the week with some news from the online dating world. Maybe. Unless I get married. I'll probably be back. So I'll definitely be back.

Monday, December 17, 2012

I Might Have Just Done the Unthinkable

"You know I don't understand men. So explain it." I said. I sat back and waited for some epic wisdom to be imparted on me. Even after all these years I still believe that I can be taught, if someone is patient enough to put up with me. 

"I know why you don't." he said. "They tell you what something is and you don't accept it, you read between the lines looking for something that isn't there just because you believe there is more to it." he added. 

True to form, I immediately wondered if he was referring to our on again off again flirtations over the years. Why hadn't we ever worked out? Was I so flawed that the idea of trying was incomprehensible? As if on cue he went on to explain. "I don't deserve a girl like you. I'll hurt you. Get it wrong, and because I do care for you and you are a nice person, it would kill me to hurt you and I couldn't live with that. You hurt a mean girl and its like hitting back." 

My inner child felt like dying. I started reviewing all of my flaws to determine what the real reason was. It was classic "it's not you it's me." That was obviously not the reason. Was I too fat? Too tall? Too ridiculous? Was I doing it again? SHIT!  I was doing exactly what he said I did. I read into it looking for some deeper meaning that didn't exist. I began to look at it from another angle. Do I need to be more cruel? Should I become the woman who lies, belittles, and makes her man wonder from minute to minute if he's good enough? At the same time I  wondered how long I could maintain the "bitch" facade. It's inevitable that if the guy were sweet, funny, attractive, and right for me I would end up laughing at his jokes or being genuinely interested. I would end up showing my "decent human" side and ruining everything. 

I'm really not cut out for this. I'm just a dork with a soft heart. Where is that on the dating profile? 

Personality type= Dorky, quirky, loving, considerate, understanding, and ready. I don't want to control you because controlling myself is enough trouble. 

So I decided to fill out a dating profile on Match.com and really see what sort of stuff someone might see when they look me up and undoubtedly want to call me (cough). 

I obviously don't read minds. I've thought I understood every man I loved and I got those wrong so I stuck with books.

My true headline should read, "39 Year Old Woman Attempts to Figure Out What the Fuck"

I didn't put any sex in there because sex is for grown ups and right now I feel like a child. 
After the basics it began to ask me questions with pictures. There ya go, that made me feel comfortable in a 3 year old sort of way. Angie likes. Angie doesn't like. Oooh something shiny. Ick, bad shoes. Still, I answered. I clicked through as honestly as one can when they don't know what is hotter... the classic businessman belt or the construction worker tool belt. I am pretty sure I did it wrong and don't know what the hell I want except that I can't have it. 

I'm going to really try not to over think this thing for a whole month. The very idea that after writing this stuff for others and setting up their accounts I am really going to go live with this makes me want to never open my email or look at the internet again. Life would be great if what I wanted was realistic or actually existed. If any man can show just cause, why I should not join Match.com, speak now or forever hold your...  It's time. 

Wish me luck. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

All About the Rim

Let me state for the record that I am a car owner. I buy them and I drive them. I know how to check the oil, the fluids, and where to go to get the oil changed. I also know where to buy tires. I'm good at those things. What I am not good at is auto repair or pesky things like knowing my tire size or anything of the sort. This became obvious some time ago. I do not actually know what a ball joint is. There is a lot I don't know. What I do know about my car:  It's a dark gray G6. It has tires. It has factory Pontiac rims. It takes unleaded gasoline. It has bucket seats and a CD player.

A couple of weeks ago as I drove down the street, a car appeared to be pulling out in front of me so I did a little swerve maneuver and accidentally "curb checked" my car. I've since been informed that the proper term is "hit the f*cking divider". It's all the same to me and the cracked rim on my car told me that the end result was the same regardless of what you called it.

After driving it and thinking to myself, "this is awfully wobbly", a friend was kind enough to call and locate a replacement rim for me. Joyous and relieved at the bargain price, I notified my daughter's boyfriend of my excellent deal and asked if he could run out and pick it up for me. He agreed. This is the conversation that followed when I looked in the trunk of my car at the replacement rim.

Me- Can you check that rim before they put it on the car? It's not the same as the others.

Zach- Angie, it is the right size.

Me- Yes, I understand that, but it's not the same RIM. Do you know what I mean? It doesn't look the same.

Zach- Okay. I'll look, but I think it's right.

This is what I expected. 
His voice sounded like he was placating a crazy woman. In my head I kept thinking to myself, "I am not going to drive around with a mismatched rim. That's just wrong. It would be like driving around with one salvage door that doesn't match the paint on the rest of the car! If I have to drive with a mismatched rim I might as well just die! UNACCEPTABLE!" I just prayed that he would look at the rim and correct the situation that otherwise would surely bring shame to our family.

And look he did. Then he went to the place where you go to get these things taken care of (uh... you know the rim swapping place). He then drove the car to my place of work and ensured me that it was driving fine, no more wobbles. Yay me! Bravo him! When I left work that day and walked around my car, I immediately noticed 4 matching rims. I smiled broadly and reminded myself to thank the kid when I got a chance.

So.... Funny thing. Did you know that the side of the rim that faces the inside of the car looks different from the side of the rim that faces the outside of the car? ME EITHER! In my defense, when I opened the trunk of my car to inspect the rim, I was looking for two things. First off, does it have the Pontiac emblem in the center? Secondly, does it have the appropriate number and size of spokes? It didn't match. I was not thinking, "Huh... I wonder what it looks like on the other side." Also, it was a sort of dirty... and not in the good way.

Here's what we've learned from this:
1. My car is dark grey.
2. Do not ask me mechanical questions.
3. Rims look different face up than they do face down.
4. I have four matching rims and my family will have to earn their shame some other way.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Christmas Letter Sneak Preview

It's almost Christmas and I think we all know what that means. It's "brag about your family" time again! We all have new things going on in our lives, but mine aren't usually as exciting as the things everyone else writes. I need to have some "one ups" to throw in there to really show people how outstanding things are around these parts. 

Jacob is competing in the "my kid said a new word" Olympics, the entry will be "Fuck." My daughter first dropped the F bomb in my presence when she was far too young to remember doing it. It was a proud moment for our whole family. I'm sure both of my kids swear a blue streak, but they've always managed to hold their tongues back around me. This past weekend though, Jacob said "Fuck"... in front of me. It was almost under his breath. Like a good parent who doesn't make a huge deal out of those things (you don't want to encourage them or make them think it's funny), I said nothing. He happened to be looking away, no doubt thinking, "Oh shit! I just said that in front of my mom!" After that he probably thought, "Sonofabitch I hope I didn't just say that out loud too!" Either way, I let it go. I wonder if he even realizes that I know. I'm sure it was accidental. He's brave but he's not stupid. He's really growing into a handsome young man with a good head on his shoulders and/or the decency to not get caught doing whatever it is that kids are doing these days. 

Alex is still dating her man of almost 3 years. Right there that tells you that I didn't screw her up nearly as badly as I once thought... or she's gotten a good shrink behind my back and is working out the issues I've caused and she's just not telling me. Bravo me! Do you know how independent and strong you have to be to seek help on your own? Realistically, we should stick with the "Angie didn't screw her kids up" story line. Shrinks are expensive and we don't have that sort of money. Truthfully, she's beautiful and smart and the older she gets the more I find that I enjoy talking to her. It seems strange to me that mothers and daughters almost inevitably go through a phase where they would rather strangle each other than speak. Don't get me wrong, just two days ago I caught her rolling her eyes at something I said. It's harder to do these days. She's become quite adept at it. If I stop walking and pivot quickly I can catch it. 

Here's what I've decided. I think it will fit nicely on the Christmas e-cards. 

Jacob turned 16 this year. It's been a year of firsts for him: First car, first job, first ticket, first word! 
Alex is 19 and continues to keep me on my toes. She's beautiful, self-sufficient, and not as sweary as her brother well spoken. 
I'm still working (at that place I go to every day), writing (here and SprocketInk), wining (red), and WINNING! No one's pregnant. No one's in jail. 
Merry Christmas from our house to yours. 

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Sunday Confession: Vanity, Thy name is Angie

My Google search history reads like an "As Seen on TV" commercial. Make me look 10 pounds thinner. Make me look 20 years younger. Make my ass round and amazing. Where can I buy Jeggings? Totally kidding. I refuse to wear jeggings and will openly mock you if I see you wearing them. Same goes for the pajama jeans, folks. Be a grown up. Wear real pants. The rest though... there all there right along with the search for the perfect pill to make everything higher, tighter, brighter, and POW! 

If you walked into my bathroom on any given day, you'll find a shelf filled with lotions, potions, creams, gels, and liquids. There are blue ones, red ones, white ones, gold ones and clear ones. They all promise me eternal youthfulness, plumper skin, radiance, and the reduction of fine lines and wrinkles. Some get used once a day, some twice, and others weekly. They get shuffled around a bit, but they are always there. I call them vanity. 

When I wake in the morning I dutifully make my way to the bathroom and stare long and hard at my reflection. It's my job. I'm a slave to the mirror. It wasn't always this way, but now I'm shackled. This vanity thing is a bitch. Part of me wants to blame the media. Every day we're faced with images of 12 year old girls pretending to be 20. Their skin is perfect. Their eyes are bright and clear. They don't have laugh lines. They need the push up bra to give them cleavage and I need it to actually push my breasts up. I bet none of them have ever walked past the Spanx section in a department store and thought, "Maybe... " Bitches. 

Still, I know it isn't the media that gets all the credit. Most of the blame lies squarely on my shoulders, which I've always thought were far too broad. If I had narrower shoulders I wouldn't feel compelled to carry the burden of this age thing. Let's go with that. Regardless, it's my fault. I want to get older without looking older. Is that so wrong? Is it wrong that I am jealous of anyone who can afford Botox or Juvederm? Is it wrong that I gaze longingly at ads that promote products that will lift this, tuck that, shrink those, and generally rewind the clock? Probably. I still do it though. 

I do my hair on the weekends in the event that someone might stop by the house. I un-tag unflattering photos of myself on Facebook. I try not to ever leave the house without my face on unless I'm working out. I don't even workout until the evening because I don't want to risk running out of time to redo my face and hair before people see me. The undone me is about as easy to spot as a Yeti. If there were cameras in my house I'd avoid them like the plague for fear that they might capture me in my natural state. The mythical Undone-Angie has only been seen by a few people. They lived to tell about it, but they wouldn't dare because I know where they live. 

The sad part is, there isn't a huge difference between me with makeup and me without makeup. Pre-makeup me just looks really tired. I know because I tried the no face thing and people kept saying, "You look really tired." So it's a fact. Not that most people would have the balls to say, "Christ on a bike what happened to your face?!" Let's just stick with tired. 

It's almost dark, so I am going to throw on my workout gear. Even that stuff is designed to make me look better than the giant baggy sweat pants do. I'll probably wear the trainers with the rounded bottom that promise to reshape my ass and never do because who knows... maybe this time. I'm turning off the front porch light so people think we're not home. I don't want anyone to see me sweat. 

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