I admit it… I’ve been slacking on my posts. So much has been going on. In the last 2 weeks I lost 2 of my great aunts. Both of them lived long fulfilling lives but most of all they lived life on their own terms. And with the recent death of Paul Walker it has me thinking a lot about life and making sure we live it to the fullest and on our own terms. Lately I have been making it a point to enjoy life and every single moment we have here on earth. This isn’t a dress rehearsal this is the real thing. My biggest fear is waking up at the age of 60 and realizing I have let life pass me by. I will NOT let that happen. Okay I already digressed…
This is the time of year where there are birthday parties, holiday parties, and just the overall theme of getting together with friends. Because I have FOMO (fear of missing out) I usually attend everything regardless of how my body feels. Most people cannot go at the pace I go. But like I said, this isn’t a dress rehearsal this is the real thing. Not to mention, whenever people ask me how I meet the various guys I go out with, you’ll never hear me say, “He magically appeared at my house.” Why? Because you have to get out there and meet folks. The other weekend was one of those crazy weekends. One of my girlfriends was celebrating her birthday and the crew went out to Kiss N Grind. I know the name sounds real suspect. But Kiss N Grind is a party in LA that is usually once every 2 months where you go to dance and sweat. It’s not the typical Hollywood party where people are standing around trying to be cute. You put on your comfortable dance shoes and you just dance your cares away. In addition to the numerous glasses of Champagne I consumed that night and all the dancing. I partied like I was 21 again and the next morning I woke up with a massive hangover, swollen feet, and my mascara smeared all over my face. Funny thing is no matter how drunk I am I always manage to wrap my hair in my scarf. And another side note: what is it about champagne that makes me get so damn drunk and hung-over? I spent that day recuperating from the hangover. This encompassed starting the day off with a greasy turkey burger and fat fries from Fatburger and going to get my nails done and drinking what seemed to be gallons of water all day. I hadn’t been this hung-over in a long time. Lesson learned… I am no longer 21 I am a woman in my mid 30’s!
I finally felt like I was 85% to normalcy and head out to another girlfriend’s surprise party that evening. It was at a cool spot and very low key. While on the dance floor my friend’s husband grabbed a guy from the side and pulled him on the dance floor to dance with me. It was a pleasant surprise. He was tall, handsome, and he seemed real cool. We danced all night and talked. “Larry” walked me out to my car and even called me later on that evening. We talked on the phone until 1 in the morning. When I woke up the next morning I was greeted by a nice text message from “Larry.”
It was great meeting you. I look forward to hanging out with you again soon.
“Larry” was off to a nice start. When he called me later on that evening we made plans to go to Perch in Downtown LA the next evening. I loved that spot. It had great views of Downtown LA. He showed up looking good. We ordered a nice Bordeaux and proceeded to get to know each other. “Larry” was raised in…. Carson, CA. What the fuck?! Why did I keep meeting men from Carson? I tried not to pre-judge him based on my ex, and the last 3 guys I went out with from Carson. I really was practicing being open to endless possibilities. My inner loving devastated coaching me, Okay Monique, there must be a reason why you keep meeting men who are from Carson. God is trying to teach you something. BE open and for the love of God don’t roll your eyes!
As we continued to converse I discovered “Larry” sold car insurance and he was 49 years old! Oh boy! I was batting a thousand. I like dating older men but “Larry” was turning 50 in 3 months! And “Larry” had never been married, engaged, or in a long term relationship, and had no kids. When a man is 43+ and fits this criteria he already get side eye but when a man is almost half a century old and fits this criteria I’m looking at him like, “What the fuck is your deal?” As we sat there getting to know each other his phone started to vibrate.
Larry: I’m sorry this is my landlord. Let me get this real quick.
Did this motherfucker say landlord?! Was I really out with a man who was almost 50, never been married, and had no kids who didn’t own his own place. Now before you start judging me let me just say this. I get that LA is expensive. I’m not expecting a single man to live in a mansion. Also, when a man has been married and divorced with kids and is paying child support and alimony I can completely understand him having financial issues. But this man was almost 50 damn years old. What the hell was he doing? But again, I realized I was jumping ahead and quite frankly I Was being a judgmental bitch. Hell, I didn’t own my condo. This man was really nice and I had to tell myself to have several seats. We ended up having another glass of wine on the rooftop checking out the view and then “Larry” looked me in my eyes with the utmost sincerity.
Larry: I’m worried I am not going to live up to your expectations.
ME: What do you mean?
Larry: You seem like the type that’s used to dating big time corporate executives, doctors, lawyers, or athletes. I’m just worried I’m not going to measure up.
Me: I have in the past. But you’re college educated man. You’re no slouch.
Larry: I know. I just want to make sure I can be on the level you’re used to.
That was honest. Had I been so jaded and put myself in such a box when it came to dating that perhaps I was being too regimented? I decided right then and there that I would really be open and give this brotha a chance. So far he had been cool and very attentive. I wasn’t going to downplay the red flags but I wasn’t going to put on my running shoes yet and scratch him off the list.
“Larry” walked me to my car. He gave me a respectable kiss and he made plans to take me out again two nights later….
To Be Continued…
The holidays can be a little trying for us single girls. From the Kay Jeweler “Every Kiss Begins with K” commercials with the staged engagement scenes, to the Lexus commercials where the husband surprises his wife with a brand new Lexus in the driveway with a huge red bow, it can make you sit on the couch with your glass of wine and feel lonely as hell… If you allow it to. After being in a marriage where I experienced what it meant to spend the holiday season married but lonelier than ever, I embrace being alone but NOT lonely. But at the same time I would be lying to you if I told you that every once in a while when I watch those commercials I don’t think to myself, “Awww… that would be nice.” (Not an engagement ring from Kay Jewelers either… just to be clear) As soon as the commercials started to play, I prepared myself for the Holiday Season. And my inner loving Diva gave me a pre-Holiday pep talk, “This year, you are going to embrace your singledom for the Holidays. You are going to live life to the fullest and enjoy every moment. You will not be sucked into that Woe is me bullshit!” And with that I came up with a fun way to spend the Holidays and make it a little unpredictable. One of my mother’s close friends was a famous bestselling author. She had such a fun personality and it was always enjoyable to be around her and her family. She and her husband met later on in life and they had a mutual respect and adoration they shared for each other. He was supportive of her successful career and encouraged her. And in turn she loved and respected that man as well. She passed away a few years ago and the love that he had shared with her is something that really honored the vow, “Till death do we part…” My mother was in town last month for some quality mother-daughter time and her friend’s husband met up with us. He is one of my “adopted” uncles. You know, one of those men who look out for you like you are their own daughter. We were laughing and reminiscing about his wife. And I asked him the story of how they met.
She was about your age at the time. She was still living back east and was planning a trip out to LA to visit some friends. And you know she had a lot of spunk. She told each of her girlfriends that she wanted them to fix her up on a different blind date each day she was in LA. I was Wednesday. We just connected when we met. It felt right. At the end of the date I told her “I know what you’re up to and you can tell Thursday and Friday you already have plans.” And as they say, “The rest is history.” We were inseparable until her dying day.
I looked at my “adoptive” uncle’s eyes. There was such a genuine love as he told the story. You could tell he missed his soul mate but you could also feel and hear the cherished moments that they shared between the two of them.
And to think she was about my age at the time of their first date. At the end of the day, she took a chance, humbled herself (in a fun way) and was bold enough to tell her girlfriends to make things happen! And look how that turned out. So in her memory I went home that evening and I sent 6 of my married and/or in serious relationship girlfriends the November Blind Date Challenge as an inbox message on Facebook. I thought what the hell! I don’t have shit to lose.
Hello Ladies! I hope all is well. This is NOT a random chain email. In honor of my mother’s close friend I am doing a November/December challenge. She and her husband met on a blind date. She was coming to LA on vacation and she told each of her friends to set her up on a date for each night she was here. She met her husband on Wednesday. When she met him he told her to cancel Thursday-Sunday dates. And they were married until she passed away a few years ago. That being said I wanted to reach out to my friends who are already married or in a serious relationship and give you all the challenge of setting me up on blind dates for the next month. I trust all of your judgments and I know you all know me we’ll enough to pick great men. As you all know I am a dating blogger. Although I change names, occupations, and locations if you prefer I not write about any of the guys you set me up with let me know and I will respect that request. Let’s see who wins this challenge out of the crew! If you have any questions you know how to reach me!
And I was surprised by the excitement from my girlfriends and their mates. I love having a competitive, loving group of friends. Each of them are determined to win the challenge. I made sure not to give them explicit instructions on what I wanted and the type of men they should pick. Instead I am trusting the process and looking forward to what happens. This will also make the Holiday season a little less predictable. We’ll see what happens. As we kick off this Holiday season my challenge to you is to be open. Instead of focusing on what you don’t have focus on what you have and where you are going. Do something unpredictable. Humble yourself to the possibilities. Drink lots of wine, eat without worrying about calories, go to the gym to burn off those unknown calories, smile at strangers, and live each day like you are a reality star on the show called YOUR LIFE.
I was around 10 years old when I first saw Dorothy Dandridge as Carmen Jones. Up to that point I was fascinated by Lena Horne’s beauty, Bette Davis’ diva attitude, and Marilyn Monroe’s sex appeal. I have always been drawn to the glamorous divas of the 1950’s… go figure! But when I first saw Carmen Jones, I was mesmerized by how she encompassed all three of the traits. She had presence. She was unapologetic; she went after what she wanted, and did it all looking like a million bucks! She was my inspiration. And to this day whenever this movie is on I stop everything I am doing, sit down and watch it with the same fascination I had as a 10 year old little girl. Dorothy Dandridge would have been 91 last week. In honor of her birthday I wanted to pay a tribute to her and the character that changed my life. Carmen Jones the original serial dater. Here’s what Carmen Jones taught me:
Be the life of the party!
Go after what you want.
It’s okay to cater to your man and take care of him.
Never be with a man who tries to keep you in a box
There’s nothing wrong with excitement when you are dating
When dating your philosophy should be: May the best man win! Too many times we are trying to win over the man instead of it being the other way around.
Don’t settle for less than what you want.
Having good girlfriends in the process of dating who have your back and love you unconditionally is priceless.
Always, always, always wear you lipstick, do your hair, keep your nails done, and be on your A game. You never know when you will bump into Mr. Right. NOT to mention the better you look the better you feel for yourself.
Don’t be afraid to keep it moving when you aren’t getting what you want out of the relationship
KNOW YOUR WORTH!
Don’t be the silly naive girl in the relationship. Always keep your power.
Passion is a MUST!
Every diva wants a man who gives her a little bit of a challenge. “You go for me and I’m taboo, but if you’re hard to get I go for you, and when I do then you are through boy. My baby that’s the end of you!”
Let the man take care of you!
Be with a man who loves you a little more than you love him.
Be unapologetic for who you are and what you want in life.
So after all that shit “Jerold” talked Monday came and he still hadn’t called me to confirm the date that he was so pressed to call the damn car service on speaker phone about. A few days later my girlfriend called me.
Girlfriend: Hey girlie. What are you up to?
Me: I’m relaxing. It’s been a long ass week. By the way, that fool never called.
Girlfriend: Typical. Well…
Me: Well… what
I’ve know my girlfriend for a decade and I knew when she says Well there’s always something behind that.
Girlfriend: We’re all going out to dinner tonight and Jeff wanted you to come.
Me: Why the fuck are you calling me and asking me instead of Jeff, that fool has my number! No. No. I’m not going. I’m not even attracted to his stupid ass.
Girlfriend: Come on! Please come. It will be fun. At least you’ll get a free meal out of the deal. Just come and maybe this time you’ll change your mind.
Me: I thought he was supposed to be in Europe working on his BIG deals.
Girlfriend: He said his trip got pushed back.
Me: Yeah, pushed back to never! Are you and your boo trying to push this?
Girlfriend: No. He specifically asked. You know my honey wants us to be able to go out on double dates. Come on.
Now I got it. That’s the thing about being the single friend, those times when your friends want to include you on a group date but they know you’re not seeing anyone so they can’t. I realized they were just excited to finally be able to include me in a couple outing. So against my better judgment and in the name of friendship, I punked out.
Me: Alright. I’ll go.
She gave me the details and later on that evening I found myself outside of a quaint Italian restaurant wondering, Why in the hell am I here? I could be having a nice glass of wine catching up on my reality TV shows. The I remembered, Oh yeah… that’s right, one of my closest friends begged me to come out. I valet parked my car and walked in. Not only was I out and about when I wasn’t in the mood. These motherfuckers weren’t even there yet. I went to the bar and ordered a glass of Sauvignon Blanc. Side note, if you work in the food industry and have anything that resembles a cold sore. Please call in sick to work. I was attempting to enjoy my wine but the bartender either had a cold sore or he picked at a scab on top of his lip. Either way, I was really focusing on not staring. Anyway I digressed…
Ten minutes later my girlfriend, her fiancée, another couple (an Asian woman with a White guy), and “Jerold” walked in. Everyone looked great. I must say “Jerold” did dress nicely. He had abandoned the flashy “diamond” cuff links for a more settle pair of silver tasteful cufflinks. Everyone hugged and my girlfriend introduced me to the other couple. Before we sat at the table the Asian woman and white guy asked that we take a picture of them together. And then my girlfriend and her fiancée took a picture. I shot her a look of death to let her know to not even think about taking a picture of me and “Jerold.” WE walked to our table at the restaurant and took our seats. I saw “Jerold” whisper something to the waiter out the corner of my eye. Although I wasn’t excited about my “date” it was nice to be out with other couples who were in love, it’s inspirational. The Asian woman and white guy had been dating for 3 months. They had met online and they were definitely into each other. It was nice to see a couple in the beginning of a new relationship. And of course, my girlfriend and her fiancée had been together for years and they had such a familiarity and naturalness that only comes with time and a mutual love and respect for each other. And here I was sitting next to… “Jerold.” A few moments later the waitress came to the table.
Waitress: Hello folks. Before I get started with the drink orders the bus boy told me you wanted to make sure we split the check. How should I divide the check up?
My girlfriend, her fiancé, the other couple and I looked at each other. Obviously none of us had made that request. “Jerold” had put on his glasses and was looking at the menu like he didn’t hear the lady. So the white guy piped in and indicated that he was handling the bill for him and the Asian lady. My girlfriend and her fiancée both looked at “Jerold” who was still looking in the menu waiting to see what he was going to do. Before I could even say anything my girlfriend’s fiancé realized this dumb ass was playing deaf so he indicated that he was handling my girlfriend and I. As soon as my girlfriend’s fiancé made it clear he was covering me all of a sudden “Jerold” took off his glasses and said, “What’s going on. I missed that.” I pinched my girlfriend under the table. I swear by the end of the night she must have had welts and bruises from all the kicking and pinching from me. The Monique in her 20’s would have called his dumb ass out. But the 36 year old Monique decided to be chill. Besides, when I go out to dinner I am always prepared to pay. After all, like I have always said, if you can not do it yourself don’t assume someone else will come to the table with what you don’t have. And given the situation we were in I wasn’t clear if perhaps, just perhaps, he didn’t realize he was walking into a couple situation. It’s not like he called me directly to go out. I’ll give him that. But what I won’t give him, is playing stupid like he didn’t know what was going on. He should have just been direct in front of the entire table and told the waitress he was paying for his own bill. Whatever… the night was already off to an interesting start. As everyone was trying to decide what they were ordering. I saw “Jerold” really struggling on what to get.
Me: What are you going to get?
Jerold: I think I’m just going to get the chicken Caesar salad.
White Guy: That’s it?
Jerold: Yeah. I’m on a diet. So I’m trying to behave tonight.
ME: Why don’t you order one of the specials. You can’t go wrong with grilled fish and sautéed veggies.
What I really wanted to say was, If you’re on a damn diet, why in the fuck would you get a chicken Caesar salad with a bunch of cheese, croutons, and heavy ass dressing when they had grilled fish with spinach on the menu and other low calorie items? This didn’t make any damn sense. Then I figured it out. The chicken Caesar salad was only $12 on the appetizer portion of the menu. Whereas the other entrees started at $30+. Which really wasn’t that much considering this is L- fucking A! OMG! You have got to be kidding me. After we finished ordering our food we got into an interesting conversation about LA and various locations. Come to find out “Jerold” lived in North Hollywood. That’s almost as bad as Carson. He was allegedly having a house built near Runyan Canyon…. Bullshit!
Girlfriend’s Fiancé: It’s all about location. Mo, I loved your spot in West Hollywood.
He was referring to my place that was in the heart of West Hollywood only 2 blocks from the famous Sunset Strip. I gave it up when I got married and moved to my ex’s house.
Me: That spot was great. We could walk to all the hot spots.
Girlfriend: It sure was. And you had the best neighbors too!
Me: You know anywhere with a majority of gay men is going to be a great high end neighborhood with the best restaurants and shops.
Jerold: There were mostly gay men living there?
Me: Ummm yeah.
Jerold: Weren’t you afraid of catching AIDS?
I literally choked on the wine I just sipped. I had to be hearing him incorrectly.
Me: Excuse me?!
Jerold: Weren’t you worried living around all of those gay people that you would get AIDS?
Me: That’s the most ignorant thing I have ever heard of in my life. You don’t get AIDS from living in the same neighborhood as gay men. Are you kidding me?
Girlfriend: What are you talking about?
Girlfriends Fiancé: My man, just stop.
I wanted to walk out. I didn’t even want to be near this ignorant fool. Once again “Jerold” started back pedaling.
Jerold: I just don’t understand women who date a man knowing he’s gay.
Me: But that’s not what we were talking about. We are talking about great neighborhoods in LA! I can’t believe you just said that. What makes you——
Just then the waitress came with our appetizers. The timing was perfect. I was two seconds away cussing his stupid, ignorant ass out. Luckily we ordered some of my favorites. Oysters and French fries. My girlfriend asked if anyone wanted some fries. “Jerold” damn near knocked my head out of the way as he reached over me and grabbed a few handfuls of fries and saturated them in ketchup. So much for that diet. When our entrées finally came and “Jerold’s” chicken Caesar salad, he kept trying to Mac on me the whole night. I thought to myself, this fool didn’t even want to offer to pay for my meal on the sly and now he’s trying to dominate my time? Really? But I was curious what he ended up doing for his birthday.
Me: What did you end up doing for your birthday?
Jerold: I just chilled. I was exhausted. Besides I’m going to Europe next week.
Me: I thought you were going this week.
Jerold: I pushed it back. I had so much going on here. And my kids had some things they had to do.
Me: That’s nice that you spend quality time with them.
Jerold: When I can. You know my ex tries to dominate shit with them.
Me: I’m sorry to hear that.
Jerold: She cost me $3 million in the divorce.
Did this fool forget he told me $1 million just last week?! OMG! I couldn’t take much more of this. So I decided to focus my attention on the other folks at the table. Perhaps this would make the time go by faster. So we started talking about Korea which is where the other guy’s date was from. And of course “Jerold” had to chime in.
Jerold: You know LA has the largest Korean population outside of Korea itself.
Asian Lady: Really?
Girlfriend’s Fiancé: How long have you lived here?
Asian Lady: I moved here when I was 6.
Jerold: Did you move directly to Korea town?
The Asian lady blinked 3 times and looked at him like he was crazy. And in her very polite heavy accent said.
Asian Lady: No, I actually grew up in Malibu.
I died laughing and I gave her a high five. She handled “Jerold’s” ignorance with such class. We all laughed at the table. “Jerold” was oblivious we were all laughing at his ignorant dumb ass. The bill finally came. And it couldn’t have come soon enough. As much as I loved my girlfriend and her fiancé that was the longest dinner ever! When the waitress came to collect the bill. “Jerold” yelled, “And they say black folks don’t tip!” He started cracking up. I was mortified! Who does that?! His bill had to be a total of $20. What was he bragging about?!
I practically sprinted out of the restaurant to get my car from valet. Of course “Jerold” followed me out. He waited until I paid the damn valet to ask me if I was good.
Me: I got it Jerold.
Jerold: You sure.
Jerold: What are you up to tomorrow?
Jerold: Give me a call. Maybe we can meet for coffee.
With that I gave him a condescending three pats on the shoulder.
Me: Have a nice night Jerold.
I got in my car and drove the fuck off. I gave myself kudos for not cussing his ass out or calling him out that evening. My goodness I have come a long way since the girl I was in my 20’s! But my inner loving diva was so strong and I have learned to listen to her. Intuition is something we all have and we MUST learn to let it guide you. The conclusion my inner loving gave me regarding “Jerold”:
If It Walks Like An Ass, Talks Like An Ass, Looks Like An Ass… It’s An Asshole!
Disclaimer: If you are a man who is born and raised in Carson, CA or anywhere close to that area. Please do NOT read this post. You will be offended…
It was nice to have a little break and have a little bit of consistency with one person. But then again, a part of me missed the excitement and the newness of meeting someone new. I am keenly aware this is only because the last person really wasn’t the right person. I must believe that when it’s right it’s right. If I’ve said it once I have said it time and time again. I get so tired of TV shows, movies, books, etc. making it seem like it is so hard for a black woman to meet a man and go on a damn date. That is absolute bullshit. And some Simpletons are actually buying into that foolishness. STOP! Going on dates is the easy part. Meeting your soul mate, well that’s a different story. If you’re willing to be patient and have faith along the journey you will meet the right man. All in due time. Anyway, I am already digressing.
I was set up on a set up last weekend. My close girlfriend and her fiance were having a fight party at their house. When I arrived at their home and they let me through the gates I noticed a beautiful Range Rover sitting in their drive way. When my friend and her husband both came out to greet me I was excited for my friend. I assumed in addition to the massive diamond engagement ring her fiance got her, and the beautiful new home that reminded me of a resort they just moved into he had also bought her a brand new shiny white range rover with cream navy trimmed seats and wood paneling.
Me: Bitch!!! I see you got a new car!
Girlfriend: No that’s not mine, it’s your man’s.
Me: My what?
Girlfriend’s Fiance: I have someone I want you to meet inside.
Me: Oh boy! He better not be a fool.
Girlfriend’s Fiance: Now let me be clear. I just met him recently. But he seems like a cool guy. Let’s see what happens.
Girlfriend: Exactly. No pressure.
That’s all part of being single, the match making attempts by your well meaning friends. And I didn’t mind. It’s always nice for a man to come with references. I remember them mentioning him a few weeks ago. “Jerold” was a 46 year old, divorced sports agent. He was married for 15 years and had two kids. According to my girlfriend’s fiance he was looking to get married again and he was definitely interested in having more kids. After the last guy I dated I realized if I was going to date a man in his 40’s who had children of a certain age. I needed to know upfront if he was open to having kids. Just a side note for any man who is being nosy and reading my blog, if you do not want to have any more kids or if there is a shadow of a doubt that you want to have kids. Then you do not get the luxury of dating a woman who is younger than you who does not have any children. It’s downright selfish and ignorant. Seriously, you get to have your family and you have the audacity to think that you can convince a woman who does not have children not to have kids of her own? Have several seats! There I go digressing again!
They figured meeting him at their fight party would be less pressure that I straight up blind date. This way I could see him in his environment and observe him from a distance. Now that was a great idea. When you’re meeting a guy on a blind set up there are a few thoughts that cross a woman’s mind.
1- I hope this man is somewhat attractive.
2- I hope he speaks in complete sentences.
3- I hope this man isn’t a fool.
4- I hope I haven’t already met this man before and turned his ass down.
These thoughts crossed my mind as I walked into my girlfriend’s massive beautiful home. I sat down the wine and sweet potato pies I baked in the kitchen. I looked up and there was “Jerold.” He was about 5’10, stocky (luckily he didn’t have a massive gut), with a low fade. His nails were a little too buffed out. I would prefer that a man’s manicure not look like he had on clear nail polish (that’s just a shallow side note). My girlfriend’s fiancée introduced us. He smiled and it revealed silver braces. He had on a nice button down lavender shirt, with “diamond” cuff links and his full name (first and last name) monogrammed on the cuffs of the shirt, snake skin loafers, and jeans. I put my hand out to shake his hand. “Jerold” pulled me towards him and gave me a big hug.
Jerold: I don’t do handshakes. I’m a hugger.
As he hugged me he buried his nose in my neck.
Jerold: You smell good. What kind of perfume is that?
I told him. (I’m not revealing my secret perfume so a bunch of people start walking around smelling like me ). He saw my sweet potato pies and his eyes lit up.
Jerold: Did you make these?
Me: I did, from scratch.
Jerold: Your man must love your cooking.
I attempted not to roll my eyes at the sheer corniness. And he had a big smile on his face which exposed his mouth full of braces again. Has he never heard of Invisilign?! But my inner loving diva kicked in, Don’t be a bitch. He’s just trying to break the ice. Besides you always said you want a man that is well groomed. At least he’s trying to get his teeth fixed. I took a deep calming breath and decided to be open minded.
Me: Well, I’m actually single.
Jerold: I guess today is my luck day.
I just smiled. When the guys left the kitchen I told my girlfriend to pour me a glass of wine IMMEDIATELY. Sometimes a slight buzz can make any situation better. Actually I think that is always the case! I grabbed a plate of food and made my way into the living room where the two other couples were sitting and chowed down. Of course they set it up where I had to sit next to “Jerold.” So I decided to make the best of the situation. “Jerold” was born and raised in… Carson. YUCK! That was a complete turn off. My ex was from there. And had I nothing good to say about that area. It’s essentially two traffic lights from Compton. And generally speaking people who are from there think that they aren’t from the hood because it’s not Compton. But when you’re spitting distance from the hood, well, you’re from the hood. I damn near broke out in hives when he said that. But I was trying to be open. My inner loving diva chimed in, “Not all people from Carson are ignorant, close minded, fronting wannabes like your ex… Breathe.” I also looked over at my girlfriend who knew me so well and she winked and tilted her glass of wine as a signalfor me to have a sip and relax. Then “Jerold” informed us that Monday was his birthday.
Me: That’s exciting, what do you have planned?
Jerold: Originally I was supposed to be in Europe.
ME: Oh really which part?
Jerold: I was starting off in Paris and then heading over to London.
Me: Two of my favorite cities. I used to live in London.
Jerold: Which part?
Me: Camden Town. When are you leaving?
Jerold: The trip got postponed to the end of next week.
Me: So what are you going to do for your birthday now that you’ll be on town?
Jerold: I don’t know yet where would you like me to take you?
Me: You’re going to take ME out for YOUR birthday? That’s very nice of you.
Jerold: We should go to Nobu in Malibu.
Alright now, things were looking up! I could over look a railroad on someone’s teeth and over the top “diamond” cuff links for a man with good taste in restaurants. Braces eventually come off and I can tweak the hell out of a wardrobe!
Jerold: Let me call my driver so I can make arrangements for us to get picked up.
Jerold then took out his phone and proceeded to dial his driver right then and there on SPEAKERPHONE!
Jerold: My man, what’s up?
Driver: Who’s calling?
Jerold: It’s me, Jerold.
Driver: How can I help you?
Jerold: It’s my birthday on Monday and I’m gonna need two pickups.
Driver: Okay, just send me the details. It will be an extra charge for the additional pick ups.
Jerold: Have you ever had a problem with payment?
Jerold: You just said there was gonna be an extra charge. You know my money is riiiiight. I got you covered.
The driver hung up. And I sat there so turned off. Was I supposed to be impressed? Did he not realize I used a car service on the regular basis? And to make the call on speaker phone? Really? Typical LA guy. Typical fronting Carson guy! But I didn’t want to generalize. The fight was over and as usual when it is a group of men and women the conversation quickly turned to relationships. My girlfriend’s fiance was one of those men who enjoyed deep grown and sexy conversations. “Jerold” started talking about his divorce.
Jerold: My divorce cost my over $1M. My problem is I have a tendency to pick women who are like projects.
I swear my head spinned around in a complete 360 full turn like the fucking Exorcist.
Me: What do you mean by projects?
Jerold: You know what I mean. Women who don’t really know what they want in life. I help them find their potential. With the young lady I dated recently she wanted to start a clothing line so I helped her out. She just needed someone to recognize her potential and go from there.
Me: Well, what if a woman doesn’t need your help and she has her own shit. Then what?
Jerold: Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I’m looking for a woman who needs to be guided. At this point I want a woman who has her own shit together. I’m like show me a credit report. If her shit ain’t on point I’m not taking it on.
Then my girlfriend’s fiance piped in.
Girlfriend’s Fiance: Wait a minute my man. You’re kind of contradicting yourself.
Jerold: How so?
Girlfriends Fiance In one breath you’re saying you have a tendency to take on projects to help a woman find their potential. But right before that you said if a woman’s credit isn’t together you wouldn’t deal with her at all? That doesn’t make sense. If you love someone you are going to try to help them reach their full potential my man.
Jerold: No that’s not what I meant. I’m just saying I’m all about helping someone reach their potential. I just don’t want to be in a situation where they don’t have shit and I’m doing ll the work.
That’s the thing about having these healthy debates with other men. They will ask the questions you want to know and check someone n a heartbeat if they aren’t making sense. I got to sit back and listen to what this fool had to say. My girlfriend’s fiance was like a brother and he knew exactly what he was doing. He was gathering information for me! I love when my friends marry men who have some damn sense!!!! We talked for a few more hours about relationships and life. “Jerold” was contradicting himself left and right. The night was coming to an end I was helping my girlfriend clear up the kitchen.
Girlfriend: What did you think? And before you answer, let me be clear, we don’t really know him too well. My honey just met him a few weeks ago and you know he got all excited when he found out he was single. He’s ready for us to take trips together and do double dates!
Me: What was up with calling his driver on speaker phone? What the fuck was that?
Girlfriend: I know!
Me: See that’s that New Money shit that I can’t tolerate. AND he’s from Carson?!
Girlfriend: I know you wanted to die.
Me: You know I did. Last time I went out with someone from Carson, I discovered they changed the numbers on their Mercedes so instead of the numbers reading S430 which was already a nice car it said S500 just so he could front. Of course I found that out after I was already married to his dumb ass.
Girlfriend: I know! I know! But just be open. He was just trying to impress you. You know the problem is a lot of these LA bitches are impressed by shit like that and men feel the need to keep doing that kind of shit thinking that it will impress all of us.
Me: Okay. I’m going to be open about this. We will see. Something just isn’t adding up. I can’t put my finger on it. But my antenna is definitely up.
My girlfriend and I had a good laugh and then of course the inevitable came. “Jerold” was heading out and asked for my phone number. Good Lawd. I reluctantly gave it to him. About an hour later he sent me a text.
Jerold: Hey MK! Great meeting you. Had a blast. Gotta pick up where we left off.
Me: Nice meeting you as well.
TO BE CONTINUED
I’m switching things up a bit. You’ll notice shorter posts. But trust me, there’s a reason for everything. It’s all part of my master plan!!!
Okay this happens to all single ladies at one point in the singledom. You look around and before you realized it you have drifted off in a boat by yourself to the Island of Only. I was currently having a nice Mai Thai on the Island and was finally allowing myself to take in the rays of Independence.
In the last few months most of my friends have either gotten into serious relationships or engaged. I am officially the last woman standing! Yes! I am the ONLY single one not in a relationship and with no prospects on the horizon. Subconsciously this was a haunting thought for me. What did I do? I tried to force myself into a relationship with someone who I really was not sure about. And for what? Just so I could feel like I was part of the Sorority called Relationship Phi Relationship? It is so easy to fall into that trap. I was genuinely and truly excited for my girlfriends too. One of my girlfriends had been single for a long time. She celebrated my wedding with me and was a shoulder to cry on during my divorce. She also sat and listened while I talked about all of my various dating adventures. She had been single for years. Within the last year she met a man who adored her (the feeling was mutual between the two of them). And they recently got engaged. Another friend of mine who had been divorced for years recently met her soul mate. Hearing the joy in her voice as she talks about this man gives me hope. But while I was excited for my girlfriends’ happiness and joy I went into panic mode for a second. You know that “Oh shit” moment. I had to take a step back. I realized I was on a familiar path. The last time I did that I ended up marrying the wrong person.
FEAR! It’s interesting what happens when you let fear rule your decisions. It could be the fear of being the ONLY friend who is single, the fear of getting too old to have a baby, the fear of thinking this is as good as it gets, etc. But FEAR is a dangerous thing when it goes undiagnosed. Luckily I was at a point in my life where I recognized the signs and could make a u turn back to where I needed to be. It was at that moment that I decided to enjoy this time by myself. I had no problem playing the supporting cast to my girlfriends who were the leading ladies in the movie called Love.
I am sure I am not the ONLY woman who is visiting the Island of Only. Instead rushing through this vacation why not take in the sights? I have such a great appreciation for ME time because I know there will come a time when I will no longer be allowed to be selfish and think of myself. There will be a time when I will not be able to just go and come as I please without taking someone else’s feelings and schedule into consideration. There will be a time when I won’t be able to sleep in the middle of the bed and hog the remote control. There will be a time when I will have to walk into my bathroom and put the toilet seat down. Until that time comes. I am going to enjoy this vacation. I have no idea how long I will be on the Island but I am not going to rush through it. With that thought I decided to lean back in my chair and enjoy!
Last week was a doozy! There was a big black cloud that was following me everywhere I went. I couldn’t shake it. The more I attempted to run from it the more it kept following me. You know where you have one of those weeks where everything seems to be going completely WRONG! It’s one disaster after the next. Just last week the guy I had been dating for the last 3 months informed me he didn’t want to have any more children. Yes, the first man I had dated and liked consistently since 1932. It a fucking wrap! I noticed he was starting to pull back. We went out to Moon Shadows and watched the sunset. I was finishing a glass of wine when “Barry” dropped the bomb on me.
Barry: I’m not sure about having more kids. My son is 21 years old and almost done with college. I have stayed up many nights thinking about this since you and I started seeing each other. I really like you. I’m just not sure we want the same things. And if this wasn’t an issue we’d be on the fast track to marriage but I know it’s important to you and I am so conflicted.
I sat there looking at him. My first thought was to say to him what I was thinking, “Ummmmm…. I haven’t even slept with you yet and I’m not sure if I would a) want to marry you and/or b) have a child with you. What the fuck? I just wanted to order another glass of wine.” I of course took the grown woman high road.
Me: I can’t continue to date you knowing you feel this way. I just can’t chance falling in love with you and getting married and either you getting a secret vasectomy or even worse, I get pregnant and the whole time I am concerned you’re not excited about it.
Barry: I think you’re such an amazing woman and I wish things could be different.
Me: To be honest Barry, I could feel you starting to pull back and I knew deep inside that’s what was going on. But I really and truly appreciate your honesty. Good luck with everything.
Barry: Why are you saying that like I’ll never see you again?
Me: I’m sure I’ll see you around.
I’m not that woman who is going to keep seeing a guy knowing we want completely different things in life. What was going to do? Keep moving forward and hope and pray he changes his mind? Um… No! When a man tells you who he is, you have to believe him.
We finished our drinks. The silence was deafening. AND we had to drive ALL the way back to the valley. That was the longest 40 minute drive of my life. He walked me to my door. I took my final look at “Barry” gave him a hug and closed the door. I took a deep breath and a sunk to the floor and had myself a good cry. Not because I had fallen in love with him or even in a deep like with him. I had no idea if he and I even had a future. The shallow part of me was never attracted to his big ass over grown stomach. He was a 45 year old man that needed to go to the gym and go on a diet immediately! But I managed to get over that. At times he even came off a little cheap. This issue was slowly actually rapidly beginning to annoy me. There’s nothing worse than a stingy man! I cried because I was so frustrated! How many more disappointments did I have to go through? What if it didn’t happen for me? Was I destined to be one of those women with a great career and social life who ended up alone? Did I need to brace myself and begin to accept that love might not happen for me. And even worse yet, babies might not happen either?! I was enjoying my life. If I was completely honest with myself I wasn’t ready for a kid. Just a few weeks ago I went to my god daughter’s volleyball game after work. After stressing out and breaking several traffic laws to get there on time, cheering her on, and then taking her out to dinner afterwards. By the time I got home, I passed out. Not my usual wine induced pass out but I was genuinely and naturally exhausted. I thought to myself, “Shit, how in the fuck did my mother do this? And she had 3 kids and was doing it on her own.” I found a whole new appreciation for her and other mothers of the world. When did I become that poster child for the 35+ woman whose biological clock was ticking when I hadn’t even purchased the clock yet alone set the alarm?! What the fuck was happening? My cry was from pure and utter frustration. Thank God I didn’t sleep with “Barry.” That could have really clouded my judgment especially if the sex resulted in a great orgasm! I might have been like, “Kids are overrated!” Okay I digressed…
By the time Friday rolled around not only did I have the black cloud still hanging over me but I felt like I was slowly descending into a deep hole! I was in a funk of all funks and I wasn’t quite sure how to shake it. And it was NOT over “Barry” it was life in general. Was this the best it was gonna get? Was this my future? The last time I was feeling like this was around my 25th birthday when I went through a quarter life crisis. So I did what I did then. I resorted to my favorite show of all time Sex and the City. I had the full DVD set. So I could watch every single season. It always seemed to get me out of my funk before. And that’s exactly what I did for the entire weekend. I had just gone to the Bev Mo five cent wine sale. My wine storage and fridge was full of great wines. I was experimenting with various recipes and settled on eggplant parmesan. And I sat on my couch and watched Sex and the City for the entire weekend. I laughed, I cringed, and I reminisced. And by the time I got to Season 6 when Charlotte went through her divorce. I had a MAJOR “Ah….Shit” moment. When I used to watch Sex and the City 10 years ago it was pure entertainment. It was a familiar yet foreign concept. I could relate to these women but at the same time I couldn’t. But as I watched Charlotte deal with her over bearing mother in law and Carrie Bradshaw debate whether to continue dating Alexander Protrovsky knowing he had a vasectomy and she was 38 years old without kids. I paused the DVD and reflected on my life. This show was no longer a foreign concept. I was their target demo… the 35+ single woman living in the city. I was the living and breathing black version of Sex and the City the only difference was I lived in LA. And Carrie, Samantha, Charlotte, and Miranda didn’t have the added text messaging etiquette and social media of dating aspect to over obsess over. But I watched it with a whole new set of eyes. And realized why this show never got old. These four women each had a piece of my heart.
Miranda- She was career driven and independent. When she was feeling insecure she dove in her work. After keeping a wall up for so many years she final allowed herself to give into Steve. She was no nonsense. I learned there’s nothing wrong with having drive for a great career. And not being afraid to just say what the fuck is on my mind without apologies.
Charlotte- The hopeless romantic. Also, if you really watch the show Charlotte was having more sex than everyone even Samantha. But she packaged it up to look like a relationship. She went through the devastation of living in a fantasy world when it came to dating and men and her divorce is what shook her into reality after dealing with an overbearing mother in law and a momma’s boy ex husband (can we say déjà vu?). But ultimately she never settled. Her second husband might have been short, overweight, and bald. But he could keep her in the lifestyle she was accustomed to and he adored her. She found her gift in a package she never expected.
Carrie- Carrie taught me so many things. And watching her now I could relate to her on so many levels. The most important thing I noticed after having my “Ah…Shit” moment was Carrie knew how to express what she was feeling. It didn’t always come out poetic and pretty. And she most certainly had her flaws. But I learned to just be upfront and let a man know how I felt no matter how uncomfortable the conversation.
Samantha- I learned the most from her. She showed me it is okay to be single and fabulous. Getting married and having children does not equate to happiness. Happiness comes from living life on your own terms and not apologizing for it. It was just what I needed at this time.
I know I ultimately would like to get married again and have children. But until it is right I realized I have to make myself okay with where I am in the journey right now. I have spent so many years trying to control my future and worry about the what-ifs. What if I never meet my true soul mate.. What if by the time I meet him I am too old to have children… What if I can’t have kids… What if I messed up a good thing.. what if this is as good as it gets? Instead… my “Ah…Shit” moment made once again realize I need to live in the here and the now. After all, Carrie, Miranda, Samantha, and Charlotte ended up just fine. And yes, I am at the Sex and the City age. And it’s okay. I have had a journey of so many discoveries and learning who I really am. And damn it, my life is just as… if not even more fabulous the ladies of Sex and the City! I did a toast to the lessons and thanked them for once again being the sunshine that got rid of the dark cloud.
I’m baaack!!!! I have to apologize to my loyal readers. When I am on heavy business travel it gets a little difficult to post my blogs. You know what they say about excuses and I do not believe in using tools of incompetence. And I most certainly will not put up some random bullshit. I love y’all too much for that. So… I am still kind of seeing someone! Pause for reaction and gasps. Like I said before I haven’t liked someone consistently since 1932. And I am still sticking with keeping my guy a man of mystery. But I must say it has been an adjustment. I have spent so much time talking about shitty dates, crazy men, losers, freaks, disappointments, etc. It has been interesting to really enjoy someone and know the feeling is mutual. I was not expecting it. See, married people. That bullshit phrase that drives me and all single women nuts, ”You’ll find the man when you’re not looking,” has officially been proven to be utter condescending bullshit. What you should say to your single friends is, “Put yourself out there. You will not meet the right guy if you aren’t actively looking. It might be an unexpected surprise.” Do you see the difference? I just have such an issue with women who get in serious relationships and marriages and then get sudden amnesia of what it was like to be single. It drives me absolutely nuts!!! I really want to stress this point. Anyway… I digressed.
Being in this new… relationship (it’s scary to actually put that word in writing) definitely brings up a lot for me. The last time I really liked someone consistently I ended up marrying him and we know how that ended. So I find myself wanting to do things completely different this time. After going through the heartache and devastation of meeting someone and realizing that the person you fell in love with was not who they really were it takes time to learn to trust yourself again. And no, I am not being closed or guarded. I am acknowledging the feeling and allowing myself to feel it so I can address it and move on. Lots of times, we as women don’t allow ourselves to have a feeling because it seems wrong, we then hold it in, and from there disaster! But there are also those feelings of insecurity and craziness all women experience at the beginning of a new relationship. Is he going to call? When is he going to call? Does he really like me? Where the fuck is this going? Should I call him? He hasn’t responded to my text right away does that mean he doesn’t like me… Is he dating anyone else? Is he fucking anyone else? How soon is too soon to finally give him some? Once I do give him some will things change? Does he want a relationship? What is he thinking? Are we on the same page? It can be down right exhausting. You want to pull your hair out at the frustration sometimes! In my 20’s BM (before marriage) I would have these conversations with the dating experts…. My girlfriends (side eye). I love them but my goodness getting advice from your girls can drive you bat shit crazy if you’re not secure in your relationship. It will have you second guessing everything. One thing I have valued PD (post divorce) and now being a woman in my 30’s is my growth. I have been through the storm and have a heightened awareness of who I am, what I am looking for in a relationship, and I am unapologetic for it. Instead of going to my girlfriends to figure out what the hell is going on with my and the new guy I decided to do something completely different. I decided to go straight to the source. The Guy! What a concept! I was nervous as hell too. Because there was the possibility he would say something that would turn me off completely and our last few months of getting to know each other and courting and me letting my guard down would quickly turn into yet another post about yet another dating disaster. After another great date we were hanging out at my house and I had my issue of Essence magazine out on my coffee table. (Yes ladies, he does know about the blog and guess what he didn’t run away. He doesn’t read it yet… thank goodness). When The Bush Bitch was featured in the July issue of Essence magazine like any other proud published author I bought 20 copies of the magazine.
He ended up reading the excerpt. As I took a long swig of my wine it felt like it was taking him hours to read it. I felt… exposed. When people are reading your work you are vulnerable and completely exposed. It was a good sign when he chuckled a few times. Whew what a relief! Two things that was great about this small interaction. He liked my writing and he wasn’t freaked out by the idea that I write about relationships. Remember a few months back when I considered shutting down my site because I was worried that I would stay single forever because men would be afraid to date me? Remember those few folks that gave me advice never to tell a guy I am currently dating about my blog? I would like to take a second to give all of you naysayers a big “FUCK YOU!” Okay, I had to get that moment of childish behavior off my chest. I keep digressing! After he read the article and we got into an interesting conversation about relationships (which I will keep between the two of us) I was set up to have the conversation. Who knew my blog would be the perfect segway for a relationship conversation with a guy I am dating? Go figure! At this point I had nothing to lose. I took a deep breath as well as another sip of my “liquid courage” aka wine.
Me: So… I actually like you. I wasn’t expecting to like you. And I haven’t genuinely liked someone for a long time. But I want to be honest with you. I’m not into casual dating or casual sex and I am at a point in my life where I am—-
Guy: Dating with a Purpose.
Me: Exactly! And if you’re not on the same page that is completely fine and there are no hard feelings but I wouldn’t keep going out with you if we are not on the same page. I’m not saying I have a wedding gown in my purse, but I just want to make sure you know where I am coming from.
Guy: I hear you and yes we are on the same page.
In my mind I did the happy dance of relief. I also did a few cartwheels. But on the exterior I kept it cool, calm and collective.
Guy: I appreciate your honesty and clarity.
Me: And I appreciate you hearing me out.
That’s the only part of the conversation you nosey people are going to get. Again, because I like his guy I won’t be giving you the nitty gritty. After we had the conversation I was relived. Is this what it means to date like a grown woman? I was so used to playing games in my day or worrying myself trying to figure out what the hell these men were thinking half of the damn time. Little did I know all I had to do was go directly to the source and be honest. As women, how many times do we not have these open and honest conversations because we are terrified of what the guy will say? How many times do we drive ourselves crazy wondering if a man likes us? How many times do we play games to make sure the guy can’t figure out if we really like them or not? Or even worse, how many times have we slept with a man and had no clue where we stood with them and then attempted to have the conversation once the oxytocin is released and our feelings are all over the place? It was at that moment I promised myself I would be open and honest with relationships moving forward. We need to have pillow talk before our heads and other body parts hit the damn pillow! I can’t say I won’t have any emotional moments where my insecurities about being in a new relationship make me have major self doubts. I can’t say there won’t be moments when I am wondering what the hell these men are thinking. I can’t say there won’t be times where I call 4 different girlfriends trying to get advice and driving them crazy with my various scenarios. After all if we can’t do that with our girlfriends who can we do that with? I also can’t say I won’t have a few relapses of playing games about my feelings. After all we are all WIPs (works in progress). But what I can say is being open, honest, and daring to ask the questions that I need to know the answers to is certainly the way to go. My goodness, imagine if I had started doing these simple things years ago. Oh well with age and experience come wisdom!