If It’s Broke…. Don’t Try to Fix It Part Two


I started to second guess myself and the expectations I had about who my future mate should be. Maybe I was too picky.

When I walked into The Village restaurant in Studio City I realized I was a few minutes early.  So of course you know I ordered a glass of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc.  I knew in my spirit that “Larry” just wasn’t right for me.  But I wanted to be fair before I rushed into judgment.  Earlier that week I was speaking to a mentor and a colleague of mine at a networking event.  We got on the topic of dating.

Mentor:  I think you’re too picky.

Me:  Why do you say that?

Mentor:  You only want to date black men, with college degrees, and who make just as much or more money than you.  That drops you down to 5%.  Then you want a man who is tall, that drops you down to 1%.

I found it interesting that he would have the audacity to say this to me given he was a tall, African American man, who was married to a homely white woman from Iowa.  I wanted to grab his ear and twist it and scream, “You are 80% of the problem!”  But I didn’t.  Then my colleague chimed in.

Colleague:  You have to realize most men do not make as much money as you.  My husband does not have a college degree and he does not make as much money as I do.  But he loves me and is a great father to my kids.

I found her statement interesting because her husband was tall and fine.  So it felt like an even exchange.

Me:  You all don’t give me enough credit.  I’m not that picky.

I sat at The Village waiting for “Larry” and replaying this conversation in my mind.  I started to second guess myself and the expectations I had about who my future mate should be.  Maybe I was too picky.  Then my inner loving diva chimed in. “Stop beating up on yourself.  You’re giving this guy a chance.  You do not have to settle to be happy.  When it’s right you’ll know it.”  Then I also thought about my girlfriend telling me to stay open.  It funny how many thoughts run through my mind when I am forced to sit still in silence.  “Larry” finally walked into the restaurant.  He was a handsome man.  Once again he was wearing a great suit.  You know I can appreciate a man in a nice suit.

Larry:  Sorry I was running late.  It’s a crazy time of year for us at the office.

Me:  No worries.  I just got here myself.  How’s everything going?

Larry:  All is well.  Business is just so slow these days.  And you know I’m commission only so I need to get on my grind or else I won’t make any money. 

For the love of God why did he have to bring that up again?!  It’s only our second date, I don’t need to know about how business is slow and you only work on commission.  That is a turn off.  The waitress came to our table to ask us what to order.  And I swear, I was looking at the price of each entrée because I was worried he couldn’t afford it since he was already bitching about how slow business was.  Have you ever been out on a date where you are worried about ordering another glass of wine because you think the guy can’t pay?!  Well if you haven’t you’re a lucky woman.  Because here I was out on a date with a man who was almost 50 years old but I wasn’t sure if he could afford an entrée that was over $30 damn dollars!  I mean really.  Why was I here?  That’s right… I was trying to be “open” and stop being so damn “picky.”  I was trying to give the “1%” a chance.  Side eye!


Why was I here? That’s right… I was trying to be “open” and stop being so damn “picky.” I was trying to give the “1%” a chance. Side eye!

“Larry” and I continued our conversation.  I settled on ordering a few appetizers off the happy hour menu.  And he really was a nice guy.  He was charming and funny.  I thought to myself, “See, that’s what you get for always being a dismissive bitch at times.  You could be missing out on a relationship of a lifetime!”  “Larry” and I started talking about home decorating.

Larry:  I still have some more things I need to do at my place. 

Me:  How long have you lived there?

Larry:  I just moved there a few months ago.

ME:  It’s always nice moving into a new spot and being able to fix it up from scratch.  Where did you live before?

Larry:  I was in San Pedro.

Me:  Are you getting all new furniture or just updating the furniture you already have?  I know a lot of great spots where they will customize pieces. 

Larry:  My roommate had most of the furniture before so I am starting from scratch.

Record screech to a loud halt.  Did this grown ass 49 year old man just say “roommate?”  No… that’s impossible.  Maybe I didn’t hear him correctly.

Me:  Your roommate?

Larry:  I’ve always had roommates.  This is my first spot on my own.

Me:  When you say roommates, do you mean ex-girlfriends?

I said a silent prayer hoping this was the case.  I could understand if he lived with girlfriends.  That’s much more acceptable than roommates.    

Larry:  No.  They were roommates. 

Not only did he confirm it, but he said it like it was perfectly normal.  That’s when I realized, I didn’t give a flying fuck about people thinking I was too picky, or if people thought I wasn’t being open.  There was no way in hell I was about to date a man who is almost a half a century old who doesn’t have his shit together.  I am willing to work with a man who is trying to build a dream… but at a certain age that dream needs to be fulfilled!  I am even willing to work with a man who has been married before and is paying alimony and child support so therefore his money is going toward his former family.  But what I “ain’t” gon’ do is date an old ass broke man!  That’s just a deal breaker for me.  I started to have a mild panic attack.  Suddenly the sight of him was a turn off.  I had to figure out a way to get the fuck out of there.  I knew I wasn’t going to go out with him EVER again.  But at the same time he hadn’t done anything drastically fucked up.  I politely excused myself to the bathroom.  I discreetly found the waitress.  I gave her my credit card and paid for the meal.  Maybe I was being a little dramatic, but I was over men acting like we women use them for free meals.  So I decided to take the hit on this.  At least, he can’t say I was trying to use him.  I got back to the table and when he asked the waitress for the check I chimed in.

Me:  Larry, this is on me.

Larry:  Why did you do that?

Me:  Because you were going on and on about how business is slow for you and I wasn’t comfortable with you paying for the meal.

Larry:  I am a gentleman, I would never expect for a woman to pay for the meal.

Me:  I understand that.  And yes you are a nice guy.  But I wasn’t comfortable with you paying for the meal.  It’s been a long night and I’m exhausted.

I faked a yawn and we got up to leave.  He walked me to my car and had the audacity to attempt to give me a kiss.  I turned my head and did the 3 pat hug and got in my car.  Perhaps I was being a little dramatic.  Actually, I can admit I was being dramatic.  But I was sooooooo turned off.  I knew something was off.  At this point in my life I am not interested in dating a man who doesn’t have his shit together at that age.  I could see if I wasn’t bringing anything to the table.  But, I just knew it wasn’t going to work.  Not to mention, if a man hits a certain age and has never been married, engaged, or in a serious relationship, something is definitely wrong.  And I wasn’t willing to waste my pretty to find out with “Larry.”

“Larry” called me the next day.

Larry:  I’ve been thinking about our date the other night.  And feel unsettled.  I would never take a woman out and expect her to pay.

Me:  I wasn’t comfortable with you paying for the meal when you kept stressing out about how slow business was.

Larry:  Well I think you misunderstood me.

Me:  Maybe I did.  I think you’re a cool guy but I just don’t think you and I are a good fit. 

Larry:  Can you please let me make it up to you?

Me:  Larry, it’s all good. 

We talked a little longer and I realized that although “Larry” and I were not a love connection we could at least be friends.  Not every man I date is an utter asshole.  There are some men who just aren’t a good fit.  It doesn’t mean that we will never speak again and be sworn enemies.  But I am open to letting men in my life as friends too.  But I know me, and I know when something doesn’t feel right in my gut then it’s not right.  Perhaps that makes me picky, perhaps that means that my “1%” chance of meeting the right man is now lowered to .5%.  But at least I know when I follow my heart and let me inner loving diva guide me through this dating scene I will have 100% certainty when something is right and I will not settle for less than what I need and desire.

Monique K.Bradley



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2 replies
  1. Ashley Caprice
    Ashley Caprice says:

    Girl, I’m with you. You’re not too picky, you just know what you want and deserve. I snapped my neck back at the “slow business” and “roommate” comments my self lol. Women don’t need to know about a man’s financial hardships when we’re just starting to date them. And a roommate at 49? My goodness!!! BUT, he is making progress I guess since he’s moving out on his own now. But still…it’s just a little too late.

    • Monique K
      Monique K says:

      Guuurl. I feel bad because I know I was overly dramatic. But what would have been worse, letting him pay when I know I’ll never go out with him and he’s broke?! I guess I can write it off for my taxes as a donation to charity! Lol!


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