Many of you have been following my ongoing forays into the world of dating as a single mom. Some of you may still be rooting for my success, but I'm quite sure that at this point the majority of you are echoing what my friend Misty suggested in a conversation we had the other day.
MISTY: Good God, Woman. At this point you should seriously consider joining a convent. Except, I don't think the nuns' wardrobe would be quite up to your standards.
ME: And that whole "vow of chastity" thing? Oh, HELL no.
MISTY: And don't forget about their serviceable shoes.
ME: Jesus, I forgot about the fugly nun kicks. Of course. . .since I just used the Prince of Peace's name in vain, I'm pretty sure they wouldn't let me in.
MISTY: True. And then there's your prodigious use of the word "fuck", so...
I know, it sounds harsh; but the last few dates I've been on had me running for cover faster than Paula Deen at a Black panthers rally. *
*Too soon? Nah, I didn't think so either.
There was the guy who proceeded to eat off of my plate with his hands, the one who stared at his reflection in the window throughout the meal and continually asked me which was his "best side", the plastic surgeon who told me I "could be gorgeous if I just had a little work done", and the one that simply fell under the Jeopardy category of "Things That Make Me Want To Drink Drain Cleaner". Eventually all of these eligible bachelors have begun to blur together, staggering awkwardly through the hallways of my mind like Amanda Bynes trying to find the bathroom at The Viper Room.*
*OK, that one may have been too soon. Sue me.
I keep thinking I'll reach the point where my perpetual disappointment will push me to the point of declaring a vow of celibacy. I almost got there the other night when I channel-surfed my way into a 'Teen Mom 2' marathon. While I'm sure I was meant to feel the emotional plight of Leah and Kailyn and Chelsea. . .*
*But not Jenelle. Because, seriously? Fuck Jenelle.
. . .in truth, it angered me. Not because I was particularly concerned with the rising epidemic of teen pregnancy in this country or because Chelsea was a self-entitled B-1-T-Charlie, but by the fact that these little twits are getting poked more than the Pillsbury Dough boy and I'm alone on my couch watching this puerile crap every night. And therein lies the rub (or the lack of rub, as it were): I wish to God I could be over men, but I still really, REALLY enjoy being under them. Sadly, it appears that my milkshake brings all of the narcissistic, abusive, immature boys with Mommy issues to the yard.*
*And the boys who are young enough to be my. . .much, MUCH younger brother. Apparently there is something about me that screams 'Stifler's Mom'. Disturbing, but true.
I can't tell you how many times I've heard my guy friends say "Women LOVE it when we treat them like shit." Dude, that's like saying your cat LOVES Friskies. That's all they get. Their options are somewhat limited, as are ours. And unless a woman is willing to jump the fence for the all-you-can tuna taco buffet, we are pretty much forced to grit out teeth and wade through the crushing hordes of testosterone-infused assholes until we find that rare unicorn of a man who will treat us like a queen. For those 24-year-old childless waifs with perky breasts and an ass you could bounce a quarter off, it generally doesn't take too long. But for a 42-year-old woman with two kids and an rack that is sliding south faster than the California coastline, the odds are not ever in our favor.
I know, you're probably thinking it's time for me to pour a big glass of Haterade to wash down that peanut bitter and jealousy sandwich, but I'm really not bitter, per se. I'm not a pessimist, I'm a realist. A pessimist thinks everyone else is a douche; a realist is willing to give someone the benefit of the doubt but isn't exactly paralyzed by amazement when that person turns out to be an even bigger douche than previously suspected. So, I'm cynical, but still willing to keep ramming my head against the wall harder than Stevie Wonder playing "Red Rover, Red Rover".
I thought I'd give the whole dating thing one last shot by going with everybody's favorite
stalking dating site, Match.com.
Of course, the finite rules of Match dictate that all information be valid and not misleading in any way.*
*I'm relatively certain it dates back to the Code of Hammurabi. Sadly, my knowledge of ancient Babylonian law is a tad rusty.
Unfortunately, there appear to be a few loopholes in that law as 90% of the guys who "approached" me were either posting pictures downloaded from some modeling website or their profiles were blowing more smoke than a drum circle at Burning Man. I ask to be matched with someone who is college-educated, I am told my ideal life partner is a 85-year-old longshoreman with a G.E.D. I specifically request a non-smoker, I wind up sharing a latte with some dude who smells like the inside of Denis Leary's Range Rover. I request someone with an interest in health and fitness and receive a photo that I can only presume is of a manatee with hypothyroidism. But my favorite had to be the one who claimed to be a part-time model. . .one that looked vaguely familiar. . .because I'd seen him a week prior on 'Vanderpump Rules'. Sure enough, the mad skills I learned from Nev and Max after watching a truly ungodly amount of 'Catfish' came in handy. I reverse Google image searched him, matched him up to Lisa Vanderpump's Facebook fan page, and BAM! Oh, yeah I got all Gil Grissom up in that shizz.*
*Pfft! And people said my extensive viewing of shitty reality TV wouldn't come in handy some day. I believe the score now stands, Catfish: 0, Jen: 5. Suck it.
So, OK, maybe I'm going about this with an excess of paranoia and angst, and I'm probably missing the whole point making myself tthe internet vigilante,but at least I was having fun with it as opposed to sitting through an evening that blows harder than a prisonyard narc in the shower stall. Because, let's face it: I don't NEED a man. Sure, it would be fun to have someone to hang out with, but overall, my life is pretty damned awesome. I have a great family, crazy-ass friends, a job I love, and I live in the raddest city on the planet. Besides, thinking that a man will provide you with security and self-worth is about as effective as slamming your head with a tire iron to get rid of a migraine. You can't keep hanging your hair out of that tower waiting for the knight in shining armor to ride up and rescue you. Sometimes, you just need to give yourself a sassy new haircut, use your steel-toed stilettos to kick down the tower, and ride off into the sunset on your own.
Am I lonely? Sometimes. But it's OK. Because I've finally accepted that you have one of two choices: you keep flipping the pages and rereading the book, hoping for a different ending, or you put the fairy tale book back on the shelf and start writing your own autobiography.
Guess which one I chose.