Sunday, January 29, 2012

Failure to Launch

This weekend I had what initially seemed might be a productive streak on the cyberdating front.  Just as I started to become convinced that I had some horrible deformaty that had been cleverly hidden from me for the past 46 years, I started getting winks (on and Icebreakers (on eHarmony).  Suddenly...I was popular.

Yes there was the guy from California who said "I make good match for you", and there was the guy from Pennsylvania whose profile picture revealed his significantly pelted chest as he lay seductively on his bed.  Have I mentioned I live in Ohio??

But there was also Andy and James.

Andy's profile tells me that he works at a large wholesale nursery and lanscaping company.  I ask him if it's XYZ company, as they are the largest around and he tells me yes, he's been there for five years and in the plant business in one capacity or another for 25 years.  Ok, sounds like a stand-up guy.  He asks me if I would like to meet him for lunch and we arrange to meet in front of a movie theater at a popular local shopping area at 1pm. 

When I arrive I'm happy to see that he looks pretty much like his picture and does not flee when I approach him.  We exchange hello's and walk to a nearby restaurant.  I pause at the door and I think it takes him a beat to realize I expect him to open it for me, so when we pass through the vestibule I open the second door myself.  However he does step forward and greet the hostess, asking for a table for two. 

We sit down, are presented with our menus and our drink orders are taken.  I ask "So what do you do at XYZ?"...he replies.  "Well acctually they laid me off about a week ago"

So.....when I asked YESTERDAY "Do you work at XYZ" and he replied "Yes, I've been there for five years"...that was a lie. 

But I don't get up and leave, though every fiber of my being is telling me to do exactly that.  I am polite and I am compassionate and I am trying really REALLY hard to give him the benefit of the doubt.  I ask if he thinks he will be called back soon and he says no, he doesn't think he will be called back ever.  So, he says, "I'm trying to look at it as a little vacation"

I am unable to look at it in this light. 

The rest of the lunch is a bit hazy.  Lots of talk about sports (him talking, me listening...I know NOTHING about sports).  He informs me that his mother and his brother live with him, but then goes into a convoluted story that leads me to believe that the house may only be in his name so that if his mother should fall ill and have to go on medicaid the nursing home would not be able to take the house.  Yes, this is a common practice.  And a smart one.  And one that I sort of wish my mother had thought to do.  But, to be clear, the dude lives with his mom.

After we ate and made small talk we engaged in an hour-long game of 'check chicken'.  If you're not familiar (count yourself among the lucky) this is a fun little dance during which both participants try to see how long the other person will sit there and try to make conversation without paying the bill.  I had no cash on me.  He asked ME out so I didn't expect to pay.  By about a half hour into the game I would have gladly flipped $15 on the table and called it a day if I had it, but I wasn't about to whip out my credit card and offer to pay for both of us. 

I went to the bathroom, hoping the waitress would approach him while I was gone and ask if he was ready to take care of the check (SHE was OBVIOUSLY ready for SOMEONE to take care of it)...but when I came back, there it sat, unpaid.  Mocking me.

We made more conversation.  The waitress asked if I wanted another (THIRD) diet coke and I said "No thanks, I'm all set"....a hint that I'm ready to go...a hint that went untaken.

But the two diet cokes did their thing and I had to go to the ladies room once again.  This time, thankfully, when I returned the check was gone.  Whew.

She brought his card and the slip back, he signed, I thanked him for lunch and said I had to go pick up my son (a lie, but come on I wanted OUT OF THERE).

We walked outside and I said "Ok well I'm parked this way".  He offered to walk me to my car.  I said "Oh no that's really not necessary".  He said "Ok well let me know if you want to go out again"...I said "Mmhmm thanks again for lunch, bye".  And he actually said 'Can I get a hug?".  Could he not SEE that I was ready to SPRINT away from him?  Clearly I need to work on my body language.

So I gave him a hug, then I wandered around Officed Max for a while so he would leave and not see me get in my car and possibly follow me home.

Fortunately he has not contacted me since.

So I came home and found a message on my eHarmony page from James.  We have been engaging in what eHarmony calles "Guided Conversation" which is a multi-step process starting with choosing one of a list of canned "Ice Breakers", then choosing five from a list of multiple choice questions, then sending your "Must Haves and Can't Stands", followed by choosing three open-ended questions (the essay portion of the exam) and ending in email.  We had made it to the email stage and so far our values seemed to be in line.  He is recently divorced after 13 years of marriage.  He has two kids.

In his email he says he noticed on my profile that I mentioned I work out, and he asks what I do for exercise.  I explain to him that I've been doing Chalean Extreme and will soon start Les Mills Pump, that I work part time as a Beachbody coach, and I send him my website url.

He tells me he will check it out and he informs me that he lives with his mom.  He adds "Go ahead and laugh, I can take it"


I ask why he lives with his mom.  Again, trying to give the benefit of the doubt.  He tells me that he only makes $600 a week and most of it goes for child support (yet he can afford eHarmony???) and his mom has early stage "althimers" so they help each other out.

I said "I commend you for taking care of your kids and your mom but I have been through too much with men who are struggling financially, as you seem to be, to get involved with one again.  I wish you all the best. ".  His response "I checked out your webiste.  What you're pushing is a lie"

Ohhhkay then. 

So here I am, back to the drawing board.  I wonder if it would be considered nosey to ask for check stubs and rent or mortgage receipts prior to the first communication.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Advenures in Cyberdating

So....I went ahead and signed up for eHarmony.  Come on you knew I would.  And when everyone on there turned out to be an hour away from my house (or not interested in me) I signed up for for good measure. 

The difference betwen Match and eHarmony, for those of you who are fortunate enough to never have had to pimp yourself out in this way, is that eHarmony sends you matches each day, where lets you go out and pick the people who will reject you.

One thing that is depressing but interesting (in a sick, self-abusing sort of way) is that both systems allow you to see "Who has viewed your profile...."  The rest of that sentence, which they don't need to add is "....and decided you are not worthy of their time"

I am finding a common thread between the two sites....the guy who says he's "Looking for a best friend" only wants to find her if she's a supermodel.  And it doesn't matter if he looks like Brad Pitt or Babe Ruth, very VERY few guys include "A few extra pounds" in the list of body types they are searching for.

Now this is not to say there are NO guys out there who claim to be willing to accept a woman of above average girth.  There are some, and they fit into the following categories:

  • Under 5'3" (I'm 5'9)
  • Over 300 lbs (I want someone who's going to live through next week thanks)
  • Unwilling to put something on over their undershirt, brush their hair or clean the toothpaste off the bathroom mirror for their profile picture. 
  • Smoke
  • Look like they may have cropped the prisoner ID number out of the bottom of the picture.
Am I too picky? I mean yes I am currently overweight, but I've lost 30 lbs in the last year and a half, it's coming off slowly but it's coming off, and I consider myself to be healthy since I work out five times a week and haven't died yet.  My plan is to live at least another 25 or 30 years and I'd prefer not to spend it as nursemaid to a morbidly obese, short, chain smoker with a collection of stained hanes v-necks.  Yep, I like to shoot for the stars.

I am exchanging very tentative emails with one gentleman who appears to be neither insane nor living in his mother's basement, but he doesn't seem to be very interested.  It's all very surfacey.  I think the warden is screening his email and taking out anything of any significance. 

So I'm six days into my one month membership on eHarmony and one day into Match. I'm giving both sites a month and if that doesn't work, well, I guess I'll just have to either lose 30 pounds or  post a picture of myself from 20 years ago.  Honesty schmonesty.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

No need to go and quote me.

Today is the first day in seriously weeks that I haven't had to go somewhere at lunchtime.  I hate the holidays.  Bah humbug and all that.  And yesterday was The Boy's birthday which, for me, marks the official end of MY holiday season.  Alas there is still Year End hoo-hah to be dealt with at The Day Job but there is a dim, flickering light at the end of the tunnel and I am running full out towards it.

Hard to believe that amidst all of the chaos that is my life at the momemt I have time to have a singular thought stuck in my head but 'tis true.  To date or not to date...that is the question.

Yeah I know, I said I was going to wait.  No need to go and quote me.  But the fact is I'm bored and a tad lonely.  Terrifeid of putting myself out there and certain that any man I look at will immediately vomit lies all over me, then possibly cut me up in little pieces and feed me to his pet lizzard, but bored and lonely nonetheless.

I was so bored one evening last weekend (the weekends are the worst) that I actually answered the three thousand six hundred and forty eight (roughly) questions on the eHarmony website.  And it matched me with seven gentlemen (I use this term optimistically).  Since I'm not a paying member it doesn't give me photos or an opportunity to actually converse with these individuals but they seem to be...well...not complete losers which is a real breath of fresh air.  They all have good jobs and unless they had someone else do their profiles for them they all appear to be reasonably literate.  Yes, the bar is THAT low.

I used years ago, which is where I met The Man.  I try not to hold the outcome of that experience against them since we did have a few good years.  But as I recall the quality of men on that site was sort of low and I had a lot of 'winks' from people who seemed to be living in their mother's basements.  But it's far more expensive to be on eHarmony than Match so my hope is that not only am I weeding out the unemployed or underemployed yet potentially loveable losers but I'm also weeding out those looking for a bootie call because, seriously, there have to be easier ways to get laid than to fill out that exhaustive questionnaire.

So yeah I looked at the portions of their profiles that I was allowed to see. The Police Officer, the Accountant, the I don't remember what else.  Men in their late 40's or early 50's whose children are grown.  Their interests are similar to mine.  Their values are similar ot mine.  WELL unless they're lying.  Truthfully they're all probably inmates.

Maybe I don't have the right mindset for this yet?  Hmm....

I've discussed this with a few friends and all are supportive. Go for it!  You deserve to be happy!  I have to wonder exactly what about my relationship history leads them to believe that this could lead to happiness....I can only conclude that my friends are really not paying attention to anything I say to them.

One suggests I take it very slow and "Who says you have to date just one?  Date them ALL!  You deserve some wining and dining!".  Wow really?  I have never in my LIFE dated more than one man. And there was neither wining nor dining in my past two relationships.  I'm not sure I'm wired that way.  But it does sound nice.  Not necessarily wining and dining (though a bit of that would be nice) but just someone to do things with on the weekends.  Could I keep from diving in head first?  And should I even be consdiering this if I'm not willing to dive in head first?

Oh this is all so complicated.

But if I remain alone, don't I let the terrorists win?  And by terrorists I mean lying jerks.

So I'm not sure.  I'm turning it over and over and over in my head like a Rubik's cube, wishing I could just peel off the stickers and reattach them where I need them to be.  Maybe then I could fast forward six months and see how it would all turn out. 

But then I'd miss all the fun....sigh...

Todays' lunch...Progresso reduced sodium chicken noodle soup, into which I dumped a generous amount of salt.  Soup is SUPPSED to be salty darnit!!!

Friday, January 6, 2012

Success lies outside our comfort zone.

This morning I started a Three Day Shakeology cleanse.  I kind of don't like how it's called a "cleanse".  That word, in my mind anyway, conjours fairly unpleasant images....chemicals and prune juice and starvation and lots of time in the bathroom.  This isn't like that at all.  It's Shakeology two meals and a snack each day, a salad with lean protein for dinner, green tea and a snack of fruit.  Really very pleasant and leaves me feeling light and like I did something good for myself. 

I do, however, tend to play mind games and do something bad to myself whenever I've done something good for myself.  Last time I rebounded calorie-wise the day after the cleanse ended.  I convinced myself I could afford to splurge.  One of these days I will figure out the root cause of my self-destructive behavior.  It would be so nice to get the hell out of my own way.

But anyway I'm NOT going to do that this time..nosiree.  I'm going to do the three days and then come Monday I'm going to be several pounds lighter (I think I lost 4 or 5 last time) and then I will eat within my calories and work out and be altogether worthy of the Independent Beachbody Coach title. 

Speaking of coaching, tomorrow is Super Saturday.  This is FUN stuff.  All over the country Beachbody coaches gather and sacrifice a fat person at the base of the Golden Arches....hahah...just making sure you're paying attention.  It's just your basic convention, learning about new products and ways to grow the business. 

The last one was an adventure.

I started with Beachbody in mid September and right off the bat I was invited to a dinner with some very successful coaches, including my boss' boss, a guy named Tommy.  Well when Super Saturday rolled around about a month later I very nearly didn't go because I didn't feel like I had lost enough weight since I had last seen these people at the dinner.  I was ashamed of my lack of progress.  Also I am a bit shy and I was uncomfortable going alone.  But success lies outside our comfort zone, or some such rot, so I decided literally the night before that I would hike up my big girl panties and go.

Once there I almost left.  I knew the few people from the dinner but this was mainly a whole room full of strangers, many of whom either knew each other or brought guests.  At one point I went into the ladies room and had a good cry because I was sure I didn't belong there.  But I was there, and my Coach had seen me so there was no slinking out at that point.

So the meeting started. And I'm sitting there next to my coach, Tina.  And Tommy is up front introducing various coaches who have been very succesful.  One by one they stood up in the audience and were applauded. And Tommy says "But Super Saturday isn't only about the coaches who have been doing this for years, it's also about our new Tina Gonzales here??".  Tina mumbles "Oh shit" and I raise my hand up and point down at her so Tommy knows where Tina is.  And Tommy says "Oh Good...Tina...where's Terrie?".

Oh shit.

I almost fell through the floor....

Of course Tina says "She's right here!!".  Tommy says "Terrie shared something on Facebook last night that I want her to share with you.  Terrie tell everyone how you got here and what you posted last night."....and Tommy hands me the microphone.

I got up in front of 200 + people and told them about how I found Tina during a very difficult time in my life, how I started to believe that I could be successful because SHE thought I could be successful, and how just the night before The Boy had asked me to order P90X for him.  I talked about how he had been headed down a bad path and this gave me hope that focusing on getting into shape might straighten him out, and just maybe it had something to do with the fact that he saw me working out every day.

I cried.  Tina cried.  Some of the coaches I knew from the dinner cried. I hugged Tommy and told him if he wasn't stronger than me I would kick his ass.  Several people told me they were touched by my story, which told me that my trip there, my tears in the bathroom, my discomfort was worth it.
And I felt like I belonged there.  And I was SO glad I hadn't turned tail and ran like I wanted to.

I'd love to say that The Boy now shares my enthusiasm for fitness...but he doesn't.  He hasn't worked out in weeks.  But the DVD's and the pull up bar and the weights are there for him if he ever wants to pick them up again...and hopefully seeing that his old mom remains dedicated to it will make him want to.

Tomorrow I'll climb in the car with my friend Marybeth, a fellow coach who I met that Super Saturday, and we will drive to Toledo and convene with Tommy and a few hundred of his closest friends and learn how to better help people get healthy.  This time I know a lot more people and will be far more comfortable...and I will make sure not to say anything on Facebook tonight to bring attention to myself. 

Today's lunch....Shakeology!!  YUM!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Very Good Single Chick Stuff

I think I may have discovered a pattern in my life and it's not paisley. 

I started datng The Ex in high school.  We went to prom together for crap sake (everyone say awwwwww).  I dragged him into marriage, homeownership, fatherhood and divorce (he went willingly into none but parenthood).  Before the ink was even dry on my divorce I was in another serious relationship...The Man.  That lasted fve years.  Well the "relationship" really lasted more like three but the cohabitation dragged on.  Two months after his unceremonious departue I was on the phone with Texas (yes he now has a nickname), which lasted four months.  And here I am, eight days later, hearing the tagline in my head (Match? Eharmony? Losers-R-Us?) "It doesn't hurt to look".

But I'm fighting it, because it DOES hurt to look...because looking leads to to dating.  Dating leads to lies and lies lead right back where I am why not just save myself the trip? 

I feel like there's someone out there for me.  Someone honest, with a quick mind, honorable behavior, a caring soul, a career and a good head on his shoulders....and did I mention honest?  Anyway I feel like I need to go find him.

I was in a room of 200 or so Payroll Managers once and the conference leader said "Raise your hand if you're a control freak".  90% of us raised our hands.  I'm convinced the other 10% were there for the free coffee. So it's not surprising that I feel like if I don't GO OUT AND MAKE THIS HAPPEN it will NEVER happen. 


I mean sure being alone is kind of boring.  And I do HATE HATE HATE yardwork.  But I also really don't like being lied to, or being told that I'm lazy (me with two jobs, a kid, a house, a yard, a more challenging than average workout routine), or treated like I'm stupid, or cleaning up other people's messes, or smelling someone else's morning breath...that all kinda sucks too.  I really enjoy the fact that I can watch whatever I want on bed...where the whole thing is mine.  I can do ALL of my laundry for the week in two loads, I can get up early or sleep in on the weekend and nobody criticizes me.  Grocery shopping is no longer a major fiscal challenge.  This all very good single-chick stuff.

So why do I....why do WE (as women) continue to put ourselves through this?  Anyone?  Anyone?  Beuller???

I'm honestly not afraid of being alone.  When The Man left I called my friend in hysterical tears, sobbing "I'm all alone". I paced the floors for days feeling like I wasn't attached to anything.  There were no rules and no net. I felt like the astronot whose lifeline got cut.  Just floating.  It scared the nee nee's out of me but I've gotten used to it.  Even during the Texas situation I was alone.  He was there, I was here...unless I was there...but that was just playing house.  That wasn't dealing with life's responsibilites.  And I've pretty much learned to do that on my own.  Every once in a while life throws me a curveball and either I deal with it myself or I get help from a friend, but I'm still standing.  As long as I have The Boy, good friends and a decent paying job I know I'll be fine.  Probably better than fine.  But it would be nice to have someone to come home to who doesn't live there because he's not old enough to get his own place yet.

Then again I lived long enough with people who were only there because it's where their stuff was.  Maybe if I wait for it to be right I'll find someone who is there because I'm there.  Wouldn't that be cool?

Today's lunch...Marie Calendar's Chicken Pot Pie soup and a Panera Oatmeal Raisin cookie.

The soup tasted nothing like pot pie, but was better than most "diet" soups for roughly the same calories (less volume though).  And yes I logged the cookie.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

How much of the year do I get?

Well lookee here.  My blog still exists.  Who knew?

The last few months have been crazy.  Cah-ray-zee I tell you.  Busiest time of the year for the day job, trying to get the night job off the ground, traveling to see the (now ex) boyfriend, that whole Jesus' birthday thing, blah blah blah you don't care.  If you do you may want to consider getting a life because seriously it's MY LIFE and I'm tired of hearing about how overwhelmed and busy I am.  So moving on...

For those of you keeping score, men who have lied to me - 3.  Terrie - 0.  Turns out he wasn't who I thought he was.  Or maybe I wasn't who I thought I was when I was thinking I could be with who I thought he was.  Whatevvs.   H20 under the structural overpass so to speak.  Moving on again...

Except I'm NOT moving on.  Remember when The Man left and I decided I was going to stay away from humans posessing penises (peni??) for a while?  Yeah what the hell happened to THAT idea? That was a freaking BRILLIANT idea!!!  The ex boyfriend from 30 years ago is what happened to THAT idea.  So this time I really do want to work on ME for a while.  Maybe if I get my weight down I won't think I have to put up with the crap of any man who will have me.  Maybe if I get my finances in order I can pay someone to do some of that pesky around-the-house dirty-hands-making stuff that I tend to think I need a man for (and therefore put up with his crap).  Maybe if I get MY crap together I will be able to avoid the crap of another.  Maybe?  Hello?  Crickets.....

Well that's my plan and hopefully this time I'm stickin' to it. 

Anyone need any Shakeology? P90X2? Again with the crickets....but it's my blog and I will shamelessly pimp the product if I want to.

So anyway I just came back to say...ahem....ya ready?  I'm back.

And I think I'm going to write about my efforts to make 2012 the year of ME. 

Yesterday I converted my spare bedroom into an exercise room.  It is freaking awesome and I did it for nobody but lil'ol' me.  I can close the heat vent and keep it so cold it snows in there if I want to (and I do).  I don't have to move things or evacuate a room to work out.  My yoga mat lays unrolled across the floor.  Mneh.  MINE!  Somehow this feels decadently, frivelously selfish and yaknow what?  I don't care!!!  It's my house, I pay the bills and I don't want to work out in the living room where I feel like I'm in a fishbowl, crazy dancing lady for everyone to see.  And I don't like to work out in my bedroom because my little TV in there doesn't have the input thingies for my DVD player so I have to use my laptop, which means messy cords all over the place and I can't see from certain angles and why am I making excuses?   I have an exercise room!  Because it is 2012 and it is the year of ME.

Doesn't it just figure I'd pick 2012?  When exactly IS the world supposed to end anyway?  How much of the year do I get?

Now I'm going to go get a haircut I can't afford.  It will not do for me to have hair in my eyes during the year of ME, however long it is.