Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Dear Sir or Madam, will you read my book?

I’m a rabid reader. I have “book baskets” both up and down stairs, chock full of hard and soft covers, some half read, some gathering dust, awaiting the crack of the fresh spine. I love books. And magazines and tabloids (exclusively bath tub reading…I read the dirtiest stuff while cleaning up). I do, however, steer clear of glamour magazines, "Cosmo" and the like. Instead of boning up on “Seven Positions to Drive Him Wild, Wild, Wild!!!” one should just do. Jump on and improvise. There’s no new cure for cellulite. I don't care how Ashley Simpson got bikini ready (bet Photoshop played a part).

An interesting link off Yahoo begins a sojourn through the Amazon.com forest. As Men’s Health Magazine editor David Zinczenko breaks downs the “The 20 Worst Foods in America”, I see he’s also authored books about men and sex. Food, men, sex...the trinity. Zinczenko promises, "A funny and fascinating guide for women into the inner workings of the male mind." I love men, honest I do, but he gets 208 pages from that? Maybe double-spaced, wide margins.

The “Dummies” and “Idiot” guidebooks are simple and effective tomes. Wonder how far is too far; “Adoption for Dummies” would give me pause. That title I made up. This one I didn’t, “The Complete Idiot's Guide to Amazing Sex, Third Edition” (THIRD edition??!!). Some things one figures out as one goes, asking questions along the way, perhaps aided by a blue movie and live partner.

Although “love” in the title is a bit pushy, "Dating Rocks!: The 21 Smartest Moves Women Make for Love is intriguing in a way. Women flock to relationship books authored my men, seeking the “male perspective”. The men in my life, however, tell me to simply stop with the “figure them out” refrain, because they themselves can't.

I’m doing and I'm saying, the good, the bad, the silly and all the sex and emotion and hands shaking and casual flings and rejection and judgment and saucy talk and NC-17 chat and butterflies and vulnerability and desire to be held and the want to be kissed soft sometimes. I need to put the bits and pieces and handwritten notes and plethora of Word docs and really raw stuff together. No advice. Just me. Be the writer others believe me to be.

You'll all get a signed copy.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Shaking All Over

Something happened this weekend. Something I wasn’t prepared for, an absolute surprise in fact. Something that keeps floating back into my head, only to be quickly erased and dislodged, Etch-A-Sketch like.

A boy made my hands shake.

BTW, I realize a woman my age and experience should, perhaps, stop referring to men as “boys”. But it’s my blog and I’ll boy if I want to.

The weekend was chock full of fun, although the two week drought continues (while vacuuming today, I found a fully wrapped Trojan nudged between wall and nightstand. My last brought three upstairs. We used two. Points for believing he had that in him). Chaste male companionship abound in the past 48 – a two hour flirty phone chat, dinner downtown, coffee on 17th, more drinks, music. Good times for a girl (even discovered during a closet raid I’ve dropped two sizes). However, at one point during the festivities, I realized my hands were trembling. Only briefly, but obviously. My cheeks even may have been flushed. Nerves? Empty stomach? Bad shrimp? Nope. It was a boy.

I didn’t sign up for shakes. My hands betray me. They should be court marshaled, chopped from forearm in some odd ritual sacrifice.

I don’t know if I can fully and properly define the moment; it's a bit scrambled in my head, like a saucy blocked cable channel. Sitting with a glass of red, suddenly all too aware of hands afflicted, like Ali lighting the torch at the 1996 Summer Olympics. Where did it come from? What does it mean? Worse yet, I have an inkling (no, not an inkling but a pert near bonafide, period at the end of the story, he's just not that into me vibe coming from every pore) that I don’t do the same for him. I find him sweet and awkward. I like that he has a little belly; I want to rub it like Buddha.

The shake stops here. I don’t want it.

I don’t.

Why don’t I make his hands shake?

I don’t care.

Maybe it was bad shrimp after all, because it makes my stomach hurt.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

When they get what they want
they never want it again

I am Good Luck Chuck. Pull yourself up from my thighs and all your dreams come true. “Chuck” is a 2007 comedy starring Dane Cook as “Charlie Logan” (aka, Chuck). To synopsize:

Charlie has to break the curse that's made him wildly popular with single women: Sleep with Charlie once and the next man you meet will be your true love.

I’ve not had loads of men in my bed, but the last two, after pre-determined and casual fun, found women with serious dating potential. Truth told, these men could be letting me down easy. Sweet, sweet liars. And although I heard it (a couple of times), perhaps I didn’t fully ring that bell. Plus there is a confidence that comes with the conquest, fueling the desire to get back on the bike and pedal hard, play a risky hand instead of bet on a sure thing.

Part of me wants to feel and do the same, but the bigger half doesn't really, not right now. Still enjoying the affair of it all. I admit to moments when the need to be merely touched, perhaps cherished a bit, overtakes the need to be drilled, to kiss with more care and less exaggerated tongue. Last night, I spent time online with a potential new buddy; we’ve not yet met, but have chatted often. He asked to come over. Asked what I wanted him to do to me. I told him it would feel good, at that moment, to be held for a bit. He replied (in much less elegant and eloquent terms) he wanted something simplier, even threw in a “hey” for extra casual emphasis before quickly saying good night. Hardcore, huh?

Oh, and the guitar player, my "holy grail” conquest and nut I couldn’t crack? His nuts remain intact. When asked, he told me there are the girls he fucks and the girls he likes and the two aren’t necessarily mutually exclusive at present. I smell what he’s stepping in; I sit on a similar lifestyle right now. So I had to go and like him instead. He’s mad talented, I like to watch and hear him play. He views me as an artist too and has made a point to introduce me as a writer.

He’ll be an in-the-rotation friend. I still may grab his junk in the off moment, but hey, what friend wouldn’t?

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Goin' to the chapel of love

I used to kid that, fierce independence and career aside, I’d have made a great 1950’s housewife. The kind who wore aprons and greeted her man at the door with a cold martini, some nights wrapped naked in Saran Wrap. Today was just one of those days.

I can cook, baby, hot and fast, using loads of vegetables and olive oil and garlic and shallots. But I can’t bake. Bores me really, and flour is annoying. This morning, however, having found a jaw-dropping recipe in the local paper for chocolate and orange sconces, I baked up a batch. Doubled the chocolate. Ever so good with a cup of strong Joe.

After a couple of loads of wash and a bit of ironing, off to the salon, two hours of gossip and saucy talk, wonderful scalp massage and fruity/minty smells. I’m still dark, cinnamon auburn (“Caramel Apple” it’s called, but think red delicious) and letting it grow for the nieces wedding next month. I cut back the bangs and did long, swingy layers. Yep. I’m cute.

On the way home, stopped by the grocery to load up on fresh produce and the makings for sushi later this week. I roll my own, talented fingers, like working a Cuban. There’s a London broil marinating and I’ll side it with roasted asparagus and shaved parmesan. Already had a glass of white. Red goes better with dinner.

After that, perhaps a bubble bath then slip into a pink cotton nightie. I’m always up for lights out “wifely duties."

Marry me? I’ll say no.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Friday night, Saturday Morning

The last couple of Saturdays I’ve awoken with some type of stamp emblazoned on the top of my right hand, fuzzy and inky remains of the night before. I try not to wash that spot too rigorously in the morning. I like to wear my mark for a day after, a not-so-permanent-marking that reads I’m out in life again. And often. And enjoying the hell of it. Observations from my night:

Jim Dalton, singer of local band The Railbenders, is one sincerely sexy beast, tall, with a deep baritone and a black hat. He's also one of the nicest, seemingly least affected guys you’ll ever meet, Must be oddly disturbing and exciting all at once to have so much passion directed at you just for showing up. He wears a band on his left ring finger. His wife or sig other must have the confidence and understanding of a Saint, or a rock star.

Not long after arriving at the downtown tavern with tattooed bar keeps and rockabilly vibe (after a dinner of the best g-damn fish and chips I've found in Denver) and minutes after a quick pee, I was hit on in the ladies. A petite brunette with huge boobs fully embraced me while I applied more apricot gloss, and with a broad smile whispered in my ear “cute”. Again, with the fucking cute. Little would I imagine two hours would pass before girl number two (this one a bit drunk, so the move could have been accidentaly uninhibited in nature) grabbed my ass as I leaned against a speaker, stage front. I had some juju with the ladies last night. I went home alone.

Later, while chatting with the nice, young and engaged couple sitting left of me, I placed my near empty martini glass on the bar, the dirty, filthy Vodka martini my drink of choice. She started vacantly at the glass for many moments then back to me and declared, “Is that a martini you’re drinking? You’re hardcore”. This from a sweet thing who’d taken a liquid trip around the world, with stops in Germany and Ireland with pals Jager and Jameson, stopping for a squat by a cool mountain Coors stream and ending in a whisky sojourn down South. She was shit-faced. In fact, I last saw her chatting in a wildly animated fashion with a cute rockabilly girl, wavy ginger hair held in two low pony tails peeking beneath a blue head scarf, dark plum Bettie Page lips, discussing a possible foursome. Hardcore indeed. Did I mention I went home alone?

One last note for a Saturday: Having brunch bloodies with a friend tomorrow at BJ’s Brew Pub. What do you tip there?

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Lay Your Hands on Me

Something interesting happened last night. I became fully aware of it because someone close who cared to ask did and I answered.

I don’t like to be touched all that much.

Obviously, I like physical contact and some of the best I had recently included being held tightly, arms entwined with face-to-face full body contact, stacked like those old school Tupperware bowls that fit together so nicely in the cabinet.

But I struggle with the casual, warm touch. Come up behind and kiss my neck and the first reaction is to pull away. Bit of a mood breaker. It may go back to teenage body image and issues that lead to taking just Diet Coke with large chunks of lemon into my mouth for weeks at a time. Even after starving down to 120 pounds on a 5’8 frame, I couldn’t bear the feel of fingers on phantom fat rolls. It may be rooted in childhood. Mine was not a touchy family.

Massages are tough. I’ve had just a handful, the first part of a full spa extravaganza for some milestone birthday, the number of which escapes me. I wasn’t uncomfortable with the naked part, although I left my panties on, yet nervously chatted with the Goth and slightly tattooed masseuse for the duration. She begged over and over, “Relax”, but at times it felt as if she was the Kung Fu Fighter, me the block of wood. I had a series of work done in a physical therapists office. The family is cursed with bad backs (strong backbones rarer yet). One heavy spring snow and a newly diagnosed condition that creates quick degeneration in discs sent me into PT for a three month stretch. Again it was a woman, a woman I ended up adoring. Perhaps it was the pain talking, but I was open to the deep lower back and top ass work she did; her hands rubbed out the knots and got me upright again. I’ve thought about challenging myself to return to the PT office for some back up back work since I tend to carry extreme stress there. And I recall a handsome, smallish but 100% Boulder-bred masseur in the office.

I am and can be touchy to others casually and in small doses. I’ll lay my hand briefly on your arm or knee when we talk, place my hand in the crook of your arm when crossing the street, or hold a girlfriends hand to lead her through a crowd. Perhaps there's work yet to do in order to not be so turned off by the power of touch.

Spanking is touching, yes?

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Tell Me Where It Hurts

First chink in the armor.

Some of the bravado is just that. The recent boy in my bed has yet to call. Maybe it wasn’t good, maybe he didn’t feel in the casual moment what he needed. Maybe the only way I can connect is naked; represent something to someone who'll never fully have me. Maybe that makes me sad. Maybe deep down I don't care. Make my own bed, indeed, and wash the sheets the next morning.

For all the connection, there's little to none, really.

There's something to calling your own shots, but it hurts when they misfire. Surprised, really, at the relatively short amount of time I went before feeling a little like a crumpled wrapper on the night stand. Not unexpected, but certainly not welcome. It was not one thing, it just all came down in one day. Life is funny that way.

Doesn’t mean I’ll stop. I probably won’t even do much different. It’s only in the briefest of moments that I envy the emotional “thing” (hand to God, best I can produce for lack of a better word) others have rather than embrace and be fully giddy with how I roll. I have lust where others have love. I don’t think I can pull that off anyway.

There’s a 45% percent chance this will never make the blog, blows the cool cover too much. Putting it out there and getting back nothing more than exactly what was asked for, fair enough. I consciously chose to dedicate the experience to who I am right now; this is me in this moment, crying as I type, real tears, the ones I usually only let out in the shower to run down the drain.

Or maybe I just needed to cry tonight. Didn't know I had it in me.

Tomorrow is another day, Scarlett.

It Was A Very Good Year

As one matures, some desires, actions, reactions, behaviors and tastes may be deemed “adolescent”. Those things or moments which transport an otherwise sophisticated soul back to girlish fruity smells, cotton candy pink comforters, “Love’s Baby Soft” and summer vacation spent watching chat shows and running around hot pavement in little shorts. Many I still embrace (in fact wholly welcome and invite over often), these things that give “teenage me” great pleasure:

Cherry Chapstick

The tentative brush of hands right before the holding

Being the girl in the booth for the guitar player…

…having the bass player come over for flirty chat too

“Sooner or Later”

Grape Bubble Yum

Strawberry body butter

When a boy is nervous too

Kissing

Did I mention kissing? And a little bit of hands under the sweater?

BBQ potato chips in the middle of the sandwich

That the first reaction to my picture and myself is often (if not always and every single time), “You’re cute.” I’m not "hot." “Cute." I will be cute when I’m 90, pulling down my tube top and chasing residents around the nursing home.

Monday, April 14, 2008

(Let's Get) Physical

I’m so sore from the weekend I can barely walk.

Sitting is an adventure in shifting and my left hip a reminder I should stretch more before.

I just joined a new gym.

Never a "jock", for most of my young adult life my idea of cardio was shooting pool, hydration coming in the form of tequila shots and a side salad (lime and salt – Lick it – Slam it – Suck it). It wasn’t until five years ago or so that I got in to daily exercise. Working at home helps; I don't merely glow in the gym, I sweat, my hair soaked, the skin on my cheeks, arms and chest a lovely flush of pink. Apr├Ęs requires getting back up on the rack to shower, lotion, flat iron. At home, I can easily sit in my stink. Once I started dance aerobics, I felt better, slept better. Strength training provided a more graceful yet stately stance and walk. Shoulder back, chest up and out. Core strength is sexy. Being limber and bendy even more so.

However the vibe at the fitness center changed, my favorite instructor left and I longed to sweat with more men. Classes there, especially mornings during the week, are made up of 99.9% women. That and I felt I’d got stagnant. Wasn’t pushing myself enough.

I found what I wanted right down the road. A beautiful new gym with steam room and sauna, smoothie/coffee bar and free WiFi, darkened spinning room where an IMAX movie of the Irish countryside is shown while U2 music blares, a brigade of equipment, mirrors and mind and body and group fitness classes. And amazing personal trainers, both men and women. Can’t wait to be stretched out.

Another plus, an indoor basketball court in full view of the cardio stations. I love watching men play a casual or pick up game of basketball. The games are usually shirts-skins, there’s body contact in the bumping of shoulders and guarding with chests and the squeak of shoes on the super-shiny-butterscotch-colored floor. Hockey is another one; the players tend to be a bit rough around the edges and display somewhat controlled, still aggressive behavior. Body checks. Getting slammed. And they carry big sticks.

My favorite activity, group cardio. Not your Mama’s Jazzercise, but funk and hip-hop and Zumba (Latin movement) and kick boxing, all laid out like a dance routine. Learn the combination, adding on. It’s fast. It really hurts the day after.

Ya got big dreams. You want fitness? Well fitness costs and right here's where you start paying... in sweat!!!

The instructor is a true blue dancer from a city sports team. You know, the girls who grind at games wearing shiny shorts that fit like Vicky Secret panties and belly baring tops tied in a “western” knot - tiny vest optional. She's a petite, almost boyish girl (I tower five or six inches over her) with a booming voice. A little piece of me wants to be her. I try hard so she thinks I’m good. To impress her. A bit of a girl crush.

I want this new gym to push me. When I’m there I want to be better, be more. Healthy, of course, but also bold and hip and desirable and in the moment and available and friendly and beautiful.

When drenched in sweat.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Peanut Butter Jelly Time

Just made a PB&J on super-seedy, whole grain bread for a very late breakfast. Couldn't decide between strawberry preserves or apricot, so I had both. Why not have a little taste of everything all at once?

Bosom Buddies

If I were living the lifestyle I choose now while in my teens or twenties, the girls and the boys (and the parents) would have labeled me “easy” or worse. At this point in life, however, it's exciting to be empowered, confident and openly sexual.

I'm not the typical girl you find in my age bracket. I never married (never really wanted to, still don't). I look, act, dress, speak and behave 10 years younger than the birthday calendar states. I’m successful in and love (capital L-O-V-E) my job. The money I earn I spend on me, and I don’t skimp. I want to know all about you. I smile. I look directly at you. If you want to see my tits, I’ll show you. I like sex and men and I don’t see the need to be committed to just one to fulfill the other. I don’t question the source of attention. My conscience is absolutely clear. Is lust cheating? Is imagination illicit?

I met a new, and I hope lingering, friend at a dark bar 11 p.m.ish Friday night. Just me, on my way home from a proper “date night out”. He’s the guitar player. I ordered a vodka, sat at a small booth and watched him play, especially his hands, graceful with long and lean fingers. We discovered later our hands are nearly the same size. I’m attracted both to him and to the idea of him. I’m the writer; I think he’s attracted to the idea of me. We’re both bright and well-spoken, attractive, engaging and interesting. When we talk, we share stories of conquest; I think it excites us both to share sexual escapades. He’s a man, I’m a woman and two anatomically correct sides of a similar coin. We pursue casual companionship without definition. There’s energy, validation in telling it to the other. Feels at times we try to "one up” each other, creating ever more grander and epic tales:

You had full on sex?
I'll woo a new buddy today and have him over and in within 24 hours.
Enjoyed a variation?
I'll swing from the ceiling.
You had two? Here’s three.


I arouse him, he turns me on, but doubt we'll ever do more than speak it. When we met tonight, and had the chance to sit and talk during a set break, he told me he was wearing a shirt stained from a late afternoon in VIP (where every day is anything can happen day). "It’s rock and roll”, he said. It was also a nice shirt. I wanted him to walk me to my car because I wanted to kiss him, not romantically, but to bond us as interesting, exciting friends who don't fuck. Each other at least.

Are we abnormal, him and I? He asked. Do we have issues with true intimacy or connection? I feel more healthy and aware and sexy and creative and desirable and witty than I did in my 20’s. The attention is mine now. I’m that girl.

I like being that girl.

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Bed's Too Big Without You

My “Could you go now? I have to get up early for work” bravado aside, the bed sometimes feels very big with one person in it. I like that part, being enveloped in arms. I have a thing for arms and shoulders. And there’s usually a really great, warm smell, a smell my skin couldn’t produce no matter the cologne or soap-on-a-rope used. It’s chemical, baby. So I still sometimes sleep in a teddy with a teddy.

I have a body pillow, a long, tubular sack made for side snuggling, good to hike a hip over. But it's awkward to get under the covers. “Ted” fits in nicely, crooked under my chin (I sleep on my side) and pressed into my chest. He’s a good lay.

There are times I can’t fully embrace myself enough. I do it more so when sad or feeling exceptionally vulnerable. Lonely instead of alone. On my side, I place ankle on top of ankle and pull both legs tight up to my stomach, arms criss-crossed like a regulation size Rold Gold pretzel, so snug hands touch either side of my neck. That’s a telling posture, and I don’t care for it often. It creates full body, protective flesh armor, holding every bit of me in. Much rather be flat on the back, arms and legs akimbo, every bit of yourself to the world. That comes too, more often than not.

Many, many years ago, on my first extended stay business trip, I made a new friend, Don. In his executive-sized-suite I found a plethora of pillows on the executive-sized-bed (I love those beds - you can lie at any angle without dangling or having your head hang over the side). He requested from housekeeping and slept with five standard hotel pillows, using most to simply hold to his body, to feel as if a woman was there. I found it odd and endearing and a really great come on. We girls love the pillows; they represent sweet and soft and squishy. Don and his pillows made me go melty for the same reason a man holding a baby or a puppy can, the combination of testosterone and tenderness. Don slept with five that night. No matter the number of shots from fake test tubes or time spent in the hot tub, at 27 I was sadly insecure and awkward sexually. But he was in my head during reflection and self expression in my room two floors down. Three pillows on my bed.

While we’re on the subject, naked sleep continues. I prefer it now, although saucy dreams don't always result. I’m a warm sleeper, flannel PJ's would perhaps kill me given my body runs like a furnace at night. Looking forward to summer, feeling cool against crisp sheets only, enjoying the soft blow of the AC.

And Ted.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Hysteria

I need constant stimulation. I have running inner dialogue. Some of it’s checking in (“You’re okay”), pep talk (“Don’t let this bother you”) or simply releasing to the universe what I plan to do next (“I have to make the bed”). Perhaps because I live alone and work from home, I’m sometimes starved for human contact, which helps explain my near addiction to e-mail and blog comments. I check StatCounter often to see who’s come for a visit, and check for new posts and comments where you all live once or twice a day. I’m fortunate to make my wage sitting at laptop, writing all day. But my mind works quickly and I require distraction. So I pop over to check Yahoo mail, catch up with Perez Hilton and the fools at TMZ and check the local weather online, although simply turning around and looking out the picture window would have the same effect.

Why all the ants in my pants? When sitting still my foot is a tappin’; I roll all over the bed so much at night I scare the cat and awake to interesting art installation's in the pillows, blankets and sheets. Yesterday I began work at 4:00 a.m. I was just done with sleeping.

The situation was exacerbated when my Dad died. My doctor suggested Wellbutrin to get through the rough bits, but being an already restless girl, it first made me cry for no reason then took me to warp speed; the constant dry mouth and dog breath. After two very short attempts to commit, they went into the garbage, although I remain a fan of Ativan for occasional sleeplessness. Instead of meds, I work out to kick up what my body produces to excite and calm me (same goes for sex), make endless lunch plans, date casually and often, clean and plan nights and weekends out like Julie the Cruise Director.

Dating and sparking relationships is tough when you’re a get what you want, I want now Veruca Salt type. People are busy. There is work, life and social responsibilities. I can't stand the “Gee, I called yesterday, so that means he should call today” or, “He said he would call Wednesday but didn’t and today is Thursday so do I e-mail or is that too forward?” Fuck that. When I want to hear the voice, I call. When I want to catch up on escapades (or share mine) I e-mail. If I ask you out, and you don’t commit, it’s still out there. If you don’t want me, tell me (but hell, that’s crazy talk…not want ME?) Pick the ball up and chuck it back, but I’ll stop running to collect it after a couple of pass attempts.

Crazy energy can wear your companions out. You can guess where and, yes, I always want to go again. Crazy energy is good for work. I’m on deadline each month, in which time I produce, edit and/or design upwards of 200 terribly interesting pieces of sales collateral and marketing copy in 10 days. And I make deadline every month.

Funny but true, I cannot drink pop/soda/cola (insert you geographically preferred term for fizzy carbonated beverage here). The combination of sugar and caffeine makes my heart beat fast, my hands shake. You don't want to be near me when launch comes (same thing happens, oddly enough, when I eat pie). Alcohol (in moderation) tends to calm a person. So, Mister Wizard, what happens after a couple rum and Cokes? I become a Stepford Wife.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Can You See The Real Me

A new, and I hope lingering, friend e-mailed in response to some of my more recent and saucy blog posts:

The freedom to be your own person is...enormously attractive. Women who live that way, all independent and confident, are just sexy as hell.

It’s the best e-mail I got all week.

I always believed that. Now I live it and write about it openly. I’m aware and conscious of my small blog readership (although the international contingency and those searching on keywords “thumb in vagina” are a bit of a head scratcher). A blog is personal and not. It's confessional, pulpit and sometimes just plain silly fun. I want to say anything, but when is telling too much too much?

I often joke, “That’s a story for the book, not the blog”, as if that’s more intimate. I write from experience; observational comes far easier than fictional, and I don’t hide behind the “I have a friend…” scenario. Perhaps I portray more of who I want to be than who I am right now, but I counter it with some angst and vulnerability. I never really felt all that sexy before; being open and available and bold and asking for what I want has done more to take me to that place than the lingerie, working out or wine (although all definitely help). And now I choose to say it all out loud. No games attached, no playing hard to get, no ulterior motives. Simple as that. And, apparently, sexy as hell.

But I confess. I pulled this post as first written. It got a little too close. It was a story for the book, not the blog.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

I wish I was special, so very special

I sensed during my short drive to a Sunday afternoon coffee “first date” that I wasn’t overly excited. I didn’t bother to put on earrings. Accessories mean a lot.

We met online (who doesn’t anymore) and chatted on the phone a few nights last week. Eight years younger and he already had a sweeping, sad story of young love lost to illness and the strange pull of possibly, perhaps, I think maybe, trying to connect with someone new. He was adamant and repetitive that we meet as friends. With potential. I didn’t sense a serious mutual attraction. I'm still not certain if he was super nervous, guarded, disinterested or a combination of all three. Given I had no butterflies, nervous knots or jewelry on during this smelling each other out, I don’t know if either of us will pursue something in some form, or if so when. However, lovely man.

“Singles” sometimes bemoan the solo moments, the times no one is there to make the morning coffee or clear snow from the steps; when you’re sick and in need of a drugstore run. The major holidays. I hedge a bet most “marrieds” or otherwise seriously committed enjoy the companionship and some of the comfortable feel of the known. Myself happily “single” - stone alone, dating, having sex casually, out “there” and driving myself home at night - judgment is a constant, my own and others. I ask to be looked over and run up the flag pole to see who salutes. Should nothing spark it’s inevitable to first think, “Was it me?” I remind myself you have to try on people, see what fits and which ones make you itch. But it’s judging all the same. I wouldn’t dare fart.

Imagine purposefully and knowingly placing yourself square in the line of judgment; an actor at an audition, during a job interview, at a cocktail party, perhaps even in a posh restaurant or retail store (think Julia Roberts in “Pretty Woman”). Now imagine that scenario as a regularly scheduled part of life.

I enjoy dating and flirting and kissing and rolling about and being out more than in, and the flip side of dealing with judgment is better defined confidence and self-esteem (no, a teenager did not write that last line, far from it). A good deal of it is bravado, baby, masking the knots and insecurities. I know I’ll get you first with wit and charm. Girls like me who don’t believe in their beauty learn to rely on funny and smart. It’s a better whole package, I know. I’m looking forward to the moment wit and wild, personality and passion meet. Scary, exciting, elusive, worth it.

But then I couldn’t make out with random boys on my couch anymore, could I?

Update: "Sunday coffee" just called. We chatted for over an hour. He said, yes, he was "super nervous" and somewhat "guarded" but definitely not “disinterested”. Never know. He may be more than couch-worthy.

Friday, April 4, 2008

As a known memory

Glancing at the headlines this morning, prominent is an article about the 40 year anniversary of the killing of Dr. King. A good deal of what I know about history comes, oddly enough, from music.

It was at the Dark Horse in Boulder, Colorado, senior year in college, where I smashed the competition in a game of trivia knowing the month and city in which Martin Luther King died. It had nothing to do with endless hours spent studying or my nearly completed history minor. It was because of a well-known song in which U2 speaks musically about that day, “Early morning, April four. Shot rings out in the Memphis sky.” The event did occur, however, in the evening. Sorry, Bono.

It's odd how little one retains (and what one does remember) after four years and a bachelors degree. My head is filled with grammar, punctuation and usage (given my daily work), yet I refer to the AP Style Guide and Strunk and White most every day. I recall the sorta-hot-in-her-early-40’s creative writing teacher who wore lowride Levi’s that gave her perpetual moose knuckle. And the zany music professor with bushy eyebrows he would comb straight up and out, like flowerily, false eyelashes at brow level. He must have sprayed them to keep them stiff.

It was obviously a history class. An exam essay question asks to expound upon the preamble to constitution. I look up, stare into my own head and hum a fave childhood tune, courtesy of Schoolhouse Rock.

We the peoplllleee in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice ensure domestic tranquility…e...e...eeeee. Provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare ANNNDDaaa secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our prosperity. To ordain and estaaabbblish this constitution foorrr the United States oooffff Americaaaa.

Before I open my blue book and begin the task at hand, I briefly look left and right to see every other student in class with eyes closed or staring blankly ahead, singing in their heads.

We need more Schoolhouse Rock.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Stupid Girl

He took my hand to shake it hello and held on to it for a bit. A nice touch (literally and figuratively); sexy and sixth grade rolled into one. Holding hands with the cute boy, envy of all the other girls. What is it about a man that makes a mature, confident woman giggle like a schoolgirl, second guess or fret?

I create marketing copy and sales campaigns that generate millions of dollars in revenue. I vote. I own properties and cars. I'm responsible for my own orgasms. But meet an interesting fellow and I’m 12. A bit awkward, aware of every limb, chest out and stomach in as much as I can pull it. The head tilt. Little girl posturing and posing. If I chewed gum I’d probably pull out a fruity string in a Lolita fingertip twist.

Remember the scene in “Dirty Dancing” of Baby and Johnny Castles’ first verbal meeting?

Baby: I carried a watermelon.
Baby: [to herself] I carried a watermelon?

On first human boy contact, traits I posses grandly in everyday life vanish in an instant. I try to wear a familiar cloak of cool, smooth, witty and hip, but often can’t even fully recall what was said. “Did I just tell him ‘Have a good one’?!?! Good lord."

In the woman’s room of a cute neighborhood hangout Saturday night, my third nervous pee of the evening, I wash my hands, damp palms smooth the pleats of a cute babydoll top. Adjust breasts. "Thundercat’s are go! Introduce yourself proper. If he's aloof and uninterested, there is a full bar. Just do it, do it, do it!!", my solo pep talk. There’s a band tonight. The guitar player and I've chatted a bit via e-mail after a chance encounter online. The cards are stacked in my favor; I know he’s booked tonight. He has no clue I’m here. He looks enough like his band profile pictures that I spot him instantly, milling about before the show. Will he recognize me from a blog photo? After the first set, right after my pep talk, he did and he approached me. And he shook my hand hello and held on to it for a bit. Of course, he being the tall, dark musician in the room, I was cockblocked by two women in the span of two minutes.

It’s grown up Duck-Duck-Goose, anticipating the approach, the tap and the heart pumping chase. I love and hate every minute of it.

A boy I know casually is coming over tonight to make out on the couch. Okay, so I shaved everything and had my toes done. Sadly it’s not the guitar player; chances are he’s holding other hands. But even a girl has womanly needs. Tonight I practice Zen; “When hungry, eat; when tired, sleep." And when one feels the need to play, play.

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