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I’ve been feeling sorry for myself lately. It’s been the kind of self loathing week where I click on the TV, or check the news, or look at my twitter feed and the only thing I can see is how the new zeitgeist is full of ladies taking on the challenge of being a lady (ages 22 to 34.) I see only this phenomenon because I’m not part of it – try as I may. I mentally go down my masochistic list of people who’ve made it who seem just like me: Zooey Deschanel (we have the same hair), the ubiquitous Lena Dunham (both sexy and sassy), Lesley Headland (theatre chick), Lizzie Caplan (she wore the same glasses as me once), the other chick from that catering comedy (we work in the food industry,) etc. As soon as I get down to Jenny Slate I start contemplating running away to Jacksonville, FL to become a scuba instructor. However, there is one actress who gives me some sort of sick schadenfreude sense of hope – Greta Gerwig. She’s cool, smart as a whip and oddly attractive – just like me! And she can’t seem to get this whole “I’m a nutty feminist with a slutty side” thing right for the viewers – just like me! Everything she’s done this year has had the makings of being on trend and on point, but…it falls flat. Just like me.

No Strings Attached

This movie was a disaster with a capital D, as was my life the month it came out. The movie felt as though it had been made three times over and then put together from different cuts so much so it looked like your little sister had torn up all your vintage Vogue Magazines, decoupaged a teacup with the pages, stuck a used tampon in it, called it art, and gotten into your first choice college with that as her application. Natalie Portman surrounded herself with some of the funniest, quickest ladies out there, and used them as doormats to stamp her perfect size 5 ½ feet on. I once had a friend who did that to me too, Greta. Sometimes girlfriend breakups are the hardest breakups. Don’t let other girls dull your shine. Therapy helps.

Damsels in Distress

On the road from Hannah Takes the Stairs to Arthur, Greta makes a pit stop with Damsels in Distress. When I was 11 all I wanted was to grow up to be in a movie by Whit Stillman. I had seen Barcelona and though I had absolutely no idea what it was about, I loved the hot Spanish girl who only wore crop tops with lettuce edging. Now I’m slightly embarrassed for Stillman, and doubly embarrassed for myself. The movie is alarmingly out of touch with reality – its whimsey is grating, the twee-ness like finger nails down a chalkboard. This was the year I stopped wearing headbands and circle skirts. Greta, I beg you to do the same.

Lola Versus.

I had super high hopes for this movie. In fact my hopes were so high that I went to see it by myself, so I could cry alone about my own ‘almost thirty, have I accomplished anything?! crisis,’ without anyone judging me. I bought a large coca cola, and three candy bars. My stomach ached with the pain of being a blocked artist for the next three days. Also the movie was bad. Oh, Greta, my darling Greta. You are simply not the everywoman this genre needs you to be! Instead of being relatable with your food and boy obsessions, you are annoying. Instead of being candidly vulnerable with your honesty and clumsiness you are confusing with a lot of pensive stares and whiny monologues. The vaudevillian slapstick of this movie (your penis is that big!) is so off, we know Greta sees that banana and the thought of landing on it correctly is making her stomach turn. Also, Lola versus what exactly? She has her own apartment in the village! I live with three other people in a foreclosed building by the river. She’s getting a PhD in poetry, which must mean her parents are rich, cause everyone knows rich kids either study poetry or join the lacrosse team. She has a small dirty mouthed friend who’s not as pretty as she is. All my friends are better looking than me and keep me around for the sole purpose to test new mascaras on before they commit to the brand. So what, your boyfriend broke up with you. We all break up, and apparently time heals all wounds, except that three years later you still might be dreaming about how you’re going on vacation with your ex, and in the dream you’ve cut off your own head and taken it as carry-on in a bowling bag.

To Rome With Love.

Oh come on Greta, a Woody Allen movie? You know better. Don’t you understand that Woody will never again be able to create a female role full of the idiosyncratic charm that made us all fall in love with Annie Hall? Maybe Mr. Allen only had three great movies in him, and you are the latest Hollywood “it” girl to become bland-ified by a boring Woody movie. Do you really want to be the next Evan Rachel Wood? I thought you were a writer? Don’t you make movies, not merely star in them? For the record, if a magic Genie could make me as a tall and skinny as Evan Rachel Wood I would be ok with that. But, Greta I hold you to a higher standard. I want you to be on the top part of the “feminsance women” list. That word is a mix of feminist and renaissance by the way. So please Greta, pick up a copy of the Artist’s Way, go to a cabin in Montana where you can really feel the isolation and get back to what’s truly unique about you as a creator. You can do it, gurl.

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laurataylor:

flamelikeme:

“Tragedy + time = comedy. But I don’t have the benefit of time. So I’m just going to tell you the tragedy and know that everything is going to be okay.” 

So began Tig Notaro’s set last night at her show “Tig and friends” at the Largo. 

Actually, that wasn’t the beginning of her set. It began when Ed Helms welcomed her to the stage and she crossed over, took the microphone, and said “Thank you, thank you, I have cancer, thank you, I have cancer, really, thank you.”

Applause gave way to reticent laughter as she explained how she had planned a set about bees flying alongside her car on the 405, but that she couldn’t possibly do her “silly jokes” when all this was going on. And that’s when she told us that 3 days ago, she was diagnosed with breast cancer, in both breasts. 

But she didn’t just have cancer. She went on to explain that in some manic twist of fate, while her career is at an all-time high — she is moving to New York to work on Amy Schumer’s new television show, she was on This American Life — while concurrently, all these terrible circumstances have befallen her over the past 3 months: pneumonia made way for a debilitating bacterial infection in her digestive tract for which she was hospitalized and lost 30 pounds off of her already small frame, days after being released from the hospital, her young mother died suddenly and tragically (fell, hit her head, died), then she and her girlfriend broke up, and then, now, cancer. In both breasts. (“You have a lump.” “No, doctor, that’s my breast.” — one of her most renowned bits is about someone remarking upon her small breasts)

For the first half of her set, even though she was telling the story in perfect grace and humor, I couldn’t laugh. For the second half, for the first time in my life, as far as I can recall, I genuinely laughed and cried at the exact same time, bewildered at the tragedy and the remarkably calm, clever prism through which she assessed her terrible set of circumstances.

While telling us anecdotes from this personal tragedies, all along the way, she assured the audience “it’s okay, I’m going to be okay.” At one part, when she reached a dark place wherein most of the audience could not find the will to laugh, she said “maybe I’ll just go back to telling jokes about bees. Should I do that?” there were several “NOs” and one insistent loud male voice who cried out

“NO. ABSOLUTELY NOT. THIS IS FUCKING INCREDIBLE.”

She looked genuinely taken aback, and relieved. She’d managed to make the tragic not only palatable but overwhelmingly engaging. She’d done it.  

Tig’s been one of my favorite comedians for a couple of years now. I told her how much I loved her work after a set at UCB one night, and she received my words so kindly that she came towards me and gave me a hug. I’ve gone downtown to bars by myself and sat for hours alone, just waiting to see her headlining set. 

At the end of her routine last night, everyone in the audience gave her a standing ovation, for me her wowed, grateful, happy face blurry with my own salty eyes. She’d released her horrific story into the hearts of her fans. I’m sure we all felt like I did; we were made witness to a truly historical moment in comedy, by one of the industry’s of comedy’s absolute greatest. 

Bill Burr followed her set, inexplicably able to make the whole audience uproarious with laughter by the end. Bill Burr then brought on Louis C.K., the surprise guest of the night, which was a shock - it was my first time ever seeing him live - but it was very difficult to give him my enrapt attention after Tig’s on-stage confessions.

My head is still swimming around what happened last night. We all saw the ultimate embodiment of what comedy is supposed to do: deeply personal tragedies somehow transformed, with the enormous power of an open-hearted audience, into brilliantly-written truths that we’ll all take home with us and keep with us as long as we’ll have a sound-enough mind to remember that show.

I’m so grateful I could bear witness to what happened last night, and more than that I’m grateful to comedy and to Tig Notaro for being not only bold enough and not only spirited enough but for being so endlessly, achingly HONEST with all of us, the stunned, mouth-breathing strangers in the dark. 

Last night, Tig gave us the most honest, moving and hilarious stand up show I’ve ever seen. I was laughing and crying, and still feel deeply impacted the morning after. I’ve never experienced anything like it. I can’t put it quite into words, but I’m glad Kira has. Tig Notaro is truly a remarkable human being. 

(via nedhepburn)

Source: flamelikeme
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All my exes live in Texas.  Just kidding, actually only one does and his name is Rocky so it makes sense.  However, the reality is that all my past loves live in cyber space.  Particularly in the country called OkCupid.  There is nothing worse, or great —at this point I can’t really tell what emotion I’m feeling— than finding your exes profile on an online dating site.  First its kinda funny in an ironic masochistic way: Of course I would get matched with this guy, oh ha ha.  Of course the world is out to get me.  I just gave him three years of my youth, for what?  For this — to be paired with him on an  online dating site!  

Then the bittersweet nostalgia sets in: We were probably paired together because of his great taste in clothes, sense of adventure, and his attraction to loud aggressive women.  Oh remember how he always let me get my way.  He always laughed at my jokes.  We had some great times…We came up with a lot of great halloween costumes— that means something doesn’t it?  

Then the sick desire to see his profile sets in.  This is tricky because once you look at it you know he’ll know you peeked.  You weigh the odds.  If you look, could you pull it off as some kinda joke?  Oh I saw your profile. Ha ha.  I always knew you had a thing for chicks with big thighs and slightly larger than normal heads, but I never knew you’d be so specific!  

Or you look and don’t say anything.  You just read between all the lines and over-analyze everything.  How could he put down that he loves girls that wear unitards!  I practically invented unitards for him!  And how dare he say that he likes “The heart is a Lonely Hunter,” he barely knew how to read before me.  Which bitch taught him to read!  You let the inckyness crawl all over you for reasons you don’t quite understand because you broke up with him goddamnit!  Then you masturbate while crying and follow it up with a three hour nap.  

Or…

You take a deep breath.  Turn your computer off.  Brush your hair.  Put on a bra.  Wipe the mustard stain off your mouth.  You remember that you broke up with him for a reason.  Most of this horrible feeling has nothing to do with him and probably has to do with your own life outside of the break up.  Pick your head up.  Remember that you are a good person who deserves to be loved.  Head into the world.  

Yeah right! 

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I recently read an article by Doree Shafrir about the naming of her generation, which are those folks now in their midthirties and how they operate differently than those of us in our twenties. Doree dubs it “Generation Catalano” after Mr. Sex himself from My So Called LifeShe writes:

Claire Danes’ Angela … fall[s] into a trope of television and film that’s an especially apt representation of Generation Catalano (or at least those of us who were white and from the suburbs): the girl who doesn’t know where exactly she fits in, because she’s smart (full disclosure: the struggle Lindsay has over whether to stay on the Mathletes hit a little too close to home), wants to be popular, and has to leave her old, dorky friends behind. The show or movie’s dramatic tension is then largely about her identity crisis as she ping-pongs among different cliques and wrestles with the seemingly monumental decision of whether to stay in on a Friday night and do her calculus homework or go to a keg party in the woods.

I felt I had to respond, not because I have a deep insight into what my generation feels compared to those in their mid thirties, but because I do think there is a cultural chasm between the women I know who related to Angela Chase from the show and those of us that couldn’t get enough of Rayanne Graff. I hated the character Angela. I always felt that despite her nuanced and supposedly complex voice overs, she was a passive wallflower caught between the conflicting desires to be simultaneously seen and also disappear. Relatable for a high school student sure, but maybe not for me, and also maybe not for the alpha females I surround myself with in my adult life. It actually worries me that there are grown ass women out there who still feel a kinship with a teenage character that when describing what she desires could not raise her voice above a mumble core-esque decibel.

I feel that this type of female character is a dangerous one, and she’s a type I’ve come across in other means of fiction from writers of Generation Catalano. Curtis Sittenfeld, who was born in 1975, debuted a similar female character in her first novel, Prep. The novel centers on Lee Fiora and is about her time as a scholarship student at an elite boarding school. Having attended boarding school on full scholarship myself I was drawn to the story, but horrified by Lee’s overwhelming inertia in the face of making something of herself at the school. Just like Angela, Lee is so enamored and intimidated by her circumstances that she tries to form no opinions of her own incase they are the wrong opinions. Perversely, it is this passivity, this waiting to be recognized, instead of bulldozing through the crowd that ultimately turns everyone away from her.

I’ve also seen echoes of this ugly phenomenon in the 1999 best seller The Girl’s Guide to Hunting and Fishing. Though the author, Melisa Bank, is older than Generation Catalano, her novel debuted at the same time as My So Called Life. One can’t help but feel that the protagonist, Jane Rosenthal, is just an older version of Angela Chase. Unfortunately they share the same deep lack of self esteem:

I saw my life in scale: it was just my life. It was not momentous … I saw myself the way I’d seen the cleaning woman in the building across the street. I was just one person in one window. Nobody was watching, except me.

There is an eerie call and response between the above passage and Angela’s own voice over from the show, ”People are always saying you should be yourself, like yourself is this definite thing, like a toaster. Like you know what it is even.” With both characters there is a massive self absorption in trying to figure out who they are, and a sadness at not being recognized by the outside world. You can hear Bank’s character’s influence on Angela; she is the older sister secretly whispering it’s better to keep quiet and hope someone realizes what you need, rather than stand up for what you want.

Angela’s, Lee’s, and even Joan’s continual concern with fitting in “in the right way” seems to be the problem that leads them to thinking that perhaps they’re not worth all that much to begin with. I get it with Angela and even Lee, they’re young and experimenting with their identities, picking them up and tossing them on the floor like different outfits.

I don’t want to get too ahead of myself though.  Just as I begin to justify Angela’s blah personality, I have to remind us that she had a confident foil who, in spite of being in high school, did exactly what she wanted. This foil/BFF was Rayanne, the unruly chick with the bad home life that deserved her own show. She had the courage of conviction – even if that conviction was going to change three times by second period. Rayanne had the guts to do things that had been dubbed as “wrong” for women to do, and she did so without the nail biting neurosis that goes into so much decision making for young women. Rayanne did not need a committee to determine she liked someone or something and was going after it. Don’t get me wrong, Rayanne was also a flawed character. She had drug and alcohol problems and she made the ultimate error in betraying her best friend by sleeping with Jordan Catalano. Yet, it was in watching Rayanne as a teenager that reminded me of my favorite childhood heroines. Whatever happened to the likes of Josephine March, and even Anne from Green Gables? How did we go from reading and watching these moxie filled women who rebelled against all sorts of boundaries, to adoring these melancholic pushovers that Generation Catalano is claiming as spokeswomen. Simply put, Rayanne was a doer and Angela was a wet noodle.

What concerns me about Doree’s article was not the generation gap, per se, but the way in which women only a few years apart could view themselves so differently. Sure everyone out there is going to say that I’m part of the “entitled generation,” but what is so wrong with thinking (especially for a woman) that what I want is out there – I just have to take it?  Many writers are now commentating on the rude awakening “the entitled generation” has to endure. Are we strong enough to get through a future that might not be as bright as our parents promised us? That’s not the way I see it though.  I don’t think its the way Rayanne would view it either, and let’s not forget that Jo March survived the Civil War, and Anne — WWI. It’s not circumstance or context that forms who we are, but how we handle it. I still think in spite of the economy and the changing world at large, that my happiness and success is out there – all I have to do it take it.

Maybe I’m not as afraid or upset by my current unglamorous lifestyle (I’m a nanny to pay the bills) because my given profession, and what I have my MFA, in is acting. As an actor you have to go into an adult life knowing that your career is kinda a crapshoot. You may never be successful. Even if I find constant artistic fulfillment I will still most likely be poor. When you decide to become an actor, or any type of artist for that matter, there has to be a coming to terms with the poverty you’ll endure, and also a completely irrational optimism about the situation.  It wasn’t the Angelas out there that convinced me to keep going, it was the Josephines, the Annes and the Rayannes of the world, who with their scrappiness and unwavering belief in themselves, endured too.    

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I went on a date with a younger guy the other night.  He wasn’t that much younger, just a couple of years, but it was enough to turn me off.  When he told me his age I immediately thought, well I’d fuck you but we can never date.  Totally unfair I know, and also just reading that sentence I winced at how much I sounded like the 80’s movie villain ready to date rape you.  I’d totally fuck you but I’m not gonna take you to prom.

 

For the record this guy was a totally great twenty five year old, who seemed like he had a sense of humor and level head on his shoulders.  Regardless though he’s only lived in NYC for a year, and halfway through the evening he started complaining about how expensive the six dollar beer was.  Even though we’re only a couple of years apart it was apparent that in terms of experience and expectation we were on two different pages.  After all isn’t twenty seven in guy years really thirty five?  

This was my first time on date with a younger guy, or really anyone that close to my age.  You see since I’ve been twenty years old I’ve date men in their thirties.  You could say that I keep getting older but they stay the same age.  

Or in my case it seems they get younger — which is not necessarily a good thing!  What happens to a person as they start seeing the flirty thirties approach the horizon?  And I’m not talking about the tic tock of my biological clock, cause I think the batteries are dead on that one.  I’m reflecting on the drastic changes in what I want, even from just a few years ago when I was twenty five.  Things…are…slowing…down.  I don’t want to live in a loft space without a door just because it’s a great deal anymore, I don’t want to work the night shift or weekends, and I can’t really live hand to mouth the way I used to.

 Ahh getting older sucks.  Now I totally understand why all those thirty year old men dated me when I twenty two — because I didn’t expect that much from them!  Whereas now I expect more from myself, and thus more from my partner.  I used to look at the guys I dated and think: I don’t want to be in your position when I’m thirty.  I want to be past the ramen noodle eating phase you’re in.  

Not only was that thought a great indication that I shouldn’t be dating said dude, but it also gave me my own maturity time line.  I look at someone now and I wonder if their timeline is running parallel to mine.  I can’t predict how might partner might change in the future, but I’d like to think that we would have more of a chance together if we started off at the same spot.  You see I don’t want to fuck anyone I wouldn’t want to be, and I don’t want to be anyone I wouldn’t want to fuck.  Which as I’m figuring out is a really high standard to hold myself and the world to, but I’m trying to take it one day at a time.  This quarter centurion I went out with is a good guy, but our timelines are running at different speeds, and I’m at age where I’m comfortable buying 6 dollar beer — I want a partner who is too.      

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Sex: Sex On The First Date Is A Fictional Fuck(via @Jezebel)

I went on a date a month ago with a boy I met on an online dating site. “Met” meaning he’d sent me a few witty messages and his pictures were decent enough to warrant an IRL pass.

Source: jezebel.com
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Let me tell you a story. Once upon a time a beautiful, smart and funny young woman went on a blind date with an attractive, intelligent gent who was semi-humorless. On her side there were no sparks, however due to a certain upbringing – she was by a nature (or nurture?) a pleaser – she led him on. He walked away from the date thinking there would be a second one, next time even with a little more action than just neckin. He thought they had so much in common, that she loved Henry James, Zadie Smith and Billy Joel just as much as he did. That she found his relationship with his sister and mother to be a complex but realistic part of his layered psyche – just like he did! Unfortunately none of this was the way she felt.

To be fair dear reader I am this woman, and I have developed a weird and possibly hurtful habit that I now have to confess to you. No matter who I am on a date with I tend to just be who they want me to be, even though I don’t like them romantically. You like cheese, turns out I love cheese! Ok, I know bad example, everyone loves cheese. How about… you like civil war memorabilia, I love civil war shit! Let me cut myself a little slack here, I have liked all the okcupid dates I’ve gone on as people, I just haven’t felt any sort of romantic surge with them. And I have found that I could spend several hours talking to each of them while we both got slightly inebriated without feeling bored to tears. The topic of conversations have ranged from Shakespeare’s most obscure histories, Henry IV anybody?, to the scary-ness factor of the horror movie Suspiria. I have waxed poetic about David Foster Wallace and about the pros and cons of pet sitting, I have even made out with some of these people. But still I haven’t wanted to go on a second date with anyone. I know I’m making myself look really bad here, and that’s part of why I’m writing this. Most of my blog posts are laments to why he didn’t call or text me after we had such a good time – and maybe the real reason is he was pretending just like I pretend.  God forbid.

Recently someone called me on this, and sent me a text that basically said:

Hey we had a great time, and you acted l as though you really liked me back so what gives about you not answering any of my messages.

I’ve got to tell you I was so refreshed to get someone who was brave enough to write that, that I almost went on a second date with this guy. I do believe in putting someone in their place, and I also believe that we would all be happier daters if we were more honest. Myself included. So here’s the deal, I can’t predict that anyone will give me the benefit of sending me a “I don’t really like you” text, vm, or even email – which I think we can all agree on is better than nothing no matter how unfortunate. But, I can say that I’m going to more disciplined about doing that, if for any reason because I think its the kind thing to do, and because I don’t want to be the same coward that most of the pussies I date are. So there.       

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The other night I was doing my usual cat sitting gig — which basically means I eat through other people’s fridges and watch all their tivo — when I got to thinking.  My noggin was swelling with thoughts about the popularity and realism of America’s favorite foursome — the SEX AND THE CITY ladiez.  Blah blah blah, I know this is old news to most of you, and that whenever I talk about them I sound like a deranged “Sex and the City” tour guide standing outside of Magnolia’s screaming at the top of my lungs about which overweight midwesterner on the bus most resembles Carrie — she’s the real glue to the group ya know!  However, while I was watching old reruns the other night what really got me going was Samantha — and not in the sexy way she’s supposed to.  That’s because I had a really hard time being convinced that any of the men that walk in and out of my life would be attracted to such a….oh what’s the word…strong?  sexy?…intelligent?…what about overpowering?…intimidating…and pushy woman.  Hey, I’m not putting down Samantha Jone’s, patron saint of empowered horny women everywhere, but I am saying that there are not a lot of men I know who would willingly take on such a lady.  And so I want to know how Samantha Blow Job Jones ever got laid in her twenties?

Especially since as of late there is the annoying trend of grown ass women acting like little girls.  Oh what who me?  Oh no you couldn’t be speaking of me, the girl with the MA in library science, who likes to wear bobby socks, and her hair in pigtails and who wrote her thesis on Twightlight vs, The Hunger Games.  Yeah I’m talking about you bitch and I can not take any more of your  twisted type of demur behavior.  STOP GIGGLING FROM BEHIND YOUR HAND!  

Come on ladies, I need a guy who will be able to take me out to dinner, who will offer to pay not because he’s a sexist douche bag but because that’s what adults do when they ask you out.  I need a guy that likes a lady who can give him a hard time, and will give me one back (Katherine Hepburn and Spencer Tracey style with out the secret adultery/alcoholism thing).  I need a guy that likes a woman who has her own money, her own opinions, and her own ability to orgasm.  And let’s face it, we’re not going to make room for the Samantha Jone’s of the world if you are going to continue wearing baby tees, crocheting unicorns and speaking in mumble core esque decibels about what you want. There is a vicious circle going on where men in their twenties/thirties are afraid of sexual women, and thus women seem to be afraid of being sexual.

 

Until we change I’m afraid I’ll get stuck with what’s hanging out in the burg these days — left overs from the McKibben lofts, guys who are waiting to validate their own lost-ness with yours.  If we can’t be out, loud and proud about own sexual prowess then we are going to get stuck with dudes who can’t either, and that means I’ll continue to have the unfortunate sex I’ve been having which is no way for a woman of my caliber to live.  So let’s all grow a spine and lead by example so that the boys, ahem men(?) can catch up.   

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Hi guys,

So we have some changes to our two person fraction over here.  R is leaving us to pursue a more high culture project — she’s gonna get a PHD!  So it’s now gonna be all about me, me, and more me.  I’ve rearranged the project so that another best friend of mine has taken over my okprofile and is now sending me out on missions, er I mean dates — Bosley style.  Long live R!  We will miss you and your wonderful romantic insights!  Alas, though higher learning, like higher ground, calls.  XOXOX you live in my thoughts forever.  

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 I’m about to get real with y’all. I know I come across as the lady who has it all together. The woman that tells it like it is, and doesn’t take shit from anybody. But…let’s be honest, I’m a total mess – a disaster even, ok I’ll cut myself some slack, I’m simply your average tropical storm. Here I am late twenties and I still don’t know how to interpret, understand or navigate most of my life, especially my love, eh hem, maybe just my sex life…

The other night I met someone at a bar and went home with them. The sex was fine, but the chit chat and laughs were amazing. We told each other our intimate anecdotes: the one’s you save for the people you really want to impress. The story that screams, look at me, I’m vulnerable, self deprecating, still hilarious, and the absolute best mix of sexy and cute! He laughed loudly at all the right places, gave me compliments and made me breakfast. Then he shared his own heartbreaking work of genius dating marketing, and I was smitten. We did that thing where we layed in bed and looked at each other without turning away for fear of pock mocks or unfeminine facial hair. I walked away on a cloud of euphoria, thinking simply whoa.

It wasn’t until about two blocks later on my walk of shame I realized we never exchanged phone numbers. That’s when I grasped that the night had really just been about the ho hum sex, and what I thought had been an intellectual connection (if it had been at all) was just a bonus. There would be no follow up for dinner, desert, or even a movie.

I have never been the type of girl who would subscribe to any sort of “Rules” scenario. By “The Rules” I mean the ones that came about when women got an MRS instead of an MA and that have been propagated by contemporary rom coms and self help books. “The Rules” is list of dating commandments to snag a hubby, and they go something like this:

Thou shalt not ever phone first.

Thou shalt always make plans three days in advance and never go out on the spur of the moment

Thou shalt not live in the present, and instead wait three dates before sexual intimacy.

It’s this last one that I have particular trouble with. I’ve always felt that you should be yourself and do what you want, and if that includes a roll in the hay so be it. But, like I’ve mentioned before there was a certain feeling of shame that came from all these one night encounters. And then a double dose of shame, when I felt I had somehow let down my empowered feminist self for feeling the burn of the scarlet letter in the first place. So instead I just kept on sleeping with people and then trying to pound empowering thoughts into my head. However, if I’m totally honest (wait for it wait for it) I think the feeling of embarrassment came from a place where I was always expecting more. No, I don’t mean that I was having sex with someone in order to rope them into a relationship, but I was confusing being openly sexual with also being emotionally intimate. Call me a late bloomer but I’ve finally put two and two together that those aren’t mutually exclusive. Sometimes pillow talk really doesn’t have any meaning beyond the pillowcase.

In a sort anti “rules” lifestyle, I’ve tried putting the cart before the horse, the orgasm before the fluid conversation, and well it hasn’t been working out for me. We now live in a world where the opportunities for hooking up seem endless, and where we don’t have the type of social constrictions that our mothers’ had. However, it seems to make it harder to tell what’s really going on. Are we just having sex, or are we sharing something else here too? I don’t really mind either way, but I’d like to know before hand so I can adjust my outlook on the situation. Maybe dating before sex has nothing to do with feminism or some sort of relationship grifting, but comes down to practicality. I guess it really is awkward to sixty nine with someone, then put all your clothes back on and try to have a conversation about national debt. I’m learning that you can’t give someone a blowie and then expect to share a plate of linguine later on.       

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