Learn from not quite perfect dating experiences Thursday, Jul 15 2010 

Hormones, hormones, hormones.  I blame them.  They are the reason we end up in the most awkward situations with the opposite sex, i.e. the date.  The buildup of hormones explains why we feel butterflies in our stomach as well as other feelings that may be too sexually inappropriate for a College Lifestyles blog.  Regardless to the chemical stimulation, we are in college and it is fun and natural for guys to want to be around girls and vise versa.

Hormones, hormones, hormones! This is how we work it.

Pleased to meet you, I am a stuttering estrogen maxed out goof who has a dating experience to make your head spin.  My father is only sane because I inform him that I am joining the convent or going to play bingo every time I walk out the door with a different guy.  From the amateur moments where I learned how to kiss, to the serious and great relationships I have had, there are a few hysterical dates that stand out enough to either make me blush or to simply laugh to tears- but who are we kidding, that could be the progesterone.

Carly rolls her eyes as she recollects dating silly guys.

Let’s start with the, “The Creepy Cuddler.”

The summer before going into college, my family and I lived on Fire Island.  Picture a small beach town with sidewalk roads made only for bicycles and a quaint row of restaurants and bars ready to fulfill ultimate partying and grooving.  It was in the beauty of Fire Island that I met an outgoing and fun blue-eyed guy who we will call, “Elvis,” due to his side burns.

Elvis and I played volleyball at the beach, boogie boarded in the ocean waves, and drank Snapple Apple from the endless supply in his mini fridge since his father worked for Snapple.  Perhaps because we were so active and usually hanging out with groups of friends, I was blind to his ultra- sensitive side.  Don’t get me wrong, emotions are perfectly normal.  But there is a fine line between honest feelings and nauseating behavior.  Nothing prepared me for Elvis’s little cherished hobby.

As he nestled his head on my shoulder to confess his bedtime secret, he shared that he most enjoys snuggling with his mother.  Take into account that Elvis was 19 years old when he confided this information.  This is when I made my speedy escape, and found something more entertaining to do than cuddling.  Even bingo won that time.

Next is, “The date heard around the world.”

Also a summer fling, I met this lumber jack-esque guy through friends.  For kicks, we shall refer to him as Paul Bunyan.  He had a very dry sense of humor and crunched his posture to fit in his too-small car.  The two of us were complete opposites.  When we went bowling he attentively kept score on the computer screen while I moon walked to the lane to inevitably toss the bowling ball into the gutter.  However my friends liked that he could balance my silly behavior.  It turned out that Mr. Bunyan could be even sillier than me.

Paul Bunyan and his Babe. Hopefully the ox will be a better companion than me.

Just as I had mentioned that hormones exist, so does flatulence.  Everyone has a different opinion of what one has the liberty to call, “farting.”  When Dr. Oz said on Oprah that it was “unhealthy” to hold in a fart, men around the world suddenly felt in style.  Since Oprah has not yet farted publicly on the show or among her many media outlets, I can assume that it is still not safe for women to openly fart.  Personally, I let it go with my brothers who will only laugh and then outdo me.  (Seriously, like on command powers.)  Besides not eating corn before a date, it is also unacceptable to fart on a date.  Poor Paul Bunyan was not informed.

As I was making us drinks in my kitchen, he farted.  Loudly.

The aftermath moment was silent and stunning.  But then I just burst into laughter.

He was stone cold and completely ignored his gas blowing stunt.

Rather than join me, he waited for me to contain myself and then proceeded on with, “How about them Yankee’s” conversation.  If he had laughed it off, everything would have been fine.  Instead, all I could hear was that fart when I looked at him and the fling could no longer go on.  Poof! (No pun intended.)

In college and out of college we will deal with weird secrets, farting, and hormones.  The bottom line is that nobody is perfect.  Within this realm of our youth, we are trying to figure out so much, let alone about the opposite sex.  Many of us are enrolled in summer courses to better advance our education to do the best we can upon completion of college.  Yet we still make minute decisions like whether or not we would like to continue dating someone.  Go with your gut instinct.  (But not necessarily his gut).  Realize that we are in the same shoes as classy college co-eds and are hoping to enjoy ourselves today.  Date or not, it is important to acknowledge people for what you like about them.  Standards are fine, but there is no point in focusing on them until truly knowing a person.  Have fun, smile big, and be yourself.

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Guilty Admirations Tuesday, Apr 6 2010 

For unexplainable reasons, tall, dark and handsome has never cut it for me. I am not saying that I would turn Bradley Cooper away if he knocked on my door, but my desire is drawn to abnormally interesting characters and traits.

Maybe it is those little brown shorts, but UPS men drive me crazy. They are strong men delivering packages (make the jokes to yourself please) in a dangerous door-less truck. I will not be calling the Ghost Busters.

At home, my UPS guy, Greg, and I have a secret handshake. Instead of the rock, paper, scissor routine, we exchange gestures of sign, sealed and delivered into a high-five. Little does Greg know that I am obsessed with him and actually get butterflies when I see the enormous brown truck pull into the driveway.

Two words: Jack Nicholson. He is a wildcat on and off screen and protrudes a magnetic energy that you cannot help but gravitate toward. From playing an edgy free spirit in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” to a ruthless head mobster in “The Departed,” I find him irresistible.

If a magic genie came to me right now permitting me one wish, it would be to spend
an afternoon playing mini golf with Mr. Nicholson. We would probably break all the course rules and putt-putt our way into thrills of laughter.

WANTED: Big blue ox named Babe. Once he is out of the way, Paul Bunyan will be all mine. If the rugged scruffy beard is not enough, he must torment me with the worn-out red flannel that he has been hacking trees in. After creating the Grand Canyon, he is the American version of Greek gods in mythology. Eat my flapjack heart out.

Irregular attractions aside, one’s knight in shining armor is another’s lumberjack in overalls. Basically beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Do not judge me for wanting Jack Nicholson in a brown UPS uniform knocking down redwoods.

I double-dog dare you to try something. Privately, list all of your guilty secrets when picturing your ideal partner. Not only will you crack yourself up, but you will see what you truly want.

Use my equation for an example. UPS men could mean that I want someone reliable that takes control of a situation. Also, being directionally savvy to make up for my blonde-guided and upside-down compass would not hurt.

Jack Nicholson is an outright character that ultimately sets the atmosphere for harmless trouble and adventure. If you can have fun playing something as lifeless as mini golf with someone, then possibilities are endless.

I admire the hard work ethic of Paul Bunyan. His ridiculous muscles and unbelievable skill are impressive. I want someone who can do things.

Even if your fantasies are about Alex Trebek of “Jeopardy” or Miss Piggy of “The Muppets,” you must come clean with yourself and face your inner passions. It is a matter of figuring out what you like before you can make a move.

I kind of pin myself as a girl that would like the traditional alpha male GQ model type, but I took Carly’s challenge and came up with a few eccentric qualities I find devastatingly handsome in the opposite sex that I altogether didn’t realize.

1. Gingers. Why are people always talking about a shock of red hair like it’s a bad thing? If the cutie next to me in class is a redhead, that is going to land him a plus-one in my book, not the other way around.

Take, for instance, Shaun White. He is the two-time Olympic gold medalist snowboarder I swoon over during the half pipe events nicknamed “The Flying Tomato,” and wouldn’t you know it, he has red hair. Another ginger that I bet you find sexy: Prince Harry. You cannot tell me that you would discount this guy if he struck up a conversation with you at Bear’s this weekend simply because of his hair color. Just Google him. He’s beautiful, and the hair definitely makes the man with this guy.

2. Nice guys. Here is another dying breed that is vastly undervalued. Whenever my girlfriends complain about the jerks in their lives and then make fun of the sweet guy who is always there I always want to grab them and yell, “DON’T YOU UNDERSTAND YOU ARE CREATING THE MORONS WHO THINK THEY NEED TO TREAT GIRLS BADLY TO WIN THEM?!” The nice guy: He will probably listen to the responses to the questions he poses, open the door for you on the way in to Starbucks and he won’t make you cry excessively.

Nice Boy, please don’t get discouraged and go the way of the asshole — it just doesn’t work for you, I promise. Stick to what you’re good at, because we all know you could never make a girl cry without shedding a few yourself.

Whew, there they are. A few things I didn’t altogether expect but hey, if you want to date the GQ model, you have to accept the fact that there is one of him and about a zillion girls who want him. But I bet that there is only one nice-guy Jack Nicholson-type with red hair and a lot of flannel who drives a big brown truck, and you are probably the only one who wants him — now those are some odds I could get down with.

Jack Daniel’s or a Red Dress? Friday, Feb 12 2010 

The difference between how Nancy and I will be spending Valentine’s Day this year, is that I will be drunk, and she will be sober.  Nancy has a boyfriend, and I do not.  While I have the choice of Jim Beam, Johnny Walker, or Jack Daniel’s, Nancy has the choice between a pink or a red dress.

As we discussed our plans together for this upcoming Sunday, we could not help but reminisce upon some embarrassing Valentine’s Day’s from the past.  We can almost taste those disgusting candy hearts now…

Carly’s Collective Calamities:

  • Apparently I am the Karate Kid, because my boyfriend during my senior year of high school, “thought outside the box,” and bought me a bonsai tree.  He was not waxed on that night so he had to wax off.
  • To fulfill my parent’s worst nightmare, I was dating a drug dealer during tenth grade year of high school.  For the romantic occasion, my Keith Richards wannabe generously treated me to psychedelic substances.  Sorry, but acid is not a girl’s best friend.
  • In 3rd grade, I was married to a freckly boy with a pet worm.  It was a glorious reception, and freckle face tried to put the worm around my finger.

Nancy’s Notorious Nostalgia:

  • Freshman year my boyfriend approached me at the end of the school day with a half dozen wilted school fundraiser purchased carnations. They were almost as awkward to look at as he was, but I shouldn’t give him a hard time seeing as I thoughtfully got him a “license to bitch” from Spencer’s and a cat collar. I thought I was being funny. I hope I
    never come to a full realization of how awkward I was because I will never forgive myself.
  • In seventh grade on the blessed day I opened my locker to see folded papers fall to my feet. It was an intensely thought out love poem from “a secret admirer”. I almost got a little excited until I realized one of the analogies looked a little familiar. It read, “your eyes are like a diamond shining up through the sea”. My friend Leslie evidently decided to recycle her work from our poetry unit in English in her cruel v-day joke. Nice try bitch.
  • Last but most awkward Valentine’s Day occasion happened in the most awkward place you can be high school- band rehearsal. The super creepy first chair clarinet sitting next to me had someone leave a single- you guessed it- carnation on my music stand. When I got there and saw it he was conveniently busy away from his seat. There was a note attached requesting a date for the coming week. I managed to thank him for the flower but conveniently forgot to mention my availability.

Choose Your Own Adventure:

Last year, Nancy and I celebrated our Valentine’s Day together as two fun and single freshmen in college.  We curled our hair, slipped on bright red dresses, and shared a bottle of red wine, of course.  Our night led us to the villa’s apartments where we danced without a care in the world.

If you had told us then what we would be doing for this upcoming Valentine’s Day, we would have laughed at you in disbelief.

A very good guy has managed the impossible by making Nancy his girlfriend.  I give him credit for handling her sass and hope he can top our hazy night at the villa’s.  As long as he does not give her acid or carnations, he will be fine.

Although separated from my partner in crime, I will also be managing a surprising feat.  Besides last year with Nancy, I have always had a boyfriend to celebrate Valentine’s Day.  This year when I think about this romantic holiday, I wonder if anyone will confess their affections.  However since John Mayer will probably not be throwing rocks at my window, I have made plans to go tubing with friends.

Oh, and get very intoxicated.  Oops, am I repeating myself already?

Whether or not you are in a relationship or not, the trick to enjoying Valentine’s Day is simple.  Spend it with someone that makes you feel good.  Indulge a little just because it is a holiday.  Make love fun and turn the day into an adventure.  Whatever your circumstances, Valentine’s Day is what you make of it.