Sunday, August 22, 2010

(Minor) Cultural Differences

Within every romantic relationship, certain characteristics are attributed to our partners from the first moments of meeting. Whether we view our significant others with eyes of lust, respect, admiration, or contempt there are emotional reactions triggered by the presence of our partners. In my recent foray back into the pseudo-dating world I found that cultural differences can affect this view, but more importantly they can mislead a person into the abyss of ignorance with regards to the intentions of your sexual counterpart.

I discovered quickly that the customary and legendary "southern manners" this gentleman exemplified rapidly faded into the ether when any issue remotely consequential arose. He was a lovely boy. Well-mannered, articulate, and cordial all executed with a charming southern accent. The kind of guy who seems comfortable in most social situations. He would hold the door, pull out my chair, and guide me to walk on the side of the sidewalk furthest from the road, but that, my friends, is essentially meaningless.

I won't lie, I ate that shit up. My country club upbringing loved it. In the depths of my crusty, white teenage fantasies I always wanted a gentleman to court me properly. You know, in that incredibly old-timey and antiquated sense that would realistically make me want to punch the guy in the face? I thought for about a second that operation "Miss Darcy and her charming gentleman suitor" was underway and according to HQ, was being executed flawlessly. Then I remembered that I am not in 19th century aristocratic England, and descended back to the world of the living, and to the world of ultimately unfulfilled pseudo dating.

When I indicated my displeasure at the arrangement we had settled into (ie mostly late night encounters in his apartment) he responded with the understandable, yet cliched reply that he was not looking for a relationship. Fine, OK, I was not looking for a big commitment either, as this was still new. All I craved was more respect and consideration than a "booty call" (I feel strange even typing the phrase) scenario.


Have not spoken since. So that pretty much answered my question.

I don't regret getting to know this fellow for a short while. It was fun and ultimately harmless to be honest. Southern charm is real, but in my case, the results just did not live up to the hype, but few things ever really do.

I'll tell you this though, as a lady whose previous romances have mostly been ones in which two pretty good friends hang out all the time and then sometimes run into each other sideways when too many Pabsts are consumed that evening, it actually felt fucking great to finally stand up and demand more for myself. Because Dammit! It's time that I accept the fact that someone might very well like me enough to want to take me out sometimes. I wish I had learned that many years ago.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Facebook friends and pseudodating

Hello all you pseudodating folks, happy spring 2010. Today's post concerns Facebook. Yes, we all claim to "hate" it, especially now the majority of us are graduated. Nevertheless, I believe almost 100% of the people I know continue to use their profiles.

So, insert pseudodating problem. How soon is too soon to add (or be added) by a pseudodatee? I like to play hard and fast with rules, but any guidance is appreciated. I recently added one such person, after a near month and a half of pseudodating. Seems legitimate? Except...he was listed as "in a relationship"! Red flag #1, check. Yes, curiosity does kill the cat. Of course, this didn't stop me, instead I viewed it as a challenge of sorts.

Red flag #2, being deleted as his Facebook friend after a night of drunken tiffs. What's the deal with that? Can you just go and DELETE someone you are pseudodating because of ONE BAD DRUNKEN NIGHT? Without informing said person, namely me?

Red flag #3, breaking it off in a text message. Should I be surprised that someone who would vindictively delete me as his Facebook friend would also decide that a text message was the best way to cut things off? I'll answer my own question, "no." Did it feel like I was in the 8th grade again, "yes." I guess I can always count my lucky stars that this did not occur in Facebook chat, but we'll save that whole universe for another post.

The moral of this short story is to always be wary of befriending a pseudodater on Facebook. Especially someone you happen to be pseudodating. Who is in another relationship. Who believes text messages are the best way of communicating semi-serious ideas. And, who may or may not only have one testicle.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

How old is too old?

Simple question really. A very subjective one at that. After reading a bit of online commentary on the subject, it seems most believe it is a personal choice, but age differences too vast just don't seem to work out. And it is worth mentioning many of these May-December relationships involve a fair amount of money.
For the sake of this argument, money is not involved and the two parties involved were not particularly looking for a much older/younger person. How old is too old for a young lady to date? For much of history it was not up to the young ladies to decide their fate in relationships, but with these new found rights we have is dating an older man just perpetuating a stereotype? Or is age really just a number? Also, will it be doomed to fail from the beginning? All of these questions are valid, but there are no clear answers.
I have never dated a much older man, I think the biggest age difference boasted in my lifetime was when I was 19 pseudo-dating a 23 year old. Well folks, that personal record may be bested soon.... and perhaps I will even garner some personal answers to the questions above. We shall see. I would love some second opinions as well...

Stay tuned.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Back to work.

Well, my lovelies (or anyone who could possibly still be reading this thing) Spring is here and summer is fast-approaching, so love is clearly in the air. Or is that the allergens? Either way both seem to have the same effect on me -- nothing. I have been up in the Portland area for a while now, and well, I have little to report on the PD front. But fear not, I do have something...

A month back or so, my previous pseudo-dating partner gave me a mysterious text message saying he wanted to talk. After recovering from the shock of him actually wanting to speak openly about "us" or whatever you want to call it, I called the man back. This was one of the more surprising conversations I had participated in for a while as I learned he "missed" me. He also dropped the old, "just got out of a long-distance relationship, and you were moving" line.

*Clarification* I am in no way making fun of this guy, it was actually quite nice to hear, and if that certain guys is reading this... I am really sorry if you are offended, but very few read this and only my blog partner knows who you are.

Back to the point, I was thrown off my game by these comments. So much so that I went to go see him later that night. My proverbial iron-clad shell had been melted (smelted?) away and I really did not stand up for myself as much as I should have. If he missed me, why didn't he call sooner? What happened to make him want to be with me now? And just how recently did this other relationship end?
The moral of this story is that it is still unfinished. I don't know the answers to any of the questions above, I still don't talk to him much, and I have no idea what his intentions (or mine for that matter) are for the future. Learn from my mistakes kids, make him answer your damn questions so you at least have some semblance of what to expect.
I hope to be better at keeping you all informed on the mythical theories of Pseudo-Dating which spring to mind from time to time. Also, I have some intersting hypotheses on what is going on with this guy, let you know if I am right.

Monday, February 2, 2009

The art of not staring deeply into someone's eyes

I get asked the question quite frequently, "Emily, if I see a cute guy at a bar for instance, how do I actually get up the nerve to make conversation?" Your average dating advice giver might say "Well, duh, make eye contact" as a plausible and seeminly rational first step towards initiating contact. 

However, as a dedicated devotee of pseudo-dating, I would argue the opposite. A key rule of pseudo-dating is to make as LITTLE eye contact as possible. Eye contact = interest = hope, and hope --> expectations. And remember, expectations are the number one no-no. At said party/bar/gathering/cafe, try to make eye contact with everyone BUT the person you are actually into. Talk to his/her friends and acquaintances, dance nearby, make funny and charming jokes within his/her auditory range, but never come into actual, normal contact with this person.  Follow this up by continued avoidance, especially if you see this person on the street the next week or something horrible like that.

This is a key step to drawing out and ensuring your pseudo-dating capabilities. Because, c'mon, who would actually want to date like a normal person?

Friday, January 23, 2009

Follow up letters from NYT article

Here are some letters of response to the New York Times article Emily posted a little ways back. Thought I would share these as they give a balanced and positive response to "The Demise of Dating," by Charles M. Blow. 
Maybe the "hookup" and lack of formal dating is a good thing? Thoughts?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009


Congrats from the ladies of Pseudodating to Perz Obama and VP Biden! Go America!

May the promising change to come also encompass all of your dating lives.