Choose Boston.

On April 15th, a series of bombs went off in Boston. I sat in my office at work and cried at my desk for a really long time. Those two statements are unrelated.

In between tears, I saw the CNN Breaking News emails and the articles popping up online, but to be honest, I couldn’t really process what was happening because I was dealing with my own issues, issues that affected no one but myself, but hurt me in a way that I haven’t hurt in a long time. My mom called me to ask, “Isn’t it horrible what’s happening?” and my answer was yes; I’m not sure if she realized I was talking about not just Boston, but myself.

Three people were killed, tens more were injured, and millions more are now trying to recover from cuts and bruises that can only be felt with the heart, not seen with the eyes. Feelings of loss and betrayal and just gut-wrenching sadness are almost palpable in the photographs that are on the front pages of newspapers and magazine and blogs across the country. In true social media form, tags and posts about hope and love and peace are spreading across Facebook and Twitter and Instagram in an effort to alleviate pain and rationalize a response to these unspeakable horrors.

Along with these messages though, are ones of choice: we should be choosing hope, not despair; peace, not violence; kindness, not cruelty; and strength, not weakness. And I agree. But shouldn’t we always be making these choices? When would you ever choose hate over love? Seriously. When?

People hurt each other every day. People suffer from loss every day. People lie and cheat and steal and are mean (mature word, I know) every day, and we pay so little attention to it until it hits the level of a Boston. Or a Syria. Or a 9/11. And it shouldn’t be that way. Everyone’s heart has been broken and fixed and broken again and maybe they’re getting ready to glue it back together and they need you to just be nice to them for one day, to make them feel wanted or appreciated or visible. Just let them know that you see them.

So look. Try this:

  1. Tell people you love them.
  2. Send someone flowers just because.
  3. Pick up your dog’s poop. I’m not kidding.
  4. Buy a sandwich for the homeless man on the corner who you pass every day.
  5. Smile.
  6. Hold the door.
  7. Recycle.
  8. Tell a neighbor their baby is cute.
  9. Compliment someone’s outfit even if you’ve seen them wear it 87 times already.
  10. Forgive.
  11. Let someone get in front of you on the highway in the middle of rush hour.
  12. Donate those clothes that you haven’t worn a year.
  13. Bake a cake not for yourself.
  14. Tell your parents they were great role models for you.
  15. Call your grandma.
  16. Be honest with others. And with yourself.
  17. Say “Thank you” and mean it.
  18. Ask someone how they’re doing and listen to the answer.
  19. Give a friend a copy of your favorite book.
  20. Tell people you love them.

Choose one of these and do it. If not for yourself, and if not for me, choose it for Boston.

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#sandyhook: More than a hashtag.

There’s no good way to start a post about what happened on Friday morning in Connecticut. There’s no funny story to set the stage, there’s no joke to help me ease in to what I really want to say, there’s no personal example that I can use to help you understand why this is important to me – or why it should be important to you. Part of me thinks that I shouldn’t even be writing this because it doesn’t really have a place in Girls Suck, but part of me thinks that how could I consider not writing this, because where is the appropriate place for talking about the massacre that happened at Sandy Hook Elementary. Nowhere. The answer is nowhere, because it’s not a conversation that we should be having. And yet, here we are, talking about the death of 20 children and six adults and trying to figure out how and why and what could we or should we have done to prevent this from happening.  And that is something that sucks.

I’m not a mother. I don’t know what it’s like to love a child, let alone lose one, but I have parents and a brother and a best friend and a boyfriend and a sister-who’s-not-really-a-sister and a mentor and a second mom and yes, a dog, and a piece of my heart would disintegrate if something happened to any of them. It’s a pain that I choose to not even imagine, a pain that I want to assure myself I’ll never experience, but every time a Columbine or an Aurora or a Blacksburg  happens, I realize that I can’t make that promise to myself. We grow up believing that people are good and nice and do the right thing and if we’re good and nice and do the right thing also, we’ll be okay, but who really knows? No one. And that sucks, also.

On Friday, I tweeted “Just for today, let’s not make this about gun control or God or mental health or politics.” And I meant it. Friday was a day for processing and crying and emotional eating and figuring out how to walk the line between wanting so badly to comfort the community of Newtown but also being so grateful that you weren’t one of them, that you could go home and kiss your kid or your cat or your girlfriend and thank whoever or whatever you believe in for giving you another day together.

But guess what? Friday is over. It’s Monday, and it’s time to do something. As a country, our short-memory is fantastic. We live in a world of hashtags and trending topics and likes, and those are great, but what happens when #26acts or #prayfornewton are replaced by #reasonsilovemyboyfriend and #beliebers4eva and the photo of Victoria Soto – the 27 year-old teacher who barricaded her students in the closet to save them – that’s been circulating Facebook is overshadowed by a new Ryan Gosling or Grumpy Cat meme? We forget. We forget about Charlotte, Daniel, Rachel, Olivia, Josephine, Ana, Dylan, Dawn, Madeleine, Catherine, Chase, Jesse, James, Grace, Anne Marie, Emilie, Jack, Noah, Caroline, Jessica, Avielle, Lauren, Mary, Vicky, Benjamin and Allison because they are not our sons or daughters or sisters or friends. But if we don’t act on their behalf now, we have no one to blame but ourselves when the next tragedy strikes and it’s our tear-stained faces plastered on TV screens across the world and people holding their loved ones close and whispering “Thank goodness it wasn’t us.”

It would be naïve to think that we could magically fix our broken system to somehow prevent acts like this from happening ever again, but it is equally naïve to think that we shouldn’t even try. Yes, we need to think about gun control, but we also need to think about mental health services and socio-economic inequality and Hollywood and video games and music and education and family structure and sure, I’ll say it, love. How do we treat each other and how do we value each other and how do we ensure that people at every level feel like they have a choice in how their future plays out? There is no reason average citizens should have access to assault rifles but there is also no reason that a young person should feel like they have no way out of life except by taking it from someone else. Maybe all we can hope for at first is a Band-Aid, and maybe it will be one of those little tiny strips that only fit on your pinky and seem too small to actually do anything, but it’s a start.

And it’s better than a #hashtag.


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Notinthegoodway goes emo. (Sorry this is your “Welcome back!” post)

It’s been a really long time since I wrote anything. Like, long enough that if I had gotten pregnant on the day that I did my last post, I’d already be in my second trimester. Holy shit, that’s a scary thought (PS: Happy Halloween, bitches! PPS: Use protection!). Anyway, my lack of entry wasn’t due to lack of trying – I’m pretty sure I started at least 11 topics and thought they all sucked, so not like I owe you any sort of explanation, but there it is. Kind of.

Anyway, I’m back, but don’t hold your breath for one of my traditional snarky posts. Sometimes this betch called Life gets in the way of our plans and makes us feel or think something totally different than what we had intended to feel or think, and that’s what’s been going on with me, so now that’s what you get to read about. Enjoy. Or hate it. You can let me know either way.

I always wanted to be one of those girls that kept a diary. I can’t even tell you how much money I spent on fancy-ass notebooks when I was a kid, convincing myself that one of them would “speak” to me and I’d be so committed to writing my hopes and dreams and pre-teen bullshit down every night and it would be awesome. Well, that was a 97% massive fail. My 3% success was buying a giant blank sketch book with some inspirational quote on the cover on sale at Borders in 2001. I don’t draw, and if I do, it usually rivals the artwork of a blind toddler holding a pencil with his feet, so I’m unsure why I thought purchasing this book was a good idea…but it’s like taking that last tequila shot of the night when you feel like maybe you’re about to have some crazy adventure (or go home and pass out in front of the refrigerator with a bowl of cold macaroni and cheese), so you do it.

In 2001, I was 16. Gasp, assuming you can do basic math, now you know my real age. The first thing I wrote in this book was a letter to Me basically saying that I have life all figured out. I was self-confident bordering on cocky and told my teenage self audience that I was so lucky to not care about what anyone else thought because I was untouchable and knew everything.

Holy fuck, was I wrong.

Here’s the thing: I give myself credit for being so assured about who I was, but the reality of the situation is that I was sorely mistaken. In 2001, I hadn’t had sex, or been in love, or had real fights with my best friend, or had a job, or paid my own bills, or gotten my Masters degree, or had my heart broken, or struggled with my weight, or felt so lonely that  getting out of bed felt like a waste of energy because who would care anyway. I hadn’t owned a dog, or not been able to make a credit card payment, or watched someone I love go to jail, or spoken at my grad school graduation, or gotten a tattoo, or been the Maid of Honor in a wedding.

Even now, I’ve done all these things, and I don’t even know if I’m sure of who I am. Some days I think I’m untouchable and other days I think a weak gust of someone else’s wind could blow me over and getting up would be a massive struggle.

If there’s anything I’ve come to realize over the past few months, it’s that we’re never done growing or learning or figuring out what’s important to us and why and what do we want to do for ourselves and for others. Being self-confident is great, but not at the expense of closing yourself off to new people and new experiences. Not only do we deserve the right to change, but we should change – that’s called growing up (cue Mr. Rodger’s theme song music here.).

But don’t get me wrong, there are pieces of me that I know probably aren’t going anywhere for a long time. My Book of Feelings (yes, I’m aware that name is super-gross but I’m not sure what else to call it, so fuck you and keep reading) is littered with me falling for the wrong guy, being confused as to where or why a relationship went wrong, feeling like the odd-girl out, struggling with wanting to tell someone how much I care about them but being too scared that they won’t understand – and ultimately, that’s who I am. Those aspects of me have stayed the same for as long as I can remember, and no amount of soul searching or alcohol will make them be anything different. But what I’m not is a girl who’s afraid to try new things, to meet new people, to go to new places, to admit when I’m wrong, to let you teach me about something because it matters to you, to make a jackass out of myself because it will make someone else smile. And that’s what life is about. 

I don’t really know what the moral of this is…maybe something like hold on to your core but never stop wanting to expand the rest of you and never stop seeking out people who make you want to be better or different or more than you are right now – because they’re out there if you’re willing to find them. And be nice to people – we’re all a work in progress.  


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Whoever said “Big girls don’t cry” has obviously never actually met a girl in real life – big or otherwise. Dumbass.

Clearly, there are a lot of things that annoy me about girls, but pretty high on my list is their (ok, our) insane lack of emotional control – specifically, crying. Before you call me a cold-hearted, soulless bitch, I’m not talking about shedding tears during a sad movie or at a funeral; I’m talking about sporadically starting to sob for no apparent reason in what may or may not be a public or inappropriate place. Yesterday, I saw a woman become hysterical in the middle of Starbucks because I assume the barista made her “quad, half caf, venti, three-pump vanilla, three-pump hazelnut soy, extra hot, extra foam, extra whip with cinnamon sprinkles” with only two pumps of vanilla. That’s clearly the only logical explanation. I know, I know…I’m going to hell.

But, anyway, look: on the one hand, I clearly want to say girls suck because they like to turn on their waterworks in less-than-ideal locales and at inopportune times and they’re stupid and annoying and look super-idiotic; but on the other hand, I have to admit that the past few months have been incredibly tear-filled for me, so by default, I’ve been sucking. A lot. And definitely not in the good way. I can recall multiple days on which my roommate has come home only to find me wailing (literally) uncontrollably in bed, unable to even really articulate why I’m so sad. And honestly, sometimes I’m not even sure if I really know. It’s so dumb. So, so dumb.

Clearly I’m not alone, and ladies, we all know there’s nothing more embarrassing (or awkward) than not being able to answer when someone asks, “Hey, why are you so upset?” They’re trying to be nice and you have nothing to say. So, to help you, I’ve put together a list of the top 100 reasons you or your girlfriend or your mom or your sister or your female barista or any given chick might be crying at any given time, in any given place. Enjoy. And thank me later.

  1. You’re having a bad hair day.
  2. You’re having a bad hair day and you have a really important meeting.
  3. You’re having a bad hair day and you have a really important date. First date. Or possible proposal date.
  4. You have nothing to wear and all your clothes make you feel as tiny as a baby elephant.
  5. You’re trying to lose weight and you swore you’d fit into your skinny jeans by Tuesday and now it’s Tuesday and there’s no way those fuckers are zipping.
  6. Your dog head-butted you in the face.
  7. Your dog peed on the carpet
  8. Your dog peed on your Kate Spade comforter.
  9. That cute boy never texted you.
  10. That cute boy never texted you back.
  11. You have no beer in the house.
  12. You have no wine in the house.
  13. You don’t have enough expendable income to buy more alcohol.
  14. You don’t have enough expendable income to buy a new pair of jeans, which you need because you haven’t lost enough weight yet.
  15. You heard a song on the radio that reminded you of your ex.
  16. You saw the same car that your ex drives and it reminded you of him.
  17. You saw the same car. Again. Twice in one day. Asshole.
  18. You logged on to Facebook and saw six more friends got engaged.
  19. You logged on to Facebook and saw four more friends got pregnant. On purpose.
  20. You logged on to Facebook and saw that cute boy (who still hasn’t texted you back) is in a relationship with someone else.
  21. You actually hate the girl who your crush is now dating. Fuck you, Zuckerberg.
  22. You need a job.
  23. You need a new job.
  24. You can’t figure out how to properly format your resume.
  25. You figure out how to properly format your resume but forget to save the new document and you accidentally delete it. Technology is the worst.
  26. Your parents are pressuring you about finding a job. Or a new job.
  27. Your parents are pressuring you about finding a boyfriend.
  28. Your parents tell you that their best friends’ daughter just got engaged to a Ryan Gosling look-alike who also has a Ph.D. and a trust fund. Where the fuck is your dream man?
  29. Your parents make you feel like a general failure. Why don’t they just start calling you Casey Anthony at this point?
  30. You text an ex and tell him you miss him and he doesn’t respond.
  31. You hate yourself for texting him in the first place.
  32. You hate yourself for still liking him.
  33. You re-count in your mind every conversation, ever interaction and try to figure out where you went wrong, even though you kind of logically know it wasn’t your fault things ended.
  34. You get a voicemail from a friend you haven’t talked to in a long time and it’s really sweet.
  35. But then you feel guilty for not keeping in better touch.
  36. You get a really weird eyebrow wax.
  37. You get a really weird haircut.
  38. You order something very expensive online from the Non-Returnable section of a website and when you see it in person, it’s ugly. Like, really ugly.
  39. You get your period.
  40. You get your period and you’re wearing white pants.
  41. You don’t get your period.
  42. You have to tell your boyfriend you didn’t get your period.
  43. You have to tell your parents you didn’t get your period.
  44. You realize probably neither your crush nor that cute boy will ever text you back.
  45. You go on a date with another guy who sucks. Why can’t you find a good man?
  46. You go on a date with another guy who’s awesome, but he clearly isn’t interested in you. Why can’t you find a good man who likes you back?
  47. Your iPad breaks.
  48. Your iPad breaks and it’s a mere $500 to fix it. You don’t even have enough money to buy alcohol or jeans, let alone fix this toy.
  49. Speaking of toys, your dog found your vibrator. Ew.
  50. You want to talk to a friend about why you’re crying, but when you scroll through your phone, there’s no one who you think will understand.
  51. You feel lonely.
  52. You think about friends who you used to have who you don’t anymore.
  53. You want a boy to come cuddle with you.
  54. You really want a boy to come cuddle with you.
  55. A friend gets mad at you for something that’s “Oh my God, so stupid.” You try not to care. But you do.
  56. But then you feel like a bad friend. Again.
  57. You tell your parents you’re going away for the weekend and they call you frivolous with money. Meanies.
  58. You feel weird because part of you is an adult but part of you is still like a little kid.
  59. You get a bill in the mail that’s much higher than you’re prepared to pay. Shit.
  60. You realize being a grown-up is balls.
  61. You find out from a friend that another friend thinks you’re a bitch.
  62. Are you a bitch? Holy shit, you might be a bitch.
  63. Your best friend gets married and you realize you’re about to start a whole new chapter of your friendship and that scares you.
  64. Your best friend gets married and you become terrified that you’ll be alone and single forever.
  65. Your best friend gets married and she looks beautiful and that makes you tear up. Not sure why.
  66. You try to bake a cake for a potluck at work and you burn it.
  67. The cake is from a boxed mix, so now you feel like a worthless female.
  68. Your crush finally texts you…to ask advice about how to ask out another girl.
  69. You see a really big spider crawl across your floor.
  70. You wish you had a man who you could ask to come over and kill the really big spider.
  71. You feel lonely. Again.
  72. You lay out and get really sunburned. It hurts and you feel stupid.
  73. You want to wear a strapless dress on a date but your sunburn makes you look like an idiot.
  74. You get an expensive manicure and two nails chip the next day.
  75. You decide to take yourself out for dinner and it rains.
  76. No one hits on you even though you look decent and are sitting at the bar by yourself.
  77. It’s official – Karma hates you.
  78. You visit a place that you love and get sad because you can’t be there all the time.
  79. You visit a place that you love and get sad because you realize a lot of things have changed and you’re scared it might not be around much longer.
  80. You run into an ex-hookup on the street and he doesn’t remember your name.
  81. There’s something weird going on with your hormones.
  82. The only people who email you on your online dating website are weird. And unattractive. What is wrong with you?!
  83. Your dog crushes your new pair of sunglasses in the car.
  84. You accidentally rear-end someone at a red-light.
  85. You can’t find your car insurance or registration, even though you swear it’s in your glove compartment.
  86. You disappoint someone whose opinion means the most to you.
  87. And we all know disappointing someone is worse than actually making them mad.
  88. God, you really miss your ex.
  89. You try to talk to your mom about something and she suggests you “bring it up with your therapist.” Awesome.
  90. Now you feel damaged and unstable.
  91. You do bring it up with your therapist and you realize something about yourself that you wish you didn’t know.
  92. You feel like maybe you’ll just never be good enough. For anyone.
  93. You eat your feelings and feel even worse.
  94. You drink your feelings and feel even worse than you did when you ate your feelings.
  95. You see a picture of you and your friends from high school and realize things will never be like that again.
  96. You feel unappreciated.
  97. You stub your toe. Really hard. Fuck, that’s painful.
  98. You run out of your favorite lip gloss and you need more. Immediately.
  99. You forget to separate your whites and colors one time (just once!) and your favorite white shirt comes out splotched with pink. Fail.


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What the eff are you wearing and do you care about having any friends?

Ok. So, I’m back (God, I’ve got to stop saying that in the beginning of these posts!). I’m thrilled that so many of you liked the last entry, alas I can’t be that emotionally vulnerable on a regular basis, so we’re officially returning to me being kind of a bitch. I know you can hardly wait.

In case you missed it – or you live literally on the opposite side of the world (hey, Aussies, you’re hot, I want to hook up with 97% of you) – us here in ‘Merica have officially entered Summer, aka almost every one’s favorite season. There are things I love about this time of year: popsicles, day-drinking, the beach, male lifeguards (ok, males without shirts on in general), sundresses, being tan, BBQs, baseball games; but there are also things I don’t love: bikinis, me sweating everywhere, people sweating on me, mosquitoes, little kids all over the place….and horrible, terrible, have-you-ever-seen-this-piece-of-reflective-glass-called-a-mirror fashion creations.

Over the past two weeks, my ocular organs (or eyes, as you might like to call them) have been accosted by some of the worst outfits ever. Granted, some have been on men – no one with actual balls should wear Daisy Duke-style jorts – but I must admit, most of the culprits are women. So, I gotta say, girls suck because their ability to put together an acceptable ensemble apparently disappears when warm weather hits.

Doubt me? Check it out:

Shorts and Uggs: I can’t handle even one iota of this trend. Look, if it’s hot enough for you to wear shorts tiny enough that I can see the bottom of your pockets, it’s clearly too hot for your feet to be stuffed in fur-lined boots. FUR LINED. Do you understand what that means? I went to graduate school in Michigan and wore my little nuggets of sheepskin comfort so my toes didn’t freeze together when I had to walk to class in blizzard after blizzard, and you want to wear them when it’s 100 degrees outside? How? Why? They’re not even cute when they’re worn appropriately! Also, if you decide to rock this look, don’t you dare complain about your paws sweating. I’ll punch you in the throat for both looking weird and being a whiny vagina.

Non-regular tops and regular bras: Ok, I have boobs, and they’re not the smallest things ever. I understand the challenges of wanting to wear halter tops and backless shirts and things that tie in weird places but manage to look really cute when they’re worn properly. But what the fuck kind of bra goes with some of those bad boys? The answer in most cases, unfortunately is “the kind that doesn’t offer enough control.” Womp womp. So, no, I don’t wear the shirts because I don’t want to look like a jackass with my whole bra out for the world to see. Call me crazy, but I don’t think it’s hot/classy/attractive/enticing/a turn-on to wear an, um, unconventional top with a good old-fashioned “regular” bra. Accept the fact that not every trend works for every body and move on.

Non-regular tops and no bras (Note: Chicks with small, cute boobs, just skip this one and know that I hate you.): Look! I get it. Girls with boobs get shafted sometimes in the fashion world, but what’s worse than wearing the wrong bra with a shirt? Throwing in the towel and going free with no bra! I’m sorry, that’s unacceptable. I don’t want to see your nips, I don’t want to see your sideboob, I don’t want to see your underboob. You know you need support, I know you need support, and your au natural vibe just makes you look crazily out of control. No one can pull of swinging breasts, I promise. Yes, going sans bra is absolutely sexy – if you’re in the bedroom (or kitchen, or living room, or on a deserted island) with your significant other, not out running errands on the streets of a major metropolis. Again, sometimes you just can’t pull it off. That’s all.

Bathing suits: The other day, I was walking my dog down literally one of the busiest pedestrian streets in the city and when I casually turned my head to the left, my eyeballs were assaulted by a chick wearing a bikini. Only a bikini (and oh, rollerblades. Legit rollerblades. But that’s a whole other topic.). I’m sorry – what are you doing? Where do you think you’re going? The only “bodies of water” near me are public fountains, so it’s not like swimming was an option, and honestly, even if she was planning on blading to the beach, have we never heard of a cover-up? Or shorts? Was she not chafing (ew)? Look, at the end of the day, bathing suits are meant to be worn in a specific context – ya know, one usually involving swimming or tanning -  so stick to that, ok thanks bye.

Winter apparel. I know, I know, this one sounds obvious – but then again, so does not rollerblading nearly naked and look where that got us. Anyway, all I have to say is parkas, turtlenecks, corduroys, knitted scarves…put that shit away once the average daily temperature is above 75 degrees. I will absolutely concede the fact that every now and then there’s a freakishly cold day in August, but there are ways to keep yourself warm in season-appropriate articles of clothing. Hello, let me introduce you to my friend, Layering! He loves light fabric and will keep you warm without making you look like an idiot. You’re welcome.

Tight things. I’m confused – someone please explain to me the correlation between high temperatures and the appeal of smushing yourself into pieces of fabric that do nothing except make you look like an overstuffed sausage? When I get hot, I want to get naked. However, in my 27 years on the planet, I’ve learned that if you plan on interacting with the human race in public, you need to cover yourself. That being said, the more naked I “feel,” the better – the looser my clothes are, the more I can pretend I’m not wearing anything. (Yep, that’s how my brain works.) The “Look Ma, all Spandex!” ensembles don’t do your body any favors unless you happen to be a Victoria’s Secret Angel, in which case, die, and probably make you sweat about 8 times more than necessary, and just…no. If you can’t breathe or I can essentially see every minute curve of your body, you’re doing it wrong.

Little things: It’s unbelievable how many times I want to approach chicks on the street and say something like, “Oh my God, I love your shirt. For a child.” I understand the urge to expose your skin – it’s definitely keeps you cooler – but come on, leave something to the imagination. Don’t wear shorts so short I can see the bottom of your ass cheeks, and a crop top V-neck that manages to expose both your entire midsection and 87% of your cleavage. In this case, less is definitely less. Also, while we’re on the subject, if your bikini top is so small that it literally covers only your nipples, I hope you get bitten by a shark and/or a little kid pees on you in the pool.

Random other summer things that are stupid: Crocs; sandals and socks; high-heeled or wedge sneakers; full outfits made of mesh; feather accessories; harem pants; sunglasses that cover 75% of your face; heels and bikinis; beach cover-ups not at the beach…

So what’s the moral here? Girls, I’m judging you – and so is the rest of humanity. Dress wisely. Or at least a little less dumbly.


Filed under Annoying In Public

Things that are scary: thunderstorms, chain saws, rabid dogs, and clowns. Oh, and trusting people.

I started to write a lot of different things this week – Lord knows I have no shortage of material on why or how girls suck. Clearly. Unfortunately, however, many failed intro paragraphs later, this is what I ended up with, and I have to say, it’s not like anything I’ve written about here before. If you’re not into seeing the softer side of @nothinthegoodway, I urge you to stop reading now and come back next soon(no really, I swear, no more of this going-a-month-without-writing bullshit)  when I promise to give you more of the sexually-frustrated, bitchy, 20-something single girl ripping apart her gender you’ve come to know and (potentially) kind of love. And if you’re still with me, I hope you don’t hate me by the end of this post.

Relationships are scary. Every single fucking one. With acquaintances, with best friends, with family, with co-workers, with fuck buddies, with boyfriends and girlfriends and spouses and one-night stands. They all have elements of judgment and vulnerability and respect and love and passion and desire and empathy and “Holy shit, what are you doing and what am I doing and what are we doing?” But above all, relationships are scary because of some little thing called trust, which personally makes me want to get super-drunk, crawl into bed, pull the covers over my face, force one of my cats to spoon with me, and maybe never interact with the human race again. Or something like that.

I’ve had my heart broken more than once, and not just by guys I’ve been dating. And yes, when I say heart break, I mean the kind where you sit in the corner of a bar and literally cry into your whiskey “Piano Man” style, and you can’t listen to the radio at all because every song reminds you of something or someone you’re trying to forget, and your parents think you’ve been abducted by aliens because they’ve never seen their daughter act like this – ever. On the surface, these emotional meltdowns couldn’t have been more different: sure, there was the stereotypical case of the guy who told me he was ready for me to meet his parents and then stopped returning my calls the next day, but there was also the best friend who covered up an incredible secret for years and the relative who cut me out of his life when other things got in the way. They all left their own scars on me somewhere.

But below the surface – cue Jaws theme song here – all of my pain was rooted in the same thing: trust. With relationships, you give a piece of yourself to another person and you trust that they’ll take care of it…and take care of you. You trust that they mean what they say and their intentions are pure and that they’re as honest with you as you are with them. But sometimes it doesn’t work out that way. Sometimes people hurt you or hurt someone you love and whether it’s intentional or not, it happens. They lie, or pull away, or disappear or send you a text message that says, “Sorry, it’s not you, but she feels right and you don’t.” Oh. Okay.

And then part of your trust is gone.  And sometimes you can get it back but sometimes you can’t and you have to admit that you’re too broken to give it another chance.

There’s a part of me that wishes I was the kind of person who could go through life wearing an emotional bubble suit that would keep people at least three feet away from my heart at all times. Or that I could download an app (for Blackberry – I know, I ride a baby dinosaur to work, too) to instantaneously send me a message like “I’m sorry, you’re heading into the Danger Zone” every time someone was saying all the right words but secretly crossing their fingers behind their back. Would things be easier if I could avoid every person and situation that might end in alcoholism and tears? Yes. A hundred times yes.

But that suit doesn’t exist and that app doesn’t exist and that easy path doesn’t exist, either. So what happens now?

First, you get hurt. Badly. Second, you drink a lot. Or eat a lot. Or both, honestly – whatever makes you feel physically worse but emotionally better in the shortest amount of time. Beer and macaroni and cheese do it for me. And you cry. Yes, a lot. Probably by yourself. Third, you start trusting again. Because there’s no other alternative.  And you try to not hold the mistakes of others against those who you don’t even know and you realize that not everyone will hurt you and you remember that even the best people make bad decisions sometimes and it doesn’t make them monsters. It just makes them human.

The alternative to not trusting is being scared and alone; and that’s not an option for me. People have made me incredibly sad, but that’s usually only after they’ve made me incredibly happy, and sometimes, that really is worth it. I know that I have the capacity to love and to be loved and not everyone can be that lucky. I’ve learned something from every relationship and while I can’t say I remember each and every lesson, I know they’re a part of me, somewhere. There are people in my life who have never hurt me, and maybe they will in the future, but I can’t live in a world of what-ifs and contingency plans. So, I pick up pennies and wish on falling stars and blow on stray eyelashes – and choose to trust.


Filed under Yes, I Do It, Too

You know that song “It’s Raining Men?” Yeah, it’s a lie. If you want a man, get off your ass and find one.

Welcome back! Yes, I totally just welcomed myself back to my own website. Deal with it. I know it’s been a while since my last post (honestly, I was kind of appalled when I realized I hadn’t written anything since March!) but anyway, spring is here and it’s time to get back in the game.

And speaking of spring – not only is this the season of flowers and sunshine and rompers (ugh – if I see a camel-toe, you’re dead to me) but it’s also the season when girls get whiny – like, really whiny – about being single. There’s something in the air that makes chicks want to be with someone in a more-than-casual capacity, and honestly, as an unattached female, I get it. As cheesy as it sounds, now that the weather has turned, I want a guy who will hold my hand in public when we walk around the city, and take me on a picnic just because it’s finally 80 degrees and sunny, and help me clean off my back patio so I can successfully grill outside (or so he can successfully grill outside, let’s be real.). And yes, someone to have consistent, um, physical contact with wouldn’t hurt either.

But, here’s the catch. Contrary to what Lifetime or Disney or, oh, your dreams might have you believe, perfect men don’t just fall out of the sky and into your living room (or bed).  Being in a relationship means you have to find someone first, and finding someone means you have to look, and looking means you have to get off your ass and be slightly proactive about interacting with the human race. And, let’s face it, girls suck because they don’t want to do anything except cry about being alone. Guess what Sweetheart – that doesn’t help. At all.

So, let’s think about this logically. You want a boyfriend. Some single man out there wants a girlfriend. What do you do? First, stop moping. Then (all while being as normal and non-needy as possible)…

Dress like you give a shit. Have you ever heard that saying “Don’t dress for the job you have – dress for the job you want?” Well, if you haven’t,  you’re welcome. Now, stretch your mind and try to apply that thought to our current scenario. Wearing ratty sweats and T-shirts stolen from one-night stands in the privacy of your own living room where your cats are the only, uh, people who can judge you is acceptable; wearing that same ensemble out into the world is not. Or, is not if you’re concerned about someone hitting on you. Look, if you know me, you know I’m basically the authority on dressing down. There are some people reading this who probably knew me for years before they ever saw me put on a dress, and you better fucking believe if it’s a Saturday morning and I may or may not still be drunk, I’m wearing my pajamas to the Wawa down the street. But, the reality of the situation is this: if you’re an adult female trying to snag an adult male, you have to look relatively attractive if you want attention. And no, I’m also not saying dress like a whore. I just mean dress in what makes you look and feel good, and might drive someone else to want to make you feel good, as well.

Talk to people. Duh. Yes, this has to go on the list. It’s amazing how many of my girlfriends will say, “Oh. Em. Gee. I was in line at Starbucks and the guy behind me was so cute and he had great shoes and he had a puppy that was adorable and he was holding The Fountainhead which is my favorite book ever EVER and he was wearing a T-shirt from my college and I think I’m in love.” And then I say, “Congrats! Did you get his number?” And then they say, “Obvi not, I didn’t even smile at him.” Ok. Really? I know that all of us girls want to believe that the guy always has to make the first move, but that’s dumb. I’m not saying throw yourself at every penis that you might be attracted to, but definitely absolutely positively make conversation when the opportunity is staring you in the face and there are 900 things you could ask him while you’re waiting for your coffee. Yes, he might have a girlfriend. Yes, he might be gay. Yes, he even might be totally uninterested in you. But so what – you took 12 seconds out of your day and said hi to someone. And maybe, just maybe, he’ll offer to buy your soy mocha latte with half whipped cream and a shot of vanilla caramel sprinkled with chocolate and crack and want to discuss Ayn Rand with you in a corner booth. Human interaction for the win!

Whore yourself out to friends. No, don’t make them pay you for your company…but do let them know that you’re single and ready to mingle (but ew, don’t use that phrase. It sounds weird.). I know, it might be rare that one of these “So, I really, really think you and my friend Dan would get along so well!! Here’s his number.” situations works out, but hey, you never know. If that kind of blatant set-up freaks the hell out of you, go for a tamer version. Ask your friend to invite you and Dan to the same house party, open bar, happy hour, or open bar and facilitate the introduction. Basically, the more people who know you’re ready to date, the better. The end.

Hit the Internet. Yes, I do mean online dating. When I first moved to the big, bad city I currently live in, I knew what felt like two people. I didn’t have a close group of girlfriends and my core drinking buddies were dudes, which, let’s face it, is not conducive to picking up other dudes. After being literally dragged to my computer by my roommate, I joined a dating site that shall remain nameless, and guess what – I loved it. I went out with some weirdos (okay, mostly weirdos), but I almost always had a good time, I met some cool people, tried out some new bars and got a lot of free drinks (and the stories I have are absolutely priceless. For real.). Is it frustrating? A little bit, yes – for every good guy you find, there are at least 17 creepers to wade through. But is it fun and easy and painless – a lot bit, yes. And hey, you can flirt from the comfort of your couch, with your cats, wearing those ratty sweatpants I yelled at you for earlier. You don’t even need to take a fucking shower to spit game. Bam.

Throw out your lists. All of them. If you’re whining about being single because you have a checklist as long as a roll of toilet paper of all the things you look for in a man and you’re refusing to compromise on any one of your ridiculous qualifications, I have no sympathy for you. If you take every other piece of my advice but say “no” to each person who doesn’t meet all of your insane “needs,” you will be single forever. Dating is about having new experiences with new people and giving yourself and others a chance. Saying “yes” to a drink doesn’t mean you have to get married – it just means you have to be open to the possibility of…something good.

If you’re one of those people who reads the first and last sentence of a story, a) you’re lazy, considering there aren’t even 1500 words in this whole post and b) here’s your major take-away: if you’re looking for a boyfriend, just try. Try something. Put yourself out there, even if it’s the tiniest “out there” ever. The world doesn’t bite, and most men don’t either (unless it’s been a night where you’ve only taken tequila shots – then all bets are off), and you have nothing to lose by looking cute, being nice and saying hi. Two letters. Give it a shot. Report back to me. Over and out.


Filed under The Love Game