Archive for April, 2009

Igniting Relationships

by GemsFromJen under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

I spoke to a guy a couple of nights ago for three hours. He said he was going to call this week. Should I call him? We had a lot in common, what should I do?
 
Dear Stacy,
 
Having a phone conversation for three hours speaks volumes about this guy! Three hours is quite a long time to talk to someone you have never met face to face; I can’t imagine you didn’t have a lot in common.
 
I’m wondering why you are not trusting about his promise to call.  My suggestion would be to send him a very brief email thanking him for a great conversation and you are looking forward to the next time the two of you speak.
 
If he said he was going to call, then trust that he will. If he doesn’t call within the week, keep your dating options open and find someone who is willing to follow through with what is said. Remember, actions speak much louder than words. 
 
Signed,
Gems from Jen


McAggravation

by SweetLo under Relationships

I can’t exactly pinpoint when playing games became somewhat of a requirement to keep both parties interested on the road to relationships, but I do know that it has many people feeling as lost as Kerouac. This strategic little game of phone tag and tactical texting is enough to ensure that both parties are so preoccupied with their next move, they forget about why they ordered the other off the menu in the first place! And, while guys are able to have their choice of chickenheads fried, baked, battered or broiled faster than Mickey D’s can have them admit that they’re loving it, we aren’t exactly able to have it our way with quite so much ease. Eventually, one of the formerly interested parties gets tired of frequenting the usual PHAT food joints. So while he’s scamming on some other white meat, he’s also charbroiling his chances with you. Your once lusted after McHottie is now a less than happy meal, and this USDA grade A choice of meat is no longer perfectly packaged. So you find yourself ready to butcher the entire tryst, and lets face it, a sharp object in hand is a risky little accessory. Thankfully, stainless steel is the new black.


All I Really Need To Know I Learned …

by SWEETADVENTURE8 under Relationships
Last night “Mike,” one of my dearest guy friends, came over to catch up.  As Mike shared his dating adventures, the discussion evolved to the lack of dating etiquette that he had recently witnessed. There is no argument that relationships have layers of complexity, but the reality is–the basics are as simple as Robert Fulgrum told us in All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten (When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands and stick together). Self awareness, observation, consideration, and respect for others is HUGE. I think everyone has their own ideas of what proper dating etiquette “is.” The “Door Test” from A Bronx Tale, is a classic example. After listening to Mike, my few takeaways are:
*Ladies, your date has put effort into planning a nice evening (perhaps even planned based on a unique observation/conversation between the two of you), thus a simple thank you the next day expressing acknowledgment for a well planned evening goes a long way and is greatly appreciated according to Dr. Mike (especially in the beginning).
On the flip side,
*Gentleman, waiting a week to follow up is never cool and does not ever work to your advantage. The whole playing hard to get is so 1990’s. If you had a good time, why wouldn’t you express that and arrange another date? If that is not a possibility, at a minimum reach out and express your desires and that you will follow up afterwards. More communication is always better. Although I begrudgingly accept the Tech Generation and the ease of texting/emailing, there are tremendous benefits of hearing someone’s voice and making an old fashioned phone call.
To be continued…

Men and Children

by GemsFromJen under Relationships

I am a 53-year-old mom with an 8-yr-old child (no other parent involved). I state it in my profile. Over and over, when I meet a man who I go out on a date with, he becomes very ambivalent about having a child come into his life.

Is there a way to screen for this without scaring the good guys away?

Thanks.

Dear Micki,

Good for you! I’m always in awe of parents who raise a child alone.

My suggestion would be to ensure your profile states that your child and you are a package deal. There is no other way; but to state this fact and repeat it a few times throughout your profile. Make sure when communicating with potential dates that you also make your relationship with your child very clear. Being a mother is your first priority and any mature man will understand and appreciate your commitment to your child.

Good luck to you and your child. Keep me posted. I would love to hear about your dating successes!

Signed,
Gems from Jen


The Modern Age Part 2

by GemsFromJen under Online Dating

Based on my last blog entry, I thought it would be a good idea to elaborate on communicating via the old fashioned device some of us may remember–the phone.

Once the first date has concluded, people tend to either freeze or move too quickly. There are ways in which both behaviors can be turned around altogether. If you would rather not see the person again, just move on and let them know you are not interested.  On the other hand, if your time together was memorable and you are interested in a second date, here are some basic guidelines:

•         Wait 48 hours and then call.  Thank your date for your time together and let him/her know what a great time you had.  This leaves the door open for a second date. Mystery and suspense keep us hooked, that is why I recommend 48 hours, but do not leave your potential date waiting too long.  I have found that when people wait too long to call, the other person believes they must not be interested and moves on to the next person waiting for a date. I can remember many nights sitting by my phone and thinking, ‘Is he going to call?’  When he would finally call, my interest had already waned. I no longer wanted to continue something with someone who didn’t have the common courtesy to pick up a phone after spending an entire evening with me.

•         Keep the conversation short, but do not rush. I know this reads as an oxy-moron, but getting to the point and securing a second date is the goal. Know what it is you would like to gain from the conversation and if that goal has been achieved, end the conversation and continue on with your usual routine.

•         If you told the person you would call, then by all means call. Even if your intention is not to pursue anything further.  Let them down gently, but also do not allow yourself to be talked into something that you are not interested in pursuing because of the guilt you might be experiencing. 

•         I’m always asked, “What if he/she does not answer?” Leave a message. If you do not get a return phone call within 24 hours leave another message.  Sometimes things happen that prevent people from getting their messages.  My suggestion is to leave no more than two messages. If the person does not return your phone call after a second message, move on.  Who wants to be dating someone who doesn’t have the common courtesy to at least return a phone call?

•         Lastly, smile while you have the phone conversation, even if you are feeling anxious. This comes across to the person on the other end of the line.  Surprisingly, smiling can help to quiet our anxieties, and can be a confidence booster.

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5 Minutes in Heaven (or …)

by SWEETADVENTURE8 under Online Dating,Relationships

There I was, sitting across the table from a stranger staring me straight in the eye, when the host rang a bell and said, “Topic: Discuss your favorite body part.” The charismatic, good looking fellow across from me bounced up and said, “I’ll go first. My favorite body part is my ass.” He then proceeded to stand up, turn around and shake that thang (I’m not kidding this is 100% true story). He sat down smugly, all proud of himself. “My turn,” I said. Following suit, I stood up, lifted my little t-shirt, and started shaking my twins (breathe: I had a swim suit on). I proceeded to sit down just as smugly. At this point everyone involved in this game (who is otherwise sitting and talking) is staring at us.  And with the sound of a ‘ding’ and the host’s command of “time to rotate,” our five minute speed date was up and it was time to move on. We both quickly turned to each other and formally introduced ourselves – “By the way, nice to meet you Jordan, I’m Michelle.” Everyone laughed.

There was no exchange of resumes or 20 questions, but rather just instant chemistry in a matter of minutes. Luckily, to both our discoveries, the five minutes of senseless banter proved our chemistry for a short-term relationship and a long-term friendship.

Next week, I will venture to give speeddating another try, though I plan to keep my clothes on this time. I am hopeful no one will ask the typical resume questions. I truly believe a lot can be determined in five minutes– instant attraction, a person’s carriage and personality. I guess you never know what shakin’ that thing can teach you.


The Pre-Passover Domestic Misadventures of Moi

by SweetLo under Judaism

You want to know why they have four glasses of wine at the Seder? I’ll tell you. Because after cooking that ridiculous meal all day, four glasses is the only thing that can bring a girl back to sanity. So, let me take you on a guided journey through my day– how lucky for you!

10:00 a.m.- Go to Trader Joes.
10:10 a.m. – Nearly face a head on cart collision in the produce section checking out a guy.
10:11 a.m. – Decide hot guys should not be allowed to shop for groceries before I’ve had my morning caffeine fix. Blame hot guy for my lack of coordination.
11:00 a.m. – Get to my grandmother’s to assume the role as the domestic goddess (that) I am.
11:11 a.m.- Finally find a vintage apron that matches my outfit and decide I’m officially ready to start cooking. I am the best thing since chopped liver. The Millionaire Matchmaker would totally agree.
11:42 a.m. – Decide chopping eggs makes me want a martini– heavy on the vodka, hold everything else.
11:59 a.m. – It has become evident that I will not be eating chopped egg, or other egg like products again in my life. Ever.
12:17 p.m. – Clearly I have earned a lunch break. Clearly. By this point my lunch could come in a grey goose bottle and I would be happy. I also enjoy my last carb concentrated meal.
12:20 p.m.- Bid a tearful goodbye to bread, and all bread-like products. I whisper rest in peace and forget these simple carbohydrates and the special place they hold in my heart. I also console myself by thinking of the fab five pounds I will be losing in the week to come.
12:52 p.m. – Start peeling potatoes.
12:56 p.m.- Manage to slice off almost an entire nail with my potato peeler.
12:57 p.m. – Start dialing 9-1-1 and then realize I might actually live. I am emotionally damaged and will probably suffer from PTSD for years to come, but I will live.
1:20 p.m. – Put a lame looking kosher-for-passover-which-means-it-tastes-nasty kugel in the oven.
1:28 p.m.- Reminded by my grandmother, armed with several four letter words, that wax paper is not oven proof.
1:29 p.m. – Take kugel out and rescue it from the grips of aforementioned evil wax paper.
1:30 p.m.- Realize oven mitts are, in fact, there for a reason.
1:31 p.m.- Stare down the oven. I won.
1:52 p.m.- Stir some concoction on the stove top; put cover back on pot.
2:08 p.m.- Pot bubbles over. Get in a fight with the stove.
2:09 p.m. – Lose fight with stove.
2:20 p.m.- Ask my grandmother if it is time for the first glass of wine yet. She says no.
2:52 p.m.- Decide G-d had it easy because all he had to do was split the Red Sea.
3:14 p.m. – Am no longer allowed near stove or oven.
3:42 p.m.- Attempt to make sure the brisket is awesome and is oh so worthy of Paris Hilton’s “that’s hot.”
3:44 p.m. – Am no longer allowed near sharp objects or any and all kitchen appliances.
4:00 p.m.- Wandering the desert for forty years with no kitchen in sight has never sounded so good.
4:15 p.m. – Completely exhiled from the kitchen. My apron has been retracted. I take comfort in the fact that my frilly apron does not match anyone else’s ensemble. I am now laughing at all the fashion slaves who only have time to make unleavened bread, and not coordinate outfits.
4:30 p.m.- Steal Elijah’s glass of wine. He didn’t have to spend all day in the kitchen.
5:00 p.m.- Eagerly await Seder and more importantly, dinner. Because clearly, I helped.

Chag Pesach Sameach! If Elijah is looking for his wine, tell him giving it to someone who REALLY needs it is a mitzvah.


It Would Have Been Enough…

by SWEETADVENTURE8 under JDate,Relationships

Over a year ago, fresh out of a long distance relationship with no holiday plans, I decided to give the JDate Puerto Rico trip a shot. Since I had never been to Puerto Rico and I love salsa and Latin influences, I figured how bad could lying on the beach in 80 degree weather with some MOTs be? Let’s just say I had low expectations.

Impetuously, I boarded the plane for Puerto Rico. On the first night, there was a big meet and greet dinner where a sweet, attractive, successful guy named David approached me. After several minutes of flirtatious banter, I was grinning…until he mentioned he was from California. Having just ended a bicoastal relationship, “LA David” was the last thing I was looking for – I wrote him off as “GU”– Geographically Undesirable.

The following day, as I met many new friends, I engaged in a variety of conversations, including a debate about the merits of the best baseball teams (White Sox, of course). My newest girlfriend was bewildered by my devotion to the White Sox, especially because her friend David (my flirting partner from the previous night) had expressed the same devotion and connection to the team. Based on some key elements of our conversation, she suggested David and I further get to know each other. Her reasoning?  “You are RELATED.” “Huh? I think I know who my family is.”  Well, apparently, I was wrong. It turns out, David was a third cousin I didn’t even know existed!

Fortunately, the upside was at that particular moment in time, I wasn’t open to long distance and didn’t even consider the possibility of David (in that light). The other upside? I met someone who has not only become a great friend, but someone special in my life that is part of my family tree.

Having 80 degree weather lying on the beaches with some salsa action Would Have Been Enough… But I was blessed and ended up meeting an amazing friend and cousin who I plan on having in my life for years to come.


The Modern Age

by GemsFromJen under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

 

I don’t like aging myself.  Who does really? Once in awhile you have to, and I guess this blog entry will do just that. It dawned on me the other night when I began to text message rather than pick up the phone that I have come into the modern age. When I was a teenager, I called. I had to gather the courage to dial a phone and speak. There was no texting, twittering, instant messaging, or e-mailing. I didn’t change my Facebook status every time the mood struck. If I wanted to know what was happening or how someone was, I picked up the phone, dialed, and had a live conversation with that person. Fast forward to today and there are countless means of communication with the outside world. How does this translate into today’s dating arena?
 
What is the protocol for dating and these modern modes of communication? Can you break up with someone via text messaging? Can you profess your love through an e-mail? Can you begin a relationship by declaring it on Facebook? Let’s face it; we are on JDate and meeting people in ways we would have never thought to be possible a few years back. It is a fantastic way to broaden our dating pools, but does this mean we are damned to communicate electronically once we have met someone that we are interested in dating?
 
My gut tells me no. Electronically communicating is a great first step, but once you begin to make plans to meet, communication ought to be continued over the phone. Electronic communication leaves a vitally important facet out-the voice nuances of the person you are speaking to that come through only with a live conversation. It also tells me that the person is willing to spend the time having a conversation. Emailing or any other electronic means of communication can be interrupted and/or prolonged. This idea might seem old-fashioned to some, but it really does help to curb misinterpretations and miscommunication; not to mention, messages/emails that are never received because they are stuck somewhere in cyber-space.
 
Keep the text messaging, emailing, and instant messaging short and sweet.  Getting to know someone takes work and the more authentically this can be achieved, the better the chance is for a true relationship to follow.

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In A Los Angeles Minute….

by SweetLo under Relationships

In A Los Angeles Minute….

My weekend was a complete blur between the drinks, my girlfriends, and jetlag (so to speak, and so it seemed). My Saturday night started out with the girls. I parked in Siberia to get to a fiesta that had us hiking south of the border (Mexican themed, clearly). The party was great and these hostesses with the most-ess were clearly thinking outside the bun! My little posse however had also rsvp’d to a different engagement and so after about an hour of margarita madness, we were on our way to a cute little neighborhood bar in WeHo with our cell phones, lip glosses, and passports in hand.

Apparently we didn’t get the memo that it was celebrity night at this dive and the stars were slumming for sure (Just trying to keep it real I’d assume, or do they need to ‘up’ their street cred for call sheets?). Well, it looks as though my jet setting was not about to end anywhere near the border, because in a Los Angeles minute I was face to face with gents from South Dakota, and later in the night, from Arkansas. Now it will probably come as a shock to you that these gents were out here to make it big on the silver screen, armed with a not-so-crystal-clear perception of how things really go down in my star-studded city. Now, in a city where casting couches are taken for a ride as often as the new Audi A5’s, a girl’s got to have some rules in order to keep her sanity. These rules of course, are subjective to each gal on the go! For example, one of my favorites is friends don’t let friends date actors. This has proven well for me, because if Fleetwood Mac is right and “players only love you when they’re playing”…well, I can’t waste time on a playboy actor who’s ready to switch leading ladies as often as Fred Segal gets new merch.

So at around 2 a.m., I was ready to head home, jetlagged from another amazing night over the hill and through the canyon into Hollywood. I bid adieu to the cross country nomads that came here with the intention of making it big in a city that has the attention span of a goldfish. I told them to “break a leg,” and walked away, armed with new numbers in my cell, my ‘go-to’ girls, and stories that were well worth the chaos. In a city with a fault line as unstable as the majority of celebutantes and their accompanying headlines, you enjoy every second you have, because like inhabitants near the San Andreas fault line know, everything can change in a Los Angeles minute.