Electives

by Aaron under JBloggers,Judaism,Online Dating,Single Life

As my semester nears its end, I get to do that joyous thing we all love to do in school: choose classes for the next semester. For once I am in the first group to register for classes, but it is still daunting. In the spirit of relating most of my dating blogs to business school lessons, I thought about the electives I’ve chosen to take in the last year of my personal life.

For starters, I decided to leave my job in retail management. This decision initially stemmed from my unhappiness in the job, but ultimately came to be meaningful in taking me back to my favorite part of life, learning. I love being a student more now than ever, and value every second I get to spend learning new, exciting things about the world of business.

Then, probably the second biggest thing is my religiousness. I started keeping Kosher for the most part in the last year, getting rid of milk and meat combinations, then all treif meat, and ideally going fully Kosher when I move to New York in the coming year (which I am hoping to do for my internship, and am open to job offers if readers have them!). I wrap tefillin every morning that isn’t Shabbat, and I am almost Shomer Shabbos (hindered by driving distance to my current shuls, but another situation I intend to fix by next year). I feel prouder of my involvement in my religion, and truly feel like I’ve seen myself grow.

Lastly, there’s my dating life. In the last year I’ve opened myself up to a lot of different things. Different girls than I’d normally date, sometimes in different cities than I’d ever dated (or lived) in. And I can say hands down, this year has been the best year of my dating life ever. I think a lot of it stems from the previous two areas of my life, areas that have allowed me to feel more whole than I ever have. I come across as more open to anything now, and truly love the adventures my life has taken me on.

So those are my electives for the year. I’m sure next year will bring a very different set, and that’s great. Whatever your choices are, or have been, there is no one else signing up before you, either, and now is the time to start picking your electives, too.


The Weekend

by JeremySpoke under Success Stories

The weekend is supposed to be a nice break from the week, but I’ve had a tenuous relationship with the weekend. As a kid, I didn’t really care either way, because school was a joke, and I did whatever I wanted all the time. I actually remember waking up on Saturday mornings before I was supposed to. What the hell was I thinking? I really had not yet grasped the true meaning of weekend.

Through junior high, the weekend grew more important. Junior high school was terrible, and I needed the weekend to recover from the teasing, the beatings, anything involving math, and that time this girl said I was cute and then said some smart ass comment that I will relive in horror for the rest of my life. This is when I started sleeping a lot. There was really no reason to wake up. I had no friends, no girlfriends, and a huge bed.

Then, during the first half of high school, I remained friend/girlfriendless. The weekend started weighing on me, though, as I would spend the entire time in my room watching television. In 1992, I was depressed on Sunday nights before school started for the week. By 1999, I was depressed on Friday afternoons knowing I would have to spend the next two-and-a-half days alone, unintentionally being humiliated by my parents trying to force me to make friends. I can remember reading the TV Guide, and literally writing down an entire television-watching schedule for the weekend. I took Must See TV for its most literal connotation. I know Must See TV referred to Thursday night, but this is just an example. It got so bad, I can actually remember writing Caroline in the City into my schedule. If you have ever seen Caroline in the City, and somehow still haven’t killed yourself, you now understand, that after I have written over 200 self-loathing posts, sometimes chronicling unfathomable lows, how bad my life has been.

By the end of high school, I had friends. The weekend was fun again. I still didn’t have a girlfriend, but I did have some female friends, and sometimes I got to sit next to them in cars. I did have a few short-lived girlfriends, though, but they were terrible. Our relationships were short-lived, not their lives. They’re probably okay now, living out their horrible lives regretting ever sitting next to me in a car.

By early college, my obsessive-compulsive disorder and general anxiety started spiraling out of control. By this point, I would often lose track of what day it was, and could not discern between the week and the weekend. It all blended together in a pool of worry, sweat, tears, and pacing around the hall of my dorm. This lasted a few years until I transferred schools, and things started getting a lot better. However, switching schools brought me back home, and most of my friends were back in college. Life was okay again, but lonely. I would often spend the weekend with my family, which was still great.

After graduation, I finally somewhat completed getting my life together by losing weight and getting a great job. For a while, I disliked the weekend again. I liked/like my job a lot, and most of my friends still did not live in this city. During the weekends, I was so tired, I would just end up sleeping and pretty much spending the entire time alone again. I would try to get the Houston friends I have to meet me Fridays after work for happy hour, but this would prove difficult, as most of them have lives/relationships. Sometimes, I would go to a bar after work by myself for a while, go to dinner by myself, and go home for the evening.

I finally found a great girl, and things seem to be falling into place. The weekend is fun again, and the week is pretty swell as well. I still struggle with a lot of things, but I’m achieving some sort of balance or something. I say that while simultaneously making sure that I’m perfectly centered on my bed while constantly worrying that the last email I wrote didn’t have a period after the last sentence. I must now go lock and unlock my front door eight times.

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Schooled

by JeremySpoke under JBloggers

The science teacher called on me even though I totally did not have my hand up to volunteer. I got up in front of my whole kindergarten class as the teacher introduced me to the peers I already knew. Today, we were talking about differences (i.e. the differences between shapes, colors, etc.)

There were two circles drawn on the board. The teacher put a yellow square inside one and a red rectangle inside the other. Then she said, “Jeremy, how are these two objects categorized?” I answered, “By shape.” “Nope,” she answers. “Okay, by color?” “No” “What is it, Jeremy?” “I can’t think of anything,” I said. Then the whole class started laughing and pointing at me. I felt mortified. Not because I was being laughed at by a large group of people, but because this happened yesterday. I, a TA, was laughed at by a group of kindergarteners for being stupid.

I stood there, while kindergarteners laughed right at my face. I tried my best to think of how else those two objects could have been categorized. Have my past four years with no formal education made me stupider than someone who can’t tie hisown shoes without either crying or vomiting? No, this would not stand. “Excuse me. Sorry to interrupt in the middle of your lesson. I just…I cannot see how else those two objects are different from one another. I said ‘shape’ and by gosh, I will not back down.” “Oh. I’m sorry. I shouldn’t have used a rectangle when I meant to use a square. I’m sorry.” Despite her apology, I don’t feel like I received emotional compensation for the gravitational strain that this will have had on my afternoon. “Can you please tell the children that I’m not stupid, and that when Michael Friedman told me, in 1989, that I have never been to Disney World® , he was wrong?” “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” she said.

Oh! This week, I also joined another dating site. So far it’s not very effective.

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Things That Go Through My Mind From 8-11 am on Weekdays

by JeremySpoke under Single Life

I recently found that I am the most miserable from 8-11 am on weekdays. Though many moments throughout the days of the week are accompanied by pain, depression, and hunger, none pack the punch of 8-11. Take 6 am. No, take it! Though I say that in jest, 6 am is one of the most miserable moments of the day. I actually usually wake up at 5:59 am, so that God gives me a moment where I think I have more time to sleep, and then slaps me in the face with His omnipresence in alarm form 15 seconds later. Is it not enough that I’m single? Is it not enough that I don’t allow myself to eat anything but turkey sandwiches?

Also, 6:10 am is equally horrible. That is the moment that I run out of breakfast to eat and have to face the harsh reality of five-and-a-half hours of hunger. However, the worst part of my day always starts at 8 am. 8 am marks the start of a three hour period where my pre-k to kindergarten class has the freedom to do whatever they want. Most of their work is done on the floor. The floor of a giant classroom where I must continuously sit down and get back up. This gets worse as the week progresses because I gradually lose energy due to my diet, until the point where I stand up and briefly see nothing but stars until I wake up again to the harsh reality of where I am. The first hour is bad. The second hour is worse. The third hour would be the end of me if it wasn’t directly before lunch.

However, this chunk of day is a huge weight that lifts once it’s over. At 11 am, I literally feel reborn every day of the week. I rebirth myself five days a week. After my rebirth, I look for sustenance as the three hours have drained everything inside of me. Everything after that moment is great. I am so happy the rest of the day, I don’t even remember the fact that I have to live it all over again the next day. I feel like I do after seeing a movie. You know when you think you can do anything? You have that sudden urge to call every girl you have a crush on and tell them? Do you want that moment to last for the better part of an evening? Next thing I know, I am all comfy in my bed, and look at the clock, and it’s 5:59 am.

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Dating Tips From Five-Year-Olds

by JeremySpoke under Relationships,Single Life

As I have already mentioned, I recently started my first job in the education field. I am lucky enough to be in a class of three to five-year-olds. I soon learned that that is the perfect age group to teach. They are old enough to know how to walk and talk and are young enough to not know anything at all. They have no inhibitions. They don’t care what comes out of their mouths. They don’t understand concepts like ‘friendship’ and ‘anger’. Again, they don’t know anything.

Spending an entire day with a group of these people is akin to a bad acid trip. It’s like suddenly learning that an entire race of people, whom you thought didn’t exist, actually existed. They don’t care about anything. They cause all of my insecurities to surface. They constantly ask why I sweat so much. One child asked how I got so hairy. I told him that I got it from my dad. He responded by asking if my dad is a werewolf. That conversation actually took place. Yesterday. Afternoon.

If these children have taught me anything, and they haven’t, it’s that I shouldn’t be ashamed or embarrassed about anything ever. My insecurities on dates would pretty much disappear after a full week with these children. I bet about eighty 80 percent of my dates nowadays are spent worried about why I sweat so much. After a half hour with these kids, the only thing I will be thinking of on dates from now on is how happy I am that I’m on a date and not in an elementary school.

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Medical School

by GemsFromJen under JBloggers,Online Dating

Dear Gems from Jen,

Should I make an effort to try and find my other half while I am constantly busy with med school? There really isn’t going to be a time in my life when I am not busy because I’ve entered a challenging field but I do not want to end up alone. Are there guys who are willing to be patient or are they looking for someone to be there 24/7? I guess that’s why many of us are online dating; because we cannot go out and meet people. Sorry, I am in a quandry.

Dear Medical School,

I can certainly understand your quandary; however, your life ambition is quite commendable! My suggestion is to add to your profile where you are in life at this point in time and where you hope to be in a few years. Being honest about your commitments is important, but don’t become so committed that you let the chance for finding your other half pass you by. Just let the people you are interested in getting to know better know that school comes first, but it won’t last forever.

I have a really good friend who ended up marrying a girl who was also in the process of becoming a doctor.  The two of them lived in different states and were still able to fulfill their individual goals while setting aside time for one another. They got married the very weekend she graduated from medical school. The two of them were introduced at the ceremony as Mr. and Dr. I thought it was endearing and I was quite amazed at how they made it all work! They are still married and in love and were able to find one another during a time in their lives when they each had time-consuming goals each wanted to meet. They were able to do it all and they made it work, so you can, too!

Signed,
Gems from Jen

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