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Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Residue buildup

Ok so one of the super-duper things about dating in "mid-life" is figuring out how to deal with the residue of a past marriage or relationship.  Yours AND that of your partner.

I've been divorced a long time.  I haven't ever wished I'd put more effort into bailing to try to save that sinking ship.  I gave it my all for 10 years, and figured that was long enough to spend on something that was never going to change.   I couldn't afford to stay in the home my ex and I built, so my boys and I started in a crappy rental, and as my financial situation changed, we've moved up a few times to get to where we are, so we didn't get super attached to our houses.  Moving makes it easy to jettison a lot of residue. 

CG has been through a similar situation, but has been in his home for many years.  His kids were very small when he and his wife chose that home to raise their family in.  There is sentiment attached to many things there. 

I haven't asked CG to change.  Really.  He is perfect for me just the way he is.  I have really appreciated the fact he's made some changes to his home and his life in order to accomodate me, but it's not because I've insisted. 

It's funny how women seem to attach sentimental  feelings to things more than a man will.  CG sized his wedding ring down to fit his pinky and has worn it since his divorce.  He didn't attach any meaning to it other than the fact he liked the ring. 

I liked my wedding ring too.  It was a gorgeous gold band hand made by my ex-husband, so rather than selling the gold, I sent it to my beautiful step-daughter for a right hand ring.  I just thought she might like the fact that her father made it, I had worn it, and it was made with gold from several of my dad's tie pins... I would never have put it on to wear again, because it signified a negative time in my life. 

Anyhow, rather than magpie-ing the way women will,  some time ago I asked CG if there was any significance to his wearing the ring.  He assured me there wasn't but I guess my asking got him thinking.  Last night he asked me if I noticed how much he's growing and changing... I said I had noticed a lot of things he'd done recently... Then he said, "Did you notice my hand?".  I hadn't noticed he wasn't wearing his ring....

His removing that ring meant a great deal to me.   He did it of his own accord, not at my insistance or suggestion, so it means so much more.  


That's the difference between the me I am now, and the me I was at 27.  When he told me there was no longer significance to the ring for him, I'd taken him at his word, and moved on.   Back then, I'd have shredded myself into a ball worrying about what wearing that ring meant, or why he had photos of his ex in his yearly albums or whatever else.  How do I know?  Because that's how old I was when I became a second wife... tough gig being second wife during my first marriage... 

The me I am now, realizes when he reminisces about his first significant girlfriend, or smiles at an old memory, it's ok.  I do the same thing from time to time.  It doesn't mean I'd go back to that person if they showed up on my doorstep, and more significantly, I don't feel threatened that HE would either.  I love my life now.  I love this man now, and I like myself way better than I did at 27.  CG and I are who we are now, because of the experiences we had in our life up until this moment. 

So... I'd like to acknowledge all the other women he's had relationships with.  That doesn't mean I want to meet them and become BFF's.  It also doesn't mean I won't feel a twinge if I meet them and they're prettier or skinnier than me. 

I don't have to like it when I know he's reminiscing about his time with another woman, but I appreciate the man he's become because of his relationships with them.  Most significantly his ex wife... She, more than any other ex, helped to shape him into the man I love. 

Like my ex, she left some permanent and very positive residue... beautiful kids.  Our children are living proof that we both lived and loved before.   Don't get me wrong..there are days I'd like MY 21 and 19 year old "residue" to get school finished, move out and start their adult lives, but they're the sort of residue I hope keeps coming back...  To VISIT....

Later...

Friday, 25 November 2011

I'm so thankful it's nauseating. Really.

I realize writing when life is really good is probably way less engaging than when my life sucks and I have a big, fat target on my back, but my life these days is just how I hoped it could be.  I realize I’ve had my teeth kicked out and handed to me more than once, but instead of waiting for that to happen, I’m enjoying what life has become.  For the first time in my life, I’m feeling secure.  

Yesterday, I discovered a great song writer.  Shazam-ed a song in the middle of Michaels’ Craft store… hadn’t heard it before, and just fell in love with the guy’s voice.  The song is called “My Favorite” by Gabe Dixon.  It just caught my heart, and expresses pretty succinctly how I feel… that led to feeding my iTunes addiction in purchasing the whole CD… which has quickly become my favorite playlist.  Yes, I’m sentimental as hell… and found myself in tears more than oncelistening to “Even the Rain”, just absolutely overwhelmed by my good fortune.  So here’s my plug for the day… go to iTunes, and listen to this guy. 

I think having lived through absolute Hell a year ago has given me a new perspective.  That hell started in October, when my father was diagnosed as having terminal cancer.  We thought he’d beaten it, but it came back with a vengeance, putting him and my family into a world of hurt, with the crescendo Christmas Day when my dad left us.   When my relationship ended just two weeks after my dad’s death, I think I was about as low as I could get.  I couldn’t see how there could possibly be an end to the pain…

Slowly, though, things started to get better… I’d started seeing a counselor earlier in the year when I recognized my then boyfriend and I had some communication issues.  She realized long before I did that relationship was a dead horse, and I was wasting my time.  She also realized I was ready to have someone in my life who saw my value, and would appreciate my nature.  She knew I had to mourn not just my dad, but the death of my long distance relationship, so she led me through that dark place and encouraged me to look forward.

When she decided I needed to “get out there” in April, I thought she was crazy.  I didn’t feel ready, but she could see the rust had begun falling from my heart, and it was time to feel again.  She assigned homework.  I was to join a dating site and get out there into the land of the living again.  I did what she asked with a great deal of trepidation and dark humor.  I hated every second of being online, but started a dialogue with about 3 or 4 men with whom I seemed to have something in common, but the “fit” just wasn’t there. 

Then I came across a profile that had something in it I found interesting way beyond the one photo of a smiling dark haired man.  I generally didn’t make first contact with anyone online, but with him I chose to send a “wink”… basically a lamo little notification that I’d found his profile interesting.  

He wrote me an articulate, warm email about a week later.  Just long enough that I’d given up on hearing from him, so it was a pleasant surprise.  We exchanged a couple of emails back and forth, and then decided to meet.  We’d both been through a few disastrous meet and greets, so neither of us was expecting to have things go well... but they did. 

Our timing was interesting... that first meeting took place on Friday the 13th.  Turns out it was a pretty lucky day for me.  The instant I saw "CG" as he’s become known, I just knew this date, at least, was going to be fun.  3.5 hours later, when he realized he had to go rescue his poor cats who were tethered in his back yard, I think we knew we had potential.  I was absolutely sure I wanted to spend a lot more time with him. 

We have spoken on the phone, texted and/or seen each other every day since, and every single day, I can’t wait to hear his voice or see him.  He is the first person I want to call to share good news with, and he’s who I turn to for advice or a laugh.  He gets me.  I get him.   It’s good.  As good as it gets.

This Sunday we will have our 5th Biweekly Sunday dinner as a "family".  We all just seem to fit.  As much as I wish our weekends lasted much longer, I look forward to those Sunday afternoons.  We’ve had small dinners with as few as 5 of us, but the last two have been much larger… our kids like each other, and have started to bring their friends along to enjoy a good meal and conversation. 

CG and I sit there like parents do, enjoying the fact that our kids, his neice and friends are there, enjoying the banter, the laughter and stories… the best part, is they have all expressed how they want to start eating together EVERY Sunday.  CG figures they want to spend time with each other, and we just happen to provide the food and location, but being a big suck, I like to believe they enjoy the time with us too…

I know our kids are happy to see us happy.  My oldest told me the other day, that he really likes the feeling of family and belonging.  I couldn’t have said it better myself.  One day, I look forward to having my step kids from my marriage and their partners and children there to join us.

Why do I deserve this any more than my beautiful girlfriends who are still out there trying to find the place they belong?  I don’t.  I realize how fortunate I’ve been.  I hope with all my heart that each and every one of them will find what I have right now.  I hope, too, that CG and I are able to keep the momentum going.  I simply love this man.  I have never felt so cared for, and I’m truly 100% happy for the first time ever.
Later….

Wednesday, 26 October 2011

The Brady Bunch...

Blending families is an interesting thing... it can be very rewarding depending on the people involved.

I can say I've been involved in family blending in a couple of different ways, and for me, it's been pretty great for the most part.  When I met my ex husband, he was a divorced father of two.  I met him at a bar, while I was out with a stunning girlfriend... you know the kind... the one who makes every man's head turn when she enters a room, rendering me invisible.  Part of the allure of my ex, was that he came over and asked me to dance after chatting with her a while... she was shocked that someone would choose me over her, and I think that was part of the bloom on that rose... that he actually noticed me.... the fact that he was a fantastic dancer helped too...

While we turned out not to be a good partnership, he gave me some of the best gifts I've ever had... my two sons, and my step-son and step-daughter.  I've spoken about the step kids and kids before, but my relationship and the relationship of my family to them is of interest here.  My parents accepted my 6 year old step son and 4 year old step daughter as though they wer their own grandchildren.  That's a model I plan to follow.  Family is important, and to me, whether other people's kids come into my life through blood, marriage or relationship, it's my job to be supportive and loving.  A soft place to fall, an ear to listen and a shoulder to lean on.  In essence, I have always tried to treat my step kids the way I would want them treated should my ex remarry.

The other very important part of making a blended family work, is to respect the other parents involved.... I have been extremely fortunate there as well.  The woman who was my ex-husband's first wife, has been a tremendous asset to my boys' lives.  She facilitated a relationship between my sons and their siblings.  That was the coolest act of kindness.  She didn't have to do that, but recognized how important family is, despite our differences... it's hard being a second wife.  There is always the spectre of the first wife there, but she modelled a wonderful example.  She chose to accept my kids as the siblings to hers, without judgement.  How classy!

In my current relationship, CG has two beautiful kids. A daughter and son.  They're smart, funny, articulate and kind.  They're kids he can be proud to say he raised.  We have that in common.  Our kids aren't perfect, but are certainly good people, and somehow we all seem to fit.  When we spend time with the kids, we laugh, interact and talk and it's good.  We've even started having family dinners together every other Sunday.

I enjoy every minute I'm given to spend with his kids, and we genuinely like each other... I get to spend good estrogen time with his daughter, and his son fits right in with my two clowns... My boys genuinely like CG, and best of all, our kids like each other!   Ok the fact that CG and I are in love with each other, and show respect for one another doesn't hurt either... life is very good.

The point I need to make about respecting the other parent, is I know there has to be something wonderful about CG's ex-wife.  I see CG so much in his children... The amazing people they are, is in a big way due to him as their custodial parent, but their mother contributed half the DNA to make them who they are. While they live with him, they look forward to the time they spend with her and with her family.  Let's face it the man I love saw enough in her to choose her as his life partner, even though that wasn't to be.  Because I trust the judgements he makes, I trust his choice was based on something special he saw in her.  Looking at things that way helps keep things in perspective. 

She and he ended, just as my ex and I did... it happens...  They have remained cordial just as my ex and I have.  The fact is, that's what's best for our children, and it causes way less drama for us.

I have also been on the other side of the coin.  My ex-husband had a girlfriend for about seven years after we split up.  I remained respectful of her and her time with him.  I never called him unless there was an emergency.  I ensured she got a nice Christmas gift from the boys, and that they treated her with respect as well.  There was a chance she could end up being their step mom, and I knew how that felt.

Not everything has been easy in my step, or ex relationships though...While I have remained quite friendly with my ex, and with one of his sisters, my ex parents in law never did care for me. They're born again, while I'm baptized but non practicing Catholic, and the fact that my ex husband had the first divorce in the family when he and his first wife split was very hard on them and the rest of the family... They really liked her, and I was very different in some ways.  I wasn't really ever given the chance to be accepted, and that's rolled down to affect my kids, and their contact with their paternal grandparents.   While I'm not perfect, I would never have kept my sons from their family, had there been any overatures made.  I will never understand the lack of contact.  I tried to set the ball rolling, even having the whole ex family over the day after Christmas about 7 years ago.

I hope later in life, I get to see I've done the legwork to let the people in my life know I love them.  That I have been the sort of grandparent my parents were to my nephews, my kids and step kids, and their kids....and that I have given them enough modeling to carry on that legacy. I hope too, that I was kind enough that my kids, grand kids and step kids think enough of me to put me in a NICE home... one with a pool and pretty yard boys would be great!

better late than...

later....

Tuesday, 11 October 2011

Ok - I know it's been a while...

I was asked by a friend to write him a character reference letter... not sure he'll ask again, but I had fun with it....

I was asked to write a ‘Character Reference Letter’ for my friend "Big I".  I’m delighted to do so, but want to warn you, I can confirm "I" doesn’t just HAVE character, he IS one as well…
"I" is bright, articulate, funny and warm.  He is incredibly observant and has an eye for detail.  He is the man who will forge a new path rather than sticking with the old way of doing something, especially if the old way is simply there because it’s the way something has always been done.
"I" and I have known each other for a very long time.  We first met at college in 1982, where we were both enrolled in the Journalism Arts program.  It was ill suited to both of us.  "Big I" hated the course, because it was stifling and restrictive, so he dropped it.  I should have done the same, but stuck it out until the end of first year.  The lesson there, is "Big I" will recognize when a path of action isn’t the right one, and will choose another.  He won’t waste time on something that clearly isn’t working, and he’s smart enough to recognize the difference.  That can translate to the bottom line in any business.  Please don’t share this story with MY employer as I have them fooled.
"Big I" and I met again in 1983 when we were both accepted to the Cinema, Television, Stage and Radio Arts program at our college.  That course WAS a good fit for both of us.  After a rigorous selection process to choose from over 400 applicants, 80 people were accepted to the course.  This should tell you that "I" will stand out in a crowd and not just because he’s tall.  I mean, he IS tall, but he’s also creative and talented.  While being ‘artsy’ isn’t always seen as a plus in a technical role, it is a plus for you because "I" will use his brilliant “out of the box” thinking style, and will come up with creative and innovative solutions to any technical problems your organization may face.
There is a number of students from our class who are still fast friends today.  "I" and I are part of that group, so my contact with him is frequent and pleasant.  From this statement you should learn that he is loyal and committed….or should be committed, one of the two…or maybe he just needs new friends. 
We still get together regularly to chat about the old days, the changes in our lives and to challenge each other on those life changes, but we remain loyal to one another.  This translates to good news for any company gaining "I" as an employee because he knows where his loyalty belongs.
The most common NICE thing people say behind his back is that "I" is among the smartest people they know.  Many times that statement is slightly different in that he might be THE smartest person they know.  So he is either smart of smarter, depending on who’s making the statement.  I would never admit out loud he’s the smartest but he’s definitely up there.  In the top 5… or 6.  So if you can stand having someone brighter than you in your organization, "I’s" your man.
In conclusion, I would love to list many more of "I’s" talents here, but I was asked to keep it to one page.
Cordially,
Merlot.


If anyone else needs me to ass-ass-inate their character, I'm on a roll!

Wednesday, 24 August 2011

Shock and OW! - you're gonna cut me WHERE?!

Saturday afternoon I went out for a coffee with my realtor-slash-friend.... He is an imposing man, standing about 6 foot 4, and is extremely muscular having played professional football in his younger days. I find him very amusing because he’s extremely animated and can tell a story like nobody else.


I've recommended him to friends looking for a home for a couple of reasons. First, he's a very good realtor, and second, he's absolutely hilarious to go look at homes with.



He’s a year or so older than me, so we share our commiserations about suddenly being “middle aged”. 
His girlfriend is a very pretty woman a few years younger than he is, and they've decided to start a family. Because in his wilder days he made the decision he didn't want to be a father, 'Big R' had a vasectomy, so they're getting a little intervention from the fertility clinic.


He and I are both people who probably "over-share" a little, but we get each other, so enjoy hearing what's going on in the other's life. We generally meet about every three months or so, just to touch base.... and here's the meat of this session.... no pun intended....


After exchanging pleasantries at the local Starbucks, we started getting into the catch up phase of our visit since we hadn't chatted in a bit. When I asked him what was going on with the baby situation, his answer was "Well, my part's done."
So before I remembered his back story, I said "Yours was the easy part!" "Not so much..." he says, and that's when I remember the whole snippage situation...

Because we like to share I asked him if he'd had to have a reversal, or whether they'd gone in to harvest.... He says... "Um... ya, well they decided to go in and do a harvest, so that I wouldn't have to have full on surgery, but that isn't quite how it worked out...." He proceeds to tell me when they tried to give him a local, the freezing didn't take.... so they tried again, and again to freeze him with the same result every time.
When they realize it just isn't going to work, they decide to try the other side. Same result there.... so he says to the doctor "OK - so if you can't freeze me, let's just do it without anesthetic. How long will I be in pain start to finish." The doctor's answer is about 12 minutes, so being a pretty strong guy, he decides he'll tough it out.
At this point I’m wincing because he describes a procedure where in order to position things correctly, there’s a nurse basically holding his jewels in her hand while the doctor goes in with a large harvesting needle, wiggling it around to make sure he's in the right spot.  He says there the nurse was, holding the most intimate part of his anatomy, but not making any eye contact… 
He said when the doctor put the syringe’s contents into the microscope, there was a second female technician, with her back to him watching a screen to see if there were any live sperm.  All he could see was the technician shaking her head no… so they tried a couple more times, again on both sides, to no avail. 
Finally they decided to actually cut into his testicle to remove a chunk of flesh where his swimmers should be… still no luck.  The doctor did a test of the tissue, and determined that ‘Big R’ must be on steroids.  “No, Doc, I don’t do that stuff anymore… crap! I’m 50 years old… if I was on steroids, I’d tell ya.”
After some questioning back and forth, it was determined he’d been on some dietary supplement bought over the counter at one of those weight lifter stores, with more anabolic effect than when he actually WAS on steroids in his football days. He said they found that he had about 8 times the normal level of testosterone in his system!
It was decided he needed to take some medication to counteract the steroid effect for a couple of months and they could try the whole procedure again.  “You know, I’ve been stitched up a million times, because I had injuries when I was playing ball” he says,  “They always used those metal staples to close me up, and that’s pretty quick… but NOOOO I have to get the doctor that’s doing this…” as he pantomimes someone sewing with a very long thread making that little jerking motion at the end to ensure the stitch is tight…. Laughing, I told him “You know, you’re the only MAN that could tell that story and make it funny.” 

He responded “Ya… it always makes me laugh when I tell guys, because they sit there, cross their legs, wince and finally put up their hand and say ENOUGH!”.

He added that the procedure both times left him black and blue from his belly button down to about mid thigh and feeling as though he'd been "kicked hard in the bag".  It was so bad, he "didn't even want to touch" himself... um...ok... I'm PRETTY sure he meant to wash...
I have to give the guy credit. He went back a couple of months later for a second go round… again without freezing…. And this time it was successful. 
Because he read most professional athletes are born in the spring, they’re holding off trying until they can "plan" a spring baby… Good luck with that... I've found kids have their OWN ideas about things, but I have my fingers crossed for him… I’m guessing any guys reading this probably have their LEGS crossed for him too….
I was a good girl, and didn't tell him I imagine when his son turns about 15, and he's 65 or so he'll feel like he's been kicked in the nuts on a daily basis....

Later….

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Counting down....

So I've been a little remiss in keeping up here, but give me a break...it's been a busy couple of weeks.  I've had CG back for a few days, and am also packing to go on my excursion... and I'm happy to say, I don't have to haul a bunch of crap with me to Thailand for other people, so unlike going down to visit the Bachelor, I am able to concentrate on my own stuff.  I packed everything I need for a 2 week trip in a carry on bag and a backpack.  Seriously. 

I suspect on the way home things won't be quite as pared down.  Interesting concept this editing of stuff.  Been editing a lot of personal stuff too... trying to reduce my baggage....  I am a mom, I'm 49 years old, have been through a few heartbreaks in my life... actually, in the last year even, and even more fun, I'm menopausal... WOO-HOO!  So... trying to keep baggage to a minimum is paramount.... but there are just times you have to work through the shit.

The bachelor has now moved from that beautiful tropical locale, to a large hub in the US for a few months before heading to the Middle East.  I got a note from him saying he's seeing someone.  Well, so am I, so that's not at issue.  I'm genuinely ok with that, because I wouldn't trade that cold and lonely existence that was the long distance relationship I had with him for the warmth I have with CG for anything.  That doesn't mean there aren't things that hurt about the WAY it happened though.

He is now living with the new girlfriend.  Ouch...
According to the rumor mill, he met her in the city he WAS working in.  That means he has either been hit by lightening, which knowing him is a virtual impossibility, or he was at the very least falling for her while he was with me.  No matter how secure I am, that smarts.  Besides that, since he's never lived with anyone before, I have to be honest and say I was hoping CG and I might get to that place first.

Just when I started to feel like shit because I was so easily replaced, I went to my mail box, and found a beautiful card from a guy who was my grade 10 sweetheart.... we have remained close friends for all these years despite my breaking up with him after spending a summer apart... and making a pretty monumental change to my appearance and attitude...  I told you before, I was a very late bloomer... so that summer, I ditched the horrible glasses I wore in grade 10, highlighted my hair, bought new clothes and returned to school a new girl.  I had outgrown my fear of being away from my family.  I was a 16 year old girl living in Rome, and decided I'd outgrown him as a boyfriend.  I never outgrew him as my friend though, and hearing the words he wrote on the card was just what I needed.  Thanks "G" for your unfailing support through the years. 

Now before you decide I'm still pining for the bachelor, I assure you I'm not.  I am happier with CG than I've been in a loooooong time.  He feels like home.  I am content and comfortable to be who I am, and I don't have to edit what I say to him... well... not much anyhow.  We are still dancing around the words to express feelings here....I'm about to leave for two weeks in Thailand, and I feel sad to be leaving him behind... but we're now halfway through our 5 week stint of apart time.  I am seriously hoping he misses me even half as much as I missed him while he was away. 

It's Sunday morning, he's cooking me dinner tonight, and we have an evening alone and free of kids, so I'm looking forward to tonight, and downtime with him.  I love just spending time with him alone.....with our kids...with friends... even on the phone...we just fit, and he makes me laugh loud and often.  Who'd have thought an internet dating site could give that to me? 

All I can tell you, is I hope someday the Bachelor and I get to a place where we can be friends and support one another's choices the way "G" and I have done.  I have to throw in though, if the Bachelor proposes to his new love romance-movie-style and I'm still single, it'll sting, even though I won't be wishing he'd proposed to me.  Really.

Later...

Friday, 12 August 2011

Time crawls while he's having fun....

Could these two weeks go any slower?  I swear to GOD it feels worse than my long distance relationship did, and I had anywhere from 6 weeks to three months apart then...

CG and his kids are on a cruise of the Greek islands... it seems he's been away a couple of months, while in real time it's been just 11 days.... I think we've entered into some bubble in the time/space continuum where time is flying for him but has slowed down to a crawl for me, and I'm pretty sure God's VERY entertained. 

It's been super busy at work, so the days are passing with me not getting as much done as I want to, but DAMN the evenings are going by so slowly. I don't want the time to go quickly for him, because it's bonding time with his kids, and he's on vacation which he really needed... but I guess I like him more than I realized, because I really miss him....

Part of the issue, of course, is there have been a few difficult things for me to navigate since he left, and it just would've been nice to have his ear... the funeral for my friend's 5 year old being the start, my son leaving home for school this morning, and finding out about my dad's memorial service on top of that.  I have to say, though, he's texted every day, except the day after they arrived in Europe, and he's called me three times... I know, spoiled girl....

Once he gets back, I'm sure time will travel at warp speed for a few days, because we have just 8 days together before I leave for Thailand, and I'm guessing he's gonna be pretty jetlagged upon his return.  Then we have another two weeks apart.... again, I don't wish for things to be inequitable between us, so I hope when it's me on vacation, he misses me so the time goes slowly for him and quickly for me.

I'm starting to get excited now, because this trip, which I booked over 8 months ago, is so close, and so exotic.  I need a break from the office, and from my younger son, "Toby"... who has been a big fat pain in my ass the last week or so...

You may remember I described him as the cat to my older son's dog... With his brother's imminent departure, the surly teen has re-emerged, and his ACDD (Anal Cranial Displacement Disorder) is worse than ever... I need an intervention badly...

Toby is gonna have to adjust some of his behavior with his older bro' gone... "Miles", the older of the two, has always taken on the role of the ice breaker... Even as a little guy,Toby would let Miles do the heavy lifting when it came to meeting new people.  He would stand back and let Miles introduce himself, and IF the natives were friendly, THEN Toby would saunter over, let Miles introduce him, and then he'd entertain the troops.... He's a VERY funny guy, but just introverted enough to be pretty quiet in unfamiliar surroundings...

Miles and CG hit it off the first time they met.  As a matter of fact, CG remarked that he wasn't sure his kids would be as friendly with me (they were).  They've gone fishing together, and even out for a beer...He hasn't had that kind of welcome from Toby though.  Tobs has avoided more than pleasantries so far, but did sit politely through dinner one night when I had CG and another couple, who have been friends of mine since my kids were little, over for dinner.  I think Toby is waiting for CG to make the first overture, but CG doesn't want to push himself on him... tough impasse.

I may have a solution though...I sent CG a text a few days ago saying I was really gonna miss Miles, because like all moms, I love my kids, but most of the time I really LIKE both of them too... He cracked me up when he sent a text back... "Well---take them on a cruise in a small cabin. It might take the edge off your feelings. Just sayin'..."

My answer was to suggest we trade kids for a week after he gets back... Toby would probably be polite if he was staying with a stranger, and would appreciate the MAN FOOD that CG is an expert at preparing... tons of red meat and guacamole.... PLUS, there's only him to contend with...and they'd have a chance to bond a bit.

CG's kids would likely be polite with me for a week... although food around here might have to be take out since I seem to be eating not a lot in an effort to drop that 5 pounds I'm fully expecting to gain on my trip...

I think it's a great idea, and CG would be getting off easy with just one kid motivated by steak, but he has yet to answer....

Later...






Thursday, 11 August 2011

To Text or Not to Text....

You hear about relationships that have ended in hatred.  I'm glad to say I have rarely experienced a really bad ending to any of the relationships I've had.  There have been a couple of crappy breakups, but they're few and far between...

There’s no love between me and my ex -husband, and the last….ok…12.5 years of our 13 year marriage was effin’ horrible, but at least we can sit and have a meal together with our kids when something big goes on in their lives, or there’s something to be discussed….

I had him over for dinner the other night, because our oldest is leaving town tomorrow to move away for school.  We were cordial, I made something he liked to eat, and we had a glass of wine.  We have nothing in common but the boys anymore so we basically made small talk until he left early to go do... whatever it is he does in his private life.
When the kids get married, they’ll never have to worry about fist fighting between us or our dates… that’s just so freaking immature.  What the Hell is the point of carrying that crap around, especially when you’re a parent?  Let the shit go.  I mean, if you have to let go of your walker to take a swing at the woman who stole your husband 40 years ago, or the guy who treated your wife badly in her former marriage you might just want to address that.  There are classy ways to act after a break-up, and ways that aren’t so classy…

When you’re 15 acting like a prize ass is sort of expected… Thankfully, when I was in my teens and twenties they didn’t have things like Twitter and Facebook, so the worst you could expect beyond the regular gossip that ensued was to have something like “Merlot is a Bitch” scratched into a desk or the bathroom wall…
With the advent of social media, the whole world can be made privy to the inner workings of a failed relationship… Seriously, I’m glad we didn’t have that stuff when I was younger, because I would have been way too tempted to use it for evil… like when my boyfriend told me he wanted the weekend off, and then came back three days later engaged… that was a tough one on the ego, and I’d be missing out on a life-long friendship if I’d had the ability to post how hurt and disappointed I was…
I love shocking my kids with the horrible social vacuum I had to endure because we only had a single phone line in our house, and I wasn’t allowed to accept or make calls after 10 at night… we actually had to deal with a whopping 10 hours without knowing exactly what our friends were doing, until we saw them at school the following day… I KNOW crazy, right?
Even seasoned adults can show just how immature they can be, even in their mid 50's….  We’ve chatted about my lovely friend "C" before… she’s the beautiful, straight talking, petite Italian fireball who is looking for love on the internet… She’s only single and looking, because her husband of 26 years left her about three years ago.  While his decision devastated her, she has moved on with grace.
When they split up, they decided to keep “joint custody” of their two dogs, so things have remained relatively cordial between the two of them.  They talk about the dogs, he has called to get advice from her from time to time.  She spent a year having a nice home built for herself, and the day she took posession he asked her to "try again".  It was a little too late by then, because she'd moved on.  He's been living with a woman for the last several months, and “C” has been friendly with her as well.  She’s a class act.
The other day, she called me just incredulous.  “Jeez-US… you’re not going to believe the text message I got from “J”!  We spent 26 years together, and he TEXTS me to tell me he got engaged over the weekend.”  Seriously, getting engaged is something that perhaps warrants a phone call to the woman you lived with for almost 3 decades in my estimation.  Text messages have a place, but in this instance, it’s just dick-less to deliver that sort of news that way.
Once in a while getting big news via text isn't so bad though.  Like when the recipient bursts into tears reacting to happy news... this happened to me last year.  A very good friend of the Bachelor's and mine texted me from London about a week after he and I split.  She didn’t realize we’d broken up, so was just sharing the very happy news that she was getting married...

There I was, with my eyes streaming tears, my nose red and running, unable to catch my breath, but texting her back to congratulate her.  She thanked me for helping her navigate her long distance relationship because she'd asked my advice while I was in my three year looooong distance romance.. you know, the one that had just ended....

I was thrilled for her, honest, but a little pissed at God when she not only announced she’d become engaged over Christmas after dating long distance for just a year... The fact that her fiance proposed at the top of the Eiffel Tower at midnight on New Year’s Eve was a little rough to take….  Honestly, THE TOP OF THE EIFFEL TOWER?  NEW YEAR'S EVE?  That shit belongs in a movie....

Later...

Tuesday, 9 August 2011

Romance and Housework...

Ok - kids, time to get back to talking about dating....

New relationships over 45 are interesting.  You are still young enough to want the fairy tale, but old enough to be set in your ways to some degree.... and old enough to know the person you're romancing is human...With morning breath and bouts of gas...

CG and I have both been out of our first marriages for over 10 years, and neither of us have tried it a second time... I've lived with someone since, he hasn't... I think we would both like to have the fairy tale, but when you have homes, kids and investments of various kinds, the romance has to take a back seat to self preservation on occasion. 

Even though the last two relationships I've had, have been with men with far more net worth than me, I would never enter into a marriage without a prenuptual agreement.  The first and foremost reason being I never want someone thinking I'm involved with them, their brother, son, dad, uncle or friend for financial gain.  Ever.  Money, a good career or what someone drove has NEVER been my reason to date someone....  

The second reason for a prenup is self protection.  If there was a split, I'd want to know I would still be able to live the way I'm living now, and so that my kids will inherit something.  I have investments, I own property, and I'd like my hard work to at least help them raise their families.  Besides that, it just takes the nasty out of an already difficult situation.  Should a couple enter into a marriage and decide to split, there is far less to fight about if the finances have been dealt with up front. 

That being said, I'd probably take a page from CG's family practices... he has his kids sign contracts for all sorts of things... he pays them for making good grades at school, and has a formulaic approach to that.  He pays a certain amount for certain grades, and they sign acknowledging they understand how the payout will occur... If I ever do decide to marry again, I think I'll have a contract written up just between the two of us stipulating a "No Cheat" order and a "Date Night" clause...  probably a "Never Initiate Sex Without Kissing Me First" one too...  I think those things are important... Who know's what a guy would put in there, but I'm guessing something detailing the frequency of oral sex or who gets to be on top, and maybe a maximum weight limit for their partner...

CG and I had a pretty candid talk about how things can screw up once you've "Done the Deed".  How little things start to change as you become familiar with one another....being a straight arrow, I gave him as direct a rebuttal as I could to his statement.  While a physical relationship isn't something I enter into lightly, I like sex.  My ex husband would vehemently argue that fact I'm sure, given that I could've entered a convent three years before we split and have nothing to confess.... but here's a little newsflash for ya...I think it's a communication tool between a couple, and for me that's a pretty good barometer of how the rest of the relationship is going.... Oooooh I could magpie on that for a while, but let's get back to CG and me....

We were talking about how many married men complain about not getting laid.  He was describing how he'd told his sister once she should make that a priority in her marriage, because it's really an important part of the relationship.   

My rebuttal to his wonderfully honest comments was simple.  I told him if he was concerned that could happen between us, there was an easy way to ensure it wouldn't..."If you treat me the way you did before we had sex, I will always want to have sex with you." 

I think that's the key to a happy marriage.  Of course things become more familiar, and it's easy to get bogged down in the day to day.  Starting our relationship at this age has it's advantages though.  We don't have little kids to try to schedule things around.  We won't be up all night with diapers and feedings and we won't be struggling the same way financially as we did when we were starting out with our respective spouses.  It should be easier for us to remember to do the little stuff...at least until the Altzheimer's kicks in....

So.  Here's today's two second lesson... To any woman who uses sex as currency in her marriage or relationship, STOP IT... and to any man who isn't getting it enough... seriously, Dude... pick up a freaking dish cloth, or do a load of laundry... you have no idea how sexy that is to a woman... Really...

Later...

Saturday, 6 August 2011

Voyeur

Watching someone else's pain when it's real and not in the movies just isn't a fun thing to do.  Today was the funeral for my dear friends' 5 year old son, and watching the strength of that couple as they stood to chronicle the last day of their baby's life, was absolutely heartwrenching to say the least.

They will remember the sweet little boy they lost and will likely see his face in every young man who mimics his age, as his twin sister grows, and they will remember him in every 5 year old boy.  To hear details of how he spent that last day was painful, and left the congregation in tears.... I want to tip my hat to both of them.  They ARE what people should strive to be like.  They showed strength, humility and love through this pain, and I am in awe of them. 

My family is also facing an impending memorial service as well, because we will have a celebration of the life of my father in October.  Quite a different memorial, as he had the chance to live a very healthy, full and long life. 

He left us Christmas day, and it's taken us this long to get to a place where we will be able to tell jokes and stories about my dad's impact on the people around us, with a drink in hand and a genuine smile on our faces.  My father INSISTED we not have a funeral.  He always told us he wanted a plain pine box to be cremated in, and he wanted a party with a Dixieland Jazz band.  He wanted smiles and laughter, not tears and heartache, so we will do our best to honor the most honorable man I have ever known. 

Saying goodbye to someone who lived such an amazing life is sad, but the one thing I can say, is my father had no regret, and lived EVERY day of his 88 years 9 months to the fullest.  The last three months when he knew he wasn't going to win the fight were tough slogging but he was an amazing man.  An extraordinary human being, and as I've said before, we thought so when he was alive too... we haven't canonized him in death.

Before he died, I had the unique opportunity of interviewing my dad for a story I wrote for the web page of the oil company he and I both worked for.  It was a great experience because I got to see my dad from a whole other perspective....  I never pictured my dad as one of the guys... but he sure was....  He shared all sorts of stories with me about his days as a geologist, working in the Rocky Mountains on a string of pack horses in the 40's....

One of the anecdotes he shared with me, happened in 1947 when he was a summer student... he was working out in the field, but he and his field partner came in to town for some meetings so were staying in a hotel for a couple of nights.  It was an incredibly hot summer, and they decided to buy a few beers to refresh them after a long day... this was before air conditioning was readily available, so the hotel room was very hot and stifling, and they had been unable to buy any cold beer.  The decision was made to cool the warm bottles they bought under the shower in the bathtub....

The bottles had come wrapped in individual paper mache sleeves, which they, being engineers, decided would be great to help cool the beers off faster.  They were "so thirsty" they decided to drink a warm one while they waited for the others to cool off...BLECH...  After opening the windows and propping open the door in order to get some air movement through the room, they sat down on the balcony to drink their one warm beer, and chat. 

Apparently they chatted longer than they thought...When my dad got up to go to the bathroom to check on the beers, his socks became wet because the carpet was covered with about a quarter inch of water.

Needless to say, the paper mache 'beer jackets' had melted off the bottles, plugged the drain, and the water was slooshing over the side of the tub....  They started to panic worried the water would seep through the ceiling to the room beneath them... so, they went to sop up the water with their bath towels.  When they went to get them, they found out housekeeping had only left them a single set of towels....

Dad said they didn't get a lot of sleep that night because they had to sop up the water, wring out the towel in the bathtub, and do it again and again and again.... By the time the sun was rising, they got the bulk of the water soaked up, but they decided to make a quick getaway before someone found out.  Like theives in the night, they left before it was completely light outside....

I would never have pictured my dad doing something like that.  It made him much less Godlike in my eyes, and replaced that image with one of a human being with faults.  Not many, I assure you, but still fallible.  One or two slips in 88 years of being an upstanding guy who didn't just yap about his moral standing but lived and breathed it every single day during my lifetime, isn't bad...

The hours I spent interviewing him for that story, are among the most precious I spent with him.  He was just a guy, telling me very interesting stories about his early days with the company I now work for...  I have a few great stories about my early years there right out of highschool, before I went to college too... and I hope someday I will relate those tales to my boys.... and they'll see me without my mom-badge on.

Later...

Monday, 1 August 2011

Mirror, mirror on the wall.......

So CG and I are heading into an interesting 6 weeks...

Tomorrow is the big day... he and his kids leave for Europe.  They're taking a cruise from Venice to Greece, via Croatia.  Sounds like a great trip for them, and I hope they have a fabulous time. He gets back two weeks from Wednesday, so about 15 days apart.  Then he's back for 8 days before I take off for Thailand for a couple of weeks for my own holiday.  I can tell already I will miss him while both vacations are on.

Neither of us has said "I love you" yet... the closest we've come is a text he sent on our two month-aversary... "I live you.  Was that supposed to be and "o" or a "k"?"...
So that's the new thing... we "live" each other... I'm guessing it's the twilight zone between the two feelings... I know I'm falling, but I have to say, having been kicked in the head a time or two, I'm trying to remain realistic yet optomistic about the prospect.  

 The original intent when I booked this trip was to go lick my wounds and try to get over my last heartbreak.  Clearly, that's no longer an issue, and I'm grateful for that.  Thanks very much to my friend the delightful Miss "L" who told me long before things blew up that I had fallen for someone who was never going to commit to me.  When I fall, I fall hard, and want to believe in the fairy tale.  Thing is, it's way more fun to be in "live" WITH someone than to be in LOVE at someone.  I guess the whole premise of my Asian vacation has now changed to going to see the sights. 

After watching The Hangover 2, I know there are sights to see outside Bangkok....and that's what I'm looking forward to most.  The movie didn't make the city itself look like somewhere spectacular, but I'll let you know when I get back, as they were trying to show the seedier side of things. 

I'm sure for some narrow minded men, a lot of the allure of vacationing in the city is the supposed "culture difference" that makes age a "non-issue"... This story has been handed to me by more than one aging lothario who doesn't appreciate the beauty in any woman over 40, and who will broadcast all the things that are wrong with a woman's aging body.  Sorry kids, but that's a load of shit... No matter where you are in the world.  True, there is a handful of men who are over 50 and still sexy to someone in their 20's, but as we've touched on before, if you're NOT George Cluny or Jon Bonjovi, you are deluding yourself. (If you ARE someone who's aged like they have, then go nuts...  ) 
How I know this, is I WAS once a 20 year old who was hit on by the over 45 guys, and I had a zillion girlfriends from all over the world who had the same things happen to them....Whether you like it or not, your ear hair and pot belly are no more appealing in Thailand, Romania, Egypt, Brazil, France or Italy.  Keep in mind, my perspective is that of a woman who, in the eyes of many men, is PAST HER PRIME... that's your disclaimer here....

When these guys have told me about their good fortune with foreign women, I notice the women are generally impoverished, and the men turn into benevolent benefactors....That should be their first clue that it isn't their man boobs the girls find sexy... period... These guys are being taken advantage of just the same as they're taking advantage of the women they are squiring.

I find it funny talking to women in their 20's who look at Brad Pitt as though he's some old man.... and if that can even happen to him, a GOD among men, then... use... your... head.

I don't mean to generalize.  There are relationships that work out because they're based on mutual respect no matter whether it's the man or woman who is 15 - 20 years older... I know a few men who have entered into marriages with women in several foreign countries.  They've chosen to adopt the culture and embrace life there, entering into a committed relationship. 

To the men who travel looking to get laid to make themselves feel more virile, and who then marginalize women in any way, I find that hard to respect.  Do whatever it is that blows your hair back.  Seriously.  But why does the age of the woman in question come into the conversation at all? 

I'm sure I will have some interesting stories to share once I'm back.... but until then, I'm going to try to pass the next two weeks hanging with the girlfriends I haven't seen much since CG and I started hanging out together... and when he's back...I will then have a week with a man who looks at me, in my almost 50 year old body, with desire in his eyes... he doesn't focus on my jowls or my muffin top... he finds ME sexy, and recognizes he is of the same vintage.... he is an amazing father and a nurturing partner to have, while remaining 100% male, and that I find incredibly sexy... but I'm 49, and not 23....

I am absolutely going to keep my girlfriends close, because even IN a fantastically fun relationship, it's VERY important to keep your perspective... and girlfriends help with that.

Later....

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Sad.... not even a little funny.

Ran out of steam this week... Had nothing witty or funny to say, and I'm coming to the realization that most of the things we worry about really have zero significance...

A dear friend of mine, a man I've known for more than 25 years, had a horrible tragedy occur last weekend.  It's really putting all the "crises" I face daily in question.  I can't fathom what they're going through, and frankly I don't want to. 

This friend of mine is a tall, lanky, easy going man who has appeared not to age. Ever... He was one of the "older" people in my college class, having a big 4 years or so on me, but back in the day that seemed to be a loooooong time....He was just always sooo much more worldly than the rest of us... He looks EXACTLY the same as he did back then, and now appears younger than many of the "kids" he went to school with.  

He is brilliant, funny,with a keen but quiet wit, thoughtful and kind.  His heart has always been about three sizes too big even for his 6 foot 6 frame. When we were in college, he dated two of the hottest girls in school.  NO not at the same time... he wasn't that sort of guy.  He wasn't classically handsome, but certainly was charming... and the women he chose to spend his time with were not only gorgeous, but smart too.  That hasn't changed.

He elected not to marry until he was over 40, but when he did, he landed yet another hawt blond.  When he became a father to a set of stunningly beautiful twins 5 years ago, everyone who knew him felt he'd be a great dad.  That fact was evident to me many times over, watching him patiently play with his son and daughter, showing his pride on his face, and his heart on his sleeve. 

His wife is about 10 years his junior I would guess, and they chose to have her stay home with the kids.  She is a doting mother....  I have been getting to know and appreciate her over the past couple of years.  I give her credit, she's managed to hold her own with my tight knit college class...

Last weekend, she took the kids to a lake about an hour and a half from town, where her parents have a home.  They'd spent a lot of time there in the past, and while my friend had just started a new job and couldn't be there, she took the kids up anyhow to have a break.

One of the days there, they decided to spend the evening outdoors... and the events that followed are still unclear.  One of the twins, the son, slipped into the water off the dock, and was later found by his grandfather, floating face down in the lake.  His mother, screaming for help started CPR in anticipation of the emergency crew, who arrived and took over. 

The boy was transported to the hospital in the nearest city while police here located my friend... I am so glad the person in charge of the medical emergency helicopter service elected to transport my friend to his son's bedside.  What an amazing gesture of compassion....Otherwise he would have been on the road for an hour and a half.  The decision has been questioned by some of the general public here.  I'm disgusted by that to be honest.  The trip cost the city $750, and while it could set a precedent, I would ask what those people would want if they were the father of a 5 year old boy clinging to life...

I suspect many of these people aren't parents because they've questioned the commitment of the parents to the safety of their child.  It's easy to sit back and be sanctimonious when you haven't had to parent 5 year old twins.  EVERY parent should know they've had situations happen where but by the grace of God their child might have died.  EVERY one of us has had close calls in our own lives where we could have died despite the best efforts of our parents to keep us safe.

Our little college community will likely raise far more than the helicopter trip cost, and will put that money toward the service they provided.  I am so grateful my friend was able to get to his family.  His boy lost his fight for life that day, and so the next weeks and months will be bleak for this family. 

I'm proud to be part of a group who will support them through the dark days and months to come.... we love one another.  We are a strange group of creative types who put people before tasks, ALWAYS... and therefore are not wealthy, but we're rich in friendships.

Rest in peace little man, and rest assured your parents loved you every second of your short life... and that both of them would take your place given the chance.  Your sister will have to make her way through her life without you to be there to have her back, but she's been left in good hands.

Later...

Friday, 29 July 2011

Scarred for Life....

So... being the worst mother in the world has it's perks... I have to say, I am getting a real kick out of grossing my kids out... haha....

Remember some time ago I told you how grossed out I was at the thought that my parents might still be "doing-it" in their 50's?  Well, I'm really enjoying creeping out my kids... is that bad?

Today, my youngest came home hung over.  He'd gone to a party, and spent the night at a friend's place rather than drive home.  I thought that was rather responsible of him, but seriously, it's my day off, and I have things to worry about besides a hung over 19 year old. 

CG and I have a 'date' booked this afternoon and evening, because I haven't seen him since Tuesday because of a business trip he had to take.... and Tuesday's visit was for about 15 minutes to say hi between work and his committment to pick up his son, "CG lite" at the golf course.... Thank GOD we live 9 minutes apart... He left Wednesday for his business trip, so this has been a super long week for me... especially since he leaves this comingTuesday with his kids for his two week European holiday.


He got in last night, but my older son actually booked a beer with him before I booked him... little bastard...   Actually, I am glad they booked this beer, because Number 1 Son is moving away for school in two weeks... so I have appreciated the time CG has taken to try to get to know him before he leaves.  No. 1 says he feels more comfortable leaving his mother alone knowing the guy he's leaving her with... how cute is THAT?


So this afternoon is the first chance we've had to be alone in almost a week... anyhow...back to the story.  My younger son was moping around here for a while before a friend of his came over.  I told the friend to take my kid with him when he left, because I just had the house cleaned, and I don't need him lounging around here all day... then I threw in that CG was visiting this afternoon....

Me:  "When you leave here, please take 'Toby' with you..."

Friend:  "Ok - you need him out of your hair?"

Me:  "Yup!  I'm not waiting on my little prince this afternoon... I have other things to do..."

Toby:  "Like WHAT?"

Me:  "CG is heading over for a while this afternoon.  I haven't seen him for a few days."

Toby:  "Oh, GOD Mom, are you guys gonna "DO-IT"?"

Me:  "MAYBE!... I told you, I haven't seen him in a while..."

'Toby' and his buddy vacated so fast it reminded me of a cartoon where they leave the little dust clouds behind their heels.... So... here I am, sipping a coffee, drinking in the peace and quiet.  Sigh...

CG is coming over, but not for a few hours, so I'm going to sit and relax, and listen to the silence in my still clean house... which will only stay that way until about half an hour after the "little darlings" are home....

Later...

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Life in the ‘Burbs…. The real version of 'Pretty Woman'.


So the other day I told you Pretty Woman is a MOVIE.  That’s true… and it’s a movie NOT based on real events, and that’s still a fact….
Now I have to tell you a story that IS in fact true.  Really.  You’re not going to believe it when you hear me out, but I cross my heart…TRUST me, this is no bullshit.
When I was married, my husband and I had a home built for us.  It was in a nice, move-up neighborhood, and for the most part we had nice neighbors…well except for the weirdos living next door… the wife was a complete psycho, and because it takes one to know one, she found a perfect match in her hideous much older husband, but that story I’ll save for another time….
THIS story is about the fairy tale that was the life of my neighbor two doors down.  Her name was one of those innocuous names from the late 50’s baby boom… let’s call her Debbie, because she sort of looked like Debbie Reynolds.  Petite and a little round, with strawberry blonde hair.  Debbie was the stay at home mom of an only child she doted on.  This kid looked very like her mother, and was a bright little thing.  She was the apple of her parents’ eye.  Debbie spent her time teaching little Debbie how to read and write before she was three years old.  Little Debbie was kept so shiny clean she almost squeaked when she walked, and she could carry on a very intelligent conversation by the time she was 7.  With adults.  She had no real clue how to relate to kids.
Big Debbie was married to a guy we’ll call Gord… not their real names… Gord was tall and lean, with a full head of dark hair and a handlebar moustache.  He owned a mechanics shop, and made a good living.  These were the people who would greet every neighbor on our end of the street as they moved in, and asked if there was anything they could help with.  They were who you called if you needed a hand, or if you were throwing a potluck because they were always there to help out, and Debbie loved to cook and entertain….. Picture the Cleavers….
Now picture the Cleavers covered in tattoos and biker gear…. THERE.  Now you have them… Debbie and Gord were a little bit of an odd fit for our little corner of suburbia.  I think it was Debbie's tattooed on earrings, wedding ring and bracelet that started that…. The diamond imbedded in her incisor added to the mystique… Gord was missing a couple of teeth, but had that fixed while he was living in the house.  My ex and I became fast friends with them over time, because they were kind and generous…..
Gord and Debbie built their house with the same builder I did… and when we started having problems with some leins put against our house by the trades who’d worked on it, I passed that information on to them… The builder story is another that would take too long to go into today, but suffice it to say, they were unscrupulous, and ripped off several of their customers, including Debbie and Gord….
When I found out there were MANY leins against my house, and Gord and Debbie’s as well, I went to the police to state my case.  A couple of months later, they came to question me about the situation.  The policeman who interviewed me was a good looking man in his 50’s, with thick salt and pepper hair and a trimmed goatee.  He had nice arms and wore a heavy silver chain bracelet, and a beautiful ring on his wedding finger.
Shortly after the interview, he went over to Debbie’s place to hear what had happened in their circumstance.  They chatted for about an hour.  The cop had parked at my place, so when they were finished talking, he came back, chatted with me for a few minutes and left.  The nanosecond he walked out the door, the phone started to ring in the house.  When I answered, it was Debbie.  She wanted to see if what I'd told the cop and what she'd told him was the same.  So, I invited her to have a coffee with me.

When we started to compare notes on the situation, she asked what I'd thought of the cop... so I told her...   I thought he was an attractive guy. He was well spoken, dressed in crisp pressed clothes, and he smelled GREAT. Let’s just say being interviewed by him didn’t seem to be a huge hardship for me.  Our conversation went something like this....

Debbie:  "So, he's really good looking, isn't he?"

Me: "Ya - I thought so, and his aftershave is really nice."

Debbie:  "Well he was a client when I was on the street.  He's cute but weird."

Me (Inside voice) "Wait.  What? Did she just say she worked on the street?... really?  No, I must've heard that wrong."

Me: "Really?............"

Debbie: "Ya - he used to just pay me to jerk off and call me names." 

Me (Inside voice)  "Wow.  She really DID mean 'on the street'... close your mouth, and try to nod.... jeez-US...stop staring at her...."

Me:  "Really.  Wow, that is a little weird...."

Me (Inside voice) "Well that just killed my picture of him... Wait.  He's MARRIED?   Close your stupid mouth, and quit with the deer in the headlights eyes... that's better, now smile and nod....."

I can't even tell you how the conversation ended, because I was really shocked... I do know she went in to telling me how when she was a prostitute she'd had the highest SDT count in the city, as though that was something you share with everyone... and she told me how her husband had been a client, but they fell in love, and he 'rescued' her from the street..... They were a very strong couple, and while I haven't seen them for years, I would bet they're still going strong.  She worshipped the ground he walked on in his big black biker boots, and he looked at her as though she was a  princess...

THAT folks is how the REAL version of how a 'working girl' gets rescued.  It ain't Richard Gere and Julia Roberts.... but I guess sometimes twisted fairy tales do come true....


Later...

Wednesday, 20 July 2011

Time for a little REALITY check....

I've armed you with a couple of books to read, and share amongst your girlfriends, and I've tried to warn you about the million mistakes I've made in my dating life, and STILL there are those among you who insist on asking my advice....Here's some for you.  I remind you, in the realm of lasting love, I couldn't find my butt with both hands... You were misguided enough to ask, so I'm gonna give you my $.02, and that's about what my advice is worth.

First of all... Date lots... if at first you don't succeed, try again.  If you don't work out with the next person you date, that's ok... date AGAIN... you will find someone you can love and respect it may just take some time...so don't waste your time on some loser you know isn't right. 

There is more than one person who could potentially "fit" with you and your baggage.  You have baggage, he is gonna have baggage... your job is to figure out whether his baggage is manageable.  If he has an ongoing substance abuse problem, or a "sex addiction" Oedipal complex, or any other whack job issue, in my opinion, his baggage is too heavy.  If YOU have an ongoing issue with substance or sex abuse or daddy issues, quit inflicting your sorry ass on other people until you get your shit together.  Seriously. GET HELP...and because you ASKED me, and I now feel omnipotent in the whole giving advice forum, here are a couple more little pearls of wisdom...

I have a couple of friends who are doing their best to move ahead in the world of dating, but need a little butt kick reality check... I have wonderful friends.  I've said that before, and I'll say it again.  BUT - there might be some things you should do differently in order to have a fighting chance with a person of substance....

My friend "B" is a great guy.  He's fun to be around, thoughtful, kind and sweet.  Because he's a great guy, I set him up with a friend a couple of years ago.  He went on the date, and enjoyed himself, laughed all night long, asked for her number, kissed her goodnight and then decided she wasn't for him... that's fine, I have no problem with that part of things, sometimes you just feel things are a little "off". 

What I DO have a problem with, is while "B" is a sweetheart, he is a "husky" guy.  He is not bad looking, but needs to drop about a hundred pounds.  Even then he's no George Cluny.  The rub here, is he decided my friend was too fat, and therefore he wasn't going to pursue the relationship.  He just couldn't see himself naked with her. 

She probably carries about 30 pounds more than she should, but she's very, very pretty.  She's also smart, successful and fun.  She's since found a guy who loves her to death, while "B" is over 46 and is still single... hmmmm... So this advice is, if you aren't Brad Pitt or Angelina Jolie, you have no right LOOKING for Brad or Angie....Pull your head out of your ASS... if you look like Donald Trump, the only way you're landing the super model is if you're super well endowed in the WALLET appendage... and trust me, she is earning what she gets....

Another friend is wondering why she can't meet her own version of "Cute Guy"... Well, HELLOOOOOO!  The fact that she's banging every guy who messages her on the dating site she belongs to, and getting her KINK on by sending skanky texts to people she's never met could be the main reason. No guy worth his salt is going to get into a meaningful relationship with someone who values themselves so little.  Really. 

A quality man won't want to picture you doing some guy in attendance at his company Christmas party.  Can't you just imagine that?

Company President:  "Hey, Bill, Merry Christmas... I'd like you to meet my wife Sally."

Bill:  "Yes... we've met before....Hi, uh... Sally... nice to s-s-s-see you again.  Have you met my wife Helen?"

Sally:  "Oh.  Hey Bill....On your KNEES!  it's MISTRESS to you, you festering pusstule!...Oh.  Helen... nice to meet you... we should get the kids together for a play date... "

Act as though you have some dignity people... if you like things a little "adventurous"  you can talk to your partner about that once you know him a little better than 3 - 4 sentences exchanged on a kinky sex dating site.  If you're not into farm animals or hanging him from a meat hook, maybe he'll be excited by the idea that you're a freak in the bedroom... Now I know there are probably some Fortune 500 companies that are run by guys who are into goats in lipstick, but they're not going to want that broadcast, and we're talking about the rule not the exception.

We've all seen Pretty Woman where the the successful, handsome guy rescues the hooker from herself.  She acts as though she has some class once the 'Come Do Me' boots come off and they live happily ever after.   Here's a little newsflash for you... that's a fucking "MOVIE".  Not even a movie based on a true story either... so GET A GRIP ON REALITY. 
My last piece of advice for today, is to remember respect is a huge part of any relationship... even with yourself, but take a realistic look at your own baggage before you make judgement about that carried by someone else...  Oh and another teeny detail?  If you keep asking my advice, I will keep giving it, so seriously.  Stop.

Later....

Sunday, 17 July 2011

Nothing like Humiliation for a little perspective....

So, Friday, I had tickets to go see three 80's bands at an outdoor venue with some friends. It's an annual concert, and has become a bit of an event for us.  The big headliners were INXS, so you get the drift... Sometimes you just have to embrace your past and go shake what your momma gave you with the other old folks in order to feel 24 again.... It was a gorgeous day, so that was just a plus.  If you've ever seen the movie Music and Lyrics, it was like that...

CG is out of town with his kids for the weekend, so I figured it was a good opportunity to hang out with my buddies from work, who rank among my favorite people in the world.  I told you before, I'm in IT which is a great joke if you know me, because the temperment of the group as a whole is very smart, analytical and thoughtful.  They are logical thinkers, and so there is no drama in the group...ok, well mostly no drama, but what happened at the concert could be construed as drama for sure.

Because there would be no parking near the venue, and since some of the people attending were gonna be working on Friday while it was my day off, I decided to go and park near the office and take a shuttle bus with one of the work peeps. 

As I've told you before, I have been trying to lose my annual 15 pounds... Managed to lose 7 of them in the last two weeks, which means I've been eating mainly lean protein and veggies. I knew they were going to feed us at this event, so I budgeted for a bit of a cheat...

Booze has a ton of calories, so I knew I would only be having maybe 3 drinks the whole evening, which even sounds more scandalous than it actually was, because the event started at 2:30 and ended at 9.... I only actually had two and a half drinks, and here's why....

One of the potential side effects from being on a low carb/high protein diet, is that some people can develop gallbladder problems... I had mine out years ago, but have had the odd attack afterward.  Apparently it's due to a spastic duct they left in, and isn't as uncommon as you might think... anyway, if you haven't seen it coming, the next part of this story wasn't much fun for me.

 I started to get some pain during the concert, even though it's been over three years since I had a problem.  I was hoping it would go away, because there were only outdoor bathrooms, and the thought of having to go lock myself in a porta potty for an hour to let it pass wasn't appealing... it was already super hot, and just the thought of being in one of those things surrounded by the smell of other people's poop was nauseating enough. 

You GOTTA know the pain's bad when that alternative became preferable to sitting in plain view having a full on attack.  Basically gallbladder pain puts your body through the ringer.  Generally speaking, you get severe pain on the right side of your abdomen, then you get really hot and sweaty, to the point where you can soak your hair and a t-shirt through, and you may be writhing around on the ground moaning with pain.  It will pass within an hour or so, and once it does, beyond being exhausted and feeling a little bruised under the right side of your ribcage, you're good to go.

As we were sitting there, the pain got worse and worse until I figured I couldn't ignore it any further. I told my good friend "D" I was headed to the porta potties because I was having a gallbladder attack, and started to walk that way.  I had told him if I wasn't back in half an hour, to come look for me.  I think he figured I was joking.  I stood up without my purse or anything and started to walk.

Problem was, I waited too long... I made it about 100 yards from my friends, in a crowd of 17 thousand people with no cell phone and nobody with me.  I started doing that pinball walk you do when you're completely loaded, and started feeling super faint.  I stopped in place, hoping my head would clear, but it didn't. 

Thankfully, there was a hay bale beside me, and I dropped onto it, probably hitting the person sitting on the other end.  I know I dropped hard, but at least I was sitting, because what happened next is a blur.  I know there was a woman who asked me if I was ok and asked what was wrong.  I told her I was having a gallbladder attack, and the next thing I know I was on the ground.

Now here we were, in a venue with booze and music, 17 thousand people and hot weather, so I know people were looking at me thinking... "Wow!  Look at that pathetic old drunk broad!"  I know I've done the same when at those things and watching some person drop.  The next thing I heard was someone saying "OMG, are you okay?!" knowing it was one of the people I'd come with.  Thankfully I'd been wearing a super bright green tank top, and she saw me fall.

EMS arrived on the scene, took my blood sugar, asked if I knew my name and where I was, and when it started to pass, took me to the ambulance they had backstage.  Once my blood pressure came back up I started feeling much better.  The paramedics were teasing me, asking if I'd faked the whole thing to get a backstage pass to see the bands... I told them that 20 years ago, flashing my boobs might have done it, but that at almost 50 I have to resort to more drastic measures... They said it was the end of their shift, and they were hoping I'd stay there to finish the last few minutes with them... It was actually as pleasant as it could be under the circumstances... they even "sent out" for a fruit plate for me to get my blood sugar up.

Once the attack fully passed, I was actually able to go and watch the rest of the show.  I was quite the celebrity in our little corner.  The people who don't know me must've wondered how I sobered up so fast...  20 years ago, I'd have been so mortified I'd have slipped out of there and changed my name and haircolor, but I actually sort of embraced it... I gave people a little excitement in an otherwise run of the mill concert...

When I sat down on the hay bale I badly bruised my tailbone, then bent my sunglasses and scraped and bruised my arm when I fell flat on my face, but mainly the only real damage was to my pride.

My thanks go out to my IT friends, because they never left my side, except when I really did have to go to the bathroom, and insisted I could make it there unescorted.  They sat outside the ambulance, and made sure I was fine.  They are a wonderful bunch of people, and I am reminded of that daily.  I am privileged to work and play with these people, and I hope they know I'd do the same for them....

Later....