I’m proud to be published once again in The Bold Italic.
As a single female resident of the Bay Area who’s in her later 30s, I agree with Alana Massey’s sentiments, expressed in her article “The Dickonomics of Tinder,” that “dick is abundant and low value.” I also believe that I’m not having enough orgasms. Bone up, boys! In the meantime, the person with the skills, commitment and attention to detail necessary to make me cum is me. Literotica stories and my impossibly cute Japanese vibrator added value to my taco saucing, but I needed to try something new…
Photographer Jacqueline Neuwirth created an unforgettable afternoon for my friends and I. We brought our gorgeous selves along with some outfits and makeup to WeWork Berkeley. Jacqueline brought all the talent, equipment, and bottles of wine (a six pack) necessary for a fun fabulous party with stunning results.
“After several bottles of wine I realized both sides are my good side,” joked my friend L. I hate getting my photo taken but Jacqueline made me feel comfortable and beautiful. K agreed, “taking photos with a group was really fun and took away the awkwardness that can go along with having your picture taken. My shots were more relaxed and natural looking because my friends were around to make me laugh.” I’m excited to use her photographs on my social media sites. I think a photo party is a great idea for a birthday but Jacqueline would also be a great addition to any singles event and an important resource for online daters .
In fact, she’s the owner of Love Your Photos. While using dating apps like Tinder, I grew weary of seeing those shirtless bathroom selfies guys post on their profiles. I also don’t understand the photos with sedated tigers or the Iron Throne. If every shot of you is skiing, surfing, climbing, scuba diving, or jumping out of an airplane and I can’t see your face, I don’t want to date you. Also, please don’t include a shot of you lying in bed. I could go on (I realize us ladies are just as guilty with our Machu Picchu pics and Where’s Waldo group shots with our hotter friends). Call Jacqueline, take a photo, and get a date.
My friend D enthused, “what better way to channel my inner Emily Ratajkowski than with Jacqueline and friends? I had tons of fun changing outfits and practicing poses while laughing and drinking the afternoon away.” It didn’t hurt that we had sexy and talented Ensemble Mik Nawooj members there to cheer us on.
My friend L recently asserted, “don’t fucking try to mom me!” I don’t know why I “take care” of my friends the way I do. If maternal instinct is a real thing, I have it. I’m super at herding and hosting but sometimes I go too far.
OK: “Hey M, you have a pizza crumb on your face.”
Too far? Wiping said crumb off M’s face.
OK: “Are you sure you’re OK to drive D?”
Too far? Insisting that D texts me when she’s home safe.
OK: Grabbing a plate for R.
Too far? “Can I serve you some pizza R?”
OK: Forcing very drunk J to get into an Uber instead of his car.
Too far? “You can crash on my couch, J who I barely know.”
OK: Introducing two single friends at a party.
Too far? “D, why haven’t you called X yet? Give him a chance!”
OK: Buying a drink for a friend.
Too far? Feeling guilty that I’m not buying more for a friend who makes less than I do.
OK: I’ll bake cupcakes for your boyfriend’s birthday.
Too far? Baking cupcakes 6 times in two months.
Last night while watching the Warriors lose, I sat next to a smart and sensitive dude who noticed me mothering right away. He asked, “why do you do that?” and proceeded to annoyingly point out each instance. I want everyone to be happy, especially at a gathering I organized. Dude suggested “hosting” Warriors watching didn’t exactly make sense. He’s correct. I’m in danger of my friends thinking I’m a, “stupid cunt.”
I did it. I vanquished my addiction to dating apps. I deleted Bumble, Coffee Meets Bagel, Match, and Tinder from my phone for probably not forever. Dating sucks. What sucks suckier is spending too much fruitless time searching for love on a dating app. I found that I needed to search, swipe on, and sweat over dating apps multiple times a day.
I received the last message from the last guy I was chatting with from a dating app on Sunday night. He offered me a drive-by snuggle. I’d say this offer is absolutely consistent with my experience on dating apps. 99% wanted some kind of relationship of convenience (sex) and the other 1% did something like having a drag queen deliver me a custom cake on the first date.
Lots of people have had good luck with dating apps. I was not one of them. Not this time. Maybe next time? For now, I’m focused on friendships, loving myself (retching sound), and doing stuff so that I can meet new people in a way that commodifies me less. I’m doing all of this in a push up bra. JK, I don’t own a push up bra. JK, I actually do.
What are some things that I might do when I get that itch to swipe? Distracting oneself for free is a challenge. Writing is free and all-consuming (even a big ass brain would struggle to look for dates while writing). Same with reading. I challenge you to read (with comprehension) and swipe at the same time. Exercise is good (heal ankle goddam you!). Bad ideas include drinking, watching anything (TV, sports, movies) because I’ll swipe during lulls, and any tasks such as cleaning, during which I’ll find any excuse for a break.
So far, so good. I used to spend awhile each morning in bed looking at dating apps, which is now somewhat replaced by narcissistically checking my stats, but I am getting up quicker than I used to. My friends are supportive. They have been telling me for a long time to stop giving my magic away (not a euphemism). I’m dick pic free and I won’t miss reading “You baby” the next time I text some rando “What are you working on today?”
On Saturday night five friends and I went on an adventure to Bolinas. I did my New York Times research and discovered there is one restaurant and one bar there. There is also a 24 vegetable stand/art gallery on the honor system. We went there to see Ensemble Mik Nawooj, a hip hop orchestra show because I included them in my Bold Italic article and the very nice director Christopher Nichols gave us free tickets. Everything was beautiful including the scenery (water, hills, ooh, aah), the food (Mmm), and the band (Mmm Mmm).
Coast Cafe is super cute and the food is great. We drank local beer and local wine and ate raw, grilled, barbecued, and fried oysters. I still get squirmy about oysters due to a bad experience at Tomales Bay so I had fish and chips. This was my “cheat meal” for the week and I nommed up every bit. Service was good too.
The show was a Smiley’s Saloon, which has a full music calendar and a hotel in case you’re too tanked to drive on the windiest darkest road ever back home. Mik Nawooj is fucking fantastic live. My friend M said it was the best show she’s seen this year. We loved every bit of it even with the drunk noisy people trying to drown out the quieter parts. All the songs were great but I especially liked Hope Springs Eternal.
On the way home we stopped at the vegetable stand. My friends picked out spicy smelling greens and what not and dropped some cash into a lock box. Then I proceeded to drive approximately 17 MPH around the bends in my friend D’s shiny new Prius. We crept up on a fox we were so slow and quiet.
Exactly one month ago, I badly sprained my ankle and foot trying to be sexy in very high heels for a man I no longer know. This Saturday it will be two months since I was ghosted by another man I (obviously) no longer know. My foot still hurts. My heart still hurts. Still feeling these hurts makes me frustrated with myself and grumpy.
I get mad at myself for not getting out there more, even as my foot hurts so much that I avoid going to the grocery store because my car is parked too far away. I go on app dates and ruminate over and chase around strangers, even as I tell myself I need a break to feel independent and my therapist tells me not to date unless it’s really worth it.
Also, I let myself gain a lot of weight (my pants’ top button is unfastened as I type). I could blame the six weeks of prednisone followed by the four weeks of not exercising (sprain), but I blame myself. How much crap exactly did I think I could shove in my face without facing consequences? Grumpy!
What’s my plan? I can’t heal my foot any faster. Dating? Ugh, I don’t want to do it. Soooo disappointing. I do have a plan to lose some weight. My friend T is going to Croatia this summer and has set for herself the ambitious goal to lose 15 pounds in two months. I’m following Tiffany’s plan and back at weekly Weight Watchers meetings. Having a diet buddy is fun. We send each other pics of our healthy lunches sometimes.
T had the dating project, then the nicer apartment hunting project, and now the Croatia in a bikini project. Clearly for both of us, vanity related problems are the easier problems to deal with.