The rest of my knowledge

 

29 THINGS I HAVE LEARNED IN 29 YEARS:

a list in 29  31days

Day Thirty-One: two days late – all the rest of myknowledge

6. Don’t let a boy give you a hickey.

Hickeys are really gross.  And tacky.  Don’t let them happen to you!  It’s pretty easy to tell if someone is bruising your neck with their mouth, so just make them stop.

Addendum: If by some chance you do get a hickey, it better be in the winter. Be thankful that it is winter time and you happen to have a great assortment of turtlenecks.

7. Smart girls are cool.

This will always be true. Reading is cool. Knowing things is cool. Don’t dumb yourself down.

8. Don’t let a strange man into your apartment.  

Does this really need explaining? It only takes one time to learn this lesson. (Even smart girls can make dumb mistakes.)

9. If you see a sign that says ‘Tow Away Zone’, take it seriously.

This an expensive mistake to make. (Again, smart girl – dumb decision)

10 There is a big difference between dishwashER detergent and dishwashING detergent. 

You will notice this difference by whether or not there are soap suds and bubbles all over your kitchen floor.

11. Wear a belt.

Your pants may seem to fit perfectly in the morning, but this is an illusion. By the time you get off of work, your pants will be a different size. Unless you want your pants to slowly start creeping down your ass while you are carrying groceries and cannot pull them back up again, just wear the belt.

12. Write thank you notes.

People appreciate it. Show them that you were raised with manners. I’m pretty sure my grandmother never forgave me for not writing any thank you notes after I received graduation presents when I was 18. Is 11 years too late? I really did appreciate the towels.

13. High heels aren’t really worth it.

A typical person will put up with a lot of unpleasant situations in their lifetime. It’s part of the deal – usually you just have to smile and get through it. But you do not have to consciously torture your feet. If you stand too long, even flat shoes will make your feet hurt. Screw the heels.If for some reason you do have to wear heels, put some flats in your purse.

14. If you find an article of clothing that is REALLY flattering, buy it in 3 colors.

Just don’t wear it all 3 days in a row. You’ll be fine.

15. Cooking really isn’t that hard.

This I have only learned VERY recently. I may be 29, but just six months ago I prepared most of my meals in the microwave. But guess what? There are directions for cooking. It’s called recipes. I have successfully prepared multiple meals at this point without burning my apartment building down.

16. My mother is a Saint.

She’s pretty much the best mom ever. She puts up with a lot silly shit – not only from me but from my sisters as well. I want you to imagine how awful teenage girls are….now multiply that times 3. My mother lived with that every day for approximately 10 years and didn’t murder anyone. Plus, she always has time to talk on the phone (or returns my calls promptly). Lately, most of these calls are me asking really dumb cooking questions (please see #14).

17.Your parents are not perfect.

They used to be your age. They make mistakes like everybody else.

18. Go to your college classes.

You might think that in the long run skipping class won’t matter. But there may come a day when your 26 year-old self has to explain your 21 year-old GPA.

19. Don’t take pictures holding cigarettes or beer cans.

It’s just tacky.

20. Say please and thank you.

People appreciate it.

21. Be skeptical of any man you meet on the internet.

Yes, we live in an age where internet dating is more common than ever and no longer carries a negative stigma. However, in my experience, most of the guys who converse with online will turn out to be a) dumb, b) boring, or c) looking for an excuse to send you a picture of their penis.

22.  The most perfect guy ever is Westley from The Princess Bride.

Let’s see:

  • He senses when you are in trouble (or you know, kidnapped) and drops his lucrative pirating business to rescue you.
  • He had the forethought to build up an immunity to iocaine power.
  • If you throw a hissy-fit and PUSH HIM DOWN A MOUNTAIN, he’s not even mad!
  • He will kill a large rodent to defend you, even when you are just too lazy get up off the ground.
  • He will jump into a pit of lightning sand to save you.
  • Basically every time you do something dumb, he is going to try and make it better.
  • He will come back from the dead for you, his true love. *swoon*
  • He’s smart – could you have come up with a better way to storm the castle?
  • He would never try to text you a picture of his penis.

Oh, and there is this:

 

23. Make an effort to stay in touch with your friends.

You never know when you will need them. And liking a facebook status does not count as maintaining a friendship.

24. When you move into your own apartment, there are a few must have items.

A broom, a first aid kit, and a plunger. Do not wait until you need a plunger, just have one!

25. Invest in good bras.

Just do it. And make sure you are buying the right size. Your boobs will thank you.

26. Lots of people have no idea what they are doing most of the time. 

Fake it til you make it is an acceptable strategy for getting through lots of things.

27. You are allowed to say no some times.

Don’t feel obligated to do things you don’t want to do. You don’t have to stretch yourself too thin. You don’t have to be the one who helps out every single time. It’s ok to hang out on the couch and do nothing on occasion. It’s therapeutic.

28. Stick to your deadlines.

Clearly, this is something I am still working on since I planned on being done with this list two days ago. I’m not perfect.

29. Change can be good.

Moving from Mississippi to Illinois might be completely terrifying. But, if you’re lucky, it just might work out okay.

Ok, Cupid, Where are you hiding the normal guys?

Welcome to Part 2 of my online dating adventures.  As I stated in Part 1, I went on a few dates with guys from OkCupid when I first moved here, but after some dates varying from mediocre to not-so-great I had to take a break for a while.  The break ended about a month ago, when I actually started browsing OKC’s website again.  I decided I needed to put myself ‘out there’ again, and I promised myself that I was actually going to go out with someone (as opposed to clicking through tons of profiles haphazardly and accepting my impending spinsterhood).

John sent me a message.  It said:

  • I think you are cute wow, and when I read you very a bubbly personality, that’s adorable, and then you might have an accident (he means accent). I’m hoping you message me. Sorry I never actually said hi, lol Hinthere. I’m John. I’m very much the creative type to, I’m out there doing stand up and have a side job to pay the bills as well. So tell me more about you…what’s your name?

Since I was trying not to be too judgmental, I decided to  let the spelling errors slide.  He seemed pretty normal, so I messaged him back.  We exchanged phone numbers and sent a few texts back and forth.  Mostly we talked about tv shows we liked.  A few days later, John asked if I wanted to get together for a drink over the weekend.

He wanted to meet in Bucktown (a neighborhood a bit south of me).  I chose a bar around the corner from a friend’s house and told John to meet me at 1:30 on Saturday.  I spent most of the morning running errands, so by the time I got to the bar I was starving.

John seemed nice enough.  Not great looking but very friendly.  I ordered food which meant I was committed to sitting with this guy long enough for a meal.  That’s when the fun really started.  Some fun highlights included: a story about how he got kicked out of Canada, he wants to be a stand up comedian but he doesn’t want to make people laugh, and he’s written a book (just for himself, not published) about his previous jobs dressing as an elf or bunny.  But here’s what really stood out:

Red flag #1:  He referred to his sister as ‘evil spawn’.  The first time he mentioned this, I thought it was just a joke.  But he continued to talk about how much he hated his sister. Even if you have the most dysfunctional of families, please don’t share this information on a first date.  PLUS, if your sister once tried to convince your family that you were beating up your mom (whether it was true or not), don’t tell anybody, EVER!

Red flag #2:  He is 30 and works at a deli.  Ok, I know the job market is in the toilet these days BUT it wasn’t just the fact that he works in a deli.  He has only been working there for a month, and he told me a story about calling in sick to work and having his boss chew him out about.  I think I responded by saying something like, “Yeah, sometimes you get sick.”  He made a face that made me think ‘sick’ was code for ‘hung over’ or ‘just don’t feel like it’.  He didn’t say it outright, but I am sensing that this guy has been fired a time or two before.

  •  Can I just say that we are at 2 Red Flags and my food has JUST arrived.  I knew at this point that John and I would not be sharing a lasting connection.  However, I could tell that the club sandwich and I were meant for each other.

Red flag #3:  Trying to maintain to most basic of conversation I asked “Where did you go to school?” His answer was about high school…and high school only.  This would have been bad enough, but then he went on to explain that he went to the alternative school (for kids with behavior problems, I think?) and didn’t even finish.  He got his G.E.D.

  • I tried to focus on my sandwich.  But I must have an amazing poker face, because he just kept on sharing.  Which brings us to…

Red flag #4:  Towards the end of the meal, he said he needed to be honest with me.  (Oh no, this can not be good.)  His announcement was (drum roll please)  He still lives with his ex-girlfriend.  SAY WHAT!?!  They broke up in October and he’s too nice to kick her out because she’s uneployed and blah, blah, blah.  At this point my face could no longer stay disconnected from my brain and my face must have given everything away.  “You’re judging, aren’t you.”  I responded truthfully saying something about this being a surprise and a complicated situation.

Here’s what I should have said, “Of COURSE, I’m judging.  You just told me that you hate your sister, you never graduated high school, and even though you are living with your ex-girlfriend you are looking for dates online!”  But I didn’t say this.  I’m too nice.  Finally, it was time to pay and leave this disaster behind.  John mentioned maybe wanting to go out again, and I smiled and said maybe and then practically ran to my friend’s house.

If you ever have a bad date, you should definitely immediately take your gay friend to see Catching Fire and forget about ending up like a cat lady.  That’s what I did, and it turned out to be a splendid afternoon.

Thank you, Peeta and Katniss. You saved my Saturday.

A few days after the date, John sent me a text that said something like this:

  • Kate, you’re really sweet and a great girl.  I don’t think this is a good time for me to be dating anyone.  I hope you find what you’re looking for.

That’s right – he’s the one who officially broke it off.  I was relieved but at the same time a little ticked that he was the one to do it first.  The lesson here: Never excuse spelling errors and bad grammar.  You will regret it.

I’m kind of on another break from OkCupid.

Sad, Single-Girl Behavior

I’m single. And I’m ok with this (most of the time). I’m mature, responsible, professional – all acceptable attributes for a 27 year old – except when it comes to the opposite sex. My romantic age is probably on par with a 12 year old’s. Sometimes, I can be a little boy crazy. I have crushes – lots of them! Tall guy standing next to me at the coffee shop, I noticed him before you and have started planning our first date. I won’t actually talk to him – just plan our entire future before he can say ‘grande caramel macchiato’. Is that a cute boy on the train? Nope, he’s actually my new fiance’. Unfortunately, our engagement will have to end at the Addison stop on the Red Line. I realize this behavior is completely silly and not at all productive in the long run, but I’m having fun! Isn’t that what being single is all about?

Usually, I’m very content to live in my adolescent-boy-crazy-dream world. But occasionally, my singleness catches me off guard, and I think, “Wow, I’m becoming one of those sad, single girls.” Here’s a list of my most common Sad, Single-Girl Behaviors:

1. When you check out at the grocery store, and the only items in your cart are Diet Coke, individual sized frozen pizzas, red wine, and toilet paper. You can bet the cashier is super jealous of your life. (The situation is only intensified when you realize it’s Saturday night.)

2. You arrive at a Red Box and suddenly a crowd forms. There’s no way to hide the fact that you are returning 3 movies (and you watched them all last night). And you can’t just jam those movies in one after the other – it takes what seems like an eternity for the machine to allow you to insert the second disc. Red Box is mocking your sad social life. You walk away after returning all three movies, even though you were hoping that Magic Mike would be available. Maybe next time.

3. Your friend asks you to meet her out, but you decline. Your reason: you just started recovering your ripped sofa cushion. Who needs the bar when you have your sewing machine?

4. When your plans for the evening fall through, you aren’t disappointed because you can keep watching back to back episodes of The Following all night on Hulu. (And doesn’t Kevin Bacon look good for his age? And your newest crush is definitely the young FBI agent with the steely, blue eyes and leather jacket.)

5. You get really excited when the grocery store is selling pieces of cake by the slice (albeit, very giant slices). You can buy cake without buying a whole cake, so you buy two slices. (This behavior wasn’t quite as sad as the others because I needed two sittings to finish one piece of cake. I guess that makes slightly sad, single-girl behavior.)

6. You have been on the okcupid website so much, you are starting to recognize most of the locals in your area.

7. Since you have no cable, you rely on the hulu for all your t.v.-watching needs. When you check the website and see there are zero shows in your queue, it’s enough to bring tears to your eyes.

Whenever I find myself in the midst of S.S-G.B, I try to move on. I try not to get bogged down in the ‘I’m in my late 20’s and when was my last real relationship and will anyone ever love me’ way of thinking. And if those crazy thoughts persist, I go to a crowded place and search for my future husbands.