I'm definitely feeling the dating itch again lately (not the free clinic kind of itch - the other kind).
I tried to act on this the other night, when I went out with friends and got it into my head that I was going to flirt fabulously with every cute man in the city, be fawned over adoringly by all around, and end successfully with an earnest marriage proposal which I would laughingly turn down but also never forget. Perhaps my image would later be carved into a giant block of ice in the town square. The usual.
It was brave of me, I will give myself that, but I always forget that being a forward as a female in this small city makes the natives start to sharpen their pitchforks and light their torches. Instead of reminding myself, oh yeah, this place is super backward, I simply drank more and became increasingly desperate to make them love me.
Men were literally backing away wordlessly from my approach. It's like when a strange dog runs up to you on the street, or your great-grandma tries to kiss you on the mouth.
"Hi, what's your name? Where are you going?"
Every time I got shot down I just went after the next one harder, mouth smiling but eye twitching like I was trying to drown out the Voices.
I am pretty sure by the end of the night I was giving off a strong "serial killer trying to lure people into her van" kind of vibe.
Not far off from the truth...
Last weekend I finally wrangled some time off to go see my friends across the state. We started out grabbing cocktails downtown, near a certain campus. We drank, we had a nice dinner, we grabbed some more cocktails at a place we had never been, and staked out the dance floor, feeling ready to move.
Cropped up at the edge, watching the young and outrageously tall slim college girls dancing in various ways that made me embarrassed for them (but seemed to be working to secure men-folk in their vicinity), I began to realize that my days in the sexual sun were waning.
Now, I ain't mad about it. I've always known this day would come. I think I've enjoyed my peak more than anyone has any right to, considering I never expected to get one at all - let alone such a long and enjoyable one. I'm ready to step aside and let these crop-topped Yetis have their moment of glory.
I was more than happy to dance on the sidelines like a Fun Aunt, holding my cocktail and periodically yelling stuff like, "I DON'T KNOW THIS SONG AT ALL! DO YOU KNOW THIS SONG?" and "THE MUSIC IS SO LOUD I CAN'T EVEN HEAR MYSELF THINK!" or "I WISH I HAD JUST WORN FLATS, MY HEELS ARE PINCHING!"
So anyway. The next night we went to a different city, one not directly in a college town, where the vibe was a weird but perfect mix of yuppie young adults on first dates trying to prove that they can be fun, and enormous groups of black girls actually having fun. We found a small club hidden behind a curtain, where the girls were riding a mechanical bull and screeching in delight, and the yuppies were bobbing stiffly along to music that I actually recognized.
Better yet, there were Go-Go dancers and poles. Anyone who knows me knows that, while I am one of the most enthusiastically shitty dancers out there, I have some internal magnet that guides me to every available pole. The Internet is full of untagged pictures of me trying my damnedest to look like I know what I'm doing.
If I just... grab right here... and maybe... turn ninety degrees to the left...
Anyway. What I'm trying to get at here was that, after some trial and error, we almost-thirties found a place where we fit in and could still have fun ignoring our approaching middle age with like-minded individuals.
And none of the men seemed scared of me (until they saw me on the pole. That effectively killed my chances of getting laid).
So, while I do have a hankering to go out on a few dates, part of me says I should just wait until I make the big move, whenever that will be, and head to the magical land where the men text back, have the perfect amount of scruff, and don't flee at my approach.
But then again... what fun would that be?